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Re: [ontolog-forum] brainwaves (WAS: to concept or not to concept, is th

To: "[ontolog-forum]" <ontolog-forum@xxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx>
From: Wacek Kusnierczyk <Waclaw.Marcin.Kusnierczyk@xxxxxxxxxxx>
Date: Mon, 10 Dec 2007 19:05:39 +0100
Message-id: <475D7FF3.2020403@xxxxxxxxxxx>
Duane Nickull wrote:
> I am surprised this group has never had a discussion on this topic or had
> someone present on P&S (irony - there is a chance I might be wrong).  For
> some scientific axioms, tenets, etc. there seem to be a search for proof by
> verifying that the one universal truth is not mere coincidence.  For
> example, if I state here are 10 random numbers and give you these:
> 1,1,1,1,1,1,1,1,1,1
> You really don't know if they are truly random.  Knowing how they are
> generated helps ( for example - knowing how the Java.Math.Random class works
> and the core algorithm is written and run on the metal) but other than that,
> there  is no verification that these are truly random.  The chance they are
> random is equal with every other possible 10 random numbers.
Of course we do not know whether these numbers are random.  We may
estimate how likely it is that they come from a particular distribution
(or, if you prefer --- i do --- how likely it is that the sequence
represents 10 successive realizations of a random variable with a
particular distribution).  They may perfectly be random --- say, they
are values of the (not very useful) discrete random variable X with the
distribution {(1, 1)} (i.e., there is one value, which has 100%
probability of being picked).    (01)

> So what does a scientist do?  Observe until they are reasonably satisfied
> there is a norm or baseline then look for statistical anomalies?  Isn't this
> somewhat flawed too since we can never really be 100% sure we have truly
> tested everything?  I got into an argument with a friend last weekend over
> the existence of god.  He stated that since there is no positive evidence
> god exists, it proves there is no god.  His inference takes a quantum leap
> in logic obviously as what it really means is that god's existence cannot be
> scientifically verified.  God may exist or may not exist was my position.
> So how does this conflict with the topic of the thread.  The experience that
> you think of someone and they call you?  Statistically, unless it had been
> studied (I am sure it has), there is a small but real probability than some
> human beings have capabilities beyond our perceptions.  
At least, it could be that for some of us it does happen that while they
think of their friends, those friends do think of them too, at the same
time.  It still does not prove any capabilities beyond our perceptions. 
It rather touches the problem of multiple testing, when you analyze your
statistics.    (02)

vQ    (03)

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