In many science fiction novels and films, there is speculation about the concept of a ‘Space Ark’a huge ship in which there can literally be cities inside, so that on long star voyages, which can last decades, this enormous crew can even advance with generations born within the ship itself.
Well, that, so far away, is what Jeff Bezos dreams of. The Amazon founder, now focused on his space company Blue Origin, believes this may be possible one day.
During a recent interview with podcaster Lex Fridman, Bezos said that these habitats, like those first described by science fiction writer Gerard K. O’Neill, could allow astronomical numbers of humans to survive.
“I would love to see a billion humans living in the solar system”, he told Fridman. “If we had a billion humans, we would have, at any given time, 1,000 Mozarts and 1,000 Einsteins.”
“The only way to get to that vision is with giant space stations,” Bezos added. “Planetary surfaces are simply too small.”
Bezos believes that the Earth will be a museum in the future
The Blue Origin CEO’s vision is strikingly different from that of his main space competitor, Elon Musk, CEO of SpaceX, who claims to be working to make humanity “multiplanetary” and establish cities on other planets like Mars.
In fact, The CEO of SpaceX has reiterated on numerous occasions that the ultimate goal of his company is to colonize Mars. So much so, that on occasion he has mentioned the possibility of terraforming the planet by launching nuclear missiles against its poles, in such a way that the temperature of the star increases.
However, NASA has had to take action on the matter to warn that this initiative would not be effective, since the effects of the atomic bombs would be transitory and conditions would not be sustained over time to ensure a habitable ecosystem.
For its part, Elon Musk also sees no coherence in Jeff Bezos’ plan, since the logistics would be too complicated. “Large amounts of mass would need to be transported from planets, moons or asteroids,” she said. “It would be like trying to build the United States in the middle of the Atlantic Ocean.”
But the Amazon founder’s vision of what the Earth will become is grimmer.. He believes our planet would end up being a vacation destination, allowing us to hop on a ship to visit it, the “same way you could go to Yellowstone National Park,” he told Fridman.
The CEO also sounded optimistic about the future of artificial intelligence, telling Fridman that people are “overly concerned” about the dangers of the technology.