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Old 25.11.2010, 17:35
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The Edge : Long Held Wrong Scientific Beliefs

Came across this and been dipping into this most of the afternoon. Found the answers very interesting, even if some of them go way over my head. Scroll down past the "In the News" section for the answers.

A bunch of contributors to the Edge were asked by a Richard Thaler:

Quote:
The flat earth and geocentric world are examples of wrong scientific beliefs that were held for long periods. Can you name your favorite example and for extra credit why it was believed to be true?
I'm sure the answers will still provide much to debate. I'd never heard of the Edge (apart from U2) or the guy asking the question before.

(It's mentioned many times that flat earth wasn't a widely held belief BTW)
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Old 25.11.2010, 17:54
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Re: The Edge : Long Held Wrong Scientific Beliefs

One of my favourites:

Stress theory of ulcers it turns out they are due to infection with Heliobacter pylori. Barry Marshall won Nobel Prize for that.
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Old 26.11.2010, 12:03
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Re: The Edge : Long Held Wrong Scientific Beliefs

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One of my favourites:

Stress theory of ulcers it turns out they are due to infection with Heliobacter pylori. Barry Marshall won Nobel Prize for that.
Yep... made me laugh as well... bet there a few more 'lifestyle' diseases that will prove to have 'chemical/genetic' causes.

The flip side to "Everyone believes someone else's best guess" approach to theory is the "Nobody has a clue why"... eg. http://entertainment.timesonline.co....cle5797028.ece
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