Author Topic: Inventing new words -- and with that, new concepts.  (Read 4564 times)

Offline OtisBrown

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Inventing new words -- and with that, new concepts.
« on: January 21, 2011, 07:12:50 PM »
Engineering/SCIENTIFIC friends.

Subject: Todd's stoic and altruistic service to all of us.

I deeply appreciate Todd's work here.  Hormetism is a new word.  I take it as the "courage" to change our "system", and our own "thinking".
I also take it as my search for "stoic" optometrists and ophthalmologists who have embraced the concept that we must "push" ourselves to learn new methods of prevention.
I have used some "old" words like "error" and "myopia" and "hyperopia" (from Donders) and have changed their meaning, to enhance our work or using preventive methods, to include the courageous Dr. Bates, and all ODs and MDs who have recognized the minus as a "poor idea".
I will post on these ideas, to help Todd and his work to the best of my ability. I consider his work to be Engineering/SCIENCE, rather than Medicine/SCIENCE.  You can take Engineering/SCIENCE to mean the use of your own "enhanced" common sense.  We are here to empower each other in the "preventive" sense of the word. 
I will continue to post on this thread to claifiy the need for new definitions of "old" words. 

Offline OtisBrown

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Re: Inventing new words -- and with that, new concepts.
« Reply #1 on: February 27, 2011, 06:49:27 AM »
Todd has "invented" or defined the word, "Hormesis".
In science, you must sometimes either "invent" new words, or re-define "old words".  That might seem difficult, but I know Galileo was condemmed because he took the earth to be somthing that could "move".  This when every rational lay-man, knew that this rock-hard earth could never move.  Thus Galileo had to both redefine the words "move" and "earth" if his concept would have ANY MEANING AT ALL!  I would suggest reading the book, "Inventing Reality', sub-title, "Physics as Language", by Bruce Gregory.  I consider Galileo a "stoic" because he felt is "truth" was so important, that he had to PUBLISH IT.  In my judgment, this is what science is all about.  I do get into "arguments" with some "medical people" about this issue of science -- and that is because the believe that there ability to "quick fix" in an office with a strong minus -- is "perfect science".  Here again, the issue is who EXACTLY defines science, or the very words of science.  In that sence, Todd's site is work to define "stoic" and "altruistic", that is combined into the work, "Hormesis". I hope you enjoy Todd's advocacy and site as I do.  I always believe in getting words "right" so we can have a better future.  I also believe in "working together" to achieve your presonal goal, be it "weight control" or preventing entry into nearsightedness (or my term, negative refractive STATE of the natural eye).  Enjoy, Otis

Offline Todd Becker

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Re: Inventing new words -- and with that, new concepts.
« Reply #2 on: February 28, 2011, 03:00:09 PM »
Todd has "invented" or defined the word, "Hormesis". In science, you must sometimes either "invent" new words, or re-define "old words"....


Thanks for the kind words.

Just to clarify: While I will take credit for devising the term "Hormetism", by no means am I the creator of "hormesis".  The term "hormesis" was first coined in 1888 by the German pharmacologist Hugo Schulz, and has been the focus of scientific study for over a century:

Hormesis is a general scientific principle of biology, whereby a beneficial effect (improved health, stress tolerance, growth or longevity) results from exposure to low doses of an agent that is otherwise toxic or lethal when given at higher doses. It derives from biological defense and repair mechanisms that have evolved to protect organisms from environmental stresses.  For more on the history of the hormesis concept, check out this overview:

Two of the most prolific researchers in the field of hormesis are Edward Calabrese and S.I. Rattan.  See Calabrese's excellent review article:

Hormetism is the practical application of hormesis in a deliberate and systematic way in order to increase strength and resilience.  It is the application of a scientific principle to achieve human ends.  I found that there was no word for this, so I had to invent a word.  In this sense, it is also a philosophy or methodology, and it raises certain practical questions that go beyond science, for example:

  • What is the optimal amount of "stressor" that you, as an individual, should apply to make the maximum gain in improving a given capacity, such as muscular fitness, visual acuity, immune strength, or emotional resilience?
  • What is the optimal timing, frequency and rest period between training sessions?
  • How do these protocols vary among individuals, and how can we determine what is optimal for each individual?

Hormetism is the practical philosophy advocated in this blog, which draws from (but is not fully determined by) the objective science of hormesis. Hope that helps to explain the difference between these terms.

« Last Edit: February 28, 2011, 03:25:22 PM by Todd Becker »