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Comment: Re:Oh good lord. (Score 2) 225

by morcego (#47643203) Attached to: Do Dark Matter and Dark Energy Cast Doubt On the Big Bang?

Sigh, when you make theories to fit your observations, of course they match.

And how, pray tell me, should we be making our theories, if not to fit our observations (facts and evidence)?
The problem is when people try to distort (or ignore) facts to fit their theories. Or when people aren't willing to revise or discard their theories when presented with new facts.

Doesn't make them any more correct

Of course it does. More than that, that is the exact definition of a theory being correct: matching the facts.
It is the the theory doesn't match the observations (facts and evidence) that it is incorrect, and needs to be revised or even discarded altogether. There is even the process where a theory gets revised so many times and it loses all credibility, even if not disproven in its entirety ("God of the gaps theory"), where you simply reverse the burden of proof and discard any validity based on preexistence and, since there is nothing to corroborate the theory, it goes the way of Russell's Teapot.

And no, if you run that backwards it doesn't work out that its all in the same place

:citation needed:

Comment: Re: slowly (Score 1) 141

by morcego (#47632025) Attached to: Paint Dust Covers the Upper Layer of the World's Oceans

I do take it with skepticism. I can also do basic math.
Unless something changes, things tend to continue moving on the same direction. If the amount of paint residue on the oceans is increasing steadily, it will continue to increase (again, if nothing changes).
So yeah, there is cause for worry, maybe even alarm. Panic? No. Panic will be when we start seeing large scale effects of this.

Comment: Re:Over paid (Score 1) 442

by morcego (#47608993) Attached to: Big Bang Actors To Earn $1M Per Episode

I both agree and disagree with you.
On other hand, they are making the production company and NBC a ton of money.
On the other hand, the writers are getting much less than the actors, and I think that at least 60% of the money being made by the show is because of the actors.
The rationale, however, is that the writers are (in theory) easier to replace than the actor, because the public don't see them.

Comment: Re:A brazilian point of view (Score 5, Informative) 432

by morcego (#47087941) Attached to: Has the Ethanol Threat Manifested In the US?

is the US climate and land conducive to growing sugar cane?

Mostly it is not, unless you somehow genetically engineer sugar cane for different climates (some groups are working on it). The reason our climate and land are so conductive to growing sugar cane gives Brazil an edge, and is perhaps the reason it is more successful than a few other countries that also have a huge alternative fuel program.

Corn based ethanol has less energy potential and is much more expensive. However, it is the only viable option available for the US right now. There are several studies involving kelp, sugar beat and castor beans that might benefit the US. Castor beans has a lot of potential. But it is much easier to pass laws and incentives for corn related programs in the US, for obvious reasons.

Comment: A brazilian point of view (Score 5, Interesting) 432

by morcego (#47087823) Attached to: Has the Ethanol Threat Manifested In the US?

Brazil is considered one of the world leader in ethanol, the country with the most successful alternative fuel program, one of the cheaper (if not cheapest) ethanol technologies and, by using sugar cane, one of the most energy efficient. All cars here can easily handle up to E40, and most cars can handle any mix of gas and ethanol. Oh, and the flex fuel technology for any kind of mix? Mostly developed here also.

That all being said, I don't use pure ethanol. We are not able to find pure gas here, because of local laws (the government mandates the ethanol level), but I avoid it as much as I can. Even with everything we have in our favor here, it is still most expensive, and the overall car performance is not as good as with gas. For ethanol to be a cheaper option for the consumer, its price on the pump has to be no higher than 75% of gas.

There is, however, another side of the coin. Gas is a limited resource. We need to develop alternative fuel technologies, and right now ethanol is the best, if not only, viable option. The technology is getting cheaper everyday, and improving a lot. As someone who saw the so called birth of the car ethanol, in the 1980's, I can see how much that changed.

Last, but not least, gas with some ethanol in it does pollute less. I remember seeing some time ago some studies regarding E20(ish), and the number was impressive.

All told, it is an important technology, it is not a scam or a threat, but it is still improving. Luckly, we still have the luxury to choose, so we can say no. That won't last, tho.

Comment: Re:Lets just stop (Score 1) 667

by morcego (#46551271) Attached to: Creationists Demand Equal Airtime With 'Cosmos'

Which is no reason to debate them. Specially since if anyone buy into their arguments, they are already beyond any ability to think critically or understanding logic, so trying to argue the merits of their argument is worse than useless.

Whenever you engage them as equals in a debate (like Bill Nye did), you are just giving them credibility they wouldn't otherwise have.

Comment: Lets just stop (Score 1) 667

by morcego (#46550875) Attached to: Creationists Demand Equal Airtime With 'Cosmos'

Lets just stop pretending these guys are worth listening to, and stop giving them an illusion of credibility, shall we?

Let them fade into obscurity and talk to their own flock. We don't give flatearthers this kind of attention. They are just making noise to promote themself. Like their site, which is featured prominently in this article (and which I'm sure a lot of people clicked on).

THIS is the kind of attention they want.

Comment: Standard in São Paulo - Brazil, for years now (Score 3, Insightful) 405

by morcego (#46509939) Attached to: Paris Bans Half of All Cars On the Road

São Paulo has had car circulation restrictions based on plate number for years now (more than a decade, too lazy to check exactly when). Mon-Fri, each day a couple different numbers aren't allowed on the streets.

The streets are still clogged, still polluted as hell. Government says it improved things. I can only imagine what it would be like without this restriction, then.

It is clear that the individual who persecutes a man, his brother, because he is not of the same opinion, is a monster. - Voltaire

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