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An Interesting Dutchman (No I don't mean Eric)

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Plavt
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An Interesting Dutchman (No I don't mean Eric)

Postby Plavt » Wed, 05 Oct 2005 7:40 pm

Below is a link to an article about Antony van Leeuwenhoek (1632-1723), a Dutchman who discovered bacteria. What is perhaps surprising is that he had no medical or scientific qualifications and spoke only his native language Dutch. I have often wondered if somebody with an obsession or intense interest in some subject might make a discovery which would in some impact significantly on our lives. Perhaps as I write this somebody outside the academic community may have found the answer to a particular problem but not been listened to due to their lack of academic qualifications or professional standing. Many of you already know Galileo wasn't believed nor was Luis Pasteur. As I write this, hard to believe a renowned hospital here in London actually uses the service of a Reiki healer! (Really don't know how effective it is).

http://www.ucmp.berkeley.edu/history/leeuwenhoek.html

Another example of an accidental discovery is the retired lorry driver who created a hand cream which kills the hospital superbug MRSA;

http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/health/3672983.stm

Reiki healer;

http://www.bbc.co.uk/london/content/articles/2005/09/28/insideout_healing_feature.shtml


Plavt.

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Re: An Interesting Dutchman (No I don't mean Eric)

Postby seraphim » Wed, 05 Oct 2005 7:49 pm

Plavt wrote:....may have found the answer to a particular problem but not been listened to due to their lack of academic qualifications or professional standing.


A situation I am all too familiar with, and also the reason I am currently uemployed!

A good read, Plavt. Thanks!
And the sultans - yeah the sultans
they play creole...Creole, baby

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Postby Viceroy Isabel Kebab Iota » Wed, 05 Oct 2005 8:00 pm

You should read 'A Short History of Nearly Everything' by my hero, Bill Bryson. So much of the greatest discoveries of science were accidental. That is why we (here I mean Americans) need to go to Mars, and fund the supercollider project which replicates the big bang, among other things. Telephones, x-rays, the AIDS assay -- all discovered while looking for something else.

We don't know what we don't know.

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Postby ringo100 » Wed, 05 Oct 2005 8:00 pm

Galileo was a hugely renowned scientist of his day. Not sure of anything he said that wasn’t believed in his time.

I think the main reason the pope locked him up was because too many people beleived him.

Einstein was a patent clerk when he started making some huge discoveries though.

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Postby Plavt » Wed, 05 Oct 2005 8:12 pm

Viceroy Isabel Kebab Iota wrote:You should read 'A Short History of Nearly Everything' by my hero, Bill Bryson. So much of the greatest discoveries of science were accidental. That is why we (here I mean Americans) need to go to Mars, and fund the supercollider project which replicates the big bang, among other things. Telephones, x-rays, the AIDS assay -- all discovered while looking for something else.

We don't know what we don't know.




There is a good deal of truth in what you say but it was a medical doctor in the US who I was talking who first told me that people did not believe Luis Pasteur when he first created his pasteurisation technique.

Best Wishes.

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Last edited by Plavt on Wed, 05 Oct 2005 8:24 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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Postby Viceroy Isabel Kebab Iota » Wed, 05 Oct 2005 8:14 pm

ringo100 wrote:Galileo was a hugely renowned scientist of his day. Not sure of anything he said that wasn’t believed in his time.


Whoa Nelly! Galileo was in direct opposition of the Church in his day and therefore a subject to ridicule and ostracism. He was persecuted in his time, not lauded as a hero.

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no

Postby ringo100 » Wed, 05 Oct 2005 8:35 pm

No he wasn't, he was a hugely celebrated amongst a large scientific community. He was also a friend to the Pope at the time. His problem came when he wrote a science book in Italian (not Latin) aimed at the layman which had three characters one in favour of heliocentricity, one against it and a layman.

One he portrayed as an idiot (who he named with a similar name to the pope) who was against it, one was for it (portrayed as clever, him) and one layman, who they were trying to convince. The pope wasn’t pleased and put him under house arrest. It was political. If he had just kept writing papers aimed at the science community he would have been alright.

His work on gravity and light was all accepted and widely celebrated. Heliocentricity wasn’t even his idea.

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Re: no

Postby Viceroy Isabel Kebab Iota » Wed, 05 Oct 2005 8:45 pm

ringo100 wrote:No he wasn't, he was a hugely celebrated amongst a large scientific community. He was also a friend to the Pope at the time. His problem came when he wrote a science book in Italian (not Latin) aimed at the layman which had three characters one in favour of heliocentricity, one against it and a layman.


Not sure having the support of a bunch of medieval science geeks with leather pocket protectors for their quill pen would have been enough during the times of the Catholics Church's Inquisition. I guess we are both right, read on:

From Yahooligans:

