Author Topic: Episode #502  (Read 10641 times)

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Offline Zerowantuthri

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Re: Episode #502
« Reply #30 on: February 23, 2015, 10:16:09 AM »
History isn't like physics. There is often sparse, contradictory evidence and the most plausible narrative wins. Once a new narrative is proposed it takes research to determine if it fits the data as well or better than the current narrative. We should be skeptical of Lars Anderson, but we should remain open-minded too.

Nah...I think Andersen has been pretty well debunked.


Offline Zerowantuthri

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Re: Episode #502
« Reply #31 on: February 23, 2015, 10:32:24 AM »
While I think Scott Larson mostly got it wrong I do believe there is a kernel of truth there that needs to be considered.

While the scientific method is unimpeachable by itself the reality is science gets co-opted with alarming regularity and you cannot really blame the media or the public for being suspicious or getting things wrong.  Just a few days ago a scientist at the Harvard-Smithsonian Center for Astrophysics known for his climate warming denial was shown to be deep in the pockets of moneyed interests.

That really isn't surprising but it highlights the point.  As a lay person I would guess the Harvard-Smithsonian Center for Astrophysics is a reliable and trustworthy organization that does solid science work and here we find a scientist with a massive conflict of interest that went unreported.  While it doesn't necessarily mean all the science he did was wrong it certainly casts it into doubt.

And that is for climate change where the science and consensus is broadly on one side of the debate.  What are we, the public, to make of claims for which there is considerable gray area?  Business makes a habit of hiring their own people to tell us why X-is good for us or a-ok.  Nothing new there.

One might say we should inform ourselves but without an expert background and two sides diligently working to sway us it is hard to impossible to sort it out sometimes and I doubt we can expect the media to be much better.

Offline abernstein

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Re: Episode #502
« Reply #32 on: February 23, 2015, 10:35:56 AM »
I've been a listener for a few years but never posted here. But a passing comment in the episode today really go to me. At about 26 minutes in, Jennifer made a comment that scientists get money when people click on their article. This is not true. Scientists PAY to have their research published in a journal (often multiple thousands of dollars - I had one that cost $3000 because of images). The publisher makes money from selling subscriptions. Scientists to do not directly get paid anything from a research paper. There are no royalties. It's not like an ad of the side of a Facebook page. You pay to publish and, to add insult to injury, the journal then owns your paper. In my dissertation, I wanted to use a figure I had used in a review that I wrote and I need to get permission from the publisher to use the image that I produced because they own the copyright. Her entire representation of scientists as enjoying "click-baity" titles in popular reporting of science was completely off base.

Offline JenJDixon

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Re: Episode #502
« Reply #33 on: February 23, 2015, 11:00:13 AM »
It is extremely difficult to casually recommendation a massive life change to anyone without knowing them. What I can say is it extremely challenging but can be deeply rewarding. There are many ways to be a non-grad student and one persons path is not necessarily the best path for everyone.

A little more about how and why I did it: TLDR find your passion.

First off, I became a programmer because it was one of the good programs offered at the local night school. At the time I was young, working full time and taking care of my fiancé who at the age of 23 was diagnosed with a rare heart defect that was killing him. I needed to be able to go to school while still working during the day to support us. I landed a good job as a tech support programmer while I finished my degree; sadly Brad did not survive to see me graduate.

Fast forward a few years and I was working full time as an analyst and programmer for a State Agency. I loved what I was doing but I was increasingly frustrated by the level of mundanity around me. I saw people just wasting through their days waiting for a pension to roll in with no particular drive for improving the system in the process. Ya, I'm a bit of a dick for saying this but I don't begrudge them their decisions. I wish I had the ability to let the BS wash over me like a spring breeze while waiting to retire but to me it was like drowning in stagnant water. So, to try and work through the stress of the situation I joined a Roller Derby group. Nothing says stress relief like hugs and bruises!

This is where everything went terribly, horribly, right. In a practice I shattered my leg in four places. OUCH!! And a month later I had a massive bi-lateral pulmonary embolism. I had a 5% chance of survival and spent 11 days in the hospital. During the glorious morphine haze I decided that life was too fucking short to spend my days in a cubicle. So when I got better I took a year to prepare and then left my career.

