Indian Mars Mission Beams Back First Photographs
+1 if I had mod points.
Netflix Expects To Be Unprofitable In 2012
I'm loving the Star Trek Reruns on Netflix too!
"World's Most Relaxing Music" Composed
I have trouble listening to music with words because I sing along in my head, and I have a trouble listening to classical music because I play along in my head (I'm a violinist).
I think whether you feel relaxed listening to 'worded' music is highly dependent on what the lyrics convey. For example, if you were to listen to Meditative chants (Vedic/Hindu/Buddhist/Sanskrit Peace chants as an example), whose sole purpose is to invoke Peace in the mind, you'd find them relaxing. Here's one such example of a 'Shanti Mantra' (Peace chant): http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ywdlxIIKiU4 .
On the other hand, if you listen to hardcore Heavy Metal, or violent Hip-Hop lyrics, you'll find it has the opposite effect, and gets you all worked up.
Dennis Ritchie, Creator of C Programming Language, Passed Away
Could Electron Counts Detect Major Earthquakes?
On stardate 3715.3, the starship USS Enterprise arrives at Gamma Trianguli VI, a planet that appears to be a tropical paradise with very rich natural resources. Captain James T. Kirk, Dr. McCoy, Ensign Chekov, and Mr. Spock, along with five other survey personnel (Hendorff, Kaplan, Landon, Mallory, and Marple, all of whom are killed except Landon), beam down to the surface to have a look and to make contact with the natives.
They discover a world of poison dart-shooting plants, unstable explosive rocks, and bizarre lightning storms that appear out of cloudless skies. Hendorff is shot by a plant and is killed, and then Spock is hit by another plant's darts when he steps to block them from hitting the Captain. Spock is stunned, and McCoy rushes over to assist, injecting him with Masiform-D serum to counteract the poison. Spock is more resilient to the poison and later recovers on his own.
Realizing there is too much danger, Kirk orders an immediate beam-out, however Mr. Scott reports that the ship's power systems are being drained by an unknown energy field emanating from the planet – they're losing potency in the anti-matter. The Enterprise's transporters don't have enough power to beam anyone back. As if this weren't enough, Spock reports that someone is hiding in the bushes, watching them.
A few minutes later, the sky clouds up and a bolt of lightning snakes down and hits Kaplan, killing him. Shortly thereafter, Mallory calls in on his communicator. He's near the village and says it's "primitive, strictly tribal," but that there's something else of great interest. His communicator fails and he runs back to the landing party to report, but trips over an explosive rock and is killed.
Spock notices they are being watched again. Kirk arranges to decoy and ambush their "observer", finding it to be a shy and frightened primitive humanoid who wears glitter and colorful paints on his skin. Kirk promises not to hurt the curious man and holds him for questioning. The man calms down and identifies himself as Akuta (Keith Andes), chief of the people known as the "Feeders of Vaal". Spock notices that Akuta appears to be in some kind of communication with someone, and points out the small antennae on Akuta's head. Akuta explains that those are his "ears for Vaal", enabling him to interpret Vaal's commands for the people, and that he is "the eyes and the ears of Vaal", who is their god.
Meanwhile, Mr. Scott calls down to inform Kirk that the Enterprise is being pulled down from orbit around the planet by some kind of tractor beam and is unable to break away. Kirk asks Akuta about "Vaal", and requests to be taken to meet him. Akuta agrees and leads the landing team to a large stone dragon head carved into the side of a hill. Akuta points to the structure and indicates that it is Vaal.
The dragon's mouth, with steps cut into a tongue, appears as a kind of doorway. Spock's tricorder indicates that it leads underground. The structure is also protected by a powerful force field. The temple appears to be some type of sophisticated computer, possibly built by an ancient civilization, with a rudimentary artificial intelligence, a thirty-foot force field, and emanating great power. Spock also concludes that it may be the source of the energy draining field that is affecting the Enterprise.
