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|Solar System Compression Artifacts|
Title text: Most of our universe consists of dark matter rendered completely undetectable by our spacetime codec's dynamic range issues.
|| This explanation may be incomplete or incorrect: Created by a MISSING PHYSICAL PHENOMENON LOST DUE TO HIGH COMPRESSION. Please mention here why this explanation isn't complete. Do NOT delete this tag too soon.|
Voyager 1 is a space probe launched by the United States in 1977. Originally designed to study the outer planets of the Solar System, it is now several decades into an extended mission beyond Neptune.
When images are compressed by a lossy compression format (e.g. JPEG), visual artifacts are created. The Voyager probe has made history for passing many milestones of our solar system. Randall here is suggesting that the probe has passed the artifacts. This cannot be true, as the solar system does not have compression artifacts. However, the slightly discolored regions often created by compression may be a metaphor for the region of space that that solar radiation prevents from being a complete vacuum. Voyager 1 has passed through numerous such boundaries, as mentioned previously in 1189: Voyager 1.
Compression artifacts are often caused by large changes in coloration over a short distance, and Randall could feel that the drastic change in coloration from bright sun to dark vacuum could be creating a compression artifact around the Sun, somewhat like the Sun looking blurry due to low video quality. However, there is no definite region where solar radiation stops, only a boundary where it fades to a level lower than that of radiation from other sources. Some compression methods result in compression artifacts that behave in the same way, fading as the distance from the color boundary increases but never completely disappearing. (They may become literally unnoticeable because hexadecimal color values are discrete, but the compression artifacts will persist as slightly different RGB values before rounding to the nearest integer.)
- [Irregular bands of gray are shown, shading from a white circular segment on the left side of the panel to black on the right. The bands have pixellated edges. A small satellite is shown barely in the completely black band moving to the right.]
- Caption below the panel: Milestone: Voyager has passed through the streaming video compression artifacts that mark the edge of the solar system
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