Tuesday, February 21, 2017

Fraud a real possibility: Steps in the development of my radiocarbon dating of the Turin Shroud hacker theory #2

Copyright © Stephen E. Jones[1]

This is part #2, "Fraud a real possibility," of my "Steps in the development of my radiocarbon dating of the Turin Shroud hacker theory" series. In this series I will set out in chronological order the key steps in the development of my theory that the 1988 radiocarbon dating of the Shroud of Turin as "mediaeval ... AD 1260-1390"[2] was the result of a computer hacking. For more information about this series see part #1, "Hacking an explanation & Index." Emphases are mine unless otherwise indicated.

[Index] [Previous: Hacking an explanation & Index #1] [Next: My first use of the term "hacker" #3]

Fraud a real possibility On 9 January 2014, six and a half years

[Right (enlarge)[3]: The agnostic but pro- authenticist art historian Thomas de Wesselow's 2012 book on the Shroud, which pointed out that fraud was a real possibility in the 1260-1390 = 1325 ± 65 radiocarbon dating of the Shroud because, "Had anyone wished to discredit the Shroud, '1325 ± 65 years' is precisely the sort of date they would have looked to achieve." (see below). ]

after it first occurred to me in June 2007 that the fully computerised AMS radiocarbon dating of the Shroud could have been the result of a computer hacking, I began what was to be a 7-part series entitled, "The case for fraud in the 1988 radiocarbon dating of the Turin Shroud." Part 6 was to be, "Possible fraud scenarios in the dating of the Shroud," under which I would have included hacking of the AMS computers radiocarbon dating the Shroud at the three laboratories, Arizona, Zurich and Oxford.

As my post of 9 January 2014 states, "I had for a long time been thinking of posting on this topic [the 1260-1390 radiocarbon dating was the result of fraud, and in particular computer hacking fraud], and was prompted to do so by reading recently what the agnostic Shroud pro-authenticist, art historian Thomas de Wesselow, wrote":

"The third possibility [why `the 1988 result ... conflicts with all the evidence that points to the Shroud having been in existence long before 1260'] is that a fraud was perpetrated ... Most sindonologists regard these fraud theories as plainly incredible ... However, scientific fraud is by no means unknown, as the editors of science journals are well aware ... One important consideration weighs in favour of the possibility of deception. If the carbon-dating error was accidental, then it is a remarkable coincidence that the result tallies so well with the date always claimed by sceptics as the Shroud's historical debut. But if fraud was involved, then it wouldn't be a coincidence at all. Had anyone wished to discredit the Shroud, '1325 ± 65 years'[4] is precisely the sort of date they would have looked to achieve"[5].
Between "plainly incredible" and "However, scientific fraud" in the above quote was, "Some, like Ian Wilson, refuse to contemplate such `unworthy' accusations." It was the influential Wilson's blanket refusal to consider fraud as an explanation of how the 1st century Shroud had a 13th-14th century radiocarbon date:
"For during both the preliminaries to and the immediate aftermath of the Shroud radiocarbon dating I struck up a moderate acquaintance with the British Museum's Dr Tite, the Oxford laboratory's Professor Hall and the Arizona laboratory's Professor Damon, from which experience I can say with some confidence that any scenario suggesting that one or more of these men may have `rigged' the radiocarbon dating ... may be judged as absurd and far-fetched as it is unworthy."[6]
(when it had to have been fraud of some kind) because those proposing fraud in the radiocarbon dating, including de Wesselow above, could only think of sample-switching, which is "incredible" [see 23Jul15], that made it hard for me to propose fraud by computer hacking. But it was my reading in early January 2014 the above serious consideration of fraud in the radiocarbon dating of the Shroud by de Wesselow, because of the `too good to be true' "1325 ± 65 years" radiocarbon date, that encouraged me to start a series presenting "The case for fraud in the 1988 radiocarbon dating of the Turin Shroud," at the end of which I would propose fraud by computer hacking.

But as the note above my 9 January 2014 post says, I had (in late January 2014): "realised that this topic is going to require a lot of research, which will distract me" from other topics I wanted to post on, so I "put... it on the backburner."

