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Hubble Captures the Violent Birth of a Star

timothy posted more than 2 years ago | from the in-space-no-one-gets-an-epidural dept.

Space 102

The Bad Astronomer writes "In what is one of the most staggeringly beautiful Hubble pictures ever taken, a newly-born massive star is blasting four separate jets of material into its surrounding cocoon, carving out cavities in the material over two light years long. But only three of the jets appear to have matter still inside them, and the central star is off-center. This may be a gorgeous picture, but the science behind it is equally as compelling."

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102 comments

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Was the government notified? (5, Funny)

roman_mir (125474) | more than 2 years ago | (#38390276)

Were the Vogons notified of this latest development? Were all the forms properly filled in, signed, stamped and approved?

How many government forms does it take for a new star to be allowed to be born? There are all sorts of special interests that may not like this new star from appearing, it's new energy competition, there could be new life forms created, that would compete with the existing interests and it's obviously bad. [thelmagazine.com]

Re:Was the government notified? (1)

jd (1658) | more than 2 years ago | (#38390420)

Yes, but recycling as firelighters is awaiting fire safety board approval, so for now an exemption certificate has been authorized, signed and posted on Alpha Centuri.

Re:Was the government notified? (1)

roman_mir (125474) | more than 2 years ago | (#38390490)

Fine, but did they just have to claim imminent domain and destroy an existing free-space floating life forms in that quadrant?

Re:Was the government notified? (1)

jd (1658) | more than 2 years ago | (#38390552)

No because the star was manufactured from said life-forms. It's thus filed under "recycling existing material" which only requires forms RX-2291 and KILL-101.

alternately (-1, Offtopic)

ronpaulisanidiot (2529418) | more than 2 years ago | (#38390762)

How many government forms does it take for a new star to be allowed to be born?

whereas if your lord and savior ron paul were president, then the births of stars would be determined by whatever the invisible (and benevolent!) hand of the free market allows.

Re:alternately (4, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#38391002)

Oh, fuck off, you goddamned political hack. We were having a fun time making nerdy jokes about something as both grandiose and beautiful as the forming of a fucking star , and you have to bring your bullshit politics into it.

Seriously, do people like you ever relax? Ever joke around without dragging The Other Team into it? Do you realize you're the problem with the world, America in particular?

No, I don't really want to argue this with you. Nobody does. Nobody cares about you. So just sit your ass down, shut the fuck up, and enjoy the star being formed already.

Re:alternately (-1, Flamebait)

ronpaulisanidiot (2529418) | more than 2 years ago | (#38391260)

Do you realize you're the problem with the world, America in particular?

wow, are you the same AC who went bananas in my journal entry for no reason recently? do you not realize that my reply here was to someone who is so engrossed with his hero/savior/messiah that not only is every one of his posts is a tribute to him? you try to sound as if the post i replied to was somehow not political, let me give you a clue AC - just because a post was moderated "funny" does not mean the post itself was not intended as a political statement.

and on top of that, the very notion of telling someone they're "the problem with the world" shows that you are yourself an arrogant hack.

Re:alternately (0)

Toonol (1057698) | more than 2 years ago | (#38394046)

Right. You're not the problem with the world; you're just A problem with the world. You are the obsessive one, the extremist one, the one that has lost self-awareness and perspective.

But there's lots of problems worse than you.

Re:alternately (0)

Iniamyen (2440798) | more than 2 years ago | (#38401206)

I think the only logical conclusion is that you ALL need to take chill pills and go look at the pretty space pictures.

Re:alternately (1)

ClickOnThis (137803) | more than 2 years ago | (#38406128)

I think the only logical conclusion is that you ALL need to take chill pills and go look at the pretty space pictures.

I think a more logical conclusion is that there are a lot of libertarians with mod points reading this thread. Look at who's getting modded "insightful" while others get modded "flamebait". Not that I'm keen on either of them.

