Science versus technology

Discussion in 'General Science & Technology' started by timojin, Aug 31, 2016.

  1. Seattle Valued Senior Member

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    You employ scientific principles to develop technology. This is true whether you realize that you are employing scientific principles or not. Science isn't a "thing".

    Since this is the general science and technology forum rather than the general philosophy forum I'm not sure why you are posting here and I'm not clear as to your actual point?

    You seem to want to raise technology above science for some reason. A religious reason is the only one that comes to mind however convoluted that may be.
     
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  3. expletives deleted Registered Senior Member

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    @ timojin:

    Actually that may fall under the mixed category of serendipitous + trial and error process. The serendipity may have come in when someone (especially one whose responsibility it was to sow, grow and tend the grain) had the time and experience to allow his innately evolved primitive "pattern recognition" faculty to "notice" what happens over time in different circumstances.

    For example, when healthy and better tasting and/or more nutritious/larger etc grains are sown and results in better harvest and food security than when poor seeds are sown and results less good. Ancient 'farmers', crop exploiters/tenders etc, had thus a store of 'relevant memories' accumulating, and at some 'critical mass' of memories triggered the innate instinctive pattern recognition faculty; thus effectively allowing conscious comparison between what seemed to correlate to better or worse crop and harvests.

    So, in my opinion, it was a combination of serendipity and trial and error process exploiting the innate and evolved faculties of the relevant human brains and minds involved in the crop and harvest activities at its earliest inception.

    I hope that observation is helpful to your OP discussion, timojin. Best.
     
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  5. timojin Valued Senior Member

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    What does religion have to do here. Let me see if you guys What come first the EGG or the Chick ?
     
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  7. paddoboy Valued Senior Member

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    No long winded contorted fabricated answer needed. Science actually came first.
    Science is the systematic ordering and gathering of knowledge by experiment and observation.
    As our science improves our technology, our technology in turn improves and extends upon our science.
     
  8. Write4U Valued Senior Member

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    The EGG came first with the formation of the first bio-molecular cell which was able to duplicate itself, long before there were any living organisms (species) at all.
     
    Last edited: Sep 1, 2016
  9. Write4U Valued Senior Member

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    I agree, but give a priori role to *observation* of natural events. Second came *speculation* (such as theism and theoretical science). Third, *experimentation* (alchemy, hard science). And last, *technology* (applied science).
    From that point on the sequence just repeats itself by an evolutionary process of refinement and efficiency.

    A clear example would be the invention of the telescope (Hans Lippershey) which changed just about every notion we had of our naked eye observations and gave birth to cosmology (Huygens), modern science (Einstein, Bohr) and technology (Cern, Gran Telescopio Canarias).
    And last but not least *space exploration*.

    And of course Darwin's *Origin of Species* and the very concept and implications of the Evolutionary process..
     
    Last edited: Sep 1, 2016
  10. exchemist Valued Senior Member

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    Bad example. Science has nothing at all to say about the properties of an abstract mathematical object, such as a sphere.

    Furthermore, science also takes shortcuts all the time. If it didn't, it would be able to model scarcely anything in the real world.
     
  11. Write4U Valued Senior Member

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    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Sphere

    I believe that's what I said. Perhaps I expressed it poorly. But I completely agree.
     
  12. exchemist Valued Senior Member

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    Well, yes you did rather. You implied the contrary: you contrasted science as "pure" with technology that takes "shortcuts".
     
  13. Write4U Valued Senior Member

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    OK, let me try explain what I meant. IMO, in *pure* scientific theory one cannot take shortcuts except by referring to a previously accepted theory or equation.

    However *applied* science (used in the development of technology) can employ shortcuts or approximations, sometimes forced by "unknown" variables, such as in the planning, testing, and placing a Rover on the moon, which occasionally demanded *best educated guesses*, if you will.
    Tegmark's clip demonstrates just such an example.

    Sometimes these educated guesses and shortcuts may have unintended consequences, take Thalidomide
    Too many shortcuts?
     
    Last edited: Sep 1, 2016
  14. exchemist Valued Senior Member

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    What do you mean by saying "in pure scientific theory one cannot take shortcuts"? I think this is a myth. As I say, shortcuts are taken all the time, whether it be the simplification of Newtonian mechanics, or the theory of chemical bonding, or countless other examples.
     
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  15. Write4U Valued Senior Member

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    Well, why should anyone want to do this. Consider the incentive. For purpose of experiment and possible use as applied science.
    The discovery of rubber was by pure accident, but mostly all scientists stand on the shoulders of those who came before. That does not negate the "common denominators" which can be found in many of these previous separate theories.
     
  16. exchemist Valued Senior Member

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    Eh?? I can see no connection between my post and your reply. Can you explain?
     
  17. sideshowbob Sorry, wrong number. Valued Senior Member

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    People went out to gather seeds to eat. They noticed that the seeds sprouted and grew near their shelters. That's science.

    Then somebody decided, Hey, if we plant seeds near the shelter we don't have to go looking for them. That's technology.
     
  18. timojin Valued Senior Member

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    A man have a 2 kilo hammer to break some rock but the 2 kilo did not do the job , so he made himself a 10 kilo hammer , and accomplished the job . So is that common sense or scientific process ?
    By your description , those primitive people were scientists . That is acceptable, So why are we at the present time making such difference in profession our present society .
     
  19. exchemist Valued Senior Member

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    Because, as with most walks of life in a sophisticated modern society, the easy stuff has almost all been done. If you consider any trade, craft or profession, as society advances you get more and more specialisation. It is pure consequence of the advance of knowledge.
     
  20. Seattle Valued Senior Member

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    It's also because the methodology has improved. It's moved from philosophers "thinking" on how things might work to employing the scientific method with its requirements for falsification, testing, etc.
     
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  21. paddoboy Valued Senior Member

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    I said previously that "Science is the systematic ordering and gathering of knowledge by experiment and observation".
    That follows that it is also the systematic implementation of common sense.
     
  22. Write4U Valued Senior Member

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    A technology which was already practiced by ants and termites hundreds of millions of years ago.. Some termites never see the light of day . A termite mound employs not only agriculture inside the hive, but also a form of natural air-conditioning. The Herder ants practice husbandry and tend to herds of aphids. Actually a symbiotic relationship, where the ants actually protect their herd and milk the aphids for nectar a valuable food source.
    Taking "shortcuts" in applied science for practical purposes is not the same as "simplification" or "refinement" of a theory to make it better for purely scientific purposes. I see a distinction here. One approach is taken for practical functional application , the other is for improvement of the theory itself.
     
  23. exchemist Valued Senior Member

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    I see no such distinction. A theory is only useful insofar as it makes successful predictions. In many fields, "shortcuts", or simplifications, are made to rigorous theory, in order to facilitate this.

    There seems to be, in the minds of some people, a myth of some kind of Aristotelian abstraction and purity in the theories of science. This may be due to modern physics. But most science is messy and deals with systems that are too complex to model with exquisite mathematical accuracy. Science is quite pragmatic about this and is happy to use imperfect models for a variety of purposes, if they work sufficiently well and are more convenient than full rigour. Science, it bears re-emphasising, is not mathematics.
     

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