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Computer Hacking Theory for Carbon Dating Continues

November 21, 2015 12 comments

“If so, then this itself was a form of scientific fraud,
or at least scientific dishonesty.”  Surely, you’re joking, Mr. Jones.

“The AMS system is clearly designed so that if there was a problem with the dating process at a laboratory, then its target (Shroud) and control sample dates would wrongly agree together, and disagree together with the correct Shroud and control samples dates of the other two laboratories.”  Again, surely …

 


 

imageOkay, I know the subject is over-reported. But I like the quotation by Richard Feynman. It’s a quotation I have always liked, never thought much about, and now am seeing again in the context of the shroud. It is from his famous book, Surely You’re Joking, Mr. Feynman!.

The first principle is that you must not fool yourself-and you are the easiest person to fool. So you have to be very careful about that. After you’ve not fooled yourself, it’s easy not to fool other scientists.

It did strike me as odd that Stephen Jones would use this quotation in his never-ending quest to convince skeptics of the shroud’s authenticity and non-skeptics alike that the results of the 1987 carbon dating of the shroud were the product of a computer program planted in all three AMS labs by a computer hacker, possibly on behalf of the Soviet Union’s KGB.

Is it that Stephen’s theory is preposterous or is it that it seems preposterous and we’re all of us fools? It’s fair, I guess, to ask, given what Feynman said. But then, too, we might think a little introspection by Stephen may be in order.

This part of the theory may be new to you. Stephen writes in his blog, The 1260-1390 radiocarbon date of the Turin Shroud was the result of a computer hacking #4. It makes for interesting reading:

The uncalibrated dates of sample 1 (the Shroud) in Table 2 of the 1989 Nature paper are widely different. As can be seen in Table 2 of the 1989 Nature paper (see above), sample 1 (the Shroud)’s average uncalibrated radiocarbon date by each laboratory was widely different, unlike the non-Shroud samples (2, 3 and 4). Prof. Gove criticised the 1989 Nature paper for having been, “opaquely written” and “difficult to comprehend … even by experts in the field“:

“On 27th February the 16 February 1989 issue of the British journal Nature (volume 337) finally reached the library in my lab. On pages 611-615 appeared the article titled ‘Radiocarbon dating of the Shroud of Turin’ by P E Damon et al. … The article was rather opaquely written-difficult to comprehend in complete detail even by experts in the field …”[20]

Presumably this was deliberate so as to conceal the inexplicable fact that the Shroud sample dates between the three laboratories were widely different. If so, then this itself was a form of scientific fraud, or at least scientific dishonesty.

So says Stephen. Now, dear reader, figure this out:

As stated above the process was fully “under computer control” so human error cannot have intervened in the process, to cause the Shroud sample dates at each laboratory to disagree widely (as they did-see next), while the control samples dates had “exceptionally good agreement. The AMS system is clearly designed so that if there was a problem with the dating process at a laboratory, then its target (Shroud) and control sample dates would wrongly agree together, and disagree together with the correct Shroud and control samples dates of the other two laboratories. Otherwise AMS radiocarbon dating in general would be unreliable and this “mediaeval … AD 1260-1390” AMS radiocarbon date of the Shroud would have to be disregarded anyway (as it should have been)!

So again it is inexplicable if the Shroud sample dates were real (and not computer-generated by a hacker’s (allegedly Timothy W. Linick‘s) program in this fully computerised process), for “the agreement among the three laboratories for [control] samples 2, 3 and 4” to be “exceptionally good,” yet the “spread of the measurements for sample 1[the Shroud]” to be somewhat greater than would be expected (my emphasis).

He does provide a nice graph to help us see this*:

Anyway, I like Feynman’s quote.  I may find a way to feature it on every page of my own blog. It is useful. You can invoke it, probably, for every argument you have about the shroud. It makes for great ad hominem slinging, too. Just make sure you are not the person who has fooled himself.

*The image of the graph is inline from Stephen’s site so he can’t complain that I’m copying his material.

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Russ Breault will also be in St. Louis, November 15

November 7, 2015 Comments off

After speaking on Friday and Saturday in Chester, Illinois, Russ Breault travels to St. Louis to speak at Incarnate Word Parish on November 15, 2015. The church’s website informs us:

Encounter the Shroud of Turin

imageIncarnate Word is pleased to sponsor international Shroud of Turin expert, Russ Breault on November 15, 2015 in our Kent Center at 7:30PM. Admission is free!

