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Darwin's Voyage Done Over, Live

timothy posted more than 4 years ago | from the it-was-live-the-first-time-too dept.

Science 147

thrill12 writes "Almost 178 years ago, Charles Darwin set sail in the HMS Beagle, to do the now famous explorations that formed the basis for Darwin's On The Origin Of Species. Now, a group of British and Dutch scientists, journalists and artists set sail again to redo the voyage of the Beagle. This time, they are taking modern equipment with them and they have live connections through Twitter, Youtube, Facebook and Flickr. As they re-explore, and (re)discover, we can join that 8-month-long trip, live over the internet."

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147 comments

USians are assholes (-1, Troll)

Adolf Hitroll (562418) | more than 4 years ago | (#29411289)

They claim Datrwin is TEH REWLZ but they still allow Creationism in their Senate.
Why don't you just nuke yourselves, morons?

o rly? (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#29411969)

can i cum in your ass?

Almost... (5, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#29411295)

"Almost 178 years ago, this piece of news was released to the world. Now, Slashdot reports."

Dupe - similar story on Slashdot 178 years ago (3, Funny)

GNious (953874) | more than 4 years ago | (#29411567)

Dupe - similar story on Slashdot 178 years ago

Too much time on their hands? (0, Flamebait)

Taco Cowboy (5327) | more than 4 years ago | (#29411301)

There are indeed a lot of stuffs to research on, a lot of stuffs much more interesting and will benefit the humankind in a much more effective ways

But those "scientists" on the "re-discovery" trip don't care, all they are after is an 8-month adventure

And they want us to watch them doing that?

This type of educational movie making is good (4, Informative)

BadAnalogyGuy (945258) | more than 4 years ago | (#29411377)

The last time there was a truly made-for-the-classroom movie, it was called The Voyage of the Mimi [wikipedia.org]. It not only brought the crisis of dwindling humpback whale populations to elementary school students, it provided survival education lessons on avoiding contaminated foods, creating drinkable water, and building shelter. I'd not be so quick to dismiss edutainment, especially when it is in the pursuit of re-enacting one of the most important non-hard scientific studies of all time.

As an added bonus, you never know which child actor will grow up to become one of Hollywood's most popular and gifted actors.

Re:This type of educational movie making is good (4, Interesting)

smoker2 (750216) | more than 4 years ago | (#29411909)

I'd not be so quick to dismiss edutainment, especially when it is in the pursuit of re-enacting one of the most important non-hard scientific studies of all time.

But the original voyage was a hard scientific study. The Beagle was on a mission to verify chronometer readings and thereby confirm readings of longitude around S. America. Darwin did his other stuff on his own time. And he hadn't developed any theory on natural selection at that time, he was just a keen naturalist who took the opportunity to gather samples and make drawings. It was only after seeing all those different forms of life that he started to develop his theory. So he didn't make the facts fit the theory, his theory was based on observable evidence.

Re:This type of educational movie making is good (1)

R2.0 (532027) | more than 4 years ago | (#29412869)

Why isn't there a +1 troll mod? I was halfway through typing a response to that last line before I clued in.

Well played, sir!

This is 2009. (-1, Redundant)

captainpanic (1173915) | more than 4 years ago | (#29411305)

Darwin's Voyage is soooo 1831.

Re:This is 2009. (4, Funny)

sakdoctor (1087155) | more than 4 years ago | (#29411327)

By now the finches will have evolved to feed on natural historians, and other assorted crew.

Re:This is 2009. (4, Funny)

Thanshin (1188877) | more than 4 years ago | (#29411949)

By now the finches will have evolved to feed on natural historians, and other assorted crew.

"If you watch closely the lower left corner of the picture, you'll be able to see an impressive specimen of Dr. Johansson's newly discovered Devoratrix Historiator; or, as the team liked to call them, a 'skullfucker'"

"On the next picture you can see a closer image, slightly darkened by some of Dr. Johansson's blood and brain pieces on the camera."

