WickedEye's Quotient

3/30/2006 at 23:34

IDiots, Movies, & the Scientific Method

Below is the text of a post I wrote to Paramount’s “Blogging Sundance” page; Cal’s entry on their upcoming ID movie led me there and into the observation of an, um, ongoing discussion. One of the IDiots posting there hacked me off with his false and unsupported assertions, so I dug up some references which would enable him to correct his inadvertent malapropisms (incurable optimist that I am).

If you ignore the (very thinly) veiled mockery, it’s actually a pretty good set of references on the definitions underlying the scientific method, as well as on the method itself.

16. Doug-

The reason you may not have been able to understand what Calladus is talking about is that he assumed- erroneously, it turns out- that you were familiar with the basic concepts relevant to the dialogue.

Firstly, you appear to be ignorant of what in fact constitutes science- its definition, if you will- and what does not. To remedy this lack, might I suggest that you read David Goodstein's "Reference Manual on Scientific Evidence: How Science Works". This document does not once refer to biology, since its author is a Professor of Physics and Vice Provost at Caltech; nonetheless, he does have some experience with the practice of science. The document is located here:

I refer you particularly to page 7 and the first paragraph of page 8, in which Goodstein explains how scientific theories are tested in actual practice, rather than in ideal circumstances.In order to understand pages 7 and 8, however, you will need to understand the definition of the word "falsifiable". Here, happily, I can be of more direct assistance in providing the information; the entry on "falsifiable" on the Princeton University online dictionary, WordNet 2.1- again, not associated with evolutionary theory, biology, or "ID", but still admitted to have some lexical authority- reads:
S: (adj) confirmable, verifiable, falsifiable (capable of being tested (verified or falsified) by experiment or observation)

Lastly, since you now have the background to understand the document, below is a link to an explanation of the scientific method. Again, lest I be accused of referring you to someone who has an "anti-ID" agenda in mind when formulating their explanation, the link is to a source which has so far been entirely neutral on the subject of evolution, and which is universally acknowledged to have a fair amount of science knowledge- NASA:

Now that you have the proper context for the words you are using and the concepts you were mishandling, you can reformulate your statement so that it makes sense in the context of the general use of the English language.

If you wish to propound or defend a theory, please demonstrate a mastery of- or at least the capacity for the correct use of- the language and vocabulary in which you plan to explicate it.

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