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Edited by Dustin: 6/23/2014 4:14:08 AM

The most common misconception about science

Science isn't a collection of knowledge. No, science is a way of thinking. It's about validating an idea through testing without bias or error, but with the severe constraints of resources and human capability. It is a means of creating knowledge the most reliable way possible. The scientific method is never debated. There may be disagreement over whether it was followed properly, but scientists don't question whether or not it's necessary to, for example, isolate an independent variable before running an experiment. No one ever asks, 'is two plus two really four?' They don't because the process is mechanical and it only states what is true for what can be proven. As long as the scientific method is followed correctly, and people are content that it is, all that is left to discourse over is the speculation for what has yet to be proven. And people often confuse that with debate over the scientific method. When scientists were trying to figure out the shape of the universe, in which none of the possibilities of potential shapes had a majority of the support, were the scientists speculating, not arguing the scientific method. Information we've collected using the scientific method [i]isn't[/i] an opinion. It is fact. It may never be completely proven granted the infinite amount of possibilities that could also be true, but it puts us within arm's reach of reasoning and coming up with conclusions like, 'the Earth orbits the Sun.' There will always be the possibility that maybe an ancient civilization once visited earth a long time ago and piled up fossils in the ground in a way that made it seem like species were living a long time ago when maybe there really wasn't any species living millions of years ago, but the science grants us the power to reason that it's more likely that there weren't any aliens trying to mess with us and the fossils we're looking at are genuine, natural, and represent actual species from ages before ours. You don't have to make any conclusion based on the evidence and still not be wrong. But what you can't do is outright deny the evidence itself. And there are far too many people that think they can.

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