And now for something completely different

or same old, same old. Academic discussion has a basic rule: quotations should be attributed and accurate. If paraphrasing is used, quotation marks should not be used to imply exact quotations. If words are omitted, they should be shown by ellipsis. I attempt to follow these rules, and here we see an example of what happens when one does not.

Here, there was a quotation error that was then surprisingly persistent, but eventually, the author recognized his error and corrected it, see the Update.

On LENR Forum, Bob wrote:

IH Fanboy wrote:

It is IH’s duty to correct the record if they deposited information to the court docket that was mistaken or inaccurate, not Rossi’s.

You are doing it again. Trying to twist the issue back to IH and pointing the finger to them while protecting and shielding Rossi!

Bob had mentioned an error in Exhibit 5, the Murray questions for Penon. It has been pointed out that if Murray’s assumptions or questions were in error, it would have been Penon’s duty to correct them, because he was a consultant responsible to IH and Rossi (at least that was the role of “ERV”). This has become conflated with an idea that Rossi must correct these things. At trial, maybe, if they are important. The pleadings at this point are not part of a trial contest, they simply establish issues, points of controversy and the existence of evidence to support suspicions. Proof and finality and perfect accuracy is not a requirement.

The Murray Exhibit is not a statement of fact, as such. It is a piece of evidence, a set of statements and questions provided to Penon before the “Final Report” was issued. Now that we are seeing data from the Final Report, these questions and statements are looming large for us, but they are a small detail in the case. If there is error in the Murray Exhibit, it would be completely improper to “correct it.” The Exhibit shows what was asked Penon, and should be what Penon was asked, not something “improved” in any way. If something there was known to be an error, when the pleadings that refer to it were filed, and if that were crucial in some way to the lawsuit, sure, it should be mentioned in the reference to the Exhibit, to be best practice. It is not required, per se. There are uncorrected errors in the various pleadings, but unless they strike to the heart of the case, they are left, unless an opposing party asks for them to be struck, and the Judge agrees. Something at the level being mentioned in these discussions would be preposterous to amend the pleadings over. Only deliberately deceptive behavior would be a problem, calling for Rule 11 Sanctions.

Bob starts out okay:

1) Who says the pipe size is incorrect? IHFB from a photo of a completely different plant, where he makes approximations and assumptions on some minor forum that has no relevancy to the court proceedings? It is not their duty to answer questions this forum!

But then he wants to assert what Murray said, using a paraphrase, and since it would be a verbal statement, he uses quotation marks, creating extensive confusion for himself and for others.

2) You are twisting the actual subject to protect Rossi again, claiming IH stated the pipe size. They did not! Murray, the engineer of record for the party paying the bills (IH) simply sent requests to Penon for clarifications to the certain issues. Something he had EVERY right to do! One of these was “if the pipe size was…. how could…”. A legitimate question. However, Penon nor Rossi answered him!

That was not an exact quote, and, further on, Bob insists on the exact language as conveying a meaning, when he did not quote the exact language, and persisted in the error. Might was well get it out of the way. The exact quote: (bolding the text in question)

You stated that the pressure of the steam that was available to J.M. Products (JMP) was nominally atmospheric pressure (0 kilo Pascals gauge (kPaG) or 14.7 psia). The steam passed through a stretch of insulated pipe that was at least 6 meters long before entering the JMP space. (Presumably there was additional steam pipe on the JMP side.) According to the data you have reported, the conserved mass flow rate of the system from February to November 2015 was on average 33,558 kg/day (1398 kg/h) and the temperature of the water and steam were on average 68.7º C and 102.8º C, respectively. The steam pressure was reported (for the entire period) to be 0 kPaG and the piping is DN40.

Bob had (loosely) quoted this as “if the pipe size was…. how could…” As we will see, Bob will conflate the previous statements about what was reported with the statement about the pipe size, as if it were included in the reports. I would imagine probably not. The sentence would probably have been written differently, as, “the steam pressure was reported … to be … and the piping to be DN40, thus connecting all this as report. Instead, Murray was collecting reported fact and some other source of data (probably his own observation in February, 2016) to then present the issue:

For steam to flow, a pressure differential is required to overcome the losses in the pipe. Given the foregoing, this would require that the pressure on the JMP side of the building was significantly below atmospheric (vacuum) and that the steam would flow at extraordinary velocity. But this was obviously not the situation present at the location.

Given your reported measurements, how do you account for the lack of an adequate pressure differential to provide for the flow of steam?

So far, though, Bob’s error is (or unclear assumption) is not so serious. I can see the error start here, though. Bob went on:

You see, you should be stating that Rossi / Pennon failed in their duty to “correct” the issue. If the pipe size was not correct, they should have simply answered Murray with the correct one. They did not! Why, most likely because they could not contradict it! Why do you not say that Rossi / Penon failed to answer the questions of the IH engineer?

