## Search found 85 matches

Fri Feb 27, 2015 8:07 pm UTC
Topic: 1492: "Dress color"
Replies: 362
Views: 61097

### Re: 1492: "Dress color"

orthogon wrote:ETA: One of the more counter-intuitive maths is stat.

Stats is intuitive to those who can count. Only for non-counters is stats counter-intuitive.

And it was very hard in that last sentence to not use "are" instead of "is".
Tue Dec 30, 2014 8:05 pm UTC
Topic: 1464: "Santa"
Replies: 62
Views: 13198

### Re: 1464: "Santa"

I once did a calculation on this... if Santa consumes 150 kCal (a reasonable-sized cookie, and some milk) at every north american household, this is enough energy to take an olympic-sized swimming pool at competition temperature (300K) to boiling and then to steam.
Thu Dec 04, 2014 3:31 pm UTC
Topic: 1455: "Trolley Problem"
Replies: 172
Views: 48480

### Re: 1455: "Trolley Problem"

Trolley Problem : Five people tied to the default track, one person tied to the alternate track. Pull the switch? No. Reasoning: One death is a tragedy, one million deaths is a statistic. By reduction, five deaths is a statistic. And statistics are neither inherently good nor evil; they are unalign...
Mon Nov 10, 2014 8:57 pm UTC
Topic: 1444: "Cloud"
Replies: 28
Views: 10227

### Re: 1444: "Cloud"

San Fran Sam wrote:Rain.

Tut, Tut.

Now, where did I put my balloon? I really would like some hunny.
Tue Nov 04, 2014 3:22 pm UTC
Topic: 1442: "Chemistry"
Replies: 63
Views: 21793

### Re: 1442: "Chemistry"

And nobody's pointed out that there are two other stable hydrogen crystals?

Spoiler:
H
H
H
H
H
H
H
H, which I'll call a "Hydrogen Hanotube" and a 3D cube, which I'll call "Cubic Hirconium"

The only other element I can find that will create tesselating 3D crystals is Vanadium.
Mon Nov 03, 2014 3:37 pm UTC
Replies: 44
Views: 14134

There's an ancient SF short story (my guess is 1950s) in which there's a laser-tag sort of game in which attacks are blocked by teammates with mirrors. They end up using their sports gear and strategy to destroy some other army with its own laser beams. The tag line at the end of the story is the m...
Thu Oct 30, 2014 8:07 pm UTC
Topic: 1439: "Rack Unit"
Replies: 63
Views: 19874

### Re: 1439: Rack Unit

Don't tell me. BHG was the guy who decided that CDs, DVDs and Blu-ray discs should all have the same physical dimensions. What's wrong with that? This way my blu-ray player can play all the older formats and my DVD player could play CD's. It saves a bunch of room in my devices stack. The don't need...
Thu Oct 30, 2014 7:54 pm UTC
Topic: 1440: Geese
Replies: 52
Views: 12060

### Re: 1440: Geese

The 1g gravity example you mentioned is kind of interesting, and actually illustrates how the geometry of a black hole works. The horizon would be an infinitely long radial distance below you, so if you lived on a 1g shellworld around a black hole and dropped your watch into the black hole, it woul...
Wed Oct 15, 2014 5:28 pm UTC
Topic: 1431: "Marriage"
Replies: 442
Views: 74325

### Re: 1431: "Marriage"

I've been married twice, and I wrote my name in the "Husband" column both times. But the county clerk (license issuer) never asked to see my penis as proof that it was the right place. Not having been married, I wouldn't know for sure, but I would suspect they would request some form of o...
Wed Oct 15, 2014 4:10 pm UTC
Topic: 1431: "Marriage"
Replies: 442
Views: 74325

### Re: 1431: "Marriage"

One thing I have never been able to find out (when thinking about the same-sex marriage debate) is exactly where the entity that proclaims the marriage actually verifies the gender of the people involved. I've been married twice, and I wrote my name in the "Husband" column both times. But ...
Thu Oct 02, 2014 1:14 pm UTC
Topic: 1428: "Move Fast and Break Things"
Replies: 32
Views: 12140

