Search found 189 matches

by nash1429
Tue Sep 13, 2016 3:28 am UTC
Forum: Individual XKCD Comic Threads
Topic: 1732: "Earth Temperature Timeline"
Replies: 540
Views: 133705

Re: 1732: "Earth Temperature Timeline"

What level of detail is necessary for public communication to qualify as "scientifically honest?" Is it dishonest to show drawings of the solar system that aren't to scale? Nice straw man. There aren't many people out there who need convincing about the existence and position of the plane...
by nash1429
Tue Sep 13, 2016 1:00 am UTC
Forum: Science
Topic: Tonic Water
Replies: 17
Views: 6362

Re: Tonic Water

The solubility of CO2 (and most other gases) decreases with temperature. See this . Yep, I'm an idiot. My gen chem prof once said something about carbonated beverages to the effect that colder=bubblier which I am probably misremembering and which I never really thought critically about. (Interestin...
by nash1429
Tue Sep 13, 2016 12:41 am UTC
Forum: Mathematics
Topic: Are "logical thinking" tests reliable/meaningful?
Replies: 19
Views: 5577

Re: Are "logical thinking" tests reliable/meaningful?

Well, they are used in IQ tests because "how well people perform on logical thinking exams" is correlated with most other measures of intelligence. So the idea is to measure intelligence by proxy by measuring performance in many areas established to be positively correlated to try to get ...
by nash1429
Tue Sep 13, 2016 12:27 am UTC
Forum: Individual XKCD Comic Threads
Topic: 1732: "Earth Temperature Timeline"
Replies: 540
Views: 133705

Re: 1732: "Earth Temperature Timeline"

thunk wrote:The idea is sound, but the execution could have been done better.


Ultimately, we're all silly for arguing about the scientific accuracy of a webcomic. It's definitely not egregiously wrong, and IMO it's about as accurate as anything you can reasonably expect in this medium.
by nash1429
Mon Sep 12, 2016 10:14 pm UTC
Forum: Science
Topic: Tonic Water
Replies: 17
Views: 6362

Re: Tonic Water

The solubility of CO2 in water is higher at higher temperatures. This means that CO2 leaves your beverage faster when it is colder, making it bubblier. However, that does not necessarily mean that storing your tonic water at room temperature will slow the loss of CO2 because you would also have a hi...
by nash1429
Mon Sep 12, 2016 10:01 pm UTC
Forum: Mathematics
Topic: Are "logical thinking" tests reliable/meaningful?
Replies: 19
Views: 5577

Re: Are "logical thinking" tests reliable/meaningful?

Even if you could create defensible logical thinking questions, I don't think presenting them in exam form will ever be reliable or meaningful for anything except measuring how well people perform on logical thinking exams.
by nash1429
Mon Sep 12, 2016 9:50 pm UTC
Forum: Individual XKCD Comic Threads
Topic: 1732: "Earth Temperature Timeline"
Replies: 540
Views: 133705

Re: 1732: "Earth Temperature Timeline"

Someone promptly accused me of destroying the planet because of the carbon footprint that the extra electricity would produce. ... meaniehead is my insult of choice for idiots like that. Perhaps there's a better one. meaniehead works for me. So, yeah, "people on the internet who annoy me."...
by nash1429
Mon Sep 12, 2016 9:41 pm UTC
Forum: Individual XKCD Comic Threads
Topic: 1732: "Earth Temperature Timeline"
Replies: 540
Views: 133705

Re: 1732: "Earth Temperature Timeline"

(Nevermind the stuff I mentioned earlier about it being two datasets with different characteristics tacked onto each other. Onward soldiers!) The purpose of this plot isn't to present scientific evidence, but to communicate scientific conclusions to the public. Instead of nitpicking about the way t...
by nash1429
Mon Sep 12, 2016 9:09 pm UTC
Forum: Individual XKCD Comic Threads
Topic: 1732: "Earth Temperature Timeline"
Replies: 540
Views: 133705

Re: 1732: "Earth Temperature Timeline"

(Nevermind the stuff I mentioned earlier about it being two datasets with different characteristics tacked onto each other. Onward soldiers!) The purpose of this plot isn't to present scientific evidence, but to communicate scientific conclusions to the public. Instead of nitpicking about the way t...
by nash1429
Mon Sep 12, 2016 7:35 pm UTC
Forum: Individual XKCD Comic Threads
Topic: 1732: "Earth Temperature Timeline"
Replies: 540
Views: 133705

