Exploration is the act of searching for the purpose of discovery of information or resources. Exploration occurs in all non-sessile animal species, including humans. In human history, its most dramatic rise was during the Age of Discovery when European explorers sailed and charted much of the rest of the world for a variety of reasons. Since major explorations after the Age of Discovery have occurred for reasons aimed at information discovery. In scientific research, exploration is one of three purposes of empirical research; the term is used metaphorically. For example, an individual may speak of exploring the Internet, etc; the Phoenicians traded throughout the Mediterranean Sea and Asia Minor though many of their routes are still unknown today. The presence of tin in some Phoenician artifacts suggests. According to Virgil's Aeneid and other ancient sources, the legendary Queen Dido was a Phoenician from Tyre who sailed to North Africa and founded the city of Carthage. Hanno the Navigator, a Carthaginean navigator explored the Western Coast of Africa.
The Greek explorer from Marseille, Pytheas was the first to circumnavigate Great Britain, explore Germany, reach Thule. Romans -under Augustus emperor- reached and explored all the Baltic Sea Africa ExplorationThe Romans organized expeditions to cross the Sahara desert with five different routes: through the western Sahara, toward the Niger river and actual Timbuktu. Through the Tibesti mountains, toward Lake Chad and actual Nigeria through the Nile river, toward actual Uganda. Though the western coast of Africa, toward the Canary Islands and the Cape Verde islands. Through the Red Sea, toward actual Somalia and Tanzania. All these expeditions were supported by legionaries and had a commercial purpose. Only the one done by emperor Nero seemed to be a preparative for the conquest of Ethiopia or Nubia: in 62 AD two legionaries explored the sources of the Nile river. One of the main reasons of the explorations was to get gold using the camel to transport it; the explorations near the African western and eastern coasts were supported by Roman ships and related to the naval commerce.
Romans organized several explorations in Northern Europe, as far as Asia up to China. 30 BC-640 AD. The Empire now has a direct connection to the Spice trade Egypt had established beginning in 118 BC.100 AD-166 AD Romano-Chinese relations begin. Ptolemy writes of the Golden Chersonese and the trade port of Kattigara, now identified as Óc Eo in northern Vietnam part of Jiaozhou, a province of the Chinese Han Empire; the Chinese historical texts describe Roman embassies, from a land they called Daqin.2nd century Roman traders reach Siam, Cambodia and Java.161 An embassy from Roman Emperor Antoninus Pius or his successor Marcus Aurelius reaches Chinese Emperor Huan of Han at Luoyang.226 A Roman diplomat or merchant lands in northern Vietnam and visits Nanjing and the court of Sun Quan, ruler of Eastern Wu During the 2nd century BC, the Han dynasty explored much of the Eastern Northern Hemisphere. Starting in 139 BC, the Han diplomat Zhang Qian traveled west in an unsuccessful attempt to secure an alliance with the Da Yuezhi against the Xiongnu.
When Zhang returned to China in 125 BC, he reported on his visits to Dayuan and Daxia. Zhang described Dayuan and Daxia as agricultural and urban countries like China, although he did not venture there, described Shendu and Anxi further west. From about 800 AD to 1040 AD, the Vikings explored Europe and much of the Western Northern Hemisphere via rivers and oceans. For example, it is known that the Norwegian Viking explorer, Erik the Red, sailed to and settled in Greenland after being expelled from Iceland, while his son, the Icelandic explorer Leif Ericson, reached Newfoundland and the nearby North American coast, is believed to be the first European to land in North America. Polynesians were a maritime people, who populated and explored the central and south Pacific for around 5,000 years, up to about 1280 when they discovered New Zealand; the key invention to their exploration was the outrigger canoe, which provided a swift and stable platform for carrying goods and people. Based on limited evidence, it is thought.
