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Author Topic:   "You are not really a scientist. You are a biologist"
Granny Magda
Member (Idle past 142 days)
Posts: 2372
From: UK
Joined: 11-12-2007


Message 16 of 32 (452793)
01-31-2008 10:45 AM
Reply to: Message 10 by Taz
01-31-2008 10:36 AM


Re: Enough Said
Isn't that only like 700K in brit's weird money?

What do you mean only? In rupees it would be a whopping 42 million, but the value would remain the same.


Mutate and Survive
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cavediver
Member (Idle past 1597 days)
Posts: 4129
From: UK
Joined: 06-16-2005


Message 17 of 32 (452794)
01-31-2008 10:46 AM
Reply to: Message 12 by Chiroptera
01-31-2008 10:40 AM


This is (or was) especially true for those in fields like particle physics

Pah - mere pretenders to the levels of arrogance we could generate in mathematical physics.


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Chiroptera
Member
Posts: 6528
From: Oklahoma
Joined: 09-28-2003
Member Rating: 3.8


Message 18 of 32 (452799)
01-31-2008 10:58 AM
Reply to: Message 17 by cavediver
01-31-2008 10:46 AM


Well, I don't know about mathematical physics, but pure mathematicians (at least the ones that I've met) are quite humble...at least in comparison.


Spare a thought for the stay-at-home voter;
His empty eyes gaze at strange beauty shows
And a parade of the gray suited grafters:
A choice of cancer or polio. -- The Rolling Stones
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Jazzns
Member (Idle past 1865 days)
Posts: 2657
From: A Better America
Joined: 07-23-2004


Message 19 of 32 (452803)
01-31-2008 11:03 AM
Reply to: Message 18 by Chiroptera
01-31-2008 10:58 AM


Well, I don't know about mathematical physics, but pure mathematicians (at least the ones that I've met) are quite humble...at least in comparison.

That may simply be a side effect of the fact that they are rarely sober.


Of course, biblical creationists are committed to belief in God's written Word, the Bible, which forbids bearing false witness; --AIG (lest they forget)
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cavediver
Member (Idle past 1597 days)
Posts: 4129
From: UK
Joined: 06-16-2005


Message 20 of 32 (452815)
01-31-2008 11:23 AM
Reply to: Message 19 by Jazzns
01-31-2008 11:03 AM


'Real' pure mathematicians who tended to hang out in DPMMS and rarely venture into DAMTP weren't big on things like communication, so you could never tell. Then again, they weren't that big on personal hygiene either, so we didn't make much of an effort ;)
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Admin
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Posts: 12561
From: EvC Forum
Joined: 06-14-2002


Message 21 of 32 (452826)
01-31-2008 12:00 PM
Reply to: Message 15 by randman
01-31-2008 10:44 AM


Re: interesting post
randman writes:

Then again, I think science has a lot of unfounded arrogance all the way around from what I can tell.

Would you please refrain from making comments that might cause a thread to spin out of control?

I've been hoping that the gentle nudges I've been providing to you would cause an improvement, and that I would begin to see a reduction in remarks designed to inflict discord. The 24-hour closure of the nested heirarchies as evidence against darwinian evolution thread was because it was deviating far too much from constructive dialogue, and the common element in threads currently experiencing the most difficulty in staying civil and/or on-topic is you, incredible given how brief the time since your return.

The problem has a simple solution. You can solve it yourself by conducting yourself in manner that brings out the best in everyone, yourself included, or I can solve the problem. Your choice.


--Percy
EvC Forum Director

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PaulK
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Posts: 14499
Joined: 01-10-2003
Member Rating: 1.6


Message 22 of 32 (452838)
01-31-2008 1:31 PM
Reply to: Message 1 by randman
01-31-2008 3:09 AM


We're not told the substance of the query - or the formulation - so we can't really judge how well the put-down fit the circumstances.

Aside form that it sounds like physics snobbery.

Here's Jack Cohen's answer to the question Is Biology science

(And if you get the chance to hear him speak, take it).


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sfs
Member (Idle past 487 days)
Posts: 464
From: Cambridge, MA USA
Joined: 08-27-2003


Message 23 of 32 (452864)
01-31-2008 2:55 PM
Reply to: Message 22 by PaulK
01-31-2008 1:31 PM


Random comments from an experimental particle physicist turned geneticist:

1) Yes, physicists are that arrogant.

2) To some extent the arrogance is well-founded. In my experience, the average physicist is smarter than the average biologist, and it is vastly easier (and more common) for a physicist to do biology than it is for a biologist to do physics.

3) Mostly, though, physicists who feel this way are full of crap. Biology is science, and there is a lot more interesting science going on in biology than there is in physics these days. Biology tends to require different skill sets than physics does, and physicists who do well in biology are the ones who do not try to treat biology as if it were physics.


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Dr Adequate
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Posts: 16056
Joined: 07-20-2006
Member Rating: 3.0


Message 24 of 32 (452869)
01-31-2008 3:26 PM
Reply to: Message 1 by randman
01-31-2008 3:09 AM


I think that "silly" is the mildest word one could use.
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nator
Member (Idle past 123 days)
Posts: 12961
From: Ann Arbor
Joined: 12-09-2001


Message 25 of 32 (452886)
01-31-2008 5:30 PM
Reply to: Message 15 by randman
01-31-2008 10:44 AM


Re: interesting post
quote:
Then again, I think science has a lot of unfounded arrogance all the way around from what I can tell.

Yeah, what with all of those mail order science PhD's from diploma mills that are so easy to get that are so common among professional scientists.

Oh, wait...

{Content "hidden"}

Randman got repremanded by Admin over that message. Replying to it (in kind?) is not a good thing. - Adminnemooseus

Edited by Adminnemooseus, : Original content "hidden". Use "peek" if you must.


