587 posts • joined 5 Aug 2008
US government debt
Charles 9, monthly summaries of “the actual books” can be found here (for a list of holdings by country) and here (for a categorized breakdown). Thus, at the end of June 2014, foreign holders had 6.01 T$ of the 12.57 T$ total US public debt (47.8% of the total), of which China’s share was 1.27 T$ (10.1% of the total). Thus, 52.2% of US public debt was held domestically at the end of June; a majority of it, but not most of it.
Surely a better headline?
Ken, I’m not certain that a sporran was the container in question; perhaps a different news article on the arrest might provide confirmation.
Re: introduction of the Weekend Edition
By utilizing my dulled sense of irony, of course.
Elmer Phud, are you unfamiliar with figurative usage of the word “corner”, such as Any part whatsoever, even the smallest, most distant or secluded, in reference to a planet?
grasp of the language
Version 1.0, of Americans grasp? damming? loose faith? (And many here might point to his defense and the offense.) Whether the past tense was appropriate or not would depend upon when that entry had been written; it would be entirely appropriate for a “how I got here” retrospective look.
Re: Which audio format sounds better?
Evil Auditor, I’ve found that (nominal) 192 kb/s Vorbis suffices for me from a Rockbox-equipped player — that is, for Vorbis, I can’t distinguish any significant difference between 192 kb/s and a higher bitrate. However, that wasn’t a blind test either, so make of it what you will; people listening to different musical samples, or people who have better hearing, could well draw different conclusions.
yet another coffeetard’s kitchenalia
I use a vacuum pot myself — an all-glass Cory “double bubble” made during WWII, without even the rubber gaskets of the pre-war or post-war models — with home-roasted beans, ground just before brewing. I consume a potful at a sitting in mug-sized portions, unlactified and unsucrified, but I don’t do so daily. For crema fans, one inconvenience of this method is that the crema needs to be spooned out of the upper pot before the coffee falls back into the lower pot; otherwise, it gets trapped in the grounds.
For sweetened coffee, I’ll brew Turkish style using a little Russian cezve.
the Galileo testing facility in Redu, Belgium
— almost an example of nominative determinism to an anglophone.
Re: "BEWARE ROMULAN'S BEARING GIFTS"
What a delightful surprise! But you really shouldn’t have — I’ve already got more apostrophes than I know what to do with.
Re: Umm. Wait.
Alistair, there’s a card game called Smash Up which lets players explore the feasibility of their own preferred combinations. I think that this was the video which my offspring used to bring it to my attention. (We haven’t played it, so I can’t provide my own review of it.)
Re: Why the Beatles anyway?
Arthur the cat, perhaps because John was “the angry Beatle”.
Re: when giving figures like this
a′) If a Commentard of Very Little Brain (like me), who Thinks of Things in US customary units and short-scale enumeration, can equate kilo- with thousand, mega- with million, giga- with short-scale billion, and tera- with long-scale billion — no arithmetic involved, only synonyms — then any other reader here could do so too.
b′) It’s not unknown in the States to call a unit of one million dollars a “megabuck”. It wouldn’t be too strenuous to extend that to “gigabucks”, “terabucks”, &c. Freakishness is, of course, in the eye of the beholder.
c′) The linked ESA blog entry noted that it was “1×10^13 kg” — i.e. 10 Pg = 10 Gt = 10 billion (short scale) tonnes.
when giving figures like this
Mephistro, if only there were a set of standard SI prefixes which one could use to unambiguously specify an object’s mass … Oh, hang on, we’re in luck — 10 billion (long scale) tonnes could be expressed as 10 Tt (or 10 Eg) without ambiguity.
OS X without the GUI
Khaptain, OS X isn’t installable without the GUI, but it can be run without it, as whatevs… noted.
hold Command-S at the startup bong
whatevs…, perhaps the crucial question might be whether GUI eschewers are way too old or much too Scottish for a startup bong. (My guess is no, but what do I know?)
Sehr geehrte Geier,
the newspaper’s name is Süddeutsche Zeitung.
Re: Latin plural for virus
Arnaut the less, who is trying to enforce partial Latin grammar on English? Pet Peeve’s claim was that There is no Latin plural for virus, and my reply addressed only that claim. I took Michael’s use of viri as being entirely tongue-in-cheek; didn’t you?
Latin plural for virus
Pet Peeve, the Latin (nominative) plural for virus (“venom”), as a noun of the second declension, is indeed viri (with both letters I being long). However, only the last letter I is long for viri (“men”).
Primus Secundus Tertius, of course the graduate engineers objected — they knew perfectly well that a word meaning “1000 gigadactyls” would have a “tera-” prefix.
Unsafe at Any Speed
JaitcH, it was the Chevrolet Corvair, not any Edsel model, which was “unsafe at any speed”. (Perhaps you were mixing up the Corvair with the Edsel Corsair?)
Marcus, … so what?
I ain’t Spartacus,
The last Labour government lost track of immigration from Eastern Europe between 2 censuses (censae?).no, census is a fourth declension noun, so its plural is not “censae”. The phrase “between two censuses” requires the accusative in Latin, so could be translated as inter duos census.
Re: What’s a billion?
