# Empirical evidence and the scientific method

Discussion in 'Amateur Radio News' started by VK6FLAB, Jan 5, 2019.

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1. ### N0TZUPlatinum SubscriberPlatinum SubscriberQRZ Page

Sorry if I repeat some of what others have already said, but I wish to make a point about two important concepts: Simplification and approximation.

The usual dipole formula is a derivation from, and a simplification of electromagnetic field mathematics, valid only for a dipole floating unsupported in infinite free space, made from a vanishingly thin wire with velocity factor 0.95, and having a perfect vanishingly small point radio source at the center.

If it is used in any other context, such as any real situation, then it is an approximation. How good the approximation is depends upon how far from the valid conditions it is being used.

The OP, finding that the formula doesn't work exactly for a real dipole near the earth, jumps to the conclusion that there is something mysterious happening, that science has failed. He either doesn't understand how the formula was derived and how to use it properly, or is feigning a lack of understanding in order to make a lengthy podcast to take advantage of people confused by the topic.

If it's the former, then I think he needs to learn a bit more about antennas. If it's the latter then shame on him, in my opinion, for adding to the general destruction of logical thinking and lack of knowledge of the scientific method happening today, especially on social media.

Last edited: Jan 7, 2019
AC0OB, N2EY, N7EKU and 5 others like this.

Wow, this is an interesting thread. So far there's been posted every theory short of the practical god of mathematics quoted; Dr Ian Malcolm.
You want a NEW HAM, Engineer or Technician of any trade or profession to be successful... Start them off with a thorough knowledge of how to use these things.. and use them well.
Maybe you may by the end of your days have been called, "Electro the Magnificent, Gizmo Girl, and maybe if you're really good.. a Total Mad-Scientist / Wizard."
Once you have full control and know the proper operation of your tools, you may apply them to: Processor melting levels of number crunching, Shooten From the Hip, or totally winging it (trial and error).
These days give me a stack of YouTube videos and a good set of tools and I'll cook ya mean Goulash or replumb your house. and I hate plumbing...

Have a great day, I hear Home Depot calling,
Erika DD

W1YW likes this.
3. ### NU4RHam MemberQRZ Page

I tried this methodology in the content of this article in my career as a tech commercial aviation.

I work for Walt Disney World now. Works MUCH better here.

W1YW likes this.
4. ### KD9LTQHam MemberQRZ Page

Well said, sir.

N7EKU likes this.
5. ### W1YWHam MemberQRZ Page

Greg--

Will U B at hamcation?

Let me know and we can have an eyeball QSO

73
Chip W1YW

6. ### W1YWHam MemberQRZ Page

Watch out--

^^^^THIS !^^^^
I haven't looked at the syllabus for the VK Foundation license, but the UK exam is very similar to our Technician, with perhaps less math.

The beauty of ham radio is that we have all kinds here. I would prefer to see the license exams oriented toward practical and timely understanding of the principles: i.e. "explain how resonance works" rather than "calculate the resonant frequency given the capacitance, resistance, and inductance of the circuit". When the principles are understood, the formula can be found rather quickly. Understanding is better than memorizing.

KQ6XA and W1YW like this.
8. ### N0TZUPlatinum SubscriberPlatinum SubscriberQRZ Page

I agree with both of you for the most part. That's why I tried to make my comments above in the nature of an explanation about two important concepts involved.

It's also why I allowed for two possibilities motivating the podcast: either a lack of understanding requiring more knowledge, or an attempt to exploit lack of understanding to generate clicks with a podcast. Unfortunately these days, there is much of the latter on the web, often cynically done for ego or income, and one must constantly be on guard. I certainly hope the OP is not in this category.

In my opinion, the OP places himself in a public position of influence on ham radio with some appearance of authority by making podcasts and promoting them prominently on QRZ and perhaps elsewhere. By doing so he will unavoidably invite comments on his endeavors regarding his level of expertise and experience on the topic.

9. ### AA5CTHam MemberQRZ Page

re: "Empirical evidence and the scientific method"

Is this a thread where I can post where Kraus* is wrong?

.
* Kraus, like in John D.

10. ### W1YWHam MemberQRZ Page

Since Onno's stuff is podcasts, shouldn't ALL of these be labelled as 'podcasts', not 'News'?

Some are, some aren't.

As far as I am concerned, anybody can say anything as a 'podcast'. People will respond in-kind.

But as 'news' we should be cognizant of the 'fake news' age we live in....

AC0OB, N0TZU and KQ6XA like this.