When Science Goes Wrong

When Science Goes Wrong

Simon LeVay

really good medical successes have assisted in shaping our global, and are regularly celebrated. despite the fact that, for each victory, there are not any doubt a variety of little-known error. Neuroscientist Simon LeVay brings jointly a set of interesting, but stunning, tales of failure from fresh clinical historical past in When technological know-how is going Wrong.

From the fields of forensics and microbiology to nuclear physics and meteorology, in When technology is going fallacious LeVay stocks twelve precise essays illustrating various ways that the clinical technique can cross awry. mess ups, failures and different damaging results of technology may end up not just from undesirable good fortune, yet from explanations together with failure to stick to applicable approaches and heed warnings, moral breaches, speedy strain to acquire effects, or even fraud. frequently, as LeVay notes, the best chance for remarkable mishaps happens whilst technological know-how serves human ends. LeVay stocks those examples:

  • To counteract the onslaught of Parkinson’s ailment, a sufferer undergoes state-of-the-art mind surgical procedure utilizing fetal transplants, and is later discovered to have hair and cartilage transforming into within his mind.
  • In 1999, NASA’s Mars weather Orbiter spacecraft is misplaced as a result of an blunders in calculation, in simple terms months after the corporation adopts a coverage of “Faster, greater, Cheaper.”
  • Britain’s Bracknell climate forecasting staff predicts attainable results for a in all probability violent method, yet is stressed into freeing a ‘milder’ forecast. The BBC’s most sensible weatherman experiences there's “no hurricane”, whereas later the typhoon hits, devastating southeast England.
  • Ignoring signs of an approaching eruption, scientists choose to lead a celebration to hike into the crater of a dormant volcano in Columbia, inflicting damage and demise.

When technological know-how is going mistaken provides a compelling glimpse into human ambition in clinical pursuit.

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