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Comment: Re:Relativity (Score 1) 184 184

The star would see the rest of the galaxy as moving slower than it should, to just the same degree that the galaxy would see the star moving slow than it otherwise should.

Each party would see the other as moving with a slower measure of time than itself.

Comment: Re:It makes you uneasy? (Score 1) 1007 1007

I think people should keep in mind that science doesn't try to prove thing - it tries to disprove things.

A theory is proposed, and it is scientific if and only if it makes testable, unique, quantifiable predictions. Those predictions are then tested and if they are shown to be 'not wrong' then we keep the theory.

At some point with most theories a prediction is found that does not pass the test, and then the theory is modified or replaced.

None of this implies that the theory is proved correct, only proved not wrong.

Religion doesn't do any of this - it does not make any testable predictions. So, there are valid reason to prohibit religion from the arena of science, but not really valid reasons to prohibit religion from the arena of truth.

(oblig. disclaimer - I am an atheist)

Comment: Re:"The data come from" (Score 1) 93 93

It isn't, I'm afraid. A 'herd' or a 'flock' etc. are a grammatical class called collective nouns, which are indeed treated as singular. The word 'data' isn't (and here I am refer to the single word 'data', not some collection of many datums).

You can tell that they're not the same thing, try saying "A data indicates that..." - it doesn't feel at all right does it? The fact that it only work when prefixed by 'the' tells us that it is a true plural noun and not a singular.

However, language being something that is subject to perpetual change though, it is something that 50 years form now will probably be very different. Many (most?) people do feel more comfortable conjugating 'to be' in the singular for the word data ( "the data is" rather than "the data are" ) so it is clearly undergoing some change at the moment.

Comment: Re:Let me get this right (Score 1) 839 839

In the UK we have VAT (Value Added Tax), currently at 20%.

It is not applicable to food, clothing, utilities (electricity, gas, etc.) and a very few other things, but is applied every other consumer retail transaction (things you might buy with cash or credit card)

In principle this exempts the bare necessities, but includes everything else.

It does not apply to capital spending, investments, property, etc, but then these fall under other tax categories (stamp duties, capital gains, etc.)

Just trying to give some context to the discussion.

Comment: Re: What's wrong with Windows Server? (Score 1) 613 613

It is though in part an issue of reputation - nobody claims that IE6 + 7 and older were secure; even Microsoft accepts that they are insecure.

But OpenSSL gets/got an implicit guarantee of security from its OSS nature.

Everyone knew IE6 was awful at security. People just trusted that OpenSSL was OK because of the OSS argument.

"Many eyes make all bugs shallow" is true, but relies on there being many eyes looking our for all of the bugs (not just those in the most obvious of systems).

Comment: Re:Empirical Data Trumps Information Theory (Score 1) 211 211

Information does travel through space at a velocity faster than c - see the EPR paradox, which was subsequently questioned by Bell, and then experimentally tested by Alan Aspect (sorry I don't know the correct French spelling for his name).

Based on the evidence, quantum information does seem to travel faster than c.

Given the paradox of the wave-function collapse within the Copenhagen interpretation of QM (once a particle is measured it takes on a definite set of properties, which means that the wave-function must collapse everywhere simultaneously) it suggests that quantum information is transfered instantaneously.

Never say you know a man until you have divided an inheritance with him.

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