QE is just a theory
Arrrrrrrgh. Every time I read "just a theory", I die a little inside. There is no such thing as "just" a theory. Being a theory means having met a certain standard of evidence and falsifiability.
Anyway. Let's run this through the Pathological Science checklist, shall we?
- The maximum effect that is observed is produced by a causative agent of barely detectable intensity, and the magnitude of the effect is substantially independent of the intensity of the cause. ✓
- The effect is of a magnitude that remains close to the limit of detectability, or many measurements are necessary because of the very low statistical significance of the results. ✓
- There are claims of great accuracy.
- Fantastic theories contrary to experience are suggested. ✓
- Criticisms are met by ad hoc excuses. [can't be bothered to see how Mr Bem responds to his critics]
- The ratio of supporters to critics rises and then falls gradually to oblivion. [likewise]
Anyway. Here's some more reading:http://www.talyarkoni.org/blog/2011/01/ ... lly-wrong/
Yes; I feel the same way when people argue that evolution is "just a theory," and they don't believe it. I usually counter by saying that Newton's "Law of Gravity" is just a theory and suggest they disbelieve it real, real hard and see if they can fly.
Too many people don't understand what "theory" means to scientists. The common belief of what theory means is actually closer to "hypothesis." The other complaint I hear about scientists is that they keep chaning their minds every time they run an experiment. Well, yeah--that's the point. New data either substantiates or refutes parts of a theory. Generally, a theory has several possible interpretations, and experiments are devised to determine which, if any, interpretation is valid. As you get more data, you refine your theory. It's like the question "Is a photon a particle or a wave?" Experiments were run, and the answer was "it depends." There are several ways to interpret the results of these experiments, and all are valid in some circumstances, and none are privelaged to be called "absolute truth." There are no physical laws
. There are simply observations and interpretations. Newton's Law of Universal Gravitation states that an attractive force (as opposed to an ugly force?) equal to gMm/r²; General Relativity says that mass warps space. Which one is true? Both.
In one of my college physics classes, the professor said he was going to prove that there was no such thing as a magnetic field. He set up a mathematical model of two electrons moving relative to each other in wires. Each electron was moving "inside" its wire at roughly 0.95 C, which is a common velocity factor for electrons in copper at room temperature. He then calculated the force on the electrons caused by their electrostatic fields and applied the relativistic mass increase to them. Maxwell's equations dropped right out. The electromagnetic force can be considered a phantom force which is simply a manifestation of relativity because electrons, especially when moving in "permanent magnetic" materials, move at relativistic velocities. Two different and perfectly valid ways (the math works perfectly both ways) of viewing the same effect. Now, which one is right? Some people would say "both." I say "There's no such thing as right and wrong here." You use the model which works in your situation. If you want to predict the lunar eclipse, it's easiest to just assume that the Earth doesn't move and that the moon rotates around it. If you're on the moon, you'd assume the Earth is fixed relative to the moon (remember that the moon is tidally locked to the Earth except for some libration). Just use whatever model is easiest. That's where Galileo blew it with the Church. If he'd just said "I have a mathematical model which simplifies the calculations if you just assume the Sun is the center of the Solar System, even though we know it isn't," he'd probably have gotten away with it.