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Color and Light in Nature (edition 2001)
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Amazon.com Amazon.com Review (ISBN 0521775043, Paperback)Why is the sky blue? Why do mountains glow in the dark? Is the darkest always before the dawn?
An ideal reference to have on hand in answering questions such as these, Color and Light in Nature is an endlessly fascinating exploration of phenomena that are familiar to us all, but that even trained scientists take for granted. Take the question of why stars twinkle, for instance: twinkling, astronomers Lynch and Livingston observe, is strongest with stars that are low in the sky, and then on a clear and windy night, when starlight passing through the atmosphere encounters little pockets of turbulence that bend its rays "momentarily away from our eyes." Sunlight undergoes similar distortions, yielding mirages, "blinks," sundogs, halos, rainbows, "mountain light," and other wonders of nature, all of which the authors describe and explain in clear and accessible prose.
Lynch and Livingston encourage their readers to seek out and study these phenomena for themselves, writing, for instance, "No effort should be spared to witness at least one total eclipse in your lifetime." They go on to make a good case for why that should be so, and why the workings of light and color should be of interest to students of science. Their book is a lively companion and teacher. --Gregory McNamee
(retrieved from Amazon Mon, 30 Sep 2013 13:33:19 -0400)
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