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Nat Geo Writer: Science Is Running Out of "Great" Things To Discover

PvtVoid Re:Astronomy (exoplanets,etc ) and Cosmology say H (290 comments)

people who think science is the right tool for every problem domain are not as smart as they think they are.

Very true. Science only has an advantage when reality is involved.

about a week ago
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Nat Geo Writer: Science Is Running Out of "Great" Things To Discover

PvtVoid Re:Astronomy (exoplanets,etc ) and Cosmology say H (290 comments)

The first telescopes used a pair of lenses, then mirrors, then finely-created mirrors, then a high quantity of parabolic radio dishes, then really really really big mirrors - launched into orbit. Two lenses were (roughly) affordable by the common man. Mirrors, also affordable by the common man who had a tax return. Then a wealthy hobbyist or dedicated scientist, then a research lab, then a country.

The difference between "how much it costs for the stuff to find new stuff" and "how much new stuff that really expensive stuff will be found" are the questions at hand. We live in an infinite universe, so there's an infinite number of discoveries to be made. It just starts to cost impractical amounts of money after a while.

Her'es a picture of the telescope used for the Sloan Digital Sky Survey, which has mapped a substantial fraction of the observable universe:

http://www.hextek.com/wp-conte...

A two-meter instrument. Much of the innovation in modern cosmology is coming from data processing, not just building bigger and bigger mirrors. People are actually pretty clever, and can work around boundaries in surprising ways.

about a week ago
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Nat Geo Writer: Science Is Running Out of "Great" Things To Discover

PvtVoid Fuck that noise (290 comments)

Like we know everything. Or even anything much at all. In terms of understanding the nature of the world. we have only scratched the barest surface. Immense depths lay undiscovered.

Let's go!

about a week ago
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Born To RUN: Dartmouth Throwing BASIC a 50th B-Day Party

PvtVoid 10 REM HAPPY BIRTHDAY (146 comments)

20 LET X = 0
30 IF X = 50 THEN 60
40 LET X = X + 1
50 GOTO 30
60 PRINT "HAPPY "
70 PRINT X
80 PRINT " BASIC!"

about a week ago
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Nanodot-Based Smartphone Battery Recharges In 30 Seconds

PvtVoid Re:Charge time is one thing... (227 comments)

Actually, it doesn't omit that at all, it states their prototype is 2000mAh.

I stand corrected. Thank you!

about two weeks ago
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Nanodot-Based Smartphone Battery Recharges In 30 Seconds

PvtVoid Charge time is one thing... (227 comments)

... discharge time is another. How long does the battery last? TFA (typically for stupid tech articles) omits this detail.

about two weeks ago
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The Problem With Congress's Scientific Illiterates

PvtVoid Re:Don't bother. (509 comments)

Some of the people opposing this include very educated folks like engineers. So don't think that the only people who oppose Common Core are people who are uneducated.

Pretty much the very last people on the planet who should be deciding how young children are taught math are people with engineering degrees. Engineers are taught an especially mindless point of view on what math is and how it is important, and walk away with an entirely undeserved sense of superiority about their insight. This is precisely what I mean about people "who don't even understand that they don't understand." It often actually gets worse with higher levels of education, ironically enough.

about two weeks ago
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The Problem With Congress's Scientific Illiterates

PvtVoid Re:Don't bother. (509 comments)

As far as I can tell, the extremely shrill, extremely ideological opposition to Common Core is the educational equivalent of NIMBY-ism: reactionary opposition to change of any kind, supported by robot-like repetition of a set of rote talking points like "high-stakes testing", and accompanied by mob-like behavior at public meetings. Reason and debate end when this kind of total ideological certainty prevails.

EngageNY is idiotic with math. There's no more working with numbers. If you have 1.62 divided by 0.27, you don't actually do the math. Instead, you draw 162 little boxes. Then you circle them in groups of 27. Then you count how many circled groups there are to get your answer.

The more I see parents bringing up stuff like this as to how "stupid" the Common Core math curriculum is, the more I realize that the fundamental problem is that the parents aren't educated well enough to understand why this is a good way to teach math. Which is a great argument for a new way of doing things: the old way of doing things apparently utterly failed with these parents, who don't even understand that they don't understand.

about two weeks ago
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The Problem With Congress's Scientific Illiterates

PvtVoid Re:Don't bother. (509 comments)

There's also the group that see idiocy all around and, knowing they can't fight it all, fight some battles and toss their arms up on others.

For example, my wife and I are fighting against EngageNY, Common Core, and the high-stakes testing that New York State has implemented.

