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Comment Re:Scientific worldview undermining own credibilit (Score 1) 668

Odds are I've thought about this and looked into it a lot more than you. Odds are I'm a lot more articulate than you speaking about it. And odds are I'm better trained in science and more experienced working with technology than you. Just sayin'.

This is an interesting statement your are making : because your are (so you say) more educated you would be less subject to believes. You will be surprised to know that this statement has been properly studied. And... the results are exactly the opposite ! Yes. ( I was actually surprised too.) http://www.lazarus-mirages.net....

The concepts of "believes" and "faith" are extremely interesting objects. Homeopathy is good test case to study them.

Comment Re:May be (Score 1) 668

There's no scientific evidence [for homeopathy]?

Hint 1: Indeed. That is a good way to check whether something is magic or real. In general, a medicine with no scientific evidence has quite some chances to not work at all.

May I stress the following: The scientific understanding of a "thing" is not to be confused with the fact that this "thing" must exists in order to be (or not) understood. Rephrased : scientific evidence regarding homeopathy still means today "is there a 'thing' at all to be explained ?". And up to today the answer is : no. The status of homeopathy today is not whether one can explain it, or which theory is good about it, but is there something to be explained. And, again, up to today the answer is : no. Explaining homeopathy - today - is like explaining how good father xmass is at going through chimneys : wrong question. Question is : is there a father xmass ? And up to today the answer is : no.

To be noticed : No one denies the "feeling good" one may express after having ingested homeopathic pills. I am sincerely happy this happens. I feel good after a cup of coffee. Because coffee dos not claim to be a medicine there is not need to prove a link between my feeling and the coffee. On the other hand, homeopathy explicitly claim to be a medicine. Wow ! Then, there is no choice : proof must be produced.

Well, there's a lot of evidence against many products which is very dangerous to health and their are legal.

Hint 2: Yep. That is also a way to detect real medicines. A real one will have effects and side effects. Both are even - or should be - documented on the notice. That is actually what is expected from a medicine : have at least "a" effect. Unfortunately it comes with "side" effects. This is a reason why medicine should be prescribed only by trained medical staff : because they are indeed dangerous. This is a good hint : a medicine claiming to have zero side effects is very more likely to have zero effects. Welcome to homeopathy which - up to now - have never produced any measurable specific effect.

Comment Re:No evidence? (Score 1) 668

The undeniable fact is that there *is* evidence in favor of homeopathy of the same nature as that used to support other medical treatments. As I said, I think this indicates poor methodology on the part of medical researchers in general. This is similar to how ESP studies are the control group for psychology:

The original post which includes some of the evidence, and that paper cites many others. You clearly cannot conceive that this situation could exist, but it does. As to "every damn reputable medical body", only the uninformed care what a bunch of NHST-users think. You have to look at the evidence for yourself, it is extremely unfortunate but the medical experts cannot be relied upon to sift BS from good science. They are not trained in scientific thinking.

Again : "... You have to look at the evidence for yourself ..."

This is IMO where the problem is. No, you cannot "look at the evidence for yourself". Reviewing the quality of a test protocol, checking the statistical significance of some numbers, in a double-blinded, against placebo group, against control group is certainly not accessible to random one. Sorry. That needs proper education and training. That is named "scientific training".

So to make it short. Homeopathy specific effect has never been observed. Nor validated by enough independent scientifically trained reviewers. The number of studies brought into the picture has little - if not none at all - evidence value. Studies must be verified. Many times.

So to make it short. Homeopathy has not been shown to have any specific effect at all. Ever.

For the homeopathy to work or not, it must first have any observable effect. Until now, homeopathy have shown zero effect.

Maybe tomorrow.

Comment Re:Scientific worldview undermining own credibilit (Score 1) 668

Hi.

I know from my direct experience that it works,

Direct personal experience is good to coin questions, not to produce validated knowledge.

