1298: "It's a beautiful day in the neighborhood!"

This forum is for the individual discussion thread that goes with each new comic.

Moderators: Moderators General, Prelates, Magistrates

User avatar
rhomboidal
Posts: 795
Joined: Wed Jun 15, 2011 5:25 pm UTC
Contact:

1298: "It's a beautiful day in the neighborhood!"

Postby rhomboidal » Mon Dec 02, 2013 9:18 am UTC

Image

Title Text: http://xkcd.com/1298/large

A beautiful day for an (alien) neighbor!
Would you be mine?
Could you be mine...?

User avatar
Envelope Generator
Posts: 582
Joined: Sat Mar 03, 2012 8:07 am UTC
Location: pareidolia

Re: 1298: "It's a beautiful day in the neighborhood!"

Postby Envelope Generator » Mon Dec 02, 2013 9:39 am UTC

My reaction to the alt text:

*twitch*
I'm going to step off the LEM now... here we are, Pismo Beach and all the clams we can eat

eSOANEM wrote:If Fonzie's on the order of 100 zeptokelvin, I think he has bigger problems than difracting through doors.

User avatar
orthogon
Posts: 3037
Joined: Thu May 17, 2012 7:52 am UTC
Location: The Airy 1830 ellipsoid

Re: 1298: "It's a beautiful day in the neighborhood!"

Postby orthogon » Mon Dec 02, 2013 9:42 am UTC

The biggest surprise for me was learning that Earth is not, in fact, an Earth-sized planet.
(I think I was misinterpreting the legend.)
xtifr wrote:... and orthogon merely sounds undecided.

User avatar
Eternal Density
Posts: 5571
Joined: Thu Oct 02, 2008 12:37 am UTC
Contact:

Re: 1298: "It's a beautiful dip in the neighborhood!"

Postby Eternal Density » Mon Dec 02, 2013 9:53 am UTC

It's day in some parts of the Earth where people speak English. Whether the day is beautiful is a subjective measure.
Play the game of Time! castle.chirpingmustard.com Hotdog Vending Supplier But what is this?
In the Marvel vs. DC film-making war, we're all winners.

sotanaht
Posts: 224
Joined: Sat Nov 27, 2010 2:14 am UTC

Re: 1298: "It's a beautiful day in the neighborhood!"

Postby sotanaht » Mon Dec 02, 2013 10:22 am UTC

Envelope Generator wrote:My reaction to the alt text:

*twitch*


He usually just links it so that you get the big version when you click on the image. I wonder why he didn't do that this time...

User avatar
J L
Posts: 242
Joined: Mon Jan 25, 2010 11:03 am UTC
Location: Germany
Contact:

Re: 1298: "It's a beautiful day in the neighborhood!"

Postby J L » Mon Dec 02, 2013 11:00 am UTC

orthogon wrote:The biggest surprise for me was learning that Earth is not, in fact, an Earth-sized planet.
(I think I was misinterpreting the legend.)


No, I think you're quite right. And why are some planets darker than others, regardless of size?

User avatar
pduthie
Posts: 18
Joined: Tue Jan 08, 2013 12:49 pm UTC

Re: 1298: "It's a beautiful day in the neighborhood!"

Postby pduthie » Mon Dec 02, 2013 11:39 am UTC

I'm not sure whether the exclusion zone around the Earth represents the other planets being driven away like oil with a fairy liquid drop at the centre, or that we are surrounded and they are closing in.

