Talk:Earth/Archive 6

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Archive 1 Archive 4 Archive 5 Archive 6 Archive 7 Archive 8 Archive 10


I feel that this article is racist and persecuted towards the members of the Flat Earth Society, as it insists that Earth is closed to sphere shaped. This is very one-sided and racist, lol.—The preceding unsigned comment was added by (talkcontribs) 14:22, 21 April 2007.

That's not racist, that's shapist :p --Alf melmac 14:28, 21 April 2007 (UTC)

16 November 2006 archive

I have archived this rather long talk page. If I have accidently archived an active discussion please move that discussion back and accept my apologies. HighInBC (Need help? Ask me) 04:07, 16 November 2006 (UTC)

A Very Special Note from the Management -MOSTLY HARMLESS

Q. Should I replace this article with the words "mostly harmless" or "harmless", as per The Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy?

A. No. Every other vandalism to this article is just that, and people who do this will be the first against the wall when the revolution comes. Share and enjoy!

I was thinking about doing this myself, but I had a feeling it would have been done before. Oh wells :-) Bennity 11:50, 1 April 2006 (UTC)
Damn! Karlusss 22:21, 27 April 2006 (UTC)
Heh, I thought about it too, but couldn't bring myself to do it... great minds think alike, apparently. 15:36, 28 August 2006 (UTC)
Seriously, given the frequently made comments on the similarity between Wikipedia and the Hitchhiker's Guide, I feel that the page does need SOME reference to "Mostly Harmless" - it is a good joke, and by being there "officially" it would disuade vandals from doing the "compelete replacement" Medconn 18:02, 7 December 2006 (UTC)
Personally I'd say the joke really only works if "mostly harmless" is the entire content of the article -- at least, that was the original joke. Anyway, although I don't think this particular vandalism is the same as every other, it is the sort of thing better placed in the Uncyclopedia -- and it is there[1]. -- Andy ( 05:58, 10 December 2006 (UTC))
The Hitchhiker's Guide references are everywhere [2] Acererak 14:06, 6 January 2007 (UTC)

Man! That's exactly what I came here to do today! Anyway, I still think it won't do any damage if the article starts with "Mostly Harmless."

          • Why doesn't Wikipedia make the search option such that when searching for "Earth" the real page and a great/hilarious page come up in the search results. That way, those who enjoy the humor can see that it turns up and those who are looking for information can find what they need, too. So please make that possible someone...

This is covered on the Earth in fiction page, which is linked via the "See also" section at the bottom of the article. — RJH (talk) 20:45, 20 March 2007 (UTC)

Earth cut-away

I've uploaded a 3D rendered version of the Earth being cut to its core. It labels the areas numerically so as to be language-independent. It also includes the D-double-prime layer.

as a replacement for:

Thangalin 04:22, 1 January 2007 (UTC)

Future Needs Editing

The future section ignores the possibility of human action to either change the atmosphere or move the earth. Perhaps a new section, "Alternate Futures," or a new article linked to the Earth one would be of interest. Science fiction often becomes science fact.

--Dwise75 09:50, 18 November 2006 (UTC)

"it is the largest planet in the world"... take that out --Darrendeng 09:29, 30 November 2006 (UTC) It still needs to be taken out. --Ben 12/17/06

"space" should link to Outer space

Done. Vsmith 15:22, 24 November 2006 (UTC)

Astronauts now alternate in the space station more often than once every 6 months, the last mission only lasted for 2 weeks or so...

The future section mentions nothing of the stability of the orbits of solar system members, including Earth. Between now and the Sun's twilight years, orbits can reshape and become unstable - resulting in possible ejection out of the solar system. External influences such as close passes by other stars and the potential collision between the Milky Way and the Andromeda Galaxy may disrupt the orbits further. Earth's fate is speculation, but generally bleak by the looks of it - disregarding speculation on Humankind's safeguarding its cradle planet.

Paulsmith99 22:07, 6 March 2007 (UTC)

Rotating Earth Animation

The animated rotating earth picture could be replaced with a better one from Wikimedia Commons: (from the large version at: ) 12:27, 25 November 2006 (UTC)

This arctical should be a featured arctical Da Man 2000

I believe "commoner" should be switched to "more common" in the minerals section.

The better image is this one. What makes you think any different? Alphaquad 06:43, 20 January 2007 (UTC)


What is the distance from the sun to earth? (in km) —The preceding unsigned comment was added by (talk) 22:48, 7 December 2006 (UTC).

Approximately 1.4959787e+08 km. To answer similar questions yourself, use GNU Units

[3]. —The preceding unsigned comment was added by (talk) 06:02, 10 December 2006 (UTC).:

Probably 150,000,000 km

Is carbon really so rare in the crust that it is not mentioned ? CaO exists in greater quantity than all the carbonate rocks ? Bob Armstrong 13:17, 3 April 2007 (UTC)

Yes. Encyclopaedia Britannica lists Carbon as the 19th most abundant element in the crust by mass. Given that it is the fourth most abundant element in the Universe, it might be interesting to find out why the abundance is so low. — RJH (talk) 16:18, 3 April 2007 (UTC)

Is Pluto still a planet?

This section wasn't relevant to this topic. I've removed it, and am putting it in my removed section on my account Ah2190 12:07, 13 February 2007 (UTC)

This article needs to be seperated

We need to seperate this article because "Earth" is a very broad subject. For example: Earth as a planet, Earth as the world, Earth meaning soil, Earth as in the ground, etc. etc. It would be wrong to assume that anyone who is searching for "Earth" is always searching for the planet :). So searching for "Earth" should only give you a disanbiguation page with all the subtopics on it.

Iron core?

So the center of the earth is made of hot iron? —The preceding unsigned comment was added by AnYoNe! (talkcontribs).

That's the current (fairly-well-supported) belief, yes. -- Atlant 01:04, 21 December 2006 (UTC)

This article

It has very large and meaty clustered chunks of great educative data to it, perhaps it could be broken down into smaller peices. Nevertheless it remains an excellent article worked on by many. Just one of several hundreds saved in my watch list. It is actually 17 pages long 16:42, 22 December 2006 (UTC)

Is Earth the 5th largest planet or not?

The article states that Earth is the fifth largest planet in the solar system. However, as far as I can tell, it is only larger than Mercury, Venus and Mars. Is this a remnant from when Pluto was classified as a planet?

Thanks, 20:47, 2 January 2007 (UTC)

Earth is smaller than Jupiter, Saturn, Uranus, and Neptune. So it is the fifth largest planet.--JyriL talk 20:50, 2 January 2007 (UTC)

Age of the Earth needs to be updated.

The article lists the Earth as being 4.57 aeons old, but in accordance with the most recent scientific data, this is completely illogical. Judging from the sun's current rate at which it loses mass, the sun would be large enough to pull the earth into it at that point in time (simple laws of gravitation have proven this.)

Furthermore, we are losing our moon at a rate of about 4 inches per year. At that rate, you would have to say that 1.2 aeons ago, the moon would have been on the surface of the Earth.

