Re: Evidence for "Big Bang Theory"

Dan Drake (
20 Apr 1995 23:51:59 GMT

In message <3n1nrl$> - David Bos <>
>Right, this has been bothering me. Isn't the general idea still that
>redshifts must be caused by difference in velocity? While we know that
>redshift can be caused by other things and that we can realy only measure
>redshift, and not velocity.

What other things? Apart, that is, from gravitational fields, which would be
a really atrocious explanation of the cosmological (whoops, allegedly
cosmological) red-shifts. I know that in the 50s people were looking at
possible alternate explanations--in fact, the Big Bang made people
uncomfortable enough that some of them wondered about completely unknown
effects that would make light "get tired" when it went huge
distances--but nothing apparently came of these speculations. Are there
other known or reasonably conjectured and falsifiable explanations for red

BTW some knowledge of recent history of science is useful in discussing
science. There are people who talk as if astronomers jumped to the Big Bang
theory because of cultural or religious bias and never seriously looked at
alternatives; these people weren't around 30 or 40 years ago
when alternatives were being discussed quite seriously and rejected
because they didn't work. I've chosen to be charitable here in assigning
motives; but even so, assuming that other people are making unwarranted
assumptions is not always warranted.

Dan Drake