34 posts • joined 2 Mar 2010
Dr Who has always been prone to quick & flippant solutions but the current format of 45 minute episodes with a story line normally fitted into one episode, two for the seaon finale exacerbates the problem, there isn't time for a serious solution. This storyline needed three episodes, the first, as was, to create a mystery & give a hint of its solution as a cliff -hanger. The second to develop that hint of a threat into a realistic major threat with a cliff-hanger of doom. Followed by a finale in which the major threat is defeated in a logically consistant manner. Trying to make the second episode bigger on the inside makes the threat nonsensical, , turning UNIT into a bigger joke than usual, giving the cyber men unrealistic & unheard of attributes to develop it, and the solution is throwaway, apart from the credualty overstretching only two cybermen to keep emotions being The Doctors mates, the Mistress-Master simply, having spent all of human history collecting the dead, decides she didn't really mean it after all & hands the threat of doom over to the Doctor to with as he wishes.
read the source material
its actually worth reading the parliamentary reports it wasn't a case of a load of mps simply deciding one day the IPCC must be right with two of their number with a little scientific knowledge dissenting as the article implies.
The conclusion of the survey mentioned in the article was also rather different from that given in the article, it concluded that climate change views of the general public, but not scientists specialising in those areas, were more likely to be dominated by self interest than scientific knowledge, essentially most people are inclined to believe what they want to believe then promote the evidence to support that view
He's a TV celebrity making a comment on a personal blog, if you want technical advice then go to a technically qualified person. If we start crucifying people for inaccuracies on Blogs or social media then we're going to rapidly have a serious worldwide shortage of crosses & nails
The best simple explanation of how global warming affects severe weather is to look at it as thows of a dice, middle numbers represent middling weather, high & low numbers are extremes of weather. changes to weather patterns from warming tend to weight the dice in favour of high & low numbers but you can't tell when you throw a high or low weather number whether it's down to the dice being weighted or whether its one of the those that would have been thrown with an unweighted dice anyhow
Re: Logical fallacy
Co2 levels rose noticibly at that time, Geologist William F. Ruddiman suggested some years ago that this was due to large scale land clearance by early farmers though that view is not generally accepted, A combination of earths orbital changes & some other effects generally being considered responsible. A team led by T. Stockmann (co-chairman of IPCC Working Group I) found evidence that carbon from cleared vegetation being released into the atmosphere was not responsible though Ruddiman disputes their findings
if every film & TV programme & book had to be completely original then they'd be very few books or films & TV would only be on for an hour or two a night & half of that would be repeats
Police & hospital dramas fill the airwaves but there's only a limited number of plots, how many modern medical drama plots were done in Dr Finlay's Casebook first & how many modern police story plots were done in Z cars first & somewhere else before that.
There are really only three Doctor Who plots, the mad scientist/meglomanic, the alien invasion & the oppressed people led to liberty, (& combinations of these), its just a case of how you dress the plot up, it's not made any great secret of borrowing classic stories for the dressing.
(- Someone mentioned Quests but quests just use a sequence of one or more of the plot lines above loosely held together by the idea of a search for whatever)
Re: Commercial fusion may not be as far away as you think
Not only that but there's a serious shortage of helium, the main source is as a by product of (some) natural gas, we don't produce enough as it is & as natural gas runs out the problem will get much worse so anything that produces helium is of interest
populist but not practical
The government is pandering to a widely held belief amongst the public that there is an area of the internet which is porn & you can simply cut off access to that area. another part of the public misconception is that the porn industry is completely autruistic & makes all its content freely vailable to everyone who goes to the porn area.
The truth is that the easily identifiable part of internet porn is big business that already restricts access to the majority of its material by charging for it (usually by credit card) but most porn is spread about & not so easily identifiable. To give two obvious examples both facebook & Flickr contain what average Daily Mail reader would consider to be porn. You soon end up in a rather old argument from cinema about what is classified as art house & what is porn.
On the other hand real time checking of content can end up with medical sites like NHS Choices STI advice pages or Net Doctor being classified as porn
Re: So were they for the scrap heap or not?
There's a legal requirement to recycle IT equipment so I would expect them to be selling (in one form or another) to a recycling firm (for parts & scrap rather than refurbishment) who would not be best pleased with the contract if many of the most valuable bits were being taken out before they got their hands on them & the council would end up getting less money for their scrap.
its all a conspiracy by the worlds scientists & Al Gore to raise taxes, The data shows that the effect of impacts on the planet have actually DECREASED dramatically SINCE 1908 not increased. The planet has been hit by objects before & it obviously hasn't done any harm since we're here now. Its an entirely natural process & therefore OK & scientists are just scaremongering to get big grants. There were times in the past when there far more strikes on the planet than now. The data is wrong, all scientists claimed this last object would hit earth & destroy the planet & it didn't so the science is wrong & the models to predict the paths of such ojects are wrong. Anyhow the majority scientists say theres no danger from these objects at all, 3 have signed a letter to prove it. The effects are localised & no threat to people at all provided you wear a hat.
