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Klarinet Archive - Posting 000191.txt from 2005/08

From: Adam Michlin <>
Subj: Re: [kl] Ah, ligatures....Gold vs. Silver
Date: Fri, 12 Aug 2005 02:53:11 -0400

There once was a time when people were absolutely convinced the world was
flat. Almost everyone "knew" that if you went too far west, you would fall
off the planet. Doubters came and went, all claiming the world was in fact
round and yet a large portion of the population insisted the world must be
flat. After all, they would say, the doubters are not proving that the
world is round therefore the world must be flat.

The believers would further reason "I walked 100 miles and came no closer
to where I started, the world must be flat. If only you, the doubter, would
walk 100 miles, you too would see that the world is in fact flat."

Of course, we now know that the world is not flat, but this is besides my
point. My point is that when one makes a claim (the world is flat, plating
makes a noticeable difference in a ligature) it is the responsibility of
the one making the claim to prove their theory to be correct. Accusing the
doubter of being wrong simply because they haven't walked 100 miles or
tried gold and silver ligatures does absolutely nothing to prove the
original claim. Perhaps more clearly, it is not my responsibility to prove
you wrong, it is your responsibility to prove that you are correct (namely
that you are correct that the difference I have no doubt you are perceiving
is due to, and only to, the different metal platings). Accusing me of being
incorrect, even based on my unwillingness to try your test, does not
constitute any kind of proof of your original statement.

One of the most basic tenets of logic is that 1,000,000 (or higher)
examples of something does not make a valid proof. I cannot show you 100
(or 1,000,000) brown horses and expect you to logically conclude that all
horses are brown. But if someone were to make the claim that all horses are
brown, I can easily and logically prove said person wrong by showing him a
single white horse. There is no proof by example, only proof by

So, if everyone on this list tried your test and agreed with your findings,
it would still not make for fact. And this assumes your test is
reproducible, which I believe is not case. Even given those conditions, I
only have to find one example to the contrary to prove you incorrect.
Perhaps this better explains my high level of skepticism. To be clear, I am
not accusing you of being wrong, I am seriously doubting that you are
right. A subtle but very important difference.

Believe what you want, play what you want, but be careful about making
broad generalizations. At best, if I were to do as you ask and try both
silver and gold ligatures and for some unknown reason experience the same
results as you experienced, I would only be giving you a second brown horse.

With no malice intended,


At 10:36 PM 8/11/2005, Geoff & Sherryl-Lee Secomb wrote:

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