The argument will be made at trial, if it comes to that, I assume, that Penon did have a responsibility to respond. It is Penon that did not respond (according to IH). Rossi had no responsibility to respond to a communication between Penon and IH. There is no record that Murray asked these questions of Rossi.

IH owned the IP, they owned the plant and they were paying the bills for the Sale of Heat and plant monitoring as present by Rossi. Not a GPT. Again, a twist in the truth.

IHFB did not here mention “GPT.” Bob is conflating issues, attempting to make a point that has been made over and over. The Murray letter explicitly sets aside the issue of “GPT” and “ERV” and simply asks Penon as the engineer who had presented preliminary reports and who was presumably preparing a Final Report.

3) Rossi filed the lawsuit. IH answered. Part of their answer was that Murray asked for answers to questions. Rossi / Penon never answered. In general, I say it is Rossi’s duty to provide the specific information since HE started the lawsuit.

There are two lawsuits. There is the original Rossi claim, and the Murray letter is not a part of it. Then there is the IH countersuit, and this is where the Murray letter is raised. The Exhibit is not yet admitted evidence, it is a report of evidence that might be submitted, presumably by Murray, who would then be subject to cross-examination by Rossi’s attorney. If Rossi wants to challenge possible testimony by Murray, as to the pipe size, his attorney can question Murray, as to how he knew that figure, and he could, in due course, present contrary evidence, if he has it. He has absolutely no legal responsibility to present it now. The parties are preparing to complete discovery, and then will be preparing for trial. We may not see much more before trial, unless there are more discovery controversies.

IH does not gain by the opinions circulating in the peanut gallery, i.e., us. Rossi might, if he hopes to have public support after the trial, perhaps to continue his work in, say, Sweden. However, I do not suspect any of the people who might be considered from Planet Rossi to be working for him; rather I assume that we are seeing sincere opinions, even if I might think them in error.

IH is simply defending themselves. It is Rossi’s responsibility as HE is making the accusations. One is innocent until proven guilty in this country. It is Rossi’s “duty” as you say, to provide the factual evidence.

The trial is not about “innocence” or “guilt.” It is an attempt to determine fact, and specifically fact relevant to an Agreement, and possible damages from fraud or other malfeasance. (An equitable claim might arise with no moral failure at all, thinking in moralistic terms will confuse matters, though attorneys may attempt to arouse feelings of outrage in jurors.) Rossi must indeed establish at trial what he has claimed. That responsibility has not yet arisen. We have no right to demand anything here. However, we do have the right to assert what we see and how it appears to us, what it implies.

There is much confusion in the LENR Forum discussions, mixed with some cogent commentary. I am only touching on one issue here, around misquotation. Most of what Bob writes is useful, but this was an exception.

Bob wrote:

[…] Question 5 on page 3 is where Murray states “the pipe is reported to be DN40“. I.E. information given him. He is not stating it as fact as IHFB stated, he is asking Penon how his calculations can be correct if the information given him (including pipe size) is correct! Note that he is questioning Penon’s report which must have reported the pipe size.

I would read what Murray actually stated as a statement of fact, source not given. Bob is depending on his own misreading. IHFB was correct on this point.

About Penon not answering is listed in Exhibit A.…Ktdce19-wyb1RxOTF6c2NtZkk [paragraph number given]

Exhibit A was the temporary place to show the proposed 4th amended AACT. It is now the main page for Document 132. The passage in question is in Paragraph 91, beginning at the bottom of this page.

IH Fanboy wrote:

[a post which re-asserted utterly bankrupt arguments, which I won’t address here, just what is relevant to the misquotation]

2) You misquoted what was said in Exhibit 5. The author of Exhibit 5 at page 2 unequivocally stated “and the piping is DN40.” — not “if the pipe size was…. how could…” as you stated above. So until you start quoting others properly, it is really tough to have a coherent conversation with you.

A fuller quotation by IHFB might have shown what Bob’s error was. There is a possible ambiguity there and the likelihood is that IHFB is correctly inferring Murray’s intention, but people do not necessarily perfectly express what they intend. It is not impossible that Murray got the piping figure from Penon. I just don’t think so, it was far from Penon’s concerns.

IH Fanboy wrote:

Bob wrote:

Question 5 on page 3 is where Murray states “the pipe is reported to be DN40”.

You have misquoted it once again. I really suggest you be more careful when quoting others.

