Manufacturing proposal & book design
This book represents a future forecast and design proposal for an asteroid mining scheme inspired by the writings of Kim Stanley Robinson. The research effort grapples with deep time and the expanse of space in an attempt to produce solutions to some of the world's harshest problems.

Shown at 2x4, the 8th Annual Brown/RISD Dual Degree Program Exhibition, Brown University Granoff Center for the Creative Arts, 2016.

Over the last several hundred years, Homo sapiens have come to dominate the surface of the Earth. We have not only transformed our own lives, but also altered the air, water, soil, and climate. As human populations explode to more than 8 billion individuals, we are bringing about the sixth great biological extinction in natural history. Already, food, clean drink, and space on our planet have become limiting commodities for life. Not only sustenance and habitats, but all environmental resources are becoming sparse—in the next decades, the rare earth metals essential to humanity’s great technologies will run out. Having turned inward on the Earth and consumed, people must now, for the first time, seriously consider looking out.

But a move off-planet faces considerable obstacles, none-the-least of which are the steady march of time, the complexity of building in space, and the brevity of human lives. Soon, revolutionary advances in health, engineering, and computational technologies will allow humans to transcend traditional lifespans, machines to self-replicate and reproduce themselves in the absence of technicians, and strong AI to guide the formation of multiple worlds. In this new technological age, our societies will be tasked with producing novel terraria within which to gather resources and sustain the life quickly fading from the Earth. We are entering the age of the Long Near, argues London-based futures consultancy The Future Laboratory; with novel tools—quantum computing, automated mining, space elevators, and powerful spacecraft engines—“generations, rather than individuals, will be tasked with shaping our world.”

Eli Block © 2018