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"Does Science Admit When it’s Wrong?"

Discussion in 'After Hours Lounge (Off Topic)' started by JParker, Jan 17, 2013.

  1. JParker

    JParker Well-Known Member

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    Informative blog post... http://www.thunderbolts.info/wp/2012/11/26/does-science-admit-when-its-wrong/ Excerpt:
    See also this video, with a rocky comet emitting plasma, and not water vapor. [VIDEO]http-~~-//www.youtube.com/watch?v=5DEvb6yEQ_0[/VIDEO] http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=5DEvb6yEQ_0
     
  2. Sam Posten

    Sam Posten Moderator
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    Yeah, pseudoscience can be fun. Don't get your hopes up tho. Very respectfully. Sam
     
  3. JParker

    JParker Well-Known Member

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    http://www.sjcrothers.plasmaresources.com/Bridgman.html
    [VIDEO]http-~~-//www.youtube.com/watch?v=wn_HqbMmn-4[/VIDEO] If anything, religion goes with the 'big bang'! http://www.holoscience.com/wp/a-nobel-prize-for-the-dark-side/
    [​IMG]
     
  4. Aaron Silverman

    Aaron Silverman Well-Known Member

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    The answer is "yes, when it's actually wrong, but not when cranks spout nonsense." :)
     
  5. Sam Posten

    Sam Posten Moderator
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    Hoo boy, I'm done here. I gave it a shot hoping you were genuinely curious and not out to push an agenda, but can see now that was a mistake. I withdraw from the thread and await its being locked.
     
  6. JParker

    JParker Well-Known Member

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    When do facts or challenges to authority become an agenda? And when is "locking" or silencing dissent something to look forward to? Who says your turn won't come. And Einstein himself challenged "black holes"; no one can refute what Crothers wrote using mathematics. http://metaresearch.org/cosmology/PhysicsHasItsPrinciples.asp
    [3] Einstein, A. (1939), Annals of Mathematics, 40, #4 (Oct.), 922-936. [​IMG] [Einstein's got you beat in your photograph of yourself, too Sam!] And observational evidence contradicts dogmatic theory. If you watched the YouTube you'll see the work of Hannes Olof Gösta Alfvén is cited. He did win a Nobel prize. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Hannes_Alfv%C3%A9n#Awards_and_Memberships http://www.holoscience.com/wp/alfven-triumphs-again-again/
    I'm not at all 'evangelical' you're free to 'believe' what you wish. But the fact that evidence contradicts traditional explanations or that even your authorities contradict themselves should allow others to form their own opinions. Galaxy Grande: Milky Way May Be More Massive Than Thought http://www.scientificamerican.com/article.cfm?id=galaxy-grande-milky-way-milky-way-may-be-more-massive-than-thought Milky Way Galaxy May Be Less Massive Than Thought http://www.space.com/19206-milky-way-galaxy-mass.html
    [​IMG]
     
  7. DaveF

    DaveF Moderator
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    Science has never apologized to me, or admitted to being in the wrong. But I've seen it turn red when embarrassed.
     
  8. Stan

    Stan Premium
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    I trust science. They may be wrong at times and some scientists use falsified results or leave out things that may debunk their theories. But overall, they provide their own checks and balances with results being reviewed by their peers. Bad or faked results are going to be exposed eventually. There may be a period of time where the results are looked at as correct, but the good scientists far outweigh the bad, and will expose things that are wrong. Some results may be considered correct for years, but if it's wrong, I think somebody will eventually find the errors and prove things were wrong. Add to that the fact that we're always learning about the earth, life, the universe, etc. new information is always going to alter the old info. Sometimes proving it correct, at other times proving things were very wrong.
     
