Articles to 2015-09-17

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First the link to this week’s complete list as HTML and as PDF.


What is science and is the way research is currently done, both in universities and the private sector, even able to produce science? Bohannon, the Open Science Collaboration, Le Noury et al., and Veresoglou all ask the question, an answer is not yet in sight.

I strongly disagree with Ioannidis in Bohannon. What is shown by the large prevalence of irreproducible results is not “a problem of science”, but of posing as and of faking science in studies that aren’t. Seeing the irrelevant and nonsensical stuff students are made to do for their original theses, I’m not surprised that so few can tell the difference any more.


Cerling et al.’s result is not that new, something similar has been found for hominins. The diets of robust paranthropines and gracile australopithecines was remarkably similar. The difference seems not to have been what they ate normally, but what they could subsist on when things got bad.


Wade is another example that the topic origin of religion covers two entirely different things. For one there are the basics: what makes humans assign intention and will to inanimate and immaterial things and beings. The other topic, covered here, is what dictates the form of religion, the content of its teaching, and its hierarchies and rituals. Wade’s article is a positive exception in keeping the two topics well apart and criticising those who fail to do so.

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