Learn About the Cosmos, One Tile at a Time

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This App is actually very cool. It's the American Museum of Natural History: Cosmic Discoveries. The App puts things into one of those mosiac images in which several tiny pictures create one huge image. You can zoom in by double-tapping or pinching, and read up on a ton of information.

It's a pretty beefy download for an iPhone App at 54.1MB, but it's full of awesome information and the App is presented very well.

Have a look at it here it's free.

As always, the press release is after the jump.




Features 1000 Stunning Astrophysical images and Social Networking Tools For Professional and Amateur Scientists Alike 

Marks 10th Anniversary of Rose Center for Earth and Space at the American Museum of Natural History 

New York, October 12, 2010‚ÄîTo mark the 10th anniversary of the Frederick Phineas and Sandra Priest Rose Center for Earth and Space, the American Museum of Natural History today announced the launch of its third application for iPhone and iPod touch, American Museum of Natural History: Cosmic Discoveries.

Free and easy to use, Cosmic Discoveries features an interactive photo-mosaic comprising 1000 stunning images stitched together to form one of the most iconic shapes in our Solar system‚Äîthe gas giant Saturn and its rings. These images are drawn from the Museum‚Äôs archives and Science Bulletins, as well as dozens of space agencies and observatories around the world. Clicking on each image in the mosaic reveals detailed information about an array of cosmic phenomena ‚Äì including planets, stars, and other celestial bodies. 

Cosmic Discoveries also features in-depth stories about Comets, Galactic Clusters, Pulsars, X-Ray Galaxy Clusters, Protostars and Very Young Stars, Neutrino Bursts, Planetary Nebulae, and Planets in the Solar System, chronicling how they were discovered, who discovered them, and other interesting facts. In order to spark real-time conversations about space and its exploration between astronauts, astrophysicists, and aspiring amateurs, the app also includes built-in social networking functionality that allows users to easily share images, notes and comments with each other. 

‚ÄúThis new mobile application is another exciting example of how the Museum is leveraging innovative digital tools across a variety of platforms to present scientific discoveries in new and interesting ways to a growing audience across the globe,‚Äù said Ellen V. Futter, President of the American Museum of Natural History. ‚ÄúCosmic Discoveries builds on the popularity and success of our first two apps and honors the tradition of the Rose Center, which, for a decade, has used cutting-edge technology to bring the latest research in the physical sciences to the public.‚Äù 

Cosmic Discoveries was produced by the Museum‚Äôs Digital Media Department and curated by Dr. Michael Shara, a leading scientist and Curator in the Department of Astrophysics whose research interests include the structure and evolution of novae and supernovae; collisions between stars and the remnant descendants of those collisions; and the populations of stars inhabiting star clusters and galaxies. Emily Rice, a postdoctoral researcher and astrophysics content advisor for Science Bulletins, and Brian Abbott, Manager of the Digital Universe, contributed important expertise.

‚ÄúThe classes of astronomical objects in this introductory release were chosen to span the widest range in size possible, from the subatomic neutrino all the way up to Clusters of Galaxies,‚Äù said Dr. Michael Shara, Curator in the Department of Astrophysics. ‚ÄúStill, we could only scratch the surface because modern astrophysics is so rich in subject matter. Future chapters will allow us to explore many more Cosmic Discoveries.‚Äù 

The American Museum of Natural History’s Rose Center for Earth and Space is renowned for its use of cutting-edge technology to present the results of actual scientific research. Its opening marked an unprecedented transition from static planetarium shows to space shows, dynamic multimedia experiences that leverage the Digital Universe—an extensive database of astronomical objects. Started a decade ago, the Digital Universe transforms scientific data and mathematical algorithms into realistic and accurate renderings of the known cosmos and animates them across the 87-foot wide, seven million pixel dome of the Hayden Planetarium.

Cosmic Discoveries was developed in celebration of this exciting tradition of innovation and is the latest offering of the Museum‚Äôs expanding digital platform which enables public access to the Museum‚Äôs extensive resources in science, education, and exhibition‚Äîwhether they are visiting on site or online. By anticipating the new ways that people access, learn, and share information today, the digital platform integrates the experience of visiting the Museum with a variety of mobile offerings that extend the Museum‚Äôs impact beyond its walls and put the wonder and excitement of discovery into the palm of one‚Äôs hand.

Earlier this year the Museum launched American Museum of Natural History: Explorer, a groundbreaking mobile app designed as an ‚Äúindoor GPS‚Äù within the Museum, pinpointing a user‚Äôs location and offering turn-by-turn directions through more than 500,000 square feet of public space that encompasses 45 permanent exhibition halls, theaters, restrooms, caf√©s, and Museum shops. American Museum of Natural History Collections: Dinosaurs showcases the Museum‚Äôs world-class fossil collection through more than 800 images and stories about the discovery of popular specimens.

American Museum of Natural History

The American Museum of Natural History is one of the world‚Äôs preeminent scientific, educational, and cultural institutions. Since its founding in 1869, the Museum has advanced its global mission to explore and interpret human cultures, the natural world, and the universe through a wide-reaching program of scientific research, education, and exhibitions. The Museum accomplishes this ambitious goal through its extensive facilities and resources. The Museum houses 45 permanent exhibition halls, state-of-the-art research laboratories, one of the largest natural history libraries in the Western Hemisphere, and a permanent collection of more than 32 million specimens and cultural artifacts. With a scientific staff of more than 200, the Museum supports research divisions in Anthropology, Paleontology, Invertebrate and Vertebrate Zoology, and the Physical Sciences. In 2006, with the opening of the Richard Gilder Graduate School at the Museum, it became the first American museum with the authority to grant the Ph.D. degree. The Museum shares its treasures and discoveries with approximately 5 million on-site visitors from around the world each year. Museum-produced exhibitions and Space Shows can currently be seen in venues on five continents, reaching an audience of millions. In addition, the Museum‚Äôs website, amnh.org, extends its collections, exhibitions, and educational programs to millions more beyond the Museum‚Äôs walls.

Cosmic Discoveries was developed in collaboration with 33Delivered, which provides digital stewardship and development services for institutions and companies, and Mosaic Legends, a digital media company that has exclusive patent rights to create Photomosaics¬Æ.

In addition, the American Museum of Natural History and the Cosmic Discoveries team would like to thank the following individuals and organizations for sharing ideas and allowing the use of their images: Martin Harwit, National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA), NASA Jet Propulsion Laboratory at the California Institute of Technology, Chandra X-Ray Observatory Center, National Optical Astronomy Observatory (NOAO), David Malin and the Australian Astronomical Observatory (AAO), Harvard College Observatory Archive, European Organization for Astronomical Research (ESO), European Space Agency (ESA), and Science Bulletins at the American Museum of Natural History.

American Museum of Natural History: Cosmic Discoveries app,American Museum of Natural History: Explorer app and American Museum of Natural History Collections: Dinosaurs app require iOS 2.2.1 or later with iPhone 3G, iPhone 3GS, iPhone 4, iPod touch (2nd generation), iPod touch (3rd generation) and iPad.  They are available for free at www.amnh.org/apps/ or from the App Store on iPhone and iPod touch at www.iTunes.com/appstore/.


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