If we truly want to become an interplanetary civilization we are going to have to establish some kind of economy to back it up. As much as I’d like for us to become a spiritually transcendent society before we get into outer space I think it’s important to establish some degree of mutually held symbolic value,
In order to create an economy that is capable of sustaining itself in the vast interplanetary realm of our solar system we would first need to conduct an accurate elemental profile of various celestial bodies so as to determine how an exchange route between them might end up playing out. For example there is a lot of helium-3 on the Moon. We might be able to extract and refine to create fuel. Which would make it easier to get to Mars for example.
However let’s not fixate on the red planet. In the beginning there is no reason why government or corporate entities should not pursue a planet of their own choosing. In that particular scenario you may actually have a very real market economy that could emerge from a natural diversity of incentive between various sectors of the solar system. You may have some organizations that prefer mars over the moon or even the asteroid belt and Oort cloud for example.
With that being said I think we should strive for a relatively balanced spread of corporate and government forces in outer space. I believe that a relatively stable equilibrium between the two styles of organization is what we should be aiming for. That is often when the greatest strength of the individual can emerge. Perhaps this is the reason why government and corporations actually emerge in the first place for example – as they are supposed to help balance each other out.
I think Its important to remember just how celestial bodies can differ in their average temperature, humidity and atmospheric pressure. You would have to consider this for example when trading material whose purported value is based on remaining within a certain state of matter. Why? Because Pluto is much colder, and Mercury is much hotter, so what is a liquid here maybe a solid there and vice versa. You could imagine how that may effect the trade of technology with a particular environmental tolerance threshold.
Speaking of which, how about quantum communication? Technologies such as this are advancing further and further every day. Say we invented a device that is capable of instantaneous communication across the entire solar system THEN it would make it FAR easier to coordinate all of the new information being gathered on the geographic and atmospheric profile of celestial bodies. Technological forms of communication that rely on quantum entanglement or gravitational waves for example may play a vital role in the establishment of an interplanetary economy.
In order to coordinate a network of trade routes across the entire solar system we would require an accurate central information structure for the mutual cross referencing of available resources. You could for example imagine that we had a form of quantum internet capable of distributing monetary value based on the fulfillment of voluntary smart contracts in a hypothetical futuristic Ethereum Blockchain.
If you wanted to transport raw minerals from the asteroid belt to a planetary body like Mars you would sign up for a “smart contract” with a potential buyer that could distribute your funds automatically in to a “digital wallet” at the port of entry when it has guaranteed the agreed upon quantity and composition of resources within the delivering cargo hull. Of course that may require some degree of advanced scanning technology such as a hypothetical quasi particle neutrino beam.
It’s important to distinguish here that it is NOT powered by AI. Smart contracts are a way of simplifying hard paper contracts into an automatic process that checks for an agreed upon quantity in order to release the agreed upon distribution of funds. It is not as much people just sitting at their desk arguing over the interpretation of a vague contract. It is all about voluntary participation in an exact logical system that can reference a literal quantity of information for the immediate distribution of funds.
Such an economic system is far easier to implement in outer space then our current one because the precision of operational integrity required for outer space is far beyond what is required for Earth. It may necessitate the use of automation although not necessarily AI. In this way an agreed upon chain of coded smart contract agreements could act as a viable alternative to an artificial form of super intelligence in the development of an interplanetary economy.