Some notes on constructing your own "Scaling the Universe" desktops.
Here are some miscellaneous notes on constructing your own "scale desktops".
If there is interest, I can expand.
Things you can do...
- Models of your favorite things
A virus (softball with spikes), pollen, whale, school, state, whatever.
Remembering to start approximate - hand-waved sizes and any-circle-will-do sketches, blob-of-clay buildings, and spherical cows. :)
Centimeter-grid sheet with outline sketch of hands, cans, etc. (1mm/mm)
Neighborhood map sketch (1m/mm), a 1:1M map (1km/mm), an Earth-Moon region
sketch (1Mm/mm), ...
- Desktop "pivot" objects every 103 units.
~1 nm benzene ring, ~1 um bacteria, ~1 mm sugar grain, ~1 m table,
~1 km neighborhood, ...
- Growing familiar with meters
Millimeter rulers, and graph paper. Cm and dm grid drawing paper.
100 mm cubes of straws and putty. 10 mm unit cubes. Meter cubes of
string and straw hanging from ceiling. Meter grid on ceiling of
thread and putty. Meter grid of chalk on playground.
- Size shifting games
On millimeter-grid graph paper, trace objects (fly, pencil, etc).
Then on meter-grid playground, `standing on the graph paper', hold hands
or lay rope in outline of objects.
If the tall building is a hair, then van is a bacteria and the baseball
is a virus.
- Order-of-magnitude reference objects
Order 1, 10, 100, and 1000 mumble-meter reference objects.
Eg, for micrometers, we have ~1 um bacteria (sugar grains), ~10 um red blood cell (M&M), ~100 um hair diameter (poster tube), and ~1000 um sugar grain (packing box).
The curve of Cape Cod is ~100 km out from Boston.
- Personal size referents
The outline of one's hand, one's forearm. Whatever you like (pencils, pennys,
a book, a bag, a box, ...).
- Rulers for alternate units, and some physical properties.
Mils, inches, feet, miles. Parsec and AU. Speed of light. Of sound.
If you are a millimeter tall...
then you have micrometers in your hands.
where we can snack on
while walking a bacteria "sand" beach.
The eye of a sewing needle is a doorway|
The `needle eye doorway' photo is from a New York Hall of Science exibit.
The `hair' photo is from LANL's Electron Microscopy Laboratory,
but I can't find it's current location there.
A big mm rule in micrometer land.
2003-Feb-03 Fixed links - 2 repaired.