Friday, July 18, 2008

Scientists for sophistry

What was once a serious group of objective scientists, the 'Royal Society of NZ,' now appears little more than a partisan, muck-raking rabble less interested in the supposed objectives of fair or responsible comment on scientific matters than they are in protecting their sources of funding, which for the most part (with most of the Society's luminaries) is based on peddling the warmist litany.

A recent press from the Society's "Climate Committee," consisting entirely of persons whose livelihoods rely upon the maintenance of the warmist myth, was issued in response to an increasing sea of doubt in the warmist litany -- in the Society's words, "the controversy over climate change and its causes, and possible confusion among the public." This "confusion" is manifested in the likes of polls that show the bulk of the public considers the likes of the Society's luminaries to be talking nonsense. Which they are. And increasing evidence that global warming promises have become "a gushing source of national hypocrisy. It's politically incorrect to question it, and political suicide to do anything about it."

Dr Vincent Gray is one former member of the Society who has resigned in protest at the public statement, which purports to be "a statement to make absolutely clear what the evidence is for climate change and anthropogenic (human-induced) causes." As Dr Gray points out, it is nothing of the sort.

Science has been politicised, and the Society's own press release is a measure of how much. I urge you to read both the original presser and Dr Gray's response.

UPDATE 1: There's no smoke and people should be fired says Dr David Evans, former consultant to the Australian Greenhouse Office from 1999 to 2005.
I DEVOTED six years to carbon accounting, building models for the Australian Greenhouse Office. I am the rocket scientist who wrote the carbon accounting model (FullCAM) that measures Australia's compliance with the Kyoto Protocol, in the land use change and forestry sector...
When I started that job in 1999 the evidence that carbon emissions caused global warming seemed pretty good: CO2 is a greenhouse gas, the old ice core data, no other suspects.
The evidence was not conclusive, but why wait until we were certain when it appeared we needed to act quickly?
As he goes on to record, the evidence has quote simply never arrived, and "since 1999 new evidence has seriously weakened the case that carbon emissions are the main cause of global warming, and by 2007 the evidence was pretty conclusive that carbon played only a minor role and was not the main cause of the recent global warming. As Lord Keynes famously said, When the facts change, I change my mind. What do you do, sir?'
There has not been a public debate about the causes of global warming and most of the public and our decision makers are not aware of the most basic salient facts...
Read on here for Dr Evans' exposition of the facts that changed his mind.

UPDATE 2
: John Lennon would disapprove, as to would anyone with an ounce of musical taste, but there's a chap here at YouTube who would like you to Imagine a World Without Global Warming. Perhaps that should read, 'Imagine a World Without Global Warming Hysteria'?

UPDATE 3: Read Christopher Booker's entertaining take on the empty words spewed forth into the oriental air at the recent G8 summit. "As well as having no idea how they could achieve such an absurdly ambitious target [as their trumpeted but far from serious fifty-percent reduction og emissions by 2050], they may inflict immeasurable damage on their economies just by trying to do so," says Booker.

UPDATE 4: As NZ's emissions trading scheme still falters for a lack of political support, folk elsewhere are beginning to realise the buying of carbon indulgences has the very opposite effect to that which emission trading supporters. See Justin Danhof's report and explanation of why cap and trade could backfire.
Simple answer: It's our old friend the law of unintended consequences again, which probably helps explain why the European Union's cap-and-trade system isn't working, and why NZ's never will.

UPDATE 5: Comedian Dennis Miller points out that it's weird when you're the only one at a dinner party who's not convinced New York City is going to be underwater by 2057 -- didn't people like this used to be derided as cranks?

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20 Comments:

Anonymous Having A Blast said...

Your post further informs the mandacity of Scientists infected with warmism. I posted last night, here on the extremely close linkages between the authors of the IPCC report last year (and in 2001). These links include co-authorship of previous papers, peer reviewing their mates from within the IPCC fraternity, heavy weightings of participants from a few institutions (partic. Hadley) making up the "global" ranks of the authors and authors who are PhD students of lead authors... The paper describing the socio web of these close cross linkages is Prejudiced Authors, Prejudiced Findings

7/18/2008 11:54:00 am  
Anonymous Falafulu Fisi said...

