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Tags telepathy , telepathy test

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Old 21st October 2013, 11:21 AM   #1
Michel H
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New telepathy test: which number did I write ?

Hi, I invite you to participate in a new telepathy test.

At about 20:17 on this Monday October 21 (Brussels, Belgium time), I wrote carefully one of the four numbers: "1", "2", "3", "4" on my sheet of paper, and I surrounded it with a circle. Then, I wrote it again twice.

I shall repeat this number from time to time during this test.

It was selected using this random number generator: http://www.random.org/integers/ .

Please note that the number I wrote has no meaning, it was just produced by the random generator.

I ask you to write it here (if you think you know it, even with a doubt). You may also answer "I don't know".

In this test, however, unlike the other tests I have done so far on this forum, I ask you to not write immediately the number explicitly (more on this below).

I also ask you to write a comment, together with your numerical answer, or at least a small sentence, like, for exemple:
I'll say 3. ,
I answer 1. Good luck. ,
or I say 4 and this is a ridiculous test. (if you want to be more aggressive).

In your comment, you may describe (or attempt to describe) the (assumed) telepathic, extra-sensory perceptions which possibly led you to give the answer you chose, and/or say a few words about telepathy in general, and/or tell us how confident you are that your number is the correct one, and/or say why you picked this particular number, and/or express an opinion on this test (good or bad), with perhaps suggestions for improvement, and so on. For inspiration, you may take a look at the 32 answers with text which have already been given on this forum in one of my telepathy tests, see analysis1 and analysis2.

My hope is that the comment or text you will write will give me some valuable (and essential) insight into your state of mind when you answered. Then, I shall use your text to rate your answer, on a credibility scale between -10 and 10, like I did in the previous tests on this forum.

In this thread however, I want to evaluate credibilities without any knowledge of the number you picked ("in a blind way"), to make sure that I don't get influenced or biased by the number you chose. This should make this test more rigorous, although at the cost of additional complexity.

To achieve this greater rigor, I ask you to give your answer in two stages. In your first post, you should write your normal, complete answer, with the "guessed" number (1, 2, 3 or 4) replaced by "xx" . So, if your normal, complete answer is, for exemple:

I am seeing a 4 very clearly. It's almost as though I had written it myself.

(this answer was given by Loss Leader in my previous test, the number 4 he gave was correct),

post instead:

I am seeing a xx very clearly. It's almost as though I had written it myself.

I also ask you to post the MD5 hash of your normal, full answer, using for exemple this website: http://www.md5hashgenerator.com/ . If your answer is very simple, I ask you to make it more complex by adding additional characters and to post the MD5 hash of this more complicated text (this is to make sure your hash cannot be decrypted, see for exemple this website: http://www.md5online.org/ , or this one: http://www.md5decrypter.co.uk/. In most cases, additional characters will probably not be necessary) . For exemple, if your answer is just "I answer 1", instead of posting the hash of "I answer 1", post the hash of "I answer 1 oibyytrtzerazewoytitrxeuytepiurezqaytiyttuecrtexru og". People who answer "I don't know" (possibly with a text) should not introduce xx's in their answers (and there is no need for MD5 hashes either).

After a reasonable number of forum members have validly answered (if this "reasonable number" is ever achieved ), I should post my "credibility ratings" for all valid answers to this test (and also the number I wrote and circled), and then (and only then) you should post your actual, full answers (with guessed numbers now visible), and also (possibly) the "complexified" text you used for the MD5. The MD5 hash of your full answer (or of your "complexified" answer) should match the hash you have given previously, in your (normally) first post. When this is done, for all answerers, I should then post an analysis of the results, like I have done for my two previous tests.

It may also be useful (I recommend it) that you send your (full) answer, in the form of a private message, to either Agatha, or Femke, or to both (click on "Contact Info", and then on "Send a private message..." on their profile pages. On these pages, look also under their names to see their "last activity" dates and times). Agatha and Femke are active members on this forum who have kindly offered to help, in order to make my tests more rigorous:
Originally Posted by Agatha View Post
...

