NMSAT :: Networked Music & SoundArt Timeline

ca - 384 BC __ Camera Obscura
Aristotle (Aristote) (384-322 BC)
Comment : This Greek philosopher taught that objects themselves emit light which the eye sees. Aristotle observes crescent-shaped images created during an eclipse, through small holes in the leaves of trees, furniture and the crossing of the fingers. Aristotle notes that the smaller the hole, the clearer the image. He goes on to observe that regardless of the shape of the pinhole (aperture), the light passing through is always in a circular shape. In the 4th century BC, Aristotle noted that "sunlight travelling through small openings between the leaves of a tree, the holes of a sieve, the openings wickerwork, and even interlaced fingers will create circular patches of light on the ground." This phenomenon will become known as one of Aristotle's "problems" (Aristotle, A Treatise Called Problems, On Dreams) and will remain unreasoned until the 16th century. Aristotle also referred to the persistence of vision when mentioning after-images.The earliest known written evidence of a camera obscura can be found in Aristotle's documentation of a device in 350 BC in « Problemata » (Patti, 1993). Aristotle's apparatus contained a dark chamber that had a single small hole to allow for sunlight to enter. With this device, he made observations of the sun. He noted that no matter what shape the hole was, it would still display the sun correctly as a round object. Another observation that he made was that when the distance between the aperture (the tiny hole) and the surface with the image increased, the image would become amplified. Although no one is perfectly sure, many attribute the invention of the camera obscura to Aristotle. He rejected the vision theory of Plato of light rays emitted from the eyes. (Compiled from various sources)
Urls : http://www.precinemahistory.net/900.htm (last visited ) http://www.mlahanas.de/Greeks/Optics.htm (last visited ) http://www.acmi.net.au/AIC/CAMERA_OBSCURA.html (last visited ) http://archimedes.mpiwg-berlin.mpg.de/cgi-bin/toc/toc.cgi?step=textonly&dir=arist_mecha_080_el_1831 (last visited )

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