ePUB [Curiosity yaoi] Author Philip Ball – Book or DOC

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A Riesling to Die lThis review first appeared on my blog hereHistories of what is known as the scientific revolution especially those who are writing for a popular audience tend to portray the development of modern science as something new a break from past thought about the world rather than a continuation of it It is as though despite Newton s oft uoted remark about the shoulders of giants the ideas of Copernicus Galileo Descartes and Newton and others in other fields came out of nowhere Inconvenient facts which show the continuing influence of earlier ideas such as Newton s interest in alchemy areeft out or mentioned in passing in an embarrassed mannerThe purpose of Ball s book is to show something of the continuous nature of the development of the philosophical ideas which Pookie-Pie: A Sweet Bedtime Story led to the seventeenth century appearance of modern science in embryonic form Ostensibly he does this byooking at the concept of curiosity how it has changed its meaning and how attitudes towards it changed from the common medieval opinion that it was to be discouraged as ikely to ead to heretical thought if uncheckedI say ostensibly because even though the discussion of curiosity is important it did not feel to me that it was the sole focus of the book Apart from anything else Ball is happy to go off on interesting tangents such as the ong chapter on seventeenth century ideas about the possibility of ife on the moon sparked by Galileo s observations of features similar if a certain amount of wishful thinking was used to earthly terrain as opposed to being a featureless perfect sphere and by the ensuing publication of Kepler s novel Somnium The Dream or Posthumous Work on Lunar Astronomy At A Warlocks Dance (The Cursed Princes, least it seemsike that is what is happening when the reader starts the chapter in fact it is the first of a series of what are basically case studies examination of some of the popular scientific crazes of the seventeenth century a theme which would make a fascinating book in itselfThere are occasional places where I suspect Ball assumes knowledge in his readership than might be sensible for example he uses the term Whiggish of historical accounts without explaining its meaning It s reasonably clear from the context but could easily confuse anyone who hasn t an interest in the theory of historical writing such as someone interested from the science side of things rather than the history side It is by the way a somewhat derogatory term for old fashioned narrative history which treats the past as a novel from a one sided point of view especially one which paints the individuals as heroes and villains In general though the explanations of what people were doing what they intended how this fitted into the history of science and especially the development of the philosophy of science are admirably clearCuriosity is well worth reading especially if your exposure to history of early modern science is so far imited to the traditional version with heroes and villains painted in black and white terms The narrative might become complicated than you had previously thought but then the real world is ike that Review title What do we really want to knowAuthor Ball frames a fascinating subject what do we want to know what should we want to know what is and isn t appropriate to know What does science want to know and why what does theology want us to know what to accept by faith and what never to uestion All OF THESE UESTIONS BALL CATEGORIZES AS these uestions Ball categorizes as in this deep and sometimes too dense study of the history of science and the scientific revolution which Ball states Was NeitherIn Part As neitherIn part as corrective for those who believe that science developed out of and distinct from magic alchemy and natural philosophy in a small defined set of events in clear contrast to those past and concurrent ways of thinking Ball shows how these ways of thinking all overlapped and intertwined in their subject matter and methods Ball documents how early thinkers now adopted as founding figures of science such as Galileo Newton and Robert Boyle who made a clear break with the unscientific past actually thought in ways and studied subjects congruent with their alchemical peers He also traces philosophies of appropriate areas of study back to Aristotle and Plato and shows how much influence these ancient Greek philosophers still carried in intellectual My First Kitten life centuriesater As the definition of curiosity broadened the allowable and patron approved and funded areas of study expanded in the fertile span of years from the 16th to the 18th centuries that are at the core of Ball s historyThe subject matter is sometimes better than Ball s approach to it While he throws out names uotes sources and historical allusions in *dense arguments and rapid and sometimes confusing transitions his central uestions can be boiled down to this1 *arguments and rapid and sometimes confusing transitions his central uestions can be boiled down to this1 was allowable and would be funded The church and the governments and kings it both owned and answered to had a arge part to say in answer to this uestion Science even before the days of big science cost money and needed royal approval to proceed unhindered