Wednesday, October 30, 2013

What Will We Miss?

Michael Stevens, Internet Personality for the YouTube channel, "VSauce"
Having trouble seeing the above video on your device? View it here.


In 1993 they began building a Time Pyramid in Germany (Zeitpyramide) that, upon completion, will consist of 120 concrete blocks. They're only adding one block every 10 years, so it won't be finished until 3183. 

The Chernobyl exclusion zone won't be safe for human activity until the year 22,000. Yes, you read that correctly!

In about a million years, stars Betelgeuse and Eta Carina will explode into super novas so brilliant that it will appear that there are two suns in the sky. 

The Andromeda Galaxy (visible in our night sky*) is 2.5 million light years away from us, but coming at us faster than a bullet (300 km a second). In about 3.75 billion years, Andromeda will collide with our  Milky Way Galaxy. There will be twice as many stars and our sky will be glowing bright with birth of new stars. After a couple billion years, the cores of the two galaxies will "be married in a bright glowing center" and renamed "Milkdromeda". Life on Earth will likely be unharmed. 

To see stellar photos of what this collision will likely look like, check out mins 2:56 - 4:46 on the video, or visit the NASA link** in "Further Reading".

Michael's Side notes:
In 2 billion years, Earth's oceans will be largely dried up.
In 3.75 billion years, conditions on Earth will be more like Venus due to our sun's warming.


Every year the moon moves 1 cm further away from Earth. Because of this, in 600 million years, solar eclipses will be impossible to view from Earth. 

Niagara Falls is going to disappear. In the year 52,000, the rocks of Niagara Falls will have eroded all the way to Lake Erie. The rocks at the top of the falls erode 1 ft  backwards every year.   

Granite erodes 1 in. per 10,000 years, so in the year 7 million, Mount Rushmore will be gone.

In 50-100 million years, Saturn will no longer have it's gorgeous rings.


Though we don't likely remember our conception or birth, we can find out what day we were likely conceived on and what movie and song were the most popular during that time (perhaps, as Michael says, playing a part in the creation of you) here:

You can find out what star's light/photons first left the star the month you were born with this site: 

My thoughts:

First, I'm really thinking that not being able to see some of the stuff we have now isn't a huge deal. Niagara Falls? Ehh. Maybe it's because I grew-up outside of Rochester, NY  and saw them a lot, but I could do without them. Solar eclipse? Yeah, pretty cool, but they rarely seem to happen anyhow. Saturn's rings? Those are pretty beautiful, but really, I only ever see the rings in photos anyhow, and I imagine those pictures will still be around somewhere in the future, so it's not like much would change for me. 

What I want oh so badly, even more than a life supply of Nutella or to grow old with my "true love", is to be around to catch a blip of what it will look like when Andromeda has collided and filled our sky with twice as many stars. I'd probably have even more trouble going to bed at night as I do now, not wanting to take my eyes off the brilliance of it all, but that's okay. I'm sure there'll be some perfectly safe pill you can pop to make-up sleep by then. 

So, suddenly being cryogenically frozen sounds kinda good...if it weren't for the fact that I'd be a blubbering idiot and some sort of weird dated species compared to the evolved humans, or whatever life will be dominating Earth at that time, that unfreeze me. Darn it. I'm all "FOMO", as Michael calls it. I have a complete Fear Of Missing Out. Wait, but the oceans will be all dried up and it's going to be hella hot and wierd here by then. I'm a huge fan of the ocean. Damn it. So...

So, instead, and in more of my style, I'll suppose I'll continue to go see as many lovely wonders of the world that I can, explore, hike, look up at night, and learn all I can about it all. I'll appreciate and find beauty in every little thing. That's all we can do I guess. And be a wee bit jealous of those folks who will be here about four billions years from now. 

What are your thoughts?


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