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The ChronoZoom Time Atlas of Earth History and Big History

By the ChronoZoom Team

"Big History" is the currently active effort to bring together in a unified way all of the information about the past, both humanistic and scientific. It is now taught at a number of high schools, colleges and universities. However, one of the problems for anyone teaching Earth history or Big History is how to help students – or anyone – to comprehend the time scales. The panels below help address this challenge by presenting Big History in a sequence of time scales. The panels cover intervals of time that differ by about a factor of ten, but rather than rigid, order-of-magnitude separations, each panel begins at a significant date in history. Each panel is accompanied by a page of text, discussing the historical features shown in the panel.

Users may view the panels and text side by side on a computer monitor to facilitate zooming in on the graphic panel, or may opt to print the entire document in book form or select individual time periods: (For the best user experience, we recommend downloading the documents and viewing directly in Adobe Reader.)

  Chart Text Introduction
Panel 0 Chart Text Big Bang and Cosmos
Panel 1 Chart Text Cosmos (13.8 Ga to now)
Panel 2 Chart Text Earth and Life (4.567 Ga to now)
Panel 3 Chart Text Phanerozoic (541 Ma to now)
Panel 4 Chart Text Cenozoic (66 Ma to now)
Panel 5 Chart Text Pliocene-Pleistocene (5.33 Ma to now)
Panel 6 Chart Text Bruhnes Normal and Ice Age (780 ka to now)
Panel 7 Chart Text Out of Africa (60 ka to now)
Panel 8 Chart Text Civilization and Writing (3,500 B.C. to now)
Panel 9 Chart Text Global Reconnection (1400 A.D. to now)
Panel 10 Chart Text Cold War / Long Peace (1945 to now)
Panel 11 Chart Text Dating and Periodizing History (Last 5 years)
Panel 12 Chart Text The Character of History (Last 6 months)

"now" = 2000 A.D.     B.C. = B.C.E.     A.D. = C.E.
Ga = billion years ago     Ma = million years ago     ka = thousand years ago



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