Although we use it every day, time is complicated.
When we break it up into small pieces, most people are pretty good at organising time, but everything starts to get a bit wobbly when the timescales get larger.
If you keep zooming out on the history of the Universe, at a certain point time becomes simply incomprehensible for our puny human brains.
The team at Kurzgesagt has just released a new animated video to help explain time, with a timescale that will give you exceptionally weird feelings about the vastness of it all.
“Time makes sense in small pieces,” they begin. “But when you look at large stretches of time, it’s almost impossible to wrap your head around things.”
A lot of amazing things have happened just in 2018 alone, but even the 21st century is starting to get on.
As the video above explains, the oldest person living today was born closer to Napoleon’s rule over France than to the present day.
Even the advancement of science is mind-boggling – it’s only been 160 years since Charles Darwin’s On the Origin of Species, the modern cornerstone of our understanding of the basics of evolution. Modern physics isn’t that much older.
It gets even weirder when you start thinking about how relatively recent industrialisation was, considering how long human ancestors have been walking around Earth.
And that’s just humans.
Dinosaurs ruled Earth for 27 times as long as all of human history.
We’ll leave Kurzgesagt to explain what happens when you get to the stunningly large time scales of the cosmos in its entirety – and what will happen when it all ceases to exist. Thankfully, they point out it’s not quite the end of the world (or Universe) quite yet.
“The good news is, this is all far far away. The only time that actually matters is now,” they explain in the video.
“Time is precious… make it count!”