Akuta says Vaal is "sleeping", but will awake "hungry" and might speak to the landing party at that time. He then leads the party to meet his people. They appear as young men and women, but all have a curious, childlike mentality. Kirk points out that the tribe doesn't seem to have any children and asks Akuta why. Akuta doesn't know what a child is, saying that Vaal has forbidden love and copulation, and provides them with "replacements" as they are needed. McCoy scans the tribe and is shocked when he discovers they are ageless and all in perfect health. The party later observes them as they perform a ritualistic "feeding" of Vaal, carrying loads of the explosive rocks down into the underground tunnel. The picture is now clear; the people live only to service Vaal, to dance, and to gather food. They don't even do their own agriculture, since Vaal controls the environment right down to "putting the fruit on the trees".
Mr. Spock observes the symbiosis between the Feeders and Vaal as an "excellent example of reciprocity", but McCoy vehemently disagrees and says the Feeders are not really alive, but stagnating, all their needs and wants provided for by a "hunk of tin". He insists that because they are humanoid, certain "universal standards" apply to them, "the right of humanoids to a free and unchained environment, the right to have conditions which permit growth." Kirk says it's more important to get the Enterprise out of danger.
Throughout their time on the planet, Chekov and Yeoman Martha Landon (Celeste Yarnall) have been showing interest in one another, and during a lull in the action slip away to be alone together. A tribal couple observe the pair and try to imitate their kissing. Vaal is instantly aware of this and radios instructions to Akuta, telling him to gather his people and kill the strangers who have trespassed here. Akuta rounds some of his men and instructs them to kill the landing party by bashing their skulls with clubs.
The landing party goes to Vaal to investigate the structure. Vaal defends itself by striking Spock with a lightning bolt. The Feeders then attack, surrounding the landing party and killing Marple. The landing party fights them off and then detains the Feeders.
Under Scott's command, the Enterprise crew have been switching all systems over to generate a thrust and now, with 15 minutes left, begins its effort to break free. All seems to be working, then the effort fails. Scott says they gained maybe an hour, but they blew nearly every system doing it. Just then, Vaal, perhaps weakened by the starship's efforts, calls for the villagers. Chekov tells the people to stay in the hut, preventing them from feeding Vaal.
Kirk orders the ship's weapons to target the structure and fire on the forcefield, intending to force Vaal to use its reserves. The ship blasts the dragon head with phasers and Vaal uses the reserves to reinforce the forcefield, but cannot hold out: Vaal's glowing eyes go dark; Kirk orders ceasefire; Vaal lights again only briefly.
Scott reports that the tractor beam is no longer pulling the ship, potency is returning to the anti-matter pods, and repairs are under way, so Kirk rehires Scott and orders a scientific and engineering detail down to investigate Vaal's remains.
Akuta and his people are devastated, but are told by Kirk that they are finally free and will soon discover work, birth, death, and the normal everyday ways of life.
Back aboard ship, Spock compares what the Captain has done to giving the primitive people the equivalent of the apple of knowledge and driving them from their Garden of Eden, but Kirk insinuates that Spock's resemblance to the Devil is much more apparent than his own.
First Observational Test of the "Multiverse"
...then it exploded.
Google Announces Google CDN
The Net (According To Akamai)
I can only say nothing.
Regarding R*cism and such
From here: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Religious_pluralism#Hindu_views
The Hindu religion is naturally pluralistic. A well-known Rig Vedic hymn says that "Truth is One, though the sages know it variously." (Ékam sat vipra bahud vadanti). Similarly, in the Bhagavad Gt (4:11), God, manifesting as an incarnation, states that "As people approach me, so I receive them. All paths lead to me" (ye yath m prapadyante ts tathiva bhajmyaham mama vartmnuvartante manuy prtha sarvaa). The Hindu religion has no theological difficulties in accepting degrees of truth in other religions. Hinduism emphasizes that everyone actually worship the same God, whether they know it or not. Just as Hindus worshiping Ganesh is seen as valid by those worshiping Vishnu, so someone worshiping Jesus or Allah is accepted. Many foreign deities become assimilated into Hinduism, and some Hindus may sometimes offer prayers to Jesus along with their traditional forms of God.
