Tuesday, January 17, 2006

New Horizons Launch

New Horizons, the Pluto (and hopefully other Kuiper belt objects) probe, is all set to launch today. I can't begin to describe how exciting this is for me. Space has always caught my attention in a way that nothing else has. For years, I dreamed of going to Mars. I doubt I'll ever get that chance, but the one thing Georgie Porgie did that got me to stop hating him for a few minutes was the proposed moon-Mars program. Of course, then he laid out his plan, and I went back to hating him, because like everything coming out of the White House right now, it's stupid.

Anyway, don't dwell on the Shrub today. Think about Pluto! Named for the Roman god of the dead, I'm betting it's much more interesting than anyone is suspecting. Planets always are.

And yes, I think Pluto is a planet. I think 2003 UB313 is a planet. The definition of a planet is up to us. We've called Pluto a planet for decades. UB313 is even bigger than Pluto. Ergo, it's a planet. Name it already!

Here's a nifty link to New Horizons, and one to KPC's live webcams.

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"Loyalty to petrified opinion never broke a chain or freed a human soul..." -- Mark Twain

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Fire does not wait for the sun to be hot,

Nor the wind for the moon, to be cool.

-- the Zenrin Kushu