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Topic: [HM] Keplerian harmonies: website
Replies: 1   Last Post: Oct 14, 2004 3:15 PM

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Tony Mann

Posts: 91
Registered: 12/3/04
[HM] Keplerian harmonies: website
Posted: Oct 13, 2004 4:56 AM
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Dear Friends,

J.V. Field has told me about the following website, which might be of
interest - Tony

Christopher Arthur, a maths graduate from Texas who is now a computer
programmer and has an interest in Kepler, has written a program that
uses NASA's ephemeris information and the method of reduction given
in Kepler's _Harmonice mundi_ to derive a musical version of the
current state of the resonances among the motions of the planets.
The sounds will doubtless not make it to the Top Ten, but I thought
they might be of interest as a demonstration of a known phenomenon.
The web address is .

Kepler's method conforms perfectly with desirable modern
scientific standards, involving no fudging of any kind. (Kepler
thought that lying was a sin.) To get the various notes within the
same octave he simply subtracts whole octaves as required. His
write-up, in which he is using the planetary speeds he has deduced
from Tycho Brahe's observations, is in _Harmonice mundi_ (Linz.
1619), Book 5 (English translation: Johannes Kepler, _The Harmony of
the World_, translated into English with an introduction and notes,
by E. J. Aiton, A. M. Duncan and J. V. Field, _Memoirs of the
American Philosophical Society_, vol. 209, Philadelphia, 1997. ISBN
0-87169-209-0, US ISSN 0065-9738).

Tony Mann
Head of Department, Mathematical Sciences,
School of Computing and Mathematical Sciences, The University of
Maritime Greenwich University Campus, Old Royal Naval College,
Park Row, Greenwich, London SE10 9LS
Tel: +(44) (0)20 8331 8709, Fax: +(44) (0)20 8331 8665
Email:, website:

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