Are scientists a gift or a course to our society?
Or: SCIENCE AND ITS EFFECTS THROUGH THE CENTURY
In this context, we will be discussing about the effects of science and technology in our planet over the years, the advantages, disadvantages, how it has impacted us and how we’ve utilized it. In the light of all this, although we all have the right to our different views and perspective,
I’d us to ponder on the question “are scientists a curse or gift to our society?” what do you think?
Would we have had s better planet earth without the inputs of science or would you rather say that science is everything?
Well, for me I think it’s all about the choices we make, do you allow the darkness with to envelop your choice or be illuminated by the light which will shine through all?
This is what makes all the difference and what we should all cling to whether scientist or not.
So I will have you reflect on your career as a scientist while you read this, think of those things or moments that made you strong or weaken your choices and then leave me a comment in the box below about the toughest of them. 🙂
Many have been unable to comprehend science, some say its magic, some say is beyond spirituality.
Some say: “it is the unravelling of natures deposits in the most effective ways using man’s imagination as the key to tapping it” (yeah not that sexy, I know).
Science is spectacular but isn’t the ultimate. In this present age, people stand to debate the effects of science on humans, the society, economy and so forth but I don’t really think many of them would relinquish the life the presently lead now for the life of the 1900.
Average life expectancy increased from 39.9 years to 49.9 years between 1960 and 1994; the infant mortality rate dropped by over 40% in the same period, falling from 166 per thousand live births to 97 per thousand; The percentage of the population with access to safe water has almost doubled in the past two decades, rising from 24% in the period 1975-80 to 42% in the period 1990-96, this survey and report was taking by the society of science-technology development and evolution in the university of Ethiopia.
All of this are facts on how science has affected the world through the centuries.
As we approach the twenty- first century, several new, more powerful technologies have made their way into households and offices.
Faster communication is made possible through mobile phones and the Internet. If you look around you, you notice that technology has grown so fast through the years that the results are quite overwhelming.
In the past 30 years, the rise of the microcomputer has enabled spectacular progress in many aspects of society, with computing power now almost doubling every 18 months. Cellular phones and cheap computers are beginning to bring Internet to even rural areas of developing countries, with major implications for distance learning and democratization. Alongside the microchip, the emergence of genetic engineering and biotechnology must be the most revolutionary development in the second half of the last century. And in its wake come a series of possibilities that link science and ethics more than ever before.
ADVANTAGES OF SCIENCE TODAY
You may want to ask, how science and technology has affected our little globe?
That’s plenty :-).
Just like every other existing thing, it has advantages and has disadvantages. If you think science doesn’t matter much to you, think again. Science affects us all, every day of the year, from the moment we wake up, all day long, and through the night. Your
Digital alarm clock, the weather report, the asphalt you drive on, the bus you ride in, your decision to eat a baked potato instead of fries, your cell phone, the antibiotics that treat your sore throat, the clean water that comes from your faucet, and the light that you turn off at the end of the day have all been brought to you by courtesy of science.
The modern world would not be modern at all without the understandings and technology enabled by science.
Science and technology makes our lives simpler.
Works can be done easier through high-tech machines and equipments. It gives less work for humans and our job can be done faster. It makes us feel comfortable and easy to live. It also helps us organize our daily activities.
Nowadays, computer is the most useful and popular invention to every people. Some may say that they can’t do anything without a computer. Some believe, it is a sort of enjoyment. Well, in fact it is true because computer makes life more enjoyable and through this, we may be able to discover and explore new things.
Using computer is like an adventure. It provides us all the information and is used to solve mathematical calculations.
Through science and technology, it is easier for us to communicate other people. It is also significant in the field of business because transactions and other events are done through the computer. Science and technology let every people live in an easy and modern life. It opens the door and allows people to enter into a new world which is fully developed and well civilized.
DISADVANTAGES OF SCIENCE TECH
The advances and advantages that science has offered us haven’t been without a cost and certainly; have presented us with many disadvantages too.
Many say that the advantage surpasses the disadvantages and so should be over look; do you think so?
Well, I certainly think differently, and I think if you know some of the disadvantages many has chosen to ignore, you may be on the same page as me.
With every advancement that is made in the technological world, creative destruction results. For example, television impacts negatively on the movies and synthetic fibers impact the cotton fibers negatively. The coming in of new types of technology also results in a negative impact on the growth of the economy at times; television at times consumes all the productive hours that a man has in a day.
