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Grad Student Wins Alan Alda's Flame Challenge

Soulskill posted more than 2 years ago | from the wins-free-M*A*S*H-dvd-set dept.

Education 161

eldavojohn writes "Scientists have long been criticized of their inability to communicate complex ideas adequately to the rest of society. Similar to his questions on PBS' Scientific American Frontiers, actor Alan Alda wrote to the journal Science with a proposition called The Flame Challenge (PDF). Contestants would have to explain a flame to an eleven-year-old kid, and the entries would be judged by thousands of children across the country. The winner of The Flame Challenge is quantum physics grad student Ben Ames, whose animated video covers concepts like pyrolysis, chemiluminescence, oxidation and incandescence boiled into a humorous video, complete with song. Now they are asking children age 10-12 to suggest the next question for the Flame Challenge. Kids out there, what would you like scientists to explain?"

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1 of my favorite Antenna channels (4, Informative)

cpu6502 (1960974) | more than 2 years ago | (#40236801)

Over-the-air channel 12-3 broadcasts an hour of Scientific American every day. Very well done (if a bit simplistic). They air other documentaries too. I remember when TLC used to have shows like this, but now it's PBS doing the job.

Important facts! Read now! (-1, Offtopic)

TheWorldIsGamemaker (2656363) | more than 2 years ago | (#40236895)

Did you know:
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*Windows was made in Gamemaker.
*Stuxnet was made in Gamemaker.
*Linux is absolute trash because it wasn't made in Gamemaker.
*OSX was made in Gamemaker.

Startling! Such a thing! Most importantly, the godlike piece of software known as MyCleanPC was made in Gamemaker!
This is reason alone for a worthless, miserable Gamemakerlessness such as yourself to switch to Gamemaker, to return to your roots: Gamemakerdom!
Return! Return! Return to Gamemakerdom, you worthless eyesore!
Gamemaker's the best.
Why not use Gamemaker?
There is no reason.
You're miserable without Gamemaker.
You're absolutely worthless without Gamemaker.
Why do you not switch?
Are you a masochist?
No. You're just ignorant. A big ol' nothingness ultimatum.
It's time to switch.
To Gamemaker, that is.
You'd better switch.
You shall switch.
You'll definitely switch.
Without a single problem, you *will* switch to Gamemaker.
You *will* return to Gamemakerdom! I command it!
Return, return, return, return, return to Gamemakerdom!

Re:1 of my favorite Antenna channels (-1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#40236961)

You lost me at PBS, and what was I saying at Alan Alda? Who is that by the way? No, I'm not Google-ing it wah liberal retards wah.

Re:1 of my favorite Antenna channels (5, Funny)

Rogue Haggis Landing (1230830) | more than 2 years ago | (#40237293)

Is it just me, or has the quality of the trolls at Slashdot absolutely plummeted in the last several years? I really appreciate quality trolling, but I'm afraid that it's turned into a lost art form around here.

Re:1 of my favorite Antenna channels (1)

Fnord666 (889225) | more than 2 years ago | (#40238419)

Is it just me, or has the quality of the trolls at Slashdot absolutely plummeted in the last several years? I really appreciate quality trolling, but I'm afraid that it's turned into a lost art form around here.

Nah, it's just summer and the kiddies are out of school during the day. Data analysis of moderations/UID/day of the week/date would probably turn up some really interesting stuff.

Do not be afraid. (-1, Offtopic)

GamemakerIsSalvation (2656367) | more than 2 years ago | (#40236973)

Do not be afraid, little one.
Switch to Gamemaker.
Don't be afraid of it.
Gamemaker will be your salvation.
No: Gamemaker is the only way to save yourself.
Gamemaker is God.
There is nothing Gamemaker cannot accomplish.
There is nothing you can't do as long as you have Gamemaker.
Return.
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Return.
Return.
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Return to Gamemakerdom!
Return to it!
Run towards it!
Run to Gamemakerdom as fast as you can!
You cannot achieve true happiness without Gamemaker!
Gamemaker is everything.
Therefore, you are nothing without Gamemaker.
Absolutely nothing.
A miserable, worthless piece of garbage is what you are without Gamemaker.
A piece of garbage that cries itself to sleep each day is what you are without Gamemaker.
It's time to end your suffering.
It's time to return.
It's time to return... to Gamemakerdom!

Re:1 of my favorite Antenna channels (1)

Loughla (2531696) | more than 2 years ago | (#40237053)

A bit off-topic, I apologize, but this is one of my main triggers.

I also remember when The Learning Channel had learning shows, instead of reality TV [realitybug.com] , and when the History Channel had history shows, instead of reality TV [history.com] (I'm too lazy to find more), and when Animal Planet had animal shows, instead of reality TV [reality-tv-online.com] , and so on, and so forth, I don't want to get more depressed than I currently am, so I'm not looking anymore up.

