Thursday, September 30, 2010

Weekend Assignment # 338: A World of Their Own

On Wednesday, someone shared a link of Facebook about the discovery of a "Goldilocks planet." That's a planet whose orbit around its sun makes it not too hot, not too cold, but potentially "just right" for life to develop. Within an hour the link attracted a large number of comments, some humorous, some political, about who should pack their bags and move to this other planet, twenty light years away. That's the inspiration for this week's Weekend Assignment:

"Goldilocks planet" illustration by Lynette Cook, 
National Science Foundation.

Weekend Assignment # 338: A World of Their Own
Even as astronomers discover planets that may be capable of supporting life, such destinations remain out of reach of would-be human colonists, even if the world is "only" twenty light years away. But if some science fictional technology were discovered in the next year or two (warp drive, matter transmission or whatever) that made it possible to leave Earth behind and go live on another planet, would you be tempted to do so? If you choose not to relocate, would you be interested in just visiting the place instead?
Extra Credit: If you did go, whether on vacation or as a colonist, and you were only allowed to bring one small suitcase with you, what would be in it?

Here are the guidelines if you'd like to participate. Please note that while Carly is on hiatus I've loosened up the deadline just a little.

**1. Please post your response no later than than 12:01 AM on Thursday morning, October 7th, your local time. You can do this either in a blog entry of your own or in the comments section of the assignment entry. No submissions will be accepted after that time unless I really want to.

2. Please mention the Weekend Assignment in your blog post, and include a link back to the original entry. Using one of the logos shown here is encouraged but not mandatory.

3. Please come back here after you've posted, and leave a link to your entry in the comments to the assignment. Please post the URL itself rather than a live link.

4. Visiting other participants' entries is strongly encouraged!

5. We're always looking for topic ideas. Please see the "Teacher's Lounge" page for details. If we use your idea, you will be credited as that week's "guest professor." Help me out, folks, because sometimes I run dry when doing this week after week!

6. We reserve the right to remove rude or unpleasant comments (not to mention comment spam), and to leave entries off the linking list if the person has been rude or unpleasant, or fails to mention the Weekend Assignment in the entry.

A few brave souls responded to last week's Weekend Assignment #337: Lone Wolf, or Part of the Pack?. Please click on each person's name to see their full entry:

Anne said...

Myers and Briggs will tell you that I am an extrovert.  I talk with people all day long and you can't shut me up.  I think out loud and sometimes I say too much.  My mother will tell you that I become more introverted every year.  I go to lunch by myself and want the world to shut up and let me read my book.  The last two vacations I have taken were by myself (which the Canadian at Customs refused to believe).

Stephen Watkins said...
Personality tests were an inconstant source of insight on the issue as well.  They often indicated that I was an Introvert – but not always.  There were times when the results were a little more inconclusive.  I accepted that I was, but at times I didn’t really feel like I was.  I wanted to be a part of the pack.  It was when I took the Birkman test at the start of my Master’s degree that I came to better understand my relationship with the group.

Karen Funk Blocher said...
It probably won't come as a huge shock to you if I identify myself as basically an introvert, a mildly shy, socially awkward person whose emotional life is largely inside my own head. I very rarely go to any sort of party, I don't go out clubbing or drinking, and I don't currently belong to any active fan clubs or other social groups. Even the annual Doctor Who convention in Los Angeles, Gallifrey One, which I attend as often as I can, is nearly as painful to me as it is rewarding. I'm just not all that good at making social connections. My social life consists of online stuff, hanging out with my husband (mostly at home), and taking a few friends to lunch on Sundays.
That's it for this week! I hope you'll join in this weekend, and tell us about any planet-hopping you would or would not do, given the chance. Be seeing you - and watch out for that wormhole!



  1. Here are my thoughts:

  2. Here's mine (yes, it's me again - hi there!):

  3. Here's mine! I only seem to make it once every three weeks...

  4. I'm in. Kind of.

  5. Here's mine! It's even illustrated!