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Comment Re:Light years (Score 1) 201

This raises a question: Why do astronomers use irregular units like "light years" and "parsecs" instead of the SI units and prefixes used in every other scientific discipline? Is it just a matter of custom, like the use of English(-ish) units in the U.S.? The SI units would not be any more awkward to work with, and would avoid the need for complex conversions:

distance from Earth to the Sun (1.00 AU) = 150 Gm (gigameters, G=10^9)
distance to Proxima Centauri (1.3 parsecs) = 40. Pm (petameters, P=10^15)
estimated size of the universe (46 billon light years) = 44 Ym (yottameters, Y=10^24)

Comment Re:For the percentage impaired... (Score 1) 79

Sorry, but "330% faster" is indeed 3.3 times faster, or 4.3 times as fast. "4.3 [times] faster" is actually 5.3 times as fast. You're off by one, and GP is correct.

Let's try it this way: "100% faster" and "1 times faster." Do you see how your statement is provably false, now?

Sorry, but the AC is right. "100% faster" = "1 times faster" = "2 times as fast".

"X times as fast" = X * original speed
"X times faster" = original speed + (X * original speed)

Comment Re:Depends (Score 1) 79

... "as slow" would seem to need to be a comparison to a value measured from a reference point ...

"slowness" = 1 / "fastness" (a.k.a. speed)

Say that an object is moving at 5 meters per second. Its "slowness" is, equivalently, one second per five meters, or 0.2 seconds per meter. "50% faster" would be 50% * 5 m/s = 2.5 m/s faster than 5 m/s, or 7.5 m/s in total. "50% slower" would be 50% * 0.2 s/m = 0.1 s/m slower than 0.2 s/m, or 0.3 s/m in total, or 3.333... m/s.

(Intuitively, "50% slower" means that it takes 50% more time to cover the same distance.)

"Twice as fast" = 2 * 5 m/s = 10 m/s.
"Half as slow" = 1/2 * 0.2 s/m = 0.1 s/m, or 10 m/s.

"Half as fast" = 1/2 * 5 m/s = 2.5 m/s.
"Twice as slow" = 2 * 0.2 s/m = 0.4 s/m, or 2.5 m/s.

Comment Re:Mount Tambora (1815 volcano eruption) (Score 1) 507

They've realized that with oil being cheap, the non-oil energy sources margins are too thin, or at a loss. With an USA oil tax at the pipe line, or from imports at oil carrier ship (unless the importing country has already taxed it), would then increase oil prices, and the market would then put more money non-oil energy sources.

Higher fossil-fuel prices will also assist in reducing the numbers of old, sick, and poor (especially the poor) through attrition as the prices for heating and A/C go higher and higher and more and more deaths from heat/cold exposure and starvation (many will have to choose between food and heat/AC). Luckily it won't much affect those that matter...the rich and the politically-connected who can easily afford outrageously high energy costs.

Increasing energy costs have a very real and serious affect on the lives of people, and price increases are extremely regressive as they hurt the poorest first and worst.

Can't we come up with a solution that doesn't involve forcing poor, sick, and elderly people to die of exposure?


Comment Re:Who would have guessed? (Score 1, Troll) 238

I wish someone could dig up some proof.

I suspect there was some proof on an insecure mail server stashed somewhere away from FOIA requests, but since but the DOJ and the major news outlets have pledged fealty to the queen, we'll never know.

Did you know that over half the people who met with Clinton as Secretary of State (excluding government employees) had donated to her foundation? It could not be more blatant. Clearly we no longer have the level of civilization where that matters.

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