RSS iconTwitter iconFacebook icon

The Trek BBS title image

The Trek BBS statistics

Threads: 139,609
Posts: 5,405,133
Members: 24,869
Currently online: 584
Newest member: Engelbert

TrekToday headlines

Star Trek: Gold Key Archives Vol. 2 Comic
By: T'Bonz on Oct 1

Cumberbatch In War Of Roses Miniseries
By: T'Bonz on Oct 1

Trek 3 Filming Location Revealed
By: T'Bonz on Oct 1

October-November 2014 Trek Conventions And Appearances
By: T'Bonz on Sep 30

Cho Selfie TV Alert
By: T'Bonz on Sep 30

TPTB To Shatner: Shhh!
By: T'Bonz on Sep 30

Mystery Mini Vinyl Figure Display Box
By: T'Bonz on Sep 29

The Red Shirt Diaries Episode Five
By: T'Bonz on Sep 29

Shatner In Trek 3? Well Maybe
By: T'Bonz on Sep 28

Retro Review: Shadows and Symbols
By: Michelle on Sep 27


Welcome! The Trek BBS is the number one place to chat about Star Trek with like-minded fans. Please login to see our full range of forums as well as the ability to send and receive private messages, track your favourite topics and of course join in the discussions.

If you are a new visitor, join us for free. If you are an existing member please login below. Note: for members who joined under our old messageboard system, please login with your display name not your login name.


Go Back   The Trek BBS > Entertainment & Interests > Science and Technology

Science and Technology "Somewhere, something incredible is waiting to be known." - Carl Sagan.

Reply
 
Thread Tools
Old November 20 2009, 10:29 PM   #1
Argus Skyhawk
Commodore
 
Argus Skyhawk's Avatar
 
Location: Argus Skyhawk
Scientific falsehoods heard from adults during my childhood

"Gravity is caused by the fact that the earth spins."
I heard that from a few people when I was really little. I remember imagining a story in which Superman (or some other superhero, I'm not sure) pushed the earth so that it spun too fast and made us all so heavy we couldn't stand up. Then he stopped the earth and we all started to float.

"Gravity is caused by air pressure pushing us down against the earth."
My sister heard that one from an elementary school teacher. Fortunately, my sister was smart enough to immediately recognize that it was nonsense.

"Seasons are caused by the fact that the earth's orbit is elliptical. When the earth is closer to the sun we have summer, and when it is farther away we have winter."
That one was in one of my elementary school textbooks. I kid you not.

What are some that you heard?
__________________
I thought I had found everlasting joy and happiness, but when I clicked the link, it just took me to a Rick Astley video.
Argus Skyhawk is offline   Reply With Quote
Old November 20 2009, 10:40 PM   #2
Christopher
Writer
 
Christopher's Avatar
 
Re: Scientific falsehoods heard from adults during my childhood

I once overheard a woman on the bus express the belief that the reason stormclouds were dark was because of pollution, rather than simply because they were thick enough to block the light. I guess she didn't read enough old books to know that stormclouds have always been dark.
__________________
Christopher L. Bennett Homepage -- Site update 4/8/14 including annotations for Rise of the Federation: Tower of Babel

Written Worlds -- My blog
Christopher is offline   Reply With Quote
Old November 20 2009, 10:51 PM   #3
Silvercrest
Rear Admiral
 
Re: Scientific falsehoods heard from adults during my childhood

A high school biology teacher tried to tell us that an object is a certain color because that's the part of the spectrum that the object absorbs. All the other frequencies are reflected away from your eyes.
__________________
What do you mean, ironic?
Silvercrest is offline   Reply With Quote
Old November 20 2009, 10:55 PM   #4
Plecostomus
Commodore
 
Location: Official forum sex god
Send a message via Windows Live Messenger to Plecostomus
Re: Scientific falsehoods heard from adults during my childhood

My favorite: Nitrogen is flammable.

Know why? Because the big cyrogenic tank outside has a DANGER tag showing an explosion, plus they use it to power race-cars and they make nitroglycerin out of it. Nitrogen is a mixture of Nitro and Oxygen that's why they keep it frozen.


Heard from the owner of a company I worked at briefly. The man was so soul-shatteringly stupid I actually walked out during one of his safety lectures.
Plecostomus is offline   Reply With Quote
Old November 20 2009, 10:57 PM   #5
John Picard
Vice Admiral
 
John Picard's Avatar
 
Location: Waiting for Dorian Thompson to invite me to lunch
Re: Scientific falsehoods heard from adults during my childhood

Argus Skyhawk wrote: View Post
"Seasons are caused by the fact that the earth's orbit is elliptical. When the earth is closer to the sun we have summer, and when it is farther away we have winter."
That one was in one of my elementary school textbooks. I kid you not.

What are some that you heard?
You lost me on that one.
__________________
Don't like my posts? Fill out a report.
Psssstttt - Dorian, my location.
John Picard is offline   Reply With Quote
Old November 20 2009, 11:00 PM   #6
Canadave
Vice Admiral
 
Canadave's Avatar
 
Location: Saint Catharines, ON
View Canadave's Twitter Profile
Re: Scientific falsehoods heard from adults during my childhood

John Picard wrote: View Post
Argus Skyhawk wrote: View Post
"Seasons are caused by the fact that the earth's orbit is elliptical. When the earth is closer to the sun we have summer, and when it is farther away we have winter."
That one was in one of my elementary school textbooks. I kid you not.

