Category archives: History

The Enlightenment wars (1): progress or decline?

The Enlightenment wars (1): progress or decline?

AnthropologyEconomicsHistory

By Jesús Zamora Bonilla

Keep in mind the word Enlightenment, because it’s very likely that it will be one of the most fashionable concepts within the next months. At a global level, Steven Pinker’s new book, Enlightenment now, will probably carry the lead in terms of sellings, comments and criticisms. But by a fortunate coincidence, its publication has been […]

Columbus and the shape of the Earth, a “Holywood” story

Columbus and the shape of the Earth, a “Holywood” story

HistoryPhilosophy of science

By Jesús Zamora Bonilla

It is said that Washington Irving’s biography of Christopher Columbus, published in 1828, was the work that started the legend that the discoverer of America was the person that convinced the ‘nearly medieval’ Europeans of his time of the sphericity of the earth, a legend that has captured the popular imagination since then. Nothing could […]

Quantum disbelievers

Quantum disbelievers

Condensed matterHistoryQuantum physics

By DIPC

The idea that the solution of Schrödinger’s equation is a wave that represents, not a physical wave, but the probability of finding the associated particle in some specific condition of motion has had great success. In fact, every experiment devised so far to test this interpretation has confirmed these results. Yet many scientists still find […]

How the physical model of atoms was lost

How the physical model of atoms was lost

Condensed matterHistoryQuantum physics

By DIPC

By the mid-1920s it was clear that “things” (electrons, atoms, molecules) long regarded as particles also show wave properties. This fact is the basis for the currently accepted theory of atomic structure. This theory, quantum mechanics, was introduced in 1925. Its foundations were developed very rapidly during the next few years, primarily by Born, Heisenberg […]