Malcolm Lear wrote:

Sure looks like question 5, page 3

This is a great example of seeing what is expected. Yeah, it “looks like,” but it is not the same. It will only seem the same is one is conscious of interpreted meaning instead of actual sensory experience. It’s quite useful to  notice that we can easily do this. I learned this stuff years ago when transcribing meetings from recordings, where I’d been present. Then I saw flame wars arise on the W.E.L.L. over what had been said, when the record was easily accessible…. old habits die hard.

Bob wrote:

IH Fanboy wrote:

The steam pressure was reported (for the entire period) to be 0 kPaG and the piping is DN40.

You accuse me of misquoting? I posted the link and you posted the wording. It says the pressure and pipe “WAS REPORTED”.

It does not state that Murray took the measurements! Rossi did not even let him in the facility remember! He had Penon’s report and was asking specific questions about the report’s content, the calculations and results. That is exactly what the link states. Then Penon refused to answer. […]

Bob is confused on several accounts. First of all, IHFB is quoted here repeating exactly what Murray wrote. It does not say what Bob claims, rather he rewords it to say what he claims. “Was reported” refers to the steam pressure only. Murray then is combining that with another fact, “… and the piping is DN40.” If it meant what Bob thinks, it would be very poor grammar. Bob then supports his claim with another error, “Rossi did not even let him in the facility remember!” Rossi did not let him in, in July. But the Murray report is a set of questions about issues apparently raised by Murray in his visit to the Plant in February, when he certainly was let in.

The Murray letter is titled with the dates of his visit, February 16-17, 2016. It begins with:

I wanted to raise with you, and I was hoping you would address, several issues that surfaced during the time we were in Doral at the location of the 1 MW Plant. This is not an exhaustive list of the issues I identified or that we discussed, but they do represent some of the more glaring concerns that were identified.

I do not concluded from this that the pipe size was necessarily raised in person with Penon. Murray does not specify what Penon said to him during the visit. The Murray letter is undated, but the AACT claims it was “presented in writing, March 25, 2016.”. I have referred to it as a memorialization of questions asked in February. Damn straight IH was preparing for a lawsuit, this can be seen as far back as the beginning of December, when they apparently denied formally that Doral was a GPT with Penon as ERV, see Rossi’s interrogatory. Memorialization is a technique to support testimony as to conversations. By presenting that document to Penon, IH was giving Penon a chance to confirm or deny that the issues had been raised. Penon, himself, appears to have been hastening to get out of Dodge.

The idea that Rossi should have answered this is odd. It wasn’t presented to Rossi. Rossi has formally Answered the related claim but with a standard denial of knowledge and a demand for “strict proof”, see paragraph 82. This is essentially meaningless, it merely does not allow the IH claims to be accepted without further evidence.

Bob is so busy identifying IHFB’s errors that he has fallen into an old trap, not noticing his own. Fast recovery, if he sees this: let go of any concern about how it looks and just admit the error or the possibility of error. Don’t defend it. You won’t die. In fact, you may gain credibility. At this point, though, after rehearsing a series of anti-Rossi memes, Bob says:

This will be the last post I make on this subject with you.

I will quote a verse from the Qur’an. “God will not hold you to account for your foolish promises.”

Let it go, admit what you can, and move on. Much more powerful than holding on to being right, merely because you can easily see what’s wrong with IHFB’s comments (and there is plenty to critique there.)

Just because I see it now,

THHuxleynew wrote:

Abd has argued that Rossi seems to be submitting things that don’t help his case but make him look good (except [they] don’t).

Glad to see THH is reading this blog, he is fully welcome here. To be more precise, it appears that documents have been submitted that are legally irrelevant, but to satisfy his followers. They don’t make him look good in court, or to anyone familiar with the case, other than on Planet Rossi, but Rossi clearly is more interested in how this all seems to his public. What we have seen is that it worked, there was an upsurge of Rossifans promoting the memes supported by the depositions he quoted and the Annex from the Final Report, probably of Penon.

IH Fanboy wrote:

[a post in which he goes into detail, including noting the exact error and how it arose, ending with:]

Had the author intended the word “reported” to also modify the phrase “the piping is DN40,” he would have instead stated: “The steam pressure was reported (for the entire period) to be 0 kPaG and that the piping was DN40.

That’s pretty funny. His “instead” sentence is borked. “That” is incorrect, the parallel doesn’t work. Much simpler: “The steam pressure was reported … as 0 kPaG and the piping as DN40.” The (reported as … as )construction clearly connects the verb, reported, then, with both reports.

Murray asserted DN40, and did not state how he knew it, but probably expected Penon not to dispute the pipe size — unless it was wrong. He would not need to prove anything to Penon. These were questions, to clarify Penon’s position, what he had done, what it all meant. Unless the preliminary reports were different, the report actually has o.o bar, not the units Murray uses. 0.0 bar is completely impossible, so Murray translated it to what has a more possible meaning, 0.0 barg, which equals, of course, 0 kPaG. I.e., atmospheric pressure. Zero is zero. This is a real problem, indicating something very off about the Penon report, because gauge pressure does not accurately tell us the boiling point of water. There might be some answer, but it probably involves gauge failure, which then demolishes the report.

