Should we all be crawling back into the seas from which we came? Ocean exploration is certainly the underdog, so to speak, in the sea vs. space face-off. There's no doubt that the general public considers space the sexier realm. The occasional James Cameron joint aside, there's much more cultural celebration of space travel, exploration, and colonization than there is of equivalent underwater adventures. In a celebrity death match between Captain Kirk and Jacques Cousteau, Kirk is going to kick butt every time.
In fact, the rivalry can feel a bit lopsided, writes Managing Editor Katherine Mangu-Ward. The chess club may consider the football program a competitor for funds and attention, but the jocks aren't losing much sleep over the price of pawns and cheerleaders rarely turn out for chess tournaments. But somehow the debate rages on in dorm rooms, congressional committee rooms, and Internet chat rooms.