Are Paradigm Shifts Real Or Are They Due To Myopic Viewpoint?

Paradigm shifts, also known as new paradigm shifts, are defined by the American Physicist and philosopher Thomas Kuhn as a sudden and marked change in scientific practices or theory. According to Kuhn the Paradigm shift occurs when a paradigm is falling apart that leads to a renewal of research in that field. The definition of a paradigm can also be considered as a statement concerning the most accepted scientific views about a particular subject or field. Paradigms are believed to have wide ranging impacts on science, affecting all areas of inquiry from physics to engineering.

There are many different types of   Paradigm shifts, . Some common examples of this type of change include scientific theories such as relativity, quantum mechanics, and classical mechanics being replaced by new paradigms such as quantum mechanics with quantum mechanics and thermodynamics with finite mechanics. It is also common for new technological fields to be defined as paradigm changes. Examples of these include the advent of cellular telephones, personal computers, desktop computers, and other similar technologies.

The first element of the Paradigm shift definition is what gives meaning to the paradigm in question. For example, in cases of relativity it is the definition of time and space that give way to spacetime; in quantum mechanics it is the definition of matter and energy that give way to atoms and molecules. In engineering it is the methodology of an activity being carried out, that gives way to a new theory of the activity, which may be called a paradigm. Another element of the paradigm definition is change: a paradigm shift may not only be a single event, but rather the manifestation of many small events over a long period of time. In this case the change is not only in theory but in practice as well, with practices being changed to accommodate with new paradigms.

When we speak of a paradigm shift we are referring to a set of related phenomena, some of which are clearly identifiable as paradigm examples. Take for example the observation that for a very long time, all the major industries of the world have been based on the use of steam engines as their main source of power. Now, since the steam engine has been replaced by electricity powered machinery, all the major industries, including those of the oil industry, are seriously considering going back to steam power. Similarly, when you consider the alternative sources of energy like nuclear fission and solar power, there have been many radical changes in how society views these options over the last thirty years.

In addition, in most scientific writing there will be a tendency to refer to these paradigm shifts as either "transitions" or "waves". It is not uncommon for scientists working within the scientific community to describe these changes as "epochal" or "unified". If you read a recent scientific article on alternative energy, for example, you will find a discussion of the recent phenomenon of a global slowdown in wind and solar power. Although the authors correctly call the phenomenon an "epochal", they go on to describe it as being caused by a "switching ground" which is the result of two independent forces, each with its own causes and effects, which were brought about by poles moving apart.

In light of the above discussion it becomes clearer that scientists working within the scientific community need to broaden their horizons and become less narrow minded. The above discussion just shows that scientists need to consider all observations, both modern and historic, in order to explain any phenomena. Only by broadening our views can we begin to understand what are the underlying reasons for certain paradigm shifts, and if they are real, how to deal with them. If you probably want to get more enlightened on this topic, then click on this related post:

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