Archive for January, 2014

All Too Muted Comment

January 30, 2014

“Buckingham then attacked again in “Science”, and again I was not allowed to reply.”

 Readers who do not have access to the 28th October 1994 issue of Science may like to see this ‘attack’ for themselves, given that Ron lives in a little world of his own, where he is right and everybody else is wrong. What are the odds?

Review of Modern Nonlinear Optics 

” There are two papers by Myron Evans in part 2. The first is entitled “Laser and pulsed laser NMR spectroscopy” and presents Evans’s contentious views of this infant subject. Its figure 4, showing an apparent shift in a methoxy resonance caused by a circularly polarized laser beam, is not to be found in the paper that is cited as its source. The second paper, “Some properties of longitudinal fields and photons,” runs to 213 pages. Evans proposes that a circularly polarized beam is associated with a static magnetic field in the direction of propagation and that this field is of opposite sign for right and left circular polarization. However, such a proposal requires that rotating positive or negative charges radiate circularly polarized light having opposite magnetic fields; that is, there would be two distinct types of right (and left) circularly polarized light, contrary to experience. The paper contains lengthy and probably unrefereed criticisms of L.D.Barron’s comments on a related paper by Evans and is seriously out of place in this volume.”

Wikipedia Gets It Wrong!

January 27, 2014

“The motionless electromagnetic generator (MEG) was built by Tom Bearden.  Allegedly, the device can eventually sustain its operation in addition to powering a load without application of external electrical power. Bearden claimed that it didn’t violate the first law of thermodynamics because it extracted vacuum energy from the immediate environment. Critics dismiss this theory and consider that it’s just a perpetual motion machine with an unscientific rationalization. Science writer Martin Gardner said that Bearden’s physics theories, compiled in the self-published book Energy from the Vacuum, are considered “howlers” by physicists, and that his doctorate title was obtained from a diploma mill. Bearden then founded and directed the Alpha Foundation’s Institute for Advanced Study (AIAS) to further propagate his theories [our emphasis]. This group has published papers in established physics journals and in books published by leading publishing houses, but one analysis lamented these publications because the texts were “full of misconceptions and misunderstandings concerning the theory of the electromagnetic field.” When Bearden was awarded U.S. Patent 6,362,718 in 2002, skeptic Robert Park complained so loudly that the American Physics Society issued a statement against the granting. The United States Patent and Trademark Office said that it would reexamine the patent and change the way it recruits examiners, and re-certify examiners on a regular basis, to prevent similar patents from being granted again.”

How disgraceful! Everybody knows that it was not the perpetual-motion crackpot, Bearden, who founded AIAS, but some foreign nutter  … who then passed the dubious mantle on to perpetual-motion crackpot, Ron. We think that it is very important that shame and blame should be attached to the correct pseudoscientist.


The Spreading Plague of Pseudoscience

January 14, 2014

Ron, of course, is perhaps the most notorious and insidious pseudoscientist of the present day; his specialty being perpetual motion … with the occasional nod to UFO-style levitation and magic cancer-cures. Such people as Ron and Searl, scientifically worthless in themselves, serve the useful purpose of revealing the spread of pseudoscience throughout the supposedly scientific literature. Take for example the travesty of a scientific paper which was published by Physica B in 2007 (volume 400, page 175). It was written by Ron and Siemen’s Stain; their affiliations being given as the “British Government Treasury” and the “Alpha Institute for Advanced Study”. The topic of the paper was “Spin connection resonance in magnetic motors”. What is a ‘magnetic motor’ in this context? According to the paper it is, “known that magnetic assemblies of a given design can rotate and translate without batteries or electrical input of any kind. Such phenomena are reproducible and repeatable [14].” This is a clear reference to the sort of perpetual-motion machine which has been a cause for ridicule for several centuries – and which was specifically banned from consideration by the French patent office in the 18th century. Reference 14 was no proof-of-principle, but simply a list of patents applied for by the confidence trickster, Howard Robert Johnson. The point that should be retained here is that – to the layman – an apparently reputable journal might seem to have backed up a ludicrous claim by publishing it. That is not the way to look at it. It should rather be concluded that Physica B is by no means reputable, that the editors and referees are clearly incompetent and that any other papers published by the journal should be regarded with suspicion. As the contents of the above paper are available only to subscribers, readers who doubt our assessment are invited to write to M.W.Evans at the British Government Treasury (Horse Guards Parade, London) and ask for an off-print. 

Principles in Free Fall

January 13, 2014

Returning from our various Christmas vacations, we find that the AIAS gang has given reason to fall even further in our estimation. Already bumping along the bottom of the ocean of knowledge, Penderghastly has plumbed new depths of intellectual depravity by reviewing his own biography of Ron … awarding it 5 stars, of course.

He has similarly reviewed every other work with which he has any connection at all:

What a pathetic spectacle this all makes. What an abdication of all proper publishing principles.