Search found 2549 matches

by orthogon
Mon Aug 07, 2017 3:33 pm UTC
Forum: Individual XKCD Comic Threads
Topic: 1873: "Email Reply"
Replies: 46
Views: 3950

Re: 1873: "Email Reply"

It recently told me that one of my contacts had been in the news. It was a completely different person of the same (fairly common) name, of course. I don't think we need to fear the Singularity from that quarter.
by orthogon
Mon Aug 07, 2017 10:47 am UTC
Forum: News & Articles
Topic: The Darker Side of the News
Replies: 3113
Views: 355341

Re: The Darker Side of the News

Request thread title change to "The Darker Side Of Grammar" plz. Kthnxbye! Just "Dark Grammar" would sound even cooler. A bit like "dark matter" but with overtones of the "Dark Web", too. I thought Sableeagle nailed it, really. We're not talking about banning...
by orthogon
Mon Aug 07, 2017 8:49 am UTC
Forum: News & Articles
Topic: The Darker Side of the News
Replies: 3113
Views: 355341

Re: The Darker Side of the News

Then your wife, sableeagle, and you wouldn't be stressed out. You would be mistaking me for someone else. I'm not stressed out. It's like being hit by an asteroid, I can't avoid it so I don't worry about it. But the hive mind does. That's delicious. I think sableeagle was a parenthetical vocative, ...
by orthogon
Sat Aug 05, 2017 11:09 am UTC
Forum: Individual XKCD Comic Threads
Topic: 1867: "Physics Confession"
Replies: 182
Views: 11363

Re: 1867: "Physics Confession"

I didn't realize that Thoreau had a hammer He (allegedly) used a hammer, so at least for the duration of plastering he had a hammer. I did not plaster till it was freezing weather. I brought over some whiter and cleaner sand for this purpose from the opposite shore of the pond in a boat, a sort of ...
by orthogon
Thu Aug 03, 2017 12:57 pm UTC
Forum: Individual XKCD Comic Threads
Topic: 1871: "Bun Alert"
Replies: 86
Views: 6311

Re: 1871: "Bun Alert"

The next roundabout along the dual carriageway was briefly home to a deer or two, but I don't think it is any more. how big are your roundabouts that they have enough vegetation to house a deer or two? good grief. I've lived in some areas where deer were quite densely populated and practically live...
by orthogon
Thu Aug 03, 2017 11:17 am UTC
Forum: Individual XKCD Comic Threads
Topic: 1871: "Bun Alert"
Replies: 86
Views: 6311

Re: 1871: "Bun Alert"

I figured most of the humor was a continuation of the use of the word "bun" to mean rabbit, which was the punchline of the previous comic. Also, that previous comic mentioned texting "BUN ALERT" to people in its title text, so this is really just a sequel to that, continuing the...
by orthogon
Thu Aug 03, 2017 9:31 am UTC
Forum: Individual XKCD Comic Threads
Topic: 1870: "Emoji Movie Reviews"
Replies: 53
Views: 4169

Re: 1870: "Emoji Movie Reviews"

somitomi wrote:
orthogon wrote:Actually it seems that's its tail, not its head!

So what happened to the head? Chinese Godfather?

:D
Actually, I think the head is what chenille thought was "some sort of pack" on its back.
by orthogon
Wed Aug 02, 2017 7:42 pm UTC
Forum: Individual XKCD Comic Threads
Topic: 1871: "Bun Alert"
Replies: 86
Views: 6311

Re: 1871: "Bun Alert"

OK, I've given it some time, and I definitely don't get it. So there's an app that pushes notifications of rabbits - I presume that birdwatchers have exactly such a thing, and - the world being what it is - it's not a massive stretch to suppose that there might be rabbit-watchers too with their own ...
by orthogon
Wed Aug 02, 2017 6:19 pm UTC
Forum: Individual XKCD Comic Threads
Topic: 1871: "Bun Alert"
Replies: 86
Views: 6311

Re: 1871: "Bun Alert"

BrandonH66 wrote:Who saw the title and thought it would have man buns somewhere in it?

