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It's Dumb To Tell Kids They're Smart

Anna Merikin Re:They always told me I was so smart... (243 comments)

I didn't need anyone to tell me I was smart. I figured it out myself. As you say, I was "smart" at the subjects I loved and not so much at others. Now, as an "elder", I tell those coming up If you want to be rich and-or famous, develop your talents. But if you want to be happy, work on your weaknesses: Become round.

BTW, If someone had told me life could be so good at 71 years, I'd have had more courage in my youth.

about a week ago

Cause of Global Warming 'Hiatus' Found Deep In the Atlantic

Anna Merikin Re:Well, at last (443 comments)

I have seen about 440 BTU/hr/ft^2. in solar reflector design manuals. This is close to your figure for solar radiation. I have no idea about ocean vent heating, as the *data is not yet available.* This is the point of the article -- that the data is only now being gathered. One data point: The part of the vulcanism measured in the North Atlantic produces one cubic kilometer of new rock every year. What is the heat equivalent of that? I don't know. What part of the earth's total undersea heating does this constitute? I have no idea. How does this affect surface currents, if at all? I dunno. How do surface currents impact weather/climate patterns? No one is sure. Not even you. But, we may soon know these things.

about a week ago

Cause of Global Warming 'Hiatus' Found Deep In the Atlantic

Anna Merikin Well, at last (443 comments)

Not only does this explain a lot of the recent data, but it also directs attention to an ignored part of climatology: the vulcanism under the oceans and the warm currents they cause at very deep levels.

Good going, guys and guyettes!

about a week ago

Critics To FTC: Why Do You Hate In-App Purchasing Freedom?

Anna Merikin Draw Your Own Conclusion (171 comments)

"Fascism is the marriage of government and business."
                                                                              --Benito Mussolini

about a month ago

New Map Fingers Future Hot Spots For U.S. Earthquakes

Anna Merikin Company say it's Been Proved (49 comments)

Cuadrilla drilling company in UK has admitted publicly the link between fracking and earthquakes. The said this in 2011

"It is highly probable that the hydraulic fracturing of Cuadrilla's Preese Hall-1 well did trigger a number of minor seismic events

This, according to a Reuters report here:

Other articles have reported various studies connecting fracking in Oklahoma with the new earthquakes flurries there and elsewhere in the US. Like Ohio: .

And here

about a month and a half ago

Slashdot Asks: Do You Want a Smart Watch?

Anna Merikin Congrats! (381 comments)

You get it. Any modern quartz-controlled watch that costs more than $10 is a status symbol and nothing more. Some watches may rise to a level of art, but still, a symbol of alphaness.

When James Bond wears a smart watch, then popularity will follow.

about a month and a half ago

Consciousness On-Off Switch Discovered Deep In Brain

Anna Merikin It nearly always does (284 comments)

it's as if the survival instinct overrode the unconsciousness

Whenever survival is at stake, consciousness is among the first wasters of valuable resources (energy) to be turned off, or at least substantially modified.. This is a principle, AFAIK.

about 2 months ago

Nathan Myhrvold's Recipe For a Better Oven

Anna Merikin Wow! Will we need... (228 comments)

Photoshop to cook our food?
We could use the device to preview the finished dish, too.
Of course, he is theoretically correct, but, as we know, theory and practice are different things.

about 2 months ago

Ninety-Nine Percent of the Ocean's Plastic Is Missing

Anna Merikin Or even... (304 comments)

marine animals are ingesting it with or instead of their food. If so, is it possible some species will evolve to digest plastic and metabolize it? Will that make those creatures toxic to humans?

about a month ago

Ask Slashdot: Is It Feasible To Revive an Old Linux PC Setup?

Anna Merikin Ooops! How do I Delete Posts? (176 comments)

On further checking, Debian 3 seems to be in the 2.2 kernel series with the right libraries for Corel.

All my posts on this subject were wrong and should be ignored.

about 2 months ago

Ask Slashdot: Is It Feasible To Revive an Old Linux PC Setup?

