Saturday, May 8, 2010

Science or Science Fiction?

What is science? A rather philosophical question I have to say. Well if you're a student then chances are science will associate with tons of homework. And if you are a simple statistical person, than science is actually nothing more than some magical thing which is the cause of your Ipod or computer. If you're a geek like me, than science is like magic to you, after all what can be more magical than flying to the Moon or having all the knowledge of thousands of libraries just one click away from you on the internet. These all definitions are all great, but what is science more precisely? Maybe we should check the vocabulary?

"The word science comes from the Latin "scientia," meaning knowledge." More precisely, science is knowledge attained through study or practice. That's all fine but you must be wondering why I'm talking about all of these definitions. Well the answer is simple, because we life in a time when it's not clear what is the difference between science and science fiction. 

A few days ago I watched a very nice movie back from the 50s, you know the golden age of horror movies about monsters, aliens and space travel. The special effects looked kind of silly after all of these years, but the movie was still kind of interesting and funny in same way. However, after watching the movie, where some crazy astronauts flew to Mars, I asked myself a very simple but a truly interesting question - is this movie a Sci-fi movie? The reason for this question is of course the famous president Obama announcement during which he revealed the new plans to travel to Mars in a course of 20 - 30 years. So if we are going to Mars, then the crazy Sci-fi movie that I've seen, is not so unrealistic. As a matter of fact if we were to look at various Sci-fi works from the early 1900s and even earlier, we would realise, that almost everything that was science fiction now is real science.For instance, some months the world was shaken when some crazy scientists discovered that some materials can bend light rays in some ways to make the material invisible. Wouldn't you like to have an invisible coat, huh?

Every time, every decade, every era is famous for something, for instance the 60s are famous for rock music and hippies, the 20th century is famous for wars and scientific inventions and so on. So what is our century famous for? I truly believe that our century is the golden age of science.
The fact that science fiction is no longer just fairy tails, means that we are truly living in a very unique time. We can travel to space, use mobile phones, the internet, travel between continents in a matter of hours and live long healthy lives. What  science fiction was in the past is now science. And the fact that we are living in the world where it is no longer clear what is science fiction and what is science, truly means that we are living in a magical world indeed.


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