The Flat Venus Society in Library Assessment; promoting accuracy in [reporting of] numbers
November 28, 2010 1:55 PM   Subscribe

The Galaxy Garden is a 100-foot diameter outdoor scale model of the Milky Way, mapped in living plants and flowers and based on current astrophysical data.

Artist Jon Lomberg conceived and designed the garden to encourage scientific education about our place in the Universe. The Galaxy Garden is located at the Paleaku Peace Gardens Sanctuary in Kona, Hawaii. Paleaku is a non-profit 9-acre botanical garden that facilitates educational and cultural programs.

Jon Lomberg is one of the world's most distinguished artists inspired by astronomy. He specializes in designing and executing visual presentations about astronomy in all media, including exhibit design, film and television, computer graphic, print and electronic media. In addition to creating his own art, he has managed and led teams of artists and technicians on major projects using sophisticated image technology.

For example, he played a part in designing the Marsdial, a way to teach about how/why a ‘sun-dial’ would operate differently on a different planet.

(extra, web-cam equipped Earth-dials)

Gallery of original art, Interestingly, Starflowers;

Computerized images from the 1992 Magellan space probe depicted high mountains and deep canyons on the surface of the Venus. Aware that Venus is mostly flat, rolling plains, one planetary scientist founded The Flat Venus Society to advance the aim of accurate representation of planetary scientific data. Since a culture of assessment requires accurate, thorough, and impartial collection, interpretation, and reporting of data, this paper proposes the formation of The Flat Venus Society in Library Assessment.
The paper reviews major library advocacy research studies and campaigns in the USA. Quite often these studies and campaigns report inaccurate information and draw unjustified conclusions. Many research studies fail to fully address limitations of their designs. Others misapply statistical techniques due to an insufficient grasp of their proper uses. Some campaigns use questionnaires for educational rather than data-collection purposes, exacerbating the already inadequate understanding of survey research methods among the profession at large. Interpretations and uses of cost-benefit and return-on-investment studies are often incorrect. Library value calculators are deceptive tools whose use should be abandoned. A call is made for the curtailment of the influence that marketing specialists have on the production of library advocacy information. The practices of these specialists threaten the reputation and credibility of the profession as a whole. A strategy by which the library assessment community might promote best research and quantitative analysis practices in librarianship is proposed. (Full PDF [VIA])

What is Nonprobability Sampling
We use the term validity to refer to the approximate truth of an inference. When we say something is valid, we make a judgment about the extent to which relevant evidence supports that inference as being true or correct. Usually, that evidence comes from both empirical findings and the consistency of these findings with other sources of knowledge, including past findings and theories. Assessing validity always entails fallible human judgments. We can never be certain that all of the many inferences drawn from a single experiment are true or even that other inferences have been conclusively falsified. That is why validity judgments are not absolute; various degrees of validity can be invoked. As a result when we use terms such as valid or invalid or true or false in this book, they should always be understood as prefaced by ‘approximately’ or ‘tentatively.’ - Shadish, Cook, and Campbell, 2002, p. 34.
posted by infinite intimation (11 comments total) 31 users marked this as a favorite
But really, you came here for the Horologium Florae (flower clocks), and systematics, so;

Carl Linnaeus (1707-1778) observed over a number of years that the flowers of
many plants opened and closed periodically and that these times varied from species to
Arranged in sequence of flowering over the day, they constituted a kind of floral
clock or Horologium Florae as Linnaeus called it in his Philisophia Botanica (Vienna,
1751): 274-275.
Niagara parks Floral Clock;

Linnaeus' floral clock on the island of Mainau

BBC 'how to', for your own floral clock.

*A minor history of time without clocks.*

Online visual Linnaean Herbarium by Genus: Herbarium (other linnean collections online)


Abroma to Acnida
Zanthoxylon to Indet.

Some background; the Hortus Botanicus, is a quiet patch of green, worlds away from the uproar of the city surrounding it. One of the oldest botanical gardens in the world, it dates from 1638, when medicinal herbs were grown here.

(flickr sets of the garden)

The Semicircle portrays plant systematics: species that are closely related can be found growing near each other, while those that have little in common are grown far apart. This is the first and only systematic garden in The Netherlands in which the plants are categorized according to 'molecular systematics'. This kind of systematics is based on the similarities between genetic material.
Read for more information on systematics in the Hortus. (Stevens, P. F. (2001 onwards). Angiosperm Phylogeny Website. Version 9, June 2008 [and more or less continuously updated since].)

A portal of plants and taxa information
Thematis Botanic Portal gives access to the plants and taxa information from the databases of connected botanic gardens.

Norval will be the proud possessor of only the fourth Analematic Sundial in Canada (the others being located in Calgary, Penticton, and Hamilton) and the tenth in North America. A similar and more understandable name for this sundial is Human or Interactive Sundial. When a person is standing in the correct position on a stone slab that is marked off in months of the year, their shadow will point toward a low wall containing a series of marker stones representing the hours of the day.
posted by infinite intimation at 1:56 PM on November 28, 2010 [4 favorites]

Such a floral "clock" is described by Andrew Marvell, in "The Garden" (1678):
How well the skilful gardener drew
Of flow'rs and herbs this dial new;
Where from above the milder sun
Does through a fragrant zodiac run;
And, as it works, th' industrious bee
Computes its time as well as we.
How could such sweet and wholesome hours
Be reckoned but with herbs and flow'rs!

posted by infinite intimation at 1:59 PM on November 28, 2010 [2 favorites]

It's already out of date.
posted by jiawen at 2:03 PM on November 28, 2010

Wow. Lots of stuff to explore! Thanks!
posted by ClarissaWAM at 2:09 PM on November 28, 2010

The danger here is that you might set up some kind of sympathetic magic between the garden and the galaxy, and then our planet will get wiped out by a gigantic bee.
posted by JHarris at 2:46 PM on November 28, 2010

JHarris: "The danger here is that you might set up some kind of sympathetic magic between the garden and the galaxy, and then our planet will get wiped out by a gigantic bee"

Or pollinated by said bee.
posted by bwg at 4:30 PM on November 28, 2010

I thought the bar was a lot bigger than they present it as being.
posted by Chocolate Pickle at 5:38 PM on November 28, 2010

The danger here is that you might set up some kind of sympathetic magic between the garden and the galaxy, and then our planet will get wiped out by a gigantic bee.

Or you might accidentally fall into a very, very deep hole.
posted by UbuRoivas at 6:47 PM on November 28, 2010

I wanna go!
posted by jenfullmoon at 8:06 PM on November 28, 2010

Good post!

The garden looks lovely. As it's nearing the end of November here, I'll have to settle for dragging the kids out to make a model in snow.
posted by Harald74 at 11:46 PM on November 28, 2010

At first I was like "awesome!" and then I realized that obsessive projects like this are how we got a lot of invasive species in the US. How many of these are native to the galaxyarea?
posted by DU at 11:30 AM on November 29, 2010

« Older Hoxton Street Monster Supplies   |   Bingo In The Blood Newer »

This thread has been archived and is closed to new comments