Please keep all archaic theories noted as such. If you must include the Earth being 4.57 aeons old, then you must also include the "facts" that the Earth is flat and that the Sun travels around it. —The preceding unsigned comment was added by (talk) 17:50, 3 January 2007 (UTC).

How old do you suggest earth is? Acererak 14:16, 6 January 2007 (UTC)
It is impossible to determine an exact date, but the evidence clearly suggests less than ten thousand years. Also, in reference to the Moon, I thought that the limit was 1.2 billion.--MarioFanaticXV 04:51, 7 January 2007 (UTC)
lol 06:07, 30 April 2007 (UTC)
Perhaps Age of the Earth would interest you? HighInBC (Need help? Ask me) 04:54, 7 January 2007 (UTC)
Has 4 inches per year always been the rate of departure? (SEWilco 05:44, 7 January 2007 (UTC))
There is no scientific data pertaining to the moon's recession from the Earth that is inconsistent with the scientific age of 4.567 billion years. There are impact craters on the earth that are too old to have been formed within the last 10,000 years. You are suggesting that the entire world formed after the stone age, cretaceous era, the cambrian era, and all other geological periods. At the rate the continents are drifting apart (South America and Africa are moving apart at an average of 5.7 cm per year because the seafloor is spreading along the Mid-Atlantic Ridge), the division must have began no less than 250 million years ago. Back to the moon issue, the rate of 4 inches per year is a lie. The real increase in the distance of the semi-major axis of the lunar orbit is in fact 3.82 centimeters/year. And we were not always losing the moon so quickly; as the gravitation between the moon and the earth was much greater billions of years ago, we were losing the moon much more slowly. Check your facts before you make such erroneous claims. BlytheG 12:25, 7 January 2007 (UTC)
The scientific evidence points the Universe being less than ten millenia... unless you wish to deny the existence of meteorites. Or perhaps the "F" rings of Saturn? Or the fact that we have fossils above water? Also, by factoring in that, you make your problem WORSE, not better. For this to be true, the Moon would have to be physically touching the Earth even LESS than 1.2 aeons ago. Furthermore, I used it as an upper limit, NOT an exact value.-- 17:52, 22 January 2007 (UTC)
Young earth believers are biblical literalists who thought they might try and win some converts by speaking in (pseudo)scientific terms. Its not even worth debating with them. Brentt 21:37, 10 January 2007 (UTC)
Of course. Why debate some one when you already know you're wrong?-- 17:52, 22 January 2007 (UTC)
They might also suppose cavemen lived along with dinosaurs and that the garden of eden was in fact the moon when she was just a few inches from earth...
In actuality, dinosaurs have lived with man throughout time. They simply used a now archaic term for them: dragon. In the Congo there have been reports of what seems to be a pterodactyl. Theories should be changed to fit the facts, not vice versa. Evolution is an archaic religion, surviving only in the minds of those who cannot bring themselves to face reality. The only reason people choose to believe it is because that would mean it has a creator, and therefore, rules. It is not my fault that your metaphysical research program of Evolutionism goes against a great number of scientific laws (the Two Laws of Thermodynamics, the Law Conservation of Angular Momentum, the Inverse Square Law AKA Gravitational Constant, among others too numerous to list.) It can be stated as a fact that nothing found in science has ever supported the religion of Evolutionism.-- 17:52, 22 January 2007 (UTC)\

I dont believe anyone who says "face reality". Evolution doesn't mean "theres no god". Theologians have no problem with it. Why do people? Mailrobot 20:57, 18 April 2007 (UTC)

Evolution isn't a religion, and Evolutionism isn't a real word. And YES, many, many, many, many, many facts have been found in science that support the theory of evolution. Much more than evidence against it, and much, much, much more than evidence for creationism and the claims you're making. --...Wikiwøw 00:03, 14 March 2007 (UTC)

Yup, I agree with the IP address. If the world really was millions of years old, everything would be dead and worn-out by now. I watched a documentary where they carbon dated trees in a lake near Mount Saint Helens that were swept there when the volcano erupted. The test found that the trees already turned to carbon and that it dated back millions of years. Also, because the trees sank to the bottom of the lake in different phases, it appeared as if it was a lot of forests on top of each other. But whatever. Adriaan90 ( TalkContribs ) ♪♫ 13:07, 14 March 2007 (UTC)

You do know you have no idea what you are saying, right? The tree outside your house hasn't been there for millions of years, that's why it isn't dead. Mailrobot 20:57, 18 April 2007 (UTC)

The age of the earth is so thoroughly theoretical; discussion of such things can only be meaningful to those with a hidden agenda. Alphaquad 06:52, 20 January 2007 (UTC)

It's been measured many, many many times via carbon-dating, half-life, and other liberal, evilutionally-biased agenda-driven sciences. Get over it. Craig3410 22:39, 13 March 2007 (UTC)

Both differing theories from both points of view each contain evidence 'proving' itself true while contradicting the other. At the moment there is no way to determine the real age of the earth but perhaps both theories could be placed on the 'Age of the Earth' page so both points of view can be noted. 02:19, 23 January 2007 (UTC)

Yawn. Stuff and nonsense. There is not a jot of evidence that the Earth is only 10 Ky old. For that to be true (and among many other things) our understanding of fundamental science would have to be wrong. And were that true, you wouldn't be able to sit there typing these pernicious fairy tales into a computer. Get over it already.
Furthermore, on a purely theological level, what's with this "both points of view" nonsense? Why is it that only one theological chronology for Earth history is correct? What about all those other theologies who posit different ages for the Earth? They have as much evidence going for them as the one being defended here (i.e. none), but I don't see anyone jumping in to defend (or savage) them.
More importantly, this page is for discussing improvements to the article. Given that we're discussing a scientific topic here (the age of the Earth), for the creationist ideas above to be considered in the article, they would need to be properly sourced. Let's see some proper, peer-reviewed references up front before we waste any more time discussing this. Oh wait, that's right, there's a vast conspiracy among scientists to keep creationism down. I forgot. --Plumbago 09:28, 23 January 2007 (UTC)

Wikipedia has articles for the above stuff and nonsense - see: Origin belief and Creation within belief systems for all the various mythologies. Vsmith 12:00, 23 January 2007 (UTC)

Why is it stated that "Widely accepted scientific evidence indicates that the Earth was formed around 4.57 billion years ago"... What else do we use in an encyclopedia? The age of the Earth is that old, we dont say "widely accepted scientific evidence" for any other age on wikipedia, why here? i think this is just bending over backwards to young-earth religious zealots... Theres plenty of other articles to do with your viewpoint where you can spread this information. Just keep it out of here -- Nbound 05:19, 30 January 2007 (UTC)

As HighInBC has already noted, go look at Age of the Earth for all the rationale anyone might need, as well as a fair review of various viewpoints on the matter. Let's not waste any more time squabbling here. Kris 10:17, 30 January 2007 (UTC)

