0925: "Cell Phones"

This forum is for the individual discussion thread that goes with each new comic.

Moderators: Moderators General, Prelates, Magistrates

billycthulhu
Posts: 3
Joined: Mon May 23, 2011 1:48 pm UTC

Re: 0925: "Cell Phones"

Postby billycthulhu » Fri Jul 15, 2011 1:49 pm UTC

paulrowe wrote:
Steroid wrote:God dammit, neither of those was as good as "Oliver!" (exclamation mark on the inside on a tie)

Isn't "Oliver!" the name of the musical anyway? Wouldn't the exclamation point belong inside quotes anyway?
And I was also taught that punctuation belonged inside the quotes only if it was essentially part of the quoted material. Frustrating is how many grammar-checkers want to correct me on this. For example: The book was hailed as "imaginative" and "surreal".


I believe it's considered a tie because the "God dammit..." at the beginning is supposed to suggest the writer being emphatic. That is, even if the title didn't include an exclamation point, the writer would still include one.

User avatar
Eebster the Great
Posts: 3487
Joined: Mon Nov 10, 2008 12:58 am UTC
Location: Cleveland, Ohio

Re: 0925: "Cell Phones"

Postby Eebster the Great » Fri Jul 15, 2011 1:50 pm UTC

paulrowe wrote:
Steroid wrote:God dammit, neither of those was as good as "Oliver!" (exclamation mark on the inside on a tie)

Isn't "Oliver!" the name of the musical anyway? Wouldn't the exclamation point belong inside quotes anyway?

That's the point. At first glance, both "Oliver!" and "Oliver"! (or even "Oliver!"!) seems viable, since the exclamation mark is used both to end the sentence and in the quotation.

But in America, it is most common to always include end punctuation in quotation marks (like "this.").

Jirin
Posts: 32
Joined: Wed Sep 03, 2008 10:18 pm UTC

Re: 0925: "Cell Phones"

Postby Jirin » Fri Jul 15, 2011 2:15 pm UTC

Yeah, whenever people talk about rising cancer rates I say, cancer rates have gone up because more people are surviving longer with cancer!

User avatar
Klear
Posts: 1965
Joined: Sun Jun 13, 2010 8:43 am UTC
Location: Prague

Re: 0925: "Cell Phones"

Postby Klear » Fri Jul 15, 2011 2:18 pm UTC

Jirin wrote:Yeah, whenever people talk about rising cancer rates I say, cancer rates have gone up because more people are surviving longer with cancer!


Cancer + cell phones = longer life!

Hirg
Posts: 18
Joined: Mon May 16, 2011 10:04 pm UTC

Re: 0925: "Cell Phones"

Postby Hirg » Fri Jul 15, 2011 2:25 pm UTC

Ptharien's Flame wrote:I've never been all that into statistics, but shouldn't the labels on the graph have a clearer relationship? For example, is "Cell Phone Users" a fraction of "Total Cancer Incidence" or a fraction of "Total US Population"? (And yes, grammar Nazis, I know the puctuation is supposed to go inside the quotes, but I'm a programmer and if I did it that way, I would end up with different and/or ambiguous string literals, no?)

EDIT: fixed my own spelling (so embarrassed)


Actually, your question mark placement is impeccable. If you care, see the very last part of this OWL article: http://owl.english.purdue.edu/owl/resource/577/03/

Also, the observation about the relationship on the graph is correct, but that's part of where the other guy's last line comes from. It's part of the joke (and part of why I woke up half the house laughing at this one this morning).

User avatar
alexriehl
Posts: 127
Joined: Wed Sep 22, 2010 1:19 am UTC
Location: Auburn, AL
Contact:

Re: 0925: "Cell Phones"

Postby alexriehl » Fri Jul 15, 2011 2:51 pm UTC

Haha.

