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BookReview: The Structure of Scientific Revolutions (3rd Edition)
by Thomas S. Kuhn, University Of Chicago Press, December 15, 1996, 978-0226458083

Thomas Kuhn promotes science as a social enterprise, which incorporates all kinds of people: revolutionaries and puzzle-solvers. Normal science is the product of most scientists. Every now and then, normal science hits a wall, science is then turbulent, and a paradigm shift happens. Scientific revolutions are infrequent but necessary to advance science.

Popper and Kuhn had a debate in 1965 (soon after Kuhn published this classic in 1962), which seemed inconsequential at the time, but has turned out to be the "Great Debate" in the philosophy of science. Kuhn "won", and Big Science triumphed with enormous projects with little of Popper's critical rationalism.

Kuhn's book is written well-enough, but I had to adapt to Kuhn's academic prose. I would say I slogged through, more than enjoyed the book. Perhaps I was dissatisfied with some of Kuhn's logic and conclusions. I don't buy his model for science or for software. However, I do think most software is written by a few programmers, and the rest of the people in my business are "normal programmers" who are content with copy-and-paste coding. The time frame of software has been so short, and there has been so many different paradigms.

Via Rob 11/01/2008