Note - I can dislike but still accept others philosophies or ideas as their paths. BUT accepting still doesn't imply liking their ideas, particularly, when they are forced upon me.
But I digress, what I originally started out saying was that disliking somebody for what they are (by birth, e.g. their skin color) is Wrong. BUT disliking their believes or disliking them for what they believe in, is not.
Regarding R*cism and such
So, then, it's okay to hate Jews. Or Christians or Muslims. Or atheists.
Notice, I didn't say 'hate' but 'dislike' someone's ideology. Doesn't subscribing to a particular philisophy (Disclaimer: I'm borderline Agnostic, was raised a Hindu, and practice Buddhist meditation as well) automatically imply a disliking alternate philosophies? Otherwise, why would one prefer or choose one over another?
But yeah, the basis of Hindu philosophy does include accepting all religions (look up Pluralism on wikipedia) as alternate paths to the same underlying Reality.
Why Anonymous Can't Take Down Amazon.com
Akamai had a role to play in the defense as well.
Akamai says it can defend against Anon attacks
Read more: http://news.cnet.com/8301-31921_3-20025477-281.html#ixzz187QnPlDV
Akamai managers say they could have bolstered the Web sites that buckled under attacks launched recently by Internet vigilantes.
The world's largest content delivery network says it has enough servers and the right kind of network to "mitigate distributed denial-of-service (DDoS) attacks," Neil Cohen, Akamai's senior director of product marketing told CNET. DDoS describes the practice of overwhelming a Web site with traffic so that it can't be accessed.
Some well-known sites were the targets of DDoS attacks launched by a loosely connected group of WikiLeaks supporters who call themselves Anonymous or Anon for short. The group lashed out at companies they consider to be hostile to WikiLeaks, the service responsible for publicizing an enormous amount of classified U.S. government documents. Some of those attacked were MasterCard, Visa, PayPal, and Amazon.
MasterCard, Visa, and PayPal stopped processing donations made to WikiLeaks while Amazon stopped hosting WikiLeaks servers. At this point it appears that Amazon was able to withstand the attack while MasterCard and Visa's sites were inaccessible for extended periods.
Cohen said few other companies have as much experience as his with defending Web sites from this kind of threat. He said that late last month, a number of U.S. retail sites came under DDoS attack from multiple different countries. Cohen said he was unaware of who was behind it or why, but he said that Akamai helped some of the retailers withstand the onslaught of hits to their sites, which in some cases reached to 10,000 times the normal daily traffic to some of these sites. None of the sites went down, he said.
"What we did over the last decade was built out our network and we now have 80,000 servers in 70 countries," Cohen said. "We can mitigate DDoS attacks by having a server extremely close to the court rather than try to absorb the attack in one centralized location. As an attack grows in size and distributes out to more bots, we have a server near the compromised machines. As the attack gets bigger, our network scales on demand."
While there are reports that Anonymous is giving up on DDoS attacks related to the WikiLeaks case, it is unlikely that we've seen the end of them. In retaliation against the entertainment industry's antipiracy attempts, Anonymous knocked out the Web sites belonging to the Motion Picture Association of America, the Recording Industry Association of America, Hustler magazine, and the U.S. Copyright Office.
Read more: http://news.cnet.com/8301-31921_3-20025477-281.html#ixzz187QiBtJU
Twitter Gets a Tweak
Here come the 'sponsored' tweets for the twits to watch and twitter about!
Seriously, it was worthless before, now it's more so, except for the marketers and the twits who 'follow' them and think they're all smart and cool for using twitter.
How Good Software Makes Us Stupid
I find that the internet, and Google-like search capabilities mirror and satisfy my mind's innate desire to jump from one thought (and topic) to another.
Now, in addition to thinking random thoughts (which the mind/brain tends to do), I can read up and learn about on these subjects which earlier used to be just thoughts, and in that sense it makes me more learned.
What this encourages though, is a more unsteady thought pattern, with related and seemingly 'random' web searches about this thought stream.
I'm considering taking up meditation to encourage a 'calmer' mind that doesn't jump around as much between thoughts.