Still, the first thing that popped into my head was, "The scale on the left is vastly different from the scale on the right..." Haha.
AMA about suitcases
Spoiler:
Image

Ptharien's Flame
Posts: 33
Joined: Tue Jun 28, 2011 4:23 am UTC

Re: 0925: "Cell Phones"

Postby Ptharien's Flame » Fri Jul 15, 2011 2:52 pm UTC

Hirg wrote:
Ptharien's Flame wrote:I've never been all that into statistics, but shouldn't the labels on the graph have a clearer relationship? For example, is "Cell Phone Users" a fraction of "Total Cancer Incidence" or a fraction of "Total US Population"? (And yes, grammar Nazis, I know the puctuation is supposed to go inside the quotes, but I'm a programmer and if I did it that way, I would end up with different and/or ambiguous string literals, no?)

EDIT: fixed my own spelling (so embarrassed)


Actually, your question mark placement is impeccable. If you care, see the very last part of this OWL article: http://owl.english.purdue.edu/owl/resource/577/03/

Also, the observation about the relationship on the graph is correct, but that's part of where the other guy's last line comes from. It's part of the joke (and part of why I woke up half the house laughing at this one this morning).


*feels stupid*

jpk
Posts: 607
Joined: Sat Nov 13, 2010 7:33 am UTC

Re: 0925: "Cell Phones"

Postby jpk » Fri Jul 15, 2011 3:12 pm UTC

JustDoug wrote:
toadpipe wrote:Break off a laptop screen? So what, pull the drive and copy any data that might be considered useful. Break the spine of a book and you've destroyed a possibly hand-crafted work of art.

See the difference?

No, of course you don't. I bet you think of yourself as a "maker" too.


I'll bet your company issues you your laptops, 'cause I've yet to see a laptop that costs less than any but the most expensive of books.

I'll also bet that HR will be wanting to have a word with you soon, provided the IT department posse doesn't get to you first.


p.s. I doubt you craft your own laptops.



Try Craigslist some time. The low-end cost of laptops is in the $50 range, for older models, which is comparable to a new hardcover ($35-$40) and less than academic or art titles (Knuth TAOCP:$80).. The replacement cost is not the reason you express horror over one and not the other. I don't really like to go here, but it seems warranted: symbolically speaking, the book is the information it contains, while a laptop merely contains the information. That's why book burnings still happen, but nobody would ever hold a laptop burning. Apart from the smell, there wouldn't be any point: "We stand here to destroy a bunch of laptops which happen to have some offensive material stored on them, and which at one point were used to view naughty web sites" just doesn't have much of a ring to it.

User avatar
AvatarIII
Posts: 2098
Joined: Fri Apr 08, 2011 12:28 pm UTC
Location: W.Sussex, UK

Re: 0925: "Cell Phones"

Postby AvatarIII » Fri Jul 15, 2011 3:24 pm UTC

jpk wrote:
JustDoug wrote:
toadpipe wrote:Break off a laptop screen? So what, pull the drive and copy any data that might be considered useful. Break the spine of a book and you've destroyed a possibly hand-crafted work of art.

See the difference?

No, of course you don't. I bet you think of yourself as a "maker" too.


I'll bet your company issues you your laptops, 'cause I've yet to see a laptop that costs less than any but the most expensive of books.

I'll also bet that HR will be wanting to have a word with you soon, provided the IT department posse doesn't get to you first.


p.s. I doubt you craft your own laptops.



Try Craigslist some time. The low-end cost of laptops is in the $50 range, for older models, which is comparable to a new hardcover ($35-$40) and less than academic or art titles (Knuth TAOCP:$80).. The replacement cost is not the reason you express horror over one and not the other. I don't really like to go here, but it seems warranted: symbolically speaking, the book is the information it contains, while a laptop merely contains the information. That's why book burnings still happen, but nobody would ever hold a laptop burning. Apart from the smell, there wouldn't be any point: "We stand here to destroy a bunch of laptops which happen to have some offensive material stored on them, and which at one point were used to view naughty web sites" just doesn't have much of a ring to it.



you are comparing old low end laptops with brandnew untouched premium hardback books, and they still only just have comparable prices

User avatar
radtea
Posts: 137
Joined: Mon Mar 03, 2008 8:57 pm UTC
Contact:

Re: 0925: "Cell Phones"

Postby radtea » Fri Jul 15, 2011 3:49 pm UTC

It's very rare for a peer-reviewed study to be retracted wholesale, as happened with the infamous 1998 MMR-autism study in The Lancet.


