[Taxacom] Reproducibility of phylogenetic analysis

J. Kirk Fitzhugh kfitzhugh at nhm.org
Tue Jan 26 17:58:19 CST 2010


Re Popper, 'e' and 'H', from what appears in much of the systematics 
literature (Cladistics and Syst. Biol. comes to mind for some odd 
reason), elevating poor Karl to almost god-like status, we need to be 
more concerned with what he was referring to by 'e'. For the most part, 
systematists' notion of 'e' isn't what Popper intended when he spoke of 
'e' as test evidence.

Kirk

Richard Zander wrote:
> Popper got, rightly, knighted for his defense of democracy's foundation
> in respect for the past and for reason (kind of Burkeian conservatism,
> but what do you expect from the Queen, it's better than President's
> Medals from the neocons (IMO)). He of course overemphasized
> nomological-deductivism and sloughed off intuition, perhaps because of
> what are not historical reasons for us, such as Nazi Aryanism and
> Mussolini's superman "First do, then think!" Popper is understandable in
> context, and the times were sad.
>
> I'm tried to struggle with his formal logic re evidence and hypothesis,
> and found (I think) that somewhere in the middle of some pages of
> "proof" that he switches e and H without telling. Blink and suddenly
> evidence and hypothesis are no longer what they seem. No I don't really
> understand it, but I am really doubtful. Anybody else get a similar
> feeling about this?
>
>
> *****************************
> Richard H. Zander 
> Voice: 314-577-0276
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> *****************************
>
>
> -----Original Message-----
> From: taxacom-bounces at mailman.nhm.ku.edu
> [mailto:taxacom-bounces at mailman.nhm.ku.edu] On Behalf Of Sergio Vargas
> Sent: Tuesday, January 26, 2010 12:28 PM
> To: taxacom at mailman.nhm.ku.edu
> Subject: [Taxacom] Reproducibility of phylogenetic analysis
>
> If I'm not wrong, Popper insisted that our brains are theory-based. So
> we propose theories pretty much by nature... I guess. Testing them
> allow us to reject the wrong ones. This is pretty much the same as to
> say that we all have a non-flat prior distribution for the possible
> explanations of a phenomenon. I think, however, Popper demonstrated
> that the ratio between the prior and the posterior probability of an
> hypothesis doesn't change after testing the hypothesis... not sure
> though, is in the first postscriptum to the logik.
>
> anyways... he did said that all we have is Conjectures and their
> Refutations... if a conjecture is not intuition, what is it?
>
> sergio
>
>   
>> It's worth noting that Karl Popper, while insisting that science
>>     
> advances by the testing of hypotheses, steered clear of just how we
> should arrive at those hypotheses. Indeed, I seem to recall that he
> admitted intuition there. The most respectable these days seems to be
> the process of "inference to the best explanation" - which, surely,
> requires just the intuition of a highly trained, talented expert.
>
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