Michael Nielsen writes:

The disincentives facing scientists have led to a ludicrous situation where popular culture is open enough that people feel comfortable writing Pokemon reviews, yet scientific culture is so closed that people will not publicly share their opinions of scientific papers. Some people find this contrast curious or amusing; I believe it signifies something seriously amiss with science, something we need to understand and change.

The whole article is worth reading. It suggests the same kind of innovation I am hoping for in science. Right now, scientists often congratulate themselves for open science. But as Michael and others point out, arXiv is not exactly a model of openness, at least relative to standards such as open-source software development.


3 thoughts on “Science and the fear of innovation

  1. “science” is a domain just as infest-able by socialstatus-driven gamesmanship as any other human domain.it has the advantage that it’s unavoidably grounded in the real world — facts CAN, eventually, convince people regardless of the bandwagon. that’s the reason why it’s often said “science” leaps forward in “paradigm-shifts” — after dogged resistance to upsetting facts, which nevertheless win over a larger and larger number of those less addicted to The Game, eventually the bandwagonists all rush to the new centre of status and Lo! a new equilibrium of consensus. and a new field for the same old game.i saw a classic example of this status-driven counter-productiveness just this year. a chap noted that a key assumption of all the “greenhouse”/”climatechange” modellers had never been actually measured in real-world conditions. so he measured it.for the first time ever.his research shows the core assumption underlying the previous (= current bandwagon’s) modelling is out by a FACTOR of 80. the current bandwagon’s extrapolations are not just rendered fantastical, but in most key respects the entire bandwagon is rendered irrelevant. but speaking to your post’s topic: what is ASTOUNDING is that 2 of the handful of lead IPCC researchers were sufficiently outraged by this to personally weigh in on his research. and their vituperative comments were entirely ad hominem and could most concisely be summarised as follows:”be more cognisant of your social status, nonentity. WE are the globally acknowledged experts! so since you contradict us, you are, by definition, wrong.shut up. (you’ll never get this published.)”it was my running across similar responses to Richard Feynmann (that ARROGANT IDIOT) in my formative years that changed my mind about becoming a physicist. i knew i wouldn’t be able to cope emotionally with something potentially so wonderful being so vilely undermined by parasites in their quest for social success.

  2. whoofnot immediately to handprintout is in *gestures* that hideous set of piles of papers “to file properly at some point”i’ll have a bit of a rummage tho, and come back to you if i have any joy

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )


Connecting to %s