A Flat Earth - Thoughts?

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Casual Shinji:
I doubt a lot of these people actually believe that shit -- they just WANT to rebel against the system so badly and not be part of the establishment. They want to feel special, thinking they're onto some big secret. I can assure if they did by some miracle manage to convince the world that the Earth actually is flat, they'd feel the need to try and debunk that and claim it's really a sphere just for the sake of rebeling against the establishment.

So a blend of conspiracy nut and hipster? *shudder*

Can we consider the world is flat if we consider non-Euclidean geometry as to be pointless in a hypothetical universe model where all points are one due to a hypothetical reality tear event that we might presuppose is inevitable and in a deterministic model of the universe if one were simply to exist outside it and yet could observe its dimensions would see but nothingness as a result given it transcends certainty and a universe where all possible potential is already spent and has achieved infinite mass and exists outside of spatiotemporal dimensions?

I mean a reality tear effect is a hypothetical end of universe event in science ... and if you were to somehow observe our universe outside itself spacve and time are meaningless and would be perceived as either a solid blob of everything and all potential across all hypothetical change over time, or you would see nothing as matter disintegrates at a fundamental level due to catastrophic acceleration and infinite mass.

Therefore, the world is flat, surely?

If we assume that hard determinism is a thing then to observe another universe somehow outside itself is to assume a solid mass of all hypothetical potential of all hypothetical things, and thus someone outside our universe would hypothetically think our universe and everything in it is flat...

Kyle Gaddo:
Everyone knows the Earth isn't flat or round, it's concave and on the back of a giant tortoise.

Stephen King reference!

I'm glad I never had met a flat earther, otherwise I would have to punch him or her in the face for such stupidity. Here's an idea: how about we gather all the flat-earthers and send them in a rocket straight to the Sun. and then they'll get to see if the Earth is flat or not from there.

CoCage:

Kyle Gaddo:
Everyone knows the Earth isn't flat or round, it's concave and on the back of a giant tortoise.

Stephen King reference!

Sir Terry Pratchett, you uncultured swine!

If I were a sophisticated posh British monkey, I'd be throwing crumpets and crickets bats at you right now. Alas, I am not, so it'll only be faeces.

Xsjadoblayde:
There are a couple of questions that I would ask them, one being what exactly was the first thing that made them seriously consider the theory for realsies...the initiator of change perhaps. And second; are they a form of fundamentalist Christian? Because it seems like an easy and efficient way of justification for keeping hold of that belief without the pesky worries of scientific research prodding those doubt glands all the time.

Yes, a common theme among them is that the massive "round earth" lie is hiding God; the earth is flat and under a dome deemed "The Firmament" which contains the sun and the moon which both rotate a couple thousand miles above our stationary disc. As an agnostic, I'm perfectly fine with people believing whatever they want about their version or idea of "God," but Flat Earthers just... just... the sheer "better than thou" smugness with which they proudly display their incomprehensible ignorance demands addressing. I am by no means prone to violence, but hearing some of them speak stirs an instinct to strangle inside of me.

Redlin5:

The idea that 'everyone is in on a grand lie' can be intoxicating. Why the fact the Earth is actually flat turned into a popular conspiracy theory will always baffle me.

On the short list of statements that merit a direct, honest and uncensored "are you FUCKING kidding me?", a snide "the earth is flat" is in the top 3 to be sure. Of all things upon which a truly probable conspiracy might possibly be built, a flat earth?!? I mean, if you're going to be a nut case, ya gotta get in line behind the "tooth fillings are transmitting our thoughts to an alien mothership" and "the fluoride in tap water is sterilizing our grandmothers" people; dropping in through the skylight doesn't get you anywhere.

Casual Shinji:
I doubt a lot of these people actually believe that shit -- they just WANT to rebel against the system so badly and not be part of the establishment. They want to feel special, thinking they're onto some big secret. I can assure if they did by some miracle manage to convince the world that the Earth actually is flat, they'd feel the need to try and debunk that and claim it's really a sphere just for the sake of rebeling against the establishment.

