Philosophy Puts Brakes on Simplistic Science

first_imgThree stories touching on philosophy of science were reported recently.  They show that simplistic ideas, and even terms deployed, can be misleading.  That’s why philosophers still have a role in curbing the pretensions of scientists, and clarifying scientific issues and terms lest policy-makers and the public get wrong ideas.Are all invasive species bad?:  We are taught to think that “alien” animals or plants introduced into another country pose a threat.  Often they do, but Mark Davis at New Scientist reminded readers that the honeybee was introduced into the Americas.  He said, “you may be surprised to learn that only a few per cent of introduced species are harmful.”  The really bad cases, like the brown tree snake in Guam that killed off most native birds, and the rabbit in Australia, tend to make the most news and noise, but “many people cling to the idea that non-native species are uniformly undesirable,” he said.  The “paradigm” of “invasive species” is changing: Scientific disciplines are often guided at their outset by a few simple ideas.  However, as the field matures, participants typically recognise the complexity of their subject and the need for a more nuanced approach.  This is what is happening in invasion biology.    Philosophers, social scientists and some invasion biologists have challenged the choice of language used to describe non-native species and have argued that conclusions about them sometimes rest more on prejudice than science.  Others have criticised the preference for native species as scientifically unsound, arguing that invasive species do not represent a separate category, evolutionarily, biogeographically or ecologically.  Others have pointed out flaws in the claim that non-native species are the second-greatest extinction threat after habitiat [sic] destruction.  In fact, with the exception of insular environments such as islands and lakes, there are very few examples of extinctions being caused by non-native species.Davis was quick to point out that these ideas do not minimize the need to carefully monitor invasive species.  “Make no mistake,” he clarified; “some introduced species have caused great harm.”  If a snake on a plane made it to Hawaii, for instance, many native birds would be severely threatened.  To Davis, though, this does not justify “message enhancement” (exaggeration) as a scare tactic.  Calling species “alien” or “invasive” or “exotic” fails to recognize the global nature of the ecology.  “As long as the harm is real,” he said, “it should not be necessary for us to overgeneralise, exaggerate, use incendiary language or misrepresent data in order to attract attention.”Do stem cells exist?  Amateur philosophers of science may perk up at a story in Science Daily that asked, “Is ‘stem cell’ concept holding back biology?”  The problem, according to Arthur Lander publishing in BioMed Central, is that “after 45 years, we are unable to place the notion of ‘stemness’ on a purely molecular footing.”  It doesn’t mean scientists can’t or won’t, “But it does give one cause to wonder whether something we are doing needs to change, either in the question we are asking or the way we are approaching it.”    Perhaps “stemness” is a property of biological systems, not individual cells, Lander suggested.  Surprisingly, he referred to the standard philosophical story about phlogiston as an example of how scientific concepts can mislead research.  Don’t tell this story to California voters.  The bankrupt government is still wondering where to get the $3 billion voters approved for stem cell research after a hyped initiative promised all kinds of miracle cures.  The upside of phlogiston theory is that it did eventually lead scientists to a correct understanding of oxygen.  Maybe a systems approach to stemness “will continue to light the path toward understanding,” Lander hoped.Is there a scientific method?:  Gary J. Nabel of NIH wrote a Perspective piece called “The Coordinates of Truth” in Science.1 The scientific method has driven conceptual inquiry for centuries and still forms the basis of scientific investigation.  Yet, the hypothesis-based research paradigm itself has received scant attention recently.  Here, I propose an alternative model for this paradigm, based on decision, information, and game theory.  Analysis of biomedical research efforts with this model may provide a framework for predicting their likely contributions to knowledge, assessing their impact on human health, and managing research priorities.But what is the scientific method?The scientific method provides a rationale upon which scientific principles are developed, tested, and validated or rejected.  For any natural phenomenon, there is a fundamental solution or truth that explains its basis.  This solution exists in nature, regardless of whether the observer formulates the best hypothesis to explain it.  It may thus be viewed as a set of coordinates in a multidimensional space: the coordinates of truth (see the first figure, panel A).  By proposing hypotheses and testing their statistical validity, the hypothesis-driven experiment allows testing and validation of a scientific principle.Nabel seems to be helping himself to the correspondence theory of truth and to the concept of truth itself.  He also seems to suggest that all scientists and philosophers are in agreement about the scientific method.  He did mention the “paradigm shift” terminology of Thomas Kuhn and talked about anomalies and falsification, but the tone of his article was progressive – as if following the scientific method necessarily guides science to the truth.    Nabel contrasted hypothesis generation with hypothesis testing.  “Hypothesis generation can create an organized body of knowledge from which insight can emerge,” he said.  This seems to confuse data with knowledge and interpretation with insight.  He gave examples such as the Human Genome Project and the CERN Large Hadron Collider.  Such projects are not testing a hypothesis so much as gathering data from which hypotheses can be generated.  The other approach is to start with a hypothesis and run experiments to test it.  He suggested both approaches are valid in science but need to be balanced against each other.  It may be surprising to readers that the “scientific method” does not factor much in peer review or funding decisions:These considerations have implications for scientific funding.  For example, the investigator-initiated grants at the National Institutes of Health allow investigators to propose and test any hypothesis as long as the rationale is justified to a set of peers.  