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    Re: Sight reduction method history
    From: Frank Reed
    Date: 2013 Nov 3, 12:25 -0800

    Lu, you wrote:
    "Can anyone give, in broad-brush terms, a brief history of celestial sight reduction methods used aboard ships from the advent of reasonably accurate timekeeping forward?
    What method (in very general terms) did Captain Cook use? Clipper Ship navigators? The navigator on the Titanic? Navigators of WW II battleships?"

    That sounds like you want a complete history of nautical astronomy!

    There are a few problems here. First, there are lots of mediocre histories on this subject, like the chapter in Bowditch, which is a collection of odds and ends rather than a real history. Second, there are works which appear to be histories of navigation which are really histories of mathematical analyses. Third, navigation is cultural. There are differences by nation and there are differences by economic function.

    I could go on for some paragraphs on my interpretation of what you mean by the "history of sight reduction", but it might turn out you have a very different focus. So could I ask you to elaborate: what are you looking for besides a "complete history"?

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