Along with running the free world, President Barack Obama has spent the past seven years guiding U.S. science and technology policy. The initiatives and goals he puts in place—in clean energy, space, medicine, education, nanotechnology, and more—help direct research, which in turn directs the future. With one year left in the Oval Office, the president talks about what he’s achieved, what’s left to do (a lot), and why being a nerd is one of the best ways to serve your country.By Cliff Ransom Photography by F. Scott Schafer
Popular Science: You have been a very pro-science president. Why do you see science and technology as being so important?
MEN'S DEXTER WINGTIP OXFORD LEATHER DRESS SHOES BLACK SIZE 8WW,Cole Haan Black Tassel Loafers Mens Size 11Mens Call It Spring Studded Dress Shoes black Size 12 Vintage,Johnston & Murphy brown leather oxfords mens shoes dress sz 10 M 20-7223,Marks And Spencer's M&S shoes Black Limited Edition,MENS SMART OFFICE WEDDING SHOES FAUX SUEDE LEATHER FORMAL BROGUE SHOES M5,Taylor & Wright Black Mens Shoes Size 10,UNLISTED BY KENNETH COLE MEN OXFORDS M M BROWN LEATHER MADE IN ITALY,Man/Woman Ben Hogan Shoes 10.5 Online Shopping The latest technology Speed refundSTACY ADAMS Black Tassel Loafer Size 7M Leather Upper & sole,Loake Jones Oxford Brogue Size 10 Tan,CLAYBROOKE Brown Leather Fringe & Tassel Moc Loafer Men's Size 8.5 D Inv F,Bostonian Men 8.5 8 1/2 Penny Loafers school Burgundy Leather Soles Brazil SHOERARE Vintage Rogers Peet 1930s 1940s Spade Sole Buckskin Spectator Shoes 12 C NR,JULIUS MARLOW ~SAMUAL~ Black Leather Square Point Dress Shoes | Size 7.5 Gr8 ConRockport Men's Ellingwood Black Cap Toe Oxford 14M,WORN ONCE SIZE MENS SHIMANO SPD MT33 BLACK CYCLING SHOES,ROCKPORT MEN OXFORDS US 10 W M SOLID BLACK LEATHER.New Republic Mark McNairy Men Sz 9.5 Black Elwood Dress Captoe Shoes X10-1110*,Ben Sherman Braintree Slip On Black Synthetic Mens Loafers Shoes BEN3160 043 U56florsheim size 10D 43 Billings dark brown leather mens dress oxfords shoes,Men's Allen Solly Black Leather Dress Penny Loafers Size 11 D,JOHNSTON&MURPHY ARISTOCRAFT Cordovan Leather Tassel Loafers Size 8.5 D,hommes MAVERICK Chaussure à enfiler, synthétique, noir, A1022,ST MICHAEL FROM MARKS&SPENCER BROWN LEATHER UPPER SIZE 8.5,Florsheim Cornell 18303-01 Square Toe Solid Black Leather Oxfords Mens size 11M,Cole Haan Sz 12 Men’s Brown Leather Slip On Penny Loafers,Kenneth Cole New York Mens Brown Leather Slip On Loafers Size 13 (Made In Italy),Bostonian Mens Light Brown Leather Driving Loafer Moccasin Shoes 9 M S12Gentleman/Lady LEATHER BROGUES BY TOPMAN Customer first Strong value Outstanding style,
PS: Among your White House initiatives, you’ve focused heavily on improving STEM education in America. What’s your proudest achievement on that front?
BO: There’s a lot to be proud of. We now graduate 25,000 more engineers per year from our colleges and universities than we did when I took office. We’re more than halfway toward our goal of preparing 100,000 new math and science teachers by 2021. We’ve secured more than $1 billion of private investment for improving STEM education, and commitments from college and university leadership to help underrepresented students earn STEM degrees. There’s also something that’s harder to measure, but every bit as important: all the young people, including minorities and young women, who are more excited than ever about pursuing their passions for STEM.
One of the new traditions I’ve started as president is the White House Science Fair. We ought to celebrate science fair winners at least as much as Super Bowl winners. And when young people are excited about science, technology, engineering, and math, that’s not just good for them. That’s good for America. We want the next game-changing industry or life-saving breakthrough to happen right here in the United States.