The process begins with the vision of the individual scientist and ends with a judgment of its scientific merit.  Recently, changes have been proposed for rating these proposals, stressing their impact, but the evaluation remains largely subjective.  The meaning of “impact” is ill defined, and there is no systematic way to assign value.  In this and many other systems for awarding grants, the scientific community does not take full advantage of the scientific method to prioritize its research portfolio.  For example, formal evaluation of hypotheses is not an inherent part of the review.  Also, there have been few criteria by which to judge and prioritize grants for hypothesis-generating research.Subjective human opinion, therefore, plays a big role in what is valued in science.  “The value of hypothesis-generating efforts should be analyzed critically for the pertinence of the methodology to the question, the overall significance of the problem, and the likelihood of generating a viable and high-impact hypothesis,” he said.  But if each of those criteria are all subjective, whose pet project ends up with the money?  Nabel did not get down to answering that question.  He just ended optimistically, “A modern and rigorous view of the hypothesis-driven research paradigm can similarly help to consolidate a foundation that fundamentally transforms biology and medicine.”  It would seem this article begs more questions than it answers. 1.  Gary J. Nabel, “Philosophy of Science: The Coordinates of Truth,” Science, 2 October 2009: Vol. 326. no. 5949, pp. 53-54, DOI: 10.1126/science.1177637.Everyone does philosophy, but not everyone does it well.  So said Greg Bahnsen, a Christian philosopher of science and theologian.  Even saying “I don’t have a philosophy” is a statement of philosophy.  Scientists are often better at exposing flaws in others’ research than in thinking consistently and logically themselves.  That’s why philosophers of science, who ask the questions that scientists don’t ask, and who strive for clarity and consistency, are often considered gadflies and troublemakers by the science department.  When billions of dollars of research funds are at stake, though, the importance of clarifying the terms, values, and logical coherence of scientific claims must be examined critically.  With limited resources it also becomes important to identify which scientific questions are worth investigating.    One of the best skills you can develop to see through the pretensions of triumphalist science is the ability to detect question-begging arguments.  “Begging the question” is the logical fallacy of arguing for a conclusion that has already been assumed in the premise.  An example would be claiming evolution is a fact because the Origin of Species says so, or claiming materialism is true because scientists only work with particles and forces.  It amounts to “helping oneself” to concepts without paying the price.  Gary Nabel talked about the “coordinates of truth” in his article without defining truth.  Moreover, he assumed that truth is “out there” in the world, and that we can “discover” it by the “scientific method.”  That begs all kinds of questions.  If he were among a group of Christians, he could probably get away with it.  Materialists, though, would be hard pressed to explain these concepts emerging from fundamental particles and forces.  Postmodernists, also, would be quick to ask, “whose truth?”  Because most readers of Science are positivists or scientific realists, who believe the public should fund their projects, he can probably get away with his simplistic views in that forum.  He would face a barrage of questions in the philosophy, theology and political science departments.    The stem-cell and invasive-species articles remind us that simplistic answers to complex questions can be misleading.  Take the current political hubbub about human-caused global warming.  Much of the discussion revolves around “average global temperature.”  Is there such a thing?  How would you go about measuring it?  At every point on earth, temperatures fluctuate from hour to hour, day to day, year to year, decade to decade.  Do we measure temperature at the south pole, or Death Valley, or Rio de Janeiro?  OK, you say, we take thousands of measurements all over the globe.  But humans cannot possibly have thermometers at every point on the earth’s surface.  Selection effects loom large in the discussion.  How many points are enough?  Are some points given more weight than others?  Do we take the measurements at ground level, or at 10 feet or 100 feet off the ground?  Do we use the arithmetic average, or the median, or the mode?  Do we clip off anomalous measurements?  How many significant figures do we use?  What statistical methods and error analyses are being performed on the raw data?  Do we use a mercury thermometer, an alcohol thermometer, a thermocouple, a bimetallic strip, or a laser thermometer?  If we choose one, or combine them, are they responding to the same external reality?  What’s the effect of humidity and wind on the measurements?  What uncontrolled influences, like the amount of pavement below the thermometer or proximity to urban pollution, could be altering the readings?  Have all the thermometers been calibrated to each other?  Have all the humans who take and record the measurements received the proper training?  Are any of them liars, incompetents, or members of groups with a political agenda?  What does the term “temperature” signify, anyway?  What is its relation to theories about climate change?    Here we have taken a simple example, “the temperature of the earth,” and asked just a few questions that have turned it into a philosophical mess.  A scientist might respond that a single station, like the Antarctica thermometer, has been the same instrument used for decades and it shows a clear trend of warming.  Even so, many of the same questions could be asked – and additional ones, too.  There’s no way to eliminate all subjectivity that goes into measurement and interpretation.  The only way to provide protection for taxpayers who end up funding research and paying for political decisions made on scientific consensus is vibrant, active debate.  That debate has to include researchers outside the paradigm.  History shows that consensus science is no guarantee of truth.  Before you get stuck with the bill foisted on you by gullible politicians swallowing consensus science, learn to ask tough questions – and demand answers that don’t beg the question.  Now hear this.(Visited 12 times, 1 visits today)FacebookTwitterPinterestSave分享0last_img read more