It's a sign of the times that we must rely almost solely on PBS for actual, substantial lessons (I do love local PBS, though - they have an awesome local history show every week). It's a sign of the times that we focus more on the people that hunt alligators, or shoot historical weapons, or have family members with odd diseases, instead of the alligators, time period the guns were used, and symptoms/physiology behind the odd diseases. Why? Because we're all precious little snow-flakes, we all have interesting stories, and we all deserve our own television show.

Thoughts?

Re:1 of my favorite Antenna channels (1)

cpu6502 (1960974) | more than 2 years ago | (#40237149)

Thoughts?
Agree 100%. This is why I don't have cable, and when I'm traveling and see cable in my hotel, I can't find anything worth watching. Even my former favorite Syfy has devolved into a reality/gameshow channel. About the only shows I still watch are iCarly (it's funny), South Park (also funny), and the movie marathons that air on weekends.

I actually enjoy Antenna TV more than Cable TV, because they air classic shows like Hitchcock/Dragnet, news shows like RT/France24, old movies almost 24 hours a day, and the channels don't cost me a penny. So even if they were airing crap, I'm not wasting my money (I just read a Sci-Fi magazine instead).

Re:1 of my favorite Antenna channels (1)

eyenot (102141) | more than 2 years ago | (#40237167)

Thoughts?

Just that I hope you're not dissing Alan Alda!

Re:1 of my favorite Antenna channels (1)

cpu6502 (1960974) | more than 2 years ago | (#40237207)

P.S. I misnamed channel 12-3 as PBS. It's actually "PBS Info" one of 6 different channels PBS is now producing for antenna viewers. (The others are the main channel, a kids channel, a music/concert channel, a home/life channel, and a few others I've forgotten.)

Re:1 of my favorite Antenna channels (1)

Megane (129182) | more than 2 years ago | (#40237487)

Damn. I get two PBS channels on my antenna, and both run Create (the home/life), one (near Fort Hood) runs Pentagon Channel, and the other (in Austin) runs their own extra channel (which usually has good stuff). At least neither runs PBS Kids; I'd probably remove that one from my channel list.

Re:1 of my favorite Antenna channels (5, Insightful)

Obfuscant (592200) | more than 2 years ago | (#40237309)

Why? Because we're all precious little snow-flakes, we all have interesting stories, and we all deserve our own television show.

Nope. Wrong.

The mass marketing of specialized channels happened because there simply weren't enough specialized viewers to keep the specialization afloat. They all had to start creating new stuff to draw more eyeballs for the advertisers.

MTV was an early victim. People got tired of watching music videos and they had to expand into whatever was edgy and new for the demographic they sought. That's why we have Real World and Road Rules and The Challenge XXI and "Pregnant at 16" and whatever other stuff they can draw people to. "Made" is homage to the fact that MTV has changed from music TV into "teen TV" but just not been honest enough to change the name.

It is an insidious problem. AMC (American MOVIE CLASSICS) has created new TV series (Mad Men) and is now heavy into "CSI Miami". Even TVLand has fallen into the trap, airing new sitcoms they've produced.

It was a grand and glorious vision in the 80's. 500 specialized channels so anyone could find the kind of material they wanted to watch anytime. Cable networks starting up to do the equivalent of "The Scotch Tape Store" or "Spatula City". And then finding out that fractional audiences brought fractional ad revenues.

PBS gets away with it because they have convinced donors that they are special and it's an honor to give lots of money ( a rich people demonstration of social responsibility), they have convinced advertisers to pay for ads that are almost not ads ("this show is funded by ..."), and use a lot of BBC produced programs to draw viewers that will pay to keep the transmitters fed with electrons.

PBS is, however, far from the "if not PBS, then who..." they were close to being many years ago. I was going to say british sitcoms are "if not PBS, then BBC America", but even BBCA has fallen into the trap and is busy showing lots of US shows --- at least any US show that has Gordon Ramsay as the host.

Re:1 of my favorite Antenna channels (1)

Quirkz (1206400) | more than 2 years ago | (#40237811)

Insightful. I'd feel gloomy about the failure of specialized channels, except I think most of us will eventually get by well enough with streaming services like Netflix and the like, where you can grab what you like from a pool of everything. The only concern there is that there's enough money, somewhere, to fund the right variety of shows in the first place so they're available to watch.

Re:1 of my favorite Antenna channels (1)

petsounds (593538) | more than 2 years ago | (#40238065)

Do you have evidence for "people got tired of music videos", or is that just a guess? Because I would say Viacom buying MTV in '85 was its death knell, although it took Viacom a few years to really figure out what to put on MTV.

Not everyone non-music video show on MTV was bad though. Look at Liquid Television – they showed fairly avant garde shows like Aeon Flux.

And according to Wikipedia, MTV dropped the tagline "Music Television" in 2010. So that last lip service to music has finally been expunged.

