Tuesday, 26 April 2011

Why many research articles are wrong.

Nature is affectionately known amongst the research community (mostly those who have not had a Nature paper) as the Journal of Irreproducible Results. Nature has been responsible for some publishing disasters - cold fusion comes to mind but the other journals should not gloat.

Here are a couple of articles about why science is often wrong
The Truth Wear Out
Significance Chasing

Word Associations

How should you visualise gigabytes of textual data?

Word arcs
Word Spectra
Other Visualisations

Data Scraping and Privacy

It is amazing to see how far "reputable" companies will go at the request of others to pry into people's personal affairs.

This is what I have come to expect from Big Pharma, but not of the scrapers.

WSJ Article

Video Game Violence

How are you to objectively measure the effect of video games on level of violence?

Here are some articles about a study that tries to create an objective measure.

Techdirt: does-being-more-vocal-video-game-violence-debate-mean-you-have-better-argument.shtml
eurekalert: Press Release

So the way the "study" creates this objective measure is by weighing the number of publications produced by both sides of an argument. I wonder if they have ever heard of the field called publication bias.

Here is another study that finds a link between video games and mental health issues
Slashdot Article