Monday, October 15, 2012

Scaling the heights

Dang. This guy takes a balloon higher than anybody ever, then jumps off. Here's one way to visualize the distance he covered. Imagine you're so vast that to you the world looks the size of a basketball. You're hovering there in space next to Basketball Earth, and maybe 8 yards away hangs a baseball-sized gray stone: the Moon. If you lean way in, your vast, cool, and unsympathetic eye can detect satellites in low-Earth orbit, about one centimeter from the surface. And from this perspective, Felix Baumgartner dove from a height of around one millimeter, 39 thousandths of an inch.

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