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Thread: The Death of Science....

  1. #1
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    Default The Death of Science....

    http://www.wired.com/wired/archive/1...try&topic_set=

    Sad but true, read all four pages.

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    legislating our way to stupidity....

    chemicals dont kill people, people kill people...

    soon we will outlaw all chemicals, guns, knives, pointy things, etc

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    Naw, its the access to skilled adults that we have outlawed!!!!!!!!!. Searched "thermite" on you tube lately? 20$ on flebay and some postage gets you everything in the mail, legally. There is far better access to science via you tube then anything I ever got by bicycling the 15 miles to the university library, when I was 16.

    The information is out there, and the chems and test equipment, other then a few good oxidizers, are still readily available, if not more available, then when I was a kid. You click on the link that says "Are you 18?" and the stuff shows up.


    I proudly mentored and equipped students towards Intel ISEF while I worked at the university. At first, I took flack from everybody official but the safety department. Parking services just could not wait to slap high schoolers with 35$ fines. Then they got a few extra grants from NSF for my having helped students with projects. At that point even the fraidy cat official "gatekeeper" types had their kids in the lab and the flack went away. Parking passes were then officially issued.

    The US military has taken notice, and has quiet programs that provide support to future engineers and even future nurses, starting at the high school level.

    Right now, with the backlash against governmental regulation stupidty, I'm very sure access to science is up. Maybe not to cold war levels, but it is up.

    For a university prof, if Obama has not cut the funding, bringing a undergrad or high schooler or two into your university lab can mean around 2,000 to 30,000$ extra at funding grant time. My old boss pulled down about 30K twice for our efforts to support local schools. It certainly puts you to the front of NSF's grant line if you mentor some one.

    What is lacking is the Adult expertise, the connections to take that spark from the sparks, and get it connected to some one who can mentor the spark into a career.
    The risks to one's professional career are huge, and that is the issue.

    And when I last checked, very few librarians care if some one young sneaks into the university library and behaves like a student. The grad students are stunned if they see a 15 year old looking up pyrochemistry, but the staff just smiles, because they see a future customer. I still sneak into libraries at state schools , been doing it since I was 15. And it IS a public facility in most cases.

    And if your science teacher "reaches out" for you, quiet support is there. Mechanisms like ISEF, which just rains scholarships and prizes. Most of the engineering professional societies will help local students who contact them.

    Jeeze, there is stuff on Google books that is stunning compared to my bike trips.

    Again, its finding Adults who are in a position to help, once you learn how not to burn.There is a huge disconnect between schools and industry. And the media is a big part of why. Its in the business of scarring people, and it does a good job.

    Even in today's hard times, there are many companies that would gladly release their engineers for a day to visit a school. What is daunting is the background check you need to go through to get in the door. That is a day of paperwork and a lot of effort. So if I wanted to volunteer, now I'd need training and a trip to the cop shop for prints. That is the turnoff. Its far easier if the teacher can get the students to the company or university facility, but the paperwork for that field trip is a NIGHTMARE for the teacher.

    It only gets easier if Adults step up to the plate and make the access happen. But access is still there. Just dont expect chlorates or drug precursors.

    What is not there is peer support, current teachers and parents tell me that ANYTHING extracurricular, even going out for football in Texas, is considered a wrong move by today's students. You dont have to be a geek, even being a athelete is often looked down upon in the current culture.

    Steve
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    Quote Originally Posted by mixedgas View Post
    Just dont expect chlorates or drug precursors.
    Steve
    We will gloss over one amusing run in I had due to a misunderstanding regarding the fact that Methanol != Meth!

    If you have access to nitric, alcohol and metals then there are a whole raft of metal azides (Some of which make really NICE primaries, much safer then metal fulminates) within kitchen chemistry reach.

    My high school stopped reporting me for truancy when they realised I was spending the time at out central library (And later at university libraries or hanging with the lab techs - who were a wonderful source of material and techniques).
    I still miss the ability to order anything in the Phillip Harris catalogue from the school chemistry department, no questions asked.

    Regards, Dan.

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    My formal chemistry lessons in high school never went farther than measuring deadly H2O in graduated cylinders. What the hell is a Bunsen burner! I never once seen the main gas line turned on. I breezed through every science related class with an A+ because the teacher only knew how to follow the curriculum of a book. I was bored stiff going over anatomy of cells and covalent bonds every year.

    Thank god for the internet. It's the best class I've ever had.

