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The 20th-century Austrian-British philosopher Karl Popper believed that any theory that was not ‘falsifiable’ – capable of being tested and proven incorrect – should be dismissed as unscientific. He was particularly critical of Marxist theory, which he believed was constantly being revised by its adherents to account for its failed predictions, and therefore could not possibly be scientific. The falsification principle is a cornerstone of the modern scientific method, but some contemporary scientists, cosmologists and philosophers believe it might need to be revised as they investigate concepts such as string theory and the multiverse, which come up against the limits of what is testable – at least for now.
Dazzling timelapse shows how microbes spoil our food – and sometimes enrich it
An animator wonders: can you ever depict someone without making them a caricature?
Can art in a swanky restaurant ever be transcendent? On Rothko’s Seagram Murals
Like pop music, humpback whale songs spread, mutate, and fall out of fashion
History of ideas
Peter Singer charts the path from Hegelian philosophy to Marxist revolution
An interstellar voyage explores the ‘paradox’ of twins separated by light years
Film and visual culture
At the movies with Pauline Kael – in the arthouse cinema where she got her start
Mood and emotion
‘Let me dream you into my reality’: memories illuminate an unthinkable isolation
Journey deep into the Philippine forest in search of the world’s largest, rarest eagle