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Difference Between Geocentric and Heliocentric

Heliocentric - a model developed by Nicolaus Copernicus that shows the sun is the centre and planets and earth moves around it. Published in 1543

Geocentric - a model developed by Claudius Ptolemy, although the thory was around years before him. The geocentric model places the Earth at the center of the universe with the Sun, Moon, stars, and planets circling it.


What was argue in the preface of De Revolutionibus Orbium Coelestium - work of Nicolaus Copernicus?

Preface (by Andreas Osiander) claimed that Copernicus had only published a technical device for making better predictions of heavenly motions.
But Copernicus argued that his theory explained the‘real’ motions of Sun, Moon and planets.
Copernicus was concerned to show that heliocentrism had classical antecedents, was physically probable, and did not conflict with Scripture.
But Scripture was literally geocentric


Who was Galileo Galilei?

Professor of Mathematics at University of Padua 1592-1610.
Lived 1564-1642


When did Galileo get a telescope?

End of 1609


What did Galileo discover?

He looked at the moon and understood it was pitted like the earth. Galileo used his telescope to show that Venus went through a complete set of phases, just like the Moon. This observation was among the most important in human history, for it provided the first conclusive observational proof that was consistent with the Copernican system but not the Ptolemaic system. Additionally he resolved the milky way into its constituent stars


Why was Galileo put on trial?

Galileo's challenge of the Church's authority through his assault on the Aristotelian conception of the Universe eventually got him into deep trouble with the Inquisition. Late in his life he was forced to recant publicly his Copernican views and spent his last years essentially under house arrest. His story certainly constitutes one of the sadder examples of the conflict between the scientific method and "science" based on unquestioned authority. Unfortunately, there still are many forces in modern society that would shackle the scientific method of open enquiry in idealogical chains of one kind or another.
In 1615 Galileo remarked on relationship between Copernicanism and Bible (letter to Grand Duchess)
Told not to teach or defend Copernicanism by Holy Office in 1616 (censorship).
In 1632 he claimed to have proved Copernicanism in his Dialogue concerning two World Systems
After this he was put on trial, found guilty of heresy and placed under house arrest until death in 1642.
Affair came to stand for intransigence of Catholic Church, and more generally, for backwardness of religion in the face of scientific reason.


What is significant about 1632?

In 1632 Galileo angered the Pope when he published a book in which he openly stated that the Earth was moving around the Sun. He was put on trial by the Inquisition in Rome, where he was found suspect of heresy, and forced to say that all of his findings were wrong. He was first imprisoned, and later confined to his house near Florence. 21 February 1632 printing of the Dialogue complete


Galileo on mathematising nature...

Galileo articulated the law of free fall (odd number rule) in his Discourses on Two New Sciences of 1638.
All objects fall in parabolic trajectories and fall at same speed, ceteris paribus; contradiction of Aristotelian notion of ‘natural’ and ‘violent’ motion.
Argued that natural philosophers should be more concerned about finding mathematical regularities in nature than with discovering physical causes of things –
This a major break with Aristotelian tradition.


Who was Rene Descartes?

Lived 1596 - 1650. French mathematician, scientist, and philosopher. Because he was one of the first to abandon scholastic Aristotelianism, because he formulated the first modern version of mind-body dualism, from which stems the mind-body problem, and because he promoted the development of a new science grounded in observation and experiment, he has been called the father of modern philosophy. Trained in a Jesuit College and learned scholastic arguments, but disillusioned with Aristotelian system by 1618.


What is mind-body dualism and who discovered it?

Descartes. in philosophy, any theory that mind and body are distinct kinds of substances or natures. This position implies that mind and body not only differ in meaning but refer to different kinds of entities. Thus, a dualist would oppose any theory that identifies mind with the brain, conceived as a physical mechanism.



Cartesianism is the name given to the philosophical doctrine (or school) of René Descartes. Descartes is often regarded as the first thinker to emphasize the use of reason to develop the natural sciences. For him the philosophy was a thinking system that embodied all knowledge, and expressed it in this way:


Who was Francis Bacon?

Francis Bacon was born on 22 January 1561 in London. He was the son of Sir Nicholas Bacon, keeper of the great seal for Elizabeth I. Bacon studied at Cambridge University and at Gray's Inn and became a member of parliament in 1584. However, he was unpopular with Elizabeth, and it was only on the accession of James I in 1603 that Bacon's career began to prosper. Knighted that year, he was appointed to a succession of posts culminating, like his father, with keeper of the great seal.


What did Bacon do?

Bacon's real interests lay in science. Much of the science of the period was based on the work of the ancient Greek philosopher Aristotle. While many Aristotelian ideas, such as the position of the earth at the centre of the universe, had been overturned, his methodology was still being used. This held that scientific truth could be reached by way of authoritative argument: if sufficiently clever men discussed a subject long enough, the truth would eventually be discovered. Bacon challenged this, arguing that truth required evidence from the real world. He published his ideas, initially in 'Novum Organum' (1620), an account of the correct method of acquiring natural knowledge.

empiricist - belief that knowledge comes from sensory experience


Bacon believed in...

