The Dappled World: A Study of the Boundaries of Science

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« Reply #15 on: November 16, 2018, 10:58:36 pm »
Sorry what I mean is there's Science that has gone from theory to, at the least, being able to produce laptops and drugs that really work well.

Then there's "in play" Scientific Hypotheses like, for example, a possible underlying reality consisting of quantum information from which Space & Time "emerge". Or arguably even more generally accepted aspects of quantum theory that haven't yet produced any technology?

Well, not knowing exactly what we could apply it to doesn't forgo it being useful.  For all we know, we could find faster than light travel by way of it.  I mean, chances are against it, but we don't know for certain what really lies past that conceptual horizon.  I think we are at pains to take it seriously.

It's just hard to do that when you can't "pay" for the research with practical, money making dividends...
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sciborg2

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« Reply #16 on: November 16, 2018, 11:04:02 pm »
Sorry what I mean is there's Science that has gone from theory to, at the least, being able to produce laptops and drugs that really work well.

Then there's "in play" Scientific Hypotheses like, for example, a possible underlying reality consisting of quantum information from which Space & Time "emerge". Or arguably even more generally accepted aspects of quantum theory that haven't yet produced any technology?

Well, not knowing exactly what we could apply it to doesn't forgo it being useful.  For all we know, we could find faster than light travel by way of it.  I mean, chances are against it, but we don't know for certain what really lies past that conceptual horizon.  I think we are at pains to take it seriously.

It's just hard to do that when you can't "pay" for the research with practical, money making dividends...

I agree all the not-yet-applicable Science should still get funding, but we might separate applicable Science and "in play" Science that has yet to yield dividends.

Not sure it really matters that much, but it might keep us from overextending what is "settled Science". OTOH, some things could be true but never yield technological dividends...or only yield dividends far down the line like Number Theory leading to Cryptography...

TLEILAXU

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« Reply #17 on: November 17, 2018, 12:46:28 am »
Hmm, that's interesting.  It think I'd need to think a bit harder on that.  But what is an example of science that doesn't produce technology and so isn't taken seriously?

Sorry what I mean is there's Science that has gone from theory to, at the least, being able to produce laptops and drugs that really work well.

Then there's "in play" Scientific Hypotheses like, for example, a possible underlying reality consisting of quantum information from which Space & Time "emerge". Or arguably even more generally accepted aspects of quantum theory that haven't yet produced any technology?
No! Like, e.g. nobody used general relativity for any technology until GPS decades later.

Sorry what I mean is there's Science that has gone from theory to, at the least, being able to produce laptops and drugs that really work well.

Then there's "in play" Scientific Hypotheses like, for example, a possible underlying reality consisting of quantum information from which Space & Time "emerge". Or arguably even more generally accepted aspects of quantum theory that haven't yet produced any technology?

Well, not knowing exactly what we could apply it to doesn't forgo it being useful.  For all we know, we could find faster than light travel by way of it.  I mean, chances are against it, but we don't know for certain what really lies past that conceptual horizon.  I think we are at pains to take it seriously.

It's just hard to do that when you can't "pay" for the research with practical, money making dividends...

I agree all the not-yet-applicable Science should still get funding, but we might separate applicable Science and "in play" Science that has yet to yield dividends.

Not sure it really matters that much, but it might keep us from overextending what is "settled Science". OTOH, some things could be true but never yield technological dividends...or only yield dividends far down the line like Number Theory leading to Cryptography...
That's already happening though. I'm pretty sure cancer research gets much more funding than number theory, and also private companies often fund support certain research at universities.
On a personal note though I think it would be absolutely awful to defund physics, even the more obscure parts, since the whole subject has brought so much and continues to bring much in terms of both practical applications and more existential knowledge about how the universe seems to work.
Evolutionary psychology however, fuck those guys. Take all their funding and give it to my boy Nima.
« Last Edit: November 17, 2018, 12:57:19 am by TLEILAXU »

sciborg2

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« Reply #18 on: November 17, 2018, 01:11:26 am »
 
No! Like, e.g. nobody used general relativity for any technology until GPS decades later.

I wasn't talking about funding with regard to dividing settled and unsettled science by technological applications. Just a classification scheme that can distinguish what is actually known about the universe from what is speculation.

Technology like airplanes run on physics that we know has to be true insofar as airplanes work. Isolated observations regarding the quantum level of reality, OTOH, can be seen as speculation that yields successful results in the context of the lab but may not apply universally.

But this is just idle speculation, I don't even know if matters much either way for our level of civilization. More advanced civilizations may be debating this sort of thing b/c they are trying to crack interstellar civilization-supporting space travel and exceptions to certain assumptions may yield big dividends.

 

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« Reply #19 on: November 17, 2018, 01:20:29 am »
No! Like, e.g. nobody used general relativity for any technology until GPS decades later.

I wasn't talking about funding with regard to dividing settled and unsettled science by technological applications. Just a classification scheme that can distinguish what is actually known about the universe from what is speculation.

Technology like airplanes run on physics that we know has to be true insofar as airplanes work. Isolated observations regarding the quantum level of reality, OTOH, can be seen as speculation that yields successful results in the context of the lab but may not apply universally.

But this is just idle speculation, I don't even know if matters much either way for our level of civilization. More advanced civilizations may be debating this sort of thing b/c they are trying to crack interstellar civilization-supporting space travel and exceptions to certain assumptions may yield big dividends.
I don't get it. How can you know what is known without knowing? Maybe I'm getting a bit tired here...

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Isolated observations regarding the quantum level of reality, OTOH, can be seen as speculation that yields successful results in the context of the lab but may not apply universally.
So the laws of physics not being constant in the universe? That's an interesting idea and would certainly fuck up our attempts at ever understanding it.

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« Reply #20 on: November 17, 2018, 01:26:42 am »
I don't get it. How can you know what is known without knowing? Maybe I'm getting a bit tired here...

That's an interesting idea and would certainly fuck up our attempts at ever understanding it.

I mean we do know the results of the experiment, but we see the extensibility of the results through application. I don't think it's much different than the way we progress from animal lab research to human trials to marketed drugs.

We find success in a smaller context then look to see how extensible it is.

As for laws, that's a thorny concept anyway but I don't know if the metaphysics really matters in practice. Scientists still gonna Science. :-)