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back to article Trekkies detect Spock's Vulcan homeworld ORBITING PLUTO

Trekkies have seized a poll in which the public voted on names for two of Pluto's moons - ensuring a winning moniker is Vulcan. With William Shatner on the case, it was perhaps a foregone conclusion that Vulcan would be the clear winner in the contest, with 174,062 votes. Runner-up mythical hound Cerberus (aka Fluffy in Harry …

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but, but, but Vulcan actually orbits one of the stars in the Centaurus constellation that we cannot yet detect due to our primitive detectors and the Vulcan's advanced stellar technology. When they do announce themselves it'll just cause confusion

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I'm led to believe that the general (i.e. almost utterly unfounded) agreement is that Vulcan is an as yet unobserved planet orbiting 40 Eridani A

I suggest that is where we send the 'word' "snuck"

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FAIL

not any more...

it was destroyed by Nero using a singularity in the most recent movie.

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Re: not any more...

An even better place for the 'word' "snuck"

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Anonymous Coward

Re: not any more...

"it was destroyed by Nero using a singularity in the most recent movie."

You might want to check the star date. Also, stop telling us the future, it's a direct violation of the prime directive.

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> the IAU has promised to take the public's opinion into consideration

And that's just how my bosses always welcome my loonier ideas too :-)

When they roll their eyes and sort of moan then I figure it must be a kind of intellectual orgasm. After all if a petit mort is so good then a grand mort must be better?

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Vulcan

Real name Hephaestus, was the Chief Engineer of [Mount] Olympus and, as such, my favourite god.

Sad to see him being exiled to the outskirts of the Solar System, but perhaps he is on a secret mission to build some interstellar jump station or something?

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Re: Vulcan

I had a quick word with Charlie, and this is what he told me:

"Vulcan? That's the bloody Romans, that is. Thievin' b*st*rds, they are. Stole Heffy lock, stock and burnin' forge. Even shifted him from Lemnos to bloody Etna. Etna! You should have heard him. Went on about it for bloody centuries, he did. Said you couldn't get decent multi-phasic pseudo particle reflux there to save your bloody life. No wonder he moved to Mount Ranier. And that whole chair thing? Well, it was all a misunderstanding. Hera was stompin' all over the shop, yellin' for someone to rope Heffy in to make her a new throne. Heffy just got a bit confused, was all."

Of course, you have to forgive Charlie. He's still trying to get over the time Leonardo Da Vinci tried to redesign his boat...

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Re: Vulcan

Sorry. Not boat. Ferry. Or as Charlie put it -

"It wasn't a bloody boat, you daft bugger. It was a bloody _ferry_! What do they teach kids these days? When I was a... well, whatever I was when I wasn't as old as I am now, well. And don't ask me about the idiot in the lion skin. Just.. just don't!"

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MJI
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Those names

Saw it on an RSS feed

I thought it was to do with our favourite tin triangle!

The other name reminds me of the Illusive Man

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I would have voted for names like Arthur Dent or Ford Prefect

but then I never was a Trekkie

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Coat

Why would you name a moon after a car?

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For the same reason you would name an alien after a car

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Coat

why ?

because the name is "nicely inconspicuous" ?

It might fit for the moon as it has only recently been discovered (must have been hiding).

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jai
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Re: why ?

Instead of the "I'll get me coat" icon we need a "I've got my towel" one!

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Alien

18610 Arthurdent

Arthur Dent already has an asteroid named after him. As for Ford Prefect, well... that would be the 5th planet found orbiting Betelgeuse Or would that be Zaphod Beeblebrox?

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Vulcan: Roman god of fire (among other things).

Pluto's moons: ice balls.

Am I the only one who thinks we can find a better name and maybe save Vulcan to name some super hot exoplanet or something?

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Joke

How about-

Coolio?

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Meanwhile, at the spaceport:

I'll have a round-trip ticket to Kerberos, thanks!

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Anonymous Coward

Re: Meanwhile, at the spaceport:

Very clever - have an up vote on me

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Anonymous Coward

Kerberos ...

... so what was the IT angle?

Oh, wait ... nevermind.

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jai
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Re: Kerberos ...

the vote was organised by SETI, who did that thing where everyone screen-savers formed a massive parallel processing to decode the radio messages from space, didn't they?

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Re: Kerberos ...

No, not the same outfit.

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Re: Kerberos ...

I'm both thinking of an authentication system and a fluffy plush toy bear from Sakura Card Captors...

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Anonymous Coward

Re: Kerberos ...

Yes, I was thinking of the authentication system.

Maybe the two moons should be called Keyboard and Interactive.

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MMB? LLAP? WTF?

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Live Long And Prosper?

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Anonymous Coward

"My Best, Bill"

"Live Long and Prosper"

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Anonymous Coward

5 moons?

Of course it's a bloody planet then!

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Facepalm

Re: 5 moons?

