What a shame the real thing won’t be half as entertaining.
Musk shows some fitting sentiment with his idea to name his first Mars-bound settlement ship the Heart of Gold.
The literal meaning is nice. Our best intentions and loftiest goals, finally off to put some of humanity’s eggs in a basket other than Earth. Good show. The best intentions riff generally turns sour eventually, of course, but that’s simply the nature of time and change — someone gets the bright idea to try being meaner for a while, and everyone suffers until they get tired of suffering enough to demand some changes that may or may not help. It’s a fine sentiment, and probably best to start out with that rather than a bunch of cynicism.
The tribute to Douglas Adams and the Hitchhiker’s Guide books is wonderful, as is the general tribute to the role of science fiction in keeping our eyes on the stars and our thoughts on getting somewhere rather than simply digging in deeper like ticks until another dinosaur killer comes around to wipe us out (assuming we don’t take the nuclear and/or germ warfare route). Damn shame Mr. Adams isn’t around to appreciate it. I wonder if he’d be tickled or annoyed or both.
Is it the best name for a spacecraft for a Mars expedition? Maaaaaaaayybe not. Unless we intend to drop a whale and a bowl of petunias on Olympus Mons.
Come to think of it, Olympus Mons would be a fine place to keep a small catalog of planets for sale, or perhaps make a decent summer home for a couple of mice.
Maybe Heart of Gold really is the right name.