Friday, February 15, 2008

Scientific American: Revealing their own ignorance

I've been a fond reader of Scientific American since I was 11. Most of the time they delight me with mind-expanding articles about cutting edge discoveries.

But every once in a while one of their contributors writes an article that just makes me shake my head "How did this get past the editors?" Has SciAm been taken over by some sort of political action committee?

In the linked article is some of the grossest glossing of an entire field I've ever seen. In the first page the vast and complex arena of nanotechnology is reduced to some niggling dust engineering.

Furthermore, the article completely overlooks all industry-wide accepted standards and practices as well as an entire field of researchers already dedicated to the purpose of scrutinizing the safety of nanotechnology. There is no mention of good workers like the folks at the Center for Responsible Nanotechnology or the Foresight Institute both of whom have long spoken of the dangers and need for research on this issue.

More and more SciAm disappoints me as it loses its scientific objectivity to the politics of panic.



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