A reminder - What this page is about

Sorry for not posting for more than 20 days, it was vacation time. Anyway, we are back now and to kick off another season, let’s say a few words about this page and it’s goals, simply to try and clear up any misunderstandings that might have happened.

Most people that like the page are probably non-religious so you might feel annoyed by some of the arguments and thoughts being published here and consider it "preaching to the choir". You do not need to be told this. You already know it.

Thank You For Being Here

Truly sorry for that, but the goal of this page is and always will be is to familiarize believers with those arguments as well. People tend to go about their lives, not thinking about things and accepting them at face value - they simply do ...not have time to read about it, to think about it because they are too busy with life. So, it might be helpful to some to have an argument or a critique randomly pop up on their FB timeline - they might just give a thought about it.

Even if they dismiss the argument or unlike the page, to have someone think about something and then dismiss it is a LOT better than not having information at all - and effectively being lied to - by omission.

So, thanks for tolerating such posts and for being here. We are just beginning. See you out there.

Science is not the only answer to everything. We need to get involved as well.

I love Science. I feel science is the greatest enterprise humanity has engaged in. I am moved to tears by reading Carl Sagan or Stephen Hawking and realizing how far humans have come by using principles of science.

Scientists are human.

However, the fact that one loves something should not prevent them from thinking about possible problems with it. Like all humans there were times when scientists did not manage to have and hold the moral high ground. Experiments on animals when they were not absolutely required and purchase of scientific integrity by big oil corporations and food industry comes to mind.

None of them were evil people. They were imperfect human beings, like all of us, that is all. Because of this, when the world gets rid of religion, we simply cannot put science in charge of everything and let it run things by itself and do whatever it wants. There would never be such problems as when religions ran everything, but, still. It is our world too, and we all should be interested in it's future. Even in a world where science is much more important than superstition, our 'work' would not be done.

We have to get rid of desire to be simply led by others. We have to participate. We have to make sure that world is everything it can possibly be. We cannot simply say - there are people working on it, that does not concern me.

The future generations and the World itself are far too important.

Search Engines are not foolproof

They give you one box, you type in your question or query and press Enter. You might think that there is absolutely no way to use that incorrectly, or that something bad might happen as a result of that search. Yet, you would be wrong.

The thing about search engines is that they use algorithms that were designed to try and find results that are most relevant to your query. Algorithm has a number of factors it considers when deciding how relevant something is. That all sounds good, doesn’t it? Well, for starters, those factors are not whether something was proven true or is something based on evidence, but they are things that search engine manufacturers have decided that are likely to produce quality results. Of course, theoretically those things can lineup, so that search engine really presents you with credible information, but that is not guaranteed in any way.

Search Illustration

To put it simply, google doesn’t care what’s true. It cannot possibly care about what’s true.

Yes, you might say – of course, google doesn’t have all the facts of the world programmed into it, so it cannot answer those types of questions by itself. Google doesn’t want to answer those questions themselves, they want to point you in a right direction. That is all fine – but what this post will try to argue is that search engines are not equipped to correct any initial bias in your query – if you start from a premise you want to prove correct – google will only basically support what you already think you know. Take a look at the following example, where the only difference is singular or plural.

Different results for - Drink and Drinks

Of course, using such terms which are more or less close to each other, you won't get a huge discrepancy. Still, using singular or plural search terms can cause google to not show you the answer snippet from Harvard, but from a fitness magazine. This is not to say fitness magazine doesn’t know what they are talking about, but to show how tiny, miniscule changes in your query can result in differences.

This is what can happen even if you start honestly.

Now, to show a more sinister example:

When I googled it today, the term was on second place:

Bible sources for Scientific Questions

Clearly, this is more or less a case of gaming the system. Two religious arguments on what is clearly a scientific query. So, clearly it is possible to game the system. Either that, or the system is not perfect in the first place. Take your pick. The most likely truth is that it’s actually both. Search engines have not yet attained even the ability to consistently show more or less same results if you change singular to plural. The point is, you simply cannot trust it to reach the conclusion for you. You can use google to find more information, but it is not a fact machine. So, even if you start with NO BIAS whatsoever and ask a honest question, you are still likely to be served with nonsense.

More...

Do not sacrifice the good for the perfect

I bought this candy because of this stamp - made without animal-based gelatin. Yet I confess that I do eat meat. So, why did this matter to me?

European Vegetarian Union

Am I simply a hypocrite in this manner? Did I simply want to briefly feel good? This all is very much possible.

Let us indulge in a bit of reflection. The fact that this mattered to me at that point in time indicates that when given a choice between two same things, but one is a bit "morally better", means that I could be a bit more likely to pick the better one, given that basically nothing changes for me. When the choice is more likely to "hurt" me, I am obviously not prepared to make it, as I still do eat meat.

You might possibly notice the similar tendency in yourself to buy free-range eggs, for example. But the point is, this little incident got me thinking about the concept of sacrificing the good for the perfect - and the perfect may never come.

I do feel that my tiny gesture multiplied many thousands of times can possibly make a difference. In short, just because you do not go all the way in regard to some idea, that does not mean that going part of the way will not push things ever so slightly in the right direction. Just because we cannot single-handedly save the world, that doesn't mean we should not do anything about it.

Off to enjoy the candy.