New Horizons spacecraft 'distracted,' misses chance to photograph Pluto

CAPE CANAVERAL: NASA's New Horizons spacecraft botched its historic visit to Pluto, officials said, because it "got distracted" and "turned to look at a passing meteor," missing its one and only chance to get up-close photographs of the dwarf planet perched on the edge of the solar system.

The compact spacecraft, launched almost a decade ago for the sole purpose of photographing Pluto, won't get a do-over, said NASA spokesman Noah Swayne.

 "The damn thing is hurtling through space at 14km per second," said an angry Swayne. "Unfortunately, it was programmed by someone with an attention deficit disorder and it turned away at the worst possible moment." Swayne said that when the craft returns to earth, he will melt it down for scrap.