Simply because they are rare doesn't mean they shouldn't happen a lot more frequently. For one, in a world where thousands upon thousands of experiments are done every year, p < 0.05 is far too weak a screening criterion. Real effects--like cancer itself--is rare, so a "screening test" that gives a false positive (indicates an effect where there is none) 5% of the time will swamp the real effects.

It would be damned interesting to look at all the studies in a field in a given year and see how many of them (including the unpublished ones, which makes this question difficult to answer) gave effects with p < 0.05. Consider 1000 such studies. There are three possible outcomes: many fewer than 50 studies with p < 0.05, about 50, and many more than 50. My bet is if you could cover all studies done, the result would be about 50, because the results are dominated by false positives.
Coming on Midsummer's Day to a Web Browser Near You: http://www.songsofalbion.com

blkballoon925
Posts: 15
Joined: Mon Jul 27, 2009 7:01 pm UTC

Re: 0925: "Cell Phones"

Postby blkballoon925 » Fri Jul 15, 2011 3:49 pm UTC

furgle wrote:Touch screens have helped me get over this cringe. I used to do the same thing when someone pulled out a usb drive without disconnecting it first. Remember when you thought that was required? But I got over that quickly.

It is required. Like unmounting a volume in *NIX, Windows releases cached writes from memory when you eject/disconnect removable storage. I suppose this comes back to probability. While it may seem unlikely that you will corrupt data or the file system by not performing the removal operation first, it is possible. Is your data worth that little to risk?

Alternatively, if you still don't want to have to disconnect it first, go into its Properties in Device Manager. There is an option to "enable quick removal." This simply prevents Windows from caching writes to the media, but it serves the purpose that you want.

User avatar
TheSoberPirate
Posts: 41
Joined: Thu Jun 24, 2010 12:48 am UTC
Location: 13 T 492960 4492224

Re: 0925: "Cell Phones"

Postby TheSoberPirate » Fri Jul 15, 2011 4:09 pm UTC

Jirin wrote:Yeah, whenever people talk about rising cancer rates I say, cancer rates have gone up because more people are surviving longer with cancer!

Well, from now on you can start by telling people that cancer rates actually haven't gone up, they've been going down.(http://www.cancer.org/Cancer/news/News/ ... ies-remain)

Glass Fractal
Posts: 497
Joined: Thu May 13, 2010 2:53 am UTC

Re: 0925: "Cell Phones"

Postby Glass Fractal » Fri Jul 15, 2011 4:13 pm UTC

TheSoberPirate wrote:
Jirin wrote:Yeah, whenever people talk about rising cancer rates I say, cancer rates have gone up because more people are surviving longer with cancer!

Well, from now on you can start by telling people that cancer rates actually haven't gone up, they've been going down.(http://www.cancer.org/Cancer/news/News/ ... ies-remain)


Unless I missed part of it that says the death rate from cancer has fallen, not the cancer rate.

[edit]: I see their link says incidence rates have been falling.
http://caonline.amcancersoc.org/cgi/con ... ac.20121v1

jpk
Posts: 607
Joined: Sat Nov 13, 2010 7:33 am UTC

Re: 0925: "Cell Phones"

Postby jpk » Fri Jul 15, 2011 4:31 pm UTC

AvatarIII wrote:

you are comparing old low end laptops with brandnew untouched premium hardback books, and they still only just have comparable prices


And you're still missing the point. The price is not the reason people cringe at the destruction of a book, and it's not the reason people don't feel the same visceral reaction to the destruction of a laptop.

User avatar
Primis
Posts: 61
Joined: Fri Jul 15, 2011 5:07 am UTC
Location: New York
Contact:

Re: 0925: "Cell Phones"

Postby Primis » Fri Jul 15, 2011 4:33 pm UTC

I hate to be the one to point this out, but Black Hat is holding the laptop by the screen, yes. But he also seems to have it balanced on his knee. This suggests that he isn't holding the weight, just keeping it balanced.
Image
Key Fingerprint: 49A8 7E39 87C1 DFB2 B0EB F7F4 1235 F2BB 9442 E47F
PhoenixRising wrote:What is this sleep you speak of? There is only the castle. All must yield to the castle.

