Biospheres and Midterms- Tiffany Leung

Monday’s lecture that included the segment on Biospheres brought me back to my elementary school days I remember being in about the fourth grade and seeing this movie called Bio-Dome on TV with Pauly Shore. The concept was really interesting to me because I thought it was so very cool to see how a bunch of different living things would interact with each other in a ‘wild’-type of environment. Then, along with the movie, I also remember having to learn about this huge Biosphere project (bio-2) that was going on in Arizona that would be very beneficial to scientific research in not only animals and plants, but in air, soil, and water as well. I was pretty much blown away by how big the place was going to be, about two and a half football stadiums, and the amount of things that were going to be able to fit inside, a rain forest, ocean, desert, and swamps! I thought this project would last a really long time and would have a major impact on the scientific community, but now that I sit here thinking about it, I can’t recall any more about Biospheres than what I have already stated. So a quick search on Wikipedia and some of my biosphere inquiries were solved!

Biosphere-2 had two major missions, one from 1991-93 and the second in 1994, but after more than a decade, the University of Arizona has taken over the research facilities and uses it for things like climate research. They also allow students to spend semesters around the center for classes.

Biosphere IIintelligent robots

When we had our midterm presentations on Wednesday, the idea of integrating robots in a semi-controlled environment like a bio-dome struck me as very intriguing. How realistically ready we are, technologically and socially, I am not quite sure, but the possibilities of this happening in the future seem plausible. For one, the integration of robot into our lives has become much more frequent and common, and the advancement of Artificial Intelligence is outstanding. I think if robots were to play a larger role in society later on, a project such as the robot biodome, to see how robots would interact in a pseudo-real world, would be good idea before we bring them into our world to perform more intelligent functions.

The other thing I thought was good about the presentations were the abundance of theoretical projects that would help humanity by using Biomimicry or some other form of bio-tech that we have learned about. It shows how far science has come in terms of helping the good of the world, as well as what we, as students and future leaders, will be able to do for the world later on. After the presentations, I know it’s kind of corny to say, but I feel a little better about our future knowing that there are lots of people out there with concerns for the issues that press us on today.


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