Are they the same as moobs?
by orthogon
Wed Aug 02, 2017 4:44 pm UTC
Forum: Individual XKCD Comic Threads
Topic: 1871: "Bun Alert"
Replies: 86
Views: 6311

Re: 1871: "Bun Alert"

A couple of days ago, I was walking along a canal towpath [...] Rabbits seem to like towpaths. Do they like watery habitats in general? I've seen a few by the side of the Thames not too far out of London. Cycling is a good way to see them - you approach quickly and quietly so they don't hear you co...
by orthogon
Wed Aug 02, 2017 3:38 pm UTC
Forum: Individual XKCD Comic Threads
Topic: 1870: "Emoji Movie Reviews"
Replies: 53
Views: 4169

Re: 1870: "Emoji Movie Reviews"

Horse = 馬 Very stylized, but you can see where it came from. The horse is the bottom part, with four legs on the left and the head hanging down on the right. It's carrying some sort of pack that's probably a bit too large for it. Actually it seems that's its tail, not its head! http://www.omniglot....
by orthogon
Wed Aug 02, 2017 1:53 pm UTC
Forum: Individual XKCD Comic Threads
Topic: 1870: "Emoji Movie Reviews"
Replies: 53
Views: 4169

Re: 1870: "Emoji Movie Reviews"

A school I passed the other day had a banner proudly proclaiming "( Offted inspectors) passed this school as Good, all across the board!", or words to that effect. The scale is "Outstanding" (desired), "Very Good" (above average), "Good" ( :| ), "Satisfa...
by orthogon
Tue Aug 01, 2017 2:27 pm UTC
Forum: Individual XKCD Comic Threads
Topic: 1867: "Physics Confession"
Replies: 182
Views: 11363

Re: 1867: "Physics Confession"

Yes, ethics is "just" applied applied applied physics, but its abbreviations form a useful system on their own. It is this that I point to in justifying treating ethical "oughts" as different from practical "oughts". Yes, ultimately it's all physics, [...] You and Pfho...
by orthogon
Tue Aug 01, 2017 2:15 pm UTC
Forum: Individual XKCD Comic Threads
Topic: 1870: "Emoji Movie Reviews"
Replies: 53
Views: 4169

Re: 1870: "Emoji Movie Reviews"

It strikes me as odd that there are so many negative reviews. It implies quite a few people have paid money to see it. I reckon I could review it accurately based on the trailer alone. I mean, the movie isn't going to be better than the trailer, which puts an upper bound of zero stars on my rating....
by orthogon
Tue Aug 01, 2017 12:10 pm UTC
Forum: News & Articles
Topic: Trump presidency
Replies: 3363
Views: 203935

Re: Trump presidency

First thought here really has nothing to do with the content but how its delivered. It's concerning they went into such detail as to how he delivered this ("Flying home from Germany on July 8 aboard Air Force One, Trump personally dictated a statement"). There can't have been THAT many pe...
by orthogon
Tue Aug 01, 2017 8:39 am UTC
Forum: Individual XKCD Comic Threads
Topic: 1870: "Emoji Movie Reviews"
Replies: 53
Views: 4169

Re: 1870: "Emoji Movie Reviews"

The big difference here seems to be that, outside of people who love LEGO's, most people probably have some experience with LEGO's and think they're a rather neat idea, Outside of the "legos (plural) / lego (uncountable)" argument (or more strict "Lego™ (brand)" usage) , can I j...
by orthogon
Mon Jul 31, 2017 4:51 pm UTC
Forum: Individual XKCD Comic Threads
Topic: 1867: "Physics Confession"
Replies: 182
Views: 11363

Re: 1867: "Physics Confession"

They can be good for many things, without having been made for anything. I don't see how they could be good for anything when they could not be used for anything, as there was no one to use them. I would still consider the hammer at the back of the shelf in the hardware store good for hitting nails...
by orthogon
Sun Jul 30, 2017 2:23 am UTC
Forum: News & Articles
Topic: Trump presidency
Replies: 3363
Views: 203935

Re: Trump presidency

I'm strongly in favour of a revising chamber made up of experts that isn't directly elected. The House of Lords isn't quite it, but it's not bad. But that's not the topic. Anyway, I came here to say that I can't keep up with events in Washington, but every time I see the former press guy's name, I r...
by orthogon
Sat Jul 29, 2017 6:30 pm UTC
Forum: Individual XKCD Comic Threads
Topic: 1867: "Physics Confession"
Replies: 182
Views: 11363

Re: 1867: "Physics Confession"

It's implicit in the structure of the universe that a thing like a hammer is possible. We then discover those possibilities and give them purpose. You make me wonder whether this "purpose" vs "good-for" distinction is related to the difference between invention and discovery. In...
by orthogon
Thu Jul 27, 2017 8:25 am UTC
Forum: Individual XKCD Comic Threads
Topic: 1864: "City Nicknames"
Replies: 42
Views: 3657

Re: 1864: "City Nicknames"

