> The reported results are powerful enough to lead
> us to quibble--and all scientists will quibble
> away with very little provocation. The most
> complete way to start the process is to go back to
> the beginning and review.
> Before any data is gathered, one must build and
> calibrate an instrument. To assure maximum
> sensitivity, one must target a specific time
> period and desired resolution. As one deviates
> from those targets, one might want to scale
> deviations to fit a normal curve. Meaningful
> deviations from the target might then be limited
> to little more than two standard deviations from
> the target. Calculated values beyond two standard
> deviations would tend to jump around, since the
> sensitivity is increasingly reduced. They might
> even be regarded as outliers and discarded.
> To make the instrument more useful, one might
> design and calibrate multiple scales with
> different targets--but the underlying sensitivity
> of the C14 calculation limits the range of useful
> targets, and changes the resolution capabilities
> around each target. No matter how objective the
> intent, the instrument will always be designed
> with (literally) built in biases.
Very interesting. I would note the '84 results had one date as much as 3900BC so this would be a pretty wide range considering in theory the target was c. 2600BC.
> Just in this very first step, there is reason for
> dispute, the greater the measured discrepancy.
> There is also a basis for dispute in the selection
> of 1) target dates: do we really want to choose
> an "established" target, like 2500 BC? and 2)
> scaling choices: do we really need to scale with
> a normal curve when we're only interested in one
> half of the curve? Maybe some other scale?
Over 400 samples were taken between the two studies and most fell outside of the intended dates, so again this range would seem to be quite large allowing for dates as much as +/- 1400yrs older than anticipated.
> Only the first step in our quibbling, and we can
> already see problems.
> When we begin to apply all possible quibbles, we
> won't be sure of anything any more.
> Start over? Of course not. These results are very
> interesting and suggestive. But they could be
How much wrong though? If a top range of say 4,000BC were used and only a few of the 400+ samples came close to that mark, i.e. +/- 3500BC, then this means what?
> > > Short of that, your summary certainly is
> > > provocative, but in need of further
> > > clarification.
I think Onvlee has done an interesting job at that.
> If the instrument could be recalibrated to target
> much later dates, and the sampling procedure
> adjusted to the oldest possible obtainable
> samples, a more diverse range of dates with no
> clear mean might permit the possibility of 20,000
> years--but such data might not be very reliable.
But what I do not understand is that if your upper range already allows for at least 4,000BC then if these samples could date this old then you'd see many bumping against this higher range, but other than a few they are quite far from it, even greater than their actual +/- range. If I had headphones that could go up to 11 but all of my 8-tracks only went up to 7, then how would setting my headphones to 20 make my tapes any louder than they are already capable of? If that makes sense.
And by the same token, if my headphones went up to 11 and all my 8-tracks went to 20 then would they not all be at least 11?
Edited 2 time(s). Last edit at 19-Jun-16 02:19 by Thanos5150.