Re:alternately (1)

ronpaulisanidiot (2529418) | more than 2 years ago | (#38408950)

I think a more logical conclusion is that there are a lot of libertarians with mod points reading this thread. Look at who's getting modded "insightful" while others get modded "flamebait". Not that I'm keen on either of them.

and now i, after posting less than a dozen times, have "terrible" karma because i had three comments voted down. yet they bitch endlessly that they are somehow not heard on slashdot.

Re:alternately (1)

Forty Two Tenfold (1134125) | more than 2 years ago | (#38408750)

ronpaulisanidiot

No, michellebachmannisanidiot, ricksantorumisanidiot, rickperryisanidiot, hermancainisanidiot, mittromneyisanidiot, newtgingrichisaretardedinfantileidiot and barackobamaisawallstreetcockmongler. Ron Paul seems OK.

Re:alternately (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#38403522)

Oh, fuck off, you goddamned political hack. We were having a fun time making nerdy jokes about something as both grandiose and beautiful as the forming of a fucking star , and you have to bring your bullshit politics into it.

Seriously, do people like you ever relax? Ever joke around without dragging The Other Team into it? Do you realize you're the problem with the world, America in particular?

No, I don't really want to argue this with you. Nobody does. Nobody cares about you. So just sit your ass down, shut the fuck up, and enjoy the star being formed already.

roman_mir and ronpaulisanidiot are both political hacks. Fuck them, and double-fuck you for not noticing and piling onto just one of them.

roman_mir's post was not a nerdy joke about a star. It was an obvious attempt to advance a political opinion. ronpaulisanidiot, being on the other side of the issue, took the bait. We don't need either of them. Andy you even less.

Is that a blue ass (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#38390396)

farrting?

Re:Is that a blue ass (1)

Bodhammer (559311) | more than 2 years ago | (#38390448)

Yes, but its not as nice as Neytiri's.

OOOOOLD (5, Funny)

zill (1690130) | more than 2 years ago | (#38390418)

The Bad Astronomer writes

Bad is quite the understatement here, considering that this story is over 2000 years old.

Re:OOOOOLD (0)

DeathFromSomewhere (940915) | more than 2 years ago | (#38390638)

Slashdot is way behind the news as usual.

Re:OOOOOLD (1)

rvw (755107) | more than 2 years ago | (#38390808)

The Bad Astronomer writes

Bad is quite the understatement here, considering that this story is over 2000 years old.

Yeah and I suppose it's duped about a quadrillion times in those parallel universes.

Re:OOOOOLD (1)

Tastecicles (1153671) | more than 2 years ago | (#38399330)

what, all 10^10^10^7 of them?

Re:OOOOOLD (1)

ballpoint (192660) | more than 2 years ago | (#38399722)

You've missed some parentheses. It's 10^(10^(10^7))

Re:OOOOOLD (2)

Tastecicles (1153671) | more than 2 years ago | (#38399924)

no i didn't. I missed super-super-superscript because I don't know how to do it.

Re:OOOOOLD (2)

ackthpt (218170) | more than 2 years ago | (#38390884)

The Bad Astronomer writes

Bad is quite the understatement here, considering that this story is over 2000 years old.

<Strong Bad Astronomer>My star asplode!</Strong Bad Astronomer>

Re:OOOOOLD (-1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#38391322)

What do you expect from a guy who has to whore himself everywhere he goes? Phil Plait goes out of his way to drum up as much business for his blog as he can. He whores it out here, he whores it out on Twitter and he tries to force people into Digging his shit.
 
Not long ago his shit wouldn't have hit the front page for the way he's trying to market himself but here he's treated like a god.
 
Phuck Phil Plait.

Re:OOOOOLD (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#38391922)

Yeah! How dare anybody try and market themselves? Fuck him! Microsoft spending billions around the world to lock people into the products? That's just smart marketing! But screw this guy! He's not rich, he didn't work hard enough!