Oh, and: Who else here actually knows more of "We Built This City" than the chorus? There's a bit in there with a fake radio announcer who says he's coming from "the city by the bay, the city that rocks, the city that never sleeps!" just to further muddy the question of what cit...
by orthogon
Wed Jul 26, 2017 5:48 pm UTC
Forum: Individual XKCD Comic Threads
Topic: 1868: "Eclipse Flights"
Replies: 31
Views: 2617

Re: 1868: "Eclipse Flights"

Hmm ... Air Force 1 ... I wonder...
by orthogon
Tue Jul 25, 2017 6:32 pm UTC
Forum: Individual XKCD Comic Threads
Topic: 1867: "Physics Confession"
Replies: 182
Views: 11363

Re: 1867: "Physics Confession"

Defining "purpose" so narrowly that no part of any organism has any purpose seems to remove most of the usefulness of having the word in the first place. Indeed. Been following this sub-thread and had to jump in to say you seem to be asking: What is the purpose of the word "purpose&q...
by orthogon
Tue Jul 25, 2017 4:54 pm UTC
Forum: Individual XKCD Comic Threads
Topic: 1867: "Physics Confession"
Replies: 182
Views: 11363

Re: 1867: "Physics Confession"

Why is the rubbing necessary? What does that do? Provide opportunities for electrons to jump? Both of the objects are insulators, so charge cannot simply flow from hair to balloon etc. through a small contact area. In order to transfer a lot of charge, a lot of molecules of object A need to be brou...
by orthogon
Tue Jul 25, 2017 6:17 am UTC
Forum: Individual XKCD Comic Threads
Topic: 1867: "Physics Confession"
Replies: 182
Views: 11363

Re: 1867: "Physics Confession"

Why is the rubbing necessary? What does that do?
by orthogon
Mon Jul 24, 2017 5:00 pm UTC
Forum: Individual XKCD Comic Threads
Topic: 1867: "Physics Confession"
Replies: 182
Views: 11363

Re: 1867: "Physics Confession"

Upon the lap of a person who is really uncomfortable around cats is probably the most likely place for a cat to be unilaterally happy to sit. This does not preclude the 'helpful' use of claws to both withstand and cause the movement of said lap. I read once, many years ago, that humans narrow their...
by orthogon
Mon Jul 24, 2017 4:45 pm UTC
Forum: Individual XKCD Comic Threads
Topic: 1867: "Physics Confession"
Replies: 182
Views: 11363

Re: 1867: "Physics Confession"

You may as well ask a cat to be happy inside a vacuum cleaner. Asking a cat to be happy seems like a futile exercise anyway. They're far too aloof to deign to be actually happy about something. If pushed, they might admit to having, on occasion, been not entirely displeased with the state of things...
by orthogon
Mon Jul 24, 2017 4:19 pm UTC
Forum: Individual XKCD Comic Threads
Topic: 1867: "Physics Confession"
Replies: 182
Views: 11363

Re: 1867: "Physics Confession"

Solra Bizna wrote:"Why are some things one color, and other things another color?"

Let's not go there...
by orthogon
Mon Jul 24, 2017 2:25 pm UTC
Forum: Individual XKCD Comic Threads
Topic: 1866: "Russell's Teapot"
Replies: 78
Views: 6179

Re: 1866: "Russell's Teapot"

All you 'detectors' out there seem to be missing the part of the quote that says... ...nobody would be able to disprove my assertion provided I were careful to add that the teapot is too small to be revealed even by our most powerful telescopes . So if you were to detect it, it would not be Russell...
by orthogon
Mon Jul 24, 2017 1:09 pm UTC
Forum: Individual XKCD Comic Threads
Topic: 1867: "Physics Confession"
Replies: 182
Views: 11363

Re: 1867: "Physics Confession"

We do have a good answer for the hair/balloon/lightning thing ... it's called the tribolectric effect. What's wrong with that? Too empirical? Beware ontic dumping; If you answer "Why does static charge build up when rubbing a ballon on hair?" with "because of the tribolectric effect&...
by orthogon
Mon Jul 24, 2017 6:34 am UTC
Forum: Individual XKCD Comic Threads
Topic: 1867: "Physics Confession"
Replies: 182
Views: 11363

Re: 1867: "Physics Confession"

rhomboidal wrote:If we don't fully understand how lightning works, I'm cool with Wrath of Thor to fill the gaps.