Re:1 of my favorite Antenna channels (1)

Obfuscant (592200) | more than 2 years ago | (#40238263)

Do you have evidence for "people got tired of music videos", or is that just a guess? Because I would say Viacom buying MTV in '85 was its death knell, although it took Viacom a few years to really figure out what to put on MTV.

MTV was doing ok with music videos as its niche format for many years. If MTV had kept doing well, Viacom would have had no decisions to make, and no reason to change formats. The change wasn't trying to get away from a successful channel, it was trying to fix a broken one. Part of the problem was that VH1 stole the "hits", and CMT stole country. One success spawned multiple copies, and thence multiple failures.

Not everyone non-music video show on MTV was bad though. Look at Liquid Television â"

I didn't say that they were bad, they were just not music television. Real World dealt with some (a few, at least) (ok, one maybe) serious social issue(s) of the time, even though it was mostly adolescent hijinks and drunken arguments. And sex. One Pedro to a hundred sex. And poor Paula, who was both a "social issue" and sex in one package. Some of the programs were fine. I loved Ken Olber's basement game show, for example. Many more are/were "reality" nightmares, successful for the same reason every reality show is: "my life doesn't suck as bad as those people on TV so I must be ok." That and "my life sucks just like those people on TV so I can relate". And maybe "those people have lives so much better than I do, maybe I can learn from them..."

You can still see some music videos -- at 6AM or so. But none of the mainstream programming is Music anymore. The 24 hour video concept wore out and advertisers noticed.

I forgot to mention even the simple concepts have tried to become generic TV. The Weather Channel, which for a long time was content to be The Weather Channel and provide weather information in a simple fast easy format. And even the program guide now carries the movies and programs that it used to be the listings for.

Re:1 of my favorite Antenna channels (2, Informative)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#40237327)

You forgot ghosts and aliens.

If I see that orange guy that is just abosolutely positive that aliens are milking our prostates to create alien-human hybrid living spacecraft to deliver pyramid materials to far-off galaxies... I'm gunna throw my TV out the window. The best part is that H presents him like an expert. Whatever the fuck an "expert" in active alien conspiracies is, I'll never know.

As for all the fucking retarded ghost shows, they just repeat the same nonsense, over and over.

"That has to be a ghost."
"No it doesn't."
"I dunno, I'm pretty sure that's a ghost."
"Nope."
"Look here, there was a sound."
"You're in a 200 year old building, jackass."
"Yeah but that's not the sound a building makes."
"God, please shut up."
"We need to do an emergency exorcism. C'mon everybody..."

"Next time, on ghost show, the guys we pay to make this show are sure they think they might have recorded yet another random sound that could be evidence of a potential ghost. Maybe."

What kind of asshole tunes in, week after week, for that?

Re:1 of my favorite Antenna channels (1)

Quirkz (1206400) | more than 2 years ago | (#40237863)

I watched a season of Ghost Hunters specifically to laugh at the silly acting every time there was a weird noise. I spent a lot of time thinking about doing a parody of their style, but with really obvious sources for the "strange activity."

More recently I've been a little impressed with a show that goes to a lot of trouble trying to debunk and/or recreate "supernatural" pictures and videos. They're still a little accepting of the idea that it *might* be a ghost or bigfoot or whatever for my tastes, but I like that they at least start out with the idea there's a rational explanation. Can't remember the name of the show at the moment, though.

Re:1 of my favorite Antenna channels (1)

Megane (129182) | more than 2 years ago | (#40237447)

I remember when cable TV was actually worth paying money for, Then over 10 years ago I gave up the $35+/month habit. Now the only reason I can see for paying money for cable TV is if you're a sports fan, as we've gradually let sports move onto cable TV. (Substitute "satellite TV" for "cable TV" as you wish, it's almost the same.)

I also remember back in the '80s when cable TV got you better picture quality on local channels. (and when MTV actually had music videos)

Re:1 of my favorite Antenna channels (1)

hairyfeet (841228) | more than 2 years ago | (#40238205)

Yeah PBS and Nova rock. I have an engineering buddy that saves me a copy of good Nova and PBS documentaries and they never fail to be engaging. I recently watched "Absolute Zero" which went from the first experiments to understand what cold was all the way up to making the first Bose Einstein Condensate and it was really REALLY good. They give you a good starting out point if you wish to learn more without piling on so much technobabble that those without a degree in the field they are talking about can't keep up, just really good stuff.

Sadly we are up to our asses in reality TV because throwing some trashy people in a room and filming them acting like asses is dirt cheap. A couple of cameras, some trashy folks with huge egos, cheap as dirt and just as common. I tried to watch one of those things just to see WTF a Snooki was and i felt like my IQ was dropping by the second, it was like a retard ray attacking my brain.

Now frankly I watch more Youtube and Hulu than anything, not because i'm snobby but because between all the retarded TV and even more retarded commercials I feel like watching most TV is like one long episode of "Ow my balls!" whereas at least Hulu has shows like Night Gallery and Youtube has excellent documentaries like Battle Stations,20th Century Battlefields and lectures by engaging thinkers like Neil Degrasse Tyson. Commercial TV has just gotten too painful for me to watch, even the non reality TV seems so predictable and formulaic its not even interesting to me.

