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Occam's Razor

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posted on Apr, 18 2009 @ 02:37 AM
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Occam's razor 

–noun

the maxim that assumptions introduced to explain a thing must not be multiplied beyond necessity.


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Origin:
1900–05; after William of Occam

I wonder how many times we would have ever heard of Occam's Razor if it hadn't been for Jody Foster in "Contact". Probably not as much as we do. It is used in effect to destroy the notion, in general, of the existence of any type of E.T. visition, past or present, to our humble (or not so) planet.

It drives me to question the manner of use in context of UFOs (alien, past and present) as a point in which the simplest conclusion is the fact we haven't been visited, singularly or frequently.

As a race, (humans) it is abundantly obvious that throughout history we have had the need to look skywards for answers. It is telling that we have ancient stories of such events as aliens, not only visiting, but co-mingling with humans - even taking brides and birthing offspring (Sumerian Tablets). Telling is the fact that we, with our great tools of technology and industry, look at great feats of acheivement such as Easter Island and Macchu Picchu - where huge statues face the coast and hats weighing as much as 20tons are meant to adorn these stone figures, where stones are placed so accurately that not even a sheet of paper can penetrate their creases - and have to wonder how this was done without some type of alien assistance.

Then we have stories of such great debate as Roswell 1947, Phoenix Lights 1997, and so on that have yet to be definitively solved or disclosed, with any level of satisfaction, that lend to the truth that we are aware of our place in this universe and our knowledge that "If we are here, we have neighbors out there". The debates that rage on today between Skeptical People and People Who Believe should be evidence enough that we know that something is going on. Point in case; if the skeptical folks know that there is nothing going on it would be moot to debate - you don't debate the facts, you don't debate 1+1=3 if you KNOW it =2.

My point is we all know already. What we really want are the details, the facts of what really is transpiring under our noses. We can debate the details.

Back to Occam's Razor. Just with the mathematics involved in the possibility of intelligent life in our galaxy and the fact of the age of our galaxy, isn't the simplest answer( Occam's Razor ), really; We have been visited and possibly (probably) still are being visited?

It seems the opposite of Occam's Razor would be trying to argue that we haven't been visited. Some even think evolution doesn't effect humans

thinkprogress.org...

others think that we aren't even from this planet originally

www.abovetopsecret.com...

Whether or not we are subject to the twisting of time or we are from Omicron-Persei 8 we may never know, but we do know the answer to whether or not we have been visited by an intelligent life form, not born and raised on Earth...

The maxim that assumptions introduced to explain a thing must not be multiplied beyond necessity.




posted on Apr, 18 2009 @ 03:30 AM
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I like what Einstein had to say about Occam's Razor.

Make things as simple as possible, but not simpler.



posted on Apr, 18 2009 @ 03:57 AM
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Originally posted by esteay812
Occam's razor
–noun
the maxim that assumptions introduced to explain a thing must not be multiplied beyond necessity.

In many instances, I think that Occam's Razor should be renamed to Crockam's Razor, as it's a complete crock of ..... I don't subscribe to most arbitrary Occam's Razor arguments.

Here's the best contradictory point of view that I have to Occam's Razor - The truth is often stranger than fiction.



posted on Apr, 18 2009 @ 02:17 PM
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reply to post by esteay812
 


Occam's Razor is a good way to sort through the many UFO sightings that are reported. If one can find an explanation to fit what was seen, it is the probably one. That does not mean it is the only explanation, or the object was not extraterrestrial in origin, but it does help out when trying to get really good cases.

There are some good cases where Occam's Razor will conclude in favor of flying saucers, and the Lonnie Zamora case is one of them. Another is the late Colonel Gordon Cooper seeing a formation of metallic disks flying while he was on a mission. The disks were not ours or the Soviets, therefore they must come from another world.



posted on Apr, 18 2009 @ 04:24 PM
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Originally posted by esteay812
Back to Occam's Razor. Just with the mathematics involved in the possibility of intelligent life in our galaxy and the fact of the age of our galaxy, isn't the simplest answer( Occam's Razor ), really; We have been visited and possibly (probably) still are being visited?