What are some that you heard?
You lost me on that one.
It's still a common misconception. Eccentricities in the Earth's orbit have nothing to do with seasonality (though they can affect the severity of the weather), but are entirely caused by axial tilt.
__________________
My blog!
Canadave is offline   Reply With Quote
Old November 20 2009, 11:05 PM   #7
Silvercrest
Rear Admiral
 
Re: Scientific falsehoods heard from adults during my childhood

Canadave wrote: View Post
John Picard wrote: View Post
Argus Skyhawk wrote: View Post
"Seasons are caused by the fact that the earth's orbit is elliptical. When the earth is closer to the sun we have summer, and when it is farther away we have winter."
That one was in one of my elementary school textbooks. I kid you not.

What are some that you heard?
You lost me on that one.
It's still a common misconception. Eccentricities in the Earth's orbit have nothing to do with seasonality (though they can affect the severity of the weather), but are entirely caused by axial tilt.
It's easy enough to disprove. If it were true, the northern and southern hemispheres would have the same seasons.
__________________
What do you mean, ironic?
Silvercrest is offline   Reply With Quote
Old November 20 2009, 11:07 PM   #8
Alpha_Geek
Commodore
 
Alpha_Geek's Avatar
 
Location: Central VA, US
Re: Scientific falsehoods heard from adults during my childhood

John Picard wrote: View Post
Argus Skyhawk wrote: View Post
"Seasons are caused by the fact that the earth's orbit is elliptical. When the earth is closer to the sun we have summer, and when it is farther away we have winter."
That one was in one of my elementary school textbooks. I kid you not.

What are some that you heard?
You lost me on that one.
*cough axial tilt cough*
Alpha_Geek is offline   Reply With Quote
Old November 20 2009, 11:08 PM   #9
Silvercrest
Rear Admiral
 
Re: Scientific falsehoods heard from adults during my childhood

Oh, just thought of another one. When I was in the Army, in land-nav training, someone taught that you can navigate using the North Star while in the southern hemisphere.
__________________
What do you mean, ironic?
Silvercrest is offline   Reply With Quote
Old November 20 2009, 11:11 PM   #10
Asbo Zaprudder
Rear Admiral
 
Asbo Zaprudder's Avatar
 
Location: Sand in the Vaseline
Re: Scientific falsehoods heard from adults during my childhood

"There are no such things as atoms." This was at primary (grade) school in 1967, and not 1867. "What about Einstein's work on Brownian Motion, Miss?" I got told to shut up or get walloped with the slipper for contradicting the teacher. Maybe it was 1867 after all. The same teacher also spouted the same nonsense as above regarding how seasons occur.
__________________
"After a time, you may find that having is not so pleasing a thing, after all, as wanting. It is not logical, but it is often true." -- Spock -- Flip flap!
Asbo Zaprudder is offline   Reply With Quote
Old November 20 2009, 11:13 PM   #11
Alpha_Geek
Commodore
 
Alpha_Geek's Avatar
 
Location: Central VA, US
Re: Scientific falsehoods heard from adults during my childhood

Silvercrest wrote: View Post
Oh, just thought of another one. When I was in the Army, in land-nav training, someone taught that you can navigate using the North Star while in the southern hemisphere.
You can, but it's a LOT of work with that entrenching tool to get a sighting!
Alpha_Geek is offline   Reply With Quote
Old November 20 2009, 11:25 PM   #12
Silvercrest
Rear Admiral
 
Re: Scientific falsehoods heard from adults during my childhood

^True!


Great Mambo Chicken wrote: View Post
"There are no such things as atoms." This was at primary (grade) school in 1967, and not 1867. "What about Einstein's work on Brownian Motion, Miss?" I got told to shut up or get walloped with the slipper for contradicting the teacher.
What did she believe in -- "air, earth, fire and water"?
__________________
What do you mean, ironic?
Silvercrest is offline   Reply With Quote
Old November 20 2009, 11:32 PM   #13
Alpha_Geek
Commodore
 
Alpha_Geek's Avatar
 
Location: Central VA, US
Re: Scientific falsehoods heard from adults during my childhood

In her health class, were illnesses caused by an inbalance of the bodily humours?
Alpha_Geek is offline   Reply With Quote
Old November 20 2009, 11:33 PM   #14
Asbo Zaprudder
Rear Admiral
 
Asbo Zaprudder's Avatar
 
Location: Sand in the Vaseline
Re: Scientific falsehoods heard from adults during my childhood

Silvercrest wrote: View Post
Great Mambo Chicken wrote: View Post
"There are no such things as atoms." This was at primary (grade) school in 1967, and not 1867. "What about Einstein's work on Brownian Motion, Miss?" I got told to shut up or get walloped with the slipper for contradicting the teacher.
What did she believe in -- "air, earth, fire and water"?
She believed that children should be silent until spoken to. We weren't allowed to enquire about anything. We just had to sit there like sponges and absorb whatever she taught. She would have fitted in well in the dark ages.
__________________
"After a time, you may find that having is not so pleasing a thing, after all, as wanting. It is not logical, but it is often true." -- Spock -- Flip flap!
Asbo Zaprudder is offline   Reply With Quote
Old November 20 2009, 11:36 PM   #15
Silvercrest
Rear Admiral
 
Re: Scientific falsehoods heard from adults during my childhood






Seriously, my heart goes out to you. Even the Army guys were willing to recognize the flaw in their logic when I pointed it out.

With teachers like that, it's amazing you came out OK.

Err... I hope...
__________________
What do you mean, ironic?
Silvercrest is offline   Reply With Quote
Reply

Bookmarks

Thread Tools

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off

Forum Jump



All times are GMT +1. The time now is 05:34 PM.

Powered by vBulletin® Version 3.8.6
Copyright ©2000 - 2014, Jelsoft Enterprises Ltd.
FireFox 2+ or Internet Explorer 7+ highly recommended.