Tuesday, November 04, 2008

Global warming melts from view now the economy's on ice | The Australian
Consider the sad circumstances of the climate catastrophists. Just weeks ago their arguments were hot stuff, the hottest, accepted as fact by everybody who knew anything about environmental science and many more who didn't. With every announcement that the Barrier Reef was becoming beige, every denunciation of China's outrageous aspiration to provide everybody with electricity, every appeal to supply sunscreen to polar bears, demand for the doomsters' opinions heated up.

They were so successful that when they demanded Kevin Rudd do something about global warming, he did. This was terrific news for the greenhouse gloomsters, which gave the climate change lobby the chance to explain that it was not enough and that the world had 15 minutes max to avoid the environmental abyss.

This in turn generated more attention so that the phone numbers for media-savvy scientists plus Green politicians and their comrades in the commentariat were every ABC producer's go-to guys and girls for explanations of everything involving the weather.

Then the boom went bust and all of a sudden global warming was off the agenda. People became more interested in the state of their superannuation than greenhouse gases. And as for the damage done by economic growth, instead of worrying that there was too much of it the big issue became whether there would not be enough.
Popular Technology.net: FACT: Only Computer Illiterates believe in "Man-Made" Global Warming
What people do not understand is that there is no proof of "Man-Made" Global Warming without using irrelevant computer models. Yes computer models have a place in engineering but are utterly useless at fortune telling, I mean "climate prediction". With engineering you can build and test in the real world to confirm the computer model's accuracy. You can do no such thing with the planet Earth and it's climate. You cannot build a planet and it's atmosphere to "test" your computer climate model.

I am a computer analyst and can program a computer model to do whatever I want. If you program a computer model so that X amount of CO2 increase "forces" X amount of temperature increase then it will happen, this does not make this true in the real world.

12 comments:

Anonymous said...

How nice to be able to alter your CV to better give credence to your argument, as Andrew at Popular Technology seems to have done:

Andrew K. is a Computer Analyst who has held various IT level positions and has been using computers for over 25 years starting with the TI-99/4A back in 1981. He has an extensive knowledge of DOS, Windows 3.x, 95, 98, ME, NT, 2000, XP and Vista operatings systems, computer security, computer diagnostics, hardware diagnostics and computer systems analysis. He has supported thousands of clients over the years including end users, educational institutions, governmental organizations and small to medium sized businesses. At last estimate he has taken 30,000+ support calls and worked on and assembled over 5000+ systems, from desktops to servers. His extensive technical knowledge and personal customer related experience has allowed him to seamlessly transfer his knowledge online in a clear and concise way. Computers are not Andrew K's hobby, they are his job.

http://home.comcast.net/~SupportCD/About.html

Andrew K. has been using computers for over 25 years starting with the TI-99/4A back in 1981. For over 15 years he has been helping people solve their PC problems. Over the years he has held various IT level positions including Helpdesk Support, Technician, Technical Service Manager and OEM Branch Manager which included other duties such as Sales and Marketing. He has an extensive knowledge of DOS, Windows 3.x, 95, 98, ME, 2000 and XP. Being A+ and Dell certified he has supported thousands of clients over the years including end users, educational institutions, governmental organizations and small to medium sized businesses. At last estimate he has taken 15,000+ support calls and worked on and assembled over 5000+ systems. His extensive technical knowledge and personal customer related experience has allowed him to seamlessly transfer his knowledge online in a clear and concise way. Computers are not Andrew K's hobby, they are his job.

https://www.flashback.info/showthread.php?t=399372

http://www.ukhwah.com/viewtopic.php?topic=34561&forum=24

Promotion from computer help-desk worker to computer analyst, or somebody making up qualifications to speak on science? Somebody should tell Andrew that support calls are not really in the job remit of computer analyst, and Popular Technology needs to be seen for what it is:

http://redwing.hutman.net/~mreed/warriorshtm/impostor.htm

Johansen said...

You generally alter your CV when your work experience changes. Since his previous experience does not mention what he currently does while his new one does but does not mention his previous experience you hardly have a case for anything but ridiculousness.

Funny but neither of those CVs are posted at the site but instead are to another Andrew from another site.

I am a Computer Scientist and can agree fully with the statement Andrew made I can also vouch for Computer Analysts being much more then simply helpdesk personnel. Many programmer positions will be officially labeled as analysts.

