Search found 237 matches

by Agent_Irons
Sat Nov 27, 2010 7:15 am UTC
Forum: Science
Topic: Video Footage of Walking Molecular Motor
Replies: 7
Views: 1075

Re: Video Footage of Walking Molecular Motor

I am legitimately really impressed. I'm going to show this to my bioengineering class, we read the paper where they finally settled the method of locomotion of myosins the other day.
by Agent_Irons
Sat Nov 27, 2010 7:11 am UTC
Forum: Science
Topic: i have to make it.. don't ask me why, i just do..
Replies: 80
Views: 14679

Re: i have to make it.. don't ask me why, i just do..

I think your best shot is using pure quartz glass powder ("Fancy Sand"). Take bucket, slam bucket onto large nail, tie balloon to other nail, fill bucket. Stab nail two into the surface of the sand, and hold it down with a brick. Let go of balloon and run away(several hours before storm.) ...
by Agent_Irons
Sat Nov 27, 2010 7:05 am UTC
Forum: Fictional Science
Topic: Gabriel's Horn
Replies: 29
Views: 9798

Re: Gabriel's Horn

Technical Ben wrote:Did you just dived by Zero?

I'm not entirely sure that I have. Assume an incompressible fluid, conservation of volume, the speed at any finite distance along the neck of the horn is finite. Although much larger than the speed of light. :mrgreen:
by Agent_Irons
Fri Nov 26, 2010 7:56 pm UTC
Forum: Fictional Science
Topic: Gabriel's Horn
Replies: 29
Views: 9798

Re: Gabriel's Horn

If you could blow into it "backwards" you could accelerate your ideal fluid to infinite speed. That's pretty cool.
by Agent_Irons
Fri Nov 26, 2010 7:53 am UTC
Forum: Science
Topic: Amino Acid Chirality
Replies: 19
Views: 1880

Re: Amino Acid Chirality

I like that neutrino idea, if only because literally very little else makes any sense. Separating enantiomers chemically is a PITA, because the two enantiomers are chemically identical except for stuff like crystallization. Only L instead of L and R is easy to see: All amino acids have the same chas...
by Agent_Irons
Fri Nov 26, 2010 7:43 am UTC
Forum: Science
Topic: Vacuum Zeppelin
Replies: 146
Views: 62603

Re: Vacuum Zeppelin

oh, i get it. i don't think it'll ever work because you'd have to spin it so fast to get a relative vacuum vis a vis the weight of its material to make it buoyant that the air friction would by far defeat the purpose. i think. Instead of cigar shaped, you could make them propeller shaped. :) But th...
by Agent_Irons
Wed Nov 24, 2010 10:20 am UTC
Forum: Science
Topic: "Making use of volcanic ash" idea
Replies: 13
Views: 1727

Re: "Making use of volcanic ash" idea

You could heat in and melt it into a sort of terrible glass, if you really wanted. But there would be far too much ash and far too little need for low-quality glass to make it practicable.
by Agent_Irons
Sun Jul 25, 2010 3:11 am UTC
Forum: Science
Topic: Dyson Sphere / Ringworld (in)stability
Replies: 36
Views: 7376

Re: Dyson Sphere / Ringworld (in)stability

Only if the force from the sails is exactly equal to the gravitational force. I think it'd be safe to assume that that would not be true in practice. Possibly a series of solar sails on pistons? Large light objects can ride on solar pressure. They are known as statites, they "float" on a ...
by Agent_Irons
Mon Jun 28, 2010 4:02 am UTC
Forum: Computer Science
Topic: Cryptology on the streets.
Replies: 13
Views: 2452

Re: Cryptology on the streets.

If you're feeling awesome, have it encrypted with something strong but breakable (outdated modern crypto, with like a 12 bit key or something) and something really obvious like rot13. The rot13 meetup is earlier and lamer than the second.
by Agent_Irons
Mon Jun 28, 2010 3:56 am UTC
Forum: Computer Science
Topic: What would you do with an infinitely fast computer?
Replies: 818
Views: 216530

Re: What would you do with an infinitely fast computer?

