0354: "Startling"

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muteKi
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Re: "Startling" discussion

Postby muteKi » Fri Dec 07, 2007 5:15 pm UTC

1337geek wrote:This comic isn't very funny, but reading this thread has informed me that I'm not as young as I thought I was (in the forum, anyway). I'm 19, but there are high-schoolers posting! I'm interested now to know what the mean and median ages of the xkcd forum users are. I assume they're mostly college students like me, but clearly there are younger and older people posting, too.


I was in HS when I joined.
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Re: "Startling" discussion

Postby russianspy1234 » Fri Dec 07, 2007 5:21 pm UTC

when ever someone tells me what year they were born, my immediete impulse is always to reference their age from 2000. I have to do a double take almost every time. then again, this was only a problem when I was meeting people online, IRL its a bit easier since I can actually see that they are my age.

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Re: "Startling" discussion

Postby TBIRallySport » Fri Dec 07, 2007 5:26 pm UTC

Shpadoinkle wrote:Also, will I still be interested in sex when they finally roll out with sex robots?

"Have you guessed the name of Billy's planet? It was Earth! DON'T DATE ROBOTS!"


taptap wrote:my little sister just got her driver's liscense the other day and i passed her while driving through town... that was my startling moment!

I have to agree with this. Seeing my younger brothers drive is just wrong somehow. (As a point of reference, I'm 23 and they're 21 and 18.)

I also remember that back in elementary school, I made two little time capsules for myself, and wrote on them to open them in 2000/2001, because anything past that would be way too long to wait. And now it's almost 2008 and I haven't opened them because I lost them. I wonder if they're down in the basement somewhere . . . .

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Re: "Startling" discussion

Postby Fieari » Fri Dec 07, 2007 6:20 pm UTC

I no longer have the "Crap! I'm grown up!" reaction (though I used to on a regular basis), but I do find myself shocked that all these little kids can drive.

I still have to correct myself and try not to write "19" for dates.
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Re: "Startling" discussion

Postby Vandole » Fri Dec 07, 2007 6:23 pm UTC

Holy shit, I'm turning 18 in less than a month.

I'm going to be an adult!
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Re: "Startling" discussion

Postby rockintom99 » Fri Dec 07, 2007 6:32 pm UTC

'; DROP DATABASE;-- wrote:For some reason I find myself not so often going "holy shit, it's 2007" but rather "holy shit, I'm 20". O_o


Seriously. I still haven't come to terms with that.
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Re: "Startling" discussion

Postby Steve the Pocket » Fri Dec 07, 2007 6:54 pm UTC

TimKoene wrote:2000-2010 "The naughties"

That's actually the first time I've ever heard it called that, but I'm tempted to use it from now on.
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Re: "Startling" discussion

Postby LarrySDonald » Fri Dec 07, 2007 7:08 pm UTC

In my native language, years are expressed as "x hundred y", such as "nineteen hundred seven" or "eighteen hundred sixty two". The linguists started pushing "twenty hundred (something) in like '95, which made perfect sense because it didn't sound all that odd and followed suite for previous speech perfectly. It didn't work at all, people still say "two thousand and .." instead, as if calling 2000 "Twenty hundred" is any stranger then calling 1900 "Nineteen hundred" which never really happens unless it's a year (not sure if it's grammatically correct as in "I have nineteen hundred and five grains of sand in this pile", but if it is it's sure not used much).

I can never remember what year it is and one of the selling points last time I bought a new watch was that the year (in full, 2007) is displayed on the standard panel usually shown. I demand it shows time and date (including month) - I just cannot live without it. It's pretty vital that it also shows day of the week, because I forget that too and would only give it up for some pretty awesome feature. I really appreciate if it also has the last two of the year (07). Just to ultimately comfort my senses, it should also give which century, which I considered an upgrade the first time a watch gave me all this. The one I'm wearing now tells me "MM: 12 DD: 7 Yr: 2007 13:06:45 FRI (small icon to show it synced to Colorado less then 24 hours ago and is for sure within .2 sec of official time and date)". Ahh.. Bliss..

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Re: "Startling" discussion

Postby der_bAUer » Fri Dec 07, 2007 7:19 pm UTC

I am also very grateful for the display of the day of the week on my watch.

But hey, it's the 21st century and they still don't have all of Germany covered with decent broadband connections!

Code: Select all

print "A" + "".join(["R"] * 1000000) + "GH"


I think I should have been born in the 80's, when your connection speed was determined by the amount of money you could afford to spend for a modem. Now, our communication costs (phone + internet) are twice of what we would pay in a city/town where we could get DSL. And the internet connection is crap when compared to DSL. And it isn't even a flat.

