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Sunday, September 15, 2019

Coin flips are more reliable than science

The reproducibility crisis in scientistry is even worse than we science skeptics had thought.
Science is facing a "reproducibility crisis" where more than two-thirds of researchers have tried and failed to reproduce another scientist's experiments, research suggests. This is frustrating clinicians and drug developers who want solid foundations of pre-clinical research to build upon.

From his lab at the University of Virginia's Centre for Open Science, immunologist Dr Tim Errington runs The Reproducibility Project, which attempted to repeat the findings reported in five landmark cancer studies.

"The idea here is to take a bunch of experiments and to try and do the exact same thing to see if we can get the same results."

You could be forgiven for thinking that should be easy. Experiments are supposed to be replicable.

The authors should have done it themselves before publication, and all you have to do is read the methods section in the paper and follow the instructions.

Sadly nothing, it seems, could be further from the truth.

After meticulous research involving painstaking attention to detail over several years (the project was launched in 2011), the team was able to confirm only two of the original studies' findings.

Two more proved inconclusive and in the fifth, the team completely failed to replicate the result.... According to a survey published in the journal Nature last summer, more than 70% of researchers have tried and failed to reproduce another scientist's experiments.
Science is not a metric for truth or reality. One should NEVER rely upon scientists' opinions about anything, because when science is actually reliable, we call it ENGINEERING.

When the gold standard is forty percent, you might as well rely upon flipping a coin.

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131 Comments:

Blogger Fuzzums Wuzzums September 15, 2019 8:44 AM  

And this is why the greatest scientific discoveries have been done by accident.

Blogger swiftfoxmark2 September 15, 2019 8:54 AM  

Scientists cannot explain how a bicycle stands straight up when you ride it. Every time they have a hypothesis as how it works, an engineer makes a bicycle that defies it.

Blogger Akulkis September 15, 2019 8:57 AM  

When a scientist gets something wrong, the worst consequences he faces is having to retract a paper... Or not. And probably won't stop being able to go to all of the same parties (see Paul Ehrlich, Micheal Mann, etc.)

In contrast, when an engineer screws up, the consequences BEGIN with property loss continuing up to loss of life, and the consequences for the engineer(s) involved range from fines, to unemployment to prison time

This is why I always tell people that the best scientists are engineers. Because they won't stand behind results that are anything less than not merely replicable, but reliably replicable.

Blogger Rakshasa September 15, 2019 9:04 AM  

Having a 40% accuracy rate when you flip one coin leads you astray.

When the question isn't a binary and you have dozens of coin flips then you get to the truth.

Blogger McChuck September 15, 2019 9:07 AM  

Most "Science" consists of going through mountains of data with a statistical comb, searching for the elusive "wee-P" value correspondences. They then publish a paper reporting the statistical correlation, logic and causation be damned.

Blogger Dave Dave September 15, 2019 9:08 AM  

Scientists are a bunch of clueless individuals that say anything for money. I know a lot of people doing science degrees and they don't know anything. Only one of them stood out as very intelligent, but I think he transferred out of science. Science teachers are retarded. Science professors are retarded. It's regurgitated nonsense and they can't begin to explain concepts like general relativity or global climate. They listen to what popularisers say and get impressed when they can't follow it. Brian Cox and black science man come to mind. They don't know what they're talking about. Stephen Hawking was at least an intelligent man, especially at deceiving people.

Blogger JG September 15, 2019 9:09 AM  

Check out the US Patent system sometime. A coin flip is a high bar for a patent. You'll be lucky to get 10% of them to work.

Blogger McChuck September 15, 2019 9:10 AM  

@3 - It used to be that when a new bridge opened up, the chief engineer was the first across and then stood under it the rest of the day.

Blogger Rabid Ratel September 15, 2019 9:16 AM  

@8 - It is a shame we can't do the same for scientists. How many would even attempt publishing their BS papers if their lives depended on it being true, valid and replicable?

Blogger Rabid Ratel September 15, 2019 9:19 AM  

Dave Dave, according to Miles Mathis Stephen Hawking was replaced at least once. Do you know anyone else suffering the same disease that lived even half as long as he did?

Blogger Gregory the Great September 15, 2019 9:19 AM  

So this was about cancer studies, if that is the case it is a miracle that even some of the studies could be reproduced.

Blogger Silent Draco September 15, 2019 9:20 AM  

Almost spewed coffee in laughter. Op-ed piece written by an instructor with a PhD in ecology, about those mean climate deniers. So far it's violated 6 of Aristotle's principles of reason, including a circular appeal to her own authority, citing her own credential. It's a text wall of bad rhetoric. Was she sniffing the dry-erase markers?

Blogger Meanoldbasterd September 15, 2019 9:23 AM  

^ this should be the standard

Blogger Silent Draco September 15, 2019 9:26 AM  

Foolish pieces like what I read, combined with inability to replicate, should clue people to scientists being inaccurate and imprecise.

It's the opening scene from "The Science Man", where an engineer bellows "He's innumerate! He don't know addition from Poisson distribution! Snake oil salesman!"

Blogger Brett baker September 15, 2019 9:26 AM  

Maybe the Jehovah Witlesses have the right idea about medicine?

Blogger Fuzzums Wuzzums September 15, 2019 9:36 AM  

swiftfoxmark2 wrote:Scientists cannot explain how a bicycle stands straight up when you ride it. Every time they have a hypothesis as how it works, an engineer makes a bicycle that defies it.

The reason why a bicycle stands straight is the same reason why you can stand straight: balance. Motion happens when another force acts on it and it has nothing to do with balance. There are two force vectors acting on the bike: gravity and velocity. It seems easier to keep the bike balanced while in motion because we mostly practiced keeping it in balance while in motion. With enough practice you can keep the bike upright while standing still, as proven by circus performers.

*Sorry, had to drain the gamma abscess.

Blogger McChuck September 15, 2019 9:37 AM  

@15 - No, they don't God helps those who help themselves. Most medical care is fairly basic and well understood. Ignoring true knowledge and acquired skill is simple foolishness.

Blogger McChuck September 15, 2019 9:40 AM  

@2 - Here's a handy video on a related topic.
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ty9QSiVC2g0

Blogger JACIII September 15, 2019 9:41 AM  

How many established treatments are based on this nonsense? Medical "science" has been stuck on chemo for at least 40 years. "We're going to poison the shit out of you and hope the cancer dies first" is not an optimal solution.

There's more going on here than just academic fraud. When the money available is doled out to research involving treatments requiring $$$$ chemicals there will be a natural funneling of inquiry. The range of diversity of treatments or principles affecting treatments that are investigated gets smaller until all that is considered is within the parameter "supports or extends the profitable status quo".

There's a good reason your MD is a pill pusher.

