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Author Topic:   Working Hypothesis -- what is the value?
RAZD
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Posts: 18241
From: the other end of the sidewalk
Joined: 03-14-2004
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Message 16 of 92 (735541)
08-17-2014 3:23 PM
Reply to: Message 15 by NoNukes
08-16-2014 4:12 PM


Example 2 -- building code structural standards
I'm not the least bit interested in a non scientific investigation into whether Yeti's exist.

So your world revolves around scientific knowledge and stuff that can be ignored (everything else).

Let's try a different tack and look at how working hypothesis actually provide practical guides: the universal building code as it applies to structures is based in part on a some working knowledge of physics and materials, but also on a whole lot of historical experience and some basic assumptions.

The physical guides are fairly limited (stress\strain equations, material bending\shear strengths, etc) and there are a lot of unknowns (future loading, material quality\consistency, etc.). So the process of developing the code has been by and large the experience of what works, using the formulas to back calculate from what works to form a hypothetical basis for future design and throwing in a factor of safety to account for variations in the unknowns ... and then upping the requirements whenever failure occurs that is not due to flagrant misuse, bad construction or bad materials ... ie - increase the factor of safety to account for the unknowns.

The building code structure is basically a "cookbook" design process: follow the hypothetical calculation steps and you can bake a cake or build a house. It is not developed from first principals but it is a working hypothesis for determining what is required based on what has worked in the past.

Is it falsifiable? Not really ... structural failure doesn't falsify the system, and the solution is usually to increase the strength in future designs using exactly the same process by changing factors (loading factors, safety factors).

So you could say that the basis of a good working hypothesis is: if it works, use it.

That would seem to offer a lot of practical use without involving the need for falsification.

Enjoy


we are limited in our ability to understand
by our ability to understand
RebelAmerican☆Zen☯Deist
... to learn ... to think ... to live ... to laugh ...
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This message is a reply to:
 Message 15 by NoNukes, posted 08-16-2014 4:12 PM NoNukes has responded

Replies to this message:
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NoNukes
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Posts: 9317
From: Central NC USA
Joined: 08-13-2010
Member Rating: 2.6


Message 17 of 92 (735553)
08-17-2014 8:14 PM
Reply to: Message 16 by RAZD
08-17-2014 3:23 PM


Re: Example 2 -- building code structural standards
So your world revolves around scientific knowledge and stuff that can be ignored (everything else).

Is that what I said, or did I limit my remarks to investigations into whether Yeti's exist?

NoNukes writes:

I'm not the least bit interested in a non scientific investigation into whether Yeti's exist.


Under a government which imprisons any unjustly, the true place for a just man is also in prison. Thoreau: Civil Disobedience (1846)

I have never met a man so ignorant that I couldn't learn something from him. Galileo Galilei

If there is no struggle, there is no progress. Those who profess to favor freedom, and deprecate agitation, are men who want crops without plowing up the ground, they want rain without thunder and lightning. Frederick Douglass


This message is a reply to:
 Message 16 by RAZD, posted 08-17-2014 3:23 PM RAZD has responded

Replies to this message:
 Message 18 by RAZD, posted 08-18-2014 2:42 AM NoNukes has responded

    
RAZD
Member
Posts: 18241
From: the other end of the sidewalk
Joined: 03-14-2004
Member Rating: 3.0


Message 18 of 92 (735568)
08-18-2014 2:42 AM
Reply to: Message 17 by NoNukes
08-17-2014 8:14 PM


Example 3 -- storm sewer design
Is that what I said, or did I limit my remarks to investigations into whether Yeti's exist?

Just taking your comment to it's logical conclusion ... "I'm not the least bit interested in a non scientific investigation into whether [X] exist(s)" would mean ignoring anything not covered by scientific investigations ... or you are inconsistent in what you choose to ignore or not ignore based on some other paradigm.

However that may be, it curiously does not answer the issue of working hypothesis that are not necessarily falsifiable even though they can (and do) provide plenty of practical usage of information.

RAZD, Message 16: The building code structure is basically a "cookbook" design process: follow the hypothetical calculation steps and you can bake a cake or build a house. It is not developed from first principals but it is a working hypothesis for determining what is required based on what has worked in the past.

Is it falsifiable? Not really ... structural failure doesn't falsify the system, ...

... because all the other building built to the code don't all fail when one building does. My house, for instance was built in 1795 (+/- 5) and as a result it does not meet current code for structural design, yet it has been standing for over 200 years.