Anonymous said...

The Andrew of Popular Technology is the very same Andrew of Optimize Guides- look at the links at the top of the page. In the past he's claimed to be a computer technician- I suspect he is- but the change in CV occured after he began to post on global warming.

I find the sudden promotion from technician/helpdesk support worker/OEM branch manager highly dubious- in fact I think Andrew just made up a false CV to give himself more credence while speaking on global warming.

Johansen said...

Sudden promotion? With all due respect those CVs are not even from the site with the article on and those CVs don't go into details outside of listing some positions held. No dates, places of employment ect...

I would just like to point out:

"Andrew K. is a Computer Analyst who has held various IT level positions"

vs.

"Andrew K. ... Over the years he has held various IT level positions including Helpdesk Support, Technician, Technical Service Manager and OEM Branch Manager."

The first one declares what he currently is the second what he has done. This is not complicated to read. Combining the two you can clearly see he has had an extensive IT related background. The computer service sector is huge and it is not uncommon to hold positions different from previous experience. I work with many programmers in the service sector or some who have been previously employed in support positions. This is far from uncommon. What matters is if you have the skills to fill your new position. Only people not employed in the IT industry would not understand this.

I think some people are trying to smear the author because they disagree with what was said. I find that juvenile. Like I said I am a computer scientist with a Masters Degree in Computer Science and what Andrew stated has been my experience with computer modeling.

Anonymous said...

The thing about climate research is, well, it *is* rocket science (quite literally, sometimes): hard, difficult science. If you've spent your life plugging in network cards, your opinions on the science of computer modelling have less value than if you took a degree in computer science and have been doing systems analysis all your working life.

Andrew's CV after he started writing about global warming implies the latter, but the previous CV makes it pretty clear he's a call centre worker/technician, promoted to technical/sales manager, and his only qualification is Dell A+. No disrespect to call centre workers, but a Dell A+ certificate doesn't give you as much authority to comment on computer models as a degree in computer science.

I believe it's right to raise doubts about the author's personal integrity on this basis, but as Popular Technology is an anonymous site, there's absolutely no way of checking the author's credentials.

Check the links at the top of Andrew's CV below: they're all links to Popular Technology, written by Andrew. They're the same person: now that's not rocket science.

http://home.comcast.net/~SupportCD/About.html

Anonymous said...

Natural Scientists with no Computer Science or Engineering degrees have absolutely no authority to comment on anything relating to computer systems let alone modeling.

Any Computer Analyst would have more credibility here than someone with a degree in Geology or Math. It is sad that they have been able to perpetuate this scam for so long on the computer illiterate.

Anonymous said...

Computer science and computer analysis are irrelevant to modelling: computers are just a tool to crunch the numbers.

It's the climatologists, geologists, biologists, astrophysicists, economists etc. who come up with the equations on which the models are based, all based on maths of course.

It's perfectly possible to be computer illiterate and create an accurate model: just hand you equations and variables and data sets over to a good programmer and leave them to their job.

For anybody reviewing the output of the model, computer analysis is irrelevant: the computer is just a black box.

The idea that there must be some way to physically construct the output of a model before it becomes valid (as in engineering) is curious: there are plenty of other sciences where models are validated if they conform to and predict observable data: biology, quantum physics, economics. Is modelling here to be dismissed too because we cannot build a gene pool, a sub-atomic particle collision or a service-based economy?

Anonymous said...

"Computer Science irrelevant to modeling" - could only be spoken by someone who has no concept of computer systems. By not understanding computer science you fail to understand the limitations of the system or relevance of the results.

Being able to process math equations and obtain results is meaningless in determining relevancy to the real world. Only empirical experimentation can ever obtain this.

Economic modeling is worthless and quantum physics is merely theoretical, nothing more.

It is interesting to see that the level of absolute computer illiteracy is this bad. This also explains the naive trust in climate modeling.

Anonymous said...

The previous comments seem to reflect the views of Freeman Dyson, as quoted on the Popular Technology blog. Let's deal with those.

