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by Eebster the Great
Mon Apr 30, 2018 1:55 am UTC
Forum: Fictional Science
Topic: Self-Contained Pure Fiction about the Fine Structure Constant
Replies: 11
Views: 1791

Re: Self-Contained Pure Fiction about the Fine Structure Constant

SecondTalon wrote:It’s like a four day cube.

When asked, the Wisest Human did clarify that the Time Cube has four sides because "you don't call the top and bottom sides, do you?"
by Eebster the Great
Sun Apr 29, 2018 9:17 pm UTC
Forum: Fictional Science
Topic: Self-Contained Pure Fiction about the Fine Structure Constant
Replies: 11
Views: 1791

Re: Self-Contained Pure Fiction about the Fine Structure Constant

I'm still curious how "✫ measures the number of unique ways to look at (rotate twice) a point-like thing in a point-like number of dimensions, inverted." What is a pointlike number?
by Eebster the Great
Fri Apr 27, 2018 10:38 pm UTC
Forum: Fictional Science
Topic: Self-Contained Pure Fiction about the Fine Structure Constant
Replies: 11
Views: 1791

Re: Self-Contained Pure Fiction about the Fine Structure Constant

The experimentally determined value of the fine structure constant is α = 0.007,297,352,5664(17), where the digits in parentheses are the standard error of the last two reported digits. The value of the expression you created is π -π *√(½(π-3)) ≈ 0.007,297,313,0038. In other words, it is off by abou...
by Eebster the Great
Wed Apr 25, 2018 8:08 pm UTC
Forum: Science
Topic: Science-based what-if questions
Replies: 608
Views: 75920

Re: Science-based what-if questions

If such a black hole were to instantly evaporate into radiation, that would be equivalent to 100 earth-sized balls of TNT going off. "Fortunately", such a black hole would actually take 2.7e24 years to evaporate. True if gradual evaporation via hawking radiation is the only relevant effec...
by Eebster the Great
Tue Apr 24, 2018 5:58 am UTC
Forum: Science
Topic: Science-based what-if questions
Replies: 608
Views: 75920

Re: Science-based what-if questions

E = mc 2 conversion? So for 10 kJ I'd need a 10000 / c 2 kg black hole? A 111.265 pg black hole. Umm ... around a billion atoms? There are also clearly theoretical challenges with the notion of such a small black hole. Black holes are sometimes seen as having a minimum mass of about the Planck mass...
by Eebster the Great
Tue Apr 24, 2018 3:33 am UTC
Forum: Science
Topic: Effects of CO2 fraction on human health below clinical levels
Replies: 2
Views: 897

Re: Effects of CO2 fraction on human health below clinical levels

Thanks, that's actually very helpful. I am having a discussion with a professor who is concerned about the distribution of CO2 emission rather than just the total emissions, in part because of effects on health. The fact that the smallest reported threshold for toxicity is five times what is commonl...
by Eebster the Great
Tue Apr 24, 2018 3:28 am UTC
Forum: Mathematics
Topic: Curve Filling a Rectangle
Replies: 5
Views: 1321

Re: Curve Filling a Rectangle

Couldn't you just substitute, say, x/2 for x? I'm missing the reason why you have to actually do anything at all.
by Eebster the Great
Tue Apr 24, 2018 3:10 am UTC
Forum: Language/Linguistics
Topic: Regional Dialect and Idiolect Oddities (pronunciation)
Replies: 941
Views: 225342

Re: Regional Dialect and Idiolect Oddities (pronunciation)

I have found some serious problems in the Collins dictionary's listings before. Check out their entry for "dice." What's wrong with it, exactly? Only two things really jumped out at me: 1. It says "dice" can be singular . . . It doesn't just say it "can" be singular, i...
by Eebster the Great
Mon Apr 23, 2018 1:05 am UTC
Forum: Language/Linguistics
Topic: Regional Dialect and Idiolect Oddities (pronunciation)
Replies: 941
Views: 225342

Re: Regional Dialect and Idiolect Oddities (pronunciation)

To be clear, if we tacked a standard English plural onto "tableau," while it would be spelled "tableaus," it would be pronounced the same as the listings form "tableaux" above. I would guess that's where it came from. It's not exactly a word that pops up very often. How...
by Eebster the Great
Sun Apr 22, 2018 9:20 pm UTC
Forum: Science
Topic: Effects of CO2 fraction on human health below clinical levels
Replies: 2
Views: 897

