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Technical Update: Pluto, Bad Batteries and Plan B

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Tiny Pluto and its moon, Charon. Media Credit: NASAThere have been three important developments in the world of technology and biotechnology today.

First and foremost, Mercury, Venus, Earth, Mars, Jupiter, Saturn, Uranus, Neptune…

Pluto, the tiny heavenly body at the edge of the solar system, has been declared a planet no more. This comes after a weeklong debate as to what exactly constitutes a "planet."

Prestigious astronomers met in Prague this week to determine Pluto's fate. This is the first time in history that planetary status has been scientifically defined.

As summed up by the CNN/Associated Press:

    Much-maligned Pluto doesn't make the grade under the new rules for a planet: "a celestial body that is in orbit around the sun, has sufficient mass for its self-gravity to overcome rigid body forces so that it assumes a… nearly round shape, and has cleared the neighborhood around its orbit."

So for now, we're down to eight "real" planets.

In the computer world, more Sony batteries have been recalled. According to reports, Apple Computer is recalling 1.8 million laptop batteries from their iBook G4 and PowerBook G4 lines.

This comes after Dell recalled over four million batteries due to concerns that they overheated and caused system damage.

Finally, Plan B, known as the "morning after pill," will be made available without a prescription according to CNN. The development comes as a compromise that could prevent as many as 1.5 million unplanned pregnancies.

The pill will only be available over the counter to women over 18. Girls under 17 will still need a doctor's authorization to obtain the drugs.

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