The above image was taken recently by the Hubble Space Telescope and is part of The Cosmic Evolution Survey (COSMOS) which is studying particular areas in space. This is a small area pictured and even the smallest dots in this image are galaxies (click on the image, you’ll get a better idea), some up to 12 billion light-years away… Galaxies, people, galaxies.
Speaking of Cosmos… Cosmos: A Spacetime Odyssey is a documentary TV series hosted by Neil deGrasse Tyson. Even with its empirical scientific bias, a sense of mystery and wonder reigns throughout the series. The premier episode alone is worth the human space/size/time perspective (hint: we are hella insubstantial!). For those in NYC, Tyson narrates the spectacular AMNH Hayden Planetarium Space Show Dark Universe.
How awesome is it that I get to reference 2 black physicists in the same newsletter? This On Being interview with string theory pioneer, S. James Gates explores the conceptual limitations in how we understand the universe at the smallest versus the highest levels of reality. Gates’ research in supersymmetry might help reconcile this conflict and along the way uncovers as many mysteries as it purports to solve.