Science in your own back yard

Via Wired comes the story of an amateur astronomer who was able to observe astronauts at work on the International Space station.

This reminds me of the fact that science is not some kind of endeavor limited to people with PhDs working for universities and the government. In fact, some of history’s greatest discoveries and advancements have come from people tinkering in backyard laboratories.

Maybe that’s something to think about as you prepare to buy your last gifts for Christmas.


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6 Responses to Science in your own back yard

  1. djhitz says:

    Galileo was a tinkerer. He was a toymaker. So was Anton Von Leewenhoek, a Dutch lens, guy. Astronomy Magazine has been selling astrnomical equipment for at home for over 30 years. It’s good stuff too. Rooftops that slide open with the same ease as you’d open an electric garage door. Try not to be around too much external lighting. Use 60X and above. Reflector telescopes get the best range for the money. Some of these advanced constructions desire a bit more than tinkering. After all, telescopes are precision instruments. Just think of the conversation that Galileo and Edwin Hubble, might have. Thanks guys for lensing us an eye on the cosmos. Thanks also to guys like Carl Sagan to deliver it home through the telly. Thanks also to Gene Roddenbery for showing us how it could be like. Like using six inch plexiglass bulkheads to tank 600 tons of whales and water because transparemt aliminum is not available. This is fiction. Isn’t it? I wish it weren’t. A society without money and you could go to any university you wanted to or choose to be grape farmer. The Final Frontier indeed. When you see photos from Hubble Telescope, like the Dragon Nebulae. How can one not see God in the heavens and on earth and in his people.

  2. dlhitzeman says:

    You are so right, DJ. We have a scope here called a Coronado, which is used for observing the sun, and it is one of my favorite astronomy pieces ever. We also have an 8-inch and a 6-inch standard scope in our observatory. I think it is impossible to look at the immensity of the universe and believe that it came about by accident.

    My goal in the spring is to start launching rockets again as well.

  3. djhitz says:

    Since it’s Christmas. I need to make a plug for Meade telescopes and spotting scopes. I’d also like to plug, Tasco optics in general.
    Whatever you do launching rockets. Do not put on metallic, nose cones and launch them over govenment facility, fences (Grin!). Launch wise!

  4. djhitz says:

    Watch the sun with your Coronado during sunspots and solar flaring. Shortly thereafter you’ll find Al Gore and other, global warming, pirates and sharks make the most money. See: Farmer’s Almanac website.

  5. dlhitzeman says:

    What we see with this whole global warming thing is no different that what power hungry people have done for millennia. The only difference today is the sheer number of people they have to fool.

  6. djhitz says:

    You can’t fake starvation unless you’re a good actor and acting isn’t starving. You can however fake millions of people out by overdramatizing something that’s already happening. Yes, God’s planet is hot. You want it hot. Yes, it’s winter, you summer lovers. The northern hemisphere is tilted away from the sun. Remember your elementary school science? Many don’t seem to. The sun still burns at 5700* Kelvin. Some time, we might get baked off, her/Earth’s face. I’m ready.

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