The danger of ideas…

(comment posted at Climatemonitor.it – in English)

I really do not understand what’s Alessio moaning about.

Tim [Cullen] had several ideas and researched them. He published his thoughts (twice) on the Talkshop and Guido [Guidi] deemed them interesting (or perhaps, intriguing) enough to see them reposted [on Climatemonitor.it].

Is Tim wrong? Who knows. Is he wrong on each and every aspect of his ideas? Who knows. But AFAIK Alessio’s point is not about Tim’s wrongness, rather a general cry against the publication of ideas he (Alessio) finds wrong.

Now…what is the danger there? Will hordes of Climatemonitor acolytes jump off as one man and start suggesting little children, grandmas and other unsuspecting quasi-skeptics that all solar science is wrong “because a guy called Tim says so“? Will physics faculties get their fundings slashed, astronomers start selling hamburgers, satellites [end up] burned deliberately in the atmosphere because of Tim’s (and Guido’s) shaming of a profession and of a science by way of a blog post or two?

No.

As Douglas Hofstadter is fond of saying, there is only one way to get the truly good ideas published, and it involves getting a million not-so-good ideas published too. If we started censoring off whoever sounds unorthodox, we would smother solar science (any science!) ourselves in the process.

These are considerations of pure and basic logic.

And whatever the true figures behind Tim’s ideas, those ideas are obviously intriguing per-se. These have been my take-home messages wrt them: what if SORCE is not measuring just-and-only TSI? What if atmospheric effects interfere, what if the data is affected by the position in the Earth’s orbit (i.e. by the time of the year)? Have all those effects been taken into account? Is SORCE’s raw data processed accordingly?

Perhaps the answers are yes some, others no. But whatever the outcome, I for one am grateful to Tim for having been made possible to me and possibly others, to ask those questions: because at the end we will of course be much wiser for them.