"When Kepler found his long-cherished belief did not agree with the most precise observation, he accepted the uncomfortable fact. He preferred the hard truth to his dearest illusions, that is the heart of science."
Carl Sagan, Cosmos.
The beating heart of science, what makes us move mountains and extend horizons, is this simple, terrible preference: rather to be pierced by truth, than a whole fool.
Thank you, ciroccoj, for letting me know about tomorrow's Sagan blog-a-thon. I will be there.
"Carl was a candle in the dark," said Yervant Terzian, the David Duncan Professor in the Physical Sciences and former astronomy department chair, after Sagan's death. "He was, quite simply, the best science educator in the world this century. He touched hundreds of millions of people and inspired young generations to pursue the sciences."
Did he ever.