Sasol expands China presence

first_img27 September 2007South African petrochemicals company Sasol has opened an office in the Chinese city of Shanghai in order to market its diverse range of chemical solvents in the world’s fastest growing major economy.“The Chinese market is extensive and forms part of our vigorous pursuit of global growth opportunities in the chemicals sector,” Sasol Chemical Business group general manager Reiner Groh said in a statement on Wednesday. “We believe that we can offer a significant value proposition to the Chinese chemical markets.”He said that the opening of the Chinese office would lay the foundation for profitable and sustainable growth by enhancing customer service through local currency sales and new business development.Operating under the banner Sasol Chemicals Shanghai Co Ltd, the company will initially market products from the global Sasol Solvents business.Sasol Solvents operates plants in South Africa and Germany and supplies a wide range of products, including glycol ethers, C3/C4 alcohols, esters and acids, ethanol, ethyl acrylate, fine chemicals and aldehydes, glacial acrylic acid, ketones, methanol, n-butyl acrylate and mining chemicals.These are used in aerosol, agricultural, cosmetic, fragrance, mining, packaging, paint, adhesive, pharmaceutical, polish, printing and other applications.The company has targeted China as a future growth area. Business Report reported in March that Sasol has started feasibility studies for two coal-to-liquid synthetic fuel plants in China, which would produce a combined 160 000 barrels of fuel a day and could be in operation by as early as 2012.Sasol chief executive Pat Davies stated in the company’s annual report that they were “very upbeat” about the prospects for the two planned plants.He said the group foresaw “a rebirth in coal utilisation in some of the world’s coal-rich regions. This case is particularly strong in those countries that have insufficient or no oil reserves, such as Australia, India, China and the US.”Davies has said that processing just 10% of China’s coal reserves could produce as much liquid fuel equivalent as that produced from the world’s proven oil reserves.SAinfo reporter Want to use this article in your publication or on your website?See: Using SAinfo materiallast_img read more

