“Hypernormal science” has minimal potential for contestation on matters of principle and practice so that information exchange can be unproblematic. Sciences comprise hypernormal domains and more contestable “normal” domains where knowledge diffusion, like acquiring linguistic fluency, depends on face-to-face interaction. Hypernormal domains belonging to molecular biology are contrasted with normal domains in gravitational wave detection physics. Sciences as a whole should not be confused with their typical domains. The analysis has immediate implications for proposed transitions out of the Covid-19 lockdown, proposed solutions to the replication crisis, and, perhaps, our understanding of the early development of social studies of science.

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