Every new form of technology gets into the market together with long term consequences that are most of the time not foreseeable.
For instance, is there really a justification for nations coming up with bombs, nuclear weapons and missiles to maintain security?
Let’s look at some of the disadvantages of science and technology…
This is the first thing nearly everybody should think about when disadvantages of science-inputs are to be discussed.
You know that the pollution coming from the automobiles and heavy duty machineries in big industry constitutes for what depletes the ozone layer?
Have in mind that ozone layer is what protects the earth from experiencing direct sun rays, that’s the (U.V) rays. With scientific by-products always tearing up this protective cover, we are exposed to more direct sun contact which causes a lot of modern illnesses like skin dilation, some degree of skin cancer, soil evaporation, effect on the immune system, amongst many others.
This is obviously not the only effect of pollution; inhaling carbon (IV) oxide from the environment is potentially dangerous to our health which is mainly the end-product of any fuel operated engine. …and you remember about the recent crisis at Volkswagen with their cars.
I could also mention the negative impacts in the long run of genetically modified plants and animals to our bodies. The waste being produced by some chemical companies, weapons created for “the sake of safety”…the list goes on and on.
It is important for us to know many of this because we already live in a world imploded with technology, the best we can do is take care of ourselves with the knowledge we have.
CONTRIBUTORS AND CONTRIBUTIONS IN SCIENCE TECH
If we were to name all those that has contributed their little pieces to the development of science tech, then we wouldn’t get past this day because I will even have to mention myself :-).
But there are those that cannot be forgotten for their inputs, some impacted positive and some negatively; it’s a matter of choice and conscience I guess.
To very great extent, Albert Einstein is considered as the father of modern physics. Yes! “Modern” there were others that laid the foundational paths through which he walked, although his contributions were tremendous and outstanding.
Albert Einstein was born at Ulm, in Württemberg, Germany, on March 14, 1879. Six weeks later the family moved to Munich, where he later on began his schooling at the Luitpold Gymnasium. Later, they moved to Italy and Albert continued his education at Aarau, Switzerland and in 1896 he entered the Swiss Federal Polytechnic School in Zurich to be trained as a teacher in physics and mathematics. In 1901, the year he gained his diploma, he acquired Swiss citizenship and, as he was unable to find a teaching post, he accepted a position as technical assistant in the Swiss Patent Office. In 1905 he obtained his doctor’s degree.
Einstein realized the inadequacies of Newtonian mechanics and his special theory of relativity stemmed from an attempt to reconcile the laws of mechanics with the laws of the electromagnetic field. He dealt with classical problems of statistical mechanics and problems in which they were merged with quantum theory: this led to an explanation of the Brownian movement of molecules. He investigated the thermal properties of light with a low radiation density and his observations laid the foundation of the photon theory of light.
In the 1920’s, Einstein embarked on the construction of unified field theories, although he continued to work on the probabilistic interpretation of quantum theory, and he persevered with this work in America. He contributed to statistical mechanics by his development of the quantum theory of a monatomic gas and he has also accomplished valuable work in connection with atomic transition probabilities and relativistic cosmology. Einstein was a great additive to the science universe as he constantly contributed to the growth, at some point; he was pressured by co-physicist like Leo Szilard, Edward Teller and Eugene Winger to use his research knowledge in quantum physics to make the atomic bomb.
He refuted the idea and still maintained his clean slate on that onto death, his formulae in relativity E=MC*2 is still very much unresolved.
Another mighty additive and unforgettable individual in the world of science is Benjamin Franklin.
He was one of the scientists that existed during the British- American struggles and greatly employed his schematics for the benefit of the now American nation. Franklin was the one that discovered the electric lightening rod (pole) and could be called the father of electric charges even before the likes of Michael Faraday and James Watt because he first discovered that there were electric charges in the clouds and that’s what forms lightening. In further explanation on that, he explained that, when the positive and negative electron collide in the clouds, the effects gives both sound and lightening but because light is faster than sound, we see the lightening first and then hear the sounds “thunder sound” later.
