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Old 4th December 2012, 02:12 PM   #321
justintime
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Originally Posted by Foster Zygote View Post
Justintime, could we have your thoughts on the following questions:

1. Why is it irrational to think that life may have evolved elsewhere in the universe?

2. Why is it irrational to investigate the possibility that some of that life might, like us, evolve to the point that it develops the technology to broadcast communications using radiation emissions?
It is the same reason Carl Sagan gave for people who thought Ghost were real or UFOs were real. They are irrational to believe in ghosts and UFOs because there is no evidence that they exist. Not that there is anything wrong looking for them but without evidence they cannot claim it is true.

Carl Sagan violated his own rules of scientific skepticism. He looked for ETI and found they do not exist. There is no proof of their existence. So he too started on an irrational belief in their existence.

Now you can say ETI have not been found yet. They might be found down the road. But so too can UFOs and Ghost. Who is to say after he fails to call others irrational.
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Old 4th December 2012, 02:12 PM   #322
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René Descartes goes into a fish and chips shop and says to the man behind the counter "I'd like a cod and chips, please". "Certainly sir," replies the man, "would you like salt and vinegar?" René replies "I think not," and vanishes.
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Old 4th December 2012, 02:15 PM   #323
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Originally Posted by StankApe View Post
ahh, but in that article, they aren't referring to skeptics are they? No they are referring to people who deny AGM based on political and/or ideological reasons (or claim that AGW is promoted for those reasons) NOT because they have evaluated the scientific evidence and come to that conclusion.

So your attempt to pigeonhole skeptics has been smited. care to try again?
They are called climate change skeptics. They are skeptics.
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Old 4th December 2012, 02:16 PM   #324
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Ahh but you are trying to apply the same rules of paranormal activity to the very simple concept of life existing on one of trillions of planets. The two are not compatible logically.
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Old 4th December 2012, 02:18 PM   #325
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no, they claim they are skeptics, but just as i can claim I am Jesus Christ and dare you to prove I'm not, they aren't following the principles of skepticism and are actually deniers (in a similar vein as those people who claim the Holocaust didn't happen, yet with a lot less evil intent )
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Old 4th December 2012, 02:19 PM   #326
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Originally Posted by justintime View Post
They are called climate change skeptics. They are skeptics.
They are cynics who call themselves skeptics.

I know I will get trouble for this (luckily, only from justin), but calling yourself a skeptic and then not accepting evidence is, well, not good skepticism.
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Old 4th December 2012, 02:20 PM   #327
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Originally Posted by StankApe View Post
no, they claim they are skeptics, but just as i can claim I am Jesus Christ and dare you to prove I'm not, they aren't following the principles of skepticism and are actually deniers (in a similar vein as those people who claim the Holocaust didn't happen, yet with a lot less evil intent )
Beat me to it, and more accurately too.

Curses!
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Old 4th December 2012, 02:22 PM   #328
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Originally Posted by Foster Zygote View Post
The amusing thing is the insinuation that we're somehow afraid of his intellectual prowess.
Not true. What it shows is someone pointed to climate change skeptics emitting fear signals. I reviewed his analysis and found it could be applied to other areas and sources of fear that Skeptics are exposed to. Someone might come after me and further broaden the scope. This is not an exhaustive list of all the fears Skeptics suffer from.
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Old 4th December 2012, 02:26 PM   #329
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and you have no evidence to support your hypothesis (well none you have presented anyway) so you are using the scientific method rather poorly. and frankly, we are starting to grow weary with your silly,pointless banter and soon we will start smiting you.
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Old 4th December 2012, 02:27 PM   #330
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Originally Posted by StankApe View Post
Ahh but you are trying to apply the same rules of paranormal activity to the very simple concept of life existing on one of trillions of planets. The two are not compatible logically.

Logic has not made much of an appearance in justintime's posts.
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Old 4th December 2012, 02:29 PM   #331
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Originally Posted by Bram Kaandorp View Post
They are cynics who call themselves skeptics.

I know I will get trouble for this (luckily, only from justin), but calling yourself a skeptic and then not accepting evidence is, well, not good skepticism.
At least you don`t have to worry about my analysis.
I first defined the Skeptic and then provided cause for his fears (doubts, uncertainty and insecurity) which built the case for panic and fear. For good measure I even located the seat of fear in the Skeptic brain.