The theoretical best Crysis player isn't unbeatable, but it's probably pretty good. You're forgetting that you can't test every possible scenario (they'll all lose infinitely many times) and any finite amount would result in an infinite amount of programs (the majority of which will malfunction giv...
by Agent_Irons
Sun Jun 27, 2010 10:04 pm UTC
Forum: Science
Topic: Cellulose
Replies: 27
Views: 2801

Re: Cellulose

I'm actually interning in a cellulose breakdown lab, where we try and develop a plasmid containing all the genes to produce the enzymes that dissolve cellulose and its associated friendly proteins. They're down to 8, last I heard. End goal is plug and play wood-eating functionality. Is that.. for r...
by Agent_Irons
Sun Jun 27, 2010 6:26 am UTC
Forum: Computer Science
Topic: What would you do with an infinitely fast computer?
Replies: 818
Views: 216530

Re: What would you do with an infinitely fast computer?

Well, the computer won't improve your skills. It could beat them for him, though. Brute force the space of scripted bot intelligences(under 1 gibibyte in size, say) for Crysis, compete them in a double elimination tournament, then take the winner and have it aim(and fire and run) for him. The theor...
by Agent_Irons
Sun Jun 27, 2010 6:10 am UTC
Forum: Science
Topic: Cellulose
Replies: 27
Views: 2801

Re: Cellulose

I'm actually interning in a cellulose breakdown lab, where we try and develop a plasmid containing all the genes to produce the enzymes that dissolve cellulose and its associated friendly proteins. They're down to 8, last I heard. End goal is plug and play wood-eating functionality.
by Agent_Irons
Tue May 25, 2010 6:49 am UTC
Forum: Coding
Topic: Why God is so l33t
Replies: 64
Views: 7735

Re: Why God is so l33t

At the highest level there's methylated DNA and ATCG At least 5 bits(less with compression(still >4) because methylation is predictable, etc). Go a level down and technically speaking God could have used all the different atoms, because the epigenome is regulated with methyl(CH3) groups. And there's...
by Agent_Irons
Tue May 25, 2010 6:42 am UTC
Forum: Coding
Topic: do errors 'hurt' my PC?
Replies: 117
Views: 10366

Re: do errors 'hurt' my PC?

Berengal wrote:Computers never make errors. They just do something different from what we wanted them to do.

We're at the limit of computer memory where the electron 'well' is just deeper than the average energy of an incident cosmic ray, so a particularly beefy one aimed right will flip a bit.
by Agent_Irons
Tue May 25, 2010 6:40 am UTC
Forum: Science
Topic: A question regarding synchrotron lightsources.
Replies: 8
Views: 2394

Re: A question regarding synchrotron lightsources.

I think a lot of the shielding is for "this beam cuts through things" circumstances when containment fails instead of 'makes you sterile' circumstances. Didn't a trial run of the LHC result in a tunnel through something that shouldn't have a tunnel in it?
by Agent_Irons
Tue May 25, 2010 6:37 am UTC
Forum: Science
Topic: Facepalm TV / Doing It Wrong
Replies: 553
Views: 57281

Re: Facepalm TV / Doing It Wrong

The only really annoying thing about Iron Man 2(i.e. that can't be reasonably explained by handwavy possibilities like islands of stability, exotic stable particles made of weird quarks instead of vanilla up/down, pressurized quickset resin, etc etc etc) is when Tony uses a wrench to bend a beam of ...
by Agent_Irons
Tue May 25, 2010 6:20 am UTC
Forum: Science
Topic: Why Sex?
Replies: 13
Views: 2348

Re: Why Sex?

There are a couple interesting ones. The concept of 'drag' where advantageous mutations by the single genetically-best-off bacterium are the only ones that matter. In a sense, its inevitable that the best bacterium wins(well, its progeny) but in the meantime it competes with all these well-adapted b...
by Agent_Irons
Fri May 14, 2010 11:23 pm UTC
Forum: Computer Science
Topic: A simple encryption cipher... Thoughts?
Replies: 22
Views: 33881

Re: A simple encryption cipher... Thoughts?

You might want to look into the Vignére cipher, which is a caesar cipher with a mnemonic keyword that changes the length of the shift in a repeating pattern. The generalization is better, but then you need the entire 26x26 square. The upside is then you have 26 substitution ciphers to choose from. I...
by Agent_Irons
Fri May 14, 2010 11:14 pm UTC
Forum: Computer Science
Topic: Merging lists in place
Replies: 41
Views: 10433

Re: Merging lists in place

You don't really have to worry. Most people don't pay attention to data structures and algorithms in the first place, so ignoring constants is the least of your problems - they're still doing 100k linear searches over large linked lists rather than using hash tables. This. My university keeps buyin...
by Agent_Irons
Thu Apr 08, 2010 8:42 am UTC
Forum: Coding
Topic: What's the generic term for a series of bits?
Replies: 11
Views: 1620

Re: What's the generic term for a series of bits?

