Paths To Knowledge (dot Science)

What is actually real in Objective Reality? How do you know? Now, prove it's real!

Archive for July 3rd, 2009

Extrapolating Climate

Posted by pwl on July 3, 2009

Paraphrasing Al Gore: “It got a little bit warmer in the arctic one day and we don’t know what will happen next year or the year after but I’m here screaming at you that the entire arctic is going to melt just because we extrapolated that it will from a very limited amount of data and Nature won’t disappoint us with it’s natural cycles by cooling off again.”

Of course 2009 is a record breaker for being cold in the arctic and at this point in the summer the arctic temperatures still haven’t risen above zero (they are hovering just below zero).

The Anthropomorphic Global Warming (AGW) Scientists approach to climate change which Al Gore adopted. The above cartoon shows why simplistic thinkers like Al Gore get caught up in silly nonsense and exaggerated claims like he’s made about AGW.

In mathematics, extrapolation is the process of constructing new data points outside a discrete set of known data points. It is similar to the process of interpolation, which constructs new points between known points, but the results of extrapolations are often less meaningful, and are subject to greater uncertainty. It may also mean extension of a method, assuming similar methods will be applicable. Extrapolation may also apply to human experience to project, extend, or expand known experience into an area not known or previously experienced so as to arrive at a (usually conjectural) knowledge of the unknown (e.g. a driver extrapolates road conditions beyond his sight while driving).

The problem with the Climate Models is that they extrapolate on so many levels and in so many ways that that they are essentially meaningless as predictors of climate.

While extrapolation is a useful mathematical tool in so many fields of science, business and medicine it’s value in prediction isn’t dependable as the systems in Nature are not able to be modeled. Yes, that’s right, Nature can’t be modeled as it’s in a category of systems that must be computed in full by the actual system itself in order to find out what is going to actually happen. In other words, Nature must run it’s course for us to know what it’s going to do!

Thanks yet again to xkcd for an amazing cartoon.

Posted in Climate Science, Ethics in Science, Exercise for the Reader (that's you), Rational Thinking, Really Funny, Science Education, Science over Propaganada | 1 Comment »

The Stunning Effectiveness of Homeopathy – NOT!

Posted by pwl on July 3, 2009

The extremely high dilutions in homeopathy have been a main point of criticism. Homeopaths believe that the methodical dilution of a substance, beginning with a 10% or lower solution and working downwards, with shaking after each dilution, produces a therapeutically active “remedy”, in contrast to therapeutically inert water. However, homeopathic remedies are usually diluted to the point where there are no molecules from the original solution left in a dose of the final remedy.[81] Since even the longest-lived noncovalent structures in liquid water at room temperature are only stable for a few picoseconds,[87] critics have concluded that any effect that might have been present from the original substance can no longer exist.[88] No evidence of stable clusters of water molecules was found when homeopathic remedies were studied using NMR.[89]

Furthermore, since water will have been in contact with millions of different substances throughout its history, critics point out that any glass of water is therefore an extreme dilution of almost any conceivable substance, and so by drinking water one would, according to homeopathic principles, receive treatment for every imaginable condition.[90]

Practitioners of homeopathy contend that higher dilutions (fewer potential molecules in each dose) result in stronger medicinal effects. This idea is inconsistent with the observed dose-response relationships of conventional drugs, where the effects are dependent on the concentration of the active ingredient in the body.[82] This dose-response relationship has been confirmed in multitudinous experiments on organisms as diverse as nematodes,[91] rats,[92] and humans.[93]

Physicist Robert L. Park, former executive director of the American Physical Society, has noted that
since the least amount of a substance in a solution is one molecule, a 30C solution would have to have at least one molecule of the original substance dissolved in a minimum of 1,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000 molecules of water. This would require a container more than 30,000,000,000 times the size of the Earth.

Park has also noted that “to expect to get even one molecule of the ‘medicinal’ substance allegedly present in 30X pills, it would be necessary to take some two billion of them, which would total about a thousand tons of lactose plus whatever impurities the lactose contained“.

The laws of chemistry state that there is a limit to the dilution that can be made without losing the original substance altogether. This limit, which is related to Avogadro’s number, is roughly equal to homeopathic potencies of 12C or 24X (1 part in 1024).

Killing your child with the delusional beliefs of Homeopathy:

Going to jail for killing your child with the delusional beliefs of Homeopathy:

Save yourself from homeopathy!

Posted in Bad Ideas, Belief Stricken, Biology, Conspiracy Theory, Double Yikes!!, Eeek!, Ethics in Science, Exercise for the Reader (that's you), Fun, Hard Science Required, Health, Human|Ape, Humbled by Nature, Intelligent Designer - Yeah Right, Proofs Needed, Rational Thinking, Really Funny, Scams, Science Education, Science over Propaganada, Video, Yikes! | Leave a Comment »


Posted by pwl on July 3, 2009


Calculus. (Latin, calculus, a small stone used for counting) is a discipline in mathematics focused on limits, functions, derivatives, integrals, and infinite series, and which constitutes a major part of modern university education. It has two major branches, differential calculus and integral calculus, which are related by the fundamental theorem of calculus. Calculus is the study of change, in the same way that geometry is the study of shape and algebra is the study of equations. A course in calculus is a gateway to other, more advanced courses in mathematics devoted to the study of functions and limits, broadly called mathematical analysis. Calculus has widespread applications in science, economics, and engineering and can solve many problems for which algebra alone is insufficient.

Historically, calculus was called “the calculus of infinitesimals”, or “infinitesimal calculus”. More generally, calculus (plural calculi) may refer to any method or system of calculation guided by the symbolic manipulation of expressions. Some examples of other well-known calculi are propositional calculus, variational calculus, lambda calculus, pi calculus and join calculus.

Read the rest of this entry »

Posted in Awesome, Fun, Get some perspective people, Math, Science Education, Video | 1 Comment »

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