Blogger Fuzzums Wuzzums September 15, 2019 9:56 AM  

JACIII wrote:How many established treatments are based on this nonsense? Medical "science" has been stuck on chemo for at least 40 years. "We're going to poison the shit out of you and hope the cancer dies first" is not an optimal solution.



Very few of them because medical science is not science. Medicine does not use the scientific method and never has. Medicine is just refined trial and error which is why most treatments today involve discoveries which were done a century ago. The most used drugs today are still the same as the most used drugs 100 years ago. All pharmacology is is taking those substances, messing around with the dosage, and mixing them up with other substances for the purposes of branding and patent registration.

The advancement in medicine didn't come from "medical science" but from engineers, coders, and physicists which gave us stuff like CT-scans and echographs.

JACIII wrote:There's a good reason your MD is a pill pusher.

Asbolutely and the better the salesmanship of the clinician the quicker the patient heals because of the placebo effect. It's just one of those things that doctors can't explain but just roll with it.

Blogger wreckage September 15, 2019 10:01 AM  

@17 There does seem to be a lot of confusion between journal papers and medical practice. Two totally different things.

Blogger John Bradley September 15, 2019 10:03 AM  

There are two force vectors acting on the bike: gravity and velocity. It seems easier to keep the bike balanced while in motion because we mostly practiced keeping it in balance while in motion. With enough practice you can keep the bike upright while standing still, as proven by circus performers.

You're neglecting the large angular momentum vectors produced by the two spinning wheels along their respective axes of rotation (e.g. the hubs). Gyroscopic effect. It's difficult to change the direction of a spinning wheel away from perpendicular to the rotational axis; they naturally resist falling over in either direction.

That's why, while it's possible for talented people to balance a non-moving bike, it's trivial for anyone to balance a moving bike.

Blogger pyrrhus September 15, 2019 10:04 AM  

It's not quite fair to tar all science with the idiocies of medical "science", and especially cancer research..The excellent 'The Emperor of all Maladies' provides the dismal details..In physics, any interesting result is replicated hundreds of times in labs around the world before anyone believes it, and every aspect is openly critiqued...In social science, no one believes the results of small-N studies in the first place....

Blogger Fuzzums Wuzzums September 15, 2019 10:11 AM  

John Bradley wrote:You're neglecting the large angular momentum vectors

Crap, you're right. Now I just have to wait for the invention of hover-bikes so I can be 100% correct.

Blogger Akulkis September 15, 2019 10:13 AM  

This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.

Blogger Rough Carrigan September 15, 2019 10:14 AM  

Want to feel even worse about cancer researchers? Do a search (not on goolag) for the name "Royal Rife" and the word "cancer".

Blogger luisonmcbiel September 15, 2019 10:19 AM  

This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.

Blogger Dave September 15, 2019 10:21 AM  

McChuck wrote:@3 - It used to be that when a new bridge opened up, the chief engineer was the first across and then stood under it the rest of the day.

Is the chief engineer going to be standing under the bridge on the first really windy day? https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=j-zczJXSxnw

The state's engineers" were telling local newspapers that the "bounce" was normal. They were in the process of installing motion damping devices and safety measures. There was no reason for the public to be alarmed at Gertie's gallop.

Yeah, the "State's" engineers.

The critical factor for engineers is they learn from mistakes. They've developed codes and standards over time that are constantly adjusted and changed to incorporate lessons learned.

Blogger Akulkis September 15, 2019 10:22 AM  

@Fuzzums Wuzzums

"There are two force vectors acting on the bike: gravity and velocity."

You failed Newtonian physics, didn't you.

While velocity is a vector, it is not a force.

Velocity is measured in distance/time.

Force is measured in mass * distance / (time^2)

F=mA
= m * dV/dt.

Blogger Akulkis September 15, 2019 10:29 AM  

At least "Galloping Gertie" stayed up for 2 years and 3 months...
And the engineers suffered more than minor embarrassment.

Blogger Ominous Cowherd September 15, 2019 10:40 AM  

McChuck wrote:Most "Science" consists of going through mountains of data with a statistical comb, searching for the elusive "wee-P" value correspondences. They then publish a paper reporting the statistical correlation, logic and causation be damned.

If you have mountains of random data, about 5% will be correlated with a p-value of 0.05, about 1% will be correlated with a p-value of 0.01, and so on. Want a good p-value? Seek, and ye shall find.

Blogger David Ray Milton September 15, 2019 10:42 AM  

And then there is the problem of entire disciplines being unfounded empirically from their inception. Nothing fruitful can come from such fields as Evolutionary Psychology for this reason. You can’t find useful conclusions when you’re combining a shitty theory compounded by a discipline where useful studies are nearly impossible to replicate.

As a whole, science is a pillar of materialism that must fall. It is a false god on par with money.

Science is for retards.

Blogger JovianStorm September 15, 2019 10:46 AM  

I'm a professional scientist and I can tell you that a large part of the failures at reproduction are due to my fellow scientists and I leaving out critical details in our methods.

No one wants to beat himself to death for years, spend endless money and tears, and go half crazy trying to figure something out just to give all the details so that people can steal the process and leapfrog us for grants.

There is a limit to altruism in science, just as there is in business.

Now, this is compounded with the fabrication and data fudging problems to the point where you can't be sure of which of the three your failure to reproduce can be blamed on.

It's this way in the biomedical science field but I'm not sure about physics or other hard sciences.

Blogger Troushers September 15, 2019 10:46 AM  

This is a dumb take, Vox. You're comparing highly technical, extremely subtle cancer studies to a binary heads or tails flip.

Would nuclear physics be disproven if an engineering lab in the 1960s of decent resources couldn't produce a working plutonium bomb? Or could it be an issue with personnel expertise, equipment, time and resources?

I am completely in agreement with your broad thesis: much science is bunk, and scientistry is a mess of perverse incentives, where it isn't fraudulent.

You certainly can't take anything science says as unvarnished truth. But you can't either dismiss technically intricate claims on the basis of a single failure of reproducibility.

Blogger VD September 15, 2019 10:55 AM  

Has anyone looked into the propertarian institute and Curt Doolittle?

This is not the first time you've asked this. Knock it off. Curt Doolittle is clueless and his opinion of religion, as well as everything else, is entirely irrelevant.

This is a dumb take, Vox. You're comparing highly technical, extremely subtle cancer studies to a binary heads or tails flip.

No, it's not, you moron. They wouldn't be calling it a crisis if scientists could not replicate MOST studies published in the elite science journals. It doesn't just apply to "highly technical, extremely subtle cancer studies", it applies to ALL published science. The binary odds of the coin flip are better.

For the future, please note that it is very foolish to attempt to correct your intellectual superiors because you just demonstrate that you're an idiot who doesn't understand what was written.

Blogger Beethoven Math September 15, 2019 10:59 AM  

One interesting factor of modern science is that most of it is based on heavy statistics that most people don't understand. And there is a tendency to reduce everything to one index or parameter.

