This book will provide you with concise informative guides to avoid the pitfalls and misleading marketing when purchasing a telescope or other beginner astronomy equipment for yourself or others. This is NOT a buyer's guide for specific makes and models of equipment because such guides become quickly outdated and useless. This book will teach you how to determine for yourself what equipment best suites your needs. The misleading marketing of some telescopes is so bad that in my opinion it is even more flagrant than the marketing of "snake oil" alternative medicine products. But at least you won't be spending your health care money on beginner telescopes (that comes later after you are more involved in the hobby). With some products you can trust that a name-brand version is a good choice, even if you know very little about the product.. Unfortunately, that is no help with beginner scopes. Strangely, a large number of high end professional telescope companies make junk toy telescopes and use misleading marketing and advertising for these scopes. The aim of this book is to be a short, concise guide to becoming not only an educated consumer when shopping for a first telescope, but also to make sure you are not disappointed with your first experiences using an amateur telescope.
It was a land of splintered peaks, of deep, dry gorges, of barren mesas burnt by the suns of a million torrid summers. The normal condition of it was warfare. Life here had to protect itself with a tough, callous rind, to attack with a swift, deadly sting. Only the fit survived. But moonlight had magically touched the hot, wrinkled earth with a fairy godmother's wand. It was bathed in a weird, mysterious beauty. Into the crotches of the hills lakes of wondrous color had been poured at sunset. The crests had flamed with crowns of glory, the canons become deep pools of blue and purple shadow. Blurred by kindly darkness, the gaunt ridges had softened to pastels of violet and bony mountains to splendid sentinels keeping watch over a gulf of starlit space. Around the camp-fire the drivers of the trail herd squatted on their heels or lay sprawled at indolent ease. The glow of the leaping flames from the twisted mesquite lit their lean faces, tanned to bronzed health by the beat of an untempered sun and the sweep of parched winds. Most of them were still young, scarcely out of their boyhood; a few had reached maturity. But all were products of the desert. The high-heeled boots, the leather chaps, the kerchiefs knotted round the neck, were worn at its insistence. Upon every line of their features, every shade of their thought, it had stamped its brand indelibly."
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