Sensational new twist in Colombian football crash

first_imgThe investigation into a  Colombian plane crash that wiped out a football team has taken a sensational new turn with the claims the pilot-in-command did not spend enough hours training to satisfy the requirements for a commercial pilot’s licence.The November 29 crash near the Colombian city of Medellin of the LaMia charter flight killed 71 people, including most members of the Brazilian soccer team Chapecoense. The British Aerospace Avro RJ85, travelling from Santa Cruz in Bolivia,  appears to have run out of fuel as it tried to land at Medellin after making the trip without a usual fuel stop and as it approached the edge of its range.  The situation became critical after the LaMIa aircraft was placed in a holding pattern after another plane with a technical problem was given priority to land.Final transmissions from the plane included a desperate plea for landing instructions accompanied by a warning of an electrical failure and a lack of fuel.Bolivian authorities have accused the small airline of disregarding rules on fuel reserves, suspended its license and arrested its manager. It has also replaced the management of its aviation authority, saying it needs to ensure a transparent investigation.Reports have now emerged from Bolivian news agency ABI and Agence France-Presse that the pilot in charge did not have enough hours to qualify as a commercial pilot.”We have been able to demonstrate that pilot Miguel Quiroga had not completed the training hours required” to fly commercially, ABI quoted Omar Duran, attorney for the family of copilot Fernando Goytia, as saying. Both pilots were killed in the crash.”Apparently in 2013, some falsified information was relayed and despite the fact authorities verify that (Quiroga) did not have the flight hours required he got his license,” in Bolivia.Duran  also disclosed that the co- pilot was aware of the deficiency but did not tell authorities to protect the airline’s reputation.According to the latest International Civil Aviation Organsiation audit,  Bolivia is below the world average in five of the eight audit categories, including licensing. The other categories in which it falls short are: legislation, organisation, airworthiness, and air navigation services. It is above the world average in aerodromes,  operations and accident investigation.The startling news came after a footballer who survived the crash s revealed he had changed seats at the last minute at the bidding of a team-mate.Reuters reported that Chapecoense full-back Alan Ruschel was sitting near the back of the plane when club director Cadu Gaucho asked him to move to let journalists sit together. “I didn’t want to but then I saw (goalkeeper Jackson) Follman and he insisted that I sit beside him,” Ruschel said. “Only God can explain why I survived the accident. He grabbed me and gave me a second chance.”Follman also survived but had part of his leg amputated.Ruschel said he did not remember anything about the accident and it had seemed like a nightmare when he was told about it.“Little by little they’ve been telling me what happened and I’m starting to understand,’’ he said. “I try not to speak of the accident, I avoid the news, but from the little I’ve seen I think it was greed on the pilot’s part.”last_img read more

