The reach of science?

Posted on September 30, 2010


Jenny: “So Professor you say the reach of science is limited – like it can’t reach very far into the future. That’s why we go from great anti-biotics and SOOPRISE  end up with superbugs – hospital induced infections that kill more people than traffic accidents and cancer combined. That’s why we start with gasoline engines and SOOPRISE end up with global warming. So science is a playpen for grownups. They play around – experiment – in a releatively small space-time play pen, find something that works and hope it will work in other places and future times. But they can’t be sure because their scientific trick hasn’t been tested in larger playpens. All scientific ‘truths’ are based on relatively small piles of evidence gathered in relatively small scientific playpens. In this sense all scientific truths are local truths, and bets – faith-based reasonining – that the trick will work outside the playpen where they ‘discovered’ or ‘created it.”

Peter: “Wow – where did that come from?’

Jenny: ” I’ve been browsing the internet and  there’s lots stuff – not only on the wonders of science, but also on it’s limits. I came across two interesting books: The Science Game, and What’s the Touble with Science.”

Posted in: Sciencing