Observer retracts Danie Krugel story… sort of
Well, at any rate Stephen Pritchard from the Reader’s Editor column has bothered to correct certain factual errors in the original article, such as that Krugel is not a scientist, and that he didn’t find the Van Rooyen girls. In summary,
[The reporters] now both agree that, at the very least, the piece should not have turned Krugel’s supposed findings into concrete fact and should also have included a considerable amount of critical comment about his methods and ability – points that could also have been picked up in the editing process.
In other DK news, Ben Goldacre from Bad Science phoned him up, and received similar evasive responses:
I rang Krugel to ask him. Are his powers paranormal? He says no. He made a discovery while experimenting with some off-the-shelf electronic devices. I asked if I could see the device: sadly, he says, no. I asked him what he measured, how he knew he was measuring anything, but he wouldn’t say. I asked about the theory, but that’s secret of course. I asked him about his background in electronics or quantum theory, and he demurred. Desperately trying to give the guy a chance, I scanned the memory banks and asked “what is a capacitor?”, and “what are the SI units for Planck’s constant?” He was offended. I apologised.
No surprises there.
(tip o’ the bad hairpiece to Back Off I’m a Scientist for the link and the linkage)