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Messages - Barnum

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Studying for the LSAT / Re: isn't this an incorrect negation??
« on: October 29, 2007, 02:52:38 PM »
Many things that are common flaws can have appropriate usages as well.

For example, it is often inappropriate to appeal to an authority on the LSAT because usually the "authority" appeal to is speaking outside their realm of expertise, but should an argument ask a physicist about gravity, that would be okay.

Similarly, it would be a flaw if the argument tells you there are two options, rules one out, and concludes that it MUST be the other option if the argument never established that they were the ONLY two options (then it would be a valid argument).

In this case, you are seeing a time where what appears to be a flaw is actually being used properly.  Normally you are correct that it is a flaw to say that

A --> B  therefore if not A --> not B.

However, when dealing with comparative statements it is not necessarily a flaw.  For example, if I tell you that the person who studies the most always does the best on the LSAT, then it must follow that if you don't study the most, you won't be the person who does the best.

Studying for the LSAT / Re: help!
« on: October 11, 2007, 09:13:57 PM »
Because they still provide useful information, they just do it more intrusively. Therefore you can't use your answer because the stimulus does not provide you the sufficient part of the principle in that answer chioice.

Just thought i'd post this because it seemed relevant to the discussion.  A study was done to undertake the validity of accomadated testing in general and in regards to students with ADHD.  The results were that their accomodated LSAT scores did in fact overpredict their grades in law school.  This means that the accomadated tests were less accurate than the LSAT without accomodations.

Here is a link to the study

Studying for the LSAT / Re: "only"
« on: September 25, 2007, 12:42:53 PM »
I'm kinda nit-picking here, but it might be dangerous to start considering things like "to achieve success" as prepositional phrases. The English word "to" is, indeed, a preposition, and indeed technically waaaaay back in Germanic proto-English the "to" phenomenon in that kind of construction did indeed indicate prepositional relation to a noun with its attendant adjectives. But nowadays we refer to a construction like "to achieve" as "an infinitive" or "the verb's infinitive." These infinitives do often function as nouns, though they take adverbs (which don't usually modify nouns) as their modifiers. "What was he trying TO DO? TO BOLDLY GO where no man has gone before, is what he was trying TO DO." Prepositional phrases seldom can act like that if they aren't a verb's infinitive, so we gotta be careful.

Granted, if we are going to get nit-picky, I wonder why Spock never corrected Captain Kirk for such poor grammar.  A definite rule of the English language is that one should not "split" an infinitive as in, "to boldly go."  Instead, Captian Kirk should have been saying "to go boldly."

Studying for the LSAT / Re: Why does MLIC Suck?
« on: September 18, 2007, 05:07:05 PM »
Links posted on discussion boards don't do sh*t for google 'juice' (OJ pun intended) for a URL for page rank and search engine ranking, FYI.  The super secret gigantic google algorithm takes care of all that to prevent simple stupid attempts to pump that stuff up.

Good to know that.  Assuming this is a company shill, I am glad to know we are not actually helping them.  Granted, if they were unaware of the futility of links on an internet forum boosting page rank (as I was) then it could still explain the recent ranting we have seen about the course.

Studying for the LSAT / Re: Why does MLIC Suck?
« on: September 18, 2007, 02:35:54 PM »
I could be completely off base with this guess, but here is another scenario.

These people could actually be from MLIC, and really don't care if they piss off some people on LSD.  After all, LSD generally promotes TM/PS already over most other LSAT prep providers.  However, one of the ways to boost search engine hits such as google is to increase your "relevance" by having links to your website on other websites.  Even more so if people click those links.  So if in one post, they place their link 3 times and get enough people to even just be curious considering the crazy nature of these posts to click through, then that could help their search engine hits, which they may be more concerned with then just how they are viewed here on LSD (especially if they didn't think they were getting any business from this site anyway).

That means the more we feed the shill, the more it helps them in the broader internet arena.  I could be just a conspiracy theorist, but just thought I'd throw that out there.

Studying for the LSAT / Re: How would you set up this LG?
« on: August 13, 2007, 11:49:52 AM »
Okay, as nasty as this game is, it actually tests some pretty basic and common themes to grouping games.

Letís us start by discussing a basic two group game deduction Ė Whenever you have two variables that cannot be together, then you know that they have to split between the two groups (assuming every variable is used exactly once).

For example, in the appetizer/main dish game (prep test 24), you get two rules about variables that cannot be together.  Such that before you begin you can split these variables up into

App:  F/N  S/T
Main:  N/F  T/S

If you understand then that any question that asks about what could be a complete list of what can be in the app (or conversely the main dish) should include F or N but not both, and should include S or T but not both.