I reiterate what I have said before: you will not get meaningful results from a test such as this. If you insist on rating answers subjectively for 'credibility', then you would need to introduce blinding so that you do not know which answers are right or wrong. If you want to do such a test, I am willing to be the person to whom everyone sends their answers, once a protocol is established.
...
,
Originally Posted by Femke View Post
Michel,
I offer myself as a blinder: you can PM me the hash, and I am willing to receive the answers from members who want to participate. After a previously arranged period of time I will provide a list of their answers, verbatim with an X for the number. You can then post the credibility rating, and afterwards I will provide the actual numbers.
Agatha and Femke should then post the full answers after I have posted my credibility ratings. If Femke and Agatha cannot, or no longer want to cooperate as an assistant, a "helper", then I may have to request the help from another volunteer. One possibility would be that each answerer sends his/her answer to the previous answerer, and perhaps the first answerer sends his/her answer to a Moderator (perhaps Loss Leader), or an Administrator (perhaps LashL).

Femke, if you want to participate in this telepathy test (you are welcome to do so), it might be somewhat useful you send your answer to Agatha (similarly for Agatha, although Agatha has not answered in the telepathy tests so far, she has only commented in the threads).

Sending your answers to a "helper" may be useful for several reasons. First, some answerers in the test might never return to post their full answers (or might return only after several weeks or months). This may be particularly frustrating if their answers look very interesting. Also, some people may have lost their answers, or may post them inaccurately. The redundancy in the people who can post full answers (after I have posted my credibility ratings) may be useful to get full answers quickly. Of course, if a complete answer has already be posted by either Agatha, or Femke, or the member himself/herself, it is not indispensable to post it a second time (I can check its correctness using the MD5 hash).

I shall now explain again the protocol of this test, using a simple exemple (if some of you think this protocol is not valid, or not good, I am of course willing to consider reasonable changes).

Let's assume again that your normal ("unmasked"), full answer is:

I am seeing a 4 very clearly. It's almost as though I had written it myself.

With the protocol, the procedure used in this test, the first thing you should (ideally) do is to send a private message to Agatha and/or Femke, for exemple:

Hi Agatha/Femke,

My answer to Michel H's test is:

I am seeing a 4 very clearly. It's almost as though I had written it myself.

Sincerely

(Of course, in this new test, the correct number is not necessarily equal to 4, 4 has only a 25% probability.)

Then, your first answer, your first post on this thread should (normally) be (if it is an answer to the test, not a comment), for exemple:

I am seeing a xx very clearly. It's almost as though I had written it myself.

MD5 hash of full answer: 3f429870bc6ff08d79d49ee471004b44

Complete answer sent to Agatha/Femke.



You should then wait until I post all credibility ratings (with my number). When this is done, you should post e.g. (if neither Agatha nor Femke has already posted your full answer):

{My full answer to the test is:

I am seeing a 4 very clearly. It's almost as though I had written it myself.}

You may also just say:

The number I chose was 4.

Thank you for participating.
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Old 21st October 2013, 11:45 AM   #2
GregInAustin
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Why not make this new post a Vote?

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Old 21st October 2013, 12:02 PM   #3
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Statistical probability doesn't imply telepathy.

Let's play a variation on your game. I'll flip a coin, and you tell me what you think the land is: heads or tails. If you're right more than 50% of the time, I'll say you're telepathic.

Here's the rub though: the 50% probability on coin tosses is based on a normal distribution, with a normal error bound. The number of heads in a series of tosses will be higher than 50% heads about half the time. The number of times you're right in a random guess will be about 50%... but as that is also a normal distribution, it will be higher than that about half the time as well.

Now, if I do a series of 5 throws, and you get every single one right, then that's pretty neat. But reality is that you've got around a 3% chance of being exactly right on every single toss in a series of 5 tosses. That 3% doesn't imply that you have any special abilities. It just means that statistical variance exists.
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Old 21st October 2013, 12:07 PM   #4
Michel H
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Originally Posted by GregInAustin View Post
Why not make this new post a Vote?

A Vote? You probably mean a poll? The texts or comments people write are important to me in these tests. If I post a poll, some people might answer anonymously in the poll without posting any text in the thread, I'm not interested in that. In addition, the security would be low, because (although I wouldn't do it) I could say that I wrote and circled the number which was answered most.
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Old 21st October 2013, 12:09 PM   #5
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Originally Posted by Michel H View Post
A Vote? You probably mean a poll? The texts or comments people write are important to me in these tests. If I post a poll, some people might answer anonymously in the poll without posting any text in the thread, I'm not interested in that. In addition, the security would be low, because (although I wouldn't do it) I could say that I wrote and circled the number which was answered most.
What keeps you from doing that if people type their answers in anyway?
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Old 21st October 2013, 12:19 PM   #6
Michel H
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Originally Posted by Emily Cat View Post
What keeps you from doing that if people type their answers in anyway?
Well, Emily, I explained in the opening post that participants in the test should write xx instead of their chosen numbers in their first posts (ruling out just comments). Only later should you reveal your chosen number.
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Old 21st October 2013, 12:50 PM   #7
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I do not understand any aspect of the point of this thread.

