archive: SETI Re: Sagan: Sagan reference to Cosmic Calendar

SETI Re: Sagan: Sagan reference to Cosmic Calendar

Larry Klaes ( lklaes@bbn.com )
Thu, 31 Dec 1998 11:18:21 -0500

Here is Carl Sagan's Cosmic Calendar, as originally presented
in his 1978 Pulitzer Prize-winning book, The Dragons of Eden:

http://www.hk.super.net/~paulchui/cosmic.html

On this scale, all of human history compared to the rest
of the Universe occupies the last second of the last day
of the last month of the year.

Larry

At 08:53 AM 12/31/1998 CST6CDT,3,-, Rammage wrote:
>>The Word of the Day for December 31 is:
>>
>>cosmic year \KAHZ-mik YEER\ (noun)
>> : the estimated time required for a star at the sun's
>> distance from the center of the Milky Way galaxy to make one
>> trip around it in a circular orbit, about 200 million years
>>
>>Example sentence:
>> One cosmic year ago, during the early Jurassic period, the
>> supercontinent of Pangaea was breaking apart and the early
>> dinosaurs roamed the land.
>>
>>Did you know?
>> Compared to a cosmic year, a millennium is just a fleeting
>> moment; after all, there are 200,000 earth millennia in a
>> single cosmic year. But although a cosmic year is a long time
>> by earth reckoning, in terms of the overall age of the
>> universe--15 billion years--a cosmic year itself is but a
>> fraction of time. (The entire history of the earth has passed
>> in just about 22.5 cosmic years.) The length of a cosmic year
>> and the age of the universe span times so enormous that
>> astronomers have sought ways to make them more comprehensible
>> to people, and in doing so have created a new meaning of
>> "cosmic year" that has gained popularity since the late Carl
>> Sagan featured it on his 1980s television series, _Cosmos_.
>> In this new type of cosmic year, the entire history of the
>> universe is compressed into a single 12-month calendar year.
>>
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>
>brian j colaluca
>Frederick, Maryland
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