Friday, September 18, 2009


I was in a cab one night and I glanced over the driver's dashboard, where the display was showing the total distance the car had traveled. It was about 170 Mm. I suddenly realized that such a distance is similar (of the same order of magnitude) to the distance to the Moon, or to one light-second (approx. 300 Mm). To realize that, during the course of a few years, a car can travel one light-something, where that something fits on the usual human timescale, is wonderfully mind-warping.