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I cannot choose between Copernicus, Newton and Darwin.

Copernicus - showed us our place in the Cosmos.
Newton - proved that reality works according to mathematical laws. His laws have immense practical applications.
Darwin - "nothing in biology makes sense except in the light of evolution"

Since I could enumerate two reasons to honour Newton, perhaps he should be the greatest.
Oh, I thought this was going to be a Fauci post.
(04-11-2020, 05:50 AM)Blazkovitz Wrote: [ -> ]I cannot choose between Copernicus, Newton and Darwin.

Copernicus - showed us our place in the Cosmos.
Newton - proved that reality works according to mathematical laws. His laws have immense practical applications.
Darwin - "nothing in biology makes sense except in the light of evolution"

Since I could enumerate two reasons to honour Newton, perhaps he should be the greatest.

Since science builds on itself, unlike art that often takes tangents, it's hard to set the great works of any single scientist against those of another.  In 1905, Einstein published his dissertation and four seminal papers on he photoelectric effect, Brownian motion, special relativity, and the equivalence of mass and energy, all 4 more than adequate to trigger a Nobel Prize in Physics. He was 26, and just getting started. Does Einstein make the cut? Of course, but it's still impossible to say who is the singular Greatest Scientist of All Time.
(04-11-2020, 09:59 AM)David Horn Wrote: [ -> ]
(04-11-2020, 05:50 AM)Blazkovitz Wrote: [ -> ]I cannot choose between Copernicus, Newton and Darwin.

Copernicus - showed us our place in the Cosmos.
Newton - proved that reality works according to mathematical laws. His laws have immense practical applications.
Darwin - "nothing in biology makes sense except in the light of evolution"

Since I could enumerate two reasons to honour Newton, perhaps he should be the greatest.

Since science builds on itself, unlike art that often takes tangents, it's hard to set the great works of any single scientist against those of another.  In 1905, Einstein published his dissertation and four seminal papers on he photoelectric effect, Brownian motion, special relativity, and the equivalence of mass and energy, all 4 more than adequate to trigger a Nobel Prize in Physics.  He was 26, and just getting started.  Does Einstein make the cut?  Of course, but it's still impossible to say who is the singular Greatest Scientist of All Time.

He does. His achievements may have seemed arcane at the time but they are now useful. 

It's a pair, but Crick and Watson, by discovering the chemical nature of DNA, established the genetic language of life.
(04-11-2020, 05:50 AM)Blazkovitz Wrote: [ -> ]I cannot choose between Copernicus, Newton and Darwin.

Copernicus - showed us our place in the Cosmos.
Newton - proved that reality works according to mathematical laws. His laws have immense practical applications.
Darwin - "nothing in biology makes sense except in the light of evolution"

Since I could enumerate two reasons to honour Newton, perhaps he should be the greatest.

I think it has to be Newton.  While Darwin's contributions to biology could be argued to be as important as Newton's contribution to physics, Newton also invented integral calculus, which was important not only to physics, but to many other applications, including biology.
Another candidate -- Dmitri Mendeleyev for establishing the periodic law of the elements, without which chemistry is muck.
Crick&Watson, Einstein and Mendeleyev definitely belong in the top league.
For scientific inquiry that has since had more of a cultural than scientific influence -- Sigmund Freud. People cannot now write quite like Dickens or Dostoevsky now that everybody is under the subtle, but inescapable, cultural influence of Freud.