Becky, Ladyada, and I attended “Our Solar Neighborhood with Jackie Faherty” at the American Museum of Natural History. The Hayden Planetarium, with ongoing support from NASA, has assembled the world’s largest cosmic atlas, extending from Earth to the greatest distances yet charted by astronomers. Join us on the first Tuesday of each month for a fully interactive tour of the universe that surrounds us… It’s each month, I plan to go back!
You can download atlas of the Universe here (pictured above).
Jackie did a great job. It’s a live event where the presenter talks about a theme or topic while navigating a real-time planetarium using real data sets. For example, if the conversation turns towards brown dwarfs or the rings or Saturn, they zoom in, pan out, show labels, or whatever is needed. It’s like the biggest processing-style app ever made. I don’t think I’ll “watch” a planetarium show again unless it’s like this and uses real data. I also like that it can crash from time to time. Very fun. If you’re into Star Trek, it’s basically a giant “Astrometric” or “Stellar Cartography” room. Special thanks to AMNH’s Lowell Eschen for the tickets to the Virtual Universe show!
I also toured the newly opened Anne and Bernard Spitzer Hall of Human Origins, great exhibit – here are some photos.