Case Study: Schon Dark Secret in Unit

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[. . .] This psychological problem would most likely expand to other segments of society as well. Computers and technology would change the landscape of education and politics as well causing more uncertainty and change. This psychological problem is most likely to cause great turmoil and disruption.

7. What was the "Dark Secret of Hendrik Shon"?

The dark secret of Hendrik Schon was that he could not replicate his findings within his experiments. In other words, he cheated. Shon's behavior seems more excusable however than his peers. This secret demonstrated to me that the scientific community is not very responsible. The film exposed the most prominent scientific journals as being extremely irresponsible for publishing Schon's work without proper vetting. Scientists appear to have too much power in terms of establishing what is provable or not. Schon apparently was tempted by fame and fortune and the lack of common sense within his community, and their lack of prudence to recognize this behavior shows that this branch of science has serious problems and lacks a general sense of its purpose.

8. What do the scholars in the video say about the importance of following the rules of proper research and describe what they say Hendrik Shon did wrong.

Hendrik Shon appeared to do many things wrong in this scenario. The scholars critical of his work demonstrated that his results were artificially manufactured and could not be repeated. Additionally, Schon made a mistake of deleting his information from his computer's hard drive. This suspicious behavior did not sit well with his critics as it demonstrated that he was either acting carelessly or not telling the whole truth. I believe however that Schon could be vindicated one day. Many prominent and groundbreaking scientists and thinkers have been unjustly persecuted in their time and their findings ridiculed. Since this branch of science is so narrow and specific, most people can't immediately understand the implications of the work. Schon's critics most likely are embarrassed because these so called experts could not immediately tell the flaws in his work and "Mully" and" Sculder" appeared they had to save their own reputations as well by denouncing Schon's work.

9. Using the definition of the scientific method provided in Unit One, write down each of the six steps and describe which step Hendrick Shon did wrong.

The scientific method is composed of the following six steps:

1. Ask a question

2. Form a hypothesis

3. Test the hypothesis

4. Analyze the results

5. Draw conclusions

6. Communicate Results

Schon's work was flawed between the fourth and fifth steps of this method. The validity of Schon's work is in question because he could not actually repeat the results of his experiment. This action is what differentiates between science and phenomena. If Schon actually created bogus information to fit his desired results, he began to fail when he analyzed his data and continued to regress when he drew conclusions from this false data. Finding a replacement for silicon through nanotechnological means should still be pursued and one failure in the community should not deter others from finding a silver lining on this grey cloud.

10. Interdisciplinary Inquiry is about how the natural sciences, social sciences, and humanities work together and effect each other. Explain how the invention of a pollution-free gasoline nanobot (natural science) might relate to / effect economics (social science) and change human philosophy (humanities) in the future.

Although the current practice of natural science is highly segregated, when properly synthesized the potential is awesome but only when balanced with the human factors of society. Eliminating the pollution that is caused by the combustion of gasoline would benefit society only minimally. The world could be more cleaner if this happened, however until the idea of a clean environment is communicated to a significant portion of the world, discontent and political strife will still be present. Technology is useless without factoring in the importance of human emotion and the ability of those emotions to override any ground breaking technology. In other words it is not what nanotechnology does that is important so much why the technology is being employed. Bad people will always exist so the problem is society itself to change from within.


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Cite This Case Study:

APA Format

Schon Dark Secret in Unit.  (2012, September 2).  Retrieved May 21, 2019, from

MLA Format

"Schon Dark Secret in Unit."  2 September 2012.  Web.  21 May 2019. <>.

Chicago Format

"Schon Dark Secret in Unit."  September 2, 2012.  Accessed May 21, 2019.