There were other inventions of Benjamin Franklin, the focal lens (bifocal), the Glass harmonica, flexible catheter, swimming fins, 24-hours three-wheel-clock, the Franklin/ Pennsylvania stove and so on… he was never known to be an idle mind. He observed that storms can move in an opposite direction from the direction of the wind and proposed one of the first correct explanations for storm movement in the northern hemisphere that prolonged exposure to lead would cause sickness
He also surmised that the common cold was passed from person to person through indoor air. He was first to use the words “positive” and “negative” to describe electricity.
Not every one of them made very positive contributions; ask yourself, if Einstein refused to make the atomic bomb, who then did? Oh yes! Someone later did, during the Second World War, there was a project that was spearheaded by the Americans but supported by the Brits and Canada, it was called the Manhattan project. A physicist, Robert Oppenheimer led a team of other scientist and built The atomic bomb. He himself knew the great wrong he had made to the world and he said this when the weapon was first tested… “Now I’ve become death itself, the destroyer of the world”. The first launch was in Hiroshima Japan where the effects were too massive. We can regard Oppenheimer as one of the rebels of science but still can’t be written off.
With all of this, you can clearly see that there’s always a positive side and negative side in the use and implementation of science. Some have used it to hurt people and degrade the environs while some others have really used it to improve humanity and help developmental growth. As a scientist, always remember that the choice of how you employ your knowledge is yours no matter what the government or society wants.
POSSIBLE ADVANCEMENTS IN SCIENCE TECH
Now, I think many would just be wondering what next to expect from the world of science. we’ve got X-rays that is used to read the internal body, the VCR, advancements in adrenaline artificial production to keep soldiers from natural reactions when on field duties and so on.
So some are actually justified that there isn’t much to expect then but I strongly believe that there is. With the increasing deliberations on atoms and magnetic movements coupled with the rising use and needs of nanotechnology, I would say some more great discoveries are right ahead of us.
Currently, science is struggling with some medicinal advancement and possible cure for viruses and some other diseases.
If I were to suggest, I think nanotechnology will be used to play vital roles in the discovery of how to wipe out viruses from the system without having to affect the person. Molecules and atoms are parts of the human system and technological functions of the nanotechnology, all that’s needed is the rise of a genius to fix the missing pieces– clearly am not that person but I do believe that one of the potential advancements in the world of science tech would be the nanotechnology.
THINGS THAT HAS CHANGED BY THE INPUTS OF SCIENCE
Energy. Our understanding of this basic atomic structure has been used as the basis of nuclear power plants, which themselves have many societal benefits (e.g., nuclear power does not rely on non- renewable, polluting fossil fuels) and costs (e.g., nuclear power produces radioactive waste, which must be carefully stored for long periods of time).
Medicine. That understanding has also been used in many modern medical applications (e.g., in radiation therapy for cancer and in medical imaging, which can trace the damage caused by a heart attack or Alzheimer’s disease).
Defense. During World War II, that knowledge also clued scientists and politicians in to the fact that atomic energy could be used to make weapons. Once a political decision was made to pursue atomic weapons, scientists worked to develop other scientific knowledge that would enable this technology to be built.
No plastic. The first completely synthetic plastic was made by a chemist in the early 1900s, and since then, chemistry has developed a wide variety of plastics suited for all sorts of jobs, from blocking bullets to making slicker dental floss.
No Modern Agriculture. Science has transformed the way we eat today. In the 1940s, biologists began developing high-yield varieties of corn, wheat, and rice, which, when paired with new fertilizers and pesticides developed by chemists, dramatically increased the amount of food that could be harvested from a single field, ushering in the Green Revolution. These science-based technologies triggered striking changes in agriculture, massively increasing the amount of food available to feed the world and simultaneously transforming the economic structure of agricultural practices.
WHAT IS YOUR DECISION?
No matter how you choose to view it today, science and technology has created a whole new world and those who have embraced it are testifiers to its beauties.
It has changed lives and saved many, help in mass food production, territorial protections and circulation of information.
So as scientists or one aspiring to be, you shouldn’t get “caught” or stuck with the ideas of others or think the same will apply to you.
Come out and make your own contributions, effect the much change that you can because your inputs may as well be talked about for several years to come, who knows?
In my conviction, Science will only improve with the gaining time and with that, we know that we will reduce the disadvantages that come with it.
After reading this article, I would love to hear your toughest decisions in your life as a scientist.
So leave me a comment down below! 🙂