by Peter Dushenski @carenvy
In Part 1 of this two-part exploration, three nimble hatchbacks mounted a front against the best selling vehicle in the world: the Ford F-150. In Part 1, the unassuming hatches took an early 1-0 lead by being more humble on a first date. Let’s see how the trio fares for the final two points of this competition: moving and commuting.
2. Helping Your Friend Move To A New Apartment:
You might have more Facebook friends than Mark Zuckerberg but being that awesome has its drawbacks, especially when you’ve been bragging to your friends about 1) how robust you are, and 2) your new car(s). It’s only a matter of time before one of your
minions legion is knocking at your door on a hungover Saturday morning, begging you to help a bro out. If you spent your 67 large on the King Ranch, with its handy tailgate step (aka Man Step), side access steps, and cargo bed extender, you’ll be a prime target every. single. time. Thankfully, the F-150 will impress even your most demanding friends … Beds, furniture, and those uselessly heavy old tube TVs will all find room in the back. There’s nothing quite like a sturdy pick-up for moving trash from one ratty apartment to another. It’s truly tough to beat.
Alternatively, you could take the robust Honda Fit, Ford Fiesta, AND Chevy Sonic.
By Peter Dushenski
One of epistemologist Karl Popper’s (above) most valuable contributions to the philosophy of science was the notion that a theory can never actually be proven true – only false – and that this quality, what he termed falsifiability, is the single defining mark of any theory.
Popper, a former Professor at the London School of Economics, believed that one of the fundamental issues with the scientific method is the confirmation bias: that more evidence in favour of a statement or theory may increase our confidence in it, but does not prove it in any meaningful way. In other words, no matter how many times a theory is supported, one piece of contrary evidence is sufficient, as well as necessary, to unravel the whole idea; that is, to falsify it. Take the statement “All swans are white”, for example. Observing more white swans increases our confidence that the statement is true, but the observation of a single black swan, such as those seen in Australia, falsifies the statement.
This is a powerful idea and one of the most important notions of 20th century philosophy. Essentially, what we all learned in elementary school science class, that we develop a hypothesis and then conduct an experiment to either confirm or contradict the hypothesis is erroneous. We can never fully prove a hypothesis of the observable world, but we can most certainly falsify it.
Which brings us to both of today’s test vehicles. In one corner we have the stalwart of “reliability”, from the brand that practically coined the term in the modern era, the Toyota Tacoma. In the other corner we have the fresh-faced Kia Rio5, one of many in a recent string of thoroughly revamped products from the emergent manufacturer, one with little history of “reliability” to speak of.
Malcolm Gladwell’s Valentine’s Day article for the New Yorker on the importance of criteria weighting when evaluating colleges, football, and cars was more profound and unnoticed by the blogosphere than it had any right to be. It went completely under the radar. We, as bloggers, typically do a stand-up job of pulling in all sorts of events, affairs, and going-ons into the automotive realm, even if, like Jalopnik, they are at best connected to the auto industry by their possession of a motor. But when Gladwell gave a Stone Cold Stunner to one of the icons of print motoring journalism, he shed light on a piece of human psychology that we as petrolheads use as a crutch rather than a platform.
Gladwell is not a demonstratable car enthusiast in any sense. He is primarily a social psychologist and a popularizer of scientific research. His focuses are business, psychology, and the elucidation of surprising patterns in everyday normativeness. Yet, it often takes the perspective of an outsider (not Outlier) to see the decay within.