www
jamesphogan
com
Comment Archive
Thoughts, Humor & Observations
Back To Comment Archives

Comment Dated May 18, 2008


STAYING INSIDE THE BOX

Much of what gets billed as advances in science in fact represents better data-processing and instrumentation engineering. Just about every new discovery in biology continues to be interpreted in terms of mutation-selection extrapolated far beyond the evidence and what it has the power to achieve, while to enable gravity-dominated theory to accommodate observations, astronomy is forced to invent progressively more exotic objects, involving virtually infinite concentrations of mass, in order to focus the weakest force known to physics. Freeman Dyson expressed it well:

"There are two kinds of scientific revolutions, those driven by new tools and those driven by new concepts. . . .The effect of a concept-driven revolution is to explain old things in new ways. The effect of a tool-driven revolution is to discover new things that have to be explained. In almost every branch of science, and especially in biology and astronomy, there has been a preponderance of tool-driven revolutions. We have been more successful in discovering new things than in explaining old ones."

-- Freeman Dyson, Imagined Worlds (Harvard University Press, 1997, p.49)