This is a blog to discuss philosophy, chess, politics,
C. S. Lewis, or whatever it is that I'm in the mood to discuss.
I'm glad the link ended with a quote from Fred Hoyle, one of the most brilliant cosmologists of the 20th Century. Sir Fred argued for decades against the "Big Bang" theory (a term he actually coined) in favor of his own "Steady State" cosmology, until finally convinced by mounting evidence, he concluded the Big Bang was probably right after all. Hoyle was also the discoverer of how heavy elements came to exist in the universe (forged in the cores of supermassive stars that blew up billions of years ago).Hoyle was an outspoken atheist for most of his life, but alongside his abandonment of Steady State cosmology, he also repudiated atheism in his later years, saying he was convinced beyond all reasonable doubt that the universe was the product of intentional, intelligent design.
"Oh, but there are no such papers."That's right! And don't you dare forget it!
The paper cited was published by Wessex Institute of Technology, which has a history of support for religious pseudoscience and not following established peer review processes.http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Wessex_Institute_of_TechnologySee the section on Design and nature.When the ID community decides to follow established scientific method and peer review processes, publishing in mainstream peer-reviewed journals, then they may have a claim to being real scientists.
im-skeptical:The topic of "design and nature" includes things like "green architecture" which have nothing to do with ID theories. I think that the journal does a decent job of reviewing papers from a design perspective. It has been unfairly targeted, for example, by false submissions claiming to have done non-existent researchandthen claiming this proved lack of revew: after all, if you have ever done such a submission, you would know that many conferences will provisionally accept an abstract without reviewing any of the actual data, expecting data that is to be presented for the first time at a conference.Of course, the topic of design for a journal is not biology. The paper was NOT likely reviewed for rigorousness as to its BIOLOGY. Here are more ID style journay articles that ALSO are NOT biology but I am sure WERE peer reviewed: Are You Living In a Computer Simulation? ORIGINAL Nick Bostrom. Philosophical Quarterly, 2003, Vol. 53, No. 211, pp. 243-255.How to Live in a Simulation. Robin Hanson (2001) Journal of Evolution and Technology, Vol. 7. The Matrix as Metaphysics. David Chalmers (2003).
Here are some relevant articles that discuss WIT and their peer review practices:http://churchoftherebarjesus.blogspot.com/2009/10/forays-into-mendacious-world-of.htmlhttp://www.cg.tuwien.ac.at/~wp/videa-paper.htmlSome notable quotes:"WIT seems to be operating what might be termed a cash-for-credibility scam.""We believe that Wessex Institute of Technology (or at least some people there) profit in a very dirty way from the international pressure on scientists to have long publication lists."Interesting reading.
im-skeptical,You seem to have stepped in it with your criticism of the WIT. I went to the link you provided (in your first posting), and there doesn't seem to be anything untoward about the Institute. As for the first link in your second posting, I think the subtitle for the blog says it all - it's not an objective source of information. The second link is a rather hyperbolic complaint about the WIT's practice of accepting papers that flout orthodoxy.Heck, in a conversation below this one, you said you "despised" orthodoxy. You ought to be applauding WIT's position here.
"and there doesn't seem to be anything untoward about the Institute."Not unless you can read."I think the subtitle for the blog says it all - it's not an objective source of information."So you can disregard his point because he is atheist. And I can disregard what DI says because they are not scientists."The second link is a rather hyperbolic complaint about the WIT's practice of accepting papers that flout orthodoxy."Flout orthodoxy? Those papers were patently absurd. They were submitted to test whether this institution employs any standards at all for publication, and it turns out they don't.
That's a pretty low bar for what passes as a peer reviewed paper. A peer review usually consists of a jury of one's peers, i.e., one's colleagues who are qualified to review one's work. The International Journal of Design & Nature and Ecodynamics doesn't qualify as a scientific journal, it's a journal that will take a hodgepodge of topics on everything from Biosciences, to Epistemology, to Economics, to Arts and Aesthetics. Does the JDNE actually have people who are qualified to review work in each of those fields? Or will they accept just about any submission, so long as it isn't replete with grammatical or spelling errors? The JDNE's practices are even suspicious apart from the helpful links which Skep provided.
Apparently, 'Science!' fetishists don't care to realize that *all* scientific 'peer review' sets a very low bar.
"So you can disregard his point because he is atheist. And I can disregard what DI says because they are not scientists."Huh? You structure that sentence as though the terms "atheist" and "scientist" were somehow synonymous. If you believe that, you'll believe anything.
"Huh? You structure that sentence as though the terms "atheist" and "scientist" were somehow synonymous. If you believe that, you'll believe anything."What I was doing was juxtaposing your reason for skepticism with mine. You disregard what people say because the don't share your religious belief, and I disregard what people say when it has been seen by the greater scientific community as bunkum. Draw whatever inference you will, but between the two of us, one seems willing to believe the bunkum, and it isn't me.
