Wednesday, November 2, 2016

Extraordinary Claims Require Extraordinary Evidence

Carl Sagan used to say “Extraordinary claims require extraordinary evidence.” What are extraordinary claims and what is extraordinary evidence? How does this moto apply to quantum-geometry dynamics?

Assuming that by “extraordinary claims”, Carl Sagan meant predictions that are not only in contradiction with current understanding (which is part of the normal evolution of science) but threatens to overturn our most fundamental understanding of nature then, yes, one can say that QGD makes extraordinary claims.

Take for instance QGD’s explanation of the redshift effect. If QGD is correct, then a star could be speeding on a collision course towards the Earth and its light would still be redshifted as long as the Earth moves in the same direction. Current understanding predicts that its light would be blueshifted. QGD challenges the redshift-distance relation that follows the accepted interpretation of the redshift effect and if correct then all maps of the universe generated from the redshift-distance relation would be wrong. That is without doubt an outrageously extraordinary claim.

But does such extraordinary claim as the one QGD makes about the redshift require extraordinary evidence?

The answer to this question depends on what one’s definition of what constitutes “extraordinary evidence is.” If extraordinary evidence is observations or experimental results that have never been observed before that contradict current observations, then no, QGD does not require extraordinary evidence. If “extraordinary evidence” is what results from extraordinary experimental or observational means, then again no.

What is required is that QGD’s descriptions be consistent with nature (and that includes the data from the body of experiments and observations up to this point). Additionally, it must make new and original predictions that can be tested through experiments or observations. Much of the evidence QGD requires is most possibly hidden in the data we already have collected or within the data from new observations such at the GAIA mission.

In conclusion, even the most extraordinary claims of quantum-geometry dynamics require quite ordinary evidence. But maybe, ordinary evidence becomes extraordinary when it is found to support extraordinary claims. In which case, Carl Sagan is right.

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