PS: Do you consider yourself a nerd and, if so, what’s your nerdiest pastime?
|Condition:||Pre-owned : |
An item that has been used or worn previously. See the seller’s listing for full details and description of any imperfections.See all condition definitions- opens in a new window or tab
|Seller Notes:||“GREAT - WORN WITH SOME SIGNS OF WEAR, STILL LOOK NICE AND CLEAN. SHOE TREES NOT INCLUDED.”|
|US Shoe Size (Men's):||10||Width:||Medium (D, M)|
PS: You also put heavy emphasis on developing innovation and entrepreneurship. How do you make Silicon Valley happen all over the country?
Gentlemen/Ladies mens dockers shoes size 11 Cheap Preferred material Highly appreciated and widely trusted in and out,BHS –ENGLAND CLASSIC/VINTAGE TWIN DERBY TAN/BROWN WORK SHOES,COLE HAAN City Tassel Loafers Men's Dress Shoes Brown Leather Slip On Size 12,Asos Briwn Leather And Suede Shoes Size 10,Bargain! Brand New Peter Werth Black Patent Shoes SizeMens tan vintage brogues size 8 worn in and full of character.Nike Air Leather Oxfords Dress Shoes Mens Size 8.5 M,Barneys New York Mens Size 10 Black Leather Oxford Dress Shoes,Calvin Klein Men’s 13 Graysons Tan Loafers Dress Shoes,Johnson & Murphy Brown Dress Shoes Size 12M Men's 20-8766,MEN`S HOBOS EASY FASTEN COMFORT SHOES SIZE 7Nunn Bush mens size 10 brown leather loafer shoes made in India,Aldo Bellini Shoes Men's Blue/Navy Faux Leather Wingtip Dress Oxford,bostonian florentine Mens 9 1/2 M Medium Multi Color Tassel Loafers,Da Uomo Marrone / in pelle Nera con Lacci Bruno Donnari Milano Scarpe,Bostonian Pantent Leather Dress Formal Shoes, Tuxexo Leather, Mens shoes SZ 10 N,Johnston & Murphy Sz 11M (15-1159) Glasgow Split Toe Black Oxfords Men's USMen/Women Black Loake Shoes 8 quality comfortability Characteristics,Clarks Mens Black Agility watch Slipon Shoes G Excellent Condition,Man's/Woman's Mens Ted Baker Shoes Excellent craft Online export store renewed on time,Men's/Women's HARRINGTON SHOES LEATHER Louis, elaborate Bright colors Good quality,Stacy Adams Mens Brown Leather Split Toe Dress Oxfords Shoes Size 12M #K13,JOHNSTON & MURPHY Men's Leather Black Cordovan Tassel Slip On Loafer Size 11MGentlemen/Ladies Bottines Jefferson & Co T6 New product Quality First Reliable reputation,Cole Haan Martino Apron-Toe Brown Sz 10 M Oxfords C07515 -m1,Nunn Bush Tassel Loafer Men size 11 D Black Leather,Feanco Fortini Mens Wingtips Formal Dress Shoes Size 8.5M In Brown,MEN'S BRUNO DONNARI MILANO SLIP ON FORMAL SHOES NN900 (2 COLOURS),Toughees Mens Class Loafers Black 9 UK Wide,Jarman Men' Black Dress Slip-on Shoe - Size 7.5
BO: When it comes to precision medicine, advances in technology, data science, and clinical research are already curing diseases that were once thought to be incurable. It’s entirely possible that a decade or two from now, treatments would be tailored not just to the disease, but also to the individual patient. We’re being careful to protect patient data and to make participants partners in this work. Because if we embrace precision medicine in the right way, the possibilities for better treatments are practically endless.
The BRAIN Initiative is another project whose time has come. Right now, we can identify galaxies billions of light-years away. We can study particles smaller than an atom. But we still haven’t unlocked the mystery of the 3 pounds of matter that sits between our ears. I believe that with America leading the way, we can change that. Hundreds of scientists and dozens of universities, companies, foundations, and other organizations have stepped up to help us tackle this challenge.
PS: You’ve also advocated the development of a private space industry to work alongside and complement government efforts. What is your vision for space exploration and commercialization? Who does what?
