On an Awesome Journey

Breaking News

I interrupt previously announced posting because of important news. Iceland posts will be delayed. The post about Reykjavik will publish Sunday evening (Eastern US), then the post about travel tips for Iceland will be Tuesday evening (Eastern US).

Long-time visitors know my fascination with images of deep space – such as those from the Hubble Telescope. After all, I use them as headers here. (Click here for past headers or click the Past Headers tab for my page dedicated to past headers.)

The magical and mystical nature of deep space image give me a special sense of the grand nature of creation – the universe we live in.

The Friday morning news featured a clip of a video from the Hubble Telescope team. I immediately knew I had to use it here. It is an animated fly-through of the Orion Nebula – a place featured in multiple headers. The video is a worthy 3 minutes and I recommend viewing it on full screen. Enjoy.

Addition (10:15 AM): For some, the video promotes reflection. If so, please share in your comment.


On Exploring Time and Space


(Note: The Exploring series continues during we continue to prepare our move.)

The previous post began our journey in this Exploring series in deep space. We remain in deep space for this post, but in a philosophical sense of time and space.

Time and space are modes by which we think and not conditions in which we live. (Albert Einstein, Physicist)

Many a trip continues long after movement in time and space have ceased. (John Steinbeck, Writer)

You build on failure. You use it as a stepping stone. Close the door on the past. You don’t try to forget the mistakes, but you don’t dwell on it. You don’t let it have any of your energy, or any of your time, or any of your space. (Johnny Cash, Musician)

Time and space – time to be alone, space to move about – these may well become the great scarcities of tomorrow. (Edwin Way Teale, Writer)

There are moments of existence when time and space are more profound, and the awareness of existence is immensely heightened. (Charles Baudelaire, Poet)

Nothing puzzles me more than time and space; and yet nothing troubles me less (Charles Lamb, Essayist)

The biggest difference between time and space is that you can’t reuse time” (Merrick Furst, Computer Scientist)

In essence, String Theory describes space and time, matter and energy, gravity and light, indeed all of God’s creation… as music. (Roy H. Williams, Businessman)

Henceforth space by itself, and time by itself, are doomed to fade away into mere shadows, and only a kind of union of the two will preserve an independent reality. (Hermann Minkowski, Mathematician)

Embed from Getty Images

A human being is part of a whole, called by us the Universe, a part limited in time and space. He experiences himself, his thoughts and feelings, as something separated from the rest a kind of optical delusion of his consciousness. This delusion is a kind of prison for us, restricting us to our personal desires and to affection for a few persons nearest us. Our task must be to free ourselves from this prison by widening our circles of compassion to embrace all living creatures and the whole of nature in its beauty. (Albert Einstein, Physicist)

The most violent revolutions in an individual’s beliefs leave most of his old order standing. Time and space, cause and effect, nature and history, and one’s own biography remain untouched. New truth is always a go-between, a smoother-over of transitions. It marries old opinion to new fact so as ever to show a minimum of jolt, a maximum of continuity. (William James, Philosopher)

When time and space and change converge, we find place. We arrive in Place when we resolve things. Place is peace of mind and understanding. Place is knowledge of self. Place is resolution. (Abdullah Ibrahim, Musician)

Even the wildest dreams have to start somewhere. Allow yourself the time and space to let your mind wander and your imagination fly. (Oprah Winfrey, Producer)

Time travel used to be thought of as just science fiction, but Einstein’s general theory of relativity allows for the possibility that we could warp space-time so much that you could go off in a rocket and return before you set out. (Stephen Hawking, Physicist)

…for us physicists believe the separation between past, present, and future is only an illusion, although a convincing one. (Albert Einstein, Physicist)

Did any of those quotes spark a thought? If you had the choice, would you use a time machine to travel ahead or backward in time? If backward in time, who/what would you visit? Enjoy Time Machine by the Alan Parson Project.

On Exploring the Final Frontier

My Exploring series ends with a salute to what some call the final frontier.

Star Trek fans know these abbreviated words:

Space: The final frontier
To explore strange new worlds
To seek out new life and new civilizations
To boldly go where no man has gone before

The universe is a big place. Think about Earth as that pale blue dot in our solar system – which is only a speck in the Milky Way galaxy – which is a very small portion in a changing and expanding universe.

Long-time readers here realize my fondness for the programs studying deep space. Not only have I used those images as my headers, but I find deep space to be mesmerizing, invigorating, awe-inspiring, majestic, and more.

