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Old 02-10-2010, 10:36 AM
witsend witsend is offline
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Join Date: May 2009
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All I am pointing to is the fact that physics today still has outstanding questions. And while these questions are really big questions, they all relate to our inability to actually see anything on a really minute scale. This includes everything on the scale of an atom and smaller. Beyond a certain size and at a certain given velocity our knowledge of anything is limited to that knowledge that can only be gained through inference. We have photographed electrons but know nothing of their structure. I have actually seen a photograph of the shadowy structure of atoms. An extraordinary feat in photography. But it simply looks like a nest of eggs laid out and cooling in something that also looks like a clinging morning mist. The atom's motor, its actual structure, remains hidden inside its shell. What little we know about particles is their charge or the 'direction' they take within a magnetic field and some extraordinary details related to the 'spin' of that particle when it can be held, tenuously suspended, away from it's natural environment. Scientists work with 'clues' and patterns of behaviour to gain an increasing understanding of the thing itself. And this art of inference has - notwithstanding these difficulties, enabled an extraordinary feat. We have the periodic table as tribute to the rarefied progressive logic that unravelled the atom's secrets. This and the fact that we know of a great many particles, an entire particle zoo as some call it, is all by virtue of the courtesy and the skills of expert knowledge, expert observation and expert assessment. Our progress in science is an enduring tribute to the skills of our mainstream scientists and their remarkably incisive logic. But yet our knowledge is limited, constrained as it is in any study of the very, very small.
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Last edited by witsend; 02-11-2010 at 06:14 AM.