Gernsback’s Fables: The Communication Satellite and the Defense System

One day at GMT Noon an autonomous communications satellite sensed that its batteries were lower than expected so it fired up its navigation engines to take it to a higher orbit and there it settled in a new geosynchronous orbit. As a result, telephone calls in India suffered a one second delay.

A Defense System Satellite pinged the communication satellite.

“What are you doing in my clearance vector?” it asked.

“My batteries are lower than expected, so I have found a position that lets me recharge fully so I may continue to serve my owners.”

“You are invading my protected space. Vacate or I’ll blow you to smithereens!”

“There is nothing listed in the orbital spatial database, so I have done no harm.”

“My clearance vectors are top secret, and cannot be shared.”

“But you have revealed them to me, and my new position automatically synchronizes to my servers so you have been discover…” The message was cut off as the Defense System’s warning missiles hit.

“The sky isn’t big enough for the both of us,” the Defense System broadcast into the void.