@nasaames does instagram right!
July 20, 1969: First Man Walks on the Moon
On this day in 1969, the spaceflight Apollo 11 landed the first humans, Americans Neil Armstrong and Buzz Aldrin, on the moon. People watched worldwide as Armstrong took that momentous first step onto the moon, declaring, “This is one small step for a man, one giant leap for mankind.”
One does not simply land on the moon wearing a t-shirt and jeans. See how these Historic Space Suits evolved to allow a successful landing on the moon!
Cabane à pêche or carrelet are fishing cabins on the Gironde Estuary in Southwest France. Families fish there and barbecue on the shore. This is a common tradition people living in Medoc. Submitted by Catherine Jullien.
The first 4,000,000 digits of Pi, visualized in a single image
Pi is what’s known as an irrational number, which means that its decimal representation is both infinite and non-repeating.
We’ve been using computers to calculate the digits of Pi for decades. In 1949, John von Neumann and his colleagues used ENIAC — the world’s first general-purpose electronic computer — to calculate Pi to the 2,037th digit. We surpassed the million-digit milestone in 1973. And on October 17, 2011, after 371 days of computing, Shigeru Kondo finished calculating Pi to 10 trillion decimal places.
The picture up top is adapted from a rather simple but effective piece of data visualization, created by the folks at design studio TWO-N, which represents the first four-million digits of Pi in a brilliant mess of interactive pointillism.
Each digit, from 0-9, was assigned a color based on the legend pictured here, and then rendered as a single, 1x1 pixel. Line the pixels up in the order designated by Pi, confine them to a 4-millon pixel image, and you get this interactive applet here, which lets you soar around the entire image, inspecting 500,000-digit sections at a clip. There’s even an interesting search function that lets you probe the mathematical mosaic for number up to eight digits in length. [TWO-N via information aesthetics]
The Mathematics of Beauty
The Fibonacci Sequence is a sequence of numbers where each number is the sum of the previous two—i.e., 0, 1, 1, 2, 3, 5, 8, 13, 21, 34…and so on to infinity. The ratio of one number to the next is approximately 1.61803, which is called “phi”, or the Golden Ratio. It’s not a magical mathematical equation of the universe, but it definitely reflects natural, aesthetically beautiful patterns. The ratio been used as the ideal proportion standard by artists and architects throughout history, and it’s also found in nature because it’s one of the most efficient way to pack things together. The human body can mostly be divided up in terms of the golden ratio, with one nose, two eyes, three segments to each limb, five fingers on each hand, and our measurements and proportions also reflect the ratio, especially the proportions of the human face—the width of the nose, position of the eyes, length of the chin. Our attraction to another person increases if their body and features are symmetrical and proportional, since we perceive them to be healthier, and so the Golden Ratio appears to be connected with humans ideals of beauty. It’s worth noting, however, that although the ratio can create a beautiful face, it can’t create a beautiful mind.
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