I'm even less sure which idea scares me more.
~~~
Note to self: Find something witty and intelligent to put here.

User avatar
3rdtry
Posts: 152
Joined: Sat Feb 16, 2013 1:46 pm UTC

Re: 1298: "It's a beautiful day in the neighborhood!"

Postby 3rdtry » Mon Dec 02, 2013 12:04 pm UTC

sotanaht wrote:
Envelope Generator wrote:My reaction to the alt text:

*twitch*


He usually just links it so that you get the big version when you click on the image. I wonder why he didn't do that this time...

I think he just misclicked something in his xkcd-software-interface-thingie and will be fixed soon.

User avatar
Envelope Generator
Posts: 582
Joined: Sat Mar 03, 2012 8:07 am UTC
Location: pareidolia

Re: 1298: "It's a beautiful day in the neighborhood!"

Postby Envelope Generator » Mon Dec 02, 2013 12:12 pm UTC

I think it's a particularly evil joke and will not be fixed soon.
I'm going to step off the LEM now... here we are, Pismo Beach and all the clams we can eat

eSOANEM wrote:If Fonzie's on the order of 100 zeptokelvin, I think he has bigger problems than difracting through doors.

User avatar
Klear
Posts: 1965
Joined: Sun Jun 13, 2010 8:43 am UTC
Location: Prague

Re: 1298: "It's a beautiful day in the neighborhood!"

Postby Klear » Mon Dec 02, 2013 12:16 pm UTC

J L wrote:
orthogon wrote:The biggest surprise for me was learning that Earth is not, in fact, an Earth-sized planet.
(I think I was misinterpreting the legend.)


No, I think you're quite right. And why are some planets darker than others, regardless of size?


It's because the scale of the legend isn't the same as the scale of the picture. The legend only shows that some planets are too big or small, but not the actual size as depicted in the picture.

Plutarch
Posts: 103
Joined: Fri Apr 17, 2009 10:29 am UTC
Location: London, UK

Re: 1298: "It's a beautiful day in the neighborhood!"

Postby Plutarch » Mon Dec 02, 2013 12:49 pm UTC

Is this a colour-blindness test? Is there a hidden message? Because I always fail those.

User avatar
PinkShinyRose
Posts: 834
Joined: Mon Nov 05, 2012 6:54 pm UTC
Location: the Netherlands

Re: 1298: "It's a beautiful day in the neighborhood!"

Postby PinkShinyRose » Mon Dec 02, 2013 12:52 pm UTC

3rdtry wrote:
sotanaht wrote:
Envelope Generator wrote:My reaction to the alt text:

*twitch*


He usually just links it so that you get the big version when you click on the image. I wonder why he didn't do that this time...

I think he just misclicked something in his xkcd-software-interface-thingie and will be fixed soon.

Envelope Generator wrote:I think it's a particularly evil joke and will not be fixed soon.

What if it was a mistake and is kept as an evil joke?
Klear wrote:
J L wrote:
orthogon wrote:The biggest surprise for me was learning that Earth is not, in fact, an Earth-sized planet.
(I think I was misinterpreting the legend.)


No, I think you're quite right. And why are some planets darker than others, regardless of size?


It's because the scale of the legend isn't the same as the scale of the picture. The legend only shows that some planets are too big or small, but not the actual size as depicted in the picture.

That makes sense as there also seem to be more than 4 planet sizes in the picture.

User avatar
orthogon
Posts: 3037
Joined: Thu May 17, 2012 7:52 am UTC
Location: The Airy 1830 ellipsoid

Re: 1298: "It's a beautiful day in the neighborhood!"

Postby orthogon » Mon Dec 02, 2013 1:00 pm UTC

Klear wrote:
J L wrote:
orthogon wrote:The biggest surprise for me was learning that Earth is not, in fact, an Earth-sized planet.
(I think I was misinterpreting the legend.)


No, I think you're quite right. And why are some planets darker than others, regardless of size?


It's because the scale of the legend isn't the same as the scale of the picture. The legend only shows that some planets are too big or small, but not the actual size as depicted in the picture.

Yes, I realised in the end, but it's a bit like that thing where you have the names of colours written in the wrong colour: the variable to which the legend applies is size, and the sample circles are actually shown in different sizes, so it's not immediately obvious that the legend is telling you what the colour mapping is. It would have been a bit more obvious if the samples had all been the same size, but that might have been confusing in other ways.

