Prof. Fidel’s take on my ‘Nobel laureate’ weblog post

Readability test scores for this post are as follows:

Flesch Reading Ease: 76.24
Flesch-Kincaid Grade Level: 5.00
Automated Readability Index: 4.00

For more info about readability tests, check out my post about those here.

This post is just actually a copy-and-paste of my e-mail to Dr. (of science in mathematics) Fidel, and his reply, when I sent him the link to my post about my attendance to a Noble prize laureate presentation. I just wanted it to be placed here in my weblog before it gets buried in my inbox. Also, I just want to share our conversation to people out there who just might be interested in such things. Thanks to Dr. Fidel for allowing me to post this here in my weblog (^)___(^).

The following is my e-mail to Dr. Fidel about my weblog post I wanted him to read through/scan:

Hi sir,
I wrote a post on my weblog, and I was thinking you could consider reading
it as a reaction paper of sort (^)__(^) or even asking some of your students
or friends to check it out.
Anyway, any comment/feedback will be appreciated, that is, if you have the
time to spare (^)___(^) :
https://f241vc15.wordpress.com/2008/01/09/my-attendance-to-a-presentation-by-a-nobel-prize-laureate-in-physics/

And the next one is his reply (with my reply interspersed in between his paragraphs):

Thanks for this! Good to know that there were students in the audience
who appreciated and savored Gross’ talk. I enjoyed reading your post
and will email you my thoughts on the ideas he put forward one of
these days. Or we can discuss over coffee. It’s too bad — I
unfortunately dozed off a couple of times, and no matter how valiantly
I tried to keep awake, I couldn’t keep my eyes open. (Bad case of jet
lag and lack of sleep these last three nights.) But I enjoyed the
talk immensely. I wish I could invite him to talk in STS!

Savour would be a good term to describe it I guess (^)__(^)
It was really too bad Doc. It was too bad you weren’t awake the whole time sir. It was really cold at my seat but I endured it for the hour long or so presentation. I had little sleep too the night before, but my eyes were agape the whole time!

Just a few points, before I go to bed-

Gross is a true believer, convinced that physics is the stuff of life,
and that everything is comprehensible. But how different is this from
religion? His work rests on faith, not in some god, but on the
platonist idea that the world is orderly, governed by transcendent
laws that exists out there, independent of us. And how can it be
otherwise? Scientists like Gross cannot function without that faith.

Yes I agree. But we also need to create some distinction between religious faith and scientific faith. The main difference I would think is that the former is not based on fact or logical reasoning, unlike the latter. Would it seem then that we’re just entangled in a semantic web?

At best, the science community is a communit based on collegiality and
respect; Gross is right, the methods of science and the peer-review
system do provide some model of how democracy can work. At worst, it
is a brew of competing ideas and viewpoints; with each idea creating
tribes of adherents, renegades and heretics. The world is not as
orderly as Gross would want it to be.

which reminds me usually of Heisenberg’s uncertainty principle…and how scientists like Einstein felt repugnant that no order can seemingly be found in the quantum mechanical world.

Einstein can be excused for dreaming about a world government. After
all, the WW2 had just ended and everyone was (or appeared to be) in
the business of putting the world together again. But alas, societies
don’t follow the laws of physics, and the UN, that prototype for world
government, has failed miserably in preventing war, famine and
inequality.

Yes I agree. Perhaps I should add that to my post, about how Einstein suggested (and to which prof. Gross agreed) a supranational government for the world to solve most of our problems.

I think intelligent design is creationism in cloaked in a lab gown.
The real source of the controversy over ID is that its proponents want
it taught in the classroom as science.

Yes as what has been happening in the United States, as recent as last year (and probably still continuing till today). Different states are trying to abolish the theory of evolution in favor of ID as early as primary education, which has caused significant personalities in the academe such as prof. Richard Dawkins and Sam Harris to put out books combating this ( i.e. The God Delusion by prof. Dawkins and A Letter to a Christian Nation by prof. Harris, both New York Times best sellers).

There! Again, thanks to Dr. Fidel. I feel much relieved now (^)___(^)

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