The answer is 3 because it just is.

A few years ago on these forums I correctly guessed a poster's four digit security code because I am cool and telepathic and stuff.
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Old 21st October 2013, 01:01 PM   #8
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I think this is XX and that Michel H is a XX who should seek XX
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Old 21st October 2013, 01:08 PM   #9
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I think this is a silly experiment, but...

You should ask people to put their answers in spoiler tags, and not to look at anyone else's answers before giving their own, to avoid being influenced by them.

3.

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Old 21st October 2013, 01:12 PM   #10
trebor
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why no blinding of the guesses?
Is this so you can only count the answers you need to give the result you want?
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Old 21st October 2013, 01:12 PM   #11
Ashles
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Originally Posted by phunk View Post
I think this is a silly experiment, but...
No but. It is.
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Old 21st October 2013, 01:13 PM   #12
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This is a meaningful experiment, much different than Michel's other same ones.

I'm going to guess 3.
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Old 21st October 2013, 01:21 PM   #13
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Actually, if you read the full text of this new proposal, it really is better than the previous ones. He is making a step towards blinding. If you are answering, you are supposed to hide the number you selected, (For example, "I am clearly seeing xx.")and PM the actual response to either Agatha or Femke.

Michel, I will wait to see if either of them are still willing to volunteer, and then post my answer here. Thank you for taking the first step to improving your test.
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Old 21st October 2013, 01:28 PM   #14
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I am happy to volunteer Just send me the numbers you perceive/guess/whatever and I will keep them secret until the appropriate time.
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Old 21st October 2013, 01:33 PM   #15
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If people post their answer, and also the hash of their answer, can the hash be recreated by someone adding a number in place of the xx that is posted in the thread? If so, that would be a problem with the blinding. Edit: I see you've specified adding some more unguessable characters to the answer prior to hashing it, so that should be fine.
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Old 21st October 2013, 01:50 PM   #16
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The first number that came to my attention is xx, so that is my choice for this test.
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Old 21st October 2013, 03:14 PM   #17
Michel H
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Originally Posted by Agatha View Post
If people post their answer, and also the hash of their answer, can the hash be recreated by someone adding a number in place of the xx that is posted in the thread? If so, that would be a problem with the blinding. Edit: I see you've specified adding some more unguessable characters to the answer prior to hashing it, so that should be fine.
This is a very good remark you are making, Agatha. This seems indeed to be rather serious weakness in my protocol (and even an error, actually). I am glad that I said "if some of you think this protocol is not valid, or not good, I am of course willing to consider reasonable changes". It is time now for me to consider a change . But the change is, like you said, just to add many (almost) unguessable characters to the full answer, before computing the MD5 hash (see initial post [I say this, not for you, Agatha, but for the other posters]). It is unfortunate that, on this forum, it no longer possible to make additions to the opening post after some time, otherwise I would post a correction there.

So, to all posters and participants, I say this:

Please, together with your "masked" answer (with "xx"), post a MD5 hash of your properly "complexified" answer (which you will have to reveal at the end of the test), and also say to whom you sent your answer (Agatha, Femke or nobody).
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Old 21st October 2013, 03:29 PM   #18
Michel H
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Originally Posted by Hokulele View Post
The first number that came to my attention is xx, so that is my choice for this test.
Very good, Hokulele, thank you. This sounds like a very good start. Now, could you also please post a MD5 hash of your properly "complexified" answer (like, for exemple: "The first number that came to my attention is 5, so that is my choice for this test. uhzuhvf oihevbio hervoije roihjervoir voiervhjeroih jveihsfdkyg hzerqresmlln")? Avoid too long character strings with no blank space, because those could get modified by the forum software.

