Carl Sagan's Pale Blue Dot image is 30 years old today

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In 30 years, how far has that probe traveled? I’d be curious to know what point in the sky to look for it, and then where it will be in the sky in another 30 years time.


‘That’s here. That’s home. That’s us’: It’s 30 years since Voyager 1 looked back and squinted at a ‘Pale Blue Dot’


:musical_note: Linger ooooon, you pale blue dot :musical_note:

ETA: No Velvet Underground fans in here?

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Right now, Voyager 1 is close to 14 billion miles away from Earth.

Track their progress here:


Let’s give some kudos to Carolyn Porco too. She was the co-originator of the idea.


And if I remember correctly, they got a lot of push-back for the idea from their colleagues who thought it would be a waste of time because the image will just be a dot. Like they didn’t already know that…


Sort of puts all the World’s problems in a different perspective, doesn’t it?

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Continuing on with Sagan’s quote,

The Earth is a very small stage in a vast cosmic arena. Think of the endless cruelties visited by the inhabitants of one corner of this pixel on the scarcely distinguishable inhabitants of some other corner, how frequent their misunderstandings, how eager they are to kill one another, how fervent their hatreds. Think of the rivers of blood spilled by all those generals and emperors so that, in glory and triumph, they could become the momentary masters of a fraction of a dot.


I think they were also worried that the brightness of the sun could damage the equipment-- along with the Pale Blue Dot, they also took pics of the inner solar system and stitched it all together. This is why they took the pic at the end of the mission.

No mention of the remastered Pale Blue Dot image?

This song always puts me in the mood to contemplate the vast empty spaces of the cosmos, with just bits of matter scattered in the nothingness:

The vocals are entirely my jam.


Yet absolutely nothing has been learned, it seems.


Earth from 6 billion kilometers away—a “pale blue dot,” as Sagan called it. It’s an iconic image that holds the power to shift our perspective in an instant.

Blaupunkt missed a golden marketing opportunity back then. :wink:


I’d have been worried that the photo would show an Interstellar Detour Sign guiding traffic away from the solar system.

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Or a site notice informing of the planned demolition for the construction of a bypass…


To me, it underscores our responsibility to deal more kindly with one another,

Oh really, and I suppose Mr. Sagan’s been trapped in the last row of a plane behind an inconsiderate recliner…

Fora moment I thought that the thumbnail for that Kansas video was Rory McCann in 1970s gear and a wig.

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(the camerawork is lousy for the first minute or so, but they get it right eventually)