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EvC Forum Side Orders The Great Debate

# Discussion of the CMI-AS debate (Meldinoor, NosyNed, Slevesque, Arphy only)

Author Topic:   Discussion of the CMI-AS debate (Meldinoor, NosyNed, Slevesque, Arphy only)
Arphy
Member (Idle past 3711 days)
Posts: 185
From: New Zealand
Joined: 08-23-2009

 Message 46 of 51 (538142) 12-04-2009 6:15 AM Reply to: Message 44 by NosyNed12-03-2009 11:01 AM

Re: Matching Clocks
 No clock ever, ever tells the "correct" time since they all have some degree of error. Some have infinitesimally tiny errors.
Great, and some have big errors. How do you know how big the error is? Can you compare them to a "correct" clock?

 If you are forced to make your best judgment on the "correct" time what would you pick in each case?
Don't know. I think the best clock is one that is experienced such as counting the number of days by experiencing night and day and making a tally. The person doing the measurements is there at the beginning, middle and end of amount of time measured. This way fluctuations may also be experienced if they occur. Although even here certain faults and assumptions with this. However I don't conclusivly trust any watch that has not been experienced throughout it's whole life.

 More importantly, what if we are interested in the elapsed time since they were last set in some way? How confident are you in picking clocks which have stayed in sync since then?
Not confident. Clocks that show the same time are more likly to be ones that are in sync with each other, but again not necessarily.

 arphy writes:If you want to bring an example of two different methods producing the same result this could be helpful.

 nosyned writes:Why don't we finish with the clocks first but if you must have it:Message 1
I took this to mean that you were giving me an example of two different methods producing the same result. What is actually contained in the message is many methods giving a wide variety of dates for the minimum age of the earth.

 We are still talking about the clock analogy I thought. You said something might impact the clocks and now you jump to geology? Does that mean you were never talking about the clocks analogy when you were referring to impacts?
ok, what do you want me to do? Research how normal clocks work and find something that effects them all. What would discussing the finer points of water clocks and pocket watches achieve? If we can't transfer this analogy to natural clocks then what is the point? Yes, some things may impact natural and man-made clocks, but not necessarily. going into the details of how man-made clocks work is not the issue.

btw, won't be here this weekend, I'll be back next week

 This message is a reply to: Message 44 by NosyNed, posted 12-03-2009 11:01 AM NosyNed has replied

 Replies to this message: Message 47 by NosyNed, posted 12-04-2009 12:32 PM Arphy has replied

NosyNed
Member
Posts: 8971
Joined: 04-04-2003

 Message 47 of 51 (538194) 12-04-2009 12:32 PM Reply to: Message 46 by Arphy12-04-2009 6:15 AM

Re: Matching Clocks
 Great, and some have big errors. How do you know how big the error is? Can you compare them to a "correct" clock?

We don't actually have or have to have a correct clock as we usually think of it since in no case are we really measuring the time of day. What we are measuring is a duration.

We use one clock with a more invariant duration to determine errors in the duration of another. It seems we can also determine the variation in duration of our most accurate clocks but I don't know the details and I'm not sure they are relevant here. At the extremes I think it isn't the variation in durations that produced errors but in how we read out the results and that is understood well enough to put error bars on the readings.

 Don't know. I think the best clock is one that is experienced such as counting the number of days by experiencing night and day and making a tally. The person doing the measurements is there at the beginning, middle and end of amount of time measured. This way fluctuations may also be experienced if they occur. Although even here certain faults and assumptions with this. However I don't conclusivly trust any watch that has not been experienced throughout it's whole life.

It sounds like you won't trust any time measurement at all then. So you might as well step out of this debate since it is about a time measurement in the end. (and at the moment about helium diffusion as a measurement method which is known to have a lot of variables that throw it off so you don't trust it at all and can tell slevesque that now).

Since at no time has any one carefully counted time duration for more than years or maybe a few decades you suggest that there are no methods for measuring durations that you will accept. Please be more clear about that.

