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1 Caption: Prague, 1605.
1 Johannes Kepler: Aha! Tycho's observations lead to four laws of planetary motion! Firstly, the planets move in ellipses, not circles!
2 Johannes Kepler: Secondly, they sweep out equal areas in equal times. Thirdly, the square of the period is as the cube of the major radius. And fourthly and most importantly...
3 SFX: ZUUURCH!! {time machine appears}
4 Isaac Newton: Johannes Kepler?
4 Johannes Kepler: Yes? Err... sorry, what was I thinking just now?
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Johannes Kepler has been mentioned before in these annotations. He is most famous for his laws of planetary motion:
A theoretical basis for Kepler's laws had to wait for a certain Isaac Newton. Nevertheless, Kepler's deductions played a crucial part in the unravelling of the mysteries of planetary motion.
Kepler lived the last years of his life in Regensburg, Germany  a town I visited in 2007. Naturally I visited his home, which has since been turned into a small museum. I took the photo at right in an upstairs room  probably Kepler's bedroom. Being a 17th century house, the building is slightly cramped by modern standards, and the walls and floors have subsided and settled a bit. In particular, there is a beam over the staircase that is a bit low, and I banged my head into it while walking down the stairs.
I like to think that Johannes Kepler himself also banged hs head into that very same beam on a few occasions.
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