The only "cool, it's the 21st century!!" thing I can do is "cool, I can record television on my computer and watch it timeshifted", although I think that was also possible (although maybe not affordable) in the last century.

Also: whoa! it's december already! In ~two weeks, it will only be half a year until I will graduate, at which point I have to know all the stuff we learned in Maths and Physics in the last three years. PANIC!!

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Re: "Startling" discussion

Postby somdude04 » Fri Dec 07, 2007 7:28 pm UTC

Yeah, this is more like a once a week thing for me. Last night it was: "Holy crap, only 4 finals left till I graduate college and exist in the so-called 'real world'". Luckily, I still have a whole semester ahead, and only 2 classes in it. Basically a vacation before I graduate.

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Re: "Startling" discussion

Postby Comrade_Smack » Fri Dec 07, 2007 7:48 pm UTC

I usually have the converse problem. "Wow, there is a black man running for president. It was only 50 years ago when it wasn't socially acceptable for them to share a bathroom." The speed at which we are changing is astonishing. It may seem like "Wow, that was 10 years ago..." but it really was only ten years ago. That being said, Any time I think of the past I usually think of me being like 13-16 when it happened. Then I check the dates and realize I was more like 6. And all the technological advances we don't have yet. Ask Ray Kurzweil. It's on the horizon.

As to the folks saying "Holy shit, I'm 20" Think of it this way. You could move to a different country/state, live there for the next 20 years, and move back to where you live now. At that point, people would invariably ask you where you were from (from the accent) and you'd probably reply as to the place you just moved from. For instance, Minnesota girl moves to Georgia at 20, lives there for 25 years, returns home. She would most likely be referred as a "southern" girl.

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Re: "Startling" discussion

Postby OmenPigeon » Fri Dec 07, 2007 8:30 pm UTC

LarrySDonald wrote:(small icon to show it synced to Colorado less then 24 hours ago and is for sure within .2 sec of official time and date)". Ahh.. Bliss..

Oh, man. That's hawt. I have a problem with worrying about my clocks going out of sync, both with official times and with each other. About once a week I go around and manually sync one of them to a Navy clock, then sync all the others to that one.

What brand was this watch?
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Re: "Startling" discussion

Postby Izawwlgood » Fri Dec 07, 2007 8:57 pm UTC

Still no flying cars.
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Re: "Startling" discussion

Postby captainoblivious » Fri Dec 07, 2007 9:03 pm UTC

I freaked the fuck out when I saw a "(c)2007" on Super Mario Galaxy. Then again, this may actually be the first new game I've played in a while. After much scientific query, I've decided that I'm perpetually stuck in the year 1997. Which isn't such a bad thing, I guess. There was decent music on the radio (the ska and rockabilly genres enjoyed alternative radio airplay around that time), games were good (GoldenEye 007 (and by extension, Perfect Dark) was the first FPS I could actually play through, the Half-Life series is the other), and movies didn't have numbers behind them. How far we have fallen.
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Re: "Startling" discussion

Postby redneckracin » Fri Dec 07, 2007 9:11 pm UTC

I get my "oh shit" moment every time i watch terminator 2 and i realize they thought 10 years ago was going to be judgment day.

I find it disturbing the kids are still trying to sell their 93 prelude for 3g's as if its still the year 2000 lol

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Re: "Startling" discussion

Postby PatrickRsGhost » Fri Dec 07, 2007 9:34 pm UTC

aeiss wrote:He's floating in the third panel. Almost. Wish I had core strength like that.


He's actually levitating a bit in the first panel.

Now that I live with my parents, I've come to realize just how many places/cities we've lived in. Holy shit, it was a lot. And only in the short span of 28 (28? WTHF?) years. I think I've lived in more places than most people I know.

I find it hard to believe that we've come so far in technology and everything else. Computers used to only be used for word processing, spreadsheets, a few cheap games, and that was it. The Internet was a place to research some information, chat with others, and post to message boards. Nowadays you can do almost anything via the Internet. Some houses are actually wired up and have wireless controllers that you can operate from your computer wherever you are. You can turn on the lights in certain rooms, turn on the TV, stereo, and a few other electrical gadgets.