Re:1 of my favorite Antenna channels (1)

Hatta (162192) | more than 2 years ago | (#40237481)

I remember when TLC used to have shows like this, but now it's PBS doing the job.

Thank you socialism.

Re:1 of my favorite Antenna channels (2)

moderatorrater (1095745) | more than 2 years ago | (#40238003)

now it's PBS doing the job

Nova's been on the air since 1974. Either you're really old or you aren't giving PBS enough credit for always having good science shows.

Here's my suggestion for the next quesstion: (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#40236809)

How big is Uranus?

Next Question? (-1, Flamebait)

HornWumpus (783565) | more than 2 years ago | (#40236811)

My suggestion: Why do people pay any attention to has been actors? Explain it to kids.

Re:Next Question? (1)

cpu6502 (1960974) | more than 2 years ago | (#40236959)

Because he's a really good host for the show and therefore not a "has been" but an "is now". Just like the guy who narrates for BBC/History Channel's "Life" and other docs.

Re:Next Question? (1)

pegasustonans (589396) | more than 2 years ago | (#40237119)

Because he's a really good host for the show and therefore not a "has been" but an "is now". Just like the guy who narrates for BBC/History Channel's "Life" and other docs.

I don't know if I'd equivocate David Attenborough with Alan Alda given the shape and span of their respective careers.

Nevertheless, I agree with you, their narration style is both informative and engaging, something few narrators achieve in modern broadcasting (unlike the vanilla quality of Oprah Winfrey and the others who narrate BBC's documentary series for an American audience).

Re:Next Question? (1)

jedidiah (1196) | more than 2 years ago | (#40237191)

Ricardo Montalban was a kick ass narrator.

Probably didn't have 1/10th the career of Attenborough but he was still a kick ass narrator.

Re:Next Question? (4, Insightful)

eyenot (102141) | more than 2 years ago | (#40237059)

God, dude. Alan Alda has made significant contributions to the public understanding of science through hosting a show about it. He never plays the smart-ass, he's always unassuming and humble, and through that honesty (and by way of interviewing authorities on various subjects) he brings the most complex scientific concepts down to a common level that most people can understand. It's why his show is so popular. So, it may have been quite awhile since M*A*S*H* but that doesn't mean he hasn't stayed relevant. In fact, if Alan Alda wanted to interview a famous scientist -- better yet, YOUR favorite famous scientist, take your pick (I'll pick Stephen Hawking for you in your absence) -- he would get that interview at nearly a moment's notice! There's no scientist who wouldn't want to be interviewed by him and seen on his show. So, Big-Mouth, how many famous scientists can you speak with whenever you feel like it?

Re:Next Question? (1)

cpu6502 (1960974) | more than 2 years ago | (#40237257)

>>>I'll pick Stephen Hawking for you in your absence

Good example of a bad narrator (when he did Masters of Science Fiction). At least the stories were good. Maybe they should have had Alan Alda narrate instead. Or the guys who did the Twilight Zone/Outer Limits in the 90s.

actors perfect the art of communication (1)

peter303 (12292) | more than 2 years ago | (#40237067)

And its nice to have a few interested in communicating science, and spend years learning how to do it.

Re:Next Question? (2)

jedidiah (1196) | more than 2 years ago | (#40237179)

Some people judge based on the message rather than the messenger.

Re:Next Question? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#40237233)

Alan Alda played the only likeable Republican character in a television series ever, which is no mean feat.

Fucking magnets how do they work? (5, Funny)

h4rr4r (612664) | more than 2 years ago | (#40236817)

âoeFUCKING MAGNETS, HOW DO THEY WORK?
And I don't wanna talk to a scientist

Re:Fucking magnets how do they work? (3, Funny)

v1 (525388) | more than 2 years ago | (#40236905)

FUCKING MAGNETS, HOW DO THEY WORK?

yes, that would be an attractive video to watch!

Re:Fucking magnets how do they work? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#40237029)

There's plenty of videos on youtube of magnets banging together....

Re:Fucking magnets how do they work? (1)

spire3661 (1038968) | more than 2 years ago | (#40237323)

Your wit repulses me.

Re:Fucking magnets how do they work? (1)

MozeeToby (1163751) | more than 2 years ago | (#40237371)

Some are attracted, some are repulsed. It's like slashdot's gone bipolar.

Re:Fucking magnets how do they work? (1)

SplashMyBandit (1543257) | more than 2 years ago | (#40237151)

Easy. The electric field of a moving charge when you are not in the rest frame of the charge results in .... a magnetic field. This is why electric fields and magnetic fields are related (although having an inkling about Special Relativity helps too). No video or song for you (believe me, you wouldn't like to hear me sing - although I can dance :) ).