Also, please say to whom you sent your full answer (if you sent it to anybody).
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Old 22nd October 2013, 02:55 AM   #19
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The OP repeats one of the choices (4) at least eleven times in describing the test. This alone is sufficient to introduce enough potential bias to invalidate the test (if it wasn't bad enough already).
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Old 22nd October 2013, 03:08 AM   #20
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Why only four choices? This alone invalidates the test.
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Old 22nd October 2013, 07:29 AM   #21
Michel H
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Originally Posted by dlorde View Post
The OP repeats one of the choices (4) at least eleven times in describing the test. This alone is sufficient to introduce enough potential bias to invalidate the test (if it wasn't bad enough already).
dlorde, meaningful and reliable answers to this telepathy test should in principle not depend upon the number of "1"s, "2"s,"3"s and "4"s in the opening post. Counting these number of "1"s, "2"s,"3"s and "4"s in the initial post will not help you finding the number I wrote and circled on my sheet of paper, which was produced by a random number generator. And answering in this way will not lead to an average "hit rate" different from 25% (with no telepathy involved).

It is true that there was an error in the initial post, but it was promptly corrected after being pointed out, and it never prevented you answering in a meaningful way in this test. Good scientist aren't those who never make mistakes (those probably do not exist), they're (more) those who acknowledge their errors, and correct them, so as to constantly make headway. If you, or others find another error, or have suggestions for improvement, don't hesitate to let me know, I'll make the necessary changes.
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Old 22nd October 2013, 07:52 AM   #22
Michel H
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Originally Posted by Kid Eager View Post
Why only four choices? This alone invalidates the test.
Kid Eager, Zener cards are sometimes used to conduct telepathy experiments, there are five of them. In ganzfeld telepathy research, there are usually also four possibilities of choice (to my knowledge).
One thing which would be wrong would be to conclude that telepathy has been proved, just because one person has answered correctly when there are four choices, and there is a 25% probability of answering correctly, even with no telepathy at all. Keep in mind that (tentative) conclusions are (usually) drawn only after many answers have been given, after a statistical analysis has been done for the large collection of answers.
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Old 22nd October 2013, 04:13 PM   #23
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I don't get what this test is supposed to find. Are you testing to see if anybody who responds is telepathic, or is this a test of your own ability to project some sort of vision to potential telepaths?

My answer is I don't know.
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Old 22nd October 2013, 04:47 PM   #24
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Originally Posted by Michel H View Post
Kid Eager, Zener cards are sometimes used to conduct telepathy experiments, there are five of them. In ganzfeld telepathy research, there are usually also four possibilities of choice (to my knowledge).
One thing which would be wrong would be to conclude that telepathy has been proved, just because one person has answered correctly when there are four choices, and there is a 25% probability of answering correctly, even with no telepathy at all. Keep in mind that (tentative) conclusions are (usually) drawn only after many answers have been given, after a statistical analysis has been done for the large collection of answers.
My point exactly - the cards are not the methodology.

The methodology you propose limits everybody to 4 choices, and the distribution of the results within those four choices will be indistinguishable from random distribution, even if there were some telepathy involved.

Now if you wrote one number per hour, and had people respond to that number within the hour, and repeat for several days, a meaningful set of data may emerge.
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Old 22nd October 2013, 06:50 PM   #25
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I am absolutely certain it is 7.
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Old 22nd October 2013, 07:15 PM   #26
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I concentrated on the assigned task and an image of a brightly lit piece of paper appeared, the circled number on it was xx.



.
I am not encrypting it, I will just send it to Agatha
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Old 22nd October 2013, 08:48 PM   #27
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The problem with applying rigor to telepathy is that the telepathy then tends to disappear.

ETA: Fortunately for telepathy, not much rigor proposed here.
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Old 22nd October 2013, 09:13 PM   #28
Michel H
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Originally Posted by Ladewig View Post
I concentrated on the assigned task and an image of a brightly lit piece of paper appeared, the circled number on it was xx.



.
I am not encrypting it, I will just send it to Agatha
Good, Ladewig, thank you for your essentially valid answer. You are only the second person (after Hokulele) who gave a correctly "masked" (with "xx") answer in this more controlled and rigorous test. I am still a little frustrated, however, because I saw no MD5 hash, neither from you, nor from Hokulele, but I don't think this is really a major problem.
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Old 22nd October 2013, 09:53 PM   #29
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Yawn.
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Old 22nd October 2013, 10:52 PM   #30
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XX

Norm
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Old 22nd October 2013, 11:41 PM   #31
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Originally Posted by kid meatball View Post
I don't get what this test is supposed to find. Are you testing to see if anybody who responds is telepathic, or is this a test of your own ability to project some sort of vision to potential telepaths?