My favorite case of this is Climate Change where the temperature of the earth is the following index:

Temperature = Weighted Average of Homogenized Temperature

Funny thing is that the weighted variance is bigger than the worst predictions of climate change making this index irrelevant.

Another interesting thing is that if you use energy as measured by emitting radiation (this will calculate energy instead of temperature which is the way we do it in physics) then there is no greenhouse effect.

The same "enlightened" people who cannot stop slandering the Scholastic Philosophers rely on authority more than any middle ages monk.
What times.

Blogger Beethoven Math September 15, 2019 11:03 AM  

JovianStorm:
This is not the case in physics. In physics you should be able to reproduce the results no matter the situation. The only possible factor could be the lab equipment (big different between modern labs and older ones) but every other technicality should be clear on the paper.

Blogger Lushtree September 15, 2019 11:07 AM  

When magic is real, we call it science.
But when science works, we call it engineering.

Blogger Brick Hardslab September 15, 2019 11:07 AM  

How much of this is due to vibrancy in science? There guys I used to know who did this were male and white. The type of guys who had pocket protectors with their pajamas.

Blogger Homesteader September 15, 2019 11:11 AM  

You could say that, at this point, "science" has become an SJW religion, with the Reverends Degrasse and Nye as its proselytizers.

As with Soviet "science", it has nothing to do with Truth, and everything to do with in-group signaling.

Its sacraments, you all know.
Its founder is Darwin, PBUH.

Services are held at Starbucks every Sunday, with readings from the Holy NYT.

Blogger Fuzzums Wuzzums September 15, 2019 11:28 AM  

Akulkis wrote:While velocity is a vector, it is not a force.

Velocity is measured in distance/time.

Force is measured in mass * distance / (time^2)


You cannot have velocity with no force. My error was ignoring the type of force used in order to make the bike move as someone else pointed out. Your observation does not change the point I was making.

Blogger Careless Whisper September 15, 2019 11:28 AM  

And let's not forget a shout out to engineers who like to imagine suboptimal weather conditions don't need to be accounted for:

https://patch.com/new-jersey/hoboken/bayonne-bridge-closed-snow-storm-trucks-cant-get-ramp

Officials temporarily closed the Bayonne Bridge on Thursday amid reports of stuck cars and "sliding" trucks as the winter's first snowstorm pummeled the New Jersey and New York area.

The future is so bright I've gotta wear shades.

Blogger Stickwick Stapers September 15, 2019 11:29 AM  

The reproducibility difficulties are not about fraud, according to Dame Ottoline Leyser, director of the Sainsbury Laboratory at the University of Cambridge.

That would be relatively easy to stamp out. Instead, she says: "It's about a culture that promotes impact over substance, flashy findings over the dull, confirmatory work that most of science is about."


Bingo. That's a problem even in my field (physics, astrophysics), which is arguably the most credible scientific field.

When I left my academic position two years ago, the acceptance rate for NSF grants was a paltry 7%. That's down from 40% during my doctoral advisor's heyday. Do you know what that kind of competition does to science? It ain't good.

It almost entirely comes down to two major problems in science -- there are FAR too many scientists, and there is FAR too much pressure to publish.

We have too many scientists for at least two reasons: 1) prior gluts in funding have created positions for them; and 2) science is seen as a respectable career that provides an almost priest-like stature and the kind of income that is likely to be worth the cost of education.

Now, couple that with the fact that many institutions have the ridiculous Lake Wobegon standard that all of their scientists should be "above average" (publication rates + securing grants), and what you have is a big problem. The last few years I was in my department, the deans of the college of natural sciences were pushing the goal of moving from top-10 status to top-5. The result was that all of the life was sucked out of the department, one reason I ended up quitting. When the effect of this kind of pressure was investigated through computer modeling, researchers found that it led to an explosion in published scientific errors. Not just fraud, but a huge amount of "innocent" errors, which is exactly what we're seeing.

What's the solution? Very simple: fewer scientists, smaller departments, scaling back ridiculous expectations in the name of vanity.

Blogger DonReynolds September 15, 2019 11:30 AM  

It may even be worse. I do not wonder if the experiments were performed or if they were performed correctly nor do I doubt the ability of anyone reproducing the experiments. In short, the experiments did not fail. The experiments are perfectly reproducible and exact. What is impossible to reproduce about these experiments are the lies, frankly the falsification of the results of the experiments. This was not faulty instruments, or measurements, or contamination of the site or the batch...this was baldfaced lying about the results.

I would be in favor of frauds and hucksters and hoaxers being required to repay the money...all the way back to the donor, not just to the university, plus any damages to third or fourth parties that relied on the false information. Yes, they do that in engineering and architecture already. Why should "scientists" not be held responsible when they deliberately falsify the results of the study?

Blogger Homesteader September 15, 2019 11:36 AM  

Stickwick Stapers wrote:

"What's the solution? Very simple: fewer scientists, smaller departments, scaling back ridiculous expectations in the name of vanity."

I work in academia. It will not be a willing change.


"It is difficult to get a man to understand something, when his salary depends on his not understanding it." Upton Sinclair

Blogger kurt9 September 15, 2019 11:49 AM  

when science is actually reliable, we call it ENGINEERING.

Yep (lol)!

Blogger Mr. Roshi September 15, 2019 11:54 AM  

But, but, but Vox, the guy in the white lab coat can't be wrong, because he's got credentials.

Blogger Cloudbuster September 15, 2019 11:58 AM  

Nope A bike will stay upright while in motion even without a rider on it. Anyone who has ever ridden a two-wheeled vehicle knows you don't have to actively balance it. In fact it strongly resists tipping over. The typical explanation is the gyroscopic forces of the spinning wheel. Whether there is an adequate physical explanation for exactly why gyroscopes work I can't say.

Blogger dienw September 15, 2019 12:00 PM  

Rough Carrigan wrote:Want to feel even worse about cancer researchers? Do a search (not on goolag) for the name "Royal Rife" and the word "cancer".

Yes. A crooked FDA at the time prevented his invention from being used in the US and damaged his reputation; but the Rife machine is successfully used in Europe: I recently read an article regarding its use in Europe.

Blogger Barbarossa September 15, 2019 12:10 PM  

@43 Ah, the mischief that comes from wanting to climb the rankings ladder, be it college football, banking or academia. I work with some folks who used to be at Wells Fargo. As they explain the frankly insane sales goals that were set before them, you understand how some teller is pushed to open an additional checking account or credit card on the sly. Publish or perish is just a variation on that theme and produces the same slimy results.

Blogger carnaby September 15, 2019 12:12 PM  

The reason why a bicycle stands straight is the same reason why you can stand straight: balance. Motion happens when another force acts on it and it has nothing to do with balance. There are two force vectors acting on the bike: gravity and velocity. It seems easier to keep the bike balanced while in motion because we mostly practiced keeping it in balance while in motion. With enough practice you can keep the bike upright while standing still, as proven by circus performers.