BO: I’ve laid out a vision for space exploration where our astronauts travel out into the solar system not just to visit, but to stay. To build a sustainable human presence in space, we’ll need a thriving private-sector space economy. I see the expanding space industry as an addition to, not a replacement for, the extraordinary work of NASA. With industry taking over tasks like ferrying cargo and crew to the International Space Station, NASA can focus even more intensely on the most challenging exploration missions, like landing astronauts on Mars or learning more about Earth and the rest of our solar system.
As we set our sights toward other planets, we can also create good jobs here on this one. American companies have begun to reclaim the lucrative market for launching commercial satellites. That’s just one example of the way that a growing space economy can help American workers succeed.
PS: If you were to end up on Mars, who would you want as your companion: Mark Watney from The Martian, or Ellen Ripley from Alien?
BO: As long as it’s a hypothetical question, can’t I pick both? If I’ve got Matt Damon growing potatoes and Sigourney Weaver taking care of any unwelcome intruders, I like my chances.
PS: It’s been barely two months since a climate agreement was struck in Paris. How do you think the agreement will be remembered 20 years from now?
BO: I believe the Paris agreement can be a turning point for our planet. It’s the biggest single step the world has ever taken toward combating global climate change. When I traveled to Paris at the beginning of the climate conference, I said we needed an enduring agreement that reduces global carbon emissions and commits the world to a low-carbon future. That’s exactly what we achieved.
The American people should be proud because this historic agreement is a tribute to American leadership. The skeptics said that taking action to transition to a clean-energy economy would kill jobs. Instead, we’ve seen the longest streak of private-sector job creation in history. We’ve driven our economic output to all-time highs, while driving our carbon pollution to its lowest level in nearly two decades.
These kinds of concrete steps helped bring more countries to the table. With our historic joint announcement with China last year, we showed it was possible to bridge the old divides between developed and developing nations that had stymied global progress for too long. And that accomplishment inspired dozens and dozens of other nations to follow our lead and set ambitious climate targets of their own.
BO: Before you can solve a problem, you have to understand it. That’s why we’ve fought hard to protect the funding for the U.S. Global Change Research Program, a government-wide effort to help us see what’s happening in the present so we can better predict the future. Thanks to their efforts, our satellites, aircraft, ships, buoys, and terrestrial-monitoring systems are providing indispensable insights and strengthening the models that tell us what to expect going forward.
My administration hasn’t just helped to advance climate science—we’ve also made good use of the results. We used the most up-to-date insights from climate science as the basis of our national Climate Action Plan. And we’ve begun to develop accessible climate databases and tools that help governments, businesses, and citizens protect themselves from the effects of climate change that we can’t avoid.
President Obama, photographed on January 4 at the White House
BO: Fifteen of the planet’s 16 warmest years have come in the first 16 years of the 21st century. The warmest year yet was 2015. The Pentagon is warning us that climate change will threaten our national security by fostering instability overseas. Here at home, we’re seeing longer and more dangerous wildfire seasons, coupled with devastating droughts. Last year I visited Alaska, where towns are literally being swallowed up by rising sea levels. Miami now routinely floods at high tide. So this debate is over. The question now is what we do about climate change because there is such a thing as being too late. And I think that regardless of their party, if candidates for elected office want to resign your children and grandchildren to a world that’s broken beyond repair, then there’s simply no way they deserve your vote.
BO: Well, here’s what we’ve done. Over the past seven years, we have transformed America into the global leader in fighting climate change. We’ve set new fuel standards for cars and trucks, invested more than any administration in history in growing industries like wind and solar, taken unprecedented steps to protect our natural resources, and set limits on the amount of carbon pollution that power plants can dump into the air. Most important, we’ve proved that we don’t have to choose between a growing economy and a safer planet for future generations. We can have both.
But in the end, when I think about our efforts to combat climate change, I don’t just think about CO2 emissions levels or degrees of global temperature rise. I think about my two girls, and the grandchildren I’d hope to have one day. I imagine myself pushing a little boy or girl on a swing set, out in the open air, looking up at the sun. In that moment, I want to know that the planet’s going to be in pretty good shape. And I want to have contributed to that.
Because that’s our goal: to leave behind a better, safer, more prosperous world for our kids and grandkids. That’s our most important mission in the time we have on Earth. And after seven years as president, I’ve never been more confident that together, we’ll succeed.