The Backyard Astronomer's Guide Hardcover – Jan 1 1994
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From Library Journal
Despite the book's title, there is very little about astronomy here, i.e., lists of constellations, star charts, night sky maps, or details about planets, stars, and galaxies. However, there is a wealth of information about the equipment used in astronomy, including prices, consumer-type information, advice on when to use and when not to use binoculars, telescopes, cameras, film, lenses, filters, and other items for the amateur astronomer. Four chapters, though, concern the observation of the solar system and deep space objects. There are also several chapters discussing the photographing of all types of astronomical phenomena. Though cost may deter small-to-medium-sized libraries, there is much information here for the experienced amateur, and some useful information for the beginner as well. (Illustrations and index not seen.)-- Robert Ellis Potter, Dunedin P.L., Fla.
Copyright 1991 Reed Business Information, Inc.
About the Author
More than one million of Terence Dickinson's previous books are in print in three languages. His many science awards include the New York Academy of Sciences Book of the Year Award and the Royal Canadian Institute's Sandford Fleming Medal.
Alan Dyer is a magazine associate editor for "Astronomy".
Top Customer Reviews
A book like this is not only perfect for the beginning novice who hasn't a clue about astronomy or the tools to engage it, but will also serve to enlighten the veteran observer, either by filling gaps in general knowledge, or by enhancing stale techniques.
There is nothing left out. Both basic and advanced perspectives, and everything in-between, including a comprehensive glossary of terms. Want to know the true definition of an Airy disk in easy to understand language? How about Wave analysis? Is 1/20th wave really that much better than 1/4? Several times I have gone back to this book to clarify an issue, or to answer a question, either for myself or for the benefit of a fellow observer. There are useful things here - for everyone.
It's a big book; an armful with which to unwind in a sofa or with a reading lamp in bed. It finds a place comfortably as a coffee table book, or something for the footstool until you arive - a great companion to that easy chair in the corner - and makes for cozy relaxation in almost any venue. It's a nice book to return to, and one that should maintain a place in the center bookshelves of our homes for decades to come.
There used to be five books on my list of essential reading for the amateur astronomer. Now there are six.
buying telescopes or binoculars
learning the skies
any natural phenomenon, like the green flash
buying accessories for telescopes and binoculars
finding how the different types of telescopes work and what to look for in purchasing one
This book has detailed descriptions on every aspect of astronomy along with spectacular pictures of various Messier objects, daytime phenomenon, the Milky Way, famous nebula, star clusters, galaxies, and everything you could ever wonder about astronomy. I very strongly recommend this book to anyone who is even remotely interested in astronomy.
Rather than spreading itself too thin, "The Backyard Astronomer's Guide" concentrates on backyard astronomy as a hobby, staying away from much of the science behind the objects we view. This is one of the book's best qualities. The science and naturalization of objects in the sky is important, but there are plenty of other books dealing with this subject.
The authors have a lot of experience in backyard astronomy, and it shows.
Most recent customer reviews
My only small gripe with this book is that it repeats verbatim several chunks of Nightwatch, Dickinson's first book. Read morePublished on Nov. 19 2001 by M. H. Bayliss
I'm a novice amateur astronomer who bought this book as a reference. When it arrived, I found myself reading every page, cover to cover. Whoa! Read morePublished on June 1 2001
I'm actually just starting in on the hobby, but I can tell that this book is going to be a MAJOR asset throughout my learning experience. Read morePublished on May 29 2001
This is the best guide to amateur astronomy PERIOD! Objective advice on the purchase of equipment, from basic items like introductory scopes and binoculars to the most obscure... Read morePublished on May 21 2001
I received this book for Christmas last year, and I love it! I have to agree with the statement from a previous reviewer, though; beginners should read this before purchasing a... Read morePublished on Nov. 10 2000 by Chad Hicks
For those who have always been interested in astronomy, or for those who are new to the subject, this book is for you. Read morePublished on Aug. 7 2000
I agree with one of the other reviewers, while this text contains some good rules of thumb, the product data is fairly dated even with the update in 1993. Read morePublished on July 7 2000
Very complete and thorough. Excellent resource for the novice and advantage amateur alike. Well worth reading and a great resource as well.Published on May 15 2000 by Clinton McQueen
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