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Old January 30 2013, 10:03 PM   #15
Re: planetary classes

I'd argue that by the time of Star Trek, sufficiently many distinct planet types (that is, permutations on the dozens of relevant parameters) would have been discovered to make a letter-based system impractical - there'd be at least a hundred distinct permutations there, and probably a thousand, if we allow something like the mass difference between 0.5 and 1.5 Earths to be a distinction.

It's not as if our heroes would have much use for such categorizing of planets, either. It doesn't appear to reveal anything noteworthy about the geohistory or -future of the worlds, about the odds of life evolving there, of dilithium being there. It's just diversity forced into a format.

Timo Saloniemi
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