Fairy tales for adults

Richard Lightman richard at nezumi.plus.com
Wed Feb 12 15:33:48 PST 2003

* Steve Bougerolle <steveb at creek-and-cowley.com> [2003-02-12 20:16]:
> On Thu, 2003-02-13 at 03:56, Richard Lightman wrote:
> > You are a bit out of date - astronomy has gone a long way in the last
> > few decades.
> I doubt that I'm more than the slightest bit out of date.  I just picked
> an example where the problems are easy to explain to non-
> astrophysicists.  Other methods of estimating distance (including that
> of using Cepheid Variables as markers) also include assumptions.  They
> MUST include assumptions.  Distance is an independent variable which we
> cannot measure directly in the huge majority of cases.  We can only get
> it by solving equations involving things we can measure, and there is
> very little control data we can use to generate reliable equations for
> solving.
Yes the are assumptions, and some of these are common to several
different methods.

I think we have enough evidence to show the universe is much bigger
than 6000 light years to al; but the most paranoid conspiracy theorists.

If you want to know more about paranoids follow them around.

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