Re:This is 2009. (1)

BrightSpark (1578977) | more than 4 years ago | (#29412009)

Aparently 50 other countries wanted to supply crew for the re-enactment but the British and Dutch won out highlighting Darwin's law of national selection. There is talk Beagle II may stop off in California to replace the first crew to prove the theory of survival of the hippest. I can't keep this up - mod me to death, I deserve it.

Waste of time? (5, Insightful)

Max Romantschuk (132276) | more than 4 years ago | (#29411329)

Whoever thinks this should be tagged waste of time is just silly. Hell, if I were single and had the opportunity this would be a really interesting experience. If the media attention helps to remind people even a little of the fragility of the ecological balance on the planet all the better, and surely not a waste of time.

(Disclaimer: I don't believe that an "ecological balance" equals no changes, but we can't honestly claim not to be raping the planet in several aspects at the moment. IMHO anyway...)

Re:Waste of time? (4, Funny)

houghi (78078) | more than 4 years ago | (#29411347)

Hell, if I were single and had the opportunity this would be a really interesting experience.

I am sure that a lot of married people would be interested as well to get away for 8 months.

Re:Waste of time? (-1, Offtopic)

Max Romantschuk (132276) | more than 4 years ago | (#29411649)

Hell, if I were single and had the opportunity this would be a really interesting experience.

I am sure that a lot of married people would be interested as well to get away for 8 months.

If you feel like you want to be away (without keeping in touch) from your wife and/or family for 8 months a divorce would be the logical option. Most people in a reasonably well functioning relationship and/or family would not like the idea of spending 8 months away from their spouse and/or children.

Then again, my kids are still rather small (3 and 5), so missing 8 months would be huge. I suspect the situation would be much different for teenagers, who can use email and stuff. :)

Re:Waste of time? (1)

moon3 (1530265) | more than 4 years ago | (#29411835)

the media attention helps to remind people

I doubt mainstream media will pick this up, "evolution" is still very controversial stuff. They just virtually banned the current Darwin inspired film in the US.

Re:Waste of time? (1, Informative)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#29412037)

otoh. in Europe this is proving to be quite popular, in The Netherlands it's getting a prime time slot appaerently

Re:Waste of time? (1)

owlnation (858981) | more than 4 years ago | (#29412093)

They just virtually banned the current Darwin inspired film in the US.

That's just not true. That is what the producers are claiming, however. But that's just propaganda, and an attempt to raise publicity. The truth is that the movie had bad reviews at festivals, and thus distributors didn't pick it up for the US market. Perhaps, potential evolutionist backlash may have played some very small part in that, but controversial movies like "The Last Temptation of Christ" have thrived on the negative publicity. The movie didn't get picked up primarily, because it was regarded as pedestrian, uninspired filmmaking.

Re:Waste of time? (1)

xaxa (988988) | more than 4 years ago | (#29412511)

I doubt mainstream media will pick this up, "evolution" is still very controversial stuff. They just virtually banned the current Darwin inspired film in the US.

Charles Darwin is on the back of the £10 note [bankofengland.co.uk], he's hardly controversial here.

The Daily Mail [dailymail.co.uk] calls Darwin, "the great evolutionist", and that's considered a conservative newspaper (Wiki [wikipedia.org]: "The Mail takes an anti-EU, anti-abortion view, based upon "traditional values", and is pro-capitalism and pro-monarchy, as well as, in some cases, advocating stricter punishments for crime. It also often calls for lower levels of taxation. The paper is generally critical of the BBC, which it argues is biased to the left.")

Re:Waste of time? (1)

moon3 (1530265) | more than 4 years ago | (#29412629)

Yep, but most people (like 70%) believe in afterlife and similar crap still (US and pretty much rest of the world).