Re:Fucking magnets how do they work? (1)

SplashMyBandit (1543257) | more than 2 years ago | (#40237165)

... although 'electric field' is an abstract concept. We'd also have to go into particle exchange to explain it. Down the rabbit hole we'd go.

Re:Fucking magnets how do they work? (-1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#40237317)

FUCKING MAGNETS, HOW DO THEY WORK?

Not much harder than anybody else. Sometimes not much at all. It all boils down to how much money you have, and attitude helps. Wait, what are we talking about?

Re:Fucking magnets how do they work? (0, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#40237743)

If you really want to know how magnets work, don't look to the "Standard Model" for answers, because there isn't an answer in the standard model. Some doofus will probably conjure up some particle to fit a dream he had about magnetism and everyone else will believe it like it is some new religion. To me the standard model is a religion in itself.

I'm not going to attempt at explaining the standard model or how this is different. Suffice to say this has nothing to do with the standard model and will be modded down so far because none of this is in any college handbook. And like a 100 times before, if it isn't in a college hand book that someone here has read before, then it is all wrong.

If you really want to know, read on anyway.

All protons have Lagrange points inside of them. The more spheres(protons) fused inside of each other, the more Lagrange points the atom will have. These Lagrange points attract protons as well as electrons. When a proton is attracted to this Lagrange point, it is gravity. Electrons are also attracted to these Lagrange points too but are so small as not to affect gravity. Although if you load up the proton with enough electrons you can over come gravity.

But, the more electrons that are attracted to the Lagrange points inside the proton, the more the Lagrange point gets filled and other electrons start to orbit the Lagrange point. The electrons that are orbiting the Lagrange point at farther and farther points, the easier it is to fling them off to other Lagrange points inside the same proton or to other protons.

If a Lagrange point of a proton is more than half way from the exact center to the outer edge, the more likely the electron will be attracted to the proton outer edge itself instead of the Lagrange point. The Lagrange point at the half way point in between the outer edge and the exact center, the proton will become magnetic. The tipping point where the pull of the electrons will over come the force of gravity. Moving away from the half way point closer to the exact center makes it more conductive than magnetic.

That is why Iron is a good conductor and magnetic and copper is just a good conductor but not magnetic.

But closer and closer the Lagrange point gets to the dead center, the more it becomes a super conductor.

Helium is not a conductor of electricity at room temperature. Helium has two Lagrange points near the two outer edges. As Helium cools and the proton shrinks, that Lagrange point moves closer and closer to the center. At some certain temperature, the Lagrange points gets to half way in between the outer edge and the exact center. It then becomes a conductor of electricity. As it get colder and colder and shrinks to near absolute zero, the two Lagrange points merge at the center of the proton and it becomes a superconductor as it is as easy to push an electron into the proton as it is to fling out out of the center and on to another helium proton. ie.. no resistance to the proton as the electron passes through. Resistance in passing through is usually given up to the proton as the speed of the electron passing through causes the speed of the rotation of the proton to speed up. That causes the proton to expand, spin faster and we usually measure that as heat. It takes lots and lots of electrons for that to happen, not just one electron.

So magnetism is the point where the Lagrange points of electrons are sufficient enough to gather enough electrons to over come the force of gravity. A conductor is the point where Lagrange points of electrons can fly off of the Lagrange points to another proton easier than getting stuck to the Lagrange point caused by the rotating proton( or commonly called gravity). The closer to the center of the proton, the less resistance on passing through, to the point of no resistance and the proton becoming a superconductor.

Re:Fucking magnets how do they work? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#40237755)

Ooo, strong with the force are they. Hew-hehehe. Much likeness to your father do they have. Yhwahahaher... *cough* *chough* To old am I to be speaking of such things. Continue with your training, young Skywalker.
-Yoda, explaining magnetism

Re:Fucking magnets how do they work? (2)

FrootLoops (1817694) | more than 2 years ago | (#40238221)

How do they work? Like [wikipedia.org] this [wikipedia.org] .
Why do they work? Fuck if I know. At least Richard Feynman agreed with me [youtube.com] .

How Women's Minds Work (3, Funny)

fallen1 (230220) | more than 2 years ago | (#40236865)

I'd enjoy hearing the explanation behind how women's minds work. Seriously. I'm sure most guys out there have experienced the "I think I've finally figured out most of what makes her tick. Now I just need to.. what the fuck?! She just did the opposite of what I.. never mind, I give up."

Oh, wait, this is /. I'm talking about... ;-)

Re:How Women's Minds Work (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#40237011)

How women's minds work:

Give me this.
Buy me that.

Re:How Women's Minds Work (1)

Loughla (2531696) | more than 2 years ago | (#40237065)

So how's that divorce settlement going?

Re:How Women's Minds Work (2, Funny)

lpp (115405) | more than 2 years ago | (#40237201)

I'm just guessing here, but probably:

Give me this.
Buy me that.