Since the age of the Earth cannot be proved scientifically and it is not documented historically (other than in the Holy Bible), the age of the earth should not be written as if it is a fact. It should say "evidence suggests that the Earth is 4.57 billion years old" or "many scientists think the Earth is 7000 years old" Since it is not a fact, it should not be portrayed as such. And everyone please, stop bashing true Christians who believe in young earth creation. It is a perfectly valid belief and endorsed by many scientists. teemanbf04 17:57, 11 April 2007

There are no certain facts; there are only theories. Theories are mathematical descriptions of natural phenomena, that have been observed to be consistent with reality. As soon as a replicatable observation has been made that contradicts a theory, it is no longer a theory, but an approximation (this is what happened to Newton's theory of gravity). Young Earth Creationism is a childish regression used by people even more mentally unstable than the usual religionite, who need reality to fit perfectly with thier holy book. Observations come first, then hypothesis. Looking for evidence to support the Wholly Babble is the exact reverse of the scientific method. And a consistent theory is safe to be treated as fact in most cases. You wouldn't object to the statement "When I drop my coffee mug near the surface of the earth, it will fall" would you? FIND A PEER REVIEWED SOURCE FOR YOUR ASSERTIONS, AND THEY SHALL BE INCLUDED! DISCUSSION OVER! —The preceding unsigned comment was added by Quantum Burrito (talkcontribs) 02:02, 13 April 2007 (UTC).

It is strongly advised that mature adults who are also critical thinkers simply ignore creationist trolls and their incessant flaming about "intelligent design."

A Day

How long exactly is a day on Earth, and would it help if I divided the orbital circumference by the orbital speed? Should it be in the article? Thanks. AstroHurricane001(Talk+Contribs+Ubx) 18:44, 25 January 2007 (UTC)

I don't feel that time lapse should be added into the article, but that's just my opinion. --Soetermans 19:06, 25 January 2007 (UTC)
What kind of day are you talking about? The civil day on our clocks is exactly 86,400 seconds long. Although the words are sometimes used differently, the mean solar day is about 86,400.002 seconds. It must be measured, so is not exact. The apparent solar day, can be up to 29 seconds different from the 86,400 figure during the year, because of our non-circular orbit and tilted axis. The sidereal day, which refers to our rotation relative to the stars, is nearly four minutes less-about 86,164 seconds. Saros136 10:29, 26 January 2007 (UTC)
Well, I meant to ask whether a day on Earth (one rotation of its axis) is longer or shorter than 24 h. Thanks. AstroHurricane001(Talk+Contribs+Ubx) 18:41, 26 January 2007 (UTC)
Well, I would go for the solar day, which comes to more than 24 hours. That is the rotation of the Earth in relation to our sun, also known as Sol. Ah2190 12:28, 13 February 2007 (UTC)

Declination and right ascension

Why are coordinates on the celestial sphere listed for Earth? Aren't they meaningless? Why should Earth be any more at the north pole of the celestial sphere than anywhere else? —The preceding unsigned comment was added by (talk) 03:50, 26 January 2007 (UTC).

The 90° declination isn't meaningless. It means a line from the center of the earth through the north pole points to celestial north. On the other hand, the right ascension for matching a 90° dec is undefined. Since the lines of right ascension, which are the equivalent of the lines of longitude on the surface of the Earth, *all* go from the N to S poles of the celestial sphere; a pole can't be identified with just one of them and given a number. Saros136 05:47, 26 January 2007 (UTC)
I should point out that reference frame is critical here. The J2000 reference frame referred to Epoch (astronomy) in the article, makes use of the mean equinox and equator...meaning that nutation, the changing tilt of the Earth's axis, is averaged out or omitted. I was talking about that average North pole. The actual North pole of the Earth doesn't really point exactly to the the J2000 North, so it does does have a (changing) RA, using J2000 coordinates. Saros136 09:41, 26 January 2007 (UTC)
Oh, the "of the north pole" applies to declination as well. Why doesn't it say so? That makes some more sense, at least. 01:59, 27 January 2007 (UTC)
It would be much easier to specify the coordinates of the Earth using alt-azimuth notation (j/k). SheffieldSteel 18:32, 29 March 2007 (UTC)

Cosmic engineering

The last sentence of the article suggests "it might be possible to move the Earth's orbit outwards, and thus it would not suffer a runaway greenhouse effect." I think this is a straightforward violation of WP:CRYSTAL, especially given the casual, un-qualified phrasing of the sentence. Sure, it's cited, but if we cite everything that some sci-fi author manages to say on television, this will be a zoo. Ethan Mitchell 20:28, 27 January 2007 (UTC)

You're right. In a section describing the evolution of the Sun and its effect on the Earth, crazy speculation on moving the Earth has no place - even if said craziness is sourced to the Beeb. Anyway, I've copied the removed text here ...
However, it might be possible to move the Earth's orbit outwards, and thus it would not suffer a runaway greenhouse effect.[1]
Cheers, --Plumbago 15:35, 29 January 2007 (UTC)

Picture needs rotating

The picture that says 'The first time an "Earth-rise" was seen from the moon.' needs rotating 90' to the left I think. I saw a documentary on TV about a year ago which had one of the astronaughts in it. He said it always bothered him how that photo was always displayed on its side. -OOPSIE- 09:13, 19 February 2007 (UTC)

What's with the weird template?

That odd looking box floating at the top of the article makes a weird space, and contains information that you'd hope the article would get to quickly anyway. It's not on mars, neptune, or pluto, (though I guess pluto isn't much of a planet anymore) and its pushing down on the introduction text. Homestarmy 22:14, 19 February 2007 (UTC)

First paragraph

I'd like to suggest that the first paragraph be modified to make it more engaging than a series of comparisons with the planets of the Solar System. Here's my first attempt:

Earth (IPA: [ˈɝθ], IPA: [ˈɜːθ]), also referred to as "the Earth", "Planet Earth", "Terra", or "the World", is the third planet from the Sun. It has a solid outer surface that is 71% covered in a layer of water, and has a dynamic atmosphere composed primarily of nitrogen and oxygen. The Earth orbits the Sun once for every 365.25 times it rotates about it's axis. The axial tilt of 23.4° produces seasonal variations on the surface. The interior consists of a viscous mantle, a liquid outer core and a solid inner core. Internal dynamics produce a magnetic field that deflects particles in the solar wind.