YouTube Begins Live Streaming Trials
For some reason, Slashdot rejected my submission back then ... here it is, based on this Guardian story:
"YouTube is running a (very) brief trial of their new live streaming platform: 'This new platform integrates live streaming directly into YouTube channels; all broadcasters need is a webcam or external USB/FireWire camera. Included in the test is a "Live Comments" module which lets you engage with the broadcaster and the broader YouTube community. For the purpose of the trial, this offering will only be available today and tomorrow. Based on the results of this initial test, we'll evaluate rolling out the platform more broadly to our partners worldwide.'"
I, for one, welcome our new TV replacement.
The Universe As Hologram
The Universe as an illusion in Hindu philosophy: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Maya_(illusion) .
I, for one, welcome our new Matrix overlords, and will be on the holodeck if you need me.
If Programming Languages Were Religions
The multiple dieties in Hinduism merely translate to various aspects of the One Absolute Infinite Consciousness.
The thinking here is that the "Absolute" is so unfathomable that everybody has a different view of it (like the fabled elephant and 8 blind men). These aspects can be viewed as different dieties and even as different religions.
Indeed, Hinduism allows and *encourages* different views of the Absolute, and thus is inherently Pluralisitc (accepts all religious paths as equally valid, promoting coexistence).
Geeky April Fools' Day Prank Roundup
I got Rick Rolled. You can too.
(speakers on, detach mouse for best effect).
Dear Valued Customer, en espaÃ±ol
Your privacy is an important priority at Verizon. We want to let you know that Verizon will soon participate in a program that will improve the ability of advertisers to reach our Verizon Online customers based on your physical address. The goal is to provide online ads that may be more relevant to you.
This program uses your address to determine whether you reside in a local area an advertiser is trying to reach. However, Verizon wonâ(TM)t share your address with advertisers as part of this process. Advertisers wonâ(TM)t know itâ(TM)s you specifically or where you actually live. If you do not want us to allow advertisers to send you ads based on your geographic area you can let us know by selecting here.
What does this mean for you?
Certain ads youâ(TM)ll see while browsing the Internet may be directed to you and other Verizon Online customers in your area, so these ads may be of more interest to you. For example, a pizza chain may want to deliver their ad to give a special offer to people living in a particular area. Using this program, national brands and local businesses can tailor their offers, coupons, and incentives to your local area.
Protection of Your Personal Information
For answers to your frequently asked questions, select here.
Regarding R*cism and such
It is hateful and bad to dislike someone for what they are (e.g. their skin color).
It is NOT hateful NOR wrong to dislike someone for what they think or believe in.
It's as simple as that!
Kent Couch flies in lawnchair
That's all folks, this is it!
Please feel free to enjoy any humorous, and/or clever and/or childish April Fool's anecdotes around my office, my ex-office, my family, the continents, and the dubloo-dubloo-dubloo.dot.www.com's out there, this fine and snowy New England April 1st morning. Rest assured, I'm celebrating with you in spirit wherever you are.
I'm in the middle of a sleepless and hectic release week and as such unable to indulge in, participate in or share any lolhappyfunrofl pranks with all of you, my friends, family and colleagues, current and past.
Let this be an April Fool's Day to commemorate all of the past fun April Fool's days we've shared together.
If you've ever been enjoyed a memorable April fool's please feel free to share the lulz with your near and dear ones over a cold beer and/or adult recreational beverage of your choice.
Or go watch a movie, refresh thats_all_folks.gif or something.
Just leave me alone.
One more checklist
Your post advocates a conspiracy theory which is
( ) paranoid
( ) delusional
(x) impossible to confirm
(x) impossible to refute
Specifically, your theory fails to account for
( ) Stupidity of the general population
( ) Stupidity of the politicians
(x) Lack of supporting evidence
(x) Plenty of contradictory evidence
(x) Lack of a centrally controlling authority for conspiracies
(x) The facts can be explained without need for real conspiracy
(x) Scientists generally don't participate in conspiracies
(x) Failure to mention the Illuminati
and the following philosophical objections may also apply:
( ) Ideas similar to yours are easy to come up with, yet none have ever been proven
(x) That's what they WANT us to think
Furthermore, this is what I think about you:
( ) Sorry dude, you're batshit crazy
(x) This is a stupid idea, and you're a stupid person for suggesting it.
