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Re: SICB Report

In a message dated 1/15/99 11:16:20 PM EST, jjackson@interalpha.co.uk writes:

<< That may be so for an individual cladogram, but the effectiveness of the
 basic system may be tested by simulation. >>

I advocated this some time ago on the dinosaur list, and I have since learned
that such simulations have already been performed here and there in various
ways. In particular, this is the basis of my remark that about 10-18% of
cladograms with four leaf nodes are incorrectly reconstructed. This percentage
seems to be irreducible; different kinds of cladistic analyses yield different
kinds of wrong cladograms, but generally in the same ratio. Apparently the
only way to find these is to compare them to the known control cladograms;
there is no algorithm that will tell you in advance that a cladogram is
incorrectly constructed (if there were, it would become part of the analysis,
of course). I was surprised to learn that the percentage was so high.