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    • here's a thought. (Last post by steamboat28)
    • Quote: Well, all the politics behind the word are nice... But let's be frank. A frog with a tiny white spot on its back and another identical frog without a tiny white spot on its back are different species for some reason. ...until you realize that the tiny white spot doesn't necessitate it being a separate species. For example, let's look at dogs. All domestic dogs are Canis lupus familiaris. All domestic dog breeds, from the large to the small, from Great Danes to Scottish Terriers, are the same species. Now, one could argue that "fine, fine, but the RACE is the human version of a dog breed!" Except that's not really accurate, either, since many dog breeds come in multiple genetic variations, including coat color, coat markings, eye color, and other characteristics. So, really, human "races" are equivalent to different colors of Chow, since we're overwhelmingly identical in genotype, and closer in phenotype than any two dog breeds.
    • The Role of Logic (Last post by steamboat28)
    • Quote: Thanks Arkayik. I'm just apologetic because I was not able to supply the kind of input sought. Sure you are, SeventhSL. Just because you aren't necessarily familiar with the type of logic the thread is about doesn't mean your insight isn't valuable. Besides, like I said in an earlier post, anyone can learn it. Here, I'll try to condense the basics so you can hop right in: Spoiler: Logic is primarily concerned with how we come to the arguments and conclusions that we reach. There are lots of different kinds of logic--some deal with mathematics or computers or other nonsense--but, at it's core, all logic is a study that asks us to think about the way that we think. Our focus is more on Informal Logic for the purposes of this disucssion, and our interactions on this forum. In logic, we don't say ideas are bad or wrong, but they very well could be "invalid" or "not sound." Let's examine these two concepts, validity and soundness, and the means of determining them, briefly below. In any argument (and we mean the philosophical kind, not the "Why did you leave the toilet seat up again?" kind), we have what are called premises and conclusions. A premise is a statement, observation, or position that helps support an argument. The conclusion is the meat of the idea we're trying to share, drawn from the premises. "Statistically, we know that cats have more fur on the outside..." might be a supporting statement (a premise) for the conclusion "...so the outside of a cat is the side with the most fur on it." Now, when we evaluate the argument (which is to say, we look at the premises and their conclusion together, as one thought), we can determine whether these are "good" arguments (they are valid and sound) or they are "bad" ones (they are invalid, or not sound). Validity is the first gatepost of logic, the first test you give an argument. Validity says that "if my premises are true, then my conclusion must also be true." (in the examples below, premises will be marked in blue and conclusions in red.) An example of a valid argument is: Quote: All Jedi are cool. Jestor is a Jedi. Therefore, Jestor is cool. An example of an invalid argument is: Quote: All Jedi are cool. Jestor is a bobcat Therefore, bobcats are cool. This argument is invalid because there is no way to ensure the conclusion is true, even if both of the premises are true. If all Jedi are cool, that's well and good, but what's that got to do with Jestor the bobcat being a rad guy? The conclusion isn't guaranteed to be true if these two premises are true, and so the argument is invalid. Soundness is the next goalpost for an argument. It is judged after validity, because in order for an argument to be sound it must: * be valid * have all true premises For example, both of these arguments are valid: Quote: All fictional Jedi train with lightsabers. Yoda was a fictional Jedi. Therefore, Yoda trained with lightsabers. Quote: All fictional Jedi have blue lightsabers. Mace Windu was a fictional Jedi. Therefore Mace Windu has a blue lightsaber. However, only the top argument is sound. It's sound because it is valid and all the premises are true: all Jedi in the fiction trained, however briefly, with a lightsaber. And we know Yoda was a Jedi master, so it's very easy to assume that he trained with a lightsaber since all fictional Jedi did. And, sure enough, there were a few interesting fight sequences in the prequels. The second argument is valid, but not sound. IF all Jedi had blue lightsabers, then the argument would be sound. But they don't; Luke and Qui-Gonn both had green, other folks had yellow lightsabers, etc. And we know, from his fight scenes, that Mace Windu had a really pimpin' purple saber. So, while this argument is valid (if we forced both of the premises to be true, then the conclusion would also be true), it's unsound (because one of the premises is not true.) The last thing you need to know to get started is that a logical fallacy is a pattern of thought that is always wrong or incorrect. Some examples follow: Ad Hominem Quote: Steamboat28 has an idea. Steamboat28 once kicked a puppy. Therefore Steamboat28's idea has no merit. No True Scotsman Quote: No American man thinks English women are cute. Steamboat28 is an American man. Steamboat28 has a crush on an English woman. Therefore Steamboat28 doesn't count as an American man. The Fallacy Fallacy Quote: Steamboat28 argues that pork chops are tasty. Steamboat28 made a logical fallacy during his argument about pork chops being tasty. Therefore porkchops must taste like crap. Fallacies are bad things. We don't want to do them if we can help it. That's all you need to know to get started.
