The dumbest astronomy quiz EVER!

So MSN is having an astronomy quiz. This is EASILY the dumbest online quiz there has ever been.

Meessa gotsa 10 outta 10!

Heheh, I did that one last month. My favourite one was:

“Which is larger?
a) A galaxy
b) A solar system
c) A universe”

Boy, I cracked up so much I actually got one of the bastards wrong!

Errr… 6 out of 10. Astronomy never was my strongest suit, I’m afraid.

Phew. 10 out of 10. If I’d have got any of them wrong, I’d never live it down.

But the questions are just silly - I mean constellations are hardly astronomy!

Hell, that constellation question is the hardest one. I was tempted to shout “In what culture?”

Coldfire, we love you anyway. You like Rush.

I have to agree, this was laughably too easy! On the other hand I know some people who don’t know diddly about astronomy and would probably have a harder time with some of the questions. The only one I wasn’t quite sure on was the number of constellations (I guessed correctly, however).

Nine out of ten. Missed the last one because the sun does look bigger than the moon TO ME, and I do think it’s slightly unfair to say that a question about how people perceive things has a single “right” answer.

Sadly, I know people who don’t realize the earth revolves around the sun once a year…

I got one question wrong because I treat these things like a time trial and answered everything in under 30 seconds…

It’s true, the constellation one was guess-worthy.

Q: Why doesn’t the site work on my computer?
A: Because I’m trying to use a non-Microsoft browser to look at a MSN site.


I think the question about the apparent size of the moon vs. sun is worded poorly. No two things are exactly the same size. That said, they are remarkably close in size - when the moon obscures the sun, sometimes you get a total eclipse (whole sun covered by moon, but just barely) and sometimes you get an annular eclipse (moon is too small to completely cover the sun).

By the way, “apparent size” is a scientific term and means the same thing as “angular size.” It’s not a subjective measure of how people perceive it.

Er, technically, both the sun and the moon subtend the same angular size on the Earth - i.e. they are the same size when viewed from the Earth.

Its not a perception question - its a fact, due to the coincidence that whilst the sun’s diameter is approximately 400 times greater than that of the moon, the sun is approximately 400 times further away from us than the moon. Note the “approximately” makes no difference whatsoever to the angular sizes as we see them.

Since angular size is inversely proportional to how far away you are from the object you are viewing, and directly proportional to the actual size of the object, the two effects cancel each other out, and so the sun and moon look the same size.

If they both didn’t appear to be the same size at the Earth, there would be no way we would be able to observe total solar eclipses.

On preview - thank you scr4 - that’s the point I was attempting to make :slight_smile:

But you have to admit that’s a phenomenal coincidence.

Yes, its an amazing coincidence - I’m not disputing that, just Fretful Porpentine’s misinterpretation of “apparent size”. That’s all.

I don’t know constellations, so I missed that one. The rest of it was laughably – no, insultingly! – easy.

Fretful Porpentine, if you ever get a chance to see a total solar eclipse, do it! You’ll really grok what that “apparent size” thing is about. The moon exactly covers the solar disk - and no more. It’s amazing, even though it is just coincidence.

Note this question is technically flawed, as it says c) A universe
Therefor it is implying more than one universe as a possibility. Since distance measurement in one universe is not transferable in any way to a different universe then there is no meaningful relationship between sizes of a galaxy in universe 1, and a solar system in universe 2,and an entire univers 3 where we have three different universes.

So this question is actually impossible to answer as written :slight_smile:

Constellations??? That’s astrology isn’t it? And it’s a totally arbitary figure. Is there an official body that defines constellations? I don’t think so! I can draw a line between two stars in my head and there, it’s another constellation. Stupid question.


But I do know intelligent people who really know zip about astronomy. Couldn’t even list the planets, never mind put them in order.

Phew. I got 10/10 and there were about two questions I wasn’t so confident about.

I thought that the question considering which planet is furthest out of orbit might be a trick question. I know Neptune and Pluto swap at some point, but then I figured this quiz would not throw a spanner into the works, and settled on “Pluto.” Good choice.

The constellation quesiton was pure guesswork, as well. The other numbers just seems to small, and I managed to guess right.

You are out of this world!
You got 10/10 correct.

What do I win? Something truly stellar, I imagine. :smiley:

Actually the question was “What planet’s orbit takes it farthest from the Sun?” The answer is unquestionably Pluto. No trickery there.