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Comment: Re:Man oh man (Score 1) 120

This has nothing todo with politics. It has everything to do with logic:

If left was right, then right would be wrong, which is obviously not a good thing to base life on. Clearly it has to be that right is right, and left is wrong.

Now in USA politics, it is usually the case (as with AGW, labelling GM "food", etc) that left is mostly right and too far right is clearly wrong. But that is because USA politics is mostly on the other side of Alice's looking glass.

Comment: Re:OK (Score 1) 268

by Will.Woodhull (#47993313) Attached to: IBM Solar Concentrator Can Produce12kW/day, Clean Water, and AC

In common usage ".22" nearly always means ".22LR". This is a rimfire cartridge. As is the .22 short and the .22 magnum.

The AR-15 fires a round whose bullet is basically the same diameter as the .22 rimfire cartridges. But the standard AR-15 uses a centerfire cartridge that has a shoulder. The cartridge is usually called a ".223" in the USA. There is a similar NATO cartridge, the "5.56", which is loaded more powerfully than the .223. As mentioned in PP, the .223 (and 5.56) bullet is longer, therefore heavier. The larger brass and use of a separate primer allows more powerful loads than can be done in a rimfire design.

To add to the confusion, there are conversion kits that allow an AR-15 to fire .22LR ammo, which allows for cheaper practice. One can generally buy a hundred rounds of .22LR for the cost of two or three rounds of .223 ammo.

Comment: Re:In lost the will to live ... (Score 1) 794

by Will.Woodhull (#47969191) Attached to: How Our Botched Understanding of "Science" Ruins Everything

I like what you are saying.

An elder Navaho woman once said to me that "We are the way that ideas move through time." I don't know whether this came from her experience or was rooted in her culture: I don't talk that language so Navaho culture is mostly opaque to me, and what I can see is probably distorted in more ways than I realize. But my basic point here is that the idea that human cultures evolve appears to be an old one that is present in several and probably all cultures.

To quote (almost) Robert Frost: We all dance in a circle and suppose; / The Secret sits in the middle and knows. It could well be that theism is to human culture as the center is to the circumference of the circle: it may be that human culture cannot exist without a God principle, just as a circle cannot exist without a center, BUT in both cases the God and the center --while absolutely necessary-- may be empty, without any independent existence.

That would not make the God principle any less real, but would mean that its reality is a necessary part of the way we experience the Universe. God might be an integral part of the Observer and have nothing at all to do with whatever is Objective Reality.

Thus spake me, who is a Goddess loving panentheist.

Comment: Re:In lost the will to live ... (Score 1, Insightful) 794

by Will.Woodhull (#47966021) Attached to: How Our Botched Understanding of "Science" Ruins Everything

Atheism has been [around] far longer than any sort of theism has, the idea of God is one that had to be invented by people.

Alternatively, it could be that some form of theism is inherent in the way humans have evolved.

The only true atheist I have met was a total sociopath of a man, completely oriented to narcisism.

I have also met a lot of people who describe themselves as atheists, but in each of these cases it seems that their definition of atheism involves negating the idea of Deity (where "Deity" is an inclusive term for belief in God, Gaia, Goddess, multiple gods, pantheistic spirits, etc). So Deity was, through its negation, very much a part of their world view. In each of these cases there seemed to be some sense of rightness that pretty much functioned as Deity no matter what the person chose to call it. That is, their "atheism" seemed to be of the "I am not a believer in God (but I have pantheistic belief, or believe I am myself sacred, etc).

That one true atheist, the sociopath, never stated a belief or disbelief. That was unimportant to him. The only thing that was important to him was enjoying himself as much as he possibly could without paying for his pleasure if he could possibly arrange for someone else to foot the bill. He was a thief of convenience, a great imposter, and a con artist. But he was rarely a burglar and never an armed robber-- I think those would have required too much work.

Comment: Re:Does HFCS count? (Score 2) 294

by Will.Woodhull (#47937079) Attached to: Study Finds Link Between Artificial Sweeteners and Glucose Intolerance

Parent post is a good example of quibbling over words.

The stuff is called "high fructose" because sucrose, or normal table sugar, is one fructose molecule bonded to one glucose molecule but HFCS contains 5% of fructose that is not bound to a glucose molecule. This is significant. Hydrogen peroxide used in wound treatments is only 3% H2O2 and 97% H2O, but has very different physiologic effects than plain H2O.

While HFCS could be used in lower quantities for the same level of sweetness as sucrose, it is often used to make the product sweeter than could be done with sucrose alone. As is the case in many soft drinks sold in the USA. But the more significant concern is that HFCS laden foods and drinks cause one to crave more since the HFCS interferes with the "I've had enough" mechanisms that normally govern food/drink intake. And another concern that bears repeating is that HFCS puts an increased burden on the liver and the blood glucose homeostatic mechanisms that are adapted to handling normal table sugars.

Again, my personal concern is that HFCS on the label is a marker I can use to avoid foods and drinks that predispose me to exercise induced asthma problems. And I don't care whether it is the HFCS or some other crap that is often used when HFCS is adulterating the food.