== Sound: My "direct personal experience" tells me there is a constant high pitch sound in my environment. Knowledge tells me it is Tinnitus https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/....
== Sight: My "direct personal experience" tells me I see phantoms right now. Knowledge tells me these are floaters https://en.wikipedia.org/?titl....
== Taste & Smell: My "direct personal experience" tells me I am eating a peach. Knowledge tells me I smelling a peach, while biting and shewing an apple.
== Taste: My dad's "direct personal experience" tells him this peach has no taste at all. Knowledge tells him he is suffering Ageusia : https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/...
== Touch: My "direct personal experience" tells me I have pins and needles on my arm. Knowledge tells me I have a kind of nerve anesthesia.
== Sight: Through "direct personal experience", billions of individuals believed earth is flat. Knowledge tells us it is spherical.
== Sight: Through infinitely reproducible "direct personal experience" billions of individuals - including you right now -, across many centuries, across many civilizations, every where on the planet can drop a pen in a glass of water and believe it is broken. Knowledge tells us the refraction of light leads us to believe so.

See for yourself what your "Direct personal experience" tells you for example there on first Google hit on "optical illusion" : http://www.michaelbach.de/ot/

Not a single sens we have can be trusted to produce knowledge. Not mines. Not yours. This is basic knowledge. At 18 years of age, school should have informed you about objectivity and subjectivity.

Comment Re:No dignity in witchcraft (Score 2, Interesting) 668

If that happened to you, YOU would be willing to try homeopathy and pretty much anything else that might work, because you don't have an alternative.

No I wouldn't use homeopathy because I am not stupid enough to ever believe it would cure me of anything. I'm going to die someday and I'd rather do so with some dignity rather than paying money to some snake oil salesman for something that will do nothing.

Hi there. Yes you will. The statement before makes an assumption : one will behave rationally under life-ending-stress. That is simply untrue. I salute the wish to stay rational in all and any circumstances. We all should have this ability. Yet that is only a wish. People are not necessarily stupid going into "idiocies". It is a better strategy to believe in rubbish and stay alive, instead of being clear-minded of commit suicide out of lack of hope. Let me diverge a bit...

A friend of mine - 35 years of age - suffers Chron like disease for years. I tell you, this is very practical : You poo blood, and are so week that you can't move a chair and suffers pain. Lots of pain. During a few weeks a year. That girl makes use of science-based medicine. Yet, when she perceives nothing cures her as much as she needs, she also turns to alternative-bollocks medicines WITHOUT abandoning science-based medicine. I discovered truck-loads of incredible crank-pseudo-medical-shit. UN-F...G-BELIEVABLE ! My rational side is screaming so loud : tell her this is all rubbish !

Once, I observed her going under 40 Kg body weight on a hospital bed. Man : when facing the real she-may-die-out-of-disease-OR-desperation-within-3-days AND given she still DOES make use of science-based medicine, my rational side screams even louder : shut up and let her believe whatever she wants.

Which leads me to this personal conclusion. We - humans - are faith machines. We want and need to believe. I am not happy about that for myself, but that is a different question. Sure hope does not cure. But it may seriously help not to commit suicide which is somehow useful. So... Sure let's banish homeopathy and others gibberish. But let's create a whole range of "official" placebos. The "red one", the "blue version", the "green style" and so on. With fine print on label : "This is not a medicine. It is distilled water void of any active content with no effect other than potential - but not guaranteed - placebo effect. In all case, you must seek professional qualified attention before using this placebo."

Comment Re:Sleep Collects Neural Garbage (Score 4, Interesting) 710

Hi there. IMO this is to be linked to the cult of "work hard play hard". The problem is... always over-driving one's life, leads faster to problems. Playing too hard also leads to problems. Hopping to balance one's over-work by some over-play is - maybe counter-intuitively for some - not a sollution. In french it is named "sur-régime" : if you always drive a car with the engine spinning well beyond what's necessary, well you may go faster, but you will certainly die earlier. Over-performing, over-working, and so on, has a cost. Ciao.

Comment Confused! (Score 1) 921

FTA

The review did not look at pesticides or the environmental impact of different farming practices.

Oops ! Isn't it a major point of organic farming. Not only the end product but also procedures and environment ? Many consumers choose organic product not only for it's intrinsic assumed qualities, but out of environments concerns. I'am no pro-organic man, yet that study seams to say little to me.

(...) they report in their analysis that there are higher levels of beneficial nutrients in organic compared to non-organic foods.