Now in a three group game, you canít make this deduction up front, because even if two variables cannot be in the same group they could split between 1 and 2, 2 and 3, or 1 and 3.  However, what the LSAT likes to do is fill one of the groups during a question (for example fill up group 3) such that your splits have to happen between the two remaining groups.

For example prep test 16 #1-6

There are only two spaces in group 3 and there is a rule that S is one of the two people.  When you get to question 4, the LSAT places X in group 3 filling the group.  Now you know to split up the other variables among group 1 and 2, such that you can finish the diagram pretty quickly.

Group 1:  R  W/Y  V/Z
Group 2:  T  Y/W  Z/V
Group 3:  S  X

Then question 5 does the exact same thing, but adds T to class 3 making it an almost identical question.

Now how all this relates to the juggler game, in particular question 22.

Since you have Team 1, Team 2, and one juggler out, it is basically a 3 group game.  Once anyone of these groups (including the out) is filled you can split your variables.

Since the contrapositive of the most obnoxious rule is that if Q is not in the middle of 1, then H canít be on 2, and none of the answer choices have Q in the middle of 1, then H canít be on 2.  Since none of the answer choices have H on team 1 either, then H must be out.  Since only one letter goes out, everybody else has to be on either team 1 or team 2.  This means that L is used and therefore should be in the correct answer, and using your split variables you can know that the right answer must contain P or N but not both, K or N but not both, and P or Q but not both.

Once you realize H is out, you actually donít need to draw any diagram to get this answer correct quickly and easily.  It is just that initial piece that is hard, but I tell my students to be expecting LSAT from time to time to use the obnoxious rule, so it is a good place to start for this question.

In the thread with the bird game, I also showed how it could be used with the doctors at the clinics game.

Studying for the LSAT / Re: PT 33 (December 2000) Game #2
« on: July 08, 2007, 09:16:24 AM »
i'm still confused as to how you combined the rules =/

I started with the first rule

Js --> Kr

and the looked to see if Kr led to anything else, and I saw

Kr or Or --> Ps

(since it is an "or" I can use just the Kr --> Ps part) and not I had

Js --> Kr --> Ps

So then I looked to see what Ps led to and saw

Ns or Ps --> Lr

Once again it is an "or" so I can use just the Ps --> Lr part, and I get

Js --> Kr --> Ps --> Lr

Then since Lr didn't lead to anything, I looked to see if anything led to Js.  This is when I saw

Or --> Js

Which gave me

Or --> Js --> Kr --> Ps --> Lr

Then I looked to see if anything led to Or, and I saw Nr --> Or

Which gave me

Nr --> Or --> Js --> Kr --> Ps --> Lr

And finally I saw that

Ls --> Nr

Which produces

Ls --> Nr --> Or --> Js --> Kr --> Ps --> Lr

Since I have a chain with all six letters (indeed I even have L at both ends), I figured I was in a good position to start answering questions.  Although this might seem like a lot of work at the beginning, with a little practice it actually becomes quite quick and easy to create these chains on many two-group and in/out games.  (Don't try it on the CD game though, there is simply too much going on for a chain to work out).

Studying for the LSAT / Re: PT 33 (December 2000) Game #2
« on: July 07, 2007, 11:35:48 AM »
This is just like the bird game in almost every respect.  The basic thing to remember when doing your contrapositives is that since all the doctors have to be at one clinic or the other, then if they're not at R then they must be at S (and vice versa).  Such that you can turn the negative parts of your conditional rules into positives.

Also make sure you notice that in the first two rules the "if" is in the middle of the rule, not at the beginning.

So the first rule would be symbolized

Js --> Kr
Ks --> Jr

And so on

Jr --> Os
Or --> Js

Ls --> Nr and Pr
Ns or Ps --> Lr

Nr --> Or
Os --> Ns

Pr --> Ks and Os
Kr or Or --> Ps

Now you can combine them all.  This one is a little trickier, but if you start with the first rule and focus on what makes a single chain, it is much easier.

Ls --> Nr --> Or --> Js --> Kr --> Ps --> Lr

and then the contrapositive

Ls --> Pr --> Ks --> Jr --> Os --> Ns --> Lr

Now if you look at both chains you will see that if you put L in s, you will eventually need to put in L in r.  Since that can't actually happen (L being in two places at once), you are not actually allowed to put L in s (because the game would end with a contradiction).  This allows the deduction that L will always be in r.

It also means you can clean up the two chains by eliminating the Ls at the beginning of each one.  Such that your final chains should look like what I wrote below.  Start with this and see how the game goes.

Nr --> Or --> Js --> Kr --> Ps --> Lr

and then the contrapositive

Pr --> Ks --> Jr --> Os --> Ns --> Lr

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