08 JAN 2018 by ideonexus

 Negative Attention is Better Than No Attention at All

To give and receive attention is a fundamental human need. In the 13th century, King Frederick II of Sicily wanted to find out what language children would naturally grow up to speak if they were never spoken to. He took babies from their mothers at birth and placed them in the care of nurses who were strictly forbidden to either speak to or touch them. The babies, as it turned out, didn’t grow up to speak any language, as they all died of attention deprivation within a fortnight of the sta...
Folksonomies: parenting attention focus
Folksonomies: parenting attention focus
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29 DEC 2016 by ideonexus

 How Science Fiction Got Its Start with Frakenstein

It’s not completely fanciful to say that science fiction began with three things: a dead frog, a volcano, and a teenage bride. The dead frog was one that an Italian physician named Luigi Galvani was experimenting with in the 1780s, when he found that a mild electric shock could cause the frog’s leg to twitch. It was just an induced muscle reflex, but it suggested that there might be a connection between electricity and life. The volcano was Mount Tambora in Indonesia, which exploded in ...
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30 JAN 2015 by ideonexus

 PETWHAC

PETWHAC stands for Population of Events That Would Have Appeared Coincidental. Population may seem an odd word, but it is the correct statistical term. I won't keep using capital letters because they stand so unattractively on the page. Somebody's watch stopping within ten seconds of the psychic's incantation obviously belongs within the petwhac, but so do many other events. Strictly speaking, the grandfather clock's stopping should not be included. The mystic did not claim that he could stop...
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02 MAY 2013 by ideonexus

 Stand Alone Complex

Laughing Man: Who knew that copies could still be produced despite the absence of the original? If you had to give a name to this phenomenon, what would you label it? Motoko: It would be "Stand Alone Complex" Laughing Man: Yes, it's the stand alone complex. From the start the very nature of our current social system has contained the mechanisms to trigger such an amazing occurrence. Personally however, I feel this marks the beginning of a new era of despair. What's your opinion? Motoko: I ...
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The concept of many people getting the same idea, giving the appearance of either coordination or copycat behavior, but there is no originating even to copy.

08 JUN 2012 by ideonexus

 The Problem with Paradigms

The success of the paradigm... is at the start largely a promise of success ... Normal science consists in the actualization of that promise... Mopping up operations are what engage most scientists throughout their careers. They constitute what I am here calling normal science... That enterprise seems an attempt to force nature into the preformed and relatively inflexible box that the paradigm supplies. No part of the aim of normal science is to call forth new sorts of phenomena; indeed those...
Folksonomies: truth paradigm
Folksonomies: truth paradigm
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Is that scientists tend to try and keep nature in the box, ignoring phenomena that fall outside the paradigm.

23 JAN 2012 by ideonexus

 The One Piece of Dogmatism Allowed the Scientist

It is the business of science to offer rational explanations for all the events in the real world, and any scientist who calls on God to explain something is falling down on his job. This applies as much to the start of the expansion as to any other event. If the explanation is not forthcoming at once, the scientist must suspend judgment: but if he is worth his salt he will always maintain that a rational explanation will eventually be found. This is the one piece of dogmatism that a scientis...
Folksonomies: science religion empiricism
Folksonomies: science religion empiricism
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That a rational explanation will eventually be found.

19 JAN 2012 by ideonexus

 Evolving Methods of Science

A closer look at the course followed by developing theory reveals for a start that it is by no means as continuous as one might expect, but full of breaks and at least apparently not along the shortest logical path. Certain methods often afforded the most handsome results only the other day, and many might well have thought that the development of science to infinity would consist in no more than their constant application. Instead, on the contrary, they suddenly reveal themselves as exhauste...
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Science does not progress smoothly through the constant application of a single method, but the methods change and there is conflict between generations.

03 MAY 2011 by ideonexus

 If Humans Were Like Chimpanzees

If we were hairless chimpanzees, our society would still Dok fairly familiar in some ways. We would live in families, be very social, hierarchical, group-territorial, and aggressive toward other groups than those we belong to. In other words, we would be family-based, urban, class-conscious, nationalist, and belligerent, which we are. Adult males would spend more time trying to climb the political hierarchy than with their families. But when we turn to sex, things would begin to look very dif...
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Much would be the same, but we would be very different sexually.

11 APR 2011 by ideonexus

 Microscopic and Macroscopic Perspectives in Science

In science, simultaneous macroscopic and microscopic exploration is quite customary, especially in biology. Molecular biology, for example, which derived from the application of chemical analysis to biological problems and led to the discovery of DNA and its function as the carrier of information for every form of life, has developed independently from physiology, which concerns the whole animal and the way it functions as an integrated living system. In like manner, the difference between th...
Folksonomies: science perspectives
Folksonomies: science perspectives
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Seeing the trees for the forest and forest for the trees.