Movie Monsters, Tallest Buildings in 1896, Solar System Planets and of Course Spaceships: Size Comparison Charts

Size comparison of stars

Size matters. Especially when it comes to starships, giant monsters, buildings, and . . . well, pretty much anything else that you can obsessively categorize using common measurement systems. Here are some of the most outrageously detailed size comparison charts you’ll ever see.

Spaceship Comparison Chart by Dirk Loechel

Get Obsessive With These Size Comparison Charts

Check the chart in full size here.

(via DeviantArt)

Star Trek ship charts, by Tim ‘Suricata’ Davies

Get Obsessive With These Size Comparison Charts

(One at the top of the post, and this one, via Modelclub)

Monster Movie Sizes

Get Obsessive With These Size Comparison Charts

Get Obsessive With These Size Comparison Charts

(via imgur and lord-phillock)

Sandworms by Dan Meth

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(via Dan Meth)

Dinosaurs and a Pterosaur from the Late Cretaceous of Europe by Hyrotrioskjan

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From left to right:

Blasisaurus, Lirainosaueus, Hadrosaur from Bavaria, Arenysaurus, Ampelosaurus, Atsinganosaurus, Balaur, Struthiosaurus, Paludititan, Pyroraptor, Elopteryx, Magyarosaurus, Gargantuavis, Hungarosaurus, Hatzegopteryx, Ajkaceratops, Zalmoxes, Rhabdodon, Tethyshadros, Telmatosaurus

(via Hyrotrioskjan)

The Biggest Mouths in Science Fiction and Fantasy

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(via io9)

Stargate Ships by Mallacore

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(via Mallacore)

Notable High Buildings of the World, from McNally & Co.’s Universal Atlas of The World, 1896

Get Obsessive With These Size Comparison Charts

(via Wikimedia Commons)

Tallest Buildings in the World Now

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The world’s tallest buildings by 2020, from a study released by The Council on Tall Buildings and Urban Habitat

Get Obsessive With These Size Comparison Charts

These will be the tallest ones:

Kingdom Tower, Jeddah: 1,000+ meters (3,280+ feet)
Burj Khalifa, Dubai: 828 meters (2,717 feet)
Ping An Finance Center, Shenzen: 660 meters (2,165 feet)
Seoul Light DMC Tower: 640 meters (2,101 feet)
Signature Tower, Jakarta: 638 meters (2,093 feet)
Shanghai Tower, Shanghai: 632 meters (2,073 feet)
Wuhan Greenland Center, Wuhan: 606 meters (1,988 feet)
Makkah Royal Clock Tower Hotel, Makkah: 601 meters (1,972 feet)
Goldin Finance 117, Tian Jin: 597 meters (1,957 feet)
Lotte World Tower, Seoul: 555 meters (1,819 feet)
Doha Convention Center and Tower, Doha: 551 meters (1,808 feet)
One World Trade Center, New York City: 541 meters (1,776 feet)
Chow Tai Fook Guangzhou, Guangzhou: 530 meters (1,739 feet)
Tianjin Chow Tai Fook Binhai Center, Tian Jin: 530 meters (1,739 feet)
Dalian Greenland Center, Dalian: 518 meters (1,699 feet)
Pentominium, Dubai: 516 meters (1,693 feet)
Busan Lotte Town Tower, Busan: 510 meters (1,674 feet)
Taipei 101, Taipei: 508 meters (1,667 feet)
Kaisa Feng Long Centre, Kaisa: 500 meters (1,640 feet)
Shanghai WFC, Shanghai: 492 meters (1,614 feet)

Watch the chart in full size here (PDF).