I've thought about this, the human desire to be different, exceptional, "in" on something grander than ourselves, to know something others don't, to be the informer, but a flat earth is such a ridiculous idea, it's disturbing to think that adults, actual grown, human beings that can drive cars and buy guns, would willingly prescribe to it... and talk about it openly!! Like, to other people!! That is some weapons-grade stupidity; they really should keep it to themselves until they have irrefutable proof. And by "irrefutable", I mean a selfie taken and signed by the Risen Christ with our pizza planet in the background notarized by God himself delivered by a burning bushing from the inside of the belly of a whale that's floating on an ark containing two of every animal at the bottom of a lions' den.

EvilRoy:

Beyond that, I've never had a satisfactory response to the pendulum problem, or an explanation as to why they can't just launch a camera in a weather balloon and demonstrate it (something I've done for a little less than $200).

Many claim they actually have launched such devices and have had their suspicious confirmed. Most, however, for all they claim to know, have no concept of just how big the earth is and that curvature may not be clearly evident at heights attainable by your average Joe NutJob. One of my favorite arguments they have is that if satellites are real and there are hundreds of them orbiting the earth, why don't we see them in pictures of the earth? Well, the largest, man-made body orbiting our planet is the International Space Station, and its largest dimension is roughly 350 feet; the earth is 8,000 miles in diameter. I challenge anyone to see, let alone identify, any specific 350 foot-long body in a span of 42 MILLION feet from over a MILLION feet away. IDIOTS!! It wouldn't be so frustrating if their nonsense wasn't so easily debunked with common fucking sense!

Dirty Hipsters:
Can you ask your friend what is on the underside of the earth if it's flat?

It's something I've always been fascinated by with regards to the flat earth movement, but have never gotten a straight answer.

Good luck getting ANY straight answers from that lot; they're too busy shooting us condescending, knowing looks and lamenting our lack of awareness to give us answers we're too brainwashed to understand.

Kyrian007:
I can sympathize. I had always thought my brother was a fairly rational person. Turns out he believes in all the "chemtrails" nonsense. I thought he was joking too, but he's even poisoned his kids with that conspiracy crap. What make is hardest for me to believe... he BUILDS JETS for a living. He works for a company that sends aircraft parts to manufacturers across the world and builds entire airplane fuselages to send to Boeing.

That's stupidity on a level I really didn't think possible. I asked him, "so, you've installed the massive chemical tanks and hardpoint mounts for those massive chemical sprayers... right? You've seen where the sprayers go and the tanks that feed them chemicals to spray... right?" He did have to admit he had never seen such things. I asked him "You've never before seen condensation form around car exhaust on a particularly cold day... right? That's something that only happens when "whomever" is spraying chemicals... right?"

It doesn't matter. People would much rather believe they have some kind of "secret knowledge" than simply not look like a complete idiot.

That's incredible, he believes in and propagates a conspiracy surrounding something he's actively involved with, and in the same breath, admits he has no evidence... We're all doomed, either he and other conspiracy theorists are right and the world's governments are plotting against all 7 billion of us, or the more likely, we'll continue breeding more and more people that will believe anything, even nonsense they make up on their own without any evidence, and we sensible few will become so as the scales of reason dip out of our favor, and the reasonable become the conspiracy theorists...

Xprimentyl:

CaitSeith:
No, sorry. I don't deal with flat-earthers because I deal with enough absurdly delusional crap in the alt-right discussions to willingly add more real world absurdity to my life.

C?mon, you?ve never had a cut or burn that hurts so much, you find yourself constantly touching it just to marvel at how much it hurts? That?s kinda my take with flat earthers. My YouTube algorithm keeps suggesting their proof (and subsequent debunk) videos and I keep watching in dumfounded amazement at how much ?dumb? found them.

After almost suffering the death by a thousand paper cuts, I prefer to not self-inflict me any more injuries.