Engineers to a lot of things by applying working hypothesis to problems and developing practical solutions.

Like storm sewer designs ... it is costly and time consuming to put in the biggest storm sewer possible, as well as being impractical for places with little rain, so how do you balance time and cost versus the occurrence of flooding events?

The standard approach is to do an evaluation of the historic record of rainfall and developing a curve of frequency of storms of different amounts of rainfall and then picking a practical time period (often 50 years, rarely more than 100 years), and then using the rainfall for that frequency period in calculating the quantity of water that the sewer would need to carry.

Nothing to falsify there ... if the system floods then that is part of the design, even if it happens twice in 50 years ... it's a working hypothesis based on probabilities after all ...

But it is also based on some knowledge of the characteristics of the ground -- how much water that falls ends up as runoff and how fast -- and these conditions can change ... and that doesn't falsify the design either.

Working hypothesis provide many practical solutions to design problems based on historical information and often some trial and error adjustment in their applications, without having to provide a falsification test for pragmatic use.

Enjoy


we are limited in our ability to understand
by our ability to understand
RebelAmerican☆Zen☯Deist
... to learn ... to think ... to live ... to laugh ...
to share.


Join the effort to solve medical problems, AIDS/HIV, Cancer and more with Team EvC! (click)

This message is a reply to:
 Message 17 by NoNukes, posted 08-17-2014 8:14 PM NoNukes has responded

Replies to this message:
 Message 19 by RAZD, posted 08-18-2014 8:05 AM RAZD has acknowledged this reply
 Message 20 by NoNukes, posted 08-18-2014 9:33 AM RAZD has responded

  
RAZD
Member
Posts: 18241
From: the other end of the sidewalk
Joined: 03-14-2004
Member Rating: 3.0


Message 19 of 92 (735575)
08-18-2014 8:05 AM
Reply to: Message 18 by RAZD
08-18-2014 2:42 AM


Re: Example 4 -- bridge design
in Creation Museum a House of Cards Sitting on Old Old Earth Rocks Message 60 Tangle says

I would say that an engineer carries out an empirical test of an scientific theory every time he builds a bridge.

What theory? How is it falsified?

And I would say that they are not looking to falsify the (theory), but rather to make a practical application, and they throw on a factor of safety to help guard against failure and unknown stresses ... they are using a working hypothesis.

This is what I mean by saying that engineering is the art of applying science for practical purposes.

They may get all 'sciency' in running controlled tests of things like the strengths of materials and even wear lab coats, but their purpose\focus is not to falsify theory but to find ways to make practical applications.

Enjoy.

Edited by RAZD, : ..


we are limited in our ability to understand
by our ability to understand
RebelAmerican☆Zen☯Deist
... to learn ... to think ... to live ... to laugh ...
to share.


Join the effort to solve medical problems, AIDS/HIV, Cancer and more with Team EvC! (click)

This message is a reply to:
 Message 18 by RAZD, posted 08-18-2014 2:42 AM RAZD has acknowledged this reply

Replies to this message:
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 Message 22 by Tangle, posted 08-18-2014 11:34 AM RAZD has responded

  
NoNukes
Member
Posts: 9317
From: Central NC USA
Joined: 08-13-2010
Member Rating: 2.6


Message 20 of 92 (735578)
08-18-2014 9:33 AM
Reply to: Message 18 by RAZD
08-18-2014 2:42 AM


Re: Example 3 -- storm sewer design
Just taking your comment to it's logical conclusion ... "I'm not the least bit interested in a non scientific investigation into whether [X] exist(s)"

Generalization is not always a successful strategy.

At this point I've just denied that your extrapolation is correct at least twice. I could of course fill in some X (e.g. Loch Ness Monster, Megalodon, or space aliens designing the pyramids) for which the statement is correct and some other X where the statement would not be correct.

However that may be, it curiously does not answer the issue of working hypothesis that are not necessarily falsifiable even though they can (and do) provide plenty of practical usage of information.

If you have a case for that, then make it. It should be quite clear that such a strategy is subject to confirmation bias. Nothing you discover using such a hypothesis will ever allow you to reach the conclusion that sightings of Yeti's were erroneous.


