Friday, April 14, 2017

We Who Write Blogs Recommend... Blogs!

Here's The 20% Statistician, Daniel Lakens, on why blogs have better science than Science.

Lakens observes that blogs (usually) have open data, sources, and materials; open peer review; no eminence filter; easy error correction; and open access.

I would add that blogs are designed to fit human cognitive capacities. To reach a broad audience, they are written to be broadly comprehensible -- and as it turns out, that's a good thing for science (and philosophy), since it reduces the tendency to hide behind jargon, technical obscurities, and dubious shared subdisciplinary assumptions. The length of a typical substantive blog post (500-1500 words) is also, I think, a good size for human cognition: long enough to have some meat and detail, but short enough that the reader can keep the entire argument in view. These features make blog posts much easier to critique, enabling better evaluation by specialists and non-specialists alike.

Someone will soon point out, for public benefit, the one-sidedness of Lakens' and my arguments here.

[HT Wesley Buckwalter]


Callan S. said...

I was going to say blogs aren't designed. Did I miss the mark?

Granted, it did all sound somewhat convincing in general.

Joshua Blanchard said...

I won't believe this claim until it is published in a peer-reviewed scientific journal.

The Daily Ant said...

The Daily Ant endorses this position!

CA Heaven said...

Very interesting. I do at least partly support this view. Peer review can be a quality control, but usually it's more like a filter made of old grumpy professors who hate to see their 30 years of research being challenged. Any paradigm shift will have a hard time getting through peer review.

Cold As Heaven