1. Member Since 15th Nov, 2011
  2. offline for 1w, 2d

Hello? Is... is this thing on? The red light means it's on, right? Or do I... I have to push a button, don't I? Well, which one? There's like ten! The black one? They're all black!

Jumbles of Words I Like

  • Forever is Forever Applejack returns to Canterlot for the Summer Sun Celebration after 33 years away. by Fon Shaolin 5,040 words · 7,560 views · 124 likes · 11 dislikes
  • Twilightning Twilight taps into the power of lightning itself to perfect a new form of teleportation. The theory is sound; what could go wrong? by Bok 5,489 words · 9,680 views · 1,468 likes · 18 dislikes
  • The Prince and the Workhorse Prince Blueblood and Big McIntosh swap bodies to pursue their respective romantic interests by fellstorm 84,935 words · 5,764 views · 337 likes · 16 dislikes
  • Wild Sky Yonder Spitfire joins the Corps to escape from her troubles. When trouble finds her, how will she respond? by Mysecsha 52,565 words · 3,760 views · 220 likes · 3 dislikes
  • Grossly Incandescent Thrust headlong into a strange new world, Solaire of Astora must make amends before he can continue with his mission. Unbeknownst to them all, a shadow from his past approaches. by Crack Javelin 72,845 words · 12,079 views · 1,842 likes · 32 dislikes

Equestria Daily actually approved these?

  • Why Didn't Ah Stay at Th' Farm? Being the only stallion in town isn't all it's cracked up to be. by FanNotANerd 5,659 words · 83,088 views · 969 likes · 43 dislikes
  • There, They're... Is there such a thing as being too obsessed with grammar? by FanNotANerd 30,393 words · 14,693 views · 1,228 likes · 23 dislikes
  • A Simple Reflection In an experiment gone awry, a pony is brought to Equestria. A perfectly ordinary pony. One so ordinary, it runs the risk of destroying Equestria's very lifeblood. by FanNotANerd 34,310 words · 3,927 views · 376 likes · 11 dislikes

I bid you welcome to the profile of none other than the great FanNotANerd: author, musician, biology major, scrollsaw artist, Canadian and all-around great guy! Is there no end to my talents? If there is, it probably inhabits the same indistinct plane as my modesty.

I look at most of my writing as an experiment, and am always glad to get feedback, be it positive or negative. The absolute last thing I want is for you guys to humour me.

I also pre-read for Bronius Maximus, who's kind enough to return the favour. He's recently broken 2000 followers, and seems to be making it his life's work to make me look bad. I like to think it's because some of my awesomeness rubbed off on him, but he's just a legitimately good author, and a hell of a lot more prolific than me.

Now I'm sure you're all wondering: what's this guy's claim to fame? Why should I pay attention to his deluded ramblings? The answer is this: because.

Hey, to be honest, I have no idea what half of you like about me so much. So if you were expecting a more wholesome answer, you're as lost as I am.

Incoherent Jumbles of Words

  • T Victory at Any Cost

    The war against the spacefaring Changelings has dragged on for two long years. After that length of time, any victory is something to celebrate.  · FanNotANerd
    6,246 words · 500 views  ·  23  ·  0
  • T A Simple Reflection

    In an experiment gone awry, a pony is brought to Equestria. A perfectly ordinary pony. One so ordinary, it runs the risk of destroying Equestria's very lifeblood.  · FanNotANerd
    34,310 words · 3,927 views  ·  376  ·  11
  • T Shadows on the Rising Star

    Sometimes, temptation isn't a result of what we want. It's a result of what we fear.  · FanNotANerd
    2,847 words · 1,032 views  ·  62  ·  1
  • T Sauerkraut

    Twilight hates it.  · FanNotANerd
    2,724 words · 872 views  ·  37  ·  1 · gore
  • E Pinkie π

    Twilight attempts to explain the concept of pi to Pinkie. She doesn't get it.  · FanNotANerd
    3,953 words · 1,708 views  ·  98  ·  5
  • E There, They're...

    Is there such a thing as being too obsessed with grammar?  · FanNotANerd
    30,393 words · 14,693 views  ·  1,228  ·  23
  • E Eh?

    In an unfortunate accident, the mane six get sent to Caneighda. Hilarity ensues.  · FanNotANerd
    10,356 words · 3,002 views  ·  98  ·  3
  • T Stroke of Midnight

    The sins of the past may be forgotten. But they are never truly silent.  · FanNotANerd
    23,447 words · 771 views  ·  30  ·  1 · gore
  • T Hush Now, Quiet Now...

    It's always the quiet ones.  · FanNotANerd
    2,584 words · 1,951 views  ·  17  ·  6 · gore
  • T Why Didn't Ah Stay at Th' Farm?

    Being the only stallion in town isn't all it's cracked up to be.  · FanNotANerd
    5,659 words · 83,088 views  ·  969  ·  43 · sex
Jul
14th
2015

... but I have. And the stuff it's sending back is super exciting.

For those who weren't following it, New Horizons is a probe launched by NASA to do a close flyby of Pluto. And I do mean close. Its periapsis, or closest approach, is 12,000 km, which is about a third of the height of the satellites we use for GPS navigation. So for the last month, I've been combing through both the NASA/JPL mission logs and r/space for the pictures it's been sending back. What makes it so exciting is that as of a couple weeks ago, every picture it sent back was the best picture of Pluto humanity had ever taken. Even the fact that we sent a probe there in the first place is mind blowing, considering Pluto's about 7.5 billion kilometres away.

Keep in mind that, until New Horizons, the best picture of Pluto we had was this:

Not that exciting.

New Horizons sent these image back a few hours ago.

On the left of the third image is Pluto's moon Charon (relative size is to scale, distance is not). Charon is less interesting than Pluto in terms of surface features, although that's likely because surface features show up way better on Pluto's mottled landscape than they do on Charon's uniform grey.

Speaking of features on Pluto, I'm noticing that the surface is really textured. Like, heavily so, especially in the first image. I'm also noticing a relative lack of impact craters, compared to other bodies in the solar system. Take a look at Mercury for comparison. As the number of impact craters is a strong indicator of surface age, there's some interesting implications. For instance, the lighter area in the center of the second picture has no visible craters (at least not by my examination). So that vast swath of land is far younger than the rest of it.

Then, of course, there's the degree of contrast in the surface colouration, which is nothing short of shocking. The only body in the Solar system with similar levels of contrast are Earth and Jupiter's moon Io, the latter of which gets its striking colouration from ludicrous levels of volcanism. Every other non-planet body in the solar system is pretty much... well, grey. They look like Charon, usually. But that makes Pluto's colouration even more striking, considering it and Charon form a binary system.

There's a lot of other cool stuff happening that I could go on for pages about, but I'll cut myself off there. If you want to see more of the pictures New Horizons will be sending back over the next week or so, check out r/space, which has been filled with the stuff lately, as well as updates about Ceres and that comet the ESA landed on a few months back.

Space is such a weird and wonderful place, full of unexpected surprises. And, quite frankly, it's nice to know that the stars in the night sky are just a little bit closer.

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