What is wrong this with picture?

August 27, 2021 • 8:35 am

Matthew forwarded me this tweet and told me to look at the fourth picture, which I’ve put below. What is wrong with it? Nicholas Booth is an author who writes about diverse subjects, especially space. (Beneath the Night is not, by the way, a book on astrology.)

The last pic:

30 thoughts on “What is wrong this with picture?

  1. Hmm. Well, I see PCCE’s book and Matthew’s book and Sean Carroll’s book…but am I probably missing something!

  2. Is the poetic reading of all 3 titles together? I guess that’s not something ‘wrong’ tho?
    “Something Deeply Hidden Beneath the Night, Life’s Greatest Secret.”

  3. The title could possibly imply that the book discusses the formation of various elements within stars, and how the stars have therefore influenced “the history of mankind” (Carl Sagan’s “stardust” imagery), but I’m pretty sure that’s a charitable reading of the title. Looks like astrology to me.

    One of these books is not like the others!

    Edit…Looks like I was wrong. Here’s a blurb from Amazon:
    “Beneath the Night is a history of humanity, told through our relationship with the night sky. From prehistoric cave art and Ancient Egyptian zodiacs to the modern era of satellites and space exploration, Stuart Clark explores a fascination shared across the world and throughout millennia. It is one that has shaped our scientific understanding; helped us navigate the terrestrial world; provided inspiration for our poets, artists and philosophers; and it has given us a place to project our hopes and fears. In the stars, we can see our past – and ultimately, our fate.

    This is the awe-inspiring story of the universe, and our place within it.”


    1. It is apparently more of a natural history of the relationship between human thought and cultural practice on the one hand and the layout of the stars in the night sky on the other. Looks very interesting, though more from the history-of-ideas point of view than from the astrophysical.

      Could one of the problems be that Jerry’s book’s title is truncated, so that people who don’t know about it would probably not be able to identify it? If that were what happened to one of my books in a photo, I’d definitely count it as something wrong with the picture…

    2. I’m glad you checked. Stuart Clark is a distinguished journalist and novelist who has devoted his career to astrophysics. He’s accepted as a peer by the likes of Martin Rees, and is generally highly thought of as an educator. He’s also a delightful guy; when he was in Canada c. 2011 for his Kepler novel, “The Sky’s Dark Labyrinth” (also a slightly distancing title), we formed the entirely concocted Toronto branch of the Tycho Brahe Appreciation Society.

  4. There are no such lines in the sky!!

    Seriously, though, I’m guessing it has something to do with the position of the stars being inaccurate or impossible, but I don’t have the background to pick it out.

  5. It looks like the gold chart is not aligned with the stars in blue. The blue “N” should be in the center of the gold circles!

    1. Best comment.

      Also the nucleotide colour scheme on the book spine is wrong. On a chromatogram from an old ABI sequencer, the default colour scheme has green As, blue Cs, black Gs, and red Ts.

  6. Well, being rather unpoetic, the title is, strictly speaking, meaningless horseshit. (Yes spellcheck, it’s ‘…it’, not ‘…oe’.)

    “Beneath” refers to SPACE.

    “Night” refers to TIME.

    I know that some people think Einstein’s Special Relativity say space and time are the same thing. But he did not say that. Minkowski, the mathematician, phrased what they are trying to say as the statement that spacetime is 4-dimensional with an indefinite quadratic form which singles out many different times (and corresponding spaces), not the unique one of each which is what absolutely every previous human had understandably believed to exist. So not “no time”— rather, “many times”.

    End of moralistic lecture, somewhat off-topic as usual for me.

  7. If the idea was to colorize GACT on the spine of LGS according to purine/pyrimidine, they failed, and also failed to include all the T’s.

    1. Looks like they hit all the letters (GACT). The T is a tad faint in yellow, but it’s there. Not being an expert, it did get me to look up the acronym, so — at least for me — it did it’s job.

      1. Thx, good eye on the yellow. But then taking a step in another direction, why are G and C the same color? Maybe that’s one of the goofs.

  8. Something deeply hidden beneath the night sky, life’s greatest secret: Why evolution is true.

    That all seems right to me.

    1. I really like that one, except for being a “right”, not a “wrong”.

      Maybe the wrong is that it’s no longer a secret, following Darwin/Wallace, and a century + a half of development, experiments and observations.

  9. They left out the word “Sky” in the title.

    What bothers me more is that the store is empty . . . hopefully, it’s just that it wasn’t open at the time of the photo.

    Edited to add: although, it could be artistic license.

  10. Well, I will it try as a non-native speaker. I would either say “Beneath a night sky” or “At night”. But “Beneath a night” leaves me wondering. It feels incomplete.

      1. But Blackwell publishing wants sales, so knocked off a couple of quid—and need exposure. Only appropriate, the author of this one being merely a writer, and not, I think, like the other three, a scientist.

        Blackwell shouldn’t publish junk such as at least one chapter of the Blackwell Guide to Philosophical Logic. But the present book may well not be junk–I’ve not read it so far, too much time beneath the sleeping bag looking up at the stars..

  11. Given that the picture on the cover includes the words “ursa minor”, we must conclude this is the Northern hemisphere and if the gold lines represent lines of longitude and latitude then Polaris is missing.

  12. There is a problem with the title of this post: “this with” needs to be transposed. Though I had trouble finding anything wrong with the photo. And I tried. Grrrr.

  13. I guess I am either uneducated (despite my BA in English) or just ornery. Here’s my list: Lolita;
    Orlando; Love in the Time of Cholera; In Trouble Again (nonfictionRedmond O’Hanlon); Roba di Roma (nonfiction by W.W.Story); Noon Wine (Katherine Anne Porter); The Devil & Daniel Webster (Stephen Vincent Benet); War of Two (nonfiction John Sedgwick); The Star Thrower (nonfiction Loren Eiseley); The Story of My Teeth (Valeria Luiselli);

Leave a Reply