Personally I wouldn't trust a person ticking off days (or any other interval ) over many of the other methods since I know for a fact that individuals are enormously unreliable at that kind of thing.

 Not confident. Clocks that show the same time are more likly to be ones that are in sync with each other, but again not necessarily.

Of course it is true that they are not necessarily in sync. At no time can we have 100 % confidence in any method (including your very weak counting by a person present). However, we are attempting to arrive at what can be considered to be the best conclusion we can some to with the facts at hand. The conclusion may be arrived at with a high degree of confidence or a lower one but it is often still possible to come to a interim conclusion that is somewhat better than "I have no clue."

In the case of the clocks I would give a rather high degree of confidence if all the types of clocks agreed, very high in fact. Why wouldn't you?

 I took this to mean that you were giving me an example of two different methods producing the same result. What is actually contained in the message is many methods giving a wide variety of dates for the minimum age of the earth.

You haven't read far enough. If you do you'll find that the method you like -- counting intervals is used to determine absolute dates and the counting methods agree with radiometric dating methods which also agree with calendar dates given by people who "were there". It is [b]not/b just the minimum dates that are given. It is actual matches between widely varying methods that are the "correlations" being discussed.

If you wish to disagree with this you're going to have to actually read the information supplied. We have months so it isn't a rush. I have reading of my own to do on the helium diffusion method too.

 ok, what do you want me to do? Research how normal clocks work and find something that effects them all. What would discussing the finer points of water clocks and pocket watches achieve? If we can't transfer this analogy to natural clocks then what is the point? Yes, some things may impact natural and man-made clocks, but not necessarily. going into the details of how man-made clocks work is not the issue.

The analogy here will carry over to the geological examples we will actually be discussing. Arm waving that there might be something affecting them all to produce the same error doesn't cut it here or there. You don't need to know the details of any of the workings of the clocks to realize there is very, very, very, very unlikely to be something to affect all of them to produce a wrong duration that all agree. That is enough for me to assign a high level of confidence in the conclusion until further facts come in. If it isn't for you; if you require 100 % confidence before you stop saying "We have no clue." then you will never have a clue.

 btw, won't be here this weekend, I'll be back next week

Enjoy the weekend. There is no deadline to all of this (other than I am getting a bit older :S).

 This message is a reply to: Message 46 by Arphy, posted 12-04-2009 6:15 AM Arphy has replied

 Replies to this message: Message 50 by Arphy, posted 12-09-2009 3:19 AM NosyNed has taken no action

NosyNed
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Posts: 8971
Joined: 04-04-2003

 Message 48 of 51 (538263) 12-04-2009 11:12 PM Reply to: Message 41 by slevesque12-03-2009 1:55 AM

Issues with the 'experiment'
 In essence, he made a classic textbook experiment. He had a hypothesis (accelerated nuclear decay), he developped it to the point of finding a way to test his hypothesis. He made the prediction about what the results should be if his hypothesis is accurate. He made the experiment, and the results validated his prediction.

The entire experiment depends on using helium diffusion as a good time measuring method. It can be used as such but is know to be loaded with difficulties of getting it right.

Humphrey's made errors in his calculations which he dismisses as not answering the huge difference between the diffusion time he gets and the times form radiometric measurements. This misses the point. The errors mean that his predicitions are not matched with the observations.

 Sure he could rerun the experiment at another location, with other zircon. I could even predict to you that the results would be similar, in my opinion. The only thing, of course, preventing him from doing so is money. It's hard to find finance for this kind of stuff; since creationist research like this is financed by privates.

The location he choose is an area of extra non radiogenic helium that may or may not be a coincidence but it is not handled in his paper. Other YEC writers (Gentry) note that there could be excess non radiogenic helium involved.

 Besides, this experiment was done in the broader RATE research group. It isn't an isolated case selectively chosen, but it finds even more weight when viewed within the whole research.

This result should certainly be viewed within the entirety of dating work where it sticks out as a very, very unlikely outlier.

