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The Engineer

The Life and Times of Donald F. Simmons

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Pluto! Yay!

The New Horizons probe launched perfectly this afternoon and is onto its way on a nine year trip to Pluto.

And they just announced that it's carrying the ashes of Clyde Tombaugh, who discovered Pluto in 1930, and who died in 1997. I imagine they held off announcing that until the launch on the chance it would end up on the bottom of the Atlantic.

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Try a google search. Now if they can only come up with a proper working definition of a planet will know what to call all these snowballs zipping around the Kuiper belt.

The problem is that any consistant defination that still manages to include Pluto results in up to 30 planets in the solar system.

At the big space event Friday, one of the co-discoverers of the new Kuiper Belt object larger than Pluto said we should all just stop worrying about it. He's waiting for an international committee to make up it's mind about what exactly his discovery is, and he'd just like to get it named and move on.

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