Cold Fusion

14 Feb 2010

http://scientificcomputing.com/Cold-Fusion-Rebirth-New-Evidence-for-LENR.aspx ... a short article on the rebirth of Cold Fusion under the banner of LENR. Cold Fusion got such a bad reputation a few years ago the people concerned, who doggedly stuck to the research in spite of everything, have been forced to pretend that what they are working on is not cold fusion - but it is cold fusion. Under a different name. Sounds as though it still has a long way to go.

A guest post on the blog http://wattsupwiththat.com by Steven Goddard has raised another issue from the past. The title of the post is, 'Are Scientists Always Smart' and is all about the idea of concensus science - and claims it is not as unusual as people appear to think as this sort of thing was very common in the past. As an example Goddard picks up on the controversy in the first half of the 20th century concerning Continental Drift (the modern terminology). It took 50 years for Alfred Wegener's idea to be accepted by mainstream geology when any child looking at an atlas could see some of the continents fitted together like a jigsaw puzzle. Goddard provides some quotes from crusty scientists from yesteryear, some maps and diagrams and a good summary of what Wegener proposed. This included, as far as Pangea was concerned, common geology and distribution of fossils. He also provides some web sites to visit if anyone wishes to go into the subject further. However, Goddard draws a parallel between the refusal of mainstream to accept a new idea (even though it was fairly obvious that it had merit) and that of AGW where the evidence also seems fairly clear that global warming is not out of control - but the mainstream insists it is. I'm not sure if drawing a parallel with the Wegener story is apt as the latter came up against an ensconced group of older geologists who were resistant to change simply because it undermined their own body of work. The AGW concensus is the opposite because the concensus is driven by a younger element that ignore the work of the older generation - such as the work of Hubert Lamb at UEA. In addition, they have the support of a very large number of young activists and it is they, in league with the media and other cohorts, that have pressed the science to comply with the belief. The only resistance there has been is by a few long in the tooth bloggers that have lived through other scary scenarios such as mad cow disease, acid rain, DDT, ozone depletion, and various health alarms, and they simply did not fall for AGW - no matter how big the hype. However, don't let me deter you from reading about Alfred Wegener.