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Moonster Saturn - Sauntering Vaguely Downward [entries|archive|friends|userinfo]
Mad Scientess Jane Expat

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Moonster Saturn [20120608|23:39]
Mad Scientess Jane Expat
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Little Niece sent me a handmade card.


[Black card with gel pen writing says "2 moonster Satun" with scattered white and yellow star-moons and a multi-coloured ringed planet at the bottom.]

Inside, it says:

To Auntie
[personal profile] nanila
We went to the hepworth
galleree
now we are reeding
about jupiter
love from Little Niece


Apparently, she is learning about the solar system and she is very excited that I'm working on the new JUICE mission to Jupiter. We have orders to bring our telescope with us on our next visit so we can look at Jupiter and the Galilean moons.

I think I forgot to tell the anecdote from our last visit with Little Niece, during which she asked me to explain my job to her. "Auntie [personal profile] nanila", she said, "how do you control your spacecraft?"

I hemmed and hawed, because well. Little Niece is five years old. "Well, it's a bit complicated to explain..."

Little Niece paused and looked at me sternly. "You could at least try."

So I did.
linkReply

Comments:
[User Picture]From: danaid_luv
2012-06-09 01:21 (UTC)
You could at least *try*.

Beautiful. And really, how could you not?
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[User Picture]From: nanila
2012-06-11 14:02 (UTC)
I did, I did! My explanation went something like this: You know your mummy & daddy's computer? Well, Auntie nanila has a very fast computer that helps her create commands for the spacecraft. Then she uses that computer to send the commands to a big satellite dish, like the one you have for your TV but a lot more powerful. That big satellite dish points at the spacecraft and sends the commands, telling it what to do - roll, turn, fire the main engine, open or close a cover (like a lid on a saucepan).

It's all about finding the right analogies.
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[User Picture]From: bryangb
2012-06-09 08:43 (UTC)
I think it's "2 moons + er (?)" and I can see a sort of proto-r in "Saturn". (-:
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[User Picture]From: nanila
2012-06-11 14:01 (UTC)
Oh no, no. I definitely think that's "moonster". Mostly because I think it's the perfect descriptor for Saturn, which is a monster planet that has a lot of moons.
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[User Picture]From: bryangb
2012-06-11 14:15 (UTC)
You have a very good point there!
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[User Picture]From: alice_mccoy
2012-06-09 09:04 (UTC)
Thats what the up and down keys on the keypad are for...and you press SPACE to make it go further into Space. Why is that complicated? ;)
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[User Picture]From: nanila
2012-06-11 14:03 (UTC)
You're right. It's not. Some of the instruments even have their own special keys - like CAPS. You want to turn it on, you press CAPS LOCK.
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[User Picture]From: flexagain
2012-06-09 11:58 (UTC)
Luckily, my nieces have never asked me that particular question, which is just as well, since I'm not sure how I'd go about answering it!
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[User Picture]From: nanila
2012-06-11 14:04 (UTC)
See my reply to danaid_luv. It's all about finding the right analogies, apparently. Although don't be surprised if they ask you to make your spacecraft do cartwheels.
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[User Picture]From: pax_athena
2012-06-09 14:41 (UTC)
Awwww ... <3
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[User Picture]From: nanila
2012-06-11 14:05 (UTC)
Isn't it lovely! I especially like "moonster" as a descriptor for Saturn. It fits perfectly.
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From: pbristow
2012-06-09 18:11 (UTC)
Quite right, Little Niece! Never let the grownups fob you off. =:o}

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[User Picture]From: nanila
2012-06-11 14:05 (UTC)
Believe me, she never does. I have to be very careful what I say around her.
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[User Picture]From: jixel
2012-06-10 16:16 (UTC)
Awesome art! Will be nice when she has a baby cousin to play with... When is due date :)
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[User Picture]From: nanila
2012-06-11 14:07 (UTC)
Oh, that reminds me of the prayer she said when she found out I was pregnant. "Dear God," she said. "Please let it be a girl and let her be pretty. Amen."
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