More Cosmology Books

The non amateur stuff. Hawking, black holes, that sort of thing

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Cliff
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More Cosmology Books

Post by Cliff »

Dear al (and even my arch enemy Joe)
I just got two new books, that seem interesting at first looks.
"Empire of the Stars" by Arthur I Miller and "The New Quantum Universe" by Hey & Walters. Just to stir it up again, according to the latter book, Mandelbrot reckons that the "fractal dimension" of the coast line of Great Britain is ABOUT 1.2. The book also shows a jiggly line which apparently has a fractal dimension" of 1.5, whilst a simple smooth curve would be 1, but the more jagged and spikey the curve gets it approaches a "fractal dimension" of 2. Well I think you will agree it could not get much simpler.
Well that is all well and good but I am still not convinced that sticking a value of ABOUT 1.2 into any "ordinary" sort of equation will produce an accurate map of the coastline of Great Britain. Or will it?
Anyway should it be 1.999999..... or 2.00000000...1 ?
Next thing you know someone will be telling us the Universe is tilted sideways left and right, as well as up and down, like Joe says Saturn should be!!
I hope I will not eating my words soon.
Best wishes from the Grumpy Old codger
joe
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Post by joe »

Hi Cliff,

I haven't the foggiest about fractals. As for tipping Saturn on its side, I wasn't implying that it should be like that, I was only making the comment that a picture of Saturn looks better if it is not horizontal. Scientifically no one gives a monkey's but if you are to put a picture on the front cover of a magazine it would be more pleasing to the eye and more dramatic if it was tipped. As my old art teacher used to say, " A good picture deserves a good frame and a bad picture needs one."

ATB,

ps Arch enemy??
200mm Newtonian, OMC140, ETX90, 15x70 Binoculars.
Cliff
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Joined: Sat Dec 11, 2004 8:18 pm
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Post by Cliff »

Dear Joe
With respect to you, I was only joking about the "arch enemy" bit, I hope I have not put my foot in it again.
I have to admit having particular interest in these "fractal" things. Two or 3 years ago I got embroiled in a serious difference of opinion about fractals with a local astronomical society member who thinks the Big Bang theory is rubbish. He thinks the Universe is fractal. I am afraid I got a bit humpty because although I know very little about fractals really myself, I thought and still think! the fractal supporter knew very little at all about astronomy and not much more about fractals either for that matter.
Best wishes from the Grumpy Old Codger Cliff
Kaustav
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Empire of the stars

Post by Kaustav »

Cliff,

You'll enjoy Empire of the Stars. I read it about a month ago and it's a facinating story. It goes in to much dept about Chandra's life at Cambridge, his discovery of the Chandrasekhar limit, the events leading up to him winning the Nobel prize and his career and further discoveries in the USA. There's also a jolly good amount of information on Sir Arthur Eddington. So go read it straight away! Forget Al, don't let Joe bother you.... just pick up the book and read, read, read! :-)

Kaustav.
Last edited by Kaustav on Thu Apr 14, 2005 8:09 pm, edited 1 time in total.
Kaustav Bhattacharya
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Cliff
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Post by Cliff »

Dear Kaustav
Thanks for the encouragement re "Empire of the Stars".
I must confess after charging through chapter 1 I have been sidetracked by other urgent matters.
Best wishes from the Grumpy Old Codger, Cliff
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