Archiver > GENEALOGY-DNA > 2008-09 > 1222105609

From: "Elizabeth O'Donoghue" <>
Subject: Re: [DNA] What shall R1b1c call themselves now?
Date: Mon, 22 Sep 2008 18:46:49 +0100
In-Reply-To: <002c01c91cd8$c9a6b830$6400a8c0@Ken1>

Ken, you are correct - that my opinion is completely uninformed insofar as I
have no formal training in statistics and probabilities. I do realize that
those in the biz had devoted immeasurable hours in developing those
quantitative tools, without which we'd have no idea at all. But they are
only the facts as is known at the time. Scientific truths are continually
being amended and changed, albeit often with great reluctance by those who
originated them. I am suggesting that since we cannot go back in time and
verify anything past a genealogical time frame, from those who are fortunate
enough to be able to trace 9th cousins or similar distances, that we may
never know for sure whether the formulas used are adequate, no matter how
well tested and researched they may be. It's not meant as a criticism at
all, just an unfortunate probability, again, in my humble opinion.

I would welcome further comment on my later points if you wish.

Thank you. Elizabeth

-----Original Message-----
[mailto:] On Behalf Of Ken Nordtvedt
Sent: 22 September 2008 18:30
Subject: Re: [DNA] What shall R1b1c call themselves now?

----- Original Message -----
From: "Elizabeth O'Donoghue" <>

In my opinion, the issues of
> back mutations, bottlenecks and the like make it relatively impossible to
> gain any comfort level that father-son rates can reliably predict clade
> ages

The above is uninformed opinion. Back mutations, bottlenecks "and the like"

are folded into what the variance methods assert they are measuring. Argue
that mutation rates are not being measured right or in sufficient detail to
catch the pertinent realities in mutation behavior of STRs --- that's fair
game, but if you are going to have an opinion about the quantitative tools
developed to connect STR variations to clade ages, please invest in
understanding what goes into the tools.

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