RE: FW: MD Dawkins on quantum/mysticism convergence

From: Vincent Campbell (
Date: Wed Mar 20 2002 - 13:04:19 GMT

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    From: Vincent Campbell <>
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    Subject: RE: FW: MD Dawkins on quantum/mysticism convergence
    Date: Wed, 20 Mar 2002 13:04:19 -0000
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    >>> I don't think it does anyone any good to complain about writers
    >>> using
    >>> scientific terms with the same rigor they are used in scientific
    >>> publications. You have to fit the words to the purpose and the
    >>> you
    >>> are writing for.>
    > >> As longer term list member will know, as a bit of a definitional
    > >> pedant, I couldn't really agree here.
            <What about people who think and believe they do understand?
    > Would you talk to first year undergrads in the same terms as third year?
    > It doesn't do much good to complain if no one pays attention.
    > That said, i'm not against pedantry wherever possible.>
            Fair point. To be honest, when teaching I try to avoid using
    jargon, or try and de-mystify it for first year students a little, but yeah,
    with students in their final year I'd probably expect them to be familiar
    with at least some of the jargon in the field.

            What I would also say, though, is that in memetics where people from
    lots of different disciplines are interested and contributing ideas etc.
    from their own disciplines, consensus over definitions becomes particularly
    important, if very difficult. I must admit that a lot of the articles that
    appear in the journal go whoosh over my head as they apply models and
    methods that I've never come across before, and don't understand, even
    though I'm sure many of them are basic methods used in those authors'

            I was going to say something else, but got interrupted by a seminar,
    and have forgotten what it was...


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