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Chemistry Nobel prize...

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sisoon posted 10/10/2013 11:58 AM

for modeling the results of experiments?

The map is not the territory. A model simply isn't an experiment.

I know the modeling is an important aid. I just hope this isn't a step on the slippery slope back to the days when 'science' was based on 'reason' and not observation.

SerJR posted 10/11/2013 04:58 AM

I don't believe it is. A few months back I was at NIST for a workshop on cement modeling. They are doing similar work - building models of the cement reactions (extrememly complex) from the atomic level up based upon fundamentals with computer models working towards material and then structural modeling (from micro to macro). The intent is to match theory up with observation. They are already seeing where the model and what we've believed for 60 years to be true not matching up in some areas, prompting re-evaluation of our understanding.
Theory and empirical data must match up, or else there exists an erronous assumption somewhere. This is a huge step forward in the field of chemistry.

gahurts posted 10/11/2013 12:30 PM

This really does not surprise me. Without getting political, it is the basis of the entire argument about global warming. The entire argument about man-made global warming is based on the results of computer climate models that predict a certain result. The problem with that is that those models cannot even predict the current state of the climate yet alone a future 100 years ahead of us.

Here is the link to an article about the prize in Chemical Processing Magazine. An industry trade journal

sisoon posted 10/11/2013 12:35 PM

Yeah, the award makes perfect sense. It's just way weird, since I was brought up on observation being the core of science.

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