Effects of CO2 fraction on human health below clinical levels

Is there any evidence for subtle but measurable effects of elevated CO2 levels below those usually considered clinically significant? For instance, is it plausible that someone living most of his life in an atmosphere with 1000 ppm CO2 would suffer in any meaningful way in comparison to someone livi...
by Eebster the Great
Sun Apr 22, 2018 8:25 pm UTC
Forum: Language/Linguistics
Topic: Regional Dialect and Idiolect Oddities (pronunciation)
Replies: 941
Views: 225342

Re: Regional Dialect and Idiolect Oddities (pronunciation)

They had "luxury" as /kʃ/ and "luxurious" as /gʒ/, which seems reasonable. I would say /ˈlʌɡʒəɹi/, but Wikipedia also lists /ˈlʌkʃəɹi/, and in my experience that's pretty common. But yeah, "crucifixion" would probably be a less ambiguous example. And "tableaux"...
by Eebster the Great
Sun Apr 22, 2018 6:53 pm UTC
Forum: Language/Linguistics
Topic: Regional Dialect and Idiolect Oddities (pronunciation)
Replies: 941
Views: 225342

Re: Regional Dialect and Idiolect Oddities (pronunciation)

So is "xylem," which was in the list.
by Eebster the Great
Sat Apr 21, 2018 3:24 am UTC
Forum: Language/Linguistics
Topic: Regional Dialect and Idiolect Oddities (pronunciation)
Replies: 941
Views: 225342

Re: Regional Dialect and Idiolect Oddities (pronunciation)

I try to say /sbɑ:ɹoʊ/, but it usually comes out like one of those.
by Eebster the Great
Fri Apr 20, 2018 12:38 am UTC
Forum: Science
Topic: Particles as sets?
Replies: 7
Views: 1475

Re: Particles as sets?

Nicias wrote:The natural numbers (inc zero) can be constructed as nested sets with 0 = {}, 1 = {0} = {{}}, 2 = {1}={{{}}}, etc. Or other similar constructions.

You want to construct the natural numbers in such a way that |n| = n, so a more typical construction would be 0={}, 1={0}, 2={0,1}, 3={0,1,2}, etc.
by Eebster the Great
Wed Apr 18, 2018 7:23 am UTC
Forum: Language/Linguistics
Topic: Regional Dialect and Idiolect Oddities (pronunciation)
Replies: 941
Views: 225342

Re: Regional Dialect and Idiolect Oddities (pronunciation)

How about "tomato sauce"? That's a synonym for ketchup in some places, right?
by Eebster the Great
Tue Apr 17, 2018 1:38 pm UTC
Forum: Language/Linguistics
Topic: Regional Dialect and Idiolect Oddities (pronunciation)
Replies: 941
Views: 225342

Re: Regional Dialect and Idiolect Oddities (pronunciation)

We've talked a lot about "caught," but what about "catch"? Do you pronounce it /kæt͡ʃ/ (rhyming with "match") or /kɛt͡ʃ/ (rhyming with "fetch")? For instance, the poem Jabberwocky rhymes "claws that catch" with "Bandersnatch," which wouldn'...
by Eebster the Great
Thu Apr 12, 2018 10:28 pm UTC
Forum: Language/Linguistics
Topic: Annoying words, and Words You Hate
Replies: 1951
Views: 405808

Re: Annoying words, and Words You Hate

The financial sense of the word makes total sense to me. Leveraging an asset is just using it to gain leverage.
by Eebster the Great
Thu Apr 12, 2018 5:47 am UTC
Forum: Fictional Science
Topic: Most creative way to manipulate boundary
Replies: 11
Views: 1903

Re: Most creative way to manipulate boundary

I would manipulate the boundary between the fictional world being described in your post and the post itself, thus editing it from within in some way that makes you look dumb.
by Eebster the Great
Thu Apr 05, 2018 1:19 am UTC
Forum: Science
Topic: Are Vitamin Supplements Toxic to Non-Human Animals?
Replies: 14
Views: 1780

Re: Are Vitamin Supplements Toxic to Non-Human Animals?

Iron does seem like a better idea than fat-soluble vitamins. LD50s are in the same ballpark, but doses found in supplements tend to be higher for iron than for vitamin D (for example). For instance, my prescription-strength vitamin D 3 supplements (taken once a week) contain only 1.25 mg of vitamin ...
by Eebster the Great
Mon Apr 02, 2018 10:38 pm UTC
Forum: Science
Topic: Are Vitamin Supplements Toxic to Non-Human Animals?
Replies: 14
Views: 1780

Re: Are Vitamin Supplements Toxic to Non-Human Animals?

