Gamers' Corner


Of Science and Men

Written by Martin Girard

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I first wanted to write something technical as it is my hobby, but then I realized what we mostly care about in fiction is hardly how devices work, but what they do. So it becomes an article on capabilities on futuristic science. On the other hand, there is a matter even more important, that is, the evolution of science itself through history. Therefore I invite the reader not to study science, but rather scientists.

The multiple topics that will be covered shall make that point much clearer, as well as its use into extrapolating futuristic settings, especially for moderated ranges. Let us first look into the brain of the common scientist, then into various fields of interests such as Quantum physics or archeology. Do not worry, no technical or scientific background is assumed except common sense.

Who is the Average Scientist?
Well, he's first a human being, and I'll ask the reader to remind this simple statement throughout the article. Even being an expert on a field, he can still fail to find solutions to issues that will seem obvious centuries later. He may make mistakes, or delude himself...he may also deliberately lie for dishonest motives.

Fact is, people tend to trust experts on words alone, and they know it. More than one then attempted (and succeeded) to become famous and rich by luring others into false reasoning. In addition, experts on any field of science organize into communities that have a lot of influence, sometimes political, and they back up each other this way. Because of those facts, successful and long-established sciences tend to become institutionalized to the point they decide arbitrarily of the truth, as it must become { commonly accepted }.

Most of times, this inhibits creativity, what is necessary for research and development. People tend to look at the average scientist as a robot calculating day and night, but this is not the case for research. Those experts must be artists as well as scientists as they look for solutions to problems no one has even a clue on how to solve them. Exploration is indeed an intensively creative process where intuition plays a role as important as rationality.

Unfortunately, both of them most often lacks on the field, leading at best to false conclusions, at worst to deliberated disinformation. Therefore, when science fiction fans look at their conclusions, they assume the very same mistakes and make wrong projections. The rest of the article deal with the most important fields that are of some interest to us as their consequences alter our view of the past as well as the future.

Quantum Physics and Astrophysics
This is the most important field of interests for futurology, and ironically the worst possible example of self-delusion leading to ridiculous conclusions. I invite the reader to document himself on the history of the field, as it is very instructive. Here follows some glimpses of it. Quantum physics is born at the beginning of the century, dealing with an important issue regarding the very nature of light. Mark Plank, and later Albert Einstein, has shown the light could behave as a particle as well as a waveform, and therefore initiated a big reunification of physics to other particle-oriented fields such as the atoms, which had been discovered a few decades ago. Physicists enjoy generalizing on everything and were so much in a hurry that they skipped many steps in the process. As for example, although physicists do deny it, they in fact have no clue on why light can behave both as a particle and as a waveform, as the two behaviors are radically opposed and incompatible.

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