RIP Sir Patrick Moore

He had some radical ideas on certain things but he was a fascinating cove who did a great deal for astronomy. I still refer to my Observer Book Of Astronomy which he wrote. He had a great innings and as a cricket lover I hope he was aware of today's result from Calcutta.
R.I.P Patrick

He is THE man who got me interested in science and astronomy. He has had a fantastic innings and leaves an incredible legacy. His influence on the lives of so many people is, and will continue to be, incalculable. Missed but never forgotten one of history's great people.
What a shame, had a fair old innings though. A truly great British eccentric, may he rest in peace.
Sir Patrick was a tv legend but also a good friend to my grandmother when she was alive so todays news is doubly sad for me. I met him a number if times growing up and he was what you saw on tv, affable, bubbly and slightly bumbling in an endearing way, although he was quite sharp when he had a point to make.

My parents were both astronomers and my dad was on Sir Patrick's programme a number of times. So was my brother once in one of those shots of kids looking up a telescope. (I was on the cutting room floor.)

Sad, yes, but I don't think you can be too sad when someone dies at such a grand old age and having achieved so much. The world will not be the same for the contribution made by Sir Patrick. RIP.
Like everyone else he was the one who gave me some interest in Astronomy. His programmes were a delight, he always treated people with respect, giving his visitors centre stage when other presenters have visitors on to show how good they are themselves.
I only found out he had passed away this morning. Yet yesterday coincidently I watched the last 2 episodes of his shows. I said to myself at the time that he looked rather poorly, on his last show in particularly he was looking pale and his speech was rather mumbled.

I think I have watched at least 75% of 'The Sky at Night' tv shows since I became hooked at a young age. It was at a lecture in Edinburgh around 15 years ago that Sir Patrick convinced me to make the investment in a telescope. I have read several of his books including his biography a fascinating and great man who will be missed.

Another of my childhood heroes who has passed away, I'm sure Senna will be good company.

Tonight at 10.35pm on BBC1....Sir Patrick Moore: Astronomer, Broadcaster & Eccentic.
A look back at the extraordinary life of Sir Patrick Moore, focusing on his work.
With contributions from Brian May & Sir Tim Rice..
Quite an interesting programme, well worth watching.

As an aside, I wonder just how much had been pre-recorded for when the inevitable happened. Newspapers have obituaries of famous people ready for the event.
I'd sign a petition to give the franchise to Brian Cox and give him a regular prime time slot, but the Beeb have squeezed TS@N and lost what it was all about in the first place: to give the public access to the truth about space. 50 years ago, people still believed in little green men so something has gone right at least.

The problem with astronomers is that they are all so clever. They forget that what is obvious to them is bizarre to most other people (take space time for example), so a TV show has to dumb it down to some degree, gethinceri, or no one will get it. I've sat through lectures by the Astronomer Royal as well as other leading astro physicists and I get about 25% of what they are saying - if you let these people go, they lose almost everyone.

TS@N was always dumbed down, but Sir Patrick got the level right for the audience and the time. I remember the show 30 odd years ago that I was on - they used us children looking up a telescope of Saturn's and its rings, being told to say it looked like a fried egg or something.

When my old man went on the show to explain how he had worked out the way to determine the mass of a black hole, he took one of my conkers on a string and spun it around in the interview to explain his method. The conker was a star and it spun faster the more force he used on the string. Force was of course a proxy for gravity and from gravity you can determine mass. By using a conker, he bridged the gap in his explanation between scientific theory and a reality that was familiar to the audience.

For me that's what Cox does in his explanations too, although maybe he strays too far into supposition to be everyone's cup of tea. The point is that astronomy could still be wildly popular but it needs someone with a wide range of scientific and presentation skills for it to work.
I loved The Sky At Night, for many years, but it's lost itself recently and I watch it if I stumble across it rather than make a deliberate point as I used.
Brian Cox what a hideous little man, things can will only get better when he stops appearing on TV, he could never fill the shoes Patrick.
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