i am an unrequited astronomer, pretend patient, gentle adventurer, pedal enthusiast, recovering calligrapher, occasional thespian and unfinished poet living in portland, oregon. contacting me via email is usually a good idea.
3:14 PM: unhook the stars
some lovely astronomical tidbits to share:
carl sent a link to brilliant noise, a film that focuses on solar videos. instead of cleaning them up, they keep the noise and graininess inherent in the original recordings, using the evidence of their interactions with the recording equipment as part of the art itself.
then susan sent a link to the moon transiting the earth. it's pretty awesome. she says, "it actually brings tears to my eyes to watch, it's that beautiful."
in fact, when i read this in chet raymo's the soul of the night, i almost got tears in -my- eyes -- i LOVED how it made me reimagine the universe filled with tiny shadowthorns: "Every object near a star wears a cone of night. Near every star there is a ring of cone-shaped shadows that points into space like a crown of thorns. The sun's family of nights includes the shadows of nine planets, several dozen moons, and an army of asteroids. Every particle of dust in the space of the solar system casts its own tiny pyramid of darkness. The sun bristles with nights like a sea urchin prickly with shadowy spines."
plus, sven & i are watching "cosmos," which i didn't see when i was a kid. carl sagan is a trip!
also, i just finally figured out stellarium's zoom feature, too. watching jupiter & its moons move in realtime is amazing. i want to start learning the names of stars (or at least the ones that have common names), and discovered stellarium's handy settings for constellation boundaries and hiding everything but the selected constellation. this will make for some nice screenshots someday.