Bias In Science

NOT A LOT OF PEOPLE KNOW THAT

By Paul Homewood

h/t Ardy

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http://quillette.com/2017/02/23/on-meaning-identity-politics-and-bias-in-the-academy-an-interview-with-clay-routledge/

Quillette, the self described platform for free thought, has an interview with Clay Routledge, a social psychologist and Professor of Psychology at North Dakota State University

It covers a number of topics, but two particular sections took my eye.

Q. Let’s turn to another topic, post-modernism. Do you think that critical theory or postmodernism will ever go away? There have been attempts to discredit postmodernism before (e.g. the Sokal Affair) but nothing seems to work. What should empirically minded academics do to counter the effects of these ideas?

“I am not sure it will ever go away. The basic idea has been around in different forms for a long time. Plus, part of the appeal of this kind of scholarship is that it approaches an important point. It just makes a dramatic turn in the wrong direction before it gets there. The important point…

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Greenland Viking Science

Fascinating. Nice find Ron 🙂

Science Matters

Eric the Red slept here: Qassiarsuk features replicas of a Viking church and longhouse. (Ciril Jazbec)

It is refreshing to come across scientists researching a question without the corrupting need to scare the public or to confirm some personal, professional or moral fear of the future. In this case I refer to a wonderful Smithsonian article on the question: Why Did Greenland’s Vikings Vanish? Newly discovered evidence is upending our understanding of how early settlers made a life on the island — and why they suddenly disappeared.

Some excerpts below give the flavor of this persistent effort by researchers unrewarded by the availability of huge grants that now flow to the once-lowly climatologists.  The whole article is fascinating to anyone with curiosity.

The Mystery of Greenland Vikings

But the documents are most remarkable—and baffling—for what they don’t contain: any hint of hardship or imminent catastrophe for the Viking settlers…

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Major Discovery! 7 Earth-Size Alien Planets Circle Nearby Star

Tallbloke's Talkshop

Exoplanets up to 90 times closer to their star than Earth is to the Sun. Exoplanets up to 90 times closer to their star than Earth is to the Sun.
We did know something about this system already, but more work has led to today’s announcement.

Astronomers have never seen anything like this before, says Space.com: Seven Earth-size alien worlds orbit the same tiny, dim star, and all of them may be capable of supporting life as we know it, a new study reports. 

“Looking for life elsewhere, this system is probably our best bet as of today,” study co-author Brice-Olivier Demory, a professor at the Center for Space and Habitability at the University of Bern in Switzerland, said in a statement. 

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