Silentpony:
I remember meeting a guy at a bar once, he was wasted, and made Fox Mulder look like a glass of water. His big thing was that its not possible to make the technological advancements we've made in the last 10,000 in only 10,000. He's convinced the real year is closer to 1,000,000AD and that the 'Government' had time machines that stopped time for the entire world while they worked on technology.
So while the calendar may be 2018 because that's just what we've accepted, humans have had advanced tech for millions of years and the 'Government' was keeping its citizens in the dark about just how advanced we really are.

Also something about underwater cities for the super rich.

To this day one of the best bar talks I've had with a complete stranger.

I'd say that would be a great idea for a cheesy sci-fi novel: The End of Sci-fi Tropes. Think in Issac Asimov's The End of Eternity, but full of sci-fi tropes.

CaitSeith:
Issac Assimov

C'mon now. Unnecessary.

The Earth is flat so it's holding you closer to its heart core. Why would anybody complain?

McElroy:
C'mon now. Unnecessary.

Oops! Sorry, finger-slip.

CaitSeith:

Silentpony:
I remember meeting a guy at a bar once, he was wasted, and made Fox Mulder look like a glass of water. His big thing was that its not possible to make the technological advancements we've made in the last 10,000 in only 10,000. He's convinced the real year is closer to 1,000,000AD and that the 'Government' had time machines that stopped time for the entire world while they worked on technology.
So while the calendar may be 2018 because that's just what we've accepted, humans have had advanced tech for millions of years and the 'Government' was keeping its citizens in the dark about just how advanced we really are.

Also something about underwater cities for the super rich.

To this day one of the best bar talks I've had with a complete stranger.

I'd say that would be a great idea for a cheesy sci-fi novel: The End of Sci-fi Tropes. Think in Issac Asimov's The End of Eternity, but full of sci-fi tropes.

Its actually a really unique perspective, that we know as human history, WW2, the Crusades, Colonization of the new world, fall of the Roman Empire, Peloponesian war, etc...all of it happened, but millions of years ago and the controlling powers of the Earth have kept most of humanity in the dark about the real future and year.
Like a mix of the Matrix and Truman Show

Silentpony:

CaitSeith:

Silentpony:
I remember meeting a guy at a bar once, he was wasted, and made Fox Mulder look like a glass of water. His big thing was that its not possible to make the technological advancements we've made in the last 10,000 in only 10,000. He's convinced the real year is closer to 1,000,000AD and that the 'Government' had time machines that stopped time for the entire world while they worked on technology.
So while the calendar may be 2018 because that's just what we've accepted, humans have had advanced tech for millions of years and the 'Government' was keeping its citizens in the dark about just how advanced we really are.

Also something about underwater cities for the super rich.

To this day one of the best bar talks I've had with a complete stranger.

I'd say that would be a great idea for a cheesy sci-fi novel: The End of Sci-fi Tropes. Think in Issac Asimov's The End of Eternity, but full of sci-fi tropes.

Its actually a really unique perspective, that we know as human history, WW2, the Crusades, Colonization of the new world, fall of the Roman Empire, Peloponesian war, etc...all of it happened, but millions of years ago and the controlling powers of the Earth have kept most of humanity in the dark about the real future and year.
Like a mix of the Matrix and Truman Show

It stills reminds me of The End of Eternity (specially the part of the secret time-traveling institution meddling with human civilization for thousands of centuries).

CaitSeith:

It stills reminds me of The End of Eternity (specially the part of the secret time-traveling institution meddling with human civilization for thousands of centuries).

That actually reminds me of Battlefield Earth. But space faring and definitely not secret

Edit: no wait. I forgot about the bank

Flat Earthers are idiots! Earth is clearly a 4 day time cube!

Chimpzy:

CoCage:

Kyle Gaddo:
Everyone knows the Earth isn't flat or round, it's concave and on the back of a giant tortoise.

Stephen King reference!

Sir Terry Pratchett, you uncultured swine!

If I were a sophisticated posh British monkey, I'd be throwing crumpets and crickets bats at you right now. Alas, I am not, so it'll only be faeces.

