Archive for the Cool Category

Happy Birthday, SR

Posted in Cool, Lesson, Vain Attempts at Humor on March 21, 2010 by dcbradshaw

Today in 1905, Albert Einstein published his paper, “On the Electrodynamics of Moving Bodies,” which described Special Relativity.

When asked if he thought it would be a big deal, he replied, “It all depends on how you look at it.”


Looky, ‘smee!

Posted in Cool on January 4, 2010 by dcbradshaw

Oh yeah, I’m famous!

Damon Bradshaw, theater specialist with the [Blank Blank] Planetarium in Kansas City, says technically there is no official astronomical term “blue moon.”


“There are 11 days in a year that the moon has to make up for,” he says. “So roughly every three years there’s an extra full moon in a year — instead of 12 there are 13.”


“Occasionally if the moon is low on the horizon and you are looking through a lot of atmosphere, it might appear bright orange or red,” Mr. Bradshaw says. “Certainly there could be circumstances where there is smoke or dust in the atmosphere that could change its color a little bit.”

The Hypothetical Sun-Earth Bridge Question

Posted in Cool, Lesson on January 2, 2010 by dcbradshaw

I do this bit in my solar system lectures:

Imagine a bridge that stretched from the earth to the sun, and you could drive a vehicle on this bridge.  If you started driving at 70 miles per hour, nonstop — and when I say “nonstop” I mean without stopping to eat, or to go to the bathroom, or to refuel the car — if you drove nonstop at 70 miles per hour, how long would it take you to get to the sun?

Fifth grade flashbacks!  It’s WORD PROBLEMS!

This is actually pretty easy to work through, but the result is so surprising that you may think you got the answer wrong.

Start with the distance from Earth to Sun.  The number everyone seems to know off the top of their heads is 93 million miles, and though that’s rounded a little bit (and also not metric…), we’ll go with it.

Actually, let’s break it down a little more: how long would it take to go 1 million miles at 70mph nonstop?

Good ol’ d = rt, don’t fail me now!  1,000,000 miles divided by 70 mph equals roughly 14,286 hours, divided by 24 hours in a day, equals 595 days.

That’s a long time to drive nonstop.

So, if 595 days equals 1 (million miles), 595 days times 93  (million miles) equals the driving days to the sun: 55,335 days.

55,335 (days) divided by 365 (days per year) equals 151.6 years.

151 years.

If you drove nonstop from the earth to the sun at 70 miles per hour, it would take you about 150 years of driving to get there.


Posted in Cool on August 7, 2009 by dcbradshaw

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Saturday Metal!

Posted in Cool, Music with tags on July 18, 2009 by dcbradshaw

Apollo 11 Live

Posted in Cool on July 13, 2009 by dcbradshaw

This is hands down the coolest thing I have ever seen on the internet.

I won’t waste words trying to describe it.  Just click.


Posted in Cool, Hilarious on July 11, 2009 by dcbradshaw

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