pduthie wrote:I'm not sure whether the exclusion zone around the Earth represents the other planets being driven away like oil with a fairy liquid drop at the centre, or that we are surrounded and they are closing in.

It reminded me of the penicillin experiment. I have the same reaction when I see a partially solved crossword with a similar empty space around a word: it normally means that the word is wrong.
xtifr wrote:... and orthogon merely sounds undecided.

xxnnss
Posts: 7
Joined: Mon Dec 02, 2013 1:08 pm UTC

Re: 1298: "It's a beautiful day in the neighborhood!"

Postby xxnnss » Mon Dec 02, 2013 1:12 pm UTC

"Earth-sized" means within the range 1-2 Earth radii, hence the confusion in this thread. The dark ones are the ones in this range. Earth is at the lower end of this range.
This range is the range used in the recent news release saying 1 in 5 sun-like stars have an earth-sized planet in the habitable zone.

JustDoug
Posts: 90
Joined: Sun Oct 04, 2009 3:35 pm UTC

Re: 1298: "It's a beautiful day in the neighborhood!"

Postby JustDoug » Mon Dec 02, 2013 1:29 pm UTC

rhomboidal wrote:A beautiful day for an (alien) neighbor!
Would you be mine?
Could you be mine...?


My second thought exactly. My first? Well, I'd been in a bit of a funk, but once the concept sank in, and I saw the Large version... I"m not sure if it was a single coherent thought at all, but it should made me grin happily.

Now all we need is a Neighbohood Trolley.

User avatar
orthogon
Posts: 3037
Joined: Thu May 17, 2012 7:52 am UTC
Location: The Airy 1830 ellipsoid

Re: 1298: "It's a beautiful day in the neighborhood!"

Postby orthogon » Mon Dec 02, 2013 1:34 pm UTC

Plutarch wrote:Is this a colour-blindness test? Is there a hidden message? Because I always fail those.

No, it's the record sleeve for a '70s jazz album.
xtifr wrote:... and orthogon merely sounds undecided.

User avatar
Lode
Posts: 70
Joined: Thu May 29, 2008 5:16 pm UTC

Re: 1298: "It's a beautiful day in the neighborhood!"

Postby Lode » Mon Dec 02, 2013 1:34 pm UTC

Why is everything around the Earth white, while at the distance planets are near each other? I think reality is not like that, it's more uniform in that zone. Thanks!

User avatar
McHell
Posts: 322
Joined: Fri Jun 22, 2007 12:52 pm UTC
Location: Ellowen Deeowen

Re: 1298: "It's a beautiful day in the neighborhood!"

Postby McHell » Mon Dec 02, 2013 1:43 pm UTC

If Euclidean distance on the comic scales linearly with Euclidean distance in space, then there's something wrong -- things should be denser towards the corner, as there's x^3/2 more space for larger x (the volume of a lightyear thick 'peel' of a sphere centered around the earth scales by third power, in 3D; on 2D paper the same scales by second power).

Is the empty zone around the earth solely created by forgetting our solar system's planets?

User avatar
cellocgw
Posts: 1992
Joined: Sat Jun 21, 2008 7:40 pm UTC

Re: 1298: "It's a beautiful day in the neighborhood!"

Postby cellocgw » Mon Dec 02, 2013 1:52 pm UTC

Plutarch wrote:Is this a colour-blindness test? Is there a hidden message? Because I always fail those.


Well, did you see "55" or "88" ? :D (dang, I can't find the original anecdote)

Anyway, I vote for graphics fail, because it's not crystal-clear that the planets are represented in diameter scale. What if the discs represent volume? That would make more sense, since the gravitational force, and thus habitability, depends more on volume than diameter. But then we'd need a density (rock vs. gas giant) indicator, and a distance_from_star indicator, and all in all some huge FOM to get a real habitability scale.
https://app.box.com/witthoftresume
Former OTTer
Vote cellocgw for President 2020. #ScienceintheWhiteHouse http://cellocgw.wordpress.com
"The Planck length is 3.81779e-33 picas." -- keithl
" Earth weighs almost exactly π milliJupiters" -- what-if #146, note 7

User avatar
orthogon
Posts: 3037