( ) Nice try, assh0le! I'm going to find out where you live and burn your house down!
Drug patents threatening cheap drugs
The BBC is reporting that a recent court
challenge to India's patent laws by pharmaceutical giant Novartis may cut the supply of affordable
medicines to treat AIDS and other epidemics in the developing world. Based on
the rejection of it's patent on a drug, Novartis is arguing that India's
requirement for drugs to be "new and innovative" is not in line with the WTO
TRIPS (Trade Related Aspects
of Intellectual Property Rights) Agreement that India is party to. India came
to be called the "pharmacy of the world's poor" since it stopped issuing
patents for medicines in 1970 allowing its many drug producers to create
generic copies of medicines still patent-protected in other countries - at a
fraction of the price charged by Western drug firms. In 2005, however, it
changed it's patent laws to comply with international regulations. NGOs
Sans Frontieres (MSF) and Oxfam say that if Novartis
succeeds, pharmaceutical firms will be able to put newer AIDS treatments based
on existing drugs under patent protection in India, preventing cheap generic
versions being exported to Africa and elsewhere. In 2005, Slashdot carried a story
about efforts to put India's ancient traditional medicine and Yoga online, so as to make
it visible as public domain to patent examiners. More recently, Slashdot carried a
similar story about Tiwan's decision to violate Roche's patent on a bird flu drug for the benefit of
Deal on International nuclear fusion plant signed
Telegraph and several
other news outlets are reporting on the international deal to build the world's most advanced nuclear fusion reactor that was signed in today. Representatives of the EU, the US, Japan, India, Russia, South Korea and China signed the ITER (International Thermonuclear Experimental Reactor) agreement in Paris, finalising the project which aims to develop nuclear fusion as a viable energy source to fossil fuels. According to the ITER consortium, fusion power offers the potential of "environmentally benign, widely applicable and essentially inexhaustible" electricity, properties that they believe will be needed as world energy demands increase while simultaneously greenhouse gas emissions must be reduced,justifying the expensive research project.
Papercraft pinhole camera
Just happened to see this cool looking, do-it-yourself paper pinhole camera on BoingBoing.net. This camera, which you can download the design for, cut and build is capable of capturing an image on any 35mm film through a pinhole instead of a lens. Though the design was first published in 1979, it was converted to a digital design recently.
Firefox "memory leak" quick fix
As reported before [slashdot.org], Firefox does not have memory problems - it has a feature that is very memory intensive. To disable this feature, do the following: 1. type about:config in you address bar 2. scroll down to browser.sessionhistory.max_total_viewers 3. set its value to 0 (zero)
Rejected story "Google unveils new search tools"
Google has unveiled two new search tools in it's growing inventory of products. Today Google released Google Trends and Google Coop. More information is available at their respective faq pages. While Google Trends seems like a variation of Google Zeitgeist, Google Coop seems like an effort to actively incorporate user feedback into their search engine. No word about this in the Google Blog yet.
Insightful PPP/wage/exchange_rate related comments
The first by me: http://it.slashdot.org/comments.pl?sid=184468&cid=15231430
by GillBates0 (664202) on Sunday April 30, @08:14AM (#15231430)
(http://slashdot.org/~GillBates0 | Last Journal: Thursday October 20, @02:54PM)
...comparing salaries in absolute Dollar terms (as the article summary does) makes _no_ sense, really without taking into account the Purchasing Power Parity [wikipedia.org]. In short, $1.00 would go significantly further in India than it would in the US.
As a rough of comparison, a loaf of bread which costs $2.50 in the US costs a little less than 25 Indian Rupees ($0.50). US $13000 is a little less than 600k INR [google.com] which by all means is quite a _comfortable_ if not princely salary to get by in India.
