ASTR100_NOTES_WEEK4

ASTR100_NOTES_WEEK4 - ASTR-100Lxg |Lec.1| Why Study...

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ASTR-100Lxg |Lec.1| Why Study Astronomy? 5/1/10 11:24 AM *If you have an opinion on basic science and you call a congressman then send Nicholas Warner an email. Broad philosophy and motivation behind study of Astronomy Philosophical Values: Why study Astronomy? Tired Old Reasons: 1. Navigational purposes (19 th century) 2. Calendar and timekeeping (0 th – 18 th centuries) People: Roger Bacon: (12 th century Franciscan Mark) Sent a great proposal (Opus Majus ) to Pope Clement IV o Plea to improve training for missionaries and to provide new skills to be employed in the defense of the Christian world against the enmity [state of hostility] of non-Christians and of the Antichrist. Question: Why study a “basic science”? 1. Basic = curiosity driven Answer: 1. Curiosity is a good thing Application sciences are useful, but useful valuable. 2. Cultural Reasons: You personally Cultures in general (Warner says that, like fire, astronomy is an essential culturally-driven discipline). 3. Astronomy is the ultimate history lesson: Universe to all sentient creatures Vehicle for teaching things o Astronomy is interesting o Learn culture of science and how scientists work and express ideas o Break the mold of formulaic “high school” thinking 4. Serendipity: e.g. Michael Faraday (1791 – 1867): Founder of modern day electromagnetism. e.g. Sildenafil citrate (Viagra): Being studied to cure angina (blood flow to heart problem)
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Lecture Glossary: sentient - able to perceive or feel things : she had been instructed from birth in the equality of all sentient life forms. implicit – implied though not plainly expressed. gibe – an insulting or mocking remark; a taunt. Intelligent Design (ID): a hypothesis stating that all parts of nature have an intelligent designer.
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Reading Notes: Introduction (Ch. 1) 5/1/10 11:24 AM Learning Goal: 1-1: What distinguishes the methods of science from other human activities? 1-1: Science uses testable theories and models based observation, logic, and skepticism. (Hypotheses, theories, and laws - essential to scientific way of knowing) The Scientific Model: o Hypothesis - a collection of ideas that seems to explain what is
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This note was uploaded on 05/01/2010 for the course ASTR 50810 taught by Professor Rhodesjr during the Spring '08 term at USC.

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ASTR100_NOTES_WEEK4 - ASTR-100Lxg |Lec.1| Why Study...

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