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Science is Method

Science refers to the application of the scientific method over time in order to create continuous improvements in our understanding of the universe.

It does not refer to any specific theory or contemporary understanding of how things work. Any of these theories could be invalidated by future research.

A common saying in 2023 is Trust the Science. Those that understand science know that this means to trust the scientific method and the peer review process to validate true claims and invalidate false ones over time, rather than trusting in any particular scientists, institutions, or theories.

Standards for Best Practices

Ultimately the goal of society should be to adopt the best practices for maximizing happiness throughout all aspects of the government, economy, and culture, as revealed through scientific research.

This should include standards for when to update those best practices that avoid abrupt and confusing changes to what science recommends based on popular research. One of the things that has significantly eroded confidence in science is the constant stream of seemingly contradictory health studies that get outsized media attention. An authoritative recommended health regimen from a trusted institution that only changes when significant and overwhelming new evidence warrants it would make it much easier for people to ignore all the noise generated by sensationalist scientific reporting, and the many grifters that profit off the confusion.

Since most people don't have the time or scientific education required to determine the validity of scientific theories, restoring trust in institutions will be a necessary prerequisite to the universal adoption of evidence-based best practices.

More Than Just a Social Construct

Postmodern critics of science claim that science is just another belief system akin to any other religion or ideology. While scientists are humans, and their psychology and culture certainly influence their chosen fields and proposed hypotheses, the system of science ensures that our models of the universe lead to increasingly accurate predictions of its behavior. These predictions are useful in a way that that prophecy and other predictive mechanisms cannot, because they result in technology.

A common criticism of anti-capitalists on social media is that they are hypocrites because they are using one of the most useful and amazing products of capitalism, the smartphone, in order to make that criticism. However, this criticism is invalid because we could easily conceive of how such a device could be manufactured under an alternative economic structure. It may have taken longer for the smartphone to be developed under communism, but there is nothing inherent in the economic systems that would prevent it from happening eventually.

The same cannot be said of science. If you use a smartphone to say that science is no better than any other belief system, you are a hypocrite without exception. The smartphone is definitive proof that science leads to a more accurate picture of reality than other systems of knowledge or belief. Every single component is the result of centuries of theory and experimentation that led to the practical engineering knowledge that enabled its invention. Some of these discoveries were made under feudalism, some under communism, some by government funded research in democracies, and others through privately funded capitalist R&D. The cultural and historical contexts in which they were made vary just as much. But regardless of the culture or economic system that produced them, the scientific system was in use throughout.

No other belief system has produced technology. Although there are many other arguments that can be made against the postmodern notion of science as a social construct, this is sufficient to falsify the theory.

Learn to Think Scientifically

Think Like a Scientist

One of the most comprehensive yet accessible courses devoted to teaching self-correcting scientific modes of thought is the Sense & Sensibility & Science course based on the book Third Millennium Thinking.

The course teaches the philosophy, psychology, and best practices for using scientific modes of thinking to tackle the problems of information overload, misinformation, and pseudoscience. It is a more academic version of this wiki with a narrower focus on critical thinking skills.

The book is also quite good and covers most of the same material as the course.

Applied Science

All references to Science in the metaculture wiki

The Sounds (and video) of Science

The Scientific Method: How scientists solve problems

Science in Action: How Science Works

Feynman on Scientific Method

Beastie Boys - The Sounds of Science