And another one my KFG: http://it.slashdot.org/comments.pl?sid=184468&cid=15231489
by kfg (145172) FriendFriend of a Friend on Sunday April 30, @08:52AM (#15231489)
A "dollar" is what a dollar buys. It has no fixed value.
In third world economies a "dime" may well be "ten bucks," so long as you stick within the local economy for food, clothing and shelter. Living is actually quite cheap, which is why so many people from the first world choose to vacation/retire to the third. You may well find you can live, and live well, for a year for less than what it would cost you to spend two weeks at Disney/land/world/universe/whatever.
The rub is that things from outside the local economy, imports, are priced at what a "dollar" is worth where they are made, and can thus be beyond the means of someone who would otherwise be considered middle class. Things like a simple radio or portable television may require the investment of an entire community which otherwise lacks nothing needed for sustaining a good life.
One can see the same affect in the first world when comparing rural vs. urban living. I turned down $60k/yr in Manhatten awhile ago, because $60k in Manhatten cannot buy me what I could get working a cruddy retail job upstate.
When comparing disparate economies you cannot think in terms of dollars. You have think in terms of hours per pound of rice/place to sleep. When you do this you may find that lower wages are often greater wealth. Money is not wealth. It is an abstraction. What your money buys you is wealth. The "stuff" itself.
Informative explanation of Diesel/Electric power/RPM ratios
Finding UID ranges
Thanks to Zobier for pointing it out here:
More friends to add
Add following to Friends list when the maximum of 100 f/f limit is resolved or worked around:
Yet another checklist
Pending submitted story
India backs cheap drug clampdown Tuesday March 22, @05:42PM Pending
According to this BBC story, the Indian Government is close to banning indigenously produced low-cost versions of patented drugs, to comply with WTO regulations. According to the current Indian patent law, drug makers are allowed to copy patented drugs as long as they use a different manufacturing process. Campaigners say the move will deprive millions of people around the world of access to cheap life-saving medicines . According to the article fifty percent of people with AIDS in the developing world depend on generic drugs from India. It should be mentioned that the last time the Indian government deliberated on WTO patent regulations was when US Company RiceTec obtained a patent on Basmati rice, a variety which has been grown in India for centuries.
Befriend once 100 limit is resolved.
Bill Gates most spammed person
'Brain' in a dish flies flight simulator
reporting that a scientist
at the University of Florida has
developed a "brain" grown from 25,000 neurons extracted from a rat's brain
that is capable of flying a plane in the F-22 flight simulator. According
to the article, the brain and the simulator established a two-way
connection to send and receive signals and eventually, the brain learnt to
control the flight of the plane based on the information it received about
Philosophy: A Brief Explanation +50 Insightful Post
By 808140 (welcome to my friend's list! BTW, his handle and UID are the same ?! )
Re:A Brief Explanation (Score:5, Insightful)
by 808140 (808140) Friend of a Friend on Wednesday October 20, @10:27PM (#10582302)
Your question is a good one, but it has no answer. I'd like to explain why. It's a matter of philosophy.
You see, science (especially in popular consciousness) is seen as the discipline which endeavors to answer the question "why?" with respect to various observable phenomena. These questions have been at the center of human thought for well, ever. We created religion in its various forms to answer this very class of questions.
With the advent of science, it seemed as though we finally had a way to truly answer these questions, but unfortunately this stems from a fundamental misunderstanding of what science is. Science does not try to answer nor can it answer the why. The why has no answer.
Let me explain. Science (and specifically the scientific method) is designed to determine, through experiment and falsifiability of hypothesis, the way the world behaves and to model its behaviour. Because these theories often have far reaching consequences, laymen (and even scientists, unfortunately) often make the mistake of thinking that their theories explain the why. But they do not; they simply explain the how.
Let's explore this a bit. Newton's law of gravity did not explain why gravity exists. Why two bodies fall together is anyone's guess -- why, as a question, demands a reason. There may very well be a reason that two bodies fall together -- a popularly believed one is that some supernatural being designed it that way -- but physics does not, indeed, cannot, conjure up a reason by simply observing and modeling the way those two objects fall together.