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    Default Thanks for the read, A....

    “A lot of schools don’t have chemistry labs anymore,” explains CEF educational coordinator Laurel Brent. “We want to give kids lessons that tie in to their real-world experiences without having them deal with a lot of strange chemicals in bottles that have big long names.”

    !!!! - how do such idiots get these jobs???!!!

    “Kids are being robbed of the joy of discovering things for themselves.” Compared with students in previous generations, he says, undergraduates raised on hands-off science seem passive: “They want someone to do things for them. Even those who become chem majors and grad students are not as versatile in the lab, because their experiences in middle school and high school were so limited. This is a terrible shame. By working with real substances, you learn how to ask the right questions about the physical world, which is half the battle in science.”

    A-frigging-men.... Three cheers for PL, but Lord help us if someone ever does actually crash a chopper / aircraft in a pointer-incident - we'll be eating breakfast one morning, calmly awaiting for our 'lasorbs' to arrive, when BLAM!! 20-guys in Raid-gear with M-16s... ...well, I guess we could just redirect them over to 'internationalprodjs' house.....what more would they need???

    thx for the read...
    peace..
    j
    Last edited by dsli_jon; 05-31-2010 at 14:48. Reason: nixed obnoxious pic...
    ....and armed only with his trusty 21 Zorgawatt KTiOPO4...

  7. #7
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    [QUOTE=dsli_jon;147404]“A lot of schools don’t have chemistry labs anymore,” explains CEF educational coordinator Laurel Brent. “We want to give kids lessons that tie in to their real-world experiences without having them deal with a lot of strange chemicals in bottles that have big long names.”

    !!!! - how do such idiots get these jobs???!!!
    End quote:

    Certainly not a qualified commenter when you read her details.


    She majored in getting a MRS in school. She has a communications degree and previously interned at a law firm. Odds are she never took chem in college. Probably well connected politically and aspiring to a career in politics. Where I worked, and where I work now, she qualifies as a secretary at best, then maybe in 10 years they would let her speak to the public.
    Place your bets she is attractive. Wanna bet shes on facebook???

    Considering whom her employer is, she should be fired or cautioned for that comment in less then a heartbeat. But she works for a PAC, so its political.

    See here:

    http://www.nacd.com/about/governance/staff.aspx

    9/10ths of the way down the page.

    http://www.bipac.net/nacdpac/login.asp

    Steve
    Last edited by mixedgas; 05-31-2010 at 16:54.
    Qui habet Christos, habet Vitam!
    I should have rented the space under my name for advertising.
    When I still could have...

  8. #8
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    Not that it matters,BUT,IMHO,I see this over protective,Hypochondriatic (did I spell that right?) sheltering of perspective brilliant minds as a big problem for future generations.
    To me,no hands on means no fun. Make it cool or fun,I'm all over it. I'm 44.
    Same as people are teaching kids to be paranoid of germs,coddle every little boo-boo,medicate every symptom,etc...
    Buy them an Ipud rather than a 101 project electronics kit. I could go on,but the point being most kids don't get the proper inspiration to wonder what/how/why it works.
    This kinda crap being aimed at those trying to support potential Einsteins and such is just sad.
    Take away the Lincoln Logs and Erection Sets and kids will have to play with Barbie.
    Where's the future in that?

    Just talkin'

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    All of this crap *and* the reason I can't fart at work without a risk assessment, method statement and safety harness plus many many of unbelieveable changes that we see today have one common denominator: Leeching, low life ambulance chasing lawyers - no win no fee.

    I was talking to a cop recently and apprently there is no such thing as a road traffic accident any more, as the word accident implies that nobody is to blame.

    Everybody is terrified of being sued, everything we do involves covering somebody's arse.

    I mean if they're making children wear eye protection and gauntlets to play f***ing conkers at school?!
    http://img62.imageshack.us/img62/3985/laser.gif

    Doc's website

    The Health and Safety Act 1971

    Recklessly interfering with Darwin’s natural selection process, thereby extending the life cycle of dim-witted ignorami; thus perpetuating and magnifying the danger to us all, by enabling them to breed and walk amongst us, our children and loved ones.





  10. #10
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    Quote Originally Posted by HD58PHD View Post
    ...Logs and Erection Sets and... Barbie.
    ...got somethin on yer mind, there, HD?

    ...jes teasin... good points... America is turning into Rome....
    peace..
    j
    ....and armed only with his trusty 21 Zorgawatt KTiOPO4...

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