Joined: Thu May 17, 2012 7:52 am UTC
Location: The Airy 1830 ellipsoid

Re: 1298: "It's a beautiful day in the neighborhood!"

Postby orthogon » Mon Dec 02, 2013 2:00 pm UTC

cellocgw wrote:Anyway, I vote for graphics fail, because it's not crystal-clear that the planets are represented in diameter scale. What if the discs represent volume? That would make more sense, since the gravitational force, and thus habitability, depends more on volume than diameter. But then we'd need a density (rock vs. gas giant) indicator, and a distance_from_star indicator, and all in all some huge FOM to get a real habitability scale.

Say what you like about it as an infographic, but at least it's wider than it's tall.

Mister Rogers' Neighborhood was a new one on me. Watching the theme tune on Youtube I couldn't get over the similarity of his voice, accent and half-spoken singing style to that of the great Tom Lehrer, and kept expecting him to slip in wry, witty and satirical jokes in perfect meter. Actually, listening to it that way, the whole thing sounds like a parody.
xtifr wrote:... and orthogon merely sounds undecided.

User avatar
rwald
Posts: 153
Joined: Mon Jan 29, 2007 7:14 am UTC
Contact:

Re: 1298: "It's a beautiful day in the neighborhood!"

Postby rwald » Mon Dec 02, 2013 2:06 pm UTC

pduthie wrote:I'm not sure whether the exclusion zone around the Earth represents the other planets being driven away like oil with a fairy liquid drop at the centre, or that we are surrounded and they are closing in.

I'm even less sure which idea scares me more.

The real reason for the "exclusion zone" around the Earth.

blowfishhootie
Posts: 486
Joined: Wed Sep 21, 2011 11:13 pm UTC

Re: 1298: "It's a beautiful day in the neighborhood!"

Postby blowfishhootie » Mon Dec 02, 2013 2:07 pm UTC

I don't think this is anywhere near as impressive or interesting as the artist seemingly expects me to.

turkeysandwich
Posts: 2
Joined: Wed Jan 30, 2013 1:46 pm UTC

Re: 1298: "It's a beautiful day in the neighborhood!"

Postby turkeysandwich » Mon Dec 02, 2013 2:18 pm UTC

I guess the reason for the exclusion zone is that there is some amount of space that we have looked at fairly well and we don't think there are any stars there.

User avatar
Wnderer
Posts: 640
Joined: Wed Feb 03, 2010 9:10 pm UTC

Re: 1298: "It's a beautiful day in the neighborhood!"

Postby Wnderer » Mon Dec 02, 2013 2:31 pm UTC

I don't find it that hard to understand.

Planets around sun like stars are reddish.
Planets around other type stars are grey.
Earth sized stars are darker. Darker red if around sun like stars. Darker grey if around other type stars.

I'm surprised by the ratio of red to grey. 80% of the stars in Milky Way are Red Dwarfs. In the 20 light year radius from Earth, there are 100 stars. Only 6 are sun-like.

User avatar
Clix
Posts: 63
Joined: Fri Mar 29, 2013 8:42 pm UTC
Location: 717841.03 834745.456

Re: 1298: "It's a beautiful day in the neighborhood!"

Postby Clix » Mon Dec 02, 2013 2:36 pm UTC

My first thought on seeing this:

"Was it something we said?"
People need panic...panic in regular draghts. I read about the governments of the world, and I panic daily. It's a heart pumping workout that keeps my cheeks rosy and my vision crystal clear.
Thorax:Pigborn (Brooke McEldowney)

User avatar
keithl
Posts: 656
Joined: Mon Aug 01, 2011 3:46 pm UTC

Re: 1298: "It's a beautiful day in the neighborhood!"

Postby keithl » Mon Dec 02, 2013 2:48 pm UTC

Does the existence of silicon in other star systems imply extraterrestrial microprocessors?

Makri
Posts: 654
Joined: Sat Oct 03, 2009 4:57 pm UTC

Re: 1298: "It's a beautiful day in the neighborhood!"

Postby Makri » Mon Dec 02, 2013 2:55 pm UTC

I'm still confused. Planets vary according to colour, darkness, and size. Colour encodes the kind of star they orbit, and darkness presumably encodes whether it's earth-sized. Then what does size encode?
¬□(∀♀(∃♂(♀❤♂)⟷∃♂(♂❤♀)))

User avatar
Envelope Generator
Posts: 582
Joined: Sat Mar 03, 2012 8:07 am UTC
Location: pareidolia

Re: 1298: "It's a beautiful day in the neighborhood!"

Postby Envelope Generator » Mon Dec 02, 2013 3:11 pm UTC

