How to Name a Protoplanet


first_imgPallas has long been classified as an asteroid, but all of a sudden in the news media, everyone is calling it a protoplanet.  How did it get promoted?    The picture being painted of asteroid 2 Pallas is that of a planetary building block that failed in its attempt to grow into another real planet.  Space.com called it a “planet wannabee.”  BBC News called it a “Peter Pan rock” that wouldn’t grow up.  And PhysOrg announced confidently, “Study of first high-resolution images of Pallas confirms asteroid is actually a protoplanet.”  That was the occasion; Hubble Space Telescope pictures of Pallas have been organized into a 3-D representation that shows the object is almost spherical.  Spectral data show hydrated minerals that might indicate the presence of water ice in its past.    On a related topic, New Scientist reported that studies of another asteroid, 24 Themis, reveal the possibility of water ice – a surprise, because the ice should be evaporating at rate of a meter a year.  Looking for a way to explain that, scientists think it may be leftover ice from a parent body that broke up.  The article turned that bad news into good news: a collision suggests that Earth might have received its ocean water from a stray ice-endowed asteroid or comet.    The BBC article explained the thinking behind the “Peter Pan” designation for Pallas.  “Theory holds that planets grow from aggregations of the dust and rock found circling new-born stars.  Collisions between clumps of material produce progressively bigger objects.”Question.  Why must our minds be forced into the bottom-up picture when interpreting images of space objects?  While it is true that objects of a certain mass can attract other objects and continue to grow, it is not true, despite the BBC claim, that dust and rock will aggregate into protoplanets.  And collisions are more likely to disrupt and fragment bodies than make them grow (think, for example of the recent discovery of the Phoebe Ring around Saturn: 10/07/2009, and what New Scientist admitted about Themis).  Why is it that the news media force these thought patterns on their readers with suggestive headlines and one-sided presentations?  Did they interview Pallas and ask it, “Tell us, why did you decide to stay an adolescent, and not grow up into an adult planet?”    Let’s think out of the box.  Think top-down.  There was a set of original planets, moons and bodies operating as a well-crafted system.  Since then, they have been perturbing each other, with collisions forming numerous craters.  Some collisions were violent enough to disrupt bodies into asteroids.  Others have been colliding and eroding to form planetary rings.  The top-down view has an advantage: it fits one of the best-known laws of science: the second law of thermodynamics.    With this view, we can change the terminology in the news reports.  Pallas is no longer to be seen as a planet wannabee.  It’s a casualty of the battlefield.  It isn’t a building block, but wreckage.  It’s not a protoplanet; it’s a post-planet.  It isn’t Peter Pan; it’s the Born Loser.(Visited 7 times, 1 visits today)FacebookTwitterPinterestSave分享0last_img read more

Google Opens Social Search to All; Cuts Facebook Off at the Pass


first_imgTags:#news#NYT#search#web marshall kirkpatrick Top Reasons to Go With Managed WordPress Hosting Last fall Google began experimenting with a new feature called Social Search, and we called it a big chess move against Facebook. Today Google Social Search is opening up in beta for all Google users. The experimental feature will surface search results from the social streams (bookmarks, blog posts, photos, etc.) of a user’s contacts on services like Gmail, Google Reader or Twitter.Social Search still doesn’t have a super-prominent place in the Google Search results pages, but make no mistake: This is a very big step. What’s your portal to the Internet: Google’s algorithmic search of the Web at large, or your social circle of people on Facebook? That’s the battle for the future that Google and Facebook are waging now, and Google Social Search is a big move. Facebook search is nowhere near as good.You may need to go to Google.com/experimental to turn on Social Search and you should try an image search once you have. It will be turned on by default for an increasing number of users over the next few days. The feature requires you to be logged in and discovers your friend connections through your Google Profile.Last week we wrote about how social networking is fast approaching the importance of online of search in terms of Web traffic. One vision of the future, though, has posited that social and search won’t remain separate forever.Do you want to have your questions answered only via your friends and their online content? No, probably not. But do you want to have your questions answered without the input of your friends and their trusted content? You probably don’t want that either. Google Social Search is a nice combination of search and social. Facebook’s search is terribly weak in comparison. That’s where the real competition is, not between Google and Bing or Yahoo.One interesting caveat, of course, is that most people have friend networks on Facebook, not in Gmail or Google Reader. Your Facebook Friends aren’t included in Google Social Search, as far as we can tell. Update: Limited information from Facebook may be included in Google Social Search if your friends have associated their Facebook profiles with Google Profiles. But after chasing the Google Social Search team around on the phone for 15 minutes and just getting a PR-answer about this, we’re left to conclude that the rivalry is as heated as we originally reported. Murali Viswanathan, Social Search product manager sent this by email: “If someone links to their Facebook account from their Google profile, Social Search may surface that user’s public profile page. These are the same public profile pages already available on a search of Google.com and other search engines today.”Give it a try and let us know what you think. A Web Developer’s New Best Friend is the AI Wai…center_img 8 Best WordPress Hosting Solutions on the Market Related Posts Why Tech Companies Need Simpler Terms of Servic…last_img read more

