The LIE of science

When discussing science, we typically distinguish between theory and practice. William Feller, in the introduction to his monumental An introduction to probability theory and its applications [sic], enlarges this dichotomy to an interdependent triangle: the formal Logical content, the Intuitive background and the applications or physical Experience – the LIE of any scientific discipline. A similar reasoning shimmers through the first lines of that other monument, Richard Courant’s What is mathematics? “Mathematics as an expression of the human mind reflects the active will, the contemplative reason, and the desire for aesthetic perfection.” → Read More

One, two, three cultures and counting

Is it dangerous to an individual or to society that a void has opened among the various types of knowledge, of culture? Has it diminished our (individual and combined) capacity to “produce future”? Does it make us less humanior? Less universal? → Read More