Watch this video, and then, tell us what thoughts come to your mind when you see images from deep space.

On 36

cooltext36The following past post marked the occasion of our 36th wedding anniversary. Given that I also enjoy saluting numbers, here’s my toast to 36.

In Mathematics

  • Divisible by 1, 2, 3, 4, 6, 9, 12, 18, 36
  • Is a perfect square (of ±6), a triangular number, a square triangular number, a 13-gonal number, a highly composite number, a semiperfect number, a Harshad number, an Erdős–Woods number, the sum of a twin price, and the sum of 1-cubed + 2-cubed + 3-cubed
  • The degrees of the interior angle of a regular pentagram
  • The number of possible outcomes when rolling two dice
  • Number of sides on the truncated cube and the truncated octahedron
  • 36 squared is 1296
  • The sum of integers 1 to 36 = 666

In Chemistry
Atomic number of Krypton, whose neutrally charged atom has 36 protons and 36 electrons

In Space

  • Messier object M36 is in the constellation Auriga
  • New General Catalogue (NGC) object 36 is a spiral galaxy in the constellation Pisces
  • 36 Cancri is an A-class star in the constellation Cancer.
  • Discoverer 36, also known as Corona 9029, was an American optical reconnaissance satellite launched in 1961\
  • Soyuz 36 spaceflight was in 1980
  • Expedition 36 to the International Space Station is scheduled to begin in May 2013

In Standards

  • In the US (and very few other countries) 36 inches = 1 yard
  • IBM System/36, a minicomputer
  • Refers to a 36 inches long pipe wrench
  • In the UK, a standard beer barrel is 36 UK gallons, about 163.7 liters
  • Many early computers featured a 36-bit word length
  • ASCII code for the symbol ‘$
  • The number of characters required to store the display name of a UUID or GUID (e.g., 00000000-0000-0000-C000-000000000046)
  • IBM System/36 (S36) was a minicomputer marketed from 1983-2000
  • 36-bit computer architecture
  • In temperatures, 36 C = 96.8 F, but 36 F = 2.2 C

In Music

  • 36 is a punk band
  • 36th Grammy Awards were in 1994 with Whitney Houston as the big winner
  • 36D is a song written by Paul Heaton and Dave Rotheray and performed by The Beautiful South.
  • 6-C is an album by Fifth Column
  • Mozart wrote Symphony #36 in 1783
  • Berlin 36 is a 2009 German film about a Jewish athlete in the 1936 Olympics

In Art

  • 36 Views of Mount Fuji
  • 36 Views of the Eiffel Tower

In Literature

In Film

  • The 36th Chamber of Shaolin (1978) is a kung fu film
  • 36 is a movie (2010) directed by Martin Campbell
  • 36th Academy Awards held in 1964 with Best Picture nominations to Cleopatra, How the West Was Won, Lillies in the Field, America America, and Tom Jones (winner)
  • 36 Pasos (36 Steps) is a 2006 Argentine horror film
  • North of 36 is a 1924 silent film Western Drama

In Entertainment

  • Watch Channel 36 in Charlotte, Lexington (KY), Oakland
  • Canal 36 is a television station in Honduras
  • The Incubator was the 36th episode of M.A.S.H, which aired December 1, 1973
  • 36 is a sports documentary show on NBC Sports Network and TSN
  • The 36th season of Saturday Night Live was 2010-2011
  • The game of roulette has ’36’ numbers on the playing grid and roulette wheel
  • Rollorpoker, a roulette-based game, uses ‘36’ playing cards on the wheel and playing grid, instead of numbers

In Language
Thirty six, trente six, dreißig sechs, kolmekymmentä kuusi, tretti seks, talatin da shida, XXXVI

In Sports

  • Retired jerseys of MLB’s Robin Roberts (Phillies) and Gaylord Perry (Giants), NFL’s Mack Lee Hill (Chiefs), and NBA’s Lloyd Neal (Trailblazers)
  • The Adelaide 36ers are an Australian Pro-Basketball team
  • In NASCAR, #36 has raced 633, never won, finished in the top 5 32 times, and driven the most by Ken Schrader (106)
  • Super Bowl XXXVI: New England Patriots 20 – St. Louis Rams 17, played at the Louisiana Superdome on February 3, 2002

In Religion

  • In the Jewish tradition, light created by God on the first day of creation shone for 36 hours
  • The Torah commands love, respect, and protect the strange 36 times
  • There are 36 righteous people in every generation
  • 36 candles are in a menorah over 8 days
  • In the Māori legend, 36 gods were involve creating the first human before receving the breath of life from Tāne
  • In Shavism, 36 tattvas describe the internal aspects of creation
  • In Christianity, Psalm 36

