Re: The influence of skeptics.

From: Richard Loosemore (
Date: Mon Jan 02 2006 - 17:16:49 MST

Do you understand anything about statistical measurements, fudley?

Eliezer: would you like to step in and explain to this guy what it
means for there to be a significant difference in the scoring of two
groups of people (distinguished by their self reported "belief"), one
group scoring above chance and the other below chance, when the scoring
should be completely random for both groups, according to the normal
laws of physics?

fudley wrote:
> On Mon, 02 Jan 2006 "Richard Loosemore" <> said:
>>If someone is able to influence an experiment in such a
>>way was to make the number of hits consistently below
>>chance, they are doing something just as paranormal as
>>someone who makes them come out above chance.
> The odds that your horse will come in first are less than the odds it
> will come in first or last. And the entire problem is that psi ability
> is not the only way to influence an experiment in such a way as to get
> an extraordinarily good (or bad) score, not when the experimenter is so
> gullible that he has a transundendal experience when he sees a magician
> at a birthday party pull a quarter out of a child’s ear.
>>They give these kinds of problems to first year psychology
>>undergraduates to trick them, in their statistical design
>>of experiments classes.
> Oh, he had a very high score so psi must be real. Oh, he had a very low
> score so psi must be real. Oh, he had a very average score so psi must
> be real, I mean if you flip a coin a million times the chance you will
> get exactly 500,000 heads is very low. Oh….
> John K Clark

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