Theobromine is also toxic to humans and definitely would not be used as a binder for supplements. Any fat soluble vitamin could be toxic to pets. The main reason is not that they are a different species but that they are usually very small and tend to eat indiscriminately. If the pet is large and pi...
by Eebster the Great
Mon Apr 02, 2018 9:44 am UTC
Forum: Individual XKCD Comic Threads
Topic: 1975: "Right Click"
Replies: 42
Views: 11315

Re: 1975: "Right Click"

For some reason, the credits can be found via Delayed Blast Fireball. What does this comment mean? Is Delayed Blast Fireball something I can type in somewhere? Is it a piece of software (like a browser addon or some shell script or whatever)? All I get on Google is that it's a level 7 evocation. Al...
by Eebster the Great
Mon Apr 02, 2018 4:34 am UTC
Forum: Individual XKCD Comic Threads
Topic: 1975: "Right Click"
Replies: 42
Views: 11315

Re: 1975: "Right Click"

There is also another way to get the "Save Image" option, but I don't remember exactly what it was. The result is the same as beating ADVENT.EXE. Note that if you are eaten by a grue, you will no longer be able to play ADVENT.EXE until you refresh the page. There is also other stuff you ca...
by Eebster the Great
Sat Mar 31, 2018 4:17 am UTC
Forum: Language/Linguistics
Topic: Miscellaneous language questions
Replies: 559
Views: 74552

Re: Miscellaneous language questions

↶ in situations where you don't use "fucking"? I'm sorry I don't understand the question Situations where saying "fucking" would be inappropriate, such as at a church service, around young children etc. Is... there something inappropriate about fucking in a church? It makes the ...
by Eebster the Great
Fri Mar 30, 2018 6:27 pm UTC
Forum: Mathematics
Topic: My take on Godel's incompleteness theorems
Replies: 42
Views: 5325

Re: My take on Godel's incompleteness theorems

In mathematical Platonism, abstract objects exist in a sort of ideal realm separate from our own. Platonism certainly strayed into religion frequently in its ancient forms (e.g. Gnosticism), but neoplatonism is a bit more rigorous I suppose. In either case, it isn't testable or particularly convinci...
by Eebster the Great
Fri Mar 30, 2018 2:28 am UTC
Forum: Mathematics
Topic: My take on Godel's incompleteness theorems
Replies: 42
Views: 5325

Re: My take on Godel's incompleteness theorems

Mathematical Platonists are definitely a minority, but yes, they do claim mathematical objects are objectively real things in some sense. I don't really get it, personally.
by Eebster the Great
Thu Mar 29, 2018 4:32 pm UTC
Forum: Fictional Science
Topic: Accidentally purifying the oceans
Replies: 10
Views: 1411

Re: Accidentally purifying the oceans

Brackish ecosystems can be fragile. The devastation of killing virtually all marine organisms is not something we have ever seen before. Some life presumably would survive, but I doubt vertebrates would be on the list.
by Eebster the Great
Thu Mar 29, 2018 4:30 pm UTC
Forum: Fictional Science
Topic: Magitech society needs a heat engine
Replies: 41
Views: 4479

Re: Magitech society needs a heat engine

Got it, hence the industrial revolution and stuff. Are there complex spells that can do highly specific things?
by Eebster the Great
Thu Mar 29, 2018 7:03 am UTC
Forum: Fictional Science
Topic: Accidentally purifying the oceans
Replies: 10
Views: 1411

Re: Accidentally purifying the oceans

Also, production of sea salt and vinegar potato chips would plummet.
by Eebster the Great
Tue Mar 27, 2018 10:50 am UTC
Forum: Fictional Science
Topic: Magitech society needs a heat engine
Replies: 41
Views: 4479

Re: Magitech society needs a heat engine

If magic costs magical energy to use, of which there is a limited quantity that is expensive to produce, and it can only be put to practical use by specific implementation requiring both expertise and technology, it sounds a lot like electricity.
by Eebster the Great
Mon Mar 26, 2018 2:34 am UTC
Forum: Fictional Science
Topic: Magitech society needs a heat engine
Replies: 41
Views: 4479

