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The people who do science represent a vast array of interests and objectives.  There is a central principle, nonetheless, that links and guides their work.  The National Academy of Sciences' Committee on Science, Engineering, and Public Policy has articulated clearly the nature of this principle:

The scientific research enterprise is built on a foundation of trust. Scientists trust that the results reported by others are valid. Society trusts that the results of research reflect an honest attempt by scientists to describe the world accurately and without bias. But this trust will endure only if the scientific community devotes itself to exemplifying and transmitting the values associated with ethical scientific conduct.

A widely recognized exemplar of these ideals is Rachel Louise Carson, pictured to the right.

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Herman Daly Festschrift: May There Be Dalyists: Politics for a Steady State Economy Last Updated on 2013-10-03 23:02:34 Herman Daly is more than a giant in the economics of sustainability; he is a gentle giant, in and out of economics.  The fact that he is widely recognized as a good fellow in addition to a scholar should not be lost in a festschrift.  Of course, the mere existence of a festschrift indicates that the scholar, and not just the scholar’s work, is held in high regard.  Yet the fact that Daly is a good fellow, with accolades such as the Right Livelihood Award, bears revisiting in a chapter on politics.  After all, assessments of “good” and “bad” rule the political hearts and minds of many citizens. For those who haven’t met Daly in person, a measure of the man may be ascertained from For the Common Good, where Daly’s ethical and theological concern for human wellbeing shines as brightly as his steely logic for a steady state... More »
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Darrieus, Georges Jeans Mary Last Updated on 2013-08-17 18:24:00 Georges Jeans Mary Darrieus (1888-1979), a French engineer who designed the first modern vertical axis wind turbine (patented 1931). Of the several rotors Darrieus designed, the most important is a rotor made of slender, curved, airfoil-section blades attached at the top and bottom of a rotating vertical tube. Compared to the more common horizontal axis turbine, the Darrieus turbine design has several attractive features. First, the blade operates at very high tension, so a relatively light, inexpensive blade is sufficient. Second, by locating the power train, generator, and controls near ground level, they are easier to construct and maintain. Howerver, a disadvantage of the Darrieus turbine is that it is not typically self-starting, requiring an induction motor connected to the local power network to initiate operation. Further Reading Wind Turbines: Horizontal or Vertical Axis... More »
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