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Posts by SamSpade

I cant' find good international comparisons of public support for science, but it is currently high in the US: http://www.pewforum.org/science-and-bioethics/public-opinion-on-religion-and-science-in-the-united-states.aspx 84% of the general public agrees that science has mostly positive effect on society Although things get less favorable when it come to conficende in scientists and their influence. Science level funding is considered "about right" by a majority, but...
Well, I hope you're right. Yet even if you are, I don't see any of these things resolving much more immediate problems such as energy and population crises, water, topsoil, overal ecological degradation, imposibility of perpetual economic growth. There is a not so fine line between appreciating science and technology for what they are, and harboring quasi-religious ideas about technological salvation or whatever. I recommend you look at some (non-fiction) futuristic...
The public has never really supported science because the benefits are not that apparent - make them apparent, and you've got no problems. The rest is simply a strawman - for now support is wrestled through the military budget, outside of democratic control anyway."We are growing our knowledge at a tremendous pace", eh?Sure, if by that you mean the continued exponential growth of journal articles - the "least publishable unit", co-authored by more and more co-authors, and...
As I said - this type of elitism will eventually lead to severe curtailment of public support (except for the military, naturally...). People may not have the ability to discern the arcane theoretical issues, but they are perfectly capable of assessing how much is spent vs. what benefits - both technological and in terms of actual improved understanding of the world - have accrued. On both grounds, S&T are failing, suggesting that they are approaching a zone of...
I don't disagree with any of the above in principle, but simnply maintain that the the issue of militarization and corporatization of science is non-trivial, precisely because it deploys it in directions that are too dangerous - or at least very narrowly beneficial - to address casually. Considering the huge amounts of tax money spent, it is perfectly reasonable to advocate for a degree of democratic control over what types of problems scientists are attempting to solve...
Vague fascination does not equal to actual appreciation of science. Most people LOVE their smart phones yet have no slightest understanding and appreciation of the fundamental physics embedded in them nor desire to understand them.The Somali pirates, al qaeda, and the calahari bushmen also use cell phones. I doubt you'c lumpt them with the science appreciation crowd.
I never said that the above (and other) gentlemen were not experimentalists - merely that their discoveries were based on insight, intellectual discipline, and experiments that were both clever and cheap - nothing that required a bloated military R&D to justify something useful trickling down eeevery ooonce in a while. There are so many projects that should not exist even by a 5th grader's standards of of common sense (biofuels, anyone?)Cumulative, "normal" science is...
oh yeah? well, pray tell...In the meantime:NewtonDarwinFaradayMaxwellJouleCarnotYoung/Bequerell/ThompsonEinsteinetc.A lot of our science and technology is simply a footnote to these guysLike any process in nature, science too is bound by the problem of diminishing returns. 99% of scientists suck ass (and/or do mainly clerical work), the problem is we can never know in advance which 1% are the good ones.If science wants to retain high levels of public support, it better...
Who would have thought - y'all are easily entertained distracted, eh?
the most important scientific discoveries were made with nothing but a pencil, piece of paper, and (occasionally) fairly cheap experimental setups.
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