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A New Ice Age?

michael posted more than 9 years ago | from the it's-all-fun-and-game-until-it's-too-late dept.

Science 449

barakn writes "Scientists have savaged the new movie The Day After Tomorrow, which depicts global warming causing a new ice age and freezing New York solid. The movie follows on the heels of a report to the Department of Defense in February, written by two guys who are not climatologists, about the implications of global warming triggering the growth of ice sheets in the northern hemisphere. There is a plausible theory which suggests that melting ice may release enough fresh water to halt circulation of warm water from the Gulf Stream, thus significantly cooling Europe and the east coast of North America. Note that this theory depends on melting ice, not growing ice, which may be one reason scientists find the ice age scenario so hard to swallow. New satellite evidence suggests a part of this circulation may already be slowing down. Those on the North American west coast will not have to worry about ice sheets, but changes in Arctic ice could mean the western drought will be permanent. For those of you who would rather do something before it's too late, iron seems to work, but the long-term ecological implications are still unknown."

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449 comments

FP? (-1, Redundant)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#8890947)

first?

smoke (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#8890962)

cock

Re:FP? (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#8890976)

fork yew!!

Re:FP? (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#8891013)

Holy shit i can't believe i fucking got that....

WooT

Wait... so you're telling me... (5, Funny)

Amiga Lover (708890) | more than 9 years ago | (#8890952)

Wait... so you're telling me that a movie writer is being loose with the truth?

What is the world coming to!?

Re:Wait... so you're telling me... (5, Interesting)

mabinogi (74033) | more than 9 years ago | (#8890960)

Actually, that makes me wonder if he was actually too close to the mark for the scientists to handle...

You don't see scientists getting up in arms about movies like The Core, or Armageddon so why are they all defensive about this one?

Re:Wait... so you're telling me... (5, Interesting)

Ralconte (599174) | more than 9 years ago | (#8890969)

Ah, movie science, so you haven't been here, have you? http://www.intuitor.com/moviephysics/

Re:Wait... so you're telling me... (1)

mabinogi (74033) | more than 9 years ago | (#8890998)

Good site, thanks!

I love the bowling ball idea for Armageddon...heh

Re:Wait... so you're telling me... (2, Insightful)

56ker (566853) | more than 9 years ago | (#8891140)

I think some people have a hard time seperating science fiction from science fact as science fiction slowly becomes science fact (at least in hard sci-fi as opposed to science that's been twisted to be implausible by dramatic licence).

Re:Wait... so you're telling me... (5, Insightful)

PHPhD2B (675590) | more than 9 years ago | (#8891243)

Ah yes, the intuitor guy. An engineer* who seems to wish he's a scientist. And instead of educating himself further he puts up a web site with some equations (mostly 7th-11th grade physics ones) and keeps talking in "I don't think a real scientist would ..."

And his silly attempts at savagery shows that he never quite GETS it - check out his "review" of The Core. It completely has eluded him that "The Core" is a funny little 50s type sci-fi movie, not a documentary.

* I'm an engineer myself but I've been trained to actually find the truth, not make surmises about what I *think* scientists would say our do - I'd go ask some of them!

Re:Wait... so you're telling me... (4, Informative)

Teppy (105859) | more than 9 years ago | (#8890984)

Scientists are up in arms because this movie was written by paranormal talk show host Art Bell [coasttocoastam.com] and alien abductee Whitley Strieber [unknowncountry.com].

Re:Wait... so you're telling me... (3, Insightful)

DigiShaman (671371) | more than 9 years ago | (#8891183)

I believe the book was called "Comming of the global super storm" or something like that. But then again, Art Bell has been known to provide shock entertainment. When it comes to this guy, just sit back an enjoy the fun. He would want it that way.

Re:Wait... so you're telling me... (1)

bhima (46039) | more than 9 years ago | (#8891237)

I really wish I could listen to Art Bell here in the EU. One of the few things I miss.

Re:Wait... so you're telling me... (5, Insightful)

WIAKywbfatw (307557) | more than 9 years ago | (#8891002)

Maybe because climate change caused by global warming is potentially (note, I said potentially) a man-made disaster waiting to happen, whereas drilling down to the Earth's core isn't actually happening and being hit by an asteroid the size of Texas is highly unlikely for the immediate future.

The attitude of a lot of people here on Slashdot with regards to global warming amazes me. This is something that could possibly devastate society as we know it, perhaps not for us, but for our children or our children's children, but there's a great many people who either dismiss it as never going to happen or something that can be easily controlled without any major shifts in lifestyle or attitude.

Someone once said "This is a fragile ball we're living on. It's a miracle and we're destroying it." That's a hell of a lot closer to the truth than any politician, especially any politician who's made a killing from exploiting fossil fuels, will ever admit to.

Maybe it is because we are skeptical... (5, Interesting)

SerpentMage (13390) | more than 9 years ago | (#8891030)

Sure global warming may be happening... BUT and this is probably why the slashdot people are laisse faire, maybe it is part of the overall scheme of things by none other than mother nature.

When that little warming period and ice age hit, which was not caused by humanity, would the arguments not be the same? EG would the green people would be saying to stop burning all of those fires to heat homes?

Frankly I think the only real way of stopping global warming is to kill off about 2/3 of our planet. There are just too many of us.

Let me give you an example. Germany, which is trying to be green installed a huge number of wind powered generators in the North Sea. They have just found out that because of all those generators the coast is getting 10% more sunshine and 10% less rain. I then ask the question, are we not dammed if we do and dammed if we do not?

So unless you are ready to volenteer your life in the name of "humanity" nothing much is going to change.

BTW I do not agree with your quote as planet Earth has withstood worse things than humans and continued. What might not survive are the humans!

Re:Maybe it is because we are skeptical... (2, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#8891194)

They have just found out that because of all those generators the coast is getting 10% more sunshine and 10% less rain.

