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Learning astromomy

  1. Jan 28, 2004 #1
    say a person wished to learn about astronomy, but the only resource they have is the internet and a public library. They have nothing for money, or anything like that. So, how should this person go about their learning? recomendations? ideas? ect...
  2. jcsd
  3. Jan 28, 2004 #2


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    There are loooooooads of great books you can get from the public library.

    You should also find a local astronomy club in your area. They often have presentations and star parties (nerds with telescopes hanging out for an evening in a parking lot somewhere), which are remarkably educational.

    There are also some rather decent educational materials on the internet. Here are some of the notes I provide for the astro classes I teach. Hope they help!

    http://users.vnet.net/warrenc/astro/introduction.pdf [Broken]

    http://users.vnet.net/warrenc/astro/telescopes.pdf [Broken]

    http://users.vnet.net/warrenc/astro/mythology.pdf [Broken]

    http://users.vnet.net/warrenc/astro/stars.pdf [Broken]

    - Warren
    Last edited by a moderator: May 1, 2017
  4. Jan 28, 2004 #3
    well i doubt those parties happen where i live... though perhaps i'll start something if i get interested enough. and i'd bet that'd be the most helpful.. i was rather worried though if books would be enough... as good a reader as i am, and although i can absorb knowledge quickly, i guess i just haven't the discipline to learn someting entirely from a book. But yeah, der, i forgot bout you warren.... shouldda just asked you. i wish we had a class at school, unfortunately we do not, but if i can find a teacher to back us, we'll soon have a club. any other ideas would be greatly appreciated
  5. Jan 29, 2004 #4

    Yes, I can totally understand you because I'm in the same situation as yours. I may even worse.

    I really interested in Astronomy and Cosmology but there is no supports and resources at my country. There is no good library at all too. More over, even in those poor libraries, no book for the subject of my interest. On the other hand, there is only one or two publishers who publish this kind of books - transalted versions. Totally, there will not more than 10 books about this subject. Yes, not more than 10. The worse thing is they all are out-dated.

    So, now I can only depend on Internet. The ISP of our country has only 2 years of age.

    For the academic study about this subject, we have only one colledge which was established last year. There is no good teacher and the resources are not enough.

    So, I have to read about Astronomy or Cosmology from old English books which are collected by my dad last 25 years ago. Now you can imagine my situation.

    So, I just have to look at the sky to study about Astronomy and Cosmology. It is my study book.

    That's why I've decided to go to USA to study Astronomy and Cosmology.
    Last edited: Jan 29, 2004
  6. Jan 29, 2004 #5
    Thanks for your sharing. I would like to get more if possible.
  7. Jan 29, 2004 #6
    Yeah Warren, I just want to say thanks also. I'm taking a general Astronomy class in college and those notes will be very helpful before exams and what-not. ~Dave
  8. Jan 29, 2004 #7


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    Hi Gale
    Read as much as you can about it. Watch for documentaries (NOVA, etc.). Ask tons of questions here at PF.

    Most importantly, just get yourself outside at night & enjoy. Don't buy a telescope to start off. Start by learning the constellations (in the sky, not just on paper). You can get an updated sky map cheaply in the monthly magazines like Sky&Telescope or Astronomy (or even downloaded free from the internet). The first optical step should be a good pair of binoculars (not too expensive). That alone should cover you for a year or two of fun.

    After that foothold, look for a local astronomy club (I can't recommend one for NH, but this looks promising...http://www.nhastro.com/index.html [Broken])

    Check out local planetariums & observatories (sometimes they allow the public access to their telescopes).
    Last edited by a moderator: May 1, 2017
  9. Jan 29, 2004 #8


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    www.skymaps.com has a good monthly star map with lots of observing hints, for free.

    - Warren
  10. Jan 30, 2004 #9
  11. Jan 31, 2004 #10
    well thanks all... thats all wicked helpful... and now that i've been fired from one of my jobs [b(] ... well at least i'll have a little more time for a hobby or two...
  12. Jan 31, 2004 #11


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    You might also want to check out Windows to the Universe and Space.Com , a site at which you can sign up for a daily newsletter to arrive in your e-mail every day. I find that getting a few quick, easy-to-read stories every day really helps keep a "cosmologically conscious" frame of mind.
  13. Jan 31, 2004 #12
    u call me a nerd boi?! nah j/k.

    where do you live? there should be an "astronomy" magazine at your local newsagent, its american (whereas i'm aussie) so it doesn't do me anygood (i don't know about you).

    it provides a few interesting coloumns about different universe aspects and a detailed (and now extensive) sky plan for the current month.
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