Then in late March 2014, I added a later note: "PS: Further to the above, see my series, "Were the radiocarbon dating laboratories duped by a computer hacker?": part 1 [18Feb14], part 2 [20Feb14], part 3 [22Feb14], "Summary" [07Mar14] and "My replies to Dr. Timothy Jull and Prof. Christopher Ramsey." [13Mar14]. So by mid-March 2014 my hacker theory was well underway!

Continued in part #3 of this series.

Notes
1. This post is copyright. Permission is granted to quote from any part of it (but not the whole post), provided it includes a reference citing my name, its subject heading, its date and a hyperlink back to this post. [return]
2. Damon, P.E., 1989, "Radiocarbon Dating of the Shroud of Turin," Nature, Vol. 337, 16th February, pp.611-615, 611. [return]
3. "The Sign: The Shroud of Turin and the Secret of the Resurrection," Thomas de Wesselow, AbeBooks.com, nd. [return]
4. Wilson, I., 1998, "The Blood and the Shroud: New Evidence that the World's Most Sacred Relic is Real," Simon & Schuster: New York NY, p.7; McCrone, W.C., 1999, "Judgment Day for the Shroud of Turin,", pp.1,141,178,246-247. [return]
5. de Wesselow, T., 2012, "The Sign: The Shroud of Turin and the Secret of the Resurrection," Viking: London, pp.168, 170. [return]
6. Wilson, 1998, p.11. [return]

Posted: 21 February 2017. Updated: 11 March 2017.

4 comments:

Gabirol said...

Thank you for your very interesting posts on the shroud of Turín. Only a question: is there any way for gathering the many different posts (dealing with the same subject) in a single document¿ In doing so it would be easier to read the posts in a complete way in any moment.
Thank you again for your wonderful blog.

Stephen E. Jones said...

Gabirol

>Thank you for your very interesting posts on the shroud of Turín.

Thank you.

>Only a question: is there any way for gathering the many different posts (dealing with the same subject) in a single document¿ In doing so it would be easier to read the posts in a complete way in any moment.

I agree. I tried to do that in my "Topic index," but as I stated in the "`Editorial and Contents, Shroud of Turin News, September 2016", it was too time-consuming, so I abandoned it:

"Topic index: In September I realised that my new topics series is also too time-consuming, so I have abandoned it to make time for more important posts. Much as I like the idea of a topic index, there will be no more topic indexes of my blog, ever!"

But I have just realised that I have not stated that above each topic index page, so I will do that, ASAP.

If you Google the topic, the name of this blog and if necessary my name, you should be able to find all my posts on that topic.

>Thank you again for your wonderful blog.

Thank you again for your support which is much appreciated.

Stephen E. Jones
----------------------------------
MY POLICIES. Comments are moderated. Those I consider off-topic, offensive or sub-standard will not appear. Except that comments under my latest post can be on any Shroud-related topic. I normally allow only one comment per individual under each one of my posts.

Paul Creasy said...

I love your blog. Very informative. Keep up the excellent work.

Stephen E. Jones said...

Paul

>I love your blog. Very informative.

Thanks.

>Keep up the excellent work.

The Man on the Shroud permitting, I will!

Stephen E. Jones
----------------------------------
"By way of guidance as to what I mean by `offensive' and `sub-standard,' I regard comments to my blog as analogous to letters to the Editor of a newspaper. If the Editor of a newspaper would not publish a comment because it is `offensive' and/or `sub-standard' then neither will I. It does not mean that if I disagree with a comment I won't publish it. I have published anti-authenticist comments and other comments that I disagreed with, and I have deleted `offensive' and/or `sub-standard' comments that are pro-authenticist. `Sub-standard' includes attempting to use my blog as a platform to publish a block of text of the commenter's own views, and also bare links to other sites with little or no actual comments. By `off-topic' I mean if a comment has little or nothing to do with the topic(s) in the post it is under (except for the latest post-see above)." [05Jan16]