Climategate commentary from the past

| December 4, 2009

Words to ponder (emphasis mine):

“There is one feature I notice that is generally missing in “cargo cult science.” . . . It’s a kind of scientific integrity, a principle of scientific thought that corresponds to a kind of utter honesty—a kind of leaning over backwards. For example, if you’re doing an experiment, you should report everything that you think might make it invalid—not only what you think is right about it: other causes that could possibly explain your results; and things you thought of that you’ve eliminated by some other experiment, and how they worked . . . Details that could throw doubt on your interpretation must be given, if you know them. . . . If you make a theory, for example, and advertise it, or put it out, then you must also put down all the facts that disagree with it, as well as those that agree with it.” — Richard Feynman (Physics Nobel Laureate, 1974)

Now, with those words in mind, go read these Climategate e-mails, and you’ll see why the Climategate scandal isn’t just “boys behaving badly”; it’s antithetical to science itself.

Hat tip to someone, if I can just retrace my browsing steps. ..bruce w..

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Category: Climategate, Main, Science

About the Author ()

Webster is Principal and Founder at Bruce F. Webster & Associates, as well as an Adjunct Professor of Computer Science at Brigham Young University. He works with organizations to help them with troubled or failed information technology (IT) projects. He has also worked in several dozen legal cases as a consultant and as a testifying expert, both in the United States and Japan. He can be reached at, or you can follow him on Twitter as @bfwebster.

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