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The Digital Universe Atlas: Think You Are Significant? Think Again

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posted on Dec, 18 2009 @ 10:19 PM
So most of you by now are probably familiar with the several different videos or photographs that attempt to tell our minds how big the universe really is and how insignificant we really are on the grand scope of things. Some examples include the video of Carl Sagan's Pale Blue Dot or those models that compare the planets with the sun and the sun with a dozen different other stars. Then biggest star was several thousand times our star's size.

These different stimulations probably made you stop and think. They probably made you realize how many things that you take for granted, including our families, things, love, and the planet in general. They probably helped open you up to the true nature of the cosmos and made you wonder, what does it really mean to be a human and live on planet earth?

Recently, the American Museum of Natural History (AMNH) did a digital computer stimulation of the known universe. They created a four dimensional map of everything we have discovered, every star, galaxy, quasar, and known light. During this stimulation, they started out with the Himalayas, the largest structures on earth, and spread out to the edge of the light left over from the big bang.

Supposedly, everything in this video is to full scale. Sit back and enjoy this.

Try to wrap your mind around the immensity of it.


Never take anything for granted during your life on this planet.

Love, Allison

posted on Dec, 18 2009 @ 11:05 PM
Very well done video. every time i see something like that it really does take me back. it depresses me and inspires me. you can take it even farther by our universe just being one little speck in the abyss. great post!

posted on Dec, 18 2009 @ 11:22 PM
Here are some links to the other universe/significance stimulations:

Pale Blue Dot:

Star Size Comparison:

posted on Dec, 18 2009 @ 11:35 PM

Originally posted by Barak89
it depresses me and inspires me.

It really is part of the paradox isn't it?

On one hand, we are a small part of the universe that is concious of itself. We are the like eyes and the rest of the matter in existence make up the body body. Therefore, we have this sort of aura of importance that surrounds us (or at least seems to).

On the other hand, as the eyes, we feel so distant from the body and sometimes it seems, well what is the point of having eyes anyway!?! We can see only fractions of what we really are and at this point in our development are years away from actually experiencing it all!

posted on Dec, 18 2009 @ 11:49 PM
And people wonder why I get "disrespectful" - get curt and snide with those who attack the scientific method when their pet theories don't pan out under critical inquiry or threaten to kick them off their geocentric ego. How many of our forefathers stared up at the night sky in wonderment and ached with desire to know what lay beyond the void... and for the first time in history that we know of, possibly (though unlikely) the first time in the history of the universe... a species, our species, can even attempt to grasp a fleeting glimmer of an infinity (in practical terms) more majestic and awe inspiring than anything our language or imaginations could conjure.

What honor... what privilege... to be among the first generations of our species to touch the very mind of god. How ungrateful and boorish, to slap in the face not only men and women who provided that gift - but all our forefathers who drew their terminal breaths with all that wonder unfulfilled - that awe just beyond their grasp.

... and that's just the tip of the iceberg. You could double the length of that film in OP if we scaled down to the size of elementary particles. And easily four times as large as the video shown if scaled out to the estimated actual size of the universe. That was just the observable universe in the video. It's still expanding, exponentially as you get farther away. The edge of the observable universe is the point at which the space between the Earth and that point of observable edge where just beyond - the rate of expansion between those two points starts to exceed the speed of light. Light emitted our planet from a star beyond the of what we can observe will never stop traveling, but will never reach us. On the smallest scale, the distance between the electron shell of an atom and it's nucleus is comparable to a house fly on the center of a football stadium's 50 yard line in relation to the tip of a flag hanging from the window of a tailgater's car in the parking lot. Go outside and grab a palm-sized rock and smash it against your thumb... and try to understand that the pain you feel is resultant from the collision of almost entirely empty space.

And almost everything you see in that video... every star, every planet, every nebula, every galaxy... all consisting of matter, which itself is only a trace constituent of the whole.