Sure, that makes sense. Fight scientific illiteracy by opposing any attempt whatsoever to improve education. Way to go.

about two weeks ago
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NSA Infiltrated RSA Deeper Than Imagined

PvtVoid Times have changed (168 comments)

Remember when the NSA was secretly changing widely-used crypto algortithms to make them stronger? I'm thinking of the DES sbox and differential cryptanalysis.

One thing's for sure, RSA is toast. They can issue all the denials they want. Nobody's ever going to trust them again.

about two weeks ago
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Tesla Model S Gets Titanium Underbody Shield, Aluminum Deflector Plates

PvtVoid Titanium? (314 comments)

Isn't titanium pyrophoric, sort of like those golf clubs?

about three weeks ago
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The Highest-Flying Wind Turbine

PvtVoid Re:Helium (143 comments)

While Hydrogen is significantly more dangerous, depending on the overall cost and possible ways to limit the dangers, it may be an option.

I for one welcome the gargantuan exploding lawnmowers to our skies.

about three weeks ago
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Bring On the Monsters: Tolkien's Translation of Beowulf To Be Published

PvtVoid The best adaptation of Beouwulf ever... (94 comments)

... is The Grinch Who Stole Christmas.

(I liked the Seamus Heaney version too.)

about three weeks ago
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Don't Help Your Kids With Their Homework

PvtVoid Re:Um, right. (278 comments)

Duh, the centrifugal force is an effect, not a force in itself. That's what we were taught in physics at least.

Searching, I stand not corrected: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/...

And Wikipedia is always right. But xkcd is always righter.

about three weeks ago
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Don't Help Your Kids With Their Homework

PvtVoid Re: Um, right. (278 comments)

I DO NOT send my daughter to a govt school that teaches her to grow up to be a lgbt whore without rights. SHE is going to a German school and at home she is learning to despise the government.

Parent is the poster-child for compulsory public education. Some kids need to be rescued from their parents.

about a month ago
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Don't Help Your Kids With Their Homework

PvtVoid Re:Um, right. (278 comments)

centrifugal force is just as real as any other force

Well, it's not just as real. It only exists in certain non-inertial frames of reference.

Just like gravity, for example.

about a month ago
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Don't Help Your Kids With Their Homework

PvtVoid Re:Um, right. (278 comments)

For example has anyone successfully managed to explain to a elementary school kid what is the point of learning three different ways to add two numbers?

Perhaps ... because learning three different ways to add two numbers aids comprehension of the mathematical concept of addition?

Nah. It must be a UN conspiracy or something.

about a month ago
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Don't Help Your Kids With Their Homework

PvtVoid Re:Um, right. (278 comments)

=did M.C. Esher write that textbook?

Now that's the kind of textbook I would vigorously advocate for.

about a month ago
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Don't Help Your Kids With Their Homework

PvtVoid Re:Um, right. (278 comments)

Or the new "Common Core" crap that has the most ass backwards ways of doing simple things like math. http://static.infowars.com/bin... I have seen people with MS and PHd in math shake their heads over this stuff.

The answer is (c). Maybe the people shaking their heads over this stuff have finally succumbed to the brain rot caused by listening to Alex Jones all the time.

about a month ago
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Don't Help Your Kids With Their Homework

PvtVoid Re:Um, right. (278 comments)

You mean like correcting the blatant errors in the grade school science texts?

I sure would like to hear an example of what kind of "blatant error" you're talking about. For every parent that points out that centrifugal force is just as real as any other force, there will be ten who deny evolution or climate change.

Perhaps this is the main effect driving the study: the majority of parents in America are half-educated nitwits, and any involvement from them will only cause damage to their child's education.

about a month ago

Submissions

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Julie Ann Horvath Quits GitHub, Citing Harrassment

PvtVoid PvtVoid writes  |  about 1 month ago

PvtVoid (1252388) writes "From TechCrunch: The exit of engineer Julie Ann Horvath from programming network GitHub has sparked yet another conversation concerning women in technology and startups. Her claims that she faced a sexist internal culture at GitHub came as a surprise to some, given her former defense of the startup and her internal work at the company to promote women in technology."
Link to Original Source
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Biologist fits sharks with lasers

PvtVoid PvtVoid writes  |  about 2 years ago

PvtVoid (1252388) writes "Marine biologist Luke Tipple mounts 50 milliwatt S3 Krypton lasers to lemon sharks to study shark movements in the water. "Tipple said that clipping the laser onto the dorsal fin and flipping on the laser was easy, although the shark didn’t like it when Tipple first attached the clamp. He said a few seconds later 'it returned to normal behavior.'""
Link to Original Source

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