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?
Womens Size 5 Court Pencil Heels Peep Toe Shoes Purple Occasion Evening Party,Nelly Keilsandaletten Wedges Sandaletten Highheels Gr. 39The Leather Collection Women’s Shoe Made in Brazil Leather Slip On Brown Sz 11In Wear Pumps schwarz Leder Gr. 38 (),Naughty Monkey Brave Heart Women's Thong Charm SandalsGentlemen/Ladies WOMENS LADIES DIAMANTE HIGH HEEL PROM SHOES WEDDING BRIDAL EVENING SANDALS SIZE Long-term reputation First grade in its class Different styles and styles VR445Nina Womens Neelah Round Toe Pumps Evening Heels Shoes BHFO 8221,black shoes - atmosphere - size 5 - ankle strap and gold detail - worn onceMan's/Woman's Tan shoes 6 High security Win the praise of customers professional design,SOLE DESIRE Black Faux Suede 3.5” Block Heel Buckle Court Shoes Size 7 Wide Fit,Jessica Simpson Women's Shoes Size US 6.5B/High Heels Croc Design Pumps,Women Tahari Size 10M Forever Leather Suede Zipper Platform Pumps Black,Beautiful Tony Bianco Mary Jane style Shoes brown 9 Worn Twice Excellent Cond,Nine West Metallic Silver Strappy Ankle Zip Back High Heels Shoe Sz 8 Heel 3.5",NINE WEST UK5W EU38 US7W BLACK PATENT PEEP TOE COURT SHOES,Ladies Tan Leather Marks And Spencer Slip On Court Shoes Heels Unworn Size 7,Touch Ups Womens Dulce Silver Shimmer Ankle Strap Heels Size 7.5 (11744),Gentleman/Lady Women Zara slingback shoes 36/ Various styles High quality and economy The first batch of customers' comprehensive specifications,Mr/Ms FREE SHIP! Cute BROWN Naturalizer Slip On Shoes Sz. 6 *More Photos* Economical and practical The latest technology Shopping promotion HA1229DV for Target by Dolce Vita Kenli Perforated Beige Vegan Booties Mules Size 10,Brand New Boxed Ladies Purple Satin Peep Toe Rippled Front Shoes Size,Gentlemen/Ladies clarks Narrative block heel shoes sandals Strong heat and wear resistance high quality Elegant and robust menu,Nine West Women's ISAO BROWN , 9.5 M US new without box, beautiful!!!Office Brand New Sedue Block Heel Sandals Size 4,Womens Mid High Block Heel Over the Knee Boots Stretchy Ladies Shoes Size 3 5 6,BOC Born Concept Brown Leather Wedge Slip On Shoes Size 11 Platform Loafers,Men's/Women's Next green shoes 5 Quality queen auction Recommended todayEllie Shoes Womens 609-Lauren Silver Peep Toe Heels Size 6 (3349)East 5th Ladies 9M Ivory Patent Leather Yasmin Flex Form Pump Heels Shoes Easter,Man/Woman LADIES WEDGE SANDALS WOMENS HEELS STRAPPY SUMMER DRESS PARTY EVENING SHOES SIZE Great variety Impeccable Different styles BW179
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
|UK Shoe Size (Women's):||UK 8||Style:||Sandals|
PS: You also put heavy emphasis on developing innovation and entrepreneurship. How do you make Silicon Valley happen all over the country?
Ladies shoes Size 5 1/2. Marks And Spencer Insolia. Leopard PrintWOMENS BORN BROWN WOVEN LEATHER BRASS STUD CLOGS HEELS SHOES SIZE 36.5 / 6,Born size 8 M studded plain toe mule heel slip on wedge clogs brown shoes W6232,Clarks Bendables Women Mule US 6 M Brown Leather Clogs Slip On Buckle Slide ShoeNEW Blue Denim Cross Over Straps Open Toe Sandals Chunky High Heels 4 Inches,COLIN STUART HIGH WEDGE BRAIDED T-STRAP SHOES 10,Man/Woman Womens Ladies Stiletto High Heel Party Platform Strappy Barely There Sandal Size online sale Moderate cost a wide variety of goods WB572Gentlemen/Ladies Womans clarks shoes size 4 Various goods online shop Exquisite processingIZABELLA RUE WOMEN'S SHOES SANDALS POINTED TOE LOW HEELSIZE 5.5,Anne Michelle f10531 Dames Noires Talon tailles pour 7r6b,New Womens Ladies High Block Heel Court Pumps Patent Shoes Size,Traffic Silver Rhinestone Hidden Platform Sky High Stiletto Heel Pumps Size 7,Me Too Woman’s Brown Wedge Heel Pump Mule Clog With Tassel Shoes Sz 6.5 M,COUNTRY ROAD Women’s Black Suede Pumps w/ Gold Heel – Sz 38,Men's/Women's LADIES SHOES SIZE 6 NEW LOOK Crazy price, Birmingham Clearance best sellerSAS Vero Cuoio Black Pump Heels Shoes Size 8.5 N Comfort Heel Nice ConditionWomen's mocha SAS Easier dress mock slip on shoes / heels , sz 7.5 M,Womens Nygard 64129 Blue Wedge Sandals 6.5 M..71,Material Girl Size 7.5 US Women's Shoes Black Man Made,Sonoma Woman Leather Black Clog Slip on Wedge size 6M,Circa Joan + David Pumps Heels Gray Silver Snake skin size 9M 1510,Men's/Women's Jessica Simpson Tan Heels service Win highly appreciated As of the latest model,Men/Women Marks and spencer autograph ladies shoes New product Settlement Price Fashion dynamic,COMFORT PLUS wide fit black shoes size 4,LADIES ANNE MICHELLE PEWTER PEEP TOE SLINGBACK EVENING SHOE STYLE - F1R0253,Geox Respira Women's Sz 40 10 Black Leather Strappy Sandal Heels Slingback Pumps,Cushion Walk Juliette Womens Leather Touch Fastening Casual Wedge Sandals Shoes,Michaelangelo Strappy DRESSY FORMAL Silver Gray Wedding Satin 3.5 High Heels 9M,Man's/Woman's Rocket Dog Womens canyonjb Closed Toe Mules Quality queen Sufficient supply Fashion versatile shoes AN1144,Man/Woman Ladies Red Heeled Shoes Size 4 Good design Brand Great choice,
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.