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Thread: Procedural Question

  1. #31
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    Quote Originally Posted by Swift View Post
    ... I would like to hear about real scientific and technological research and advancement, and hear questions from people who are interested in learning about science, and not in promoting their ideas based mostly on a misunderstanding of the real science. But there is extremely little of that here, and I am frankly pretty bored with this place. I have even searched around for a better alternative, but with little luck.

    And often when I've tried to promote discussion of real science by example, it is either ignored or becomes a source of humor. ...
    I wouldn't mind having our active scientists occasionally share what they're working on with us.

  2. #32
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    Quote Originally Posted by Jeff Root View Post
    Since it has been quite a long time since I Iast said it, I'll repeat my
    comment that out of all the general science/astronomy discussion
    fora I have extensively participated in over the last 30+ years, including
    the Minnesota Space Frontier Society BBS, FidoNet Astronomy, Space
    Exploration and UFO echos, GEnie SpacePort Roundtable, and USENET
    sci.astro and sci.physics newsgroups, CosmoQuest is the only one I
    have never recommended to anyone else as a good place to go for
    general discussion, because of the moderation attitude here which
    promotes fear of being against the mainstream as more important
    than scientific exploration.
    Why would you think that not saying something for a while is a good reason to say it again?
    You'll perhaps recall what Einstein famously didn't say: "The definition of insanity is doing something over and over again and expecting a different result."

    Grant Hutchison

  3. #33
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    Quote Originally Posted by Swift View Post
    I'm going to be exceedingly blunt here (note black ink).

    I strongly disagree with your wording ("fear of being against the mainstream" ), but I get your general point, to which I respond "Good!".

    I think CQ has been slowly going downhill for a long time, and not in the way you and several others probably think. I think it has become entirely too friendly to non-mainstream nonsense. For the most part I see a lot of threads in S&T and Q&A about crackpot ideas, silly nonsense, and questions best left to typing in Google. I'm not against any of that (bolded because I'm sure it will be missed), but they now completely dominate CQ.

    I'm not interested in the vast majority of them. I would like to hear about real scientific and technological research and advancement, and hear questions from people who are interested in learning about science, and not in promoting their ideas based mostly on a misunderstanding of the real science. But there is extremely little of that here, and I am frankly pretty bored with this place. I have even searched around for a better alternative, but with little luck.

    And often when I've tried to promote discussion of real science by example, it is either ignored or becomes a source of humor.

    I know forums, like many things, change over time. Frankly, I don't expect CQ to change to suit my wants, and I expect you will get exactly what you want Jeff, but without me.

    Here's what Jeff and I are arguing: people, good scientists, don't feel welcomed here because of the strict rules, and they leave.

    I do active research with a NASA mission, and I'm allowed to express "crackpot ideas" and "silly nonsense" more often with my co-investigators at team meetings than I am here. In fact, at LPSC next week I will give a presentation that is 100% against the mainstream to an audience of hundreds of people, scientists that are as curious about the world as I am. The best part is that my idea will at least be considered by the entire audience. They'll ask questions about what my idea implies, and as a group we'll decide if the idea should be pursued. They won't ban me from coming to future LPSCs, nor will they censure me.

    NOTE: I don't have a fully formed idea, and it will take me far longer than 30 days to answer all of the questions. That's the way science works. What we see here on CosmoQuest is a *******ized version of the ivory tower, where we pick who can talk and exclude anyone with ideas that don't conform to our own.
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  4. #34
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    Quote Originally Posted by grant hutchison View Post
    Why would you think that not saying something for a while is a good reason to say it again?
    You'll perhaps recall what Einstein famously didn't say: "The definition of insanity is doing something over and over again and expecting a different result."

    Grant Hutchison

    If anyone gives you infractions for that comment, I'll be severely disappointed with our moderators.


    An enormous part of being a scientist is coming up with idea and allowing others to tell us our ideas are crazy.
    My travel blog Mostly about riding a motorcycle across the US and Europe. Also has cool things that happen in between.

  5. #35
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    Quote Originally Posted by crosscountry View Post
    Here's what Jeff and I are arguing: people, good scientists, don't feel welcomed here because of the strict rules, and they leave.

    I do active research with a NASA mission, and I'm allowed to express "crackpot ideas" and "silly nonsense" more often with my co-investigators at team meetings than I am here. In fact, at LPSC next week I will give a presentation that is 100% against the mainstream to an audience of hundreds of people, scientists that are as curious about the world as I am. The best part is that my idea will at least be considered by the entire audience. They'll ask questions about what my idea implies, and as a group we'll decide if the idea should be pursued. They won't ban me from coming to future LPSCs, nor will they censure me.

    NOTE: I don't have a fully formed idea, and it will take me far longer than 30 days to answer all of the questions. That's the way science works. What we see here on CosmoQuest is a *******ized version of the ivory tower, where we pick who can talk and exclude anyone with ideas that don't conform to our own.
    Sure, you know your audience and can tailor what you say, even to be speculative, without too much concern that someone is going to post it as established theory. The challenge here, as I see it, is this Site tries to be many things to many audiences, and structures itself to accommodate that. It can be thought of as a design issue if there is a design element not adequately performing it's intended function (as judged by ??) or there is a function not fulfilled. My (extremely limited) observation is that the type of speculative discussion that may be taken as ATM could become it's own category (with its own rules - shudder) that the Mods could throw discussions into as necessary, but without all of the painful criteria of an ATM presentation. But all of this ignores what has likely been a long evolution.

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  6. #36
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    Quote Originally Posted by crosscountry View Post
    If anyone gives you infractions for that comment, I'll be severely disappointed with our moderators.