The RATE research concluded that radiometric methods do in fact yield an old earth. They simply decided that this can not be right and somehow, someday an explanation will be found. They have no such explanation.

 Finally, I'll say that the result doesn't contradict the dating methods. He is saying that there is 1,5billion years worth of uranium decay, but only 6000 years worth of helium diffusion. Humphreys explains it by saying the decay was faster in the past (much faster), Henke explains it by saying that the diffusion rates were smaller in the past (much smaller).

We know that helium diffusion dating is an uncertain proposition for a number of perfectly clear reasons.

We also know that if decay was much faster in the past then the heat produced is prohibitive to life on earth. The RATE group agrees with this but decides that there must be a way for it to be handled but don't know what it is.

From that point on they are not doing science. They need a miracle.

 This message is a reply to: Message 41 by slevesque, posted 12-03-2009 1:55 AM slevesque has replied

 Replies to this message: Message 49 by slevesque, posted 12-08-2009 3:45 AM NosyNed has taken no action

slevesque
Member (Idle past 3919 days)
Posts: 1456
Joined: 05-14-2009

 Message 49 of 51 (538582) 12-08-2009 3:45 AM Reply to: Message 48 by NosyNed12-04-2009 11:12 PM

Re: Issues with the 'experiment'
 The entire experiment depends on using helium diffusion as a good time measuring method. It can be used as such but is know to be loaded with difficulties of getting it right.Humphrey's made errors in his calculations which he dismisses as not answering the huge difference between the diffusion time he gets and the times form radiometric measurements. This misses the point. The errors mean that his predicitions are not matched with the observations.

It would help if you identified which errors you are referring to (Henke as 15pages of''errors'')

I do think that overall, the errors that are legitimate are very minor ones, and that they don't fall out of the two sigma error bars, meaning that the experimental results still fall into the prediction.

 he location he choose is an area of extra non radiogenic helium that may or may not be a coincidence but it is not handled in his paper. Other YEC writers (Gentry) note that there could be excess non radiogenic helium involved.

The location was chosen because the content % of helium in these zircons were known, thus predicting the diffusivity possible.

About extraneous helium contaminating the zircons, I think it should be put into perspective. It is two steps: first you need to get the helium into the zircon. Henke makes a pretty vague scenario of how maybe it could have contaminated it. Because he needs to bring into it 60% of 1,5Billion years worth of uranium decay. That is a lot. Not only that, but there is no evidence about any of what he is alluding to ever took place, it is only speculation.

Second, the contamination must stay there. This is where it ultimately fails, because even though his scenario is plausible (but unlikely), his method to keep the helium in the zircon fails. He suggests that the current pressure (and possibly even higher pressure in the past) would keep it there. But as humphreys explained, the pressure has little to no effect on the diffusion rate in zircons.

I think the experimenter doesn't propose this as an explanation because he knows that pressure is a non-factor. (Which is why he simply measured the diffusivity in a vacuum.)

This result should certainly be viewed within the entirety of dating work where it sticks out as a very, very unlikely outlier.

 The RATE research concluded that radiometric methods do in fact yield an old earth. They simply decided that this can not be right and somehow, someday an explanation will be found. They have no such explanation.

You oppose these results with the results of radiometric dating, but this is probably a misrepresentation of the data.

The RATE results show that nuclear decay rates were not constant in the past, and so you need to oppose them to the evidence we have that the decay rates were constant.

 We know that helium diffusion dating is an uncertain proposition for a number of perfectly clear reasons.

Uncertain for someone like Henke, who magnifies details to enormous proportions.

Besides, since when do such ''uncertain'' methods get predicted so accurately ?

 We also know that if decay was much faster in the past then the heat produced is prohibitive to life on earth. The RATE group agrees with this but decides that there must be a way for it to be handled but don't know what it is.From that point on they are not doing science. They need a miracle.

This is pretty dichotomic. You point out that their hypothesis poses another problem, and then you point out that the RATE group acknowledges the problem and says that this is still an unanwered question.