Re:OOOOOLD (2)

Hatta (162192) | more than 2 years ago | (#38392136)

At least he's whoring it out for science.

Re:OOOOOLD (1)

Maritz (1829006) | more than 2 years ago | (#38394914)

Phil Plait goes out of his way to drum up as much business for his blog as he can.

So?

Lemme guess; you got a problem with the moon landings or something?

wake me up when the capture (-1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#38390422)

the violent birth of Kim Kardashian's ass niglets.

Stellar formation? (3, Interesting)

SirGarlon (845873) | more than 2 years ago | (#38390472)

This may be a naive question (and will almost certainly be derided as such). I remember from Astronomy 101, many years ago, the prevailing idea about stellar formation. But I don't remember anyone ever explaining studies that verify the hypothesis is valid. What I'm saying is that it's pretty obvious this is a star surrounded by a cloud of material (gas or dust, I can't remember), but how do we know the star is forming rather than, say, dying? Or are we just supposed to take it on faith because we read it in a book?

A related question-- this is an awesomely cool picture, but does it or does it not tell us much about how stars form?

Re:Stellar formation? (3, Funny)

Baloroth (2370816) | more than 2 years ago | (#38390598)

but how do we know the star is forming rather than, say, dying?

You can tell because of the pixels.

Re:Stellar formation? (5, Informative)

jd (1658) | more than 2 years ago | (#38390740)

We know from stellar nurseries we've seen elsewhere that the current model is largely correct. We know from spectrometry that the gas cloud is abundant in light elements and poor in elements that form in later-generation stars, and know also from spectrometry that the star itself is also very rich in light elements. Spectrometry, the the level of light given off, plus the estimated distance also tells us where in the sequence the star is, because the sequence is now very well known. We can further verify a few details -- the solar winds push gas away from the sun, but there are no solar winds before there's a sun to emit them. By measuring output and the degree of push, you can determine how long the gas cloud has been blasted at by the star. If this matches expectation, all's well. If the gas cloud shows evidence of more displacement than can be accounted for, there'd be problems. So far, all looks good.

So although the exact details of stellar formation do shift from time to time, major changes aren't likely. Minor ones, on the other hand, are commonplace. For example, some stellar nurseries close to the galactic centre are being hammered by solar winds from supermassive stars in the region. Current models cannot account entirely for how the stars were able to condense at all under such conditions. (You wouldn't expect fog patches to form in gale force 9 winds for the same reason. If you see fog in such conditions, then there's some extremely freaky condition to explain it - a total lack of air currents or turbulence is possible if you've exactly the right environment, and therefore something similar must exist in these freak star formations. It's an addition to, though, rather than a replacement of existing models.)

Re:Stellar formation? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#38390850)

Short answer: The colour of a star tells us about its composition. The less hydrogen there is, the older the star.

Long answer: LMWTFY. [wikipedia.org]

Goatse has scarred me (5, Insightful)

regular_guy (1979018) | more than 2 years ago | (#38390550)

That's the first image that immediately came to mind when I saw this picture. Not the awesomeness of the universe, but someone's bum. Tragic.

Re:Goatse has scarred me (2)

Lyrata (1900038) | more than 2 years ago | (#38390576)

I saw an angel, and now I wonder if I'm one of those crazies who sees Jesus in toast.

Re:Goatse has scarred me (5, Insightful)

SirGarlon (845873) | more than 2 years ago | (#38390608)

You're only crazy if you see Jesus in toast and think it's not a coincidence.

Re:Goatse has scarred me (0)

geekoid (135745) | more than 2 years ago | (#38391166)

This^

Re:Goatse has scarred me (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#38400796)

"This" what?

You know, jerkalope, responding with only "This" to a post is the epitome of douchbag behavior. What does it say about you? Well, it says that you think you're a very serious and insightful and SUPERIOR person. "See how smart I am. I can instantly recognize the truth when another person says it, and yet I am so concise and Steve-Jobs-like that I only have to say one single word to shower all you mutants with my genius critical acceptance."

