Tom Giannotti Wins September 2020 “Competition” EXTREMES (See photo)

“Lights On.” ©Thomas Giannotti 2020

Congrats to Tom who wins with this stunning photo called “Lights On.”   And like any great photo, viewers may bring any interpretation they want to explain for themselves, “what exactly is going on here?”

The photo is so unusual that it commands immediate attention. You have to look at it.  You have to try and figure out what’s going on, to try to explain it for yourself.  A photo like this is catnip for our brains.  What’s your interpretation of what is going on?

I saw this and immediately thought, “black hole.”  Objects so massive they warp space and time around them while their gravitational pull swallows and crushes everything and not even light can escape its pull.

Black holes have been in the news a lot recently. Just this week the Nobel Prizes in Physics were awarded to 3 physicists for their mathematical and observational studies supporting the existence of black holes, and another proof of Einstein’s theory of General Relativity.

In fact, a year ago an actual black hole was imaged, digitally, from various telescopic images and data.  

Tom’s photograph is extremely clever, even brilliant.  Einstein’s 1915 theory of General Relativity predicts the warping, or bending, of space-time by the gravity of massive objects such as black holes.  Tom’s photo is a perfect representation of this idea. There is even an actual black hole at the bottom of the picture.

What do scientists think would happen if you were swallowed up by a black hole? All your matter would be consumed and converted to energy, and perhaps explode into a new universe similar to what happened at the “Big Bang” that started our universe. Game Over: Your time in this universe has ended!

Pity the poor occupants of this car as they turn their puny “Lights On” while travelling this roller coaster plunge to the end of time, but perhaps to a new universe.  Now that’s some trip.

And this is some photograph!