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Skeptical Info Overload

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posted on Nov, 4 2005 @ 01:04 AM
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Originally posted by nightwing

Further reading would show the types of
dummies out there, and subcategories. In the dummy photo, a careful look shows many things. Cinder block
construction. Concrete floor, and partial details of a light fixture. Why cant you see OUT THE WINDOW ?
Is that a gurney from MASH or what? I see 5 dummies, the first is nude, the next three have some sort of
jacket, the last appears in coveralls, and none of the clothing is distinctively military. Dummie 1,3,4 appear
to be significantly more massive than dummie 2. The last dummie is clothed so its mass is indeterminate.
Dummie 2 shows either upper thigh damage or significant difference from the rest.


And I will never replace testimony with conjecture!

You really must be joking!




posted on Nov, 4 2005 @ 01:44 AM
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"And I will never replace testimony with conjecture! " == l_s

A lesson I hope others will pick up on. But without conjecture, most of the
postings on ATS would not exist.


"You really must be joking!" == l_s

Refering to your quote ? No. Just use your eyes and see if we can agree on what we see.
The "concrete floor" is a best guess based upon flooring types I can eliminate. The non-military
clothing implication is also a best guess since the photo is a B/W, and the last dummie could
be in an old flight suit if the color was right. Other than that, I reported what I see. What would
you suggest that you see differently ?



posted on Nov, 4 2005 @ 02:44 PM
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Originally posted by nightwing
"Hynek concluded that some reports represented genuine new empirical observations." == Hynek/Hal9000

As have I. But that doesn't mean the sky is falling. Most likely a chance to make an extraordinary find
in the realm of physical science.

"The fact that someone says something doesn't mean it's true. Doesn't mean they're lying, but it doesn't mean it's true." == Carl Sagan from
Howard Roark's excellent reference. And bears some additional emphasis.
I recall a short film I viewed as part of a law course in college. After the film, students were asked to report what they had observed.
......................


Zzzzzzzzz.... Hmph, um what?

(just kidding
)

Hey nightwing, how's it going? Still going on about Roswell I see.

Let me just ask you then, if you don't think any alien craft and/or bodies were recovered at Roswell. What do you think happened if anything? Do you think the story the Airforce tells is true? Or do you think the whole story is a bunch of mixed up memories?



posted on Nov, 4 2005 @ 02:50 PM
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Great thread and work BTW Dulcimer!

I would add Seth Shostak to the list of Skeptics.

...


Dr. Seth Shostak

SETI Institute Senior Astronomer

Seth is an astronomer with a BA in physics from Princeton and a PhD in astronomy from Caltech, and is involved with the Institute's SETI research. But he's also responsible for much of the outreach activities of the Institute. He is science editor for "The Explorer", gives more than 50 talks annually for both academic and general audiences, and writes magazine articles (and books) about SETI. He also teaches informal education classes on astronomy and other topics in the Bay Area, and is the inventor of the electrical banana, a circumstance he claims has had little positive effect on his life. He is the host for the SETI Institute's weekly radio program Are We Alone?



*****************************************************


I guess what I was getting at in my first post , is that Group consensus is different from consistent independent testimony.

I have to agree with you ( nightwing ) that groups of people with insuficeint information can collectively form " Poor " consensus from "inadequate" observations.

That is completely different from individual testimonies being consistent with other testimonies independent from one another.





[edit on 4-11-2005 by lost_shaman]



posted on Nov, 4 2005 @ 08:42 PM
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And Hello Hal. You sure put a lot into a question. At the risk of putting you further into your nap, I think I shall try and answer
that one but will have to make it a separate post, OK ?

"I guess what I was getting at in my first post , is that Group consensus is different from consistent independent testimony. " == l_s

How ?

"I have to agree with you ( nightwing ) that groups of people with insuficeint information can collectively form " Poor " consensus from "inadequate" observations. " == l_s

You missed the point. The consensus is a way of analyizing independant testimony under "laboratory" conditions. It was also, until recently, a way to
hang the defendant in court.

"That is completely different from individual testimonies being consistent with other testimonies independent from one another. " == l_s

No. Controlling the input versus how people witness was a way to "measure" the results. Like it or not, it was a scientific approach
to measuring testimony.



posted on Nov, 4 2005 @ 11:52 PM
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Originally posted by nightwing

"I guess what I was getting at in my first post , is that Group consensus is different from consistent independent testimony. " == l_s

How ?



