Rush to knowledge

[From Rick Marken (921012.1130)]

Martin Taylor (921010 15:40) --

I still have absolutely no idea what you expect to find by analyzing
"residual variance" or why you expect to find it. How about actually
writing some equations or, better, some model code so that I can
understand how your proposal relates to a functional control model. I
still believe that the statistical analysis you are so earnestly
pursuing is worthless; but I am willing to be convinced otherwise, if
you want to try. But I certainly don't mind if you want to have a good
time doing these kinds of analyses -- they are familiar and comfortable
for you. But sometimes, in order to understand new things, you have to
try what is not familiar and comfortable. It's called reorganization.
It happens when current control systems are not working. Your "data
analysis" systems seems to be working just fine so, mazel tov.

Martin also said to me:

Well, I want to know how people work, even if you don't. It isn't enough for
me to accept that behaviour is controlled perception. I want to know where
the signals go (functionally), and what happens if you block this of that
path, how to deal with people suffering from stroke, why we have focussed
attention and what its limitations are, whether we use internal feedback
for short-term memory, and all sorts of questions like that.

In support of Martin's comments, Greg said:

Well said and worth repeating. Sadly, I predict no reorganization
resulting from these comments. I hope my prediction is wrong.

Bill Powers (921011.1500) replied to Martin (and Greg):

Wanting this isn't sufficient to make it possible. We have 50 years of
groundwork to lay before any believable answers to such questions can be

Before you can ask where signals go and what happens if you block this or that
path, you have to have a model that is correct. Not just plausible, correct.
Throwing together a bunch of suppositions and then using them to make
deductions is a total waste of time. Do you want to know how people work,
or do you just want to SEEM to know how people work?

To which I can only add an enthusiastic "here, here". PCT can't be much fun
for people who already know what they want to find out about how people
work. It's no fun because people don't work that way.

Have a nice week




Richard S. Marken USMail: 10459 Holman Ave
The Aerospace Corporation Los Angeles, CA 90024
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