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Submission + - Let science be science (thebulletin.org)

Dan Drollette writes: On April 22, a young particle physicist will be in Washington, DC, to be part of the March for Science. She explains why marchers should not have to worry about appearing as another special-interest group.

Comment 89% of the time, it works every time (Score 3, Insightful) 75

"In a trial conducted on a single patient who already used the Argus II device, the person was able to correctly read Braille letters up to 89 percent of the time, and most of the inaccuracy appeared when the participant misread a single letter."

...so by "the person was able to correctly read Braille letters up to 89 percent of the time," they mean that at one point during the test, they showed the guy a 9 letter word, and he got 1 letter wrong. Did the patient 1/9 letters wrong overall, or was this one rare mistake? How many words did they have the patient read? The technology is amazing, don't get me wrong, but somebody needs to tell their product testing/PR crews how to convey performance in a remotely meaningful way.

Comment Re:It's all about the blogs! (Score 1) 337

This is definitely true -- bloggers are often scientists writing directly from the source, so you tend to get news that is both accurate and very current. Another site to try is:
For example, try:
for an excellent particle physics blog. Tommaso will tell you everything you need to know about the Tevatron and the LHC!
Also, a shameless plug for a friend: check out http://www.factodiem.com/ for really interesting science-y articles about science :)

Comment Re:Not the Higgs (Score 2) 180

This comment should be emphasized. The summary and title are way off the mark.
1. This was not a data "review," but rather an entirely new analysis. Fermilab has two experiments that study proton-antiproton collisions, named CDF and D0. CDF published the original paper, and then D0 tried to verify their claims. Reproducibility of results is a tenet of science; having multiple ~independent experiments at Fermilab allows results from one experiment to be verified at another. This story demonstrates exactly why we need independent verification to be confident in a result.
2. This is not a setback. The CDF bump was unexpected and quite exciting, but not vital to the progress or science, nor anybody's daily business in the particle physics world.
3. This never had anything to do with the Higgs. Generally, people have not been regarding the CDF bump as a possible Higgs signal, but rather an indication of something new.

See D0's paper. And...let's stay away from FoxNews for science writing.

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