Last edited by justintime; 4th December 2012 at 02:33 PM.
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Old 4th December 2012, 02:36 PM   #332
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Originally Posted by justintime View Post
At least you don`t have to worry about my analysis.
I first defined the Skeptic and then provided cause for his fears (doubts, uncertainty and insecurity) which built the case for panic and fear. For good measure I even located the seat of fear in the Skeptic brain.

No--you have made post after post of near-nonsense, refused to accept when you've been wrong and failed to present any evidence to support your "case".
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Old 4th December 2012, 02:43 PM   #333
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Originally Posted by justintime View Post
I first defined the Skeptic and then provided cause for his fears (doubts, uncertainty and insecurity)[...]
Yes, you did make unfounded assumptions and sweeping generalisations. This is why you're not being taken seriously by anybody.

Of course, if you'd like to start saying something sensible, which you can provide evidence and reasoning for, people might start viewing your posts as something other than to laugh at.
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Old 4th December 2012, 02:46 PM   #334
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Originally Posted by justintime View Post
It is the same reason Carl Sagan gave for people who thought Ghost were real or UFOs were real. They are irrational to believe in ghosts and UFOs because there is no evidence that they exist. Not that there is anything wrong looking for them but without evidence they cannot claim it is true.

Carl Sagan violated his own rules of scientific skepticism. He looked for ETI and found they do not exist. There is no proof of their existence. So he too started on an irrational belief in their existence.

Now you can say ETI have not been found yet. They might be found down the road. But so too can UFOs and Ghost. Who is to say after he fails to call others irrational.
One problem. There is life in the universe. We have incontrovertible proof of this. We've never had the slightest empirical evidence for the existence of an alien spacecraft or a ghost, but we know of a planet that is positively crawling with life. We also know that the elements that life is made up from are among the most abundant in the universe. We know that these elements make organic molecules that spontaneously arrange themselves into more complex arrangements. We know that the universe is teeming with the organic molecules that life as we know it is composed of. We also know that there are an unimaginably vast number of worlds in the universe. The Sloan Digital Sky Survey allows us to estimate that there are between 10 sextillion and 1 septillion stars in the observable universe. That's 10,000,000,000,000,000,000,000 to 1,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000 stars! Each one likely to have at least several planets. So even if the odds of life evolving on any given planet are extremely low, there are a staggering number of chances of it happening. Even if the odds of any given star harboring life are a trillion to one, there could be ten billion to one trillion worlds with life in the universe.

Try to wrap your brain around a number like 1 septillion. If you had a lottery where the odds of winning with any individual ticket was 1 in a trillion, but you had 1 septillion tickets, you'd win the lottery about 1 trillion times over.

And remember, we do have proof that life exists in the universe.
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Last edited by Foster Zygote; 4th December 2012 at 02:52 PM.
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Old 4th December 2012, 02:50 PM   #335
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I'm nominating your post Foster Zygote. It's concise, well written, to the point and will probably be completely ignored or hand waved away by you know who...
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Old 4th December 2012, 02:50 PM   #336
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Originally Posted by justintime View Post
It is the same reason Carl Sagan gave for people who thought Ghost were real or UFOs were real. They are irrational to believe in ghosts and UFOs because there is no evidence that they exist. Not that there is anything wrong looking for them but without evidence they cannot claim it is true.
I see you misunderstood Foster Zygote's question. He asked what was irrational about believing extraterrestrial life may exist.

You are also making a false analogy. For life evolving on a planet, we have one example of it happening, so we know it's possible. For ghosts and alien spacecraft visiting the earth, we have zero examples.
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Old 4th December 2012, 02:53 PM   #337
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Originally Posted by Foster Zygote View Post
Wow! That is incredibly wrong. Unless your mechanic is psychic, he can't "just know" all the time. There are any number of presented problems that will require the application of the fundamentals of the scientific method. My cousin is an ASE Master Mechanic who works for a Volvo dealership. If a car gets towed in with the problem, "will not start", there are hundreds of possible causes. He uses his experience to know what the most likely causes are, but then he forms an hypothesis and tests it by making an alteration to the element that he thinks might be the cause. If it has no effect and the car still won't start, he moves on to another likely system.
Foster Zygote you are disappointing me.
Let us try again.

