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Comment: Re:mdash (Score 2) 126

by blutfink (#40351163) Attached to: Did Neandertals Paint Early Cave Art?

Schadenfreude (from 'Schade', sadness, and 'Freude', joy).

Not accurate. "Schaden" just means "harm" or "damage". And in this context, a better translation for "Freude" would be "pleasure".

Neandertal is and has always been the correct spelling. [...] The spelling with the 'h' is anglicized, technically Neandertal is correct, inasmuch as it is the original name, from the original language.

Not correct. It used to be 'Neanderthal' in German before the spelling reform of 1901. This spelling has been kept in some places, e.g. for the local train station. The English speaking world has just kept the old spelling, which is consistent with the scientific name.

Comment: Re:And it took this long to "make the connection"? (Score 1) 248

by blutfink (#39638121) Attached to: Dental X-Rays Linked To Common Brain Tumor

But it would take tens of thousands of RF photons simultaneously striking the same exact electron at the same exact time to give it enough energy to break free from the atomic bond it has formed.

That won't do either. Photons are not billiard balls. In the quantum world, only frequency (wavelength) attributes to the effect, not intensity. See http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Photoelectric_effect.

Comment: Re:Richard Feynman (Score 3, Informative) 107

by blutfink (#39494757) Attached to: Particle-Wave Duality Demonstrated With Largest Molecules Yet

I do not believe in particle-wave duality. I believe in Feynman's path integral formulation.

This is not related in the way you might think it is. The former is a philosophical problem in the interpretation of quantum mechanics, the latter is one of several ways of resolving this problem in practice.

Comment: Re:This only addresses one aspect of altruism... (Score 1) 360

by blutfink (#36031042) Attached to: Robots 'Evolve' Altruism

Compassion and caring is not bounded by family boundaries, so it seems to me that the evolutionary advantage behind altruism is still questionable.

There are multiple ways in which genes may bring about altruism. Some are more indirect:

1. Kin selection: Help those who share your genes. (A promotes A'.)
2. Reciprocity: Help others, they help you. (A promotes B who promotes A.)
3. Reputation: Let others recognize who is generally helpful. (A promotes B to persuade C to promote A.)
4. "Handicap Principle": Advertise yourself by showing to be able to afford to take risks and provide charity. (A promotes B to persuade C to mate with A.)

Comment: Re:Give the (Score 1) 532

by blutfink (#20360747) Attached to: Can Open Source Give Comfort To the Enemy?
Sorry for nitpicking: The term "antisemitism" does not (anymore) derive its meaning from "anti-" and "semite". Since the 19th century (or so) it is established as the term for _racially_ motivated adverseness against jews (in particular) -- as opposed to anti-judaism, which is the term for religiously motivated adverseness against jews. It's an unfortunate diction, but that's the way it is.

Every nonzero finite dimensional inner product space has an orthonormal basis. It makes sense, when you don't think about it.

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