[ExI] I don't understand students: help !

Fred C. Moulton moulton at moulton.com
Sat Dec 20 00:05:27 UTC 2008

On Fri, 2008-12-19 at 01:01 -0700, Kevin H wrote:
> Fred C. Molton, I give as good as I get.  I respond to posts in kind.
> The more effort the poster spends in making his or her post, the more
> effort I exert in a reply.

Actually it is difficult to determine the effort for most posters since
generally all we see is the output not the effort that went into the
output.  Thus I suggest that a more useful approach is to examine the
quality of each post when replying to it.  This determination of quality
would likely be concerned with accuracy and with adhering to the basic
guidelines of logic and with clarity and other factors such as style,
civility, etc.  Thus when replying to a post we can note only evaluate
the quality of the post but in our reply strive to improve upon it.
Thus instead of matching other posters we can attempt to reach to even
greater heights.  So if your feelings were hurt because my request for
your evidence was not civil enough then I apologize.  I will make a
special effort to be more civil in my posts for the rest of the year
since sometimes people get a touchy during the holidays.

>   And this has been a rather informal discussion so far, lets leave
> the tribunal for someone else, okay?

Even in an informal discussion surely we would expect evidence for
assertions.  Well at least I do.

> And, so you know, it's bad form to place the burden of proof only on
> those assertions you disagree with.

My understanding was that in this forum the burden of proof fell on
anyone making an assertion regardless of whether I agreed or disagreed
with the assertion.  And since I assumed that you felt the same I was
merely giving a gentle reminder that the evidence for the assertion was
missing.  As for "bad form",  I do not think I did anything which would
constitute "bad form" but if I have then I am sure that that Moderator
will add a notation on my "Bad Form" form.  And it just occurred to me
that if the Moderator spills ink and ruins a form then it will be
useless and could be called a bad "Bad Form" form.

Best regards and happy holidays to all


> Kevin
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