Definition of Scientist: A person having expert knowledge of one or more sciences, especially a natural or physical science.

Scientific method : Mathematical and experimental techniques employed in the natural sciences.

Natural science definition:A branch of science that deals with the physical world, e.g., physics, chemistry, geology, and biology.

Is a mechanic a scientist. I don`t think so by that definition.
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Old 4th December 2012, 02:57 PM   #338
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That's one of the dumbest things i have ever seen, and YOU SIR ARE NOMINATED FOR A STUNDIE!! congrats!
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Old 4th December 2012, 03:01 PM   #339
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Originally Posted by StankApe View Post
You don't seem to understand that the scientific method is exactly what a mechanic uses (and also peer review)

I shall demonstrate

Person A brings in a car that's making a wobbling noise, the mechanic asks questions to determine an initial system diagnosis (what part of the car can he eliminate from his "source" options) (this is akin to eliminating the possible variables in a science experiment)

He then fires up the car, drives it himself so as to familiarize himself to the "sound" the person has relayed to him. Then he uses his experience and knowledge to isolate and recognize the problem then make the repairs. (just like a scientist who wants to know why something is the way it is,isolate the 'something" study it's behavior, introduce a variable, observe the results)

He may also, consult other mechanics before making the repairs to verify that his diagnosis is accurate (peer review) and thus doesn't waste time chasing worthless data down the rabbit hole.

Then the customer returns, drives the car, notices the sound is gone. Is relayed the information of the cause (like a study is relayed in a journal) and happily pays and goes home.

The 2nd stage of review is the aftermath of the repair, if the "science" was practiced properly, the repair should solve the issue and the sound should not reoccur, if it does come back , then the initial stage can be said to have been "proven false" and further review of the information by the original mechanic is required. (this is like what happens when you publish a paper, the initial peer review merely states that the data was gathered in a verifiable and repeatable manner. The science community at large will get to work and give the final "grade" on the paper based on how often it is cited by others and also if any further papers are published refuting the original claim)

so mechanics use the scientific method. I use it everyday when doing baseball analysis. I'm not a 'pro scientist" but I MUST follow the scientific method if I want my statistical analysis to have any value.
Baseball analysis is using a branch of mathematics. Statistics, probability etc. Scientific method also used some of that. But that is just a part of the scientific method. Just like marketing and population projections all use mathematics and other techniques that were developed for the natural sciences. But they are not natural science and they are not scientific methods.
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Old 4th December 2012, 03:03 PM   #340
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LOL, YES THEY ARE!

dude, seriously, you should just stop, you clearly have no idea what you are talking about.


unless you care to list some of the unnatural sciences for us to consider?
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Old 4th December 2012, 03:06 PM   #341
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Originally Posted by justintime
Let us try again.

Definition of Scientist: A person having expert knowledge of one or more sciences, especially a natural or physical science.
Interesting definition. Certainly not accurate, by any stretch, but interesting. For example, those firemen that publish in peer-reviewed journals--would you call THEM scientists? They've got knowledge of paleontology equal to that of the guy who's writing that volume of the Treatise, but they're not professionals and you've already said that non-profesionals are excluded from being scientists.

Quote:
Scientific method : Mathematical and experimental techniques employed in the natural sciences.
Employed by, but not limited to. Geology uses compasses. Does that mean cartographers are incapable of using them? You're confusing the tools with the institutions--a critical failure for someone who is attempting to school us on epistemology.

As an aside, are you aware of how dictionaries define words? I think you really aught to look that up sometime. It'd be extraordinarily educational for you.

Quote:
natural science definition:A branch of science that deals with the physical world, e.g., physics, chemistry, geology, and biology.
This illustrates another problem with argument by definition: definitions aren't typically complete. For example, your definition is extremely vague, to the point where I could honestly include carpentry and farming as natural sciences.

