Saturday, December 30, 2006


Capital Development

Phil Plait, of Bad Astronomy, has had is book from 2002 (also called Bad Astronomy) named one of the five best books on space by William Burrows in the Wall Street Journal:
"Bad Astronomy" by Philip Plait (Wiley, 2002).
Philip Plait is a California astronomer who evidently became so exasperated with the contemporary warping of science by ideology or just plain ignorance that he wrote "Bad Astronomy" as an antidote. This primer on basic astronomy explains, among much else, why the moon sometimes hits your eye like a big pizza pie (it happens when the moon reaches the perigee of its elliptical orbit and is closest to us). But Plait's astronomical discussions also take on creationism. My favorite part of the book: when he goes after the crowd that claims the Apollo moon landings were a hoax. Years ago, Buzz Aldrin showed one way to deal with this bizarre belief when someone shoved a Bible at him and demanded that he swear he actually landed on the moon; Aldrin decked the guy. Plait achieves the equivalent with words.
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