Zitate von Freeman Dyson

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Freeman Dyson

Geburtstag: 15. Dezember 1923
Andere Namen: Freeman John Dyson

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Freeman John Dyson ist ein britisch-US-amerikanischer Physiker und Mathematiker.

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Zitate Freeman Dyson

„Wenn wir in das Universum hinausblicken und erkennen, wie viele Zufälle in Physik und Astronomie zu unserem Wohle zusammengearbeitet haben, dann scheint es fast, als habe das Universum gewusst, dass wir kommen.“

—  Freeman Dyson
Zitiert in John D. Barrow, Frank J. Tipler: The anthropic cosmological principle; Clarendon Press, Oxford 1986 - S. 318 "As we look out into the universe and identify the many accidents of physics and astronomy that have worked to our benefit, it almost seems as if the universe must in some sense have known that we were coming." - The Argument from Design, in: Disturbing the Universe, Harper and Row New York 1979, p. 250

„If we had a reliable way to label our toys good and bad, it would be easy to regulate technology wisely. But we can rarely see far enough ahead to know which road leads to damnation.“

—  Freeman Dyson
Disturbing the Universe (1979), Context: If we had a reliable way to label our toys good and bad, it would be easy to regulate technology wisely. But we can rarely see far enough ahead to know which road leads to damnation. Whoever concerns himself with big technology, either to push it forward or to stop it, is gambling in human lives. <!-- Pt. 1, Ch. 1

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„What was needed was a little more human charity, a little more willingness to listen rather than to lay down the law, a little more humility. Scientists stand in need of these Christian virtues just as much as preachers do.“

—  Freeman Dyson, buch Infinite in All Directions
Infinite in All Directions (1988), Context: There is no easy solution to the conflict between fundamentalist Christian dogma and the facts of biological evolution. I am not saying that the conflict could have been altogether avoided. I am saying only that the conflict was made more bitter and more damaging, both to religion and to science, by the dogmatic and self-righteousness of scientists. What was needed was a little more human charity, a little more willingness to listen rather than to lay down the law, a little more humility. Scientists stand in need of these Christian virtues just as much as preachers do. Ch. 1 : In Praise of Diversity

„Like many other crucially important technologies, hay emerged anonymously during the so-called Dark Ages.“

—  Freeman Dyson, buch Infinite in All Directions
Infinite in All Directions (1988), Context: The technologies which have had the most profound effects on human life are usually simple. A good example of a simple technology with profound historical consequences is hay. Nobody knows who invented hay, the idea of cutting grass in the autumn and storing it in large enough quantities to keep horses and cows alive through the winter. All we know is that the technology of hay was unknown to the Roman Empire but was known to every village of medieval Europe. Like many other crucially important technologies, hay emerged anonymously during the so-called Dark Ages. According to the Hay Theory of History, the invention of hay was the decisive event which moved the center of gravity of urban civilization from the Mediterranean basin to Northern and Western Europe. The Roman Empire did not need hay because in a Mediterranean climate the grass grows well enough in winter for animals to graze. North of the Alps, great cities dependent on horses and oxen for motive power could not exist without hay. So it was hay that allowed populations to grow and civilizations to flourish among the forests of Northern Europe. Hay moved the greatness of Rome to Paris and London, and later to Berlin and Moscow and New York. Ch. 8 : Quick Is Beautiful, p. 135

„A point has no existence by itself. It exists only as a part of the pattern of relationships which constitute the geometry of Euclid.“

—  Freeman Dyson, buch Infinite in All Directions
Infinite in All Directions (1988), Context: Euclid... gave his famous definition of a point: "A point is that which has no parts, or which has no magnitude." …A point has no existence by itself. It exists only as a part of the pattern of relationships which constitute the geometry of Euclid. This is what one means when one says that a point is a mathematical abstraction. The question, What is a point? has no satisfactory answer. Euclid's definition certainly does not answer it. The right way to ask the question is: How does the concept of a point fit into the logical structure of Euclid's geometry?... It cannot be answered by a definition. Ch. 2 : Butterflies and Superstrings, p. 17

