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Comment Not squarish to my eye (Score 2, Informative) 123

To see the plot, read the paper (PDF), not the article. Figure 4 does not look like a square to me. Figure 7 has some squarish shapes drawn over the plot, but it is not highly convincing. Further, these squarish orbits appear in the inner parts of the Galaxy, not the outer shape as one might assume. Orbital shapes change with radius as different gravitational resonances dominate at different distances.

Comment Re:Small parallax problem? (Score 1) 114

We agree. Our current system does not allow us to release multiple formats in a simple manner. We chose red/cyan anaglyph as a test case. We are quite glad to see that there is demand for a side-by-side version as well as a YouTube version. For the slashdot crowd, conversion of formats and/or download and play through special software is no problem. The general public is the vast majority of our visitors and they generally just want to push play in the browser. What I suspect would make our website folks happiest is if we could employ something like the YouTube 3D player on our web pages. Your comments will help us make arguments for better 3D support. Thank you.

Comment Re:3D TV content (Score 1) 114

Thanks for the info, Joseph. You clarified the most important point - that the TV is switched into 3D mode separately from Media Play opening the file and starting it. We will have access to a 3D HDTV for testing shortly (it is also a Samsung, which is why I had looked into Media Play). When ready, I will be glad to post a version for you and others to download. I'll post the link as a comment to this thread and also see if the folks who do the YouTube channel will post it there. Thank you very much for your feedback.

Comment Re:3D TV content (Score 1) 114

We are interested in producing files that folks could watch directly on their 3D HDTV via USB, but have not figured out the encoding to use. In looking at the Samsung Media Play supported video formats, none of them jump out at me as being side-by-side, top-bottom, or other obviously 3D aspect ratios. They are all listed as 1920x1080 (with a couple 800x600). Hence, one could do a 1/2 width side-by-side or 1/2 height top-bottom, but not a full resolution or the Blu-ray 3D format of 1920x2205 at 24 fps. Have you done 3D off a USB stick on your Samsung? What is the encoding that tells the TV to activate 3D mode? How does the TV know a file is 1/2 width side-by-side 1920x1080 vs a normal 1920x1080 movie?

Comment Re:Small parallax problem? (Score 1) 114

No, we did not attempt to include relativistic effects. If we were creating a video to explain special/general relativity, we would include them. Otherwise, such effects would be too confusing for the average viewer, especially since this movie has no narration.

Comment Re:Small parallax problem? (Score 4, Interesting) 114

Yes, of course the camera separation is much wider than human eye separation. The camera motion is also probably faster than the speed of light. As you correctly infer, scientifically accurate visualizations of what the human eye would see moving at currently achievable speeds would look no different than the original Hubble image. What would be the point in releasing such a visualization?

Thank you for your comments on 3D formats. We did not feel that enough of the public has 3D hardware today, but a reasonable number might have anaglyph glasses. If we do future projects, we will increase the formats as appropriate.

Comment Re:Not annoying at all (Score 3, Informative) 114

The visualization does uses separate left and right cameras. However, I forgot to mention in the posting that the "3D" is mostly "2.5D". We have no information about what the backside of the nebula looks like, so we could only do full 3D modeling if we artistically created volumes and pixels that Hubble does not observe. We did some of that for the "Hubble 3D" film, but did not invest such time on this project. We did sculpt the front side of the clouds in the nebula into landscapes, but the camera path stays mostly in front, so the sculpting is not that obvious. We are testing to see how much effort is required to get "enough" immersion.

Submission + - Hubble in Anaglyph Stereo 3D (

rwllama writes: We at the Hubble Space Telescope have quietly released our first anaglyph (i.e. red/cyan) stereo 3D movie of a flight into a Hubble image. This work is a follow-on to the sequences we produced for the "Hubble 3D" Imax film. Note that the 3D interpretation uses lots of artistic license, so it is not intended to be scientifcally accurate. We would love to hear the Slashdot crowd feedback on whether you want more, are artistic interpretations of scientific data acceptable, is anaglyph 3D too annoying, how many could watch this will a real 3D (e.g., NVIDIA 3D Vision) setup, etc?

Submission + - 3-D movies at home? Not so fast! (

crimeandpunishment writes: Planning to buy a 3-D television this year? Looking forward to buying all those 3-D movies that have hit theaters the past couple years? Hold that thought. According to a British research firm, most of the 3-D movies likely to be available this year will be tied to the purchase of a TV made by a specific manufacturer. In other words the studios and the TV makers are making deals. The analyst behind the research says "The exclusive bundling deals can't go on for too long, or it's going to be a problem".

Submission + - Internet Explorer 9 won’t run on Windows XP (

An anonymous reader writes: While Microsoft has tried to move on from Windows XP many times, millions of users refuse to budge, even with Windows 7 repairing a lot of the damage Vista caused.

XP users are in for a surprise though, when it comes to the next major upgrade they try to apply to their browser. Microsoft has confirmed that Internet Explorer 9 will not work with Windows XP. So all those nice new features such as hardware acceleration will not be available on the old operating system.

Comment Re:How big a telescope do we need to see cities? (Score 3, Informative) 189

OK - Here's the math ...

100 light-years = 1 quadrillion kilometers -- You want a 1 meter resolution at that distance, so you need an angular resolution alpha, where tan(alpha) = 1 / 10^18 --> alpha = 5.7 x 10^-17 degrees

Let's use Hubble as a scaling proxy. It has a 2.5 meter mirror and 1/20th of an arc second resolution. Converting units, that resolution is 1 / (20*60*60) = 1.4 x 10^-5 degrees. Now, simply scale to get the desired resolution and you have the diameter of the mirror = 2.5 * 1.4 x 10^-5 / 5.7 x 10^-17

The diameter you want is 614 million kilometers, or more than 4 times the distance between Earth and the Sun. Good luck building that.

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