The utter relativism of definitions

I'm always surprised how contentious definitions, can be.  How opinions about what are essentially sounds in language become matters of intense debate. When the IAU (International Astronomical Union) redefined the word "planet" to exclude Pluto, which came about due to the discovery of Eris, a similarly sized body, many people reacted with intense emotion, igniting … Continue reading The utter relativism of definitions

Neil deGrasse Tyson Turns Down Pluto Debate Challenge

And speaking of the outer solar system, it seems that Neil deGrasse Tyson isn't interested in debating whether or not Pluto is a planet. If you were looking forward to seeing astrophysicist and "Cosmos" host Neil deGrasse Tyson debate how Pluto should be classified, don't hold your breath. Tyson says he's done debating. The planetary scientist in charge of … Continue reading Neil deGrasse Tyson Turns Down Pluto Debate Challenge

Ask Ethan #20: Is the Mars One crew doomed? – Starts With A Bang

What Mars One is counting on is that they can safely land a heavier payload than ever before, that they can do it more precisely than ever before (as in, within just a few hundred meters of previous successful landings), and they can do it for only 12% of the projected costs, with a total … Continue reading Ask Ethan #20: Is the Mars One crew doomed? – Starts With A Bang