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America's Turn From Science, a Danger For Democracy

jmizrahi Re:U.S. is established on religion, so (900 comments)

The whole U.S. is established on the idea of God and religion

A rather silly statement, given that if it were true, you would expect it to appear in the establishing document of the United States, namely the constitution. In actuality, the founding fathers were mostly atheists, and the government was designed in such a way to keep religion out of the picture.

For future reference, this sort of outrageous hyperbole diminishes the impact of whatever else you have to say.

more than 2 years ago

Does Telecommuting Make You Invisible?

jmizrahi that's why people telecommute? (275 comments)

Telecommuting provides many joys, including the ability to stay in your pajamas all day and the chance to work with a cat on your lap.

Does anyone else find the two listed "perks" of telecommuting extremely unappealing?

about 3 years ago

Breakthrough Toward Quantum Computing

jmizrahi Re:um... (61 comments)

Neither statement is true. First, we have entangled many systems other than photons. We have entangled trapped ions, neutral Rydberg atoms, superconducting qubits, nuclear spin states, and the list goes on. There are advantages and disadvantages to each quantum computing architecture. One of the fundamental issues facing all quantum computing architectures is the question of scalability. It is not always clear how to go from 1 or 2 qubits to thousands or millions of qubits. Some architectures, such as trapped ions, lend themselves naturally to scaling. The significance of this work is that up to this point, it has been unclear how you might scale a photonic quantum computer. The authors of this paper have taken the first steps towards overcoming that obstacle. As to your second statement, observed photon entanglement cannot be explained via classical optics. It has been shown to violate a Bell inequality, which is the hallmark of non-classicality in quantum mechanics.

more than 3 years ago

Wireless HDMI At 1080p, Lag-Free WHDI Tested

jmizrahi Monster cables? (171 comments)

So when can I expect to see $200 wireless HDMI monster cables? Only true audiophiles can see them -- to everyone else, they're invisible.

more than 4 years ago

Where Are the Original PC Programmers Now?

jmizrahi Re:Back in the days (124 comments)

Are you seriously suggesting that you can think of no other technical field besides programmer and electrician? How about physicist? Chemist? Biologist? Engineer? And of course, within each of those fields are a thousand subfields...

more than 4 years ago

Scientists Using Lasers To Cool Molecules

jmizrahi ridiculous summary (169 comments)

This is a particularly bad science article. First of all, this research is interesting because they are laser cooling molecules. The article makes it sound like the new thing here is using lasers to cool. Laser cooling of atoms has been around for decades, but laser cooling of molecules is considerably more difficult because molecules have far more resonant transitions than do atoms (this is due to the additional rotational and vibrational degrees of freedom.) Traditional Doppler laser cooling relies on cycling transitions, in which the atoms go back and forth between two levels, losing momentum as they cycle. If the particles can "escape" to other levels, the cycle breaks and cooling stops. Traditionally, in atoms this problem is solved by having other lasers on the table which "plug up" these holes by repumping the atoms back into the cooling cycle. With molecules, there has historically been far too many holes to simply plug them with other lasers.

Second, Fahrenheit? Seriously? Nano/Micro/MilliKelvin is the appropriate unit.

more than 4 years ago

LHC Spies Hints of Infant Universe

jmizrahi Quark gluon plasma? (311 comments)

The article seems to say that sufficiently high energy density results in free quarks. I was under the impression that the theory of the strong nuclear force demanded that all observable particles are "colorless," i.e. quarks are never free, but only appear in colorless combinations of mesons and hadrons. Could someone more knowledgeable clarify whether this phenomenon is a violation of the "nature is colorless" law, or whether the article simply does a poor job of explaining a quark-gluon plasma?

more than 4 years ago

Brazil Considering Legalizing File Sharing

jmizrahi Re:Gee, what a concept (233 comments)

Its only in the last 200 years or so that we have had the idea that musicians should make money for a recording of their performance.

Yes, it sure is shocking that nobody thought to sell music recordings before 1904. It's almost like the technology to record and play back music didn't even exist.

Honestly, since there is no way they are ever going to stop filesharing, its not a bad idea to legalize it IMHO.

That's a ridiculous argument, seeing as though they are never going to completely stop ANY crime.

more than 4 years ago

400 Turns of Civilization V

jmizrahi Re:meh (320 comments)

This is obviously a personal preference thing, but I had the opposite experience. I played Civ II for many years, then had a long break, and years later tried Civ IV. I found it to be better than Civ II in a lot of ways. There were all sorts of annoying things in Civ II, like losing whole stacks of units when one gets attacked, or the ability to deposit entire armies outside your opponents city and then declare war, during which you could use his railroads. Civ IV has numerous small improvements, which for me added up to make a big difference. The basic gameplay, of course, is the same.

more than 4 years ago

Dog Eats Man's Toe and Saves His Life

jmizrahi What am I reading again? (207 comments)

Here I thought I was reading Slashdot, when all of a sudden I find out that I'm reading Fark.

more than 4 years ago

'Project Vigilant' Recruits At Defcon To Track You

jmizrahi In Soviet Russia (97 comments)

In Soviet Russia, YOU track Project Vigilant!

more than 4 years ago

Utah Attorney General Tweets Execution Order

jmizrahi Re:whoopie (556 comments)

Widely held to be a mistranslation by whom?