I went to a local community college for a few terms and took a class in every science they offered so I could decide which area I wanted to pursue. With the help of an amazing professor and mentor, Craig Dilley who sadly died last year in a car accident, I made connections at the University and applied for the graduate program. The first semester I was a provisional student as I proved that I had the chops for science and by semester 2 was accepted into the Ecology, Evolution, and Organismal Biology program.

Here is the deal, it is really fucking difficult to not fit into a pre-established box. It's also really really hard to go from a good paying job to making close to nothing. For me, this change has impacted every aspect of my life, from friends to family, hobbies to home life. It has the best thing I ever did for myself but it has never ever been easy or simple.

I am all for people getting an education and I think non-trad student are some of the best students out there. But don't make the leap casually.

I hope that helps.

Jen

Offline JenJDixon

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Re: Episode #502
« Reply #34 on: February 23, 2015, 11:04:31 AM »
I've been a listener for a few years but never posted here. But a passing comment in the episode today really go to me. At about 26 minutes in, Jennifer made a comment that scientists get money when people click on their article. This is not true. Scientists PAY to have their research published in a journal (often multiple thousands of dollars - I had one that cost $3000 because of images). The publisher makes money from selling subscriptions. Scientists to do not directly get paid anything from a research paper. There are no royalties. It's not like an ad of the side of a Facebook page. You pay to publish and, to add insult to injury, the journal then owns your paper. In my dissertation, I wanted to use a figure I had used in a review that I wrote and I need to get permission from the publisher to use the image that I produced because they own the copyright. Her entire representation of scientists as enjoying "click-baity" titles in popular reporting of science was completely off base.

Let me clarify.

Scientists don't get usually get paid directly for "clicks" but it can lead to citations which can lead to additional funding sources. There is a terrible "feedback loop" in science publishing where good work gets ignored while sometimes poor work which gets citations get "paid" by being able to generate additional funding.

Also, the "pay for publication" model is what you see here and in the EU, it is not the only science publication model. Chinese scientists for example often work on a "publications for pay model."
« Last Edit: February 23, 2015, 11:07:06 AM by JenJDixon »

Online Sawyer

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Re: Episode #502
« Reply #35 on: February 23, 2015, 11:09:44 AM »
I've been a listener for a few years but never posted here. But a passing comment in the episode today really go to me. At about 26 minutes in, Jennifer made a comment that scientists get money when people click on their article. This is not true. Scientists PAY to have their research published in a journal (often multiple thousands of dollars - I had one that cost $3000 because of images). The publisher makes money from selling subscriptions. Scientists to do not directly get paid anything from a research paper. There are no royalties. It's not like an ad of the side of a Facebook page. You pay to publish and, to add insult to injury, the journal then owns your paper. In my dissertation, I wanted to use a figure I had used in a review that I wrote and I need to get permission from the publisher to use the image that I produced because they own the copyright. Her entire representation of scientists as enjoying "click-baity" titles in popular reporting of science was completely off base.

I guess she didn't make it clear, but I automatically assumed that Jennifer was referring to the subset of scientists that already enjoy a prominent media spotlight.  The typical article published in a journal will NOT suffer this problem, which should be obvious to anyone that's flipped through a peer-reviewed journal before.  However, there are scientists that regularly write short review and opinion pieces for journals, as well as pop-science stuff for magazines like Scientific American.  They absolutely benefit from click bait headlines, although I think it's less about money than pushing an ideological narrative.

Case in point - there's a lot of controversy in the infectious disease community about gain-of-function experiments on viruses and bacteria.  Mark Lipsitch is a scientist (not a journalist) that falls on one side of this debate, and he has managed to get several pieces published in prominent journals and magazines.  His latest piece in Scientific American was titled "Defusing a Biological Bomb", until and editor wisely decided that the title was a little too sensationalist and toned in down to "Make the Pause on Risky Pathogen Research Permanent".  Continuing to generate headlines that catch people's eyes has a direct impact on public perception, whether it is to make a conclusion more acceptable or more doubtful.  People like Dr. Lipsitch are well aware of this phenomena, and they are taking advantage of it to hype their conclusions. 

EDIT:  I see Jen has already replied and was referring more to the funding problem, but I maintain that the ideological agenda is a big part of the drive for click bait titles.

Offline JenJDixon

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Re: Episode #502
« Reply #36 on: February 23, 2015, 11:15:28 AM »
I completely agree Sawyer! Thank you for helping articulate some of he issues here.

