The 1995 Hubble photo that changed astronomy

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The Hubble Deep Field, explained by the man who made it happen.



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Click here to download the Hubble Deep Field images: http://www.spacetelescope.org/science/deep_fields/


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Magic Eye: The optical illusion, explained

Magic Eye: The optical illusion, explained

The science behind the stereogram craze of the 1990s. You might have remembered when sterograms appeared on Seinfeld. Learn about how these images trick the brain.



Sources:
MagicEye.com http://www.magiceye.com/
MagicEye.js http://peeinears.github.io/MagicEye.js/
EasyStereogramBuilder.com http://www.easystereogrambuilder.com/3d-stereogram-maker.aspx

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NASA's incredible mission to Pluto, explained

NASA's incredible mission to Pluto, explained

A tiny spacecraft has been traveling 9 years for this moment — the day we finally get a close look at Pluto. Here's what you need to know about NASA's New Horizon's mission.

Learn more: http://www.vox.com/2015/7/9/8921713/pluto-mission-new-horizons-nasa-flyby

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Why every picture of a black hole is an illustration

Why every picture of a black hole is an illustration

Scientists are pretty sure black holes are real. Soon they'll know for sure.


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The biggest problem with trying to detect a black hole is that even the supermassive ones are relatively tiny.

"The largest one in the sky [is] the black hole in the center of the Milky Way," Dimitrios Psaltis, an astrophysicist at the University of Arizona, writes me in an email. "And taking a picture of it would be equivalent to taking a picture of a DVD on the surface of the moon."

What's more, because of their strong gravity, black holes tend to be surrounded by other bright matter that makes it hard to see the object itself.

That's why, when hunting for black holes, astronomers don't usually try for direct observation. Instead, they look for evidence of the effects of a black hole's gravity and radiation.

But an ongoing effort is linking up several radio telescopes around the world in an effort to see a black hole up close for the first time. The historic image is due in 2017.

Read more: http://www.vox.com/2016/2/23/11095624/what-does-a-black-hole-actually-look-like

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The most mysterious star in the universe | Tabetha Boyajian

The most mysterious star in the universe | Tabetha Boyajian

Something massive, with roughly 1,000 times the area of Earth, is blocking the light coming from a distant star known as KIC 8462852, and nobody is quite sure what it is. As astronomer Tabetha Boyajian investigated this perplexing celestial object, a colleague suggested something unusual: Could it be an alien-built megastructure? Such an extraordinary idea would require extraordinary evidence. In this talk, Boyajian gives us a look at how scientists search for and test hypotheses when faced with the unknown.

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Why ships used this camouflage in World War I

Why ships used this camouflage in World War I

Dazzle camouflage was fantastically weird. It was also surprisingly smart.

WWII saw another kind of strange history unfold: a meme (yes, really). Watch our video on it here: http://bit.ly/2Co9DEu

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Dazzle camouflage was a surprisingly effective defense against torpedoes. In this episode of Vox Almanac, Phil Edwards explains why.


World War I ships faced a unique problem. The u-boat was a new threat at the time, and its torpedoes were deadly. That led artist Norman Wilkinson to come up with dazzle camouflage (sometimes called “razzle dazzle camouflage”). The idea was to confuse u-boats about a ship’s course, rather than try to conceal its presence. In doing so, dazzle camouflage could keep torpedoes from hitting the boat — and that and other strategies proved a boon in World War I.


This camouflage is unusual, but its striking appearance influenced the culture, inspired cubist painters’ riffs, and even entered into the world of fashion. Though dazzle camouflage lost its utility once radar and other detection techniques took over from u-boat periscopes, for a brief period in time it was an effective and unusual way to help ships stay safe.

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