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“To look at the stars always makes me dream, as simply as I dream over the black dots of a map representing towns and villages. Why, I ask myself, should the shining dots of the sky not be as accessible as the black dots on the map of France?”

Vincent van Gogh

 

…Yeah right, it was lazy before I begun trying to figure out some of these. 

http://www.funfactz.com/space-facts/ 

“A car traveling 100 mph would take more than 29 million years to reach the nearest star.” 

BretWebster_GhostPanelStars. Early civilization. Intimidating nature. Stars. Technology. Human adventurousness. And stars. 

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http://www.bretwebsterimages.com/gallery-list

Trivia (“spine of night”):  http://www.scienceinafrica.co.za/2003/november/cosmic.htm

What does Earth look like? What colours does it have?

Well, who knows?

What images satellites send us, turns out, always have to be manipulated if simply to acquire some colour. Because they wouldn’t gain much if they saw only in the visible-by-humans spectrum. So we have to rely on space agencies’ word that an effort for realism doesn’t take over reality.

Elektro-L earth moon photo

And that’s why  the photos published by the russian meteo satellite Elektro-L look as similar to the ones we’re used to as Tarkovski did to Hollywood ;)

Pic and whole story: http://gizmodo.com/#!5787176/this-is-the-moon-and-the-earth-like-you-have-never-seen-them-before

Enjoying the balcony on the Sunday afternoon, sipping in the majestic show of clouds and zodiac light against the urban horizon, contemplating at the curls of vapour from the tea cup or of smoke from the cigarette or of whatever you’d rather read here crashing against thin air and twirling whimsically, to think that this same twirling helped astrophysicists realize than we’re in the dark even more than we hoped…

The “usual” matter all around us has been known for some time now to comprise only a small percentage of the actual universe, with a far larger percentage been so-called dark matter, which doesn’t interact with normal one. This was made obvious by observing the motion of galaxies and clusters of galaxies, but it had always been hoped that somehow our theories of gravity are a bit off, instead of the calculations needing more mass to make sense.

Bullet_cluster_Chandra

Well, no more. Having a closer look at the already-amazing-enough Bullet Cluster, where two clusters of galaxies collide, the usual matter can be seen to crash against thin intergalactic air and slow down whimsically. The issue is that all this amount of matter can change the apparent position of other galaxies, by gravitationally attracting their light. Ok, this happens all the time.

But what else did people see in summer 2006? They saw the apparent position of galaxies changing by gravitational attraction in areas where no matter could be seen. Aha! dark matter… dark matter separated from usual one. Because the collision of clusters of galaxies is no reason for it to stop moving, since it doesn’t interact with usual matter, remember?

Newton and Einstein, you’re still right. Tough bitches.