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Old 29-11-2007, 05:41   #16
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Quote:
One vessel was built to accomplish many things and the other to do one thing. Although beat, the Cutty Sark still holds the greater honor.
The concept of covering the greatest distances by man in record time using ships at sea is long over. That was the honor and the legend. That record was already broken by men circling the planet in hours. There are better records to make new that can accomplish something. This record is over 130 years late and not even 5% faster.

It might have been a lot of fun though!
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Old 29-11-2007, 06:04   #17
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Best 24 hour run is one thing - maintaining that speed consistently is another.

Read red-duster.co.uk Homepage for the red duster merchant navy maritime information archive

for a description of the China Tea Clipper races.

(Yes, I am related to the Robert Steele & Co. of Greenock that built many of those ships).
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Old 29-11-2007, 08:12   #18
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What a great read. Thanks for the link.

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Observations are gold; hypotheses, silver; and conclusions, bronze.

Democracy is two wolves and a lamb voting on what to have for lunch. Liberty is a well-armed lamb contesting the vote.--Ben Franklin

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Old 29-11-2007, 10:21   #19
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I agree, ID - great read! Thanks for posting that link, Patrick.

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Old 03-12-2007, 05:57   #20
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“Observations are gold; hypotheses, silver; and conclusions, bronze”, is another of those pointless and misleading aphorisms, that so exasperate me.

What practical value has a mere observation, that doesn’t lead to a useful conclusion?
Isn’t a conclusion, attendant upon a “proven” hypothesis more generally useful than one without?
All three form an important part of any examination.

The Scientific Inquiry Process is often referred to by the acronym PHMOCA:
P stands for purpose, or problem
H stands for the hypothesis
M stands for the method
O stands for the observations
C stands for the conclusion
A stands for the application to the world outside the laboratory.
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Old 03-12-2007, 08:27   #21
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Well, Gord, I'm sorry you feel exasperated about it, but as a scientist and researcher in an applied field for the last 30 years I can tell you that it is far more common for people to come to conclusions about a phenomenon without having examined other hypotheses, first. Furthermore, it is far from unusual for people to develop hypotheses, and then to stake out their personal favorites, without having actually made observations (collecting and analyzing data).

This process may well be because we humans are likely to have some hard wiring in us that served survival purposes in the ancestral environment. (Lots of the evolutionary biologists/psychologists have studied and written about this topic.) After all, if you're out somewhere you shouldn't be at night and hear a noise, those hominids who survived and therefore became our ancestors, are most likely the ones who didn't go searching to see if it was a cricket or a big cat, but rather jumped to the conclusion that it was a cat.

However, what may have served an excellent purpose in the ancestral environment, does not necessarily result in an accurate understanding of nature. To tag along on your own sig line -- doing it "right" in the first place requires the correct understanding of the problem to be solved. The vast majority of the times when I haven't done something right the first time was because I jumped to a conclusion, without having considered other options (hypotheses) and spent the time to observe and understand.

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Observations are gold; hypotheses, silver; and conclusions, bronze.

Democracy is two wolves and a lamb voting on what to have for lunch. Liberty is a well-armed lamb contesting the vote.--Ben Franklin

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Old 03-12-2007, 11:04   #22
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Let’s not confuse conclusions with inferences.
A conclusion is an understanding based on proof, usually gained from observation.
However, an inference is an explanation that is not usually proved or disproved by observation.
An observation, without a corresponding conclusion, is just a (so far) useless Data Point.

According to Charles Darwin:
"... About thirty years ago there was much talk that geologists ought only to observe and not theorize; and I well remember someone saying that at this rate a man might as well go into a gravel-pit and count the pebbles and describe the colours. How odd it is that anyone should not see that all observation must be for or against some view (sic: conclusion) to be of any service ..."
Charles R Darwin in a letter to Henry Fawcett, September 18, 1861
Goto: Darwin Correspondence Project - Letter 3257 — Darwin, C. R. to Fawcett, Henry, 18 Sept [1861]
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Old 03-12-2007, 11:33   #23
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Well, you can appeal to Darwin if you wish, but if he were actually here to participate, I believe he would clarify his statement, thusly: Those who conclude without understanding (hypothesis) and those who believe they understand without having tested (observed), all base their findings on conjecture and speculation. Until one has observed nature at work and then tested the hypotheses regarding it, then what you have is opinion, not fact.

You can call data points useless if you wish, but it is the accumulation and aggregation of data points, in a systematic fashion, that is integral to science.

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Observations are gold; hypotheses, silver; and conclusions, bronze.

Democracy is two wolves and a lamb voting on what to have for lunch. Liberty is a well-armed lamb contesting the vote.--Ben Franklin

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Old 03-12-2007, 12:45   #24
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<thread hijacked comment>

Allow me to observe that, in general in the marine environment, gold and silver are pretty useless metals except inside electronics, while bronze pays its way.

The two of you are talking at cross-purposes, and you agree with each other. You disagree on whether it's a cute aphorism.

I agree in part with Gord - I have a dozen log files which I haven't time to analyze but are packed full of "gold" observations. Theorizing that a problem may exist, then analyzing the files to determine if so, has been very successful as a model for me in some cases. In others, the analysis has pointed out the problem and helped determine a solution. But I'd say they all started with the conclusion "we can do better than this", or would that be an assumption?

I agree in part with ID, without good data you have no basis for claims. Of course, what I consider valid data and what you consider valid data may differ, and in our area of research we believe errors in methodology are more common than error-free research methodology.
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Old 03-12-2007, 14:02   #25
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In reading through the last few posts, it seems to me the following is self-evident:

Observation: A site administrator hijacked this thread.

Hypothesis: Site administrator's expression of exasperation reveals he's having a bad day.

Conclusion: This silliness belongs in a PM, if it must be expressed at all.

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Old 03-12-2007, 15:29   #26
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Tao’s (often excellent) native intuition may have been augmented by a weather report.
I’ve spent these past 2 days either: stuck, digging out, or digging someone else out; of a rather significant snowfall.
This Site Administrator apologises for having hijacked this (and another) thread … with his pithy & clever comments (off-topic, though informative they may be).

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Old 03-12-2007, 15:37   #27
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There's the man we've all come to respect and admire! Many months ago I referred to Gord as a treasure to this board - and that is still my opinion.

Sorry to read of the difficulties you've had with the weather, Gord. But look at it this way - in only three months after the end of Fall, it will be Spring again!

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