Neil deGrasse Tyson, the bestselling author and director of the world-famous Hayden Planetarium, chronicles America's irrational love affair with Pluto, man's best celestial friend.
Dr. Laura Danly is Curator at the Griffith Observatory, where she develops all educational, theatrical, gallery, and telescope programs. She holds a Ph.D. in Astronomy, and is a spectroscopist specializing in ultraviolet observations from space satellites.
Neil deGrasse Tyson
Neil deGrasse Tyson was born and raised in New York City where he was educated in the public schools clear through his graduation from the Bronx High School of Science. Tyson went on to earn his BA in Physics from Harvard and his PhD in Astrophysics from Columbia.
Tyson's professional research interests are broad, but include star formation, exploding stars, dwarf galaxies, and the structure of our Milky Way. Tyson obtains his data from the Hubble Space Telescope, as well as from telescopes in California, New Mexico, Arizona, and in the Andes Mountains of Chile.
In 2001, Tyson was appointed by President Bush to serve on a 12-member commission that studied the Future of the US Aerospace Industry. The final report was published in 2002 and contained recommendations (for Congress and for the major agencies of the government) that would promote a thriving future of transportation, space exploration, and national security.
In 2004, Tyson was once again appointed by President Bush to serve on a 9-member commission on the Implementation of the United States Space Exploration Policy, dubbed the "Moon, Mars, and Beyond" commission. This group navigated a path by which the new space vision can become a successful part of the American agenda. And in 2006, the head of NASA appointed Tyson to serve on its prestigious Advisory Committee, which will help guide NASA through its perennial need to fit its ambitious vision into its restricted budget.
In addition to dozens of professional publications, Dr. Tyson has written, and continues to write for the public.
Neil deGrasse Tyson says despite President George W. Bush's record on the environment and opposition to stem cell research, more money was allocated to science under the his administration than under Clinton.
"Funding for science under Republican administrations has been historically higher than under Democrats," he says.
Solar system body, regarded as the ninth planet from the Sun until struck from the list of planets and reclassified as a dwarf planet in August 2006. It was discovered in 1930 by Clyde W. Tombaugh (190697) and named after the Greek god of the underworld. Its average distance from the Sun is about 3.7 billion mi (5.9 billion km)it is located within the Kuiper beltbut its eccentric orbit brings it closer to the Sun than Neptune for 22 years during its 248-year orbit. Its axis is tipped 120°, so it rotates nearly on its side and backward (seeretrograde motion) once every 6.39 days, locked synchronously with the orbit of its largest moon, Charon, discovered in 1978. Two additional, small moons were discovered in 2005. Pluto has a diameter of about 1,455 mi (2,340 km), less than 1% of Earth's mass, and only about 6% of Earth's surface gravity. Its estimated average surface temperature is near -390 °F (-235 °C). Its thin atmosphere contains nitrogen, methane, and perhaps other heavier gases. Pluto is thought to be made of frozen gases with a significant fraction of rocky material. Its size, composition, and orbital location in the Kuiper belt sparked a long debate over its classification as a major planet, which culminated in a decision by the International Astronomical Union to drop it from the planetary ranks.
Originally Posted by Fentro
..., the Bible has a system of moral certainty (the ten commandments, while not perfect, are really good and close to perfect). ...
Uhm, commandments one through three deal with religious dogma, not morality,
four through eight can be summarized as "do no harm and do not lie", nine and ten say "don't be jealous" while implicitly being okay with slavery.
It can all be summed up in the "Golden rule" and only is even applicable when interpreted in the modern view since the ancient view actually meant to apply any of those commandments only to other Israelites (e.g. killing, looting and enslaving Philistines, Moabites et. al. was entirely okay)
I mainly answer to your small point to an otherwise nice post because I can't respond to those 2012 posts by other people without stopping to be nice.
I do not think that Neil got the humor in HR 36. It was meant to be taken in tongue and cheek. One of its authors, Keith Richardson wrote out of frustration with gridlock politics in California. He writes, "Political reform must be a priority for all who care about California’s future. Sadly, there is probably a much better chance that the Assembly will vote on HR 36 than independent redistricting.” Keith's was an MD before he entered politics so he could not have that much disregard for science and reason.
I think was is sad is the fact that I didn't pick up on the humor immediately because I wouldn't put it past some members of Congress to introduce something that stupid into congress. Watching the Colbert Report's better know a district you'll get a sense of what I'm talking about.
When you argue against a world-renowned scientist and you put "amateur" in front of their profession to describe your standing in the field, you really need to step down. It's fine to have opinions, but they don't hold much weight in the grand scheme.
