top Giant Crater Appears In Northern Siberia
An enormous hole had been made by the impact of the projectile, and the sand and gravel had been flung violently in every direction over the heath, forming heaps visible a mile and a half away. The heather was on fire eastward, and a thin blue smoke rose against the dawn.
about a month and a half ago
top Scientists Have Developed a Material So Dark That You Can't See It
I'll just leave this here: the
Daily Mail-o-matic headline genrator
about a month and a half ago
top Facebook's Emotion Experiment: Too Far, Or Social Network Norm?
,G+ is ... an ANTI-social network.
G+ suits me fine, I have no friends IRL either.
You insensitive clod. People sometimes go on at me about being antisocial, I think they're being overly judgemental in implying it's a bad thing.
top Geothermal Heat Contributing To West Antarctic Ice Sheet Melting
Kenya imagine a worse country-name pun than that?
Oman that's awful!
top There's No Wind Chill On Mars
Mars' atmosphere is
.. around 20 mBar ..it's near-vacuum. And vacuum makes for a very good thermal insulator.
"For all practical purposes" is not correct. The thermal conductivity of a gas is near-independent of pressure down to very low pressures, until the mean free path of particles becomes large compared to the distance to the solid where the heat gets dumped.
20mBar and the MFP is still tiny.
You need a pretty good vacuum (10^-4mbar or so) in a coffee flask otherwise it doesn't change a thing.
top Why You Shouldn't Use Spreadsheets For Important Work
Excel checks formulas for "consistency" so if you have
b1 : = a1+1 , b2: =a2+1 , b3: =a
then the ropey B3 will be flagged up. Of course there are sometimes false positives and you switch this check off or ignore it, and who knows how many false negatives. 42 + 1 , b4: =a4+1 ,
The message "just say no to Excel" still stands.
top London Police To Wear Video Cameras In Pilot Project
the cameras a re supposed to have a 30 seconds buffer that always records, so you get the 30 seconds
before you press "Start". That, and the fact that the battery is supposed to last a whole shift, makes them a very interesting device. Where can I buy one of those?
top Favorite Star Wars Movie?
and then there's making bad movies because you can't tell your arse from your elbow...
and then, there's Uwe Boll.
top I expect to retire ...
I wonder if the retirement age (here in UK) will go up faster than my own age, in which case I'll never get to retire.
top Gunshot Victims To Be Part of "Suspended Animation" Trials
Richard Branson, is that you?
No, surely it's Dr Strangelove:
top Mazda Says Its Upcoming Gas-Powered Cars Will Emit Less CO2 Than Electric Cars
passing neutron (= beta radiation)
beta radiation is high-energy electrons, not neutrons.
Beta decay happens in certain nuclei, upping the atomic number while keeping the nucleon count constant. A proton flips into a neutron and the spare electric charge flies off with the electron, which has comparatively little mass.
Neutrons are emitted during fission events, a nucleus splits (roughly) in half with a few neutrons left over. These neutrons are generally "fast", i.e. high-energy, and the "fast" in fast breeder refers to the fact that these fast neutrons are used for breeding rather than slowed-down ("thermal") neutrons.
top Apple Refuses To Unlock Bequeathed iPad
This is indefensible behavior. Apple are being assholes.
Quite the contrary. The Customer is in the wrong, since she did not stipulate to be buried clutching her iPad but instead to pass it on to other beings.
She can't be of the One True Apple Faith, thus she's a heretic.
top The Mammoth Cometh: Revive & Restore Tackles De-Extinction
mitochondrial + nuclear DNA would make an actual mammoth
No biologist here either but I believe it's technically correct, but still useless. If elephants are anything to go by, which are social creatures, a mammoth calf would have to learn a lot about its habitat from its parents, geography, what to eat, what not to eat, etc. It can't learn that from an African elephant. A zoo animal is all you would get.
top Invention Makes Citibikes Electric
I went around on a Velosolex some time in the late eighties, some people thought they were cool and retro then, and you could by them new.
Horribly dangerous to ride on anything but a straight line or VERY SLOWLY.
Weight distribution all wrong Front wheel drive unforgiving Front tyre adapted for roller but not good on the road
This was a petrol engine but I can't imagine that electrics now win out on power/weight either, at least not with a useful range.
top Who's On WhatsApp, and Why?
she's 16 and uses whatsapp all the time because it's cheaper than SMS. I guess they get their demographics by analysing word frequency histograms, age being inversely proportioal to LPS ("like" per sentence)
top Why Improbable Things Really Aren't
Verbing weirds language. Seriously, constructs like this stop my reading flow. Please don't.
top At my current workplace, I've outlasted ...
more "noob" than "past it"'.
count(*), decode(sign(emp_id - 16562), 0, 'me', -1, 'past it', 1, 'noob')
emp_status = 'A'
decode(sign(emp_id - 16562), 0, 'me', -1, 'past it', 1, 'noob')
top India To Build World's Largest Solar Plant
if you love numbers you do a quick calculation : 4*10^9W for $4.4*10^9: that's 1.1 US$/Watt, and once you google about a bit for "dollars per watt powerplant" or something, you find it's a pretty competitive price.
top Chinese Professor Builds Li-Fi System With Retail Parts
could anyone in the know enlighten us how the uplink is supposed to work? TFA doesn't clarify.
top Boston Dynamics Wildcat Can Gallop — No Strings Attached
I consulted Wikipedia about bone names: in a cat (and many outer quadrupeds) the tarsal joint forms what is the "knee" in our legs, and the metatarsals are the lowest segment of the leg. The joint happens to point backwards, and consequently it looks "right" to us, and a robot with its knees pointing forward looks "creepy".
The Boson Dynamics people obviously found that it's somehow beneficial to have that joint pointing forward rather than backward, and they have the freedom to engineer it that way. Nature doesn't have that freedom: Evolution frequently "chooses" second-best solutions where the "design penalty" is small, because evolution always works in infinitesimal steps, there is no chance of atop-to bottom rewrite, the process doesn't cater for that.
Take that, "Intelligent Design" believers.
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