Well this is The Register isn't it
some of the earliest surviving revalation manuscripts (Codex Ephraemi Rescriptus & Papyrus 115) have the number as 616.
One of the most common interpretations of the number is that it is a reference to Nero, emperor at the time revelations was written. Nero Caesar translated from Greek to Hebrew enumerates to 666 however when translated from Latin to Hebrew it enumerates as 616
either way, I don't think Nero is a major threat to christianity these days
During the Eemian sea levels are known to have been 4 to 8 metres higher than now, if Greenland ice contributed less water to this higher level than previously thought then other areas must have contributed more.
The rate of surface lowering in the Eemian was 6cm per year, and the research team estimate that the rate of mass loss from the Greenland ice sheet was likely to be on the same order as changes observed during the last ten years.
“We were quite shocked by the warm surface temperatures observed at the NEEM ice camp in July 2012. It was simply raining, and, just as during the Eemian period, meltwater formed subsurface ice layers. While this was an extreme event, the present warming over Greenland makes surface melt more likely, and the predicted warming over Greenland the next 50–100 years will potentially lead to Eemian-like climate conditions."
“The good news from this study is that Greenland is not as sensitive as we thought to temperature increases in terms of disgorging ice into the ocean during interglacial periods.
-Professor Dorthe Dahl-Jensen Project Leader
A perfectly valid psychological paper on denialism, this has been an area of study since Freud & due to its increased occurance is now being studied by an increasing number of psychologists along with the related subject of Cognitive dissonance. Regardless of which particular aspect of reality they choose to deny, its quite predictable that those with this paricular mental illness react strongly when faced with diagnosis. If one checks the references at the end of the paper one gets a feel for the number of people now working in this area.
Lewis is getting more & more desperate
Actually the relevance of this article (if it's correct) is that Climate change is worse than previously thought. There was a view held by many that the underlying temperature trend was level, this paper says the underlying trend has been one of slight cooling meaning that the recent rise in temperature is actually greater than previously thought since mean temperature would have cooled slightly rather than remained level. The paper shows an increase in temperature in recent times which completely bucks the trend of the past 2000 years. If (& its a big if) this paper proves correct then it potentially destroys many sceptic arguments which rely on recent warming being part of a long term warming trend or natural cycles.
There are currently vineyards in fife, Scottish (grape) wine is planned to be on the shelves in 2014. Yorkshire has been producing wine for a few years. Sweden & Denmark also have vineyards & have been producing wine. In 2001 Denamrk produced 20 hectolitres, last year 546 hectolitres. (hectolitre = 100 litres)
current developments in meat production means pasture will become a thing of the past soon with part of that land being covered by giant factory sheds, the high- yield cattle they're producing can't be fed on grass they must have carefully controlled high-tech feed & be kept almost permanently indoors.
didn't quite finish the paper
apparently he didn't read the whole paper
The research suggests that in the last five million years, changes in ocean circulation allowed Earth's climate to become more closely coupled to changes in carbon dioxide concentrations in the atmosphere.
& these changes mean the climate of modern times more readily responds to changing carbon dioxide levels.
change of emphasis
The paper barely mentions global warming, its about the bloom itself & the team are more interested in the effects on the arctic ecosystem, mainly the effect it will have for animals that feed at different ocean levels, - benefit bottom-feeding species, to the detriment of species that feed in the water column.
asked about the possible increase in the Arctic's ability to sequester carbon Arrigo said the effect is "unlikely to make much difference". "Even if the amount of CO2 going into the Arctic Ocean doubled, it's a blip on a global scale,"
LEWIS PAGE PREDICTS THE TITANIC WILL BE RAISED
In a register article on 10th April 2012, LEWIS PAGE SAID The chances of the Titanic being raised "from the freezing ocean depths, restored lovingly once more to her full fin-de-siècle glory" while slim were not non-existant, leaving open the possibility that IT COULD REALLY HAPPEN.
easy to take pot shots at something which some third rate headline writer (me in this case) has put a sensationalist & inaccurate headline on.