### Re: 1428: "Move Fast and Break Things"

Having just finished reading Randall's book "What If?" I now find that I can walk out through my front door so much better prepared to face the world. But now I keep asking "Just how fast would I have to be moving to literally walk through my front door?". Perhaps Cueball has th...
Wed Sep 24, 2014 5:06 pm UTC
Replies: 85
Views: 25875

Just feed its quantum wavefunction into a regular expression! Won't work. You need to run it through an "enhance" filter first. In addition to the assumption that one can "enhance" any image to any resolution, a far-too-common request of photo-manipulators is to "turn it ar...
Fri Sep 05, 2014 5:34 pm UTC
Topic: 1417: "Seven"
Replies: 130
Views: 30752

### Re: 1417: "Seven"

Envelope Generator wrote:Guacamole is one of the seven ________?

Less-Interesting things to describe a Mole of.

(Others include Mole sauce and melanocytic skin lesions)

--Joe
Mon Aug 18, 2014 4:30 pm UTC
Topic: 1408: "March of the Penguins"
Replies: 25
Views: 9634

### Re: 1408: "March of the Penguins"

Well, xkcd has covered sympathetic apologies before: /945

At least BHG knows what he did.
Wed Aug 06, 2014 2:35 pm UTC
Topic: 1402: "Harpoons"
Replies: 41
Views: 22457

### Re: 1402: "Harpoons"

In space, nobody can hear you whale. Nor wail. Norwhal.
Thu Jul 17, 2014 4:23 pm UTC
Forum: What If?
Topic: What-if 0105: "Cannibalism"
Replies: 41
Views: 13525

### Re: What-if 0105: "Cannibalism"

True, we could apply the same logic to using the genomes in flight and reduce the necessary number to a minimum of 2 persons, no more, no less--a mother and a daughter, or, if you prefer, a master and an apprentice. This would ensure that a womb is available upon arrival, and then the women can beg...
Tue Jul 15, 2014 2:05 pm UTC
Forum: What If?
Topic: What-if 0104: "Global Snow"
Replies: 32
Views: 9209

### Re: What-if 0104: "Global Snow"

So they would have 7.2 seconds facing each other kid, which we could manage by having them all line up into two facing lines, and rotating them past each other (line A moves one person to the left every 7.2 seconds, the person at the end of line A becomes the first of line B, and the person at the ...
Mon Jul 14, 2014 6:38 pm UTC
Forum: What If?
Topic: What-if 0104: "Global Snow"
Replies: 32
Views: 9209

### Re: What-if 0104: "Global Snow"

each kid would be able to roll [...] 210 Million snowballs [...] Which would take a little bit of time to roll and throw... If they could effectively roll and throw a snowball at the age of 2, and if we go with the Obama-care definition of "kid" that extends until age 26, they've got 24 y...
Mon Jul 14, 2014 1:50 pm UTC
Topic: 1393: Timeghost
Replies: 77
Views: 19938

### Re: 1393: Timeghost

Djehutynakht wrote:My god... World War 1 was a hundred years ago. How time flies.

Oh, no, we have Time Vultures, Time Ghosts, and now Time Flies?

Somebody get me a banana!
Thu Jul 03, 2014 5:59 pm UTC
Topic: 1389: "Surface Area"
Replies: 125
Views: 37709

### Re: 1389: "Surface Area"

But yeah, the "square foot" in that garden plan is reference to the area allocated for each different type of vegetable... so you may have 1 square foot of spinach growing next to a square foot of tomato plants next to a square foot of strawberries, arranged in a 4x4 grid. Also, note that...
Thu Jul 03, 2014 3:43 pm UTC
Topic: 1389: "Surface Area"
Replies: 125
Views: 37709

