TED Conversations

Amrut Deshmukh

Student, School of Scholars

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Is moving out on moon for Space exploration a wastage of money and time instead of which we can develop the country itself.

Instead of wasting money on the space explorations cant we spend all that amount into the development of a particular country and the human resources of that country. Cant we upgrade the quality of the education, civil developments and all other important aspects which we need from a ideal country.Cant we reduce the poverty level of that country. Lets Discuss !!!

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    Aug 29 2011: Amrut, You are right upto some extent. In India, we need proper division of resources for different causes. And any country's first motive should be providing proper living conditions to its inhabitants, which unfortunately seems last thing of concern among all things, specially in India. When this comes to developed countries, Space exploration and search of God particles are two important things that humans need and can yeild to spectacular results in future, which may pave way to better human life and better understanding of our universe.
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      Aug 29 2011: Yes, you absolutely correct Vivek. This is the biggest concern at these times. The country should concentrate wherever it lacks. Thanks for your valuable answers.
  • Aug 29 2011: Considering the billiards game that our universe is it's only a matter of time before this rock gets taken out by another, I don't see how spreading to other rocks could possibly be considered a waist of anything as it exponentially improves our odds of surviving as a species.
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    Sep 27 2011: Amrut --

    Yes.

    Space exploration is an indulgence that should not be undertaken given the state of our globe.

    Andrea
  • Aug 28 2011: No, in my opinion it is not a waste of time. By researching moon we learn a lot about history of our solar system and physical processes underlining it, and that knowledge is permanent! Computer chips for example function because of quantum mechanical effects, If we wouldn't be curious we would be still living in caves, or not even that.

    But I hear what are you worried about. I think it's absolutely neccesary to get more knowledge/understanding, as we can benifit greatly by doing so - maybe employing them in future to adress or solve some of those problems, even if we have worldwide problems of poverty, famine, underdevelopment, etc.. I think quality of human life will greatly increase over next decades and poverty will eventually get negligible. But that doesn't mean we should quit thinking about the problem or searching for new solutions, we should encourage international collaboration which should focus on long term goals - in terms of providing energy sources and technology to badly developed countries (like nuclear reactors, solar pannels, wind turbines), so they can build industry and become autonomous faster, and thus able to combat famine/drougth more effectively. Food and water is only temporary fix, it is like giving a heroin addict a shot, it certainly won't solve the problem he must go on rehabilitation.
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      Aug 29 2011: Yes, I do agree you but as I was talking about poverty and unemployment these are the two main problems in the country like India. So there must be a limit of investing in the big space projects. Here in India 900 Billion $ per annum are invested in space research and other space projects and on the other side the same country has 29% of its population under poverty line and 12% unemployed. So what do you think about this condition...

      @ Mr. Anony mouse
      By Amrut Deshmukh
      • Aug 29 2011: Honetly I think it is up to your government to decide.

        Where did you get those informations - can you give me referrences?

        According to http://www.wolframalpha.com/input/?i=India&lk=1&a=ClashPrefs_*Country.India-

        Unemployment rate of india is 4.4% and poverty 27.5% that is around year 2004-2005, but still it can't be so far off can it?

        According to: http://www.thespacereview.com/article/1265/1 :

        "Today the Indian space program is funded at 40.74 billion rupees, or over $800 million, and includes 16,500 people spread all over the country."

        That is more than 1000 times less than what you are mentioning. It also provides employment for 16500 people.

        I agree poverty rate in india is problematic, but it is also hard to make great social changes to erraditace poverty. Also $800 milion is not a huge portion of GDP - which is 1.53 trilion. If people all over the world would work on erradicating poverty there would be no space exploration for quite few years... By the way In US there is 12% poverty rate (2004) and 11.1% in Russia (2006).
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    Sep 27 2011: i don't think its a waste of time and money. Agreed there are problems in our country like corruption, poverty, unequal distribution of basic amenities but we cannot focus on one thing at one time. Our students, engineers, require lot of opportunities and diverse platforms to use their skills. Taking the case of India, we have different courses ranging from nano technology to space sciences and a student can be interested in any of them. It will not be appropriate to deny these opportunities to our students just because we have many burning problems to be solved. Other wise we will again go back to the time when students of IIT Delhi after taking a course in nuclear technology used to go to CERN and other nuclear research institutions abroad. That's brain drain.

    Now are going to stop our bright minds from going for such courses? Are we going to stop such courses in educational institutions? That will be ridiculous. We can't expect a 'rocket engineer' to start working on a effective public food distribution system. Also these recent advances in space science is the result of human endeavour to know more about universe and is commendable.

    What can be done is make people contribute towards the problems of poverty, naxalism, terrorism etc in their own way. Make it a compulsion to give back something to the society in their own way, may be finance, may be infrastructure, service, anything. Just as Infosys leads in IT sector which was unimaginable 20 yrs back. Its one of the founder is working on UID project. That is what i mean by giving back to the society.!!!
  • Aug 30 2011: I believe India will get highly technologically developed as well and living conditions will improve (but maybe it will take some time 50,75,100 years? - to be on economical par with US for example). It has better potential to grow than US because of it's large population, it just needs a really good management - government :)