Re:Waste of time? (2, Insightful)

thisnamestoolong (1584383) | more than 4 years ago | (#29412815)

"evolution" is still very controversial stuff

This is, quite unfortunately, true in America these days. I find it positively baffling that 60% of a modern society can find it appropriate to take the word of a goat herder who lived in a tent 4,000 years ago over the whole of modern science. We are all entitled to our own opinions, but not our own facts. Evolution is a fact. It is no longer in dispute that all life on Earth evolved over about 3 billion years and that all life has a common unicellular ancestor, and that life tends to become more complex over time, the human race included. This has been proven by biology, archaeology, paleontology, anthropology, geology, chemistry, and virtually every field of modern science. It is astonishing that this is still controversial and makes it very clear why things like the War in Iraq and Income Taxes are possible -- the vast majority of people out there are maddeningly stupid and proudly ignorant.

Job opening? (1)

R2.0 (532027) | more than 4 years ago | (#29412797)

"Hell, if I were single and had the opportunity this would be a really interesting experience."

I'm sure the position of "peg boy" is wide open.

BORING. (5, Funny)

cffrost (885375) | more than 4 years ago | (#29411345)

Let's see a live re-creation of RMS Titanic's maiden voyage. Now that would be good television.

Re:BORING. (3, Funny)

sadness203 (1539377) | more than 4 years ago | (#29411579)

But, you see, iceberg are not fitted to survive the rapidly evolving climate change... They didn't adapt to the new reality. Soon, they will be gone like thousand of other species before it, they will be on the wall with the Dodo bird. And we'll hear no more of their rabid and vicious attacks on unwary sea captain! Bastard iceberg.

Re:BORING. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#29413167)

Then fuck it, use a railgun!

Deification of Darwin (4, Insightful)

SlashBugs (1339813) | more than 4 years ago | (#29411401)

This does sound like a cool project and I'll keep an eye on it, but I worry about the consequences of lauding Darwin and his work too much. Creationists, IDers and other crackpots often attack evolution by attacking errors or omissions that Darwin made, ignoring almost two centuries of refinements and advancements since his work. They also love to strawman scientists and other people who accept the evidence for evolution by referring to them as "Darwinists", implying that it's a simple case of "faith in God" vs. "faith in Darwin", rather than a matter of evidence.

Darwin certainly deserves to be remembered and respected for the amazing groundwork and insights he gave us. But I think there's a danger of looking too fixated on one personality and his centuries-old pronouncements at the expense of modern and more solid results. It sucks that we have to consider stuff like this, but like it or not there is an ideological battle going on. Because IDers and creationists are basing their arguments on emotion and strawmen, we have to consider what attacks we're exposing ourselves to, even (or especially) if they're unfair and totally illogical.

It does look like the ship will be packed with modern research equipment; hopefully the media they put out will heavily emphasise the modern data supporting evolution and acknowledging where Darwin's work has been improved upon, emphasising the success of the scientific method over the hero-worship.

Re:Deification of Darwin (4, Insightful)

dangitman (862676) | more than 4 years ago | (#29411543)

Creationists and IDers will get their panties in a bunch no matter what you do. Best just to ignore them, because changing what you do for their sake is just a way of being manipulated by them.

Re:Deification of Darwin (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#29411695)

Creationists will get their panties in a bunch regardless; however, note that most of the creationist wingnuts happen to also be Glenn Beck wingnuts. So most of them won't notice, as they are too busy yelling, "OMG OBAMA SOCIALIST NAZI HEALTHCARE BAD!!!!1!one!eleven!!!!"

Re:Deification of Darwin (1, Troll)

Jedi Alec (258881) | more than 4 years ago | (#29411809)

This does sound like a cool project and I'll keep an eye on it, but I worry about the consequences of lauding Darwin and his work too much. Creationists, IDers and other crackpots often attack evolution by attacking errors or omissions that Darwin made, ignoring almost two centuries of refinements and advancements since his work. They also love to strawman scientists and other people who accept the evidence for evolution by referring to them as "Darwinists", implying that it's a simple case of "faith in God" vs. "faith in Darwin", rather than a matter of evidence.

