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Author Topic:   Chance as a sole-product of the Universe
dwise1
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Posts: 4715
Joined: 05-02-2006
Member Rating: 5.0


(1)
Message 204 of 263 (851310)
04-22-2019 11:03 AM
Reply to: Message 202 by AZPaul3
04-22-2019 10:47 AM


Re: Necessary Certainty
"Creator", in the idiom, denotes some kind of entity with will in control.

Does it really? Or isn't that a reflection of our tendency to anthropomorphize? For example, I am thoroughly convinced that all Apple software has an attitude problem with me because I'm a retired software engineer who knows how computers work and how they should behave. Of course Apple software doesn't have any attitude problem (it was just written with a bias against anyone who knows anything about computers), yet we describe it in that manner. Similarly, we still speak of sunrise and sunset at the same time that we know that that's not what's actually happening (the world turns, you know).

I'm seeing that as a fundamental problem. We normals try to use language to describe what we observe happening (AKA "reality"), while the fundies and creationists try to use language to change reality to fit their own whim, a form of word magick fit for lawyers and theologians.


This message is a reply to:
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Replies to this message:
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dwise1
Member
Posts: 4715
Joined: 05-02-2006
Member Rating: 5.0


Message 205 of 263 (851311)
04-22-2019 11:12 AM
Reply to: Message 195 by FLRW
04-22-2019 9:16 AM


Re: Necessary Certainty
If you look at ourworldindata.org you will see as recently as 1800, the health conditions of our ancestors were such that 43% of the world's newborns died before their 5th birthday.

I'll give you a personal data point. My mother's mother gave birth six times, but only two children survived. That was in the USA in the early 20th Century.


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dwise1
Member
Posts: 4715
Joined: 05-02-2006
Member Rating: 5.0


(2)
Message 206 of 263 (851312)
04-22-2019 11:20 AM
Reply to: Message 203 by FLRW
04-22-2019 10:58 AM


Re: Necessary Certainty
Please do not feel discouraged.

Every statistical data point has some kind of causality behind it. The fundamental danger is in applying the wrong causality to that data point.

To protect against applying wrong causalities, the scientific approach includes trying to weed out wrong causalities.

In science and engineering, this is called "rigor". It is a necessary discipline which can be ... rigorous.

You are being asked to be properly rigorous. That is no insult, but rather a basic requirement.


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dwise1
Member
Posts: 4715
Joined: 05-02-2006
Member Rating: 5.0


Message 209 of 263 (851348)
04-22-2019 3:15 PM
Reply to: Message 208 by ringo
04-22-2019 12:05 PM


Re: Necessary Certainty
I tend to attribute that to Reagan's false meme of the "traditional nuclear family".

Part of that was the higher rate of infant and young-child mortality. You had to pump out more babies to compensate for most of them dying off.

The other part was pure economics which Reagan had ignored. The "traditional" nuclear family is instead an aberration created by the Industrial Revolution. Instead, the truly traditional family is the extended family of rural societies in which multiple generations and and aunts and uncles and even cousins all contributed to the survival of the family. It was largely moving to the city for the factory jobs that destroyed that support system. That happened in the USA in the 1930's, but in most countries in the world since WWII we've seen a shift from rural populations to large cities.

In rural agrarian populations, large family sizes are advantageous as are extended families: all the more hands to help out. In urban industrial populations, large family sizes are just an extra burden to support (especially with child-labor laws, which I support) and extended families are not much help at all.


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dwise1
Member
Posts: 4715
Joined: 05-02-2006
Member Rating: 5.0


Message 240 of 263 (861477)
08-22-2019 4:34 AM
Reply to: Message 239 by Tangle
08-21-2019 4:35 PM


Re: Not A Chance
All you need to know as a gambler is that chance and probability ARE the same and that you have no influence on either no matter what you think and no matter how hard you pray.

Unfortunately, my university textbook on probability didn't talk much about chance.

My take on it is that the two words, chance and probability, basically describe the same thing but also two distinctly different things.

Chance describes the situation in which things are not predetermined. You flip a coin or roll dice. Nobody knows ahead of time the outcome of such events, therefore the outcome is up to chance.

There is another situation, one alluded to at least twice by Gene Roddenberry [FOOTNOTE]: stochastic processes. The idea is that the physical universe is so deterministic that if we were to know all the factors and variables to a problem then we would always know the outcome. For example, let's take rolling two standard dice; eg, the outcome of rolling two cubes with differently numbered unique dots on each side with certain given initial orientations, intimate details of their construction, etc. If we were to know all those many factors (which is humanly impossible), then those processes would all be deterministic, no chance involved.

But since we cannot possibly know all those many different factors

BTW, to delve into just some of the variables to think of when making dice, look into that work of retired USAF enlisted and wargamer, Lou Zocchi of GameScience.


[FOOTNOTE]
Gene Roddenberry created two different story-lines about androids that I am aware of: Androids CDR Data and Questor of The Questor Tapes (1974). Both androids performed the exact same task (Data in The Royale (S2E12--1989March27)).
In both scenes, the android finds himself at a craps table and must win the toss. Both androids input all possible factors (including the feel of the craps table), perform the calculations, and make the winning toss.

The idea of stochastics is that such computations are beyond our ability to perform them, so they are better dealt with as probabilistic.


This message is a reply to:
 Message 239 by Tangle, posted 08-21-2019 4:35 PM Tangle has responded

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