Jump to content

Why do I do science?


Trurl
 Share

Recommended Posts

Why do I do science?

I just replied to a tweet on Twitter with the following tweet:

Science and money both solve problems. But both cause new problems. Like winning a 100 million then going bankrupt or building a bomb and causing arms race. Blatant example where science doesn’t solve anything.

Don’t get me wrong I have loved science all my life. But what is its underlying meaning or goal?

Fix one problem; five new ones. Ones that don’t exist before the science. I ask before if a utopian world could exist through science but I couldn’t define utopian. But those who answered said they did science to improve the World. I like that answer, but when tweeting the above made me wonder why I do science?

I should include a link to the tweet. The original tweet the author talk about how we use technology to track the entire internet and the computer scientists would rollover in their grave if they knew what their technology was being used for.

When I say,”why do I do science?” I am not trying to trash science. I just wonder is it doing what we intend it to and are we even in control of it?

Link to comment
Share on other sites

The goal of science is to explain, the world and the universe around us, with  explanations, based on observational and experimental evidence.

It's us humans that chose to use that knowledge for good and improve technology for our collective benefit, or for greed or personal benefit.  That is "applied science"

Edited by beecee
Link to comment
Share on other sites

If you know your neighbour's address, there's knowledge. Whether you decide to send them a love letter or a card bomb is up to you.

Atomic energy destroyed life in 1945. It created tension between superpowers. But it's been saving lives on a daily basis ever since, and allowed many other nice things.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

10 hours ago, Trurl said:

Fix one problem; five new ones. Ones that don’t exist before the science.

Science shows us how to focus on the solution rather than the problem, so your perspective isn't helping you. Find one solution, and the opportunity to find five more solutions suddenly appears. Solutions that didn't exist before the science.

This is how our intelligence works. Blissful ignorance is a trap for animals, but our intelligence allows us to learn and gain a broader understanding of how the universe operates. Learning one thing leads to learning (at least) five new things. And those each lead to....

11 hours ago, Trurl said:

When I say,”why do I do science?” I am not trying to trash science. I just wonder is it doing what we intend it to and are we even in control of it?

You're not trying to trash science, but you're questioning the intentions of the people involved in it with a discussion in the Religion sub-forum?

Link to comment
Share on other sites

On 8/2/2021 at 5:05 AM, Trurl said:

Why do I do science?

I just replied to a tweet on Twitter with the following tweet:

Science and money both solve problems. But both cause new problems. Like winning a 100 million then going bankrupt or building a bomb and causing arms race. Blatant example where science doesn’t solve anything.

Don’t get me wrong I have loved science all my life. But what is its underlying meaning or goal?

Fix one problem; five new ones. Ones that don’t exist before the science. I ask before if a utopian world could exist through science but I couldn’t define utopian. But those who answered said they did science to improve the World. I like that answer, but when tweeting the above made me wonder why I do science?

I should include a link to the tweet. The original tweet the author talk about how we use technology to track the entire internet and the computer scientists would rollover in their grave if they knew what their technology was being used for.

When I say,”why do I do science?” I am not trying to trash science. I just wonder is it doing what we intend it to and are we even in control of it?

It looks to me as if you are ascribing too much "intent" to the activity of science.

I believe it is a misconception to think that science is done in order to enable technology. We do science to satisfy our curiosity about nature, that's all. It is fully expected that solving one problem leads to further ones. But that does not detract from the progress made in solving that first problem.  

Few people would suggest it is a bad thing that we are curious about nature and want to understand it better. That would be tantamount to an attack on human intelligence. 

Edited by exchemist
Link to comment
Share on other sites

Because we are inquisitive and have discovered the tools required to model and gain knowledge & understanding of the universe and all within. 

As already been pointed out, what we chose to do with that knowledge and how we then apply it is a choice, not a natural consequence of doing science.  

Link to comment
Share on other sites

I do believe in doing science. I just wanted to point out the dilemma. It is the same in business. And politics. I guess you just have to make the best decisions you can. Some stuff is small but with others you have to rely on intuition. Many years ago I was put into a small leadership position of a group of 20 people. I was never in a leadership position before and it showed. I was an engineer student and I thought in my l leadership role that would help me “think” about all our decisions. I was wrong. Managing people, completing objectives, and making decisions is a whole other skill set.

I just wanted to point out science is also limited. You guys have good answers, but more than science applies with decisions. We can’t be responsible for what is done with our creations or can we? I don’t like when science is referred to as a religion or do I think as Christianity as one. Instead they are a set of beliefs we base our decisions on.

In my beliefs I don’t think we are any more in control with science. There is just too much unknown.

By being out of control in science I mean we are not in total control when creating something. That is not me saying that. It comes from  book on Creativity and Flow.

Some decisions are insignificant but even if we are just a scientist creating or someone using that scientist’s knowledge we better make the best decision possible.

Those are my thoughts. Like I said you guys did give good answers. I am under the assumption that science directly relates to technology. I have never experienced it otherwise. Just as some discredit Christianity with studying it, I am lost when science doesn’t result in knowledge or technology. The fruit of knowledge is what caused all these problems in the first place.😉 You guys are right curiosity is a good thing. The odds are that man eats the apple every time.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

  • 2 weeks later...

Why I do science?  Several commented on the satisfaction of curiosity-- but I would go beyond that.  First off-- I rarely do pure science, in the sense that I rarely do controlled experiments to confirm or falsify a hypothesis.  But-- I would find it very difficult to live my life without doing applied science.  Researching and using knowledge developed through science is a daily activity.  When measurements of earth movements published in 1988 showed the huge strain in the California faults, I packed up especially fragile items in my home prior to the 1989 earthquake, and had no damage to my home's contents.  When observations of the Jet Stream in 2012 showed the increasing amplitude and implications of instability I began to think about how that might affect weather patterns and moisture carryover past the Sierra's into northern Nevada where I live.  Somewhat more bizarre (to some, perhaps) I have a hobby of developing target ammunition for old firearms.  When I was gifted a small supply of a type of smokeless powder of a type I had no data for, I turned to the national gunpowder forensic database to learn the chemical characteristics in order to identify chemically equivalent gun powders for which I did have the necessary data.  Utilizing knowledge developed through science is, for some of us, a way of life as natural as breathing.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Create an account or sign in to comment

You need to be a member in order to leave a comment

Create an account

Sign up for a new account in our community. It's easy!

Register a new account

Sign in

Already have an account? Sign in here.

Sign In Now
 Share

×
×
  • Create New...

Important Information

We have placed cookies on your device to help make this website better. You can adjust your cookie settings, otherwise we'll assume you're okay to continue.