Talk:Osmosis

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Accuracy and presentation[change source]

This article is very inaccurate as osmosis does not just pertain to water moving through a cell membrane. It is any liquid moving through any membrane when the driving force is the thermodynamic change in equalizing the concentration on either side of the membrane.

I also take issue with the application of the word "strength" in relation to the water. What exactly is strong water? It is very poor practice to use that kind of phrasing. I'm cleaning this up (and shortening it dramatically in the process) but it has to be done. It's better to have less information than inaccurate information. (76.168.57.16 (talk) 07:29, 24 February 2009 (UTC))

Also, osmosis doesn't apply to only salt either. This article needs further cleaning. I'll remove the word salt for now. 67.166.78.58 (talk) 03:57, 8 May 2012 (UTC)

Let's not get too far on the high horse. Editors were just trying to make the concept easier for a readership with more limited English than might be desired. Macdonald-ross (talk) 13:44, 8 May 2012 (UTC)
I don't think this person was on a high horse and I don't think not understanding "Osmosis is the net movement of solvent molecules through a partially permeable membrane into a region of higher solute concentration, in order to equalize the solute concentrations on the two sides." says anything about how limited your English is. I came here looking for an explanation of the main article, and what I get is more confused.
Anyone may make constructive suggestions for the improvement of an article. We welcome that, but posts need to be signed with four tildes: ~~~~. Macdonald-ross (talk) 07:07, 13 January 2013 (UTC)

Can The Word Be Used Non-Scientifically?[change source]

Just about all on-line definitions of osmosis I've read describe the scientific use of the word, and rightly so from a formal perspective, and yet more broadly I've encountered uses of the word, even by those with scientific training, thus accustomed to precise word usage, that suggests other ways to use the word: to describe a process,--mental, emotional, even musical or artistic, political--that are essentially metaphorical.

Osmosis hasn't thus far entered the vocabulary of non-scientists to any great extent (that I know of), unlike, say, evolution, which has. Since the concept is more difficult for those without training in basic or applied science to understand the general use of osmosis may never grow wings (so to speak). Yet I've heard it used in a general sense by those who know what they're talking about, and have noted that it was accepted by their peers. For most of the rest of us the word is seldom used, and I think it would be a good thing if a broader, simpler use of the word entered the mainstream, provided, that is, that the metaphorical-symbolic applications didn't alter or pervert the idea of what osmosis means in the world of science.