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Re: orion: Scholars and Others [was: Altman and Crowder]

Nichael, Paul, and Next,


Nichael- actually I did have a bad experience with the guy on the bus who did
a horrible job. And I take you don't want to hear my rebuttals to Einstein...

Paul- I really wasn't accusing anyone of elitism! And you did exactly what I
wanted. I am familiar with the processes you outlined but I thought a good
reminder was in order. Yet, I do think that more of (us) "day job" guys are
getting closer to making real or noticeable contributions (them, not me ;^)
)...because of what we are now doing.

That was what the last bit was about, and trying to get a reaction concerning
"an expansion of (any) intellectual community (them, not me)" due to
"Internet" type tools. At least the discussions don't stay in the office. (I
would have much preferred that my old history prof call me a twit in an
e-mail, or "netmeeting"  without me having to drive 200 miles!) I'm a teacher
in a public school (my degree was terminal) and I can't help to wonder about
academics, scholarship, and the Net.

Thanks again,

Tim Phillips


Nichael Cramer wrote:

> Tim L Phillips wrote:
> > If "scholarship" occurs outside of a university setting is it still
> > "scholarship" and how valued will it be by those in that setting if it
> > originates outside that setting?
> I think the point, to be fair is, is not that it is _impossible_ for such
> serious scholarship to appear outside of a standard academic environment.
> It's just --frankly-- that the odds go way, way down.
> Several folks here have already invoked the myth of "contributions" made
> by the proverbial lone genius, without credentials working in splendid
> isolation.  To the extent that such things actually occur, its worth
> pointing out that for every one of those guys there are ten thousand
> cranks pushing their trisections of angles, alternate versions of General
> Relativity or some other pet theory that could be shown to be gibberish
> by any first year grad student in the field.
> In short, there really _are_ credentially, competent people working in
> these disciplines and the overwhelming majority are found in exactly the
> places where you would expect to find them.
> To ask a slightly silly version of this question, would you let the
> stranger sitting next to you on the bus home tonight take out your
> appendix?  Why not?  She _might_ be the world's greatest surgeon, who just
> happened not to go to medical school.  What do you know?  Can prove
> otherwise?
> --
> Nichael Cramer
> work: ncramer@bbn.com
> home: nichael@sover.net
> http://www.sover.net/~nichael/