It is unknown if one or more boats went to New Zealand, or the type of boat, or the names of those who migrated. 2011 studies at Wairau Bar in New Zealand show a high probability that one origin was Ruahine Island in the Society Islands. Polynesians may have used the prevailing north easterly trade winds to reach New Zealand in about three weeks; the Cook Islands are in direct line along the migration path and may have been an intermediate stopping point. There are cultural and language similarities between New Zealand Maori. Early Maori had different legends of their origins, but the stories were misunderstood and reinterpreted in confused written accounts by early European historians in New Zealand trying to present a coherent pattern of Maori settlement in New Zealand. Mathematical modell
Operational level of war
In the field of military theory, the operational level of war represents the level of command that connects the details of tactics with the goals of strategy. In Joint U. S. military doctrine, operational art is "the cognitive approach by commanders and staffs—supported by their skill, experience and judgment—to develop strategies and operations to organize and employ military forces by integrating ends and means." It correlates military power. Operational art is defined by its military-political scope, not by force size, scale of operations or degree of effort. Operational art provides theory and skills, the operational level permits doctrinal structure and process. During the 18th and early 19th centuries, the synonymous term grand tactics was used to describe the manoeuvres of troops not tactically engaged, while in the late 19th century to the First World War and through the Second World War, the term minor strategy was used by some military commentators. Confusion over terminology was brought up in professional military publications, that sought to identify "...slightly different shades of meaning, such as tactics, major tactics, minor tactics, grand strategy, major strategy, minor strategy".
The term was not used in the United States or Britain before 1980–1981, when it became much discussed and started to enter military doctrines and officer combat training courses. Operational art comprises four essential elements: time, space and purpose; each element is found in greater complexity at the operational level than at the tactical or strategic level. This is true, in part, because operational art must consider and incorporate more of the strategic and tactical levels than those levels must absorb from the operational level. Although much can be gained by examining the four elements independently, it is only when they are viewed together that operational art reveals its intricate fabric; the challenge of operational art is to establish a four-element equilibrium that permits the optimal generation and application of military power in achieving the political goal. Viewing time, space and purpose as a whole requires great skill in organizing and envisioning masses of complex contradictory factors.
These factors exist for extended periods, over great distances and with shifting mixes of players and beliefs, pursuing political goals which may or may not be clear, cogent or settled. Compounding factors, such as the opponent's actions, create further ambiguity; the operational-level strategist possesses numerous tools to frame and guide their thinking, but chief among these are mission analysis and end state. Mission analysis answers the question "What is to be accomplished?" Through mission analysis, the operational-level planner fuses political aims and military objectives. In so doing, the planner determines what application of military force will create military power to achieve the political purpose. Subordinate processes here include defining objectives and centers of gravity, but excessive dependence on analytical mechanisms can create false security; the final test rewards success, not the quality of the argument. Conversely, the planner cannot hope to "feel" a way to victory—complexity demands an integration of thought and effort.
End state answers the question "What will constitute success?" The campaign end state is not a desired status quo of the military goal. It establishes a touchstone for the tactical and strategic levels; the end state exposes any limitations. Indeed, an achievable end state may require the employment of nonmilitary elements of national power; as such, it recognizes. An operational-level strategy must continually inventory and weigh time, space and purpose, extrapolating from them outcomes and likelihood. To accomplish this, practitioners need both skill and theory and knowledge. At the operational level and experience must be developed indirectly, through formal training, military history and real-world practicum. Success at the tactical level is no guarantee of success at the operational level: mastery of operational art demands strategic skills. Without a strong grounding in the theory and application of operational art, a successful tactician has little hope of making the demanding leap from tactics.
The operational level strategist must see and expansively from the foxhole into the corridors of national or coalition authority. They must be aware of the plausibility and coherence of strategic aims, national will and the players who decide them. Successful operational art charts a clear, unbroken path from the individual soldier's efforts to the state or coalition's goals. While the emerging corpus of operational art and the establishment of a operational level of war are new, in practice operational art has existed throughout recorded history. Peoples and commanders have long pursued political goals through military actions, one can examine campaigns of any period from the existential perspective of operational art. Current schools of thought on the operational art share the fundamental view that military success can be measured only in the attainment of political-strategic aims, thus historians can analyze any war in terms of operational art. In the case of World War II analysis, the Wehrmacht did not use the operational level as a formal doctrinal concept during the campaigns of 1939–1945.
