Last week I sent former SSI Vice President and forever Emeritus Board Member Gregg Maryniak a heads up that we were ready to start putting his 1992 SSI presentation to the AIAA up on the Space Studies Institute YouTube Channel and he wrote back inviting me to call for a chat. We spoke for about an hour of several things that I’m trying to work into future SSI posts but for right now I want you to know that Gregg is happy and well, Singularity University is happy and well, and Gregg hopes that you will enjoy the video.
I know that you will enjoy it.. it is an amazing video and very easy to see why the AIAA named Gregg a Distinguished Fellow for this presentation.
The entire original tape runs two hours, right now we have the first half ready for viewing and the second half will be coming along within a few days.
This is an SSI Classic: Space Studies Institute Executive Director Gregg Maryniak presents SSI’s The Harvest of Space at the AIAA Ventura-Pacific meeting in Oxnard, California April 22nd, 1992.
Talk about a session that packs it all in. Space Solar Power at 12:52, Bill Brown and the powerbeaming demo at 18:45 (far as I know, this is the only way you can now see that original Brown-voiced reel), Why don’t we have all this at 29:00, The Moon as a supermarket at 32:00, Mass Drivers at 35:00 and, as the announcers say “so much more!” :-).
I’ll let you know with a post on the SSI Facebook page when we have part two ready for watching. Spoiler: Along with even more of the historical SSI core, part two has a geologically historic moment as you’ll be seeing how the Joshua Tree Earthquake could sway the buildings of Southern California but not sway this Chicagoan from his focus :-).
That’s not the only video we hope you’ll make time to watch.
Several months ago long-time SSI Senior Associate Robert Sugg sent us a huge stack of SSI documents and files that we are scanning for research use and among them was a video that his father recorded over the air… of Carl Sagan addressing the Emerging Issues Forum in 1990.
Sagan and O’Neill had different ideas about the uses for Space (Jim Muncy has a great anecdote telling his view of both men in the May 1992 Newsletter), I’ve even heard The O’Neill/Sagan relationship described as ‘The Beatles vs The Rolling Stones – with the wrong guy wearing a Beatles haircut’ But in the end, this video shows that there were common concerns for the future of Earth underneath the differing opinions of the role Human Beings should play in Space.
And there’s another video that you really have to see, it’s been on the SSI YouTube Channel for a while but its viewing count tells me that I’ve not done enough to point it out. YouTube pros say that people today have very short attention spans and long is bad… but this 59 minute video is great and it is worth your time. It’s Jo Franklin’s wrap up episode of her documentary series “The Great Space Race”, titled “The Next Civilization”.
Yesterday morning I put it on while I was making my coffee and the next thing I knew I was four cups in and still sitting at the table watching instead of mowing my poor lawn. Yes, there are hindsight issues, we always think the future is closer than it turns out to be. Yes, there are some dated visuals… but the interview segments with SSI’s (and NASA’s) Thomas Paine plus Gerard K. O’Neill, Freeman Dyson and many others on all sides of the question of Humanity Beyond Earth are simply timeless. This debate, alas, continues in much the same way right now and knowing the feelings of the brightest minds from all generations is good knowledge to have.
For a long time the Great Space Race series was a top seller at the NASM and if you don’t want to pay the high prices for used on ebay I believe that you can get copies of the complete set or individual episodes by dropping a note to Seacastlefilms AT gmail.com .
We won’t be able to make this video available for free for much longer, Ms. Franklin would really like to produce an updated addition to The Great Space Race series and allowed us to show episode 4 for a limited time to help that cause. I think a production with her experience behind it would be truly excellent… I wish I could think of a good idea for how she might jump-start such a project.
If you have YouTube on your smart TV or Roko why not play it on the big screen for the whole family. YouTube on a small screen is fine for little things, but Space is big and a real PBS production like The Next Civilization deserves a real viewing experience.