Comment: Re:Does HFCS count? (Score 1, Informative) 294

by Will.Woodhull (#47936709) Attached to: Study Finds Link Between Artificial Sweeteners and Glucose Intolerance

HFCS is more of a "super sugar" than a sugar substitute. Fructose is a natural sugar, and HFCS in its pure laboratory form is only a highly concentrated fructose derived from corn. (high fructose corn syrup).

For me at least, it is a health concern since if I eat or drink some things that contain HFCS I am more prone to asthma attacks. This may not be due to the HFCS itself; it may be some impurity in food quality HFCS, or it may be some other additive that is commonly used with HFCS. I don't care: I know if I avoid HFCS I don't have asthma; otherwise I often have exercise induced asthma which really limits my bicycling.

HFCS is used in foods and drinks for a couple of reasons: it has a sweeter taste than sucrose; it has a documented affect on depressing satiation so people consume more of the product than if sucrose was used; and I think because it is a liquid that is often shipped in railway tanker cars its delivery costs to the food factory are cheaper.

Fructose is a form of sugar that has to be converted in the liver to a different form before it can be used. HFCS puts a strain on the liver, and the blood glucose regulatory mechanisms, that does not occur with any natural foods. Anyone with a history of hepatitis, hypoglycemia, or diabetes maybe would want to avoid HFCS.

Comment: Re:Bikes lanes are nice (Score 1) 213

by Will.Woodhull (#47865377) Attached to: Surprising Result of NYC Bike Lanes: Faster Traffic for Cars

An excellent time for a century ride (100 miles) is under 6 hours. Or 17+ mph. Most commuter bicyclists do about 15 mph.

However most automotive traffic on the downtown streets of every city I have seen in the last 20 odd years never exceed 20 mph, and spend a lot of time waiting at stop lights. They probably average between 5 and 10 mph. Bicycles usually leave them in the dust, waiting for a light to turn, etc.

Comment: Re:Bikes lanes are nice (Score 2) 213

by Will.Woodhull (#47865261) Attached to: Surprising Result of NYC Bike Lanes: Faster Traffic for Cars

But getting rid of those bikers, which honestly do not belong on the road, could only of helped.

That's just really bad logic.

A bicycle doesn't take up anywhere near as much road space as a car. On crowded downtown streets, where cars cannot travel faster than bikes, every person on a bike is one less vehicle in your gridlock. And one less competitor for that parking space you are looking for. Bikes make a helluvalot of sense in highly trafficked areas, and bike lanes which encourage more people to use bicycles is one of the best things that can be done to improve the commutes of automobile drivers.

Comment: Re:Neanderthals = Humans (Score 2) 91

by Will.Woodhull (#47807683) Attached to: Researchers Say Neanderthals Created Cave Art

Most of today's works of art would not survive 10,000 years neglect, the exception being stonework. And we have done very little of that in the last hundred years. If we went away tomorrow, visitors to Earth 10,000 years from now would have trouble determining whether some of our contemporary art was done before or after the Lascaux cave paintings.

So cave art is special in that way.

It is also special because this old stuff was done in the flickering and moving light of torches. Photographs do not capture the art, especially in this type of petroglyph where the changing shadows as a torch was brought toward the work or moved from side to side would have been the point of the grooves.

It would be cool to model these in Blender or Maya, and make movies using a point source of light as the light changed intensity and was moved about. Or just take movies of the original cave art as someone carried a torch toward, away, and across it. The art here is definitely in the shadows, not the physical grooves.

Cave art is special in this way, too: we are not seeing it as the artist intended it to be seen. It is probably a lot more sophisticated than what the camera shows.

Comment: The FedEx bomber (Score 1) 52

by Will.Woodhull (#47784689) Attached to: Google Testing Drone Delivery System: 'Project Wing'

Google is always doing weird experimental shit. So this is not news.

What would be news is what FedEx or UPS are working on wrt drones. Imagine a FedEx jet flying high over a city, its bombay doors opening to spill out a fleet drone quadcopters that deliver the goods to designated rooftop landing pads. Imagine a world where technology is paying as much attention to the last 2,000 (vertical) feet of delivery as we do to the last mile of communications.

Comment: Re:Good way to make yourself ill (Score 2) 133

by Will.Woodhull (#47784601) Attached to: Coffee Naps Better For Alertness Than Coffee Or Naps Alone

Yeah, because what was good enough for the Roman slaves and medieval serfs is obviously the best life style for everybody.

Look to our roots in hunting/gathering, and you find there was no set pattern for sleep. When picking berries, you slept in the shade when it was too hot or at camp when it was too dark; otherwise you picked while watching the sunrise and picked while watching the sun set. When the smelt were running, you scooped up fish in the moonlight, cleaned fish as the sun rose, gathered wood and greenery for the smoking fires in the morning, and took long siestas during the heat of the day.

Our ancestors may have averaged 8 or 10 hours of sleep in a day, but for the most part it was in bits and pieces. Mostly no more than 4-6 hours at any one time, with the rest in siestas or naps as tasks allowed.

The only possible interpretation of any research whatever in the `social sciences' is: some do, some don't. -- Ernest Rutherford

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