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(Jon sez:)

Your Writer: Jon Kilgannon The International Astronomical Union's Minor Planet Center is a real organization, tasked with collecting and disseminating information about moons and minor planets - that is, asteroids.

The MPC is probably best known among the general public for its list of asteroids that make close approaches to Earth as well as their maps of the innermost solar system and the inner solar system. The list and the maps are updated every day thanks to the wonders of modern telecommunications and software.

The green ring on this map is the asteroid belt. It looks a lot denser than it really is; the asteroids in the belt are generally many kilometers apart.

In the fictional world of MoS, the MPC would need to keep ships in space updated with information on the location and direction of asteroids so that ships can avoid them. If a ship were to accidentally or purposefully shift the orbit of an asteroid, its new orbit would need to be promulgated.

Deimos, if you were wondering, is the outer moon of Mars.

(Mark sez:)

Your Artist: Mark Sachs Uhm... never mind that it was snowing in New York City a story week ago or so and now it's a pleasant summer's day in Cambridge, MA. Yeah, I figure if I don't mention it nobody'll noti-- crap!

OK, continuity backfill time. Those darned mad scientists with their weather machines! Next thing you know they'll make a button that'll make it snow at the beach!

I'm also wondering what would be an even dumber thing to do than accidentally shifting the orbit of an asteroid.