Forum Casualties, Deserters/AWOL & MIA

#84
Oh yeah, Skeptiko friends, don't let Iyace convince you that he's officially part of the cool club. We tolerate having him around because he tells funny jokes and carries a gun.
Eh, parapsych is for nerds. The real joy is in trolling SJWs with the implication that maybe their opinions aren't as important to the real world as they are in their own heads.

Johann and I are of like minds in this.
 
#87
That didn't really happen. What happened was that Jay had a rather subtle point about binomial tests that turned out to be correct, and we came to an agreement on that eventually (that is, it isn't technically valid to assume a hit rate different from the null in the ganzfeld paradigm just because your p-value is very small—but, as it is, the binomial calculation of the p-value does adequately summarize the probability of finding the test statistic as extreme or more extreme, under the hypothesis of identical, independently distributed Bernoulli trials, at p = .25—therefore if it is very small, something important is going on). Anyway, it's technically interesting, but practically not very important; Jay agrees that ganzfeld researchers have uncovered evidence for psi that far exceeds conventional thresholds, and he says as much in this wonderful post, and in subsequent ones: http://www.internationalskeptics.com/forums/showpost.php?p=10414041&postcount=970

He defends the binomial inference, with his quibbles, and takes a jab at the Milton and Wiseman meta-analysis, here: http://www.internationalskeptics.com/forums/showpost.php?p=10418824&postcount=1157

I actually quite like Jay. He's a fair and knowledgeable opponent, and has a sense of humor. My exchanges with him were some of the most informative. Max and Jay, do both, however, have a tendency to get a little testy; the animosity in the early ganzfeld threads was mutual, and had escalated, so neither party was willing to moderate their position. Where Max and I tend to disagree most with Jay is in his assessment of the (subjective) physically-based probability of psi; he still says things like, "it would overturn all of physics", and he appears to rely heavily for this on Sean Carol's essay on the subject. Max, being a graduate student in theoretical physics, and having published several papers in quantum foundations, made a long response to Carol that argued with his premises. I'm not nearly at Max's level yet, but I've taken courses in quantum mechanics and general relativity, and I don't find "overturn all of physics" arguments very well thought out.

Actually, I'm not so sure Jay does either, since the prior probability he actually set for psi (1 in 10 million) is pretty easily overcome by a few psi experiments—assuming they were conducted as stated in their published reports, which Jay isn't willing to do for a variety of reasons; many of which I find reasonable. Nevertheless, if he were able to witness one successful psi experiment that he could put complete trust in, it would only take a Bayes factor of a little more than 700,000 to 1 to push him to 50/50 odds on psi. By contrast, Rouder, Morey, and Province (2010) found a Bayes factor of 6 billion to 1 in their skeptical analysis of just some 67 ganzfeld experiments (before they argued for excluding a number of them on methodological grounds). So it's not hard to shift this prior. To give you some perspective, Jay was arguing with people who were trying to justify setting the prior probability of psi at zero; that means no amount of statistical evidence can shift it.

Now, these days, I hang out with a lot of really knowledgeable people (my interests have somewhat shifted, though I still do discuss a lot psi research, and have been invited to give a talk at the PA/SSE convention), and I have, with Max, had some pretty intensive discussions about psi research with them. Few of the folks in these discussions—mostly data analysts, physicists, and mathematicians—continue to think of psi like they think of horoscopes and creationism. That's something that appears to be endemic to a population of self-styled skeptics with, I'm sorry to say, a low wit, and little imagination—not the crop that still lurks around here, or Jay. Also, interestingly, a majority of them seem to have gravitated towards panpsychism, as a philosophy of mind, more or less independently.
Speaking about Maaneli - Johann, I recall you saying that he is working on a paper about the possible sensitivity of parapsychological database to fraud hypotheses. Does my memory serves me well? And, if it does, can you tell anything about his work? Maybe he (or he and you, together) is going to present it during the upcoming joint conference of the Parapsychological Association and the Society for Scientific Exploration? Your previous work with him was very warmly received by the academic parapsychological community. I would be definitely glad to learn about more of it!
 
#88
I actually quite like Jay. He's a fair and knowledgeable opponent, and has a sense of humor. My exchanges with him were some of the most informative.
There was so much time and energy spent by forum members trying to discredit him, insult him personally, and paint him out to be someone with a limited grasp of the material, it's interesting to hear your take on him.
 
#89
What happened to Chris? He's showing up as "Guest" and his name is unclickable. He was a smart guy and helped me out a lot privately with some mathematical problems (mostly re expectation bias). It's sad to see him gone and uncontactable.
 
Top