While personnel within the German forces knew of operatio
4X is a genre of strategy-based video and board games in which players control an empire and "explore, expand and exterminate". The term was coined by Alan Emrich in his September 1993 preview of Master of Orion for Computer Gaming World. Since others have adopted the term to describe games of similar scope and design. 4X computer games are noted for their complex gameplay. Emphasis is placed upon economic and technological development, as well as a range of non-military routes to supremacy. Games can take a long time to complete since the amount of micromanagement needed to sustain an empire increases as the empire grows. 4X games are sometimes criticized for becoming tedious for these reasons, several games have attempted to address these concerns by limiting micromanagement, with varying degrees of success. The earliest 4X games borrowed ideas from 1970s text-based computer games; the first 4X computer games were turn-based. Many 4X computer games were published in the mid-1990s, but were outsold by other types of strategy games.
Sid Meier's Civilization is an important example from this formative era, popularized the level of detail that became a staple of the genre. In the new millennium, several 4X releases have become commercially successful. In the board game domain, 4X is less of a distinct genre, in part because of the practical constraints of components and playing time; the Civilization board game that gave rise to Sid Meier's Civilization computer game, for instance, has no exploration and no extermination. Unless extermination is targeted at non-player entities, it tends to be either nearly impossible or unachievable in board games; the term "4X" originates from a 1993 preview of Master of Orion in Computer Gaming World by Alan Emrich, in which he rated the game "XXXX" as a pun on the XXX rating for pornography. The four Xs were an abbreviation for "EXplore, EXpand, EXploit and EXterminate". By February 1994 another author in the magazine stated that Command Adventures: Starship "only pays lip service to the four X's", other game commentators adopted the "4X" label to describe a game genre with specific gameplay conventions: Explore means players send scouts across a map to reveal surrounding territories.
Expand means players claim new territory by creating new settlements, or sometimes by extending the influence of existing settlements. Exploit means players gather and use resources in areas they control, improve the efficiency of that usage. Exterminate means eliminating rival players. Since in some games all territory is claimed, eliminating a rival's presence may be the only way to achieve further expansion; these four elements of gameplay have been described as the four phases of a 4X computer game session. These phases overlap with each other and vary in length depending on the game design. For example, the Space Empires series and Galactic Civilizations II: Dark Avatar have a long expansion phase, because players must make large investments in research to explore and expand into every area. While many computer strategy games arguably contain a similar "explore, exploit, exterminate" cycle, game journalists and enthusiasts apply "4X" to a more specific class of games, contrast 4X games with other strategy games such as Command & Conquer.
Hence, writers have tried to show how 4X games are defined by more than just having each of the four Xs. Computer gaming sites have stated that 4X games are distinguished by their greater complexity and scale, their intricate use of diplomacy beyond the standard "friend or foe" seen in other strategy games. Reviewers have stated that 4X games feature a range of diplomatic options, that they are well known for their large detailed empires and complex gameplay. In particular, 4X games offer detailed control over an empire's economy, while other computer strategy games simplify this in favor of combat-focused gameplay. 4X computer games are a subgenre of strategy games, include both turn-based and real-time strategy titles. The gameplay involves building an empire, which takes place in a setting such as Earth, a fantasy world, or in space; each player takes control of a different civilization or race with unique characteristics and strengths. Most 4X games represent these racial differences with a collection of military bonuses.
4X games feature a technology tree, which represents a series of advancements that players can unlock to gain new units and other capabilities. Technology trees in 4X games are larger than in other strategy games, featuring a larger selection of choices. Empires must invest them in new technology. In 4X games, the main prerequisite for researching an advanced technology is knowledge of earlier technology; this is in contrast to non-4X real-time strategy games, where technological progress is achieved by building structures that grant access to more advanced structures and units. Research is important in 4X games. Battles are won by superior military technology or greater numbers, with battle tactics playing a smaller part. In contrast, military upgrades in non-4X games are sometimes small enough that technologically basic units remain important throughout the game. Combat is an important part of 4X gameplay, because 4X games allow a player to win by exterminating all rival players, or by conquering a threshold amount of the game's universe.
