Are You A Scientist? Yes.

What makes somebody a scientist? Scientists typically have traits that define their career as a whole. The most important of these is the use of the scientific method and the curiosity to find answers to questions–both those unsolved and those solved eons ago.

Anybody, from a kid to a grandmother, can be a scientist in some way.  You can be a scientist in almost any place and at any time. A scientist can study in most any environment, from the traditional lab to one’s bedroom or kitchen, and what you can study in those places can vary as wildly as the sky’s color and the earth’s many textures.

One thing most scientists share is the use of the scientific method. In the words of theoretical physicist Richard Feynman, “Experiment and observation is the sole and ultimate judge of the truth of an idea.“** The scientific method is the process by which scientists form uncover answers to the questions they have. As philosopher John Dewey once wrote, “Every great advance in science has issued from a new audacity of imagination.”*

The scientific method consists of steps to help determine the validity of a hypothesis constructed about a question. The steps themselves consist of things like testing the hypothesis practically. If it is proven true then it is the answer to the question, but if it is false then the scientist’s process begins again by forming another hypothesis, this time consisting of the information gathered from the previously failed hypothesis. Richard Feynman once wrote, “The price for rejecting easy answers and reliance on authorities is that one must be willing to tolerate ambiguity and accept one’s own ignorance.“***

Scientists generally are defined by what area of science they focus on. Most of the time those who practice it work on a very specific area of science such as biology or chemistry with the people who study these fields being called biologists and chemists respectively. (The Ist suffix notes that one specializes in the subject.)

The fields of science encompass almost anything you can think of and thus anybody that seeks to become a scientist has an endless supply of subjects to examine. Science, as a subject, has more than 39 different fields of study. In my search for a number of science subfields, I could not even find an estimate. Even a single field can have hundreds or even thousands of subfields of its own.

Along the way, I did find this interesting infographic showing many of the sub-fields of chemistry. There are multitudes.

In summary, what makes a scientist doesn’t have one definitive answer, any more than the field itself has a limited set of answers. Science is far branching both you and me can pursue very different subjects, under the overarching tree of science itself.

John Dewey, The Quest for Certainty: A Study of the Relation of Knowledge and Action. 2005, Kessinger Publishing.

** & *** Richard Feynman, Perfectly Reasonable Deviations from the Beaten Track: Letters of Richard P. Feynman. 2005, Basic Books.

Hockey Facts

Early yesterday while me and my family were watching TV we ended up watching some hockey. While doing that I quoted the first fact on this list. I thought you dear reader might enjoy some more hockey facts so here they are.

“The Gretzky brothers hold the NHL record for the most goals scored by a set of brothers, with a total of 2861. Of which Wayne scored 2857 and Brent scored 4.”*

The Stanley Cup was created in 1893. It was named for Lord Stanley of Preston, a Canadian Governor General.

The names of twelve women appear on the Stanley Cup. They were either team executives or owners.

*  Gretzky, Wikipedia. Retrieved May 18, 2018.

Baseball Fact

I found this fact while I was browsing the internet yesterday and I thought my readers would enjoy it. This is because I used to live in Staunton and some of my close family members love baseball.

In 1914, the city of Staunton fielded a team in the Virginia Mountain Baseball League: The Staunton Lunatics.”

Remote Control

Prompt:  Name something you wish had a remote that currently does not? Why? What would that benefit?

I would like a remote control for the house thermostat. Having a remote for the thermostat would allow me to change temperature whenever I want, which would allow me to either reduce the temperature at night, when I go to bed or turn up the thermostat in the middle of the day if it is getting cold.

My Sailboat

Prompt: You have just bought a sailboat, and you have to name it. What would you name it? Where is the first place you’d sail to?

I would name my ship Boaty McBoatface, in loving reference to the ship that almost was named the same.

My first sailing destination would be the Bahamas to see firsthand the damage caused by Irma and to stay at the many luxurious resorts on the island.

Abducted by Aliens

Prompt: An alien has just abducted you. Give three reasons why it would send you back to earth from your point of view. Then, what are three reasons it would send you back from her/his point of view.


1: Dangerous diseases.

One reason why an alien would send me back is the potential of us both getting a dangerous foreign disease. Aliens would be entirely not used to human diseases and have not built a resistance to them. This could be a problem in that even a minor cold might kill their entire species very quickly.

2: A sign of war.

If any government found out that one of their citizens had been abducted this would likely cause a war between us and them, which would not be beneficial for either.

3: Potential fatalities.

Some of the experiments the aliens could run on me might be accidentally fatal.  Most likely, subjects of the previous experiments were members of their own race, and were not practiced upon a member of our species.


1:  I believe they too would worry about the dangerous potential of foreign diseases.

2: The threat of their existence being found out.

While simply keeping me would have a low chance of being found out, people would notice me being gone. Dropping me off back on the planet would easily work to obscure people’s views that aliens were there in the first place.

3: Costs / Resource requirements of keeping me.

What if the aliens do not have a common resource they could give me as edible food? That would make it nearly impossible to survive for long, and the only way they could logically get it would be obtaining it from earth which would likely be very costly.

Favorite Quotes

Here are some of my favorite quotes. I found most of these helping my mom sort through her ridiculous quote collection.

“People are a lot more bizarre than shrimp.” -Unknown

“640k ought to be enough for anyone.” Bill Gates

“Homophobia, fear of full fat milk.” -Unknown

“Facts do not cease to exist just because they are ignored.” -Aldous Huxley

“A computer lets you make more mistakes faster than any invention in human history — with the possible exceptions of handguns and tequila.” –Mitch Ratliffe, who is a friend of my mom’s but who was quoted as saying this before she met him a long time ago.

“God gave me the stubbornness of a mule and a fairly keen scent.” -Albert Einstein

“People-focused, productivity-centered software is easy to learn; efficient to use; fun to work with; easy to remember; visually pleasing; provides quick recovery from errors and allows consistent success in getting the job done.” -Marcia Conner, who is my mom and tells me to make my sentences shorter all of the time and so I thought it hilarious this sentence is soooo long.

Give me bars!

Writing Prompt: Name the one thing you wish your cell phone did for you that it currently does not.

I wish my phone could have three bars of constant cell service. While data exists and is very useful it cannot be used constantly. Having full service would allow me to use my phone to its true potential.