The Scientific Indian

Wonder

I was watching many of the videos at Beyond Belief yesterday evening. They are well worth your time, particularly if you want to understand the historical narratives of science and religion. When Carolyn Porco was talking (video, last speaker) about wonder and showing some of the stunning astronomical images, I was struck by a thought. It is this: Whenever I see some beautiful astronomical images, I cannot get over the fact that they are real. Consider the image below. Each of these little swirly things are galaxies with millions of stars. How puny our imaginations and preposterous fictional accounts seem to be when compared to this!


Image via APOD

Comments

  1. #1 Mustafa Mond, FCD
    November 27, 2006

    Whenever I see some beautiful astronomical images, I cannot get over the fact that they are real.

    Hmmm, when I see beautiful astronomy images, I have to wonder about how real they are. Colorization is quite common in the field today. In many cases this is essential, because some scopes “see” in infrared, ultraviolet, or even X-rays, and so must be substituted with visible colors when rendered. In serious scientific forums the colorization scheme for any image will be reported, but when these images make it to more mainstream outlets, that information is frequently omitted.

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