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Mars Entertainment

Mars One Has 78,000 Applicants 355

Posted by Unknown Lamer
from the send-me-to-space dept.
An anonymous reader writes "Mars One reports that 78,000 people have volunteered for a one-way ticket to Mars. A quick calculation shows that this means people lined up coast-to-coast in a line with only 40cm per person! (As Robert Zubrin already predicted). If you want, you can still go and sign up (or sign up your worst enemy). Or you can just look at some videos of the would-be travelers."
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Mars One Has 78,000 Applicants

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  • by dtmos (447842) * on Wednesday May 08, 2013 @11:48AM (#43666131)

    I can think of several people that I would like to volunteer for a one-way ticket to Mars. Were these volunteers self-nominated, or did Mars One accept third-party nominations?

    • by Anonymous Coward on Wednesday May 08, 2013 @11:53AM (#43666181)

      You know my ex-husband too and his mistress?

    • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

      by Princeofcups (150855)

      I can think of several people that I would like to volunteer for a one-way ticket to Mars. Were these volunteers self-nominated, or did Mars One accept third-party nominations?

      More importantly, how many responders are serious? Would they really climb into a craft to go to mars? I'd wager around, let's see, none.

      • by h4rr4r (612664) on Wednesday May 08, 2013 @12:17PM (#43666495)

        I will wager you are wrong.
        Not all 78,000 will, but I bet you could find at least 100 that would. Being first to mars, or among the first will be a huge draw.

        • by Loether (769074)

          First to mars or last, I'd still love to go. I love travel and it's been a dream of mine for as long as I can remember to go to space. I can't think of a more exciting place to travel than Mars. Even if I was not the first person to set foot on Mars. Just for the ability to see Earth from orbit, I'd go all the way to Mars. After seeing Earth from orbit, the rest is just gravy. Sure you might never make it back, but most people never have a chance to complete a lifelong crazy dream. Sign me up! So lo

        • I considered it.

          I won't pretend it's for mankind or science or anything like that - I'd be doing it because people would remember my name for having done something somewhat insane, with few harmful side-effects. That mankind would benefit or science would benefit is great, but it would be a side-effect.

          Because I could carve a plaque that said "I was here first, bitch. Suck on that, you second-place losers." I would do my damndedst to ensure that I was remembered not only as the First Man On Mars, but also b

      • by mrsquid0 (1335303) on Wednesday May 08, 2013 @12:31PM (#43666663) Homepage

        I suspect that most of the people who are applying are planning to take advantage of being on a reality tv show. Everything but the last round is going to happen on Earth, so the vast majority of the applicants know that they will never make it to Mars and simply want to take advantage of whatever fame and fortune come with being on the Mars One tv show over the next few years, which could be considerable.

    • On an only slightly related note, this article missed a huge chance to use one of the favorite words of geeks everywhere: "archenemy".
    • by c (8461) <beauregardcp@gmail.com> on Wednesday May 08, 2013 @12:54PM (#43666935)

      I can think of several people that I would like to volunteer for a one-way ticket to Mars.

      I'd pledge $5 to the "Send Snooki Home" kickstarter...

    • I can think of several people that I would like to volunteer for a one-way ticket to Mars. Were these volunteers self-nominated, or did Mars One accept third-party nominations?

      People generally fill out their own applications and there's a fee (I think, $38 US via PayPal).

      And... you all do know that an applicant does not *have* to go if chosen, right?

    • by TWiTfan (2887093)

      Send Phillip Fry. I'm getting sick of that guy and all his damned accomplishments.

  • I know the idea of going to Mars sounds awesome, but are there that many emotionally stable and qualified applicants who will sign up to be the first to die on another planet?

    I think this is a bad way to go about this.

    • by StefanJ (88986) on Wednesday May 08, 2013 @12:00PM (#43666273) Homepage Journal

      If you read the Mars One, you'll see that they're counting on revenue from a reality program to fund the project.

      So, the candidates must not only be emotionally stable and qualified, but be photogenic and charming enough to sustain the interest of viewers.

      Imagine the horror if, after three years, all of the surviving colonists turn out to be phlegmatic, agreeable, no-drama workaholics and stable family-minded folks.

      "These rating are terrible! My God, it's turned into The Waltons in space! Can we ship in some ninjas or a killer robot to liven things up?"

      • by gstoddart (321705) on Wednesday May 08, 2013 @12:03PM (#43666321) Homepage

        If you read the Mars One, you'll see that they're counting on revenue from a reality program to fund the project.

        Awesome, I've been expecting that sooner or later reality TV would go in the direction of people dying for years now.

        I'm sure the dying moments of these people will make for really awesome ratings.

        What a dumb fscking idea.

        • by Sarten-X (1102295) on Wednesday May 08, 2013 @12:22PM (#43666557) Homepage

          Is that a problem?

          What dying moments will be broadcast? Ideally, the travelers would survive long enough to set up a viable sustainable colony, whose expenses could be handled by a large enough trust fund. By the time they die of natural causes, the reality show would be long-since off the air.