So if we fill the Irish Sea with them, Manchester will finally have nice weather...

Re:Maybe it is because we are skeptical... (3, Insightful)

bankman (136859) | more than 9 years ago | (#8891268)

BTW I do not agree with your quote as planet Earth has withstood worse things than humans and continued. What might not survive are the humans!

Reminds me of Hoimar von Dittfurth who once said, and I paraphrase, that "mankind shouldn't be so arrogant to believe that it can destroy the earth. The earth will have destroyed us long before that." Like you, I completely agree.

Re:Wait... so you're telling me... (1)

G-funk (22712) | more than 9 years ago | (#8891124)

Someone once said "This is a fragile ball we're living on. It's a miracle and we're destroying it." That's a hell of a lot closer to the truth than any politician, especially any politician who's made a killing from exploiting fossil fuels, will ever admit to.

Says you. Prove it. Personally, I don't believe in "global warming" as it's described as being something us evil humans have done to our delicate world. I think that unless we unleash "the power of the atom" and get ourselves glowing in the dark all the way to a nuclear winter, it's the height of man's arrogance to assume that every little thing he does will derail the earth's "natural" cycle of ice ages and warm ages. And frankly I think all-out civilisation destroying nucleat war would only be a 300 or so year hiccup in the billion year climatalogical story of our planet.

There's companies buying politicians, people starving in africa so some warlord can live it up, and various cancers killing people left right and center. Maybe we can worry about those things for a while instead of the boogie man?

Re:Wait... so you're telling me... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#8891200)

"There's companies buying politicians, people starving in africa so some warlord can live it up, and various cancers killing people left right and center."
Says you. Prove it. Personally, I don't believe in "crooked politics" as it's being described as being something evil people with money do to screw around with the delicate people of the Earth. It's the height of man's arrogance to assume that every little person dying of some disease will derail earth's natural cycle of people dying.

Re:Wait... so you're telling me... (1)

the_2nd_coming (444906) | more than 9 years ago | (#8891189)

considering it was warmer in europe in the middle ages than now and we are about 13 degrees below the global average temperature over time, I would say that you are freaking out over nothing.

Re:Wait... so you're telling me... (1)

benhocking (724439) | more than 9 years ago | (#8891204)

"The attitude of a lot of people here on Slashdot with regards to global warming amazes me. This is something that could possibly devastate society as we know it, perhaps not for us, but for our children or our children's children, but there's a great many people who either dismiss it as never going to happen or something that can be easily controlled without any major shifts in lifestyle or attitude." But people on /. aren't the type who reproduce... (Obviously, I'm being satirical.)

Re:Wait... so you're telling me... (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#8890966)

Wait... so you're telling me that a movie writer is being loose with the truth?

You mean lose.

Re:Wait... so you're telling me... (1, Flamebait)

mabinogi (74033) | more than 9 years ago | (#8890970)

Um no...he means loose.

loose ( P ) Pronunciation Key (ls)
adj. looser, loosest

1. Not fastened, restrained, or contained: loose bricks.
2. Not taut, fixed, or rigid: a loose anchor line; a loose chair leg.
3. Free from confinement or imprisonment; unfettered: criminals loose in the neighborhood; dogs that are loose on the streets.
4. Not tight-fitting or tightly fitted: loose shoes.
5. Not bound, bundled, stapled, or gathered together: loose papers.
6. Not compact or dense in arrangement or structure: loose gravel.
7. Lacking a sense of restraint or responsibility; idle: loose talk.
8. Not formal; relaxed: a loose atmosphere at the club.
9. Lacking conventional moral restraint in sexual behavior.
10. Not literal or exact: a loose translation.
11. Characterized by a free movement of fluids in the body: a loose cough; loose bowels.

Re:Wait... so you're telling me... (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#8890990)

Loose?? I'll show you loose [goatse.cx] !!

It occurs to me... (2, Interesting)

clifgriffin (676199) | more than 9 years ago | (#8890971)

That every global warming prediction scientists have made in the last 30 years has fallen flat on its face.

According to them, we should be all dead by now.

Personally, I'm not sweating anything. There is plenty of evidence that our toxic output is not the largets or the deadliest on this planet, and thankfully things pretty much clean themselves.

I refuse to forget how many times popular science has been wrong.

Re:It occurs to me... (4, Insightful)

Lumpy (12016) | more than 9 years ago | (#8890991)

I refuse to forget how many times popular science has been wrong.

there is your answer... "popular science"

it diesnt say accurate science, or proper science or even real science... but popular science...

they only print that which is "popular" at that time. Many times their articles are complete bunk and sensationalized to the point of being redicilous... and they have ALWAYS been that way.

Popular science is for the Lay person that likes to be entertained... go grab one of the real science journals for accurate information.

And don't call "global warming" accurate science (3, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#8891032)

It can't be "accurate science" or "proper science" or "real science" because there is no control, nor is there any way to run any experiments to actually measure any cause-and-effect relationships.

Could the warnings of global warming armageddon be true? Yeah, but so could the warnings of global cooling armageddon from the 1970s.

And even if either guess is true, there's no way to be sure that the problem was caused by man.

Now, all that doesn't mean we shouldn't be reasonable about reducing pollution and greenhouse gas generation. (Well, except if the older "global cooling" predictions were really true, then we should be cranking out the greenhouse gases, right?)

Re:And don't call "global warming" accurate scienc (3, Insightful)

moonbender (547943) | more than 9 years ago | (#8891254)

It can't be "accurate science" or "proper science" or "real science" because there is no control, nor is there any way to run any experiments to actually measure any cause-and-effect relationships.

Wrong. While it is not possible to run experiments as such, it certainly is possible to make certain predictions based on the underlying physics and look how the predictions turn out based on empirical data. Then the theory is either validated or not - in which case you modify the theory trying to account for the difference. Or, in briefer terms, you apply the basic scientific process.