What do you think? I'm sure this can be much improved. Any suggestions? — RJH (talk) 22:54, 20 February 2007 (UTC)

I like your idea, as the article could use a more dynamic opening paragraph. However... I think perhaps you might wish to consider some more accessible information in the first few sentences. The rewrite above is long on facts and numbers. Science fans (I count myself in that group) would be comfortable with reading it, but it may not "hook" the casual reader. (It's comparable to introducing yourself by starting with your height, weight, etc - rather than what your interests are.) What about incorporating some more "human" ideas, such as Earth being the only planet we know of that supports life, or that has these particular environmental conditions? You could also mix in some "wow" facts, perhaps including something about the age and the way it was formed. Thoughts? --Ckatzchatspy 01:08, 21 February 2007 (UTC)
Here's a re-write that eliminates most of the numerical factoids:
Earth (IPA: [ˈɝθ], IPA: [ˈɜːθ]), also referred to as "the Earth", "Planet Earth", "Terra", or "the World", is the third planet from the Sun and is the largest of the terrestrial planets. It is the only planet known to have liquid water on the surface and the only place in the universe found to harbor life. Earth has a magnetic field that, together with a primarily nitrogen-oxygen atmosphere, protects the surface from radiation that is harmful to life. The atmosphere also serves as a shield that causes smaller meteors to burn up before they strike the surface.
I left the age out as it is already part of the second paragraph. — RJH (talk) 23:12, 21 February 2007 (UTC)
You could add another name for it - Sol III. I saw that name on Nine Planets, a website I found. Ah2190 14:24, 21 February 2007 (UTC)
Do you know somebody who would actually use that name, outside of a Sci-fi novel. ;-) — RJH (talk) 22:58, 25 February 2007 (UTC)
I feel that the opening paragraph should say "the largest of the terrestrial planets in the solar system." Acknowledging that there are other planets outside our solar system that are terrestrial planets as far as we know. Just a thought Cobaltghost 23:48, 25 April 2007 (UTC)
Makes sense to me. — RJH (talk) 15:28, 26 April 2007 (UTC)

Contents need a re-org.

After looking over this article it seems to me that there are entirely too many penny-packet sections with less than a paragraph of content. The overall structure also seems a little random. So I tried to put together an organizational structure by grouping common content into major headings:

  1. History — past, present and future.
  2. Structure — shape, composition, internal structure and tectonic plates.
  3. Surface — surface, extreme points, pedosphere, hydrosphere, atmosphere and climate.
  4. Habitability — natural resources, land use, natural and environmental hazards, and human geography.
  5. Outer space — solar system, phases, magnetic field, and moon.
  6. Human viewpoint — descriptions, lexicography, and earth day.

If these makes sense, it should be possible to consolidate a number of the sub-topics as well. Any thoughts? — RJH (talk) 21:00, 23 February 2007 (UTC)

I implemented something like this organization: hopefully it is acceptible. There sure is a lot of redundancy in this article—it needs a good edit. — RJH (talk) 22:57, 25 February 2007 (UTC)


We know that the earth isn't quite spherical. It would be great to have an exaggerated picture of the earth to show where the bulges are. This could include the mountain ranges, to get a sense of how much of the earth's nonsphericalness is due to mountains and how much is due to large-scale shape. Perhaps NASA has that dataset? —Ben FrantzDale 17:23, 1 March 2007 (UTC)

A good idea in principle, since the Himalayas reach about 9km higher than the geoid and Earth's oblateness yields an equatorial radius of about 20km more than at the poles, so mountain range effects on this are appreciable. The only problem I foresee (apart from actually finding such a diagram) is that it would have to be a video of a rotating Earth to account for all the significant mountain ranges. Kris 09:40, 9 March 2007 (UTC)
This page has some info: [4] —Ben FrantzDale 19:43, 7 March 2007 (UTC)

Propose adding a new section that provides the actual earth radius (much like it is referenced in the facts box) and a footnote reference to the WGS84 standard. I'd also like to clean up some of the wording regarding the ellipsoid, geoid, oblate sphere, etc. Spaceman13 15:00, 11 May 2007 (UTC)

Please note that this is a summary-style article, and it's already quite large. A more in-depth coverage of that nature would seem more appropriate for the Figure of the Earth "main article" page. — RJH (talk) 15:22, 11 May 2007 (UTC)

Earth Day

I don't think there's a place for a paragraph on "Earth Day", at best it should be cross-referenced with a link in a "See Also" section. I propose we delete this bit. Kris 10:58, 3 March 2007 (UTC)

I agree. —Ben FrantzDale 13:08, 3 March 2007 (UTC)
I disagree - it's a global event, well-established, it's not very long (five sentences) and fits well within the "Human viewpoint" section. --Ckatzchatspy 17:30, 3 March 2007 (UTC)

I can see why some editors would want to keep it in but I don't think it flows with the Human Viewpoint section that well. The two other subsections refer to development of thought and study, whereas the Earth Day part is just tacked on the end describing events that go on to promote environmental issues and concerns. The rest of the article is also about studies of Earth phenomena and associated theories and facts, so this bit just doesn't fit for me. There's no harm in wikilinking to the main article though. Kris 10:36, 6 March 2007 (UTC)

The brief Earth Day section was converted to a link in the "See also" table. — RJH (talk) 23:29, 9 March 2007 (UTC)

Doubling Earth's radius?

"The moon formed soon afterwards, possibly as the result of a Mars-sized object, known as Theia, impacting the Earth in a glancing blow.[2] Most of this object's mass merged with the Earth, nearly doubling the planet's radius."

Doubling Earth's radius means quadrupling its volume, which a Mars-sized object cannot do since Mars has only a quarter of Earth's volume. --Bowlhover 21:25, 8 March 2007 (UTC)

Before you make edits on the article regarding a point brought up on the discussion page, wait for some responses and a consensus. I could be wrong here, because I'm no maths whizz, but I think perhaps you'd octuple the volume of a perfect sphere (given the formula for the volume of a sphere (V) is V = (4/3)πr3) if you double its radius. This is by using: (4/3)*π(2r)3 = (4/3)*π8r3. Kris 23:08, 8 March 2007 (UTC)
I completely agree with the point and thanks for bringing it up. The recent models only add about 10% to the Earth's mass,[5] so the radius increase should have been relatively small (~3%?). — RJH (talk) 23:40, 9 March 2007 (UTC)
Can we have some confirmation of the change in Earth's radius or mass? Reference 2 & 3 don't mention any change (only the size of the likely impactor and proto-moon). --JamesHoadley 19:32, 14 March 2007 (UTC)
Yeah the various articles on this topic are pretty fuzzy about the details, and the mass accretion varies based on the model selected. I'll weaken the text so it's not an issue. — RJH (talk) 23:11, 14 March 2007 (UTC)
Good, fine. --JamesHoadley 08:51, 15 March 2007 (UTC)
Wait, why would it increase the Earth's volume? Sure, some Ejecta would land on Earth, creating numerous craters, but don't forget that the asteroid would also destroy fragments of the Earth, not all of which would add to the Earth's volume, as some fragments would burn up in Earth's atmosphere, descend on the moon, or get blasted into space away from Earth's gravity. Thanks. AstroHurricane001(Talk+Contribs+Ubx) 00:15, 18 March 2007 (UTC)
Asteroid? This was a planet-sized body. Are you talking about the same topic? — RJH (talk) 19:30, 22 March 2007 (UTC)
LOL, do you know what burning up is? Burning something doesn't destroy it, the total mass of the reaction remains relatively unchanged, that's a law isn't it? It would make sense to assume that if a planet sized object collided with the earth and became the moon (Which is significantly smaller than a planet) the excess mass would have to go somewhere, and since the closest, and most applicable gravitational pull would be the earth, it is safe to assume that most of this mass was imparted onto the earth. Hence, the radius increased. Furthermore, I am quite distressed to think that mass could be destroyed, as it most definately cannot. It can be converted into enegry however, but the type of energy youre talking about, and the amount of it in question would probably be enough to blow a hole in the space time continuum. Therefore, I believe, (since no such hole exists at our current location) that the mass would be mostly conserved. thanks Glooper 08:29, 6 May 2007 (UTC)