Having a Blast, thanks for the link. Its about time that real authority such as the APS (American Physical Society) has come out to question the validity of the IPCC claim on AGW. I frequently follow certain publications from the APS own popular journal Physics Review Letters (PRL) and hardly any peer papers in there that glorify AGW. I have seen probably 2 or 3 to the best of my knowledge, but perhaps the APS reviewers for submitted papers for PRL have been suspicious about all this AGW political driven hypes. Perhaps this explains why AGW related papers are ever made it to publications in PRL.

7/18/2008 04:55:00 pm  
Anonymous Falafulu Fisi said...

are ever made it to publications in PRL.

mean to say:

are hardly ever made it to publications in PRL.

7/18/2008 05:32:00 pm  
Blogger SamV said...

You recommend that people check out Gray's response - sure, why not. You'll see the rant of an old man obviously too tired from his upstream paddling against the flows of scientific discovery to check whether the references he cites are worthy of citing.

As a thought exercise, PC - let's just assume for a moment that CO₂ emissions are a problem. Would you agree that my property rights - eg, the largest commons being the atmosphere - are being infringed? If we establish that, with whom would I raise a grievance?

7/19/2008 01:33:00 am  
Anonymous Sean said...

Samv,

If something is in "the commons" then far from being owned by everyone, it is in fact owned by no one. To talk of property rights in this situation is to completely miss assign the concept.

7/19/2008 07:55:00 am  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

samv

"You'll see the rant of an old man obviously too tired from his upstream paddling against the flows of scientific discovery"

Yes and what discoveries are those?

I am not aware of any advances in mathematical physics being produced from any of the "manufacturers of model world"

Indeed Ghil et al suggest otherwise.


"As the relatively new science of climate dynamics evolved through the 1980s and 1990s, it became quite clear from observational data, both instrumental and paleoclimatic, as well as model studies that Earth's climate never was and is unlikely to ever be in equilibrium. The three successive IPCC reports (1991 [2], 1996, and 2001 [3]) concentrated therefore, in addition to estimates of equilibrium sensitivity, on estimates of climate change over the 21st century, based on several scenarios of CO2 in-
crease over this time interval, and using up to 18 general circulation models (GCMs) in the fourth IPCC Assessment Report (AR4) [4]. TheGCMresults of temperature increase over the coming 100 years have stubbornly resisted any narrowing of the range of estimates, with results for Ts in 2100 as low as 1:4 K or as high as 5:8 K, accord-
ing to the Third Assessment Report. The hope in the research leading up to the AR4 was that a set of suitably defined better GCMs" would exhibit a narrower range of year-2100 estimates, but this does not seem to have been the case.

The difficulty in narrowing the range of estimates for either equilibrium sensitivity of climate or for end-of-the-century temperatures is clearly connected to the complexity of the climate system, the multiplicity and nonlinearity of the processes and feedbacks it contains, and the obstacles to a faithful representation of these processes and feedbacks in GCMs. The practice of the science and engineering of GCMs over several decades has amply demonstrated that any addition or change in the model's parametrizations" i.e., of the representation of subgrid-scale processes in terms of the model's explicit, large-scale variables may result in noticeable changes in the model solutions' behavior."

Maksimovich

7/19/2008 08:37:00 am  
Blogger SamV said...

Yes and what discoveries are those?

To give a specific example, advances in Ice Core analysis, extraction and treatment. One of the key papers cited by Gray, by Jaworowski "emphasizes only the difficulties of these studies [...] without any appreciation for the development of expertise in this field over several decades. Thus he extrapolates from contamination problems in improvised pioneering experiments in the late sixties to more recent (1992) similar experiments on the Greenland ice cap for which special equipment was developed" (commentary by Hans Oeschger, University of Bern, in a 1995 letter to ESPR).

That was ripping apart earlier work by Jaworowski, but it's quite clear if you read the details of his new reports that time (over 10 years) has gone on, the technologies and methods have further improved, but the papers released by Jaworowski just never took into account any of the criticisms leveled against them. Jaworowski's ideas about CO₂ levels being related to depth and pressure hold true for only one limited region of ice core and nowhere else.

