Richard Feynman metaphorically describes the quest for scientific understanding (video)

What Feynman is presenting in the video is an atheist’s version of the story of Adam and Eve and the Tree of Knowledge. Feynman’s banana is analogous to the fruit of the Tree of Knowledge, which is more typically depicted as an apple.

And as an atheist, Feynman rejects the version of man’s origins presented in Genesis, but rather considers man to be a close relative and a descendant of the apes. Plucking a banana from its tree is like obtaining one additional bit of understanding of “the ultimate laws of physics”.

Feynman asserted that science is imagination constrained by a tight straitjacket

β€œThe game I play is a very interesting one. It’s imagination, in a tight straitjacket.” — Richard P. Feynman

“Feynman once said, ‘Science is imagination in a straitjacket.’ It is ironic that in the case of quantum mechanics, the people without the straitjackets are generally the nuts.”
–Lawrence M. Krauss

Here is link to a video clip where Feynman makes his science as imagination in a tight straitjacket assertion:

Here are two shots I took of a street performer entertaining spectators by struggling to get out of a straitjacket while balancing on a large ball. It’s interesting that some of the spectators watching him have their arms crossed as if they themselves were wearing straitjackets:

Introducing Mr Magnet, man with a body which radiates a special energy

Muhibija Buljubasic, 56, poses for photo with cutlery and a Samsung Galaxy S4 phone on his body and head in Srebrenik, February 23, 2014. Buljubasic discovered five years ago that he had the unusual ability to attach items to his body by radiating a special energy. Without making any special preparation, he was able to hold on to spoons, forks, knives and other kitchen appliances, as well as non-metal objects like remote controls and cell phones. REUTERS/Dado Ruvic This fellow’s portrait (above) seems to bear a resemblance to the decorations that are attached to a manniquin outside of a resturant in Baltimore (below). Perhaps this fellow (above) simply sprays a little adhesive on the backs of the spoons and cellphone to get them to stick to his body.

Perhaps this fellow has a “magnetic personality”? Some Chinese fortune cookies contain slips of paper that make such assertions about people: πŸ˜‰

Some clever humor and bad science in the movie “Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy”

I found the movie version of “Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy” by Douglas Adams to be very clever and amusing. But the producers of the movie created a short companion video titled “Making of Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy” (available on YouTube) that contained a bit of bad science in it. It presents the discredited theory of Lamarckism as an explanation for the physical deformities of the Vogons. Briefly stated (and as presented in the video clip below) this is the idea that if you flattened people’s noses by hitting them in the face with a shovel for millions of years, they would then inherit the trait of flattened noses.

Here is the section from the video “Making of Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy” in which the movie’s director, Garth Jennings, presents this bit a bogus science as the back story for how the Vogons came to be as deformed as they were over a span of millions of years. The Vogons are a clever visual caricature, but their evolution is not very good as a concept in science fiction.

The Evolution of the Vogons (TubeChop Video)