Mathematical Thinking in Physics

March 22, 2007

LogoVery nice set of articles and essays from the NASA Glenn Learning Technologies Project.


600-1: A Tomb of Jesus follow-up

March 4, 2007

I’ve just had an email. Prof Andrey Feuerverger has put up reasoning behind his 600-1 figure online. It helps make more sense of an odd claim and appears to confirm that this is an example of the Prosecutor’s fallacy. For example here are some of the assumptions:

  • We assume that ‘Marianemou e Mara’ is a singularly highly appropriate appellation for Mary Magdalene. Note that this important assumption is contentious and furthermore that statistically this assumption drives the outcome of the computations substantially.
  • We assume that Yose/Yosa is a highly appropriate appellation for the brother of Jesus who is referred to as Joses in Mark 6:3 of the NT.
  • We assume that the Latinized version Marya is a highly appropriate appellation for Mary of the NT.
  • It is assumed that Yose/Yosa is not the same person as the father Yosef who is referred to on the ossuary of Yeshua.
  • We assume that the presence of Matya does not invalidate the find but we assign no evidentiary value to it…

These assumptions are the very things we are testing for. It is claimed the statistics help prove that one of these ossuaries is of Mary Magdalene, but the statistics in fact are part of the claim that Mary Magdalene was buried with Jesus.
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Carnival of Mathematics

March 4, 2007

I’m late with this one. The 2nd Carnival of Mathematics is up at Good Math, Bad Math, which mentions the Roman Camp post here. I’m almost late enough to point to the next one, which will be up on Michi’s Blog.

Something else that doesn’t make sense: The Tomb of Jesus

March 4, 2007

Another test podcast recorded as I picked up a cold. The claims around the Tomb of Jesus are… Well by now everyone knows.

13 things that don’t make sense

March 3, 2007

According to New Scientist, here are 13 things that don’t make sense. How many can you explain?

  1. The placebo effect
  2. The horizon problem
  3. Ultra-energetic cosmic rays
  4. Belfast homeopathy results
  5. Dark matter
  6. Viking’s methane
  7. Tetraneutrons
  8. The Pioneer anomaly
  9. Dark energy
  10. The Kuiper cliff
  11. The Wow signal
  12. Not-so-constant constants
  13. Cold fusion