I've found that Ghil paper you quote from - please do include the year in your citations. Also, "et al" means that there were other authors involved, which is not the case with the paper you quote. It's a short paper outlining further directions that modelling can go, but if you read it you'll see that it doesn't take any issue with the result, just the accuracy of it, and starts to outline ways of going forward. That will always be the case, but it doesn't mean that the qualitative results are wrong! Even the first very crude models, treating the atmosphere as if it were a sheet of glass, are of some use certainly in understanding, and for a snapshot gross estimate they're not bad.

sean, thanks for the explanation, but your answer also misses the point of the exercise. My understanding of the libertarian / common law model is that something has to have an owner to persue claims the person who is detracting from their property. I can't believe that such an obvious fault would exist in a group of people who pride themselves on rigorous thought! Because that would imply that it's ok to do whatever you like to any commons, because no-one is there to complain. I guess I was assuming that commons would be common property rather than ownerless land.

7/19/2008 03:03:00 pm  
Anonymous Falafulu Fisi said...

Samv said...
It's a short paper outlining further directions that modelling can go, but if you read it you'll see that it doesn't take any issue with the result, just the accuracy of it, and starts to outline ways of going forward.

The main problem with modeling dynamical systems as correctly pointed out by Ghil is complexity of the climate system, multiplicity and nonlinearity of the processes
and feedbacks it contains, and the obstacles to a faithful representation of these processes and feedbacks in GCMs
and you can see that those issues were raised on this NASA sponsored workshop a few years back. (Note to have a clear view - Click the refresh/reload button so text on the page don't cluttered on the left-hand-side ). As far as I know today, scientists and modelers aren't any closer to solving those problems yet. If you wish, you can see the following paper by Aires & Rossow, which discuss those problems with a bit more depth.

Inferring instantaneous, multivariate and nonlinear sensitivities for the analysis of feedback processes in a dynamical system: Lorenz model case-study

Rossow/Aires paper was an attempt to address the problems. This is the right direction. The problem with modeling of non-linear multi-variate/multi-coupled feedbacks is that the structure (relations of effects to causes , ie, relation of outputs to inputs) of the climate dynamical systems is not known as a priori. This is very important because you can still model 2 or more different structures that have the same output functional mapping. This means that you can have 2 or more (structures - causal/effect linkages or functional relation) that more or less fit the observational data well. Once you start doing this, then you must always be suspicious of the model because there is no guarantee that what it represents is the true underlying cause/effect in the system being modeled.

7/19/2008 04:16:00 pm  
Anonymous Sean said...

Samv,

There are many different property structures. A group of people can own a parcel of land as a collective. The internal decisions will be made collectively. While their property right is secure against any none group members. So if I try to dumb toxic waste on the communal garden they can prevent me, or if to late, seek redress from me.

Your issue becomes one of, well what about the air? Well each property owner should be the rightful owner of the air immediately above his property. If your factory is spewing soot onto my property, then I can rightful insist on cessation or compensation.

Then the issue gets very woolly. What if some gas as a by product of production is slowly warming the earth? But there is no single big contributor as above. This is classic externalities analysis. The first point to make is that you have to demonstrate actual harm. (Note that some property will increase significantly in value if/as the world warms - which suggests we have the compensation question backwards!) Not only that, you need to demonstrate that you are not in fact a contributor. If you purchase products from firms that admit this gas, then you are far from an innocent third party! Any negative costs/benefits are internal to the transaction.

One final note. 99% of benefits we receive come in the form of externalities. That is we live in society with certain benefits (technology etc). It seems silly to complain about some marginal cost of living in a society when we otherwise benefit so enormously!

7/19/2008 04:43:00 pm  
Anonymous Falafulu Fisi said...

Samv said...
That will always be the case, but it doesn't mean that the qualitative results are wrong!

See, my previous comment above, ie, you can map the causes to the effects of different structures to within acceptable tolerance, but the modeler must choose only one structure since nature itself (physical laws) can't be everything at once. Note that this selection of the best fit model, was done algorithmically, ie, using some best fit test (AIC - Akaike Information Criteria, BIC - Bayesian Information Criteria, PE - Prediction Error, ...) rather than a definite knowledge of the underlying Physics. In this way, the modeler has always assumed that what is given algorithmically is always the correct structural relations between the inputs (causes) and outputs (effects). This is what you call blind faith.

