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Author Topic:   Working Hypothesis -- what is the value?
New Cat's Eye
Inactive Member

Message 6 of 92 (735429)
08-14-2014 12:02 PM
Reply to: Message 5 by Stile
08-14-2014 11:20 AM

Re: Bass Ackward
This is horrible science. This is creation-science. This is science led by it's pre-made conclusion, not by it's evidence.
Good science goes from the data and moves from there... with no leading-pre-made-conclusion guiding it.
You can still do good science with a leading pre-made conclusion. It happens when people are trying to invent technologies, or create new drugs.
We use design controls for new product development and a lot of times we'll already know exactly what we want the product to do, we just got to figure out how to get there from here.

This message is a reply to:
 Message 5 by Stile, posted 08-14-2014 11:20 AM Stile has replied

Replies to this message:
 Message 7 by Stile, posted 08-14-2014 2:56 PM New Cat's Eye has replied

New Cat's Eye
Inactive Member

Message 8 of 92 (735435)
08-14-2014 3:28 PM
Reply to: Message 7 by Stile
08-14-2014 2:56 PM

Re: Bass Ackward
If you search for longer and find more and more evidence for a bear in the area, and no evidence for a Yeti... then you can start saying "this is evidence that the 'yeti' was a bear all along..."
That's exactly how I read the OP. "This is evidence that the (thing that is referred to in legends as the) yeti is (actually) a bear (instead)".
Maybe it's the amount of evidence found?
Well, what counts? Does the eye-witness report of a large upright mammal roaming the Himalayas count?
I'd say so. Its not good evidence but its something to work with. It at least points us in a direction.
And if you then find bear fur in the areas of the reports, then I think that can lead us towards a working hypothesis that the thing that was seen, called the yeti, is actually a bear instead.
There is, however, something wrong with getting stuck on the 'yeti' aspect. At some point, that needs to be dropped or you're not following the evidence.
I suppose it depends on what you're trying to do.
If you're trying to figure out what the legends of the yeti stem from, then I wouldn't have a problem with keeping your hypothesis framed around that word.
If you're just trying to find a large mammal in the area, then there's really no reason to bring up the yeti in the first place.
Building something is a bit different.
You would 'drop the yeti' part by dropping any further development down a certain avenue if you identified that it was taking you away from your design goal.
Heh, sometimes the people paying the bills really really want their idea to come to fruition... and they might tell you to keep trying.
You would then attempt to 'find the yeti' again by trying something else (possibly new). And you'd be doing testing to see how close you're getting (this would be 'finding unique evidence of the yeti').
And often we have to tell them: Honestly, you just can't get there from here. We need to start a new route.
They don't like to hear that. lol, I've actually had a customer tell me to "work some magic"... I literally told them that there's no such thing as magic in chemistry. This was a grown-ass man. Desire sometimes outweighs realism.
Ah, but now I'm just rambling...

This message is a reply to:
 Message 7 by Stile, posted 08-14-2014 2:56 PM Stile has replied

Replies to this message:
 Message 9 by Stile, posted 08-15-2014 8:32 AM New Cat's Eye has replied
 Message 11 by NoNukes, posted 08-15-2014 1:31 PM New Cat's Eye has replied

New Cat's Eye
Inactive Member

Message 10 of 92 (735448)
08-15-2014 12:26 PM
Reply to: Message 9 by Stile
08-15-2014 8:32 AM

Re: Bass Ackward
Perhaps it's an internal decision...
Sure, without us having any of the actual data and hypotheses, the only person who really knows your motivation is yourself.
And I do think its that motivation that determines if you're gonna end up doing good science or not.
Edited by Catholic Scientist, : No reason given.

This message is a reply to:
 Message 9 by Stile, posted 08-15-2014 8:32 AM Stile has seen this message but not replied

New Cat's Eye
Inactive Member

Message 12 of 92 (735453)
08-15-2014 2:44 PM
Reply to: Message 11 by NoNukes
08-15-2014 1:31 PM

Re: Bass Ackward
Where I am going with this, is that there are already plenty of excuses to blame Yeti sightings on bears. What new evidence is likely to be found by following up on RAZD's working hypothesis?
Fur, scat, footprints, or even an actual bear.

This message is a reply to:
 Message 11 by NoNukes, posted 08-15-2014 1:31 PM NoNukes has replied

Replies to this message:
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