Branson: thinking of humans

Business 2.0 magazine has a brief interview with Richard Branson that touches on a number of subjects, including why he got involved in space tourism:

And why space travel now?

NASA has always looked at it as a government-run research program – never thinking of it as human beings, individuals wanting to go into space. We think there are millions of people who’d love to go into space, and why shouldn’t they have that experience?

Ten years ago I thought, “Right, how can Virgin be the first company to send people into space commercially?” Then we went out talking to every single person in the field, so that we’d learn the ins and outs of space travel. By the time Burt Rutan had his breakthrough, we were there. We were the first on the scene.

The “ten years ago” comment is interesting, since there are varying accounts of exactly when Virgin Galactic got started.

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