A Day of Universal Celebration

The Good Doctor would have turned 93 today. For reading purposes, that gives us:

Book #93: Asimov’s Guide to the Bible, Volume One

Book #186: The Hugo Winners, Volume Three

Book #279: Isaac Asimov Presents the Great SF Stories 10, 1948

Book #372: Isaac Asimov Presents the Great SF Stories 17, 1955

Book #465: How Did We Find Out About Pluto?

Of the five, How Did We Find Out About Pluto? is easily the least worth re-reading. There isn’t anything particularly bad with it, but it was published nearly a quarter-century ago, and that’s a long, long, long time in astronomy. Our understanding of Pluto has not unnaturally—well, let’s say changed in the interval.

The three anthologies are solid enough, but nothing spectacular. That leaves the Guide to the Bible as the book of choice. It’s perhaps a bit much for one day, but definitely worthwhile. (And forty-four years is not nearly as long in Bible studies as a quarter century is in astronomy.)

The best thing is that the Universe is joining in the celebration this time around. The Earth reached perihelion this morning at 4:38 a.m. (UT). This isn’t an uncommon occurrence, but a nice bit of lily-gilding nonetheless.

2 thoughts on “A Day of Universal Celebration”

  1. “Our understanding of Pluto has (changed in 25 years)”.

    I’d say that nothing that we (and Dr. Asimov) positively knew about Pluto has changed since then.

    OK, our measurement of it’s mass is better and we now know that Pluto has a companion, but what else?

    Astronomers have now demoted Pluto from “planet” to “plutoid’ – but that’s a matter of classification, not of knowledge, per se.

    1. Fair enough, although it is that reclassification is the core of how our understanding has changed; that is, we see it now not as a rather oddball planet, but as an unusually close-at-hand exemplar of something just as interesting.

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