philosophy of science
What Is the Human Microbiome, Exactly?
Microbiome metaphors influence scientific understanding and can shape medical treatment.Illustration by vrx / Shutterstock Are you an ecosystem? Your mouth, skin, and gut are home to whole communities of microscopic organisms, whose influence on your body ranges from digesting your food to training your immune system and, possibly, impacting your mood and behavior. What are […]
Nietzsche Is Not the Proto-postmodern Relativist Some Have Mistaken Him For
When writing Ecce Homo in the late 1880s, Nietzsche sought to resurrect the Voltairean spirit in Europe, which he felt by his times had been washed away by pessimistic Romanticism. “Voltaire still comprehended umanità in the Renaissance,” Nietzsche wrote, “the cause of taste, of science, of the arts, of progress itself and civilisation.”Photograph by Gustav […]
Color Is a Dance Between Your Brain and the World
When Robbert Dijkgraaf was a little boy, growing up in the Netherlands, he’d play in his home attic after school, often with a friend. It was dark inside except for the light streaming in from one window. One time, they closed the shades so only a sliver of photons could pass through. Robbert, holding […]