Tuesday, May 13, 2008

Space -- The One Thing *Almost* Better Than TV

Space and astronomy fans are all over Microsoft Research's new release of WorldWide Telescope, and you should be, too. It's amazing, a virtual planetarium of tours and explorations which should keep you mesmerized for hours and hours. The download is free (thanks, Bill Gates!) but you will need a pretty fast computer and good internet speed to take advantage of this. (Further reason why universal broadband and unfettered access to the net is a must in this 21st century world of ours.)

Anyway, get on over to WorldWide Telescope, download the app, and start experimenting. Take some of the pre-made tours. (You need to download, start the program, then go back to the tour page and click, then it will download). For a fast one, I watched Earth @ Night, which shows the lights all over our planet. I can't wait to spend lots of time on this site, and I think many of you will feel the same!

I'm including here a talk by science educator Roy Gould and Microsoft's Curtis Wong, given at the recent TED conference, prior to the release of this exciting technology. It's a great overview and will get you worked up, I guarantee (and hope)!

1 comment:

Scott said...

Wow, cool stuff. I love astronomy. I even took it as a science elective in college (and aced it I must proudly say). Good for Microsoft! If Google enhances its "Google Mars" feature to be more interactive like "Google Earth" that will be amazing too.