Naked I astronomy

By Phil Plait | December 10, 2011 12:30 pm

I have a billion things to do this weekend, but since today is conspiring to just be silly, I’ll just leave this here for you. Click it, and don’t forget to hover over the red button at the bottom.

P.S. That’s not my real tattoo, though Zach got the location correct.

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CATEGORIZED UNDER: Cool stuff, Geekery, Humor

Comments (28)

  1. Brian

    Are we EVER going to learn the details of your tattoo, Phil?

  2. I am with Brian on this… Is LA Ink even on the air anymore (not that I watched it in the first place)? Come on, when does the NDA or whatever you signed expire?

    And I can totally see you wearing the tall pointy hat! ūüėÄ

  3. Thanks Doug (I see the moderation queue made my post a little out of date…). So instead I’ll just embed the video here for folks.

  4. Douglas Troy

    We should say Hi! – LOL!

  5. Chris

    I didn’t even know about the red button. Now I’m going to have to reread the past several months of comics.

  6. David

    I have a question about the speed of light. Is this the right forum? 186000 miles per second, right? what if the miles are moving?

  7. David

    Earth-surface miles are not static relative to other celestial objects. The implication is that the known physical laws may be relative to earth gravity but not other graveties. Is this a correct assumption?

  8. Jason

    Forum? This is where we comment on seeing Phil naked. But no, the speed of light is always the same, no matter how fast you or anything else is moving.

  9. Correction: The speed of light IN A VACUUM is always the same, no matter how fast you or anything else is moving.

    The speed of light passing through a medium, such as water or glass, is slower — which gives rise to fun phenomena like Cherenkov radiation.

  10. I also have to admit, I was disappointed that I couldn’t actually drag the Bishop’s miter onto Phil’s head. :-(

  11. Makoto

    That tattoo is epic, and I kind of want one of the same now…

  12. Actually the speed is the same everywhere! However, in air, glass, and other materials; the photon keeps being absorbed and being re radiated – hence the effective speed of light appears to slow! This is the explanation I read recently.

  13. Chris

    So now we know the answer to the eternal question. Boxers or briefs?

  14. Derek

    It was the pope hat that made milk come out of my nose.

  15. @7. David : Okay I’ve tried to answer that for you – click on my name for link or see comment #43 in the Watch the lunar eclipse Saturday that the BA posted on December 9th, 2011 10:00 AM.

    Not sure what you mean by “moving miles” though – a mile is standard designated measuring unit that doesn’t really change unless you switch to nautical miles or something like that! ūüėČ

  16. Mike

    “What if the miles are moving?”

    When I read that, I laughed so hard that the color of my eyes changed to music.

  17. Monkey

    Epic – we see a post of Phil in his near-naked birthday suit and by only comment #7 we are already talking about the speed of light!!!

  18. Andy

    I had no idea that red button on the SMBC page was a rollover bonus!

  19. Related more to the discussion in the comic I found this posted (not long after reading of the recovery of two Dr Who episodes): First Paragraph: “While searching deep space for extra-terrestrial signals, scientists at the Arecibo Observatory in Puerto Rico have stumbled across signals broadcast from Earth nearly half a century ago.” We are too late as of 47 years ago.

  20. I love Phil’s pose there. Epic. Shades of “The Thinker” and “The Discus Thrower” :)

    @15 Chris So now we know the answer to the eternal question. Boxers or briefs?

    See, I find that unrealistic. I’d think an astronomer would wear boxers. More space for the bolides ūüėČ

  21. David may be way off-topic (again, the BA-UT forum is the thing to Google), but to be fair, the “moving miles” bit is a legitimate question, and was the basis of the Michelson-Morley experiment. The Earth is in motion, after all, and we typically measure miles (or any distance) with the surface of the Earth as a reference.
    Of course, Michelson-Morley did not find any sort of “ether,” and soon after, Special (and General) Relativity filled in the blanks as to why.

  22. Darren

    @21 Julie. What, no smilie?

    Our television broadcasts are too low power to be picked up at that distance. They disappear into the noise pretty quickly.

  23. @24 Darren: Using our technology, certainly. For all we know, there are ETs out there with a dish the size of half a Dyson sphere ūüėõ

    Of course, any intelligence with a receiver that sensitive must be like the galactic version of the FCC, in which case they’d likely take action to censor all the crud that the Earth is broadcasting. Meaning shutting down all our transmitters. Somehow.
    *cue dramatic orchestral sting*

  24. Beer Case

    Am I the only one not seeing any semi-naked Phil? I clicked the picture, and the link (Click it) , and the only thing coming up here, is a cartoon strip about signals from space. Am I missing something?

  25. @26 Beer Case: Hover your mouse pointer over the red button under the comic strip toward the left.

  26. Gary Ansorge

    You have a beard? When did THAT happen???

    Gary 7


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