Astronomical objects & human children

University of Tel Aviv astronomer Alon Retter alerts us to his provocative paper positing a mathematical similarity between astronomical objects and human children.

Retter’s monography is another example of the spectacular nature of many research papers in the small, new viXra depository (profiled here recently; see “Alternate everything: the joy of viXra“) as compared to many of the holdings in the vast, more traditional arXiv depository.

Retter wrote both a long version and a short version of his paper. The abstract of the long version begins:

This paper presents a remarkable analogy between the human society and Astronomy. Please keep an open mind as the resemblance is not only qualitative but also quantitative. We point out many similarities between stars and people, such as properties of grouping – single stars vs. singles, binary stars vs. couples, cities vs. clusters, countries vs. galaxies, etc. Men and women are linked with cool and hot stars. We match planets with children and attribute the two genders to gas and solid planets.

Moons are related with pets or grandchildren, asteroids with germs / viruses, accretion disks with bellies and jets with pukes. Suicide attempts in people are associated with supernovae in stars.

Inflation is connected with the rapid growth of the embryo, and the time the universe became transparent to light is linked with the human birth. A simple analogue to the cosmic background radiation is the bellybutton, and the universe acceleration is coupled with the pace increase in modern life. The mean values of the distributions of star multiples and the number of US households are almost identical (2.04 and 2.03). Moreover, an amazing resemblance between the two curves is evident.

The distribution of gas (or solid) planets is similar to that of boys (or girls) as well [see figure 2, reproduced below], and the fit could improve once selection effects are considered. Monte Carlo simulations suggest that our results are significant at a confidence level higher of ~99.9%…