Anna Merikin Oldtimerz setting in (176 comments)

I just checked and you're right about the kernel being in the 2-series, 2.2.x. Thanks for that; apparently it wasn't the change to the 2-series kernel that caused the incompatibilites, but to the 2.4- versions from 2.2.

I was right about the libraries, though.

IIRC Debian 3 was released about the same time as RH 7, which makes using anything Corel doubtful.

about 2 months ago

Ask Slashdot: Is It Feasible To Revive an Old Linux PC Setup?

Anna Merikin Debian-3 (176 comments)

You've got mix of incompatible requirements here. IIRC Corel's support for L:inux ended with the introduction of libc6 and kernels in the 2.0 series. These linux binaries will not run on Debian-3, which had both. I know, I tried to keep WordPerfect for Linux going on RH-6.2 till about the time Debian-3 was introduced but it became a losing proposition.

Worse still, source code for Linux-kernel series 1.x will not usually compile on later kernels which require an incompatible libc.


about 2 months ago

WikiLeaks Publishes Secret International Trade Agreement

Anna Merikin Man-in-the-Middle? (222 comments)

|(T)he US is particularly keen on boosting cross-border data flow, which would allow uninhibited exchange of personal and financial data.|

Perhaps the traffic between nodes will give the NSA some useful information about people's transactions to "Keep us safe." Or the US IRS about offshore deposits?

about 2 months ago

Researchers Find "Achilles Heel" of Drug Resistant Bacteria

Anna Merikin Re:The Reason... (106 comments)

Why the percentages? In real terms life expectancy from adulthood (20+) increased 17-22 years while the infant (0) life expectancy has increased by 37-40 years. According to the chart you referenced.

about 2 months ago

Researchers Find "Achilles Heel" of Drug Resistant Bacteria

Anna Merikin The Reason... (106 comments)

The reason average life expectancy has more than doubled in a century or two is that infant mortality has been reduced, bringing the average up.

There is not so much difference in survival expectancy once on is an adult.

about 2 months ago

LinkedIn Spam Lawsuit Can Continue

Anna Merikin Re:That's nothing. (50 comments)

I agree; that's why I posted. I berated that guy righteously, and some others, too. I called him every name in the book. If I were him (and presumably innocent) I'd want to sue someone. I'm just glad I didn't CC: my remarks to others....

about 2 months ago

LinkedIn Spam Lawsuit Can Continue

Anna Merikin Re:That's nothing. (50 comments)

Yeah, me, too. I found one "offer" from linkdin that looked like it was sent by a guy whose craigslist ad for a cheap Mercedes I had responded to; I sent him a flame email calling him out for it.

Now, I look like the a**hole....

Thanks, linkdin. NOT.

about 2 months ago

General Anesthesia Exposure In Infancy Causes Long-Term Memory Deficits

Anna Merikin Doubtful (90 comments)

This flies in the face of current theory, which says infants flush "excess" synapses and children continue to do so on a lesser scale for years. See

Huttenlocher P. Neural Plasticity: The Effects of the Environment on the Development of the Cerebral Cortex. Harvard University Press; 2002.

Or any decent Google search will support this.

Unless a lchemical ink can be shown in the chemistry resultant from the anaesthesia which might cause the synapses to morph, it will be very hard to "prove" this hypothesis.

Correlation does not prove causation.

about 3 months ago

Inside Ford's 3D Printing Center Where More Than 20K Parts Are Made Each Year

Anna Merikin Re:How can I not be a Cynic... (49 comments)

OK: Here's both barrels.

It used to take five years or more to develop a new model auto, back in the twenties through 60s. This lag time caused bad decisions like the introduction of 12- and 16-cylinder cars in the middle of the Great Depression and Edsels, planned in 1952-3 and introduced in 1958, after the target market had lost their jobs in a deep recession.

These printers doubtless help reduce the time and make carmakers more nimble.

That's the real story, and it is neither in TFA nor the summary.

Call me a cynic....

about 3 months ago


Anna Merikin hasn't submitted any stories.