Re: 1732: "Earth Temperature Timeline"

Surely Randall didn't cherry pick data on purpose, did he? Are you serious? Who's more likely to be cherry-picking: Randall or the Heritage Foundation ? It even says, right on your plot , that the data is limited to a random latitude band in the Northern Hemisphere. Can you show us one of the globa...
by nash1429
Mon Sep 12, 2016 5:41 pm UTC
Forum: Individual XKCD Comic Threads
Topic: 1732: "Earth Temperature Timeline"
Replies: 540
Views: 133705

Re: 1732: "Earth Temperature Timeline"

It just bugs me when people do that on a graph and then act as though it's all one data set. It's not. If we could have measured data on a daily basis for 20,000 years, it would be much noisier than what was drawn. That's true. I'm not really a climate scientist but I do environmental work that oft...
by nash1429
Mon Sep 12, 2016 4:58 pm UTC
Forum: Individual XKCD Comic Threads
Topic: 1732: "Earth Temperature Timeline"
Replies: 540
Views: 133705

Re: 1732: "Earth Temperature Timeline"

Am I missing something? the graph in the comic doesn't change scale. I assume the point is that the hockey stick we see at the end is just the sort of variation that we are not able to identify in the historical records (as Randall points out). It would be a more convincing argument if climate scie...
by nash1429
Mon Sep 12, 2016 4:26 pm UTC
Forum: Individual XKCD Comic Threads
Topic: 1732: "Earth Temperature Timeline"
Replies: 540
Views: 133705

1732: "Earth Temperature Timeline"

Image

Alt-text: "[After setting your car on fire] Listen, your car's temperature has changed before."

Interesting, I would have expected Randall to be aware of the doubts cast on the Beringia land bridge theory.
by nash1429
Wed Feb 17, 2016 6:29 pm UTC
Forum: Science
Topic: Should we consider string theory to be science? (Philosophy)
Replies: 32
Views: 5967

Re: Should we consider string theory to be science? (Philoso

You might be interested in String Theory and the Scientific Method and this related article . The book is written by a physicist-cum-philosopher and aims to answer the question: why do physicists believe they don't have empirical evidence for? It's less about the scientific method or the bounds of s...
by nash1429
Mon Dec 07, 2015 4:54 pm UTC
Forum: Individual XKCD Comic Threads
Topic: 1613: "The Three Laws of Robotics"
Replies: 120
Views: 28568

Re: 1613: "The Three Laws of Robotics"

You know what's actually really good? Foundation and Empire. Actually, I have no idea, I've never read Asimov. I want to at some point. I just don't know whether to read them in the order they were written or in the chronological order of events in the books. I would recommend reading them in the o...
by nash1429
Tue Mar 06, 2012 2:08 am UTC
Forum: School
Topic: What can you do with a BS in Physics?
Replies: 8
Views: 4533

Re: What can you do with a BS in Physics?

For what it's worth, I've heard that math and physics majors are often hired simply because the people hiring assume that someone with such a degree must be intelligent. It's not something to base a plan for the future on, but it's worth keeping in mind.
by nash1429
Mon Dec 05, 2011 5:33 am UTC
Forum: Individual XKCD Comic Threads
Topic: 0986: "Drinking Fountains"
Replies: 115
Views: 25293

Re: 0986: "Drinking Fountains"

The idea is to be drinking continuously and also pissing continuously, which means you could only be drinking a relatively small stream of water. You would have to have *extremely* precise control over urination rate for that to work. To the point where it might not be possible to have such a low r...
by nash1429
Mon Dec 05, 2011 5:29 am UTC
Forum: Individual XKCD Comic Threads
Topic: 0986: "Drinking Fountains"
Replies: 115
Views: 25293

Re: 0986: "Drinking Fountains"

The alt text is backwards. "drink FAST enough, and eliminate SLOWLY enough" would make more sense. Although I'm pretty sure this isn't possible anyway. You would probably die of water intoxication before reaching a steady-state. Yeah, I don't think the kidney would be able to process liqu...
by nash1429
Sun Aug 28, 2011 12:55 am UTC
Forum: Science
Topic: Finity
Replies: 60
Views: 7622

