Sunday, November 16, 2014

The scale of the Universe, in log-polar coordinates

Have you enjoyed the awe-inspiring interactive flash animation by, Cary and Michael Huang The Scale of the Universe? If not, then do it before reading. I enjoyed it a lot, and when few days ago I've seen it again in the G+ stream, an idea appeared in my mind: make a log-polar image of it.

Logarithmic polar coordinate system is a natural way to show things of different scale on the same diagram. Previously I've already used it to make a photographic image of the Earth: Logarithmic zoom at the Palace square, Saint Petersburg, and played with Google Maps: Log-polar system applied to Google Maps, so I already had some python scripts to do the thing. So I took the Python, and after a night of scripting and Gimp'ing got this! (Linked image is 800x18000 pixels)

"The Scale of th Universe", in log-polar coordinates.

In case you would like better resolution, here is the full 2000x48000 version.