„It is too early yet to come to conclusions.“

—  Freeman Dyson, buch Infinite in All Directions
Infinite in All Directions (1988), Context: What philosophical conclusions should we draw from the abstract style of the superstring theory? We might conclude, as Sir James Jeans concluded long ago, that the Great Architect of the Universe now begins to appear as a Pure Mathematician, and that if we work hard enough at mathematics we shall be able to read his mind. Or we might conclude that our pursuit of abstractions is leading us far away from those parts of the creation which are most interesting from a human point of view. It is too early yet to come to conclusions. Ch. 2 : Butterflies and Superstrings, p. 18

„We stand, in a manner of speaking, midway between the unpredictability of atoms and the unpredictability of God.“

—  Freeman Dyson
Progress In Religion (2000), Context: My personal theology is described in the Gifford lectures that I gave at Aberdeen in Scotland in 1985, published under the title, Infinite In All Directions. Here is a brief summary of my thinking. The universe shows evidence of the operations of mind on three levels. The first level is elementary physical processes, as we see them when we study atoms in the laboratory. The second level is our direct human experience of our own consciousness. The third level is the universe as a whole. Atoms in the laboratory are weird stuff, behaving like active agents rather than inert substances. They make unpredictable choices between alternative possibilities according to the laws of quantum mechanics. It appears that mind, as manifested by the capacity to make choices, is to some extent inherent in every atom. The universe as a whole is also weird, with laws of nature that make it hospitable to the growth of mind. I do not make any clear distinction between mind and God. God is what mind becomes when it has passed beyond the scale of our comprehension. God may be either a world-soul or a collection of world-souls. So I am thinking that atoms and humans and God may have minds that differ in degree but not in kind. We stand, in a manner of speaking, midway between the unpredictability of atoms and the unpredictability of God. Atoms are small pieces of our mental apparatus, and we are small pieces of God's mental apparatus. Our minds may receive inputs equally from atoms and from God. This view of our place in the cosmos may not be true, but it is compatible with the active nature of atoms as revealed in the experiments of modern physics. I don't say that this personal theology is supported or proved by scientific evidence. I only say that it is consistent with scientific evidence.

„Science is not a monolithic body of doctrine. Science is a culture, constantly growing and changing.“

—  Freeman Dyson, buch Infinite in All Directions
Infinite in All Directions (1988), Context: Science is not a monolithic body of doctrine. Science is a culture, constantly growing and changing. The science of today has broken out of the molds of classical nineteenth-century science, just as the paintings of Pablo Picasso and Jackson Pollock broke out of the molds of nineteenth century art. Science has as many competing styles as painting or poetry. The diversity of science also finds a parallel in the diversity of religion. Ch. 1 : In Praise of Diversity

„The biggest breakthrough in the next 50 years will be the discovery of extraterrestrial life.“

—  Freeman Dyson
Context: The biggest breakthrough in the next 50 years will be the discovery of extraterrestrial life. We have been searching for it for 50 years and found nothing. That proves life is rarer than we hoped, but does not prove that the universe is lifeless. We are only now developing the tools to make our searches efficient and far-reaching, as optical and radio detection and data processing move forward. "Freeman Dyson forecasts the future" at NewScientist.com (15 November 2006) http://www.newscientist.com/channel/opinion/science-forecasts/dn10481-freeman-dyson-forecasts-the-future.html

„Scientifically speaking, a butterfly is at least as mysterious as a superstring.“

—  Freeman Dyson, buch Infinite in All Directions
Infinite in All Directions (1988), Context: Scientifically speaking, a butterfly is at least as mysterious as a superstring. When something ceases to be mysterious it ceases to be of absorbing interest to scientists. Almost all things scientists think and dream about are mysterious. Ch. 2 : Butterflies and Superstrings, p. 14

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„It belongs to everybody who is willing to make the effort to learn it. And what is true of science is true of poetry. … Poetry and science are gifts given to all of humanity.“

