The Secret Art of Abduction

The Secret Art of Abduction

What the scientific method, medical diagnosis and conspiracy theories can teach us.

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So then, What does Sherloc Holmes do when deducing?

Abduction is relevant to my interests.

EDIT: I missed out loads of what I meant to type. I love the way that some people are able to add and develop so much from the implications of rules.

Love it.
Putting this into practice will certainly improve my DMing style.
I have a three day long session this weekend (We only play once a month) and I was starting to stress the minute details. This put me at ease.

I enjoy these articles and look forward to your coffee table book. (The one with great illustrations and a collection of these articles.)

It's great. This article points out something I think a lot of people do without even thinking about it. I often listen to my players when they think out loud or discuss what may or may not be happening in the story based off of the adventure so far. They often remember some of the smaller details I have forgotten and elaborating on their theories while cherry picking their best ideas is a blast.

The player's abductions are often a great source of inspiration for the GM.

It helps to leave some story unwritten for more fluid storytelling and helps prevent the GM from forcing preplanned events and railroading the stories flow.

Another great piece Macris. I've run with the abductions of players before, it can get pretty crazy.

Currently in a thursday game, a dm has designed his own world, which we are playing in. He just loves to run with the suggestions and build the world around the players. E.g. the word swag to denote loot, comes from the many looting adventuring groups which have headed into the ruined city-states of Swagia. The reasons behind our actions are expanded, the frontiers are growing from our experience, a new condition which you don't quite get in a pre-generated world adhered to with a sense of orthodoxy.

When I saw Miyamato Musashi I half expected the article to become Zen and the art of GMing. How the GM should be the perfect Zen saint without desire and recite the odd sutra or two. There could an article there, GM as quite centre of the whirlwind.

Ooooh, zen and the art of gamemastering. Great idea!

I don't know anything about zen, though. I could write Stoicism and the Art of Gamemastering, though. Or Objectivism and the Art of Gamemastering.

So... what's the difference between abduction and deduction? :S

Abduction gives you one possible cause for whatever phenomenon you are examining. It may not be the correct cause (except in the case of D&D, where the DM can MAKE it the correct cause if they so desire).

Deduction examines the phenomenon to determine the only possible cause.

Abduction is not a useful tool for Private Investigators, but is quite useful in creative endeavors, or in science, where having an idea of a cause (arrived at by abduction) provides you with a hypothesis you can test.

I don't think doctors should be abducting. Surprising facts would present to a physician all the time, but then to make a conclusion and render treatment based on an abduction would be fertile ground for a malpractice lawsuit, since usually there are multiple interpretations of any given fact. Rather, diagnosis involves a collection of facts, from which a diagnosis ends up being triangulated from a reasonably thorough amount of information which can be gathered.

Fearzone:
I don't think doctors should be abducting. Surprising facts would present to a physician all the time, but then to make a conclusion and render treatment based on an abduction would be fertile ground for a malpractice lawsuit, since usually there are multiple interpretations of any given fact. Rather, diagnosis involves a collection of facts, from which a diagnosis ends up being triangulated from a reasonably thorough amount of information which can be gathered.

Abduction is almost always the first step in determining causality of unique phenomenon (such as illness). Keep in mind that physicians and the natural sciences use abduction to generate a hypothesis which they can test to get at the true cause of a particular situation.

For example, a doctor sees a patient who's extremely fatigued over long periods of time. Based on his observations, the doctor can abduct that the person has anemia (low amount of red blood cells). The doctor can test this assertion by taking a blood sample from the patient. Only after confirming the abduction would they proceed with treatment.

Abduction is not the only tool at a scientists' disposal, but the first necessary one. Without it, you'd have no hypothesis to guide the direction of any research.

 

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