I referenced this image in my Yahoo 360 blog, but it’s worth presenting again. Taken by the Cassini spacecraft (currently in orbit around Saturn), it shows Earth as a point of light viewed through Saturn’s rings. You can read more about the image on NASA’s Cassini page. As Carl Sagan wrote, regarding a similar image: “Our posturings, our imagined self-importance, the delusion that we have some privileged position in the Universe, are challenged by this point of pale light. Our planet is a lonely speck in the great enveloping cosmic dark. In our obscurity, in all this vastness, there is no hint that help will come from elsewhere to save us from ourselves.”
I just attended two conferences, back to back: the Astronomical Society of the Pacific (ironically, held in Baltimore) and Pale Blue Dot III (in Chicago). Although I blogged about both Baltimore and Chicago, I left feeling dismayed on certain counts but also inspired, particularly by a talk given by Aaron Price. So what’s a guy to do but start another blog?
Okay, okay, okay, I already have two blogs, but they have issues. First off, I don’t blog well—in the sense that I tend to write full-blown essays, not concise little blog entries. And secondly, I tend to avoid contemporary science issues; doing science-y stuff as a job every day makes the latter less appealing, but I feel now that it’s part of my brain I need to exercise a bit. Thus, “Visualizing Science: Seeing Science in Everyday Life.”
We’ll see what happens next…