Under a government which imprisons any unjustly, the true place for a just man is also in prison. Thoreau: Civil Disobedience (1846)

I have never met a man so ignorant that I couldn't learn something from him. Galileo Galilei

If there is no struggle, there is no progress. Those who profess to favor freedom, and deprecate agitation, are men who want crops without plowing up the ground, they want rain without thunder and lightning. Frederick Douglass


This message is a reply to:
 Message 18 by RAZD, posted 08-18-2014 2:42 AM RAZD has responded

Replies to this message:
 Message 33 by RAZD, posted 08-19-2014 8:54 AM NoNukes has responded

    
NoNukes
Member
Posts: 9317
From: Central NC USA
Joined: 08-13-2010
Member Rating: 2.6


Message 21 of 92 (735579)
08-18-2014 9:49 AM
Reply to: Message 19 by RAZD
08-18-2014 8:05 AM


Re: Example 4 -- bridge design
And I would say that they are not looking to falsify the (theory), but rather to make a practical application, and they throw on a factor of safety to help guard against failure and unknown stresses ... they are using a working hypothesis.

You would say that if your goal was simply to deny Tangle's point without actually making a point of your own. When the bridge performs as expected, that is at least a partial verification that the underlying calculations based on physics and material properties was correct. Those things would generally not be considered hypotheses.


Under a government which imprisons any unjustly, the true place for a just man is also in prison. Thoreau: Civil Disobedience (1846)

I have never met a man so ignorant that I couldn't learn something from him. Galileo Galilei

If there is no struggle, there is no progress. Those who profess to favor freedom, and deprecate agitation, are men who want crops without plowing up the ground, they want rain without thunder and lightning. Frederick Douglass


This message is a reply to:
 Message 19 by RAZD, posted 08-18-2014 8:05 AM RAZD has responded

Replies to this message:
 Message 34 by RAZD, posted 08-19-2014 9:04 AM NoNukes has responded

    
Tangle
Member
Posts: 4400
From: UK
Joined: 10-07-2011
Member Rating: 2.8


Message 22 of 92 (735583)
08-18-2014 11:34 AM
Reply to: Message 19 by RAZD
08-18-2014 8:05 AM


Re: Example 4 -- bridge design
RAZD writes:

What theory? How is it falsified?

And I would say that they are not looking to falsify the (theory), but rather to make a practical application, and they throw on a factor of safety to help guard against failure and unknown stresses ... they are using a working hypothesis.

This is what I mean by saying that engineering is the art of applying science for practical purposes.

They may get all 'sciency' in running controlled tests of things like the strengths of materials and even wear lab coats, but their purpose\focus is not to falsify theory but to find ways to make practical applications.

You're normally quite sane, you must have Faith withdrawal symptoms.

It wouldn't be possible to build modern bridges over the spans we need and materials we use, without an enormous quantity of physics. And the idea that a practitioner can not be a scientist is away with the fairies.

But enough already!


Life, don't talk to me about life - Marvin the Paranoid Android

"Science adjusts it's views based on what's observed.
Faith is the denial of observation so that Belief can be preserved."
- Tim Minchin, in his beat poem, Storm.


This message is a reply to:
 Message 19 by RAZD, posted 08-18-2014 8:05 AM RAZD has responded

Replies to this message:
 Message 23 by RAZD, posted 08-18-2014 5:45 PM Tangle has responded

  
RAZD
Member
Posts: 18241
From: the other end of the sidewalk
Joined: 03-14-2004
Member Rating: 3.0


Message 23 of 92 (735606)
08-18-2014 5:45 PM
Reply to: Message 22 by Tangle
08-18-2014 11:34 AM


Re: Example 4 -- bridge design
It wouldn't be possible to build modern bridges over the spans we need and materials we use, without an enormous quantity of physics. And the idea that a practitioner can not be a scientist is away with the fairies.

Yet the engineer is basically a technician applying cook-book rules to the design, rules that he does not develop. Other engineers that check the calculations do the same thing, go through the same recipe.

The amount of physics is actually rather limited in my experience, amounting to some standard set of mathematical models of material behavior (bending moments, shear loads, moments of inertia).

The Romans built bridges without and engineer with a BSc ...

You're normally quite sane, you must have Faith withdrawal symptoms.

One of the things that distinguishes science from creationism is the use of the scientific method, agreed?

If you do everything involved with the scientific method except have a falsifiable hypothesis, are you doing science?

Enjoy


we are limited in our ability to understand
by our ability to understand
RebelAmerican☆Zen☯Deist
... to learn ... to think ... to live ... to laugh ...
to share.


