What I’ve Got: Moon as 1 Pixel Website

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The Moon as 1 Pixel website, a favorite among Astronomy nerds, is an exploration of the massive scale of our solar system, designed by engineer extraordinaire Josh Worth. It responds to the question — how can we possibly comprehend distances beyond where we can travel to on Earth — distances so vast that we must use the speed of light to measure them? To explore the scale of our solar system, Josh Worth condenses the diameter of the moon to 1 pixel and makes viewers scroll horizontally until they encounter each planet beyond the sun. Along the way, he includes witty commentary about how much space there is in space. One of my favorite features of this site is the symbol at the bottom right of the page — if you click on it, the website will scroll automatically at the speed light travels (on the scale of moon=1 pixel). This makes viewers realize that even though light travels instantaneously to us, within the massive scale of the universe, it actually travels quite slowly. Guess that explains why it would take light 4+ years to travel from our sun to the nearest star. Though the website seems to be a mere design/engineering passion project for Josh, I appreciate its educational nature, and wonder how digital design can further be harnessed to evoke curiosity and wonder about the world we live in.

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