Studying nature yourself. Do not trust words. Believed Aristotle was a waste of time. Get rid of books and libraries and go and DO it yourself


Describe Baconianism

1. Nature should be analysed (broken down) and interrogated by means of experiments.
2. Knowledge came from actively investigating (and not merely contemplating) Nature.
3. Science was a communal activity that should be directed at the improvement of the human condition;
4. Knowledge and utility were bound up with each other. Knowledge is Power


The Royal Society - describe

The Royal Society started from groups of physicians and natural philosophers, meeting at variety of locations, including Gresham College in London. They were influenced by the "new science", as promoted by Francis Bacon in his New Atlantis, from approximately 1645 onwards.[3] A group known as The Philosophical Society of Oxford was run under a set of rules still retained by the Bodleian Library.[4] After the English Restoration, there were regular meetings at Gresham College.[5] It is widely held that these groups were the inspiration for the foundation of the Royal Society.[4]

Both institutions (societies and journals) are constitutive of modern science
It promoted‘experimental philosophy’which relied on data produced by instruments and machines.
Most influential exponent was Robert Boyle, who pioneered experiments in air-pump.


Who was Isaac Newton?

Isaac Newton was born on 4 January 1643 in Woolsthorpe, Lincolnshire. His father was a prosperous farmer, who died three months before Newton was born. His mother remarried and Newton was left in the care of his grandparents. In 1661, he went to Cambridge University where he became interested in mathematics, optics, physics and astronomy. In October 1665, a plague epidemic forced the university to close and Newton returned to Woolsthorpe. The two years he spent there were an extremely fruitful time during which he began to think about gravity. He also devoted time to optics and mathematics, working out his ideas about 'fluxions' (calculus).


What was Newton famous for?

Invented calculus in annus mirabilis and at same time showed that white light was composed of primary coloured rays, each with its own index of refraction.
Invented refracting telescope as a result.
Disputes following publication of his theory of light made him withdraw from natural philosophy to concentrate on theology/alchemy.
His chief interest was in theology, of which he wrote about 5 million words (see Newton Project).


Newtons greatest work?

In 1687, with the support of his friend the astronomer Edmond Halley, Newton published his single greatest work, the 'Philosophiae Naturalis Principia Mathematica' ('Mathematical Principles of Natural Philosophy'). This showed how a universal force, gravity, applied to all objects in all parts of the universe.


Newtons law of gravitation

Asked by Edmond Halley in 1684 if he could prove that an elliptical orbit implied a 1/r2 force law.
Resulting work, Principia Mathematica (1687) established concepts of mass and force, along with 3 laws of motion.
Key equation F = G MM’/r2 : every body in universe, no matter small, attracts every other due to Universal Gravitation.
Principia, and his later work, Opticks (1704), make Newton exceptionally famous and revered as first scientific genius.
However, critics condemned his notion of Universal Gravitation as he had not provided a ‘cause’ for its action.



Mechanism is the belief that natural wholes (principally living things) are like complicated machines or artifacts, composed of parts lacking any intrinsic relationship to each other. Thus, the source of an apparent thing's activities is not the whole itself, but its parts or an external influence on the parts.[citation needed]

The doctrine of mechanism in philosophy comes in two different flavors. They are both doctrines of metaphysics, but they are different in scope and ambitions: the first is a global doctrine about nature; the second is a local doctrine about humans and their minds, which is hotly contested. For clarity, we might distinguish these two doctrines as universal mechanism and anthropic mechanism.


Philosophical transactions

Philosophical Transactions later Philosophical Transactions of the Royal Society (Phil. Trans.) is a scientific journal published by the Royal Society. It was established in 1665,[1] making it the first journal in the world exclusively devoted to science. It is also the world's longest-running scientific journal. The slightly earlier Journal des sçavans published some science but also contained subject matter from other fields of learning, and its main content type was book reviews.[2][3][4] The use of the word "Philosophical" in the title refers to "natural philosophy", which was the equivalent of what would now be generically called "science".


who argued there was no scientific revolution

He sides with the idea that there is no “essence,” no undeniable point of demarcation that pinpoints the Scientific Revolution, but rather that it exists as a sort of organic whole—a series of events and of scientists who contributed to our modern conception. In other words, the “past is not transformed into the ‘modern world’ at any single moment: we should never be surprised to find that seventeenth-century scientific practitioners often had about them as much of the ancient as the modern; their notions had to be successively transformed and redefined by generations of thinkers to become ‘ours’”


Quote Shapin on historians view of scientific revolution

'Such historians now respect even the notion that there was any single coherent cultural entity called 'science' in the seventeenth century to undergo revolutionary change. There was, rather, a diverse array of cultural practices aimed at understanding, explaining, and controlling the natural world, each with different characteristics and each experiencing different modes of change'


What does Shapin argue in defence of his belief there was no scientific revolution

Shapin believes that there were many changes experienced at this time which changed the view of science; 'religious, political and economic patterns'. He states that science was always around it just took these other changes to embrace that


Quote shapin on the past to modern

The past is not transformed into the 'modern world' at any single moment: we should never be surprised to find that seventeenth century scientific practitioners often had about them as much of the ancient than the modern; their notions had to be successfully transformed and redefined by generations of thinkers to become 'ours'.


Explain shapins view how seventeenth century scientists work was viewed

Shapin believes that the seventeenth century scientists actually had 'as much of the ancient about them as the modern' in that they still had many ancient views and approaches, it was only that these views were now listened to due to peoples opinions changing with regards to religion, politics and the economy. They now had there eyes opened to new possibilities.