An example of this in more human terms: suppose you have a batty friend, and everytime you say foo, he says bar, like clockwork. You would quickly observe this and would, in your mind, be able to construct a hypothesis based on this behaviour -- when the subject hears foo, he says bar. And you could construct a series of experiments that test this hypothesis -- perhaps you would find that in the presence of blondes, he utters baz instead. This knowledge would allow you to predict his behaviour in certain situations, but it would say nothing whatsoever about his reasons for it. Nor could any amount of observation ever explain the reasons.
Now, in physics this is obfuscated by the discipline's drive to isolate core phenomena. That is, it has been noted that often phenomena we observe are caused by smaller, less obvious phenomena. So, for example, attempts to make gravity fit into quantum mechanics have driven physicists to suggest that gravity as a force is mediated by a graviton, or what not. If this were ever demonstrated by experiment and became widely accepted, a laymen might ask, "why does gravity behave the way it does?" and a physicist might explain that it has to do with property xyz of gravitons. But this is not an explanation.
This is simply telling the listener that the macroscopic observable phenomenon of gravity is actually made up of several, less easily observable phenomena. This is all well and good, but you'll notice that it actually explains "how" gravity works. "Why does my house keep out the rain?" "Because it has a roof." It seems logical, but it isn't. Because the roof is how it keeps out the rain -- the reason it keeps out the rain is something much more subtle, like, "Because the designers felt that the house's inhabitants would rather not get wet."
Science answers the how of things, and it does this exceedingly well. It cannot (and for the most part, does not even attempt) to answer the why. But why and how are so muddled in the way people think that lots of folks (scientists included) are deluded into thinking that science will eventually explain the big questions like "why does the universe exist", and "why are we here."
If you've ever asked a scientist the latter question, you may have gotten something along the lines of "We're here as a result of abiogenisis, followed by billions of years of evolution, catelysed by Darwinian natural selection and occasional random mutations." He hasn't lied to you; there's evidence to support everything he says. But he's explaining how we got here, not why we're here, which is why this answer is somewhat less satisfying than we hoped it would be. He's not answering the question we asked. He probably doesn't even realize it. In fact, we ourselves may not realize it.
When a religious person says, "We're here because God made us in his image", he has no evidence, and is essentially selling you what he believes and so we're often unsatisfied, because we feel that he lacks the credibility of science, which is based on falsifiable principles deduced from observable phenomena. But the religious person is actually attempting to answer the question you asked: he's giving you a reason for our existence, even if it seems to be a facile one.
Religions don't make this distinction easy on themselves because they foolishly get caught up in trying to answer the how, too. So they make up stories about Adam and Eve or Pandora's Box or whatever their creation story is -- this mythology is a primitive attempt at answering the how, and science does this in an infinitely better and more reliable way.
But Science can never answer the why. This is chiefly the realm of religion an philosophy. Who knows why gravity works the way it does? It just does. Obviously, if I drop an apple, it falls. It has done this for all time and I induced from this that next time I drop an apple, it will also fall. I explain at what speed it falls by careful measurement, and find that for bodies with mass that differs enough, the acceleration is relative the masses of the two bodies and inversely proportional to the square of their distance from each other. All good, that. But it isn't why.
I'm agnostic myself, by which I mean that I don't believe in God but don't write off the possibility that such a being could exist (in the days of the luminferous aether, I probably wouldn't have believed that special relativity was true, either, but as I've been shown proof, I've changed by viewpoint -- I suppose I would do the same if "proof" of God could be given). But I think that this subtle distinction between the how and why is one of the reasons that so many of the most brilliant scientists have been religious. Ultimately, you realize that you can never induce intent by just observing operation. At best you can make educated guesses. At best.
So, yeah, to sum up, Science: how? Religion: why? And the two are linearly independent, if you will. And therefore do not conflict. You just need to make sure that you let science answer the how and religion the why, and not get caught up in ridiculous mythologies that are falsifiable by modern science (Noah's Ark, for example, or Adam and Eve).