Saturday, December 19, 2009
The Universe, and the Tibetan Plateau
I had no idea, for instance, how much completely unmapped space there is. Why is that? I can see it being hard to map past the center of the Milky Way, but couldn't tell in which directions we're yet unmapped, and why -- could be be that hard to map in the opposite direction from the center? Are the stars densely packed that direction, for far enough to make it opaque for us?
Of the whole video, though, my favorite part was tipping past the Himalaya to see the lakes of the Tibetan Plateau. I had no idea how lake-rich the area is. I knew that it was sparsely populated, that big quakes there can go almost unreported except by instruments, that there are thousands of square miles with no roads. But the lakes just caught my attention: Look at all this gorgeous water. What's it like there? Who lives there? What do they do?
It turns out google and flickr both had answers for me.