"This." Wow, that pisses me off.

Re:Goatse has scarred me (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#38412120)

This^^

Re:Goatse has scarred me (1)

hedwards (940851) | more than 2 years ago | (#38390692)

I saw a crystal skull personally, and like SirGarlton said it's basically just chance. Sort of like when you see a face in a cliff.

Re:Goatse has scarred me (3, Insightful)

Maritz (1829006) | more than 2 years ago | (#38394938)

Partly chance, also pareidolia [wikipedia.org] . The brain is very good at picking out patterns, regardless of whether they're really there.

Re:Goatse has scarred me (1)

Tastecicles (1153671) | more than 2 years ago | (#38399398)

The Mitchell-Hedges skull is long known to be a hoax. They didn't have diamond polishing paste or titanium-tipped machining heads back when the hucksters claim it was made...

Re:Goatse has scarred me (2)

Nidi62 (1525137) | more than 2 years ago | (#38391090)

I saw an angel, and now I wonder if I'm one of those crazies who sees Jesus in toast.

Don't get too worried until toast Jesus starts talking to you.

Re:Goatse has scarred me (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#38392734)

I saw an angel, and now I wonder if I'm one of those crazies who sees Jesus in toast.

And just below the forming star, I see a mighty bonner...

Re:Goatse has scarred me (2)

rubycodez (864176) | more than 2 years ago | (#38394196)

is a bonner someone who makes bonnets? I myself saw a giant boner under that mighty cosmic nut sack, but I won't admit to it lest someone think I'm gay.

Re:Goatse has scarred me (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#38394870)

Didn't they say the star was born two thousands years ago? Surely, that can't be coincidence! :)

Re:Goatse has scarred me (1)

mcgrew (92797) | more than 2 years ago | (#38400752)

That's not Jesus, it's RMS.

Well, actually, it's a rorschach test. What you see in the clouds, stars, or ink blots says a lot about your personality and thinking, and may even show mental illness.

Re:Goatse has scarred me (1)

cyachallenge (2521604) | more than 2 years ago | (#38393048)

I don't know about you guys, but I saw a huge pair of space tits.

Re:Goatse has scarred me (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#38394304)

How on Earth did this get moderated insightful? We need better meta moderators...

Re:Goatse has scarred me (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#38403238)

I read this before I saw that; now I can't unsee it.

photoshop color contrast enhancement ? (-1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#38390772)

Nah, NASA wouldn't do anything that sleazy.....
http://io9.com/5659951/nasa-caught-photoshopping-an-image-of-saturns-moons-what-were-they-trying-to-hide
http://news.discovery.com/space/nasa-conspiracy-image-processing.html

Re:photoshop color contrast enhancement ? (2)

ackthpt (218170) | more than 2 years ago | (#38390926)

This is why you can find good deals on great astronomy equipment - also some cheap astronomy equipment, too...

People see these "color enhanced" or "artist's impression" pictures and go buy a telescope, eye-pieces, etc. Then go out on a clear night and besides Juper and Saturn, which are pretty cool to look at, are unimpressed with all the little brown-smudgies in the sky, which are most of what Hubble & Co. make such beautiful images out of.

Re:photoshop color contrast enhancement ? (1)

SomePgmr (2021234) | more than 2 years ago | (#38391146)

You forgot the moon. :)

I did exactly that. I love what I can see, but now I just want a bigger scope. [Insert beavis & butthead chuckle here]

Re:photoshop color contrast enhancement ? (1)

ackthpt (218170) | more than 2 years ago | (#38391226)

You forgot the moon. :)

I did exactly that. I love what I can see, but now I just want a bigger scope. [Insert beavis & butthead chuckle here]

It's called "Aperature Fever"

Behaviour typified by acquiring the largest telescope you can manage to fit in your car. Extreme affliction may lead to buying a bigger vehicle (and/or modification of existing vehicle) to accomodate very large scople, primary mirrors, counter weights, etc.