Russ Breault is bringing his FAST PACED, DRAMATIC, VISUAL, UNFORGETTABLE, BIG SCREEN EXPERIENCE titled "SHROUD ENCOUNTER" to Incarnate Word!  Russ uses over 200 images covering all aspects of the history, science, art and theories of how the image on the Shroud may have been formed.  He will have two small displays, as well as a full size 14 ft by 3.5 ft replica of the Shroud available for up-close viewing.

The Shroud of Turin (reportedly the burial cloth of Jesus Christ, bearing his image) is the most analyzed artifact in the world. At the direction of Pope Francis it will once again be on public display next year in Turin, Italy. Russ’ presentation has been called  "Tour de force", "Spellbinding", "Mesmerizing", "Riveting": and more.  He has appeared in numerous documentaries seen on History Channel, Discovery and CBS.  He was interviewed last year on Good Morning America for an update on the latest research concerning the Shroud. Russ has also lectured at some the country’s most prestigious universities including Duke, Penn State, Johns Hopkins, West Point, Cal State, Auburn, GA Tech, U Mass and many more.

Please plan to attend and explore the mystery of the Shroud. See you there!

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Checking in on Stephen Jones’ Blog

September 1, 2015 1 comment

imageStephen has been discussing the side strip: Sidestrip #5: The evidence is overwhelming that the Turin Shroud is authentic!

< CLICK ON IMAGE TO ENLARGE >

Problem for the forgery theory. That the Shroud has almost invisible stitching in its seam that is identical to stitching found elsewhere only at the Jewish fortress of Masada, which was last occupied in AD 73, is yet another (see #1, #3 and #4) problem for the forgery theory. Since a medieval forger would be most unlikely (to put it mildly) to even know about almost invisible first century Jewish stitching; and even if he did know about it, he would be even more unlikely to go to the trouble of adding it to his forgery (what use would almost invisible stitching be to a forger?); and even if he wanted to use it, he would be most unlikely to have the high degree of skill needed to do such stitching. So again the forgery theory would need to resort to the pre-1988 fall-back position of the late leading anti-authenticist Walter McCrone (1916-2002), that "a first century cloth could have been found and used by a 14th century artist to paint the image":

"A carbon-dating test would be final if it led to a date significantly later than the early first century. A first century date, on the other hand, would remove almost all obstacles to universal acceptance of the `Shroud’ as authentic. Only the careful objective scientist might still point out that a first century cloth could have been found and used by a 14th century artist to paint the image"[18].

But, leaving aside whether that would be "objective," for anti- authenticists to claim that a medieval forger forged the Shroud’s image on a 1st century cloth would, as we saw in parts #3 and #4, mean admitting that the 1988 radiocarbon dating of the Shroud claim was wrong…

Does Stephen mean this is overwhelming – the emphasis on the word in the title of his posting is his – or that this argument, in conjunction with a gazillion other (or a few other) arguments, is overwhelming. I think he means the latter. I’m just not a big fan of piling up weak arguments one on top of the other. But then, again, that’s just me. And maybe it’s not weak.

Your thoughts?

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Cherry Jam, the Metaphor

July 31, 2015 109 comments

That Dan Porter should allow a serial commentator on his site, one with no blogsite of his own, and unable for one reason or another  to provide links to a published model – any model – to make baseless charges time and again against a  senior investigator like myself, albeit long retired,   is quite simply unacceptable, totally unacceptable.

— Colin Berry


Can anyone explain this from Colin’s blogsite?  I think it was posted today but it is hard to figure that out:

… here’s a graphic I made yesterday for which there’s an immediate use on shroudstory (by way of emphasizing the difference between the scientific method, and the pseudo-scientific method that attempts to ape it.

clip_image001

Beware pseudo-science. It’s worse, much worse, than cherry-picking to support a case. It’s more akin to cherry jam manufacture!

And one cherry jam manufacturer has the nerve to accuse this retired scientist (with three published models under his belt, one highly cited and attracting patent applications) of plagiarizing his idea! Why? Because he used words like “alkali”, “fumigation”, “mordant”, “compression”, “paste” etc. As I say, I shall give a brief summary as to how I came to deploy those words in the course of my post Machy-mould modelling, and did so as a series of practical experiments, all reported in real time here or on my sciencebuzz site. That Dan Porter should allow a serial commentator on his site, one with no blogsite of his own, and unable for one reason or another  to provide links to a published model – any model – to make baseless charges time and again against a  senior investigator like myself, albeit long retired,   is quite simply unacceptable, totally unacceptable.

