Talk:1532: New Horizons

Explain xkcd: It's 'cause you're dumb.
Revision as of 11:17, 12 June 2015 by (talk) (The crisis of multiple Earths. [email protected])
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Anyone know why the text on the comic was heavily aliased (pixelated edges), although it's since been fixed on the xkcd website? Keavon (talk) 07:45, 1 June 2015 (UTC)

Probably a bad setting on the PNG compression by Randall when saving. Maybe he's trying to optimize file size (although in this case, the quality suffered). --BigMal // 11:53, 1 June 2015 (UTC)
Did the quality of the comic improve over time? Might have been a reference to the images provided by new horizons becoming more clear as it approached108.162.215.113 12:51, 5 June 2015 (UTC)

According to Wikipedia, "in August 2014, astronomers made high-precision measurements of Pluto's location and orbit around the Sun using the Atacama Large Millimeter/submillimeter Array to help NASA's New Horizons spacecraft accurately home in on Pluto." Was Steve involved in these measurements too? (And any of the numerous ways by which it can be determined how far away NH is and which way it is travelling!)--Laverock (talk) 12:43, 1 June 2015 (UTC)

This joke appears to be aimed at the implausibility of the Horizon Mission’s concept art, which looks suspiciously like earth. The image shows deserts, mountains and oceans which appear to be “riffs off” of a satellite image of the Horn of Africa, western Asia, and the Indian Ocean. Examples: Artist's conception of New Horizons at Pluto. Image Credit: NASA Image usage:

I think that -is- Earth, a view of the probe right after it was launched. Then again... Classic Star Trek episode "Miri" is set on a distant planet with identical continents to Earth for no reason except to get you interested quickly. It was made before "Planet of the Apes" by the way (spoiler). An unsatisfactory novel called "Preserver" revisits it and proposes there are super-powered aliens just messing with us. Actually in Star Trek there are super-powered aliens just messing with us about every third week and they usually constructed their own gonzo planet just for that purpose, so the assumption that these are new, unknown super-powered aliens is unjustified, but of course true (The Preservers), unless they are really Organians or Q but they just don't say so. And if the Planet Copiers are abroad, who's to say that Earth is the original. Outside Trek, it's also even odds that a fictional Counter-Earth planet on the other side of the sun - there have been several although it's physically impossible - has identical continents to Earth. And in "D.R. and Quinch Have Fun On Earth", our continents are alien graffiti, unfortunately leading to cleanup. Love, Robert Carnegie [email protected] 11:17, 12 June 2015 (UTC)

I do not know if the image is concept art for the New Horizon mission from back in 2006; or if it is a more generic space exploration art work. It is hard to imagine that it is specific to the New Horizon’s Mission. One should ask New Horizons mission members to comment. There must be an interesting inside story. Dfh42 (talk) 15:49, 1 June 2015 (UTC)

This earlier mission art is probably closer to what Randall would consider plausible: Dfh42 (talk) 16:29, 1 June 2015 (UTC)

Waitasec, wouldn't the people on the ground know pretty much the exact position of this probe at all times? If nothing else they know its direction and distance from earth just by monitoring their communications with it. Odysseus654 (talk) 17:45, 1 June 2015 (UTC)

Yes, that is the joke.Zeimusu (talk) 21:18, 3 June 2015 (UTC)
Slingshot maneuver

It uses the gravity of a planet to alter the path and speed of a spacecraft. Reference I guess Steve miscalculated the maneuver. --Arturotena (talk) 06:41, 1 June 2015 (UTC)

  1. Related tweet: As @NASANewHorizons gets closer, our view of #Pluto gets better and better!.
  2. Related link: NASA’s New Horizons Sees More Detail as It Draws Closer to Pluto.
  3. NASA Dawn Team

--Arturotena (talk) 06:34, 1 June 2015 (UTC)


If Pluto is 39.26 AU from the Sun, how can New Horizons be 0.34 AU from Pluto and 32.55 AU from the Sun? 20:54, 1 June 2015 (UTC)

I reinserted the sentence semi-major axis, and I added a Wikipedia link: semi-major axis. 21:47, 1 June 2015 (UTC)

Why is the distance even in the explanation ? -- I move to strike and delete Spongebog (talk) 15:02, 2 June 2015 (UTC)


So is Steve a character now? What about a dwarf character? Z (talk) 20:22, 2 June 2015 (UTC)

There must be other people named "Steve" ! Spongebog (talk) 06:35, 3 June 2015 (UTC)
No, Steve was an only child . . . . BingoBash (talk) 06:45, 3 June 2015 (UTC)

Btw, Steve was also mentioned in comic 228. TronX7 (talk) 06:59, 5 June 2015 (UTC)

I didn't even see this as a representation of Earth. As I looked at each image, I thought I was seeing an image of Goofy (rather than Pluto) as seen through a glass orb. 20:26, 9 June 2015 (UTC)