This is not correct. You are describing static balance which is not generally what keeps a bicycle upright when it is ridden. Notice the difficulty riders have balancing a bicycle while waiting at a stop light.

Nope A bike will stay upright while in motion even without a rider on it. Anyone who has ever ridden a two-wheeled vehicle knows you don't have to actively balance it. In fact it strongly resists tipping over. The typical explanation is the gyroscopic forces of the spinning wheel. Whether there is an adequate physical explanation for exactly why gyroscopes work I can't say.

This is not necessarily correct either. Some bicycles will stay upright while in motion without a rider, some will not, and a bicycle can be constructed that no human rider can keep upright, though a computer controlled robotic system could. Bicycle stability falls under the topic of stability and controls. Have a look, it's interesting stuff. One of subjects that eigenvalues and other fun math concepts can be applied to in the physical world.

Blogger Snidely Whiplash September 15, 2019 12:16 PM  

You cannot have velocity with no force. 
This is an amazingly ignorant thing to say. You are continually surrounded by velocties that have no force being applied.
Just remember that you're standing
on a planet that's revolving,
revolving at 500 miles an hour,
Orbiting a 40 miles a second
(so it's reckoned)
the sun that is the source of all our power.
And the sun, and you, and me,
and all the stars that we can see,
are moving at a million miles a day,
in an outer spiral arm,
some fourty thousand miles an hour
'round the galaxy we call the Milky Way.

Blogger Phil Mann September 15, 2019 12:18 PM  

...my fellow scientists and I leaving out critical details in our methods.

No one wants to beat himself to death for years, spend endless money and tears, and go half crazy trying to figure something out just to give all the details so that people can steal the process and leapfrog us for grants.


Seriously? I hope this is not the case. In my day (admittedly a zillion years ago) we recorded and made available such things as the serial numbers of the individual pieces of test equipment involved so that, if needed, the latest calibration could be determined, or an investigation made as to whether the equipment functioned properly, etc.

There is nothing wrong with keeping your methods and techniques secret -- companies do that all the time, and the law provides substantial protection for trade secrets. Just don't pretend it is science or that it follows the scientific method if the details needed to enable OTHERS to replicate and verify experiments are not provided.

Blogger Ska_Boss September 15, 2019 12:26 PM  

They just need more money for them programs!

Blogger Doktor Jeep September 15, 2019 12:29 PM  

Expect people to be on the level, they are liars.
Expect any kind of commerce that takes a little more than 2 brain cells, and if you don't triple check everything, things don't go well.
Expect decency, get degeneracy.
Expect reward, get punishment.
Expect salvation, get damnation.

So why, in this hell or the next, should be expect anything more than charlatanism out of science? Especially when they push man-made climate change as fact and tell us there are more than 2 genders.

The last words of the Titanic's captain come to mind. But it's not like there was any logos in science anyway. The end game of top physicists was to find God in the math.

Blogger Akulkis September 15, 2019 12:30 PM  

@Fuzzums Wuzzums

"You cannot have velocity with no force."

1) Now you are equivocating m * (dx/dt)^2 with dx/dt.

2) Of course you can have motion without force -- it's called unaccelerated motion. Same speed, same direction, forever.

3) Before you replied, I suspected you never passed even a high school physics class. Now, I know it.

Blogger NewTunesForOldLogos September 15, 2019 12:34 PM  

I’m no scientist, but I’m sure glad musicians and cookbook authors don’t think like that. You aren’t trying to advance science, you're just chemical lawyering, trying to sneak your way into some money.

THIS is why real science requires Christianity, because without it, everyone is looking to advance their own interests, rather than than the Truth.

Blogger Akuma September 15, 2019 12:36 PM  

The experiments are not reproducible because they are not factoring in EMF pollution into their methods.

Blogger Akulkis September 15, 2019 12:39 PM  

" The end game of top physicists was to find God in the math."

What else would or should we have expected from atheist Jews?

Blogger van helsing September 15, 2019 12:43 PM  

well lets look at the "scientists" and the language. modern scientists arent really like the scientists of old, or the ones who toil in relative obscurity these days. nowadays modern "scientists" practice scientism. so maybe they are just cargo cult scientismists.

Blogger justaguy September 15, 2019 12:49 PM  

Medicine is not science. Academia is not science-- the paper pushing path for 1 in 1000 (guess) to get tenure is not science, but some absurd form of cult rites for ascension. Bell labs, before the government killed it used to do science, the R+D directly leading to some project is science... In our society-- too much of what we think is science isn't.

How much "science" is developed for tort lawyers to sue companies that make things?

Coin flip might not be accurate enough if one thinks that the papers published to get tenure are science. Until it is used to build something that works-- you do not know if it is true.

Science stopped many many decades ago, the public just doesn't know it.

Blogger Harris September 15, 2019 12:57 PM  

I started out as a Physicist, and then became an engineer. I can tell you from personal experience that scientism is just as much a religious belief system as any other false religion. I can also say from personal experience that scientists are more often wrong than right, but because of personal arrogance born of their relatively higher intellect, they resist criticism, and trust too much in their superior intellect.

The real tragedy is than much of the church has come to trust science more than the Bible. But if you don't trust in the God of the Bible, your imaginations become vain, and professing yourself to be wise, you become a fool. (See Romans 1). The net result in the "science" living west had been the abandonment of God, and the devolvement of our society and science itself into a large company of fools.

I often tell those of lesser intellect that it is more important to have a personal relationship with God through the sacrifice of Jesus than it is to worry about their lesser intellect. For those to whom God has given the Holy Spirit, He can give more revelation, understanding and wisdom in just a moment than a lifetime of study can do. What good is knowledge without the revelation of how to use that knowledge with wisdom, kindness, and mercy? The God who has ALL KNOWLEDGE AND WISDOM is freely available to those who will place their trust and faith in Jesus.

It is not shocking at all that those who deny God have ruined the field of science. Above all, we need to understand and BELIEVE that God is faithful and wise.


The deception in the Garden of Eden was that God was holding something from us - namely the Knowledge of Good and evil. But that was a lie then, and it is a lie today. There is not, and has never been a conflict between true science and the God who created science.

But it is the Word of God that is eternally true. Science is just a temporary construct of this created world and universe. God is under no obligation to make the science that is true of this physical creation work the same in whatever will come in the new creation. Ultimately, the purpose of the physical scientific world and universe is to show the greatness of God and proclaim His glory. If you study science, and miss that truth, then you've missed the entire point. I say that as a scientist.

Blogger cyrus83 September 15, 2019 1:00 PM  

The problem is that too many people take these studies to be as solid and proven as the Pythagorean Theorem, especially media types who hype the alleged findings despite having limited to no experience in statistics or science.