And of course it is still absolutely possible to run many experiments on a smaller-than-global scale - the outcome of which help the understanding of the global climate and help predict it's future development.

And even if either guess is true, there's no way to be sure that the problem was caused by man.

That's true. There's no way to be sure of anything per se. There are ways to be reasonably sure of it based on a given set of information, though.

Well, except if the older "global cooling" predictions were really true, then we should be cranking out the greenhouse gases, right?

No. I haven't been around to read about the older predictions, so I might be wrong. However, I imagine a global warming can well induce a severe global cooling, and the other way round. And furthermore, it might well be that the previous claims were just wrong - and the underlying assumptions corrected since then in the process I described above. Of course, now you're saying "Well, what if they're wrong again?!" - that's just the problem with any scientific claim, it can always be wrong. Unless you've got some indications that the current theories are failing, though, it'd be probably be wise to assume they are correct. If on the other hand you do have such indications, you probably should do some research into the matter and find out if either you're wrong, or they are.

And as for the original poster saying: "I refuse to forget how many times popular science has been wrong."

I'm not sure what exactly "popular science" is supposed to refer to, but science is one of the few fields were being wrong is not that bad. Newton's laws on gravity have also been proven wrong, but they were still an incredibly important discovery. And while you refuse to forget how often science was wrong, you do seem to forget how often it has learned from those errors and corrected them, and how often science is right. Also: Try reading a book some day. [amazon.com]

Re:It occurs to me... (4, Insightful)

Smidge204 (605297) | more than 9 years ago | (#8891035)

I don't think the parent was referring to the magazine "Popular Science" but rather the current theories that permeate society, eg: "Global warming" and "We only have 20 years worth of oil reserves left". (That second one was popular around the 1970's, and 30 years later they still say we have 20 years worth left...)

Unfortunately, it's popular science that the laymen take as truth. The public has SO MUCH blind faith in science its disturbing. Everyone figures "well these guys are scientists, so they must know what they're talking about" - It's not that that the public is stupid (debatable...) but rather they are just so uninformed about how everything works that they really can't critique the claims.

And all too often the laymen are the policy makers and social/political reactionaries. That's when the problems start.
=Smidge=

Re:It occurs to me... (5, Insightful)

Bearpaw (13080) | more than 9 years ago | (#8891217)

I don't think the parent was referring to the magazine "Popular Science" but rather the current theories that permeate society, eg: "Global warming" and "We only have 20 years worth of oil reserves left". (That second one was popular around the 1970's, and 30 years later they still say we have 20 years worth left...)

Your gross (though common) oversimplification of the claims doesn't counter the fact that the amount of oil is limited ... unless you are hypothesizing either an infinite amount of oil or some currently unknown process that is replacing it as fast as we can use it? When the reserves will run out, whether in 5 years or 50, is a relatively unimportant detail compared to the fact that they will. Yes, there is uncertainty about the timing -- should we gamble that it will be later rather than earlier?

The attitude that "it hasn't happened yet therefore it won't happen" is even sloppier thinking than what you are criticizing.

The only way to avoid be caught unprepared for changes in the availabilty in resources is to prepare for those changes. Why is this so hard to understand?

Re:It occurs to me... (2, Informative)

clifgriffin (676199) | more than 9 years ago | (#8891006)

Actually, in this case I wasn't referring to a magazine, I was referring to "accepted science". Popular as in the theories that are vogue among the world's scientists at any given moment.

Re:It occurs to me... (1, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#8891015)

Yeah, we may be overestimating ourselves on the effect we have on climate. That "global warming" due to our excessive release of CO2 may be a lead cause is rather sketchy (but we do introduce them).

In any case, nontheless, two observational facts do worry me: (1) slow-down of Great Atlantic Conveyer
and (2) accelerating melt-down of polar ice and desalination of sea water. If these two trends progress, literatures suggest that ice age is coming soon (in a geological time scale, ie., ~10 -- 1000 years).

Are we ready for it? Sure as hell Dubya ain't.

Re:It occurs to me... (1)

EsbenMoseHansen (731150) | more than 9 years ago | (#8891022)

As I remember the predictions, it was something along temperature rising of about 0.1 to 0.2K at this point. Not exactly killing increases. In any case, the global warming effect prediction seems to be measurable now. Unfortunately, my source is in Danish, but since the "scientist" (Lomborg?) who starting this "it's all ok, nothing to worry about" fad of today is Danish as well, I'll go ahead and post it. http://www.dmi.dk/dmi/index/viden/drivhuseffekten. htm I do not believe that the human race will be killed off by this. But it might be expensive/inconvenient to live with.

Re:It occurs to me... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#8891048)

Over the last 30 years, data gathering technology and computing power to facilitate modelling have grown immensely - no doubt chewing up lots of resources in the process ;-)

For instance, supercomputers like the Earth Simulator (http://www.es.jamstec.go.jp/esc/eng/) in Japan are able to provide data that just weren't available in the past.

Certainly, there may be an element of wolf crying, but we should be listening to what scientists are saying NOW, not what they said 30 years ago when they correspondingly old tools, techniques and data.

And it occurs to me... (5, Insightful)

fw3 (523647) | more than 9 years ago | (#8891241)

That it's far too early to call whether these studies, models etc are going to be right / wrong. 'Prediction' is a dangerous business.

Generally, in any case by no means every theory/prediction made about climate has been wrong. Case in point James Lovelock (who happens to be one of the two founders of what's generally known as the Gaia hypothesis) and co-researchers *accurately* predicted the medium-long term results of CFC release on the ozone layer.

Science is inherently wrong, because it's the art of better explaining what we don't know. Another related case in point. Up until a dozen years ago physical oceanography uniformly concluded (based on theoretical models and very limited data sets) an understanding that the deep ocean flow was uniform and slow.

