1720: "Horses"

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1720: "Horses"

Postby Soupspoon » Mon Aug 15, 2016 12:23 pm UTC

Image

Alt text: "This car has 240% of a horse's decision-making ability and produces only 30% as much poop."

Knowing the practices of White Hat, he has actually found a (humane?) way of stabling 203½ horses within the bodywork, somehow.
Last edited by Soupspoon on Mon Aug 15, 2016 2:08 pm UTC, edited 1 time in total.

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Re: 1720: "Horses"

Postby Whizbang » Mon Aug 15, 2016 12:37 pm UTC

Go right to the source and ask the horse
He'll give you the answer that you'll endorse.
He's always on a steady course.
Talk to Mr. Ed.

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Re: 1720: "Horses"

Postby leeharveyosmond » Mon Aug 15, 2016 12:39 pm UTC

Possibly Randall has never investigated getting a horse drunk.

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Re: 1720: "Horses"

Postby Echo244 » Mon Aug 15, 2016 12:40 pm UTC

I love Ponytail. She makes so much sense.

Except, you know, the horses might walk over to the tree anyway to munch fruit. Or wander down the wrong carriageway. Ignore the red light. Treat the level crossing barrier as a fence to jump over.

It'll be a long time before most affordable cars can do that last one, but when they do I want one.

...and, uh, according to the forum rules the image should be a link to http://xkcd.com/1720/ ...
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Re: 1720: "Horses"

Postby Mental Mouse » Mon Aug 15, 2016 1:09 pm UTC

I suspect Randall is idealizing horses a little too much. Yes, horses can balk at conditions they see as unsafe, but they still have their limits, including that they are domesticated, and trained to obey human orders.

An unwise human rider can certainly ride a horses into unsafe terrain, urge them to a jump they can't actually make, or just drive them beyond the limits of their endurance (look up "foundering"). Sure, a horse might shy away from riding into a tree... but at speed, they might not be able to avoid it (that is, in a forest or suchlike). And they'll also shy away from various motions, shadows, or creatures that aren't in fact threats.

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Re: 1720: "Horses"

Postby cellocgw » Mon Aug 15, 2016 1:27 pm UTC

Mental Mouse wrote:I suspect Randall is idealizing horses a little too much. Yes, horses can balk at conditions they see as unsafe, but they still have their limits, including that they are domesticated, and trained to obey human orders.

An unwise human rider can certainly ride a horses into unsafe terrain, urge them to a jump they can't actually make, or just drive them beyond the limits of their endurance (look up "foundering"). Sure, a horse might shy away from riding into a tree... but at speed, they might not be able to avoid it (that is, in a forest or suchlike). And they'll also shy away from various motions, shadows, or creatures that aren't in fact threats.


Ok, then, for an extra $3500, you get the "Police-trained horse" version of the CPU. Those beasts don't flinch at anything.
Or, if you like performance roadsters, the "Polo-pony" version.

ETA Since it might be difficult to program up the Three Laws of Robotic Horses, I recommend just programming in a large virtual Image into the horse-cpu
Last edited by cellocgw on Tue Aug 16, 2016 3:20 pm UTC, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: 1720: "Horses"

Postby orthogon » Mon Aug 15, 2016 1:44 pm UTC

Mental Mouse wrote:I suspect Randall is idealizing horses a little too much.

Weren't horse-and-carriage accidents fairly common, too? I'm pretty sure a pedestrian gets killed early on in A Tale of Two Cities, and presumably carriages themselves would overturn when cornering etc.

Still, nice comic and a point well made.
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Re: 1720: "Horses"

Postby davearonson » Mon Aug 15, 2016 1:49 pm UTC

A car salesman in a white hat?!

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Re: 1720: "Horses"

Postby fangbeer » Mon Aug 15, 2016 1:52 pm UTC

Problematic issues arise when your horse car gets a flat tire. Do you have to put a bullet in the engine block, or just reboot the ecu?

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Re: 1720: "Horses"

Postby Story » Mon Aug 15, 2016 2:00 pm UTC

The first time I went horse riding, my horse immediately tried to kill me (by running under a roof that was too short for me).

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Re: 1720: "Horses"

Postby Soupspoon » Mon Aug 15, 2016 2:07 pm UTC

Echo244 wrote:I love Ponytail. She makes so much sense.

Except, you know, the horses might walk over to the tree anyway to munch fruit. Or wander down the wrong carriageway. Ignore the red light. Treat the level crossing barrier as a fence to jump over.

It'll be a long time before most affordable cars can do that last one, but when they do I want one.
I was going to suggest waiting for a cat-driven vehicle, the KITTY (Kat My Friend Katherine Industries Twenty Twenty, Yowl?), but driving, or indeed going to sleep, on the top of walls might be a problem.