Join the effort to solve medical problems, AIDS/HIV, Cancer and more with Team EvC! (click)

This message is a reply to:
 Message 22 by Tangle, posted 08-18-2014 11:34 AM Tangle has responded

Replies to this message:
 Message 24 by NoNukes, posted 08-18-2014 6:04 PM RAZD has responded
 Message 25 by Tangle, posted 08-18-2014 6:07 PM RAZD has responded
 Message 26 by herebedragons, posted 08-18-2014 8:26 PM RAZD has responded

  
NoNukes
Member
Posts: 9317
From: Central NC USA
Joined: 08-13-2010
Member Rating: 2.6


Message 24 of 92 (735607)
08-18-2014 6:04 PM
Reply to: Message 23 by RAZD
08-18-2014 5:45 PM


Re: Example 4 -- bridge design
Yet the engineer is basically a technician applying cook-book rules to the design, rules that he does not develop. Other engineers that check the calculations do the same thing, go through the same recipe.

That is part of what civil engineers do, but what you describe is not the complete story. In all but the most trivial cases, the cook book is insufficient to design a bridge or other complex structure. And of course the design rules themselves were produced by other engineers.

Besides that, civil engineers may well be the most cook book segment of the engineering profession. It is the much denigrated sister of mechanical engineering.

The amount of physics is actually rather limited in my experience, amounting to some standard set of mathematical models of material behavior (bending moments, shear loads, moments of inertia).

What is your experience? What do you think a PhD candidate in mechanical engineering does in school. Learn more thumb-rules?


Under a government which imprisons any unjustly, the true place for a just man is also in prison. Thoreau: Civil Disobedience (1846)

I have never met a man so ignorant that I couldn't learn something from him. Galileo Galilei

If there is no struggle, there is no progress. Those who profess to favor freedom, and deprecate agitation, are men who want crops without plowing up the ground, they want rain without thunder and lightning. Frederick Douglass


This message is a reply to:
 Message 23 by RAZD, posted 08-18-2014 5:45 PM RAZD has responded

Replies to this message:
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Tangle
Member
Posts: 4400
From: UK
Joined: 10-07-2011
Member Rating: 2.8


Message 25 of 92 (735608)
08-18-2014 6:07 PM
Reply to: Message 23 by RAZD
08-18-2014 5:45 PM


Re: Example 4 -- bridge design
RAZD writes:

The amount of physics is actually rather limited in my experience,

But, by your admission, you're not a scientist nor a structural engineer, so you have ruled your opinion out by your own standards.


Life, don't talk to me about life - Marvin the Paranoid Android

"Science adjusts it's views based on what's observed.
Faith is the denial of observation so that Belief can be preserved."
- Tim Minchin, in his beat poem, Storm.


This message is a reply to:
 Message 23 by RAZD, posted 08-18-2014 5:45 PM RAZD has responded

Replies to this message:
 Message 37 by RAZD, posted 08-19-2014 9:27 AM Tangle has responded

  
herebedragons
Member
Posts: 1251
From: Michigan
Joined: 11-22-2009
Member Rating: 5.6


Message 26 of 92 (735610)
08-18-2014 8:26 PM
Reply to: Message 23 by RAZD
08-18-2014 5:45 PM


Re: Example 4 -- bridge design
Hey RAZD, just my 2 cents here (seasonally adjusted for inflation and unemployment)... the term scientist describes an occupation - a person who engages in a systematic activity in order to acquire knowledge. As does engineer, geologist, statistician, etc. I don't think it is a statement about whether that individual actually applies the scientific method or not.

For example, I would say my current occupation is a scientist. However, I have been working in the lab for about 8 weeks now and have not once developed an hypothesis or even tested a falsifiable premise. My primary job is to characterize a soil fungus (Rhizoctonia solani) isolated from dry beans in East Africa. I am going about that characterization in a systematic way and the product of my work will simply be the knowledge associated with that characterization (which will include some practical applications such as resistant varieties of beans). Even the controlled experiment I conducted was more of an application experiment rather than a falsifiable testing of an hypothesis.

Also, another point, I will use a lot of statistics in my job but that doesn't make me a statistician because it is not my primary purpose. So in that sense I agree, an engineer would not be a scientist just because during the course of their work they apply the scientific method. They are engineers because their primary function is to produce usable products through applied science. I don't think it is an issue of them not applying the scientific method but that their end goal is to produce usable products ratehr than basic knowledge.

So back to how this all got started, Walt Brown is not a scientist because he does not engage in systematic activity in order to acquire knowledge; not because he has a mechanical engineering degree as opposed to a more "scientist-type" degree. The degree he has is a separate issue from the occupation he engages in. And again, whether he is an authority on any of the issues he writes about would depend on not only the degree he has but also the occupation he engages in; a degree alone does not makes one an authority. I would say he is more of a science fiction writer.

