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by stoppedcaring
Thu Nov 20, 2014 5:44 pm UTC
Forum: Science
Topic: A new Theory on fundamental physics
Replies: 33
Views: 6855

Re: A new Theory on fundamental physics

At first pass, it seems this work is based on the quantum gravity theories of Claude Poher, who proposes a universal energy flux responsible (among other things) for creating UFO appearances. Poher also argues that this flux can be harnessed to produce limitless electrical power. So I'm not inclined...
by stoppedcaring
Wed Nov 19, 2014 10:53 pm UTC
Forum: Serious Business
Topic: Can one prove a being doesn't exist?
Replies: 55
Views: 16628

Re: Can one prove a being doesn't exist?

I don't know what you mean by a "fundamentalist-inerrancy" definition of truth. Truth isn't ordinarily taken to imply that something is known with certainty, or even that it's known at all. For example, "Snow is white" is a true sentence. It's true because of the color of snow -...
by stoppedcaring
Wed Nov 19, 2014 10:16 pm UTC
Forum: Serious Business
Topic: Can one prove a being doesn't exist?
Replies: 55
Views: 16628

Re: Can one prove a being doesn't exist?

Even though we talk about things as being "true", that's never strictly the case. Logic, the scientific method, and so on aren't "true" in the absolute fundamentalist-inerrancy definition; they're "true" in the sense of being consistently useful and predictive. It's not...
by stoppedcaring
Wed Nov 19, 2014 8:09 pm UTC
Forum: Science
Topic: A new Theory on fundamental physics
Replies: 33
Views: 6855

Re: A new Theory on fundamental physics

As with any other "new physics", I have two questions:

1. What predictions does this model make which differ from the Standard Model?

and

2. When/how can these predictions be tested?

If it's a good theory, it'll be able to answer those two questions fairly easily.
by stoppedcaring
Wed Nov 19, 2014 6:03 pm UTC
Forum: Serious Business
Topic: Can one prove a being doesn't exist?
Replies: 55
Views: 16628

Re: Can one prove a being doesn't exist?

The Loch Ness monster is supposedly (according to the most common speculation) somewhere around 2,500 lbs - which is big but less than half the mass of an average elephant. Loch Ness is 23 miles long, about a mile wide, and very deep; and filled with numerous large fish and even some mammals like s...
by stoppedcaring
Wed Nov 19, 2014 4:30 pm UTC
Forum: What If?
Topic: What-If 0003: "Yoda"
Replies: 122
Views: 59960

Re: What-If 0003:" Yoda"

Yeah, when I've written sci-fi, I just handwaved FTL travel by saying the FTL drive "pushes" through space and time at once so simultaneity is preserved from the perspective of the traveler, the start point, and the endpoint, allowing round-trip flights. It also allows an observer to see a...
by stoppedcaring
Tue Nov 18, 2014 9:52 pm UTC
Forum: What If?
Topic: What-If 0003: "Yoda"
Replies: 122
Views: 59960

Re: What-If 0003:" Yoda"

And though this isn't the use of telekinesis, specifically, Obi Wan and Yoda both felt disturbances in the force from many lightyears distant -- Obi Wan when Alderaan was blown up; Yoda when Order 66 was activated. Those signals don't appear to attenuate with distance. Concerning both this and use ...
by stoppedcaring
Tue Nov 18, 2014 5:29 pm UTC
Forum: Serious Business
Topic: Can one prove a being doesn't exist?
Replies: 55
Views: 16628

Re: Can one prove a being doesn't exist?

But as Weinersmith points out, most people are not terribly bothered by a concept of God which sacrifices one or more of the omnis, so in practice the Problem of Evil disproves only an edifice.
by stoppedcaring
Tue Nov 18, 2014 4:38 pm UTC
Forum: Serious Business
Topic: Can one prove a being doesn't exist?
Replies: 55
Views: 16628

Re: Can one prove a being doesn't exist?

The deductive form of the Problem of Evil is a proof that God does not exist. Formal proof helpfully available here for those of a mathematical persuasion: http://plato.stanford.edu/entries/evil/validity.html This merely shows that a certain conception of God -- specifically, a God whose properties...
by stoppedcaring
Tue Nov 18, 2014 4:35 pm UTC
Forum: What If?
Topic: What-If 0003: "Yoda"
Replies: 122
Views: 59960

Re: What-If 0003:" Yoda"

So a force user could lift something on another world, if he only just believed he could? Considering that the power of the Death Star can destroy entire worlds, but is said to be insignificant in comparison to the power of the Force...yes. Galen Marek plucked a star destroyer out of the sky. Tulak...
by stoppedcaring
Tue Nov 18, 2014 4:24 pm UTC
Forum: What If?
Topic: What-If 0003: "Yoda"
Replies: 122
Views: 59960

Re: What-If 0003:" Yoda"

So a force user could lift something on another world, if he only just believed he could? Considering that the power of the Death Star can destroy entire worlds, but is said to be insignificant in comparison to the power of the Force...yes. Galen Marek plucked a star destroyer out of the sky. Tulak...
by stoppedcaring
Tue Nov 18, 2014 4:14 pm UTC
Forum: Serious Business
Topic: Can one prove a being doesn't exist?
Replies: 55
Views: 16628

Re: Can one prove a being doesn't exist?

