[Taxacom] methodological plurality

Kipling (Kip) Will kipwill at berkeley.edu
Thu Nov 22 11:48:24 CST 2012

(Last comments. I’m off to do other things and so won’t be able to go 
tit for tat with posts to this thread, but will try and read everyone’s
interesting and stimulating input.)

>> Dan Lahr
> If you have a very good reason to determine a prior in a BI analyses,
> then you should do a BI.  If you´re going to end up setting a flat
> prior, then you should just use ML.  They are trying to solve
> different problems and are telling you different things about the
> world.

What priors should be used for phylogeny is an interesting issue I would
like to see further explored.

> It is a problem with many layers.  Like someone else mentioned, this
> is what makes us scientists.  Bob O'Hara has a great quote in one of
> his papers that says that big questions in science are never solved,
> they just dissipate as people figure out that they didn't matter, but
> they are important in the development of science.  I feel this is one
> of those questions.
> Dan
>> Bob Mesibov
> I'm sensing a slow shift in the literature back to an emphasis on
> species biology, in which species relationships are sort of
> interesting but not the really cool things worth studying. If I'm
> right, then 'What method did you use, and why?' is a question we may
> be 'getting over'.

Great, then I can go back to Darlington’s mental analyses of the
Australian fauna and spin the best story ever about carabid beetles and
no one will care. Much easier than wrestling over methods.


Contact info:

Kipling W. Will
Associate Professor/Insect Systematist
Associate Director,Essig Museum of Entomology

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