Everything is Miscellaneous
Wired News/Berkman Center Podcast Series
by Dylan Tweney:
“Neil DeGrasse Tyson is an astrophysicist who doesn’t believe in planets. Of course he knows that there are large objects circling the Sun. He just doesn’t believe that picking out nine of them — or eight, now that Pluto has been demoted — has any scientific basis. There are far more interesting ways of dividing up the universe. For example, there are four bodies in our solar system that have atmospheres — three planets and one moon of Saturn — and having an atmosphere is far more interesting scientifically than simply being a big object because having an atmosphere raises lots of questions and possibilties. Being big raises nothing but the question, ‘Well, so how exactly big are you, anyway?’
David Weinberger, author of Everything is Miscellaneous, recently talked with Dr. Tyson about why we humans have insisted on acting as if there’s only one way to slice up a universe that is far more miscellaneous than that.
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