I'm pretty sure that it does follow that if you 1) Presume the supernatural provides its own evidence, 2) Note there is no evidence of the supernatural provided, then this is sufficient evidence to disprove the supernatural. To put it another way: Santa Claus visits every house on Christmas. Santa ...
by stoppedcaring
Tue Nov 18, 2014 3:37 pm UTC
Forum: What If?
Topic: What-If 0003: "Yoda"
Replies: 122
Views: 59960

Re: What-If 0003:" Yoda"

I noticed a problem with Randall's calculation. When Yoda lifted the ship he was a certain distance away from it. If he were closer, we can assume he would be more powerful, since if force stayed constant with change of distance then it wouldn't be realistic. Thus we must make an assumption about t...
by stoppedcaring
Mon Nov 17, 2014 7:40 pm UTC
Forum: Serious Business
Topic: Can one prove a being doesn't exist?
Replies: 55
Views: 16628

Re: Can one prove a being doesn't exist?

Existence is not a predicate You get into trouble when you treat existence as a property of a 'thing' which it can either have or not have. To say 'X does not exist' means you have to be really really sure what you mean by X. This very statement highlights what you're saying -- the "thing"...
by stoppedcaring
Mon Nov 17, 2014 4:49 pm UTC
Forum: Serious Business
Topic: Can one prove a being doesn't exist?
Replies: 55
Views: 16628

Re: Can one prove a being doesn't exist?

In one sense -- a very loose sense, but a legitimate sense nonetheless -- everything that can be conceived does exist, even things which are inherently self-contradictory like square circles and non-male cisgender males. Simply by virtue of their being discussed, the mental state associated with the...
by stoppedcaring
Mon Nov 17, 2014 3:38 pm UTC
Forum: Science
Topic: Flying cars and jet-powered batwing
Replies: 110
Views: 23823

Re: Flying cars and jet-powered batwing

You know, I think we could relax my original #3 requirement -- fuel-efficient cruise mode -- as long as VTOL and "drive mode" were functional. Just having something that could VTOL or drive is big.
by stoppedcaring
Sun Nov 16, 2014 5:21 pm UTC
Forum: Science
Topic: Flying cars and jet-powered batwing
Replies: 110
Views: 23823

Re: Flying cars and jet-powered batwing

Copper Bezel wrote:Flying cars seem like the exact opposite of infrastructure development and urbanization, like they're really designed to encourage suburban sprawl and carbon emissions. I don't think we actually want people to have them, even if they're possible and safe.

Blasphemy! Blasphemy!
by stoppedcaring
Sat Nov 15, 2014 6:55 pm UTC
Forum: Science
Topic: Flying cars and jet-powered batwing
Replies: 110
Views: 23823

Re: Flying cars and jet-powered batwing

This guy has the right idea: [i]"For me, it has to be vertical take-off and landing," said Daniel Lubrich, the managing director of Krossblade Aerospace Systems . "I think this idea of an aircraft you can drive on the street but you still have to find an airport for is nice, but it d...
by stoppedcaring
Fri Nov 14, 2014 10:50 pm UTC
Forum: Science
Topic: Flying cars and jet-powered batwing
Replies: 110
Views: 23823

Re: Flying cars and jet-powered batwing

I have a quick aerodynamics/physics question. The whole concept of vertical lift is based on conservation of momentum; lifting force is proportional to the momentum imparted to a given mass of air. It takes more power to impart a high amount of momentum to a small mass of air; it takes less power to...
by stoppedcaring
Fri Nov 14, 2014 10:04 pm UTC
Forum: Science
Topic: What's the maximum lifetime of a candle wick?
Replies: 2
Views: 1878

Re: What's the maximum lifetime of a candle wick?

Sizik wrote:Or: How long could a candle last if you continuously replenish the supply of melted wax?

