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View Full Version : Bye Bye Planet Pluto (UK Only)



Sticks
2006-Jun-22, 01:53 PM
Tonight on BBC2 at 21:00 (http://www.bbc.co.uk/sn/tvradio/programmes/horizon/index.shtml)

sasome
2006-Jun-22, 03:25 PM
Hi mate
Thanks for the heads up.

TheBlackCat
2006-Jun-22, 07:03 PM
Is Pluto about to lose its planet status and become a mere asteroid? Horizon investigates.(emphasis added)

What? Asteroid? I am not sure I can take a show seriously that thinks Pluto is going to be listed as an asteroid.

WaxRubiks
2006-Jun-22, 08:29 PM
(emphasis added)

What? Asteroid? I am not sure I can take a show seriously that thinks Pluto is going to be listed as an asteroid.


In 1992, Professor Dave Jewitt and Dr Jane Lu at the University of Hawaii discovered a new collection of objects beyond Neptune called the Kuiper Belt. Some suggest Pluto should no longer be considered a planet, but a Kuiper Belt Object.

what ever Kuiper Belt Objects are.

Horizon is a good documentry series.

parallaxicality
2006-Jun-22, 08:58 PM
Comprehensive, and very funny. Every major player in this glorious mess (Brian Marsden, Dave Jewitt, Alan Stern, Jane Luu, Chad Trujillo and of course Mike Brown) was interviewed and they all revealed themselves to be definite characters. The despised head of the Hayden Planetarium, who caused such a stir by dropping Pluto from his planet list, revealed himself to be something of a jackass. They even had Jonathan Cainer on, and oddly, his contributions were valid, covering the early history of the word in its initial astrological sense. He seemed to imply that astrologers had been using a fine definition for planet for three thousand years and scientists were probably making a bit of a fuss about nothing. He even drew up Pluto's "birth chart" at the end, which was kinda cute.

A few issues: the IAU was presented as something akin to the Illuminati, Opus Dei or the Freemasons, which was a bit weird ("You want to know what's happening with the IAU? Well I can't tell you, because it's all behind closed doors!"), and Sedna wasn't mentioned, which must have cheesed Brown off no end. Still, it's hard to see how they could have worked it in.

Alasdhair
2006-Jun-22, 10:44 PM
Horizon is a good documentry series.

It's not what it was: it's become very formulaic in the past few years; you can almost set your watch by the line "And then something unexpected happened".

MrClean
2006-Jun-22, 11:56 PM
I was just reading one of Ludlums book, Oh I forget the name but it should have been called 'Suddenly'. As in every 4th paragraph started with 'Suddenly'. Sounds like Horizons has gone that way eh?

eburacum45
2006-Jun-23, 02:57 PM
It's not what it was: it's become very formulaic in the past few years; you can almost set your watch by the line "And then something unexpected happened".
Or "But all this was about to change".
The writers must have that line set up as an autotext.

ToSeek
2006-Jun-23, 03:01 PM
When Arthur C. Clarke was working on 2001: a Space Odyssey, he claimed that the publicists must have had a single key on their typewriter that printed out "Never before in the history of motion pictures".

mid
2006-Jun-27, 09:10 AM
On the bright side, it's actually a Horizon that can't then spend the next 40 minutes explaining why that means WE'RE ALL GOING TO DIE!!!

Sadly, I missed it, as Horizon is opposite House in the schedules. Does it get a repeat on BBC4 soon?

parallaxicality
2006-Jun-27, 11:38 AM
I know. I used to call Horizon the "Armageddon Hour."

But still, nice to know that there's a city-wide volcano underneath Yellowstone National Park, or that one of the Canary Islands has a giant rock dangling from it like a loose tooth that would send a shockwave across the Atlantic big enough to take out the east coast of the States. These are things we should know.

Sticks
2006-Jun-27, 01:10 PM
You forgot the killer plagues as all the viruses mutate and wipe us all out by next Holliday season

ciderman
2006-Jun-27, 01:38 PM
Caught this thread too late for broadcast, but saw the programme via cable companies replay service :D
Then they lost the coverage of the England match on sunday just before the start, to about 100,000 customers:eek:
(not that I missed it, never had any intention of watching)

parallaxicality
2006-Jun-27, 02:52 PM
What did you think?

Gas Giant
2006-Jun-27, 03:12 PM
Awful game.

(sorry)

Sticks
2006-Jun-27, 04:30 PM
Awful game.

