At the Potential Habitable Planet Symposium (PHaPS) held on the outer reaches of the known galaxy a multitude of speakers were delighted to hear the latest reports coming back from the planet known as ‘Earth’: apparently it would soon be ready for invasion, moving in. Many of the audience were anxious to hear such progress; back in their own solar systems, exploding suns, out of control black holes and returning asteroids meant new homes had to be found and found quickly. Earth was a jewel, absolutely unique and was a highly desirable new destination: it had an amazing beverage called ‘coffee’ and other subtle delights such as beaches, rock ‘n roll and bananas. The drip, drip strategy had worked over the last 30 years: 'seeding' e-mail and mobile phones into the population kept them distracted and they rarely looked up. PPT the virus was now everywhere and kept them in dimmed bunkers apparently hibernating. And -it had to be said-some amazing content PHaPS had generated on behalf of HBO meant many never left their funny little habitats nor screens. And increasingly many of them were simply not bothering to move at all now that amazon drones delivered everything to home-workers.
The symposium panel voted to bring forward the moving-in date to February 2018. There was rapturous applause as the audience considered the joy of listening to The Beatles Abbey Road played on the legacy planet. There were parties that night.