25 June 2012, Development - Extrapolated Science in Science Fiction, still more Accuracy
Introduction: I wrote the novel Aksinya: Enchantment and the Daemon. This was my 21st novel and through this blog, I gave you the entire novel in installments that included commentary on the writing. In the commentary, in addition to other general information on writing, I explained, how the novel was constructed, the metaphors and symbols in it, the writing techniques and tricks I used, and the way I built the scenes. You can look back through this blog and read the entire novel beginning with http://www.pilotlion.blogspot.com/2010/10/new-novel-part-3-girl-and-demon.html.
I'm using this novel as an example of how I produce, market, and eventually (we hope) get a novel published. I'll keep you informed along the way.
I wrote in detail about how to study history and culture to write historical fiction. That moved to how to write about culture in science fiction, and now, I am exploring how to study to write science fiction.
Conclusions based on a paucity of data are almost guaranteed to be wrong. We already looked at statistical issues. If the sample size of the data set is small and the confidence is not large, there is a real issue with the data. If the levels measured are too low to cause effects, there is a problem with the results. If the paper is written without research or using anecdotal evidence, there is a problem.
In addition to these problems, there can be false conclusions. If the researcher can't show a direct causal link between the results and the conclusions, the conclusions are not necessarily true. In fact, lack of a direct causal link indicates the lack of a cause and effect relationship. This is why there is so much debate on the issue of global warming. No scientist will argue that carbon dioxide doesn't have some affect on global warming, but water vapor is responsible for about 95% of all global warming. The question is the direct causal relationship between increasing carbon dioxide levels and warming of the earth.
So when you are looking at a scientific study, be cautious of conclusions that can't be directly related back to the experiment. Be especially cautious of conclusions based on incomplete or inexact relationships between data or poor data samples.
In medicine, double blind tests are the means of conducting studies.
I'll write more about science in science fiction tomorrow.
I'll repeat my published novel websites so you can see more examples: http://www.ldalford.com/, and the individual novel websites: http://www.aegyptnovel.com/, http://www.centurionnovel.com/, http://www.thesecondmission.com/, http://www.theendofhonor.com/, http://www.thefoxshonor.com/, and http://www.aseasonofhonor.com/.