Debates are fascinating human activities that are a mixture of logic, strategy, and show. Not everybody shares this fascination. The German author Emil Ludwig considered debates to be the death of conversation. Jonathan Swift regarded debates as the worst sort of conversation, and debates portrayed in books as the worst sort of reading. Public debates pose various interesting dilemmas. A debate between two positions gives an impression of symmetry, and engaging in a debate against an obscure or illegitimate position gives it some legitimacy and emphasis. On the other hand, ignoring obscure or illegitimate positions may also pave the way to getting them public legitimacy or to making them mainstream. A common form of debate is one in which an uninformed decision-maker extracts information from two (or more) informed debaters who hold contradictory positions on a certain issue. Weblog debates are especially interesting, as they allow an unusual amount of interaction between the debaters and the uninformed audience. Common debate practices include ample repetitions, not giving up on seemingly small issues, never admitting a mistake, trying to undermine the professionalism and integrity of an opponent and not just his logic. We can ask ourselves if these debating practices are rational and optimal in terms of influencing the audience. They probably are.
kazekkurz on More around Borsuk Gil Kalai on More around Borsuk kazekkurz on More around Borsuk Gil Kalai on Polymath 8 – a Succ… Patrick Poirier on About Alon Amit on NatiFest is Coming Abdulrahman Oladiipu… on The Kadison-Singer Conjecture… More around Borsuk |… on Helly’s Theorem, “… Gil Kalai on Polymath 8 – a Succ… Gil Kalai on Greg Kuperberg: It is in NP to… dmoskovich on Greg Kuperberg: It is in NP to… zhang twin prime bre… on Polymath 8 – a Succ…
- Many triangulated three-spheres!
- NatiFest is Coming
- More around Borsuk
- Analysis of Boolean Functions – Week 7
- Analysis of Boolean Functions week 5 and 6
- Real Analysis Introductory Mini-courses at Simons Institute
- Analysis of Boolean Functions – week 4
- Polymath 8 – a Success!
- Analysis of Boolean Functions – Week 3
Top Posts & Pages
- NatiFest is Coming
- Polymath 8 - a Success!
- The Kadison-Singer Conjecture has beed Proved by Adam Marcus, Dan Spielman, and Nikhil Srivastava
- Analysis of Boolean Functions
- Answer: Lord Kelvin, The Age of the Earth, and the Age of the Sun
- Why is Mathematics Possible: Tim Gowers's Take on the Matter
- Believing that the Earth is Round When it Matters
- 'Gina Says'
- Two Math Riddles