User avatar
enumerated powers
Posts: 49
Joined: Fri Dec 17, 2010 10:22 pm UTC
Location: Dayton Ohio USA
Contact:

Re: 0925: "Cell Phones"

Postby enumerated powers » Fri Jul 15, 2011 5:19 pm UTC

Taymon wrote:...(We see this "just in case" mentality a lot, because humans are not that good at thinking with probability, and are absolutely terrible at it when the probabilities are very low.)...


Like the petroleum companies which put "Don't use cell phones while fueling" warnings on or near the gasoline pumps. The petroleum retailers' association in the US has a web site where they address the myth that cell phones can cause gas station fires. They have no records of cases where that ever happened, but plenty of cases where sliding off the plastic-covered car seat with insulating shoe soles (having sat back in the car during the fill-up) builds up a static charge in the body, causing a spark when pulling the nozzle out of the filler hole, including fantastic surveillance camera video of such a fire.

The cell phone warnings are there, however "just in case".

User avatar
SpringLoaded12
Posts: 350
Joined: Wed Oct 08, 2008 1:58 am UTC
Location: Guarding the Super Missile
Contact:

Re: 0925: "Cell Phones"

Postby SpringLoaded12 » Fri Jul 15, 2011 5:35 pm UTC

xX17GHDUDE17Xx wrote:Methinks the W.H.O. should take a gander at http://xkcd.com/552/ (Heck, maybe BHG should too)

There's a lot of fun you can have with claims that assume correlation implies causation.

I remember a joke theory someone put together that had the same setup as the comic, but instead it compared the increase in global temperature to the decrease in the number of pirates (real life pirates, not software pirates), and stated that the decrease in pirates was causing global warming.

jpk wrote:
AvatarIII wrote:you are comparing old low end laptops with brandnew untouched premium hardback books, and they still only just have comparable prices

And you're still missing the point. The price is not the reason people cringe at the destruction of a book, and it's not the reason people don't feel the same visceral reaction to the destruction of a laptop.

It may be true that burning books is not comparable to holding the laptop the way Hat Guy is, but keep in mind where this argument started.
"I wanted to scream until I saw the title text. Seriously. That's almost worse than bending the spines of books backwards."
Bending the spines, not burning the books. Bending the spine of a book, breaking the hinges of a laptop, scratching up the surface of a table, spilling red wine or something else that stains on a carpet or on clothing, cracking a window, etc. will all get a similar visceral reaction. You can still read the book, you can still get the data off the hard drive, you can still put things on the table, you can still walk on the carpet, you can still wear the clothes, you can still see out the window. But see, this logic is not good, because it implies that it is acceptable -- or at least not a big deal -- to do this type of damage. People like their things to be undamaged, even if they're still usable while damaged, and fixing each thing I listed is either difficult, expensive, or both.
Last edited by SpringLoaded12 on Fri Jul 15, 2011 5:57 pm UTC, edited 1 time in total.
"It's easy to forget what a sin is in the middle of a battlefield." "Opposite over hypotenuse, dipshit."

User avatar
rhomboidal
Posts: 801
Joined: Wed Jun 15, 2011 5:25 pm UTC
Contact:

Re: 0925: "Cell Phones"

Postby rhomboidal » Fri Jul 15, 2011 5:39 pm UTC

Forget cancer. Using a task chair without height-adjustable arm supports? Nightmares.

User avatar
Nyerguds
Posts: 62
Joined: Mon Aug 27, 2007 7:43 am UTC

Re: 0925: "Cell Phones"

Postby Nyerguds » Fri Jul 15, 2011 5:54 pm UTC

To see this in perspective it should all be divided by the total population, otherwise it simply has no value at all.

User avatar
bmonk
Posts: 662
Joined: Thu Feb 18, 2010 10:14 pm UTC
Location: Schitzoed in the OTT between the 2100s and the late 900s. Hoping for singularity.