Some 4X games, such as Galactic
Biology is the natural science that studies life and living organisms, including their physical structure, chemical processes, molecular interactions, physiological mechanisms and evolution. Despite the complexity of the science, there are certain unifying concepts that consolidate it into a single, coherent field. Biology recognizes the cell as the basic unit of life, genes as the basic unit of heredity, evolution as the engine that propels the creation and extinction of species. Living organisms are open systems that survive by transforming energy and decreasing their local entropy to maintain a stable and vital condition defined as homeostasis. Sub-disciplines of biology are defined by the research methods employed and the kind of system studied: theoretical biology uses mathematical methods to formulate quantitative models while experimental biology performs empirical experiments to test the validity of proposed theories and understand the mechanisms underlying life and how it appeared and evolved from non-living matter about 4 billion years ago through a gradual increase in the complexity of the system.
See branches of biology. The term biology is derived from the Greek word βίος, bios, "life" and the suffix -λογία, -logia, "study of." The Latin-language form of the term first appeared in 1736 when Swedish scientist Carl Linnaeus used biologi in his Bibliotheca botanica. It was used again in 1766 in a work entitled Philosophiae naturalis sive physicae: tomus III, continens geologian, phytologian generalis, by Michael Christoph Hanov, a disciple of Christian Wolff; the first German use, was in a 1771 translation of Linnaeus' work. In 1797, Theodor Georg August Roose used the term in the preface of a book, Grundzüge der Lehre van der Lebenskraft. Karl Friedrich Burdach used the term in 1800 in a more restricted sense of the study of human beings from a morphological and psychological perspective; the term came into its modern usage with the six-volume treatise Biologie, oder Philosophie der lebenden Natur by Gottfried Reinhold Treviranus, who announced: The objects of our research will be the different forms and manifestations of life, the conditions and laws under which these phenomena occur, the causes through which they have been effected.
The science that concerns itself with these objects we will indicate by the name biology or the doctrine of life. Although modern biology is a recent development, sciences related to and included within it have been studied since ancient times. Natural philosophy was studied as early as the ancient civilizations of Mesopotamia, the Indian subcontinent, China. However, the origins of modern biology and its approach to the study of nature are most traced back to ancient Greece. While the formal study of medicine dates back to Hippocrates, it was Aristotle who contributed most extensively to the development of biology. Important are his History of Animals and other works where he showed naturalist leanings, more empirical works that focused on biological causation and the diversity of life. Aristotle's successor at the Lyceum, wrote a series of books on botany that survived as the most important contribution of antiquity to the plant sciences into the Middle Ages. Scholars of the medieval Islamic world who wrote on biology included al-Jahiz, Al-Dīnawarī, who wrote on botany, Rhazes who wrote on anatomy and physiology.
Medicine was well studied by Islamic scholars working in Greek philosopher traditions, while natural history drew on Aristotelian thought in upholding a fixed hierarchy of life. Biology began to develop and grow with Anton van Leeuwenhoek's dramatic improvement of the microscope, it was that scholars discovered spermatozoa, bacteria and the diversity of microscopic life. Investigations by Jan Swammerdam led to new interest in entomology and helped to develop the basic techniques of microscopic dissection and staining. Advances in microscopy had a profound impact on biological thinking. In the early 19th century, a number of biologists pointed to the central importance of the cell. In 1838, Schleiden and Schwann began promoting the now universal ideas that the basic unit of organisms is the cell and that individual cells have all the characteristics of life, although they opposed the idea that all cells come from the division of other cells. Thanks to the work of Robert Remak and Rudolf Virchow, however, by the 1860s most biologists accepted all three tenets of what came to be known as cell theory.
