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In Breakthrough, US and Cuba To Resume Diplomatic Relations

careysub Re:Why not push toward collapse? (424 comments)

Let's look at an "evil government" index to determine the "evilness" of Cuba among authoritarian regimes. A good one is the Democracy Index put out by the Conservative economics journal "The Economist".

Cuba ranks at 124, which puts it in the top 20% of authoritarian regimes, so 80% of them are "more evil". We certainly don't do any business with those 80% do we? Near the bottom of that list is our old friend Saudi Arabia, a regime we absolutely should not support right? Others in the "evil 80%" are Nigeria, Kuwait, Afghanistan, Tunisia, China, Qatar, Oman, Vietnam, and the UAE. No way we do we have diplomatic relations, do any business, or offer any support to any of those guys!

Of course six of these Evil Nations have oil, which makes everything good, correct? Well, it turns out that Cuba has useful offshore oil as well, so geology automatically promotes them to Tolerable Oil Nation, even if their much higher democracy ranking does not.

2 days ago
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How Identifiable Are You On the Web?

careysub Re:Why don't browsers clean it up? (159 comments)

Especially if "Do Not Track" is set to on - why don't they limit the data to send back?

You have misunderstood what "Do Not Track" means.

No, I don't think he did. He was suggesting that browsers truly act on that option selection in a useful way. You misunderstood his post.

4 days ago
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Peru Indignant After Greenpeace Damages Ancient Nazca Site

careysub Re:mistakes were made (465 comments)

Rather that being a display of "good intentions" the message appears to me to be just an ad for Greenpeace. It is one thing to promote a message, and then take credit/blame for it - this just looks like advertising pure and simple.

Even to many who generally support the same causes as Greenpeace, they are often full of self-importance and recklessness. A very flawed messenger.

about a week ago
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MIT Removes Online Physics Lectures and Courses By Walter Lewin

careysub Re:Just wondering... (416 comments)

Eastasia, not Eurasia.

about a week ago
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MIT Removes Online Physics Lectures and Courses By Walter Lewin

careysub Re:Professor Harasses Student (416 comments)

The "online harassment" probably only exists in her head. The guy is a Nobel, that alone guarantees him enough tail for a lifetime.

If he believes that it does then that would be ready explanation for harassment.

about a week ago
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Rosetta Results: Comets "Did Not Bring Water To Earth"

careysub Re: Oh it's asteroids now? (135 comments)

Because Earth has very unusual moon. Some good models exist to explain how it came it existence, and how the present system evolved, and can explain the isotope and elemental composition data we have for the Moon, and explain all currently discernible features of the system rather well. But they start with a massive planetoid collision on the early Earth that lofted enough material (combined from Earth and the impactor) to create that little twin planet of the Earth called Moon. Available evidence favors this model much more strongly than any contenders, and this collision event would have driven off the volatiles. It is a very difficult conclusion to escape from, and requires later acquisition of material.

Seems far-fetched? "Fetch distance" is not generally a useful tool to judge a theories plausibiity.

about a week ago
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Rosetta Results: Comets "Did Not Bring Water To Earth"

careysub Re:The wet ones did! (135 comments)

Some on with mod points please mod Calvar up. He has it exactly correct.

about a week ago
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James Watson's Nobel Medal Sells For $4.1 Million

careysub Re:the evils of Political Correctness (201 comments)

You are probably right about the confirmation bias. But one should be able to make that argument without hounding someone out of a profession. That is more-or-less what happened here.

No, it isn't. Watson proved himself incapable, after a good 39 years as Chancellor of the Cold Harbor Laboratory, a publicly funded scientific research institution, to continue to successfully function in that position. Like it or not, carrying out such a prominent, highly-paid job puts demands on a person to act and speak responsibly, with the object of maintaining the image of the institution who trusts him to represent it.

A programmer who can no longer the job he is paid to perform gets fired.

A scientist who can no longer the job he is paid to perform gets fired.

A Chancellor who who can no longer the job he is paid to perform, well, he becomes Chancellor Emeritus with a $375,000 salary.

NB: The claim that it is up to everyone else to debunk Watson is incorrect. As a man of science he had the responsibility of being able to support his assertion.

