To Basener and Sanford: This is the 21st Century

What is The Skeptical Zone, William Basener and John Sanford? Why should you care?

The Skeptical Zone is where a couple of distinguished biologists, Joe Felsenstein and Michael Lynch, have dignified a recently published article of yours with a response. That is all you need to know. If they had responded on the back of a cereal box instead, providing you with a form to clip, then it would have behooved you to clip the form, fill it out, and send it, along with a self-addressed, stamped envelope, to their post office box in Battle Creek, Michigan.

Of course, I am dating myself — and also you. That is just the point. You ought to know that, even as the computer enables studies that were impossible when Ronald Fisher dubbed a not-so-fundamental result of his the Fundamental Theorem of Natural Selection, it enables interaction with domain experts in ways that were impossible in Fisher’s time. We are well into the 21st Century, and no one under the age of 50 will find credible any reason you might offer for declining to engage Joe in this forum. You can ignore all of the riff-raff, myself included, and interact with the scientist who happened, about the time that your paper addressing Fisher’s theorem was published, to address the theorem in the 37th Fisher Memorial Lecture (via video link, I might add).

The prospects for resolving some points, and arriving at a degree of agreement, are much better in a modern exchange of comments than in an old-fashioned exchange of essays. One aspect of The Skeptical Zone makes it particularly appealing in discussion of mathematical models: you can enter stuff like \LaTeX between two dollar signs, and cause readers to see stuff like \LaTeX. It’s a miracle!

7 thoughts on “To Basener and Sanford: This is the 21st Century

  1. J-Mac,

    As some of you already know, or suspect, I have decided to “return” to publishing OPs at TSZ. There are many reasons for that but mainly to save TSZ from what many blogs like this one suffered; the inevitable death.

    So, as Virtual Savior of the Zone, do you see yourself as most like the Son, or more like the Father or the Holy Ghost?

  2. Tom English:
    J-Mac,

    So, as Virtual Savior of the Zone, do you see yourself as most like the Son, or more like the Father or the Holy Ghost?

    I surly don’t see you as the saviour of anything… How could you when you even chickened out from publishing your OP when I bluffed to take it apart before knowing what’s it about… Seems your confidence is at all time low… Maybe you should do a search? 😉 Let me know when the search is over…

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