Metres and feet

I've noticed that in some places the text gives both metres (or km) and feet, while in others only the metric values are shown. Should the page be consistent one way or the other? I would have no heartburn over dumping the old-English units but others may disagree. — RJH (talk) 23:28, 9 March 2007 (UTC)

Good point, I'm all for ditching the imperial units and introducing the more universal metric units consistently throughout. I doubt several million Americans would agree though, perhaps the traditional "m (ft)" format is the best way to go. The article definitely needs consistency in this regard though. Kris 09:26, 10 March 2007 (UTC)
Don't even ask how I managed to meander here, but for what it is worth to have a Canadian point of view, the "m (ft)" format is a good compromise, or go with "m" as being the 'scientific' preference. -- Kavri 23:53, 17 March 2007 (UTC)

NASA Worldbook

To be comprehensive, I think this page should cover most of the core topics described on the NASA World Book article. I don't think the page is quite there yet. For example, currently the Hydrosphere section doesn't cover the roles of the oceans as a heat and chemical reservoir. — RJH (talk) 15:55, 12 March 2007 (UTC)

Okay I think the Earth article now covers most of what is on the NASA/World Book article, although the later goes into much more detail and takes a simpler approach. Since this is a summary-style article, the somewhat brief approach in the wikipedia article is probably not an issue. (Readers can always drill down for more information.) Probably what's left now are to finish up the citations and perform a thorough copy editing. — RJH (talk) 21:05, 26 March 2007 (UTC)

I think the following entry: "The mean height of land above sea level is 686 m (426 ft)." Should be corrected. Either the feet of the meters value is wrong.

Good catch. I restored the correct value using the cited reference. Thanks. — RJH (talk) 15:18, 11 May 2007 (UTC)

A separate concern is the orbital and geologic table along the right edge. The earth's radius is listed as about 6 million KM. It should be 6 million METERS.

Alien race?

"Earth does not have a sovereign government with planet-wide authority. Independent sovereign nations claim all of the land surface except for some segments of Antarctica. There is a worldwide general international organization, the United Nations. The United Nations is primarily an international discussion forum with only limited ability to pass and enforce laws."

What the **edited out** is this? It sounds like it has been written for interplanetary space travellers. - Abscissa 18:57, 17 March 2007 (UTC)

How would you re-write that paragraph, sans the bar-room vernacular, so that the article is still comprehensive? — RJH (talk) 18:22, 19 March 2007 (UTC)
"All land on earth is divided into countries. Almost all countries are members of the United Nations." KEEP IT SIMPLE!!!!!!!!!!!!! - Abscissa 00:27, 20 March 2007 (UTC)
This isn't the simple English version of the article. Check the "In order languages" box to the left of the article page, then look for "simple English". I don't think there is any good reason to simplify this article's text to the extent you appear to prefer. — RJH (talk) 20:48, 20 March 2007 (UTC)

If that were true, the current article would be deleted and replaced with, "Mostly Harmless". Fephisto 17:25, 19 March 2007 (UTC)

Abscissa, it is an overview of the political units and governmental structure on Earth. Please moderate your language. — Knowledge Seeker 18:49, 19 March 2007 (UTC)
Question #2: who is it directed at? is it necessary? - Abscissa 00:27, 20 March 2007 (UTC)

The implication of saying "Earth does not have a sovereign government with planet-wide authority." is that there exists presently, or did exist at one time, intergalactic sovereign governments with planet-wide authority. You could also say, "Earth does not choose the leader of the planet by holding martian elections." This is, by the way, a true statement, but notice how this implies that there are other planets that choose a planetary leader through martian elections. - Abscissa 23:39, 21 March 2007 (UTC)
To extrapolate that statement into an implication concerning an intergalactic sovereign government is logically absurd. One could be comparing it to groups of nations, for example. E.g. the European Union, the British Empire or the Autran-Hungarian Empire. Also this article could be considered part of a series on the Solar System planets, so I don't think an outside perspective is necessarily a bad thing. The layout, for example, is similar to the FA'd articles for Mercury, Venus, & Jupiter. — RJH (talk) 14:44, 22 March 2007 (UTC)

Absicca's change has been reverted - the text does not imply "intergalactic sovereign governments" (or anything even remotely similar). As mentioned above, this is not the Simple English edition. (No disrespect whatsoever to that version, but the English Wikipedia can presume a certain level of comprehension from its audience and the text should reflect that.) --Ckatzchatspy 00:33, 22 March 2007 (UTC)

Is the goal then of the "non simple English" Wikipedia to be as convoluted and confusing as possible? - Abscissa 00:39, 22 March 2007 (UTC)
I guess, Abscissa, that the rest of us don't consider the text to be confusing. I personally think it's pretty clear. I don't see how any reasonable person could make any sort of inference about intergalactic governments from that; that's a ridiculously large jump. The version you proposed above does have merits, and it would fit the format of the Simple English Wikipedia. It's not easy to write in simple, clear terms, explaining the fundamentals, and perhaps you should consider contributing there. It might fit your goals better than this version does. — Knowledge Seeker 18:35, 22 March 2007 (UTC)

I've had to revert Abscissa's changes again, as they appear to be contrary to the preferences outlined above. However, in an attempt to address his/her concerns, I've reorganized and slightly reworded the text for clarity. Please take a look and let me know what you think. --Ckatzchatspy 20:26, 22 March 2007 (UTC)

Rewrite of paragraph on sovereign nations

The following versions of this paragraph have appeared over the past couple of days:

  1. Original: There are 267 administrative divisions, including nations, dependent areas, other, and miscellaneous entries. Earth does not have a sovereign government with planet-wide authority. Independent sovereign nations claim all of the land surface except for some segments of Antarctica. There is a worldwide general international organization, the United Nations. The United Nations is primarily an international discussion forum with only limited ability to pass and enforce laws.
  2. Rewrite #1 by RJHall: There are 267 administrative divisions, including nations, dependent areas, other, and miscellaneous entries. Historically, Earth has never had a sovereign government with authority over the entire globe, although a number of nation-states have striven for world domination. Independent sovereign nations claim all of the land surface except for some segments of Antarctica. The United Nations is a worldwide general international organization, but it is primarily an international discussion forum with only limited ability to pass and enforce laws.
  3. Rewrite #2 by Abscissa : All land on Earth (with the exception of part of Antarctica) is divided into 267 nations or special regions. Almost every nation is a member of the United Nations. The United Nations is more of an official international forum for discussion, with no ability to enforce international law.
  4. Rewrite #3 by RJHall: All land on Earth (with the exception of part of Antarctica) is divided into 267 nations or special regions. Although there is no sovereign government with authority over the entire globe, most nations are signatories to treaties of International law that, to some degree, govern their relations. The United Nations is a worldwide general international organization, but it is primarily an international discussion forum with only limited ability to pass and enforce laws.
  5. Rewrite #4 by Ckatz: Independent sovereign nations claim all of the planet's land surface, with the exception of some parts of Antarctica. There are 267 distinct administrative divisions, including nations, dependent areas, and other entries. Historically, Earth has never had a sovereign government with authority over the entire globe, although a number of nation-states have striven for world domination. The United Nations is a worldwide intergovernmental organization, but it serves primarily as an international discussion forum, with a limited ability to pass and enforce laws. (this was based on RJHall's first rewrite, as I didn't notice RJ's second rewrite until it was posted here - Ckatz)