Speculative pursuits have their place, but the way people talk about them today is almost like putting speculative theology and the Gospel on the same level. The distinction has to be kept between the body of demonstrated and proven knowledge and speculative theories.

It's interesting that similar approaches to Rife's concept are used elsewhere in medicine, I recently had a radiofrequency ablation to eliminate dysfunctional veins, one wonders why a similar approach couldn't be used with a tumor that hasn't metastasized.

Blogger justaguy September 15, 2019 1:04 PM  

To add a serious side, in the 1950s and 1960s there were many arguments that the technocrats would solve our problems. Of course this was simply the same progressive crap that came about in the 1840s (Marx etc) and again in the 1880s-1920s with the US progressive movement. Each time is was our supposed intellectual superiors telling us how they would save us. Each time, the "science" was bastardized" by politics/power. It is remarkable how much of our political structure was made between 1910-1937 based on fallacious social and scientific thoughts? Most of our system was set up with the progressive amendments in the early 20th century, capped off by Roosevelt finishing destroying the American republic of limited government. It died in the late 1930s, once FDR took control of the SCOTUS which then passed the travesties we now live with.

Today, academia-- the scientific landscape is filled with absurdities-- just look at climate change--- easily debunked by anyone with a decent statistics background-- but still propped up by the several $B per year the US and other governments spend in research--- thank you NSF!

Blogger RedJack September 15, 2019 1:04 PM  

Some may remember my little bear spent since time in the NICU. On of the treatments they used was a trial polymer for coating the lungs. The salesmen was trying a technical based pitch, and I happened to be sitting outside the office waiting for the doctor. The respiratory tech saw me and motioned me in to the office. Seems the doctor could not understand how the compound would work.

Long story the tech and I were excited about it enough, and the doctor humble enough, to give it a try. Little Bears lungs recovered quicker, and the treatment became a standard there.

Great doctor, but she was a neophyte about chemistry. She, however, knew it and listened to her tech. Most doctors can't stand to be anything else but the smartest person in the room

Blogger swiftfoxmark2 September 15, 2019 1:19 PM  

Modern science is definitely dogmatic, more so than most religious sects these days. I think that's something we all know here, or at least suspected.

What should be alarming to all of us is that government policies are formed based on many of these studies.

Blogger swiftfoxmark2 September 15, 2019 1:21 PM  

Fuzzums Wuzzums wrote:swiftfoxmark2 wrote:Scientists cannot explain how a bicycle stands straight up when you ride it. Every time they have a hypothesis as how it works, an engineer makes a bicycle that defies it.

The reason why a bicycle stands straight is the same reason why you can stand straight: balance. Motion happens when another force acts on it and it has nothing to do with balance. There are two force vectors acting on the bike: gravity and velocity. It seems easier to keep the bike balanced while in motion because we mostly practiced keeping it in balance while in motion. With enough practice you can keep the bike upright while standing still, as proven by circus performers.

*Sorry, had to drain the gamma abscess.


You really don't get it, do you? I wasn't trying to start a bicycle debate, I was trying to highlight how little scientists actually know or understand.

But if you want some citations, here's one:

https://www.fastcompany.com/3062239/the-bicycle-is-still-a-scientific-mystery-heres-why

Blogger Gettimothy September 15, 2019 1:23 PM  

Coin flips...shoot thought this was the NFL thread

Blogger luisonmcbiel September 15, 2019 1:33 PM  

I was just asking because I was curious. And I knew you are educated here. I am young and not as intelligent and educated.

Blogger Thomas W. September 15, 2019 1:39 PM  

Vox, is there any information that shows when the reproducibility crisis started? It'd be helpful to compare it to the time when scientists started moving away from Christianity.

Blogger Al K. Annossow September 15, 2019 1:45 PM  

I don't know why they're even still researching cancer. It's been 'cured' for decades. I read during the eighties that new scientific research had found out what the problem was and it would take about 15 years to develop the solution. I posted this telepathically while driving my flying car. (h/t John Prine)

Blogger Noah B. September 15, 2019 1:53 PM  

I look forward to scientists trying to top the absurdity of claiming that we're all living in a simulation while those same scientists ridicule Christianity.

Blogger Al K. Annossow September 15, 2019 1:59 PM  

We are living in a primitive physical simulation created by a spiritual being.

Blogger Fuzzums Wuzzums September 15, 2019 2:26 PM  

Akulkis wrote:1) Now you are equivocating m * (dx/dt)^2 with dx/dt.

2) Of course you can have motion without force


I didn't equivocate anything, I just pointed out you made no point, you just took umbrage with my use of the wording "force vector" which if you remove from the argument the whole point still stands. It was someone else that corrected me and actually brought an argument, not you.

And don't think I didn't notice you switching the word "velocity" for "motion". It's the ol' swticharoo, oldest trick in the Talmud.

swiftfoxmark2 wrote:You really don't get it, do you? I wasn't trying to start a bicycle debate, I was trying to highlight how little scientists actually know or understand.

I know you weren't trying to start a debate. You were only trying to make a point through a faulty metaphor which will invalidate your point. Bikes were created by engineers not scientists which is why they stay upright. You would've been far better off using photons or gravity as an example as to why scientists don't really know what they're doing.

Blogger McChuck September 15, 2019 2:48 PM  

Think physics and engineering don't have their own problems? Look into quantum computing. Here's a hint - there's nothing a "quantum computer" does that a normal computer connected to a reliable random number generator can't accomplish more cheaply, easily, and quickly.

The Copenhagen Interpretation has caused untold harm to minds for almost a century now.

Blogger TMLutas September 15, 2019 3:14 PM  

I'm shocked that 30% of scientists do so few replication attempts that they haven't failed to replicate something.

If everything is running correctly in science then up to 1 in 20 studies will fail to replicate on average. That means if you do more than 20 replication attempts and you don't get a failure, you're above average lucky.

The replication crisis is not that large numbers of scientists are failing to replicate. It's that the percentage of studies that fail is significantly worse than 5%.

Blogger HouellebecqGurl September 15, 2019 3:15 PM  

Unlike you big brains, as.a slightly above average woman, this is how I read all media stories regarding scientific discoveries/breakthroughs-

"Well, that *is* interesting, I wonder how much, if any, of this story is true."

IOW, just like I read every published article. Heavy cynicism has always served me very well. I just wished more people could come to embrace its mentally health benefits.

Blogger glueballs September 15, 2019 3:32 PM  

@75

there's nothing a "quantum computer" does that a normal computer connected to a reliable random number generator can't accomplish more cheaply, easily, and quickly


This statement is false. A quick search online would yield lists of the advantages, proved and theoretical, presented by quantum computing. Why would MNCs invest substantial sums in quantum computing R&D without expected payout? Nice troll schlomo.