Re:How Women's Minds Work (1, Insightful)

JWSmythe (446288) | more than 2 years ago | (#40237647)

It sounds like the whole cycle. Dating, marriage, and divorce.

    I worked with a guy once, who said that everything a woman said could be summarized to "I want ..." and "I need ...". The second could still be summarized as "I want ..."

    I waited years to prove him wrong. I couldn't. When he was around, and a woman was talking, I was always waiting to be able to say "See, she didn't say want or need!" It wasn't necessarily in the first few seconds of talking, but those were just the introduction to "I want..." or "I need..." In the end, it usually involves money. Sometimes directly like "I need $20". Sometimes indirectly "Wouldn't it be nice if we had a new car?" (meaning, "I want a new car.")

    There are exceptions to this. She is my girlfriend. :) There may be others out there, but you'll be hard pressed to find one.

    Those who deny it, are ignoring what's really being said.

    And now that you've read this, you'll see how often it does occur.

Re:How Women's Minds Work (1)

cpu6502 (1960974) | more than 2 years ago | (#40237025)

Bought this 20 years ago, and it helped immensely (though it's only the beginning of understanding; every martian/venusian is different) :
http://www.amazon.com/Men-Mars-Women-Venus-Understanding/dp/0060574216 [amazon.com]

Re:How Women's Minds Work (2)

FrootLoops (1817694) | more than 2 years ago | (#40238377)

You know, there are a lot of downsides to being gay and not a lot of upsides, but at least I've never seen a book titled Bears are from Mars, twinks are from Venus.

Re:How Women's Minds Work (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#40237107)

Re:How Women's Minds Work (1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#40237169)

1. If she is tired, or sick, she wants pampered.
2. If she is is stressed, she wants assistance
3. If she is chatty, she just wants someone to listen to her
4. If she's feeling sexy or lonely, she wants to be gushed over.
5. If she's crying, sometimes it's best to either hold her, or leave her alone till she's done crying. Sometimes, she doesn't even know why she's crying. In those cases, just leave her alone till she's done.

There. That pretty much covers it. You are welcome.

Re:How Women's Minds Work (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#40237205)

1. If she is tired, or sick, she wants pampered.

You mean either "pampering" or "to be pampered".
You can't use past participles that way in English.

Re:How Women's Minds Work (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#40237231)

And she doesn't like being nit picked to death either....esp since she has to pick up your stinking dirty socks.

Re:How Women's Minds Work (1)

dgatwood (11270) | more than 2 years ago | (#40237253)

Maybe she wants someone wearing Pampers. If saying "She wants George Clooney" is correct, then so is "She wants Pampered".

Re:How Women's Minds Work (2)

Megane (129182) | more than 2 years ago | (#40237583)

I think you missed a few:

6. If he is tired, or sick, she wants to be pampered.
7. If he is is stressed, she wants assistance
8. If he is trying to get some actual work done, she just wants someone to listen to her
9. If he is feeling tired or lonely, she wants to be gushed over.
10. If he is crying over the monthly bills, she wants to go shopping. Sometimes, she doesn't even know why she wants to go shopping. In those cases, just leave her alone till she's done.

Re:How Women's Minds Work (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#40237705)

That's what you get for picking a pretty girl, and not a geeky one.

Re:How Women's Minds Work (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#40237187)

Regarding these women you are referring to, do you mean my Mom? You know, the person who lives upstairs, brings food down to me, and says I need to take a bath and spend some time outside - something like that?

Re:How Women's Minds Work (2, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#40237217)

Most non-boring men are complicated too. It just seems that some men whine a lot more about it.

So please get over this overused trope. I don't come here to have my gender made fun of. It's getting pretty tiring getting hit with this ridiculousness in the middle of reading actual decent comments.

Re:How Women's Minds Work (1)

The Good Reverend (84440) | more than 2 years ago | (#40237745)

Men are complicated in much less strange ways. It's not like each and every one of us doesn't deal with both men and women in a variety of relationships all the time.

Why is the sky blue? (1, Interesting)

magic maverick (2615475) | more than 2 years ago | (#40236897)

Where do babies come from?
How can I make this other person like me?

And why can't you explain flame without using a stupid video, in a manner that can be understood by those with crappy Internet connections and/or those with poor or non-existent eye sight? Another question, who the hell still uses frames in this day and age?

The whole concept is pretty damn cool though. Explaining science to kids. Perhaps explain evolution next. If you can make a small child understand, you've got some hope of making an adult creationist understand...

What I am interested in knowing, is did the children actually understand the explanation, or did they just pick the one that they understood the most of? Were they tested afterwards?

Re:Why is the sky blue? (1)

c0lo (1497653) | more than 2 years ago | (#40236971)

And why blue is blue?