"My first heresy says that all the fuss about global warming is grossly exaggerated. Here I am opposing the holy brotherhood of climate model experts and the crowd of deluded citizens who believe the numbers predicted by the computer models. Of course, they say, I have no degree in meteorology and I am therefore not qualified to speak. But I have studied the climate models and I know what they can do. The models solve the equations of fluid dynamics, and they do a very good job of describing the fluid motions of the atmosphere and the oceans. They do a very poor job of describing the clouds, the dust, the chemistry and the biology of fields and farms and forests. They do not begin to describe the real world that we live in. The real world is muddy and messy and full of things that we do not yet understand. It is much easier for a scientist to sit in an air-conditioned building and run computer models, than to put on winter clothes and measure what is really happening outside in the swamps and the clouds. That is why the climate model experts end up believing their own models."

Popular Technology of course omits this sentence: "I have no degree in meteorology and I am therefore not qualified to speak."

Freeman Dyson seems to be a bit of an eccentric old duffer, and as he clearly admits, has no experience of meteorology or the life sciences. Anyone who does will not recognise his description of scientists:

"The real world is muddy and messy and full of things that we do not yet understand. It is much easier for a scientist to sit in an air-conditioned building and run computer models, than to put on winter clothes and measure what is really happening outside in the swamps and the clouds."

Life scientists spend most of their time muddy and messy and in their winter clothes, taking measurements, observing and recording.

The predictions made by any model are constantly checked and tested against these empirical observations.

Freeman Dyson is equally eccentric in the way he dismisses predictions:

"As a scientist I do not have much faith in predictions. Science is organized unpredictability. The best scientists like to arrange things in an experiment to be as unpredictable as possible, and then they do the experiment to see what will happen. You might say that if something is predictable then it is not science. When I make predictions, I am not speaking as a scientist. I am speaking as a story-teller, and my predictions are science-fiction rather than science. The predictions of science-fiction writers are notoriously inaccurate. Their purpose is to imagine what might happen rather than to describe what will happen."

This is a rather bizarre opinion for a physicist, as two of the greatest triumphs of physics in the 20th century were the predictions by Einstein that time would slow down in a fast-moving spaceship, and that light would be 'bent' by the gravitation field of the earth: both later confirmed by observation.

Of course, we'll know in twenty years or so how correct (or incorrect) the global warming models were, but despite what Freeman Dyson (and the previous commenter) claimed, models are not used in isolation, and prediction does have meaning.

As a side note, Freeman Dyson does believe in man-made global warming, but that it will not be as bad as predicted, and can be mitigated.

By the logic of the article, ("FACT: Only Computer Illiterates believe in "Man-Made" Global Warming") he must be computer illiterate, and his opinions must be of no value.

Anonymous said...

Dyson may not have a degree in meteorology but that does not mean he has no right to speak as he has as much authority to speak on climate models as any other non-computer scientist does.

Dyson has a far better understanding of computer systems then the ones "programming" climate models. Because he understands what they cannot do.

Anonymous said...

He has the right to speak, but what he says shows he does not understand the life sciences, in that he thinks life scientists "sit in air-conditioned buildings running computer models", and never "put on winter clothes and measure what is really happening outside in the swamps and the clouds," which I'm sure is not a picture any life scientist, or, come on, any body who's ever watched a documentary about any of the life sciences, would recognise.

Climate models are not developed by computer scientists- computers are just used to crunch the numbers. The models are not "programmed," at least not until after the how's and why's and how much'es are worked out.

Dyson's view of what models can't do is again based on his ignorance of the life sciences:

"They do a very poor job of describing the clouds, the dust, the chemistry and the biology of fields and farms and forests. They do not begin to describe the real world that we live in. The real world is muddy and messy and full of things that we do not yet understand."

These things are constantly being studied by life scientists and, yes, modelled. Understanding how a system works inevitably leads to a model. Models of smaller systems are built into models of bigger systems. There are plenty of systems scientists don't fully understand, and how systems will interact in the future is still uncertain, but one thing is certain (as Dyson admits)- global warming is occuring. There are models which predict a lot of warming, and models which predict less. Dyson is not saying that global warming is not happening, just that he doesn't like making predictions. But whether he likes it or not, some of the models in use today will be proved to be accurate by future observations.

Anonymous said...

Hey, Anonymus, I am "Anonymus 2":

Why dont' you say you're Gavin Schmidt and are trying to defend the sloppiness of your boss Jim Hansen in model "prediction"?

Your ranting is clear and ridiculous. Remember GIGO? That's what you do at GISS.

BTW, you have not showed at Climate Sceptics debate list for a long time. What's the matter? Got tired of having your butt kicked?