Since the upcoming book is basically done, it’s time for me to launch the next phase of the project — the supplementary material, which will be placed here, on this website.
Any science book has to leave out many details of the subjects it covers, and omit many important topics. While my book has endnotes that help flesh out the main text, I know that some readers will want even more information. That’s what I’ll be building here over the coming months. I’ll continue to develop this material even after the book is published, as additional readers explore it. For a time, then, this will be a living, growing extension to the written text.
As I create this supplementary material, I’ll first post it on this blog, looking for your feedback in terms of its clarity and accuracy, and hoping to get a sense from you as to whether there are other questions that I ought to address. Let’s try this out today with a first example; I look forward to your comments.
In Chapter 2 of the book, I have written
- Over two thousand years ago, Greek thinkers became experts in geometry and found clever tricks for estimating the Earth’s shape and size.
This sentence then refers to an endnote, in which I state
- The shadow that the Earth casts on the Moon during a lunar eclipse is always disk-shaped, no matter the time of day, which can be true only for a spherical planet. Earth’s size is revealed by comparing the lengths of shadows of two identical objects, separated by a known north-south distance, measured at noon on the same day.*
Obviously this is very terse, and I’m sure some readers will want an explanation of the endnote. Here’s the explanation that I’ll post on this website: