RECYCLE digest 351
Fri, 22 Jan 1999 16:12:45 -0500

RECYCLE Digest 351

Topics covered in this issue include:

1) re: Chuck Irvine
Date: Tue, 12 Nov 1996 01:03:23 -0500
Subject: re: Chuck Irvine
Message-ID: <>

I am catching up on some of the back issues from this recycling list
serve and keep noticing Chucks comments.
It reminds me of my academic days. I was a biology student, later in
applied oceanography, but with a tendency to hand out near the social
sciences because they had fun raging debates. I noticed that the campus
segregated all of these various departments, going so far as to put a row of
trees between the sciences and non sciences.
The biologists were studying the complexity of life, which is somewhat
daunting in its vastness. Almost weekly I'd listen to someone studying some
specfic creature and its relationship with others and the environment it
lived in describe to me how we humans are doing something that is messing up
this creature. In some cases they could paint a scenario leading to end of
life on Earth, in others just extinction of that ecosystem. These biologists
were overwhelmed by the complexity of nature and very pessimistic in our
ability to coexist with nature on the long run.
A few buldings and walls away were the engineers for whom no problem
lacked a solution. These people were the most optomistic bunch I've ever
seen...marching forward to create the perfect tomorrow.
In my view the Biologists saw the complexity, but were not trained in
solutions. The Engineers were trained to come up with solutions but did not
understand the complexity of the problem. To my dismay these two groups
never interacted, never tried to work together, to understand each others
concerns and abilities....