Frasi di Francis Crick
Data di nascita: 8. Giugno 1916
Data di morte: 28. Luglio 2004
Francis Harry Compton Crick è stato uno scienziato britannico, premio Nobel per la medicina nel 1962.
Frasi Francis Crick
„What is found in biology is mechanisms, mechanisms built with chemical components and that are often modified by other, later, mechanisms added to the earlier ones. While Occam's razor is a useful tool in the physical sciences, it can be a very dangerous implement in biology. It is thus very rash to use simplicity and elegance as a guide in biological research. While DNA could be claimed to be both simple and elegant, it must be remembered that DNA almost certainly originated fairly close to the origin of life when things were necessarily simple or they would not have got going.
Biologists must constantly keep in mind that what they see was not designed, but rather evolved. It might be thought, therefore, that evolutionary arguments would play a large part in guiding biological research, but this is far from the case. It is difficult enough to study what is happening now. To figure out exactly what happened in evolution is even more difficult. Thus evolutionary achievements can be used as hints to suggest possible lines of research, but it is highly dangerous to trust them too much. It is all too easy to make mistaken inferences unless the process involved is already very well understood. “
— Francis Crick
„My own prejudices are exactly the opposite of the functionalists’: “If you want to understand function, study structure,” I was supposed to have said in my molecular biology days. (I believe I was sailing at the time.) I think that one should approach these problems at all levels, as was done in molecular biology. Classical genetics is, after all, a black-box subject. The important thing was to combine it with biochemistry. In nature hybrid species are usually sterile, but in science the reverse is often true. Hybrid subjects are often astonishingly fertile, whereas if a scientific discipline remains too pure it usually wilts. “
„An honest man, armed with all the knowledge available to us now, could only state that in some sense, the origin of life appears at the moment to be almost a miracle, so many are the conditions which would have had to have been satisfied to get it going. But this should not be taken to imply that there are good reasons to believe that it could not have started on the earth by a perfectly reasonable sequence of fairly ordinary chemical reactions. The plain fact is that the time available was too long, the many microenvironments on the earth's surface too diverse, the various chemical possibilities too numerous and our own knowledge and imagination too feeble to allow us to be able to unravel exactly how it might or might not have happened such a long time ago, especially as we have no experimental evidence from that era to check our ideas against.“
— Francis Crick
New York NY: Simon & Schuster, 1981, p. 88.
„If for example I had some idea, which as it turned out would be quite wrong, was going off of the tangent, Watson would tell me in no uncertain terms this was nonsense, and vice-versa. If he would have some idea I didn't like, and I would say so, this would shake his thinking about, and draw him back again. And in fact it is one of the requirements for collaborations of this sort, is you must be perfectly candid, one might almost say rude, to the person you're working with. It's useless working with somebody who is either much too junior than yourself or much too senior because then politeness creeps in. And this is the end of all real collaboration in science (giggles).“
„I wasn't aware of Chargaff's rules when he said them, but the effect on me was quite electric because I realized immediately that if you had this sort of scheme that John Griffith was proposing, of adenine being paired with thymine, and guanine being paired with cytosine, then you should get Chargaff's rules. I was very excited, but I didn't actually tell Chargaff because it was something I was doing with John Griffith.... This was very exciting, and we thought "ah ha!" and we realized - I mean what anyone who is familiar with the history of science ought to realize - that when you have one-to-one ratios, it means things go to together. And how on Earth no one pointed out this simple fact in those years, I don't know.“
„Our brains have evolved mainly to deal with our body and its interactions with the world it senses to be around us. Is this world real? This is a venerable philosophical issue and I do not wish to be embroiled in the finely honed squabbles to which it has led. I merely state my own working hypothesis: that there is indeed an outside world, and that it is largely independent of our observing it. We can never fully know this outside world, but we can obtain approximate information about some aspects of its properties by using our senses and our brain. “
— Francis Crick
„Philosophers have been especially concerned with the problem of consciousness—for example, how to explain the redness of red or the painfulness of pain. This is a very thorny issue. The problem springs from the fact that the redness of red that I perceive so vividly cannot be precisely communicated to another human being, at least in the ordinary course of events. If you cannot describe the properties of a thing unambiguously, you are likely to have some difficulty trying to explain these properties in reductionist terms.“
„The ultimate aim of the modern movement in biology is in fact to explain all biology in terms of physics and chemistry.“
— Francis Crick
Seattle: University of Washington Press, 1966, p. 10.