Here's one thing that kind of freaked me out: A job I worked at back in 2001 was as the Parts Coordinator for the Maintenance crew at a distribution center for a major retailer. One of my duties was to turn on and off the HVAC units throughout the building as needed. Usually someone (mainly a shift supervisor) from a department would call me and say that it was too hot or cold in their department. I would then turn the AC or the heat on or off. It was all controlled by a single computer. I just opened up the HVAC grid, clicked on a section, clicked on a unit, then clicked on either "On" or "Off." I could do the same thing with most of the lights in the building. There were times I had to do it, mainly when we returned from a three-day weekend like Memorial Day or July 4th weekends.

I'm still waiting for the matter transporters we were promised, and the rocket packs. Flying cars, not so much. Rocket packs FTW.

Oh, well. At least we have footomobiles, even though I don't think I'd ever use one. They just don't look safe.

These are some wacky predictions, although some have come somewhat true.
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Re: "Startling" discussion

Postby 1337geek » Fri Dec 07, 2007 9:36 pm UTC

Moo wrote:
1337geek wrote:I'm interested now to know what the mean and median ages of the xkcd forum users are.
For your interest: Age thread

Thanks! I figured there was such a topic, but I couldn't find it.
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whuhoh, bunch of quotes

Postby '; DROP DATABASE;-- » Fri Dec 07, 2007 10:44 pm UTC

cjsedwards wrote:They have 8 years to develop flying cars and hover boards, or I am not going to be impressed. Doc brown better not have screwed up the future as badly as I think he has...
Also, they have only 24 days to release The World. I'm wondering if they will at all given that Pluto Kiss* didn't cause nearly as much damage as expected. :-/

*which I'm guessing was the name of at least one insignificant nobody-cares virus released in 2005.

e946 wrote:The only time I'm really surprised by this is when I play donkey kong country and it says (C) Nintendo 1994 on the splash screen. That game's almost 14 years old.
The other day I was playing Zelda OoT when it hit me. "Holy shit, this game's like... 9 years old! That can't be right."

TBIRallySport wrote:
taptap wrote:my little sister just got her driver's liscense the other day and i passed her while driving through town... that was my startling moment!

I have to agree with this. Seeing my younger brothers drive is just wrong somehow. (As a point of reference, I'm 23 and they're 21 and 18.)
I had a similar experience when I realized my younger brother was starting high school. Like what? It seems not too long ago I was starting high school!

LarrySDonald wrote:I can never remember what year it is and one of the selling points last time I bought a new watch was that the year (in full, 2007) is displayed on the standard panel usually shown. I demand it shows time and date (including month) - I just cannot live without it. It's pretty vital that it also shows day of the week, because I forget that too and would only give it up for some pretty awesome feature. I really appreciate if it also has the last two of the year (07).
I love my watch that shows day of week, day of month, and month. I don't generally have trouble remembering the year, so I don't mind that. But it's a great watch. Waterproof, extremely durable, I don't remember how long ago I've had it but it's been several years. There is no way I could start using a watch now that doesn't tell me the date.
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Re: "Startling" discussion

Postby Syphon » Fri Dec 07, 2007 11:14 pm UTC

I'm convinced the future is 2008. Something big is going to happen.

I was fine with 2006 becoming 2007, just another year. But since 2004 or so, I've been waiting for '08 with some sort of dull hope in the back of my head and I don't know why.

WWIII? First human resurrection? Man walks on Mars? Dinosaurs finally cloned? Who knows.

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Re: "Startling" discussion

Postby '; DROP DATABASE;-- » Fri Dec 07, 2007 11:23 pm UTC

Me too, actually. 2008 just has a funny feeling to it. A "something big is going to happen" kind of feeling.
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Re: "Startling" discussion

Postby Severius » Fri Dec 07, 2007 11:27 pm UTC

I do that all the time too. I read an Isaac Asimov story called Franchise the other day, it was written in 1955 and it's about the 2008 presidential elections. About halfway through I was like holy crap thats just next freaking year!

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Re: Startling discussion

Postby gumby » Fri Dec 07, 2007 11:29 pm UTC

screech wrote:In my mind, the future is 2010, which is only three years away. When we get there, I'm going to be so freaked out.

OK, so some think the future started in 2004 and at least one thinks 2010. Sounds like the future is unevenly distributed!

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Re: "Startling" discussion

Postby Sgt. Mateo » Fri Dec 07, 2007 11:30 pm UTC

False, false false. Everybody in this thread is wrong. Everyone knows it's not the future until we have flying cars.

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Re: "Startling" discussion

Postby foodeater184 » Fri Dec 07, 2007 11:38 pm UTC

I keep doing this too. It's November? Wait, no, now it's December! Why is it not 2005? I'll be starting college in less than a year! I'm almost 18! The 1930's were almost 80 years ago! We're less than 10 years into the new century! What is wrong with this world?