"You disregard what people say because the don't share your religious belief"Absolutely false. I disregarded your source blog because it titled itself "Bible studies for atheistsand anyone else who takesreligion seriously". If you can't recognize that that is pure and simple blatant bias (not to mention uncivil, ill-mannered, and downright rude), then you are either off-the-chart biased yourself or just blind. Do you also think either MSNBC or FOX are objective sources of the news?For the record, I have enormous respect for many people who don't share my religious belief. I've already mentioned in a previous comment my admiration for John Bunyan. I also appreciate Homer, Virgil, Aeschylus, Laozi (sometimes spelled Lao Tsu), Walt Whitman, Herman Wouk, and the Dali Lama (and many, many others) - none of whom share my religious beliefs. Many of my favorite musicians are from Mali - all of them Muslims.
I wonder how you know that, Ilion.
"If you can't recognize that that is pure and simple blatant bias (not to mention uncivil, ill-mannered, and downright rude), then you are either off-the-chart biased yourself or just blind."I think you're reading more into that title than it says. Please remember that many atheists are not ignorant of religious beliefs and understanding. Many of them are ex-believers who came to that position by studying their religion and gaining a deeper understanding than most believers have. Why do you think it's "uncivil, ill-mannered, and downright rude" to state an objective of learning about the bible without the goal of imparting religious belief?
Let me say again that an academic design journal is one which overlaps with the industry art journals in intent, and so it is bound to be somewhere between Vogue and PNAS in rigor,and for what it is I don't see a lack of rigor and review!I doubt an academic biologist would get much of any positive credit in his review committee for publishing there as opposed to a biology journal, however.What's amazing is the amount of speculative stuff published without ANY protest by the atheistic blogs, in the philosophy journals (references in an above post) on reality as a simulation, something which surely hits the SF genre level, well below the design journal level in empirical rigor, if I may say so :).
"Why do you think it's "uncivil, ill-mannered, and downright rude" to state an objective of learning about the bible without the goal of imparting religious belief?"Because that is not the intent of the banner. The clear meaning of the wording is to say that atheists take religion seriously, but believers do not. It was intentionally worded so as to be insulting while providing plausible denial when this is pointed out. It's an old trick - in politics, they call it a dog whistle. You can read about the practice HERE.
"I wonder how you know that, Ilion."Know which? That 'peer review' is a very low standard in *all* fields of science, or that 'Science!' fetishists will refuse to understand this?In both cases, simple observation.
I seriously wonder, in this digital age, just how long the very concept of "peer reviewed" is going to last. For instance, we once had a news environment where no story got printed until it passed muster with the paper's (or the TV news station's) editor. Now we have internet blogs where anyone can put out whatever he feels and doesn't have to screen the content with anyone. Once upon a time, you wouldn't see a Catholic publication out there without the obligatory imprimatur or nihil obstat gracing its copyright page. Now there are ten thousand "Catholic" blogs of every imaginable persuasion, subject only to the whims of the webmaster.How long before science succumbs to this juggernaut? My prediction: within this decade.
Point taken, William. However, the Evolution News and Views website claimed that Halsmer's paper counts as a peer reviewed scientific paper. And it does, but only if we set the bar for what counts as a peer reviewed scientific paper very, very low.And Ilíon, you aren't qualified to judge the rigor of the peer review process. You may sneer at me for being a credentialist again, but you have to take into account the fact that one becomes qualified to judge another's work by first submitting his work for judgement. Technicality and form do matter, and if you don't know either, then you can't judge for quality.
"And Ilíon, you aren't qualified to judge the rigor of the peer review process ..."What a fool.
"What a fool."It seems we are all fools. Tell me, do you see yourself as a fool as well?
Here's a news item suggesting Illion is right about the lack of peer review in getting something into press.
William,Any publication of bogus papers in peer-reviewed journals is deplorable. At least the IEEE (which is an engineering society, by the way) is withdrawing those papers.
"Any publication of bogus papers in peer-reviewed journals is deplorable."Especially when they show that many submissions to journals normally thought to be "peer reviewed journals" are not peer reviewed at all, since conference submissions often are not? See the above discussion?
William: "Here's a news item suggesting Illion is right about the lack of peer review in getting something into press."That "peer-review" is "broken" (*) isn't even an open secret -- it's widely known and acknowledged that the process isn't delivering the goods it was intended or claimed to deliver.But that fool, that intellectually dishonest hypocrite, wasn't merely claiming that *he* is ignorant of certain widely known facts (**), he was asserting that *I* have no right/standing to draw the only conclusion that can be rationally-and-logically drawn from the widely known evidence (***).Isn't it amusing about these 'Science!' fetishist fools that they constantly assert that non-fetishists are never qualified to draw rational-and-logical conclusions/judgments about 'Science!' -- unless it's to agree with the anti-logical "conclusions" from which they start -- while asserting that *they* are qualified to pass judgment on, well, everything?(*) Which commonly made assessment of the current state "peer-review" presupposes that there was ever a time when it wasn't broken.(**) And, even if he had been making that claim, it would be extremely difficult to view such claimed ignorance as anything other that willful ignorance, which is to say, intellectual hypocrisy/dishonesty. But, even with giving him the benefit of the doubt on that, in the present context of his assertion that I (or anyone else) have no standing "to judge the rigor of the peer review process", we come right back 'round to intellectual hypocrisy/dishonesty as the only reasonable explanation for that assertion.(***) Modern science doesn't deal in truth. And, increasingly, due to the 'Science!' fetishists' need to protect the false paradigm of science-as-applied-atheism, it doesn't even deal in logic or evidence.
