Ignorance: How It Drives Science

Ignorance: How It Drives Science

Stuart Firestein


wisdom is a huge topic, says Stuart Firestein, yet lack of understanding is a much bigger one. And it really is ignorance--not knowledge--that is the genuine engine of technology.

such a lot people have a misunderstanding of technological know-how as a surefire, planned, step by step strategy for locating issues out and getting issues performed. in reality, says Firestein, ordinarily, technology is like searching for a black cat in a depressing room, and there will not be a cat within the room. the method is extra hit-or-miss than you may think, with a lot stumbling and groping after phantoms. however it is strictly this "not knowing," this brooding about thorny questions or inexplicable information, that will get researchers into the lab early and retains them there overdue, the article that propels them, the very driver of technological know-how. Firestein indicates how scientists use lack of knowledge to software their paintings, to spot what might be performed, what the subsequent steps are, and the place they need to focus their energies. And he encompasses a catalog of the way scientists use lack of understanding, consciously or unconsciously--a outstanding variety of techniques that incorporates searching for connections to different study, revisiting it seems that settled questions, utilizing small inquiries to get at immense ones, and tackling an issue easily out of interest. The publication concludes with 4 case histories--in cognitive psychology, theoretical physics, astronomy, and neuroscience--that supply a consider for the nuts and bolts of lack of awareness, the daily conflict that is going on in medical laboratories and in clinical minds with questions that variety from the quotidian to the profound.

Turning the normal thought approximately technology on its head, Ignorance opens a brand new window at the actual nature of study. it's a must-read for someone all for science.

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