Why do we Do?

Recently I posted a link to an article about what might be the world’s next tallest building (as at 2014, anyway). A friend responded to my post asking “Isn’t the question why?”

It’s a fair question but one I have never asked myself. It’s always seemed to me an intrinsic part of the human condition that we should strive to improve and push the boundaries of science, engineering and technology – preferably for good not ill. I have always felt a close affiliation to that need to go beyond what is possible today and create something awesome, even if I’m not gifted with the intellect or skills myself to be the one building those modern marvels.

A poster for the 1958 film adaptation of Jules Vernes book From the Earth to the Moon (French: De la terre à la lune) written in 1865, 101 years before the first men landed on the moon.

A poster for the 1958 film adaptation of Jules Vernes book From the Earth to the Moon (French: De la terre à la lune) written in 1865, 101 years before the first men landed on the moon.

I have been driven to affect change in my own small way, running my technology startups (largely in the consumer and mobile space) and trying to create the next big thing, even if I did after many years fail in my attempt to create a Facebook-esque location based mobile social network back in 2001!

Curiosity and exploration of our own capabilities to create and engineer are crucial to the human spirit. Modern marvels from the first horseless carriage to putting a man in outer space have inspired children to learn, to thrive. It’s closely connected with and fed by, our ability to imagine beyond what we know mankind can achieve today.

At a practical level, technologies often have secondary applications in more down to earth ways.

Finally, personally I believe we should do it because, as unique animals on this planet and in this solar system, we can.

What will you do today to go the extra mile and change the world (even if only in a small way)?

* and I mean that in the correct use of the word, to create something awe inspiring

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