Showing posts with label Armillary sphere. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Armillary sphere. Show all posts

Friday, February 28, 2014

Live action role-playing game - LARP

Medieval Knight Crusader Helmet
A live action role-playing game (LARP) is a form of role-playing game where the participants physically act out their characters' actions. The players pursue goals within a fictional setting represented by the real world while interacting with each other in character. The outcome of player actions may be mediated by game rules or determined by consensus among players. Event arrangers called gamemasters decide the setting and rules to be used and facilitate play.
The first LARPs were run in the late 1970s, inspired by tabletop role-playing games and genre fiction. The activity spread internationally during the 1980s and has diversified into a wide variety of styles. Play may be very game-like or may be more concerned with dramatic or artistic expression. Events can also be designed to achieve educational or political goals. The fictional genres used vary greatly, from realistic modern or historical settings to fantastic or futuristic eras. Production values are sometimes minimal, but can involve elaborate venues and costumes. LARPs range in size from small private events lasting a few hours to large public events with thousands of players lasting for days.
Full Body Gothic armor


LARP has also been referred to as live role-playing (LRP), interactive literature, and free form role-playing. Some of these terms are still in common use; however, LARP has become the most commonly accepted term.[1] It is sometimes written in lowercase, as larp.[2] The live action in LARP is analogous to the term live action used in film and video to differentiate works with human actors from animation. Playing a LARP is often calledlarping, and one who does it is a larper.


Gothic Gauntlets 15Th Century

Tuesday, February 11, 2014

Armillary sphere

An armillary sphere (variations are known as spherical astrolabearmilla, or armil) is a model of objects in the sky (in the celestial sphere), consisting of a spherical framework of rings, centred on Earth, that represent lines of celestial longitude and latitude and other astronomically important features such as the ecliptic. As such, it differs from a celestial globe, which is a smooth sphere whose principal purpose is to map the constellations.

The exterior parts of this machine are a compages [or framework] of brass rings, which represent the principal circles of the heavens.

The Greek astronomer Hipparchus (c. 190 – c. 120 BCE) credited Eratosthenes (276 –194 BCE) as the inventor of the armillary sphere. The name of this device comes ultimately from the Latin armilla (circle, bracelet), since it has a skeleton made of graduated metal circles linking the poles and representing the equator, the ecliptic, meridians and parallels.
Usually a ball representing the Earth or, later, the Sun is placed in its center. It is used to demonstrate the motion of the stars around the Earth. Before the advent of the European telescope in the 17th century, the armillary sphere was the prime instrument of all astronomers in determining celestial positions.

 Description and use of the armillary sphere
1. The equinoctial A, which is divided into 360 degrees (beginning at its intersection with the ecliptic in Aries) for showing the sun's right ascension in degrees; and also into 24 hours, for showing its right ascension in time.
2. The ecliptic B, which is divided into 12 signs, and each sign into 30 degrees, and also into the months and days of the year; in such a manner, that the degree or point of the ecliptic in which the sun is, on any given day, stands over that day in the circle of months.
3. The tropic of Cancer C, touching the ecliptic at the beginning of Cancer in e, and the tropic of Capricorn D, touching the ecliptic at the beginning of Capricorn in f; each 23½ degrees from the equinoctial circle.
4. The Arctic Circle E, and the Antarctic Circle F, each 23½ degrees from its respective pole at N and S.
5. The equinoctial colure G, passing through the north and south poles of the heaven at N and S, and through the equinoctial points Aries and Libra, in the ecliptic.
6. The solstitial colure H, passing through the poles of the heaven, and through the solstitial points Cancer and Capricorn, in the ecliptic. Each quarter of the former of these colures is divided into 90 degrees, from the equinoctial to the poles of the world, for showing the declination of the sun, moon, and stars; and each quarter of the latter, from the ecliptic as e and f, to its poles b and d, for showing the latitude of the stars.

Throughout Chinese history, astronomers have created celestial globes (Chinese: 浑象) to assist the observation of the stars. The Chinese also used the armillary sphere in aiding calendrical computations and calculations. Chinese ideas of astronomy and astronomical instruments became known in Korea as well, where further advancements were also made.
According to Needham, the earliest development of the armillary sphere in China goes back to the astronomers Shi Shen and Gan De in the 4th century BCE, as they were equipped with a primitive single-ring armillary instrument.[6] This would have allowed them to measure the north polar distance (declination) a measurement that gave the position in a xiu (right ascension).[6] Needham's 4th century dating, however, is rejected by British sinologist Christopher Cullen who traces the beginnings of these devices to the 1st century BCE.[7]
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