Is Adrien Broner struggling with weight?


first_imgManny Pacquiao, left, listens as Adrien Broner speaks during a news conference Wednesday, Jan. 16, 2019, in Las Vegas. The two are scheduled to fight in a welterweight championship bout on Saturday. (AP Photo/John Locher)LAS VEGAS—Adrien Broner’s camp has been mum about their ward’s weight issues, something that cropped up early on when Broner made a public appearance looking grossly overweight.And there’s a general consensus that Broner’s weight woes are the reason why he has been cranky, throwing tantrums all week long.ADVERTISEMENT His camp has refused to say how close the 29-year-old Broner is to meeting the 147 lbs weight limit for the WBA welterweight clash on Saturday at MGM Grand.But talk has continued to resurface with the weigh-in for the fight nearing. Both fighters tip the scales Friday afternoon at the hotel’s Garden Arena.FEATURED STORIESSPORTSPrivate companies step in to help SEA Games hostingSPORTSUrgent reply from Philippine ‍football chiefSPORTSWin or don’t eat: the Philippines’ poverty-driven, world-beating pool starsBroner has missed weight a couple of times before.In 2012 he was a full three pounds over the 130-lb limit when he faced Vicente Escovedo. Four years later, Broner had to pay Ashley Theopane $50,000 after he weighed in 140.4 lbs, four-tenths of a pound over the limit of the lightweight title clash. Don’t miss out on the latest news and information. “Hey I only failed to make the weight twice, but I did it on purpose,” said Broner, who on both occasions moved up one division heavier.Pacquiao isn’t expected to have troubles on the scales.Since he started fighting at welterweight 10 years ago, Pacquiao, whose natural weight is 140 lbs, has had little problem making weight. He is known, in fact, to load up on meals during training camp.Pacquiao said he would like to climb the ring against Broner weighing at least 145 lbs because “I would need the necessary weight on fight night.”ADVERTISEMENT Private companies step in to help SEA Games hosting Sports Related Videospowered by AdSparcRead Next LOOK: Joyce Pring goes public with engagement to Juancho Triviño Amir Khan claims Manny Pacquiao has agreed to Saudi Arabia bout PLAY LIST 01:05Amir Khan claims Manny Pacquiao has agreed to Saudi Arabia bout00:36Manny Pacquiao part of 2019 SEA Games opening ceremony01:49Pacquiao, 3 presumptive senators want status quo in Senate02:42PH underwater hockey team aims to make waves in SEA Games01:44Philippines marks anniversary of massacre with calls for justice01:19Fire erupts in Barangay Tatalon in Quezon City01:07Trump talks impeachment while meeting NCAA athletes02:49World-class track facilities installed at NCC for SEA Games02:11Trump awards medals to Jon Voight, Alison Krauss Is Luis Manzano planning to propose to Jessy Mendiola? SEA Games hosting troubles anger Dutertecenter_img Hornets lean on defense, bench to squeeze past Kings MOST READ LOOK: Joyce Pring goes public with engagement to Juancho Triviño SEA Games: Biñan football stadium stands out in preparedness, completion TS Kammuri to enter PAR possibly a day after SEA Games opening LATEST STORIES SEA Games: Biñan football stadium stands out in preparedness, completion View commentslast_img read more