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?
Con Plataforma Para Dama Tacón en Bloque Tobillo Corbata Up Correa MUJERNine West women's size 10 turquise wedges, brand new in box, never worn,Anne Klein Black Leather Pointy Toe Slip On Shoes 6 1/2 FREE SHIPPING!,Bruno Magli Tan Satin Peep Toe Slingback Heels Womens 7.5 AAA Made in Italy,Gentlemen/Ladies Miss kg Black Heels 6 Best-selling worldwide Skilled manufacturing Various,Annie's Pinky Ladies Colorful Suede Pumps, Size 8, Very Nice,UsedWhite Oaul Floral Pearl Strap Bridal Wedding Shoe High Heels FlatSoft Style Hush Puppies Womens Pleats Be With You Pump Navy Blue Size 6 EW,da Donna Spot On Legare the leg Décolleté con aperto punta (3 colori) Stile:,Man's/Woman's Ladies Shoes High-quality Optimal price Fashion dynamicMan/Woman Steve Madden Womens P-James Platform Wedge Sandal Shoes, Navy, US 10 Cheap Price reduction A balance between toughness and hardness BV105,Mesdames Anne Noir Michelle Diamant Sandales à Lanières Style: F10300Men/Women Silver open toe Heels Size 10 online sale fashionable Tide shoes list,Women's Guess Size 8 M Brown Strappy Wedge Heel Sandals 3" HeelSimply Vera Wang Classic Mary Jane Pumps sz 10 M Brown SyntheticLotus Minori Sandals Size 6 Snakeskin Leather Strappy Mid Heels,Womens 9 AA Paloma Black Heels Shoes Made in ITALY,Koi Couture Nude High Heels Size 8 /41,Miss Selfridge Brown Snakeskin Pattern Heels Size 5,New Black Camel Beige Studded T Strap Platform Heels Faux Suede High Heel Shoes,Gentlemen/Ladies CLARKS blue suede sandal size 6 Durable service Comfortable touch unique,Stuart Weitzman Womens Heels 8.5M Chocolate Satin Brown Pointed Slingback (A5),Charlotte Russe sz 8 medium wedge sandal heels multi colors pretty feminine shoe,Aerosoles Suit N Tie Pumps Shoes Heels BRAND NEW IN BOX,Cathy Jean brown leather cross strap platform sandal mules heels 7 4854,Gentleman/Lady Red Herring Shoes Size 4 Clearance price New in stock renewed on time,Anne Michelle Donna F10550 Talpa Microfibra Alto Con Lacci Sandali (R12B),Man's/Woman's Womens Shoes superior luxurious Clearance sale,Women faux Suede Pointed Toe shoes Pumps Stilettos Party wedding High Heel ShoesWomens 9M Black Faux Patent Leather & Snakeskin Simply Vera Wang 5" High Heels
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?
Pre-owned: An item that has been used or worn previously. See the seller’s listing for full details and ... Read moreabout the condition
|Heel Height:||High (3 in. to 4.5 in.)|
|US Shoe Size (Women's):||US 9.5|
|Heel Type:||Platform||Width:||Narrow (AA, N)|
PS: You also put heavy emphasis on developing innovation and entrepreneurship. How do you make Silicon Valley happen all over the country?
Gentleman/Lady Fabulicious AUDREY-03 Slv Shimmering Fabric () Practical and economical First quality As of the latest modelLadies Black Suede-Leather-Look Block Heel Platform Shoes Women Size 3 4 5 6 7 8Touch Ups Womens Ankle Strap Heels Size 10 (C,D,W) (1623)Men/Women LADIES WOMENS BLOCK MID HEEL ZIPPED KNEE HIGH WINTER SHOES BOOTS UK SIZE 3-8 elegant low cost Strong heat and heat resistance AR1554,Ladies black shoes size 7 used Jasper ConranNINA New York 8 M Gold Glitter Sparkle Open Toe Slip On High Heel Shoe,Ladies Savannah Beige Open Toe Sandals/Wedges UK Sizes 3-8 F10742,Nuovo Donna Cinturino Alla Caviglia Cut Out Scarpa Scollata con Plateau Sandali,Journee Collection Frauen Ferah Geschlossener Zeh Knoechel Riemen Klassische PumImpo Black Stiletto Open Toe Size 7.5M Waltham,Gentlemen/Ladies Journee Collection Womens Elina Pointed Toe Ankle Strap D-orsay Pumps service Has a long reputation Preferential price AB176,Mr/Ms ladies shoes size 41 Promotion New in stock Very good classificationSalvatore Ferragamo Brown Peep Toe Leather Size 8 AAA Heels ShoesMen's/Women's Ladies Anne Michelle Low Heels Crazy price, Birmingham Brand Elegant and robust menu,This is what you called a style. Betani Edith 1,Chic Gold Chain Braided Ankle Strap Block Heel Sandal OrangeFranco Sarto Women's Maroon Pump Peep Toe Heels Shoe Size 9.5M,WHITE moc croc LEATHER look PEEP-TOE 9.5 SLINGBACK HEELS BUY 3+ITEMS= FREE POST,Blue Suede Faux Wedge Heels “Sensitive sole” Nearnew,Men's/Women's Aerosoles Women's Green Suede Shoes~Size 7.5 Cheap cheapest Selling new productsBNWT JENNY BY ARA LADIES BLACK SUEDE MID HEEL SMART COURT SHOES SIZE,BCBGirls Koala Black Suede Booties Pumps Leather Upper Size 8.5 B / 38.5Steve Madden Womens Taytum Peep Toe Espadrille Wedge Pump Shoes, Natural, US 9.5,Clarks Ladies Sandals 5.5 Brown Leather Festival High Heel Wedges Summer,New $145 VALENTINO RANGONI Heels SANDAL 7AAA STRAPPY ANTIQUE GOLD PATENT -ITALY,Gentleman/Lady Ladies Anne Michelle F9803 Wedge Shoes The Style ~ K Elegant and sturdy set meal In short supply Official website WR3570,Ladies shoes Wilma D'Or heel Size,TUFI DUEK SZ 38 Wedge Heels Strap Sandal Black Leather Open Toe,Mr/Ms ladies heeled sandals size 4 Outstanding features Cheaper than the price Very good color,NINE WEST KAROO SZ 8 M DEEP NAVY PATENT PEEP TOES, BUCKLE SLING BACK HEELS,
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.