By linguists. The Hebrew word "hariga" means killing, whereas "retzach" means murder. "Retzach" is the word used in the ten commandments. You're welcome to dislike the Bible, but this particular complaint is unfounded.

more than 4 years ago

Quantum Entanglement and Photosynthesis

jmizrahi Re:No details but interesting (129 comments)

The difficulty in achieving entanglement comes from the system being perturbed at random from thermal vibrations.

That's not quite accurate. The difficulty in achieving entanglement comes from the inherent difficulty in isolating a quantum system from its environment. In the case of ion trap quantum computing, for example, this isolation is achieved through an ultra high vacuum. Ultra high vacuum has its own difficulties, but does not require cryogenics.

more than 4 years ago

Passive-Aggressive Wi-Fi Hotspots

jmizrahi Re:Exactly. Using open wifi is not stealing. (263 comments)

While in general I agree with you, I don't think it's quite that crystal clear. Let's suppose that the person with the internet subscription and his neighbor are both technologically clueless. Person A buys a device which, by default, allows anyone within range internet access (a wireless router). Person B buys a device which, by default, connects to the closest available network (a Windows computer). Both these devices are fully legal. Can you really say that Person B is stealing when he turns on his computer and discovers he has internet access? Maybe he doesn't even realize that you have to pay for such things. He could be a complete moron. The point is, all he did was turn on his computer and use its native features. The other reason the theft analogy breaks down is that in most cases, the person with the internet subscription does not suffer any losses from the freeloader, unless he's downloading tons of data. Except for that case, it's more akin to somebody using your driveway when you're out of town. Is that really stealing? Trespassing seems a more appropriate analogy.

more than 4 years ago

New Most Precise Clock Based On Aluminum Ion

jmizrahi Re:Ah, I unplugged the atomic clock... (193 comments)

You are absolutely correct, the time measured by such a clock is going to be dependent on general relativistic effects, most prominently by distance from the mean geoid. However, I fail to understand how you jump from that to concluding that it's useless. For example, you could use such a clock to make precision measurements of general relativity and test possible extensions. Moreover, a clock that sensitive should be able to "feel" changes in gravity caused by density fluctuations in the Earth. This could help find oil deposits, for example. The summary says as much. Generally speaking, you NEVER lose by increased precision. It is true that if your specific application is limited by low precision in some other component, you won't gain by increasing precision somewhere else. However, that's not the case here. I'll admit that I don't know enough about GPS and satellites to answer your specific question, but my impression is that they currently ARE limited by time standards.

more than 4 years ago

The best pizza I have ever had, I found ...

jmizrahi missing options (920 comments)

What about all of us that don't live on Earth? You insensitive clod!

about 5 years ago

On the Efficacy of Flu Vaccine

jmizrahi Re:Editorializing (430 comments)

Of *course* healthy people don't get a significant personal benefit from being vaccinated. Nobody ever said they did.

Are you crazy? Maybe you and a few other people get vaccinated for altruistic reasons, but the vast vast vast majority of people get vaccinated because they honestly believe that it will protect them from getting infected. Moreover, this is exactly what the doctors and researchers say it will do.

more than 5 years ago

Favorite type of electical wall socket?

jmizrahi home made (711 comments)

If you want a plug done right, design it yourself.

more than 5 years ago

Possible Extra-Galactic Planet Detected

jmizrahi Re:I get it but... (83 comments)

Science is done for science's sake. You would be hard pressed to find any discovery in the field of astronomy which has led to a practical discovery (I won't say there is none, because I'm sure someone can come up with an example.) Who cares about the atmosphere of Venus, or the structure of the Sun? The point is, we do science for its own sake, and when it leads to a discovery, that's nice, but hardly the goal.

more than 5 years ago

First Evidence of Supernovae Found In Ice Cores

jmizrahi Re:The Crab Nebula wasn't born in 1054 AD (145 comments)

The whole point of relativity is that there is no such thing as absolute time. Your statement assumes that there is meaning to simultaneity, which is incorrect.

more than 5 years ago



Gamma Ray Bubbles Erupting From Milky Way Center

jmizrahi jmizrahi writes  |  more than 4 years ago

jmizrahi (1409493) writes "A group of scientists working with data from NASA’s Fermi Gamma-Ray Space Telescope said Tuesday that they had discovered two bubbles of energy erupting from the center of the Milky Way galaxy. The bubbles, they said at a news conference and in a paper to be published Wednesday in The Astrophysical Journal, extend 25,000 light years up and down from each side of the galaxy and contain the energy equivalent to 100,000 supernova explosions.

“They’re big,” said Doug Finkbeiner of the Harvard-Smithsonian Center for Astrophysics, leader of the team that discovered them.

The source of the bubbles is a mystery. One possibility is that they are fueled by a wave of star births and deaths at the center of the galaxy. Another option is a gigantic belch from the black hole known to reside, like Jabba the Hutt, at the center of the Milky Way. What it is apparently not is dark matter, the mysterious something that astronomers say makes up a quarter of the universe and holds galaxies together."

Link to Original Source

Open source software for experimental physics

jmizrahi jmizrahi writes  |  more than 5 years ago

jmizrahi writes "I've recently started working in experimental physics. There are quite a few programs used in the lab, for assorted purposes--Labview, Igor, Inventor, Eagle, just to name a few. I've noticed that they're all proprietary. This seems to be standard practice, which surprised me. Does anybody know of any open source software intended for scientific research? Does anybody work in a lab that makes an effort to use open source software?"


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