Quote:
Is a mechanic a scientist. I don`t think so by that definition.
You ONLY think in definitions, so the last three words here are redundant. Also, you're ignoring the fact that none of us have argued that a mechanic is a scientist. Rather, we've argued that they use the scientific method. I'm not an engineer, but I've used blueprints. My father's not a geologist, but he's used geotechnical studies. The SM is a tool, nothing more--and anyone who's ever owned a home can tell you that one tool can have many, many uses.

Of course, I doubt you'll even read that. You're locked into your world-view, it seems.
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Old 4th December 2012, 03:08 PM   #342
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Originally Posted by justintime View Post
Foster Zygote you are disappointing me.
Let us try again.

Definition of Scientist: A person having expert knowledge of one or more sciences, especially a natural or physical science.

Scientific method : Mathematical and experimental techniques employed in the natural sciences.

Natural science definition:A branch of science that deals with the physical world, e.g., physics, chemistry, geology, and biology.

Is a mechanic a scientist. I don`t think so by that definition.
Well of course you don't. You've resorted to the semantic game that you apparently believe is so clever.

You certainly don't disappoint.

Scientific method.

1. Formulate a question

Why won't the car start?

2. Hypothesis

The car won't start because the battery is dead.

3. Prediction

If a charged battery is installed, the car will start.

4. Test

Replace battery or use jumper battery and attempt to start car.

5. Analysis

Car still won't start. Dead battery is not cause of failure to start.

6. Go back to step 2

----------

2. Hypothesis

Car will not start because coil is burned out.

And so on.


Remember that originally, all scientists were amateurs.
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Old 4th December 2012, 03:09 PM   #343
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Once more, I need to point out that this thread doesn't really seem to have anything to do with religion or philosophy. Perhaps a move is in order?
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Old 4th December 2012, 03:14 PM   #344
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Originally Posted by AdMan View Post
No--you have made post after post of near-nonsense, refused to accept when you've been wrong and failed to present any evidence to support your "case".

Yep. It's pretty entertaining watching someone try so desperately to bash skeptics and skepticism, and all the while failing to make a single cogent argument, or even a compelling point, in over 50 posts.

So justintime, do you have anything other than whining?
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Old 4th December 2012, 03:15 PM   #345
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some fields (like herpetology) rely greatly on amateur hobbyists for information. They have the time (and the animals) to do lots of studies about reptile genetics, behavior...etc

They use the scientific method. well, they did.... now I guess we will have to call it the "amateuric method" eh? lol
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Old 4th December 2012, 03:16 PM   #346
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Originally Posted by justintime View Post
Carl Sagan violated his own rules of scientific skepticism. He looked for ETI and found they do not exist. There is no proof of their existence. So he too started on an irrational belief in their existence.

Now you can say ETI have not been found yet. They might be found down the road. But so too can UFOs and Ghost. Who is to say after he fails to call others irrational.
Non sequitur. Carl Sagan searched for ETI and did not find it. This does not mean it does not exist. Nor does it even prove he believed that it did exist. Sagan believed that extraterrestrials could exist, and could be sending signals which we might detect. That's an entirely rational position to take.

Visiting aliens in flying saucers are much less likely to be real, simply because of the vastness of space and the limit (so far as we can tell) of light speed. That doesn't mean it's irrational to think they might exist, but the 'evidence' believers cling to that they do exist appears to be garbage. So it's not unfair to call the insistence that "they're here" irrational. Similarly with ghosts, the 'evidence' is hopeless and, what's more, the claimed phenomenon appears to contradict what we already know about how the world works. So there's really no good reason at all to think it's a topic which will ever be legitimised 'down the road'.

Last edited by Jack by the hedge; 4th December 2012 at 03:18 PM.
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Old 4th December 2012, 03:17 PM   #347
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Originally Posted by Foster Zygote View Post
One problem. There is life in the universe. We have incontrovertible proof of this. We've never had the slightest empirical evidence for the existence of an alien spacecraft or a ghost, but we know of a planet that is positively crawling with life. We also know that the elements that life is made up from are among the most abundant in the universe. We know that these elements make organic molecules that spontaneously arrange themselves into more complex arrangements. We know that the universe is teeming with the organic molecules that life as we know it is composed of. We also know that there are an unimaginably vast number of worlds in the universe. The Sloan Digital Sky Survey allows us to estimate that there are between 10 sextillion and 1 septillion stars in the observable universe. That's 10,000,000,000,000,000,000,000 to 1,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000 stars! Each one likely to have at least several planets. So even if the odds of life evolving on any given planet are extremely low, there are a staggering number of chances of it happening. Even if the odds of any given star harboring life are a trillion to one, there could be ten billion to one trillion worlds with life in the universe.

