Friday, 25 August 2006
It’s all in a word. Pluto is still as much or as little as it was yesterday, last week, and when it was identified decades ago. Science is evaluative and reevaluative. It also strives to be consistent. So, Pluto hasn’t changed; merely our terminology has. As a result, those of us who normally keep some distance from astronomical issues, have learned more about the complexity of way out there. This is perhaps the best poor Pluto can offer us layfolk at this point, and it’s not trivial….
Ok, if that doesn’t satisfy you, maybe this will: to make your coffee taste like you expect it to taste, although “the characteristics of the bean partly determine taste and aroma, naturally occurring fungi also put the zing in your favourite brew.�? (from Judy Skatssoon and ABC Science Online, via News in Science). Also, different places/regions have different fungi, helping give their beans distinctive flavors. (Many of you are aware that I must be tongue in cheek including this, as I “quit�? coffee years ago, much to my spouse’s dismay.)
So, Pluto is/is not whatever you want to believe (including “it’s a planet�?), and remember that fungus is your friend (sometimes).