Considering this trip is a dutch/english project and the creationist/id crackpots are mainly located in the US of A, I fail to see the problem. I can't speak for the folks across the channel, but over here in the netherlands the kind of people that believe in creationism are generally speaking quietly ignored, right along with the alien abductees, the moon landing hoax proponent and other similar characters ;-)

Re:Deification of Darwin (1)

SlashBugs (1339813) | more than 4 years ago | (#29413169)

Here in the UK, we have our very own Creationist Zoo [bbc.co.uk] that markets itslf to local schools as fulfilling curriculum requirements but pushes a strong and consistent creationist adgenda [noahsarkzoofarm.co.uk].

Meanwhile, a recent survey [guardian.co.uk] says that half of Britons either don't believe in evolution or say they're too confused to have an opinion.

Re:Deification of Darwin (0, Troll)

dogmatixpsych (786818) | more than 4 years ago | (#29411965)

It's not a strawman to refer to people who accept evolution as Darwinists. Besides, many staunch evolutionists (like Richard Dawkins) do profess their belief in "Darwinian evolution" and "Darwinian life" and so forth (see this article by Dawkins {scroll down to his portion of it}: http://online.wsj.com/article/SB10001424052970203440104574405030643556324.html [wsj.com]).

Dawkins is one of the main faces of anti-Creationism / pro-evolution and he does exhibit Darwin worship. Sure, he's only one person but I've met many like him in their beliefs of evolution.

Further, many people in our world may not worship Darwin but they worship science and have science as their object of faith. Science is great but it is not perfect (I mean both that science is not perfect and the scientific method is not perfect). A study of the philosophy of science and epistemology should help people understand that. We can't get too hung up on evolution because like you said, we've had "almost two centuries of refinements and advancements since [Darwin's] work" and will have many more in the future; we might have discoveries or advancements or refinements that will completely revolutionize and change what we know about evolution!

I'm not anti-evolution; I'm a scientist working in the fields of neuropsychology, neuroscience, and neurobiology but I think it's important to not put too much faith in the scientific method either.

Re:Deification of Darwin (1)

Ihmhi (1206036) | more than 4 years ago | (#29412091)

Science can be tested and proven, and it's constantly being improved and refined. That's about as perfect as it gets.

Re:Deification of Darwin (1)

tapanitarvainen (1155821) | more than 4 years ago | (#29412281)

[...] many people in our world may not worship Darwin but they worship science and have science as their object of faith. Science is great but it is not perfect (I mean both that science is not perfect and the scientific method is not perfect).

One of the major features of science is that it can never be perfect, and it is the very opposite of accepting things on faith, so "worshipping" it or having science as an object of faith sounds a bit strange. Then again, people do worship things they don't understand... hmm, actually I'm not sure one can worship and understand the same thing.

Re:Deification of Darwin (3, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#29412319)

Perhaps Richard Dawkins talks about "Darwinian Evolution" as opposed to the other methods of evolution people have come up with. Darwin does deserve to be associated with the current Theory of Evolution since he got so much of it correct. That is not "Worship" as you say, but giving credit where credit is due.

From what you've said, me thinks you don't know what the Scientific Method is.

It isn't something to have faith in. It is a method of finding out truth from non-truth and it is the best way anyone has found to discern the difference. The Scientific Method is also self-correcting so if we have refined Darwin's theory, that is Science working as it should.

If we don't rely on the Scientific Method to find out the truth, what do you propose we use instead?

Re:Deification of Darwin (2)

mdwh2 (535323) | more than 4 years ago | (#29412457)

Dawkins is one of the main faces of anti-Creationism / pro-evolution and he does exhibit Darwin worship. Sure, he's only one person but I've met many like him in their beliefs of evolution.

What acts do you mean by "Darwin worship"?

I think it's important to not put too much faith in the scientific method either.

Now that sounds like a straw man - do you have an example of this?

Most scientists, and atheists for that matter, are aware of the limits of science (the objection is just to people claim that if science can't answer something, there is something else that somehow can provide answers).

Dawkins himself did a programme on the dangers of misusing science, for example, people convicted of crimes solely on dodgy scientific evidence.

Re:Deification of Darwin (2, Funny)

vlm (69642) | more than 4 years ago | (#29412485)

Further, many people in our world may not worship Darwin but they worship science and have science as their object of faith.