On another matter, Jed Rothwell argued for temperature gauge imprecision. There is a problem with the precision of the temperature gauge, but this was apparently a thermocouple, not the kind of dial gauge that Jed talks about….

Update. Bob acknowledged his error. See the comment below and his post on LENR-Forum. Congratulations to Bob.

One small point. Bob references the googledrive archive so that people can read Exhibit 5 for themselves. That is cumbersome, because that archive is not presented to make the individual file quickly accessible. Rather, I recommend, to point to the whole case archive, use Rossi v. Darden case files, or, much better, point to the specific exhibit file, which can easily be found from that case file page, in this case, “0029-5_exhibit_5 Queries from Murray to Penon” is how it is listed on the case page. As well, when referring to a multipage PDF, adding “#page[number]” to the URL will take the reader right to the page referenced.

(The IH Exhibits have been entered into the docket six times, five times from the original Answer and four amended answers, plus they were included with the request to amend the fourth time. I intend to put up the final iteration to replace all the earlier copies, but haven’t done it yet. So far, I have found no significant differences in the files. I host a reduced-resolution version of the Bass business card, because it is simply not necessary to burden people with the full resolution.)

(Eric has uploaded Exhibit 5 from the second amended answer, document 050-05 in his numbering system. As far as I can see, it is not possible to directly access the gdrive files; while they may be read without formal download, the URL remains the URL for the entire archive. Eric is invited to participate in maintenance here, while keeping the gdrive archive for backup. The case access and impersonal analysis pages should be neutral, unlike blog posts and some non-post pages.)

Author: Abd ulRahman Lomax


2 thoughts on “And now for something completely different”

  1. Thanks for the remarks. I see much of your point and concede that my point of view about the Murray pipe size wording is likely incorrect in that it was not part of the reporting used in the sentence. No doubt I was incorrect about Murray not being in the plant. Somehow my mind failed to click on the February visit.

    I do think that Murray was responding specifically to Penon’s report. In that report, undoubtedly were calculations and most likely equipment description and setup. Very likely, pipe size would have been included in either calculations, schematics or descriptions of the plant. I do not necessarily think it unreasonable and yes, evenlikely, that the pipe size was listed in the report.

    However, yes, Murray may have measured it as well.

    The original point of the debate was that IHFB made the statement that IH had the responsibility to correct the pipe size as he had declared it wrong from assumptive logic. My main debate failed to keep that focus and I did error in wording. I will try to do better with quoting as well. Sometimes the small things do matter.

    And I did say that was the last time I would debate IHFB on this subject and it will be. (This does not exclude new subjects perhaps) But as I answered Rigel much later in the night… debate can be of value, but sometimes it turns to folly. It has in this case. I have no need to try to win this argument and most likely, there is no winning anyway. To prove someone wrong for pride’s sake is probably just as bad as being wrong! Perhaps worse. Time will bring the truth to light.

    Again, thanks for the remarks. One makes choices, to consider and grow or reject and wither. I do take your words into consideration.

    1. Great Bob. You will age gracefully. One more recommendation though: don’t bind your future. “The last time” binds your future. You can say “I have no intention to….” or “At this point, it appears useless to,” or even, “I’ve stopped.” In this case, by acknowledging your error, you win. It is not necessary for someone to lose for you to win. The framing of this as some kind of deadly combat, a zero-sum game, is part of the problem.

      Trolls will notice any error and seize on it. IHDB is not a pure troll, he appears sincere, merely very, very stuck, beating a dead horse, it’s called. As these things go, he was relatively moderate (on this particular point.) In on-line fora, because newcomers read the fora, it’s important for misleading information and analysis to be corrected. It is not necessary that everyone do this, though it is very useful if people support it. That includes errors on all “sides.” I recommend going back and annotating your errors. The WMF way, where there has been response, is to use strikeout to show that the error was there (this is a courtesy to critics) and that it is retracted. You can place a link at the bottom to a place where you explain the error, or do this with the first occurrence at the bottom and link back. The least disruptive way to do it is only to correct the posts, and not write a new one, because this does not create a “new post” display for forum readers. However, an apology to another would be a new post, or it could be a private message.

      Doing this helps establish you as careful and not attached to being right. Remember, the scientific method is to attempt to prove ourselves wrong, so every time we do that, we have a breakthrough. Someone, our collective social training has it backwards, that it’s shameful to be wrong.

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