End of Faith in What ?

Several different threads here. All mentioned before – reading Sam Harris “End of Faith” itself, a discussion thread on MoQ.Discuss with End of Faith title and several spin-off threads, and a discussion thread on Chairman Parker’s Blog. My position can be summarised quite easily. Tolerance of (misplaced) religious faith is as dangerous as extremes of … Continue reading “End of Faith in What ?”

Intelligent Design / Creationism Propaganda

“Expelled” is a movie in the pipeline (due for release in April at the last count) that purports not so much to “debunk” evolution (or Darwinism as they refer to it, like any good Victorian might) in favour of ID / Creationism, but to claim a mass institutional conspiracy preventing debate on alternatives, not just … Continue reading “Intelligent Design / Creationism Propaganda”

Taking Science on Faith

Series of two articles and letters to the editor in the NY Times, and a SlashDot thread … Dennis Overbye “Laws of Nature, Source Unknown” Paul Davies “Taking Science on Faith” (More of the same by the same authors in the latest “Edge“) Letters to the NYT Editor “Scientific Method; Evidence not Faith” SlashDot “Where Do the Laws … Continue reading “Taking Science on Faith”

shit happens

I mentioned before that I’d had some dreadful air-travel experiences since moving to the US. Well I’m having one now sitting at Chicago Logan [doh! Boston I mean] posting from my Blackjack for the first time. Left Huntsville mid-afternoon Friday bound for Gatwick via Atlanta on Delta58. All like clockwork until an hour or so into the … Continue reading “shit happens”

Anomalous Energy

I blogged about Eestor recently. That’s not an anomalous energy patent, but an electrical capacitance alternative to the internal combustion engine. Will it work commercially and socially ? The point is that there may be reasons for engineering scepticism, but the basic physics is not (yet) in doubt. Brian Josephson has been a regular champion … Continue reading “Anomalous Energy”

Myxobacter & Emergence

The example of the “myxobacter” species of bacteria was used in a presentation I saw a couple of years ago at David Gurteen’s 3rd Knowledge Management Conference, at which David Snowden’s management of complexity was a main theme. [Blogged earlier]. I couldn’t be sure who’s presentation it was and I was unable to track down … Continue reading “Myxobacter & Emergence”

Rationalistic Neuroses

Funny how the overly rational attracts mental (ill-)health metaphors. “Autistic” was my current favourite until I saw this passage from Nick Maxwell. Science is indeed neurotic. It suffers, that is, from what I call “rationalistic neurosis”, a methodological condition that involves suppressing, or failing to acknowledge, real, problematic aims, and instead acknowledging an apparently unproblematic … Continue reading “Rationalistic Neuroses”

Recursion is good – It’s official

Just reading the latest Edge magazine, and see a review by Stewart Brand of Kevin Kelly’s – “Speculations on the Future of Science”. I’ve mentioned many times the vaue of recursion, often when people get hung up on cyclical logic, as if it is automatically a dead end, begging some question or other. Most recently … Continue reading “Recursion is good – It’s official”