- Subject index
Geomorphology is the study of the Earth's diverse physical land surface features and the dynamic processes that shape these features. Examining natural and anthropogenic processes, The SAGE Handbook of Geomorphology is a comprehensive exposition of the fundamentals of geomorphology that examines form, process, and history in the discipline. Organized into four sections, the Handbook is an overview of foundations and relevance, including the nature and scope of geomorphology, the origins and development of geomorphology, the role and character of theory in geomorphology, the significance of models and abstractions to geomorphology; techniques and approaches, including geomorphological mapping, field observations and experimental design, remote sensing in geomorphology, quantifying rates of erosion, measuring fluid flows and sediment fluxes, dating surfaces and sediment, GIS in geomorphology, and modelling landforms and processes; process and environment, including rock weathering, the evolution of regolith, hill slopes, riverine environments, glacial environments, periglacial environments, coastal environments, desert environments, karst landscapes, environmental change and anthropogenic activity; and environmental change, including geomorphology and environmental management, geomorphology and society, and planetary geomorphology.
Chapter 7: Observations and Experiments
Observations and Experiments
Observation and experiment are fundamental procedures in science. Science is said to be derived from the facts of observation – observations preferably, although by no means always, made experimentally. Observations are, then, the fundamental building blocks of scientific knowledge. In a naïve view, observations are supposed to be directly acquired by careful, unprejudiced observers, independent of any theory. They constitute the firm reference points against which theory is tested. Observations made under similar conditions by different observers ought to be similar, hence verifiable, and therein is supposed to lie the authority of science. Observations and experiments are closely connected, the latter being a formally arranged instance of the former designed, first of all, to ensure that the observations will sharply ...