Re:photoshop color contrast enhancement ? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#38391808)

Ah, I'd heard "Aperture Envy". I think someone else even mentioned a similarly perverse-sounding version of what boat owners get... two-foot-itis.

I was hoping to go from a 130mm reflector to a 12" dob. I just can't find primaries in my price range and I don't want to get something that's only a little better. Some day...

Re:photoshop color contrast enhancement ? (1)

Tastecicles (1153671) | more than 2 years ago | (#38393444)

um... so grind your own mirror? Plans for homebuilt machines, blank glasses, and 1200 grit diamond polishing paste are relatively easy to come by. All you need is a garage you can fairly effectively seal and six months to do the actual grinding.

Been there, built my own 16" Herschel camera.

Aperture Science (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#38396214)

We do what we must because we can,
For the good of all of us,
Except the ones who are dead.

Re:photoshop color contrast enhancement ? (1)

Kyusaku Natsume (1098) | more than 2 years ago | (#38393166)

I have a telescope that, outside the moon, I can't really see much due light pollution, but can't stop to get amazed every time I see moon craters. Maybe the pictures are doctored but even so, I love to see beatiful pictures like these published. If I were american, I would feel enormously proud for stuff like this instead of the last bombing campaign of USAF or CIA.

My hat off to the Hubble team.

Best Regards

Re:photoshop color contrast enhancement ? (1)

fluffy99 (870997) | more than 2 years ago | (#38406992)

Nah, NASA wouldn't do anything that sleazy.....

Of course they would. They translate the x-ray or non-visible spectrum into a visible color scale, and play with it until it looks nice, then use photoshop and artistic license to come up with something to sell to the public.

They even admit it. The description on the video download page says:

This movie presents a visualization of the star-forming region known as S106. This unique three-dimensional view illustrates and emphasizes that many of the objects contained within astronomical images are not at the same distance, but, in fact, spread across light-years of space. The Hubble image is augmented with additional field-of-view from the Subaru Infrared Telescope. The stars and the lobes of glowing gas from the Hubble/Subaru two-dimensional image have been separated and sculpted using both scientific knowledge and artistic license to create the depth in the movie. Of note, the relative distances between stars and the nebula have been greatly compressed. The format of this movie is a standard "2D" presentation and does not require a 3D screen or 3D glasses.

They don't really look like that, do they? (4, Insightful)

mark-t (151149) | more than 2 years ago | (#38390900)

Correct me if I'm wrong, but it's my understanding that the colorful photos that you see from the Hubble are only pretty because it's been 'shopped like nobody's business. Sure what you're seeing is really out there, but it doesn't actually look like that... and if you were to be at a point in space such that your normal field of vision only envelops roughly the same area as what the photo contains, you would surely see similarities... probably enough to even make a strong connection between them... but not the vibrant colors that space photos so often contain. It is like the difference between a decorated christmas tree, and a decorated christmas tree with many hundreds of lights.

Re:They don't really look like that, do they? (2, Interesting)

Almonday (564768) | more than 2 years ago | (#38391204)

To continue the christmas tree analogy, what Hubble does for our eyes is a little like what some enterprising pixel-slinger might do for a person with some form of color blindness; sure, the viewer might not be able to distinguish between red and green (or blue and yellow) lights on the tree, but they can still be rendered using the available spectrum into something which conveys the beauty and complexity of the overall display.

Re:They don't really look like that, do they? (2, Informative)

mark-t (151149) | more than 2 years ago | (#38391514)

That's more or less my understanding. The hubble sees far more of the EM spectrum than we can with our own eyes... and so they take the invisible frequencies and assign them to colors in the visible spectrum to produce a visually pleasing image, whereas if you were to actually see it with your own eyes, instead of the vibrant colors that you saw in the photo, it would probably look very dull and grey.

