The visual display of quantitative information remains a challenge for researchers. We’ve taken a look before at examples of visual models meant to show the size of various celestial bodies, but as the video below notes, these are often problematic because we quickly lose context of scale, because as each new planet or star is introduced, it is usually shown at the same size as the one before it.

To correct for this, the artist here uses a set scale, 1/190,000,000, shrinking the earth to the size of a tennis ball, and showing relative distances and sizes from there.

David Crotty

David Crotty

David Crotty is the Editorial Director, Journals Policy for Oxford University Press. He serves on the Board of Directors for the STM Association, the Society for Scholarly Publishing and CHOR, Inc. David received his PhD in Genetics from Columbia University and did developmental neuroscience research at Caltech before moving from the bench to publishing.

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