.jpg or it didn't happen... I've never even heard of anyone participating in the following "science faith" activities:

1) Interpretive dance in the full moon-light at the solstice in hope that my copy of "science news" magazine will be delivered.

2) Sacrificed a goat or chicken before organic chemisty lab in hopes of my grignard reagent not having moisture contamination.

3) Prayed to the "pharmo-industrial complex" to cure an illness. (their only god is money, anyway)

4) Sing hymns of praise for the AAVSO website having an easily downloadable light curve for a star I'm interested in.

Now there are borderline activites, that I think still do not qualify based on intent.

1) Meditation before a test, doesn't count because its purely for anti-anxiety effects not supernatural communion.

2) Worshiping the ground the professor walks on doesn't count, although it is treating him as a diety, it is done with the full knowledge he is merely a powerful human.

3) Reading from scientific "holy books", or even worse, reading the literal word of a powerpoint presentation, is not worshiping the book or its author or even the content, but is merely a (poor) teaching technique. Although people whom read powerpoint presentations to their audience should be burned at the stake, but not for religious reasons.

Re:Deification of Darwin (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#29413617)

Although people whom read powerpoint presentations to their audience should be burned at the stake, but not for religious reasons.

Absolutely! It's to create selective pressure and evolve better teachers...

Re:Deification of Darwin (1)

thisnamestoolong (1584383) | more than 4 years ago | (#29412927)

Referring to 'Darwinian Evolution' is simply a general term crediting the father of the theory -- it is in no way a statement that the father's formulation was conclusive -- it is exactly the same as referring to 'Newtonian Physics' -- we are not worshiping Newton nor are we suggesting that his word on physics is final -- we are simply giving him credit for his vast contribution to science.

As for science worship, I am going to have to simply disagree with you. Placing your 'faith' in science is not faith at all due to one major difference between science and every religion in history -- science works. We have used science to accomplish many mystical feats thought to be the realm of magic -- we can communicate instantly over vast distances, cure disease, fly through the air and into space, predict the future, and many others. It does not take faith to believe in science -- it WORKS. It takes faith to believe in anything else, as all other belief systems are religions are based on nothing, and prayer provably works no better than chance. Religion has never increased the human lifespan by a single hour, whereas science has increased the average human life span by 40 years over the past century.

Re:Deification of Darwin (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#29413395)

Religion has never increased the human lifespan by a single hour,

I'm not sure this is true. Even though religion is basically a pile of bollocks, apparently it has a calming effect on some people - and reduced stress levels can lead to longer life.
That's not to say that (for example) some form of non-religious meditation couldn't provide the exact same benefits.

Effectively it's a relation of the placebo effect - a sugar pill for the mind, which benefits you because you think it will.

Of course, there's the flip side such as people killing themselves or at least being miserable and stressed all the time because they can't live up to some nonsense religious requirement (e.g. you're gay and your church says you're wicked and should be punished or 'cured', results disastrous).

Re:Deification of Darwin (1)

MistrX (1566617) | more than 4 years ago | (#29413489)

People talk about evolution as it is an religion. Terms like 'Worship' and 'belief' are posted. I don't get this.
Evolution is nicely proven by observation and not just a theory people 'believe' in. Evolution is science. Science is derived from Latin: 'scientia' which means 'knowledge'. Faith/religion/beliefsystem is a total different aspect which when combined with a scientific subject is a fallacy in terminology.

Actually MY theory is that (especially religious) people tend to call it a beliefsystem so they can relate to their own mindset. Darwin was a naturalist. And naturalists study the science behind plants and animal life. One might call it a 'flora and fauna scientist' but thats quite the mouth full.

