Archive for 24 June, 2006 EUTC

Firefox

24 June, 2006 EUTC

I've been using the firefox browser for a while now, and I'm a big fan. It has convenient tabbed browsing, eliminates most pop-ups, and has extensions that do cool things like remove ads and restore the session when I reopen firefox, plus you can get skins to change its look. The extensions are great, so many features you can add, and more coming. If you haven't tried it yet, give it a try at http://www.mozilla.com/firefox/.

My current favourite extenstions are:

Adblock (filters ads from web-pages)

SessionSaver

Forecastfox (shows weather forecast)

Customize Google (removes ads from google, gmail etc.)

McAfee SiteAdvisor (warns you if a site is unsafe)

TimeTracker (shows how long you've been browsing that day)

Sage (RSS reader)

Performancing (For writing blog articles) 

Gmail Notifier (tells me when I get email, even if gmail is closed

Gmail Skins

Cricketfox

IE Tab (load sites within firefox but using IE)

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Science and the Supernatural

24 June, 2006 EUTC

An important issue in the intersection of science and religion is whether science should include supernatural explanations. A good post on this issue is What is Science? by Jason Rosenhouse at Evolutionblog. Jason starts by saying

Science is best viewed as an activity undertaken with a specific goal in mind. That goal is to understand the way nature works. We measure our understanding by the extent to which we can make nature’s phenomena predictable and controllable. Any investigative technique that brings us closer to this goal can reasonably be considered part of science.

All of the standard pieces of the scientific method we learned about in high school – experimentation, hypothesis testing, inductive reasoning and so forth – have their role to play in bringing us closer to our goal of predictability and control. By contrast, hypothesizing the actions of ill-defined supernatural entities such as ghosts or poltergeists do not help us move closer to our goal. Consequently, the actions of supernatural entities play no role in modern scientific discourse. The day someone finds a way to use such an hypothesis to bring clarity to some confusing aspect of nature is the day scientists will embrace the supernatural. (more…)