The English word scientist is relatively recent—first coined by William Whewell in the 19th century.

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While empirical investigations of the natural world have been described since classical antiquity (for example, by Thales and Aristotle), and scientific method has been employed since the Middle Ages (for example, by Ibn al-Haytham and Roger Bacon), modern science began to develop in the early modern period, and in particular in the scientific revolution of 16th- and 17th-century Europe.

From the 18th century through late 20th century, the history of science, especially of the physical and biological sciences, was often presented in a progressive narrative in which true theories replaced false beliefs.

A concrete instance of Pythagoras' law was recorded, as early as the 18th century BC: the Mesopotamian cuneiform tablet Plimpton 322 records a number of Pythagorean triplets (3,4,5) (5,12,13).

..., dated 1900 BC, possibly millennia before Pythagoras, but an abstract formulation of the Pythagorean theorem was not.

Many ancient civilizations collected astronomical information in a systematic manner through observation.

The physical structure and chemical makeup of the planets and stars was not a consideration for ancient people; the emphasis instead tended to be on the relative positions of celestial bodies, with inferences often being made about the effect of this positioning on seemingly unconnected Earthly factors.Their development of geometry was a necessary outgrowth of surveying to preserve the layout and ownership of farmland, which was flooded annually by the Nile river.The 3-4-5 right triangle and other rules of geometry were used to build rectilinear structures, and the post and lintel architecture of Egypt.This should also prove to be a genuinely significant book insofar as it raises far-reaching questions about Plato's understanding of natural science, teleology, the Ideas, and the philosophic life."-Peter J.Ahrensdorf, author of The Death of Socrates and the Life of Philosophy"In The Socratic Turn, Dustin Sebell argues that Socrates' efforts to find a way forward after coming to see the shortcomings of pre-Socratic natural science can help political theorists today as we grapple with the predicament of political philosophy in a world transformed by modern science.From their beginnings in Sumer (now Iraq) around 3500 BC, the Mesopotamian people began to attempt to record some observations of the world with numerical data.