2006-01-05

Wiki: Cold Fusion

Since the wiki climate pages have been pretty sane recently, and not a lot has been happening on the climate front, I've been browsing further afield and contributed to the [[Cold Fusion]] page. Or rather, to the discussion of it. Its interesting in itself, if you're interested (so to speak) but its also interesting as an illustration of the problems of psuedo/fringe science: that the True Believers in such are generally far more commited, and often more knowledgeable (in some sense; they know more things about it but not the one key thing: that its wrong...) that the larger mass of folk.

So if anyone out there has a reasonable knowledge of nuke-related matters (hello, John!) do go and have a look and leave a comment at least.

And while I'm on this stuff, I really ought to mention the RFA against Reddi.

4 Comments:

Blogger James Annan said...

its also interesting as an illustration of the problems of psuedo/fringe science

I presume you mean the problems of Wikipedia. I'm not encouraged by the idea that you could be one of the more sane contributors to that debate, any more than if I were to get involved.

At least by googling widely I know that the onus is on me to decide which sources are credible, rather than perhaps being tempted (fooled?) into to relying on wikipedia's status.

9:21 am  
Blogger Belette said...

I hope I'm not encouraged by the idea that you could be one of the more sane contributors to that debate, any more than if I is not quite what you meant: I'm sure you and I are fully sane. What we lack is knowledge. The problem is of those who have knowledge but are not sane.

But yes, I meant of the the problems of wikipedia in reporting these things. The same thing applies to Tesla. But... where else (on the web) are you going to get your info on CF from?

Incidentally, the Economist has ripped off a wiki graph on probability this week (it attributes it, but I'm not sure thats good enough).

9:57 pm  
Blogger Lumo said...

I agree. The crackpots who promote a certain pseudoscience are very efficient in copying pseudofacts meant to celebrate their agenda, but they don't care about the basic questions like whether it can be shown what is the actual answer to the questions they want to ask.

Cold fusion is one example. There are many others. Burkhard Heim's fans (a German crackpot). Shahriar Afshar with the self-promotion of his absurdly interpreted experiment. Loop quantum gravity. And yes, global warming. These people just don't want to listen.

I've tried to add a basic explanation why cold fusion is nonsense which was not there, at least not transparent enough.

3:02 pm  
Blogger Belette said...

Hi Lubos. Thanks for that contribution on Cold Fusion - very helpful I think. Will it convince the nutters? I doubt it.

As a gesture of peace, you may now consider yourself unbanned here, though moderation for profanity will continue. Welcome back.

5:05 pm  

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