EDIT JUN 1: The image released on May 19 by the ESO was actually an infrared view -- the visible view I posted below is two years old. That doesn't affect how cool the photo is, though! Visit the ESO website for the brand-new infrared view.
What does a barred spiral galaxy look like? THIS is what a barred spiral galaxy looks like. The image was released today by the European Southern Observatory.
I don't ordinarily go in for astronomical photos, but I found this one irresistible. Look at the enlarged version and you'll see that many of the background specks of light are more galaxies, more "island universes" full of stars great and small.
...there, I spaced out for five full minutes, contemplating that. Must return to rocks and ices and tactile things!