zenpundit.com » Blog Archive » Scientific Method: Perception and Reality

Scientific Method: Perception and Reality

I am working on a couple of posts and a book review, but in the meantime, I thought this graphic was interesting:


From Electron Cafe:

6 Responses to “Scientific Method: Perception and Reality”

  1. J. Scott Says:

    Neat post; science follows other disciplines in its institutional resistance to innovation or new perceptions, new explanations and reminds me of a passage from the Margolis book Patterns, Thinking and Cognition on "first recruits" to a new idea: "So the first recruits face repeated choices about whether to bother putting more effort into grasping the new arguments, repeated occasions on which the novel argument might be found to be more trouble than its worth." 

  2. Curtis Gale Weeks Says:

    How did they ever do it, before there was a printing press?  Wonder of wonders…..

  3. zen Says:

    Scott – that’s the economics of science!!!
    Curtis – What they did was usually have their secrets die with them.

  4. Cameron Schaefer Says:

    A few quotes from "The Structure of Scientific Revolutions" seem apt here.

    "The temptation to write history backward is both omnipresent and perennial.  But scientists are more affected by the temptation to rewrite history, partly because the results of scientific research show no obvious dependence upon the historical context of the inquiry, and partly because, except during crisis and revolution, the scientist’s contemporary position seems so secure."


    "It is they who first learn to see science and the world differently, and their ability to make the transition is facilitated by two circumstances that are not common to most other members of their profession.  Invariably their attention has been intensely concentrated upon the crisis-provoking problems; usually, in addition, they are men so young or so new to the crisis-ridden field that practice has committed them less deeply than most of their contemporaries to the world view and rules determined by the old paradigm."

  5. What we know and what we don't know Says:

    […] (Well, that’s the theory. In practice, the process is usually a bit messier).  […]

  6. David Says:

    They forgot to put an “Apply for grants” step (or better yet, “beg for funding”)

Switch to our mobile site