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Comment: Re:Old things (Score 1) 389

Taking literally the biblical texts is nowadays no longer compatible with the aim of staying intellectually honest. Tons of scientifically based evidences conflict with your unjustified claims (biblical texts are not science based).

Remind some scientifically based evidences:

1) The sky show us plenty of evolving objects at distances that light needs thousands to billions of years to reach us.
2) Any serious geologist observing km thick layers and layers of rocks arrive to the conclusion that most of the stones and fossils must be millions to billions years old and made by processes like sedimentation or volcanic eruptions.
3) Archeologists can date the spread of human ancestors over the Earth back to millions of years.
4) Historians can document the emergence of civilizations from the Neolithic period well before any epochs you mention, such as 8'000-10'000 BCE in Egypt and Mesopotamia.
5) There is no geological evidence for a world wide flooding as described in the Bible. The required amount of water is just not available on Earth.

Believing in biblical chronologies together with not ignoring scientific evidences must lead to the conclusion that the universe was created by a god devious enough to introduce at the same time uncountable false evidences (like all the photons coming from deep space) for the existence of a consistent but fake universe, millions of times older than the biblical one. .

Comment: kW or kWh? (Score 2) 245

by Framboise (#48751469) Attached to: Bill Gates Endorses Water From Human Waste

From BG blog one can conclude that the author belongs to the category of people unclear about the difference between a quantity of energy and a rate of energy production. To his excuse the common poor choice of kWh instead of the SI J (Joule J, 1 kWh = 3.6 MJ) as energy unit is just making energy discussions more confusing.


Comment: Mean and fluctuations (Score 2, Informative) 222

by Framboise (#48604295) Attached to: Linking Drought and Climate Change: Difficult To Do

The climate has always been a highly fluctuating system where extreme temperatures oscillate over seasons and location by, say typically +/-20K (Kelvin), around a mean value around 287K, slowly growing. In some countries the fluctuations are larger, in some others smaller. All the discussion about the human-induced warming is about the effect of changing this mean value by a couple of K (now +0.5K, in the next century by +2-4K). So even in the most pessimistic scenarios the warming remains in amplitude a small fraction of the typical annual fluctuations. No wonder that it will be difficult to prove that any extreme fluctuations will result from the warming.

Comment: Real advantage (Score 2) 108

by Framboise (#48495979) Attached to: Who Needs NASA? Exoplanet Detected Using a DSLR

One cannot escape the fact that bigger apperture telescopes can record fainter
stars, and/or perfom the photometry of bright stars with more precision than a simple camera.

To detect exoplanets one needs both large samples of stars recorded as continuously as
possible over several years and high precision photometry. Besides being cheap, the advantage
of a small camera is than the field is larger. But with a larger telescope in space like Kepler one
can target regions of the sky with density of stars optimal for the CCD/camera combination, and
observe continuously for months with the same instruments, which is crucial for differential
photometry. Thousands of amateurs worldwide detecting as many new exoplantes as Kepler
would face the problem of coordinating the analysis of huge amounts of heterogeneous and
incomplete data (due to day/night and weather interruptions in differently dark and transparent skies).

The real question is wether crowdsourcing planet detection is cheaper for global economy at equal scientific return than with state sponsored research. Perhaps the most important benefit of such an
activity is educational and promotional for research in general.


Comment: Re:Lua[0]? (Score 1) 729

The discussion is not on measuring continuous quantities
  but counting discrete objects. Physicists and mathematicians have indexed, say, vectors, starting with 1 for ages, except in recent times where sometimes they use 0 for very special reason (like chapter 0 in a book).

Comment: Assignement in Python (Score 2) 729

Assigning a number or a list in Python and many other languages (Julia) is a different operation. Such as

>>> a = 2
>>> b = a
>>> a = 1
>>> b

>>> a = [2]
>>> b = a
>>> a[0] = 1
>>> b

Octave (Matlab) is more consistent on this point, every assignement is a memory copy.

Felson's Law: To steal ideas from one person is plagiarism; to steal from many is research.