Sorry, affirmative action for influential wealthy white men does not wash. Nothing unfair here.

about two weeks ago
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James Watson's Nobel Medal Sells For $4.1 Million

careysub Re:No More Ramen (201 comments)

And in the words of the article he "draws a $375,000 base salary as chancellor emeritus" which according to this calculator puts him in the top 2% of Americans. This is assuming that he had no other academic income which we do not know to be the case. Heck, The Double Helix is available right now in five different formats, and so must being in some income.

Efforts to pain Watson as beleaguered and impoverished are bizarre to say the least.

about two weeks ago
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Overly Familiar Sci-Fi

careysub Re:Nonsense (368 comments)

And let's not forget the downfall of the Roman empire included the introduction of homosexuality.

Odd. The collapse of the Western Roman Empire seems to correlate far more closely in time with the adoption of a homophobic religion.

about two weeks ago
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Overly Familiar Sci-Fi

careysub Re:you're doing it wrong (368 comments)

You don't have to go back in history at all. Consider present day Saudi Arabia. Its society is quite alien to the experience of modern Americans, and the status of women right now is as bad, or worse, than any historical examples given here, and quasi-slavery (various forms of trafficking and forced servitude) are still practiced.

about two weeks ago
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Facebook Founder Presents Vision For The New Republic, Many Resign In Protest

careysub Re:Who cares... (346 comments)

1990s of course.

about two weeks ago
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Facebook Founder Presents Vision For The New Republic, Many Resign In Protest

careysub Re:yea no (346 comments)

Here, here!

For nearly 40 years I have read TNR off and on, trying to divine why it was regarded as a thought leader among Liberal/Left/Progressives. All I could conjecture was that is was a combination of their culture writing, and left-over reputation from an earlier era before I was old enough to read it, which it was gliding on. It's articles about economics, and social and foreign policy were fairly consistently disturbing and decidedly right-wing.

about two weeks ago
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Facebook Founder Presents Vision For The New Republic, Many Resign In Protest

careysub Re:Who cares... (346 comments)

Mostly right on, but the rich are largely Democrat voters and Democrat policies highly favor them...

If only that were a fact, rather than that staple of the right, a lie made up on the spot. In fact the available evidence shows that not is the truly rich heavily Republican, that they even more heavily favor Republican economic and policy prescriptions than party ID would indicate.

about two weeks ago
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Facebook Founder Presents Vision For The New Republic, Many Resign In Protest

careysub Re:Who cares... (346 comments)

Sullivan (a Brit) self-identifies as a conservative, which he translates into Democrat in the US.

Wasn't always so. Sullivan used to self-identify as a Republican. Self-identifying as a Democrat today, when that party is moderate Conservative, while the Republicans have abandoned Conservatism for a race to the fringes of radical right-wing wing-nuttery is absolutely what any honest thinking Conservative would do.

It is significant, I think, that the last public turn that honest thinking Conservative William F. Buckley took before his death was to reflect with satisfaction on his role in running the radical right-wing wing-nuttery of the John Birch Society out of Republican politics. He lived to see the reincarnations of the John Birch Society take over the Republican Party in the early 1960s.

Needless to say, the implicit rebuke went unnoticed on the right.

about two weeks ago
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You're Doing It All Wrong: Solar Panels Should Face West, Not South

careysub Re:well you know (327 comments)

You must live in a location without wind. A solar panel must be mounted such that it will not blow away in a 100 year wind (if you want it to survive with high probability over the 30 year panel life). This requires a very robust motorized mounting in most places. A very significant expense.

about two weeks ago
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Scientists Have Finally Sampled the Most Abundant Material On Earth

careysub Re:Wait till they see water! (128 comments)

Water is in fact, therefore, pretty scarce on Earth.

That's like arguing the material a balloon is made of is scarce on a balloon. Its true that there's not much of it in the total volume of a balloon. But it still makes up pretty much 100% of the surface area ON a balloon.

...

Two strikes for you - first you make a poor analogy (In a completely deflated state the rubber is the entire volume and mass of the balloon), and second you missed the opportunity to make it a car analogy.

A better analogy would be that paint (or enamel) is pretty scarce on a car since such a tiny fraction of its total mass consists of paint, even though us "surfacists" consider the paint a very important characteristic of the car.

about three weeks ago
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Stars Traveling Close To Light Speed Could Spread Life Through the Universe

careysub Re:I don't understand this ... (184 comments)

Answers to various comments/questions on this sub-thread:

Time dilation at 1/3 c is 5.7%, quite a noticeable amount, but not remotely close to to turning billions of years into millions.

