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::: center home >> events >> lunchtime >> 2004-05 >> abstracts

Friday, 22 October 2004

"Spuntar lo scoglio più duro":  Did Galileo ever think the most beautiful thought experiment in the history of science?
Paolo Palmieri, History & Philosophy of Science, U. Pittsburgh
12:05 pm, 817R Cathedral of Learning

Abstract:  Still today it remains unclear whether Galileo ever climbed the leaning tower of Pisa in order to drop bodies from its top. Some believe that he established the principle of equal speeds for falling bodies by means of an ingenious thought experiment.  However, the reconstruction of that thought experiment circulating in the philosophical literature is no more than a cartoon. In this talk I will tell the story of the thought processes behind the cartoon.

Revised 3/11/08 - Copyright 2006