|Exegesis Volume 4 Issue #24
Exegesis Digest Wed, 24 Mar 1999
Date: Tue, 23 Mar 1999 17:06:16 -0800
From: "William D. Tallman"
Subject: Re: Exegesis Digest V4 #23
> I think the following URL is worth a look:
> It points to a paper titled "Twelfth Century Castle Besiegement in Sport" by Bernadette
> Brady and J.Lee Lehman. The authors test "Guido Bonatti's methods for determining the
> outcome of castle besiegement" by applying them to some modern sporting contests.
> This is worth a read.
> The interesting thing here is that the method under scrutiny is essentially an algorithm,
> which means that everyone can produce the same results and set up demonstrations of
> the method. Brady and Lehman show something like 66% correct prediction, which is
> good enough to make an nice income gambling, if one is into that sort of thing.
I would guess they used JigSaw to do the work, although it doesn't seem difficult to do by hand. Maybe doing so would serve to test their work in a way that extracts the algorithm from the process; that might be useful.
> I think we might take the group into a new realm by testing the claims in this paper and
> trying to apply the methods in some other areas.
The Stanley Cup and the world chess championship are other examples of besiegement contests. Any others?
> But that requires we all read the paper. Anyone?
Yup, read it, will see what I can do with it.
> Tough crowd, eh? I wish I'd had more time to actively participate this past year and
> want to thank you for carrying the banner (while I sailed a long choppy Saturn transit). I
> can't be sure of my schedule, but let us try to set up a real experiment following Brady
> and Lehman and see where that leads us, eh?
Yeah, tough crowd. Maybe this will be more to their liking.
Nevertheless, I want to caution everyone that an intent to use this as a demonstration of the validity of astrology is inappropriate; such activity is almost certain to become a bootless exercise. This will not take the place of the search for the astrological mechanism.
It is not enough to show that a thing may or may not work. It is the why and how of a thing that is convincing, and that is true for astrology as well. Until we can link the astrological effect to measurable phenomena, science and the world at large will continue to refuse us any kind of legitimacy. Work such as the research into old algorithms is definitely worthwhile, because it is in just such endeavors that the potential for powerful insights resides.
And once again I want to make the central point: until we (astrologers) actually know what is going on, we will never be able to conclusively determine what parts of the astrological tradition work, and why they do or do not do so. Until we can do this, we remain as practitioners of an arcane art that is inaccessible to most people, as an elite group forever suspect of chicanery and worse.
I would strongly suggest that we keep these things in mind.
PS. Incidentally, an active interest in these types of research does *not* indicate that the researcher would (mis)use such techniques to the detriment of a client. Those who do, do not represent (we would fervently hope) the majority of professional astrologers, nor do they reflect the best traditions of astrological practice. Or such is my belief.
End of Exegesis Digest Volume 4 Issue 24
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