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Science Forum

  1. Subscriber AThousandYoung
    Do ya think?
    09 Jul '10 22:56 / 1 edit
    http://www.telegraph.co.uk/sport/football/world-cup-2010/7878270/Paul-the-psychic-octopus-correctly-predicts-Germany-defeat.html

    Oops I mean Germany.
  2. 10 Jul '10 18:38
    Originally posted by AThousandYoung
    http://www.telegraph.co.uk/sport/football/world-cup-2010/7878270/Paul-the-psychic-octopus-correctly-predicts-Germany-defeat.html

    Oops I mean Germany.
    That is not science, unless you want do discuss the psychology surrounding why such a story would end up on CNN?
  3. Subscriber AThousandYoung
    Do ya think?
    10 Jul '10 19:00
    Originally posted by twhitehead
    That is not science, unless you want do discuss the psychology surrounding why such a story would end up on CNN?
    I am sure that the octopus is able to pick up on peoples' body language or something. This is about intelligent octupi.
  4. 10 Jul '10 19:15 / 1 edit
    Originally posted by AThousandYoung
    I am sure that the octopus is able to pick up on peoples' body language or something. This is about intelligent octupi.
    It seems that most of the time he picks the German team to win. The rest of the time he gets it wrong as much as he gets it right.
    Yes, it probably has a lot to do with what his keepers think and is no better at predicting the outcome than they are.
    This probably doesn't take a whole lot of intelligence on his part. Most reasonably intelligent animals can pick up on their owners body language.
  5. 10 Jul '10 19:49
    Another perfectly plausible explanation is that it is mere coincidence.
    The mistake is to look at the octopus in isolation.
    If you realize that similar 'guesses' are being made by thousands of people, psychics pets, etc, and the bets matches being reported, the chance that at least one will get most of the predictions right is actually quite high, similar to the way a lottery winner seems improbable when taken in isolation, but when seen as part of the whole can become a near certainty.
  6. Subscriber AThousandYoung
    Do ya think?
    10 Jul '10 19:56
    Originally posted by twhitehead
    Another perfectly plausible explanation is that it is mere coincidence.
    The mistake is to look at the octopus in isolation.
    If you realize that similar 'guesses' are being made by thousands of people, psychics pets, etc, and the bets matches being reported, the chance that at least one will get most of the predictions right is actually quite high, simil ...[text shortened]... bable when taken in isolation, but when seen as part of the whole can become a near certainty.
    That argument fails if you DO take the octopus in isolation and find that it's future predictions are correct to a significant degree.

    However I agree that you probably understand the situation correctly.
  7. 18 Jul '10 16:26
    Originally posted by AThousandYoung
    I am sure that the octopus is able to pick up on peoples' body language or something. This is about intelligent octupi.
    Octopi is a well known hypercorrection and octopussies is preferable.
  8. Standard member wolfgang59
    Infidel
    18 Jul '10 17:17
    Originally posted by Diodorus Siculus
    Octopi is a well known hypercorrection and octopussies is preferable.
    octopi and octopussies are equally incorrect

    octopuses is correct
    (you may see the equally correct but archaic octopodes in some old text books)
  9. Subscriber AThousandYoung
    Do ya think?
    21 Jul '10 00:16
    Just don't stick anything precious in there...these octopussies have eagle beaks!
  10. 22 Jul '10 10:54
    Originally posted by wolfgang59
    octopi and octopussies are equally incorrect

    octopuses is correct
    (you may see the equally correct but archaic octopodes in some old text books)
    Ye olde textbooks of lore? Wikipedia? I was taking the pish
  11. Standard member wolfgang59
    Infidel
    22 Jul '10 19:48
    Originally posted by Diodorus Siculus
    Ye olde textbooks of lore? Wikipedia? I was taking the pish
    I did not use Wiki ... I got my info from a higher authority ... QI

    have just taken a look at Wiki and found this;

    Fowler's Modern English Usage states that "the only acceptable plural in English is octopuses," and that octopi is misconceived and octopodes pedantic