Five Reasons Blog Posts are of Higher Scientific Quality Than Journal Articles

By Daniel Lakens – Re-Blogged FromThe 20% Statistician

A blog on statistics, methods, and open science. Understanding 20% of statistics will improve 80% of your inferences.

The Dutch toilet cleaner ‘WC-EEND’ (literally: ‘Toilet Duck’) aired a famous commercial in 1989 that had the slogan ‘We from WC-EEND advise… WC-EEND’. It is now a common saying in The Netherlands whenever someone gives an opinion that is clearly aligned with their self-interest. In this blog, I will examine the hypothesis that blogs are, on average, of higher quality than journal articles. Below, I present 5 arguments in favor of this hypothesis.  [EDIT: I’m an experimental psychologist. Mileage of what you’ll read below may vary in other disciplines].

1. Blogs have Open Data, Code, and Materials

When you want to evaluate scientific claims, you need access to the raw data, the code, and the materials. Most journals do not (yet) require authors to make their data publicly available (whenever possible).

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Don’t Hide Your Gold Coins Where Your Thermostat Can See

By John Rubino- Re-Blogged From Dollar Collapse

Back in the 1990s when businesses started going online they frequently didn’t realize that their new networking gear came with simple default passwords like “admin”. So a whole generation of early hackers simply scanned the web for companies that had inadvertently exposed themselves in this way, siphoning off (probably, no one really knows) billions of dollars and causing various other kinds of mischief.

Now that process is repeating with the Internet of things (IoT). As pretty much every device in homes and businesses is imbued with sensors and connected to internal networks and/or the broader Web, hackers are exploiting the many resulting vulnerabilities.

But this time around it’s personal, as formerly innocuous things like TVs, phones and thermostats gain cameras and microphones, creating all kinds of privacy issues – some of which are potentially (and catastrophically) financial. Here’s a sampling of what appeared on the subject in yesterday’s Wall Street Journal:

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Coney Island Incubator Babies

cropped-bob-shapiro.jpg     By Bob Shapiro

My wife just called my attention to an obituary of a 96 year old “Coney Island Incubator Baby.” What’s that, I asked, and I found a wonderful story of US Free Enterprise, borrowing and building upon innovation from France, early in the 20th Century.

Lucille Horn, Who Was Nursed To Health In A Coney Island Sideshow, Dies At 96

In this 2015 photograph, Lucille Horn stands on the boardwalk outside her home in Long Beach, N.Y.

Frank Eltman/AP

New 1918 Style Flu Pandemic Fear

By Eric Worrall – Re-Blogged From http://www.WattsUpWithThat.com

This isn’t a climate article, it is about a real problem.

Back in 1918, the infamous flu pandemic killed an estimated 3-5% of the population of the time – 50-100 million people. The awful potential of a new 1918 style flu Pandemic to sweep the world and kill millions, perhaps billions, despite all our medical advances, makes every flicker of infectious ability for novel strains of flu newsworthy.

H1N1 Flu Virus.

H1N1 Flu Virus. By NIAID (H1N1 Flu Virus) [CC BY 2.0], via Wikimedia Commons

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How The Filthy Rich Create Jobs Directly & Indirectly!!!

By Jonathon Dunne – Re-Blogged From Freedoms Disciple

Let me start this column by asking you some questions. How much do you HATE rich people? How many think they hold poor people down? How many feel they are disadvantaged and put out by them? How many feel they don’t pay their “fair share”?

Let me introduce you to person X. He has a net worth of over $450 million and earned a massive $88 million in the last calendar. His “day-job” pays him around $26 million a year. You hate him already, right? Damned millionaires and billionaires!!! Right?

Well it gets worse so trigger warning. He is just the third person in history to sign a life-time contract with an un-named company worth $14 million a year and has other contracts that pay handsomely over the course of the year. Lastly he has hotels in four different cities.

How sad is the world we live in, that a chunk of the population including our friends on the left would read the above paragraph’s and hate him and seek to tear him down. I bet some of you have already messaged some of your friends wanting to start a protest, right?

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Modern Scientific Controversies Part 4: The Obesity Epidemic

By Kip Hansen – Re-Blogged From http://www.WattsUpWithThat.com

Prologue:  This is the fourth in a series of  essays that will discuss ongoing scientific controversies, a specific type of which are often referred to in the science press and elsewhere as “Wars” – for instance, The Salt Wars.  This essay covers the Obesity Epidemic, aka The Obesity Wars.  The purpose of the series is to illuminate the similarities and differences involved in each of these wars.   Warning:  This is not a short essay.  Dig in when you have time to read a longer piece.

Trigger Warning:  This essay is about obesity – the condition of being fat or overweight.  It is about being overweight, body size, fatness;  it is about all the problems that accompany that condition.   If reading about these topics will cause you any emotional distress or make you feel unsafe or threatened in any way  – stop reading here.

Stephen Hawking is a very smart guy, a very very smart guy.  But like some smart guys in other fields, he can make very foolish statements based on ideas that are commonly believed but almost entirely inaccurate.

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