Blogger weka September 15, 2019 4:18 PM  

As someone who works on repurposed medications, getting funding without development of a new product first is impossible. Our replication of benzoic acid supplementation for SCZ fell over because ethics demands the clinician (read nurse) has to ask any potential participants first and they lurve science (TM)

Blogger Akulkis September 15, 2019 4:22 PM  

Dear clueless one: a velocity vector is not a force vector.

Blogger Akulkis September 15, 2019 4:31 PM  

There is nothing proven regarding "Quantum computing" for the simple reason that nobody has yet developed, built, and demonstrated even the simplest of "quantum computing" gates or other computing logic.

It's all a scam that has been going on since before I first learned programming in 1980.
As a computer engineer, I've yet to see a single article about quantum computing that doesn't sound like the physics equivalent of the typical paper published by the quacks who run the Modern Language Association.

It's a fairy tale invented to extract research grant money.

Blogger Scott September 15, 2019 4:38 PM  

If the reproducibility crisis weren't bad enough, there's also scientific taboos, AKA anything that proves or suggests God's existence.

Science is a machine designed to prove that God doesn't exist. When the machine says that God exists the priests of scientistry appeal to ridicule and math.

An infinite number of universes (string theory vs the fine tuning of the universe) or an infinite amount of time (evolution vs the fossil record).

Make a machine to prove that God doesn't exist. The machine tells you God doesn't exist and these fools couldn't be more pleased with themselves.

Blogger weka September 15, 2019 4:42 PM  

Can confirm. For years I have let my students have first authorship on the "he who does the work get the credit" rule. Now HoD wants first authorship or last for paper to "count". Which kills collaboration.

Blogger weka September 15, 2019 4:44 PM  

Most PhDs are midwits who cannot do a power calculation correctly.
But in my field, most PhDs are psychologists, so I am repeating myself.

Blogger Primus Pilus September 15, 2019 4:50 PM  

The average dullard has been brainwashed into believing science is revealed wisdom, handed down by priests marked by "science" degrees, rather than simply a methodology.

Blogger justaguy September 15, 2019 4:56 PM  

Why would anyone think that quantum computing is physics? Yes quantum physics may allow something like QC to occur-- we do not know yet. Lots more engineering to do first.

Blogger justaguy September 15, 2019 4:59 PM  

I like that the commenters here argue about simple physics-- like the forces on a bike....just shows MPAI.

Blogger Fuzzums Wuzzums September 15, 2019 5:06 PM  

McChuck wrote:Look into quantum computing.

I did. A processor is made of transistors which is made of only 2 states: off and on. It's a binary system meaning all data encoded in a computer at its core has a binary structure. A transistor in a quantum computer has 3 states: off, on, and in between. This means that all data in a quantum computer is written at its core in a ternary system.

The advantages of data encoded in a ternary system is that it requires less space and less transistors to process. The disadvantages of quantum computers is that all data we have now is in a binary system therefore quantum computers are a pointless endeavor. It's like the QWERTY keyboard, everybody uses it and will always use it because nobody is willing to use another configuration even though it's a little more advantageous.

Feynman was talking about this way back in the day and it's fascinating. He suggested switching to quantum computers not because of efficiency but because of the limits of physics. We are getting to a point where transistors are becoming so small they're getting too close to the quantum realm which will make them useless. Feynman also suggested parallel processing as a means of avoiding this issue.

Blogger Damelon Brinn September 15, 2019 5:09 PM  

Why would MNCs invest substantial sums in quantum computing R&D without expected payout?

Why would companies invest in green technologies that produce less energy than they use? Why would Nike, Gillette, and other companies engage in woke advertising campaigns that cost billions to their bottom lines? Why would an entertainment company hire a talentless troublemaker like Zoe Quinn?

Really, you think people throwing money at something proves it's a good bet?

Blogger Akulkis September 15, 2019 5:10 PM  

Fuzzums, that is ABSOLUTELY NOT what is meant by Quantum computing. The term means fuzzy computing, with "reversible" logic gates.

You're now batting 0 for 3 today.

Blogger IndubitableD September 15, 2019 5:23 PM  

Given the recent discussions about the sloppiness of lawyers. Could part of the problem be with the sloppiness of the researchers not correctly explaining their methodology or skipping steps?

Notwithstanding all the other explanations that have been proferred.

Blogger BriarRabbit September 15, 2019 5:52 PM  

I can't wait to hear more "Science" tell me about how we evolved from goo over millions of years. Oh how I was fooled for so long...

Blogger BriarRabbit September 15, 2019 6:14 PM  

@58
"The experiments are not reproducible because they are not factoring in EMF pollution into their methods."

Studies are paid for by entities who desire a particular outcome. That's one of the major reasons why they aren't reproducible. Not the only factor, but a major factor, nonetheless.

Blogger furor kek tonicus ( Honkeys genocided poor, innocent little Smallpox, it was anuddah Shoah!, WhiteManBad ) September 15, 2019 6:43 PM  

Neo Cons are more reliable than Science!

you know they're always going to be in favor of war with Iran.

Blogger Fuzzums Wuzzums September 15, 2019 6:57 PM  

Akulkis wrote:Fuzzums, that is ABSOLUTELY NOT what is meant by Quantum computing. The term means fuzzy computing, with "reversible" logic gates.

You're now batting 0 for 3 today.


I know about the sci-fi idea that it can calculate all the inbetween probabilities, or that's logarithmically faster and whatnot. My trouble is understanding how a quantum transistor will work. Once you "look" at the physical quantum transistor it can be either 1 or 0. I can picture a transistor that can measure the inbetween state as a whole thus making the whole system ternary. I don't understand how you can make a transistor that can somehow store the amount of inbetweeness of the two states. Such a transistor is self-contradictory, if you can measure the state of the electron then that means it is no longer in a quantum state which means you can't measure the quantum state.

Blogger furor kek tonicus ( Honkeys genocided poor, innocent little Smallpox, it was anuddah Shoah!, WhiteManBad ) September 15, 2019 7:00 PM  

experimentation concerning the self stabilizing nature of bicycles

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=6cxq9wclgsE

Blogger Meng Greenleaf September 15, 2019 7:21 PM  

Not to beat a dead horse, but the 2017 Australian of the Year Award was given to a psychologist who allegedly 'cured spinal cord injuries' using magical stem cells from the nose. He worked in a magical institute that generates magical natural drug products at a cost of millions to the tax payer - yet, not a single drug has been brought to market afaik. Just up the road is the Brain Institute, founded by the eminent scientist who discovered adult neurogenesis. And on and on it goes....

Except, spinal injuries were never cured, and god only knows what was injected into those patients and adult neurogenesis was not discovered by an Australian. The fake Professors have all retired with millions in public pensions and all the glad handlers are still there running the scams.

Billions of dollars are borrowed every year to pay these and thousands of other con-artists. Far from setting of a system of meritocracy, The Boomers (who run most public institutes) set up a system in a way that doesn't prevent fraud - but fosters it. They're the main benefactors of their tax-scam science fraud.