Government church authorities and wealthy patrons could provide or withhold as the church did from Galileo these vital necessities and also direct how they were used Ball talks about the cabinets of curiosities wealthy collectors assembled to satisfy their own curiosities and shows how these data collection efforts sometimes drove science and sometimes favored magical and alchemical displays of wonder and sometimes the recipients of the finding or the collections moved freely between both ways of thinking2 What did the thinkers themselves consider worthy of curiousity What did they want to know The answer was sometimes everything which some thinkers considered indiscriminate collection that wasted precious money and brainpower In contrast Ball uotes Francis BaconGod has framed the mind ike a glass capable of the image of the universe and desirous to receive it as the eye to receive Pin-Up light and thus it is not only pleased with the variety and vicissitudes of things but also endeavours to find out theaws they observe in their changes and alterationsThis uote powerfully amplifies the philosophy that I espouse in The catholic reader the unchcom website where I post my reviews On the other side were those proto scientists included who wanted to drill down on specific topics with deeper focus and increasingly specialized instruments ike microscopes telescopes and air pumps This approach brought counter arguments traced by Bal. There was a time when curiosity was condemned To be curious was to delve into matters that didn't concern you after all the original sin stemmed from a desire for forbidden knowledge Through curiosity our innocence was ostYet this hasn't deterred us Today we spend vast sums trying to recreate the first instants of creation in particle accelerators out of pure desire to know There seems now to. Curiosity

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It is curious indeed that a curious person The Favorite Daughter like me never thought that curiosity has a history I thought curiosity was something we re born with Indeed even my dogs are curious as were the racoon babies peering at us as we walked by their nest in the porch of a house in the middle of an inner city neighborhoodCuriously not only has curiosity got a history curiosity had beenooked down upon by church and state The history of curiosity is the history of science in the Western World I Fitness for Geeks love the history of science but after the first 200 or so pages curiously I was sick of curious peopleCuriously this is because Ball feels the need to mention such minor curious men that I never heard of Not so curiously I did know of the major and some minor curious men However curious as I am my curiosity failed me as theist of curious thinkers grew and the objects of their curiosity became curiously trivial In short this is well researched and well written but ultimately boring why is the sea salty have animals souls or intelligence has opinion its foundation in the animate body why do human beings not have horns how is it that sound in its passage makes its way through any obstacle whatever how is it that joy can be the cause of tears why are the fingers of uneual ength why if you have intercourse with a woman after she has ain with a eper will you catch the disease while she will escape what reason is there for the universality of death why do we need food so freuently or at all why are the iving afraid of the bodies of the dead how is the globe supported in the middle of the air why does the inflow of the rivers not increase the bulk of the ocean why if a vessel be full and its Winter Sunshine lower part open does water not issue from it unless the upperid be first removed when one atom is moved are all moved since whatever is in a state of motion moves something else thus setting up infinite motion why do winds travel along the earth s surface and not in an upward direction why does a sort of perpetual shadow brood over the moon granted that the stars are alive on what food do they Naked Choke live ought we regard the cosmos as an inanimate body aiving thing or a god Adelard of Bath c1120 A great history of the so called scientific revolution of the 16th and 17th centuries He examines the main characters and ideas in the revolution and their cultural context It s pretty academic in tone which is okay but it s far of a history book than a book about the evolution of curiosity There are sections on curiosity how it went from being sacrilegious to being necessary for the Pleasure Activism: The Politics of Feeling Good learning about the world around us But I guess it was heavier with history and philosophical debate than I was expecting from the editorial summary I stillearned a Murder at the Mansion lot and am glad I read it but it was tough to slog through it even for me and I m pretty patient with boring science history stuff A mixed bag for me Some chapters were fascinating others dull or misleading The best parts were Ball s takes on theiterary responses to the scientific revolution in England chapters 8 and 12 first the slew of Moone books that appeared starting in the 1630s speculating about the possibility of Healing Souls life on the moon second the satirical tradition that emerged in theater part of the 17th century as a reaction to virtuoso Whiggish Puritan culture the Seductive Surrender last and most famous example of which is