Buzz Bombed

[From Rick Marken (950529.2045)]

Bruce Abbott (950529.1955 EST) --

What ARE you trying to accomplish on CSG-L?

I'm trying to present what I understand about PCT after having
studied and worked on it for over 15 years. I like the CSG-L forum
because I can see what people do and do not know about PCT. I try to
address questions or misunderstandings about PCT that I think I can
answer based on my experience doing PCT research and modelling .


I would really appreciate it if you could point out some of the more
egregious errors in "Mind Readings".


I haven't read it. Why don't you quote a paragraph? I understand
that I should be able to judge a whole book from one paragraph. (;->

I wasn't asking you to read it for enlightenment. I was asking it as a
favor so that you could tell me where I had made mistakes from your
point of view. If you don't want to read it, that's fine.

I don't recall saying anything about your having misconceptions
about PCT or making "egregious errors."

I get the impression that you often disagree with me (or consider
my statements ridiculous) when I make what I consider to be basic
points about PCT. This suggests that your understanding of PCT is quite
different from mine. For example, I don't think I have ever heard you
agree that "selection by consequences" cannot possibly be a reasonable
characterization of the relationship between an organism and its
environment. Given these persistent differences, I was interested in
how you would evaluate my collection of papers ("Mind Readings")
about PCT. I was being only somewhat facetious when I suggested that
you would find "egregious errors" in the book; since your perception of
PCT seems to be somewhat different than mine, I am sure that some
parts of my book will create an error signal in you. I was curious about
what would create those errors.

By the way, did you read Bill Powers' nifty little description of
hummingbird behavior? On second thought, you wouldn't find it of
interest--no application of the TEST and all that, just description from
the point of view of the external observer, with a little speculation
about possible controlled variables thrown in.

I did read it but I did see an application of the Test -- and suggestions on
how to do more detailed applications of the Test using high speed
photography. Here, for example, is an implicit Test for control of
perceived distance:

When the birds move up to the feeding ports, the whole feeder is
usually swinging gently in the wind and twisting slightly around the
axis of the supporting string. The head and body of the bird swing back
and forth in space, and the orientation of the bird moves in an arc
around the feeder as it twists, so a constant distance is maintained
between the beak and the feeding port

If Naftigall describes how flying insects maintain constant results in
the face of naturally occurring disturbances then he has described an
application of the Test. I didn't notice such a description in the paragraph
you posted but there may, indeed, be such desciptions in other parts of
the book.



Hi Rick;

Hummm, I'm glad your response to Bruce's message of 950529.1955 arrived
at the same time as did his message.

I almost considered blasting him twice...

Once for the "saying anything about your having misconceptions about PCT"
and once for the "Forget I mentioned it." about Bill's outstanding
posting of a pure observation from a PCT perspective.

As it is, you covered things nicely (maybe even more nicely than I would
have) and of course I am still a very junior PCTer.