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gailcalled's avatar

Is there any topic left that someone hasn't researched? Is info flowing too rapidly?

Asked by gailcalled (54538points) August 1st, 2008

See Aug. 1 question on why songs get stuck in our head. Here’s what syz found: http://www.uc.edu/news/kellaris.htm

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7 Answers

Les's avatar

There are plenty of topics still needing research. I’m in the meteorology field, so I can only tell you about those, but I’m sure the same can be said for other fields. For example: some scientists in my field are studying ice crystals in the upper atmosphere. We have no idea why the different sizes and shapes form. There are many theories out there, but we cannot definitively say why different ice crystals form at varying altitudes/conditions. And the kicker is that some of these crystals will form at multiple levels and conditions. As for me, I study stratospheric ozone (here in Laramie, and soon in Antarctica). As much as we know about the ozone layer and that it needs our help, there are still so many unanswered questions. There is new evidence that suggests that the temperature of the stratosphere actually impacts ozone levels indirectly. This is news to us!
I think we do know a lot now, and there is really so much information out there, it is a wonder this “series of tubes” we call the internet doesn’t get clogged more often. But I don’t think we will ever stop finding things to research.

syz's avatar

There is a tremendous amount of research that gets grants and funding that I find incredibly frustrating and ridiculous (Disappearance of teaspoons in the workplace http://www.bmj.com/cgi/content/full/331/7531/1498) but there are many, many topics that I come across that I wish there was comprehensive information available.

gailcalled's avatar

I have an acquaintance who has been writing the history of the fork for a long time. So far I have not seen it in publication.

marinelife's avatar

There are new frontiers in every field. There are also a lot of fields in which we are no longer applying new learning. They have become institutionalized. Several have been discussed recently on Fluther. What new techniques and technologies and rethinking can we do in the field of education and in the arena of prisons.

What are the long-term effects of having our children plugged into technology all the time? I was really struck by the almost frantic nature of the questioner whose school has blocked access to MySpace and Facebook and to proxy servers that would give him or her access.

Our oceans remain vast areas of mystery in many areas, tectonics, biology, and more.

emt333's avatar

“What has been will be again, what has been done will be done again; there is nothing new under the sun.”- Ecclesiates 1:9

on the other hand,

“The untold want by life and land ne’er granted,
Now voyager sail thou forth to seek and find” – Walt Whitman

La_chica_gomela's avatar

While many may disagree with me, I don’t think information can flow “too rapidly”. It seems like if the research is contributing to the improvement of our lives, not being used for evil (which is a whole different can of worms) then there’s no such thing as too much, like that old country song, “I ain’t never had too much fun”.

marinelife's avatar

On the aspect of information flowing too rapidly, I think there is a danger. Our technology breakthroughs are moving faster than our ability as a society to absorb them. That means that we do not have adequate societal discussion of or legislation for issues like stem cell research, ownership of frozen embryos and procedures for dealing with them, what methods should be employed to extend life, who has the right to decide that, should humans be cloned.

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