  9. BrianW

    BrianW Well-Known Member

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    Wiley Miller's NON SEQUITUR cartoon that you posted is more characteristic of electric universe believers than it is of mainstream cosmologists. It's the electric universe proponents who want their pet theory to be true and seek out evidence to support it. Even your characterization of mainstream theories as "dogmatic" belies your bias and unwillingness to evaluate the science at face value. Real scientists (yeah, I said it) go where the data leads. Your own contribution demonstrating Einstein's reluctance to accept his own theory's prediction about the existence of black holes damns your assertion that real scientists have a particular outcome in mind when they do science. Einstein didn't like black holes, but he did nothing to eliminate them from his equations because he knew his equations were consistent and intrinsically correct. He utterly refused to modify his theory to match up with what he expected to be true. That's the mark of a real scientist. You are correct, however, in that Einstein (and all good scientists) preferred "purely mathematical reasoning" over "physical principles", if, by "physical principles" you mean "what humans intuitively think must be correct". Nature doesn't give a damn what our intuition tells us about nature. Nature doesn't give a damn if we happen to think black holes are too outlandish to exist. Yes, physicists trust the math, even if -- especially if -- it goes against our intuition. (Quantum mechanics, for example, is borderline magical in the extent to which it defies intuition, yet it yields to mathematical analysis.) Electric universe proponents, however, think their theory just makes so much sense and is so intuitive that it simply must be true. Yes, it's a compelling, lovely theory. But, as Kepler did when his beautiful nested perfect-polyhedron model of the solar system just didn't work out, we need to heed the results of the Scientific Method and move on. To answer your question: All scientific knowledge is tentative and subject to revision as the Scientific Method is further applied. Admitting when it's wrong and correcting itself is the very definition of science.
     
  10. Johnny Angell

    Johnny Angell Played With Dinosaurs Member

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    Brian, 100% what you said. :tu: Especially
     
  11. RobertR

    RobertR Well-Known Member

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    As usual, you state it very well, good sir.
     
  12. Cees Alons

    Cees Alons Moderator
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    Brian,
    Very well said.
    And I like to add (in a reaction to the topic line of this thread): science is not a person.
    Cees
     
  13. RobertR

    RobertR Well-Known Member

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    To put it another way, scientists don't think precisely alike in dogmatic lockstep with each other as part of some monolithic consciousness.
     
  14. Sam Posten

    Sam Posten Moderator
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    I realize I said I was done with this thread but I actually found the admission you are looking for!
    http://www.insidescience.org/content/ancient-magical-illusion-even-more-effective-magicians-may-realize/935
     
  15. Joseph DeMartino

    Joseph DeMartino Well-Known Member

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    Reminds me of a favorite line from a (fictional) scientist, CSI's Gil Grissom. When Grissom admits making a mistake, Nick and Warrick are surprised, because most people don't like to say they were wrong about something. Not Grissom: "I'm wrong all the time. It's how I eventually get to right." Pretty neat summation of the scientific method. Regards, Joe
     
  16. Sam Posten

    Sam Posten Moderator
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    Performance art or true believer?
     
  17. Sam Posten

    Sam Posten Moderator
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    Phil Plait answers the OP's question far better than I ever could:


    And
    Sadly the article that it is from has a very strong religious angle so it's not appropriate for discussion on HTF. Google Bad Astronomer and Science Test and you will find it easy enough tho if you are curious.
     
  18. Sam Posten

    Sam Posten Moderator
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    Another interesting piece:
    https://medium.com/editors-picks/adfa0d026a7e

    Note the second half of that, it cuts both ways! Perhaps that's what's afflicting the HTF debunk squad =p

    Also, even if science can't, I can. I was wrong in believing that I was done with the topic =p
     
  19. Aaron Silverman

    Aaron Silverman Well-Known Member

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    How about this for an example: Sam defending Microsoft's original software policies for the XBone? :D ;)
     
  20. Sam Posten

    Sam Posten Moderator
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    Well, that's a bit off track, if funny. I'm laughing along with ya tho ;) I can poke fun of myself as well as anyone else can.

    Here's the thing tho Aaron, we are still at just the beginning here on a lot of these digital issues. This is the time in the evolution of our species where we will first confront these issues and make decisions on political, consumer, and other fronts that will have long lasting effects but it's impossible to state that any of these opinions and choices are clearly good or bad on the whole until we've seen the results (aka the Zen master says "We'll see!"). I try very hard not to conclusively say anything is absolutely right or wrong just what works for me and what I think are poor anti-consumer policies by companies. For example I was very anti-steam when it first came out and then it matured and I'm an enthusiast for that tech now. I'm all in on discussing those things because it's one of the most interesting facets of the world we inhabit today. Vigorous and clean debate on those issues will help us avoid being railroaded by those who simply want to sell you whatever they've cooked up most recently or from being railroaded into choices we will regret long term.

    But that's very different than science. I didn't start with the intention of being the James Randi of HTF but apparently that's the role I'm framed in... I tried to avoid the conflict over the science stuff but the half dozen articles I've pointed to state better than I can how I see these types of threads.... I think they are interesting and the topic of science versus pseudoscience is interesting on the whole. Not sure how much there really can be interesting debate over it tho!
     

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