While fake science is all fun and games, at the end of the day, the money / grants must be repaid to the lender - mostly the Chinese.

Blogger Noah B. September 15, 2019 7:50 PM  

Remember that Sun Tzu said that the supreme art of war is to subdue your enemy without fighting. He also said that all warfare is based on deception.

In that light reconsider the decades-long media hype claiming that quantum computers will render classical encryption obsolete Real Soon Now. We're constantly bombarded with claims of new DARPA created superweapons, most of which turn out to be quiet failures for reasons we seldom hear. Attempts to demoralize and subdue us are everywhere. This is all psychological warfare being conducted against the American people.

Blogger Akulkis September 15, 2019 9:05 PM  

Ternary computing is not quantum computing, Again, you are trying to lump two fundamentally different things together. You are now 0 for 4.

Blogger Fuzzums Wuzzums September 15, 2019 9:12 PM  

Akulkis wrote:You are now 0 for 4.

You win again.

Blogger Damelon Brinn September 15, 2019 9:13 PM  

My trouble is understanding how a quantum transistor will work.

Think of Schroedinger's Cat, where both possibilities theoretically exist until you observe the result. Now apply that to a single bit in a computer: it can be both 0 and 1 until you observe it. Now put billions of such bits in a computer, so that you can feed in a calculation to do, like brute-forcing a password, and then let them hold all the possible calculations until you observe the result and see the one calculation that succeeds out of all the possibles, and it was calculated as fast as a single try.

It may work in theory; we just can't build anything like it now or in our lifetimes. That's why I put it in the category of a Trek-type warp engine, or AI. It's fine to fantasize about, but not to take articles seriously when they talk breathlessly about how quantum computing will soon make encryption obsolete. No it won't.

Blogger Unknown September 15, 2019 9:28 PM  

Biomedical scientist here. Binary logic, a bit of a logical fallacy. Imagine that you were testing treatments to protect from an ischemic insult, on say, cells in culture. Randomly, only one in a hundred thousand substances would be protective. In this example, 40% would be a great batting average. The bias in biomedical Sciences is towards positive results. A fun game that indicates a way to selectively Target cancer, for instance, obviously aytract funding and help someone's career. It may be years, even decades, before it's proven to be ineffective. All this said it is frustrating to see so much garbage in the literature. Science is a very high trust game. Dirty little secret is that when the WASPs were running a show, the published literature was much more reliable. With the pakis and the hibjeebs and Chinese, not so much. Sid

Blogger Akulkis September 15, 2019 10:27 PM  

This comment has been removed by the author.

Blogger Akulkis September 15, 2019 10:28 PM  

This comment has been removed by the author.

Blogger Fuzzums Wuzzums September 15, 2019 10:28 PM  

Damelon Brinn wrote:Now apply that to a single bit in a computer: it can be both 0 and 1 until you observe it.

If it's cracking a password at some point within the code the algorithm outside the quantum computing part will have some code like "IF [input] = [password] THEN allow access ELSE deny access". So this line of code will act as the observer which will nullify the quantum properties of the qubits. In order to brute force the password that line of code (written in binary) has to only trigger when the qubits arrange themselves in the correct configuration which makes no sense.

Am I correct in assuming that quantum computing relies on the idea that the "observer" has to be the human in order or the quantum effect to be nullified?

Blogger Ominous Cowherd September 15, 2019 10:29 PM  

Meng Greenleaf wrote:While fake science is all fun and games, at the end of the day, the money / grants must be repaid to the lender - mostly the Chinese.

The lender wants you to think it must be repaid. If you used the loan to fund an effective military, you have other options. Too bad we used it to fund a diverse military, instead.

Blogger Akulkis September 15, 2019 10:29 PM  

No, Fuzzums, I didn't win anything. I'm just cleaning up after your comments which advocate violations of basic math and existing, well-established principles of 1st semester physics, and my particular subject of expertise: computer engineering -- by both my university education in that particular domain and 15 years working in that field.

Vox repeatedly advises people to not foolishly contradict those who are smarter and better informed. You seem to be intent on ignoring that excellent advice.

Blogger Akulkis September 15, 2019 10:34 PM  

"My trouble is understanding how a quantum transistor will work"

To begin with, ALL transistors are quantum devices, even when operating in the analog domain.

Blogger Ominous Cowherd September 15, 2019 10:40 PM  

Damelon Brinn wrote:Now apply that to a single bit in a computer: it can be both 0 and 1 until you observe it. Now put billions of such bits in a computer, so that you can feed in a calculation to do, like brute-forcing a password, and then let them hold all the possible calculations until you observe the result and see the one calculation that succeeds out of all the possibles, and it was calculated as fast as a single try.

How do you get it to collapse to the desired state? How do you even define the desired state? How do you ensure that the result you observe is the result you wanted? I've read a great many explanations, but they all rely on hopium and handwavium.

I read recently that someone was claiming to have purchased a six qbit ``computer,'' and they were trying to figure out how to demonstrate that it did indeed have six qbits and not zero. Presumably once they figure out how to demonstrate the existance of qbits, they can start on the problem of how to apply them.

So far I believe the people who claim quantum computing is pure scam.

Blogger furor kek tonicus ( Honkeys genocided poor, innocent little Smallpox, it was anuddah Shoah!, WhiteManBad ) September 15, 2019 10:55 PM  

108. Akulkis September 15, 2019 10:34 PM
To begin with, ALL transistors are quantum devices, even when operating in the analog domain.



oh jeezus, don't confuse him with infinite state transistors, he can't handle tri-state computing.

Blogger MendoScot September 15, 2019 10:57 PM  

You cannot understand the world within which you work without understanding who made it.

Vannevar Bush.

Blogger Ominous Cowherd September 15, 2019 11:16 PM  

Ternary computing is old news.

Blogger Paul Thompson September 15, 2019 11:48 PM  

Engineers exploit discoveries that scientists make.

Blogger carnaby September 16, 2019 12:00 AM  

Engineers exploit discoveries that scientists make.

Engineers make plenty of discoveries.

Blogger furor kek tonicus ( Honkeys genocided poor, innocent little Smallpox, it was anuddah Shoah!, WhiteManBad ) September 16, 2019 12:05 AM  

all discoveries are discovered by IFLScientists.

checkmate.

Blogger Phil Mann September 16, 2019 1:00 AM  

Engineers exploit discoveries that scientists make.
Nope, it's usually the other way around. What came first? Heat-treating metals, or the quantum mechanical explanation for why it works?

Blogger Salden September 16, 2019 2:21 AM  

All you need to do is just point out the chimpouts that occured over in Quantum Mechanics. Namely since following one interpretation suggests physicalism as peddled by Dawkins and Co. is not the case.

Blogger Fuzzums Wuzzums September 16, 2019 4:06 AM  

Akulkis wrote:No, Fuzzums, I didn't win anything.