...and, uh, according to the forum rules the image should be a link to http://xkcd.com/1720/ ...
...whoops, correcting my erroneous copypasta in a moment. Done! (It seems that thw error arose because I used 1719 as a template, and that was/still is also lacking... I'll let someone else nudge that author, though.)

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Re: 1720: "Horses"

Postby ucim » Mon Aug 15, 2016 2:40 pm UTC

Never mind horses - what about deer? Deer crash into cars (yes, in addition to cars crashing into deer)... I wonder if deer ever crash into each other as they bound about in the forest.

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Re: 1720: "Horses"

Postby da Doctah » Mon Aug 15, 2016 2:59 pm UTC

ucim wrote:Never mind horses - what about deer? Deer crash into cars (yes, in addition to cars crashing into deer)... I wonder if deer ever crash into each other as they bound about in the forest.


You must live in a place where the image of a couple of stags deliberately running at one another head-first isn't a meme. (And even if you've never witnessed it yourself, there was this guy named Disney who used to make these nature films....)

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Re: 1720: "Horses"

Postby RAGBRAIvet » Mon Aug 15, 2016 3:05 pm UTC

Excuse me, but with "3.5 horses in the computer" wouldn't that be the equus-valent of 350% of a horse's decision-making ability?

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Re: 1720: "Horses"

Postby Showsni » Mon Aug 15, 2016 3:20 pm UTC

RAGBRAIvet wrote:Excuse me, but with "3.5 horses in the computer" wouldn't that be the equus-valent of 350% of a horse's decision-making ability?


Unless the 350% includes proportionally more body and less brain. But actually I think the title text car is just a different car to the third frame car.

How about dog sleds? Are dogs more intelligent than horses?

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Re: 1720: "Horses"

Postby Soupspoon » Mon Aug 15, 2016 3:25 pm UTC

RAGBRAIvet wrote:Excuse me, but with "3.5 horses in the computer" wouldn't that be the equus-valent of 350% of a horse's decision-making ability?

Hmm, does a committee accumulate decisiveness for each additional member in it? I'm not sure. I think I'll have to refer that important question to a break-out subcommitte, to more thoroughly discuss the issue. I move that we concoct a motion to decide who to assign to such a group, and who else we might also subpoena to that group from outside the standing members. But first, I think we've got a coffee-break coming up, and rather than break the next item half way, I think we should take it now. All in favour?

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Re: 1720: "Horses"

Postby ucim » Mon Aug 15, 2016 4:11 pm UTC

da Doctah wrote:You must live in a place where the image of a couple of stags deliberately running at one another head-first isn't a meme. (And even if you've never witnessed it yourself, there was this guy named Disney who used to make these nature films....)
I mean accidentally.

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Re: 1720: "Horses"

Postby keithl » Mon Aug 15, 2016 5:18 pm UTC

da Doctah wrote:And even if you've never witnessed it yourself, there was this guy named Disney who used to make these nature films....)
Disney made fiction films, sometimes killing animals as props.. He helped exile American rocket scientists (Frank Molina and Qian Xuesen) while promoting former Nazis. Now his legacy is the draconian extension of copyright and the suppression of fair use.
Ah well. My loathing of Disney stems from Disney films in junior high science classes, instead of real science. Now my science-ignorant age group dominates the government and the schools. Ignorance begets ignorance.
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Re: 1720: "Horses"

Postby keithl » Mon Aug 15, 2016 5:22 pm UTC

Absent-minded scientist Pierre Curie was killed by a horse-drawn carriage. Horseback riding cripples and kills more young people than heroin. Pro-tips: avoid science, and inject heroin before mounting a horse.

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Re: 1720: "Horses"

Postby wumpus » Mon Aug 15, 2016 5:54 pm UTC

Mental Mouse wrote:I suspect Randall is idealizing horses a little too much. Yes, horses can balk at conditions they see as unsafe, but they still have their limits, including that they are domesticated, and trained to obey human orders.

An unwise human rider can certainly ride a horses into unsafe terrain, urge them to a jump they can't actually make, or just drive them beyond the limits of their endurance (look up "foundering"). Sure, a horse might shy away from riding into a tree... but at speed, they might not be able to avoid it (that is, in a forest or suchlike). And they'll also shy away from various motions, shadows, or creatures that aren't in fact threats.


My understanding of "horseback riding under the influence" is that in such locations that riding off from the bar is still a thing (Montana and Idaho, USA) was that if you held the reigns you were accountable for "drinking and driving". Don't touch the reigns (and presumably just tell the horse to "go home") and you are ok. Note that is "thrice told internet tales", but it is reasonably believable.

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Re: 1720: "Horses"

Postby Snard » Mon Aug 15, 2016 6:59 pm UTC

I'm really surprised that no one has mentioned "correct horse battery staple" so far on this thread.

