Download Asimov’s New Guide to Science by Isaac Asimov PDF

By Isaac Asimov

Asimov tells the tales in the back of the technological know-how: the boys and ladies who made the real discoveries and the way they did it. starting from Galilei, Achimedes, Newton and Einstein, he's taking the main advanced techniques and explains it in one of these method first-time reader at the topic feels convinced on his/her knowing.

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In line with this concept of purity, we take almost ridiculous precautions to make sure that the contestants in the Olympic games are free of any taint of professionalism. The Greek rationalization for the “cult of uselessness” may similarly have been based on a feeling that to allow mundane knowledge (such liS the distance from Athens to Corinth) to intrude on abstract thought was 10 allow imperfection to enter the Eden of true philosophy. Whatever the rationalization, the Greek thinkers were severely limited by their attitude.

As early as 1440, a German scholar, Nicholas of Cusa, maintained that space was infinite, and that the stars were suns stretching outward in all directions without limit, each with a retinue of inhabited planets, That the stars did not look like suns but appeared as tiny specks of light, he attributed to their great distance. Unfortunately Nicholas had no evidence for these views but advanced them merely as opinion. The opinion seemed a wild one, and he was ignored. In 1718, however, the English astronomer Edmund Halley, who was working hard to make accurate telescopic determinations of the position of various stars in the sky, found that three of the brightest stars—Sirius, Procyon, and Arcturus—were not in the positions recorded by the Greek astronomers.

The Greek rationalization for the “cult of uselessness” may similarly have been based on a feeling that to allow mundane knowledge (such liS the distance from Athens to Corinth) to intrude on abstract thought was 10 allow imperfection to enter the Eden of true philosophy. Whatever the rationalization, the Greek thinkers were severely limited by their attitude. Greece was not barren of practical contributions to civilization, but even its great engineer, Archimedes of Syracuse, refused to write about his practical inventions and discoveries; to maintain his amateur status, he broadcast only his achievements in pure mathematics.

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