I will give a simple example: Suppose that you have a SISO system (single input single output) to model and you have data collected on the cause, which is X and also data collected on the effect which Y. Suppose that I have no prior knowledge about the structural equation relation between X (input/cause) to Y (output/effect). What should I do? Well I can run a polynomial fitting of the data-pair (X,Y) and see what's the structural relationship that it gives. Suppose that I want to fit my cause/effect (X,Y) data on polynomial order of 1,2 and 3 ; The structural relation would be something in the followings, where (a , b , c and d are constants);

n=1:
Y = a*X + b

n=2:
Y = a*X^2 + b*X + c

n=3:
Y = a*X^3 + b*X^2 + c*X + d

The coefficients a, b, c & d are identified by the fitting algorithm and all these structural relation models (n=1, n=2 and n=3) do fit the data and I mean they really do. What is the next step? Well since all 3 structural models of the input (cause) X and output (effect) Y fit the data, I can pick one model by purely random since it makes no difference to favour one over the other 2 because they all fit the data. The fact that I have no clue to the causal relation between X & Y, I would use a best fit testing algorithm to tell me which of the 3 structural models (cause/effect models) has the least error/residual. Suppose that my algorithm tells me that the structural model with the least error is the one with order 2 , ie, n=2, which is a quadratic equation of the general form:

Y = a*X^2 + b*X + c

But am I confident that the true underlying Physics has this quadratic structural relationship? I have no clue at all. Perhaps more experimentation and data collection is needed to independently confirmed if my suspicions on the quadratic structural causal relations that the algorithm had advised me that I should accept.

So, if you don't know the climate variables structural relation model, you can almost follow by being suspicious about the models, since blind identification of the structures (as my example above) doesn't guarantee that the identified structure is the true underlying Physics of the system. In other words , don't blindly accept what the algorithm give/tell you.

If you're interested in the subject of dynamical system identification which the Aires/Rossow paper also covered, then I recommend the following popular book on the subject:

System Identification - Theory For the User

This book covers linear/non-linear, single-coupled/multi-coupled evolving dynamical systems modeling using black-box, gray-box and white-box. Note that GCM is a white-box modeling, ie, you already have the structural relationship equations between the inputs & outputs are already known as a priori. My polynomial fitting example in this post is a black-box modeling, since I have no clue or prior knowledge of the structural relation between the input/cause (X) and the output/effect (Y). Indeed there is the mid ground the gray-box, where the structural relation between the input & output are known in advance, however values of its parameters are not known in advance and therefor needed to be identified.

I believe that this book is a text book for engineering students who are majoring in Control Systems theory and design, anyway, there are 3 copies of this book available from the Auckland University School of Engineering library, that you can get access to.

7/19/2008 04:46:00 pm  
Anonymous Sean said...

Enjoyed the video links provided in updates 2 & 5!

7/19/2008 05:02:00 pm  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Samv

Yes and what discoveries are those?

First this is a question for the AGW community to provide, where are the evolutionary discoveries?


Secondly, Three authors hence et al.

Climate dynamics and fluid mechanics:
Natural variability and related uncertainties
Michael Ghil MickaÄel D. Chekroun, Eric Simonnet

Physica D 2008

Second there is a very clear and significant message in the quotation provided and in the paper provided ,
i) the binary transformation of climate states and,
ii) the amplification or attenuation of process within the climate state( continuous process).

The problem area is the parameterization of external forcing ,from what is the “normal mean climatic state’ and what is an “abnormal state” This is a not insignificant problem as no GCM or indeed “ensemble” of GCM”S predicted this.(hence unknown qualities)

The level of mathematical skill from the “proprietors” of “state of the art gcm” being another as Dymnikov observes.

“It should be emphasized that most of the scientific community concerned with climate models are generally not interested in mathematical problems and treat a model as a specific finite-dimensional construction with a specific description of physical processes, thus reducing the study of the model’s quality to a numerical experiment alone.”

Ruzmaiken puts this quite succinctly.

Linear and non-linear systems respond differently to external forcing. A classical example of a linear system response is the Hooke’s law of elasticity that states that the amount by which a material body is deformed is linearly proportional to the force causing the deformation. Earlier climate change studies used this linear approximation to evaluate the sensitivity of the global temperature change caused by external forcing. However the response of non-linear systems to external forcing is conceptually different; the issue is not a magnitude (sensitivity) of the response. Non-linear systems have internally defined preferred states (called attractors in mathematics) and variabilities driven by residence in the states and transitions between them. The question is what is the effect of an external forcing: change of the states, residence times or something else?

