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Alhacen's Theory of Visual Perception: A Critical Edition, with English Translation and Commentary, of the First Three Books of Alhacen's "De aspectibus", the Medieval Latin Version of Ibn al-Haytham's "Kitab al-Manazir": Volume One

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Poussin’s biographers emphasized the importance of his study of optics and, particularly, of his study of Zaccolini’s treatises. Through a close examination of the reflections on the surface of the lake in Landscape with a Calm, we show how Poussin’s mastery of catoptrics (the science of mirrors) guides the viewer experience and provides a key to the function of the lake as the central focus of the picture.
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Histology, the branch of anatomy also known as microscopic anatomy, is the study of the structure and function of the body’s tissues. To gain an understanding of the tissues of the body is to learn the foundational underpinnings of anatomy and achieve a deeper, more intimate insight into how the body is constructed, functions, and undergoes pathological change. Histology, therefore, is an integral element of basic science education within today’s medical curricula. Its development as a discipline is inextricably linked to the evolution of the technology that allows us to visualize it. This chapter takes us on the journey through the past, present, and future of histology and its education; from technologies grounded in ancient understanding and control of the properties of light, to the ingenuity of crafting glass lenses that led to the construction of the first microscopes; traversing the second revolution in histology through the development of modern histological techniques and methods of digital and virtual microscopy, which allows learners to visualize histology anywhere, at any time; to the future of histology that allows flexible self-directed learning through social media, live-streaming, and virtual reality as a result of the powerful smart technologies we all carry around in our pockets. But, is our continuous pursuit of technological advancement projecting us towards a dystopian world where machines with artificial intelligence learn how to read histological slides and diagnose the diseases in the very humans that built them?
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We consider several appearances of the notion of convexity in Greek antiquity, more specifically in mathematics and optics, in the writings of Aristotle, and in art.
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A societal system study investigates a targeted social case in order to extract universal structures behind the scenes while modelling the extracted structures. By demonstrating that the investigated social case is explicable, this study verifies the validity of the theory. This paper introduces inference methods for agent model parameters and inverse simulation methods for verifying validity within a societal system study. This paper then attempts to describe that these methods correspond to the optimal control problem in a dynamic model. The latter part of this paper introduces the Chinese imperial examination model as the case of inductive inference based on an inverse simulation method and the labour market model as a case of deductive inference.
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The collection of four Latin bucolics ascribed to one Martius Valerius was only published in the twentieth century; they have been widely considered as twelfth-century compositions. Picking up on suggestions proposed by François Dolbeau, this study presents evidence that Martius drew directly on the bucolics of Theocritus, and that his poems are late antique, not medieval, literary productions, probably written in the sixth century. Such a conclusion will require a revision of the history of post-Virgilian Latin bucolic poetry.
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At the end of the sixteenth century new anatomical knowledge led both empirically minded philosophers and philosophically minded anatomists to rethink theories of light, color, and vision in subtle but significant ways. In this paper I show how anatomy and philosophy conspired to understand the structure and the purpose of the parts of the eye in two important, but largely overlooked, works by professors at the University of Padua: the natural philosopher Jacopo Zabarella’s De visu (first published in 1590) and the anatomist and physician Hieronymus Fabricius ab Aquapendente’s De visione (1600). How they understood the roles of the various parts of the eye reveals much about the strategies different disciplines used to reconcile ancient authorities (particularly Galen and Aristotle) with new anatomical observations and experiments. Importantly, the two professors offer identical accounts of the size, shape, and clarity, as well as the usus (or Galeno-Aristotelian final cause), of the vitreous humor, the transparent gel that fills the space between the crystalline humor (or lens) and the retina. This account of the vitreous is at the center of a theory of vision that differs in crucial ways from previous perspectivists, natural philosophers, and anatomists. Given this striking similarity, I argue that the two must have interacted significantly at Padua. I also argue that (by way of a former student of Fabricius, the anatomist and physician Jan Jessenius) this theory of vision influenced Kepler’s revolutionary account in his Ad Vitellionem paralipomena (1604) in certain respects.
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We discuss how light acquired a velocity through history, from the ancient Greeks to the early modern era. Combining abstract debates, models of light, practical needs, planned research and chance, this history illustrates several key points that should be brought out in science education.
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According to the received view, the first spyglass was assembled without any theory of how the instrument magnifies. Galileo, who was the first to use the device as a scientific instrument, improved the power of magnification up to 30 times. How did he accomplish this feat? Galileo does not tell us what he did. We hold that such improvement of magnification is too intricate a problem to be solved by trial and error, accidentally stumbling upon a complex procedure. We construct a plausibility argument and submit that Galileo had a theory of the telescope. He could develop it by analogical reasoning based on the phenomenon of reflection in mirrors—as it was put to use in surveying instruments—and applied to refraction in sets of lenses. Galileo could appeal to this analogy and assume Della Porta’s theory of refraction. He could thus turn the spyglass into a revolutionary scientific instrument—the telescope.
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