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A Chinese ancient book problem

  1. Nov 17, 2011 #1
    Recently, I have read a old book with an article about two kids arguing the problem of Sun.

    One day, Confucius heard two kids arguing on the road.
    One said "in the morning, the sun rises, it is closer to the ground and look as big as a roof of the carriage. In the afternoon , the sun is far from the ground and look like a dish. It is because an object at faraway place look smaller than the close."
    Another said " It should be reversed. In the morning, it is cooler ,but at noon, we seem to be living in the hot water. Since we are nearing a heat source, we feel hotter."

    Actually, who is right and why?
  2. jcsd
  3. Nov 17, 2011 #2
    I think both are wrong...
  4. Nov 17, 2011 #3


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    The image of the sun near the horizon is part illusion and part due to atmospheric refraction. While the image is not really larger, it is distorted making the sun appear to be an oblate spheroid [oval] at the horizon. The illusory part can be blamed on the brain, which fools itself into believing the sun is closer when near the ground. I believe this is at least partly related to our instinctive fear of heights. Which appears more distant, the tenth rung of a ladder as it leans against your house, or the tenth rung of the same ladder lying flat on the ground? The other boy is also wrong for more obvious reasons [the sun has already been shining for half the day].
  5. Nov 17, 2011 #4


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    Confusious say " Man who sees sunrise, will live his life, and see sunset."
  6. Nov 18, 2011 #5
  7. Nov 21, 2011 #6
    thx a lot
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