A friend of mine at WHOI put some cameras on the floor of the northern Atlantic, one day they were thinking their hardware had flaked 'cause they couldn't see anything. What was happening was silt was being stirred up by a high velocity current. What they discovered was that oceans have 'weather patterns' which operate much as atmospheric weather, fronts, low&high pressure areas etc.

This completely blew away established theories of physical oceanogrpahy (and happens to be directly related research to the abrupt climate change and ocean conveyor research article referenced in this post).

I'm glad you feel safe, however concluding that you're safe because prior research has been wrong is not a great recipe for the long term. The CFC / ozone problem is one of the first instances of scientific results materially impacting environmental policy at the global/international level. If rapid-onset ice-age is a possiblity (this has been pretty well established). And if a 'lens' of low-density fresh water over the northern oceans can trigger this abrupt change we would be foolish to conclude there's no risk worth further understanding.

I'm not convinced (2, Informative)

Omega037 (712939) | more than 9 years ago | (#8890974)

I personally believe that all this supposed changes may eventually occur, but they are a normal cycle of the earth and be very gradual. If the human race mangaes to survive long enough, we will slowly change how we do things to meet these problems.

Regardless though, what is gonna happen will happen, and there is nothing we can do to change it. Worrying about such things seems pointless to me. The whole planet is going to be destroyed by the sun dying in about 5 billion years, why don't we worry about that as well?

Re:I'm not convinced (2, Interesting)

clifgriffin (676199) | more than 9 years ago | (#8890997)

If we ever come up with a way to equal the fluorocarbon output of just one volcanic explosion or forest fire, I'll be the first one to start taking these articles seriously.

Re:I'm not convinced (2, Interesting)

Lehk228 (705449) | more than 9 years ago | (#8891044)

more than that, All human activity since the industrial revolution is less than one small to moderate eruption

Re:I'm not convinced (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#8891210)

Regardless though, what is gonna happen will happen, and there is nothing we can do to change it.

Yet if George Bush were to say that about terrorists, you'd vote him out of office in an instant.

Re:I'm not convinced (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#8891273)

Yet if George Bush were to say that about terrorists, you'd vote him out of office in an instant.

Huh? If I had the power to "vote him out of office in an instant" then I already would have done. The most I can do is cast one vote out of millions when the election comes around. I dont't have the power to just instantly sack him, whatever he says about terrorists. Try to keep some sort of hold onto reality.

Re:I'm not convinced (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#8891233)

The whole planet is going to be destroyed by the sun dying in about 5 billion years, why don't we worry about that as well?

Actually life on earth will be unable to survive in about 2 billion years due to the increased output of the maturing sun.

Science... (1)

qat (637648) | more than 9 years ago | (#8890981)

Yes, it is infact true, however it's the reverse. Our computers will soon require such sophisticated cooling units that if one of our cooling units that has been harvested from the iced over vomit of a blood sucking community just so happens to get access to open air, we will all be instantaneously entered into an ice age. I've seen it happen...

ice age (4, Interesting)

marine_recon (652565) | more than 9 years ago | (#8890982)

i might be wrong, but arnt people saying were in the middle of an ice age right now and the only thing keeping it check is the amount of CO2 being produced. anyone?

After the Warming (1)

holt_rpi (454352) | more than 9 years ago | (#8891163)

I remember some time ago seeing a documentary by James Burke written as a retrospective (in 2050) on global warming. A pretty good (and very critical) synopsis of the show is here [energyadvocate.com].

I recall him mentioning something about how the polar ice would melt, diluting some kind of salt/mineral/whatever transport stream in the atlantic, and effectively killing off the ability of the oceans to simultaneously absorb CO2 and somehow effect some atmospheric flow (the jet stream, perhaps?)

As the above critique points out, though, even that was perceived to be approximately a 70 year cycle and couldn't explain global ice ages or anything really apocalyptic.

Perhaps we should start digging tunnels now to prevent any mine shaft gap [tigersweat.com].

Re:ice age (1)

MarkPNeyer (729607) | more than 9 years ago | (#8891174)

The amount of C02 being produced by human beings is miniscule. It's really very tiny compared to the amount produce in nature, by animals and natural processes such as Volcanoes. This should be evident by the dramatic drop off in C02 production since the 1870's - the client hasn't really changed all that much.

Re:ice age (1)

Bearpaw (13080) | more than 9 years ago | (#8891236)

I might be wrong, but arnt people saying were in the middle of an ice age right now and the only thing keeping it check is the amount of CO2 being produced. anyone?

Yes, I've heard that "theory" too ... but not from anyone who wasn't an energy industry spokesdroid/lobbyist or somebody unwittingly quoting them.

Then again... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#8890983)

There's shitload of movie's that has plots that are a slap in the face to science. I mean, look at star trek for chrsit's sake. Or the laughable new release, hellboy.

Movie's do this with a lot of things. They don't bother to consult consultants.

Move it! (1, Insightful)

Sicarii (768338) | more than 9 years ago | (#8890985)

Oh shit!...time to move to another planet...

Re:Move it! (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#8891256)

nahh im gonna stop here and help ruin this one some more, its not like we have a choice

a comment (3, Interesting)

cinnamon colbert (732724) | more than 9 years ago | (#8890988)

A major part of climate change is the amount of CO2 in the air (CO2, carbon dioxide, is the major greenhouse gas) In figuring out how CO2 levels will change, a major term is the exchange between gas and water over the oceans; this is a key parameter in all the super complicated computer models from places like NOAA a few years ago, in SCIENCE magazine, turns out this term was wrong by an order of magnitude CONCLUSION: the models are crap why ? u r an administrator, testifying before congress on why u need 200 large. YOu could say, well we made major progress in FFT algorythmns usefull in modeling, and our understanding of image recognition to model cloud patterns...(congress falling asleep) OR u cd say GLOBAL WARMING !!! NYC underwater !!!! it is not that it is bad science, it is just that the quality of the models is not that high - noone has the lsightest idea of how our climate will change in response to any significant perturbation - sort a like MS stuff, no ?

