Talk:Searching for asteroids, extraterrestrial life a little more rocky: Budget cuts threaten to close Arecibo, world's largest radio telescope
I have contacted several people who run programs and projects using arecibo such as Dave Anderson of SETI@home. I also contacted the program director of Arecibo and will be contacting the Planetary Society later. I have recieved a reply from SETI@home and will be adding that info soon. DragonFire1024 (Talk to the Dragon) 19:39, 4 July 2008 (UTC)
- Will contact the NSF as well as the NEO Program. DragonFire1024 (Talk to the Dragon) 21:59, 4 July 2008 (UTC)
E-mails are long, and somewhat in depth. So I sent them to scoop. If an individual would like to see them, feel free to ask and I will send. DragonFire1024 (Talk to the Dragon) 03:21, 5 July 2008 (UTC)
Senators and Congressmen
I'll note that although Arecibo is the most sensitive radio telescope in the world, it isn't necessarily the best, or the most powerful. Sensitivity (ie, the amount of light that it takes for the telescope to detect an object) is only one of several factors that determine the usefulness of a telescope. As an example, Arecibo's resolution is far lower than some other telescopes, because resolution is determined by the baseline of the detector, not by the area of the detector (meaning that it takes blurry images, but it can take blurry images of really dim objects). So while Arecibo is certainly useful, I don't think that it is correct to imply that it is the most useful radio telescope in the world.Gopher65talk 17:25, 6 July 2008 (UTC)
- In terms of the main body of science it is responsible for, it is the most sensitive. Most of the research done using Arecibo cannot be done elsewhere. For example the NEO Program would be non existent if it were not for Arecibo. SETI@home might never have existed, and who knows about the NEO...I am still waiting for replies from them. DragonFire1024 (Talk to the Dragon) 17:27, 6 July 2008 (UTC)
- Well... we could just as easily say that about any telescope. In terms of the science each telescope does, it is the only telescope that can do that science. I think it is disingenuous to imply, however loosely, that it is the most powerful telescope around. Technically it is the most "sensitive" telescope, but that word means something very particular in telescope speak. It's like saying that a set of speakers is the best set around because it produces good base sound. If it's good at base but bad at everything else then it isn't the best set around.
- I agree that Arecibo is the only telescope that can do certain tasks, but that doesn't mean that it is the best telescope around; it merely means that it was designed for a specific task, and other telescopes that *weren't* designed for that task aren't as good at it (obviously;)). This isn't a major problem with the article; it's just a minor quibble. But if this stood out for someone like me (I am an amateur telescope user), I'm sure it would jump out of the page for anyone who knows much about telescopes.Gopher65talk 18:29, 6 July 2008 (UTC)
Added a link to the Arecibo message because I was not myself fully conscious of the fact that the telescope had been used for the purpose of CETI before I looked it up. With regards to title, why not just "Budget cuts threaten to close Arecibo, world's largest radio telescope"? 188.8.131.52 13:20, 18 July 2008 (UTC)
Um, there seems to be a gigantic confusion here regarding the telescope's name. Arecibo is the name of the municipality, not the telescope, and nowhere have I ever heard the telescope called that: not by the people of Puerto Rico, nor by the press (both local and international). Therefore, anyone who is familiar with the island and the municipality would understand by this article's wording that the city is the one that is receiving budget cuts. The Wikipedia article refers to it as "the Arecibo telescope", as do the natives of the island. This needs to be changed immediately. --Boricuæddie 21:12, 18 July 2008 (UTC)
- Boricuaeddie, normally I'd agree that a slightly less ambiguous title is better, but in this case the title is already really long.
- Irregardless, I suspect that most people who haven't been to the town of Arecibo don't even knows it exists, unless they happen to have seen a documentary or something. For most people "Arecibo" is synonymous with the telescope (those few who would even recognize the word:P). And even if some of the people reading the title do realize that Arecibo is a place, the fact that the title says "Budget cuts threaten to close Arecibo, world's largest radio telescope," should be enough to dissuade them of the notion that the town is somehow being "closed", which is a strange enough notion that I doubt anyone will think that. Gopher65talk 00:23, 19 July 2008 (UTC)