Sometimes the best things in life are free. Sometimes they are pure accidents. In the case of the image below, it's a bit of both!
My good friend, and fellow graduate student, Nick was using a piece of code I had told him about. Alas, I did not tell him about all the settings the code required, and it spit out nonsense. (Sorry Nick!)
But what lovely nonsense it is....
|Oops - this was supposed to look more like this, not that|
We quickly figured out the error, thankfully, and now his code is off and running. So often little typos can cause your computer to do strange and awesome things. We thought this "error" was beautiful, and worth sharing. Now the repaired code creates a map of the Milky Way in the mid-infrared, which is also beautiful in a different way... and that's how science is done!