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Thread: question on cosmology

  1. #1 help with cosmology/astronomy questions 
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    hey guys, me and a group my friends spend alot of time pondering about the universe and discussing how it was created, ie: talking about what created it and if this thing created the universe, what was here before that, you know basic philosophy of existence...

    we now decided we all want to take this further and learn all we can about this,
    i have done some research and narrowed it down too cosmology and astronomy.

    thats as far as our knowledge goes on this im afraid other than the easily talked about stuff i have already explained we do.

    my question basicly is...

    where do we start? what books do we read, what do we watch or search for,
    a list of books or any form of information to get us started would be amazing.
    no idea where to begin,

    thanks [/b]


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  3. #2 question on cosmology 
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    hey guys, me and a group my friends spend alot of time pondering about the universe and discussing how it was created, ie: talking about what created it and if this thing created the universe, what was here before that, you know basic philosophy of existence...

    we now decided we all want to take this further and learn all we can about this,
    i have done some research and narrowed it down too cosmology and astronomy.

    thats as far as our knowledge goes on this im afraid Sad other than the easily talked about stuff i have already explained we do.

    my question basicly is...

    where do we start? what books do we read, what do we watch or search for,
    a list of books or any form of information to get us started would be amazing.
    no idea where to begin,

    thanks Smile[/b]


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  4. #3 astronomy/cosmology books? 
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    hey guys, me and a group my friends spend alot of time pondering about the universe and discussing how it was created, ie: talking about what created it and if this thing created the universe, what was here before that, you know basic philosophy of existence...

    we now decided we all want to take this further and learn all we can about this,
    i have done some research and narrowed it down too cosmology and astronomy.

    thats as far as our knowledge goes on this im afraid Sad other than the easily talked about stuff i have already explained we do.

    my question basicly is...

    where do we start? what books do we read, what do we watch or search for,
    a list of books or any form of information to get us started would be amazing.
    no idea where to begin,

    thanks Smile[/b]
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  5. #4  
    Universal Mind John Galt's Avatar
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    I think you may have narrowed your questions down to the wrong field. Let me explain.

    Cosmologists (and astronomers and physicists), through a combination of observation and theory, think they have a reasonably good idea of what happened starting a small fraction of a second after the beginning of the universe. (There is a small, vocal group who think they have that all wrong - unfortunately this attracts nutters, many of whom regurgitate there nonsense all over forums like this.)

    If you want to know what the universe was like in those early moments then cosmology really is the place to go. Two popular books that would get you started are:

    The First Three Minutes - Steven Weinberg
    The Elegant Universe - Brian Greene

    At present there is little or no evidence to allow us to identify what preceded the universe, or what initiated it. That hasn't stopped some cosmologists from taking a stab at it. (Personally I feel their efforts are more science fiction than science.) You might want to read this book for a review of those ideas:

    Before the Beginning: Our Universe and Others - Martin Rees

    Martin Rees is Astronomer Royal, so his credentials are impeccable.

    If, however, the questions that interest you more are "talking about what created it and if this thing created the universe, what was here before that, you know basic philosophy of existence... ", then you are talking more about philosophy or religion. I'll let someone else field that area.
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  6. #5  
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    Yeh, I would definately suggest reading Brian Greene's Elegant Universe, perhaps Stephen Hawkins A Brief History of Time. Also, depending on your level you might find An Introduction to Galaxies and Cosmology very useful, it talks about Big Bang cosmology and the various problems with current theory. A very good introduction.

    May I also suggest taking Physics or Astronomy at A-Level or even degree level! Thats the best way to learn. And dip in to New Scientist and or PhysicsWorld whenever you have time!
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