The god of the spark-gaps?
by orthogon
Sat Jul 22, 2017 3:35 pm UTC
Forum: Individual XKCD Comic Threads
Topic: 1866: "Russell's Teapot"
Replies: 78
Views: 6179

Re: 1866: "Russell's Teapot"

gmalivuk wrote:Yeah, if the thing you're looking for (teapot or keys) could move under its own power ...

They can, damn it! I swear they can!
by orthogon
Sat Jul 22, 2017 2:51 pm UTC
Forum: Individual XKCD Comic Threads
Topic: 1866: "Russell's Teapot"
Replies: 78
Views: 6179

Re: 1866: "Russell's Teapot"

I made the teapot move at a zero rate as compared to the observer. I'm lazy, so shoot me. I'm going to have to shoot you. By doing this, you threw away a whole dimension. To find my keys, I don't need to rig up an array of cameras all over my flat and have them all take a simultaneous photo. I can ...
by orthogon
Fri Jul 21, 2017 1:26 pm UTC
Forum: Individual XKCD Comic Threads
Topic: 1866: "Russell's Teapot"
Replies: 78
Views: 6179

Re: 1866: "Russell's Teapot"

For the space geeks: might we at some point be able to disprove the existence of Russell's teapot? Might we eventually have enough instruments in orbit to scour the alleged region of space exhaustively and with sufficient resolution? What if we knew the orbital radius more accurately than stated in ...
by orthogon
Fri Jul 21, 2017 1:05 pm UTC
Forum: News & Articles
Topic: Trump presidency
Replies: 3363
Views: 203935

Re: Trump presidency

because optics are the means (lenses and suchlike) or phenomena (refraction etc) by which things are seen, not the image itself of those things Yeah, that's the idea. The perception of actions can be iffy even if the actions themselves are legitimate. By using "optics", they're refraining...
by orthogon
Fri Jul 21, 2017 12:42 pm UTC
Forum: News & Articles
Topic: Trump presidency
Replies: 3363
Views: 203935

Re: Trump presidency

As with "telling foreign powers state secrets", being able to doesn't mean that it'll look good... (Like "double(/ing) down", it seems that "the optics" is the current phrase I should use, come to prominence during the Trump/Clinton campaign and being used by everyone ...
by orthogon
Fri Jul 21, 2017 10:32 am UTC
Forum: Individual XKCD Comic Threads
Topic: 1866: "Russell's Teapot"
Replies: 78
Views: 6179

Re: 1866: "Russell's Teapot"

Cueball is trying to settle the teapot argument by actually launching a teapot into space... but how would doing this settle the argument? The comic is funny, but logically it's not changing anything. I wonder what "Cueball" thought this mission would proof... Russell's Teapot is a hypoth...
by orthogon
Wed Jul 19, 2017 7:26 am UTC
Forum: Individual XKCD Comic Threads
Topic: 1865: "Wifi vs Cellular"
Replies: 35
Views: 4513

Re: 1865: "Wifi vs Cellular"

I lolled when this finally loaded, having been on the point of switching off WiFi. Presumably the problem is contention. Cellular operators have their own segregated frequency bands; cell sites are in planned positions and use planned transmit powers; contention for access amongst a given operator's...
by orthogon
Tue Jul 18, 2017 7:24 am UTC
Forum: Individual XKCD Comic Threads
Topic: 1864: "City Nicknames"
Replies: 42
Views: 3657

Re: 1864: "City Nicknames"

widdershins. One of my favourite words ... I'm also very fond of "oblong" , ... Half of the time I figure oblong is a type of tea. The other half I try and remember what it is a collective noun for. I was startled awake by an oblong of ... Tea merchants? Haberdashers? Graphic Novel Inkers...
by orthogon
Mon Jul 17, 2017 10:27 pm UTC
Forum: Individual XKCD Comic Threads
Topic: 1864: "City Nicknames"
Replies: 42
Views: 3657

Re: 1864: "City Nicknames"

widdershins. One of my favourite words, which I'd heinously forgotten. Thank you for reminding me! I only wish enough people knew it to allow to use it in normal conversation. I'm also very fond of "oblong", which I use to mean "rectangular, but with a high aspect ratio" (simila...
by orthogon
Mon Jul 17, 2017 12:40 pm UTC
Forum: Individual XKCD Comic Threads
Topic: 1864: "City Nicknames"
Replies: 42
Views: 3657

Re: 1864: "City Nicknames"

Reminds me of a joke, whose author and origin I forget:

"Ah, Cambridge. The city of dreaming spires."
"Actually, that's Oxford. Cambridge is the city of perspiring dreams."

(Full disclosure: I'm a Cantabrigian).

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