(sorry)

I think he meant about people seeing sense and removing Pluto from the list of planets :naughty:

ciderman
2006-Jun-30, 01:30 PM
I enjoyed it, though it was a bit dumbed down I felt. Would have liked to have had more science, thought a chance was missed to educate people more about the KBO's, though I guess more science would have left the argument less balanced!
Personally I find the science convincing that Pluto is a KBO, but don't see how you can convince the world to stop caling it a planet... In my mind its a world, no matter if its officially a planet or not.

Roy Batty
2006-Jun-30, 02:10 PM
Oh I dunno, if the English can convince themselves we've got a hope of winning the world cup then I say anything is possible! :D

Gillianren
2006-Jun-30, 10:42 PM
Hey, at least you're not from a country whose apparently only goal ever in the World Cup was an own goal from the other team! (Congratulate me; that's the only soccer/football term I know.)

Lord Jubjub
2006-Jun-30, 11:56 PM
Not the U.S. They scored an impressive goal against Ghana. They had a winning goal against Italy called back because one player was slightly offsides and blocked the goalie's vision. :(

Gillianren
2006-Jul-01, 02:48 AM
Not the U.S. They scored an impressive goal against Ghana. They had a winning goal against Italy called back because one player was slightly offsides and blocked the goalie's vision. :(

Oh. Hurrah! (I got my news from the Colbert Report, not actually watching the World Cup, largely because I'm not a sports fan.)

jkmccrann
2006-Jul-02, 05:53 PM
Oh. Hurrah! (I got my news from the Colbert Report, not actually watching the World Cup, largely because I'm not a sports fan.)

Just on this point about the US being pants at Soccer. The USA has actually made the World Cup Semi-Finals before - so they do have a history at the event - though that was more than 70 years ago, Soccer has obviously comparatively regressed since that time.

Mellow
2006-Jul-03, 01:09 PM
To keep this post back on-topic, I thought the program was one of the better recent Horizon episodes. I like the fact that occasionally, the series makers will allow themselves to cover a scientific debate that does not relate to mass extinction.....

Oh, and I feel awful regarding Englands exit from the World Cup, I haven't felt this bad in.... well 2 years, since we were dumped out of the European Championships.

Roy Batty
2006-Jul-03, 02:07 PM
Hmm, sorry for posting off topic before. It's just that I'd like to be observing Sven through a telescope right now... orbiting somewhere beyond the orbit of Pluto :D

Mellow
2006-Jul-04, 09:41 AM
Yes, perhaps on the next major interplanetary probe, we could insert Sven instead of a gold disc in order to let other life forms know what Swedes looked like in the early 21st C.

Sticks
2006-Jul-04, 02:26 PM
Yes, perhaps on the next major interplanetary probe, we could insert Sven instead of a gold disc in order to let other life forms know what Swedes looked like in the early 21st C.

Do you really want to provoke the first interstellar war? :naughty:

Sticks
2006-Aug-14, 05:19 AM
The latest news (http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/sci/tech/4789531.stm)

Wolverine
2006-Aug-14, 08:13 PM
The latest news (http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/sci/tech/4789531.stm)

I see they still haven't corrected this:


That changed with the discovery of 2003 UB313 by Professor Mike Brown and colleagues at the California Institute of Technology (Caltech).

After being measured with the Hubble Space Telescope, it was shown to be some 3,000km (1,864 miles) in diameter, making it larger than the ninth planet.

That's actually describing a size estimate from previous measurements with IRAM. Brown (http://www.gps.caltech.edu/~mbrown/planetlila/index.html) described the impact of the Hubble observations in April of this year:


The measurement is extremely hard, however, even for HST, because even HST distorts light a little bit as it goes through the telescope, and we needed to be sure that we were measuring the actual size of the planet, rather than being fooled by distortion. So we waited until the planet was very close to a star and then snapped a series of 28 pictures and carefully went back and forth comparing the star and the planet. In the end, we determined that the planet is 2400 +/- 100 km across.

Bad Beeb!

WaxRubiks
2006-Aug-14, 10:54 PM
well, the hyperintelligent jellypeople, on Jupiter are disgussing whether Earth is a planet or not.

Mellow
2006-Aug-17, 04:27 PM
I've heard that there is a reasonable chance that the "Plutons" idea will get accepted..... thoughts?

Gillianren
2006-Aug-17, 04:43 PM
I think it's a dumb word, but I doubt that will be a consideration.