Wicks for oil lamps last a really long time; that's basically the same thing. They're treated with chemicals to make them flame-resistant; the fibers typically don't burn.
by stoppedcaring
Fri Nov 14, 2014 7:42 pm UTC
Forum: Science
Topic: Flying cars and jet-powered batwing
Replies: 110
Views: 23823

Re: Flying cars and jet-powered batwing

Eh, a police helicopter runs $500k-$3m; a Martin Jetpack costs $150k. Yeah, and a Martin Jetpack can't carry anything besides a pilot and a leatherman. But it can land in spaces a helicopter can't even approach, and it takes much less time to power up and take off. A LOT cheaper to operate, too. Lo...
by stoppedcaring
Fri Nov 14, 2014 6:11 pm UTC
Forum: Science
Topic: Flying cars and jet-powered batwing
Replies: 110
Views: 23823

Re: Flying cars and jet-powered batwing

[police/emergency responder is] more "time is of the essence" than "money is no object". Well, then would you rather have six helicopters, ensuring that one of them is already near the problem, or one flying car that's on the other side of town (and maybe in the middle of anothe...
by stoppedcaring
Fri Nov 14, 2014 3:47 pm UTC
Forum: Science
Topic: Flying cars and jet-powered batwing
Replies: 110
Views: 23823

Re: Flying cars and jet-powered batwing

I'd probably look at Elon Musk's decision that electric cars are going to be expensive for awhile, so try to compete with Porsche buyers instead of Prius buyers. If I was trying to not only build flying cars, but simultaneously build a startup that makes flying cars I would ponder why cars that cos...
by stoppedcaring
Thu Nov 13, 2014 5:26 pm UTC
Forum: Science
Topic: Flying cars and jet-powered batwing
Replies: 110
Views: 23823

Re: Flying cars and jet-powered batwing

Even if we forget about the car side of things, it's the "flying" bit that's important. To my knowledge, there is no manned VTOL craft capable of fitting into a garage. Anywhere. We need to rectify that. :) I really don't think that the horseless carriage had to fit in a horse's barn to r...
by stoppedcaring
Wed Nov 12, 2014 10:26 pm UTC
Forum: Science
Topic: Flying cars and jet-powered batwing
Replies: 110
Views: 23823

Re: Flying cars and jet-powered batwing

Well, you can reduce the power consumption of a fan by restricting the air flow going in, but that is a highly inefficient method. In many cases, you reduce output a lot with only a minor decrease in input. Good guide vanes are designed to prerotate the flow going into the fan, typically against th...
by stoppedcaring
Wed Nov 12, 2014 8:35 pm UTC
Forum: Science
Topic: Can protons be extracted from an acid solution?
Replies: 26
Views: 4208

Re: Can protons be extracted from an acid solution?

If you had all the protons from 1L of water in a sphere, you'd have about 53MC of charge in a sphere 6.2cm in radius, for a total electrostatic potential energy of 2.4e28 J, or 6 trillion megatons of TNT. That seems off, if I recall correctly 1 gram of matter/antimatter annihilation causes an explo...
by stoppedcaring
Fri Nov 07, 2014 10:26 pm UTC
Forum: Science
Topic: Flying cars and jet-powered batwing
Replies: 110
Views: 23823

Re: Flying cars and jet-powered batwing

This is just complete spitballing, but I wonder if two stacked blisks (of equal or different blade counts) could be designed to create an effective-variable-pitch system by changing their clock position relative to each other. E.g., when the blade edges are closely aligned, they exert less force on...
by stoppedcaring
Fri Nov 07, 2014 4:51 am UTC
Forum: School
Topic: Changing modern education into old style
Replies: 5
Views: 6067

Re: What if 0119, "Changing modern education into old style"

No, Daedalus is just posting in the wrong forum.

This subforum is for What-Ifs that Randal has done and posted. Not for random questions. Your question would likely be better served in one of the other subforums like Language. Or you can send the question directly to Randal and see if he runs it.
by stoppedcaring
Thu Nov 06, 2014 9:35 pm UTC
Forum: Science
Topic: Gravity vs Conservation of energy
Replies: 12
Views: 3313

Re: Gravity vs Conservation of energy

Disclaimer: I am a biologist. Much of what I wrote is probably incorrect, and based on nothing more than a mild obsession with KSP. Nah you got it right. Except for the direction of tidal locking, haha. Another example of why tides don't violate conservation of energy...suppose a sentient, industri...
by stoppedcaring
Thu Nov 06, 2014 9:21 pm UTC
Forum: What If?
Topic: What-If 0116: "No-Rules NASCAR"
Replies: 60
Views: 16273

Re: What-If 0116: "No-Rules NASCAR"

Remember also that the limit on spinning is for an object that holds together under its own tensile strength. If you attached lots of rockets to the track, so that no part had to support stress from other parts, then that particular limit doesn't apply. Of course, there's still the issue of how fas...
by stoppedcaring
Thu Nov 06, 2014 9:16 pm UTC
Forum: Science
Topic: Gravity vs Conservation of energy
Replies: 12
Views: 3313