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Posting For a Slow News Day

July 28, 2015 13 comments

Psychosis set in when the radiocarbon dating results for the Shroud of Turin were
announced, or when the due date of the Mayan apocalypse came and went.

imageIt is about apophenia and pareidolia: the short essay, Beware of the Man in the Ashtray by Neels Blom appearing in Business Day (BDlive of South Africa). Well, no, not really. It is about politics. Well, no, not really. Well maybe if you lived in South Africa you might think so.

Oh, did I mention the Shroud of Turin is mentioned. But it is not about that.  Fly fishing? Pluto?

It is entertaining. And if is very well written. And it is not an essay. It’s and Op Ed. That’s enough.

By-the-way, we’ve discussed apophenia and pareidolia many times in the blog (those are links to pages in this blog). We discussed fishing once.  Well, no, not really.

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Clarification

July 14, 2015 Comments off

imageArt Lind writes to St. Louis Conference attendees (published here with permission):

Yesterday I viewed Russ Breault’s video1 of my presentation, Hypothesis that Explains the Shroud’s Unique Blood Marks and Several Critical Events in the Gospels, at the St. Louis Shroud Conference 20142. At 6 minutes into my presentation I noticed that I made a statement concerning Dr. Lavoie’s studies of blood transfer from skin to linen that I wish I had better clarified, so I am doing it now.  The statement I made in my presentation made it seem that I did not believe Dr. Lavoie’s results as presented in his book, Unlocking the Secrets of The Shroud.  That was not my intent, as I do believe his results are as he reported.

In my presentation I said that the results of my experiments indicated that blood coagulated and dried in less than 15 minutes, which prevented me from transferring blood on skin to linen more than 15 minutes after the blood was put on the skin.  I also said that Dr. Lavoie reported that he was able to make transfers as long as 2 hours after the blood was put on the skin. It was not 2 hours. Actually, he reported on page 94 of his book, “At room temperature, transfers could take place up to one and a half hours after the blood was taken from a volunteer.”  More importantly, I failed to mention in my oral presentation that I used a blood collection method different from that used by Dr. Lavoie.  As a medical doctor, he used a blood collection method that he believed better duplicated the conditions surrounding Christ’s crucifixion.  Thus, our different blood collection methods could explain why we obtained different results.  I must acknowledge that during my research Dr. Lavoie and I talked many times and he was of great help to me because of his knowledge of blood and its clotting factors.

In my written paper3 I more completely described Lavoie’s methods and results, as summarized above.  Unfortunately, many who attended my talk and/or only viewed Russ Breault’s video1 of my oral presentation may not have read my written paper.  Thus, I am sending this email to all attendees of the conference to correct misunderstandings that may have resulted from my verbal presentation.

1. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=X1VdmyHXOY0

2. http://www.stlouisshroudconference.com

3. http://www.shroud.com.pdfs/stllindpaper.pdf

Thanks for letting us know.

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More Than 2 Million People Saw the Shroud in 2015

June 26, 2015 1 comment

image

The above note reads, according to Google:

I thank the Volunteers of the Shroud and also those who have helped me in my visit to Turin. I cordially bless you and your families. And please do not forget to pray for me. May the Lord bless you and keep you Madonna.

Affectionately,

Francesco
22-6-2015

After reading the above note to the assembled press in a closing press conference, Msgr. Cesare Nosiglia, the Archbishop of Turin, gave a brief speech. The highlights of the speech include the facts that…

  • More than 2 million people saw the shroud
  • Nearly 3 million people came to Turin including those who came to see Pope Francis
  • More than 1 million euro was collected during the Exposition and donated to the Holy Father. It will be used for charitable works in Turin.

The speech with Google translation from the Official Holy Shroud website (sindone.org) reads:


imageSummary of the Custodian, Msgr. Nosiglia

It was an exposition of the most participated and experienced by pilgrims for human and spiritual intensity. The organization and the welcome was perfect also for the kindness and friendliness of the volunteers. The path toward the Shroud proved useful with panels of social saints and with the movie of the prefetch, both judged by all well made ​​and necessary. All pilgrims then had the opportunity to pause in silence and prayer before the Shroud for a sufficient time.