But astonishingly, you claim right after this that they aren't doing science! May I ask if this is because there is an unanswered question ? (Because I did think that those type of questions were the primary building blocks of science)

 This message is a reply to: Message 48 by NosyNed, posted 12-04-2009 11:12 PM NosyNed has taken no action

Arphy
Member (Idle past 3711 days)
Posts: 185
From: New Zealand
Joined: 08-23-2009

 Message 50 of 51 (538666) 12-09-2009 3:19 AM Reply to: Message 47 by NosyNed12-04-2009 12:32 PM

Re: Matching Clocks
 We don't actually have or have to have a correct clock as we usually think of it since in no case are we really measuring the time of day. What we are measuring is a duration.
true, so time is relative.

 It sounds like you won't trust any time measurement at all then. So you might as well step out of this debate since it is about a time measurement in the end.
I didn't say that. I did however say
 arphy writes:However I don't conclusivly trust any watch that has not been experienced throughout it's whole life.

 Since at no time has any one carefully counted time duration for more than years or maybe a few decades you suggest that there are no methods for measuring durations that you will accept.
The first qualification is that the start of the watch is experienced and recorded. Throughout the life the time shown on the watch needs to be compared to other watches and checked that it is still operating. In other words it needs to be experienced. If you don't know the history of the watch then no i don't trust it, there are far too many factors that can influence it for those types of watches to be useful.

 The conclusion may be arrived at with a high degree of confidence or a lower one but it is often still possible to come to a interim conclusion that is somewhat better than "I have no clue."
hmm... you seem to have a problem with the fact that some things are unknowable. Sorry, that's just the way it is, especially with the past, things get lost.

 In the case of the clocks I would give a rather high degree of confidence if all the types of clocks agreed, very high in fact. Why wouldn't you?
I agree, if all clocks agreed with each other then this would be strong evidence. But, even this i cannot fully trust to give us an accurate date because of the reasons above. But, anyway, i don't think this is a question that will concern me much because not all clocks agree. It is purely hypothetical and has no place in reality.

 You haven't read far enough. If you do you'll find that the method you like -- counting intervals is used to determine absolute dates and the counting methods agree with radiometric dating methods which also agree with calendar dates given by people who "were there". It is not just the minimum dates that are given. It is actual matches between widely varying methods that are the "correlations" being discussed.
Great and up to those dates I think I probably agree with the dating. It is the dating beyond these points that i have problems with. Do you want to go into detail into one of these methods? Maybe ice core dating?

 Arm waving that there might be something affecting them all to produce the same error doesn't cut it here or there. You don't need to know the details of any of the workings of the clocks to realize there is very, very, very, very unlikely to be something to affect all of them to produce a wrong duration that all agree.
Great, as evolutionists like to point out, improbable doesn't mean impossible. Anyway, as i said before, this point is irrelevant to the actual discussion unless you can prove that all dating methods agree.

 This message is a reply to: Message 47 by NosyNed, posted 12-04-2009 12:32 PM NosyNed has taken no action

 Replies to this message: Message 51 by Arphy, posted 02-11-2010 3:45 AM Arphy has taken no action

Arphy
Member (Idle past 3711 days)
Posts: 185
From: New Zealand
Joined: 08-23-2009

 Message 51 of 51 (546468) 02-11-2010 3:45 AM Reply to: Message 50 by Arphy12-09-2009 3:19 AM

Re: Matching Clocks
Hi Guys.
I've been a bit busy of late. To save me going through endless pages of debates to try and find a suitable discussion to jump into, did any of you want to reply to the last post in this thread? or continue this thread on in general. If not at the moment I guess it's back to joining into the fray for the time being, but feel free to start this thread up again anytime you want. Good to see all of you are still active. Especially you slevesque, good to know you're still toughing it out against the masses.
See ya all round,

Arphy

 This message is a reply to: Message 50 by Arphy, posted 12-09-2009 3:19 AM Arphy has taken no action

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