Re:They don't really look like that, do they? (4, Informative)

Fluffeh (1273756) | more than 2 years ago | (#38394144)

There is a great video on the Hubble site [hubblesite.org] that you can view that goes into exactly what goes into a hubble picture and explains the whole concept of colors and the like in it.

Re:They don't really look like that, do they? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#38395692)

Aligning images manually? LOL. I guess those boys at NASA have heard of Pixinsight.
What gov completes in 10 h, you and me can do in 4 h :)

Re:They don't really look like that, do they? (1)

geekoid (135745) | more than 2 years ago | (#38391342)

Different frequency are given different colors. SO when you look at it you can see what is going on.

Also, there are taken in three different colors, and then blended. Since it's from a moving object, yes, you will need to be sure the picture are all aligned properly.

It's no like there are shopping in Ice T.

Re:They don't really look like that, do they? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#38391926)

What, would you rather they leave the image in the original infrared?

Re:They don't really look like that, do they? (1)

mark-t (151149) | more than 2 years ago | (#38392098)

Not particularly... but pictures that stunning always seem like false advertising to me.

Re:They don't really look like that, do they? (2)

Tastecicles (1153671) | more than 2 years ago | (#38393512)

It's pictures that stunning that can tell us a hell of a lot about an object. An amazing amount of detail is in the colours, however assigned. The same can be said for radio images, where colours are assigned to relative frequencies in the image field - giving images like this [nrao.edu] shot of Messier 51 in hydrogen. Might just look like a blue blob to some but it tells a lot about the distribution of hydrogen we would otherwise miss - and assume it's uniformly spread relative to the density of stars in the cloud, which it clearly isn't. There are cool areas of hydrogen in there that don't correspond to any normal-light visible feature (ie it isn't trapped inside stars!).

Re:They don't really look like that, do they? (1)

rubycodez (864176) | more than 2 years ago | (#38394218)

hell yes. I'm a pit viper, you insensitive clod!

Re:They don't really look like that, do they? (1)

HiThere (15173) | more than 2 years ago | (#38392228)

This is definitely true. And one of the reasons is that you don't see UltraViolet very well, or InfraRed, either. False color images are the only way to show the information.

Re:They don't really look like that, do they? (1)

mark-t (151149) | more than 2 years ago | (#38392332)

While I certainly agree it shows information that is otherwise invisible, the problem is that it presents an image that doesn't reflect what people expect when they see a photo - which is a duplicate of what they would see if they could see it with their own eyes.

Been there, the photo doesnt do it justice. (2)

TiggertheMad (556308) | more than 2 years ago | (#38392640)

the problem is that it presents an image that doesn't reflect what people expect when they see a photo - which is a duplicate of what they would see if they could see it with their own eyes.

Yes, I hate it when I am flying through the galactic core, and I notice a super nova that I have a poster of, and I am like, OMFG, they totally shopped that photo.

I am pretty sure nobody is going to be looking at this object with 'their own eyes' for a very long time, if ever.

Re:Been there, the photo doesnt do it justice. (1)

rubycodez (864176) | more than 2 years ago | (#38394234)

I get the same feeling when I'm swimming in Lake Michigan, the amoeba I see are nothing like the dyed prepped slide photographs seen in textbooks. And don't even get me started on those ghastly black and white electron microscopic photos of insect faces, the real ones are cutely colored with much less harsh contrast.

Re:They don't really look like that, do they? (1)

rubycodez (864176) | more than 2 years ago | (#38394262)

that's not true, a photo does NOT show what the human eye would see. The lens' altering of perspective and depth of field are different, even the size of the picture is different. The film or array's response to brightness and color are different. All photographs are thus a distortion of what would be seen, so there is really no valid complaint to make other than that of degree.