Re: 0925: "Cell Phones"

Postby bmonk » Fri Jul 15, 2011 8:11 pm UTC

Not only does his graph show that there's a correlation between cell phones and cancer ("cancer causes cell phones"), but you can calculate the latency period. From a rough examination of his graph, I'd say 12-25 years between the onset of cancer and cell phones.
Having become a Wizard on n.p. 2183, the Yellow Piggy retroactively appointed his honorable self a Temporal Wizardly Piggy on n.p.1488, not to be effective until n.p. 2183, thereby avoiding a partial temporal paradox. Since he couldn't afford two philosophical PhDs to rule on the title.

Taymon
Posts: 30
Joined: Sun Oct 25, 2009 4:52 am UTC

Re: 0925: "Cell Phones"

Postby Taymon » Fri Jul 15, 2011 8:56 pm UTC

SpringLoaded12 wrote:I remember a joke theory someone put together that had the same setup as the comic, but instead it compared the increase in global temperature to the decrease in the number of pirates (real life pirates, not software pirates), and stated that the decrease in pirates was causing global warming.

This phenomenon is a central tenet of Pastafarianism.

Image

project2051
Posts: 178
Joined: Fri Jan 29, 2010 2:20 pm UTC

Re: 0925: "Cell Phones"

Postby project2051 » Fri Jul 15, 2011 9:21 pm UTC

jgh wrote:Over the last 50 years, Coca Cola consumption has increased in line with teenage pregnancy rates, therefor Coca Cola consumption causes teenage pregnancy.



I think you have to factor in the amount of rum mixed in to work that one out.

User avatar
Fixblor
Posts: 182
Joined: Mon Jun 14, 2010 4:20 am UTC
Location: Pencilvania

Re: 0925: "Cell Phones"

Postby Fixblor » Fri Jul 15, 2011 10:41 pm UTC

So the moral of the story is that anything is possible when you lie.
The quantity of possibilities will double when you lie using statistics,
triple if you use a chart,
and quadruple if you use two charts at once.

That's like more than infinite possibilities,
and a whole lot of lying.
I'm gonna start a spreadsheet to keep track of it all.
Last edited by Count Modulus on Fri Dec 21, 2012 12:5l am UTC, edited 13 times in total.
06:23, 18 April 2011 SmackBot (talk | contribs) m (90,899 bytes) (Dated {{Dubious}} x 153. (Build p609)) (undo)

Rgeminas
Posts: 45
Joined: Mon Aug 11, 2008 5:02 pm UTC

Re: 0925: "Cell Phones"

Postby Rgeminas » Sat Jul 16, 2011 12:56 am UTC

Hey, remember when xkcd used to be statistically accurate? This joke is really old (and, as we've seen, has been used in xkcd before), and Randall's art adds nothing to it.

It seems to me that, lately, when Randall tries to be funny with science he does it by using it the wrong way and saying: 'Hey, people make mistakes, that is really funny!'.

User avatar
Fixblor
Posts: 182
Joined: Mon Jun 14, 2010 4:20 am UTC
Location: Pencilvania

Re: 0925: "Cell Phones"

Postby Fixblor » Sat Jul 16, 2011 1:29 am UTC

Rgeminas wrote:Hey, remember when xkcd used to be statistically accurate? This joke is really old (and, as we've seen, has been used in xkcd before), and Randall's art adds nothing to it.

It seems to me that, lately, when Randall tries to be funny with science he does it by using it the wrong way and saying: 'Hey, people make mistakes, that is really funny!'.

True that.
Last edited by Count Modulus on Fri Dec 21, 2012 12:5l am UTC, edited 13 times in total.
06:23, 18 April 2011 SmackBot (talk | contribs) m (90,899 bytes) (Dated {{Dubious}} x 153. (Build p609)) (undo)

User avatar
xkcdfan
Posts: 140
Joined: Wed Jul 30, 2008 5:10 am UTC

Re: 0925: "Cell Phones"

Postby xkcdfan » Sat Jul 16, 2011 1:46 am UTC

I hold my Thinkpad like that every day.

User avatar
ManaUser
Posts: 284
Joined: Mon Jun 09, 2008 9:28 pm UTC

Re: 0925: "Cell Phones"

Postby ManaUser » Sat Jul 16, 2011 2:09 am UTC

If I recall correctly, an interesting aspect of the last study that showed a possible link was it only found a correlation in people those used cellphones heavily, while moderate users were actually at a reduced risk. Assuming that relationship generally holds true (whether causative or not), that would mask the effects in any study that looked at only cellphone users vs. non-users. The most recent study looked at duration (years) of use, but not (as far as I heard) how heavily they were used.

