Re: [Interstellar-Travel-100-Year-Starship] The Myth of the Flat Earth

From: M
Sent on: Monday, July 1, 2013 2:03 PM
We hear that back in the day, when those cavemen were bumping around scratching out designs for a wheel, some of them knew the motorcycle was on the way, only it was down the road a piece.  Other's told them it was theoretically impossible (like be real Og, there's no road).  I am certain I speak for all when I say I am pleased they stuck it out.


From: "David Abraham" <[address removed]>
To: [address removed]
Sent: Sunday, June 30,[masked]:50:55 PM
Subject: RE: [Interstellar-Travel-100-Year-Starship] The Myth of the Flat Earth

While I would only applaud anyone who devotes his/her life to a future today barely imaginable, I honestly doubt that you will find one person in the scientific community who would suggest that (manned!) interstellar travel is likely/probable within the next 500 years.  None of the milestones so far achieved or talked about within the space community has been a surprise to anyone who has been interested in space flight since he was a pre-teen in the late 1940's.  
Landing on Mars is one thing, interstellar quite another.  The nearest star after the Sun is 500,000 times further away from us than Mars, 500,000 times farther away than Mars!  It demands a wholly new science of energy.

I am not trying to dampen your enthusiasm, just trying to lay a proper foundation for how hard it is.  GO FOR IT!




Subject: RE: [Interstellar-Travel-100-Year-Starship] The Myth of the Flat Earth
From: [address removed]
To: [address removed]
Date: Sun, 30 Jun[masked]:29:12 -0400

I would agree that "conventional scientific thinking" might view interstellar space travel as possible in the future. However...the dominant ideology (the majority of people and how they have been socialized) tend to articlate the belief that interstellar space travel is a fantasy and that if it is possible, it would happen so far into the future that it doesnt make sense to think about, talk about, or to commit one's life studying about it. The scientific community, or at least people within the space community, they seem to be moving forward to achieve milestones towards interstellar space travel.
On Jun 30,[masked]:08 PM, "David Abraham" <[address removed]> wrote:
I think that conventional scientific thinking says that interstellar travel is not possible anytime SOON, surely not in the next 50 years.  No prediction can be (dis-)proved until it is lived.   Never is a long long long time.  The first hump is humanity getting smarter so that it may survive its own suicidal tendencies.   IF we are around in 5000 years, I'd bet on interstellar travel (and I'll come back to collect).




Subject: Re: [Interstellar-Travel-100-Year-Starship] The Myth of the Flat Earth
From: [address removed]
To: [address removed]
Date: Sun, 30 Jun[masked]:52:36 -0400

PS....I did state that people "tended" to believe that our Earth was flat. It seems that there are usually  pockets and groups of people likely to think differently than the dominant ideology at various historical epochs. During our current epoch, I believe tje dominant idelogical view is that interstellar space travel is not possible. This doesn't "prove" that interstellar space travel is not and/or will never be possible or realizable. Im not directing this at anyone. I just wanted to speak from my heart about this thought as I was experiencing it.
On Jun 30,[masked]:15 PM, "David" <[address removed]> wrote:
Not that Wikipedia is the best source for anything, but this one has citations:

"The myth of the Flat Earth is the modern misconception that the
prevailing cosmological view during the Middle Ages saw the Earth as
flat, instead of spherical.[1] The idea seems to have been widespread
during the first half of the 20th century, so that the Members of the
Historical Association in 1945 stated that:

'The idea that educated men at the time of Columbus believed that the
earth was flat, and that this belief was one of the obstacles to be
overcome by Columbus before he could get his project sanctioned,
remains one of the hardiest errors in teaching.'[2]

During the early Middle Ages, virtually all scholars maintained the
spherical viewpoint first expressed by the Ancient Greeks. From at
least the 14th century, belief in a flat earth among the educated was
nearly nonexistent, in spite of fanciful depictions in art, such as
the exterior of Hieronymus Bosch's famous triptych The Garden of
Earthly Delights, in which a disc-shaped earth is shown floating
inside a transparent sphere.[3]

According to Stephen Jay Gould, 'there never was a period of "flat
earth darkness" among scholars (regardless of how the public at large
may have conceptualized our planet both then and now). Greek knowledge
of sphericity never faded, and all major medieval scholars accepted
the earth's roundness as an established fact of cosmology.'[4]
Historians of science David Lindberg and Ronald Numbers point out that
'there was scarcely a Christian scholar of the Middle Ages who did not
acknowledge [Earth's] sphericity and even know its approximate
circumference'.[5]"


On 6/30/13, Edythe Weeks <[address removed]> wrote:
> I think it is important to remember that people once tended to believe our
> world was flat.



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