There’s Richard Branson’s Virgin Galactic and Elon Musk’s SpaceX, but not as well known is this luxury space balloon from World View, that in about four years, should be ready to start taking tourists on five hour flights through the upper levels of Earth’s atmosphere. It may not have Virgin Galactic’s super sexy stewardesses or whatever Branson will have up there, but it will give you the most amazing space balloon ride ever, and that counts for a lot.
Information is power, but for many parts of the world, access to the internet is slow in coming, and requires a great deal more infrastructure work to be done before local populations can have access to porn and cat videos. But an ambition plan by Google would use strategically placed balloons to cover as much of the globe as possible with internet wi-fi hotspots.
The European Union, in a bid to become the absolute definition of a Nanny State has decided to outlaw fun by passing a law making it illegal for children 8 and under to blow up balloons. It’s not good enough just to have a choking hazard label or for parents to just not give balloons to kids that aren’t smart enough the get the concept of blowing into it (not sucking it down your throat)… we have to PASS A LAW.
Just like some envisioned in the late 1800s, in the near future, you could be taking a trip to the edge of Earth’s orbit in a giant balloon. People have easily and cheaply sent cell phones into near space on a balloon, so why not people?