What Is Good Science? Part 2: How to think like a scientist

What Is Good Science? Part 2: How to think like a scientist
8 apr 2024 · 55 min. 14 sec.

In the last episode, I discovered that rinsing my Chemex filter papers was a waste of time! As a result I’ve managed to claw back over seven days of my...

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In the last episode, I discovered that rinsing my Chemex filter papers was a waste of time! As a result I’ve managed to claw back over seven days of my life left on earth. 

But why stop there? 

The coffee industry is full of elaborate ways of brewing and savouring coffee: fancy drippers, cold metal balls, “slurp-able” cupping spoons.

These are very fun, but how many of them actually affect the flavour of our coffee?

I fear elaborate coffee gear is wasting our time and money. They're distracting us from the existential crises in coffee that actually require all our attention now. For example, the issue of farmers who grow delicious coffees quitting the business because it’s just getting too hard. 

But to figure out whether a popular new coffee tool was actually waste of time or not, I needed to think like a scientist. 

This episode is the journey I went on to rewire my brain: I had to learn what good evidence looks like, what to do if I can’t find good evidence, and why it’s important to focus mostly on experimental results while resisting the allure of a compelling theory. 


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Discover this episode’s sponsor BWT’s water filtration products. I use their Penguin magnesium filter cartridges and cafes can use their BestAqua ROC


Dive deeper into the science of slurping, water and Signal Detection Theory

Do a Certificate of Advanced Studies with the Coffee Excellence Centre
Read Georgiana’s paper on soup slurping
Learn more about Signal Detection Theory
Explore BWT White Paper on the effects of magnesium (German)
Browse Christopher Hendon’s book Water for Coffee 
Take Barista Hustle's Water course 
Watch James Hoffman's water video


Connect with my very knowledgeable guests
Morten Munchow - Coffee Mind website
Jeremy Nelson - LinkedIn
Samo Smrke - Instagram
Georgiana Juravle - Google Scholar
Young Baek - Instagram
Frank Neuhausen - LinkedIn
Sergio Barbarisi - LinkedIn
Alessandro Genovese - LinkedIn


The Science of Coffee is made possible by these leading coffee organisations:

BWT Water and More
Marco Beverage Systems
ROEST
Sustainable Harvest
Mahlkönig


The Science of Coffee is a spin-off series from James Harper's documentary podcast Filter Stories
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