How long would it take to get to Kepler 22b?

Kepler 22b, the extrasolar planet discovered by NASA’s Kepler Space Telescope is apparently around 600 light years away. I wondered how long it would actually take for us to get something there. Maybe if we start today, we could surprise our descendants with a signal from a probe in a 10,000 years or so.

Apparently not. Using the current speed of the Voyager 2 probe as my unscientific example of “something flying through space real fast”, and the handy Wolfram Alpha service, it would take 11.64 million years to get to Kepler 22b.

I find this simultaneously boring and existentially terrifying.


BoingBoing delves much deeper into the idea of the (im)practicality and cost of interstellar travel. While Kepler 22b might be a boring 11-million-year flight away, the article discusses the nearest star, Alpha Centauri would would be a brisk 70,000 years or so.


Baby Rock

In this interview with Chris Murphy from Sloan, he was asked about song-writing themes as the band gets older. Chris says:

“I’m trying not to write songs about how much I hate getting up at 5:30 am with the baby. It’s so boring but that’s all I know these days.”

Chris, I would love to hear that song.


New Album from Sloan: The Double Cross

Sloan - The Double Cross album coverOn their 20th anniversary as a band, Sloan has release their best album in a while. The Double Cross arranges song order, bleeds one song into another, and calls back to hooks from other songs in the way that made their 1998 album, Navy Blues, so amazing.

Like all of their albums, The Double Cross can be streamed for free or purchased in digital form (even in FLAC, audio nerds) from their website.

There is also a great series of short interviews with the band about the new album, and with other artists about their love of Sloan over the last 20 years.