Saturday, November 12, 2011

No, That Isn't What We Meant

So, somebody started spreading the word that 2012 is coming, a year which is supposed to be the end of the world, and that the Sun is experiencing increasing activity, with sunspots sending out solar flares, and suggested that a massive solar flare might wipe out the Earth.

NASA, with its usual gift of stellar wordsmanship (heh), said that no, solar flares would not wipe out the Earth and that solar flares were a “problem in the same way that hurricanes are a problem.” They probably should have picked a better way to phrase it, because the result was pretty predictable.

“NASA Forecasts That Solar Flares Can Wipe Out Entire Cities.”

NASA hasn’t responded to that one yet, but I rather suspect that what they meant to say was that solar flares are actually rather small on a global scale, and that we can see them coming in time to take protective measures to prevent them from doing much in the way of great damage.

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