Broadband boost as Eassy hits SA

first_imgAfrica is moving towards a new era ofcheap and reliable broadband connectivity.(Image: Seacom) MEDIA CONTACTS • Pynee ChettyMedia LiaisonTelkom SA Limited+27 12 311 5247 or +27 82 857 [email protected] NkosiThe Eastern Africa Submarine Cable System (Eassy) hit South African shores on 15 February, signalling a significant development in information infrastructure on the continent. It was delivered by the Ile de Batz cable-laying vessel.Eassy’s arrival in the country marked the start of the final phase of installation of the 10 000km high-capacity undersea cable. It will run from Mtunzini in northern KwaZulu-Natal to Port Sudan in the Red Sea to boost internet connectivity in 21 African countries.It will connect the 21 countries to each other and to the rest of the world, providing them with high-speed internet and other international communications services. Eassy will have landing stations in Djibouti, Somalia, Kenya, Tanzania, Comoros and Madagascar – in addition to Mozambique, South Africa and Sudan where it has already been installed.The project started in 2003 and is due to be up and running by August 2010.With the capacity of 1.4 Terabytes (Tb) per second, Eassy will rival Seacom, a 600m cable that connects Africa with Europe and India and offers bandwidth speed of 1.28Tb per second.All service providers will have equal access to the cable and a uniform bandwidth price.Eassy will ensure that Africa no longer has to rely on expensive international satellite systems for internet connectivity and other data services.It will also service at least 10 landlocked countries in Africa. “An extensive backhaul system linking landlocked countries to the coastal countries has been developed and is in various stages of completion,” according to a statement by Alphonzo Samuels, managing executive for wholesale services at Telkom – one of four South African partners in the project.Samuels said submarine cables were more advanced than satellite systems as they have superior transmission quality and capacity, considerably fewer delays, access to the global optical fibre network, lower unit costs, no electromagnetic interference and greater resistance to adverse weather conditions.“However, activities such as fishing and anchoring, ocean drilling, fish bites and earthquakes constitute some of the commonly known submarine cable hazards,” he added.But various measures have been put in place protect Eassy. “These include conducting ocean bed surveys to select the safest undersea routes; burying the cable in sand where possible, especially at the shallow end; avoiding heavy shipping lanes when approaching landing points; selecting safe beaches, bearing in mind that later beach erosion could expose cables; and designing the shortest land cable route for maximum security,” Samuels said.Eassy has also been designed to last well over 25 years. “It must be emphasised, though, that in the event of submarine cable service interruptions, every attempt is always made to expedite customer services,” he said.Boost for TelkomTelkom is upbeat about the implications of the Eassy project, which is one of its key cable investments. It’s a significant step towards establishing a Telkom fibre-ring around Africa, the telecommunication provider said.“Eassy further increases the robustness of Telkom’s international bandwidth offerings and portfolio. Together with other undersea cables and land-based fibre routes, Eassy creates redundant fibre access prospects into East Africa,” Samuels said.“Redundancy means that we have duplicated equipment at the cable stations, duplicated power converters, generators … therefore, if a single piece of equipment should fail, we have another piece of equipment standing by to take its place.”Telkom’s other cable investments are Columbus3 – providing a link to Southeast Asia, the Middle East and Western Europe; the SAT3/WASC/SAFE – connecting South Africa to West Africa and the Far East; and EIG – the Europe-India Gateway.MTN, Eassy’s largest private operator investor, said the cable’s bandwidth capacity will help it improve its services for users in South Africa, Swaziland, Namibia, Botswana, Zambia, Uganda, Rwanda and Kenya.“MTN’s capital investment of U$40.3-million [R310.5-million] in Eassy came in addition to the investments made by the company in similar ventures such as the Europe-India Gateway, SAT-3, Main-1 and the West Africa Cable System,” according to a statement by Trevor Martins, MTN Eassy management committee chairperson.“The increased bandwidth that will be available as a result of our investments in these submarine networks will capacitate both these ISPs [internet service providers] and our mobile operations in markets largely serviced by costly satellite bandwidth, thus enabling MTN to open up large-scale access to international broadband to our valued customers,” Martins said.Other operators that have invested in Eassy include South Africa’s Neotel and Vodacom, India’s Bharti Airtel Limited, the Botswana Telecommunications Corporation, Dalkom Somalia, Zambia Telecommunications Company, Zanzibar Telecom and Uganda Telecom.Healthy competitionVodacom, a leading cellular network in South Africa, halved its broadband rates in early February 2010 due to “the increasing competition between undersea cable providers, which in turn creates a sustainable competitive international bandwidth market in South Africa”.The reduction was made possible by the 2009 launch of the Seacom cable, which competes directly with SAT-3 and team cables in the Indian Ocean.Vodacom and all the other service providers are expected to further cut their rates when Eassy becomes operational.“Ultimately, we believe that Eassy will go a long way towards increasing Africa’s bandwidth capacity, affordability and create increased diversity and fibre redundancy between South Africa and Europe as well as within East Africa,” Samuels said.last_img read more

Brand South Africa is proud to collaborate with the National Heritage Council (NHC) and various other stakeholders on its annual programme Heritage Education Schools Outreach Programme (HESOP)

first_imgJohannesburg, Friday, 28 September 2018 – Brand South Africa is proud to collaborate with the National Heritage Council (NHC) and various other stakeholders on its annual programme Heritage Education Schools Outreach Programme (HESOP).Speaking about the programme, Brand South Africa’s Strategic Relationship Manager, Ms Toni Gumede said; “Brand South Africa is very pleased to be collaborating on this programme for the second year. The significance for Brand South Africa as the custodian of the South African Nation Brand, is that through HESOP, young people get to engage with their heritage and identity which is enabling for building pride and patriotism, as an important part of Brand South Africa’s work.”The HESOP programme is targeted at Grade 9 to 11 learners from public schools and is designed to deepen awareness and appreciation of our common and diverse heritage through an inter-cultural exchange, presentations, traditional performances and a visit to a heritage site of cultural significance.In a statement the Chief Executive of the NHC, Adv. Sonwabile Mancotywa, said; “We also pride ourselves in decolonizing heritage for the future leaders of the country to start writing about and telling their own history as well as to better understand their heritage.”Each Province is represented by the school that won the provincial round of presentations. This year the 2018 HESOP competition will be at the Golden Gate Highlands National Park in Free State from 01st – 05th October 2018.“One of the most attractive features of our beautiful country is the diversity of culture and multiplicity of lenses through which our stories are being told. It’s a privilege few are afforded to be able to own such a rich heritage as ours and we should not only appreciate it but share it, collectively. We are proud of all the schools that made it this far and encourage other schools to get involved in HESOP”, adds Ms Gumede.The names of the schools participating at the 2018 HESOP, who also won the provincial presentations, are;Free State: Selelekela Sec SchoolGauteng: Sunward Park High SchoolKwazulu Natal: Nsikayethu High SchoolLimpopo: George Mbulaheni Secondary SchoolMpumalanga: Valencia High SchoolNorthern Cape: Emmanuel Secondary SchoolNorth West: Vuyani – Mawethu High SchoolWestern Cape: John Ramsey High SchoolEastern Cape: Jongilizwe S.S.Slast_img read more