O.k. well expanding on your example of Law students and the short Video.

You said



I recall a short film I viewed as part of a law course in college. After the film, students were asked to report what they had observed.

About a week later, we were asked to re-submit our report but were not shown the film again. We shocked ourselves by the difference a week made. Then we were shown the film in slow motion. (around a few seconds worth, less than a minute anyways.) Most of the class (pre-biased by being in a law course) had assumed we were watching a crime. The reports reached a consensus that one person had been shot by another, and many in the class identified the weapon as a handgun, some even suggesting what model and manufacturer. About the only agreement with these classroom testimonies was over half the class agreed that two shots had been fired.

A slow motion view showed a man carrying some books to a lectern, another man who is visible in the edge of the scene, casually waves the BANANA he was eating and moves away from view. The other person moves to wave back and drops some books. The sound of the books hitting the floor is the only sound on the film.

The moral of the lesson, since most were law students, is that you cannot TRUST testimony even when the witness believes what he is saying, and in FACT IS YOU. I do not profess to know if this lesson is still used, but the point was very personally made to student attorneys that testimony IS NOT reliable.



Lets say that we had the chance to go back and interview the Librarian and her testimony was that no one had a gun , but a man was eating a banana and a kid tripped and dropped his books loudly and a woman spilled Diet Coke on a library table .

Then we interviewed a man reading a book in the Library at that time and he told us that he only remembers that a young man dropped his books and distracted him while he was reading.

The Librarian never had met the Man reading the Book , and the Man reading the Book never talked to the Librarian that day.

Do you see how important those individual independent testimonies would be compared to your "Group Consensus" made after evaluating insufficient information.



[edit on 5-11-2005 by lost_shaman]



posted on Nov, 5 2005 @ 12:56 AM
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"O.k. well expanding on your example of Law students and the short Video. " == l_s

Read for content accuracy, if it applies. I said film, not video. If the content is accurate
that dates the story prior to video.

You are still missing the point of "control". There is nobody else to interview. The ONLY witnesses
WERE the consensus. See?



posted on Nov, 5 2005 @ 01:13 AM
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Originally posted by nightwing

You are still missing the point of "control". There is nobody else to interview. The ONLY witnesses WERE the consensus. See?


I think that the Librarian and the Man reading the Book would be witnesses, and the " group " would be evaluators of insufficient information since they weren't actually at the scene and had only watched a short Film that contained minimal and insufficient information who were removed from the actual setting of the events they are trying to reach a "group" consensus about in a controlled setting with admittedly preconceived notions about what they would be shown.

I believe there is a difference.

I would not consider the members of the "group" as "witnesses to the events in the Library on the day in question".

Nor would I consider this "Group Exercise " as evidence that witness testimony can not be trusted as the "group" can not be considered as "witnesses to the events" they are asked to come to a consensus about.









[edit on 5-11-2005 by lost_shaman]



posted on Nov, 5 2005 @ 02:05 AM
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"I think that the Librarian and the Man reading the Book would be witnesses" == l_s

And that is why I really enjoy our conversations. You have an incredible way of stating things that so perfectly
makes my point. And thus leads to the answer I shall give to Hal's question.

Read the story again. There was NO Librarian and NO Man reading the Book. But you do have me acknowledging
bogus witnesses. Precisely what has been happening with Roswell since 1978. And yes, your addition to the story makes
a very great difference, and leads to any conclusion you want to support.



posted on Nov, 5 2005 @ 02:24 AM
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Originally posted by nightwing
"I think that the Librarian and the Man reading the Book would be witnesses" == l_s

And that is why I really enjoy our conversations. You have an incredible way of stating things that so perfectly
makes my point. And thus leads to the answer I shall give to Hal's question.

Read the story again. There was NO Librarian and NO Man reading the Book. But you do have me acknowledging
bogus witnesses. Precisely what has been happening with Roswell since 1978. And yes, your addition to the story makes
a very great difference, and leads to any conclusion you want to support.