It's a tricky topic because there is a great deal of nuance in the discussion and the definition of "pay" is not necessarily a monetary one. Citations, mentions in other writing when not peer-reviewed, social standing, consumer impact, etc. are all other examples of pay that can be utilized and are increased by click-bait publications.

Offline abernstein

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Re: Episode #502
« Reply #37 on: February 23, 2015, 11:21:45 AM »
That is very different than what was said on the program. The implication on the program was that scientists make money from papers. Full stop. No clarification, no explanation. This is a very dangerous thing to be spreading around without further clarification. Because like you said, the majority of scientists just doing their science thing do not. This does not help with public trust in scientists. As we learned from Spiderman "with great power comes great responsibility". When you have a public voice, you have to be careful with that voice.

Offline JenJDixon

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Re: Episode #502
« Reply #38 on: February 23, 2015, 11:24:11 AM »
That is very different than what was said on the program. The implication on the program was that scientists make money from papers. Full stop. No clarification, no explanation. This is a very dangerous thing to be spreading around without further clarification. Because like you said, the majority of scientists just doing their science thing do not. This does not help with public trust in scientists. As we learned from Spiderman "with great power comes great responsibility". When you have a public voice, you have to be careful with that voice.

Indeed. I recognize that some listeners may not have known what I meant and will endeavor to be more precise in the future if I ever find myself in the position again. Thanks for the feedback!
« Last Edit: February 23, 2015, 11:52:36 AM by JenJDixon »

Offline Googolplexbyte

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Re: Episode #502
« Reply #39 on: February 23, 2015, 02:36:54 PM »
Jen is a great podcaster. Does anyone know where I can listen to more of her stuff?

They mention a gaming podcast near the start but I don't see a link in the show notes.
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Offline Zerowantuthri

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Re: Episode #502
« Reply #40 on: February 23, 2015, 02:51:21 PM »

At the end it was mentioned that Richard Feynman cracked safes for fun while at Los Alamos working on the atomic bomb.

What is more interesting is how he did it (basically some really smart deduction).  It is explained in the video below.  Well worth a watch.


Offline JenJDixon

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Re: Episode #502
« Reply #41 on: February 23, 2015, 02:52:42 PM »
Jen is a great podcaster. Does anyone know where I can listen to more of her stuff?

They mention a gaming podcast near the start but I don't see a link in the show notes.

The podcast was The Walking Eye: www.TheWalkingEye.com and on iTunes.

It was a gaming podcast where we did actual play (AP), interviews and reviews of indie table top games. Keep in mind that some of these episodes go back a long ways and I've come a long way since then. Some of the older stuff is a little embarrassing. lol

This one on emergent play in Eve Online is one of the most recent and was a fun discussion episode: http://www.thewalkingeye.com/?p=2224

If you're looking for actual play episodes I'd recommend the Apocalypse World and The Dresden Files episodes.

Jen
« Last Edit: February 23, 2015, 02:55:32 PM by JenJDixon »

Offline stupid humans

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Re: Episode #502
« Reply #42 on: February 23, 2015, 03:52:08 PM »

Offline Lynchpin

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Re: Episode #502
« Reply #43 on: February 23, 2015, 04:13:26 PM »
I replied in wrong thread, apparently.  Been listening for years, think I posted once. So, copy and paste (at work so making it short and can only skim over thread)


Oh?  Eve Online?  Taken down some corps?  Which alliance?  -FA- here :)



Emergence in Eve...I have to definitely read that thread.

Anyway, for those who want to read about the sci-fi in Eve Online, go here:

http://community.eveonline.com/backstory/scientific-articles/interstellar-traveling/

Offline JenJDixon

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Re: Episode #502
« Reply #44 on: February 23, 2015, 04:25:45 PM »
I replied in wrong thread, apparently.  Been listening for years, think I posted once. So, copy and paste (at work so making it short and can only skim over thread)


Oh?  Eve Online?  Taken down some corps?  Which alliance?  -FA- here :)



Emergence in Eve...I have to definitely read that thread.

Anyway, for those who want to read about the sci-fi in Eve Online, go here:

http://community.eveonline.com/backstory/scientific-articles/interstellar-traveling/

I've worked with several alliances during my days of espionage. I specialized in infiltration and information trading, MWAHAHAHAHA. I actually did a little work with FA, BL for a while, a bunch of null sec renter corps and Pizza back in the day. Ah good times!