The Sky & You


Have you ever noticed the Moon in the sky during the day?

Do you wonder why the Hubble Space Telescope is in space instead of on a mountain top?

Do you want to command a telescope to image a distant galaxy?

And are you concerned that there seem to be fewer stars in the sky than there used to be?

The sky - especially the night sky - makes us wonder about living on Mars, what its like to be an astronaut, are there other people in the universe, what will the future bring. You can investigate these and other topics on the web, and the Cosmic Cafe provides many opportunities to do it. And a place to share ideas and experiences experimenting with the sky.


Who is "you"? And who are "we"?

"You" are a kid, probably a teenager, a girl or a guy - someone interested in playing with technology, experimenting with new things, and thinking about the amazing ways the universe works. You'll probably go to college, but you aren't sure where or what you'll study. But you sort of feel that what you experience now will help point the way to your future. Ultimately you want a job doing neat stuff, that will pay a good salary, and will let you feel happy with your life and contributions you are making to the world.

"We" are a bunch of researchers at a university and an astronomical observatory. "We" also includes graduate students who will share some of their experiences and answer your questions about growing up, having fun learning and finding out how to get from high school to college and beyond. "We" are interested in exciting "you" about science and technology because there are and will be fantastic opportunities and jobs in these fields.

But we want to do something more subversive than exciting you. We want to guide you to become better at learning, better at gaining technology and thinking skills to do neat things, and better at investigating opportunities that you may never have considered for your future. We want to open your eyes, both to see and understand the sky, and to envision alternative futures for yourself.