"... to paraphrase Winston Churchill’s invocation of a famous quote about democracy, peer review is the worst way to weed out bad science and promote good science, except for all the others that have been tried. One thing’s for sure, if there’s a sine qua non of an anti-science crank, it’s that he will attack peer review relentlessly ..." - Orac, in ScienceBlogshttp://scienceblogs.com/insolence/2010/08/11/its-that-time-again-broken-peer-review/Here's another take. Note that for the major first-rate journals cited, the acceptance rate is well below 10%. What do you suppose WIT's acceptance rate for papers is?http://www.the-scientist.com/?articles.view/articleNo/23672/title/Is-Peer-Review-Broken-/Finally, the IEEE is a very large, worldwide organization that publishes numerous journals, and serves as an umbrella institution for many affiliate organizations. It appears that some of those affiliates have acted in much the same way as WIT, accepting bogus papers to publish for profit. This is damaging to the reputation of the IEEE, and they have taken steps to correct those problems, unlike WIT."Recently, many fake papers appeared in several IEEE conferences, because the IEEE grants its name and its logo to many local organizers who supposedly do not conduct a thorough review process. It is being argued that such conferences only exist to make money out of researchers that are looking for a simple way to publish their work, in particular publishers like IARIA, http://www.iaria.org, HIGHSCI http://www.highsci.org and SRP http://www.scirp.org appear questionable. As seen from their web sites, IARIA, HIGHSCI and SRP use the name of IEEE and the IEEE publishing services, thus attracting numerous papers."http://bogus-software.blogspot.com/2009/06/bogus-conferences.html
You guys are all arguing about sand castles as the tide comes in. Peer Review, if it is not dead now, will be within a very short time (see my previous comment). The question is, what's going to replace it?
@planks length:"The question is, what's going to replace it?"The simple matter of fact is that with the Malthusian explosion of published papers in our Publish or Perish culture, a good deal of them is never decently scrutinized simply because no one gives a damn. The real scrutiny of a paper is in the use that the paper is put to, and if no one cares about, no one is using it, so in the end things probably balance out. Or to put it contrapositively -- and this is true in mathematics, which is what I can talk about with some expertise, things are necessarily different in *experimental* areas of the empirical sciences -- if a paper is really interesting, and if what is in it is put to use, then it will be scrutinized and if it has flaws, you can bet that they will be found sooner or later.As far as what is going to replace it, by the above it should be obvious what my answer is: nothing will. Well, in mathematics, the situation may be improved in *some* respects (but definitely not all, not even the most important ones), if proof checkers progress to the point of actually being usable by the average mathematician. Then on submission, the paper will be accompanied by a program that contains the check of proof-correctness, and the peer-reviewing work is softened a bit. But only a bit as already nowadays many reviewers do *not* check for proof correctness and on reasonably plausible grounds. And besides, this only helps mathematics. It is largely irrelevant for the other sciences, even where there is a strong mathematical component like in theoretical physics.
1. I'm not a Science! fetishist, Ilíon. I just don't have the same irrational distrust of academia as you do. (Honestly, for someone who is so freakin' sensitive about what others say about him, you'd think that Ilíon would try harder to avoid lying about other people.)2. I never said that I was qualified to pass judgement on "well, everything." I have no problem admitting that I'm not qualified to peer review scientific papers, and that therefore I have no standing to judge the peer review process; I don't have science background, nor have I ever written or submitted scientific papers for peer review. If I actually partook in science's peer review system I'd have the standing to judge how rigorous it is.3. Quit being so tetchy about everything, Ilíon. You aren't a special snowflake; your opinions don't matter; you aren't smarter or more logical than everyone else; and you certainly don't have a better handle on the truth. (Haven't you seen or read Fight Club?) You're just an average guy, which isn't a bad thing. I'm an average guy, Skep is an average guy, Crude is an average guy. You fit right in, really.
A = !A: "I'm not a Science! fetishist, Ilíon"Ah! So, it was someone else going by the name 'Dan Gillson' who wrote "And Ilíon, you aren't qualified to judge the rigor of the peer review process."Well, obviously, that's the intellectually dishonest fellow to whom I was referring as a 'Science!' fetishist.
I wonder why said fellow said what he said. Maybe if we looked through the comments again, we’d find out.
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