September 24, 2017

August 2013-Life in the AstroBlogosphere: Adventures in Astrology

Gazing upon astronomy’s astrological past…

(Photo by author).

I was first bitten by the astrology bug in the 6th grade.

This was in the late 1970s, when Weekly Reader (remember Weekly Reader?) offered students mail order books to purchase. Astrology and new age mania was also at a fevered pitch.

I eagerly absorbed a book on astrology, like I did with every new subject I came across. (UFOs and Bigfoot were big then too). How simple and clear cut it all seemed! All of humanity could be divvied up into 12 trouble-free houses, all dictated by birth date. All triumphs and tribulations could be attributed to the heavens. After all, as the book stated, “If plants grown in different seasons are dissimilar, then why not people?” [Read more...]

Life in the Astro-Blogosphere May 2013: They’re Out There, Man…

Why yes, we HAVE seen the ISS!

You just never know when you’ll come face-to-face with Woo.

We recently wrote about Comet ISON on Universe Today and how conspiracy crackpots are already lining up to capitalize on the projected “Comet of the Century.” It’s really win-win for them; if the comet lives up to expectations, there’ll be lots to hype, and if it’s a fizzle, hey, NASA’s “secret mission” must’ve taken it out…

[Read more...]

Review: Science Under Siege edited by Kendrick Frazier.

Out now from Prometheus Books!
Out now from Prometheus Books!
After centuries of progressive enlightenment, a sinister reversal is afoot. Ever since science has become an effective force for change, there have been those who either inadvertently or deliberately sought to reverse the benefits it has wrought to modern society. True, scientific development is not without its own set of problems as the paradigm shifts; such is our evolution into a more mindful, forward thinking species. But the detractors and exposures of “pseudo” or “anti” science seek to revert our hard won knowledge back to ignorance; at best, their failure represents a simple misinterpretation of the scientific method. But at its worst, their misguided ideology can cost lives… a look at the heavens’ gate mass suicide  or the current anti-vax  movement shows that. I sometimes wonder if our grandparents look down on us, woefully shaking their heads as we work to undo the hard won knowledge they accumulated for our own general well being… [Read more...]

In Search of Latitude 0°:Between Hemispheres in Ecuador!

 

The "Zenith Scope" at Cayambe!

The "Zenith Scope" at Cayambe!

 

Many folks flock to what they presume is the Earth’s equator just north of Quito, Ecuador’s capital city at Mitad del Mundo. They are greeted by egg-balancers, mariachi bands, and all manner of methods to separate the credulous from their money, but alas, not science. There seems to be something about latitude 0 degrees that makes people just throw common sense to the wind. [Read more...]