Usually when I see an hour long speech on youtube I turn it off when my attention wonders for a minute. This talk, however, literally hypnotized me
from the first minute till the end, where I nearly applauded! He basically said everything I've thought about space, the economy, NASA, politics,
frontiers, culture, eduction and the history of great exploration undertakings on this planet for years.
The original upload of this is already the highest rate:view count in the science section on youtube, it's going to be massive soon.
Neil to Earth - Reality Check - Best Neil DeGrasse Tyson speech - Space as Culture
He covers how to boost start our space exploration as a frontier to give our population something to dream about tomorrow, because it is the act of
discovery that empowers an innovative culture, as the discoveries are write large in the press, how to solve our economy, how to bypass the whims of
political discourse ... loads more.
I highly recommend watching it rather than reading the text below, the way he puts things and his enthusiasm is really quite contagious. He's a
I want to talk about space, not as spin offs, not as weather satellites, no.
I want to talk to you about space as culture.
Space, as culture.
You know the first hunk of hardware that had the power to exit earth atmosphere was the V2 rocket. Verner Von Brown and everyone knew that if we have
any future in space it will have to borrow some of that technology if not all of it.
The 1950s descends upon us. You remember the v2 rocket, it was kind of bullet shaped, had these huge fins? Fins. CARS had fins in the 1950s! Where do
you think those fins came from? I propose a test, you could probably dig up the designers of those cars and they would probably just say “well fins
just look cool” they are probably not even thinking about the v2 rocket, even if they are it's probably not in their frontal lobe. But our cars had
fins. When did the fins go away? When we learned that the v2 shape and the fins is not the shape we are going to need to get to the moon.
Saturn five emerges, the fins go away. What happened to the fins? So maybe the designer thought it's played itself out. Or maybe deep down inside
space was operating on their creativity.
So what happens, the 60s are underway. We are going to the moon, everybody knows it. Everyone is innovating, we have an innovative culture, you know
this because every day a space story garners the headlines. Something new to think about daily. Each mission previously more adventurous than the
So when did we go to the moon? That was 1968. Everyone was dreaming about tomorrow, thats what the world fair was all about. It wasn't about
yesterday, or today, but about tomorrow. The kind of tomorrow that could only be brought into the present by scientists and engineers. And people knew
How else is space influencing, ok how about the uni-sphere. Gorgeous Earth just sitting there. It's got three rings around it. Ask the designers,
they will probably say that the three orbits of John Glenn did not influence them, but the rings are there, and they are going polar, not
The 1960s is the bloodiest decade in american history since the civil war since the 1860s. Servicemen are killed weekly, reported in by the papers,
the civil rights movement playing out, campus unrest.
The bloodiest year in that most bloody of decades? 1968. The Tet offensive. Martin Luther King assassinated. JFK assassinated. Yet somehow we were
still able to dream about tomorrow. It was still in us, it still mattered. It's what birthed the star trek television series.
The twilight zone was also heavily influenced by space. Our presence in space is effecting not only the engineers and the mathematicians and the
scientists, it's effecting the creative dimension of that which we call culture. We are living it at every turn. Hardly what I would call special
What happens December 1968, how do you cap off that year? Apollo 8. A lot of people have never heard of it, it's a very unappreciated mission. Excuse
me, that was the first time anyone ever left Earth, with a destination in mind. Figurating around the moon. The photo of Earth rising over the lunar
landscape is iconic.
That photo, we all know it, Earth Rise over the Moon. There was Earth, not as the map maker would have you identify to it as, no it was not color
coded with boundaries. It was seen as nature intended it to be view2ed. Oceans, land, clouds.
We went to the moon; and we discovered Earth.
And I claim we discovered Earth for the first time.
This was an AWESOME speech by Tyson, and thanks for finding and posting, OP
So many valid points made about the curiosity and interest in future space explorists, and that is what will be needed for the brave future
volunteers. His list of 'space-innovated ideologies' were accurate in my opinion, as he was able to make the connection that the world stopped
looking at Earth in boundaries and as the center of the universe- thanks for the view of Earth from afar.
Thanks! I just listened to the entire DeGrasse speech (mods, please let me know if I can use the word DeGrasse) and learned things as well as being
exposed to his interesting views on space and culture and the connections involved. I won't give away any spoilers, but will agree that yes, this
speech is worth listening to and, if possible, to share with the politicans of your choice (the trick is to have them actually listen to it and react
edit on 7-5-2013 by Aleister because: (no reason given)
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