Ivan 4, you should be more discerning about whom you listen to. Here’s the OED exegesis under billion:
The name appears not to have been adopted in Eng. [from 16th c. French] before the end of the 17th c.: see  quot. from Locke. Subsequently the application of the word was changed by French arithmeticians [to the short scale]. In the 19th century [by 1834], the U.S. adopted the French convention, but Britain retained the original and etymological use (to which France reverted in 1948).
Since 1951 the U.S. value, a thousand millions, has been increasingly used in Britain, especially in technical writing and, more recently, in journalism; but the older sense ‘a million millions’ is still common.
Re: A US Judge has smited an attempt
Steve, smote is a preterite (for the past tense), not a past participle (for the perfect aspect). Compare smite with write, its closest surviving kin in modern English from the Type I Germanic verbs; wrote is the preterite, written is the past participle. Your example is correct for a past tense statement, but has smitten (or has smited, if one must) would be needed for a statement in the present perfect.
A US Judge has smited an attempt
Shaun, we have so few strong verbs left in English; why not use its strong participle? A US judge has smitten an attempt better preserves that sense of just deserts.
Ole, the definition of broadband in this report is 4 Mb/s minimum, so the low end (like my 3½ Mb/s DSL) is completely ignored by it.
make an afghan, Stan
Daedalus, there have been national banks in the US since 1863, although even national banks can have just a single branch.
Pah — I refuse to join any terror organization that would have me as a member.
Re: Guaranteed to work
Anonymous Coward, it’s guaranteed to work in exactly the same way that countries with capital punishment substantially deter capital crimes being committed. “Being tough on crime” — what could possibly go wrong?
Re: to undetectably (sic) alter or sniff your traffic
Phil, a non- prefix would certainly be possible, thanks to the flexibility of English, but does not fully address the “correctness” issue which you’d stated came from root inconsistency, since biodegradable is itself a mix of Greek and Latin roots.
English has a long tradition of using an un- prefix with words which don’t have English roots, e.g. unsavoury from the 13th century. My original point was that there was no reason to mark undetectably with “sic”, since that word exists and was used comprehensibly.
Since the OED is descriptive rather than prescriptive, collecting linguistic turds is part of its remit.
Re: to undetectably (sic) alter or sniff your traffic
Phil, English has many, many words with mixed roots. How should a word like unbiodegradable be made “correct”, with its mixture of Old English, Greek, and Latin roots? “unlifeshendable”? “abiodiasporable”? “invitadegradable”?
If you would really like to get to the historical truth of the matter, read the wall of text which is the entry for un- in the OED.
to undetectably (sic) alter or sniff your traffic
Darren, what’s so sic about “undetectably”? Both “undetectable” and “indetectable” are in the OED; “undetectably” is also present as an adverbial form of its adjective, unlike “indetectably”.
Gene, as a citizen with the right to vote, you get a choice every two years with your federal Representative. Your ballot might offer you more than two pre-printed choices, and you could write in a candidate of your choice if the ones on offer are not to your liking.
Which Canadian accent do you practice?
Re: Unemployed and going on holiday overseas?
Bucky 2, another possibility is “between contracts”.
Offer them a stage and they get stage-fright?
… wrote an Anonymous Coward.
Re: Robertson Rules!
Barry, the reason why Phillips and slotted screws are so popular in the US is ultimately due to Robertson’s refusal to license his patented design to foreign manufacturers. (Phillips was willing to license his design to anyone, and eventually sold his patents to Ford. Slotted screws were unencumbered by IP issues.)
The US accepted metric measurement in 1866.
quantum physics has been as edin love with cats as Facebook
Richard, what does “edin” mean?
a game of skill to pick attendees
Given the recent popularity of words for hardware in Arapaho, I hope that a limerick in one of the Pama–Nyungan languages would earn extra points for antipodean wordsmiths. Good luck to all of the entrants!
Re: Upgrades to software, other platforms.
Herby, another example would be TenFourFox, a version of Firefox made for G4 and G5 Macs running Tiger and Leopard, still supported years after Mozilla dropped their support for them. It takes advantage of the PowerPC AltiVec instruction set, which I think no other PPC Mac OS X browser ever did.
ancient tech is rubbish, do yourself a favour and lose the many year old stuff
Longrod_von_Hugendong, do you practice what you preach by eschewing all ancient tech, like inclined planes, levers, pulleys, screws, wedges, and wheels & axles?
A Scottish government can no more grab the spectrum back than it can lay claim to the land on which my house sits.is there no power of compulsory purchase / eminent domain under Scots law?
The competition mostly focused on restaurants and hospitals
The focus of the competition should not be presumed to be based upon cause and effect.
Captain DaFt, the reconstructed classical Latin pronunciation would be [tɐ.bɛrˈnɐm.kwɛ] (or approximately “tuh-bear-NUM-kweh” in English phonetics, where “tuh” sounds like tub without the letter B, “bear” is rhotic (with an audible R — as pronounced in North America), and “kweh” sounds like quell without the letters L). I think that it would have the same pronunciation in ecclesiastical Latin, in case you feel a hymn coming on.
This triumph demands some blatant thievery from a Horatian ode:
Nunc est bibendum, nunc pede libero
pulsanda tellus; nunc Saliaribus
ornare pulvinar deorum
tempus erat dapibus, sodales.
Re: Makes IE more attractive every day
AMBxx, have you looked into the Firefox ESR stream? It resynchronizes with the main stream every seventh version (10, 17, 24, 31, …), and only gets security updates in between.
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