What We Don’t Know

As I study for midterms and try to solidify the things I’m supposed to know, I think it appropriate to take a break and look at what Science Magazine recently listed as 125 things we don’t know. These are some of the big puzzles that the world of science still can’t answer. Clicking on the title will take you to an article discussing the topic.

> What Is the Universe Made Of?
> What is the Biological Basis of Consciousness?
> Why Do Humans Have So Few Genes?
> To What Extent Are Genetic Variation and Personal Health Linked?
> Can the Laws of Physics Be Unified?
> How Much Can Human Life Span Be Extended?
> What Controls Organ Regeneration?
> How Can a Skin Cell Become a Nerve Cell?
> How Does a Single Somatic Cell Become a Whole Plant?
> How Does Earth’s Interior Work?
> Are We Alone in the Universe?
> How and Where Did Life on Earth Arise?
> What Determines Species Diversity?
> What Genetic Changes Made Us Uniquely Human?
> How Are Memories Stored and Retrieved?
> How Did Cooperative Behavior Evolve?
> How Will Big Pictures Emerge from a Sea of Biological Data?
> How Far Can We Push Chemical Self-Assembly?
> What Are the Limits of Conventional Computing?
> Can We Selectively Shut Off Immune Responses?
> Do Deeper Principles Underlie Quantum Uncertainty and Nonlocality?
> Is an Effective HIV Vaccine Feasible?
> How Hot Will the Greenhouse World Be?
> What Can Replace Cheap Oil — and When?
> Will Malthus Continue to Be Wrong?

A list of the remaining 100 can be found here.

With all that is still unknown, what a comfort it is that the Creator of the Universe, the Covenant-keeping God, the One who knows all things and rules all things CAN be known.

5 thoughts on “What We Don’t Know

  1. Hannah Faith

    I was watching NOVA science NOW last night, and I found it intersting that scientists still don’t know exactly what makes lightning happen – they have theories, but many of them have holes, and they still are unsure on the specifics.

  2. Karyn Post author

    Ah, but as any of my former students can (hopefully) tell you…”If you can hear thunder, you can be struck by lightning.” And that’s really the most important thing you can know about lightning!

  3. Hannah Faith

    Whenever I hear thunder, I hear your voice in my head saying: “If you can hear thunder, you can be struck by lightning”… I’ve then proceeded to tell people this, and be met by looks of incredulity.

  4. MasterAegidius

    As a side note, we don’t know what electricity IS. We only know what it does (most of the time), how it is produced (most of the time), and how it is utilized (most of the time). But our ignorance doesn’t stop us from enjoying it. The best defintion I have heard yet is “All I need to know is I can’t see it, and it is faster than I am.”

  5. john Eddy

    to take this in a different direction, I would offer this for contemplation:

    My Dad may not have always known why, but he always knew why not.

    This is foundational.

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