Saturday, August 24, 2013

The Theory vs. The Supporter

My surfing online has yielded many interesting articles and has led me to form a theory of my own. There are a great many crackpots out there, but not everything they come up with is pure idiocy. Yes, if you read their work you come away with a deep understanding of how unhinged they are, but once in a while they come up with a theory that has more merit than we give them credit for.

Take, for instance, one article that purported to explain why our planet was much younger that it appears by arguing against the slow, gradual speed of plate tectonics. The theory went that there had been giant asteroid impacts that had pushed the plates at great speed and then the plates had slowed down. At face value that theory is rubbish. However, look closer at it. Throw out his improbable idea that the plates have so radically change speed and just look at the idea of how giant asteroid impacts might affect plate tectonics. It makes sense. We know there have been some fairly large impacts, but what if there had been a few larger ones, ones that pushed plates in new directions and at faster speeds. It would explain India.

Another of the crackpot ideas is intelligent design. I have yet to find anyone of a serious scientific bent who give it any credence. It's supporters are all striving to prove their religion rather than seeking out theories to explain scientific findings. Yet the core of the idea, that there is a greater intelligence out there, has found a cadre of supporters to solve a problem with certain scientifically derived findings. The two theories of a greater intelligence are not even remotely the same, but the core idea, that there is something greater out there, lie at the heart of both. The issue with intelligent design as a theory is that it was not derived with the scientific method in mind, but rather just to give people of religion a quasi-scientific theory to bolster their claims that God exists and created the universe like their holy book claims.

That is why I have come up with the theory that you must separate the idea behind a theory from the person who created it. Crackpots have their own agenda and their arguments are usually discounted as completely worthless. However, An examination of the ideas they come up with can lead to some gems hidden in the dung. If we look at those ideas in the more sane light of mainstream science, they often have merit once divorced from the crackpot who created them.

In the end, it is the idea that matters, not who came up with it or what they were trying to prove using it. Each individual idea should be taken on its own merit and considered independently. We might find some overlooked ideas if we start looking past the agenda of the person who came up with it.

Monday, August 5, 2013

Doctor Who 50th Anniversary and John Hurt

My mind keeps wondering over what we know about John Hurt's character. Out there are some interesting theories, but theories that don't seem to fit the facts. What we will find out in the 50th Anniversary Special in November remains to be seen, but here are my guesses.

John Hurt did what he did "without choice - in the name of peace and sanity." He is the Doctor's secret and did not do what he did as the Doctor. Clara saw 11 faces, 11 Doctors. What could this all mean. She jumped into his time stream at his tomb. She should have seen all the Doctors, from the first to his death, but she did not see past the Eleventh or before the first. Now, the Doctor had a life before he became the Doctor. He had a family and a granddaughter, Susan. We know that there will be a twelfth Doctor (Peter Capaldi) and long ago, at the end of Trial of a Timelord, it was hinted there would be a thirteenth and something pulled from that regeneration that we knew of as the Valyard.

The two key points to my way of thinking are the timestream and the Twelfth incarnation. Clara saw 1-11, and if there was something buried in the middle, she would have seen it. But there was before and after as well. I do not think that John Hurt is playing a part that fits anywhere between An Unearthly Child and The Name of the Doctor. I strongly feel it must be before, after, or (a remote possibility) something to the side (like the Valyard). I think the 50th Anniversary is key to what the event is. I think that a celebration of 50 years is going to be key to the story. I'm strongly leaning to John Hurt being the Doctor before he took that name. A different incarnation? Possible, but doubtful.

Now, we have a couple of examples of side Doctors. The 10th nearly regenerated, but instead ended up with a clone from his severed hand. The Valyard, a mysterious amalgamation of the Doctor, also, was a separate being. Both are technically the Doctor, but not. Perhaps there is another and instead of the secret of why he took the name of Doctor and ran, it might be a mysterious amalgamation from between his Eighth and Ninth incarnations, a tool used in the Time War. That would also harken back to the Doctor's past.

The other possibility is that we are looking toward the future. Perhaps John Hurt is the last Doctor and the terrible thing he did was what we saw on Trenzalor.

Still, looking a the event and what might be possible in the Doctor Who universe, I still am leaning toward a pre-Doctor first Doctor and an event that made him run. But we need to wait until November to find out.

Introducing The Twelfth Doctor - Peter Capaldi

Doctor Who is a show filled with mysteries. The title is the first indication, but it doesn't stop there. There are many things we don't know. We don't know the Doctor's Name or very much about his life on Gallifrey before he stole a Type 40 time Capsule. We don't know how he knows half the stuff he does or how he has gotten his hands on some of the most important pieces of Gallifreyan technology. What we do know he can regenerate (at least) twelve times and we are about to see it happen for the 11th time.

William Hartnell
Patrick Troughton
Jon Pertwee
Tom Baker
Peter Davidson
Colin Baker
Sylvester McCoy
Paul McGann
Christopher Eccleston
David Tennant
Matt Smith

and next...
Peter Capaldi

Congrats, Peter. Can't wait to see where you take our favorite Timelord next.