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John Michael Ziman (May 16, 1925 – January 2, 2005) was a British-born New Zealand physicist and humanist who worked in the area of condensed matter physics. He was a spokesman for science, as well as a teacher and author.
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- ...the 'size' of science has doubled steadily every 15 years. In a century this means a factor of 100. For every single scientific paper or for every single scientist in 1670, there were 100 in 1770, 10,000 in 1870 and 1,000,000 in 1970.
- John M. Ziman (1976). The Force of Knowledge: The Scientific Dimension of Society. Cambridge University Press. p. 56-57. ISBN 0-521-09917-X.
- A new scientific theory is seldom stated with such clarity by its original author, and usually takes many years to creep into public conciousness.
- John M. Ziman (1976). The Force of Knowledge: The Scientific Dimension of Society. Cambridge University Press. p. 98. ISBN 0-521-09917-X.
- The communication of modern science to the ordinary citizen, necessary, important, desirable as it is, cannot be considered an easy task. The prime obstacle is lack of education. … There is also the difficulty of making scientific discoveries interesting and exciting without completely degrading them intellectually. … It is a weakness of modern science that the scientist shrinks from this sort of publicity, and thus gives an impression of arrogant mystagoguery.
- John M. Ziman (1976). The Force of Knowledge: The Scientific Dimension of Society. Cambridge University Press. p. 119. ISBN 0-521-09917-X.
- Ethics is not just an abstract intellectual discipline. It is about the conflicts that arise in trying to meet real human needs and values.
- Ziman, John M. "Why must scientists become more ethically sensitive than they used to be?", Science, December 4, 1998.
- "Even in physics, there is no infallible procedure for generating reliable knowledge. The calm order and perfection of well-established theories, accredited by innumerable items of evidence from a thousand different hands, eyes and brains, is not characteristic of the front-line of research, where controversy, conjecture, contradiction and confusion are rife. The physics of undergraduate text-books is 90% true; the contents of the primary research journals of physics is 90% false. The scientific system is as much involved in distilling the former out of the latter as it is in creating and transferring more and more bits of data and items of 'information'."
- John Ziman in "Reliable Knowledge: an Exploration of the Grounds for Belief in Science" (1978)