I don’t know. I like watching The Universe series on The History Channel (once I get past the stupid graphics and the talking-down-to they give us) but this guy, a frequent contributor to The Universe, seems a little too full of himself for someone who apparently doesn’t understand the words he’s using.
Just as there are many solar systems in our galaxy, and many other galaxies in the universe, there may be, we find, other somethings (he uses “soap bubbles”) in the universe. “Universe” has it right there in the word– Uni. There can be only one. What all it may include is a subject for further study and discovery, but there is only one. Please.
Maybe this bugs me more than it should, but I don’t think so. When it comes to cross-culture or cross-generational communication it is critically important. Simple things like the meaning of “the People” and of “…shall not be infringed” have been under assault for example. If we’re not constantly on our guard we lose our history. When we lose our history we lose our culture and our freedom.
For the Sesame Street audience, “soap bubble” works OK, but surely there’s a better choice. I’ll take it over “multiple universes” any day though, as the latter is a direct contradiction of terms, hanging right out there in your face.
Encarta offers this definition of the universe; “the totality of all matter and energy that exists in the vastness of space, whether known to human beings or not.” Well there you have it, see? You might want to alert the theoretical physicists and the astronomers you know. That last clause is even better than I’d hoped. I’d figured on something more like “everything that exists everywhere, period. No, really– everything. Seriously. Dude” but that definition has a bit of a problem built into it. Ten points if you can describe it.