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Science and philosophy before the revolution

In immediate contrast to modern times, only a few of Europe’s academics at the beginning of the scientificrevolution and the end of the sixteenth century considered themselves to be “scientists.” The words “natural philosopher”carried much more academic clout and so the majority of the research on scientific theory was conducted not in the scientificrealm per se, but in philosophy, where “scientific methods” like empiricism and teleology were promoted widely. In the 17th century,empiricism and teleology existed as remnants of medieval thought that were utilized by philosophers such as William of Ockham, anempiricist (d. 1349), Robert Boyle (Hall, p 172), a 17th century chemist, teleologist and mechanist, and by the proponents of Platoand Aristotle (1st century teleologists and abstractionists). Both empiricism, as the theory that reality consists solely of what onephysically experiences, and teleology, as the idea that phenomena exist only because they have a purpose (i.e. because God wills themto be so), generally negated the necessity of fact-gathering, hypothesis writing, and controlled experimentation that became suchan integral part of modern chemistry and biology at the beginning of the 17th century. In other words, the study of science beforethe scientific revolution was so concentrated on philosophy (such as Aristotle’s conception of “ideas” as ultimate truths) as topreclude the development of a scientific method that would necessitate the creation of an informed hypothesis to be tested.Certain medieval philosophers, however, such as Roger Bacon (1214-1294; no relation to Francis), did emphasize the necessity ofcontrolled experimentation in coming to a theoretical conclusion, but they were few and far between, and generally failed tocorrectly use the experimental method in practice. For example, author Hall wrote that “Bacon [and other advocates were]guilty of misstatements of fact which the most trifling experiment would havecorrected” (Hall, p 163).

The advent of the scientific revolution – 17th century

A. R. Hall, in his book The Scientific Revolution 1500-1800, made the observation that a main pointdividing scientific thought in the seventeenth century from that of the ancient Greeks and medieval Europeans was the choice ofquestions each group sought to answer through their methods of research or observation.

2Hall, p 164
He argued that the first group, that of Copernicus and da Vinci (15th and 16th centuries),focused more on questions of “how can we demonstrate that…” or “how may it be proved that…” that aimed to prove a defined hypothesistrue or false, while the second group (that of 17th century chemists and physiologists) emphasized questions phrased as “whatis the relationship between…” or “what are the facts bearing upon…” that necessitated fact-finding before a concrete hypothesis couldbe formulated. The most important point to remember here is that both the questions posed in the 15th century and those of the 17thcentury form part of the definition of a complete modern “experimental method” – the first type of question cannot standalone. A concrete hypothesis (question 1) must be accompanied by sufficient, independently verifiable observations (question 2) inorder for the scientist to make a vague inference (a form of hypothesis) that canthen be tested with a controlled experiment. The way the scientist/philosopher comes by this “vague inference”that will form a concrete hypothesis differs, and these differences can be described as the scientists’ different approaches toward an“experimental method.” The following portion of the module will give an idea of the types of experimental methods promoted by 17thcentury scientists as well as their impact on the standard experimental method utilized and accepted by chemists, biologists,and physicists today.

Questions & Answers

Is there any normative that regulates the use of silver nanoparticles?
Damian Reply
what king of growth are you checking .?
What fields keep nano created devices from performing or assimulating ? Magnetic fields ? Are do they assimilate ?
Stoney Reply
why we need to study biomolecules, molecular biology in nanotechnology?
Adin Reply
yes I'm doing my masters in nanotechnology, we are being studying all these domains as well..
what school?
biomolecules are e building blocks of every organics and inorganic materials.
anyone know any internet site where one can find nanotechnology papers?
Damian Reply
sciencedirect big data base
Introduction about quantum dots in nanotechnology
Praveena Reply
what does nano mean?
Anassong Reply
nano basically means 10^(-9). nanometer is a unit to measure length.
do you think it's worthwhile in the long term to study the effects and possibilities of nanotechnology on viral treatment?
Damian Reply
absolutely yes
how to know photocatalytic properties of tio2 nanoparticles...what to do now
Akash Reply
it is a goid question and i want to know the answer as well
characteristics of micro business
for teaching engĺish at school how nano technology help us
Do somebody tell me a best nano engineering book for beginners?
s. Reply
there is no specific books for beginners but there is book called principle of nanotechnology
what is fullerene does it is used to make bukky balls
Devang Reply
are you nano engineer ?
fullerene is a bucky ball aka Carbon 60 molecule. It was name by the architect Fuller. He design the geodesic dome. it resembles a soccer ball.
what is the actual application of fullerenes nowadays?
That is a great question Damian. best way to answer that question is to Google it. there are hundreds of applications for buck minister fullerenes, from medical to aerospace. you can also find plenty of research papers that will give you great detail on the potential applications of fullerenes.
what is the Synthesis, properties,and applications of carbon nano chemistry
Abhijith Reply
Mostly, they use nano carbon for electronics and for materials to be strengthened.
is Bucky paper clear?
carbon nanotubes has various application in fuel cells membrane, current research on cancer drug,and in electronics MEMS and NEMS etc
so some one know about replacing silicon atom with phosphorous in semiconductors device?
s. Reply
Yeah, it is a pain to say the least. You basically have to heat the substarte up to around 1000 degrees celcius then pass phosphene gas over top of it, which is explosive and toxic by the way, under very low pressure.
Do you know which machine is used to that process?
how to fabricate graphene ink ?
for screen printed electrodes ?
What is lattice structure?
s. Reply
of graphene you mean?
or in general
in general
Graphene has a hexagonal structure
On having this app for quite a bit time, Haven't realised there's a chat room in it.
what is biological synthesis of nanoparticles
Sanket Reply
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Source:  OpenStax, Nanotechnology: content and context. OpenStax CNX. May 09, 2007 Download for free at http://cnx.org/content/col10418/1.1
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