Informative? (3, Funny)

pjt33 (739471) | more than 9 years ago | (#8891079)

Could the person who modded parent informative please translate it into English? (Spanish or French will do, I'm not too fussy).

Re:Informative? (3, Funny)

bhima (46039) | more than 9 years ago | (#8891169)

Una parte importante de cambio del clima es la cantidad de CO2 en el aire (el CO2, bióxido de carbono, es el gas principal del invernadero) en calcular fuera de cómo los niveles del CO2 cambiarán, un término importante es el intercambio entre el gas y el agua sobre los océanos; esto es un parámetro dominante en todos los modelos complicados estupendos de la computadora de lugares como NOAA hace algunos años, en compartimiento de la CIENCIA, resulta este término era incorrecto por una orden de la CONCLUSIÓN de la magnitud: los modelos son crap porqué? u r un administrador, atestiguando antes de congreso encendido porqué necesidad 200 de u grande. Usted podría decir, bien hicimos progreso importante en usefull de los algorythmns de FFT en modelar, y nuestra comprensión del reconocimiento de la imagen para modelar caer de los (congress de los patrones de la nube... dormido) O CALENTARSE GLOBAL de la opinión "copia más oscura"de u!!! cNyc subacuático!!!! no es que es mala ciencia, él es justo que la calidad de los modelos no es que alto - noone tiene la idea ma's lsightest de cómo nuestro clima cambiará en respuesta a cualquier perturbación significativa - clasifique a como la materia del MS, no?

Re:Informative? (1)

pjt33 (739471) | more than 9 years ago | (#8891270)

He debido especificar que sea español, francés o inglés gramatical. Su traducción no es más fácil de comprender que el original, porque el problema fue la cantidad de errores gramaticales y deletreos; babelfish no los corrige.

WTF ? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#8891249)

Dude, can I try whatever you're smoking

Please don't tell me this... (3, Funny)

Mahonrimoriancumer (302464) | more than 9 years ago | (#8890992)

Next you'll be telling me that Jurrasic Park, Armageddon, etc. are based on junk science!

Re:[OT]Jurassic Park... (1)

botzi (673768) | more than 9 years ago | (#8891083)

...bad example. I couldn't care less for the movie, but Micheal Crighton's novels are usually one of the best "pseudo nowadays science" novels one can read.
The guy goes deep enough in his research to hide most of his own speculations between enough facts to make the story "believable". Jurassic park was definately one of the rather entertaining books of my childhood and I don't see any reason to use the word "junk" when you discuss a Sci-Fi novel.

Aren't we still in an Ice Age? (5, Informative)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#8890996)

IIRC, the historic/geologic average temperature of the Earth over it's 5-billion or so years had been something like 72 degrees F.

Today, it's like 59 degreees F.

If that recollection is true, then we're still in an "Ice Age" and should expect the world to be getting warmer if the "Ice Age" is in fact coming to an end.

Sorry if this doesn't fit into the "human == BAD, all_natural == GOOD" paradigm, but getting struck by lightning or eaten by a lion does fall into the "all_natural" category too...

Re:Aren't we still in an Ice Age? (2, Funny)

clifgriffin (676199) | more than 9 years ago | (#8891011)

I personally was unaware we'd been tracking the earth's temperature for 5 billion years.

Thanks for enlightening me.

Measuring global temps over time (3, Informative)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#8891093)

Here's [confex.com] one way.

Here's [xs4all.nl] another.

Or you could just Google for paleotemperature [google.com] among other things.

Re:Aren't we still in an Ice Age? (1)

adamofgreyskull (640712) | more than 9 years ago | (#8891065)

Unless you're eaten by a white lion [bbc.co.uk] which is only alive because we want to gawk at them....

Also, does a lightning strike still count as all_natural if you're out playing golf in a thunderstorm? :o)

Totally agree with you on the global warming [globalwarming.org] though...

Playing golf in a thunderstorm (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#8891071)

Just use a 1-iron and wave it above your head.

Even God can't hit a 1-iron. :-)

Re:Aren't we still in an Ice Age? (4, Insightful)

eclectro (227083) | more than 9 years ago | (#8891155)

If that recollection is true, then we're still in an "Ice Age" and should expect the world to be getting warmer if the "Ice Age" is in fact coming to an end

This is what I call "Dubya" science or speak, as this is something like what he would say.

The fact is that we are conducting a worldwide uncontrolled experiment on mother earth, as we pump evermore quantities of CO2 in the enviroment.

There has never been a greater amount of CO2 in the enviroment than right at this point of time.

This outpouring of uncontrolled CO2 started with the industrial revolution and hasn't slowed since.

Likewise, the temperature of the Earth has been rising steadily and at a faster rate.

People may scoff at and dismiss a 1 degree raise in the earth temperature as nothing important, but there is one fact of physics that is incontrovertible;

Ice is frozen at 32 degrees, ice is *water* at 33 degrees

Which means that we start losing the polar ice caps with a one degree change in the earth's climate.

Startling evidence has occured that this shows this very thing may be happening - The north pole turns to water on a regular basis, and a huge part of the Antartic ice sheet has broken off.

I'll let somebody else post the links or google it. One of them was an old slashdot story.

So scientists or whoever can diss the movie all they want, but it is just a matter of time before some weather related event occurs that will come back to bite us in the collective but in a big way due to global warming.

Re:Aren't we still in an Ice Age? (1)

HairyCanary (688865) | more than 9 years ago | (#8891277)

I have yet to see anyone show any conclusive evidence that "global warming" exists, or that any change in climate is actually occuring as a direct result of human intervention. As usual, in our arrogance we automatically assume that any change in climate can only be caused by us. This planet has been around many times longer than our species, and I am willing to bet this is not the first time it has undergone a warming cycle.