The sub headline "A ship science expert, Professor Ajit Shenoi, says that a seafaring tragedy on the scale of the Titanic disaster is unlikely to happen again." was right underneath in BIG type on the Science Daily article. Science Daily is a popularist website that pulls science related stuff from various sources & chucks it back out en masse, its not peer reviewed itself nor does it restrict itself to peer reviewed material
Good article (& I'm defintely not a UKIP supporter), been explaining this to people fior weeks & they just bleat
printing money bad
spending money bad
can't spend your way out of debt crises
If they decide to changee the ECB rules then they'll find a way to do it, apparently Sarkozy suggested it & the Germans said no.
The Germans have a morbid fear of inflation & they've also cut out all the pages from their economic books relating to the 1930's which unfortunately is when economists figured out how to fix the kind of problems we have now. In truth the Eurozone could do with a little bit more (but not too much) inflation at the moment & a lower Euro. Even the IMF have started making Keynsian noises & talked of a 'pardox of thrift' in relation to EU imposed austerity cuts. The entire IMF would normally slit its wrists before acknowledging Keynes so that shows how bad it is.
The Devils work
"According to folklore legend, on the 10th October the Devil pees on the blackberries and they become unfit"
- taken from Allotment Vegetable growing
The BBC nature pages have a variant on it
"On Old Michaelmas Day (10th Oct) the Devil puts his foot on blackberries"
& monday when I believe all this started was the 10th October.
For a more balanced & factual Critique people should read Physics World article
or for a more accurate presention of the work, the Cern article linked to in the Register article
The whole thing is a hoax, The website is a copy of a that of a company called Central Test but with alterations, Central Test however have no knowledge of who these people are and no knowledge of this supposed research. This why Science has the peer review process and only recognises publications in peer reviewed journals.
It only goes to show how easy it is to get the Register to post complete rubbish as scientific fact - for anyone who hadn't realised that already.
The whole thing is a hoax, The website is a copy of a that of a company called Central Test but with alterations, Central Test however have no knowledge of who these people are and no knowledge of this supposed research.
It only goes to show how easy it is to get the Register to post complete rubbish as scientific fact - for anyone who hadn't realised that already.
Not exactly new
The article so distorts this paper that it is impossible to comment on it, one could only start from scratch and rewrite every word.
What I really don't like about the paper is that it sets out to debunk denialist claims and papers that set out to counter a particular view tend to be much less reliable than ones where someone has simply gone out and done piece of science and come up with a result. A notable aspect of its approach is to accept denialst interpretation of the temperature record in the first instance, its clearly intended for a particular audience. If the paper is correct, it does potentially add to the understanding of short term global temperature changes but there's actually been a lot of other papers on this topic, here's 3 examples, one from 1995, one from 2005 & one from 2010
Climate response to increasing levels of greenhouse gases and sulphate aerosols, J. F. B. Mitchell, T. C. Johns, J. M. Gregory & S. F. B. Tett Nature 376, 501 - 504 (10 August 1995); doi:10.1038/376501a0
Strong present-day aerosol cooling implies a hot future, Meinrat O. Andreae, Chris D. Jones, Peter M. Cox Nature 435, 1187-1190 (30 June 2005) | doi:10.1038/nature03671
Aerosol exposure versus aerosol cooling of climate: what is the optimal emission reduction strategy for human health?, Löndahl, J., Swietlicki, E., Lindgren, E., and Loft, S.: Atmos. Chem. Phys., 10, 9441-9449, doi:10.5194/acp-10-9441-2010
There is also the recently concluded European Integrated project on Aerosol Cloud Climate and Air Quality Interaction based at the University of Helsinki,, an article on their conclusions can be found here
along with some older articles on the topic.
As to articles suggestion that the best way to counter global warming is to burn more fossil fuels, that is only true if you want to live in a world of smog ridden cities with all the associated health problems & then only until the fossil fuels run out which they will do rather more quickly than expected if we increase use.
Houston we got a problem
The idea that we're heading into a maunder minimum has been around for a few years, what's happened now is that some more researchers have published on the topic & they may well be right.
According to GWPF that means "The Earth - far from facing a global warming problem - is actually headed into a mini ice age"
In 2010 researchers calculated what would happen to global temperatures if a grand minimum started now and continued until 2100. They found that it would lower temperatures by a maximum of 0.3 °C
greenhouse gas emissions are predicted to increase temperature by anything from 2 °C (Sceptiks) to 4.5 °C (Alarmists) by 2100
So in the Best Case scenario a rise of 2 °C would be reduced to 1.7 °C
Now Solar Minimums are pretty unpredictable things, the figures could be wrong but I wouldn't bet on them being that far out & even if they were, a grand minimum will only delay the problem a bit not fix it permanently. We are actually overdue a proper ice age though, it will come, sometime in the next half a million years or so, holding your breath for that one might be a better bet than a flutter on a mini ice age.
Forget copies, go for the original
I think people should read the original article at
I suspect the majority will come away with a rather different impression of this article than they had from reading The Register article.
