Brainy Quote of the Day

Friday, August 20, 2010

Alice through the looking glass...

String theory.  Dark matter.  Dark energy.  The theory of everything.  "Learning to read the laws of physics is like reading the mind of God."  (Einstein)

I've had a lot of fun posting things on this blog and tried not to come off as the "expert" or to advocate one view or the other. Like the rap I posted the scientists did at the large hadron collider: that was sheer hilarity! It also fit my personal philosophy that science becomes accessible when the scientists themselves show themselves not as nerdy islands, but "part of the main," to paraphrase John Donne. If you've read anything in the area of string theory and listen to the rap, it does follow the "genre" or pattern of thinking string theory advocates.

However to be fair, I'm posting this opposing view to string theory: Is the Search for Immutable Laws of Nature a Wild-Goose Chase?

Part of the beauty of the Scientific Method is the necessity to question previously held theory, as Einstein did Newton and advance knowledge in the subject area. String theory did this, and others have a right to do it back: it keeps science as science and not allowing it to digress into dogma. Only rigorous self-examination prevents research from becoming orthodoxy.

The Scientific Method:
-Ask a question
-Formulate a null (initial) hypothesis
-Test the null hypothesis via experiment
-Evaluate data results
-Fits hypothesis?
     -Yes. Draw conclusions and report results.
-Does not fit hypothesis?
     -No. Draw conclusions about experiment viability and ask another question.

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