Re: Finity

Also, my argument has no intellectual merit. So you admit that? Assuming you aren't trolling, it seems like you're having some pretty fundamental conceptual problems with mathematics. This is not uncommon when people are exposed to sensationalist science on the internet or PBS and have trouble sepa...
by nash1429
Wed Aug 24, 2011 4:51 am UTC
Forum: Science
Topic: Math/Science Movies
Replies: 11
Views: 2326

Math/Science Movies

I searched a little bit for a topic like this but it seemed like most things were more about general science fiction that what I'm interested in. I'm looking for recommendations for movies that have mathematicians, scientists, and/or engineers in them. Preferably these movies would actually be focus...
by nash1429
Mon Dec 20, 2010 7:09 am UTC
Forum: Individual XKCD Comic Threads
Topic: 0836: "Sickness"
Replies: 299
Views: 56291

Re: 0836: "Sickness"

While science has been wonderfully beneficial to us as a species, I think a world run by scientists would be as scary as the (Western) world when it was run by the Catholic church. How many scientists have you met in person? While the world should never be run solely by one group of people, scienti...
by nash1429
Mon Dec 20, 2010 6:58 am UTC
Forum: Science
Topic: Is it possible to translate nerve signals?
Replies: 13
Views: 2320

Re: Is it possible to translate nerve signals?

justaman wrote:. The duration from time of injury plays a big role, if it has been too long, there is a good chance that the nerves have atrophied so they won't work any more.


It's my understanding that the nerves are taken over by other parts of the brain rather than dying.
by nash1429
Mon Dec 20, 2010 5:20 am UTC
Forum: Individual XKCD Comic Threads
Topic: 0836: "Sickness"
Replies: 299
Views: 56291

Re: 0836: "Sickness"

LordDragonfang wrote:Also, is that supposed to be the black hat guy's counterfoil, "white hat guy", or just some generic religious dude?


Interesting... Have we seen white hat guy before?
by nash1429
Tue Nov 09, 2010 8:53 am UTC
Forum: Mathematics
Topic: Can (PI) exist?
Replies: 24
Views: 4868

Re: Can (PI) exist?

Mathematical philosophy does not change the reality of the universe we live in. With only 39 digits of pi a circle can be constructed with a diameter equal to that of the known universe accurate to one atom of hydrogen.
by nash1429
Mon Sep 06, 2010 1:01 am UTC
Forum: School
Topic: Suspected Plagiarism?
Replies: 13
Views: 3004

Re: Suspected Plagiarism?

There are certain websites that use internet searches to determine the likelihood that something was plagiarized (I don't put much stock in them, but they seem o work reasonably well). The only one I can think of is turnitin.com, which requires a subscription from your school. You could use one of t...
by nash1429
Thu Sep 02, 2010 6:44 pm UTC
Forum: Mathematics
Topic: New poll shows that correlation is causation
Replies: 14
Views: 3726

Re: New poll shows that correlation is causation

If I had lung cancer, I'd smoke :) (And anecdotes and one point data sets are useful in statistics!) Useful in the way I use it: to convince the others that x is true even when there is only superficial evidence. This is how I got into college. Apparently, Ivies prefer anecdotal evidence over more ...
by nash1429
Mon Aug 30, 2010 4:00 am UTC
Forum: Mathematics
Topic: Wait, is this really true?
Replies: 36
Views: 4459

Re: Wait, is this really true?

++$_ wrote:nash: The plus signs make a huge difference; now the value under the radical goes to 0 as n goes to infinity.


Didn't notice that; pretty cool.
by nash1429
Mon Aug 30, 2010 3:54 am UTC
Forum: Mathematics
Topic: Wait, is this really true?
Replies: 36
Views: 4459

Re: Wait, is this really true?

While I agree that this is what MathFacts was trying to do, I don't see it as any more plausible than what he/she actually posted. the limit of 2^(n-1) as n approaches infinity should be infinity just like the limit of 2^n. Does someone have an explanation for something like that coming from wolfram?
by nash1429
Mon Aug 30, 2010 3:48 am UTC
Forum: Science
Topic: Finding a Quote
Replies: 5
Views: 835

Re: Finding a Quote

"Everything of importance has been said before by somebody who did not discover it." -Alfred Whitehead
by nash1429
Mon Aug 30, 2010 2:23 am UTC
Forum: Mathematics
Topic: Wait, is this really true?
Replies: 36
Views: 4459

Re: Wait, is this really true?

