A Classical Framework for Assessing Beauty in the Fields of Science and Engineering
Beauty is that which communicates itself clearly to the perceiver who is so pleased by what is perceived so as to inspire a movement of the will toward that beauty. Beauty is true and it is good, and it greatly enriches all aspects of human life. The sciences are no exception, as they too can be enriched by beauty. As science is concerned with the pursuit of truth for the good of all, it is only natural that beauty be a part of its patrimony. As such, beauty and science are assessed together in this article to find places of cooperative enrichment and benefit. An internally consistent framework is presented herein which defines what beauty is and how to critically assess it. This framework is classical in origin and is represented here to a modern audience. Once properly understood, this framework can be used to objectively discuss and analyze beauty, particularly within the context of scientific and engineering disciplines. Examples are given to demonstrate how beauty can be better implemented into the sciences with respect to figures, presentations, and products. The ultimate goal of the work is to encourage the critical discussion of beauty and to empower scientists to more beautifully present their research.