Y'all think the image was generated algorithmically? Are there readymade packages for doing something like that or is Randall experimenting with rolling his own?
I'm going to step off the LEM now... here we are, Pismo Beach and all the clams we can eat

eSOANEM wrote:If Fonzie's on the order of 100 zeptokelvin, I think he has bigger problems than difracting through doors.

User avatar
Flumble
Yes Man
Posts: 2162
Joined: Sun Aug 05, 2012 9:35 pm UTC

Re: 1298: "It's a beautiful day in the neighborhood!"

Postby Flumble » Mon Dec 02, 2013 3:22 pm UTC

Envelope Generator wrote:Y'all think the image was generated algorithmically? Are there readymade packages for doing something like that or is Randall experimenting with rolling his own?

Randall seems to be a Python fanatic, so chances are he got the data set, parsed it to a pythony format, calculated nice positions and colours for the data points and generated an image. And he had all weekend to program those ~70 lines of code. :)

User avatar
orthogon
Posts: 3037
Joined: Thu May 17, 2012 7:52 am UTC
Location: The Airy 1830 ellipsoid

Re: 1298: "It's a beautiful day in the neighborhood!"

Postby orthogon » Mon Dec 02, 2013 3:23 pm UTC

Makri wrote:I'm still confused. Planets vary according to colour, darkness, and size. Colour encodes the kind of star they orbit, and darkness presumably encodes whether it's earth-sized. Then what does size encode?

Size. There is some question over exactly how, but my guess is that diameter encodes diameter.
I don't think the position on the page encodes anything. And as I understand it, they're not real known planets, they're just a randomly generated sample following a particular distribution.
xtifr wrote:... and orthogon merely sounds undecided.

User avatar
addams
Posts: 10096
Joined: Sun Sep 12, 2010 4:44 am UTC
Location: Oregon Coast: 97444

Re: 1298: "It's a beautiful day in the neighborhood!"

Postby addams » Mon Dec 02, 2013 3:45 pm UTC

I don't 'get' it.
That image has nothing to do with any kind of space map I have ever seen.

It does represent an Existential Map of our place in the Galactic Neighborhood.

What are 'They' like?
"They'? There is no 'They'.


It may be written into our DNA. We look up.
When we look up, we sometimes Stop Thinking, for a moment.

Then the wheels really start turning. "What Is That?" We ask one another.
The answers sometimes become our Religions.

For Jose'
Spoiler:
Where are we?
No. Here.
Here?

Yes. This is Here.
We were going, Where?

What?
The Name of this Planet. This is, What, Where, or Here?
Life is, just, an exchange of electrons; It is up to us to give it meaning.

We are all in The Gutter.
Some of us see The Gutter.
Some of us see The Stars.
by mr. Oscar Wilde.

Those that want to Know; Know.
Those that do not Know; Don't tell them.
They do terrible things to people that Tell Them.

User avatar
cellocgw
Posts: 1992
Joined: Sat Jun 21, 2008 7:40 pm UTC

Re: 1298: "It's a beautiful day in the neighborhood!"

Postby cellocgw » Mon Dec 02, 2013 3:55 pm UTC

keithl wrote:Does the existence of silicon in other star systems imply extraterrestrial microprocessors?


Sounds like a question for a Philosophy 101 midterm :mrgreen:
https://app.box.com/witthoftresume
Former OTTer
Vote cellocgw for President 2020. #ScienceintheWhiteHouse http://cellocgw.wordpress.com
"The Planck length is 3.81779e-33 picas." -- keithl
" Earth weighs almost exactly π milliJupiters" -- what-if #146, note 7

airdrik
Posts: 241
Joined: Wed May 09, 2012 3:08 pm UTC

Re: 1298: "It's a beautiful day in the neighborhood!"

Postby airdrik » Mon Dec 02, 2013 3:56 pm UTC

I'm getting the impression that Randall has a "thing" for extra-solar planets (which I have to admit, it is exciting to be finding out that there are that many habitable planets within a single life-span's journey from here. We just need to locate a couple, collect some data, send out some probes, collect some more data, and then we should be able to send some colonists, hopefully within the next 50 years).

McHell wrote:Is the empty zone around the earth solely created by forgetting our solar system's planets?