I also like to think that faith combined with science makes a whole.

cute but no cigar (2, Interesting)

youn (1516637) | more than 4 years ago | (#29411407)

wake me up when they do an intergalactic voyage with an FTL drive to see the evolution of life across the universe... darn, I'm afraid I'm gonna have to sleep a long time :)

So sayeth the book of Darwin (4, Insightful)

Supurcell (834022) | more than 4 years ago | (#29411409)

And so the first of many blessed pilgrims set out to become one niche closer to He Who Was Fittest, Darwin. By standing in His very foot prints, they too wouldst experience what was experienced through his highly evolved sensory organs. In their specialized grasping limbs, they wouldst wield the implements by which scrolls of eldritch knowledge would be wrought. As men they did die, but proven to be fit themselves, they too shall survive yet; not through their mortal vessels, but through story and song they outlive the ages.

Re:So sayeth the book of Darwin (1)

Hurricane78 (562437) | more than 4 years ago | (#29411481)

You don't know how deep/true the last sentence is, considering that one can see ideas/mindsets/realities as lifeforms, growing, reproducing, feeding, and perhaps... having thoughts themselves?

Any usefulness? (1)

VincenzoRomano (881055) | more than 4 years ago | (#29411433)

Apart of rising some attention about the Evolution Theory in the (funny) battle against the Intelligent Design, I don't see any usefulness.
Have those scientists, journalists (?) and artists (??) gained any new knowledge from this trip?

I gotta get a piece of this. (-1, Troll)

Anarchduke (1551707) | more than 4 years ago | (#29411443)

Wow. I am immediately going to apply for a national science foundation grant to recreate the historic travels of Hunter S Thompson. [imdb.com]

Re:I gotta get a piece of this. (0)

MrMr (219533) | more than 4 years ago | (#29411469)

You are aware that this is project is sponsored by the TV companies and commercial partners, not by the 'national science foundation'?.

Re:I gotta get a piece of this. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#29411533)

I am fully aware that this is sponsored by Dutch public television. Taxpayer's money.

They just would not settle for Gregor Mendel's study of peas, which form the basis of genetics and without which Darwin's theory was rubbish. I guess taxpayer's money is better spend on a trip around the world than on a bunch of peas.

Re:I gotta get a piece of this. (1)

darinfp (907671) | more than 4 years ago | (#29411723)

"Wow. I am immediately going to apply for a national science foundation grant to recreate the historic of Hunter S Thompson. "

Bags Shotgun...

Re:I gotta get a piece of this. (2, Interesting)

draco664 (960985) | more than 4 years ago | (#29411755)

Maybe we could get a grant to recreate the Mayflower and the Titanic in one go. Stuff a ship full of fundementalists and sink it in the Atlantic.

Live Video?!?!? (4, Interesting)

t0qer (230538) | more than 4 years ago | (#29411499)

Anyone know how they're doing live video at sea?

Re:Live Video?!?!? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#29411541)

satellite

Re:Live Video?!?!? (3, Informative)

illustir (92508) | more than 4 years ago | (#29411573)

If you have the money it is actually not that difficult to do live video links using smallish satellite receivers. A laptop and an antenna the size of a briefcase is all you need to go live on television from anywhere in communication satellite range.

Re:Live Video?!?!? (2, Informative)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#29411701)

The main partners in this project are the Dutch and Belgian broadcasting corporations. I saw the first episode and they seemed to be using the same satellite setup they use for live reports.

Re:Live Video? Green Video! (1)

AliasMarlowe (1042386) | more than 4 years ago | (#29411655)

Anyone know how they're doing live video at sea?

The first few weeks of video would be quite educational, if they actually used a ship like the Beagle. Puking over the side every few minutes as the ship rolls at the least ripple on the sea, puking in horror on discovering what a state-of-the-art "marine head" was in the 1830s, puking at the sight of the maggoty gourmet cuisine served to officers and VIPs, puking at the smells of one's fellow voyagers (want a shower? dream on!). Almost like a twisted reality TV with green faces. Then there's the little issue of all that sodomy, grog, and the lash.

probably meant live-action video (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#29411817)

Who framed Darwin Rabbit?

Re:Live Video?!?!? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#29411875)

They're using a satellite receiver. If you want to know the exact details you might want to ask the producer via twitter: http://twitter.com/lexrun

Twitter etc... (1)

Lord Lode (1290856) | more than 4 years ago | (#29411645)

Why do these things always need to use live connections through twitter and facebook etc...? Why don't they just make their own website which shows the info in a more personal way to them? All the rest are just dumb hypes.