    • Conscription - Draft (Last post by Ecthalion)
    • Quote: Conscription in the U.S. hasn't happened since the 70's, but the agreement for men is still "Sign up for the draft pool just in case, or you don't have a say in how the country is run." Thank goodness that things are different over here. If one is only allowed to vote to get rid of a government one disagrees with if one fights a war for them which one also disagrees with then it's a rum do.
    • Fear Leads to Anger... (Last post by den385)
    • Yoda Disclaimer: "Hello! I am Yoda and I speak in reverse order because it makes me wiser. Sometimes I say things that sound very wise, but you should be an enlightened person already to get them right anyway. Because if you are not, they will stay cool motto phrases forever. And isn't it cool that I can compile stylish mottoes? So... You know, you shouldn't really listen to me that much. I just like to speak wise things. Even when there's no need to. Ok, so after this disclaimer, let me teach how to be a Jedi"
    • What makes a Jedi? (Last post by Aqua)
    • If you are faced with a serious problem, think very carefully. Is there a solution, then it makes no sense to excite. There is no solution, then it's no use you to excite. Unacceptable behaviour for Jedi, to much excitement.
    • Scientific Article: "Get Me Off Your F****** ... (Last post by Cyan Sarden)
    • Quote: You should try to go to conferences. Sometimes I swear a majority of the people there are actors (people who get paid to pretend they work in/with the industry). Wouldn't surprise me one bit - if you want to meet the actual scientists, go to the town where the conference takes place. But rather than looking for them in the conference center, look for them in the local spa, zoo, micro-brewery etc. :-)
    • Dream job? (Last post by peace)
    • My dream job would be helping people around the world who needs serious help with anything like medicine, security help, advice, shelter, or just someone to talk to because The're so lonely. I would like to wish you good luck in your upcoming path and hope you find what you are looking for. May the force be with you fellow Jedi.
    • A Jedi Career choice: making a living thats helps ... (Last post by Goken)
    • I understand completely. I work at a bank, many people believe that all banks are evil conglomerates that are just out to squeeze all the money out of you that they can. Some banks are very much like that. Luckily I work at a small local bank that has to be all about keeping our customers happy and loves doing it. I love talking to our bank president because of how much he wants to help people. I sometimes feel like all I do is remind people that they owe us money or that they have fees and things like that, and then days come when I really do get to make a difference in a person's life. Even if that difference is just removing some fees or opening an account for someone who was turned away at other banks. I think that as Jedi we should strive to make a difference in our communities. If you can have a day job that does that, great, more power to you. If you can't, find ways outside of work. If you want to make a difference then you will, you just have to look. I also agree with Reacher, you won't be as helpful if you're too worried about your family or your financial situation.
    • Workout Check-In Thread (Last post by Desolous)
    • bunch of tricep dips, pullups, upper back rows, roman chair situps, ropes, push a heavy sled around, situps.

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