And when you're done pondering that... ponder this...

Steve Grand points out that you and I are, ourselves, more like a wave than a permanent thing. He invites us, the reader, to "think of an experience from your childhood -- something you remember clearly, something you can see, feel, maybe even smell, as if you were really there. After all, you really were there at the time, weren't you? How else would you remember it? But here is the bombshell: You weren't there. Not a single atom that is in your body today was there when that event took place. Matter flows from place to place and momentarily comes together to be you. Whatever you are, therefore, you are not the stuff of which you are made. If that doesn't make the hair stand up on the back of your neck, read it again until it does, because it is important.

A quote taken from Richard Dawkin's TED speech "Queerer than we can suppose". Itself is a reference to J.B.S. Haldane's quote:

"Now, my own suspicion is that the universe is not only queerer than we suppose, but queerer than we can suppose. I suspect that there are more things in heaven and earth than are dreamed of, or can be dreamed of, in any philosophy."

[edit on 18-12-2009 by Lasheic]

posted on Dec, 19 2009 @ 12:05 AM
thank you Allison!!

I have been sharing the comparison chart/image for years,
and im still fascinated by it..

but this, maaann..!!

we are literally. "Star Stuff" as Sagan said it.

specs of dust....

star dust.

so amazing
deep bows,

posted on Dec, 19 2009 @ 12:14 AM
amazing post man! its funny how little we trully are and yet some of us still dont believe that theres life out there...

posted on Dec, 19 2009 @ 12:25 AM
Thank you so much that was a really good video...
Even when we enter our solar system the earth is so little a unsignificant compared to the cosmos...

posted on Dec, 19 2009 @ 12:50 AM
I do NOT feel small and insignificant. And do you know why?

Because I realize EVERYTHING in this universe was made for US. -

The self aware beings who have the ability to learn and grow and go out and get what they want.

We are The Special Ones. All Creation was made for Our Pleasure.

That's something to feel special about!

I believe in God, but God did not make this Universe for Him, He made it for US. Surely an infinitely powerful being like God does not need his own tiny physical universe.

God may have made other self aware beings and set them to live in this universe too. That's o.k. - They are Special Too! Of course some may be bad and want to harm us just like there are bad men. But we are so small it won't hurt us to share this great gift. We certainly will not need to use all of it ourselves.

We are made so teny tiny so we would more appreciate this HUGE gift we are given. Don't you like it when you get Big presents at Christmas and Birthday?

And if you don't believe in God you are still Special enough to enjoy this universe too. This universe is for everyone no matter what you believe in. That's how great a gift this universe is!

So next time you watch that video, don't think of how small you are.

Think of what a great gift to you it really is and how you were so loved that it was made for you! You Are Special!

posted on Dec, 19 2009 @ 03:17 AM
thats not that small really.

posted on Dec, 19 2009 @ 08:27 AM

Originally posted by Dances With Angels
Try to wrap your mind around the immensity of it.


Great video but it seemed kind of strange the way they left out some obvious things I'd expect to see, for example was the moon visible as they backed away from the Earth? If so I missed it, that seemed strange.

In response I have to post a star size comparison video. One afternoon I spent an hour going through all the star size comparison videos I could find on youtube and this was the best I found, especially in HD. Videos like this comparing star sizes do a lot more for me than the still pictures for some reason, same information but presented differently. I siggest opening it in another window, then go full screen in HD for the best effect:

Another great movie is "powers of 10" I don't feel so insignificant after watching that one. Why? Because it makes me feel tiny on larger scales, but it makes me feel like a giant compared to the smaller scales! Check it out:

I think powers of 10 did a great job especially the way they timed the scale changes, you lose some of that richness of information in the OP video. And it's a really old video so they did a good job with the animations for the time it was made.

But still I agree; the scale of the infinite universe is humbling, as we can't really even grasp the sizes shown.

[edit on 19-12-2009 by Arbitrageur]

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