User avatar
StClair
Posts: 409
Joined: Fri Feb 29, 2008 8:07 am UTC

Re: 0925: "Cell Phones"

Postby StClair » Sat Jul 16, 2011 2:46 am UTC

Say it with me, "Correlation is not the same as causation."

Anyway, I figure that cancer is just what kills you if you survive everything else that used to kill people before they accumulated enough replication errors (or had one or two really unlucky rolls). It's the "backstop", as it were.

User avatar
Eebster the Great
Posts: 3487
Joined: Mon Nov 10, 2008 12:58 am UTC
Location: Cleveland, Ohio

Re: 0925: "Cell Phones"

Postby Eebster the Great » Sat Jul 16, 2011 4:26 am UTC

radtea wrote:
It's very rare for a peer-reviewed study to be retracted wholesale, as happened with the infamous 1998 MMR-autism study in The Lancet.


Simply because they are rare doesn't mean they shouldn't happen a lot more frequently. For one, in a world where thousands upon thousands of experiments are done every year, p < 0.05 is far too weak a screening criterion. Real effects--like cancer itself--is rare, so a "screening test" that gives a false positive (indicates an effect where there is none) 5% of the time will swamp the real effects.

A study utilizing a test with a false positive rate greater than the true positive rate certainly won't have p < 0.05, though. Your next paragraph makes a good point, however.

User avatar
arbivark
Posts: 531
Joined: Wed May 23, 2007 5:29 am UTC

Re: 0925: "Cell Phones"

Postby arbivark » Sat Jul 16, 2011 8:09 am UTC

<color=green>So if you're thinking about buying a cell phone, it's safe to assume you already have cancer.Crap.
</color>
I'm thinking about buying a cellphone. I applied for a job last week, but I haven't gotten it, because I didnt leave them a working number,and I doubt they'll think to email like i asked them to (if i didn't not get it for other reasons.)
I may have cancer. They found traces of blood in my stool last time I had some work done, and that is a possible indicator of colon cancer, so I need to go get it checked out.
Graphs and playing with correlations versus causation are recurring themes around here, part of the math sarcasm romance language focus.

Afrael
Posts: 36
Joined: Mon Sep 20, 2010 10:23 am UTC

Re: 0925: "Cell Phones"

Postby Afrael » Sat Jul 16, 2011 12:05 pm UTC

For the sake of completeness: That one guy with a popular webcomic already commented on that issue years ago. >click<

not baby Newt
Posts: 110
Joined: Wed Feb 03, 2010 11:30 pm UTC

Re: 0925: "Cell Phones"

Postby not baby Newt » Sat Jul 16, 2011 1:50 pm UTC

Nyerguds wrote:To see this in perspective it should all be divided by the total population, otherwise it simply has no value at all.

I'm thinking 'per 100000' means this was already done, then the decimal point was moved to get prettier numbers. Probably same with cell phones, 90%+ ownership seems about right.

So each case of cancer causes 200 cellphone owners.

User avatar
Qaanol
The Cheshirest Catamount
Posts: 3069
Joined: Sat May 09, 2009 11:55 pm UTC

Re: 0925: "Cell Phones"

Postby Qaanol » Sat Jul 16, 2011 5:18 pm UTC

The graph is disingenuous because the cancer-axis does not start at zero, whereas the cellphone-axis does.
wee free kings

User avatar
addams
Posts: 10338
Joined: Sun Sep 12, 2010 4:44 am UTC
Location: Oregon Coast: 97444

Re: 0925: "Cell Phones"

Postby addams » Sat Jul 16, 2011 5:55 pm UTC

SpringLoaded12 wrote:
xX17GHDUDE17Xx wrote:Methinks the W.H.O. should take a gander at http://xkcd.com/552/ (Heck, maybe BHG should too)

There's a lot of fun you can have with claims that assume correlation implies causation.

