I think science is humankind’s attempt at understanding the natural universe. This means that scientists not only seek out new knowledge, but that they also create systems to categorize, record and advance information as they go. Spoken word, scrolls, books and electronic media have housed this information for us over many millenia and this month, like most months, science was advanced once more: we lost a planet in our solar system.
Well to be fair we didn’t lose it exactly, we redefined it. Pluto is now considered a “dwarf planet” like almost a dozen similarly-characterized bodies in our solar system. To many people this is shocking: we now have eight planets instead of nine, we don’t have “pizzas” at the end of the acronym My Very Excellent Mother Just Served Us Nine Pizzas and heck, all of our science teachers were liars! Well yes, all of that is true, but besides our education system what is going to change? Probably not a whole lot. As science fine-tunes its understanding of the natural universe, which it does quite often, textbooks will include the changes in new editions, spoken word will adapt to the differences and electronic media will evolve just the same. Like many times before we will change the way we think to allow for truth to be our guide (even if we don’t like the truth at the moment). People eventually dealt with the fact that the Earth wasn’t the center of our solar system, much less the universe, and now people will have to deal with the fact that Pluto isn’t a planet. The universe doesn’t seem to mind the reorganization and Pluto probably doesn’t either.