We all need a win sometimes. Have this one on me.

Blogger wreckage September 16, 2019 7:19 AM  

As a general rule "theory -> experiment -> new facts! -> practical applications" only happens in strategic computer games, and even then only because they are a particular kind of resource allocation game.

Most discoveries happen within industry. Which is part of why moving all our industry offshore was utterly suicidal. There is no such thing as a society of thinkers, devoted to thought, generating ideas. Once again, Plato was wrong; philosopher-kings are useless.

Blogger Akulkis September 16, 2019 7:41 AM  

Ternary computing has the disadvantage of substantially more complicated circuitry to provide the same range of values.

Blogger Damelon Brinn September 16, 2019 7:51 AM  

So far I believe the people who claim quantum computing is pure scam.

That's basically where I'm at, not that I'm an expert with a qualified opinion. There's some weird stuff that happens at the quantum level which makes it *seem* like some sci-fi concepts are possible if we could ever both control and observe the particles at that level, things like quantum computers and instant long-distance communications. But we can't build it or test it, so we don't even know whether it's possible, let alone what complications might arise if we did.

Blogger Roman Daoist September 16, 2019 8:06 AM  

Make unreproducable science criminal. It's fraud. Let's treat it as such.

If you've been on a team of researchers of a project that's results can't reproduced, 15 years in prison minimum plus annullment of your qualifications plus financial penalties. Unless you come forward to confess before-hand. People will be falling over themselves to admit fraud. At least then the BS science would be identified.

Blogger Ominous Cowherd September 16, 2019 8:21 AM  

Akulkis wrote:Ternary computing has the disadvantage of substantially more complicated circuitry to provide the same range of values.

That's probably why it is old news, not current. Ternary sounds attractive because the optimal base is supposedly e, and 3 is closer to e than is 2. That optimization probably didn't take into account the number of transistors needed to implement logic for each base.

Blogger VD September 16, 2019 9:52 AM  

Engineers exploit discoveries that scientists make.

You have it backwards. Scientists attempt to explain why what engineers make works.

Blogger Avalanche September 16, 2019 10:08 AM  

@97 "While fake science is all fun and games, at the end of the day, the money / grants must be repaid to the lender - mostly the Chinese."

You left out "repaid to the lender" by the uninvolved!

Blogger PJW Gent September 16, 2019 11:18 AM  

When science is truly reliable we call it engineering...
When engineering is truly reliable we call it systems engineering.

Blogger Balam September 16, 2019 11:45 AM  

Roman Daoist wrote:Make unreproducable science criminal. It's fraud. Let's treat it as such.

If you've been on a team of researchers of a project that's results can't reproduced, 15 years in prison minimum plus annullment of your qualifications plus financial penalties. Unless you come forward to confess before-hand. People will be falling over themselves to admit fraud. At least then the BS science would be identified.


I am inclined to criminalize fraud in 'science' academia as well as the quick fix, but you and I both know that it would just create another layer of bureaucracy that makes no one accountable. Perhaps a 'Department of Science' whose job is to give stamps of approval to such projects which in reality is just another well paid administrative layer which makes the process slower and more expensive. When the DoS is found incompetent, just as happens with the DMV, you will have no recourse as they just promise to retrain their employees.

The culture that produced good science is dead or moved on. Find the places where that culture thrives or build such a community around yourself. You cannot legislate morality.

Blogger OneWingedShark September 16, 2019 1:57 PM  

Akulkis wrote:Ternary computing has the disadvantage of substantially more complicated circuitry to provide the same range of values.
That's not necessarily true; if it was the statement "and it had notable advantages over the binary computers which eventually replaced it, such as lower electricity consumption and lower production cost" on the Setun wouldn't be cited here, and the usage of balanced-trinary makes the numeric-machinery (handling positive and negative values) much, much more simplified as compared to the Two's Complement system.

Blogger Unknown September 16, 2019 7:24 PM  

Yeah but you picked a bad example. Why we age would have been a better example of something that's completely not understood.

Blogger Dirk Manly September 17, 2019 12:46 PM  

@128

"That's not necessarily true; if it was the statement "and it had notable advantages over the binary computers which eventually replaced it, such as lower electricity consumption and lower production cost" on the Setun wouldn't be cited here, and the usage of balanced-trinary makes the numeric-machinery (handling positive and negative values) much, much more simplified as compared to the Two's Complement system."



If that were actually true, manufacturers would have abandoned binary for the cost-savings (HIGHER PROFITS!) of ternary. The "Middle" voltage is difficult to maintain unless you are running 3 reference voltages (ground, Vpp, and Vnn). Connecting to one of 3 reference voltages means 2x more transistors for only 1 1/2 x more values.

There are a lot of circuits which are simpler using tubes with >3 internally connected pins than using transistors. But when you have IC's, the equivalent of a single 4-pin vacuum tube requires at least 2 transistors, and to duplicate the functionality of a 5-pin typically takes 3 transistors.

The SETUN computers were built using tubes, not transistors, and the statements for power and complexity are for comparisons with binary computers using tube-based circuitry.

Blogger Fletch September 19, 2019 11:23 PM  

I'm inclined to agree that most of what quantum computing offered cryptographically is a scam, and meant to generate funding. The explanation of "solving for all possible solutions" makes no sense to me. All potential states of the transistors are equally valid, but not all are "correct" after evaluation. I've yet to see experiments of even two bits presenting a desired result after the quantum magic wand is waved.

If anyone has papers of this that I missed, please enlighten me.

Ternary computing is interesting, but if the chip manufacturers are suffering from heating problems that necessitate the dark silicone solution, I don't think adding an additional state will help much. Not to mention the complexity of the business shift. Also I never knew what the plan was supposed to be for all the existing binary files. Recompile for ternary?

What I believe is of much more of value cryptographically is quantum entanglement. Being able to "spooky action at a distance" in an unsniffable way seems more efficient than thinking up newer, harder math problems. Just send it in plain text. Who else has your entangled quarks or whatever?

Even if this theoretical quantum brute forcer existed, countries would just shift to something that is not mathematically solvable.

The one-time pad is soviet era pen and paper technology that is theoretically unbreakable with a sufficiently random key. The problem used to be the "no reusing the key ever" requirement lead to lots of paper being exchanged and difficulty in future key exchanges. I think a 128 gig micro SD card can cover a lot of one-time keys.

Because the one time pad is a simple offset based on the key, and not a mathematical formula which generates results which either test as valid or invalid, all solutions are equally valid. The code ABCD can translate to any 4 letter result based on the key chosen. All solutions are possible, some solutions are probable, but only one solutions is correct... That said, with some planning, you could publish one code to 3 agents, and each could decode with their own different keys, and get 3 different messages, all of which being correct.

But this is all kind of silly to theorize about. I don't even think they can reliably break AES128...

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