Tidal effects are small for super-massive galactic black holes. I doubt tidal disruption of Earth-like (i.e. fairly close) orbits would occur, especially for cool M-type stars (the most common kind).

While individual particles of cosmic dust hitting the planet at 1/3 c won't be a problem, (they will simply explode high in the upper atmosphere), the energy flux hitting the atmosphere from interstellar gas would be considerable. Average interstellar space has something like 1,000,000 hydrogen atoms per cubic meter. At 100,000 km/sec every second there would be 100,000*1,000*1,000,000= 10^14 hydrogen atoms hitting each square meter of atmosphere. The kinetic energy of those atoms would be about 1000 J, so roughly 1000 watts/m^2 of heating from interstellar hydrogen. Earth gets 1400 watts/M^2 of heat from the Sun, so it would roughly double the heating of an Earth-like world until it cleared the galaxy plane. If it ran into a denser patch (all of the region in the galactic center would be denser than the average I quoted) then the heating could be 10, 100, even 1000 times higher for a bit. I think this would cook any existing Earth-like planet.

Once in interstellar space though the heat load would drop by a factor of 10,000 to 100,000 of the average interstellar value and would cease to be significant. From there on the planet and star system would evolve on their own, and a new biosphere could come into existence.

about three weeks ago
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"Barbie: I Can Be a Computer Engineer" Pulled From Amazon

careysub Re:So close, so far (561 comments)

Where do you find actual chemistry sets with actual chemicals in them that can actually make interesting things? I have been trying to find something like I had as a kid for 10 years - with no luck. ...

Thames and Kosmos. Their Chem 5000 set is the real deal, at least equal to, and probably better than, the ChemCraft sets of yore that I loved as a kid.

About five years ago I was casting about for a chemistry set for my daughter, and heard about Thames and Kosmos. Unfortunately at that particular moment they were retooling their offerings, and none were available - but they are back on the market, better than ever.

about a month ago
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The Disgruntled Guys Who Babysit Our Aging Nuclear Missiles

careysub Re:Scale down the land based forces (176 comments)

Yes, they do. We can put an ICBM anywhere in the world within 29 minutes. Neither bombers or sub can do that.

ICBMs can cover much of the Earth, but not all of it. The U.S. submarine fleet, consisting of multiple mobile missile fields, can. Submarines can be positioned closer to the target, and can thus put a warhead on it faster than an ICBM (not clear why you think shaving minutes is so important though).

Bombers an Subs can more easily have the comms disrupted.

Not at all clear that this true today, with modern communication systems. Silos have serious problems with communications when warheads land on top of them.

Bomber and Sub will hve an active defense targeting them. Bombers and sub are tracked by other actors the various theaters.

What effective "active defense" do you imagine exists in the world today against the U.S. SLBM fleet? They patrol a couple of thousand miles off the coast, if they need to, and there is no effective anti-submarine force in the world to target them. The Russian submarine fleet is less than 1/4 the size that it was under the Soviet Union.

You may have heard of the U.S. carrier battle groups of which the U.S. has 11, versus none for the rest of the world. SLBMs have the option of operating from the protective umbrella of battle groups, which makes the notion of them being effectively target truly ridiculous.

And the bombers have cruise missiles with a range of 1500 miles, so the effectiveness of active defense against them is questionable.

Sorry you are grasping at ancient, worn-out straws trying to prop up the case for the ICBM fleet.

about a month ago

Submissions

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Climategate Review: Round Two

careysub careysub writes  |  more than 4 years ago

careysub (976506) writes "The report by the second of three panels constituted to investigate the conduct of the Climatic Research Unit of the University of East Anglia, has come in. This panel was a scientific review panel set up in consultation with the Royal Society to examine the integrity of their research methods, and whether there research supports their conclusions.

The key assessment:

We saw no evidence of any deliberate scientific malpractice in any of the work
of the Climatic Research Unit and had it been there we believe that it is likely
that we would have detected it. Rather we found a small group of dedicated if
slightly disorganised researchers who were ill-prepared for being the focus of
public attention. As with many small research groups their internal procedures
were rather informal."

Link to Original Source

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