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Pale Blue Dot: a Vision of the Human Future in Space (original 1994; edition 1997)

by Carl Sagan

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1,853193,730 (4.26)17
Member:xander_paul
Title:Pale Blue Dot: a Vision of the Human Future in Space
Authors:Carl Sagan
Info:Ballantine Books Inc. (1997), Edition: Ballantine Books ed, Paperback, 360 pages
Collections:Your library
Rating:****
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Pale Blue Dot : A Vision of the Human Future in Space by Carl Sagan (1994)

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» See also 17 mentions

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A comprehensive and exhilarating account sketching out mankind's place in the universe. Starting from the famous photo of the 'pale blue dot' – Earth as seen from the Voyager spacecraft as it travelled away from us past Jupiter – the book manages to be both chastening to our hubris and inspiring for our future potential.

It covers much more than this, including detailed explorations of the other planets in our solar system as well as climate change (argued in such a way that it manages to not be annoying) and prospects of interplanetary space travel and off-world colonies. Indeed, this is often to the book's detriment, for it is a dense and time-consuming read, despite being only 400 pages long. Pale Blue Dot is at its best when it is focused on Earth and the solar system, particular the Voyager missions of which author Carl Sagan was a part, not more abstract speculations beyond. (That said, it also took me a long time to read as there's plenty to chew on: many of the things Sagan discusses deserve to be pondered before moving on to the next chapter.)

Nevertheless, Sagan – perhaps more than any other writer in fact or even fiction – managed to capture the almost spiritual (and certainly non-material) sense of human destiny amongst the stars. Helped by high-quality illustrations of some of outer space's treasures, he evokes the awe and majesty of this universe we live in and the potential it offers us. And this world is visible not only through mere telescope lenses mounted on or around this pale blue dot of a planet, but through Sagan's solemn scientific prose and infectious enthusiasm, which brings barren worlds and the empty void to vivid life. ( )
1 vote MikeFutcher | Apr 3, 2017 |
Didn't care for it. I thought his case against the geocentrism of religion was silly and poorly made (straw man!), with far too much faith in the objectivity and infallibility of Science, capital S. Some of the planetary science stuff was interesting, but I didn't really care for his writing style much. Then I found out that my e-book edition didn't have any of the beautiful photographs or illustrations, which seem to be kind of the point of the book. So, don't read the e-book. ( )
  jalbacutler | Jan 10, 2017 |
წაკითხვიდან და "რევიუს" დაწერიდან ერთ წელიწადზე მეტი გავიდა და მხოლოდ ახლა მოფივიქრე ჩემ ბლოგზე დაწერილი დამეკავშირებინა Goodreads-ისთვის.

"რევიუს" წასაკითხად გადადით ლინკზე:
მკრთალი ლურჯი წერტილი, პერსონალური მოგზაურობის გაგრძელება ( )
  Misha.Kaulashvili | Aug 22, 2016 |
A well written and thought-provoking justification to reach for the stars. ( )
  dpevers | Jan 31, 2016 |
In a tour of our solar system, galaxy and beyond, Cornell astronomer Sagan meshes a history of astronomical discovery, a cogent brief for space exploration and an overview of life-from its origins in the oceans to humanity's first emergence to a projected future where humans "terraform" and settle other planets and asteroids. Earth having long been swallowed by the sun. Maintaining that such relocation is inevitable, the author further argues that planetary science is of practical utility, fostering an interdisciplinary approach to looming environmental catastrophes such as "nuclear winter"
  paamember | Jan 13, 2016 |
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Sagan, Carlmain authorall editionsconfirmed
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For Sam, another wanderer. May your generation see wonders undreamt.
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Amazon.com Product Description (ISBN 0345376595, Paperback)

"FASCINATING . . . MEMORABLE . . . REVEALING . . . PERHAPS THE BEST OF CARL SAGAN'S BOOKS."
--The Washington Post Book World (front page review)

In Cosmos, the late astronomer Carl Sagan cast his gaze over the magnificent mystery of the Universe and made it accessible to millions of people around the world. Now in this stunning sequel, Carl Sagan completes his revolutionary journey through space and time.

Future generations will look back on our epoch as the time when the human race finally broke into a radically new frontier--space. In Pale Blue Dot Sagan traces the spellbinding history of our launch into the cosmos and assesses the future that looms before us as we move out into our own solar system and on to distant galaxies beyond. The exploration and eventual settlement of other worlds is neither a fantasy nor luxury, insists Sagan, but rather a necessary condition for the survival of the human race.

"TAKES READERS FAR BEYOND Cosmos . . . Sagan sees humanity's future in the stars."
--Chicago Tribune

(retrieved from Amazon Thu, 12 Mar 2015 18:25:37 -0400)

(see all 3 descriptions)

Examines humankind's changing awareness of its place in the universe and the rich potential of human ventures into the world beyond Earth

(summary from another edition)

» see all 3 descriptions

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