I remember reading about something that said that if you have a rectangular board with parallel lines evenly spaced across the whole board, and you toss toothpicks whose length is the same as the distance between the lines, the probability of a toothpick landing to cross one of the lines was a numb...
by nash1429
Sun Aug 29, 2010 5:40 am UTC
Forum: Mathematics
Topic: The American Math Competition
Replies: 30
Views: 3266

Re: The American Math Competition

the people with the highest scores just memorized lots of "competition theorems" in euclidean geometry and number theory that proved useless everywhere else. There are very few math competitions that I like for this very reason. My other problem is that I get stressed out by the time limi...
by nash1429
Sun Aug 29, 2010 5:29 am UTC
Forum: Science
Topic: Wanting to learn Classical Mechanics
Replies: 7
Views: 1244

Re: Wanting to learn Classical Mechanics

MIT Opencourseware? (Not sure if that's what doogly posted, my computer won't let me go to the page.)
by nash1429
Sat Aug 28, 2010 4:42 am UTC
Forum: Mathematics
Topic: Permutations and board games
Replies: 5
Views: 1023

Re: Permutations and board games

The number of legal positions in chess is estimated to be between 10^43 and 10^47 (a provable upper bound[84]), with a game-tree complexity of approximately 10^123. The game-tree complexity of chess was first calculated by Claude Shannon as 10^120, a number known as the Shannon number.[85] Typicall...
by nash1429
Sat Aug 28, 2010 4:28 am UTC
Forum: Mathematics
Topic: New poll shows that correlation is causation
Replies: 14
Views: 3726

Re: New poll shows that correlation is causation

"It is really a mandate from the people." commented one pundit who wished to remain anonymous. "It says that The American People are sick and tired of the scientific mumbo-jumbo that they keep trying to shove down our throats, and want some clear rules about what to believe. Now that...
by nash1429
Sat Aug 28, 2010 4:26 am UTC
Forum: Science
Topic: Are paradoxes proofs of impossibility (time travel)?
Replies: 30
Views: 4195

Re: Are paradoxes proofs of impossibility (time travel)?

Well yeah, if you throw around the word "paradox" for things which are actually completely resolvable, then it doesn't mean something's impossible. For example, Zeno's Paradoxes. Even if we don't have a resolution now we might have one later. Perhaps the OP should read up on general relat...
by nash1429
Wed Aug 25, 2010 9:54 pm UTC
Forum: School
Topic: Lockers? Bah!
Replies: 48
Views: 7886

Re: Lockers? Bah!

A back pack is not feasible when your classes for one day require at least 3 large textbooks and 3 large ring binders. I would've lost feeling in my arm carrying that around. I killed one pack by overstuffing it, then got a slightly smaller one and carried a textbook or two in my arms. At this poin...
by nash1429
Wed Aug 25, 2010 9:34 pm UTC
Forum: Science
Topic: Young Earth Arguments
Replies: 26
Views: 4509

Re: Young Earth Arguments

I have always thought it interesting that creationists slam evolutionists for manipulating data to fit their worldview, when in fact it is the creationists who are usually trying to make data fit the bible. On the topic of convincing creationists that they are wrong: I recently found (either with St...
by nash1429
Wed Aug 25, 2010 5:02 am UTC
Forum: Science
Topic: Ok, seriously, rounding
Replies: 16
Views: 2600

Re: Ok, seriously, rounding

Basically, your error is that you only take into account .0 in one end of your scale. aight now I feel really out of the loop. This is what I imagined rounding to an integer to be. You've got some number N, and you remove 1 from it as many times as you can without it going negative (N%1), and you'r...
by nash1429
Sat Aug 21, 2010 7:35 am UTC
Forum: School
Topic: Trigonometry and Logic
Replies: 40
Views: 5169

Re: Trigonometry and Logic

Although problems decreased as classes became more advanced or higher track, it always seemed to me that there was an emphasis on calculation through memorization (some of which I admit is vital) as opposed to creative problem solving. When I was in high school I thought it was interesting that the ...
by nash1429
Fri Aug 20, 2010 6:51 am UTC
Forum: School
Topic: Reactions to your Major
Replies: 344
Views: 60593

Re: Reactions to your Major

I usually try to avoid such topics when I am not around people who I know are aware of the different scientific disciplines and what they entail. When it does come up it gets so awkward... I feel like shaking people and saying "I am NOT a genius, I just happen to be interested in using my knowl...

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