The paragraph was then reverted to Rewrite #1 by Ckatz. I've been attempting to compromise between the viewpoints expressed, but apparently not successfully. We need to reach a consensus on how to write this paragraph before this turns into an edit war. Please comment. Thanks. — RJH (talk) 21:58, 22 March 2007 (UTC)

Rewrite #3 is perfectly fine. Ckatz seems to think that I have some hidden agenda to remove information, or I am trying to subert the article with simplicity. In fact, I am trying to improve the article. "Concise writing comes quickly to the point. It avoids wordiness—unnecessary and repetitious words that add nothing to the meaning." Ideas require clarity and distinctness to be communicated effectively. Let us take a look at what the paragraph is trying to communicate. There are three clear and distinct ideas: 1. There are 267 regions on Earth; 2. There is no international government; 3. The closest thing to international government is the United Nations.

Everything else is just wordy nonsense. Perhaps Ckatz would be kind enough to enlighten us as to what a general reader will reap from the first paragraph that he will sorely miss from a simpler, clearer version. - Abscissa 23:04, 22 March 2007 (UTC)

Abscissa, please don't put words into my mouth, or presume my intentions. Remember, you're the one who went and changed the text despite opposition from other editors. As to RJHall's note above, I've amended it slightly to better reflect the path to the current version, which is actually a reworking version of his first rewrite - and not just a revert. Now that I see RJHall's second version, I think it gives a good starting point for continuing this process. (I'm more than willing to participate in refining the section to help alleviate Abscessa's concerns, provided it is not oversimplified to the degree of what he/she originally presented.) --Ckatzchatspy 02:46, 23 March 2007 (UTC)
Re-write #4 is even worse than what was there before. After I have asked serveral times (including on his talk page), Ckatz is unable or unwilling to tell me what the paragraph is trying to say, or the advantages of an unnecessarily complex paragraph. I am not sure that he is able to recognise the distinct ideas within the paragraph. If one cannot realise how absurdly stupid the paragraph is, it's his own loss. Maybe get a second opinion from an English or Philosophy teacher. - Abscissa 04:40, 23 March 2007 (UTC) And P.S., I am very curious to learn how the UN enforces international law at all. Perhaps you can tack it on to the paragraph.

RJHall, if you'd like input on the text, I'll be glad to work with you. However, I'm not willing to put up with what I feel is an unfair (and unduly aggressive) attitude from Abscissa. Thank you for your efforts with regards to the paragraph. --Ckatzchatspy 08:31, 23 March 2007 (UTC)

If you think I am going to take this apparent flamebait, you are sorely mistaken. Almost 5 years on Wikipedia and I have never seen such poor writing defended so passionately, especially since it is evident I have no bias nor am I trying to disrupt the article. Please be kind enough to solicit the peer-review of some of your real life colleagues. Mine had this to say: "That is the biggest piece of 5!@7 paragraph I've read in a while. So yes, I would say that needs re-writing." - Abscissa 16:32, 24 March 2007 (UTC)
Thanks Ckatz. The paragraph encompasses five ideas, rather than three as Abscissa suggested. All are related to the important topics of nation-states and international government, and each is appropriate (at this high level) to a section on human geography. The page has undergone peer review and group collaboration, so it has been reviewed by multiple people. As long as the current elements are retained by the paragraph, I have absolutely no issue with having it rewritten into a better form. But I find it objectionable to have relevant information removed from the article, and I acted accordingly. — RJH (talk) 17:08, 24 March 2007 (UTC)
One particular user, who I will not name, has contributed to various anti-Semitic articles and his/her intentions are quite clear. Therefore I will abstain from further discussion, and therefore I will leave it amongst yourselves to decide what to do with that horrible paragraph. RJHall did very well, I thought. An example of an outstanding Wikipedia user who tries for a comprise between reality and consensus. - Abscissa 22:06, 24 March 2007 (UTC)
Anti-semitic? I'm not sure I follow... but no matter. Given your somewhat combative attitude earlier I'm not sure why you're being flattering now. Thanks though. — RJH (talk) 16:03, 26 March 2007 (UTC)

GA in zh.wikipedia

Please add {{Link GA|zh}} in interwiki section. Thanks! -- Givegains 13:32, 23 March 2007 (UTC)

Picture size

Guys, I don't know whose bright idea it was to include the Earth lights picture (The Earth at night) in the article with the current resolution of 16384 by 8192! Do you want to see your own house or something?

Anyway if you are to include a picture SCALE IT DOWN FIRST. This is less then helpful and borders on stupidity. At the moment I am VERY tempted to delete it. Please scale it down or I will give it the chop. Cheers 15:11, 25 March 2007 (UTC)

I'm just curious - what is the problem with the image as is? It is already scaled down for display on the page. In order to get the large version, you have to click on the image, and then click again to get to the full-res image. --Ckatzchatspy 17:59, 25 March 2007 (UTC)
Some Problems
  • Loading time (imagine trying to get that on dial-up) - excessively long
  • Browser Hang due to image size
  • System crash on weaker systems (can definitely happen on 9x systems or computers with lower hardware specifications)
  • Unnecessary use of system resources.
Think of the actual image size - it is as large as a wall, why is such a level of detail required? Besides it causes problems. 01:28, 26 March 2007 (UTC)
I'm afraid you're not making any sense. The version displayed in the article is 380×190 pixels; it is only 5.53 kilobytes. That should not cause problems even on precarious systems. A user would have to click on the image to see the larger-resolution version (1280×640 pixels; 47 kilobytes). That is quite a reasonable size for the Internet and certainly not "as large as a wall". To see the full-sized version, the reader would again have to follow the link, which warns "Image in higher resolution (16384 × 8192 pixel, file size: 8.11 MB, MIME type: image/jpeg)". If readers have such unstable systems that they cannot display large images, or if they are on slow connections, they should not deliberately load the full-sized version. There is no need to restrict the size of images available just because there are users who lack the self-control to deliberately download files their systems cannot handle. If it causes problems for you, then don't access it in the first place. — Knowledge Seeker 02:35, 26 March 2007 (UTC)
Fact - opening the file in your browser will most likely cause it to hang - try it, so don't give me the "self control" crap. In regards to the fact that there is warning on the page - my bad, as for some reason when I clicked on the image in the article I instantly stated to download the full resolution composite in my browser, which caused it to hang. The topic is resolved as I didn't get to see the pre-image screen.
Cheers 08:43, 26 March 2007 (UTC)
I can easily view the full-sized picture in my browser, both at home and at work. I'm sorry that it doesn't work on your system. — Knowledge Seeker 11:56, 26 March 2007 (UTC)
It works fine for me as well. I can understand why the large version of the image might cause issues, but this is apparently just the reduced-size version. Maybe this is the result of a misunderstanding? — RJH (talk) 16:17, 26 March 2007 (UTC)

