clarym29What is a theory?Tue Apr 24, 2012 11:33220.127.116.11Development of a Simple Theory by the Scientific Method:
Start with an observation that evokes a question: Broth spoils when I leave it out for a couple of days. Why?
Using logic and previous knowledge, state a possible ansser, called a Hypothesis: Tiny organisms floating in the air must fall into the broth and start reproducing.
Perform an expierment or Test: After boiling some broth, I divide it into two containers, one covered and one not covered. I place them on the table for two days and see if one spoils. Only the uncovered broth spoiled.
Then publish your findings in a peer-reviewed journal. Publication: "Only broth that is exposed to the air after two days tended to spoil. The covered specimen did not."
Other scientists read about your experiment and try to duplicate it. Verification: Every scientist who tries your experiment comes up with the same results. So they try other methods to make sure your experiment was measuring what it was supposed to. Again, they get the same results every time.
In time, and if experiments continue to support your hypothesis, it becomes a Theory: Microorganisms from the air cause broth to spoil.
This is what I mean by the word in this forum. The other, more general meaning is almost the opposite--it means that somebody has made a sort of hair-brained statement--"That's just your theory, and has no basis in fact."--this seems to be the most widely accepted and used definition for the word. Hence the confusion when using the word. So, in my statements on this forum I'll use the scientific definition of the word, which describes more of a process rather than a statement.
- Theory sai ram, Tue Apr 24 09:42"The theory of evolution is just that a theory"....I agree...but some supporters of evolution believe it has become no longer a theory but fact......I have had more than one argument on this... more
- Not heard..... clarym29, Tue Apr 24 11:57of that theory, Sai--thanks. But that use of the word "theory" is another definition; one used by the social and psychological sciences. Just to underline the thought that when discussion any subject ... more
- Actual molecular biology ... Baruch, Tue Apr 24 18:48is quite complicated, and new discoveries are still being made. But usually in lay discussions, it is overly simplified or using the 19th century version. Shalom
- What is a theory? clarym29, Tue Apr 24 11:33
- Good scientific method is good ... Baruch, Tue Apr 24 18:51because it was developed thru trial and error over the last 500 years, and didn't succumb to Lysenkoism. It is not always possible to apply it however, because of the nature of what is being studied, ... more
- ...air my foot sai ram, Tue Apr 24 12:29its not 'air' that has spoiled my grandkids.....its Grandma...er, maybe Grandpa......and my wife has made some broth that never was allowed to sit lone enough to have any dang air spoil it (or so... more
- There are kooks that believe in ... Baruch, Tue Apr 24 18:52Hollow Earth theory and Flat Earth theory also, and would get a hearing on Fox & Friends ;-) Shalom
- That's Faux and Friends (nm) clarym29, Tue Apr 24 19:56
- I don't buy hollow earth sai ram, Tue Apr 24 19:15but hollow moon might be true.....there has always been something odd about the moon in my mind...sai ram.. http://www.onelight.com/thei/hollowmoon.html
- Lunacy? (nm) Baruch, Tue Apr 24 23:50
- While sai ram, Wed Apr 25 00:40While people insist that admissions to psychiatric hospitals, traffic accidents, homicides or suicides increase during a full Moon, there is no scientific evidence to support such claims....but my... more
- It's the green cheese..... (nm) clarym29, Tue Apr 24 19:57
- perhaps.......but sai ram, Tue Apr 24 20:55but I think its odd why the man-in-the-moon...doesn't have a name...everyone should have a name...even if its Ralph....sai ram.