Science's Parents

Anna Merikin Anna Merikin writes  |  more than 5 years ago

Science owes its creation to Socrates and his circle, philosophers who could not agree whether the universe acted on causality or phenomenology. Since they did not have enough information to determine which was operant, they appointed a group of technicians to "measure" the world, to gather hard information that philosophers could use to further one argument or the other. They called those measurers "scientists."

The Greek civilization, in Socrates' time, was said to have begun with Hermes Trismagestis, whose Kybalion was written in symbolic metaphor (from which we retain the word "hermetic"). The advocates of this idea were the Sophists Socrates defeated in a debate using his tool, rhetoric.

Those who favored causality were called atomicists. Part of their theory was that if matter were divided repeatedly, eventually an "atom" would be found, a particle not further divisible.

So it took two thousand years to find an atom, and less than a century to divide it into electrons, etc., and further divide these constituents until no matter could be found except in tables of probability.

By then, however, the atomicists ran rampant, expecting everything to have a cause and ignoring their own brethren's warnings, conscious or not, of impending philosophical doom. This came in the form of the quantum theory, as boneheaded an idea as ever was accepted by an otherwise intelligent group of human beings. (See "is culture psychotic?" to come.)

At their acendancy, scientists forgot they were philosophers' measuring sticks, not philosophers themselves. They could never be such, as philosophy requires generalization and science deals with specifics. Today, a scientist cannot keep up with new developments in his field; one must read abstracts and journals within one's one sub-specialty. So their vision is narrow, not the wide-ranging view of the philosopher.

What does quantum theory have to do with this? Just that the very theory itself and its ramifications proves phenomenology to be at least equal to causality. Once the atom had been divided and subdivided until no material existed any more, science [with the notable exception of Einstein] accepted that probability is beneath physical events in a subatomic world. As Richard Feinman explained, the scientist looking through his electron microscope (in a hadron collider?) changes the result of the interaction simply by observing the event.

This is the very definition of phenomenology. That an eagle screeching at the moment of a child's birth will affect the fate of the child, and the child that of the eagle.

Science has, without knowing it, proved the atomicists wrong and proved the Sophists right!

But one would have to be a generalist, a philosopher, to see it.


Human evolution -- or Revolution?

Anna Merikin Anna Merikin writes  |  about 7 years ago

This has become a sore point with me. I will try to explain my thinking on this after a year and a half of study, which I started with a recent (2004) edition of a college evolutionary biology textbook. I found the same questions I asked in my post of Feb, 2006 with regard to the question of whether science can explain all of the anamolies nature exhibits in speciation.

I complained that the organization of the evolutionary "tree" is poor and does not inpsire insight. It leaves so many questions unanswered, especially those involved in the study of behavioral evolution and sociobiology, nascent sciences both.

It turns out the "scientific" press has been misleading us with respect to humans' supposed close link to other primates. It has been reported that we share 99.8 per cent of our genes with chimpanzees.

I need to disgress for a paragraph here. There is a science of textual analysis that grades the difficulty of reading a certain piece of text by taking into consideration the number of unique words, their difficulty, and the proportion of verbs, modifiers and connections as well as sentence length. These scales (Fletch Reading Ease, and others) are quite accurate and well accepted by teaching professionals and editors.

Very recently, it was shown that the arrangemet of the DNA strands in human DNA is in a different order compared to chimpanzees. As I understand the finding, it is as if a piece (perhaps one-third) of a strand of Chimp DNA was reversed and one more pair of chromosomes added at the joint (Someone correct my facts if they are wrong here).

So, in effect, our (us laymen and scientists out of their specialty) understanding of the evolution of human DNA has been formed by the same logic that would have us believe that one book of 220000 words and another of 210000 are are closely related in content because they share 99.8 oer cent of the same unique words and have a similar total number.

This is clearly rubbish. And so is science's claim that humans are in any way evolutionarily (historically) connected to chimps or to any other species, since we and they could never have produced viable offspring in hybridization, given the wide difference in *the arrangement* of the genetic material on the RNA/DNA strands.

