Welcome to Empirical International

Posted by Matt

The capacity to blunder slightly is the real marvel of DNA.  Without this special attribute, we would still be anaerobic bacteria and there would be no music.  ~Lewis Thomas

Think about that for a second. Any “progress” that this experiment we call life has made over the past four and a half billion years has been largely the result of error and happy accident. Imagine the sheer amount of random aggregation of atoms, self-replicating molecules, miscopied genes, haphazard genome augmentation and reduction that has gone into the creation of a brain with the capacity to even read this sentence, let alone develop the computer on which you’re reading it.

With that in mind I’m launching this blog, encouraged by the hope that even an accumulation of my misremembered facts and erroneous conclusions may one day blossom into something so awe-inspiring. Really, I’m just using it to practice writing about science. As an undergraduate who’s just begun work on his senior thesis, I have way too much access to cool information and an astounding capacity to procrastinate. My main interest is ecology, so I guess I’ll be writing mostly about that. Check back in the near future for posts on good science, bad science, science in the news, the philosophy of science, and even things that may not be related to science at all.


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