          In a less ideal situation, the travelers' catastrophic dying moments are broadcast to the world, and the travelers are martyrs in the ongoing process of human exploration. This is a known risk, which all the travelers must accept before volunteering. Why, then, would it be a problem to broadcast the unintentional deaths of these brave folks? The chance of their sudden death is something they accept... why can't we viewers accept it as well?

          • by gstoddart (321705) on Wednesday May 08, 2013 @12:32PM (#43666675) Homepage

            The chance of their sudden death is something they accept... why can't we viewers accept it as well?

            This isn't a chance. It's a 1 way trip. They'll either die on Mars, die taking off, or die getting there. But, they *will* die.

            Of course viewers will accept it, they'll embrace it -- pretty much like they embraced gladiatorial and watching public executions and watching decapitation videos on the internet.

            I somehow doubt that a Mars mission funded by a reality show is going to create a viable self sustaining colony which allows these people to die of natural causes.

            I can accept an astronaut signing up for something which is risky, but has a reasonable chance of working. But I'm a little creeped out by a guaranteed death sentence from a one way mission operated by a private company who wants to have a reality show.

            • by Anonymous Coward on Wednesday May 08, 2013 @12:47PM (#43666855)

              I'm a little creeped out by a guaranteed death sentence from a one way mission

              why? were you creeped out when you learned that europeans sailed to the americas?

              It's a 1 way trip. They'll either die on Mars, die taking off, or die getting there. But, they *will* die.

              spoiler alert, everybody dies. i'd rather be one of the first people to live and die on mars than the umpteen billionth person to live and die on earth.

            • by ewieling (90662)

              This isn't a chance. It's a 1 way trip. They'll either die on Mars, die taking off, or die getting there. But, they *will* die.

              You missed one: They will die if they stay on Earth. It is simply a matter of exactly when, not if.

              • by Sperbels (1008585)
                Not me. I'm having my head cryogenically frozen. I'll be relived when they perfect immortality.
            • by Sarten-X (1102295) on Wednesday May 08, 2013 @01:26PM (#43667245) Homepage

              Gladiators, executions, and snuff films differ from pioneering in one major aspect: the pioneers choose to take the risk. The AC summed up my opinion pretty well. Everybody dies. Every moment we live is another moment closer to our death... If someone has no better long-term plans, why not volunteer?

              It's a simple gamble. The prize is an extremely valuable contribution to human exploration. The entry price is difficult communication with most other humans for the rest of your life, however long that may be. The risk is a sudden death.

              Like every other wager, whether it's advantageous depends on the cost/benefit analysis. Someone who doesn't value their connections on Earth nearly as much as their contributions to science may find it perfectly reasonable to risk a sudden death for the chance to begin human planetary colonization. If that's their opinion and their choice, why not respect it?

              There is a pervasive idea in Western culture that death is something tragic. We avoid death to the point where we spend our whole lives taking pills, exercising, and cowering in fear of what new deaths we might encounter. The very mention of death brings sadness into a party, and funerals are silent orgies of despair. Why must we all be such cowards? Let us go each day seeking new ways to die. Not merely new to each individual, but a death unlike any other in history. Now, the corollary to that is that we must avoid deaths that have been done before. Avoid heart attacks lying on the couch, avoid getting hit by a bus that you thought would stop, and avoid getting mauled by animals.

              A natural death on Mars after a long career of science hasn't happened yet, and neither has a fiery death in a do-or-die effort to return a drifting interplanetary spacecraft. Let's do it [wikipedia.org].

            • I can accept an astronaut signing up for something which is risky, but has a reasonable chance of working. But I'm a little creeped out by a guaranteed death sentence from a one way mission operated by a private company who wants to have a reality show.

              Life is a guaranteed death sentence. I'm not seeing how that's much different than not signing up... IMO, it's not how long you live, that's silly. You'll be dead (or unborn) for infinitely longer a time than alive. What counts is the journey, and what you do with your life.

              Frankly, I've lost complete tolerance for any humans who aren't actively trying to do something about the problem of having all the eggs in one basket called Earth.

              I don't care if they're going to fund Mars One via reality TV, liv

      • by Synerg1y (2169962) on Wednesday May 08, 2013 @12:05PM (#43666347)

        Haha,

        what reality stars are emotionally stable?

        If they want to make a reality show, I think we know exactly the type of people they'll select and trust me they won't be astronaut grade.

      • by h4rr4r (612664)

        People who are emotionally stable and qualified are not suitable for reality tv.

        • There is no such thing as emotionally stable people Sheldon =) only terminally delusional people.

          • by h4rr4r (612664)

            I do not get the reference.

            I would also argue that it is wrong.

            • “If you think anyone is sane you just don't know enough about them.”
                Christopher Moore, Practical Demonkeeping

              Linux fortune is great.

              Sheldon Cooper from the Big Bang Theory is a delusional geek who thinks he is the perfect specimen of mankind. At the top of the evolutionary order and everyone else is plagued with insanity.

              • by h4rr4r (612664)

                I find that show pretty offensive so I refuse to watch it. If it stereotyped other groups that way it would already be off the air.

