Tag Archive: shape of the earth

May 12 2011

This isn’t a Bowling Ball

Planet Earth Bowling Ball

even the most mathematically sophisticated geoid can only approximate the real shape of the earth.                          – Witold Fraczek The earth is hardly a nice sphere like a bowling ball or even a nice simple spheroid. All of our models of the earth are …

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May 10 2011

Magellan’s Nightmare


geodesy: a branch of applied mathematics concerned with the determination of the size and shape of the earth and the exact positions of points on its surface and with the description of variations of its gravity field. – Merriam Webster’s Dictionary Only 18 men out of 237 survived Magellan’s circumnavigation of the globe. Magellan was …

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