[extropy-chat] Re: SPACE: new planet?
mail at HarveyNewstrom.com
Sat Feb 21 21:20:58 UTC 2004
Mike Lorrey wrote,
> It is actually rather easy to define a planet:
> a) it has its own independent orbit around the sun, and,
> b) its own internal gravity has caused it to be round
I agree that this is a simple definition that works. People can nitpick the
wording to get it right, but the meaning is clear. For "a", I would say it
orbits the sun instead of another planet. For "b", it could be defined by a
specific roundness measurement, or could be defined geologically as accreted
on its own into a round shape and not a piece broken off another planet.
Historically, the round planetoids are old and formed early, while the
non-round ones are more recent fragments from collisions
> Those who dislike this definition because it results in 'too
> many' planets are obsessive compulsive neatniks who need to
> get a grip.
Yes, but as a futurist and sci-fi buff, I like a lot of planets. This is my
primary interest in the Kuiper-Belt Object. They give us thousands of
planet(oid)s to explore that are close to earth without requiring
interstellar travel. This is more planets than some Star Trek type sci-fi
envisioned for our region of the galaxy.
This is cool stuff!
Harvey Newstrom, CISSP, CISA, CISM, IAM, IBMCP, GSEC
Certified IS Security Pro, Certified IS Auditor, Certified InfoSec Manager,
NSA Certified Assessor, IBM Certified Consultant, SANS GIAC Certified GSEC
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