Very large and varied profile of the pilgrims: families with children, young people, the homeless and the poor, Orthodox and Evangelicals, Muslims and representatives of other religions, people from European countries, America, Africa, Middle East and Asia. Of particular note is the thousands of visitors Filipinos.

They stopped in front of the Telo numerous cardinals, bishops, priests, deacons, men and women religious, ecclesial associations and movements. Thick delegations of pontifical councils of the Holy See and the offices of the CEI.

They are also parades in front of the Shroud political authorities, economic and financial, entertainment, sports, film and theater.

And how many ‘such as’ pilgrims

The total number of pilgrims visiting the Holy Shroud in the monstrance Costituto 2015 is the sum of the people who have booked and have made ​​the journey, those who participated in the celebrations in the Cathedral, the groups walked right through the door without central reservation and authorities and personality accompanied by the Ceremonial. With this calculation, the number more than two million people.

To these must be added those in the two-day visit of the Pope have followed him all the way from Caselle in Turin, in all the squares and streets where past and has stopped . We can say, then, that Turin has received 3 million people.

We have received a number of messages and endless claims of what the experience of the Shroud was intense and full of grace and joy for the pilgrims.

The Visit of Pope Francis

Pope and all his followers were surprised by the enthusiastic welcome of the people, a sign of great affection for the Pope.

The Pope’s speeches and his actions have hit the mark and will remain in the hearts of all as an invitation to hope and confidence in the future.

The actions of the three representatives of the world of work were concrete, realistic and not of fact but also loads hope in God and in themselves. A good injection of optimism even in the middle of the well-known difficulties.

At the Shroud, the Pope was in meditative silence as each pilgrim. No word not to break the climate of silence and contemplation that requires the Shroud. But he made ​​a gesture full of tenderness and pregnant meaning. He touched the sacred Linen, as he stroked, as if he had touched the broken body of the Lord to comfort him. It’s nice that the One from whom we receive the consolation of God becomes the object of tenderness and consolation. I saw in this gesture of Veronica wipes the face of Jesus or that of women who go to anoint the body of the deceased. But I also saw the gesture of the woman with a hemorrhage, of which the Gospel speaks, he wants to touch the cloak of Jesus for healing. Jesus said, “your faith has saved you.”

The “gift” of Pope Francis for the poor of Turin

The Pope gave me a blessing and gratitude to the volunteers of the Shroud and those who have done their utmost for the success of the Exhibition. The handwritten text says: “I thank the Volunteers of the Shroud and also those who have helped me in my visit to Turin. I cordially bless you and your families. And please do not forget to pray for me. May the Lord bless you and the Madonna keep you. Affectionately. Francesco. 21.06.2015 “

The Pope has asked me to take advantage of the gift fruit of donations from pilgrims and Exposition of the faithful of the diocese of Turin, for a work of charity in favor of the latest in Turin. The figure exceeds one million Euros. We will define these days with Caritas, Migrantes Office and Ministry of Health which will make it work.

The Pope has also written a note of greeting and blessing to the children who greeted him in Piazza Solferino and on the way to Caselle . We will do have to all parishes, will be published by the Voice of the People and of http://www.sindone.org. The text says: “Dear children, I left Turin after my visit, bearing in our hearts your joyful greeting, I have blessed and I invite you to always be friends of Jesus and of you, to give everyone his Gospel of love and peace. I cordially bless you together with your parents, priests and leaders. Pray for me. Francesco 22.6 2015 “.

From the speeches and gestures of the Holy Father will derive a pastoral letter to the city and to the Diocese because both the support base of our common path for the next years.

The intervention of Elis Tisi, President of the Organizing Committee and Deputy Mayor of Turin Exposition

I Exposition of 67 days have left a mark on the city. I am proof that Turin knows mobilize in all its various social and economic components.

Turin has been able to field his best forces, for the visit of Pope Francis where 600 firefighters who served together with the police and the prefecture to ensure everyone a peaceful performance of the two days.

It was enshrined in the ability to collaborate between different parties to achieve common goals.Working together is the key to achieving the best results. This is demonstrated by the work of the Diocesan Youth Ministry who welcomed thousands of young people from around the world, the Ministry of Health who coordinated initiatives shelter for sick and disabled, including the Home, and collaboration with associations working in prisons Le Vallette and Ferrante Aporti. It also shows the sensitivity of the business community who have contributed in various ways all’ostensione.

All these examples confirm that Turin is on track to build a culture of welfare and that makes us look to the future with greater confidence.

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