Inspirational Scientists – Copernicus and Johannes Kepler

As writers, we build upon the writings of others, much as scientists have done for centuries.

Nicolaus Copernicus (1473 – 1543) was the first documented scientist who tried to prove that the Earth, and other planets rotated around the sun.  He tried to share the understanding that humans, and Earth are not the central point upon which the universe was hinged. Rather, that Earth, sun, and planets were part of a larger moving system.  However, he felt the stars themselves beyond the planets were still much like a rotating solar system in the middle of a box with stings of lighted stars upon the sides.
Johannes Kepler, (1571-1630) born nearly 30 years after Copernicus died took his picture of the universe and expanded it even further.  He realized his predecessor’s circular orbits for the planets, needed to be elliptical in order to explain a variety of factors, including Mars apparent backwards travel.  He went on to work for the astronomer, Tycho Brahe.
However, Johannes Kepler isn’t known only for astronomy.  Without his help, astronomy wouldn’t have advanced as it did.  Johannes Kepler suffered from side effects of small pox, leaving him with impaired eye sight and crippled hands.  In order to improve his eyesight, he studied refraction and created special eye glasses for the nearsighted and farsighted.  He expanded his refraction knowledge to improve the telescopes of the time.
Nicolaus Copernicus took the knowledge of those before him, and expanded it to include now know scientific facts.  He did so at a time when such views were not only unpopular, they could have resulted in his death.  Johannes Kepler expanded them even further.  Stretching the limits that people would accept before they could go even one step further.

Together, they have improved my scientific knowledge of the world, and helped me to understand the tiny increments with which we must work to improve the lives of those who will come after us. Those increments may be as tiny as the diopters used to measure glasses and telescopic lens. Johannes Kepler has proven, that even 445 years ago, blind, and visually impaired people changed the world, if they were given the chance.  Thanks to him, I have glasses that help me see what little I can see.  Thanks to his work, I have a telescope that allows me to view the moon.  Without his work, we wouldn’t have the Hubble Telescope.  If he had not been a visually impaired person, we wouldn’t have satellites, cell phones, or many other things we take for granted.  They are all one step on the line of progression through science.

Works Cited:

“Nicolaus Copernicus Biography” Editors. Access Date: August 3, 2016 Publisher: A&E Television Networks

“Johannes Kepler.” Famous Scientists. 12 Mar. 2015. Web. 8/3/2016