Re:They don't really look like that, do they? (1)

mark-t (151149) | more than 2 years ago | (#38402736)

You are being pedantic. Nonetheless, I did not say that a photo shows what a human eye would see... I said it was a normal expectation that this was the case... or at least approximately so. You are welcome to dispute this point, if you wish, but bear in mind that the fact you would point out the assorted technical deviations that a picture has from what you normally would see with your own eyes strongly suggests that you might not exactly be within a tolerable sigma of what most people think in the first place when they look at a photo. Heck... if it weren't the case, that people expect photos to look like what they would actually see, why do you think this [slashdot.org] should have ever even been an issue?

Re:They don't really look like that, do they? (1)

rubycodez (864176) | more than 2 years ago | (#38413268)

actually, I'm just hobbyist photographer, and I sometimes use the 35mm lens on 35mm camera that approximates human perspective and field of view. sometimes I compare the picture with the reality for different lighting...amazing what our brain and memory accept as nearly identical

Re:They don't really look like that, do they? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#38392464)

On that same line of thinking, I'd love to be able to see our Earth in the full range of the electromagnetic spectrum.

With broadcast transmission frequencies tuned out maybe.

Re:They don't really look like that, do they? (1)

Maow (620678) | more than 2 years ago | (#38394750)

On that same line of thinking, I'd love to be able to see our Earth in the full range of the electromagnetic spectrum.

With broadcast transmission frequencies tuned out maybe.

I'd love to be able to see broadcast transmissions; perhaps with fancy glasses. Imagine seeing mobile phone towers, find a missing phone, see interference given by car engines, see locations of Wifi units, etc.

Of course, I'd want to be able to turn it off. Think of a virtual-assisted reality.

Re:They don't really look like that, do they? (1)

BenJCarter (902199) | more than 2 years ago | (#38394470)

I'll bet it would look that sweet if you were wearing Geordi La Forge's [wikipedia.org] visor...

Re:They don't really look like that, do they? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#38394946)

Ever looked at the Orion nebula through a decent telescope? Sure, not crazy colorful, but no less stunning.

Re:They don't really look like that, do they? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#38400174)

It's more the extended exposure that gives it the look. You can see the Andromeda Galaxy during some parts of the year. It's our closest galaxy and looks like a grey smudge on a dark night. It won't get any brighter as you get closer as the light just gets spread out. Even the Orion Nebula would just be a mild grey smudge to the naked eye. Remember, we're IN the Milky Way galaxy and can't see any colors in it other than the individual stars.

It's a dim, grey world to the world of natural vision.

Giant Vagina (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#38390950)

looks like it

Re:Giant Vagina (0)

Tablizer (95088) | more than 2 years ago | (#38394242)

It looks like both a vagina AND tits combined. Build Ship Now!

yuck (1)

OrangeTide (124937) | more than 2 years ago | (#38390984)

What's with the shitty lens flare?

Re:yuck (1)

mhotchin (791085) | more than 2 years ago | (#38393348)

It's not lens flare (at least not in the classic sense)- it's diffraction around the internal supports for the secondary mirror.

Re:yuck (4, Informative)

Tastecicles (1153671) | more than 2 years ago | (#38393584)

that's not lens flare, that is a common artefact in Cassegrain cameras because the secondary mirror is usually held in place by wires, which introduce diffraction patterns in the image. I'm still disappointed that they didn't use a glass plate* to hold the secondary but there again that would kill a lot of bandwidth for detection, so I can understand the decision to use wire.

*I have some camera lenses which are basically small Schmidt reflectors; they have secondaries held in place by corrective lens optics which reduce common mirror artefacts such as astigmatism, blooming, etc. I would use these as portable scopes but I don't have a full-frame DSLR body to hand... any donations greatly appreciated ;) and if anyone has an Olympus OM digital back with at least 16MP true resolution they'd like to just, like, give away, I'll have your babies!

Flare (1)

ChrisMaple (607946) | more than 2 years ago | (#38391038)

The four flare lines out of each bright spot in the image are very distracting. Can't they be properly removed in postprocessing to give a truer image?