If it had TRULY been such a reference, there would have been mention of the 4 elephants you uncultured ape-impostor! Now get thee back to your librarian's internship!

bluegate:
Wow, sounds like your friend became one of those conspiracy nut jobs, my condolences.

I have no first-hand experience with "flat earthers" as I live in a country where the department of education tries to do a good job and make citizens smarter.

It's a pity that with all the information at peoples' fingertips through the internet, there are still dumb people that don't know how to handle it and start drawing obscenely idiotic conclusions.

Flat Earthers propagate over the internet, however. I mean, the speed by which propaganda works is partly based on the speed of circulation of misinformation. It's easier to propagate misinformation than it is empirically tested ideas.

That being said, Flat Earth seems uniquely dumb. There's places even on land like in Australia where everything is so 'flat' you can actually see the curvature of the Earth with the naked eye with passing traffic like trains and a half decent sand dune. In the middle of the Indian Ocean as well on a ship and observing other large vessels...

Also with sunrises and sunsets at sea level or observational points of reference moving away or towards you. Like seeing cliffs or perhaps mountains before beaches depending on where you're going.

I mean it's subtle AF but it's nakedly observable. There is the argument that references Homer made in the Illiad and the Odyssey refer to this fact, so I find it hard to believe any Greek mariner even so far back as Homer could believe Earth was flat. Even if they lacked the scientific method and the educational basis to formulate and articulate the argument properly, it's hard to believe they didn't make the connection to a curvature of the Earth simply by watching ships leave ports or by themselves being on said ships and watching the beaches and ports disappear from sight before cliffs did.

If you're on the deck of a trireme ... let's say a good 10m above sea level looking at something 2-5m above sea level, you can see it roughly 5.8km away ... but if you're 20 metres above sea level you can see 14.3km away something at 2-5m above sea level. I also remember being trained something similar during my fieldcraft and orienteering exercises in the Australian Army but everything prior the TBI is kind of a haze.

So people must have worked out the maths on that at some point the Earth was round in some way just by Greeks being on boats.

Have they never been on a plane? Cannot we all pitch in towards a nice overseas holiday for these poor confused souls?

Majestic Manatee:
Have they never been on a plane? Cannot we all pitch in towards a nice overseas holiday for these poor confused souls?

Yeah, but those plane windows aren't real windows mate, they are special 3-dimensional OLED screens that run a video to fool the people inside the plane. You'd be surprised how much money and effort is going into keeping the people dumb and thinking that the earth is round, the lie must be uphold!

bluegate:
Yeah, but those plane windows aren't real windows mate, they are special 3-dimensional OLED screens that run a video to fool the people inside the plane. You'd be surprised how much money and effort is going into keeping the people dumb and thinking that the earth is round, the lie must be uphold!

Then an opening of the plane doors and a surprise skydiving holiday should extinguish those preconceptions. I refuse to give up on these poor misled souls yet!

Addendum_Forthcoming:
I mean it's subtle AF but it's nakedly observable. There is the argument that references Homer made in the Illiad and the Odyssey refer to this fact, so I find it hard to believe any Greek mariner even so far back as Homer could believe Earth was flat. Even if they lacked the scientific method and the educational basis to formulate and articulate the argument properly, it's hard to believe they didn't make the connection to a curvature of the Earth simply by watching ships leave ports or by themselves being on said ships and watching the beaches and ports disappear from sight before cliffs did.

If you're on the deck of a trireme ... let's say a good 10m above sea level looking at something 2-5m above sea level, you can see it roughly 5.8km away ... but if you're 20 metres above sea level you can see 14.3km away something at 2-5m above sea level. I also remember being trained something similar during my fieldcraft and orienteering exercises in the Australian Army but everything prior the TBI is kind of a haze.

So people must have worked out the maths on that at some point the Earth was round in some way just by Greeks being on boats.

Sorta. A while back I tried this myself, and at least with my vision, smaller vessels disappear in the horizon before they disappear under the horizon.

