General science thread

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May 17th, 2017 at 3:52:36 PM permalink
kenarman
Member since: Oct 24, 2012
Threads: 3
Posts: 872
National Geographic Channel has never been owned out right by the Association. In the US the channel is a partnership between Fox and NG Assoc. with Fox being the majority owner. That is why it's programming has never been up to the standard that one might expect.
"There is no sin but ignorance" Christopher Marlow
May 31st, 2017 at 6:23:34 AM permalink
Nareed
Member since: Oct 24, 2012
Threads: 323
Posts: 11128
Where has all the lithium gone? http://www.cosmicyarns.com/2017/05/the-mystery-of-cosmic-lithium.html

On a related note, as mentioned in the post, the mystery of the missing neutrinos has been solved.
If Trump where half as smart as he thinks he is, he'd be twice as smart as he really is.
June 2nd, 2017 at 12:44:36 PM permalink
Nareed
Member since: Oct 24, 2012
Threads: 323
Posts: 11128
A company based in Philadelphia (figures) wants to run a clinical trial of resurrection.

I kid you not. The idea is to take someone who's brain dead, inject them in the spinal cord with stem cells plus a blend of proteins, and apply electrical nerve stimulation and, finally, laser therapy applied directly to the brain. The goal is to re-start brain activity.

I'm not one to dismiss outrageous ideas out of hand. And compared to the notion of head transplants, this is positively pedestrian.

But come on. They haven't even done this in animals yet. Parts of it, yes, but not the whole thing. I think it would be irresponsible to move to human trials without a string of very successful animal studies first.

There are other ethical and legal complications (the trial was to be done in India, but that didn't happen; now it's moved to some South American country not named in the article I read). To begin with, clinical trials must perforce involve only volunteers. How do you get someone who is clinically dead to volunteer? Oh, right. You get permission from the next of kin. And that's the other complication: offering hope for what is, after all, an untested mélange of long shots.

I wonder what outcomes can be expected, too. No doubt the company, named Bioquark (not Bioquack), expects full recovery. But consider such states of consciousness closer to death that we know about, many involving types of brain injury or damage: coma, and persistent vegetative state. Imagine seeing your loved one revived, only to have them linger unconscious and hooked to life support for years or decades.

Without even successful attempts on animals, this strikes me as completely irresponsible.
If Trump where half as smart as he thinks he is, he'd be twice as smart as he really is.
June 8th, 2017 at 8:11:16 PM permalink
Fleastiff
Member since: Oct 27, 2012
Threads: 49
Posts: 4703
How couldl this get by an institutional review board?

If you do jumpstart the dead... how long does one have to keep them alive and how can you measure quality of life in a brain with more but still insufficient cellular activity.

Is the study to take place in Translyvania?
June 8th, 2017 at 8:31:11 PM permalink
Evenbob
Member since: Oct 24, 2012
Threads: 108
Posts: 11386
Quote: Nareed
A company based in Philadelphia (figures) wants to run a clinical trial of resurrection.

I kid you not. The idea is to take someone who's brain dead, .


They did this in Young Frankenstein, it worked
great.
If you take a risk, you may lose. If you never take a risk, you will always lose.
June 12th, 2017 at 8:26:11 AM permalink
Nareed
Member since: Oct 24, 2012
Threads: 323
Posts: 11128
Interesting question, unsatisfying answer: http://www.realclearscience.com/blog/2017/06/12/why_is_the_speed_of_light_so_slow.html

Why is the speed of light so slow?

First I'm going to paraphrase one fo Asimov's characters: IT's a datum. The result of a measurement process.

Next, I did like the reverse Mr. Tompkins imaginary scenario (Mr. Tompkins gets to visit places where the speed of light is 15 mph. )

The question is misstated. "Slow" implies judgment, after all. The real question should be "why is the speed of light about 300,000 km per second?" But that gets metaphysical too quickly. Why is a proton the mass it is?

Still, I guess once we figure out the fundamental questions of dark matter, dark energy, quantum gravity (if any), multiple universes, etc., perhaps we'll get into the real fundamentals that explain why the many constant values of the universe are what they are :)
If Trump where half as smart as he thinks he is, he'd be twice as smart as he really is.
June 22nd, 2017 at 1:28:02 PM permalink
rxwine
Member since: Oct 24, 2012
Threads: 119
Posts: 5137
Alert: going to mix in what some people like to call technology news. (but feel it's unnecessary to start a tech thread also)

To sum up.

"Go" is a game said to be invented in China 2500 years ago. It is simple to understand but is virtually unsolvable now or in the known future. More moves possible than chess.

It's been studied longer than chess. If you're especially good at it, China sends people to "Go School" where you train so many hours a day.

Even so, the Deep Mind Alpha Go program was able to show humans that new lines of strategy that weren't considered viable were possible to use and win -- even though human prodigies have been studying the game for centuries.

IMO, that's kind of cool.
No one has ever proven I am not God.
June 22nd, 2017 at 1:51:22 PM permalink
Evenbob
Member since: Oct 24, 2012
Threads: 108
Posts: 11386
Quote: rxwine


"Go" is a game said to be invented in China 2500 years ago.


It has more moves than the known atoms
in the universe. No thanks.
If you take a risk, you may lose. If you never take a risk, you will always lose.
June 22nd, 2017 at 3:00:29 PM permalink
Fleastiff
Member since: Oct 27, 2012
Threads: 49
Posts: 4703
Quote: rxwine
IMO, that's kind of cool.
Only if you can count down the deck.
June 29th, 2017 at 9:37:19 AM permalink
odiousgambit
Member since: Oct 28, 2012
Threads: 73
Posts: 1560
The power of water can be awesome indeed.

We had some big rains recently, but nothing that will be remembered as notable after a year or two goes by I think. Yet in one of our favorite swimming spots this was set down on a ledge we like to sit on. Awesome but one of the things to help understand it is to pick up a large rock underwater yourself, one that you would strain to move on land, and you find it seems to weigh so much less.

PS: nothing there to give scale I realize; if I stood there it would be about shoulder high.

The light at the end of the tunnel is often a freight train coming the other way! per Fleastiff
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