My answer is I don't know.
^ Yeah, what the kid said.

Any coincidental "correct" answers can be claimed as "proof" that Michael and/or the guesser are telepathic.

This test fails IMHO.
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Old 22nd October 2013, 11:46 PM   #32
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Originally Posted by Orphia Nay View Post
^ Yeah, what the kid said.

Any coincidental "correct" answers can be claimed as "proof" that Michael and/or the guesser are telepathic.

This test fails IMHO.
Yes, it fails because the OP has only the most basic understanding of the scientific method, and if he has that much it is only because members here have pointed out huge holes in his earlier "experiments".

These "experiments" are a nonsensical waste of time.
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Old 23rd October 2013, 02:14 AM   #33
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I'm getting equally strong impressions of "2" and "4" so should I submit something like xx,xx or should I split it into separate posts?

Also, when will my hash be delivered?
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Old 23rd October 2013, 02:55 AM   #34
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I got nothing.
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Old 23rd October 2013, 06:14 AM   #35
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Right to get this right, he wrote down 4 numbers? Assuming all guesses are even (which they aren't) 25% of people are going to be right by chance alone. Even a computer will have a 1/4 in chance of guessing correctly. It's a good way to DISPROVE telepathy completely.

Another thing: double-blind it. Don't tell the other person what they are working with.
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Old 23rd October 2013, 07:40 AM   #36
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Originally Posted by tuxcat View Post
Right to get this right, he wrote down 4 numbers? Assuming all guesses are even (which they aren't) 25% of people are going to be right by chance alone.
The OPer is hoping to demonstrate that the test results will be significantly higher than 25%.
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Old 23rd October 2013, 08:59 AM   #37
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Originally Posted by Ladewig View Post
The OPer is hoping to demonstrate that the test results will be significantly higher than 25%.
Right I see. It's still not very rigorous though and due to the small sample size flukes will result in a large scale error anyway. And people don't choose numbers randomly either which is a bit of a problem but that's the way the cookie crumbles unfortunately. I would advise the OP to use something like a number between 0 and infinity to reduce the odds of flukes causing a large error.

Those well-versed in statistics might want to clear that up a bit as I'm not very succinct at explaining it, sorry.
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Old 23rd October 2013, 09:29 AM   #38
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Originally Posted by tuxcat View Post
Right to get this right, he wrote down 4 numbers? Assuming all guesses are even (which they aren't) 25% of people are going to be right by chance alone. Even a computer will have a 1/4 in chance of guessing correctly. It's a good way to DISPROVE telepathy completely.

Another thing: double-blind it. Don't tell the other person what they are working with.
I am not sure I understand you very well, tuxcat, but I think you gave me an idea Since neither Hokulele, nor Ladewig (they are the two answerers who have provided essentially valid answers, until now) have posted MD5 hashes of their properly "complexified" full answer, I think I should post myself a MD5 hash of a complicated sentence containing my number to "guess" , in order to give sufficient security to this test (similar to, for example: "The number I wrote and circled for this test is 5 .... f4315d 3b1fcd81 rdtiuguyf zqreiudler", but with "5" replaced by "1", or "2", or "3", or "4").
This hash is:
4f956837e6022c4eb5a30fc05c52c7a4
At the end of the test, I should reveal the sentence (containing my number to "guess") which corresponds and leads to the hash above. From now on, it would be virtually impossible for me to change the "target" number I wrote, and I ask you to write here.

Last edited by Michel H; 23rd October 2013 at 09:31 AM.
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Old 23rd October 2013, 09:45 AM   #39
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Originally Posted by Michel H View Post

<something>

At the end of the test, I should reveal the sentence (containing my number to "guess") which corresponds and leads to the hash above. From now on, it would be virtually impossible for me to change the "target" number I wrote, and I ask you to write here.


It's not much use coming up with these various methods to create an illusion of integrity when all you're going to do is use that idiotic "credibility scale" to declare invalid anyone's guesses that you don't like.

Why would we even be bothered with the possibility of you tampering with your chosen number when we already consider it most likely that there will be an even spread between all four numbers anyway?

There's no need for you to resort to subterfuge when it's just as easy and far more effective for you to blatantly reject all the misses and just count the hits.
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Old 23rd October 2013, 10:15 AM   #40
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Originally Posted by fromdownunder View Post
XX

Norm
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