The saying goes, “your cell phone has more computing power than all of NASA in 1969. NASA launched a man to the moon. We launched a bird into pigs.”
Thankfully, in addition to launching furious balls of feathers into evil swine, we also use our phones for taking photographs. And just as our phones have more computing power than all of NASA in 1969, our phones also have better imaging capabilities than many of the astrophotography endeavors of the past.
Case in point is the above image featuring a comparison of two almost identical photos taken of the Orion Nebula, but done so over a century apart, with very different gear.
On the left you have the first photograph ever captured of the Orion Nebula. Taken in 1880 by physician and amateur astronomer Henry Draper. With complete access to an observatory and its accompanying tools, Draper used “an 11-inch Clark Brothers photographic refractor” to capture the image with an approximate exposure time of 51 minutes.
On the right you have an image taken in 2013 by Andrew Symes, an amateur astrophotographer. What did he use to capture his photograph over 130 years later? Nothing more than an iPhone and amateur telescope with an exposure time of approximately a second.
Currently at the Neil deGrasse Tyson Keynote. You can watch it live with the link.
The Belcher Bunch (via ohmylaurito)
It’s called hashtag mining. And ever since Thomas Dworzak did it so creatively in these photo/scrapbooks presented by NatGeo, I was anticipating something more weird and bizarre to come.
What Dworzak did was remarkably simple. Following particular (in some instances, you could say “notorious”) hashtags on Instagram, he took screenshots of particular pictures with his iPhone, then edited images together. The most fascinating and creepy are those shots from Watertown during the Boston Marathon bomber manhunt.)
Which brings me to the Kiev mining Esquire did a couple days ago. Presented as simple “before’s” and “after’s” intended to demonstrate how civil unrest can turn life upside down in an instant, we are shown 32 sets of images from Ukranian citizen’s Instagram feeds. In the face of widespread protestations over the sensationalized use of imagery from Kiev, these pairs juxtapose gritty, sometimes gruesome pictures from Independence Square with mundane, often frivolous photos from the same person’s feed before witnessing living hell.
ITURI, Democratic Republic of the Congo — Innocent Mburanumwe can talk to gorillas. He crouches low, knees bent, and lets out a deep, guttural grunt. Then, after a moment or two, another one. If they’re feeling particularly vocal, the gorillas talk back.
“Each gorilla has his own personality,” Mburanumwe said. “That one speaks too much, that one plays too much.”
“I love them all.”
For decades, the eastern region of the Democratic Republic of Congo has made international headlines for its armed conflict. While war is part of the history of this region, it’s certainly not the whole story, and Mburanumwe is determined to let the world know it. For many years he’s been habituating the park’s 300-plus gorillas to the presence of humans in the hopes that the tourism industry will one day return to the region.
After many years, Virunga opens this month. And the gorillas are here, waiting.
(Photo: Elaisha Stokes)
New Yorkers, see the premiere of Cosmos: A Spacetime Odyssey, starring Neil deGrasse Tyson, at the Museum on March 4!
A live-streamed Q&A with Dr. Tyson, Seth Mcfarlane, and panelists will follow.
Register here! Doors open at 7 pm.
So my English teacher put up a new poster today