—  Freeman Dyson, buch The Scientist as Rebel
The Scientist As Rebel (2006), Context: There is no such thing as a unique scientific vision, any more than there is a unique poetic vision. Science is a mosaic of partial and conflicting visions. But there is one common element in these visions. The common element is rebellion against the restrictions imposed by the locally prevailing culture, Western or Eastern as the case may be. It is no more Western than it is Arab or Indian or Japanese or Chinese. Arabs and Indians and Japanese and Chinese had a big share in the development of modern science. And two thousand years earlier, the beginnings of science were as much Babylonian and Egyptian as Greek. One of the central facts about science is that it pays no attention to East and West and North and South and black and yellow and white. It belongs to everybody who is willing to make the effort to learn it. And what is true of science is true of poetry.... Poetry and science are gifts given to all of humanity. Part I : Contemporary Issues in Science, Ch. 1 : "The Scientist as Rebel"; this first appeared in New York Review of Books (25 May 1995).

„Progress in religion means that, as time goes on, religion more and more takes the side of the victims against the oppressors.“

—  Freeman Dyson
Progress In Religion (2000), Context: One of the great but less famous heroes of World War Two was Andre Trocme, the Protestant pastor of the village of Le Chambon sur Lignon in France, which sheltered and saved the lives of five thousand Jews under the noses of the Gestapo. Forty years later Pierre Sauvage, one of the Jews who was saved, recorded the story of the village in a magnificent documentary film with the title, "Weapons of the Spirit". The villagers proved that civil disobedience and passive resistance could be effective weapons, even against Hitler. Their religion gave them the courage and the discipline to stand firm. Progress in religion means that, as time goes on, religion more and more takes the side of the victims against the oppressors.

„I am saying to modern scientists and theologians: don't imagine that our latest ideas about the Big Bang or the human genome have solved the mysteries of the universe or the mysteries of life. Here are Bacon's words again: "The subtlety of nature is greater many times over than the subtlety of the senses and understanding".“

—  Freeman Dyson
Progress In Religion (2000), Context: I am saying to modern scientists and theologians: don't imagine that our latest ideas about the Big Bang or the human genome have solved the mysteries of the universe or the mysteries of life. Here are Bacon's words again: "The subtlety of nature is greater many times over than the subtlety of the senses and understanding". In the last four hundred years, science has fulfilled many of Bacon's dreams, but it still does not come close to capturing the full subtlety of nature.

„The step in size from each of these things to the next is roughly the same… twenty powers of ten….“

—  Freeman Dyson, buch Infinite in All Directions
Infinite in All Directions (1988), Context: Imagine, if you can, four things that have very different sizes. First, the entire universe. Second, the planet Earth. Third, the nucleus of an atom. Fourth, a superstring. The step in size from each of these things to the next is roughly the same... twenty powers of ten.... Ch. 2 : Butterflies and Superstrings, p. 18

„The technologies which have had the most profound effects on human life are usually simple.“

—  Freeman Dyson, buch Infinite in All Directions
Infinite in All Directions (1988), Context: The technologies which have had the most profound effects on human life are usually simple. A good example of a simple technology with profound historical consequences is hay. Nobody knows who invented hay, the idea of cutting grass in the autumn and storing it in large enough quantities to keep horses and cows alive through the winter. All we know is that the technology of hay was unknown to the Roman Empire but was known to every village of medieval Europe. Like many other crucially important technologies, hay emerged anonymously during the so-called Dark Ages. According to the Hay Theory of History, the invention of hay was the decisive event which moved the center of gravity of urban civilization from the Mediterranean basin to Northern and Western Europe. The Roman Empire did not need hay because in a Mediterranean climate the grass grows well enough in winter for animals to graze. North of the Alps, great cities dependent on horses and oxen for motive power could not exist without hay. So it was hay that allowed populations to grow and civilizations to flourish among the forests of Northern Europe. Hay moved the greatness of Rome to Paris and London, and later to Berlin and Moscow and New York. Ch. 8 : Quick Is Beautiful, p. 135

„Lorem ipsum dolor sit amet, consectetuer adipiscing elit. Etiam egestas wisi a erat. Morbi imperdiet, mauris ac auctor dictum.“

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