Re:Why is the sky blue? (1)

Atzanteol (99067) | more than 2 years ago | (#40237633)

Rayleigh scattering.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Rayleigh_scattering [wikipedia.org]

Re:Why is the sky blue? (1)

SplashMyBandit (1543257) | more than 2 years ago | (#40237939)

That's the blueness. Don't forget Mie scattering for the whiteness (clouds, haze etc).

Re:Why is the sky blue? (1)

kenrblan (1388237) | more than 2 years ago | (#40237035)

Perhaps explain evolution next. If you can make a small child understand, you've got some hope of making an adult creationist understand...

The primary difference here is that a small child might want to understand, while the creationist prefers to ignore logical explanations. Most creationists would be capable of learning and understanding if the desire were present.

I absolutely love the concept of these challenges to develop really good explanations of science related concepts. Children generally want to know why things are they way they are. Giving them clear lessons to their questions will only result in improved scientific literacy and interest. Very few things are as discouraging as an incorrect or poorly constructed explanation. For instance, my 5th grade science teacher (also a sports coach) totally screwed up the explanation of how the phases of the moon work, basically confusing them with eclipses. I'm sure that damaged several of my classmates.

Re:Why is the sky blue? (-1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#40237075)

Hi I'm a troll railing on creationists once again making slash dot look like the bigoted site it is and trashing its once good name. I can't think for myself because my second grade teacher and my government want me to believe in some theories that don't stand up to scrutiny. So like the little robot I am I make fun of other theories that are just as valid. I have become the church of old that blocked science, I now have a closed mind and I'm dumb.

Re:Why is the sky blue? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#40237135)

Hi, I'm a mockery of you. See, I'm mocking you. Mock!

I do this because I don't have a valid opinion and I feel threatened by a world that's waking up to the tyranny of my devices.

Mock! Neener!

Re:Why is the sky blue? (1)

jedidiah (1196) | more than 2 years ago | (#40237237)

He's not really mocking creationists.

For that you need a publication from the Family Research Council.

Re:Why is the sky blue? (1)

countach (534280) | more than 2 years ago | (#40237313)

Erk. Creationists understand, they just don't agree.

Re:Why is the sky blue? (1)

MozeeToby (1163751) | more than 2 years ago | (#40237443)

There are absolutely creationists who don't understand the concepts of evolution. Either because they were never taught it or because they were taught a ludicrous straw man by people peddling FUD. We can't forget that! If we do, whenever a creationist asks a legitimate question about evolution we'll go off on them instead of providing an informative answer. The odds of an answer, no matter how informative, opening someone's eyes might be very slim but it is non-zero and every mind opened is a good thing. I know that I myself have answered questions from people who self describable "don't get evolution" and received back words of thanks and sometimes another, more informed and interesting question that keeps the discussion moving forward. It doesn't happen often but it does happen.

If someone is being a troll do what you will to them. But if someone merely asks a question we should try to give them an informed answer, even if it's a question that's been answered before.

Re:Why is the sky blue? (1)

Grishnakh (216268) | more than 2 years ago | (#40237069)

If you can make a small child understand, you've got some hope of making an adult creationist understand...

Doubtful. But at least if you can make the creationists' kids understand, things will be better in 30 years. Of course, by then, the country may well have collapsed because of the idiocy of the creationists, but at least their kids and grandkids might be able to pick up the pieces and build something better.

Re:Why is the sky blue? (1)

spire3661 (1038968) | more than 2 years ago | (#40237339)

You have no hope of making a Creationist understand, for it is not truth they seek, but comfort.

Re:Why is the sky blue? (2)

dylan_- (1661) | more than 2 years ago | (#40237381)

The sky is blue because air is blue and the sunlight is shining through the air.

Where do babies come from?

When a man and a woman love each other very much, they cuddle is a special way and make a baby.

How can I make this other person like me?

Firstly, you need to record all your actions for a whole month.

Once you have that footage, kidnap the person. Then randomly torture them for a couple of days asking questions that are totally irrelevant to your purpose. This is to invoke a Stockholm syndrome with the torturer.

Now, start showing clips of the video of yourself in different scenarios, and following that you test your victim with choices on their actions... such as way of walking, responding to people, types of clothing etc. If they choose the same as you would, they are rewarded. If not, they are beaten and tortured further.

After about 18 months of this treatment, this person will be just like you.

Re:Why is the sky blue? (1)

RedDeadThumb (1826340) | more than 2 years ago | (#40237425)

What I am interested in knowing, is did the children actually understand the explanation, or did they just pick the one that they understood the most of?

Or perhaps the one that entertained them the most.

Schrödinger's cat (1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#40236911)

The superposition of states at the quantum level.

Flame (1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#40236921)

Alan Alda is behind the Flame virus? That was surprising

Evolution (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#40236939)

Based on the recent submissions this is clearly needed.

I've got one (1)

slashmydots (2189826) | more than 2 years ago | (#40236975)

Why is Jersey Shore still on the air? That, or as I'm sure a little dude would suggest, why do 'splosion 'splode?

