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Unformatted text preview: Resources Geology 22/01/2008 07:02:00 ← The goal of science is to attempt to understand the natural world around us ← Based on the assumption that natural events occur in an orderly pattern ← Understanding those patterns allows us to provide explanations of natural phenomena and to try to predict the occurrence of such phenomena ← ← Model- an approximation, simplification, or simulation of something that is being ← Hypothesis- a tentative explanation or educated guess that needs further evaluation ← ← Scientific method- • Problem or question • Do experiments, make observations, collect data • Interpret data • Formulate hypothesis to explain observations/data, Make predictions • Test Hypothesis (A hypothesis must always be able to be tested!!!) • Revise hypothesis if necessary ← Scientific theory- shit that has withstood testing over time ← Scientific law- shit that works exactly the same wherever you are (gravity etc.) ← ← Scientific Law- a concise but general statement about how nature behaves (something that occurs over and over in the same way) ← Scientific Theory- a certain or nearly certain, widely accepted scientific conclusion ← ← Science is not “black and white.” Scientists cannot prove that their theories, laws, models are absolutely true ← Scientists can: ← 1. Disprove something ← 2. establish a high probability of something ← ← An important part of science is communication. • Presentation and publication of new data, models, and theories is important so that they can be peer reviewed (a.k.a. hypotheses can be tested!!!) ← The very nature of the scientific method is that scientific theories are constantly being revised and refined. SCIENCE IS NOT ABSOLUTE!! ← ← ← Scientific method and Geology ← • One important thing that distinguishes geology from most other sciences is the consideration of time • Geology often involves extremely large time units which are not easy to conceptualize for most people • Natural processes and material are commonly very complex and can’t always be easily tested or reproduced in a laboratory setting o Ex. You can’t come up with a life size simulation of an erupting volcano ← ← Systems ← ← System- any part of the universe that we wish to select for study. We define what the boundaries are. ← Systems are made up of components that interact with each other in some manner ← Models are frequently used to simulate or approximate some systems ← ← Types of Systems ← ← Isolated system • Completely separated from the surrounding universe. No exchange of mass ore energy between the system and the surroundings. True isolated systems do not exist- ←...
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This note was uploaded on 04/26/2008 for the course GEOS 1024 taught by Professor Meschreiber during the Spring '08 term at Virginia Tech.
- Spring '08