31 Days of Geocaching in Review

first_imgWe did it! Whether you found one geocache in August or a geocache every day of the month, you joined a global team of more than a half-million adventurers who geocached last month. How many completed the 31 in 31 challenge? An amazing 26,228 geocachers found a geocache each day in August. That’s 10 times the number from August of 2012.Would you like to relive the 31 Days of Geocaching? Do you have 31 seconds? Check out the 31 Days of Geocaching in 31 seconds video. You can also relive the memories, over and over again with this printable 31 Days of Geocaching calendar.Share with your Friends:More SharePrint RelatedGeocaching Plans for July 13 and All of August? You Do Now…July 7, 2013In “Geocaching Quizzes”31 Days of Geocaching Printable CalendarJuly 30, 2013In “Community”Results from Geocaching Get Outdoors DayJuly 16, 2013In “ Videos”last_img read more

OSU’s Chances of Backdoor Playoff Getting Better, According To 538

first_imgAll of the things are happening. Mike Gundy’s mullet is a cape. Glenn Spencer’s defense is thriving. And the CFB Playoff back door has been propped open. As of Sunday, here are your four most-likely candidates to get into the CFB Playoffs, according to 538.screen-shot-2016-11-20-at-8-36-05-amOklahoma State is further down the list at 9 percent. Here’s how the next five look.screen-shot-2016-11-20-at-8-40-22-amI’m not sure why OU’s chances are so much better than Oklahoma State’s. Wait, yes I am. Regardless, this chart is about to change a lot. Washington plays Washington State next week. Ohio State plays Michigan. OU and OSU play the week after.So let’s shake things up and see what has to happen for us to get Oklahoma State at around 50/50 odds to get in the playoff. What if we punch in Michigan winning out, Washington losing to Washington State, Colorado losing to Utah and OSU winning Bedlam?[inhales deeply] OH YEAH THAT’S THE GOOD STUFF!screen-shot-2016-11-20-at-8-55-30-amNow if you take out the least likely of those scenarios — Colorado losing to Utah — OSU’s chances drop to 56 percent, still the best of the non-top three but also a lot more precarious.screen-shot-2016-11-20-at-8-47-17-amEven a simple Washington loss in Pullman coupled with a Bedlam win gives you a prayer.screen-shot-2016-11-20-at-9-03-21-amThe bottom line is that these last two weeks are going to be an absolute circus. Who should you root for? Probably realistically Washington State and Michigan. If those two win this upcoming week, the Bedlam winner will *probably* get in the CFB Playoff. And OSU badly needs Washington to lose. It also needs Michigan to win the Big 10 title. You don’t want Ohio State to win and bring itself, Penn State and Wisconsin all into the playoff mix.In this proposed Washington State/Michigan winning scenario you could still have a Colorado problem in which it is a 11-2 Pac-12 champion and could usurp the Sooners or Cowboys. So Utah winning next weekend would also be quite nice. Either Washington or Colorado winning out and taking the Pac-12 title would be real bad for OSU.screen-shot-2016-11-20-at-9-00-05-am screen-shot-2016-11-20-at-9-00-21-amSide note: If Michigan wins this weekend and a two-loss non-conference-winning Ohio State team gets in over a Big 12 champion in Oklahoma State, Mike Gundy would do snow angels on the turf at Boone Pickens Stadium until somebody airlifted him out of there and to safety.The best part of all of this? We don’t have to sweat it out next weekend.May the chaos be abundant.If you’re looking for the comments section, it has moved to our forum, The Chamber. You can go there to comment and holler about these articles, specifically in these threads. You can register for a free account right here and will need one to comment.If you’re wondering why we decided to do this, we wrote about that here. Thank you and cheers!last_img read more