Meanwhile and classification became the focus of natural historians. Carl Linnaeus published a basic taxonomy for the natural world in 1735, in the 1750s introduced scientific names for all his species. Georges-Louis Leclerc, Comte de Buffon, treated species as artificial categories and living forms as malleable—even suggesting the possibility of common descent. Although he was opposed to evolution, Buffon is a key figure in the history of evolutionary thought. Serious evolutionary thinking originated with the works of Jean-Baptiste Lamarck, the first to present a coherent theory of evolution, he posited that evolution was the result of environmental stress on properties of animals, meaning that the more and rigorously an organ was used, the more complex and efficient it would become, thus adapting the animal to its environment. Lamarck believed that these acquired traits could be passed on to the animal's offspring, who would
Video game programmer
A game programmer is a software engineer, programmer, or computer scientist who develops codebases for video games or related software, such as game development tools. Game programming has many specialized disciplines, all of which fall under the umbrella term of "game programmer". A game programmer should not be confused with a game designer. In the early days of video games, a game programmer took on the job of a designer and artist; this was because the abilities of early computers were so limited that having specialized personnel for each function was unnecessary. Game concepts were light and games were only meant to be played for a few minutes at a time, but more art content and variations in gameplay were constrained by computers' limited power; as specialized arcade hardware and home systems became more powerful, game developers could develop deeper storylines and could include such features as high-resolution and full color graphics, advanced artificial intelligence and digital sound.
Technology has advanced to such a great degree that contemporary games boast 3D graphics and full motion video using assets developed by professional graphic artists. Nowadays, the derogatory term "programmer art" has come to imply the kind of bright colors and blocky design that were typical of early video games; the desire for adding more depth and assets to games necessitated a division of labor. Art production was relegated to full-time artists. Next game programming became a separate discipline from game design. Now, only some games, such as the puzzle game Bejeweled, are simple enough to require just one full-time programmer. Despite this division, most game developers have some say in the final design of contemporary games. A contemporary video game may include advanced physics, artificial intelligence, 3D graphics, digitised sound, an original musical score, complex strategy and may use several input devices and may be playable against other people via the Internet or over a LAN; each aspect of the game can consume all of one programmer's time and, in many cases, several programmers.
Some programmers may specialize in one area of game programming, but many are familiar with several aspects. The number of programmers needed for each feature depends somewhat on programmers' skills, but are dictated by the type of game being developed. Game engine programmers create the base engine of the game, including the simulated physics and graphics disciplines. Video games use existing game engines, either commercial, open source or free, they are customized for a particular game, these programmers handle these modifications. A game's physics programmer is dedicated to developing the physics. A game will only simulate a few aspects of real-world physics. For example, a space game may need simulated gravity, but would not have any need for simulating water viscosity. Since processing cycles are always at a premium, physics programmers may employ "shortcuts" that are computationally inexpensive, but look and act "good enough" for the game in question. In other cases, unrealistic physics are employed to allow easier gameplay or for dramatic effect.
Sometimes, a specific subset of situations is specified and the physical outcome of such situations are stored in a record of some sort and are never computed at runtime at all. Some physics programmers may delve into the difficult tasks of inverse kinematics and other motions attributed to game characters, but these motions are assigned via motion capture libraries so as not to overload the CPU with complex calculations. For a role-playing game such as World of Warcraft, only one physics programmer may be needed. For a complex combat game such as Battlefield 1942, teams of several physics programmers may be required; this title belonged to a programmer who developed specialized blitter algorithms and clever optimizations for 2D graphics. Today, however, it is exclusively applied to programmers who specialize in developing and modifying complex 3D graphic renderers; some 2D graphics skills have just become useful again, for developing games for the new generation of cell phones and handheld game consoles.
A 3D graphics programmer must have a firm grasp of advanced mathematical concepts such as vector and matrix math and linear algebra. Skilled programmers specializing in this area of game development can demand high wages and are a scarce commodity, their skills can be used for video games on any platform. An AI programmer develops the logic of time to simulate intelligence in opponents, it has evolved into a specialized discipline, as these tasks used to be implemented by programmers who specialized in other areas. An AI programmer may program pathfinding and enemy tactic systems; this is one of the most challenging aspects of game programming and its sophistication is developing rapidly. Contemporary games dedicate 10 to 20 percent of their programming staff to AI; some games, such as strategy games like Civilization III or role-playing video games such as The Elder Scrolls IV: Oblivion, use AI while others, such as puzzle games, use it sparingly or not at all. Many game developers have created entire languages that can be used to program their own AI for games via scripts.
