Wednesday, September 25, 2013

"The Scientific Method vrs Farting around in the Dark"

Escher Stairs
This title above was actually a hilarious one I found on TED Talk by Neuroscientist Stuart Firestein who speaks about the "Pursuit of Ignorance". One of the fascinating things he pointed out was that having the ability of acquiring great knowledge and/or obtaining massive amounts of informational content is not the most important thing. He stresses that although it is important for a Scientist or researcher to have knowledge and information which is certainly necessary to be one, in the end it means nothing without wisdom to use it properly. Obviously wisdom and practical application play important roles, otherwise, such an intellect is nothing more than a stale lifeless version of a data storage program within a supercomputer. Oddly enough, there are actually individuals out there who aspire to becoming such a living entity. I think this is why such fields as biomimicry or Biomemetics are extremely important disciplines within science as they tend to dump much the old guard philosophy, ideology and religiosity that often times infect much of science like a disease and brings it back down to Earth with the old neutral position of the scientific method once again.  

"To the making of many books there is no end, and
 much devotion to them is wearisome to the flesh"
One of the best points he made in his TED Talk was about very young children who are just starting out in School with all their curiosity and hunger for learning are naturally attracted to science as a subject at an early age. Funny, I remember that. Fortunately for me it only became a private addiction. One which I often have to control. The reason for this interest from 2nd grade Elementary School level of course is their natural inner desire of curiosity to explore things, take them apart and investigate newer and newer things. But he also mentions that by grade 11 or 12, that fewer than 10% of them have any interest in things scientific (discovery & wonder) is almost totally gone as the majority don't even have an interest in pursuing anything scientific as a career. Hmmm, maybe one could blame the age of lazy consumerism for that. People today are overwhelmed with masses of informational content coming from all directions. Much of that information throughout history has been worthless. Seriously, look at the unhealthful condition of our planet's natural world and lack of any cohesive unity among mankind. Today when students or people in general are asked to research something or find out for about any subject for themselves, their source of information is usually a quick Google or Wikipedia search. Nobody likes real discovery outdoors anymore. Well anyway, enjoy the TED Talk below.
Stuart Firestein Science: "Like Farting Around in the Dark"

Further reading references on the same subject:
Science which was once Curiosity & Discovery driven, now replaced by Corporate Science - So What Happened ? 
How do People figure out whom to Trust in a Scientific Controversy?

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