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Re: 1720: "Horses"

Postby jc » Mon Aug 15, 2016 8:19 pm UTC

Soupspoon wrote:Hmm, does a committee accumulate decisiveness for each additional member in it? I'm not sure....


There's an old theory that the intelligence of a group of humans is an inverse function of the number of members, though there's disagreement about the function. Some think it's just the number of people; others insist that it's the square of the number of people; a few magnanimous writers have suggested that it's actually an inverse exponential. Somehow, nobody suggests that the function has a positive slope. ;-)

(But I do note that you said "decisiveness", not "intelligence". It's entire possible that the decisiveness goes up as the intelligence goes down.)

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Re: 1720: "Horses"

Postby Heimhenge » Mon Aug 15, 2016 8:55 pm UTC

RAGBRAIvet wrote:Excuse me, but with "3.5 horses in the computer" wouldn't that be the equus-valent of 350% of a horse's decision-making ability?


No, it would be the equivalent of a 2610 W power supply ... pretty beefy and up to the demands of any nag nav computer.

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Re: 1720: "Horses"

Postby somitomi » Mon Aug 15, 2016 9:24 pm UTC

ucim wrote:Never mind horses - what about deer? Deer crash into cars (yes, in addition to cars crashing into deer)... I wonder if deer ever crash into each other as they bound about in the forest.

Jose

No matter how good deer might be at avoiding dangers, I do not want my car to try running accross the road in front of an aproaching other car.
Not to mention this: [WARNING, this image is a bit disturbing]
Spoiler:
Image
"Find the deer"
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Re: 1720: "Horses"

Postby rmsgrey » Mon Aug 15, 2016 9:45 pm UTC

wumpus wrote:
Mental Mouse wrote:I suspect Randall is idealizing horses a little too much. Yes, horses can balk at conditions they see as unsafe, but they still have their limits, including that they are domesticated, and trained to obey human orders.

An unwise human rider can certainly ride a horses into unsafe terrain, urge them to a jump they can't actually make, or just drive them beyond the limits of their endurance (look up "foundering"). Sure, a horse might shy away from riding into a tree... but at speed, they might not be able to avoid it (that is, in a forest or suchlike). And they'll also shy away from various motions, shadows, or creatures that aren't in fact threats.


My understanding of "horseback riding under the influence" is that in such locations that riding off from the bar is still a thing (Montana and Idaho, USA) was that if you held the reigns you were accountable for "drinking and driving". Don't touch the reigns (and presumably just tell the horse to "go home") and you are ok. Note that is "thrice told internet tales", but it is reasonably believable.

And if you don't know the difference between "reins" and "reigns", you get mocked online ;)

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Re: 1720: "Horses"

Postby commodorejohn » Tue Aug 16, 2016 3:39 am UTC

Mental Mouse wrote:I suspect Randall is idealizing horses a little too much. Yes, horses can balk at conditions they see as unsafe, but they still have their limits, including that they are domesticated, and trained to obey human orders.

Still, your average horse can tell the difference between a semi trailer and a cloud.
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Re: 1720: "Horses"

Postby RogueCynic » Tue Aug 16, 2016 4:15 am UTC

Soupspoon wrote:
Echo244 wrote:I love Ponytail. She makes so much sense.

Except, you know, the horses might walk over to the tree anyway to munch fruit. Or wander down the wrong carriageway. Ignore the red light. Treat the level crossing barrier as a fence to jump over.

It'll be a long time before most affordable cars can do that last one, but when they do I want one.
I was going to suggest waiting for a cat-driven vehicle, the KITTY (Kat My Friend Katherine Industries Twenty Twenty, Yowl?), but driving, or indeed going to sleep, on the top of walls might be a problem.

...and, uh, according to the forum rules the image should be a link to http://xkcd.com/1720/ ...
...whoops, correcting my erroneous copypasta in a moment. Done! (It seems that thw error arose because I used 1719 as a template, and that was/still is also lacking... I'll let someone else nudge that author, though.)


Probably not a good idea to have a cat drive a car. George Carlin once said the difference between a cat and dog was that when a dog did something stupid, the dog looked at you with an expression that said "yeah, I know. That was stupid.". When a cat did something stupid, his expression said "I meant to do that. Want to see me do it again". A cat powered car may hit a tree, then do it again just to seem cool.

orthogon wrote:
Mental Mouse wrote:I suspect Randall is idealizing horses a little too much.

Weren't horse-and-carriage accidents fairly common, too? I'm pretty sure a pedestrian gets killed early on in A Tale of Two Cities, and presumably carriages themselves would overturn when cornering etc.

Still, nice comic and a point well made.


Someone dies in a carriage accident in "Great Expectations" as well.
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Re: 1720: "Horses"

Postby Copper Bezel » Tue Aug 16, 2016 7:14 am UTC

So what you're saying is, it should be fine unless we let Dickens drive the carriage? Definitely don't use him in the self-driving car....
So much depends upon a red wheel barrow (>= XXII) but it is not going to be installed.