Pesto wrote:Every once in a while I have a "Holy crap, I'm an adult!" moment. I look at my hands and they seem completely normal, then I realize that they're now as large as my father's hands, and they start looking huge.

It's all part of my dawning realization that people older than me are people just like me, who are living their lives and experiencing new things just like I am. They're not these static entities called "adults" that have everything figured out.

Life is wierd.


I do that too, and I look around my school and realize that these people are still kids but they are also adults, and they look like adults, and I look like an adult.. and in most cases I think like an adult. It's amazing.

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Re: "Startling" discussion

Postby squark » Sat Dec 08, 2007 12:31 am UTC

Regarding 2007 being 'the future': there is an unfortunate lack of flying cars, but have people seen this? The future could be closer than we think...

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Re: "Startling" discussion

Postby kellsbells » Sat Dec 08, 2007 12:42 am UTC

Clumpy wrote:An existential dilemma more common to myself is:

"Wow! I'm me! Here! In existence! Existing! Right now!"

And then my mind starts imploding so I have to think about something transient and insubstantial like celebrity gossip.


...That is the EXACT feeling that I had just last night, almost asleep in bed. It had total mental seizure just thinking about it, so I started thinking about Heart of Darkness instead... yeah, English class essay. It's just so strange to think about how improbable your own existence is, how bizarre that in this unbelievably vast universe filled with mostly nothing, you're sitting at your computer reading a webcomic, not even thinking about your own existence.

Ahhh, it's giving me the willies again. Think about Calculus homework...
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Re: "Startling" discussion

Postby nick » Sat Dec 08, 2007 1:16 am UTC

Who knows anything about whatever happened in the year 1907? Nothing worth remembering ever happens at the start of centuries. Start of centuries are like the dumpsters of history. We're wasted.


(Oh, and sometimes I wonder if humanity has reached it's peak and it's only downhill from now. Though supposedly that would make us the lucky ones.)

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Re: "Startling" discussion

Postby foodeater184 » Sat Dec 08, 2007 1:20 am UTC

nick wrote:Who knows anything about whatever happened in the year 1907? Nothing worth remembering ever happens at the start of centuries. Start of centuries are like the dumpsters of history. We're wasted.


(Oh, and sometimes I wonder if humanity has reached it's peak and it's only downhill from now. Though supposedly that would make us the lucky ones.)


Well, there were airplanes in 1903... but you're right, all the good stuff starts coming in 25-50 years later, it seems.

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Re: "Startling" discussion

Postby wing » Sat Dec 08, 2007 2:47 am UTC

Oh. My. God. We're doomed. I just realized that the majority of "people" born in 1990 (the last REAL PERSON was born on December 31, 1989. People born in the 90's aren't real people) will be able to VOTE in this coming election. WE'RE DONE FOR!
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Re: "Startling" discussion

Postby aerojad » Sat Dec 08, 2007 3:56 am UTC

wing wrote:Oh. My. God. We're doomed. I just realized that the majority of "people" born in 1990 (the last REAL PERSON was born on December 31, 1989. People born in the 90's aren't real people) will be able to VOTE in this coming election. WE'RE DONE FOR!

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Re: "Startling" discussion

Postby Quixotess » Sat Dec 08, 2007 5:32 am UTC

In a similar vein, as a high school senior, I often look around me and go, "Wait a minute. We're all as tall as we're ever going to be! I'm going to be this height when I choose a career--when I have children! Is this really all I get?"

...And as a US citizen, "aught" is not something I say. It's like "thee" or "thou".
Raise up the torch and light the way.

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Re: "Startling" discussion

Postby Kudos » Sat Dec 08, 2007 8:14 am UTC

So when are these Millenium Kids going to start fixing our planet?

...by your powers combined, I am Captain Planet!

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Re: "Startling" discussion

Postby Sawta » Sat Dec 08, 2007 10:36 am UTC

jlintern wrote:I can almost guarantee that in the (not so distant) future, this decade will be referred to as "twenty - oh - one, "twenty - oh - two", etc.. just as we refer to 1901 as "nineteen - oh - one". 2000 will probably just be "two thousand".

EDIT: I take that back, 2000 will probably be "the year two thousand", since just "two thousand" is a little ambiguous. We do the same thing with the other multiples of 100.


