Race to Space heats up with Amazonian joining the fray

It was Paul Allen who started it. Then Richard Branson jumped in, as he always does in any remotely cool, outlandish project, with the world’s first galactic venture — Virgin Galactic. Sergey Brin likes an elevator idea better, so does his pal Larry.

Bezos professed his love for the stars last year too, and now has something to show for it. More details on that from the man himself here.

Shaped like a gherkin, it went up to an altitude of 285 feet, or 87 metres, hardly stratospheric yet. As for speed, lets just say it wobbled its way awkwardly up the skies. pic1.jpg

But those who know me should also know I am a big fan of space travel. And any venture that explicitly states a vision towards living and travelling between the stars is an awfully exciting venture for me. There’s nothing that makes me more regretful when I think back of the day i turned my back on an engineering degree, and childhood dreams of being an astronaut. (okay, maybe only fleetingly, i was never cut out to be a good physicist, and Singapore having a space program was as ridiculous as travelling from Earth to the Sun)

Still, it is uplifting to know that successful entrepreneurs of our time, like Jeff Bezos, Sergey, Larry, and the earlier Paul Allen of Microsoft fame, are putting their money into the future. God knows how many failures there will be but the trend has definitely been set and the wheels (or rather wings and booster fuel) put in motion for space flight to be on the same development trajectory as airplane flight which we take for granted today.

Jeff Bezos might only have clocked 87 metres in his latest spacefaring alternative, we might only have had one single SpaceShipOne as we await the launch of Virgin Galactic and there might only have been 4 private space tourists/ travellers so far but that number is still better than 0. I have faith in private sector-led entrepreneurship, i just hope i have the chance to celeberate that faith 30 years from now from an orbit around Earth, or beyond. =)

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