Mankind has always been curious, striving to understand why things behave in specific ways and trying to link their observations with predictions made in old age. Since prehistoric times, men have observed the heavens and tried to understand the changes in the position of the sun, moon, and stars.
In about 4000 BC, the Mesopotamians attempted to explain their observations and suggested that the Earth was at the center of our Universe and other heavenly bodies moved around it.
Meanwhile, the Greeks were the first civilization who developed theories based on their observations. Pythagoras concentrated on a mathematical view of the world, Aristotle and Plato worked on logical methods for examining the world around them. The Greeks first proposed that matter was made up of atoms, which are fundamental particles that could not be further divided or broken down.
But it wasn’t only the Greeks who played a vital role in scientific discoveries. Meanwhile, scientific theories were also developed in India, China, the Middle East, and South America. The contribution of Muslim scientists in developing early scientific ideas is enormous. Despite having their own cultural views, scientists from different parts of the world independently produced materials such as gunpowder, soap, paper, etc. However, in the 13th century, many of these scientific advancements were brought together in European universities, and they started to look more like science as we know it today.
The scientific advancements are transforming with increasing knowledge, changing societal norms/ concerns, advances in communication and technology, and the rise of the internet.
The founders of modern science inherited an excellent deal from their successors and built more theories on these established cornerstones. The sensitivity to selective methods and the idea of knowledge played a crucial role in allowing them to integrate all pieces of the puzzle. These pieces were lying around and were pulled together by the founders of modern science.
Science has come a long way in the last 150 years. We now have more powerful data analysis techniques and more sophisticated tools and equipment for making observations and running experiments, with a greater breadth and depth of scientific knowledge. And as the attitudes of the broader society have progressed, science has benefited from the expanding diversity of perspectives offered by its participants.
In the modern era, science has become deeply interwoven with society and played a massive part in making our lives better and safer. At the same time, scientific advancements are transforming with increasing knowledge, changing societal norms/ concerns, advances in communication and technology, and the rise of the internet.
Summing up the history, Scientia Pakistan brings its exclusive edition on the theme “history of science”. We have got exciting stories on advancements in the Islamic golden age, the Atom bomb and its adverse impacts on humankind, history of space travel, science, and the environment, significance of Quantum mechanics, the first industrial revolution, and much more. The cherry on the top is the exclusive interview with scientific historian Dr. Paul Halpern. We assure you that this edition will not dampen the spirits of science and history enthusiasts. Have an excellent read!
Also, read: Science and the environment
Saadeqa Khan is the founder, CEO, & Editor-in-Chief of Scientia Pakistan. She’s a member of the Oxford Climate Journalism Network (Second Cohort) and NASW. Saadeqa is a fellow of NPF Washington, The Falling Walls Foundation, and the Science Journalism Forum. Saadeqa has won several international journalism grants and awards for her reports.