Friday, July 13, 2007

The Scientific Method

The issue on whether there is such a thing as a single "Scientific Method" has been debated in many circles. For most practicing physicist, this issue seldom comes up, because how we investigate something just seems like second nature to many of us. But for the general public (and certainly to philosophers and sociologists), the concept of the scientific method seem to be of great interest. This is especially true when scientists try to argue on why such-and-such can't be considered as science, or why a certain set of "knowledge" is flawed due to its non-scientific methodology. It is why, for example, Intelligent Design isn't considered as science, and why astrology is a pseudoscience. While scientists usually can distinguish the difference between science and non-science, the general public (y'know, the one where half of them did not know that the earth revolves around the sun) often can't. So it is actually quite important if some sort of an explanation on the scientific method and how we arrive at our knowledge are presented.

Brian Jennings at TRIUMPH tries to do just that. I've only skimmed through the article rather fast, so I can't exactly endorse everything that is said here. But from what I've read, it is certainly quite informative and entertaining, at least. You might find a few interesting things to read about in this preprint.


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