These languages are less technical than the language used to implement the game, will be used by the game or level designers to implement the world of the game. Many studios make their games' scripting available to players
A star system or stellar system is a small number of stars that orbit each other, bound by gravitational attraction. A large number of stars bound by gravitation is called a star cluster or galaxy, broadly speaking, they are star systems. Star systems are not to be confused with planetary systems, which include planets and similar bodies A star system of two stars is known as a binary star, binary star system or physical double star. If there are no tidal effects, no perturbation from other forces, no transfer of mass from one star to the other, such a system is stable, both stars will trace out an elliptic orbit around the barycenter of the system indefinitely.. Examples of binary systems are Sirius and Cygnus X-1, the last of which consists of a star and a black hole. A multiple star system consists of three or more stars that appear from Earth to be close to one another in the sky; this may result from the stars being physically close and gravitationally bound to each other, in which case it is a physical multiple star, or this closeness may be apparent, in which case it is an optical multiple star.
Physical multiple stars are commonly called multiple stars or multiple star systems. Most multiple star systems are triple stars. Systems with four or more components are less to occur. Multiple-star systems are called trinary or ternary if they contain three stars; these systems are smaller than open star clusters, which have more complex dynamics and have from 100 to 1,000 stars. Most multiple star systems known are triple. For example, in the 1999 revision of Tokovinin's catalog of physical multiple stars, 551 out of the 728 systems described are triple. However, because of selection effects, knowledge of these statistics is incomplete. Multiple-star systems can be divided into two main dynamical classes: hierarchical systems which are stable and consist of nested orbits that don't interact much and so each level of the hierarchy can be treated as a Two-body problem, or the trapezia which have unstable interacting orbits and are modelled as an n-body problem, exhibiting chaotic behavior. Most multiple-star systems are organized in what is called a hierarchical system: the stars in the system can be divided into two smaller groups, each of which traverses a larger orbit around the system's center of mass.
Each of these smaller groups must be hierarchical, which means that they must be divided into smaller subgroups which themselves are hierarchical, so on. Each level of the hierarchy can be treated as a two-body problem by considering close pairs as if they were a single star. In these systems there is little interaction between the orbits and the stars' motion will continue to approximate stable Keplerian orbits around the system's center of mass, unlike the unstable trapezia systems or the more complex dynamics of the large number of stars in star clusters and galaxies. In a physical triple star system, each star orbits the center of mass of the system. Two of the stars form a close binary system, the third orbits this pair at a distance much larger than that of the binary orbit; this arrangement is called hierarchical. The reason for this is that if the inner and outer orbits are comparable in size, the system may become dynamically unstable, leading to a star being ejected from the system.
Triple stars that are not all gravitationally bound might comprise a physical binary and an optical companion, such as Beta Cephei, or a purely optical triple star, such as Gamma Serpentis. Hierarchical multiple star systems with more than three stars can produce a number of more complicated arrangements, which can be illustrated by what Evans has called a mobile diagram; these are similar to ornamental mobiles hung from the ceiling. Some examples can be seen in the figure to the right; each level of the diagram illustrates the decomposition of the system into two or more systems with smaller size. Evans calls a diagram multiplex if there is a node with more than two children, i.e. if the decomposition of some subsystem involves two or more orbits with comparable size. Because, as we have seen for triple stars, this may be unstable, multiple stars are expected to be simplex, meaning that at each level there are two children. Evans calls the number of levels in the diagram its hierarchy. A simplex diagram of hierarchy 1, as in, describes a binary system.
