Presentations

Alyssa Goodman: Linking Visualization & Understanding in Astronomy, at CFA, Cambridge, MA, Monday, February 10, 2014

Abstract

In 1610, when Galileo pointed his small telescope at Jupiter, he drew sketches to record what he saw. After just a few nights of observing, he understood his sketches to be showing moons orbiting Jupiter. It was the visualization of Galileo’s observations that led to his understanding of a clearly Sun-centered solar system, and to the revolution this understanding then caused. Similar stories can be found throughout the history of Astronomy, but visualization has never been so essential as it is today, when we find ourselves blessed with a larger wealth...

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Alyssa Goodman: An "Insider's" View of the Milky Way, at Canadian Institute for Thoeretical Astrophysics (CITA), Toronto, ON, Thursday, November 21, 2013

Abstract: It has been almost 100 years since the Shapley-Curtis debate. Today, we have fantastic images of the "spiral nebulae" Shapley wanted to leave in our Milky Way, and we are quite sure that they are external galaxies. But, our knowledge of the Milky Way's structure is still quite fuzzy. We are buried deep within the mucky plane of the Milky Way, and hence our view of it is highly obscured. In this talk, though, I will show how the Sun's placement just 20 or so parsecs above the geometric mid-plane of the Milky Way may...

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Alyssa Goodman: Why do we need a WorldWide Telescope and glue to solve the Mysteries of the Universe?, at Institute for Astronomy, Hawaii, Tuesday, October 22, 2013

Description: The great statistician John Tukey didn't just invent the Fast Fourier Transform.  In the 1970s, Tukey began experimenting with what is now called "linked view" data visualization, where many views of data are investigated on an interactive computer display at once, linked together so that selections in one view automatically highlight relevant corresponding data in another view.   A (very) few scientists adopted Tukey's ideas and started using this approach in their work, but since linked-view principles were only implemented within very limited...

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Alyssa Goodman: Star and Planet Formation through the WorldWide Telescope, at Protostars and Planets VI, Heidelberg, Germany, Monday, July 15, 2013:

Abstract:
The WorldWide Telescope is a Universe Information System that can display and access nearly all astronomical images and literature available online. In the five years since its initial release, the program has been downloaded more than 10 million times, but only a very tiny fraction of those downloads, so far, are by professional research astronomers. While WorldWide Telescope (WWT) is a fantastic tool for education and outreach (see wwtambassadors.org), it is also a tremendously valuable research tool, especially for putting results into their astronomical...

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