Earth is just too small and fragile a basket for mankind to keep all its eggs in.
–Robert A. Heinlein
This brief century of ours is arguably the most significant one in the history of our universe. We’ll have the technology either to self-destruct, or [to] seed our cosmos with life. The situation is so unstable that I doubt we can dwell at this fork in the road for more than another hundred years. But if we end up going the life route instead of the death route, then in a distant future our cosmos will be teaming with life, all of which can be traced back to what we do—here and now. I don’t know how we’ll be thought of, but I’m sure that we won’t be remembered as insignificant.
— Max Tegmark, MIT professor
The dinosaurs became extinct because they didn’t have a space program. And if we become extinct because we don’t have a space program, it’ll serve us right!
— Larry Niven