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The 8-Fold Way of the Scientific Method

What science has been all about so far, and how it should be done now
Vinod Kumar Wadhawan
Type: Print Book
Genre: Philosophy, Science & Technology
Language: English
Price: ₹525 + shipping

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Description

A major objective of this book is the promotion of scientific temper in society. The Scientific Method underscores the importance of a robust sense of skepticism when it comes to accepting evidence for any claim. And yet scientists are ever willing to accept and correct any errors in their theories; this ensures that self-correction is a part of how science progresses. Much of the science done so far has been based on reductionism. The so-called ‘complex systems’ are the next challenge for 21st-century science, and we have to go beyond reductionism for investigating them meaningfully. The most familiar and quintessential example of a ‘complex adaptive system’ is the human mindbody, with consciousness as one of its ‘emergent’ properties. The Scientific Method used so far values only empirical or objective information, and has no direct use for subjective or experiential information. In this book some suggestions are made for cautiously and tentatively relaxing some of the eight tenets of the Scientific Method so as to make science more inclusive in scope. Substantial space is devoted in the book to what it takes to achieve health and longevity of the human mindbody. Can you hope to live forever? The answer is ‘yes’, provided you can manage to stay alive and well for the next few decades, so as to be around when the fruits of biotechnology are already commonplace, and medical nanotechnology has come of age. Three approaches are discussed for meeting this goal, two of them from ‘Western’ medical science. It turns out that the Indian yogic way of life is the best of them all for achieving the goal.

About the Author

Vinod Wadhawan got his M. Sc. degree in solid-state physics from the University of Delhi, and the Ph. D. degree in physics (X-ray crystallography) from the University of Bombay. All his scientific career was with the Department of Atomic Energy (DAE), Government of India. After his retirement on superannuation, he was given the position of Raja Ramanna Fellow for about six years by the same Department. He was based at the Bhabha Atomic Research Centre (BARC), Mumbai, during this tenure. Earlier he served as 'Outstanding Scientist' and Head, Laser Materials Division, Centre for Advanced Technology, Indore. He is also a former Associate Editor of the journal PHASE TRANSITIONS (published by Taylor & Francis, U.K.). He has been elected as an 'Enthusiastic Bright' by Brights International.

After doing his Ph. D. in crystallography, he did not stay in that field for long, and shifted his interest to ferroic materials. In the year 2000 he published his book 'Introduction to Ferroic Materials', the first comprehensive and still the only definitive book on the subject.

Ferroic materials, particularly multiferroics, find extensive applications in smart structures. This got Wadhawan interested in smart structures, and in 2007 he published the book 'Smart Structures: Blurring the Distinction Between the Living and the Nonliving'.

From materials (ferroic materials) to structures (smart structures) to systems. Complex systems. Wadhawan has written two books on complex systems: 'Complexity Science: Tackling the Difficult Questions We Ask About Ourselves and About Our Universe (2010)'; and 'Understanding Natural Phenomena: Self-Organization and Emergence in Complex Systems (2017)'. In between, he took time off to write a book about his work on symmetry: 'Latent, Manifest, and Broken Symmetry: A Bottom-up Approach to Symmetry, with Implications for Complex Networks (2011)'.

He is a committed science-popularizer, and the present book on science and the Scientific Method has been written as a part of that crusade. He is also an avid blogger, and his blog is aptly named 'The Vinod Wadhawan Blog: Celebrating the Spirit of Science and the Scientific Method' (https://vinodwadhawan.blogspot.com/).

Wadhawan believes that scientists should lead by example when it comes to promoting scientific temper in society. Their lives should reflect all that is worthwhile in the scientific profession, particularly intellectual integrity, curiosity, wonderment, rationality, skepticism, ready willingness to change one’s views if new information warrants that, and a deep sense of belonging and oneness with the Cosmos in general and Mother Earth in particular. They should also make an effort to become mentors to youngsters.

Book Details

ISBN: 9789354578922
Publisher: Self-published
Number of Pages: 332
Dimensions: 6"x9"
Interior Pages: B&W
Binding: Paperback (Perfect Binding)
Availability: In Stock (Print on Demand)

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