(via Blog Construmática)

Average Floor Area per family between 1950 and 2000

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(via Treehugger)

Relative Sizes of American Amphibious Ships and Craft built since WWII

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(via LSM-275)

Space Launch Vehicles Compared to Big Ben and the Statue of Liberty

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(via Spaceanswers)

Helicopter size comparison

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(via reddit/__atomlib__)

A size comparison of four of the largest aircraft

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(via Clem Tillier/Wikimedia Commons)

Solar system planet size comparison

Get Obsessive With These Size Comparison Charts

(via Wikimedia Commons)

Star size comparison

Get Obsessive With These Size Comparison Charts

(via Quantrek)

Jupiter Structural Layer Cake

Jupiter cake showing core


When I posted the Earth cake, I did not expect it to get anywhere near the amount of attention it received. Getting featured on the Facebook pages Think Geek and I Fucking Love Science was a total highlight of my blogging life. I’m big fans of both pages so it was kind of surreal. A lot of my Zoology graduate mates are also fans of IFLS and you’d often hear conversations in the Masters office beginning with, “Did you see that post by IFLS today?” So I woke up to several of them messaging me about it and we all got super excited over it.

With the exposure those pages brought came a whole lot of people who wanted to know how to make it. I still get a couple of emails a week asking for a recipe. The cake was a total experiment on my part, and not one that went flawlessly. There were many imperfections within the cake and I never share recipes unless I know it’s absolutely tried and true. I’d hate to be responsible for a baking fail simply for giving a botched up recipe. But I also hate letting people down. So I decided to re-visit the concept so I could make a tutorial. That will come later in the week as I’m still editing it. But first, here’s the result of round 2.

Cakecrumbs' Jupiter Structural Layer Cake

One question I got asked a lot was if it was possible to make it a sphere. Absolutely it is. If you can make the hemisphere a sphere is easy. I didn’t want to make another Earth cake as I hate repeating bakes, so I opted to decorate it as something new. I threw around a few ideas ranging from something floral to a giant pokéball, but in the end I just wanted to make another planet.

Choosing a favourite planet was tough. As a kid I was fiercely passionate about two things: animals and the solar system. I ended up following the path of the former and never kept up to date with the latter, but the inner passion for astronomy has never died. Space is just so freaking cool. Our solar system alone is filled with so many fascinating planets, dwarf planets and all their satellites — choosing just one felt treacherous.

Cakecrumbs' Jupiter Structural Layer Cake

In the end I settled on Jupiter predominantly for one reason: its Great Red Spot. The giant anticyclonic storm has always been one of my favourite things and continues to be a subject of great fascination for me. At thrice the size of the Earth it’s bewildering to comprehend the actual magnitude of it. If I absolutely have to choose a favourite planet, it’s got to Jupiter for that storm alone. It’s also so iconic. It’s a characteristic feature almost everyone is familiar with, making it easier to create something that would be instantly recognisable.

The red spot is one of a number of storms you can see all over Jupiter. Some of them last hours, others last for centuries. The red spot had been around since the early 1800s, and it’s possible that it may remain as a permanent feature of the planet. It would be fascinating to see Jupiter if the storm did in fact die out, or if another large one were to appear. The smaller white storms are made up of cool clouds in the upper atmosphere, whereas the brown dots are composed of warmer clouds in the lower atmosphere.

Cakecrumbs' Jupiter Structural Layer Cake

I detailed the atmosphere of Jupiter by covering the cake with ivory marshmallow fondant, then dry brushing a combination of ivory, brown and maroon edible ink. The top ended up being a bit more saturated as I was largely experimenting with colours at that point and was throwing in a bit of yellow. I ended up sticking mostly with ivory and adding extra detail with the brown. Once all the base colours were down I started removing colour to create the storms or other distinguishing features and topping it off with highlights. The whole process took about 8 hours with teeny tiny brushes.

Cakecrumbs' Jupiter Structural Layer Cake

Here’s a 360 of the cake:
Cakecrumbs' Jupiter Structural Layer Cake Cakecrumbs' Jupiter Structural Layer Cake Cakecrumbs' Jupiter Structural Layer Cake Cakecrumbs' Jupiter Structural Layer Cake
It was kind of difficult to get good reference shots of the non-red-spot sides of Jupiter, particularly to get consistent ones. They were all taken over many different years and influenced by many different weather events so there was lots of variation. But I got enough to get a rough guestimate of the more static features of Jupiter’s atmosphere. The rest I’ll just claim as artistic license.