This knocks the theories that humans evolved gradually from other primates into the trash bin. It also builds a stronger case for the need for newly-speciated individuals to find each other (at the same time!) and set up a viable and unique mating ritual to keep hybridization to a minimum as the hybrid individuals would not be able to reproduce either species or would not be born alive. These are accepted principles in evolutionary biology today.

So, the way humans evolved has never been clear, regardless of what the *faithful* scientist has told the rest of the world. Science does not rest on faith. And the facts do NOT support the traditional scientific view of human evolution, in my opinion.

In fact, I would more easily accept that the reversal of part of the DNA/RNA strands is not evolutionaly at all but, instead, revolutionary.

However, let no one think that because it was a revolutionary shift there must have been a supernatural cause.

We just don't understand how we came to be as well as we were told we do.

And I stand by that.


Three causes of Global Warming?

Anna Merikin Anna Merikin writes  |  more than 8 years ago

Social scientists seem to be mad to measure the amount of global warming and reporters seem mad to blame it (the warming) on human life and culture.

HL&C are only one of at least three contributors, as far as I can tell, and perhaps not the most important vector of GW.

Another is the general warming that has been taking place for the past fifty-thousand years or so: the one that melted the Ice Age glaciers and that, apparently, is now warming the polar ones, too. The retreat of the glaciers has been more-or-less steady for thousands of years, apparently.

A third is the weakening of the Earth's Magnetic Field, because this allows more cosmic and other radiation to reach the surface of our planet, thus heating it up. This, depending on which source you believe, has been going on for three hundred years, or only two hundred. If it is the older figure, then human activity can be ruled out as a primary cause of GW as no activity I can think of save producing and transporting electricity could possibly have a connection to the EMF itself.

The EMF is getting so unstable, compasses in the Ozone Hole between Antarctica and New Zealand point south!

Recently, major newspapers have carried reports that the North Pole has moved out of Canada and into the Bering Strait.

However, if the EMF has been weakening for only two hundred years, that coincides, more or less, with the invention of electrical generators and transmission lines (all of which produce magnetic flux as a byproduct or necessary constituent of current flow.)

Of course, science always likes a good fight.

Either way, we humans should stop beating ourselve up over this and get on with the job of adapting to it.



Anna Merikin Anna Merikin writes  |  more than 8 years ago

IQ tests (Benet's, etc.) used to measure eleven different kinds of intelligence (logic, spatial relations, etc.) of the twenty-two that had been identified at the time. Perhaps now more have been discovered.

On a parallel line, I am reading a book by a man (now long dead) who I saw lecture on perception in Boston at the annual meeting of the Association of Humanistic Psych ologists around 1970, Julian James. His topic then was "Personality is Perception," and, as his speech sparked many insights, I made note of the book he said was "soon to be released," "The Origin of Consciousness in the Breakdown of the Bicameral Mind."

In it, he flatly states there is only one way we think: in words. I had to stop there, as I knew from experience as a photographer that I sometimes thought in terms of transforming images, and, as a t'ai chi player that I sometimes thought in terms of convergant movement.

Listening to Fresh Air on US PBS yesterday, I heard an author, who had been diagnosed as autistic as a child, describe the way she saw the world: As an animal did, she claimed. Sudden motion produces fear, she said. An animal is always afraid of sudden movement.

This is not what I experienced in t'ai chi defense against a gang of muggers, however. I was not afraid. I was able to use my newly-discovered and trained facility to "see" converging movement and position myself to use it to my own advantage.

The idea that we humans can think in many different ways is at the core of humanistic psychology and should become prominent in years to come, as Maslow's Hierarchy of Needs became prominent -- but corrupted by culture to fit its own needs for Status.

The Hierarchy (for those interested)
1. Survival (Food, shelter, etc.)
2. Security
3. Ego gratification
4. Status
5. Self-esteem
6. Self actualization.
(I suspect there is one missing. Sorry, Abe.)

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