Hi Yanniru and everyone else,
As a rule, I don't like to point out other people's faults, but in this case I feel compelled. Most people cannot or will not carefully and competently examine Dick Stafford's work. In order for these people to form an opinion on what Dick has done, they must rely on the opinions of others, including the opinions of Dick, himself. Although the sharing of such opinions is the only avenue available for those who are not competent to follow the math, that can never categorically confirm or deny the correctness of his results.
I, too, participate in the sharing of opinions on Dick's work in the attempt to help others come to understand it But what I refuse to tolerate without comment is when someone claims to have the competence to follow his work, and who claims to have read it, and who publicly pronounces it to be in error, and then shows him/herself to be incompetent and careless.
You are one of those, Yanniru, and I cannot let it slide. I must point out your lack of credibility to the readers of this forum. Your recent posts commenting on an essay from my web site clearly show that you are neither a careful reader, nor a competent mathematician.
In my essay, I clearly stated, "He took the graph of the function y=1/x^3 from one to infinity and rotated it about the x axis." As you admitted in your post at http://www.astronomy.net/forums/god/messages/26997.shtml you erroneously read it as "from zero to infinity." We all make mistakes in reading, but I would think that before you publicly declared that I made an error in my essay and that I needed to re-write it, you would at least check your source and your analysis to make sure you got it right. You didn't.
The problem here is that there are probably many more readers of your allegation who have not read my essay than there are who have read it. For those people, they have no basis for judgement except their own opinions pitting your credibility against mine. Of course anyone competent in first-year calculus could go to my essay and prove to him/herself which of us is right. But I'm afraid there are few in number who will do that.
Setting your reading skills aside, you have also shown your math skills to be weak, if not lacking altogether. Your efforts to convince us of your competence by citing your background as a math teacher and as a graduate of a school with a famous name do not impress me. They might have if you had not so blatantly revealed your incompetence in interpreting the simple equation, y equals one over x cubed, which appears in my essay as "y=1/x^3".
As for your mathematics, both your calculation of the volume and your calculation of the surface area of the figure described in my essay are wrong. You need to find someone competent in calculus to sit down with you and show you how to calculate the surface area and volume. Only after that will you be able to appreciate what I wrote.
Now, I hope I have not lost any readers at this point, because I am just getting to the most important, in fact the only important, part of this post. Yanniru's misreading, misunderstanding, failure to comprehend, and brazen attack on my essay, is a microcosm of what has been happening to Dick Stafford and his work for many years. Yanniru is one among a few people who claim to be competent, to have read his work, and who find it to be incorrect. Since those who are not competent to understand Dick's work read commentaries such as Yanniru's, it ends up being a shameful travesty. It is my purpose here to expose that travesty so that readers will not be so quick to accept his opinions on the question.
Other critics of Dick's work, who for all I know may be competent, such as Bruce, will not engage in dialog but instead engage in guerilla warfare. They fire a shot now and then, but with no backup and no follow up. Yet other critics, such as Harv, either openly or tacitly admit they are not competent to follow the math, but try to attack Dick's conclusions on other bases, such as philosophical or linguistic.
My purpose here is to admonish you readers to withhold judgement on the correctness of Dick's math until either you, yourself, have examined it competently, or until you read that some competent mathematician has either pointed out and documented specific errors, or has verified its accuracy. Until then, trust me that the math (at least through Chapter 1) is correct, and then open your mind to the possible implications of this magnificent discovery. But by all means, discount completely any and all criticisms of Dick's work coming from Yanniru.
Warm regards,
Paul |