Thursday, December 29, 2011

Only 100 years ago:

Just want to get this post in before the year runs out.

In 1911, Ernest Rutherford proposed a model for the atom - of electrons in the outer region and a small positive nucleus - that still holds today. There have been several refinements since then, with the Bohr, electron cloud, wave, and energy state models that were more accurate, but Rutherford was the first to point in the right direction. Prior to that atoms were thought to be either hard objects with no structure or a diffuse mixture of positive and negative charges.

Of course, since 1911, a lot more was learned - especially in the subsequent 30 years of nuclear physics. Still, it's easy to forget how not too long ago, our understanding of nature was extremely lacking.


Thanks for the reminder Q.

Rutherford's model was based on the results from his own very elegant experiment.
...and, at the time, biological science was basically butterfly collecting.

Yes, we have come a long way in a short time in science. Fasten your safety belt, there is a lot more to come.

By Anonymous Rockie the Dog, at 12/29/2011 9:00 AM  

You're forgetting Gregor Mendel, who was only 'rediscovered' in the last century:

By 1900, research aimed at finding a successful theory of discontinuous inheritance rather than blending inheritance led to independent duplication of his work by Hugo de Vries and Carl Correns, and the rediscovery of Mendel's writings and laws. Both acknowledged Mendel's priority, and it is thought probable that de Vries did not understand the results he had found until after reading Mendel.[3] Though Erich von Tschermak was originally also credited with rediscovery, this is no longer accepted because he did not understand Mendel's laws.[13] Though de Vries later lost interest in Mendelism, other biologists started to establish genetics as a science.[3]

By Blogger Dark Avenger, at 12/29/2011 11:14 AM  

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