The universe is a big place. As Douglas Adams once wrote, mindbogglingly so. But the thing it doesn’t lack is space. The commute may kill you, but there’s an infinite number of places to hang your hat if you look hard enough.
Here on Earth, we’re running out of room in a lot of the habitable places. Sure, you can live in the middle of the desert and pipe water in from elsewhere, but it’s not the most efficient use of resources. So when we headed to set up bases on our moon in 2025, that was just the beginning. We already had our eyes on Mars and quite a few asteroids in the belt just ripe for the picking.
I’m sure there were realtors already out there getting ready to put up “For Sale” signs on half the property in our solar system long before the first lunar base was established. But that was just the beginning.
The beauty of having so many places to land is that everybody can have a piece if they can afford it. And some of the more adventurous souls were already exploring the next phase of humanity’s sense of manifest destiny. There were new lands to conquer. Resources to exploit. And money to be made.
And like the rest of human existence, there were crimes to be perpetrated. Criminals to be caught. Prisoners to be housed. Prisons will quickly move offworld. Hard labor takes on a whole new meaning when you’re operating on a rock millions of miles from Earth and have to rely on secondhand environmental suits and tools operated by the last fool to carry them.
Survivalists waiting for the apocalypse to finally destroy our homeworld will also be among those seeking refuge among the stars. Maybe they will fly a small ship and live a nomadic life roaming from outpost to outpost only when they need oxygen, food, and water. Or maybe they will decide to put down roots on a small rock drifting in space. Or just maybe they’ll catch a ride to the next planet with plenty of wide open spaces and adventure. Those rugged individuals will find a way to isolate themselves and live out their lives in peace… except when they need something.
Then there’s the colonists seeking to start over on a new world light years away from the old one. Entire planets and moons just waiting for that human touch and a group of brave humans to wrangle it. Some of these may choose to join terraforming missions, playing the long game for their children and grandchildren. Others may choose to fight environments more amenable to human life, with food, water, and air. Either way, the ambitious and brave will try and find worthwhile opportunities in galaxies far, far away.
There are many opportunities to be found out there. Will you be among those to find them?