Re: Gravity vs Conservation of energy

The energy you are extracting from tidal energy is, firstly, extracting a terribly minute amount of energy from a strikingly larger system, and secondly, extracting energy from a system that is not endless. Eventually the moon will be tidally locked, and the tides will cease. Eventually the Earth w...
by stoppedcaring
Thu Nov 06, 2014 9:14 pm UTC
Forum: Science
Topic: Flying cars and jet-powered batwing
Replies: 110
Views: 23823

Re: Flying cars and jet-powered batwing

On that note, since you're the AE here, are variable-pitch ducted fans a thing at all, or are ducted fans all invariably fixed-pitch? Variable-pitch fans would really add a lot of stability, simplicity, and reliability. Variable pitch ducted fans do exist, but aren't very common. The best example I...
by stoppedcaring
Thu Nov 06, 2014 8:39 pm UTC
Forum: Science
Topic: Gravity vs Conservation of energy
Replies: 12
Views: 3313

Re: Gravity vs Conservation of energy

Nothing can orbit forever due to gravitational wave radiation. But even neglecting gravitational wave radiation, the important question in determining whether something violates conservation of energy is to compare the energy of the system at time t = 0 and its state at time t > 0. Imagine a satelli...
by stoppedcaring
Thu Nov 06, 2014 5:01 pm UTC
Forum: Science
Topic: Flying cars and jet-powered batwing
Replies: 110
Views: 23823

Re: Flying cars and jet-powered batwing

More related to the original topic: Ive got a job interview coming up with a flying car company Seriously? Dude, that's awesome. Which company? Or can you say? The specific batwing-type appearance isn't entirely necessary, of course. But the goal is to fit a growing need in the military: manned cou...
by stoppedcaring
Thu Nov 06, 2014 2:50 pm UTC
Forum: What If?
Topic: What-If 0116: "No-Rules NASCAR"
Replies: 60
Views: 16273

Re: What-If 0116: "No-Rules NASCAR"

Hey, here is a second design idea. What if the engine of a standard sized / shaped car caused the whole track (and world?) to rotate / move underneath a now stationary car. Then the driver would be subject to no acceleration or angular momentum. Lots of possibilities there as long the track was of ...
by stoppedcaring
Wed Nov 05, 2014 3:23 pm UTC
Forum: Science
Topic: Apparently working Hoverboard... with some constraints.
Replies: 19
Views: 5829

Re: Apparently working Hoverboard... with some constraints.

I could see a tech-heavy university spending some stagnating building grant funds to put a series of slightly-concave aluminum trailways all around its campus. My university wasted a bunch of money giving all the cops useless Segways.
by stoppedcaring
Wed Nov 05, 2014 3:16 pm UTC
Forum: Fictional Science
Topic: The Light Saber problem
Replies: 122
Views: 61304

Re: The Light Saber problem

I thought the key to making a lightsaber was the special crystals used in their construction. The blade is exotic radiation created from passing a laser beam through the crystal. The energy beam reacts with solid materials and repels particles of a similar energy. Without sufficient matter to inter...
by stoppedcaring
Tue Nov 04, 2014 11:02 pm UTC
Forum: Science
Topic: Flying cars and jet-powered batwing
Replies: 110
Views: 23823

Re: Flying cars and jet-powered batwing

Ok, while it still looks like an infinite sink of R&D funds (requiring entirely new technologies needed simply to make the explicitly require entire new technologies to work), it might be a bit more sane. Well, "a bit more sane" is definitely a step in the right direction! :lol: There...
by stoppedcaring
Tue Nov 04, 2014 8:11 pm UTC
Forum: Science
Topic: Flying cars and jet-powered batwing
Replies: 110
Views: 23823

Re: Flying cars and jet-powered batwing

You don't think that having unpowered fans in the wings will affect lift/handling in level flight? Not with the control louvers closed, no. The louvers will certainly increase induced drag during transition, but that's to be expected. Once transition is complete and they are closed, the fans are ae...
by stoppedcaring
Tue Nov 04, 2014 8:07 pm UTC
Forum: Science
Topic: Apparently working Hoverboard... with some constraints.
Replies: 19
Views: 5829

Re: Apparently working Hoverboard... with some constraints.

Trying to run this thing on anything other than pure copper/aluminum would be hella tricky. "Additives" seem like the handwaving of a MAJOR hurdle. I agree, I could imagine it maybe working on some other conductive surfaces but marketing is marketing and nobody is going to rip up roads to...

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