In US History

  • Nevada is the 36th state (1864)
  • Lyndon B. Johnson served as the 36th US president
  • The 36th US Congress (1859-1861) during the last two years of James Buchanan’s presidency
  • Alexander Hamilton wrote Federalist Papers 36, The Same Subject Continued: Concerning the General Power of Taxation, the last of the seven papers on taxation

In World History Year 36 BC

  • Buddhist calendar year 509, Korean calendar year 2298, Thai solar calendar year 508, Chinese calendar year 2601/2661 to 2602/2662
  • Mark Antony married Cleopatra VII while still married to Octavia

In World History Year 36 CE

  • A leap year that started on a Saturday
  • Bengali calendar year -577, Berber calendar 986, and Iranian calendar year 586 BP – 585 BP
  • Historical figures include Pontius Pilot, Emporer Tiberius, and Herod Antipus
  • Some say this is the year of Jesus’ crucifixion

In Geography

  • The 36th parallel south only across land in Australia, New Zealand, Chile, and Argentina
  • The 36th meridian east passes through Russia, Ukraine, Turkey, Syria, Lebanon, Jordan, Saudi Arabia, Sudan, Ethiopia, Kenya, Tanzania, and Mozambique
  • US Route 36 runs 1,414 miles from Rocky Mountain National Park, Colorado to Uhrichsville, Ohio

In Business

  • The Thirty-Six Bisto in Anchorage, Alaska
  • Thirty-Six, a camera boutique in Singapore
  • Thirty-Six Peonies Publishing Company
  • Studio Thirty-Six – spa, beauty, and personal treatment in Santa Rosa, California


  • A perfect score on the ACT
  • In French-speaking countries, 36 is often used as a placeholder number
  • International phone code for Hungary
  • The 36 pounder long gun was the largest piece of naval artillery for French war ships in its time
  • TI-36 calculator made in 1986
  • The 36 Boys were a gang of primarily Turkish immigrants from Berlin-Kreuzberg involved in criminal activities
  • The 36-line Bible, the second printed edition of the Bible and known as the “Bamberg Bible”, is named after its 36 lines of text on each page. FYI: The Gutenberg Bible had 42 lines per page

On a Time to Play

In lieu of a Saturday Morning Classic Cartoon post, here is a wonderful interactive site for you to enjoy – and probably learn something. Special thanks to Alex for finding this gem earlier this year.

A couple of notes for you before you get to play. The image below is what you probably will see first after clicking the link. Notice the following on the image:

  • The Scroll bar, which located at the bottom of the interactive field (at within as shown), is for zooming in and out
  • Click any image to learn more
  • It may take time to load, and the Start button will display the loading status
  • Once loaded, click Start



The universe is a wonderful place, so enjoy and savor. To start your exploration, click here.

On Johnson Style

Especially for those of us that grew up during the space race, NASA has a special place in our heart. Yes, I remember the first named flight by Russian Yuri Gagarin, the first US flight by Alan Shepard, and obviously the ones that followed. They were big news events – and I recall our grade school class stopping to watch the televised launches. From Mercury to Gemini, to Apollo missions the wonderful space shuttle, and countless satellite programs,  NASA has taken us to the heavens.

Today, the shuttle program is retired, the Russians transport the astronauts to/from the International Space Station, and satellite launches in this country is now by private business. Nonetheless, the Johnson Space Center in Houston is still operating, thus this video made by smile and laugh. Cheers to two space geeks who visit here, Alex and John.

On a Header to Saturn by Cassini

Usually headers feature images from the Hubble Telescope, but when I saw this one, I knew it was a must-use image. Not sure for how long, but it is a user.

This is an image from the Cassini orbiter from the dark side of Saturn looking back at the sun, whose rays illustrate the main particles in the Saturn system. Similar to Hubble images, scientists use filtering techniques to determine the digitally created colors. Here is more information about this image.

The Cassini-Huygens mission is a joint mission between NASA, the European Space Agency, and the Italian Space Agency. The Cassini orbiter, sending a steady stream of images of the Saturn system since 2004 arrival, is just another example of the awesome nature of creation.

This image happened to capture a small, bright speck of light on the left side, which happens to be the pale blue dot we call home. With that in mind, I can never get enough of this awesome video accompanying the words of Carl Sagan. Besides, he would be proud of the images from this mission.