We've got pictures of 4+ miles of super-strong string, a jumble of connectors (we use some climbing rigging for safety), various specialty nuts and bolts to attach everything to the spine of the 'bot, David at the controls of the laser cutter, more laser cutting work as we build the wheels, creating the gripping surface and splitting the wheels into the separate parts, creating the motor mounts and connecting these to the spine of the 'bot and finally...
The final image is of me, with the (semi) working robot, shaking hands with Jerome Pearson - the US inventor of the Space Elevator! He 'taught' Arthur C Clarke how to build a for his book - Fountains of Paradise. He invented the concept of the Lunar Elevator! I'm proud of his efforts on our project. He liked the robot, and was especially pleased that we named it "Neil" after Armstrong.
Take care, mjl
We’re hosting a Google Hangout today (Monday, October 6th) at 8pm ET so folks can get to know us and ask any questions they might have about the film. We’re happy to chat about what we’ve filmed, our plans for miniature-based special effects, LiftPort — anything. Our director and producers will be on hand to field questions personally. LiftPort backers are especially welcome to drop by!
I've been out of touch for more than 2 years but exiting a dark tunnel now.
Great that you're still plugging away, let me know how I can help, I will have a lot of time this winter, starting in a few weeks.
[Sent from my iPad]
Unexpectedly, the folks running the “Shoot the Moon” #SpaceElevator documentary have asked me to do a Google Hangout with them in about an hour, 5pm Pacific. I’d love to have you participate. If you can’t make it, I am pretty sure it will be recorded so you can watch it later.
Here’s the link: https://plus.google.com/events/cb9bb5qluce05fetvnmbd6beq54?enfplm
Take care, mjl
p.s. After getting this set-up today, I now feel pretty confident with the Hangout tool. I'm going to use this with all our backers. I'll post details on how that will work tomorrow.
- International Space University
- Boston University
- Olympic College
- South Kitsap High School
Michael Laine’s career spans a variety of disciplines and specializations. It starts directly out of high school, by enlisting for four years in the United States Marine Corps. While there, he learned many tangible skills, like operational management, logistics, and interpersonal communications. But perhaps the most important experiences during those formative years were the expansion and refinement of intangible abilities like leadership, perseverance and team-building. Mountain Warfare school, working at both the Officers Candidate School and the NCO Staff Academy and being meritoriously promoted certainly added to some colorful years. He was fortunate that the US stock market crashed during his enlistment and that his commanding officer was very interested in personal investing. His commander taught a 20 year-old the intricate details of capital management and diversification and at the end of service to his country, Laine left the USMC to work in Finance.
Laine would begin his seven years of Investment Management with a small, exclusive boutique in Portland. There, he was part of a team of only 17 full-time professionals - to handle the finances of just 16 high net worth clients (plus various ancillary clients). This was an illuminating experience as Laine was the most junior person on the team by 20 years. At 25 years old, Laine had de facto control of $4M of other people’s money, and an advisory capacity on another $40M.
While he had to do a lot of ‘grunt’ work, this was the place he learned critically important skills like diversification, long-range and contingency planning, and risk mitigation strategies. This was also the time in Laine’s life where he became fascinated with large infrastructure projects like phone, rail transportation and energy systems. The complex intricacies and interdependencies of these super-systems would fuel him for the rest of his life. These systems have a profound impact on the world we live in, and are tightly woven with threads of technology, politics, living conditions, economics (regional and personal), law, policy, research, engineering, public outreach, and education. As a result, Laine has a personal interest in all of these facets of super-systems.
Next, in 1995, after returning from Boston University (where he focused on Organizational Behavior) he did two things. He bought a 6-story commercial office building and started an Internet company. The Internet company started quickly and failed slowly, six years later. His company was extremely good at large database management, and as a result they built the first online shopping system for a major grocery store chain and developed the largest online yellow-pages directory of its kind. The lessons learned during this period were important: know when to cut your losses, build an extraordinary team, and that leveraged technology can – and does – change the world.
Finally, in 2001 (a detail not lost on him) Laine shifted careers to the one he’d been dreaming about for years: the commercialization of space. Initially Laine started a consulting firm, and then was brought on full-time to NASA’s Institute of Advanced Concepts team that was researching the development of the Space Elevator. He has been the commercial force behind of the Space Elevator project for the last 10 years. In that time, his team pioneered work in super-materials (ultra-strong, ultra-conductive carbon nanotubes), and built 18 robots that climbed into the sky on tethers held aloft by balloons (9 tests sanctioned by the Air Force, Navy and Federal Aviation Administration). His team has developed professional research relationships with more than 50 world-class universities and government research centers – including Harvard, Stanford, U. Washington, U. Texas, U. British Columbia, McGill, Massachusetts Institute of Technology, Georgia Tech, New Jersey Institute of Technology, and our first research partner was the United States Air Force Academy. For our efforts we were regularly featured in the press, and because of this, the public’s imagination caught fire. As a result, there are currently over 40M Google/Bing references to our project and a global community working on a program that many consider still to be science fiction. At this point, the project has its own self-generated momentum.
Laine is an accomplished public speaker, having delivered thousands of lectures, briefings and presentations on the topic – from generating enthusiasm for science and discovery in 8th grade classrooms to addressing congressmen; lecturing at universities to briefing military generals; delivering papers to NASA to being interviewed on National Public Radio, and speaking at all manner of agencies within the Washington, D.C. beltway. Laine worked with NASA and as a founding Director of the Spaceward Foundation to create a set of $4M prizes for technology development. He also serves in an advisory role to the International Space Elevator Consortium, Leeward Foundation, Awesome Foundations - Seattle and the Space Literacy Foundation. Recently, Laine became President of the International Space University’s US Alumni Association. He attended the Space Studies Program in Barcelona in 2008 and is currently enrolled in ISU’s Executive Masters in Business Administration program.
Laine’s experience in building teams,
developing research programs, creating technical roadmaps, business
operational planning, and bridging the gaps between the commercial and
technical teams plays a critical role in the development of this
advanced technology-focused venture capital fund. His experience taking
an ‘out of this world’ concept and refining it into ‘down to Earth’
profits serve us well.
- LiftPort Group - The Space Elevator CompaniesPresident, Chief Strategic Officer, present
- Laine Property Management
- Teknology-Laine LLC
- Polaris Financial Services
- Interlink Finanical Services
- United States Marine Corps
- Fallout Shelter
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