Re: Magitech society needs a heat engine

But the technology seems adequate, it should develop quickly with so much energy, and as jseah said, "In general, a magic engineer has to worry more about how to power the spells rather than how much action the spells can do. If the power can be gotten, using the power isn't too difficult."...
by Eebster the Great
Sun Mar 25, 2018 9:05 am UTC
Forum: Fictional Science
Topic: Magitech society needs a heat engine
Replies: 41
Views: 4479

Re: Magitech society needs a heat engine

Is there any real necessity for a cold spell, given you can generate heat? Like, you could always just build a refrigerator. Your whole society could be powered by magic, and all manual labor positions would be this kind of thing.
by Eebster the Great
Sat Mar 24, 2018 10:11 am UTC
Forum: Science
Topic: Quantum Question
Replies: 110
Views: 10995

Re: Quantum Question

We can imagine devising a precise set of coordinates and momenta of gas molecules in a box such that to any casual observer, it appears random, but in matter of fact, they are all coordinated just so they will all happen to end up near the same corner of the box, with the rest of it a perfect vacuum...
by Eebster the Great
Thu Mar 22, 2018 8:10 am UTC
Forum: Science
Topic: Quantum Question
Replies: 110
Views: 10995

Re: Quantum Question

By definition, high entropy states are far more numerous than low entropy states. It is exceedingly unlikely for entropy to drop at a large scale. As I said, the reason we have this asymmetry is that the Big Bang was relatively low entropy (in a sense; things get kind of complicated when you bring i...
by Eebster the Great
Thu Mar 22, 2018 12:30 am UTC
Forum: Science
Topic: Quantum Question
Replies: 110
Views: 10995

Re: Quantum Question

(Other than the conceit that we can talk about particles in the first place) In order to talk about possible histories of particles in isolation, I think you need local realism, which isn't going to happen. MWI is the closest, but it definitely doesn't have true particles the way you mean, and exce...
by Eebster the Great
Wed Mar 21, 2018 10:13 pm UTC
Forum: Science
Topic: Quantum Question
Replies: 110
Views: 10995

Re: Quantum Question

ucim wrote:Ok, could you unexplode an atomic bomb?

Jose

Time symmetry is pretty much conserved outside of kaon physics. I don't think CP-violation plays much of a role in nuclear bombs.
by Eebster the Great
Mon Mar 19, 2018 4:03 pm UTC
Forum: Science
Topic: Quantum Question
Replies: 110
Views: 10995

Re: Quantum Question

No. Imagine a universe in a box which (ignoring gravity) is at maximum entropy. It's basically a big, homogeneous gas at thermal equilibrium. If you pick out a particle at random, it will have random properties. That doesn't give you any information at all.
by Eebster the Great
Sat Mar 17, 2018 6:01 pm UTC
Forum: Mathematics
Topic: My take on Godel's incompleteness theorems
Replies: 42
Views: 5325

Re: My take on Godel's incompleteness theorems

The way I see man's exertion to know the existence of things in the totality of reality at all, it is that we must keep in mind that there is a distinction between the world we have in our mind and the objective world of empirical reality outside and independent of our mind. But the way you see it ...
by Eebster the Great
Fri Mar 16, 2018 5:25 am UTC
Forum: Mathematics
Topic: My take on Godel's incompleteness theorems
Replies: 42
Views: 5325

Re: My take on Godel's incompleteness theorems

I tend to agree. Moreover, some basic concepts, like the natural numbers, are so broadly applicable anyway, that it's hard to imagine how they could fall to be useful.
by Eebster the Great
Fri Mar 16, 2018 4:01 am UTC
Forum: Mathematics
Topic: My take on Godel's incompleteness theorems
Replies: 42
Views: 5325

Re: My take on Godel's incompleteness theorems

Analogies aside, much of mathematics is literally recreational and often involves looking at actual games. It's still perfectly valid mathematics, but it is difficult to apply in practice. For instance, solving the game of checkers is interesting, but it's not really useful. You are specifically foc...
by Eebster the Great
Sun Mar 11, 2018 9:37 am UTC
Forum: Mathematics
Topic: My take on Godel's incompleteness theorems
Replies: 42
Views: 5325

Re: My take on Godel's incompleteness theorems

In logic or math, roughly speaking, "true" means "follows from axioms by valid reasoning," and "false" means "has a negation that follows from axioms by valid reasoning." [1] This isn't something we started doing recently; the words (or their translations) hav...

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