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Nonsense Detection – The UnScientific Method

March 10, 2010
the following table translates commonly used expressions found in research papers:

Published Translation

" It has long been known…."

I didn't look up the original reference.

" Of great theoretical and practical importance…."

Interesting to me.

" A definite trend is evident…

The data seem practically meaningless

" Three of the examples were chosen for detailed study.."

The others made no sense.

" Typical results are shown..

The best results are shown.

" It is believed that..

I think

" It is generally believed that….

A couple of other guys think so too.

" It is clear that much additional work will be required before a complete understanding of these phenomena is possible..

I don't understand it.

" Correct within an order of magnitude.."


" Statistically oriented projection of the findings..

Wild guess.

" Highly significant area for exploratory study.."

A totally useless topic suggested by my committee.

Source: Unknown

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