I remember a joke theory someone put together that had the same setup as the comic, but instead it compared the increase in global temperature to the decrease in the number of pirates (real life pirates, not software pirates), and stated that the decrease in pirates was causing global warming.

jpk wrote:
AvatarIII wrote:you are comparing old low end laptops with brandnew untouched premium hardback books, and they still only just have comparable prices

And you're still missing the point. The price is not the reason people cringe at the destruction of a book, and it's not the reason people don't feel the same visceral reaction to the destruction of a laptop.

It may be true that burning books is not comparable to holding the laptop the way Hat Guy is, but keep in mind where this argument started.
"I wanted to scream until I saw the title text. Seriously. That's almost worse than bending the spines of books backwards."
Bending the spines, not burning the books. Bending the spine of a book, breaking the hinges of a laptop, scratching up the surface of a table, spilling red wine or something else that stains on a carpet or on clothing, cracking a window, etc. will all get a similar visceral reaction. You can still read the book, you can still get the data off the hard drive, you can still put things on the table, you can still walk on the carpet, you can still wear the clothes, you can still see out the window. But see, this logic is not good, because it implies that it is acceptable -- or at least not a big deal -- to do this type of damage. People like their things to be undamaged, even if they're still usable while damaged, and fixing each thing I listed is either difficult, expensive, or both.

Yes. It is true. We do like our things undamaged. But; It is very difficult to use things with our the wearing them out.
My favorite books look worn. It is, because, I have read them.
My, 'Field Guide to the Atmosphere' Has sections that are no longer attached to the binding. That is a good reason to have the pages numbered. I can put the book back together, if, I drop it.
What is the point? Oh. Right. I don't hold my laptop like that.
What is the life expectancy of a laptop?
Life is, just, an exchange of electrons; It is up to us to give it meaning.

We are all in The Gutter.
Some of us see The Gutter.
Some of us see The Stars.
by mr. Oscar Wilde.

Those that want to Know; Know.
Those that do not Know; Don't tell them.
They do terrible things to people that Tell Them.

bigjeff5
Posts: 127
Joined: Tue Nov 10, 2009 3:59 am UTC

Re: 0925: "Cell Phones"

Postby bigjeff5 » Sat Jul 16, 2011 6:37 pm UTC

addams wrote:Yes. It is true. We do like our things undamaged. But; It is very difficult to use things with our the wearing them out.
My favorite books look worn. It is, because, I have read them.
My, 'Field Guide to the Atmosphere' Has sections that are no longer attached to the binding. That is a good reason to have the pages numbered. I can put the book back together, if, I drop it.
What is the point? Oh. Right. I don't hold my laptop like that.
What is the life expectancy of a laptop?


There is a huge difference between items wearing out because they are used as intended and items wearing out because they were handled carelessly or abusively.

Bending a book's spine is abuse, and cringe-worthy for most book lovers.

Holding a laptop by the top is also abuse, and many laptop users will find it cringe-worthy.

Another example would be people who own nice leather footwear. With proper care, a quality pair of shoes can last almost indefinitely. A shoe lover might cringe at seeing a nice pair of leather shoes sitting in a closet and caked with mud.

It is the abusive behavior that causes the cringing, not unavoidable wear and tear.

User avatar
addams
Posts: 10338
Joined: Sun Sep 12, 2010 4:44 am UTC
Location: Oregon Coast: 97444

Re: 0925: "Cell Phones"

Postby addams » Sat Jul 16, 2011 7:34 pm UTC

bigjeff5 wrote:
addams wrote:Yes. It is true. We do like our things undamaged. But; It is very difficult to use things with our the wearing them out.
My favorite books look worn. It is, because, I have read them.
My, 'Field Guide to the Atmosphere' Has sections that are no longer attached to the binding. That is a good reason to have the pages numbered. I can put the book back together, if, I drop it.
What is the point? Oh. Right. I don't hold my laptop like that.
What is the life expectancy of a laptop?


There is a huge difference between items wearing out because they are used as intended and items wearing out because they were handled carelessly or abusively.

Bending a book's spine is abuse, and cringe-worthy for most book lovers.

Holding a laptop by the top is also abuse, and many laptop users will find it cringe-worthy.

