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Re: <eyebeam><blast> Astronomical hindsight

Fred Hoyle the S/Fwriter (also known as Sir Frederick Hoyle, chief
astronomer to Her Majesty) once wrote a very short short story of which 
all I remember is the gist:
back when people had just discovered PI (3.14etc), they figured the sun 
was about 347.9 ah ... leagues (I guess) away from earth. This they 
calculated by most carefull triangulations based precisely on the PI
Several years (or centuries) later, somebody figured that such a
distance could simply NOT be possible, after all ... So, again aplying 
PI as the basis for further carefull measuring, that somebody was able 
to assertain the sun was in fact 34,790 ah... leagues, or cords or 
something, away from the earth.
This was deemed absolute rubbish by people several generations removed, 
who once again using PI discovered the sun was really 34,793,872 miles 
away from earth.
This has been going on for several centuries. PI has always been the
basis of the most precise calculations possible, and every time the new 
distance to the sun is finally set as definitive. The knowledge serves 
the purpose of the generations using it, until it is no longer 
useful.Then another measring takes place and ...
This, Fred Hoyle called "the Flat Earth theory", because the Earth  WAS 
ACTUALLY FLAT while people (some people, anyway) believed it was.
At least, that's the way I remember the story, and the memory has been a 
constant in my life ever since. I'm sure there will soon be a variation 
on my constants (the "eyebeam" forum is sure helping thast assurance.
Regards to Saskia and Pedro and Coco and Milton (oy, Milton, tudo bem?) 
and Organon
felipe Ehrenberg

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