Is Chemistry Science's Poor Relation ?

Discussion in 'Chemistry' started by Captain Kremmen, Jul 16, 2007.

  1. Captain Kremmen All aboard, me Hearties! Valued Senior Member

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    Looking at the science threads, chemistry has by far the lowest number of viewers, posts, and resulting threads. (apart from comparitive religion, and why is that in this section?)


    Any ideas why that is?
     
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  3. one_raven God is a Chinese Whisper Valued Senior Member

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    It's in this section because it is a science, no less than Anthropology is a science.
     
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  5. §outh§tar is feeling caustic Registered Senior Member

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    And why isn't History a science then?
     
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  7. Captain Kremmen All aboard, me Hearties! Valued Senior Member

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    I've just done a few googles to see how many results come up, using the inverted commas

    "Science of History" 99,000
    "Science of Biology" 121,000
    "Science of Chemistry" 64,000
    "Science of Religion" 91,000
    "Science of Comparative Religion" 3,780
    "Science of Cosmology" 13,300
    "Science of Physics" 50,600
    "Science of Anthropology" 20,300
    "Science of Fortune Telling" 2,050
    "Science of Music" 84,100

    Religion, and History, and even fortune telling seem to be regarded as sciences, at least by web site creators. I suppose if you are applying scientific methods to a subject, anything can have a scientific aspect.
     
  8. przyk squishy Valued Senior Member

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    The Chemistry, Comparative Religion, and Linguistics subforums were only created within the last few months. The others have been around for much longer.
     
  9. Captain Kremmen All aboard, me Hearties! Valued Senior Member

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    Thanks przyk. That explains it.
     
  10. Nasor Valued Senior Member

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    Has anyone ever done a comparative religion experiment? Do people formulate theories of comparative religion and then proceed to support or refute them with empirical data?

    I’m not trying to be flippant, I’m really asking because I don’t know much/anything about the field.
     
    Last edited: Jul 16, 2007
  11. guthrie paradox generator Registered Senior Member

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    I saw the title and thought this was more about society in general.
    To which my answer is:
    Since the basics and even many advanced concepts in chemistry were worked out so long ago that they have been completely absorbed into peoples everyday lives, nobody notices chemistry much. The triumph of the atomic theory, the structures of organic chemistry, even x-ray diffractometry, all have been worked out and utilised in modern life and industry, so that chemistry is percieved to have much less immediate relevance or "coolness" to people.

    As for this bit of the forum being quiet, that is partly because chemistry is pretty much settled, in the way that physics and biology aren't. You'll probably find that half the threads in the physics and cosmology section are by obsessive braindead people who think Einstein was wrong, but somehow can't seem to explain how.
     
  12. Nasor Valued Senior Member

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    That’s more or less true. The research that you’ll find going on in a cutting-edge university or industry lab usually involves things like developing new drugs, making interesting new materials for better microchips/bulletproof vests/whatever, developing catalysts for industry that will magically turn one type of chemical into another, trying to make better fuel cells, developing more environmentally-friendly ways to make various products...the list goes on and on, but you won’t find many people studying the fundamentals of how and why chemicals react.

    People don't spend much time studying fundamentals, but rather spend time working on the many things that you can't hope to do without a very good understanding of chemistry.
    This is also true. For some reason uneducated people don't seem to be inclined to decide that they know better than the experts when it comes to matters of chemistry, but they certainly do for physics.
     
  13. guthrie paradox generator Registered Senior Member

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    I'm not clear as to whether you are being sarcastic or not. to phrase it another way (because the practise will be good for me) the main point is that, whilst physics and cosmology are still struggling with the idea of a TOE and people still reject relativity, and conversely, biology keeps finding strange new species and people still reject evolution, I have yet to see anyone reject chemistry and atomism, and all the stuff you talk about is treated as background by the media.

    "We've invented this great new drug!"
    "Great, so what does it do?"
    "Don't you want to hear about the intricate and cunning synthesis steps we took to make it?"
    "No, just tell us what it does"
     
  14. Captain Kremmen All aboard, me Hearties! Valued Senior Member

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    These all sound like interesting subjects for the forum. Perhaps its remit should be widened. The only pure chemistry which would attract posts is illegal drug manufacture and explosive production. I don't know what things are like in the US, but in Britain, to have any information on the latter even stored on your computer is a criminal offence, and any correspondence on the former would quickly cause you problems. There's a lot else to discuss. In particular I have a feeling that the development of better fuel cells will become increasingly important.
     
  15. Chatha big brown was screwed up Registered Senior Member

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    Of the three major sciences, chemistry is the latest, in fact chemistry is only about a few years old, while Physics, mathematics, and biology have been around for thousands. Chemistry has never been though of as a branch of science itself until recently. Chemistry is sort of like a 24 hr tech support for all other sciences, nobody goes to the chemist until they run into trouble while developing something. For instance, physicists building a new aircraft may need better knowledge into developing body parts for their plane, and may have to consult metalurgical firms for inputs. A biomedical company may also consult chemists for analysis of certain intricate samples. Chemistry and metarlurgy is sort of like an extension of all sciences, and sometimes you can't differenciate chemistry from other sciences-the same way you can't differenciate advanced nuclear chemistry from Quantum mechs.
     
  16. Nasor Valued Senior Member

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    Really? It's illegal to simply have the information??? Man, remind me to never visit Britain.
     
  17. Oli Heute der Enteteich... Registered Senior Member

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    I haven't got into trouble (so far) and I've been collecting such data for over 30 years.
    If they do come and look I'm completely buggered (although I did get away with having an AK-47 leant against the wall in the front room when a detective inspector and his oppo came for a visit a couple of years ago...)
     
  18. guthrie paradox generator Registered Senior Member

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    Chris, I dont think it is technically illegal, except that if they do decide your a terrorist, they can use it as evidence that you were planning a bombing campaign. I merely have old chemistry textbooks, one of which, for example, has the complete instructions for making gunpowder, and potassium nitrate in industrial quantities.
     
  19. Oli Heute der Enteteich... Registered Senior Member

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    Pfft, my hard drive is full of nuclear weapons technology...

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  20. guthrie paradox generator Registered Senior Member

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    Oli, I assume the AK 47 was properly de-activated?
     
  21. Oli Heute der Enteteich... Registered Senior Member

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    Yeah, but the coppers still went ballistic!
     
  22. guthrie paradox generator Registered Senior Member

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    Then that goes to show they shouldnt be doing house calls. One of my friends has over a dozen swords in the house, but only one of them is sharp. THe police never seem interested in him.
     
  23. Oli Heute der Enteteich... Registered Senior Member

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    Ah well, they had an excuse for the call.
    There had been a rape in the area and they were asking round the entire street to see if anyone had seen anything...
    (They didn't see my swords or the other guns upstairs

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