4 days agoCrystal Palace planning swoop for Chelsea striker Giroud

first_imgTagsTransfersAbout the authorPaul VegasShare the loveHave your say Crystal Palace planning swoop for Chelsea striker Giroudby Paul Vegas4 days agoSend to a friendShare the loveCrystal Palace are planning an ambitious January swoop for Chelsea striker Olivier Giroud.Palace have had to make do with Christian Benteke and Jordan Ayew leading the line this season, and are desperate to add a more prolific front-man to their ranks.Giroud is unsettled at Chelsea, and The Sun says Palace are keen to make the most of his uncertain future and move for his services in January.The Eagles have a good relationship with Chelsea, having previously loaned some of their players – Ruben Loftus-Cheek and Michy Batshuayi are two recent, successful examples – and the south Londoners hope they can get another over the line. last_img read more

Turning a new corner OSU guard takes on new challenge

As if Evan Turner didn’t do enough already.In the game of basketball, guards typically handle the ball and pass, forwards shoot and score and centers rebound and block shots. So what position is Turner, who led Ohio State in points, rebounds, assists, 3-point percentage and steals a year ago?“He would be your hybrid point forward, whatever those announcers call those guys,” coach Thad Matta said. “He’s a guy that can do a lot of different things.”Technically speaking, Turner started all 33 games last season at shooting guard, with juniors Jeremie Simmons and P.J. Hill splitting the point guard duties. But the 6-foot-7 swingman handled the leather as much as any point guard would, as evidenced by his team-high 7.1 assists per game.As the Buckeyes turn the page on a new season, Matta will present Turner with a new role to add to his arsenal: the team’s true point guard.“I think I’m going to do a little bit of everything,” said Turner, a First Team All-Big Ten selection last year. “I’m going to start off at point guard, trying to orchestrate the team. I always prefer to have the ball in my hands and try to have control over the game.”While his all-around statistics impress, Turner’s passing ability caught Matta’s eye, triggering the idea to start the junior at the point.“One thing I’ve seen a lot of improvement in is Evan’s passing,” Matta said. “That’s something that we talked about in the offseason. From that standpoint, we’ve got to get him the ball in certain situations because he finds guys, and it’s advantageous for us where he is when he catches it. The defense has a lot of decisions to make. When we have guys around him that can shoot it, that’s good for us.”The switch means that Hill and Simmons will both come off the bench, a demotion they refuse to scoff at, knowing full well that the team excels best when Turner possesses the ball.“It benefits us a lot because Evan is such a great player that he can not only create for himself, but he can create for others,” Hill said. “That makes the game easy when a guy can drive. Everybody is all eyes on him, they help, we move into position, and he gets us the ball on time every time where we want it.“And even if they don’t help, then he scores. Good things happen when he has the ball. He’s a very special player.”Matta hopes that the move will enable Turner’s teammates to contribute more for a team that won 22 games and lost in the opening round of the NCAA Tournament a year ago.While defenses concentrate on Turner setting up the offense, forward David Lighty expects the rest of the players on the court to get less attention, and open shots as a result.“He creates for everyone out there on the floor,” said Lighty, who missed the majority of last season with a broken foot. “You have to double-team him because if you don’t, he’s going to hurt you. Whatever defenders have to do to stop him, it’s going to help us out because they have to read him.”He might not match his league-high 17.3 points per game average from last year, but Turner should find plenty of open teammates.“I score in other ways,” Turner said. “We have an equal balance of scoring, and it makes it even easier for everyone else on the team. If [his scoring] takes a hit, it takes a hit. We’re just trying to get some more wins in the win column.”In all, both coaches and players feel that placing Turner at the point puts him — and the team — in the best position to exceed the predicted preseason finish of third in the conference.“Coach Matta is helping me understand the system more and putting trust in me to carry out what needs to be done,” Turner said. “I think that I can make plays, and I have a lot of teammates who can make shots. Whichever way we go, we’ll try to be successful with it.” read more