Earth simulator (supercompuer) (3, Informative)

JaF893 (745419) | more than 9 years ago | (#8891008)

Although accurate software models of the earth's climate and weather conditions don't exist. There is certainly the hardware to run it. The worlds most powerful supercomputer the Earth Simulator [jamstec.go.jp] is designed to be able to accurately model the earth. Hopefully advances in software modelling will enable us to actually make good use of all that raw processing power.

Re:Earth simulator (supercompuer) (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#8891061)

Sorry, but 34TFLOPS is not enough to model the climate over Tokyo accurately... the weather is too complex. While this sort of power may be _more_ accurate for global simulations, it still may be way off.

Re:Earth simulator (supercompuer) (2, Informative)

Xyrus (755017) | more than 9 years ago | (#8891088)

Not quite. The computer has massive computational power to be sure, but to accurately model the complexities of the earth would take alot (and I do mean ALOT) more power.

They can make a better approximation. If it were used for weather, it could possibly give us a relatively accurate forecast for a couple of weeks (as opposed to a handful of days). :)

The problem with simulating earth is that there are too many variables, and too much data. :)

~X~

Terraforming (3, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#8891014)

Why is it that people here* are so dismissive of climate change on Earth, but if it's terraforming on Mars, nary a criticism (of the scientific theory) is heard...

* a generalisation, yes, but just look at some of the comments so far!

because they are American (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#8891219)


and are so conditioned to reject whatever "proof" scientists throw at them, after all they are the planets biggest CO2 producers so have the most to lose financially (an abstract concept called money no less)
fuck the cost to humanity, greed is whats celebrated in that country, god help us all

Re:Terraforming (1, Flamebait)

Bearpaw (13080) | more than 9 years ago | (#8891274)

Why is it that people here* are so dismissive of climate change on Earth, but if it's terraforming on Mars, nary a criticism (of the scientific theory) is heard...

This is Slashdot, one of the great cultural centers of technophilia.

1) All Technology And Its Results Are Good. (Except Microsoft.)
2) Any Possible Bad Side Effects Are Luddite Hysteria.
3) If It's Bad But Hasn't Happened Yet, It Never Will Happen.
4) If It's Good But Hasn't Happened Yet, It Inevitably Will Happen.

It's not universal here, obviously, but it's certainly annoyingly common.

Well, damn! (5, Funny)

Dark Lord Seth (584963) | more than 9 years ago | (#8891017)

I was hoping for global warming! I already had ordered a few 100.000s tonnes of pearly white sand to make some lovely beaches in soon-to-be-sunny Greenland... Damn it!

rising temps cause iceage theory? (2, Interesting)

beaverfever (584714) | more than 9 years ago | (#8891019)

There is a plausible theory which suggests that melting ice may release enough fresh water to halt circulation of warm water from the Gulf Stream, thus significantly cooling Europe and the east coast of North America.

okay, I couldn't begin to tell you where I heard this (let alone provide a URL) but I recall hearing/reading the "global warming=new ice age" theory kinda like this:

So the earth's temperatures rise a certain level, really only a few degrees, maybe half a dozen. This means the atmosphere can hold more moisture and precipitation increases.

But - with the earth's overall temps slightly higher the temperatures over the poles would still be hella cold (just not as hella cold as before) and the moisture-laden air passing over the cold regions would dump a lot of snow, sleet and ice, which would mean expanding polar ice caps, glaciers, etc., etc., albeit this would be a cumulative effect taking place over many thousands of years.

So, like, I ain't no climatol... clima... uh, scientist or nuthin' - that's just what I read in some fancy magazine somewhere.

Re:rising temps cause iceage theory? (1)

bersl2 (689221) | more than 9 years ago | (#8891111)

The way I heard this is that the melting ice will significantly decrease salt concentration. This is related (can't remember if it's cause or effect) to a slowing down of the entire system of oceanic currents and submarine rivers, essentially fucking everything up.

Re:rising temps cause iceage theory? (2, Informative)

bhima (46039) | more than 9 years ago | (#8891120)

I read the parent's "plausible theory" in Scientific American.

Bad Science (4, Interesting)

Prototerm (762512) | more than 9 years ago | (#8891040)

A few months ago ( I can't find the link right now), scientists were claiming that "Global Warming" is not the problem the media, and some politicians say it is. According to the original Global Warning theory, the Earth's temperature is higher than it's ever been due to the influence of technology (greenhouse gasses). The scientists in this new study pointed out that the original Global Warming research ignored historical data documenting temperatures in Europe, in the Middle Ages, that were higher than today. It would appear that the original scientists chose a date range for their research that supported their already-made conclusion of Global Warming.

It would seem that the Earth's climate is normal, and we're not going to suffer a slow broil (so put away the onions, and get that apple out of your mouth).

As for the ice age theory, one of the last ice ages was caused by a lot of fresh water pouring into the North Atlantic. The difference in salinity caused the warm Gulf Stream waters to submerge, reducing the overall temperature in Europe and North America enough to cause an Ice Age. The effect took only 70 years.

It would indeed be ironic, though, if the only way to save civilization as we know is would be to increase greenhouse gasses, not reduce them.

Re:Bad Science (4, Interesting)

Gadzinka (256729) | more than 9 years ago | (#8891122)

...one of the last ice ages was caused...

I just wanted to remind you and everyone else, that we are living in the last Ice Age, it didn't end yet.

The climat we are experiencing for the last 12000 years or so is a moderate warming during an Ice Age, nothing special. And yet all our civilisation was built in and depends on these rather uncommon (for this planet) conditions.

Re:Bad Science (4, Interesting)

MtViewGuy (197597) | more than 9 years ago | (#8891148)

I think the global warming crowd is forgetting one thing: the biggest determinant of the climate on Earth is caused by this thermonuclear fireball about 93,000,000 miles away called the Sun.

