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  Science – the World around Us

The real world around us is full of various colours and many different sounds, offering astonishing surprises. As Ortega y Gasset once said, ‘To be surprised, to wonder, is to begin to understand’. The world undergoing eternal transformations encourages us to ask questions, to delve into the subject to uncover new mysteries. Thanks to this curiosity, we discover secrets of various life forms and, consequently, learn the human nature and the sense of human existence. No wonder science looks at the world around us with such an interest. The title of the fourth edition of the photo competition is ‘Science – the World around Us’. Fascination, the urge to satisfy the insatiable curiosity, the desire to know what we do not know yet and expand the frontiers of knowledge make the researchers of all specializations and all corners of the Earth capture in a photo that what intrigues them and demands explanation. The problems raised by the authors of the submitted photos were: the issues associated with the ‘sea of mist’ in Zawoja; how organisms adapt to various living conditions; why wrecks of ships may be considered centres of marine biodiversity; what the role of amphibians in protecting biodiversity of water areas is; how thermal pollution influences functioning of living organisms; how natural environment of Madagascar is protected; what Easter traditions in Poreč are; how ultrasonic waves influence the rate of descent of fog, or what characteristic elements of Olender settlements are.

Unceasingly posed questions and sought answers allow expanding the horizons of science and check the limits of our perception. According to Ambrose Gwinnett Bierce, ‘The small part of ignorance that we arrange and classify we give the name of knowledge’. The world around us seems at the same time familiar and alien, known and unknown. That makes it still surprising, provoking to observe it every day and devote oneself to scientific research. Their results, gradually, get us closer to revealing the mystery of existence.

Agnieszka Nęcka
Department of Information and Promotion University of Silesia in Katowice