Answer to this question is critical to our understanding of climate change.
Based on the model studies mentioned above we can formulate the following, updated conjecture of the climate system response to external forcing: external effects, such as solar, the QBO and anthropogenic influences, weakly affect the climate patterns and their mean residence times but increase a probability of occurrence of long residences. In other words, under solar or anthropogenic influence the changes in mean climate values, such as the global temperature, are less important than increased duration of certain climate patterns associated say with cold conditions in some regions and warm conditions in the other regions


So we can see a significant distance in the capabilities of the “modelmakers” and mathematical physicists with significant skill

Maksimovich

7/20/2008 09:02:00 am  
Blogger SamV said...

Falafulu, you write an awful lot of words and formulae to repeat the old argument that "climate models are the result of their assumptions".

This argument is not scientific at all. These "assumptions" that everyone continually blasts are either directly empirically tested, derived from empirical results and hence known to a high level of accuracy, or more "open" parameters for which there is debate about how they are constrained.

Don't forget "model" is just a fancy way of saying "hypothesis". They're stacking up everything we can empirically show and deduce into a set of numbers and making our best guess. This simply cannot be undermined by saying that it never going to be "complete".

The point is that studies and papers that discuss the problems with modeling will be ones adding constraints to these open parameters of the model, and refining the model. But the very basic level of the climate model is based on climate absorption, Brownian motion, heat emission and other phenomena which are easily tested.

ie, if you want to say that the parameters are wrong, it's not enough to say "models can show anything". You have to actually say which forcing value you think is wrong, and why.

Maksimovich, the "AGW community" is quite proficient at providing these evolutionary discoveries.

sean, part of the thought exercise was that we had already decided that the CO₂ emissions were harmful, so "demonstrating actual harm" is assumed. You make a good point about being complicit in the trade of course. I guess that would imply that carbon neutral entities would have a case to take to those that weren't? It sounds like under this model, schemes like the ETS would be useful (assuming, of course, the AGW hypothesis is proven to everyone's satisfaction - eg, in 10 or 20 years it should be obvious really).

7/20/2008 11:15:00 pm  
Anonymous Falafulu Fisi said...

SamV said...
But the very basic level of the climate model is based on climate absorption, Brownian motion, heat emission and other phenomena which are easily tested.

Sam, you bemoaned that I wrote awful lot, which is true. The reason that I wrote awful lot for you (and your likes) because I hoped that you would finally realized that magic formulas is not the end all. You seemed to believe it is, and YES I already know that is based on climate absorption, Brownian motion, heat emission, because models has to be based on Physics. But the questions is, is/are the climate processes based on these Physics have other Physics subprocesses that scientists don't know about. I mean the same climate absorption, Brownian motion, heat emission, etc, but they contain other subprocesses that interlink in a way that scientists didn't foresee?

The answer is YES and was provided by the Aires/Rossow paper and they believe it is, based on the fact that there is a wide margin between the model prediction & observations. You should read that paper and try to understand the issue that the authors discussed, because it is going to be a waste of my time in trying to write more awful lot for you so you could grasp what you need to know in order to understand the danger of blindly endorsing numerical climate modelings without questioning it.

The whole debate about AGW rests primary on the over reliance on computer modeling and this is fact. In your own words, hypothesis, and why hypothesis is being elevated as facts, in which it hasn't been shown (rigorously) to be the case. Hypothesis should be remained as hypothesis, until such a time that they are being proven to be facts.

Physicists had been theorizing/predicting over in the past decades the existence of graviton particle, the carrier of gravity. This is still hypothesis and not fact yet, ans why should this be any different from IPCC, where they put forward some hypothesis as facts?

Last, I want to reemphasize on Maksimovich's comment about the behavior of linear system and non-linear dynamical system which they're completely different in their behavior and this is fact (Maksimovich is correct here) and again read what Aires/Rossow described in their paper.

7/21/2008 03:57:00 am  
Anonymous LGM said...

Samv

FF has got you dead to rights and blown your position completely out of the water.

He reveals that your position is that of assertion made in the absence of proof. You have little or no direct evidence of what you are claiming. That which you cite as supporting information is either false or not properly understood by you (in other words it does not support your case).

As has been previously written, the burden of proof falls upon he who claims the positive. That is, it falls upon you. That means FF need produce no proof whatsoever, but you do. All he needs to is express doubt in your assertions and demand you provide real proof. In this case he's gone further than that and provided counter-argument.