Guys, it's all good. Like I’ve stated before when I clicked on the image on the article I started to download the full resolution image without seeing the intermediate screen. This caused my browser to hang. I wasn't happy about it because I didn't see the screen in between the thumbnail and full sized picture which actually states that the size of the picture (over 8Mb) and a warning regarding opening the picture with the browser. Therefore I do not have a problem with the current picture. I'm checking wether that incident was a one of or there are other incidents in Wikipedia where clicking on a thumbnail causes the browser to download the full version picture without the intermediate screen.

This topic is resolved and I retract my initial message.

Keep up the good work on the article. 06:00, 27 March 2007 (UTC)

Thanks; perhaps you initially encountered some glitch, but I'm glad it has worked out. Let me know if you encounter any other problems. — Knowledge Seeker 03:19, 29 March 2007 (UTC)

Rotations and solar days

From the third paragraph, "At present the Earth orbits the Sun once for every roughly 365.26 times it rotates about its axis — a period known as the sidereal year".

Noting the sidereal frame of reference, shouldn't the Earth be considered to rotate about its axis once every sidereal day, or about 366.26 times a year? If that would be thought too confusing for such an early paragraph, perhaps it should be rephrased to explicitly refer to solar days instead of rotations.

RTBoyce 18:10, 27 March 2007 (UTC)

An excellent point. Perhaps, after the above correction, the value in solar days should then be included in parentheses for clarity? Something like this:
At present the Earth orbits the Sun once for every roughly 366.26 times it rotates about its axis (or 365.26 solar days)—a period known as the sidereal year.
But that is starting to look a little cluttered. — RJH (talk) 17:36, 28 March 2007 (UTC)

Much better now. :) RTBoyce 18:27, 2 April 2007 (UTC)


Can we left align some of these images? The reader with a high resoltion computer screen is treated to no less than an eight inch blank gap in the early section of the text. Yeesh, talk about ugly. Quadzilla99 03:53, 31 March 2007 (UTC)

I attempted to address this. — RJH (talk) 15:57, 1 April 2007 (UTC)

Persistent vandalism

I noticed that since the protection has been removed this page has already been subjected to a mass of vandalism. The wide scope of the topic probably makes it an attractive target, so it will always suffer an undue amount of these unhelpful "revisions". I'm expecting that whatever quality the page possessed will now start to slide, at least without a lot of constant monitoring. So I don't think the removal of the protection status will prove helpful. — RJH (talk) 16:29, 31 March 2007 (UTC)

Question on Flat Earth Society paragraph

The following paragraph appears in the "Human viewpoint" section:

A 19th-century organization called the Flat Earth Society advocated the even-then discredited idea that the Earth was actually disc-shaped, with the North Pole at its center and a 50 m (150 ft) high wall of ice at the outer edge. It and similar organizations continued to promote this idea, based on religious beliefs and conspiracy theories, through the 1970s. Today, the subject is more frequently treated tongue-in-cheek or with mockery.

This doesn't seem a very notable entry in the wider context. It appears that at best this group had a few thousand followers and the particular views don't represent a wide-spread belief. The topic is also covered on the Flat Earth article page. So is there any objection to the removal of this paragraph from the Earth article? — RJH (talk) 17:19, 31 March 2007 (UTC)

No objection, so the paragraph was yanked. — RJH (talk) 22:34, 18 April 2007 (UTC)

Why is it called Earth?

Wouldn't Terra match the other planets' names better? -Working for Him 02:29, 4 April 2007 (UTC)

"Earth" comes from words for the ground, land, etc. that predate Old English. ptkfgs 03:11, 4 April 2007 (UTC)
"Earth" is also common usage, and is the more likely search term. "Terra" is french/latin.[6]RJH (talk) 14:56, 4 April 2007 (UTC)
ooh I don't know, all my freinds refer to as "Terra" i'd say that is by far the most commen usage in fact I don't even thing Earth is in the dictionary.--Wiggstar69 11:21, 5 April 2007 (UTC)
As a matter of fact, it is. — Knowledge Seeker 20:06, 7 April 2007 (UTC)
Interesting that it is only listed as the 4th meaning. Personally I find Sol3 a better alternative as name for for Earth. After "Earth" of course. --Walter Do you have news? Report it to Wikizine 14:57, 10 April 2007 (UTC)
Why not call it "Big blue/green place where we live, it looks round but it is really bumpy"? HighInBC(Need help? Ask me) 15:00, 10 April 2007 (UTC)
This does not appear to be a serious discussion. Good day. — RJH (talk) 15:21, 10 April 2007 (UTC)

What I'm saying is every other planet in the Solar System is named after a Roman god or goddess, so why is it called "earth" when the Roman goddess of earth is named Terra. -Working for Him 21:50, 12 April 2007 (UTC)

  • Obviously, this is not a discussion that can be resolved here. As well-reasoned as the argument may be, re-naming the planet would be a ridiculous endeavor, even for Wikipedia.
Well thank-you for the straight answer instead of making me feel like a moron like what these *Edited Out* did! -Working for Him 17:51, 26 April 2007 (UTC)
I apologize. My name probably makes me look rather hypocritical. I cause some rather unnecessary confrontation. -Working for Him 21:08, 29 April 2007 (UTC)

Wikipedia is an online encyclopedia, is it not? I don't believe that it has the authority, nor the means to question the name of something as large as a planet. The planet should be reffered to as Earth on this wiki page, as that is the name by which the majority of modern (English speaking) society calls it. From this perspective, I believe that no further discussion is required. However, it may be interesting and/or useful to include a summary of where the name Earth came from in the first place, but since this would probably take effort, and since it is only a minor point, I shant be doing it. Glooper 09:31, 6 May 2007 (UTC)

Future, reference?

The article says: "But even if the Sun were eternal and stable, the continued internal cooling of the Earth would have resulted in a loss of much of its atmosphere and oceans (due to lower volcanism).[91] More specifically, for Earth's oceans, the lower temperatures in the crust will permit water to leak more deeply into the planet than it does today. (At present, water evaporates at a sufficient depth due to increasing temperature.)"

