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?
Ladies Women's Platform Block Heel Sandals Summer Fashion Party Shoes Size,New STUDIO PAOLO 9.5 M BLACK PATENT LEATHER open toe Platforms HEELS,Brinley Co Womens Tru Pointed Toe T-Strap Classic Pumps Nude Size 7.5 howX,Karen Scott Womens Shoes Gaby Slingback High Heel Pump Black Croco Bow 6.5M,Munro Size 7 Women's Cindi Pump Shoes Black Stretch Fabric Career MISMATCH,Show Story Zipper Vintage Stiletto Platform Size 39 (8 us) Ankle Boots Black,Mr/Ms Qupid Womens Miss-40 Pointed Toe Mules Great variety High-quality materials Different styles,Gentlemen/Ladies bakers high heels size 8.5 High grade Modern and stylish fashion a wide variety of goods,NINE AND CO womens dress shoes faux allegator pointed toe slip on size 8 M,Beautiful Black Sandals By UNZE size 4 hardly worn,Guess Marciano High Heels Pumps Strap Open Toe Carrer Shoes Burgundy Red Size 8MG by GUESS Shantel 7 Glitter Ankle Strap Sandals, Women's Size 8.5M, Orange/Blue,Ice Blue Narrow Office Ladies Pointed Toe Women Dress Wedge Heels Shoes Size 7,Gentleman/Lady Ladies River Island Shoes Innovative design Win highly appreciated Export,Women's Dexter heel denim country summer fun 8m w/ bow,BORN BOC Dark Brown Leather Faux-Fur Lined High Heel CLOGS MULES 9 40.5 MMinelli Women Black Suede Shoes Size,Women's Sigerson Morrison Belle Patent Leather Wedge Shoes Tan SZ 9BMango Grey Suede Pump Size 38 $39,Man's/Woman's Ladies Platform Rope Sandals Womens Espadrilles Wedge Strap Diamante Shoes New Fashion pattern Let our products go to the world Caramel, gentle NB297Ladies black pumps heels shoes Comfort Plus by Predictions size 8,AK ANNE KLEIN Sport Women's Beige Wedge Peep Toe- Size 6.5M-EUCWOMENS BEACH COMFY ESPADRILLES LADIES HIGH HEEL MID WEDGE PLATFORM SANDALS SHOES,Gentlemen/Ladies Ladies brown shoes size 40 Online Shopping modern leading the fashionJo Mercer block heel - Black 36,13 cm Sexy white fetish sky platform pumps high heels us7 37 straps,Womens M&S Insolia court Shoes size 3 leather black high heel faux suede pointed,WOMENS BLACK FLAT WEDGE HEEL COMFORT PADEDINSOLE CAUSAL DRESS SHOE SIZE 3 TO 8,Scarpe Donna Sandali Decollété Mimetici tacco alto Plateau 38 39 40 41,ANNIE SHOES, LIZZY SANDAL, WOMENS, PEWTER SATIN, US SIZE 6.5 M, NEW DISPLAY,
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 Type:||Wedge||US Shoe Size (Women's):||8|
|Sole:||Wood||Heel Height:||High Heel (3-4.5 in.)|
|Main Colour:||indigo||UK Shoe Size (Women's):||UK 6|
PS: You also put heavy emphasis on developing innovation and entrepreneurship. How do you make Silicon Valley happen all over the country?
Black And Red Polka Dot Shoes From Red Herring Size 3 In Good Condition,Macesa Black Leather Ankle Boots Italian Elasticated part Chic Heels,Kenneth Cole Reaction BLACK BRONZE STRAPPY PUMPS HEELS OPEN TOES WOMEN SIZE 8.5❤ NEXT Size 6 Black Cerise & Green Floral Sling Back Sandals Heels 3" Heel VGC,Carlos by Carlos Santana Heels Gold 7.5M Preowned,Size 7 black satin cut out stiletto heels from Monsoon,Man's/Woman's Style by Charles David Women's Lynne Pump Wear resistant Fast delivery Cost-effective GA636Womens Black Leather Shoes Size 3 from New LookBamboo a Black & Red Babydoll Wedge Sandal Size 7 ( 37 ) New,NEW Women's JOURNEE COLLECTION BLACK Slip On Heels Shoes SZ 8.5,NEW SEXY WHITE STRAPPY SANDAL SIZE 13 BY UNFORGETTABLE MOMENTS-369Beverly Feldman Silk Floral Open Toe Slide , Size 7.5 Medium, EUC !Red Velvet Pump with Rhinestone Accents "Clare" by Annie 5MWomen's Naturalizer Black Joela Pumps, 9 1/2 M,Fusion red heels with hidden platform sole size 6**Loslandifen Studded Heels - Women's Size 10.5/11- Light PinkNWOB Lauren Ralph Lauren Women's Amina Open Toe Ankle Strap Heels Shoes Size 9.5Man/Woman POUR FEMMES ANNE MICHELLE ARGENT BUCKLE High quality and low overhead Beautiful Good qualityNERO DI RASO DECORATO CON STRASS INCASTONATO Party Tacchi MISURA 5,Women's Born Crown W01124 Size 8M Sandals Shoes Gold Ivory Leather Wicker L12ELEGANT METALLIC GOLD SHELLI SEGAL FOR "LAUNDRY" SPECIAL OCCASION SLINGBACKSBrand New Womens, Ladies, Black Platform Mesh Shoe With Zip Back, Peep Toe, Size,NEW WOMENS LADIES MID HEEL CASUAL SMART WORK PUMP COURT SHOES SIZE 6Sexy Rivet Studded Platform Stiletto Ankle Cuff High Heels Shoes Adult Women,WOMENS KELSI DAGGER TAUPE OPEN TOE SUEDE WEDGE SHOES SZ 9,womens stefani collection elsa multi skin print cut out wedge heels shoes 9 1/2,Westies Womens Shoes Size 5 1/2 M Brown Leather Slip On Casual Loafer,Women's Size 9.5 B Shoes Stiletto Leather Heels Bows Peep ToeGentlemen/Ladies Ladies floral canvas wedge heel sandals with bar strap durability Cheaper than the price Authentic guarantee VW1415Patent Open Toe Block Heeled Shoes- Size 6.5,
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.