### Re: 1389: "Surface Area"

For reference, if this comic were printed the size of a standard SD card, the surface of the sun would be 1.5 square meters, or the size of a "square foot garden" that can provide a year's worth of vegetables for one person. So a "square foot garden" is over 16 square feet? That...
Wed Jul 02, 2014 1:51 pm UTC
Topic: 1389: "Surface Area"
Replies: 125
Views: 37709

### Re: 1389: "Surface Area"

For reference, if this comic were printed the size of a standard SD card, the surface of the sun would be 1.5 square meters, or the size of a "square foot garden" that can provide a year's worth of vegetables for one person.
Mon Jun 30, 2014 6:12 pm UTC
Replies: 59
Views: 15343

I'm just glad it wasn't a Seduction License, which would have brought all the Impromptu-Team Artists out of the woodwork.
Mon Jun 16, 2014 8:27 pm UTC
Topic: 0169: "Words that End in GRY"
Replies: 51
Views: 39295

### Re: Re:

Klear wrote:

"RailRoad Crossing; Look out for the cars."
"Can you say that without any 'R's'?"

That is sooo easy if you're Czech =P

Or if you're Bostonian
Mon Jun 16, 2014 3:57 pm UTC
Topic: 1381: "Margin"
Replies: 48
Views: 12065

### Re: 1381: "Margin"

Unfortunately, this process has two flaws... Firstly, you'll end up with lots of false positives, so not only will you end up with the information you started with, you'll also end up with lots of information that never existed before, and you may not be able to tell which information is the inform...
Fri Jun 13, 2014 3:51 pm UTC
Topic: 1381: "Margin"
Replies: 48
Views: 12065

### Re: 1381: "Margin"

Carteeg_Struve wrote:When someone questions any theory you put into a margin, just be sure to stand Fermat.

Ah, the internet in a nutshell[1]...

"When challenged, stand Fermat your marginal theories"

--Joe
[1] Warning: may contain nuts. Or the nuts might not be contained.
Fri May 16, 2014 4:17 pm UTC
Forum: What If?
Topic: What-If 0096: "\$2 Undecillion Lawsuit"
Replies: 65
Views: 20078

### Re: What-If 0096: "\$2 Undecillion Lawsuit"

Just a heads up: the "world's most famous stamp" is due to be sold at auction in a couple months, and Sotheby's estimates that it could sell for as much as \$20M. I'm intrigued that "world's most famous stamp" is assumed to be a title awarded by philatelists, rather than the publ...
Fri May 16, 2014 3:08 pm UTC
Topic: 1368: "One Of The"
Replies: 91
Views: 21877

### Re: 1368: "One Of The"

For even greater annoyance, preface "one of the" with "arguably". Spot on. Qualify any opinion with "Arguably one of the" and you can make a statement that sounds bold but is so inclusive that it is meaningless. I literally explode when I hear things like that from arg...
Wed May 14, 2014 3:15 pm UTC
Forum: What If?
Topic: What-if 0095: "Pyramid Energy"
Replies: 52
Views: 36081

### Re: What-if 0095: "Pyramid Energy"

It was an epic scene when O'neill ring transports the nuke up to Ra's ship while its in orbit. The look on Ra's face when he sees the timer :twisted: :twisted: That was O'Neil, with one L. O'Neill with two Ls is a different guy with a much better sense of humor. There were so many differences betwe...
Thu May 01, 2014 3:20 pm UTC
Forum: What If?
Topic: What-if 0094: "Billion-Story Building"
Replies: 106
Views: 28098

### Re: What-if #0094: Billion-Story Building

Meh. Like said above, by the time the tower is built, smart devices will be so much more advanced than they are today as to seem magical. Even today you just send a text message, or make a memo, or appointment or whatever. It wouldn't be that difficult to remember where your meeting is. In fact, a ...
Wed Apr 30, 2014 5:37 pm UTC
Forum: What If?
Topic: What-if 0094: "Billion-Story Building"
Replies: 106
Views: 28098

