Probability
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12-03-2013, 08:32 PM
RE: Probability
I've never seen so much effort put into slowing down an argument for skepticism.

If I'm not mistaken, Heywood's original argument was that we don't assume the existence of black marbles in the bag until we come across them. They may be there, but without examples of them we take the presumption of their non-existence. And then he wanted to make the argument that we're too skeptical of miracles because we don't observe them. Did I get it? Did I understand that correctly?

Why are there so many arguments here about probability? It's so pedantic. It's like seeing an umpire call a batter "out" because the batter got his second strike, and the ensuing debate becomes whether or not the throw was a strike (rather than whether the conclusion made from the called strike was right or not).

Forgive me for the baseball analogy. I know it isn't universal, but it's the best I could come up with.

My girlfriend is mad at me. Perhaps I shouldn't have tried cooking a stick in her non-stick pan.
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13-03-2013, 06:08 AM
Re: Probability
Even if it is an argument for skepticism, it is incorrect. Statistics and probabilities are descriptors and not predictors. They say nothing about what might or might not exist. They only describe information and observations that have already been made.

Wrong is wrong, even if it appears to be skeptically inclined.
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13-03-2013, 06:25 AM (This post was last modified: 13-03-2013 06:32 AM by Vosur.)
RE: Probability
(12-03-2013 08:32 PM)Starcrash Wrote:  If I'm not mistaken, Heywood's original argument was that we don't assume the existence of black marbles in the bag until we come across them. They may be there, but without examples of them we take the presumption of their non-existence. And then he wanted to make the argument that we're too skeptical of miracles because we don't observe them. Did I get it? Did I understand that correctly?
As far as I can see, your description of his argument doesn't even come close to anything he has said in this thread. In case you disagree, please cite the posts which you are referring to, as I'm entirely clueless as to how you got that from his posts. Anyway, what Heywood has been arguing in his OP and the following posts is that atheists should not be opposed to using inductive reasoning to show that miracles don't happen, because the more miracles (the more marbles) turn out to be explainable naturally (turn out to white), the higher the chance that all miracles in the world have a natural explanation (the higher the chance that all marbles in the bin are white).

(12-03-2013 08:32 PM)Starcrash Wrote:  Why are there so many arguments here about probability?
Because his argument is about probabilities.

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14-03-2013, 08:21 AM
RE: Probability
Funny how this thread died so quickly.

“Science is simply common sense at its best, that is, rigidly accurate in observation, and merciless to fallacy in logic.”
—Thomas Henry Huxley
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14-03-2013, 08:38 AM
RE: Probability
(14-03-2013 08:21 AM)TheBeardedDude Wrote:  Funny how this thread died so quickly.
Heywood is trying to work out the problem I stated in his proof Drinking Beverage
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14-03-2013, 11:57 AM
RE: Probability
That, and I spilled a bowl of delicious chicken soup on my laptop. Now all I have is my Xoom and posting from it is a pain in the ass so you will not hear much from me for a while.
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14-03-2013, 12:06 PM
RE: Probability
(14-03-2013 11:57 AM)Heywood Jahblome Wrote:  That, and I spilled a bowl of delicious chicken soup on my laptop. Now all I have is my Xoom and posting from it is a pain in the ass so you will not hear much from me for a while.
You mean that you were not able to predict that event with with statistics?

“Science is simply common sense at its best, that is, rigidly accurate in observation, and merciless to fallacy in logic.”
—Thomas Henry Huxley
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14-03-2013, 12:15 PM
RE: Probability
(09-03-2013 01:23 AM)Heywood Jahblome Wrote:  The marbles you observe allow you to make a statement about the marbles you can't/haven't observed. You draw 1000 marbles from the bin and they are all white, then it is likely that all marbles in the bin are white.
No. Thanks for demonstrating you don't understand probability, and thanks for playing.
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14-03-2013, 12:30 PM
RE: Probability
(14-03-2013 12:06 PM)TheBeardedDude Wrote:  
(14-03-2013 11:57 AM)Heywood Jahblome Wrote:  That, and I spilled a bowl of delicious chicken soup on my laptop. Now all I have is my Xoom and posting from it is a pain in the ass so you will not hear much from me for a while.
You mean that you were not able to predict that event with with statistics?

A statement could have been made about how likely it would be that I would spill my delicious chicken soup on my laptop. I never claimed that you could predict that all the marbles in the bin are white, but rather that the likely hood of all marbles being white is an increasing function of drawing white marbles and never drawing black ones.
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14-03-2013, 12:33 PM
RE: Probability
(14-03-2013 12:15 PM)Superluminal Wrote:  
(09-03-2013 01:23 AM)Heywood Jahblome Wrote:  The marbles you observe allow you to make a statement about the marbles you can't/haven't observed. You draw 1000 marbles from the bin and they are all white, then it is likely that all marbles in the bin are white.
No. Thanks for demonstrating you don't understand probability, and thanks for playing.

Given a certain set of assumption, like how many marbles the bin can hold, you can claim that it is likely all the marbles in the bin are white.
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