So I think we’re still quite a long ways off from sending humans to Mars.
But apparently we’re not so far off that some people haven’t begun seriously thinking about it. Back in 2012, when Mars One, a non-profit dedicated to making interplanetary travel a reality, announced that it was accepting applicants for the first manned flight to Mars (room for four people only; have to be cool with dying there since you can never return to Earth; also, no sex) the group received some 200,000 bids from around the world. They’ve narrowed that pool down to 700 finalists, now. And The Guardian has seen fit to profile a handful of those finalists in this video right here.
Here’s the original advertisement video from the group’s YouTube page (sorry, I couldn’t seem to embed the Guardian one).
Mars One claims it will start sending four people up every two years beginning in 2024; maybe I am dense, but I just can not imagine it happening anytime soon (like, not within my lifetime). Still, it’s interesting (and quick) to watch the Guardian video, and think about where these contenders are coming from, and what they’re saying about the state of our own planet, not to mention the meaning of life and death. And achievement. And legacy.