### Re: What-if #0094: Billion-Story Building

I'm disappointed (assuming I did the math right) that the top of the building is only moving (around the center of the earth) at 0.1% C. (14 ft/story * 1000 000 000 stories + 21000000 ft) * Tau / 86164 second -> 1022000ft/s (pretty close to 1Mf/sec according to floppy disk manufacturers) I thought i...
Mon Apr 14, 2014 2:07 pm UTC
Topic: 1355: "Airplane Message"
Replies: 84
Views: 21652

### Re: 1355: "Airplane Message"

The mouseover text claims some pharaoh is the first human whose name we know. I might suggest that Adam and Eve may predate that and suggest the text be altered to be something like "first human whose name we know outside of the Bible" No. Unless you subscribe to the theory that anything ...
Thu Apr 10, 2014 3:26 pm UTC
Topic: 1353: "Heartbleed"
Replies: 99
Views: 32136

### Re: 1353: "Heartbleed"

Yes, you will get 64k of memory from the server. But you don't control which 64k 1 . And even if you happen to get the server's key, that string of bytes is (should be) indistinguishable from 8192 bits from /dev/random (except that you can test it to see if it happens to decrypt something, or match...
Wed Apr 09, 2014 4:22 pm UTC
Topic: 1353: "Heartbleed"
Replies: 99
Views: 32136

### Re: 1353: "Heartbleed"

I am not a security expert. But if Heartbleed makes stuff readable from server memory, wouldn't an attacker still need command line access on the web server? Getting such access should be hard, right? Doesn't that make this problem less severe than it is drummed up to be? Nope. In a nutshell, an Op...
Mon Mar 31, 2014 6:15 pm UTC
Forum: What If?
Topic: What-If 0089: "Tungsten Countertop"
Replies: 77
Views: 23801

### Re: What-If 0089: "Tungsten Countertop"

Zassounotsukushi wrote:den again, if de primary reason for it be pure vanity

Nah, the granite-surface vanity is in the bathroom, not the kitchen.
Sat Mar 29, 2014 1:54 pm UTC
Topic: 1348: "Before the Internet"
Replies: 166
Views: 44300

### Re: 1348: "Before the Internet"

I find this interesting: Are schools in the US huge factory halls? Is there only one school every couple of towns? I can easily imagine these situations in rural areas, but living with 4 primary schools within three blocks from here it's difficult to imagine from my perspective (combined with the u...
Mon Mar 24, 2014 4:16 pm UTC
Forum: What If?
Topic: What-If 0088: "Soda Sequestration"
Replies: 50
Views: 13471

### Re: What-If 0088: "Soda Sequestration"

cellocgw wrote:
rmsgrey wrote:The time axis doesn't start from zero either

Cue the AD vs. CE and 3 billion vs. 6000 wars.

Besides, time zero was apparently about 1e-35 seconds prior to the beginning of inflation! Better use a log scale.

log scale? Bah, you just need to use more paper.

--Joe
Wed Mar 12, 2014 3:43 pm UTC
Topic: 1341: "Types of Editors"
Replies: 88
Views: 25672

### Re: Types of Editors

I thought fish were generally more random than other animals, particularly haddock, lobster and halibut. What I don't know is whether those creatures were already more random before the Surrealists, or whether they're random because of them. Of course they're more random. They were chosen just for ...
Tue Mar 11, 2014 2:11 pm UTC
Topic: 1340: "Unique Date"
Replies: 140
Views: 32563

### Re: 1340: "Unique Date"

I like to think that there was a Time Zero rather than a Year Zero - midnight on 1 January 1 AD (even though it wasn't invented until much later, and years used to begin on 25 March) is 0.000000, midnight on 1 January 2 AD is 1.0000000, midnight on 1 January 1 BC is -1.0000000, midday on 2 July 1 A...
Mon Mar 10, 2014 3:47 pm UTC