But the difference being that you are describing a sociological experiment and making a case for throwing out witness testimony by trying to convince us that a group of law students are witnesses to events in a library.

I only make the statement that if we wanted to know what happened in the library on that day we would go find witnesses from the library on that day , and you can not compare witness testimony from the people on the scene with people who are removed that watched a short film with insufficient information.

And your now saying that because the Law Students didn't see the Librarian or the Man reading a Book on the short film that they are bogus witnesses, but what Library is open without the presence of a Librarian or people reading?

Just because the Group has insufficient information doesn't mean there is a lack of sufficient information.




And yes, your addition to the story makes
a very great difference, and leads to any conclusion you want to support.



Exactly I would much rather support the testimony of the witnesses I could confirm were at the scene rather than support a consensus reached by "Non-Witness evaluators" of insufficient information.

The point was the the witnesses on the scene would be able to give first hand accounts of the events and would not be easily manipulated and you can not compare this type of witness testimony to a group of Law Students that are not actual witnesses to the events they don't have sufficient information about.

I was not showing that I could introduce "Bogus witnesses", simply using these "witnesses" to represent what I would consider to be true "witnesses" to the events.

[edit on 5-11-2005 by lost_shaman]



posted on Nov, 5 2005 @ 02:37 AM
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Context, lost_shaman, context.

You assume from the books dropped that we are in a Library ?
Thus we have a librarian, and people reading.

I did say the "victum" was approaching a "lectern" with books.

And how are your assumptions different from those of the law students who concluded they would be watching a crime ?



posted on Nov, 5 2005 @ 02:55 AM
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Originally posted by nightwing

And how are your assumptions different from those of the law students who concluded they would be watching a crime ?



Well if you were investigating an " event" you would know the source.

Since the "Event" you presented making your point lacked the information of the Location I took the Liberty to assume a location in order to put the events into context.

To make my point I am assuming that I have all the information of the events in order to show that the "Witnesses" that were present on the scene and their testimonies would be more valuable to an investigator than a group of people with insuffeceint information who were not present at the actual scene of the events.





I did say the "victum" was approaching a "lectern" with books.



No. You never said "Victim" you said " a Man ".



[edit on 5-11-2005 by lost_shaman]



posted on Nov, 5 2005 @ 03:21 AM
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"Well if you were investigating an " event" you would know the source." == l_s

Maybe,and maybe not. You need to read more Sherlock Holmes I think. If
you are biased, then yes you would certainly think you did.

"Since the "Event" you presented making your point lacked the information of the Location I took the
Liberty to assume a location in order to put the events into context to make my point I am assuming
that I have all the information of the events in order to show that the "Witnesses" that were present on
the scene and their testimonies would be more valuable to an investigator than a group of people with
insuffeceint information who were not present at the actual scene of the events." == l_s

I could not define modern UFOlogy better than you just have. I would be remiss if I did not point out
that the group of people with insufficient information who were not present at the actual scene are,
in this case, the only and original witnesses. In such a few posts, you have succently demonstrated
the evolution of Roswell. Well done.

Just noticed your edit. Now you are paying attention.



posted on Nov, 5 2005 @ 04:04 AM
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Originally posted by nightwing

I could not define modern UFOlogy better than you just have. I would be remiss if I did not point out
that the group of people with insufficient information who were not present at the actual scene are,
in this case, the only and original witnesses. In such a few posts, you have succently demonstrated
the evolution of Roswell. Well done.



And I might add that you have brilliantly demonstrated the tactics employed by the most ardent Skeptics by reaching for anything that allows you to marginalize and caricature the witness testimony and the facts so that you can make your case appear stronger. In this case an out of context hypothetical story.

Much like the USAF did by trying to explain witness testimony by proclaiming as fact that the witnesses had seen test dummies years after Roswell and this is why bodies were reported at Roswell. Also an out of context hypothetical story.

What was the first thing I said here ? ... "I will not replace witness testimony with conjecture."



con·jec·ture

1. Inference or judgment based on inconclusive or incomplete evidence; guesswork.
2. A statement, opinion, or conclusion based on guesswork:




You aren't supposed to bend the facts and evidence to fit your preferred hypothesis, but rather fit your hypothesis to the facts and evidence.



[edit on 5-11-2005 by lost_shaman]



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