Finally came time to cut the cake and see how there spheres lined up inside. It turned out better matched than I’d anticipated.

Cakecrumbs' Jupiter Structural Layer Cake

When my sister asked me what I was making and I said Jupiter, she said to me, “I didn’t even know Jupiter had layers.” It’s amazing how much we can forget after learning it in primary school. So here’s a rehashing for those of you who’ve also forgotten. Our knowledge is mostly theoretical of course, but the gas giants are thought to have a core comprised mostly of rock and ice. This is surrounded by a layer liquid metallic hydrogen, and the outer layer is composed of molecular hydrogen. *cake is totally not to scale

Cakecrumbs' Jupiter Structural Layer Cake

In cake speak, this translates to a core made of mudcake, surrounded by almond butter cake, surrounded by a tinted vanilla Madeira sponge. There’s a crumb coat of vanilla buttercream underneath the fondant.

This run went so much better than the first, informed by the mistakes and lessons learned in the mean time. So I feel much safer sharing the process with you guys now. Stay tuned for that later this week if all goes to plan.

Desktop Backgrounds Designed to Make You Smarter

Typeface anatomy

Anyone can throw an image of the periodic table onto a desktop and call it a background, but the creations in the gallery above combine useful information with strong aesthetic appeal.

1. Periodic Table of Typefaces

Type%2520tableStudy the popular, influential and notorious typefaces with this background. Image courtesy of Flickr, Jeff McNeill

2. Typeface Anatomy Wallpaper

Typeface_anatomy_wallpaper_Take a closer look at the components of a typeface with this simple wallpaper. Image courtesy of Kevin Wittevrongel

3. Brain


This wallpaper displays the dichotomy between our creative right and scientific left. Image by Jack

4. Solar

SolarScience enthusiasts will enjoy this simple depiction of the solar system. Image by Jouhl Zamora

5. Konami Code

Konami-codeCheat your way to victory with this simple trick. Image by Teles Maciel

6. Fibonacci


Spiral out of control with Fibonacci’s sequence. Image by amitabher

7. Periodic Light


Optimal for memorizing the families in the Periodic Table. Image by Chris Bogie

8. Moog


You’ll get familiar with the parts of a Moog sequencer when you make this your background. Image by Ania Haho

9. World Map


Memorize the countries around the world with this map of the world desktop background. Image via iStockPhoto, bamlou

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Stitching the Solar System: Science as Needlepoint, 1811

Solar System crosstitch pattern

Solar System crosstitch pattern

From The Vault,’s history blog:

In the 17th, 18th, and 19th centuries, girls in the UK and the US used needle and thread to embroider images and text onto pieces of fabric that were called “samplers.” Samplers, which could be quite intricate, were meant to promote basic literacy and to teach patience and carefulness.

Unlike many samplers, which featured botanical, Biblical, or domestic themes, this unusual pre-printed fabric from 1811 depicts a surprisingly scientific subject: the arrangement of the solar system. (Click on image for larger view.)

While girls and women would have found it quite difficult to pursue scientific careers in 19th-century England (the anomalous example of astronomer Caroline Herschel notwithstanding), several popular authors of the time published science books that included girl readers in their intended audiences. Astronomy and natural history were particularly common scientific topics in children’s literature, since authors could relate the information to children’s everyday lives.

This sampler includes a verse from Milton’s “Paradise Lost,” which begins “These are they glorious works, parent of good.” Although we’re accustomed to thinking of scientific and religious education as incompatible, before the controversy over evolutionary theory, which began in the mid-nineteenth century, such conflicts were much more easily resolved. Within certain parameters, instruction in science could be used to reinforce lessons about religion, morality, and God’s plan.

Whoever was working the sampler didn’t get very far with it. The only part of the design that’s been completed with thread is the box around the date.

The blog of the Victoria and Albert Museum of Childhood, where the sampler is held, has an excellent post about the piece and its historical context.