What makes a good Scientific Theory? We know we need to do experiments. Did we always know this?
Is the Bible Science? It is clearly authoritative. It gives simple descriptions of many events: creation, flood, etc. Why not call it science?
Thomas Kuhn Requirements for a good Scientific Theory (1977) Simplicity Accuracy Scope Fertility Consistency
Actual Trial, 1925, Tennessee John T. Scopes, Teacher William Jennings Bryan (Prosecution) vs Clarence Darrow (Defense) Can evolution be taught, since it contradicts the Bible? Play by Lawrence and Lee (1955); Movie (1960) Bertram Cates, Teacher Mathew Harrison Brady (Prosecution) vs Henry Drummond (Defense) Verdict: Guilty ($100 fine) Scopes “Monkey Trial” and “Inherit the Wind”
Creationism Bishop Ussher determined that the creation began in 4004 B.C. . . . On October 23rd . . . At 9 A.M. (EST, RMT, EDT??)
OK, real Science The “Greek” way of looking at things Thales (625 BC) in Miletus, Turkey Water is the primary element Mathematical
Some Lesser Lights Anixamander – Primary element can’t be water: what about fire? Primary element is aperion, or vacuum Things show up in pairs Man from lower animals
Anixamenes: Air is primary element Did experiments Parmenides: Matter neither created not destroyed: Conservation laws
A model for everything Empedocles Four elements: earth, air, water, fire Two forces: love, strife Combinations give everything that we see on “Earth”
How far have we come? Empedocles’ scheme seems a bit silly. Have we done better? The Modern Standard Model and its origins (see you next time . . . )