A simplex diagram of hierarchy 2 may describe a quadruple system, as in. A simplex diagram of hierarchy 3 may describe a system with anywhere from four to eight components; the mobile diagram in shows an example of a quadruple system with hierarchy 3, consisting of a single distant component orbiting a close binary system, with one of the components of the close binary being an closer binary. A real example of a system with hierarchy 3 is Castor known as Alpha Geminorum or α Gem, it consists of what appears to be a visual binary star which, upon closer inspection, can be seen to consist of two spectroscopic binary stars. By itself, this would be a quadruple hierarchy 2 system as in, but it is orbited b
Social science is a category of academic disciplines, concerned with society and the relationships among individuals within a society. Social science as a whole has many branches; these social sciences include, but are not limited to: anthropology, communication studies, history, human geography, linguistics, political science, public health, sociology. The term is sometimes used to refer to the field of sociology, the original "science of society", established in the 19th century. For a more detailed list of sub-disciplines within the social sciences see: Outline of social science. Positivist social scientists use methods resembling those of the natural sciences as tools for understanding society, so define science in its stricter modern sense. Interpretivist social scientists, by contrast, may use social critique or symbolic interpretation rather than constructing empirically falsifiable theories, thus treat science in its broader sense. In modern academic practice, researchers are eclectic, using multiple methodologies.
The term "social research" has acquired a degree of autonomy as practitioners from various disciplines share in its aims and methods. The history of the social sciences begins in the Age of Enlightenment after 1650, which saw a revolution within natural philosophy, changing the basic framework by which individuals understood what was "scientific". Social sciences came forth from the moral philosophy of the time and were influenced by the Age of Revolutions, such as the Industrial Revolution and the French Revolution; the social sciences developed from the sciences, or the systematic knowledge-bases or prescriptive practices, relating to the social improvement of a group of interacting entities. The beginnings of the social sciences in the 18th century are reflected in the grand encyclopedia of Diderot, with articles from Jean-Jacques Rousseau and other pioneers; the growth of the social sciences is reflected in other specialized encyclopedias. The modern period saw "social science" first used as a distinct conceptual field.
Social science was influenced by positivism, focusing on knowledge based on actual positive sense experience and avoiding the negative. Auguste Comte used the term "science sociale" to describe the field, taken from the ideas of Charles Fourier. Following this period, there were five paths of development that sprang forth in the social sciences, influenced by Comte on other fields. One route, taken was the rise of social research. Large statistical surveys were undertaken in various parts of the United States and Europe. Another route undertaken was initiated by Émile Durkheim, studying "social facts", Vilfredo Pareto, opening metatheoretical ideas and individual theories. A third means developed, arising from the methodological dichotomy present, in which social phenomena were identified with and understood; the fourth route taken, based in economics, was developed and furthered economic knowledge as a hard science. The last path was the correlation of knowledge and social values. In this route and prescription were non-overlapping formal discussions of a subject.
Around the start of the 20th century, Enlightenment philosophy was challenged in various quarters. After the use of classical theories since the end of the scientific revolution, various fields substituted mathematics studies for experimental studies and examining equations to build a theoretical structure; the development of social science subfields became quantitative in methodology. The interdisciplinary and cross-disciplinary nature of scientific inquiry into human behaviour and environmental factors affecting it, made many of the natural sciences interested in some aspects of social science methodology. Examples of boundary blurring include emerging disciplines like social research of medicine, neuropsychology and the history and sociology of science. Quantitative research and qualitative methods are being integrated in the study of human action and its implications and consequences. In the first half of the 20th century, statistics became a free-standing discipline of applied mathematics.
Statistical methods were used confidently. In the contemporary period, Karl Popper and Talcott Parsons influenced the furtherance of the social sciences. Researchers continue to search for a unified consensus on what methodology might have the power and refinement to connect a proposed "grand theory" with the various midrange theories that, with considerable success, continue to provide usable frameworks for massive, growing data banks; the social sciences will for the foreseeable future be composed of different zones in the research of, sometime distinct in approach toward, the field. The term "social science" may refer either to the specific sciences of society established by thinkers such as Comte, Durkheim and Weber, or more to all disciplines outside of "noble science" and arts. By the late 19th century, the academic social sciences were constituted of five fields: jurisprudence and amendment of the law, health and trade, art. Around the start of the 21st century, the expanding domain of economics in the social sciences has been described as economic imperialism.
The social science disciplines are branches of knowledge taught and researched at the college or university level. Social science disciplines are defined and rec