Re:Twitter etc... (1)

Dak RIT (556128) | more than 4 years ago | (#29411711)

Bandwidth?

Re:Twitter etc... (1)

IBBoard (1128019) | more than 4 years ago | (#29411761)

Bandwidth?

Comparatively cheap these days. Scripts for micro-blogging, standard blogging, etc? Freely available. Not just being another hype-follower? Priceless.

I suspect their are arguments like "because people use it" and "because people know it" and "because people don't need to make separate registrations". All it means is that you get buried in junk instead, or force people who wouldn't otherwise bother with an account on one of these "trendy" services to get an account just to comment (while avoiding the rest of the spam).

Re:Twitter etc... (1)

mdwh2 (535323) | more than 4 years ago | (#29412507)

Comparatively cheap these days. Scripts for micro-blogging, standard blogging, etc? Freely available. Not just being another hype-follower? Priceless.

So why are you here on "trendy" Slashdot like the rest of us? Surely you're better off building your own site to post your opinions to, instead of following the hype, right?

I suspect their are arguments like "because people use it" and "because people know it" and "because people don't need to make separate registrations". All it means is that you get buried in junk instead, or force people who wouldn't otherwise bother with an account on one of these "trendy" services to get an account just to comment (while avoiding the rest of the spam).

But if you can be bothered to even RTFS, they do have a website ( http://beagle.vpro.nl/#/page/item/12/english/ [beagle.vpro.nl] ), for those people who don't want to sign up to Facebook or Twitter, etc. Those things are provided in addition, for the convencience of people who are on those sites.

Re:Twitter etc... (1)

MistrX (1566617) | more than 4 years ago | (#29412027)

My guess would be that more people visit Facebook, Twitter and Youtube then some obscure educational/informative/scientific website where only specific magazines and Slashdot news items refer to the URL.

Re:Twitter etc... (1)

Arrawa (681474) | more than 4 years ago | (#29412607)

It is not obscure! You have to get in mind that the VPRO is one of the large Dutch public broadcasters with lots of airtime on tv and radio. The co-host, VRT is the Belgium public broadcaster. They have a beagle site at http://multiblog.vrt.be/canvasprogrammas/beagle-kaart/ [multiblog.vrt.be] Many public broadcasters here in the Netherlands, endorse the idea of 'Don't care where and how you watch or listen to us, if you are listening to us'. In that adagium, Youtube, facebook, twitter fit very well.

Re:Twitter etc... (1)

Arrawa (681474) | more than 4 years ago | (#29412639)

Erhmm... that should be: 'Don't care where and how you want to watch or listen to us, as long as you are watching and listening to us'.

Re:Twitter etc... (1)

MistrX (1566617) | more than 4 years ago | (#29412879)

Yeah, but on an international platform I think they did right by using Twitter, Youtube etc. then just a website. You either have to watch the VPRO and go to the website to learn what the website is where the expedition is hosted on or read it on forums like Slashdot.

Thats what I ment with obscure and I was referring to the website. ;)

Also I fully endorse this expedition. Many people see it as a waste of time but a lot of new discoveries and/or insights are found when recreating an old scenario or walking an old path. New understanding and technology also helps a great deal.

Dutch AND Belgian! (1)

NaughtyNimitz (763264) | more than 4 years ago | (#29411741)

British, Dutch AND Belgian participants please! It's not because Kim Clijsters speaks Dutch, she is Dutch. Also, The Netherlands celebrates 'their' foundation of New York. But apparently, New York was also founded by Belgians (Walloons) and French. Hoboken for example is also a community near Antwerp. It's so convenient to leave the others out...

Re:Dutch AND Belgian! (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#29411789)

VOC was dutch.

Re:Dutch AND Belgian! (1)

NaughtyNimitz (763264) | more than 4 years ago | (#29411927)

Of course VOC was Dutch, but they brought Dutch, Belgian and French colonists with them (as paying customers). It's not because I pay KLM to bring me to island X , that KLM is settling on island X...