    An enormous part of being a scientist is coming up with idea and allowing others to tell us our ideas are crazy.
    100 percent agree with that last statement.

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  7. #37
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    Quote Originally Posted by crosscountry View Post
    If anyone gives you infractions for that comment, I'll be severely disappointed with our moderators.


    An enormous part of being a scientist is coming up with idea and allowing others to tell us our ideas are crazy.
    To be honest, you being disappointed in one or more moderators feels like nothing new. However...and without issuing an infraction because I don't think Grant was literally doing so...I will point out that characterizing one's behavior as insanity is quite different than calling an idea crazy.

    As far as being unable to come up with ideas and present them here...well, that's just a crazy idea. There is enough latitude to do that here if one follows the forms and norms. I get that you don't like those rules. Holy tap-dancing space cows, I do get it. But here's the thing: if we change things so you don't feel so disaffected, what do we do for those who don't like the new regimen? Which complaining faction do we mollify? Or do we just do the best we can with respect to this site's stated purpose and scope?
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  8. #38
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    Quote Originally Posted by crosscountry View Post
    If anyone gives you infractions for that comment, I'll be severely disappointed with our moderators.
    Well, I'd certainly be a bit surprised, since it didn't strike me as being at all edgy. What makes you think it might be controversial?
    Quote Originally Posted by crosscountry View Post
    An enormous part of being a scientist is coming up with idea and allowing others to tell us our ideas are crazy.
    I don't really know how that's related to the post of mine you quoted. But I think an enormous part of being a scientist is coming up with ideas that you think you can defend in depth.
    It may be different where you are, but where I worked, people didn't welcome spending time listening to speculation and then having to tell other people their ideas were crazy - presenting a crazy idea was a sign of sloppy thinking, not innovation, and a fast track to career limbo.

    Grant Hutchison

  9. #39
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    Quote Originally Posted by PetersCreek View Post
    However...and without issuing an infraction because I don't think Grant was literally doing so...I will point out that characterizing one's behavior as insanity is quite different than calling an idea crazy.
    Oh, I see.
    It never occurred to me that anyone would think "Einstein" was offering a formal psychiatric diagnosis, rather than merely pointing to a behaviour that is neither well-considered nor useful. The phrase actually seems to have originated in a Hazelden Foundation publication, dealing with recovery from addictions, so I'm pretty sure they weren't using it in a psychiatric sense either.

    Grant Hutchison

  10. #40
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    Quote Originally Posted by grant hutchison View Post
    Oh, I see.
    It never occurred to me that anyone would think "Einstein" was offering a formal psychiatric diagnosis, rather than merely pointing to a behaviour that is neither well-considered nor useful. The phrase actually seems to have originated in a Hazelden Foundation publication, dealing with recovery from addictions, so I'm pretty sure they weren't using it in a psychiatric sense either.

    Grant Hutchison
    Again, I didn't take you to mean "insanity" literally but I think it often doesn't matter what Einstein meant by the quote. It's the intent of the person quoting him that can be the problem...and I seem to recall a member or two who have questioned the mental health of ATMer's who doggedly repeated their pet theories.
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  11. #41
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    Quote Originally Posted by crosscountry View Post
    Here's what Jeff and I are arguing: people, good scientists, don't feel welcomed here because of the strict rules, and they leave.
    That's not my experience. The several I can think of left because either they thought there was too much ATM in such sub-forums as Space Exploration that was not reigned in, or they were not allowed to be critical to the point of blatant rudeness to ATMers (not that I think they should be allowed to). And the big content providers, like the BA and Fraser left because they could be paid to put content on their own blogs.


    Quote Originally Posted by grant hutchison View Post
    <snip>
    Originally Posted by crosscountry
    An enormous part of being a scientist is coming up with idea and allowing others to tell us our ideas are crazy.
    But I think an enormous part of being a scientist is coming up with ideas that you think you can defend in depth.
    It may be different where you are, but where I worked, people didn't welcome spending time listening to speculation and then having to tell other people their ideas were crazy - presenting a crazy idea was a sign of sloppy thinking, not innovation, and a fast track to career limbo.
    Yep. Mostly what I see in ATM is the crazy idea part (usually founded on a fundamental misunderstanding of related science) and zero evidence of any work to prove or disprove their idea. Because another enormous part of being a scientist is having the ability to disprove your own ideas, to be self-critical about one's work. I don't see much of that in ATM.

    Of course, none of that was my point in my long post. I am really not complaining about too much ATM on CQ, as much as I am complaining about too little TM (The Mainstream).
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  12. #42
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    Original question answered. Thread derails as usual. Closed as usual.
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  13. #43
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    Quote Originally Posted by geonuc View Post
    I wouldn't mind having our active scientists occasionally share what they're working on with us.
    I can only speak for myself.

    Since I am an industrial scientist, and I work for a company that publishes almost nothing in the open literature, I am pretty restricted about what I can say about what I am working on. I also suspect that pretty much no one would find it interesting; I'm not solving the "big questions", or even the little ones, I'm designing ways to make products for our customers.

    And, given the nature of the Internet, and the various threatening things that have been said to me over the years as a moderator, I am hesitant to post things here that would possibly do more to reveal my identity in the real world.

    When my knowledge about solid state chemistry has been useful for a discussion, I have contributed relevant information, but those discussions seem few and far between.

    (sorry I wouldn't have posted non-moderator comments after the thread was closed, but I was in the middle of composing, and being a moderator, the software allowed it to be posted)
    Last edited by Swift; 2017-Mar-19 at 07:35 PM. Reason: added last bit
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