                • I don't think its any worse then Fresh Prince of Bell Air. It is mildly entertaining. But about as banal as cats and hamburgers. I can understand your dislike of it.

              • Well, thats not the quote I was looking for. It goes something like this "The first stage of insanity is believing you are sane". =) I wish I could fine the exact fortune database with it, because the guy who said it I believe was someone historically known for deep thought and their outlook on psychology or philosophy.

                • "Years ago, it meant something to be crazy. Now everyone's crazy." Charles Manson

                  "Insanity is relative. It depends on who has who locked in what cage." Ray Bradbury

                  "Democracy is the art and science of running the circus from the monkey cage." H.L. Mencken
          • by hedwards (940851)

            There are degrees of emotional stability. Most people are relatively stable, otherwise nothing would get done and we couldn't have a society. The folks that fit in well with society are generally not suitable for reality programming. It would be like going to a movie called "accounts: the motion picture" where they were actual accountants engaged in regular accounting practices. I shouldn't spoil it, but about halfway in, they find a misplaced comma and have to redo the numbers.

            • Agreed, but there are tons of people out there who could qualify for this without being deemed insane. Which I think is the parents argument. That anyone is insane for wanting their contribution to life be a mission to Mars on public T.V.

        • by geekoid (135745)

          Some reality Shows are fine. For example 'Big Brain Theory'.
          Of course the producers work damn hard to invent some.

      • by Hentes (2461350)

        No, they are counting on revenue from the application fees these 80k idiots have just paid. It's not like they really plan to send people to space.

    • by sycodon (149926)

      I hope they double check their calculations or they may die quicker than they figured by slamming into Mars.

  • But I know there are at least a 100,000 more qualified people that will volunteer and do a better job then I on the mission. I imagine a lot of people have not volunteered for that very valid reason. So these look like pretty decent numbers to me, maybe a tiny bit low. But not bad.

    • The thing is, can you legally volounteer, provided that this can be considered as a suicide?
    • by Cenan (1892902)

      I know there are at least a 100,000 more qualified people that will volunteer and do a better job then I on the mission

      Being qualified for this "mission" only entails being expendable on Earth. This mission is most likely going absolutely nowhere, the real unknowns are what the showstopper is going to be. Will it be their tenuous grasp on basic science? Or perhaps the fact that they havn't got the faintest idea about how they're going to get to Mars in the first place? Maybe it'll be something completely different... We just don't know. Exciting times.

  • So what? (Score:5, Insightful)

    by DerekLyons (302214) <(fairwater) (at) (gmail.com)> on Wednesday May 08, 2013 @12:01PM (#43666289) Homepage

    So? In this era of "liking" and "sharing" and "+1ing"... 78k "likes" isn't all that impressive. (And the vast majority probably aren't qualified and won't pass screening in the first place - they're just applying because it's "cool".)

  • Math is way off. (Score:5, Informative)

    by butlerm (3112) on Wednesday May 08, 2013 @12:03PM (#43666317)

    Somebody needs a math lesson. 3000 miles * 5280 feet per mile / 78000 = 203 feet. That is a tad more than 40 cm.

    • Somebody needs a math lesson. 3000 miles * 5280 feet per mile / 78000 = 203 feet. That is a tad more than 40 cm.

      Seems appropriate given this is a story about sending something to Mars.

      • by period3 (94751)

        Wait, are we talking about the guy who made the math mistake, or the guy who didn't use the metric system?

  • 40 cm per person? No... 40 m per person? Yes.
    • by amiga3D (567632)

      I think you are right. Someone missed a decimal place. Does not inspire confidence in an interplanetary mission.

  • by istartedi (132515) on Wednesday May 08, 2013 @12:14PM (#43666463) Journal

    I hope the guy who did that calculation is not computing the path of the spacecraft.

  • What the summary fails to mention is that the "application fee" was at minimum $20 USD, and went upwards towards $40 USD depending on the country. Worst case scenario they made about $1.5 million off of applications alone. I would think that volunteering to permanently leave your life behind would be enough collateral without needing to nickel and dime applicants. This reeks of the space-equivalent of vaporware to me.
  • by edxwelch (600979) on Wednesday May 08, 2013 @12:20PM (#43666529)

    Just wondering. What percentage of those are Telephone hygienists?

  • This is about as likely to happen as North Korea landing a man on the moon.
    I'll volunteer to be the first man to arm wrestle an alien.

  • I signed up for the news letter and was planning on applying but they want 38 fucking dollars as a registration fee. Screw that. If I actually thought this was gonna go anywhere I'd gladly pay it. If it was 5 bucks or so I'd gladly pay it just on a lark even thinking as I do that this will probably amount to nothing. 40 bucks just to apply for something that will probably fail and that I probably won't get picked for even if it does succeed? Fuck that noise!
  • If I recall correctly, a trip of that amount of time and distance will expose people to all sorts of life shortening types of energy. I'm not sure I see the point of that trip without protection from all of that. Is there SPF-2000 yet?

  • I'm still waiting for Pan Am to let me know when my number comes up for the Moon First Flight Club...

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