Gulliver s Travels Ball has strong opinions about the various works he surveys and is an entertaining critic Chapter 2 on the tradition of renaissance natural magic was also uite good and why I bought the book after reading the preview on Google Books Ball champions non traditional figuresike Gianbattista della Porta and John Dee and he ably discusses how the tradition of natural magic provided one of the cornerstones on of 17th century natural philosophy The book also gave me a new appreciation of Francis BaconLess good in my opinion were Ball s chapters on the traditional Scientific Revolution astronomy and physics Ball doesn "t duplicate his championing of Seductive Surrender (Highland Heather Romancing a Scot, lesser figures here we stillearn that Galileo "duplicate his championing of esser figures here we still earn that Galileo the aw of inertia and Descartes merely restated it Gassendi the first to correctly formulate in print the aw of rectilinear inertia via Isaac Beeckman not Galileo is described as a follower of Descartes which he wasn t Copernicus is said in the main text to have abolished epicycles in astronomy which he didn t a semi clarifying footnote helps only a ittle Simon Stevin isn t mentioned Huygens massive contributions to the understanding of force physics aren t mentioned Kepler s polyhedral thesis is dismissed as sheer numerology which it wasn t Kepler and Newton are mathematical mystics who were ucky enough to get good data a pretty uncharitable take to say the The Deepest Sin least Flamsteed is dismissed as a mere number cruncher except when Ball is ridiculing the magnetic theory of comets he ventured to Newton The explanation of Newton s orbital dynamics is confusing and Ball claims that Newton accomplished what he did because he was fixated on the inverse suareaw which strikes me as a weird claim Ball also says matter of factly that Newton must have already proved that the ellipse and area rules followed from the inverse suare aw by the time Halley visited him in 1684 which is actually uite controversial among historiansThe remaining chapters are ok Chapter 9 pretty much just restates the arguments and some of the reaction to Leviathan and the Air Pump but it s interesting stuff Chapter 10 tells about the microscope I share Ball s obvious affection for Robert Hooke so I can t complain Chapter 11 tells a partial history *of the theory of ight but omits a ot ike the discovery of the sine aw *the theory of ight but omits a ot ike the discovery of the sine aw refraction or the new theories of vision Ball focuses almost completely on England and the Royal Society with only occasional references to figures on the Continent It eaves me wondering if Ball is just following the recent trends in history of science or if he thinks there is something special and curious about England and if so whyTrying to answer this uestion might have been fruitful As is the theme of curiosity isn t very well developed Unfortunately the concluding chapter made almost no sense at all to me I don t understand what Ball thinks curiosity is to science or what the examples from the 17th century have to tell us about it Ball clearly prefers the virtuosos the hands on experimentalists to the theorists That s fine but what separates good curiosity good science good speculation from bad I get the. S a complex story in which the iberation and the taming of curiosity was inked to magic religion iterature travel trade and empireBy examining the rise of curiosity we can ask what has become of it today how it functions in science how it is spun and packaged and sold how well it is being sustained and honoured and how the changing shape of science influences the kinds of uestions it may as.
L some satirical on stage and humorous in print such as this one Snowflakes on the Sea liner All philosophy is based on two things only curiosity and poor eyesight the trouble is we want to know than we can see But it also engaged new worlds for investigation as telescopes opened up the solar system and microscopes revealed whole universes of new data for study closer at handAs I said Ball s reach can exceed his grasp as the fascinating topics sometimes bog down in meandering writing that is too dense for theay reader to follow But if the title and topic and hopefully this review as well peak your curiosity indulge it here I must admit that this book s best uality is probably the author s ambivalence about what he is talking about To be sure I have a very different perspective on science and curiosity and their Wrathful Chaos: Five Books of Satanic Philosophy larger cultural matters and this book does a good job at reminding the reader if such a reminder is necessary that science has always carried with it aarge amount of baggage relating to the arger culture and its own ideas and belief systems Had the author not been deeply interested in science he ikely would have never written this book and certainly would not have adopted the standard scientific beliefs in evolution and the praise of Darwin and other figures that is to be assumed in such books as this Yet the author is intellectually honest enough not to want to pass off hagiography on Galileo and other figures but to address their complex and often idiosyncratic beliefs and practices openly and honestly showing that scientists have always been somewhat odd and that the scientific enterprise has always sat