However, if you were on a ship going towards a mountain, really big lighthouse, or the Colossus of Rhodes, you'd see the top before the bottom. There's a WW2 era(ish) training film made by the Americans about how to use lighthouses, you have to look up the power of the lighthouse in a big book and it's height above sea level and compare it to your height above sea level and work out how far away you can see it.

So Columbus sailing to the Americas proved the Earth was round...on the very first day of the voyage.

Majestic Manatee:

bluegate:
Yeah, but those plane windows aren't real windows mate, they are special 3-dimensional OLED screens that run a video to fool the people inside the plane. You'd be surprised how much money and effort is going into keeping the people dumb and thinking that the earth is round, the lie must be uphold!

Then an opening of the plane doors and a surprise skydiving holiday should extinguish those preconceptions. I refuse to give up on these poor misled souls yet!

You know how sky divers always wear goggles to protect themselves from the wind and small animals flying in them? That's not their only purpose.

Current VR tech is actually based on leaked government documents in the 60's. Not only have our minds been kept dumb by the government, they have been holding back technology as well. Advancements are usually due to government leaks getting out.

Hawki:

Canadamus Prime:

This statement by itself completely invalidates the whole flat Earth movement. It is fundamentally impossible for that for that many people to perpetuate that huge a lie. Also there lies the question of what is gained from doing so.
Anyway no, I have not had any personal experience with such moro- I mean flat Earthers.

Listen up you damn dirty Autobot - just because Cybertron is round, it doesn't mean Earth is.

You can't keep the truth from mankind forever!

Hey, we Autobots have seen your planet from space. We know what shape it is. It's a cube.

Your friend believes in Earth? PFFFFT, poseur, everyone knows we live in a simultion! How else do you explain the dead pixels in the "sky" and the dude who respawned in 3 days?

Anyway, kidding aside, I'm sorry to hear you know someone who went full flat-earther. It's crazy that we have so much information, videos showing the curvature of the planet, etc, and people still actually believe in a flat earth to such a degree.

On my end, it's comforting that the conspiracy theorist nutjob I used to know didn't go that far.

This was a man who was full 9/11 truther ("It was a coverup to hide wall street fraud, and get us into endless war!"), who is full on Illuminati-control-everything, that the illuminati use hollywood to make us subliminally believe in the end of the world so we submit to them, and thinks the pope controls ALL the world governments, that the catholic church literally worships lucifer, that vaccines are secretly a eugenics program designed by bill gates to kill black people, and unquestioningly shared articles from a site that said AIDS medicine CAUSES AIDS, etc.

And even he was like "Yeah flat earthers are freakin' stupid, we have way too much video proof that it's round."

Then again, he's also terribad with allegory and metaphor. He legit didn't get the central twist of the Lego Movie and was like "waaaaaaaat reaaaaally?" when I explained it to him. XD

bluegate:

I have no first-hand experience with "flat earthers" as I live in a country where the department of education tries to do a good job and make citizens smarter.

This kind of condescension is exactly the reason these Flat Earthers are what they are, don't be like them. Education, intelligence, whatever, it doesn't matter. The entire planet could have the best education the human race could ever possibly have and we'd still have just as many of these Flat Earthers around as we do now, possibly more. These people want to believe something particularly if in their minds it gives them license to be condescending toward everybody else. People who WANT to believe something will believe that thing contrary to any and all evidence and common sense.

Flat Earthers, those who genuinely believe it and aren't just screwing with people for the lulz anyway, are deluding themselves for any number of reasons, none of which because they actually want know and present the truth. It's the same with all conspiracy theorists and their theories, always has been and always will be. If there wasn't the Flat Earth conspiracy these people would just latch onto something else. If there wasn't a single conspiracy theory in existence they'd make one up on the spot, believe it as genuinely as if they had just jumped in a lake and declared water is wet, and then proceed to preach it to anybody who would listen. Flat Earthers are not stupid, they're delusional, no amount of education will make somebody who is delusional think anything contrary to their delusion is true.

aegix drakan:

Then again, he's also terribad with allegory and metaphor. He legit didn't get the central twist of the Lego Movie and was like "waaaaaaaat reaaaaally?" when I explained it to him. XD

As someone who finds the Lego Movie overrated, but also who doesn't want to be on the same level as a Flat Earther...