The burning question... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#40237031)

What is love?
(Baby, don't hurt me.)

Re:The burning question... (3, Funny)

ZeroSumHappiness (1710320) | more than 2 years ago | (#40237117)

Can you explain why you're never gonna give me up?

Re:The burning question... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#40237177)

It has already been explained in this excellent video [youtube.com] . I am surprised you have not seen this.

Obvioulsy: The other three elements (1)

eric31415927 (861917) | more than 2 years ago | (#40237091)

Now with Fire explained, children should learn about Earth, Wind, and Water.
flame : Fire
as
solid : Earth
as
gas : Wind
as
liquid : Water

Re:Obvioulsy: The other three elements (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#40237123)

and HEART!

Re:Obvioulsy: The other three elements (1)

eyenot (102141) | more than 2 years ago | (#40237181)

Uh, gee, there, don't forget about gold. Because you're trying to turn children into gold, right?

ASIDE: I went to the NYC World Science Festival (1)

peter303 (12292) | more than 2 years ago | (#40237133)

It was last weekend. Alda's Flame presentation was one of 41 pieces. I saw four presentations, but not Alda's. The four were in the "Big ideas" track and panels on currently practicing researchers on a specific topic. And I learned more than I had expected. The were other tracks on the arts and for children. I'd recommend this conference to others, even if you work it into a NYC vacation which I did.

I didn't think (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#40237163)

that it was that great. I'm not trying to be super negative, it mentioned all the terms and stuff but that's not really what's important. Having an actual understanding is much more important. This would be good if you had to pass a test on it.

Usefulness? (0)

Corson (746347) | more than 2 years ago | (#40237235)

Mankind has learned and used fire for over 100,000 yrs without needing to explain in words to a 10-12 year old something that is best grasped through the senses.

Re:Usefulness? (2, Funny)

ae1294 (1547521) | more than 2 years ago | (#40237315)

Mankind has learned and used fire for over 100,000 yrs without needing to explain in words to a 10-12 year old something that is best grasped through the senses.

Pretty sure the number you where looking for was 6000... 6000 years.... your welcome...

Re:Usefulness? (1)

Corson (746347) | more than 2 years ago | (#40237527)

The Cro-Magnon man was dated at ~35,000 BC. Okay, maybe calling "mankind" the puny apes before that age is too much. :)

Re:Usefulness? (1)

Kittenman (971447) | more than 2 years ago | (#40238053)

The Cro-Magnon man was dated at ~35,000 BC.

Dinner and a movie? Tricky in those days.

How come... (-1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#40237263)

How come that when I turned 11 and we went to the restaurant and everyone sang Happy Birthday and the one guy in the suit who wasn't singing stood up and wanted daddy to pay a rul.. ray... royalty because he said he was Warner?

Is this aimed at 11-year-olds?!? (3, Insightful)

MartinSchou (1360093) | more than 2 years ago | (#40237267)

It's a great explanation, but why does it feel like it's explaining it to a 6-year-old?

I have a hard time imagining my 11-year-old self taking it serious at all.

Personally I think they should change the challenge a bit. Explain X to an adult, but in a way that an 11-year-old can grasp.

Stop talking down to kids.

Re:Is this aimed at 11-year-olds?!? (3, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#40237391)

The thing is, it's talking down but it's also spouting all kinds of random vocabulary that they don't need. Getting a basic understanding of the concept is much more important than knowing what everything's called.

Re:Is this aimed at 11-year-olds?!? (0, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#40237911)

I think that is a natural result of someone being in the education system (eg. a grad student like we see here). It's what they know and what they're used to.

That's exactly the way most teaching takes place and it's idiotic.

torture and hell? (-1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#40237275)

Anyone else find it a little unsettling to stare at a naked man chained to wall being tortured in hell?

Tides & Currents (1)

AioKits (1235070) | more than 2 years ago | (#40237375)

I'm for explaining how tides and currents work.. Why the ocean is higher at some point in the day, but lower in others... What's it like beneath the surface when the water is calm... That stuff...

I hate deep water too, deathly afraid of it.

I understood this video . . . (1)

NicknamesAreStupid (1040118) | more than 2 years ago | (#40237389)

. . . . so any kids will, too. Pity that I never saw this when I was their age.

Higher ed? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#40237693)

/. = flames galore, more than its fair share of explanations amid conspiracies, and
yet nary a grad in sight.

Alda (1)

CAIMLAS (41445) | more than 2 years ago | (#40237935)

Alda is quite the personality and has

How about these questions:

* Why is the sky blue?
* Why does water freeze?
* How is charcoal made? (relating it to fire, of course)

For those who are curious, he had an interesting discussion with Bob Osserman entitled M*A*T*H some years ago. You can download the video of it here: http://www.msri.org/web/msri/online-videos/-/video/showVideo/11928

evolution (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#40238127)

explain evolution so an 11 year old can understand it, and maybe the republicans will then understand it also!

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