The c++ template library has a class called a bitset, which is exactly what you're describing. Most people use a vector of booleans instead, of course.
by Agent_Irons
Thu Apr 08, 2010 8:40 am UTC
Forum: Coding
Topic: Linux C++ IDE Recommendations
Replies: 30
Views: 4813

Re: Linux C++ IDE Recommendations

I'm making a point to learn vim mostly because it's essentially guaranteed to be on the host machine, and isn't half bad.
by Agent_Irons
Thu Apr 08, 2010 6:53 am UTC
Forum: Coding
Topic: Javascript Codes for xkcd.com/unixkcd
Replies: 9
Views: 9366

Re: javascript Codes for April Fools

'sudo apt-get upgrade' sends you to a site telling you to choose a better browser if you're running IE *or Firefox*, but not others (line 143). What gives? The || is probably supposed to be an && in "($.browser.name == "firefox" || $.browser.versionX < 3)", to tell off p...
by Agent_Irons
Thu Apr 01, 2010 8:21 am UTC
Forum: Coding
Topic: Optimal full-align in a terminal (like emacs/vim)
Replies: 5
Views: 1189

Re: Optimal full-align in a terminal (like emacs/vim)

So many conversations on this board end "Go read Knuth". I should probably get the hint.
by Agent_Irons
Mon Feb 15, 2010 11:10 pm UTC
Forum: Science
Topic: Batman Grappling Gun
Replies: 41
Views: 4765

Re: Batman Grappling Gun

The limiting technology is definitely not the cable or even the hook. The hardest part about this is the engine that lifts a human being and equipment, at speed. Ideally you should go zipping on up quite briskly. I'd like to ascend the 25m cable in about two seconds, if that's okay with everyone els...
by Agent_Irons
Mon Feb 15, 2010 10:54 pm UTC
Forum: Science
Topic: public misconceptions
Replies: 1073
Views: 140178

Re: public misconceptions

ikrase wrote:People who cannot stop freaking about bioethics

QFT.

It's incredibly difficult to do something unethical if you remember that reproductive cloning turns one person into two people of different ages. Just because you did it in the lab doesn't make them unpeople.
by Agent_Irons
Sun Jan 17, 2010 7:35 am UTC
Forum: Science
Topic: Perpetual Motion Machine! (With exotic matter...)
Replies: 18
Views: 2580

Re: Perpetual Motion Machine! (With exotic matter...)

The total energy of the system remains at zero. You can't harvest energy from the system because if you try and push around a paddlewheel, say, there's no oomph behind the traveling two-brick assembly. No momentum, no energy, etc. It's not useful, just cool. :cry:
by Agent_Irons
Sun Jan 17, 2010 7:31 am UTC
Forum: Science
Topic: Indonesian descent and red hair (genetics)
Replies: 19
Views: 2392

Re: Indonesian descent and red hair (genetics)

Let's break it down(wa-a-wa-ah): Red hair means yellow-red pigments, but not the black-brown ones. As I understand it there are several(lots) alleles for pigment, so mendelian inheritance would be unlikely. If y'all were peas this would be not even be an issue. Given the absence of freckles, your gi...
by Agent_Irons
Sun Jan 17, 2010 1:25 am UTC
Forum: Science
Topic: Biology Questions
Replies: 27
Views: 7685

Re: Biology Questions

I wish there was more about Fungi in textbooks, at least. Protists are basically miscellaneous, so more of that is probably out of the question. But hyphae! Lichen! Cells with two nuclei! Fungi are weird . Ballistic spores! There's so much cool to know about. Prokaryotes don't get as much love as eu...
by Agent_Irons
Mon Jan 11, 2010 6:52 am UTC
Forum: Coding
Topic: Fancying up a python?
Replies: 9
Views: 1546

Re: Fancying up a python?

