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Who said: “Dangerous... to take shelter under a tree, during a thunder-gust. It has been fatal to many, both men and beasts.”
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Home > Category Index for Science Quotations > Category Index I > Category: Inaccuracy

Inaccuracy Quotes (4 quotes)

.…yes, sitting on the bank of the Kibali itself and philosophizing about river systems with the much-traveled Abu Ssamat and his people, … I caught him out there and then in blatant contradictions and inaccuracies. Well then, I finally said, quite beside myself, so show me how you speak of rivers: here is the Kibali, show me with your hand: where does it come from and in what direction does it flow? To which all pointed eastwards and said: it is flowing in that direction, and then pointing west: it comes from there, that is how we say it. I could have gone through the roof. No, I cried, you Moslem, you have everything confused and mixed up, what must it be like inside your heads!
In August Petermann, Petermann’s Geographische Mittheilungen (1871), 135. As quoted and cited in Kathrin Fritsch, '"You Have Everything Confused And Mixed Up…!" Georg Schweinfurth, Knowledge And Cartography Of Africa In The 19th Century', History in Africa (2009), 36, 94. Fritsch comments on their misunderstandings caused by “different spatial conceptions [and] language barriers.”
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I know a good many men of great learning—that is, men born with an extraordinary eagerness and capacity to acquire knowledge. One and all, they tell me that they can't recall learning anything of any value in school. All that schoolmasters managed to accomplish with them was to test and determine the amount of knowledge that they had already acquired independently—and not infrequently the determination was made clumsily and inaccurately.
In Prejudices: third series (1922), 261.
For a longer excerpt, see H. L. Mencken's Recollections of School Algebra.
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Surely it must be admitted that if the conceptions of Physics are presented to the beginner in erroneous language, there is a danger that in many instances these conceptions will never be properly acquired. And is not accurate language as cheap as inaccurate?
A paper read at the Association for the Improvement of Geometrical Teaching (19 Jan 1889), 'The Vices of our Scientific Education', in Nature (6 Jun 1889), 40, 128.
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The chemists work with inaccurate and poor measuring services, but they employ very good materials. The physicists, on the other hand, use excellent methods and accurate instruments, but they apply these to very inferior materials. The physical chemists combine both these characteristics in that they apply imprecise methods to impure materials.
Quoted in Ralph Oesper, The Human Side of Scientists (1975), 116.
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Carl Sagan Thumbnail In science it often happens that scientists say, 'You know that's a really good argument; my position is mistaken,' and then they would actually change their minds and you never hear that old view from them again. They really do it. It doesn't happen as often as it should, because scientists are human and change is sometimes painful. But it happens every day. I cannot recall the last time something like that happened in politics or religion. (1987) -- Carl Sagan
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