Worst Sci-Books: "The Secret Life Of Plants" & "Mindwalk - The Tao of Physics

In summary, this book talks about plants getting scared if they see a murderer, and a book from the 1970s that talks about ancient astronauts.
  • #1
Ivan Seeking
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While cleaning my office I found what has to be a top candidate:

The Secret Life Of Plants

I guess that since I mentioned this as a good Sci-Fi movie, I should include the book version of the movie Mindwalk - The Tao of Physics.
 
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  • #2
why is this under skeptisism and debunking?
 
  • #3
For the debunking part of course. :biggrin:

Ah, I just realized why you asked. I am thinking about the worst science found in popular books, not a literary critique.
 
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  • #4
"the physics of waves"
 
  • #5
yomamma said:
"the physics of waves"

Why do you say that? Who is the author?

or have I stepped on some toes already? :biggrin:
 
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  • #7
Okay, that appears to be a comment about a difficult book, but not bad science.
 
  • #8
My favorite book when I was 14 was The Philadelphia Experiment. I never saw the movie. I'm pretty sure all the stuff that enthralled me in the book has since been debunked.
 
  • #9
Math Is Hard said:
My favorite book when I was 14 was The Philadelphia Experiment. I never saw the movie. I'm pretty sure all the stuff that enthralled me in the book has since been debunked?

That's true. A little research reveals a story full of holes, with no supporting evidence, and plenty of contradictions. It is rare to find a story so completely debunked.

https://www.physicsforums.com/showthread.php?t=57097&highlight=Philadelphia
 
  • #10
Dogpatch girls ask the hardest questions.
 
  • #11
The Atlantis enigma, if indeed you can call that science :P
 
  • #12
Ivan Seeking said:
While cleaning my office I found what has to be a top candidate:

The Secret Life Of Plants
That's the one claiming that plants get scared if a plant murderer walks in upon them, isn't it?
 
  • #13
For me it's The Dancing Wu Li Masters, hands down. That's because it is such a GOOD book, so persuasive, and teaches such BAD physics.
 
  • #14
selfAdjoint said:
For me it's The Dancing Wu Li Masters, hands down. That's because it is such a GOOD book, so persuasive, and teaches such BAD physics.
Interesting... someone recomended that book to me. I may read it anyway for entertainment value or just to know what I may be up against if I ever argue quantum physics with someone.
 
  • #15
Math Is Hard said:
My favorite book when I was 14 was The Philadelphia Experiment. I never saw the movie. I'm pretty sure all the stuff that enthralled me in the book has since been debunked.

Ivan Seeking- That's true. A little research reveals a story full of holes, with no supporting evidence, and plenty of contradictions. It is rare to find a story so completely debunked.

I think I say a show on this on TLC. It was pretty much big time, hard core debunked.
 
  • #16
Oh my, bad science is something I have seen in Gens VII. A lot of inaccuracies in its elucidation of ligand complexes. Normally I'd expect some problems with General chemistry texts but never with biology.The discipline is simple to understand at any level; yet people still tend to make mistakes in their organization and understanding of higher and more complex ideas in biology, why then do they bother writing books??
 
  • #17
In Search of Ancient Astronauts has bugged me since my adolescence.
 
  • #18
I don't think that there is any hope of controlling, or any need to control, whatever rubbish is read by the general public. What astonishes me is that universities etc., often do not weed out such books. My local university, for instance, has Secret Life of Plants on its shelves, as well as all of the works of Harold Aspden (a well-known anti-relativist and promoter of 'free energy'). They have several copies of the Aspden books; apparently because some were bought by the university, and others were presented, free, by Aspden. That may explain why CERN (Geneva) also had a copy of one of them.
 
  • #19
skeptic said:
I don't think that there is any hope of controlling, or any need to control, whatever rubbish is read by the general public. What astonishes me is that universities etc., often do not weed out such books. My local university, for instance, has Secret Life of Plants on its shelves, as well as all of the works of Harold Aspden (a well-known anti-relativist and promoter of 'free energy'). They have several copies of the Aspden books; apparently because some were bought by the university, and others were presented, free, by Aspden. That may explain why CERN (Geneva) also had a copy of one of them.
Perhaps it is sometimes good to have examples of bad science to point to.
 
  • #20
I agree; the quickest way to teach physics is often to pick on bad examples from the outset. The problem is that very few people (apart from Gardner or Gould) actually take/took the trouble to point out errors in popular pseudoscientific books. And even when they do/did, they are/were unlikely to reach the target readership.
 

Related to Worst Sci-Books: "The Secret Life Of Plants" & "Mindwalk - The Tao of Physics

1. What are the main themes in "The Secret Life Of Plants"?

The main themes in "The Secret Life Of Plants" are the idea that plants have emotions and can communicate with humans, the connection between plants and humans, and the impact of human actions on plant life.

2. How accurate is "The Secret Life Of Plants" from a scientific standpoint?

From a scientific standpoint, "The Secret Life Of Plants" has been heavily criticized for its lack of scientific evidence and reliance on pseudoscience. Many of the claims made in the book, such as plants having emotions and being able to communicate with humans, have not been supported by scientific research.

3. What is the main message of "Mindwalk - The Tao of Physics"?

The main message of "Mindwalk - The Tao of Physics" is the interconnectedness of all things and the idea that science and spirituality are not mutually exclusive, but rather can be viewed as complementary ways of understanding the world.

4. Is "Mindwalk - The Tao of Physics" based on real scientific theories?

Yes, "Mindwalk - The Tao of Physics" is based on real scientific theories, particularly the theories of quantum physics and Eastern philosophies such as Taoism and Buddhism. However, the book has also been criticized for oversimplifying and misrepresenting these theories.

5. Can "Worst Sci-Books: "The Secret Life Of Plants" & "Mindwalk - The Tao of Physics" be considered legitimate scientific literature?

No, neither "The Secret Life Of Plants" nor "Mindwalk - The Tao of Physics" can be considered legitimate scientific literature. Both books have been heavily criticized by the scientific community for their lack of scientific rigor and reliance on pseudoscience and New Age ideas.

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