Page 17

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Title Ivory Ghetto, The
Subject Science
Description The 33rd Annual Frederick William Reynolds Lecture
Creator Dick, Bertram Gale, 1926-
Publisher Division of Continuing Education, University of Utah
Date 1969-02-17
Date Digital 2008-05-29
Type Text
Format image/jpeg
Digitization Specifications Original scanned on Epson Expression 10000XL flatbed scanner and saved as 400 ppi uncompressed tiff. Display images generated in PhotoshopCS and uploaded into CONTENTdm Aquisition Station.
Resource Identifier,898
Source Q171 .D525
Language eng
Relation Digital reproduction of "The Ivory Ghetto," J. Willard Marriott Library Special Collections
Rights Digital Image Copyright University of Utah
Metadata Cataloger Seungkeol Choe; Ken Rockwell
ARK ark:/87278/s62v2d2c
Setname uu_fwrl
Date Created 2008-07-29
Date Modified 2008-07-29
ID 320157
Reference URL

Page Metadata

Title Page 17
Description "THE IVORY GHETTO" 17 mechanics and electrodynamics led to the revision of Newtonian mechanics, to the unification of the concepts of mass and energy and, eventually, in quantum theory, to the prediction of the existence of hitherto unobserved particles. The simplicity of the special theory of relativity, its wide ranging consequences and its great accomplishment of unification and generality, are all awesomely beautiful. It was mainly the work of one man, Einstein, who, probably more than any other, always emphasized the aesthetic aspect of physics. It is this aesthetic side to physics which is of greatest interest to the non-physicist. A man who doesn't know what viscosity is or who has no idea how an infrared spectrometer works is not marked for life. It's not even very important that one know how a television set works. We're surrounded by gadgets that we depend on but don't understand. It doesn't really make much difference. I wonder who understands how zippers work. Even if a knowledge of how they worked increased one's power over the pesky things, there's no feeling of impoverishment if one doesn't have this knowledge. On the other hand, consider a man who has not had the chance to see that electricity, magnetism and visible light are all aspects of a single interrelated set of phenomena, and that they are all governed by a set of simple equations, Maxwell's equations. This man is missing something. Maxwell's equations are only a sort of culmination of a long struggle to understand. The history of this struggle is full of reverses, errors, bold intuitive leaps forward and patient work. Not to know something of this history is like being deprived of the story of the discovery and exploration of the New World. It's part of our saga and anyone is poorer for being unacquainted with it. Thus, scientists and educators have the responsibility to see to it that the majority of educated people are not cut off from science, as they are now, if only because it is simply too interesting and beautiful to be missed. In addition, there are a number of more work-a-day advantages which a more than superficial study of the sciences has to offer to education. At present, it seems to me that these advantages are largely unexploited. There are three of these I would like to emphasize: unusual directness of participation, the especially intimate character of contact with great minds, and what might be called the democratic nature of science. It is scarcely possible to study a scientific subject in any depth without performing the role of a scientist. Mastery is manipulation. One can't go about this passively with any degree of success. There are many things in which at least some sort of satisfaction can be derived from passive involvement. We can enjoy music without being able to perform it, read novels or poetry without trying to write them, assimilate some history
Format image/jpeg
Identifier 019-RNLT-DickG_ Page 17.jpg
Source Original Manuscript: The Ivory Ghetto by Bertram G. Dick.
Setname uu_fwrl
Date Created 2008-07-29
Date Modified 2008-07-29
ID 320151
Reference URL