Nice holiday (-1, Flamebait)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#29411941)

Who the fuck is paying for this complete waste of time?

Re:Nice holiday (1)

Arrawa (681474) | more than 4 years ago | (#29412695)

The Dutch and Belgium tax payers (they pay for the public broadcasters VPRO and VRT (and the educational broadcaster Teleac/NOT) who co-host the show) with additional funds from the Dutch and Belgium governments and private sponsors.

Horrible (2, Interesting)

The Cisco Kid (31490) | more than 4 years ago | (#29412061)

Looks like a great project, however the website has got to be one of the most horrid and difficult to use things Ive seen in a web browser. Ever. Add that apparently they have been drinking from the MS Silverlight koolaid machine, and despite my interest in the project, I can say it will not be a site I will waste my time visiting anymore.

Re:Horrible (1)

jeremyp (130771) | more than 4 years ago | (#29412149)

No kidding!

That's the first time I've seen a multi-document interface implemented inside a web page. What were they thinking?

Alfred Wallace says - Been There, Done That (1)

mrheehee (1637105) | more than 4 years ago | (#29412099)

As too often happens, the wrong person is deified. Alfred Russel Wallace, at the least, co-authored the Theory Of Evolution. Like Nicola Tesla, he faded, or was trampled, into obscurity by a publicity seeking opponent. Google it and see, although many articles attempt to downplay Wallace's contribution because he dared to venture into "unscientific" areas of research. In any case, evolution as they both proposed is long since obsolete.

Next up! (1)

erroneus (253617) | more than 4 years ago | (#29412159)

I plan to reproduce the famous "Franklin lightning, kite, key in the thunderstorm" experiment. If you don't hear from me again, you'll know how it went.

Re:Next up! (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#29412277)

Sometimes I wonder if Franklin had grad students.

Just more timber (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#29412373)

For the fires burning in the pits of hell

Re:Just more timber (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#29412941)

Just more timber,
for the fire of curiosity of the mind.

Here, fixed that for you.

BBC Documentary (2, Interesting)

CopaceticOpus (965603) | more than 4 years ago | (#29412399)

Anyone who is interested in this topic should watch the BBC documentary "Galápagos: The Islands That Changed the World". It is fascinating and beautifully shot. You can buy it on DVD or BD, or rent it from Netflix.

Re:BBC Documentary (1)

American Terrorist (1494195) | more than 4 years ago | (#29412555)

I recommend "The Moral Animal" by Robert Wright. The book is mostly about modern evolutionary theory related through Darwin's works and life. I really liked that Galapagos documentary too, I felt like after watching it I never really need to go there myself, which is a good thing for the islands' wildlife.

Summary error : Dutch & Flemish, not British (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#29412599)

The summary calls this a project by "a group of British and Dutch scientists". However, as all of the links in the summary indicate, this is a project run by the VPRO, a Dutch tv station and the VPRO web site clearly states that this is a VPRO project together with the (also Dutch) Teleac and the Flemish Canvas.

I wonder why the summary put the British contribution first....

Must be a entertaining read (1)

Coren22 (1625475) | more than 4 years ago | (#29413465)

Eight month trip huh? Must be real entertaining read.

"At sea, the horizon is empty in every direction"

"Still at sea, nothing to do, playing WoW"

So, who would read this log of travel long enough to get to them making landfall?

Gentlemen, we need a new word. (1)

GameboyRMH (1153867) | more than 4 years ago | (#29413601)

Upon reading the summary I realized that we need a new word for people obsessed with the latest inane online social networking/banter sharing/privacy destroying fad services. I looked for one but could not find a suitable word with which to tag the story. Neophile is close but not specific enough, and carries too many negative connotations for the user. Blogtard sort of says it all but I think we can do better. Can anyone offer any suggestions?

maybe it's worth noting that... (1, Informative)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#29413777)

there are also belgian scientists on board (not only dutch and british)

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