Monthly Archives: April 2015

Reducing irreducible complexity

Irreducible complexity is the cornerstone of the intelligent design movement, and it is a popular argument among young earth creationists as well. In simplest terms, this argument states that some systems are too complex to have evolved via natural selection … Continue reading

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“Follow the money”: the finances of global warming, vaccines, and GMOs

One of the most common unifying themes of the anti-science movement is the notion that large corporations and governments are concealing the truth for the sake of monetary gain. These conspiracy theories pervade blogs against GMOs, vaccines, modern medicine, global … Continue reading

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Winning the war with the “Food Babe Army”

Over the past week, something truly amazing has happened on the internet. The skeptic community has risen up and unanimously decried the quackery and fear mongering that constantly spews from Vani Hari’s mouth (and website). Vani Hari, better known as … Continue reading

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Evolution doesn’t give organisms what they need

When I am teaching evolution, I often like to ask my students to think about why a particular feature or trait evolved. I might, for example, ask them why flying squirrels evolved a flap of skin between their legs that … Continue reading

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Basic Statistics Part 3: The Dangers of Large Data Sets: A Tale of P values, Error Rates, and Bonferroni Corrections

In previous posts, I have explained the importance of having lots of data, but what I failed to mention was the dangers of analyzing these large data sets. You see, all real data has variation in it, and when you … Continue reading

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What does it mean to be a skeptic?

It is good to be skeptical about everything that you hear and read. In fact, skepticism is one of the defining characteristics of a scientist. Nevertheless, terms like “skeptic” and “open-minded” are often misappropriated by people in the anti-science movement, … Continue reading

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