apologies ("Alain de Cheveigne'" )

Subject: apologies
From:    "Alain de Cheveigne'"  <Alain.de.Cheveigne(at)IRCAM.FR>
Date:    Wed, 16 May 2001 14:23:42 +0200

I'd like to apologize to the list and to Martin Braun for my part in escalating our recent discussion into a personal exchange. In trying to figure out how things could have gone wrong in his study, I made conjectures, counting on the the "ifs" to make clear that they were conjectures. I treated it as a case study, forgetting that a human being was behind it. That wasn't considerate of me. I wished to make the point that there is always a non-zero probability that a statistically significant result arose by chance, and that it is raised beyond p values by the very nature of scientific inquiry, by which we actively search for several things in several places, thus raising the likelihood of finding something. I did NOT mean intentional manipulation. I started out trying to nail a fact, and got carried away in a spiral of argument that went further than I intended. Sorry for kicking up a fuss. Alain P.S. I'm not an opponent of the claims themselves, rather agnostic. I find them attractive and I'd be delighted to learn that they are true (I'd seize any opportunity to contribute to prove it). Precisely because the appeal of an idea can be very strong, skepticism is important when evaluating the evidence. The more skepticism has been applied, the easier it is to believe a result. Of course one must be careful in expressing it. -------------------------------------------------------------- Alain de Cheveigne' CNRS/IRCAM, 1 place Stravinsky, 75004, Paris. phone: +33 1 44784846, fax: 44781540, email: cheveign(at)ircam.fr http://www.ircam.fr/equipes/pcm/cheveign --------------------------------------------------------------

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