Now I am confused. What does this study have to say then!?

Z.

The Media

Wikipedia Bans Church of Scientology 665

El Reg writes "Showing a new-found resolve to crack down on self-serving edits, Wikipedia has banned contributions from all IP addresses owned or operated by the Church of Scientology. According to Wikipedia administrators, this marks the first time such a high-profile organization has been banished for allegedly pushing its own agenda on the 'free encyclopedia anyone can edit.'"

Comment Wow : WP threads on /. are getting interesting... (Score 2, Interesting) 266

Hi.

A long while ago, I contributed to WP quite a bit. I stopped being subject to WikiStress. I learned one thing at that time : when WP things gets on your nerves, just get a break. Then, one realise that an article is no one's little pet. And now one can come back to an article and forget about it easily. Many people who claim to be specialist or to be especially rightful, should take a WikiBreak... and come back later. No, later than that. Now, contributions starts being good.

I also observed /. threads about WP : They where rather poor, often being aggregation of blatantly incorrect statements. Reason IMHO was that not so many actually contributed to WP, thus ignoring what I now can read in this thread : WP is not a school yard, there are rules, these rules can indeed be gamed, WP is no one pet's toy : being a so called expert does not yield special status, consensus is indeed the driving thing in WP - not The Truth - and so on...

That's a lot of good comments in one single WP /. thread. Pleasantly surprising. I suppose WP is getting actually known by people. Nice!

Z

Comment Re:A wikipedia that was "cool like that" (flame) (Score 1) 439

Hello. Disclaimer: This will probably flagged as flam-ish.

HA HA HA! ( I.e. Laughing Out Loud ). Pardon my French (BTW I am a French man) but Wikipedia-wise you are the exemplification of a wanker. So many of you thinks WP is their-little-pet-project-I-do-what-ever-I-want-out-of-it. Ça fait pitié.. :-)

OK. On a less flamish tone. WP is not and has never been anarchy. There were and are many rules one has to follow in order to contribute. This was and is the project of J Wales. Those signs that are annoying you, are there to remind user that WP is not one-more-my-space-n-co i.e. pure utter jabber-teen-ager-commercial-crap-I-want-you-to-believe. I suggest the following question : Without any attempt at forcing WP users to cite and reference their statements, would you be reading Wikipedia ? My bet is for a plain no. I have already had some conversation about WP-pseudo-freedom here and here. How about plainly ignoring those warnings ? The fact you don't want to accept that you can't write just anything you fancy is your freedom. You are not forced into contributing. Yet, working with WP means you will have to abide by JW rules. Unhappy boy ? Well... fork.

With regards. Z.

Comment (Again) pay to receive calls? (Score 1) 76

Hi. FYI, in Europe we don't pay to receive SMS within a state. So from my point of view, this "SMS spam problem" is a non-problem. Have people sending SMS pay. End of story, move on.

Yet to be honest, this is still a reap off. SMSing in Switzerland costs 0.10euro/SMS. Head of Swiss mobile phone operators society said on radio RSR the cost for providers is actually 0.02Euro/SMS. No one is naive here: if that is the publicly acknowledged cost, that means - rough un-sourced estimate - real cost may well be 0.002Euro/SMS. So that is still a vast reap off. To the extent that European instances recently forced operators to lower their unjustified high prices. Ha! See, let the market be totally free, and feel the citizen be totally fucked. Funny how I can't help thinking of nowadays western economic crash. Let the market do whatever, noooooo worries folks : citizens will anyway pay.

Sidewise, I would accept to have to pay a tinny fee per e-mail I send: like 0.00001Euro. Poof, e-mail spam is dead. End of story, move on. Yes that would mean if I use mailing-list, I would pay for every single recipient: exactly what's required. I mean, I'd have to wonder am I really making sense enough to justify the cost ? Ach nein ! I'd have to admit that vast amount of what I send is rubbish. And... poof: less shite on the net. Exactly what's required. ( And... poof - domino's cascade - every one would dam care not to have zombified PC. )

Z.

I was playing poker the other night... with Tarot cards. I got a full house and 4 people died. -- Steven Wright

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