Tuesday, June 19, 2007

The Universe: Feel Small

A small atlas of the Universe, which is boiled down to 9 pictures at scales ranging from 12.5 light years to 14 billion light years.  And you ask yourself, “They can see that far into space?”  It does seem like a long way.

The thing that caught my eye was the 14 billion-l.y. map, and the distribution of galaxies.  Think about this when you’re viewing it:  the conventional wisdom that the universe exploded from a single point and drifted outward seems in err when looking at a universe that’s as evenly distributed as astronomers make it seem in these pictures.

Which also presents a conundrum of it’s own.  This is only what we’ve been able to observe.  How much farther does the universe extend?  How many stars/galaxies are really out there?  Makes you feel pretty small, but also makes you feel interestingly cared about by a God who is big enough to call this a backyard project.

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