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“We are what we are, and we’re doing the best we can. It is not for you to set the standards by which we should be judged.” -Captain Picard, Star Trek: The Next Generation Fifty years ago, on September 8, 1966, the first episode of the original Star Trek premiered. It introduced a vision of humanity’s…

“Now the world has gone to bed, Darkness won’t engulf my head, I can see by infrared, How I hate the night.” -Douglas Adams The Hubble Space Telescope is an amazing piece of equipment, and has seen more distant stars and galaxies than any telescope before or since. Earlier this year, it broke its own…

“I have lost tolerance for things without meaning. There is no time for them. Does that make sense?” -Sara Seager The discovery of a potentially habitable planet around the nearest star to our own — Proxima Centauri — has brought up the tantalizing possibility that this might be closest Earth-like world ever found. But it’s…

“Never look down to test the ground before taking your next step; only he who keeps his eye fixed on the far horizon will find the right road.” -Dag Hammarskjold A black hole is a region of space that’s got so much mass in such a small volume that the escape velocity within a specific…

“We meet aliens every day who have something to give us. They come in the form of people with different opinions.” -William Shatner It’s been another big week here at Starts With A Bang, with stories covering the Universe near and far. Although the biggest announcements seemed to shatter our picture of how things are, this week…

“What, I sometimes wonder, would it be like if I lived in a country where winter is a matter of a few chilly days and a few weeks’ rain; where the sun is never far away, and the flowers bloom all year long?” -Anna Neagle At some point in the future, the Sun, the giver…

“All of the books in the world contain no more information than is broadcast as video in a single large American city in a single year. Not all bits have equal value.” -Carl Sagan For every action, there’s an equal and opposite reaction. While Newton may not be the final word in mechanics anymore since…

“A careful analysis of the process of observation in atomic physics has shown that the subatomic particles have no meaning as isolated entities, but can only be understood as interconnections between the preparation of an experiment and the subsequent measurement.” -Fritjof Capra For most living humans on the planet, the Standard Model and General Relativity,…

“Otherwise we are trying to communicate with someone who doesn’t exist with a system which doesn’t work.” -Philip K. Dick When it comes to the now famous “Alien Megastructures” star, the observations didn’t add up. There were huge, irregular flux dips, but not a hint of infrared radiation that would indicate a circumstellar disk. Infrared radiation…

“These galaxies are among the most massive galaxies in the universe and are believed to have rapidly formed their stars a long time ago. However, how these galaxies formed and why have they stopped forming new stars remain mysteries.” -Tao Wang, lead author on this new study There was once a time early on in…