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Wikenigma - an Encyclopaedia of Unknowns Wikenigma - an Encyclopaedia of the Unknown Science

Galaxies (definition of)

“What exactly is a galaxy? Surprising as it may sound, astronomers don't have an answer to this fundamental question. There's no agreement on when a collection of stars stops being a cluster and starts being something more.
You might think a galaxy is simply a large group of stars, but just how many stars does it take? Astronomers tend to call five or so stars a 'group' and a hundred or more a 'cluster'. At some point, a cluster becomes a galaxy—the Oxford English Dictionary suggests 'millions or billions' of stars is enough—but there has never been an official threshold.”
source: Science Magazine, 2011

Also see : Sorites paradoxplugin-autotooltip__plain plugin-autotooltip_bigSorites paradox

The sorites paradox is a philosophical problem dating from the time of (at least) Ancient Greece.

It relates to the problem of defining groups - specifically large groups. It has implications for the definitions of 'vagueness' 'fuzziness' 'bluriness' e…


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