Also things have changed somewhat since the article was written
Last December, a Barzilian government report said deforestation in the Brazilian Amazon had fallen to its lowest rate for 22 years. However, the latest data shows a 27% jump in deforestation from August 2010 to April 2011. Satellite images show deforestation increased from 103 sq km in March and April 2010 to 593 sq km (229 sq miles) in the same period of 2011, - Brazil space research institute
At the same time Brazil has passed a batch of reforms easing the decades-old Forest Code which restricted deforestation.
What The Register forgot to include
The researchers underline that their results do not question the dramatic loss of Arctic sea ice or its relation to anthropogenic climate change. "If we don't slow down global warming extensively, we will lose the summer sea-ice cover in the Arctic within a few decades," says Tietsche. "Our research shows that the speed of sea-ice loss is closely coupled to the speed of global warming. We think that it's important to know that we can still do something about slowing down or possibly even stopping the loss of the sea-ice cover."
There's a piece of research just published in Science which is a study of historic sea temperature in the Fram Strait ( near Greenland), it has found that having remained relatively stable until around 1850, the average summer seawater temperatures in the strait have increased by around 2 °C since then. Another study recently published in Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, found that warming in the West Atlantic has caused the Gulf Stream off the coast of Canada to drift northwards from its historic position in recent years.
These two studies like the one in the Register article tell you nothing (on their own) about trends in global sea temperatures, they are all studies of sea temperature in very specific regions which are considered important by climate scientists and others for differing reasons. Given the register apparently considers studies of sea temperature in specific locations (as opposed to studies of global sea temperature) worthy of articles, I am somewhat surprised that they haven't reported on these studies too given they are at least of similar importance in scientific terms.
The ocean's natural variability mechanisms
The register picked up on this because it had the word cooling in it. This was actually a study of the oceans natural variability mechanisms and specifically what happens at one area which was chosen because it was identified as being important for those mechanisms. The relevance to climate change is that a better understanding of these mechanisms should lead to better climate modelling in the future. It's not particularly useful as a global temperature measurement because, apart from being a relatively small area, its a bit like trying to measure the temperature of your bath by putting a thermometer in the bath under your tap, the readings will be skewed by the temperature of any water dripping out of the tap. If you want a good temperature reading for the oceans then you take readings in a large number non-volatile areas not in one particularly volatile area.
I strongly suggest people read the Stern Review for themsleves
it is available at
Outsourcing the Gravy Train
Just goes to show is that outsourcing often isn't the best financial option, Tory policy is to increase outsourcing on the basis that it's more cost effective. My own experience in the public sector (not councils) is that the best approach is to do these things in house and hire some temporary specialised staff to add expertise and manpower but the powers that be tend to incorrectly believe that their own staff aren't capable of contributing, they also believe that Project Management is more important than technical expertise, set up the right commitees and it can't go wrong, can it?
I suspect if you asked the inhouse IT teams they would say they could have done the work cheaper and better but no-one even bothered to ask them.
Phil Jones' Mistake
In the past it was not normal practice to put all of ones raw data or ones methodology into the public domain, indeed it was not uncommon to deliberately exclude some information to make it harder for competitors to pinch your work. You did your research, wrote a paper which was then Peer Reviewed. Basically If the reviewers felt your conclusions were not justified by information in your paper they would recommend to the editor that additional information or data needed to be included. I make no great claims for peer review, its just the way things were/are done.
In recent times "climate change deniers" have changed all that, now if you work in that field, you have be prepared to produce all your raw data, along with precise details of all methodologies & models used. The main (but not only) mistake that Phil Jones made was not to realise that the rules had changed.
If the case for climate change is to be proved beyond any doubt, it is essential that these new rules are not only used, but embraced in a spirit of complete openness.
Of course I should add that these “new” rules only apply to “pro climate change” research, I have yet to come across any "climate change deniers" who obey them, their use of data is selective to the point of absurdity, their methodologies in no way deserving of the name and their models are non-existent.
I don’t include in the term “Climate Change Denier” the relatively small number of scientists who have done "peer reviewed" research which does not reach the same conclusion as the bulk of research in the field nor do I include sceptics, please be sceptical, ask awkward questions, it's part of their job to answer them.
- Product round-up Coming clean: Ten cordless vacuum cleaners
- Something for the Weekend, Sir? I need a password to BRAKE? What? No! STOP! Aaaargh!
- Episode 13 BOFH: WHERE did this 'fax-enabled' printer UPGRADE come from?
- Vulture at the Wheel Ford's B-Max: Fiesta-based runaround that goes THUNK
- Worstall @ the Weekend BIG FAT Lies: Porky Pies about obesity