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Re: 1720: "Horses"

Postby commodorejohn » Tue Aug 16, 2016 7:16 am UTC

I think as a general rule, the less association you have with Dickens, the better your long-term prospects.
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Re: 1720: "Horses"

Postby Wee Red Bird » Tue Aug 16, 2016 7:23 am UTC

"There's a rock I passed on my way out but didn't notice. Must jump in the air and run away as fast as possible."

Image

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Re: 1720: "Horses"

Postby Wee Red Bird » Tue Aug 16, 2016 7:56 am UTC

orthogon wrote:Weren't horse-and-carriage accidents fairly common, too? I'm pretty sure a pedestrian gets killed early on in A Tale of Two Cities, and presumably carriages themselves would overturn when cornering etc.

That's when you need a set of low profiles on your carriage to let it corner at faster speeds.

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Re: 1720: "Horses"

Postby Mahnarch » Tue Aug 16, 2016 3:23 pm UTC

orthogon wrote:
Mental Mouse wrote:I suspect Randall is idealizing horses a little too much.

Weren't horse-and-carriage accidents fairly common, too? I'm pretty sure a pedestrian gets killed early on in A Tale of Two Cities, and presumably carriages themselves would overturn when cornering etc.

Still, nice comic and a point well made.



Then, again, that was back in the day when people died from get a sliver in their hand.

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Re: 1720: "Horses"

Postby Mikeski » Tue Aug 16, 2016 5:32 pm UTC

Mahnarch wrote:
orthogon wrote:
Mental Mouse wrote:I suspect Randall is idealizing horses a little too much.

Weren't horse-and-carriage accidents fairly common, too? I'm pretty sure a pedestrian gets killed early on in A Tale of Two Cities, and presumably carriages themselves would overturn when cornering etc.
Still, nice comic and a point well made.

Then, again, that was back in the day when people died from get a sliver in their hand.

Then, again again, "sure, your 3.5 horsebrainpower car will crash all the time, but with modern safety features and modern medicine, you'll almost surely survive" isn't what I'd consider a selling point.

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Re: 1720: "Horses"

Postby MarkW » Tue Aug 16, 2016 5:51 pm UTC

Can some with a ranch run a head-to-head competition between a horse and Tesla Autopilot's Summon feature. Which one will reach the barn first? fastest? Injuries to the competitor incur time penalties.

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Re: 1720: "Horses"

Postby speising » Tue Aug 16, 2016 6:10 pm UTC

MarkW wrote:Can some with a ranch run a head-to-head competition between a horse and Tesla Autopilot's Summon feature. Which one will reach the barn first? fastest? Injuries to the competitor incur time penalties.

The question is: can you jump into the driver's seat from a second floor window?

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Re: 1720: "Horses"

Postby StClair » Wed Aug 17, 2016 12:21 am UTC

... without landing on the gearshift?

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Re: 1720: "Horses"

Postby philipquarles » Wed Aug 17, 2016 12:25 am UTC

Fun fact: an actual horse can output significantly more than one horsepower for short periods of time. The highest power output ever documented by a single horse is 14.9hp. source

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Re: 1720: "Horses"

Postby Eoink » Fri Aug 19, 2016 12:23 pm UTC

philipquarles wrote:Fun fact: an actual horse can output significantly more than one horsepower for short periods of time. The highest power output ever documented by a single horse is 14.9hp. source


So in this case one horsepower = 14.9 horsepower, divide both sides by horsepower, 1=14.9.

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Re: 1720: "Horses"

Postby Neil_Boekend » Fri Aug 19, 2016 12:48 pm UTC

1 horse power is 735,5 W.
A trained cyclist can put out 600-800 W in a sprint.
A tour de France pro can put out 1200 - 1400 W during a sprint (this does require significant sacrifices in their personal lives to allow for the required training)
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Re: 1720: "Horses"

Postby Mahnarch » Wed Aug 24, 2016 1:46 pm UTC

Mikeski wrote:
Mahnarch wrote:
orthogon wrote:
Mental Mouse wrote:I suspect Randall is idealizing horses a little too much.

Weren't horse-and-carriage accidents fairly common, too? I'm pretty sure a pedestrian gets killed early on in A Tale of Two Cities, and presumably carriages themselves would overturn when cornering etc.
Still, nice comic and a point well made.

Then, again, that was back in the day when people died from get a sliver in their hand.

Then, again again, "sure, your 3.5 horsebrainpower car will crash all the time, but with modern safety features and modern medicine, you'll almost surely survive" isn't what I'd consider a selling point.


I first read that as "safety feathers", and now I'm picturing a car crashing and it looking like a bird exploding from it. :D


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