These examples represent very dissimilar areas, and the only common factor is hubris on the part of experienced
researchers. Secondarily, failure of peer review sometimes happens, and journal editors do not step in, sometimes even when alerted before publication. These failures of the publishing process teach us that unnecessary mistakes occur and should warn us all to watch our own enthusiasms. This is a commentary on the publishing of science, beyond the fringe from what is recognized as the innovative results and hypotheses leading from them (Kuhn, 1962), and not on the scientific results themselves. In this Y-27632 time of open-access online publishing, sometimes reports are altered after publication online, at the option of the editor (sometimes without or sometimes with authors’ agreement). This new process is also open to beyond the fringe problems concerning what publication now means. The topic here is that creative and experienced experimentalists frequently overly INK 128 nmr interpret their
results, going from far more than mere hypothesis to what is quickly recognized by the peer community as snake oil. This phenomenon is not new. Two useful monographs cover the processes by which one can judge innovative real science from beyond the fringe ideas, with examples mostly from physics. Park (2000) has a long interest in this problem, especially with regard to flying saucers and claims of governmental cover-up of beyond the fringe physical science. Friedlander’s (1995) book is titled ‘At the fringe ….’, so we move here to ‘Beyond the fringe’, recognizing that this phrase was used 50 years ago for a British stage comedy that had strong academic roots. Irving Langmuir (a Nobel laureate physical chemist) perhaps started
modern consideration Astemizole of these problems, when he called this ‘pathological science’ in an unpublished 1953 lecture at General Electric Company (where he worked). That lecture was recorded and later transcribed and published (Langmuir & Hall, 1989). Langmuir considered it pathological when the excess enthusiasm by scientists (often distinguished and experienced) ran beyond reason. Langmuir himself, however, was victim to this situation in his unwarranted defense of a model for protein structure. The model (Senechal, 2012) might be described as heterocyclic polyatomic rings assembled into a lace doily-like flat structure that could then fold over on itself, leaving amino acid side chains either internal or sticking out.