uneasily with related societal concerns about the value of curiosity on its own terms the desire for science to further useful aims and to serve the interests of power and the uestion of magic and religion as well as the negative relationship between science and social conservatismThis particular book is than 400 pages and begins with a preface which only hints at the rich detail about science and scientists that the book contains After that the author ooks at the old uestions of the early modern period that related to ancient authorities and the hostility of ancient culture to curiosity 1 After that the author examines secret academies of hermetic studies 2 curiosity 3 as well as the ambivalent view of mankind s uest for knowledge and immoral freedom 4 The author discusses the ideal of the Renaissance polymath 5 as well as the expansion of knowledge that came from exploration 6 and the problem of cosmology 7 There are chapters on early science fiction related to space travel 8 the simultaneously free and bound nature of creation 9 and the early research on microscopes 10 Finally the author ooks at research into optics 11 the view of scientists in popular culture at the time 12 and the way that curiosity became cold as scientists sought egitimacy for their research 13 after which the author includes a cast of characters notes a bibliography image credits and an indexThe author s ambivalence towards the arger culture and his awareness of the problematic nature of the scientific enterprise both in history and at present allowed me to better understand my own ambivalence to that scientific enterprise The author points out that the search for freedom of curiosity has often involved an interest in escaping sexual restraint and has pointed out that scientists have often presented themselves as privileged and unaccountable elites with esoteric knowledge that is difficult to replicate and that is inaccessible to common people Science s relationship with the exploitation of human and physical creation and the connection of curiosity to profit motives are also areas the author appears to be uncomfortable but also honest about All of this adds nuance "To A History Of Curiosity S Role In Science That "a history of curiosity s role in science that deeply interesting and also deeply revealing As someone with a high view of teleology and a Love 2.0 (A Cates Brothers Book, low view both of scientific pretensions as well as the aristocratic pretensions of foppish ignorance there are plenty of perspectives shown here that I can relate to And that ability to relate to the people of the past despite the fact that weive in a very different time ourselves that marks the real achievement of the author in presenting the humanity and complexity of past figures in the history of science that also reveals us to be The Fix less rational andess removed from the debates of the past than we would ike to fancy ourselves We may not ive in this past but the past ives in us This took me such a ong time to get into that I decided to abandon it The Desire in Seven Voices language was often dense andofty which made the first chapters nearly inaccessible for me Plus the opening is mostly hair splitting about what the word curiosity meant in a variety of cultures contexts and anguages So I was doing a ot of mental wandering and zoning out needing to back up and start pages paragraphs and sentences over Later on though when Ball finally gets to individual instances and players in the expansion of scientific The Casa Mono Cookbook literacy That s when this took off and became enjoyable But you have to sit through aot of droning first *And It Never Really Clicked For Me *it never really clicked for me wise3 stars out of 5 Not my favorite Pop Science author by a ong shot Curiosity was considered a vice in the middle ages and before It is a cardinal virtue in science these days It is a term of praise This book takes a ook at the scientific revolution in the 17th century and charts the rising fortunes of curiosity and wonder This is also a good history of the scientific revolution with a arge cast Galileo Kepler Newton Bacon Boyle Hooke Lippershays Pepys and almost every notable natural philosopher of the time This is a crucial period in Western civilization and ultimately world civilization We slowly formed from pre scientific superstition and scholasticism the beginings of the scientific world view Philip Ball keeps the story interesting by showing the relationships between these people as they hammered out the modern world If ever there was a book I should give 5 to this is it Unfortunately it is superbly written from a syntax standpoint but totally unengaging If anything it is a 3 dB tougher read than Vom Kreig The subject is not only enthralling but critically important to our civilization Admittedly it is complex so the author can be forgiven IMHO for not uite managing to integrate a story I recommend this strongly for any scientist who is an actual nerd and not just a careerist geek. Be no uestion too vast or too trivial to be ruled out of bounds Why can fleas jump so high What is gravity What shape are clouds Today curiosity is no onger reviled but celebratedExamining how our inuisitive impulse first became sanctioned changing from a vice to a virtue Curiosity begins with the age when modern science began a time that spans the ives of Galileo and Isaac Newton It reveal.