There are way too many armchair scientists that think their opinion is important to a topic outside of their actual field. I really think their should be more than one species of living humans. This is a field I'm very much interested and learning more about, but in the end, I yield to the scientific community that has dedicated their lives to studying this topic. Let the experts have the final say. We must not let the field of science became like the field of music....
I agree. He is totally off track.
How does he know anything about what will happen? Is he kidding?
Why is he talking like that?
A MICRO shift in polar shifts could affect everyone...small or big results, you dont know whats going to happen, idiot...
The Mayans never said anything about the world being destroyed...
most now believe its a shift in consciousness for mankind. Its already been happening, there is no instant snap and it will happen...
or maybe there could be? But who knows, certainly not him.
ahdr... I am sure you meant all of this in jest.
An even cursory look at
shows that he digital switchover is a decade long process and not linked to a specific date. To equate it with some change of consciousness is therefore ridiculously funny. The actual reasons for the switch are threefold:
1) Terrestrial RF bandwidth is limited. It is an expensive good. To waste it on ancient analog modulation techniques is ridiculous in an age where a complete digital decoder is cheaper to manufacture than a decent analog receiver.
2) Because bandwidth is such an expensive good and because it typically belongs to the governments of the world, it can be sold. We are talking tens of billions of dollars here.
3) Digital technology, because it makes better use of the available bandwidth can transmit more channels, which, to the people who lease this bandwidth from the governments, means more advertising revenue. Pure and simple.
But I am sure the old Mayan's had exactly this in mind when they didn't say anything about anything when they rolled their calender over from one of its cycles to the next.
Mr/Ms mcse109, I have read the Koran. It is a regressive, ideologically repressive (if not indeed downright evil) in trying to create a misogynistic system of authoritarianism, and simply put, a practically worthless text for our modern age. ANY system of thought which spreads an idea of darkness that tries to stop education for anyone is EVIL. We should mandate to the world that Education is Everyone's (Our Species - The Human Race's)-given Right! So the Koran, much like other texts from that era (like the Bible), are a fool's errand, and it's time the more enlightened of our species stand up and call a turd a turd!
Now to all you Christians out there, hey, believe in Santa Claus if you want, and just because the Bible has major gaffs and errors in it, doesn't mean there is nothing worthwhile in it. Contrary to the Koran (which has nothing of value in it, except to teach the human race how religion intoxicates the masses to quell thinking), the Bible has a system of moral certainty (the ten commandments, while not perfect, are really good and close to perfect). From the philosophical perspective, the Bhagavad Gita, the I-Ching, and almost everything Richard Bach wrote, are much more urbane. WHile challenging, I also like the Hindu Vedas and Upanishads, and the TAO is ancient thinking that has Retained its relevance in the modern age. So science should be the religion for the only relevant race - the HUMAN RACE to which all non-racists belong (and racists are just stupid, or had horrible parents). Like I said, it's time to call a turd a TURD!
So to all you poorly educated (obvious from your atrocious spelling) humans, I understand how easy it is to stop thinking and let others tell you what to do. You can't have leaders without followers. AND THAT IS THE POINT! Like Monty Python's "Life of Brian," we should stop following ANYONE. Look at America's current supply of evil, power-crazed greedy bastards stinking up Washington, Wall Street - anywhere there is a lot of money to be made, there's some sonofabitch trying to get his followers. So to everyone - STOP FOLLOWING (and call a turd a turd). When will those with a megaphone (like Dr tyson) start pushing not just there agenda, but one that helps our brothers & sisters out of the darkness called religion? Believe in Science and mathematics, stay out of the dogshit, and make your own path.
It's interesting to note how a lot of the mainstream scientists who disprove a lot of the conspiracy theories regarding 2012 fail to mention what the Mayans (actually) spoke about in relation to the significance of 2012 and the reason why it is an important event. If they did, they would realise it has nothing to do with planetary activity as we all know it, as there is no mention of a physical event that would occur.
What would occur between 2010-2012 is a change in conciousness, or in other words a change that will bring about new ways of thinking, new innovation, new technology and new ideas. When you put all the pieces of the puzzle together something great happening in the near future is not so far-fetched as it sounds. Many projects and technological advancements will be made in 2012, for example the digital switch-over where all analogue TV broadcasting will be stopped in favour for the new introduction of flatscreen TVs which are 3D capable and connected to the web and that is only 1 example.
Our knowledge of the universe and our solar system is evolving at a tremendous rate and in turn it has become necessary to update the lexicon or language of it.
Placing Pluto in its new appropriate category was not only necessary but logical to.