Our solar system's planets were excluded by the "Habitable-Zone" qualifier.

User avatar
Jackpot777
Posts: 328
Joined: Wed Sep 14, 2011 1:19 pm UTC

Re: 1298: "It's a beautiful day in the neighborhood!"

Postby Jackpot777 » Mon Dec 02, 2013 4:30 pm UTC

Plutarch wrote:Is this a colour-blindness test? Is there a hidden message? Because I always fail those.


(whistles innocently)

Image

Oh, this? It's a picture of a fish. Or a lot of exoplanets.

User avatar
SecondTalon
SexyTalon
Posts: 26399
Joined: Sat May 05, 2007 2:10 pm UTC
Location: Louisville, Kentucky, USA, Mars. HA!
Contact:

Re: 1298: "It's a beautiful day in the neighborhood!"

Postby SecondTalon » Mon Dec 02, 2013 4:52 pm UTC

orthogon wrote:Mister Rogers' Neighborhood was a new one on me. Watching the theme tune on Youtube I couldn't get over the similarity of his voice, accent and half-spoken singing style to that of the great Tom Lehrer, and kept expecting him to slip in wry, witty and satirical jokes in perfect meter. Actually, listening to it that way, the whole thing sounds like a parody.

And yet.. and I assure you here... you will probably never find a more genuine person than Fred Rogers.
heuristically_alone wrote:I want to write a DnD campaign and play it by myself and DM it myself.
heuristically_alone wrote:I have been informed that this is called writing a book.

User avatar
San Fran Sam
Posts: 228
Joined: Tue Nov 15, 2011 5:54 pm UTC

Re: 1298: "It's a beautiful day in the neighborhood!"

Postby San Fran Sam » Mon Dec 02, 2013 4:53 pm UTC

Yeah, but borrowing a cup of sugar from one of these neighbors is going to be a real bear.

User avatar
da Doctah
Posts: 956
Joined: Fri Feb 03, 2012 6:27 am UTC

Re: 1298: "It's a beautiful day in the neighborhood!"

Postby da Doctah » Mon Dec 02, 2013 5:04 pm UTC

J L wrote:And why are some planets darker than others, regardless of size?
That you ask this question may indicate some unaddressed racist leanings.

User avatar
Flumble
Yes Man
Posts: 2162
Joined: Sun Aug 05, 2012 9:35 pm UTC

Re: 1298: It's called "Exoplanet Neighborhood" now

Postby Flumble » Mon Dec 02, 2013 5:05 pm UTC

PinkShinyRose wrote:
Envelope Generator wrote:I think it's a particularly evil joke and will not be fixed soon.

What if it was a mistake and is kept as an evil joke?

All the texts are switched around now. I prefer the old title — it's demoted to pop-up text. :(



Jackpot777 wrote:Oh, this? It's a picture of a fish. Or a lot of exoplanets.

You do know that colourblind people have the ability to open an image manipulation application, don't you?

User avatar
PinkShinyRose
Posts: 834
Joined: Mon Nov 05, 2012 6:54 pm UTC
Location: the Netherlands

Re: 1298: "It's a beautiful day in the neighborhood!"

Postby PinkShinyRose » Mon Dec 02, 2013 5:07 pm UTC

airdrik wrote:I'm getting the impression that Randall has a "thing" for extra-solar planets (which I have to admit, it is exciting to be finding out that there are that many habitable planets within a single life-span's journey from here. We just need to locate a couple, collect some data, send out some probes, collect some more data, and then we should be able to send some colonists, hopefully within the next 50 years).

McHell wrote:Is the empty zone around the earth solely created by forgetting our solar system's planets?

Our solar system's planets were excluded by the "Habitable-Zone" qualifier.

It also says exoplanet neighbourhood, then again, it also displays earth. Isn't Mars within the habitable zone? I suppose we should try getting there before going to some planet much further away.

User avatar
davidstarlingm
Posts: 1255
Joined: Mon Jun 01, 2009 4:33 am UTC

Re: 1298: "It's a beautiful day in the neighborhood!"

Postby davidstarlingm » Mon Dec 02, 2013 5:10 pm UTC

San Fran Sam wrote:Yeah, but borrowing a cup of sugar from one of these neighbors is going to be a real bear.

Seriously, right? Accelerating that cup of sugar out of your neighbor's gravity well and slowing it down on entry into our own is going to cost you at least 5e7 joules.


Return to “Individual XKCD Comic Threads”

Who is online

Users browsing this forum: No registered users and 118 guests