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This site is named for the famous statement of US Congressman Willard Duncan Vandiver from Missouri : "I`m from Missouri -- you'll have to show me." This site is dedicated to skepticism of official dogma in all subjects. Just-so stories are not accepted here. This is a site where controversial subjects such as evolution theory and the Holocaust may be freely debated.

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Location: Los Angeles, California, United States

My biggest motivation for creating my own blogs was to avoid the arbitrary censorship practiced by other blogs and various other Internet forums. Censorship will be avoided in my blogs -- there will be no deletion of comments, no closing of comment threads, no holding up of comments for moderation, and no commenter registration hassles. Comments containing nothing but insults and/or ad hominem attacks are discouraged. My non-response to a particular comment should not be interpreted as agreement, approval, or inability to answer.

Monday, May 12, 2008

Unintelligible high-falutin gobbledygook about co-evolution

An article titled "Intelligent Design Exposed," linked to Panda's Thumb, has what are probably the most unintelligible scientific discussions that I have ever seen. The following abstract is an example:

Evolution of mixed strategies

In this study we present a simple optimization model for the evolution of defensive strategies (tolerance and resistance) of plants against their natural enemies. The model specifically evaluates the consequences of introducing variable costs and benefits of tolerance and resistance and nonlinear cost-and-benefit functions for tolerance and resistance. Incorporating these assumptions, the present model of plant defense predicts different evolutionary scenarios, not expected by previous work. Basically, the presence of an adaptive peak corresponding to intermediate levels of allocation to tolerance and resistance can arise when the shape parameter of the cost function is higher than the corresponding of the benefit function. The presence of two alternatives peaks of maximum tolerance and maximum resistance occurs only when benefits of tolerance and resistance interact less than additive. Finally, the presence of one peak of maximum resistance or maximum tolerance depends on the relative values of the magnitude of costs for tolerance and resistance. An important outcome of our model is that under a plausible set of conditions, variable costs of tolerance and resistance can represent an important aspect involved in the maintenance of intermediate levels of tolerance and resistance, and in favoring adaptive divergence in plant defensive strategies among populations. The model offers a framework for future theoretical and empirical work toward understanding spatial variation in levels of allocation to different defensive strategies.

EVOLUTION OF MIXED STRATEGIES OF PLANT DEFENSE ALLOCATION AGAINST NATURAL ENEMIES, Evolution, Volume 58, Issue 8 (August 2004)

Perfectly clear.

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6 Comments:

Anonymous Voice in the Urbanness said...

> An article titled "Intelligent Design Exposed," linked to Panda's Thumb, has what are probably the most unintelligible scientific discussions that I have ever seen. <

You find most things unintelligible. We could try to explain it to you but I am sure it would go over your head like everything else.

Monday, May 12, 2008 1:08:00 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

If you knew anything about science, it would be perfectly clear. Your failure to understand a basic published (or of publishable quality) article in the sciences is precisely why none of your readers (except for "Jim Sherwood") take you seriously.

Monday, May 12, 2008 3:41:00 PM  
Anonymous Alt-Anonymous said...

Admittedly, the snippet that you quote is rather on the turgid side. (It is actually a secondary quote from the article you linked, and may read somewhat better in context -- it needs examples and diagrams, for instance, and may have them in the original.) But I wonder why you focus on that snippet instead of the rest of the linked article, which is very straightforward and quite good? Or for that matter, why don't you criticize the IDiocy of 'The Argument' presented in the first place?

Tuesday, May 13, 2008 3:52:00 PM  
Anonymous Alt-Anonymous (P.S.) said...

I meant to add: 'The Argument' is what I would call "low-falutin gobbledygook".

Tuesday, May 13, 2008 3:57:00 PM  
Blogger Larry Fafarman said...

Alt-Anonymous said...
>>>>> But I wonder why you focus on that snippet instead of the rest of the linked article, which is very straightforward and quite good? Or for that matter, why don't you criticize the IDiocy of 'The Argument' presented in the first place? <<<<<<

Lots of people criticized the "IDiocy of the Argument," but no one else criticized the unintelligibility of that abstract. Somebody had to do it, so I did it.

This is a little story about four people named Everybody, Somebody, Anybody, and Nobody.

There was an important job to be done and Everybody was sure that Somebody would do it.

Anybody could have done it, but Nobody did it.

Somebody got angry about that because it was Everybody's job.

Everybody thought that Anybody could do it, but Nobody realized that Everybody wouldn't do it.

It ended up that Everybody blamed Somebody when Nobody did what Anybody could have done.

Tuesday, May 13, 2008 5:03:00 PM  
Anonymous Voice in the Urbanness said...

> but no one else criticized the unintelligibility of that abstract. Somebody had to do it, so I did it. <

Too bad you couldn't do it intelligently.

Tuesday, May 13, 2008 5:27:00 PM  

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