There seems to be nothing that geeks enjoy more than engaging in a hypothetical debate and “Can You Yeet It? (For Science),” at 4PM Saturday on the Science Track YouTube, was a prime example. The definition of yeet, for those who might not be in the know, according to the Cambridge dictionary is “to throw something with a lot of force”. The panelists discussed mostly the things they would like to yeet themselves or see yeeted for various reasons. The panel’s specialties included chemistry, engineering, and astronomy.
While each panelist was given equal opportunity to discuss their yeeting preferences, the largest discussion and something that was referred back to several times was whether the moon could be yeeted out of the way. There was even a warning on the panel that there was a lot of hate for the moon. Dr. Jen Greco, who originally wanted to see if we could yeet the moon, calculated that it would take approximately 100 quadrillion Saturn V rockets to accomplish the task due to the moon’s mass. That led the other panelists to wonder whether the moon could simply be nudged out of orbit now so that it would eventually be out of the way for future astronomers or whether it would make it easier to reduce the mass of the moon first and then yeet the smaller pieces. Dr. Joe Meany suggested that it might be more effective to yeet enough VANTA black to the moon to cover it, thus reducing all of its reflective properties, making the stars and planets beyond it easier to see.
The panelists moved on from the moon to discuss black holes. Dr. Nicole Gugliucci talked about how black holes have so much energy that blobs of particles are yeeted out of the galaxy because not everything around a black hole can be pulled in at once. Naturally, the other panelists wondered if the black hole could somehow be aimed if that could maybe solve the problem of the moon by destroying it or moving it for us. Later, as the panelists were discussing whether nuclear waste could be yeeted into the sun, it was suggested that maybe instead the waste could be sent to the moon and then the moon yeeted into a black hole. What could possibly go wrong?
But not everything was about space. Dr. Meany talked about a unique kind of snake that yeets itself out of trees. Apparently, the South East Asian Paradise Tree Snake (which has gained the nickname of yeetsnek on Wikipedia, thanks to this panel) can launch itself from treetops and use the motion of its body to glide down to the ground, making it appear to fly. Researchers were just recently able to define the mechanism behind this motion by essentially setting up a giant motion-capture rig to see how the snake keeps itself stable. Robotics is one area where this could potentially be applied by creating more efficient drones.
Perhaps inevitably, the conversation eventually turned to discussing what would happen if you yeeted something that could already fly such as a magical object like a flying broom or a dragon. The consensus seemed to be that the consideration of balancing the force of the throw with the biology of the creature or item, as you would have to do with a bird or bat.
In the end, there seemed to be nothing that couldn’t be debated in the context of yeet.