• Question: do pets have anything to do with science?

    Asked by #Holly to Steve, Emma, Christian, Bose, Alice on 17 Mar 2016.
    • Photo: Benjamin Bose

      Benjamin Bose answered on 17 Mar 2016:

      Not really unless you’re a biologist whose experimenting on your dog, or a physicist testing gravity with your pet turtle.

      I was walking my dog when I finally decided to become a scientist but he was probably doing his business, completely oblivious to my decision, when I made it 🙂 So I don’t think he really had much to do with it, let alone actual science.

      In a philosophical sense, everything has everything to do with everything. So I could answer yes :p But realistically, not really hehe!

    • Photo: Steve Marsden

      Steve Marsden answered on 17 Mar 2016:

      I didn’t have any pets growing up, and I can’t have any now as I’m living in a flat (despite how much I’d love to have a greyhound). So I can confirm it’s definitely possible to do science without a pet.

      In coding, there is a concept that if you have a problem, explaining it to someone is often enough for you to solve your problem, even if the person has no knowledge of coding. In fact, in the ATLAS control room, there are a collection of rubber ducks. If you have a problem, you must first explain your problem to them. If this doesn’t solve your problem, only then can you talk to the shift leader.

      I imagine that in this way, a pet would be able to provide a lot of help whenever you get stuck on a problem. 😛

    • Photo: Emma Dean

      Emma Dean answered on 17 Mar 2016:

      In my research area, no they don’t. Although my puppy loves to try and help me. He helps me test newtonian mechanics by getting me to throw his ball. He checks if light travels in straight lines by hiding round corners. He enjoys making sound waves by barking. And of course he loves testing gravity. He does this by chasing flies and jumping really high to catch his frisbee.

    • Photo: Alice Harpole

      Alice Harpole answered on 17 Mar 2016:

      I have a picture of my cat stuck next to my computer on my desk. Her cuteness definitely inspires me when I’m stuck on a particularly challenging bit of code! Sadly, despite my best attempts she seems to have a rather poor understanding of basic mechanics, as demonstrated by her inability to judge her jumps (often causing her to be off by several centimetres and collide into things).