HBD


Whoever calls me ignorant shares my own opinion. Sorrowfully and tacitly I recognize my ignorance, when I consider how much I lack of what my mind in its craving for knowledge is sighing for... I console myself with the consideration that this belongs to our common nature. - Francesco Petrarca

"Nothing is easier than to persuade people who want to be persuaded and already believe." - another Petrarca gem.

Ignorance is a most formidable opponent rivaled only by arrogance; but when the two join forces, one is all but invincible.


This message is a reply to:
 Message 23 by RAZD, posted 08-18-2014 5:45 PM RAZD has responded

Replies to this message:
 Message 28 by NoNukes, posted 08-18-2014 10:00 PM herebedragons has responded
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herebedragons
Member
Posts: 1251
From: Michigan
Joined: 11-22-2009
Member Rating: 5.6


Message 27 of 92 (735611)
08-18-2014 8:32 PM
Reply to: Message 1 by RAZD
08-13-2014 8:05 PM


Would you clarify for me what you mean by the term "working hypothesis?" How is that different than a regular hypothesis?

I have used the term myself but meant it to mean a hypothesis that can be used to develop testable predictions. You seem to be using the term in a slightly different way, I'm not quite sure.

HBD


Whoever calls me ignorant shares my own opinion. Sorrowfully and tacitly I recognize my ignorance, when I consider how much I lack of what my mind in its craving for knowledge is sighing for... I console myself with the consideration that this belongs to our common nature. - Francesco Petrarca

"Nothing is easier than to persuade people who want to be persuaded and already believe." - another Petrarca gem.

Ignorance is a most formidable opponent rivaled only by arrogance; but when the two join forces, one is all but invincible.


This message is a reply to:
 Message 1 by RAZD, posted 08-13-2014 8:05 PM RAZD has responded

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 Message 41 by RAZD, posted 08-19-2014 10:03 AM herebedragons has not yet responded

  
NoNukes
Member
Posts: 9317
From: Central NC USA
Joined: 08-13-2010
Member Rating: 2.6


Message 28 of 92 (735612)
08-18-2014 10:00 PM
Reply to: Message 26 by herebedragons
08-18-2014 8:26 PM


Re: Example 4 -- bridge design
Hey RAZD, just my 2 cents here (seasonally adjusted for inflation and unemployment)... the term scientist describes an occupation - a person who engages in a systematic activity in order to acquire knowledge. As does engineer, geologist, statistician, etc. I don't think it is a statement about whether that individual actually applies the scientific method or not.

Actually, at least according to Wikipedia, the word scientist can be used in both senses. When people say that scientists are not engineers, they are using the term in the more restrictive sense. I general use the term in the more restricted since, while Tangle has argued for a more expansive definition.

quote:
A scientist, in a broad sense, is one engaging in a systematic activity to acquire knowledge. In a more restricted sense, a scientist may refer to an individual who uses the scientific method.[1] The person may be an expert in one or more areas of science.[2] This article focuses on the more restricted use of the word.

On the other hand, in EvC debates, there is another, even more restricted sense in which the term is used. In most cases, it is unimportant whether an economist is actually a scientist or not because we don't expect an economist's opinion on evolution, cosmology, or geology or other science relevant to a debate about Christian Science to be of any special relevance.

There is a tendency among some scientists to characterize engineers as technicians because they generally don't do basic science. While there are some reasons to distinguish between the practice of engineering and the practice of science, a mechanical engineer is not a mechanic, and an electrical engineer is not a tv repair man.

The degree he has is a separate issue from the occupation he engages in. And again, whether he is an authority on any of the issues he writes about would depend on not only the degree he has but also the occupation he engages in; a degree alone does not makes one an authority. I would say he is more of a science fiction writer.

In particular, a person with an PhD in engineering is fully capable of doing science in an area of his expertise. But every person is fully capable of being a Creationist regardless of his training.

Edited by NoNukes, : No reason given.