Another example would be people who own nice leather footwear. With proper care, a quality pair of shoes can last almost indefinitely. A shoe lover might cringe at seeing a nice pair of leather shoes sitting in a closet and caked with mud.

It is the abusive behavior that causes the cringing, not unavoidable wear and tear.


Yes. Has this thread looped around to connoisseurship?
There is a thread about that.
Ignorance of proper use might lead to abusive behavior. Right?
The example that you used:
"A shoe lover might cringe at seeing a nice pair of leather shoes sitting in a closet and caked with mud."
I am a shoe lover. When, I see a pair of shoes with mud on them. Well; I like a little mud. Mud is slippery and dangerous and heavy when on boots. I still like it. I, also, like to take those boots off and take a bath. Then, go back and look at my boots. Don't you? Really?
Muddy boots make you cringe? Huh. We both like shoes. I don't cringe at the sight of muddy shoes. I laugh.
Oh! Please, don't wear muddy boots into the house.
Life is, just, an exchange of electrons; It is up to us to give it meaning.

We are all in The Gutter.
Some of us see The Gutter.
Some of us see The Stars.
by mr. Oscar Wilde.

Those that want to Know; Know.
Those that do not Know; Don't tell them.
They do terrible things to people that Tell Them.

User avatar
The Scyphozoa
Posts: 2871
Joined: Sun Jun 01, 2008 6:33 pm UTC
Location: Sector 5

Re: 0925: "Cell Phones"

Postby The Scyphozoa » Sat Jul 16, 2011 8:20 pm UTC

Qaanol wrote:The graph is disingenuous because the cancer-axis does not start at zero, whereas the cellphone-axis does.

It doesn't matter. The important thing is WHEN each of the rates goes up or down, not by how much.
Image
3rdtry wrote:If there ever is another World War, I hope they at least have the decency to call it "World War 2: Episode One"

doogly wrote:murder is a subset of being mean

bigjeff5
Posts: 127
Joined: Tue Nov 10, 2009 3:59 am UTC

Re: 0925: "Cell Phones"

Postby bigjeff5 » Sat Jul 16, 2011 9:04 pm UTC

addams wrote:Huh. We both like shoes. I don't cringe at the sight of muddy shoes. I laugh.


Well, you either don't understand what that mud is doing to your nice leather shoes, or you don't care about your shoes all that much.

"Nice" is subjective. I don't bother cleaning a $50 pair of boots after each use, as they will probably fall apart in some other area anyway due to their low quality. A $300 pair of Woverine's, though, I'm going to clean and dry after each use, and rotate with an alternate pair to give the leather time to air out (maybe that cheap $50 pair, if I don't have another set of Woverines), and occasionally oil the leather to be sure it remains supple.

The same with books. Destroying the spine of a $7 paperback doesn't bother me a whole lot. I don't do it, mainly because they look ugly as hell on the bookshelf forever after, but it isn't really that cringe worthy to me. That 80 year old leather-bound copy of Jules-Verne, however, is an entirely different story. For some people, ruining those $7 paperbacks is cringe-worthy.

teadrop
Posts: 3
Joined: Wed Nov 24, 2010 4:41 pm UTC

Re: 0925: "Cell Phones"

Postby teadrop » Sat Jul 16, 2011 11:03 pm UTC

I just checked the WHO website, this a quote from their website http://www.who.int/mediacentre/factsheets/fs193/en/:
Are there any health effects?
A large number of studies have been performed over the last two decades to assess whether mobile phones pose a potential health risk. To date, no adverse health effects have been established as being caused by mobile phone use.

... so it seems WHO didn't say cellphone cause cancer, but I did remember some major news channeled reported that WHO said cellphone cause cancer.....

So what happened here?
Did the major news channel misquote WHO?
or
Did WHO changed their Website after reading this XKCD comic?

pcma
Posts: 1
Joined: Mon Feb 28, 2011 1:46 pm UTC

Re: 0925: "Cell Phones"

Postby pcma » Sat Jul 16, 2011 11:11 pm UTC

I'm going to hold my laptop like that because of this comic 8)


Return to “Individual XKCD Comic Threads”

Who is online

Users browsing this forum: Google [Bot], mscha and 98 guests