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Old 08-05-2013, 02:37 PM   #21
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Glad I finally found your paper, BigNick. Before then I had no hope of lifetime happiness since my positivity ratio was only 2.8743
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Old 10-17-2013, 05:39 PM   #22
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Bumping this thread to mention that someone took the time to write up the back story of how this came to pass. Note the scare quotes around the word "retired" near the end...
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Old 10-17-2013, 06:18 PM   #23
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BugNick, you are my hero! Down with BS!
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Old 10-17-2013, 07:14 PM   #24
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I absolutely loved the article. And I love what you did and how you accomplished it.
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Old 10-17-2013, 07:55 PM   #25
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Bravo, BigNick! Great write-up of the fab work you did.

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Old 10-17-2013, 09:01 PM   #26
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Well done.

Retired from IT at 52. Starting a new career debunking junk science.

Should you live to be 100, Lord willing, you'll never want for fertile ground.
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Old 10-19-2013, 04:25 PM   #27
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Well done, sir! And well played!

I hadn't even heard of this positivity ratio before, but the thought that such a single psychological parameter governing success or failure exists, and is known to five places of precision, just sets off alarms to me. I can imagine how this must have bothered you.

Sticking to pursuit of this, well, BS, and managing to get Sokal in on it is both impressive and commendable.


So, YAAAAAY!
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Old 08-25-2014, 04:15 PM   #28
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I got published again...
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Old 08-25-2014, 04:29 PM   #29
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Great Job Nick! Congrats!!
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Old 08-25-2014, 05:09 PM   #30
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Nice!
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Old 08-25-2014, 05:18 PM   #31
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Congratulations Nick! While a media story is not peer reviewed, it is gratifying to see your work being cited in the public domain. It means it matters.

I spent a career in academia and never bought into the "publish or perish" philosophy. I only cared about meaningful research. Now that I am ER it's great to be away from the expectation to compete for and get grant funds and get studies presented and published.
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Old 08-25-2014, 08:04 PM   #32
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Enjoyed the article. Geez, happiness to four decimals debunked. Congrats.
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Old 08-25-2014, 11:00 PM   #33
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Originally Posted by ERD50 View Post
I'm guessing you won't be getting a Holiday card from...Fredrickson?
I have determined that the probability of that happening are becoming less by the day, but I won't share my calculations.

Here's a lecture by Dr. Frederickson. She mentions the discredited research around 8:55



Congrats, Nick.
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Old 08-26-2014, 05:35 AM   #34
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Here's a lecture by Dr. Frederickson. She mentions the discredited research around 8:55
Actually, I think she is describing there some more recent research, in which she combines the angle that we critiqued in the article published yesterday (which was more about the relationship between your general experience of well-being and gene expression), with another previous study in which she claimed to have demonstrated that certain forms of meditation improved your health in other ways. (Incidentally, this other previous study is also severely flawed, and we have a critique in preparation.)

As far as my co-authors and I have been able to tell from glimpses of graphs that have appeared on slide presentations, the statistical analyses in this new (as yet unpublished) study that I think she is discussing here are based on the same techniques that we have shown to be invalid. Hopefully, if that's the case and her lab submits this work for publication, it will be subjected to appropriate scrutiny by the reviewers.
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Old 08-26-2014, 11:57 AM   #35
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Congratulations!
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Old 08-26-2014, 01:06 PM   #36
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As far as my co-authors and I have been able to tell from glimpses of graphs that have appeared on slide presentations, the statistical analyses in this new (as yet unpublished) study that I think she is discussing here are based on the same techniques that we have shown to be invalid. Hopefully, if that's the case and her lab submits this work for publication, it will be subjected to appropriate scrutiny by the reviewers.
I thought her comments were telling:

Quote:
In a reply to Brown, Frederickson and coauthor Steven Cole of the University of California, Los Angeles, reject the criticism and say they have replicated their 2013 findings in a new sample of 122 people.
New sample, same flawed methodology? It follows that the same flawed conclusions will be generated, right? Am I missing something?

I'm a little embarrassed to hold a degree from Ms. Frederickson's institution of higher education!
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Old 08-26-2014, 03:21 PM   #37
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New sample, same flawed methodology? It follows that the same flawed conclusions will be generated, right? Am I missing something?
Well, if you think that the methodology is not flawed, then this would be OK. So actually, in itself, this doesn't constitute evidence either way.

However, there is a rather bigger problem. Tucked away in a corner of our supplementary information document (where you put the minor analyses that won't fit in the main article), we note that the original dataset contained a coding error. There are two ways to fix it. When you do, the original claimed effect drops by half. So, if you claim to have "reproduced" the original figure, in fact you have found an effect that is twice as big.
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Old 08-26-2014, 03:59 PM   #38
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Nick, you might have heard of Dr. Ranjit K. Chandra, one of the most notorious fraudulent researcher in recent years. It was his research assistant who unmasked him in the end.

Dr. R.K. Chandra ::

http://www.the-scientist.com/?articl...ts-2001-paper/

Unfortunately there are unscrupulous people in every walk of life. I am not suggesting that is the case with Dr. Frederickson, but there is certainly a lack of scientific rigor (more common in the "soft" sciences, and likely an element of self deception. When years have been devoted to a line of research, the academic can become emotionally attached and can lose objectivity. Sometimes it takes a skeptic to reveal that the emperor has no clothes.
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