"So, the central twist is that almost everything that's happening in the film is the kid playing through a made up narrative. The Lego pieces appear to have some intelligence (e.g. when Emett enters the real world), but for the most part, the kid's controlling their actions. By extension, the narrative he creates is emblematic of his issues in the real world, with Lord Business being his father, and his plan with the Kraggle representing his father's insistence on keeping everything neat and tidy, and not allowing embracement of more chaotic creativity. Likewise, the moral of the story is that both sides are ultimately needed in life - there's those that follow the rules, and those who go down their own path, and both approach has its pros and cons, and to achieve the best possible outcomes in life, you need to accomodate both types of people and have mutual respect."

So...did I get it? I'm hoping the answer is yes, because if it isn't, I may not have the mental clout to finally expose the Lizard People.

The conspiracy theories that bug the crap out of me are the ones we have the capacity to test and debunk. It might be hard to do any sort of experiment to verify that vaccines doin't cause autism (though that one bugs me because it's a public safety issue), but we can generate a model base don simple observations and predictions without extraordinary means.

People who have the capacity to test their claims and do not are likely beyond help.

I'm also still not sure why people would keep this secret going. I'm not sure who it benefits to keep people believing in a globe if it's false.

Catfood220:
I have a 100% fool proof way of proving that the world is not flat. And that is, if the world was flat, we would know because there would be cats sat along the edge of the world, knocking things off into the void below.

Also, that. Kitties would knock things over and feed the turtles.

When did the whole "world is flat" thing start anyways? Because lets face it the ancient Greeks thought it was round, and so did Culumbus and those exploring the world like him.

But if this world was flat, a disk world if you would, where is the Invisible College, a charming DEATH, his snarky granddaughter, or the turtle carrying the whole thing?

As far as I'm aware, the whole flat earth thing is entirely satire, and I refuse to believe otherwise in any circumstances.

The Lunatic:
As far as I'm aware, the whole flat earth thing is entirely satire, and I refuse to believe otherwise in any circumstances.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=4ylYvNnP1rg

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=erA3WQE9Zes

It's disturbingly real. :(

Hawki:

aegix drakan:

Then again, he's also terribad with allegory and metaphor. He legit didn't get the central twist of the Lego Movie and was like "waaaaaaaat reaaaaally?" when I explained it to him. XD

As someone who finds the Lego Movie overrated, but also who doesn't want to be on the same level as a Flat Earther...

"So, the central twist is that almost everything that's happening in the film is the kid playing through a made up narrative-"

Ding ding ding. This is the part he didn't understand at all. And he complained that it was stupid and there's no way you can possibly figure that out without help because the movie didn't make it clear at all. XD

...Then again, he's also the same guy who, as one of the few people I know personally who has played my hobby RPGS, could not beat the final "cinematic" style fight at the end of one of them, so...

This is basically how that convo went:

Him: "The last fight is garbage hard man, even on Easy!"
Me: "Wat. It's the easiest fight in the game, with the simplest combat puzzle! What are you doing to lose it?"
Him: "Oh, I just mashed attack the whole time"
Me: "...Wat. But the whole game is based on using your Skills to counter enemy strategies. And this fight completely changes the hero's Skills, including the name of his Skill Menu! The second you open up the Skill Menu it should be super clear what to do to wi-"
Him: "But the cutscene made me look OP. If the cutscene makes me look OP I should be able to just mash attack and win!"
Me: "...Seriously? ...How many times did you fight the boss?"
Him: "6 times!"
Me: "You...fought it 6 times and didn't think to do anything other than mash attack? ...But..Like...If it didn't work the first 2 times, why-"
Him: "THE CUTSCENE MADE ME LOOK OP! Obviously I should be able to win by mashing attack!"
Me: *dying inside*

I live over near NYC and work in the city itself, and while working in one building I had a thought of something that I'd wish to try bringing up to a flat-earther sometime.