The thing that bothers me about the 21st century is that I can't (comfortably) refer to it as "the 2000's" the same way I can with anything past the 1300's ("In the late 1660's, early 1670's; the mid 1880's, etc.) I'm not really sure what they're going to do for "the 2000's", but I'm releaved that, for "the 2100's" the phrase will work well again. :P

I wouldn't be surprised if historians will refer to 2003 "twenty - oh - three" as it sounds kind of "futurey" while still being precise/pleasing to the ear.

As for the comic, I tend to have this same realization every couple of weeks. I'll be talking about something that happened "A few years ago, in 1998", then stop and correct myself with the right year. I'll occasionally mess up dates on papers and put down 2004 (I don't know why). Some times when I'm talking to my friends about younger women, and they mention their age I'll say "So what if she's a Junior? It would only be about a two year age difference.. It wouldn't be THAT weird..wait..I'm 20, #@%$!"

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Re: "Startling" discussion

Postby Sareji » Sat Dec 08, 2007 11:50 am UTC

"To continue with the registration procedure please tell us when you were born.

Before 07 Dec 1994 :: On or after 07 Dec 1994"

Just registered to post in this thread, and this is what I was asked. Spooky. I was startled when I falsely assumed that they were making sure I was over 18. I had to subtract 1994 from 2007 several times before my pulse had returned to normal level.

Anyway. *sings In the year twentyfive-twentyfive..

Btw: This AMV just came to my mind with technological future and so on. It's the only AMV I know that anime-haters can like. Surely worth a peek.

Cheers!

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Re: "Startling" discussion

Postby pointfivenine » Sat Dec 08, 2007 12:18 pm UTC

I really really really want flying cars and unlimited (clean) energy.
Now.

Instead, the planet is getting PISSED. :cry:
What?

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Re: "Startling" discussion

Postby toughlove » Sat Dec 08, 2007 12:24 pm UTC

well hey everyone.

and what i was going to say was, that im actually pretty young, as is under 20 and i dont have the whole "Oh me yarm its the 21st century" because i am used to technology and everything.

BUT im a fan of 2001 a space Odyssey (1968) so after watching im like, holy crap, am i really in the future?
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Re: "Startling" discussion

Postby Netrilix » Sat Dec 08, 2007 12:46 pm UTC

In my eyes, the future is A.D. 2101. 8)

I'd have to agree though, everything after 2000 seems like a single year to me. The music I consider "new" is by bands who have either broken up by now, or have released 3+ albums since the one I own. Heck, I have a 007 Tomorrow Never Dies poster hanging on my wall from the week the movie was released. In 1997.

Quixotess wrote:...And as a US citizen, "aught" is not something I say. It's like "thee" or "thou".

While I agree as a general rule, I do make an exception for a .30-06. "Thirty aught six"

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Re: whuhoh, bunch of quotes

Postby Kirby_d » Sat Dec 08, 2007 2:03 pm UTC

'; DROP DATABASE;-- wrote:
cjsedwards wrote:They have 8 years to develop flying cars and hover boards, or I am not going to be impressed. Doc brown better not have screwed up the future as badly as I think he has...
Also, they have only 24 days to release The World. I'm wondering if they will at all given that Pluto Kiss* didn't cause nearly as much damage as expected. :-/

all given that Pluto Kiss* didn't cause

Pluto


"When I was your age, Pluto was a planet."

re: Future; Can you imagine your kids coming home from school, and telling you they learned about the eight planets of the solar system?

Also, I have a horribly overcranked view of the past.

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Re: "Startling" discussion

Postby szarka » Sat Dec 08, 2007 3:28 pm UTC

Comrade_Smack wrote:I usually have the converse problem. "Wow, there is a black man running for president. It was only 50 years ago when it wasn't socially acceptable for them to share a bathroom." The speed at which we are changing is astonishing. It may seem like "Wow, that was 10 years ago..." but it really was only ten years ago. That being said, Any time I think of the past I usually think of me being like 13-16 when it happened. Then I check the dates and realize I was more like 6. And all the technological advances we don't have yet. Ask Ray Kurzweil. It's on the horizon.


I feel the same way when I look around at my fellow real analysis students (I'm back in college 17 years after I earned my degree) and half of them are women. I think we had two women in my entire high school calculus class--women who majored in math were the exception then, as were those who went on to earn graduate degrees in science. Now I meet lots of young women with graduate degrees in math or science.

I was born the year we landed on the moon and ARPAnet went online. That has always felt like being born right at the beginning of the future. ;)

szarka
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Re: "Startling" discussion

Postby szarka » Sat Dec 08, 2007 3:34 pm UTC

Quixotess wrote:...And as a US citizen, "aught" is not something I say. It's like "thee" or "thou".


You must not own a shotgun.


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