Try to wrap your brain around a number like 1 septillion. If you had a lottery where the odds of winning with any individual ticket was 1 in a trillion, but you had 1 septillion tickets, you'd win the lottery about 1 trillion times over.

And remember, we do have proof that life exists in the universe.
Yes we do have life on planet earth. We also happen to be the only blue planet in out solar system that supports life. We know there are billion and billions of planets and million of galaxies like our Milky Way. So it is a speculation that with such large numbers the probability of life existing among those billions and billions of planets are quite reasonable. That is what the Drake Equation tries to calculate. That is what Carl Sagan used to support his search for ETI.
Today after 50 years of SETI. The number of planets scientist think are capable is reduced to a little over hundred tops. And even there is could be microbial and not the ETI Carl Sagan envisioned. Please don`t ask for link. I did not save it.
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Old 4th December 2012, 03:19 PM   #348
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Originally Posted by Foster Zygote View Post
Once more, I need to point out that this thread doesn't really seem to have anything to do with religion or philosophy. Perhaps a move is in order?
It seems more in tune with the stuff over on the CT section doesn't it?
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Old 4th December 2012, 03:21 PM   #349
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Originally Posted by StankApe View Post
some fields (like herpetology) rely greatly on amateur hobbyists for information. They have the time (and the animals) to do lots of studies about reptile genetics, behavior...etc

They use the scientific method. well, they did.... now I guess we will have to call it the "amateuric method" eh? lol
Many amateur astronomers still contribute to the base of scientific knowledge.
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Old 4th December 2012, 03:23 PM   #350
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1. What can be more irrational than looking for aliens without a spacecraft that could reach them.
2. What could be more irrational than assuming aliens could be contacted using radio telescope.
Pursuing some inscrutable internet vendetta against a respected scientist who didn't deserve it, for one thing.
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Old 4th December 2012, 03:24 PM   #351
StankApe
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Skeptic deniers are self absorbed sociopaths, here's a link to prove my point:
http://www.funnycatpix.com/


It's fairly obvious to all but the most confused of skeptic deniers that there behavior is driven by fear, and insecurity with their own intellect......








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Old 4th December 2012, 03:28 PM   #352
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yes astronomy (perhaps the field with the greatest amount of amateur involvement) heck armchair astronomers have discovered suns, planets, comets... lots of stuff!

(I used the herpetology thing cuz I used to be highly involved in it when I was younger)
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Old 4th December 2012, 03:30 PM   #353
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Originally Posted by Jack by the hedge View Post
Non sequitur. Carl Sagan searched for ETI and did not find it. This does not mean it does not exist. Nor does it even prove he believed that it did exist. Sagan believed that extraterrestrials could exist, and could be sending signals which we might detect. That's an entirely rational position to take.

Visiting aliens in flying saucers are much less likely to be real, simply because of the vastness of space and the limit (so far as we can tell) of light speed. That doesn't mean it's irrational to think they might exist, but the 'evidence' believers cling to that they do exist appears to be garbage. So it's not unfair to call the insistence that "they're here" irrational. Similarly with ghosts, the 'evidence' is hopeless and, what's more, the claimed phenomenon appears to contradict what we already know about how the world works. So there's really no good reason at all to think it's a topic which will ever be legitimised 'down the road'.
Carl Sagan was challenged about the two way communication even if it was possible would take hundreds of years to get the messages across. The entire project was a scam.
1. First the ETI had to be contacted.
2. We would never know if they responded to our signal because it would take way longer than a lifetime.
3. It would take another lifetime for the ETI to receive out reply.
You cannot get more irrational that this.