Since the 1600's when telescopes became widely available, scientists have actually plotted the level of sunspot activity. They noted that between the 17th and 18th Centuries there was a long period of NO sunspot activity, and that corresponded in a mini Ice Age period where temperatures in Europe were quite a bit lower than normal and the Thames River going through London regularly froze over during the winter.

Indeed, I think Earth is returning to a period of warmer weather akin to what it was like before the dinosaurs died out about 65,000,000 years ago.

Nostradamus movie? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#8891043)

Isn't that the title for a documentary about nostradamus?

It's the sun, you green idiots (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#8891054)

Hmm, if MARS IS EXPERIENCING GLOBAL WARMING RIGHT NOW AS WELL [space.com] then perhaps it's that giant yellow ball in the sky that's causing global warming here as well??

Mars Global Warming (3, Insightful)

tadmas (770287) | more than 9 years ago | (#8891094)

Or perhaps our probes are polluting the Martian atmosphere? ;-)

Are you implying that these scientists' predictions of doom are wrong? That would mean that they're just "stretching the truth" to get more grant money and don't care about being credible!... oh, wait.

non-linear systems (3, Insightful)

Transcendent (204992) | more than 9 years ago | (#8891073)

Note that this theory depends on melting ice, not growing ice, which may be one reason scientists find the ice age scenario so hard to swallow.

Because our climate is probably not bound by a purely linear occurrence of events. It is full of rebounds, snap-backs, and whatever else you want to call it... like oscillations.

Just because the melting of the caps is the result of global warming doesn't mean that doing so will not trigger a rebound, causing more of the northern hemisphere to freeze. Just like freezing the caps and lowering the sea level will (theoretically) uncover methane deposits in the soil, releasing greenhouse gasses and thus warming the planet again. So stopping the nice current bring warm water up to northern Europe will cool it down, allowing more ice caps to form. Sure, one they're formed the currents might start up again and warm up Europe, but like I said, it works in oscillations.

What really surprises me is why so many people have a hard time swallowing this. Even looking back at the history of Earth's climate shows numerous ice ages and warm periods. CO2 levels have done the same as well.

Some people just need to think a little bit longer down the line. Or maybe they disregard the claims so they don't loose grant money? Not flaming, just a warranted curiosity...

Re:non-linear systems (1)

jarrettwold2002 (601633) | more than 9 years ago | (#8891162)

A definite book recommendation who want to piss off errr.. sound slightly more informed among academic friends is James Gleicks Chaos. It's goes into detail how complex, complex systems are. Complex systems are integral to many things including weather. It's a fairly lay book, with pretty pictures too :)

My favorite quote in the book is from Lorenz about weather forecasting more than five days in advance being more or less "junk". It's a great book, and if you don't want to buy it you can find it in your library. It's also probably been reviewed here before.

Links

http://www.around.com/ [author of Chaos... James Gleick]
http://badastronomy.com [funny debunking site.]

What? Hype precedes movie release? NO! (1, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#8891084)

It's become customary for new sci-fi movie releases that pretend to have a grain of truth to hire a few "scientists" to make media rounds on how GASP THIS COULD REALLY HAPPEN without making it too obvious that they're just shilling for the movie. This film is no exception.

The last big disaster flop, "THE CORE" was promoted the same way.

The very fact that this movie was made by the same fools who made Independence Day and the Matthew Broderick is Godzilla travesty should clue people in that the movie has no credible science.

This is called a LPHI event (1)

Snooweatinganima (168199) | more than 9 years ago | (#8891086)

Low Probability, High Impact. I once attended a presentation by Stefan Rahmstorf [pik-potsdam.de], a well known professor of physics of the oceans, in which he talked about these events.

On his website, you'll find a simulation [pik-potsdam.de] of the worst case szenario. There is also an animation [pik-potsdam.de]!

Chemtrails... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#8891089)

Global Warming is one of many reasons why governments world wide are spraying chemicals from white, unmarked astro-tanker jets. See http://www.carnicom.com/contrails.htm, or search Google for "Chemtrails".

Nature's reset? (2, Funny)

Xerp (768138) | more than 9 years ago | (#8891103)

Nature probably thinks we are spyware or something, and figures the only way to fix the problem is to do a "cold boot"...

Not for much longer (1)

lobiusmoop (305328) | more than 9 years ago | (#8891105)

Human impact on the environment is going to drop significantly in any case as the oil runs out and the population drops/stabalises over the next 50-100 years.

Thanks Bush! (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#8891127)

Whether or not you see the implications of the UNDENIABLE RAPID CLIMATE CHANGE as either causing a mini-ice age, end of the gulf stream, or just higher sea levels, one thing is certain: President Bush is a stupid motherfucker. Here is a man who simply does not work on facts. He subverted the facts about Saddam, sending back reports until they contained the intelligence he wanted, he ignored the facts about Al-Queada, he doesn't understand the economy, facts about foreign policy, how the internatinal community works, or any other facts, for that matter.

Its not that I'm some kind of a raving democrat. I liked Clinton, because he brought about economic stability, growth, and when he was president, I had a loft apartment, a relationship with a d-list actress (she couldn't act, but god, she was hot), a series of excellent, overpaying jobs in IT, my name on guest lists at places where a celebrity might spill a drink on me, and I didn't need a car, because I had a stack of car service vouchers in my pocket from work. I am in fact a liberal identified libertarian, who believes in the free market, that monopolies are evil, but really only when they use the government to create their monopolies (like patents, licenses, etc) and the simple principle that if I have to pay 45% tax, I should very well get universal health care and a cheap education at a state college or university. I'd rather pay a 5% tax rate, and effectively get the services I get now, but that ain't going to happen.

There have been non-evil Republicans, like Teddy Roosevelt, and admit it: Nixon created OSHA, the EPA, ended the Vietnam War, open diplomatic channels with China and said "cocksucker" about 10 million times. Not so bad.