This statement is highly intriguing, and I want to know more. However, the reference doesn't point to anything substantial. What I want to know, is where is this information from (reference)? Specifically, I am interested in how the cooling of the core would result in loss of the atmosphere and the oceans. I crawled the web and have found no information on this. Any insight would be helpful. Nja247 (talkcontribs) 23:46, 10 April 2007 (UTC)

This (PDF) article suggests that only a portion of the Earth's oceans will be subducted. The remainder will be outgassed in 1.3 Gyr due to solar luminosity increases. I'm not sure which of these two references is more accurate. But it should probably be reflected in the article. — RJH (talk) 20:16, 11 April 2007 (UTC)
Thank you for the link. This is quite interesting. I agree, things could be clarified slightly in the article. Thanks again. Nja247 (talkcontribs) 21:48, 11 April 2007 (UTC)

It is theroised that the earth will end when the sun goes out in 5 Gyrs, but our galiaxy will collide with Andromida in about 3 Gyrs. the turmoil that will ensue may cause an ending of the solar system includung earth.

Yes, it's possible. There are a number of scenarios for how the world might end within that time frame, such as a gamma ray burst, a nearby supernova event, a grazing encounter with another star, &c. — RJH (talk) 17:12, 19 April 2007 (UTC)

Earth's satellites

The Earth's Satellites. Ambiguous?

I believe, and I could be wrong, but I believe that the moon is the Earth's only natural satellite (and that's if we're being fussy and not including Cruithne) but we have many man made satellites, so shouldn't that be included in the concise facts on the top right? Or at least changed to : Natural Satellites: 1. (The Moon)." As oppose to "Satellites: 1. (The Moon)".

I would agree with this (note that the same will have to be done to Mercury, Venus, Mars, Jupiter, and Saturn!) Spaceman13 14:34, 11 May 2007 (UTC)

The Earth's Satellites.

I believe, and I could be wrong, but I believe that the moon is the Earth's only natural satellite (that is if we're being fussy and not including Cruithne) but we have many man made satellites, so shouldn't that be included in the concise fact on the top right? Or at least changed to: "Natural Satellites: 1. (The Moon)." —The preceding unsigned comment was added by Matthewhaworth (talkcontribs) 02:43, 13 April 2007 (UTC).

Personally I don't feel that this is the right place for a list of the Earth's artificial satellites. That could get unwieldy and I think the information is at too detailed a level for the scope of this article. (Just have a look at Category:Earth observation satellites, for example.) However, some (referenced) mention of artificial satellites would probably be appropriate for the Observation section. Would that make sense? — RJH (talk) 17:50, 13 April 2007 (UTC)
I hate to add the same comment twice to the talk page. Perhaps someone should delete the first paragraph of the talk page, since it covers the same as this paragraph? In any case, while I don't think we should list all the artificial satellites, for correctness the facts box should say "Natural Satellites" as the earth does have thousands of artificial satellites (or satellite/rocket parts). Spaceman13 14:44, 11 May 2007 (UTC)
Okay they have been merged into a single section. I didn't want to just blank out the comments. — RJH (talk) 15:25, 11 May 2007 (UTC)

Shouldn't this article mention that earth is our home planet?

After all, some people may actually not be aware our planet is called Earth. I mean seriously, someone might not know that (not likely, sure). Like, they might come to this page and think we're talking about some planet made of dirt, hence the name earth, but where's home?

I just think it makes sense, even if it's obvious, to state early in the lead that Earth is the planet on which we/humans live. Just the same as how the article on Milky Way points out that it is the home of the solar system (even though most people know this). --Alfakim-- talk 02:46, 15 April 2007 (UTC)

The third sentence reads "The Earth is the first planet known to have liquid water on the surface and is the only place in the universe known to harbor life." Do you find this statement insufficient? — Knowledge Seeker 03:21, 15 April 2007 (UTC)
  • Who exactly do you think is reading this article? —Preceding unsigned comment added by (talkcontribs)
    • Anyone, that's the idea. Yes, I do mean on earth, but like I said... it seems counter to intention to assume knowledge. --Alfakim-- talk 21:57, 17 April 2007 (UTC)
I added a very brief mention. But if the wording of that blurb starts to become an issue (due to a discussion of the space station for example), then it would be best just to lop it back out. — RJH (talk) 22:46, 16 April 2007 (UTC)
I've tweaked your note slightly, moving it to the first paragraph. (As it was, the preceding text said "...only place in the universe known to harbor life, including the human race." If it's the only place, it would have to include humanity.) Check out what I've done, and please modify if need be. Cheers. --Ckatzchatspy 09:36, 17 April 2007 (UTC)
Thanks Ckatz, that works for me. Yes I was aware of the logical redundancy. — RJH (talk) 15:51, 17 April 2007 (UTC)

Much better :) --Alfakim-- talk 21:57, 17 April 2007 (UTC)

LOL im sorry but if someone is logging on to an english wikipedia via the Internet im pretty sure they know the name of the planet they live on.-- 23:13, 26 April 2007 (UTC)

Hill Sphere

"The Hill sphere (gravitational sphere of influence) of the Earth is about 1.5 Gm (930,000 miles) in radius.[62][63] This is maximum distance at which the Earth's gravitational influence becomes stronger than the more distant Sun and planets. Objects must orbit the Earth within this radius, or they can become unbound by the gravitational perturbation of the Sun."

This is wrong. The Sun's gravity becomes stronger around 258,000 km. G*Msun/150,000,000,000^2 =~ G*Mearth/258,000,000^2 (in meters). Also saying that "this is the maximum distance at which the Earth's gravitational influence becomes stronger" implies that there are lesser distances where the Earth's gravity becomes stronger. Perhaps rephrase to "This is the distance at which...". Also, the gravity of the other planets are insignificant when considering Earth's Hill Sphere. —Preceding unsigned comment added by Tony873004 (talkcontribs)

I may be wrong, but I believe the Hill sphere is looking at gravitational perturbations rather than just the magnitude of the gravitational force. So it falls off as the cube-root of the masses rather than the square. This gives a different result than just looking at the net force. (It strikes me as being similar to the tidal force in that sense.) The influence of the planets can be significant at large distances from the Sun. (Neptune has the largest Hill radius, for example.) — RJH (talk) 19:31, 24 April 2007 (UTC)

Improving Clarity

"The rotation of the Earth creates the equatorial bulge so that the equatorial diameter is 43 km (27 mi) larger than the pole to pole diameter."

Since earth circumference numbers are provided (Equatorial 40,075.02, Meridional 40,007.86 km), why not replace the above quote with "The rotation of the Earth creates the equatorial bulge so that the equatorial _circumference_ is 67km (xx mi) larger than the pole to pole circumference"? In this case, I find shifting from circumference to diameter less intuitive than sticking with circumference. —The preceding unsigned comment was added by Slawek7 (talkcontribs) 04:28, 29 April 2007 (UTC).

Both radius and circumference are listed in the infobox. — RJH (talk) 17:54, 29 April 2007 (UTC)

earth has life and water and is knawn as the living world.

  1. ^ Whitehouse, David. 2001. "Planet Earth on the move." BBC.