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Sagan argued that thousands of technically advanced civilizations might be scattered across the galaxy. Some of these societies might be able to communicate with Earth via radio. The back-and-forth messaging might take centuries because of Albert Einstein’s speed limit on electromagnetic waves, but the participants felt the search for such signals was worthwhile anyway.
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Old 4th December 2012, 03:31 PM   #354
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Yes we do have life on planet earth. We also happen to be the only blue planet in out solar system that supports life.
Ignoring the implied requirement of a blue color, Earth is the only body in our solar system that we know supports life. We've barely started looking.
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Old 4th December 2012, 03:34 PM   #355
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True, lots of evidence that Europa could possibly support simple forms of life under it's thick crust of ice (and even more evidence was recently gathered at the isolated lake in Antarctica where new forms of bacteria were discovered that had been isolated from the outside world for thousands of years)
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Old 4th December 2012, 03:36 PM   #356
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Originally Posted by justintime View Post
...That is what the Drake Equation tries to calculate. That is what Carl Sagan used to support his search for ETI.
Today after 50 years of SETI. The number of planets scientist think are capable is reduced to a little over hundred tops. And even there is could be microbial and not the ETI Carl Sagan envisioned. Please don`t ask for link. I did not save it.
Even if you could remember where you got that claim from, what help is speculation based on current information to your fallacious argument that the Sagan was irrational to look for signals from ETI?
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Old 4th December 2012, 03:38 PM   #357
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Originally Posted by Foster Zygote View Post
Well of course you don't. You've resorted to the semantic game that you apparently believe is so clever.

You certainly don't disappoint.

Scientific method.

1. Formulate a question

Why won't the car start?

2. Hypothesis

The car won't start because the battery is dead.

3. Prediction

If a charged battery is installed, the car will start.

4. Test

Replace battery or use jumper battery and attempt to start car.

5. Analysis

Car still won't start. Dead battery is not cause of failure to start.

6. Go back to step 2

----------

2. Hypothesis

Car will not start because coil is burned out.

And so on.


Remember that originally, all scientists were amateurs.
Get another mechanic. Why pay for a total analysis of the problem when all you only want it to have your car fixed and a mechanic who knows how to fix it. I am sure a scientist can also fix your car using his scientific method. How much are you willing to pay him to get it fixed.
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Old 4th December 2012, 03:43 PM   #358
justintime
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Originally Posted by Jack by the hedge View Post
Even if you could remember where you got that claim from, what help is speculation based on current information to your fallacious argument that the Sagan was irrational to look for signals from ETI?
It is no help to Sagan. It just shows the picture is not very rosy for people approximating large numbers of finds when it is extremely reduced. The fact NASA has stopped funding SETI should be evidence it is not the preferred way to look for ETI. Nor does Stephen Hawking recommend we look for them. They might not be all that altruistic.

Last edited by justintime; 4th December 2012 at 03:44 PM.
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Old 4th December 2012, 03:44 PM   #359
Jack by the hedge
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Originally Posted by justintime View Post
Carl Sagan was challenged about the two way communication even if it was possible would take hundreds of years to get the messages across. The entire project was a scam.
1. First the ETI had to be contacted.
2. We would never know if they responded to our signal because it would take way longer than a lifetime.
3. It would take another lifetime for the ETI to receive out reply.
You cannot get more irrational that this.
Nonsense. SETI was a project to search for signs of life elsewhere in the universe. Nobody pretended that we could have real time two-way communication with a civilization hundreds of light years away. I'm afraid the irrationality being displayed is not coming from the source you fondly imagine.
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Old 4th December 2012, 03:44 PM   #360
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Originally Posted by justintime View Post
Get another mechanic. Why pay for a total analysis of the problem when all you only want it to have your car fixed and a mechanic who knows how to fix it. I am sure a scientist can also fix your car using his scientific method. How much are you willing to pay him to get it fixed.
so, what you are saying is, that a mechanic, when confronted with the age old problem of "car won't start" immediately leaps to his feet and solves the problem WITH NO HYPOTHESIS, OR EXPERIMENTING? That he just knows via osmosis, or psychic behavior that "it's the ignition coil?".

True with experience he can take a guess at the problem based on the owner's description, but even that is "gathering data" it's science. it's using the method to SOLVE PROBLEMS.

sigh...........
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