Of Pocket Cameras

joveEven overexposed and blurred by the movement of about one second of arc, it’s fun to share a picture of Jupiter and its moons. Very improvised setup, just an old Canon pocket camera put up to the eyepiece (for the record, a 25mm Plössl from the Celestron Omni series, with a 2× Barlow and a Baader neodymium filter).

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From an image poorer than even this, Galileo (looking through his organ pipe fitted with reading glasses) deduced that Earth orbits the Sun just as Io, Europa, Ganymede and Callisto orbit Jupiter. The analogical imagination.1

The weather here has been terrible. February was warm, but in March temperatures plummeted. April was a bit better, but the first half of May has been chilly and rainy. The garden is complaining, and some leaves are looking wan and wilted. The infant sunflowers miss their namesake. The peonies are extremely promising but I don’t want them to end up a disappointment. The rose is doing great so far–frankly, everything is on schedule, even after that dismal March with its blizzard. Without sun, soon, that could change.

It’s been raining for several hours. I write this in front of a cozy fire–which I shouldn’t need!

Here’s to sunny days and starry nights, soon!

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1 See David Tracy’s book of that name. Also see Thomas Aquinas, Summa, pars prima, quest. 6 art. 84. I’m told that an engineering institute on the East Coast offered a course titled something like “Atoms and Stars: a Joint Reality,” an insufferable name but essentially analogous.

About Jon

Organist, sacred musician, teacher, writer, working in New York City and parts north. Amateur genealogist, astronomer, etc.
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