It seems the opposite of Occam's Razor would be trying to argue that we haven't been visited.

Actually you just multiplied it far, far beyond necessity. If we have been visited, and still are, then you'd have to assume a space faring, technologically advanced civilization that by some miracle happened to have tracked down this particular little ball of dirt in the vastness of space.

Occams razor applied to a high probability of alien existance would be that aliens exist, period.



posted on Apr, 19 2009 @ 08:34 PM
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Theres some good points made in this quote about UFO cynics and Occam's Razor:


UFO debunkers don't understand Occam's Razor, and they abuse it regularly.
They think they understand it, but they don't. What it means is that when several hypotheses of varying complexity can explain a set of observations with equal ability, the first one to be tested should
be the one that invokes the fewest number of uncorroborated assumptions.
If this simplest hypothesis is proven incorrect, the next simplest is chosen, and so forth.

But the skeptics forget two parts: the part regarding the test of the simpler hypotheses, and the part regarding explaining all of the observations.
What a debunker will do is mutilate and butcher the observations until it can be "explained" by one of the simpler hypotheses, which is the inverse
of the proper approach.
The proper approach is to alter the hypothesis to accommodate the observations.
One should never alter the observations to conform with a hypothesis by saying "if we assume the object was not physical, despite the level of evidence that would imply the solidity of a conventional aircraft with near-certainty, then we can also assume the object was not moving, was not exhibiting the color orange, was not 50 feet in diameter as described, and
then declare that it was really Venus."

But that's okay for the skeptics to do because it's an "extraordinary claim" being made that deserves to be explained away in a Machiavellian fashion as rapidly as possible with the urgent zeal of a religious missionary.
Now, to alter observations to force conformance with the
preferred hypothesis -- is that science? Or is that dogma? The answer, of course, is dogma.
This practice is extremely poor science, and the approach undermines the very spirit of scientific
inquiry.
It is simply unacceptable to alter the observations that refuse to conform with the predetermined, favored explanation.

www.nicap.org...



posted on Apr, 19 2009 @ 08:45 PM
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INDEED.

And this has long been a . . . pet peeve of mine.

1. It seems like those who obviously seem to hold themselves to be the

--MOST SCIENTIFIC
--MOST ERUDITE
--MOST LOGICAL
--MOST THOUGHTFUL
--MOST RESEARCHED
--MOST REASONED
. . .

like to throw the Occam's razor issue out as though it settles the argument automatically.

It's most absurd GIVEN THAT they typically DEMONSTRATE that

in fact, they are the LEAST scientific, erudite, logical, thoughtful, researched and even the least reasoned.

They are also typically compulsively ADDICTED to setting themselves up for an almost certain TYPE II ERROR--falling prey to the fact that SOMETHING is there in spite of their denial and refusal to believe it . . . because they have leaned sooooooooooooooo far over backwards to avoid a TYPE I ERROR [believing that something is there when, in fact nothing is there] that they are doing continual back-flips avoiding the evidence.

Fine--for the 95% or so sightings which are readily explainable, prosaic etc. let Occam's razor slice it's due in favor of reality.

However, for the well vetted other 5% . . . Occam's razor slices it's due IN FAVOR of 'OTHER STRANGENESS' as the MOST PLAUSIBLE explanation fitting the most data points of the evidence.

And for those 5% cases, one typically has to do all manner of crazy mental gymnastics and contortions . . . such as

pretending that some flares dropped late in the game over Phoenix were the more than mile big UFO seen by a Commercial pilot flying above it . . . etc. etc.

Good post. Thanks.



posted on Apr, 19 2009 @ 10:53 PM
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reply to post by BO XIAN
 


It just seems like everytime a good thread of someone's theory, or articles that are very persuasive or an actual video that is great pop up someone seems to throw in a one liner like "Don't forget Occam's Razor on this one". Drives me crazy to see someone trying to kill a thread with that and nothing else. It would probably still drive me crazy if they did add something else.




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