Has science in general really helped mankind or a disaster to mankind?Hockey59 - 6 Answers
I'm a "glass half full" type of person on this topic. Science has explained or to be more exact it has described how nature works. So for instance we know how many biological processes work such as human digestion and photosynthesis in plants. Chemistry explains how compounds and elements react and new compounds are formed and physics describes the behavior of objects under the influences of forces, the dynamics of motion, electricity and magnetism and light. Without this knowledge gained from practical experiments and worked out by the great scientists over the centuries, we would be still be in the Dark Ages thinking that everything is the result of magic.
Scientific knowledge has allowed us to develop vaccines and antibiotics which enable the treatment, prevention or elimination of diseases which have plagued humans for millennia.
We have been able to develop drugs to treat disorders such as cancer, vascular disorders, thyroid disorders and many other conditions which would have been fatal or made life difficult in a previous era.
Transplant surgery also prolongs life.
So the "weak" survive and people live longer. Is this good?
Developments in science in the 18th century led to the development of the steam engine and industrial revolution . During the early 19th century, steam engines replaced animals, wind and water as a source of power for driving machinery in factories and for traction on farms. Long distance transportation was possible because of steam trains.
In the late 19th century, more developments in physics led to the invention of electric motors and generators which were more versatile than steam engines as a source of mechanical and electrical power. Wired, and eventually wireless telegraphy allowed us to communicate and jumping forwards, the electronics revolution gave us all the gadgets we are familiar with today.
So it goes on and on - scientific research gives us knowledge and applying it results in technology and gadgets to make life easier or amuse us. Medication makes us better and prolongs our lives. Our homes are warmer and more comfortable because of new insulating materials, electricity and heating systems. Selective breeding of plants has given us more productive and disease resistance crops.
Science and its applications can make our life more comfortable and take away the hardship which would have been experienced by our ancestors. We don't seem to have any more leisure time though. The idea of robots looking after all our needs us and taking a pill instead of a meal didn't really materialize! I suppose people still need to work in order to design and produce all this technological wizardry!
On the downside, science, specifically chemistry, and technology has resulted in more "efficient" weapons technology. This however been a progression since earliest times and its not the fault of the science, just how we apply it. Explosives for instance have obvious benefits in construction and mining.
In some places chemical waste and effluent from production and mining activities has poisoned the environment.
The proliferation of gadgets can make us solitary and too busy to talk to others and stem our imaginations.
Overall though I think science is good. Without it we would be ignorant.
Science has done amazing things for humanity as a whole. True, there have been some failures, but overall, I think that science is getting far more checks in the "helped" column than the "disaster" column.
We are finding ways to feed more people on the land we have available, such as vertical farming. We are creating plants that provide more food in less space, as well.
Science is finding ways to help people who have physical limitations that had at one time been insurmountable. have a friend who is paralyzed and who just got her master's degree in education a few years ago, thanks to her motorized wheelchair. She is also experimenting in computer art.
Science has opened up new business and social opportunities that previously didn't exist. Just look at what we are doing here. I have hundreds of friends that I have never met face-to-face, but that is due to lack of opportunity, not lack of interest. I hope to meet one of them this coming summer, and one of these online friends is now a face-to-face friend -- she moved to the city where I live in 2010.
Science makes it possible to have a far more sanitary environment than we have ever had before. Oversanitization can weaken our immune systems, but we have far fewer epidemics than ever before.
Children are more likely to live to adulthood than ever before, and that improvement is increasing. When I was a child, my peers who were diagnosed with Type 1 diabetes were told that they might not live to adulthood. All of them (that I can find anyhow) are still alive.
And that's not even counting the inventions that have been with us for so long we probably forget they were inventions, like the wheel and fire.
The only failure of science is that we have yet to get many of these improvements into poverty-stricken areas, both at home and abroad. And that may not be a failure of the science itself so much as a failure of the mechanisms we use to deliver that science. If people have to choose between food now and sanitation in six hours, they will almost always choose food now and take their chances with diseases like cholera and typhoid.
I think overall science has immensely helped humanity, although in solving some problems it has created others. If you look at the lives most people, at least those in developed countries lead now, they are a lot better than before the scientific revolution. A few hundred years ago people were lucky if they lived to see their 40th birthday, and their deaths from many diseases we don't worry about today were horrible.
Of course the problem with the increased longevity and better health, their is the problem of over population and combined with industrialisation, there is the problem of using up earth's resources, pollution and climate change, which potentially might end up in disaster. On the other hand, this does not have to happen. If humanity stopped being so shortsighted, and reformed the way we live, there is a way of benefiting from the gains of science rather than destroying the earth.
People don't actually have to take their car everywhere, they do not need to go on holidays to far away places which necessitate flying. We do not need to get a new smartphone model, just because it is out, even though our old smartphone works perfectly fine. With modern technology a lot of meetings could happen virtually, not in person. We do have the choice to change our lives slightly to avert an environmental disaster.
Science, improved health care, and technology, has helped mankind reach a point where we are now are at risk of destroying our planet.
There are, of course, many different types of science, and even my father was a scientist (he studied fish) but as a whole I would say science has helped mankind a little too much.
Science has advanced in areas of health care that, while better for each individual, might not be so good mankind, in that what is good for the one might not be good for the whole - keeping somebody alive that is of no use to the population but continues to consume is bad especially since we have reached a point where our population as a whole uses renewable resources faster than they can be renewed.
The same goes for the work in fertility and so forth. Of course those who want fertility treatments benefit but for the "whole" of mankind such treatments only aid in adding more people to what scientists already agree is an over populated planet.
Some work in science is now trying to clean up some of the messes we have already made on an environmental level, but at the same time others are using science to try to find more oil and such even if it puts some areas of the environment at risk.
Science has helped mankind but it has also hurt it at times. We have weapons but we also have medicine. There is good and bad. In the past before we had thinks like TV people would go to an arena and watch people fight to death or come to a town to watch people being hanged. Before scientists developed medicine people would just make up cures. For example dung, as in poop, was put on a wounds. They also did blood letting. Blood letting is when you stick something in a person to cause them to bleed out. I think science has did more good than harm....
I think it's both, not one or the other. Food safety, infectious disease, and medical science are great tools that improve the quality of life but improved weapons and pollution are the down side.
Progress in any area has a downside.