Re:Flare (1)

tirerim (1108567) | more than 2 years ago | (#38394178)

Sort of -- it would be possible to take them out, but as they saturated those pixels of the sensor, the only thing it would be possible to do would be to replace them with black, which isn't particularly more true than white. Anything else would just be Photoshop tricks, which are likewise not particularly true. As it is, they do provide some information, since their size is dependent on the brightness of the star.

It is very beautiful... (0)

Brad1138 (590148) | more than 2 years ago | (#38391206)

But I don't quite see where the center or new star is. There is a bright star showing from a bit below the center but I think that is just a star behind it. Is there something I am missing that is obviously the "center"?

Re:It is very beautiful... (1)

Tastecicles (1153671) | more than 2 years ago | (#38393376)

Yes. That bright star left and below centre is the new one. I guess it looks odd because of the angle we're seeing it at, combined with obscuring dust clouds.

That is one pissed off looking Angel (1)

Shivetya (243324) | more than 2 years ago | (#38391212)

I love how one can pick out an image that isn't there, but an Angel is what I saw... just not a happy one....

Re:That is one pissed off looking Angel (1)

dominious (1077089) | more than 2 years ago | (#38396328)

Interesting. I saw two big eyes with a nose.

The videos are amazing (4, Informative)

Rashdot (845549) | more than 2 years ago | (#38391288)

Especially the 3D video:

ahref=http://hubblesite.org/newscenter/archive/releases/2011/38/video/rel=url2html-24467 [slashdot.org] http://hubblesite.org/newscenter/archive/releases/2011/38/video/>

It's God's ass taking a dump! (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#38391410)

The universe is his toilet.
I don't do well with Freudian ink blots.

I don't care about the science. (1)

Tastecicles (1153671) | more than 2 years ago | (#38393330)

Prettiest background jpeg ever.

Is it Jesus? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#38394336)

If this star is being born 2000 years ago, could it be Christ?

"My Father’s house has many rooms; if that were not so, would I have told you that I am going there to prepare a place for you? 3 And if I go and prepare a place for you, I will come back and take you to be with me that you also may be where I am. 4 You know the way to the place where I am going.”

How long does the birth last? (1)

tbird81 (946205) | more than 2 years ago | (#38395572)

Now obviously this happened 2000 years ago, but does anyone know how long it will last/has been going on for?

In more general terms, I'd like to know whether they scan new parts of the sky periodically for changes, or whether they just concentrate on different parts of the sky and see what they see. For instance, if you could go back 2000 years (taking Hubble with you), would the image look similar? How static are these images?

My first guess would be millions of years, so when astronomers look in the sky and find something cool, it's not by fluke of timing, more by fluke of angle and elevation.

A star is born (1)

hesaigo999ca (786966) | more than 2 years ago | (#38397690)

So who is to say that these stars are not alive in the real sense, and that like a buttefly, at this great size, ends up being a cocoon like beast that emerges a different entity in the end....I am sure when another alien life form looks at us as bags of almost pure water, they might wonder how we are alive as they could not accept us to be alive upon their definition, but likewise, we look at these stars and planets in orbit and think they are just things, yet they could actually be primitively intelligent living beings...of which we have no real way of knowing, unless getting up close and personal to see maybe a (heart) center was actually making that earth/star live/stay alive.....

Kind of looks like an Angel (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#38397918)

At a quick glance, I mean if you think about it Angels.. in the sky.. of course the fact that any older civilization would have the technology to view something like this and associate it to Angels, Gods or whatever celestial bodies are popular at time seem extremely far fetched but that was my first thought when looking at it.

Well... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#38398336)

It looks like boobs to me.

FSM (1)

djxl (2472764) | more than 2 years ago | (#38401958)

That appears to be the 2 meatballs and appendages of his noodly goodness...
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