Under a government which imprisons any unjustly, the true place for a just man is also in prison. Thoreau: Civil Disobedience (1846)

I have never met a man so ignorant that I couldn't learn something from him. Galileo Galilei

If there is no struggle, there is no progress. Those who profess to favor freedom, and deprecate agitation, are men who want crops without plowing up the ground, they want rain without thunder and lightning. Frederick Douglass


This message is a reply to:
 Message 26 by herebedragons, posted 08-18-2014 8:26 PM herebedragons has responded

Replies to this message:
 Message 29 by herebedragons, posted 08-18-2014 11:26 PM NoNukes has responded

    
herebedragons
Member
Posts: 1251
From: Michigan
Joined: 11-22-2009
Member Rating: 5.6


Message 29 of 92 (735613)
08-18-2014 11:26 PM
Reply to: Message 28 by NoNukes
08-18-2014 10:00 PM


Re: Example 4 -- bridge design
I guess I am arguing for the more restricted sense as well, except for what seems to be a different reason than what RAZD seems to be saying. My contention is that a person is a scientist by occupation. If a mechanical engineer spends 98% of his time using strictly applied science (ie. not using the scientific method) and then for a short period of time uses the scientific method to solve a complex problem, he does not then become a scientist for that short period of time and then revert back to non-scientist when the problem has been solved.

Another issue is what it means to be "engaged in a systematic activity." That doesn't mean going to the library and reading every book on a subject in alphabetical order. It means the methodology that generally follows the scientific method, although, as in the example of my job, doesn't necessarily use the scientific method directly. So engineers may be engaged in a systematic activity, but the difference is their primary output is not knowledge, it is a usable product.

An area of science where this distinction gets a bit blurry is geology. I don't think I would refer to petroleum geologists as scientists, since they typically engage in applied science with the primary output to be a definable product (petroleum). Certainly they engage in scientific activity, and certainly that doesn't discredit their occupation at all. However, a geologist who documents the rocks of the Grand Canyon simply for the sake of the knowledge that it provides, I would consider a scientist, because the primary output is knowledge.

So I guess my position is more expansive in the sense that it isn't just a person who engages in the scientific method - that's too restrictive, but also not so expansive that it includes everyone who works with science.

On the other hand, in EvC debates, there is another, even more restricted sense in which the term is used. In most cases, it is unimportant whether an economist is actually a scientist or not because we don't expect an economist's opinion on evolution, cosmology, or geology or other science relevant to a debate about Christian Science to be of any special relevance.

Well, unless there is an appeal to authority (such as what sparked this whole line of discussion) arguments should stand on their own regardless of the credentials of the individual. A person with only a high school diploma can have valid, relevant opinions on any topic we discuss here. So if an economist writes a book about evolution, it would be presumptuous to dismiss it because it was written by an economist. It should be judged on its own merits. Although honestly, I have pretty much gotten to the point where I automatically dismiss anything written by a YEC; experience has shown it is always of little value.

a mechanical engineer is not a mechanic, and an electrical engineer is not a tv repair man.

Indeed. In fact, engineers as a whole are the brightest and most gifted individuals on a college campus.

HBD


Whoever calls me ignorant shares my own opinion. Sorrowfully and tacitly I recognize my ignorance, when I consider how much I lack of what my mind in its craving for knowledge is sighing for... I console myself with the consideration that this belongs to our common nature. - Francesco Petrarca

"Nothing is easier than to persuade people who want to be persuaded and already believe." - another Petrarca gem.

Ignorance is a most formidable opponent rivaled only by arrogance; but when the two join forces, one is all but invincible.


This message is a reply to:
 Message 28 by NoNukes, posted 08-18-2014 10:00 PM NoNukes has responded

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NoNukes
Member
Posts: 9317
From: Central NC USA
Joined: 08-13-2010
Member Rating: 2.6


Message 30 of 92 (735614)
08-19-2014 12:06 AM
Reply to: Message 29 by herebedragons
08-18-2014 11:26 PM


Re: Example 4 -- bridge design
Well, unless there is an appeal to authority (such as what sparked this whole line of discussion) arguments should stand on their own regardless of the credentials of the individual.

I think that about nails it. Following mram10 down the credential traill where he drops a couple of names and talks about supposedly significant numbers of unnamed scientists at unnamed secular university was the wrong tactic. He should have been called on his entire line of argument.


Under a government which imprisons any unjustly, the true place for a just man is also in prison. Thoreau: Civil Disobedience (1846)

I have never met a man so ignorant that I couldn't learn something from him. Galileo Galilei

If there is no struggle, there is no progress. Those who profess to favor freedom, and deprecate agitation, are men who want crops without plowing up the ground, they want rain without thunder and lightning. Frederick Douglass


This message is a reply to:
 Message 29 by herebedragons, posted 08-18-2014 11:26 PM herebedragons has not yet responded

    
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