In 1611 he visited Rome to display the telescope to the papal court. In 1616 the system of Copernicus was denounced as dangerous to faith, and Galileo, summoned to Rome, was warned not to uphold it or teach it. But in 1632 he published a work written for the nonspecialist, Dialogo … sopra i due massimi sistemi del mondo [dialogue on the two chief systems of the world] (tr. 1661; rev. and ed. by Giorgio de Santillana, 1953; new tr. by Stillman Drake, 1953, rev. 1967); that work, which supported the Copernican system as opposed to the Ptolemaic, marked a turning point in scientific and philosophical thought. Again summoned to Rome, he was tried (1633) by the Inquisition and brought to the point of making an abjuration of all beliefs and writings that held the sun to be the central body and the earth a moving body revolving with the other planets about it. Since 1761, accounts of the trial have concluded with the statement that Galileo, as he arose from his knees, exclaimed sotto voce, "E pur si muove" [nevertheless it does move]. That statement was long considered legendary, but it was discovered written on a portrait of Galileo completed c.1640.
After the Inquisition trial Galileo was sentenced to an enforced residence in Siena. He was later allowed to live in seclusion at Arcetri near Florence, and it is likely that Galileo's statement of defiance was made as he left Siena for Arcetri. In spite of infirmities and, at the last, blindness, Galileo continued the pursuit of scientific truth until his death. His last book, Dialogues Concerning Two New Sciences (tr., 3d ed. 1939, repr. 1952), which contains most of his contributions to physics, appeared in 1638. In 1979 Pope John Paul II asked that the 1633 conviction be annulled. However, since teaching the Copernican theory had been banned in 1616, it was technically possible that a new trial could find Galileo guilty; thus it was suggested that the 1616 prohibition be reversed, and this happened in 1992. The pope concluded that while 17th-century theologians based their decision on the knowledge available to them at the time, they had wronged Galileo by not recognizing the difference between a question relating to scientific investigation and one falling into the realm of doctrine of the faith.neough

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Postby Plavt » Wed, 05 Oct 2005 9:52 pm

The debate about Galileoo is all very interesting but the point | was trying to put across was Antony van Leeuwenhoek was likely considered a nobody by the scientific and academic society of the day not whether or not his discovery was an accident. Imagine if you yourself discovered the answer to problem which would affect everybody in the world. How would you explain that you had found the answer if in all likelihood nobody was going to believe you? As I said earlier I wonder if somebody with a pet interest or hobby has found the answer to something but never bothered to mention it for fear of being made to look foolish. Who do we usually listen to when discoveries of one sort are made - scientists or academic researchers.

As an example since much of what I have said is a bit vague, I used to work with a girl whose husband suffered from sickle cell anaemia. In the UK he spent most of the winter months housebound with the heating turned up full blast (in the UK of course). In his native country Africa he went to witch doctors who gave him things that apparently worked.
The point to consider is that might well know of herbs or remedies but will have been either ignored or ridiculed since many of their methods will be surrounded by ritual or superstition.

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Last edited by Plavt on Wed, 05 Oct 2005 9:55 pm, edited 2 times in total.

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no again

Postby ringo100 » Wed, 05 Oct 2005 9:53 pm

That’s why doing searches on Yahoo for some basic facts never really revels the truth. The whole of your cut and paste effort actually describes the book that I have read on Heliocentricity and is factually correct does not contradict a single thing I said above. All it does is miss the point. And being put under house arrest is only really bad when it is a hovel not an Italian villa in Siena.

The original poster said Galileo was not recognized in his time. He was; the vast majority of his early work on light was applauded by the church.

He got in trouble for slapping the pope in the face with regards to a theory that was around for 100+ years already. No one in his time doubted his genius or contribution to science, even the pope. It was just political. And his incarceration was not very strict, he was still allowed to publish books; he could have burnt or hung.

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Postby Wind In My Hair » Wed, 05 Oct 2005 11:18 pm

Plavt, the articles were fascinating. thanks for posting the links.

let's see, i've long thought that mosquitoes are attracted to blood type B. when i'm around my friends don't get bitten cos the mozzies all go for me. i've asked around and other B blood types seem to have similar experiences. but of course no one believes me cos i'm a nobody in the scientific world! ](*,)

does that prove your point? :wink:

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Postby sundaymorningstaple » Wed, 05 Oct 2005 11:31 pm

Wind In My Hair wrote:Plavt, the articles were fascinating. thanks for posting the links.

let's see, i've long thought that mosquitoes are attracted to blood type B. when i'm around my friends don't get bitten because the mozzies all go for me. i've asked around and other B blood types seem to have similar experiences. but of course no one believes me because i'm a nobody in the scientific world! ](*,)

does that prove your point? :wink:


I'm '+' of your 'B' theory! :mrgreen:

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Postby Wind In My Hair » Wed, 05 Oct 2005 11:46 pm

sundaymorningstaple wrote:I'm '+' of your 'B' theory! :mrgreen:

ha ha, which reminds me i am 'B+'! now i need to investigate my little unrecognised theory a little more... is it just 'B+'ers like me who get bitten or 'B-'ers as well. :-k

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Postby sundaymorningstaple » Thu, 06 Oct 2005 12:08 am

Wind In My Hair wrote:
sundaymorningstaple wrote:I'm '+' of your 'B' theory! :mrgreen:

ha ha, which reminds me i am 'B+'! now i need to investigate my little unrecognised theory a little more... is it just 'B+'ers like me who get bitten or 'B-'ers as well. :-k


Remember, there's not that many of us out there. Only 15% of the Population has B+. No damn wonder why we get bitten so much. There's not that many of us to go around! :mrgreen:

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Postby Wind In My Hair » Thu, 06 Oct 2005 12:13 am

sundaymorningstaple wrote:Remember, there's not that many of us out there. Only 15% of the Population has B+. No damn wonder why we get bitten so much. There's not that many of us to go around! :mrgreen:

all i can say is, don't you dare claim the nobel prize when it really belongs to me cos i discovered it first! [-X


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