In the end this global warming climate change sky is falling bullshit is about politics. The debate is not about the science (of which there is little or none). It is about the justification of a particular political approach and execution of political policy. There has been plenty of evidence for that presented here on this blog. You'd do well to look it up and consider it.

In the meantine, if you are insistent on continuing with the global warming climate change sky is falling nonsense (yet another blind believer in the faith of the climate pimps), then you'd do well to start working on some proofs, because you are going to be asked to provide them and explain thenm in detail. Here they are (I've listed them by memory so I may have missed a few from the hierarchy- they are attributable to a teacher from the Islands and were published in a newspaper a while back).

Prove that the Earth's climate is warming and will continue to so do.
Prove that the warming is caused by an increase in atmospheric CO2.
Prove that this increase is as the direct result of Man's industrial activity and is dominated by that source.
Prove that the climate would not be arming for natural reasons (that is, that it wouldn't be changing anyway).
Prove that the climate change is necessarily bad for Man.
Prove that this is an emergency situation.
Prove that coercive, compulsory collectivisation of all is the necessary action required to solve the problem.
Prove that this would result in solution.


Unless can do this (and I reckon you won't be capable of doing it) you need understand that your position is merely assertion and will properly be treated as little more than defense of collecivisation, hence a fraud and a crime.


LGM

7/21/2008 06:15:00 am  
Blogger SamV said...

LGM, I'm not going to go through this in much detail, but I'll answer all your questions. I'm not going to spend a lot of time on it, because all of the things you want proven can be either proven, demonstrated or well projected, so I'll just use Spencer and Weart and IPCC. The references are all there. If you're really interested, please do read the relevant sections of the AIP.org references.

By doing this I am shifting this supposed "burden of proof" back to you. If you think there is some violation of the scientific method, go ahead and point it out...

Prove that the Earth's climate is warming and will continue to so do.

I refer you to this chart which shows Jansen (2007), which addresses all of the problems associated with Mann (1999), but the "will continue to do so" bit is hard, so see this chapter. but in fact the introductory paragraph or two of that chapter should give you some idea about how the projection is established.

Prove that the warming is caused by an increase in atmospheric CO2.

eg Arrhenius, Svante (1896). "On the Influence of Carbonic Acid in the Air Upon the Temperature of the Ground." Philosophical Magazine 41: 237-76.

Well, that's the earliest demonstration that CO2 increases can lead to planetary scale temperature increases, but again the earlier link contains lots of information on the building of this argument and plenty of reasons as to why this is as good as we can go towards a proof. Actually this chapter is pretty good on explaining that argument a little better.

Prove that this increase is as the direct result of Man's industrial activity and is dominated by that source.

This is a question few people doubt. It is simply calculated from the volumes that have been known to have been burnt, and confirmed that it is not recycled by isotopic studies of atmospheric CO₂.

The IPCC 2001 gives quite a good summary of how much Carbon goes where, and how this was established.

Prove that the climate would not be warming for natural reasons (that is, that it wouldn't be changing anyway).

Well, that's a little irrelevant. Of course there are natural forcings in addition to CO₂. That doesn't mean that the CO₂ forcing does not exist or is not important.

Prove that the climate change is necessarily bad for Man.

This case is well made by the IPCC AR4, working group II report.

Prove that this is an emergency situation.

Hard to prove, but the different levels of projections by Hansen show the different scenarios based on what emissions happen.

Prove that coercive, compulsory collectivisation of all is the necessary action required to solve the problem.
Prove that this would result in solution.


Look, you got me there. I bet there are a dozen solutions, but they all revolve around reducing CO₂ emissions. Whether that's a free market solution like an ETS/Carbon credit scheme, or a collectivist "regulate and destroy" ;-) action, or something else ... who knows?

Of course there is an entire section of IPCC devoted to ways to mitigate the risks.

Falafulu, thanks for summarising concisely. However the paper is still just refining a model; to prove that the point they are raising makes a difference, you would have to demonstrate by running a model with the adjustments mentioned in the article, and show it leading to a different result.

The whole debate about AGW rests primary on the over reliance on computer modeling and this is fact

This is just the same as saying, the whole debate around Physics rests primarily on the over reliance on formulae and this is fact.

