Well, I poke fun of mars pretty consistantly whenever it comes up. However, I really do prefer probes over manned missions to mars.
I threw Venus into the mix on a lark. I think terraforming mars would be much easier than Venus with present and near present technologies. But I look at it from a different angle, suppose we terraform both? Which would you choose? I think Venus wins simply for gravities sake.
Like I said before, heat and water are the biggies on Venus. I figure heat has to be solved first. I break heat into two problems, heat comming in and heat going out. Maybe atmospheric microbes/nanobots could be developed to create a mirrored atmosphere on the sunside to block out the neccessary radaitions. Now the second problem is bigger, there's lots of heat trapped inside the planet it self. So much that there's a controversial theory that says the entire crust of the planet becomes molten every 4 or 500 million years.
If you solve the heat in problem you've still got so much heat stored up inside the planet that it could be a problem? Also, in a previous post I read that a good sized moon might be required to keep the core molten and get those radiation deflecting magnetic belts working. Hmmm...were's a good for nothing planet that people are trying to find a good use for? Oh yeah, mars, we could use mars as a moon of Venus!
PS. I also agree that we should somehow physically remove our destinies as a species from our planets destiney. I just think we need good gravity to do it in the style to which we've become accustomed. Maybe really big space stations that have like a million people on'em? Shoot those succers out in every direction. You first though.
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