But this piece of shit Bush! He didn't even get elected, he got appointed after using that cunt Kathleen Harris to subvert democracy. He stopped stem-cell research, which needs to create breakthroughs NOW if Gen-X is going to realize the promise of a productive three digit life span. He has invaded three countries, only one of which deserved it, and because he overstretched the military, Mexico could probably retake the Southwest, if they wanted to. He took the Arabic language experts and intelligence officials out of Afghanistan to go his War of Lies in Iraq, meaning that bin Laden (the real enemy for people keeping count) is still out there. He is the only president EVER to go the White House with a criminal record, for all of the abuse Clinton took about admitted to smoking weed, Bush has yet to come clean about his coke problem, he has lost millions of jobs, and the fundamental value of the NYSE is about 60% of what it was under Clinton. He spent the surplus and plunged us into defecit. He has cut back the programs that all of us outsourced workers need, and he is also cutting back on the programs for the military families. They don't get earned-income-tax credit, because they don't get paid enough. He is cutting medical benefits for veterans, and lied to them, many of whom were specifically told they would only serve 12 month tours, are going to be there for at least twice that long.

And we haven't even touched the environment. Backed out of the Kyoto protocol, prompting the 2nd biggest polluter to do the same (Russia). He refuses to accept the obvious fucking truth that the climate is changing, very rapidly, and despite the numerous warnings, even from inside his own intelligence network, still chalks it up to be a "normal pattern".

Only drug addict assholes like Rush Limaugh would claim that the obvious scientific evidence has a partisan spin.

This guy needs to be impeached, and his entire cabinet needs jail time. I can't stand this shit any more. Every fucking day the news gets worse.

If he gets re-appointed, mark my words, there will be a limited nuclear exchange with North Korea, probably involving the Alaskan pipeline. There will be war in Iran, and there will be a draft.

Ashcroft will put most of us in front of a judge either for pr0n or mp3's, and Cheney will start wearing a full length life support system, probably jet black, with a cape. NATO and the EU will fall apart, and Ocenia will emerge! Big brother has been watching for quite some time, and soon, he'll have the authority of the law!

We're doomed!

Re:Thanks Bush! (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#8891139)

Way to go off-topic, fucktard.

The Great Conveyor (3, Informative)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#8891128)

Cold, salty water from the North Atlantic sinks far below and runs south. Far enough south that it brings back warmer waters north. This flow includes the Gulf Stream.

Climate research has shown that climate shifts have occurred over history in as little as a few years.

If enough ice melts and flows into the North Atlantic, it disrupts the cold saline flow, which disrupts the concomittent return warm flow. Which makes the Northern Hemisphere colder. Which brings on the Ice.

That's as simple as it gets and the ice record in Greenland bears this out.

Self-serving scientific bias. (1)

vandelais (164490) | more than 9 years ago | (#8891143)

Much of climatology is a victim of groupthink and academic bias.

My explanation for this opinion is as follows:

Approximately 9/10ths of the energy stored in the atmosphere and oceans exists in the oceans. The ratio of scientific research done on the atmosphere and oceans is just about exactly inverse to that.

Wondering why? We all live in the atmosphere, but few of us, relatively speaking, own beachfront property. We are largely ignorant about our oceans because they are not studied or funded. Academia has unwittingly co-opted this ignorance by exerting their efforts in understanding on what can be easily explained to the simple-minded (i.e. they want their importance to be justified to their dumb friends and politicians). It ignores studying the complex and mysterious deep waters of oceans in favor of having their work understood by people who want to know whether they'll need to bring a raincoat to work that day.

Just like George Carlin said, "Santtity of life? Who says? We do. You know why? We made the whole fucking thing up! You know why? Self interest. It's a man-made self-serving bullshit story."

The same man-made self-serving way of thinking plays into this much more than meets the eye.

"OK. What? What? What? Yayyaa! OK."

IPCC reports on climate change (1)

dankelley (573611) | more than 9 years ago | (#8891146)

There are unresolved research questions regarding the issue of climate shifts in response to changes in high-latitude convection. Our qualitative sketches are gradually being filled in through numerical simulation, and we are still in an interesting stage of debate about mechanisms. The cited WHOI documents are particularly readible, and I would encourage /.ers to study them.

You might also like to read more about the science of climate change, you should check out the IPCC (Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change) reports. Various aspects of the IPCC reports are accessible to readers with various technical backgrounds. This link [grida.no] might be a good starting point.

Global warming is NOT the problem (4, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#8891175)

The real problem these movies point out is the shocking rise in bad acting. Apparently something in the future (possibly estrogen-like toxins?) is destroying humanity's ability to emote properly. This is what scientists should be studying. At the rate it is occurring, bad acting could sweep the planet in just a few decades. This could have a profound impact on Broadway, Shakespeare festivals, and even school plays.

Previous Ice Ages (4, Insightful)

tehanu (682528) | more than 9 years ago | (#8891246)

I'm not sure how bunk the notion of Global Warming causing an ice age is (esp. since the article seems to be slashdotted so I can't read it) nor have I watched the movie. I remember when we were studying planetary science, one of the chief questions was what caused ice ages, esp. connections with the Earth's orbit and rotation. Mind you this was some years back, but if I recall correctly, one of the things we focused heavily on was the fact that the geological evidence shows that just before Ice Ages, the Artic regions have record peaks in their temperatures. It seemed that no-one was too sure about why this was the case but what seemed to be popular was how very high Artic temperatures affected the percentage of the ocean covered by ice and the different amounts of heat that land and water absorb (and also how the Southern Hemisphere was different because of its different ratio of land to water). This seemed to be pretty established physics at the time and no-one mentioned anything about global warming. Though the question of just exactly how this all worked was still up in the air. It just seems that people are applying what is known about past Ice Ages and theorising that if record high temperatures in the Artic Circle which preceded previous Ice Ages played a direct role in the Ice Ages (and you have to admit, it's pretty reasonable to assume this), global warming may eventually result in an Ice Age as well due to the same conditions that caused previous Ice Ages.
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