Originally Posted by NCC-73515
I'll never understand why applied research should be more important than basic research.
Too bad they won't have use for a neuroscientist in the next decades (expecting prokaryotes only)...
What are you talking about? Neuroscience is going to be huge once the zombie apocalypse begins. Ready to eat brains grown in a test tube...Biggest thing since sliced bread.
Anyway, applied research might have more immediate gains or at least it's easier to sell it as such. Basic research is harder to do so. Especially with something like this. Also in tight economic times, research in general is kind of hard to make a case for because it's still a "what if" scenario.
Originally Posted by horatio
Well said, Akula and Tom. Seeking for alien life doesn't happen in a scientific void, knowing that there are strange forms of life on Earth, be it creatures that don't use photosynthesis or substitute phosphorus with arsenic, expands the parameters.
Especially if you want to propose more off world missions to find life out in space. I don't think anyone is going to be keen on opening up their pocket books to do so unless there was a decent chance of success. The more possible environments you can show where life can exist increases those odds. And that still doesn't even address the issue of what is gained by doing so. The same goes for propositions for colonization. These are foundation steps. Not glamorous ones but important ones.