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per amica silentia lunae

or, across the ferny brae with the evil voodoo celt

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More good stuff from "Best American Science Writing of 2010"
A dash of cold water for the "Theory of Everything" concept:

"It might be that to describe the universe we have to employ different theories in different situations. Each theory may have its own version of reality, but according to model-­dependent realism, that diversity is acceptable, and none of the versions can be said to be more real than any other."

Caution about the current vogue in Artificial Intelligence hype:

"This constant stream of stories suggests that machines are becoming smart and autonomous, a new form of life, and that we should think of them as fellow creatures instead of as tools. But such conclusions aren’t just changing how we think about computers — they are reshaping the basic assumptions of our lives in misguided and ultimately damaging ways."

And a call for an end to black-and-white thinking in even our most passionate debates on the environment:

"...if our model of advocacy, no matter what the cause, requires that we stridently defend our territory without leaning across the fence to consider, wholeheartedly, another view, if we cannot embrace the Other in both its delightful and repelling pigments, then the world has little chance to be spared.
The hunter and the hunted. The Old West and the New. The wild and the tame. We must be lithe enough to stretch between. "