I don't dispute it, but I suggest that you are taking issue with the very essence of applied science, rejecting an entire field of scientific knowledge with a hand-waving argument.

7/22/2008 02:16:00 am  
Anonymous Falafulu Fisi said...

SamV said...
However the paper is still just refining a model;

Exactly. The purpose is to improve the prediction, not because the current models have included all Physics that involved in the climate processes and sub-climate processes, but because there are still some unknown sub-processes or sequences of the current known processes not yet discovered.

If all the Physics that involve in the climate processes are known, then there is no problem with deriving the model that fits observations. However there is still a huge gap between observations and the model predictions. Note here that improving the models means that the cause-effect (input-output) structural relations has to be altered. Once relations is altered leading to better predictions, then you know that your cause-effect is different and this what Aires/Rossow have highlighted in deriving in their model in their paper to include all possible hypothetical real (sub) processes that exist in the climate system but not yet identified.

A good example of this was the Bohr Hydrogen atom model. It worked well in a single electron atoms, however it was found to be completely useless in describing the spectra of multi-electron atoms. Along came Quantum Mechanics and offered a better explanation of the spectra of both single & multi electron/s atoms, ie, Quantum Mechanics is more generalizable. The difference here wasn't that the Bohr's model was correct but just needed to be improved. Nope, it was completely wrong. It was based on the wrong hypothesis and formulation of physical reality. He formulated his model based on Newtonian Mechanics that he proposed that electrons revolves around the nuclear in a manner similar to the planetary system. This is wrong. Atoms don't arrage their electrons in a manner similar to the solar system, ie, a flat plane, where all planets are orbiting the sun in the same plane (but different orbit).

Quantum Mechanics & Bohr's model both agree in describing the single electron atom spectra, however one can't say that the 2 theories are both true. One is true and the other one is wrong.

If you go back to my previous messages where I stated that in the language of numerical modeling one can have different structural model relations (cause-effect) but they have the same predictions (similar analogy to the Quantum Mechanics / Bohr Atom). However these different structural models, there must be only one of them that represents the true underlying Physics of the system, and the rest of them must be dismissed.

The scenario that I described above is no difference from modeling in a climate dynamical system.

7/23/2008 11:21:00 am  
Anonymous Falafulu Fisi said...

SamV said...
This is just the same as saying, the whole debate around Physics rests primarily on the over reliance on formulae and this is fact.

There is a difference between relying on formula blindly and finding out physical reality, ie, big , big difference. These 2 are completely different things and not the same.

For example, in Quantum Mechanics, the mathematics says that a point particle (ie, a bit of matter) can be at 2 places at once as can be seen in the double-slit experiment. Apart from observing this phenomena with commonly used laser beam, it has been replicated with atoms (in atom laser) and cluster of atoms (in Bose-Einstein-Condensation).

So, are you saying that the mathematics of Quantum Mechanics should be just taken at what it says? That is, the ability to traverse thru 2 different points in space at once or two correlated particles that communicate instantaneously with each other with time delay?

You can watch the double-slit-experiment animation here at YouTube so that you understand the point I am making about the counter-intuitiveness of mathematical predictions.

Dr Quantum - Double Slit Experiment

Do you believe all these non-causal predictions in the Quantum Mechanics mathematical formulations or cay you say, wait a minute, Quantum Mechanics is useful, but it must not be the true representation of physical reality. This is the problem that happens in Physics with over-reliance in mathematical derivations. Quantum Mechanics is useful, but it can't be a true representation of physical reality.

It is the same analogy here with the over-reliance of climate science in numerical modeling. Is it useful? Yes, definitely it is, however one must not declare that it is final and this is what at stake here in the debate about AGW.

7/23/2008 11:21:00 am  
Anonymous Falafulu Fisi said...

communicate instantaneously with each other with time delay

meant to say:

communicate instantaneously with each other with NO time delay

7/23/2008 11:27:00 am  
Blogger SamV said...

Falafulu,

That video is awesome!

The point you make is accurate, which is why strict constraints are placed on the models; Chris Merchant explains this well. See about 26:38 in. For instance, variability they exhibit must be within observed bounds, and they must be able to reasonably accurately reproduce the previous century or so worth of observations.

In this way, these "big, big differences" are reasonably avoided.

7/24/2008 12:25:00 pm  

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