If you just want to play with graphics and generally get a feel for easybutton graphics, you should try processing. It's a bit like java but designed more as a scripting language for images. It's kind of fun and very easy, and you can compile for the web or for windows,mac, linux, etc. http://proces...
by Agent_Irons
Sun Jan 10, 2010 3:51 am UTC
Forum: Science
Topic: Artificial Intelligence
Replies: 25
Views: 2548

Re: Artificial Intelligence

The distinction between "innate" abilities and abilities that require an external device starts to blur when you are talking about things that are integrated into the AI as subroutines (or into the brain as internal brain augmentation hardware, for that matter). Is it an "external de...
by Agent_Irons
Tue Dec 29, 2009 8:13 am UTC
Forum: Science
Topic: You Might Be a Biology Major if...
Replies: 153
Views: 19715

Re: You Might Be a Biology Major if...

crowey wrote:Engineered? Heathen! :P

Technically true.

And if a deer comes through your window in the middle of your christmas party? Don't turn up your nose at perfectly good entrails just because you didn't shoot them yourself.
by Agent_Irons
Mon Dec 14, 2009 5:03 pm UTC
Forum: Science
Topic: You Might Be a Biology Major if...
Replies: 153
Views: 19715

Re: You Might Be a Biology Major if...

nbonaparte wrote:
Admiral Valdemar wrote:
YMBABM if you consider the perfect organism has already evolved. And it's not eukaryotic (a certain quote by Gould springs to mind).


Already evolved isn't too hard to swallow, but not eukaryotic?

It's the simplicity. Eukaryotic systems have a certain over-engineered feel to them sometimes.
by Agent_Irons
Sat Dec 12, 2009 12:59 pm UTC
Forum: Science
Topic: You Might Be a Biology Major if...
Replies: 153
Views: 19715

Re: You Might Be a Biology Major if...

endospire wrote:You might be a molecular biology major if, when you tell people what your major is, 99% of them give you the 'I wish I didn't ask' look.
And, when you silently rage when people mistake it for microbiology

I'm bioengineering, and I know exactly what you mean.
by Agent_Irons
Tue Nov 10, 2009 6:05 pm UTC
Forum: Computer Science
Topic: What would you do with an infinitely fast computer?
Replies: 818
Views: 216530

Re: What would you do with an infinitely fast computer?

What I mean is that if you found such an algorithm you would likely have discovered a new branch of mathematics or at least something cool about primes we didn't know yet. There are a lot of ways to expand human knowledge in more fundamental ways than compiling a huge list of primes(not that I would...
by Agent_Irons
Fri Nov 06, 2009 9:05 pm UTC
Forum: Computer Science
Topic: What would you do with an infinitely fast computer?
Replies: 818
Views: 216530

Re: What would you do with an infinitely fast computer?

Okay, why not brute-force over the space of all programs less than a certain (runtime*length) looking for one that returns the prime factorization of all primes less than say, 10k bits in length? It probably doesn't exist, but checking for it would be a good idea. Just keep expanding the length*runt...
by Agent_Irons
Fri Nov 06, 2009 8:20 pm UTC
Forum: Coding
Topic: New initiate into the grand order
Replies: 18
Views: 2469

Re: New initiate into the grand order

ah, thanks, ill try that tonight...now when my internet disconnects (because of my shitty ISP) I have to kill the dhcpcd process and rerun it, is that gonna fix that as well or what should I do for that You could write a little something something that pings google every minute or so and if that fa...
by Agent_Irons
Fri Nov 06, 2009 8:14 pm UTC
Forum: Coding
Topic: Black hat or White hat?
Replies: 30
Views: 3448

Re: Black hat or White hat?

If you ask this question in a public forum the only answers you are not going to get are "black" and "white".

You'll find that most people are at least light colored hats.
by Agent_Irons
Fri Nov 06, 2009 5:11 pm UTC
Forum: Coding
Topic: Writing a Theorem Prover
Replies: 2
Views: 630

Re: Writing a Theorem Prover

I've thought about doing this once or twice. It's essentially a graph search problem. Every mathematical statement is a tree, and every equation can be applied to other equations.

Then it's just a question of moving outwards in concentric circles. Good luck with this: it's probably pretty tricky.
by Agent_Irons
Wed Oct 14, 2009 8:25 am UTC
Forum: Coding
Topic: The "IT DOESN'T WORK!" thread
Replies: 1958
Views: 518865

Re: The "IT DOESN'T WORK!" thread

Lisp problem! Solved! I'm getting weirdness with my Erastosthenes Sieve (apostrophe?). I'm attempting to return a list of primes. (defun primedo (maxprime) (let ((primes (loop for i from 2 to maxprime collecting i))) (do ( (currentp...

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