So you completely missed the bit in the article about Sylvia, Romulus and Remus then? Being in the asteroid belt is a pretty fair clue that Sylvia is a nailed-on asteroid.

Anything with a significant gravitational field can have satellites.

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Khan

Should've gone for 'Khan' as a name, then they could've had Shatner announce it's new name in true style.

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Coat

Family.

One might ask why work colleague Charon and guard snake Hydra would be closer to Pluto than his nephew?

Because they're less likely to have borrowed his chariot and wrapped it round a tree?

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IR

Balls!

Now we can't name an actual habitable planet as Vulcan! You've ruined it for the generation of interstellar tourists.

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Pirate

Re: Balls!

I'd wager that if you get to a habitable planet, you can name it whatever you like as you'll be far beyond the remit of the InterNATIONAL Astronomical Union. Those bloody planet-killers...

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Holmes

"One might ask why work colleague Charon and guard snake Hydra would be closer to Pluto than his nephew?"

Easy. I sadly see my work colleagues every day, and my guard snake just as frequently, coiled at my feet ready to strike at any of said work colleagues should the need arise..

My nephew, generally see him at family gatherings is the extent of it.

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— Leonard Nimoy (@TheRealNimoy)

Sadly DeForest Kelley never had a Twitter account, but it's a shame, as he could have been @TheRealMcCoy

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RealMcCoy

That would nark former doctor who Sylvester McCoy. IIRC he used to appear as "the real McCoy" in a mock freakshow thingy before he got the tradis gig

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Alien

Someone doesn't know their history of astronomy

There has already been a Vulcan (OK, they never managed to find it....)

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Vulcan_(hypothetical_planet)

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Boffin

Re: Someone doesn't know their history of astronomy

Beat me to it. Yes, this is another reason why Vulcan isn't a good choice. The book listed in the Wikipedia article, In Search of Planet Vulcan, by Richard Baum and William Sheehan, is very good, particularly in describing the expeditions to observe Vulcan's supposed transits.

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Re: Someone doesn't know their history of astronomy

Asimov also had a wonderful essay about Vulcan called "The Planet that Wasn't." It became the title for one of his essay collections.

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Alien

Mass Effect

For me Cerberus is not from Harry Potter but Mass Effect series.

http://masseffect.wikia.com/wiki/Cerberus

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Stop

Re: Mass Effect

I read Greek mythology in my childhood, and so to me Cerberus (Kerberos) is, and will always be, the giant three-headed dog that guards the gates of the Underworld and prevents the spirits of the dead from leaving (i.e. he's there to keep the dead in, not the living out). Notably captured and brought back to Tyrins by Heracles as the last of the twelve tasks assigned to him by the cowardly prince Eurystheus. The monster dog so terrified Eurystheus that he hid, gibbering, in a brass pot for three days, until Heracles returned the creature to Hades.

Cerberus was also put to sleep by the singing of Orpheus, who was given permission by Persephone, daughter of Demeter and wife of Hades, to lead his dead lover Eurydice out of the Underworld - as long as he didn't look back to see if she was following. He did, and thus lost her forever. (A happier alternative ending has it that Orpheus died soon after of a broken heart, and he and Eurydice were then re-united in eternal bliss in the Elysian Fields.)

Anything else is just a rip off. It's as abrasive (to me) as someone hearing a Beethoven sonata and going, "Oh, that's the tune from the [insert brand name here] commercial!" Gaaack!

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Intollerable!

This really is too much!

Everyone should know by now that the technologically advanced world of Vulcan broke up as the result of a war in which weapons of planetary destruction were deployed in the primordial past, and that the planetary remnants formed what is now known as the Asteroid Belt.

This is basic history, confirmed by perilous expeditions made possible by Mr Edison and his wondrous Aether Propeller.

What are they teaching in the schools these days?

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Re: Intollerable!

No, that was Minerva.

See "Inherit the Stars" by James P. Hogan

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Holmes

Re: Intollerable!

Bah!

That's Tesla's Aether Propeller!

What are they teaching in the schools these days? Indeed!!

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FAIL

Optional

Almost as lame as when they voted to call the first space shuttle (which never even went into space) 'Enterprise'.

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Re: Optional

That wasn't a vote, it was a write-in campaign, and I think it was pretty harmless considering the first USS Enterprise dates from 1775 and took part in the War of Independence.

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Re: Optional

Yes, but in the rush to make sure the FIRST shuttle was named Enterprise, the trek faithful missed the fact that NASA wanted to give the name to a spacefaring vessel. The noise became so great that they caved and moved the name up.

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Headmaster

How old was Hagrid?

Hagrid claimed to have raised Fluffy from a pup, so Fluffy can't be an alias of Cerberus. Probably a relative.

I should get out more.

I like the idea of naming an astronomical body Kerberos. Fluffy should be reserved for a warm body that you can cuddle (as long as the music is playing).

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Happy

Another Vulcan

There's been a Vulcan closer to home for some time, and very beautiful it is:

http://www.vulcantothesky.org/

Brian

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