Wednesday, April 24, 2013

A Little Perspective

Sometimes I get a a sense of the actual scale of the universe, or buildings, or just really big plants–sometimes I just consider that a worm has a heart–and when I do this, I get a mild panic attack/bout of vertigo. Douglas Adams described a torture device call the Total Perspective Vortex that drives you insane by giving you an exacting display of your insignificance in the universe in a very similar manner.

The above image has been circling the Internet for several days with varying notes attached to it. It is a still image of the Martian dusk sky taken by the Mars Curiosity rover depicting (from horizon up) Venus, Jupiter, and Earth.

Recall that the small dot seen here is divided infinitesimally by the microbes scurrying across its surface, warring over imagined slights and invisible markers, hording certain mineral elements and trading them in exchange for other elements with which to hopefully damage other little microbe people.

And a few of them are hoping to get up off that small dot and visit other small dots and maybe one day not have imagined slights or invisible markers, so they drove a nuclear-fueled RC Power Wheels they shot out of a capsule in a bullet in a cannon to the nearest dot they could find and took this picture to show us the most zoomed-out selfie you'll see all week.

And here you were watching Dancing with the Stars.

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