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Brad McFall
Member (Idle past 2986 days)
Posts: 3428
From: Ithaca,NY, USA
Joined: 12-20-2001


Message 26 of 32 (452898)
01-31-2008 6:10 PM
Reply to: Message 1 by randman
01-31-2008 3:09 AM


off my mark
I find it is quite the opposite, that biology is more open-ended than physics (aka Penrose etc). What is "stuck" is the 'economy' and its relation to biology. Feynman once said that some institution had as many equipments as there were facts in physics which made that place quite endowed. This is not the case for individualistic biology since Darwin. History is the fact. Everyone posses it if they dare to say so.

Gould could easily have written,

"You have a problem with "these" ideas, Richard, because you are not an interactionist. You're a molecular biologist.

Can Richard be pigeon or button holed? Sure, we have done that even here on EVC. Does Barrow really mean anything here other than biology is stuck as is politics with our economy??

Yes, Lewontin made it clear in "Biology as Ideology" that for him at least there is this thing between 1700 and 1800s (I quote that here) but I am pretty darn sure this all changes with Cantor and Russell (around the time Mendel was "rediscovered")and since Bohr was only able to encourage Delbruck (and this only got virus biology etc.) it is still the physicist's fault that biology has not found itself able to get unstuck with better maths. It can not be the case that biologists have to alter the whole of economics every time they do some work. I am sure this did not happen because of what Godel and Einstein were talking about.

But really if Barrow is so concerned with "variation in constants" then he would need to see how the suggestions I am making actually drive towards a biology that is beyond physics. For if (I am reworking my argumentation here )it is the case that Darwin used w.2, w.3,w.4... for food productivity immanent arithmetic increases while reproduction is exponential transiently(confusing the two principles of generations of numbers infinitely PER SPECIAL CREATIONS (hence the relation to creationism)) then he would find that biology can result in new laws available for physics (as I started to say in more detail here(how Gladyshev's work relates physiological and biochemical orthogenesis)yet to come).

Both of my brothers are less open-minded than me (scientifically) and they are physicists. I now work with a Mensa(175 IQ)Engineer and I find the same thing yet again with someone else.

It is the social surrounding of biology not biology itself that Barrow railed agasint. I wish I had the privilege of making statements like that and being heard. I never felt a need to diss Dawkins because his "Selfish Gene" book did it for him by his own words. Gould knew that. Only if Barrow has designs to rid biology of its individuality could he be correct. I am not living to see that day. Dakwins could be correct but then both my grandfather and I must be wrong. That is much less probable than just me being off.

Look here


Click to enlarge

is some data I collected that shows that the ostracods I have are cathodic. If one reads Jacques Loeb one would find that he considers this to be a “forced” motion. Is it? By what forces of physics?? It is not an easy question to answer. Barrow surely would not find vitalism here (which was what Leob was writing against).

(I do not have any other info on the possible endosymbiotic nature of the liver of these guys as the prof at Cornell had some problem with his equipment, is building something more sensitive to light, and forgot to get in touch with another prof with a fluorescent microscope which would enable us to get an answer more quickly).


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teen4christ
Member (Idle past 3752 days)
Posts: 238
Joined: 01-15-2008


Message 27 of 32 (452900)
01-31-2008 6:20 PM
Reply to: Message 26 by Brad McFall
01-31-2008 6:10 PM


Re: off my mark
Brad McFall writes
quote:
Dakwins could be correct but then both my grandfather and I must be wrong. That is much less probable than just me being off.

Could you elaborate on this? What did your grandfather and you believe that conflicts with Dawkins? More specifically, is your grandfather someone famous that I am not aware of?
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RAZD
Member
Posts: 19674
From: the other end of the sidewalk
Joined: 03-14-2004
Member Rating: 2.8


Message 28 of 32 (452926)
01-31-2008 7:36 PM
Reply to: Message 27 by teen4christ
01-31-2008 6:20 PM


Re: off my mark
... is your grandfather someone famous ...

IIRC he's a published biologist and naturalist. Brad has shown excerpts of his books.

Enjoy.



we are limited in our ability to understand
by our ability to understand
RebelAAmericanOZen[Deist
... to learn ... to think ... to live ... to laugh ...
to share.


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Brad McFall
Member (Idle past 2986 days)
Posts: 3428
From: Ithaca,NY, USA
Joined: 12-20-2001


Message 29 of 32 (452928)
01-31-2008 7:41 PM
Reply to: Message 27 by teen4christ
01-31-2008 6:20 PM


Re:reply to off topic question
I have responded to you here.

www.evcforum.net/cgi-bin/dm.cgi?action=msg&f=14&t=1808&m=37#37 -->www.evcforum.net/cgi-bin/dm.cgi?action=msg&f=14&t=1808&m=37#37">http://www.evcforum.net/cgi-bin/dm.cgi?action=msg&f=14&t=1808&m=37#37

Brad.


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Modulous
Member (Idle past 58 days)
Posts: 7789
From: Manchester, UK
Joined: 05-01-2005


Message 30 of 32 (453352)
02-01-2008 10:32 PM
Reply to: Message 1 by randman
01-31-2008 3:09 AM


PZ Myers responds to this over at Pharyngula.

He notes that sci-fi programs have physicists as advisors rather than biologists - and the biology in the shows is almost universally awful (Vulcans producing viable offspring with humans? They're not just different species but they are in a whole different domain! (Then again Star Trek does have an xeno-IDer so...)). Evolution happening to individuals, rather than populations, aliens who couldn't possibly have evolved (eg., Alien).

Anyway, it generated a lot of discussion, so anyone interested in the issue might gain some interesting insights by reading it.


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