This paper takes part in the series essay competition of “great science” of Recordunkown.
I believe many friends know that the first industrial revolution of mankind began in the 18th century. From the 18th century to the 21st century, although it is less than three centuries, human science and technology has made brilliant achievements.
Some people may think that from the 18th century to the present, there will be some great scientists and put forward some great scientific theories in every century. The reason why human science and technology can develop so fast is that there are some great scientists who can lead human science and technology, and they put forward some great scientific theories. Under the guidance of these great theories, human science and technology have made leaps and bounds.
Do these great scientists and great scientific theories appear in every century on average? The answer is No. from the 17th century, some great scientists and great scientific theories began to appear. For example, Newton’s classical mechanics was put forward in the 17th century, and it was the emergence of classical mechanics that accelerated the pace of human civilization into the industrial age.
In less than three centuries since the industrial age, the 20th century, that is, the last century, has made the greatest contribution to human science and technology. Rather, it was the first fifth of the last century, before 1920. We can give some examples. For example, Einstein put forward special relativity in 1905 and general relativity in 1915.
And Rutherford’s great breakthrough in atomic structure, that is, at this time, it laid the foundation of nuclear physics. In addition, the focus of our scientists’ research on quantum mechanics was put forward by scientists in the first 20 years of last century. Many great scientists and theories were also put forward in the first 20 years of the last century. It can be seen that the first 20 years of the 20th century were the golden age since the industrial revolution.
In addition to these, many great scientific conjectures were born in the last century, such as the conjecture of gravitational wave, wormhole, gravitational lens, Higgs boson, black hole and so on. In this century, all these conjectures have been proved scientifically except wormhole.
After looking at the glory of the first 20 years of the last century, let’s look at the great scientific theories of mankind in the first 20 years of the next century? Maybe we can’t think of it. Whether it’s gravitational waves, Higgs bosons or quantum mechanics, they are all the things put forward by scientists in the last century. In the 21st century, we are just testing the theories of the past.
At this time, many people will have such a question: why has one fifth of the 21st century passed, and there is no great scientist who can match Newton and Einstein? No great scientific theory yet? Is it human intelligence that has degenerated?
Some scientists once put forward such a view that there has been no substantial breakthrough in the basic science of mankind in the past 100 years, and the development of human civilization has encountered shackles. If this shackle can not be broken through, human civilization will be trapped on the earth forever. We should understand that with the continuous increase of population and the depletion of resources, if human civilization can not really get rid of the shackles of the earth, the end of civilization may be waiting for mankind.
So has the development of science and technology in the last hundred years really been shackled? From the current point of view, it is true. We have also made some brief introductions. You can find that the basic sciences in the history of human science were basically born before the 1920s. Since the 1920s, it has been basically testing those basic sciences, following the great theories put forward by scientists more than 100 years ago.
Although only one fifth of the 21st century has passed, we can see that the science and technology of human civilization has undergone earth shaking changes, with the emergence of new science and technology almost every day. But if we take a closer look, you will find that no matter how powerful these technologies are, they have not broken away from the framework of some basic scientific theories put forward by scientists 100 years ago.
Why can’t the first half of the 21st century have a brilliant scientific era like the first 20 years of last century? In this regard, different people may have different views. Some people think that it is because in the 21st century, there has not been a great scientist who can lead the direction of human science. This is indeed a fact. The reason why the last century was a brilliant era of science is that a great Einstein was born, and some other great scientists, such as Tesla, had nearly 2000 inventions in their lifetime.
A great scientist plays an important role in the development of human science, which can not be compensated by the number of scientists. Quality and quantity are always two things. No amount can match the real quality. Let’s compare the current domestic cars with those famous foreign cars. No matter how much we produce, we can’t compare with the quality of others. Therefore, it is an eternal truth that quality is king.
Others believe that there were so many great theories in the early 20th century because of the low requirements of observation technology at that time. For example, relativity and quantum mechanics came into being in the 20th century only because of the super intelligence of scientists. The more important reason is the rapid development of observation technology at that time. First of all, on a small scale, scientists can use the roughest “collision” to discover the physical phenomena in the micro world.
The birth of the theory of relativity is also because human beings can start to capture “high-speed phenomenon” and phenomena under strong gravitational field, which makes the birth of the theory of relativity possible. In a word, the basic theories put forward in the past are supported by the improvement of observation technology. It is precisely with the improvement of observation technology that the requirements of basic theories on observation technology are not very high, so the great ideas are put forward.
In the 21st century, many cutting-edge sciences need more powerful observation techniques to put forward. For example, string theory is a hypothesis put forward in the 21st century. However, because we can’t verify its correctness through experiments, it is only a hypothesis, and whether it is correct or not is still unknown.
This point of view tells us that the reason why there will not be great scientists and great scientific theories in the 21st century is that there is not enough powerful observation technology to carry out experimental demonstration. This conclusion seems to have some truth, but after careful analysis, we will find that it is a big mistake.
The emergence of any great scientific theory does not depend on machines or on some so-called observation techniques. It depends on the bold conjecture of scientists, who can form the conjecture of Tianma starry sky in their own mind. This conjecture is not wishful thinking without any scientific basis, but can be supplemented with specific formulas or other data.
If it’s just a wild conjecture without formula or other data support, it’s just a hypothesis. For example, string theory has no specific formula or data to support, so at present it’s just a hypothesis and has not yet formed a scientific theory. However, in the first 20 years of last century, the scientific theories put forward by great scientists were all supported by formulas and data, so relativity became a great scientific theory.
Newton’s classical mechanics is also supported by concrete formulas and data, so it has become a great scientific theory. Although these theories could be proved by experiments at that time, the most difficult and valuable thing was to put forward great theories first. Without these great theories, no powerful observation technology would be of any use.
The observation tools from the 21st century to the present are essentially different from those from the 1920s, and they are not at the same level at all. But can we draw some great scientific theories by relying on these powerful observation tools? The answer is no, because no one can really think of which scientific theories may be great and correct, and can be demonstrated by modern observation tools.
Besides Einstein’s greatness, he put forward the completely subversive theory of relativity, which was not accepted by people at that time. And Einstein did not just put forward a theory of relativity, he also completed the relevant formulas and data, which is the most powerful. It is not difficult to put forward the scientific theory of Tianma starry sky, but to put forward the corresponding formula or data.
Only with the formula and data, can we use the observation tools to verify, so as to verify whether the theory is correct. If we just put forward some scientific theories of Tianma XingKong, we believe that not only scientists can do it, but even people like Xiaobian can also put forward some ideas that completely subvert people’s cognition.
However, the subversion theory we put forward can only be a conjecture. We can’t put forward corresponding formulas and data, such as the theory of human soul. We can also put forward hypotheses to guess that the soul is real. However, we can’t put forward more specific things, so we can’t use observation tools to verify it. It’s just a conjecture and hypothesis.
It can be seen that there is no great scientific theory in the 21st century, not that the observation tools are not advanced enough, but that there is no great scientist like Einstein. Only the birth of such a great scientist can really lead human civilization into a new chapter. At that time, human beings were the star civilization, completely free from the shackles of the earth. We are looking forward to that day.
Guys, what do you think of this? Welcome to leave a message below to discuss and express your opinions.