What I'd do, is take them up to the top of one of the skyscrapers in NYC and point out over to the horizon, particularly east and southeast. They'd likely comment on how it clearly looks flat, just look at the edge of the ocean that you can SEE there.

I'd simply nod, turn to them, point to the horizon to the southeast, and ask them "If the Earth is flat, why can't we see Africa on the other side of the ocean that way?"

I'd love to see their explanation or rationalization for that. Unless it's a simple "Well that's on the other coast", in which case I'd just be disappointed.

Or if the workd is technicly flat, why are there cliffs and csnyons and hills

Xprimentyl:

EvilRoy:

Beyond that, I've never had a satisfactory response to the pendulum problem, or an explanation as to why they can't just launch a camera in a weather balloon and demonstrate it (something I've done for a little less than $200).

Many claim they actually have launched such devices and have had their suspicious confirmed. Most, however, for all they claim to know, have no concept of just how big the earth is and that curvature may not be clearly evident at heights attainable by your average Joe NutJob. One of my favorite arguments they have is that if satellites are real and there are hundreds of them orbiting the earth, why don?t we see them in pictures of the earth? Well, the largest, man-made body orbiting our planet is the International Space Station, and its largest dimension is roughly 350 feet; the earth is 8,000 miles in diameter. I challenge anyone to see, let alone identify, any specific 350 foot-long body in a span of 42 MILLION feet from over a MILLION feet away. IDIOTS!! It wouldn?t be so frustrating if their nonsense wasn?t so easily debunked with common fucking sense!

Made all the worse by the fact that you totally can see the ISS from ground without aid, just have to wait for it to zip across the moon or keep an eye on the horizon for a very regular curved plane/shooting star. There's even a cool website where you can enter your location and it will give you ideal times to take a look and see it on the go.

If you drop a couple hundred bucks on a P400 camera you can zoom in and get a good look, for a chunk of change more with the P1000 you can start to make out details and get a beautiful view of the moons craters. I've actually had the thing screw up an otherwise nice shot of the moon by causing a weird thin smudge across the bright moon (long exposure and the little bastard is really screaming along so it makes a darker smudgy kind of line as it tracks across the moon).

If you live in a place where you can escape city light reasonably, I suggest doing it just for fun even if you don't have a fancy camera (or if you're one of those oddly specific enthusiasts with attachable telescoping lenses for your cellphone and a tripod). Its very impressive to see that thing fire so fast across the sky.

The Lunatic:
As far as I'm aware, the whole flat earth thing is entirely satire, and I refuse to believe otherwise in any circumstances.

Perhaps that's the intention, but the thing about satire is that you always get people who take it as gospel truth.

Thaluikhain:

Sorta. A while back I tried this myself, and at least with my vision, smaller vessels disappear in the horizon before they disappear under the horizon.

However, if you were on a ship going towards a mountain, really big lighthouse, or the Colossus of Rhodes, you'd see the top before the bottom. There's a WW2 era(ish) training film made by the Americans about how to use lighthouses, you have to look up the power of the lighthouse in a big book and it's height above sea level and compare it to your height above sea level and work out how far away you can see it.

So Columbus sailing to the Americas proved the Earth was round...on the very first day of the voyage.

Sorry for not responding sooner... my flight back into Sydney was only 2 hours ago and I was running around the last two days. Also, yeah ... I mean if your eyesight isn't shot and it's a big enough object you're gauging. It's more noticeable things like beaches in comparison to harbour-side cliffs and the like.

That being said, once again, hard to imagine a mariner who thought the world flat.

Oh yeah, I've got the friend who likes to spew the flat earth (and assorted other gibberish) out in a regular stream on facebook.

He retreats back to the "Well I just wanted to make you think and research conclusions" spiel when proven wrong. Except he'll still come back around and post the same crap again afterwards.

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