Given the dodgy rep of Chinese research...
I'll wait for it to be peer reviewed and the experiment replicated thank you very much.
Time to start crying in your beer, people: according to researchers at the Hong Kong University of Science and Technology, not only is it impossible to break the speed of light, it will always be that way. Forget time travel, forget trips to distant galaxies, and ditch the idea that there’s a more advanced civilization than …
..it's racial stereotyping. Don't confuse the two.
Racism is when you act on, make a biased decision, or treat somebody differently based on this information (e.g based on a racial stereotype).
Also applies to sexism vs sexual stereotyping. Loads of sexual stereotypes on TV adverts (e.g. men can't multi-task, women can't catch or throw, women love to gossip, men love cars), but not employing a man or woman because of these stereotypes ("sorry, can't employ you because you would spend too much time gossiping in the office as you are a woman") is sexism, as you have made a biased decision based on a stereotype.
Admittedly an increase in stereotyping does lead to an increase in 'ism' (hence most people make the same mistake you did) but they are not the same thing at all.
My understanding is that racialism is making a distinction between people based on race, whereas racism is doing so with negative connotations.
Either way, it doesn't really matter because the point remains that some people (not all - it is so convenient to generalise, after all) are still following the formula that because this research was Chinese, it must be of lower worth, because fake products come out of China, therefore everything that comes out of China is fake. Which is clearly wrong.
..so do you tell black jokes about fried chicken? They're just jokes, right? Got any good Bernard Manning DVDs? You don't know whether anyone was offended by negative comments against the Chinese on here, and given how widely El Reg is read, it's more than possible.
But often the "it's just a joke" defence is wheeled out by people who can't or don't want to confront their own ignorant views.
> Tarring everyone with the same negative brush because they belong to the same race...
That seems like a reach, when your example really tars everyone with the same negative brush because they come from the same COUNTRY, which is a different thing. Yes, most (but by no means all) people who live in China are Chinese, but that is not germane, unless the original statement was "anyone who looks like they're Chinese only create fake products", which really would be racist.
..that no-one was claiming it's a group of Yorkshiremen knocking out Harry Potter compilations DVD, Louis Ditton handbags and dodgy scientific research. I'm pretty sure whatever blanket assumptions were being made it's on the basis of the producers being Chinese as well as being in China - but please correct me if I'm wrong.
I have no issue with someone discussing fake products coming out of China.
However I would not consider someone automatically asserting that a scientific paper is rubbish solely on the basis that the people writing it are Chinese to be a 'discussion of fake products coming out of China'. Especially when said individual clearly hasn't read either the report or the article in question. That would be more in the racial prejudice area wouldn't it.
"Wow, nothing like a bit of comedy racism eh?"
It's not comedy racism. It's a well-known fact in science circles that the best and brightest in China (and not just China, but many countries all over the world) run away to more interesting universities very early, leaving the still quite talented people left behind largely cut off from the main thrust of scientific research. They generally end up producing uninteresting research because of this, not because of any inherent weakness of Chinese genes.
Acknowledging that one country has not very good research is not racism, and using that word to describe verifiable conclusions cheapens it to the point where real, actual, important, racism is ignored or similarly tarnished. See also: wolf, boy who cried.
You're missing the point, this has nothing to do with the general quality of papers coming out of China.
This was a specific incident about a specific paper. Someone made a comment about an individual paper, that was peer reviewed by knowledgeable and hopefully independent scientists in the field, then accepted by the editor of PRL for publication (indeed was one of the Highlight articles in that particular issue). That comment was solely to rubbish the paper based on nothing more than the ethnicity of the authors, no other reason was suggested for why the paper might be no good. So how exactly is that not racism?
"That comment was solely to rubbish the paper based on nothing more than the ethnicity of the authors, no other reason was suggested for why the paper might be no good."
No, not ethnicity, location. If the university involved was the University of South-West Shropshire, or for a real one, Bishop Grosseteste University College Lincoln, then I would say the same thing. That university has a history of producing rubbish, this is from that university, therefore it is *likely* to be rubbish.
Oh, and peer review, yes, well, I am a reviewer for peer review and I don't know what I'm talking about, so that kind of cancels that point.
Actually 20% of the articles published by US labs are either completely withdrawn or amended after publication for "inconsistency" reasons (read: suspected fraud), or proven completely wrong within one year. That places the US firmly in first place when it comes to "dodginess" in research. What do you expect when 80% of the labs workforce is in short-term contracts (1 to 3 years) and under enormous pressure to publish?
Chinese research actually has a good reputation these days (in terms of integrity, if not for ethics). Hong Kong, origin of this paper, is seen as an emerging world-leading research center.
"It's a well-known fact in science circles that the best and brightest in China (and not just China, but many countries all over the world) run away to more interesting universities very early..."
It's a fact that many of them return after their education to help raise the standards back "home" and find highly productive and profitable jobs. This is especially true given the current economic climate as costs tend to be lower and opportunities more available. In the case of China, many of the best and brightest are state sponsored with the intent of getting a world class education and bringing it back to keep the economic growth going through research, business and education.
That said, you may be right and it may not be racism but it certainly is ignorance. After all, it's a well-known fact that many people can't look past their own pride colored glasses.
Problem El Reg ?
I would have said the same thing if it had come out of some other less than trustworthy institution....
It has been peer reviewed... but has it been replicated?
As long as you choose friendly peers, anything can be "peer reviewed" successfully.
Am I wrong in wanting science tested over and over ?
That is what science is about.
I always took from Albert that an arbitrary "something" travelling "faster than c" as far as an observer is concerned wasn't impossible, but rather meaningless. And if the observer itself is travelling at c - relative to an arbitrary "something" - travelling across the universe would mean the time taken would tend to zero - ie distance would become the meaningless factor - in the sense that the concept of "relative to an arbitrary something" would be nonsensical.
But I haven't had my morning coffee yet.
Warning: Armchair physics ahead:
An observer travelling at c will still spend whatever local time he or she takes to cross the universe - you can't magically ignore time just because you're going fast. The point old Albie was trying to make about that was that however much personal time passes for you, the time that passes in the rest of the universe will be a function of both the distance you travel and the time you personally take to travel it (ignoring any tedious acceleration and deceleration). Which will be significantly greater than your local time.
Things can teleport over very short distances (atomic scale) in a phenomenon known as quantum tunneling. It is the idea behind Hawking radiation that black holes presumably emit, for example. Nothing we've ever found travels faster than the speed of light over macro-scale distances though.
This paper says that information cannot travel faster than the speed of light when propagated by light, which whilst nice to know doesn't rule out tachyons or time travel. Hell, it doesn't even rule out exotic bits of space time like wormholes or alcubierre metrics; their issues come from other bits of physics.
So no, this doesn't have much to tell us about time travel.
Re: hawking radiation:
Not quite, Particles are constantly being created and annihilated in free space, to conserve energy and momentum (along with the other conservables, spin, strangeness, etc) they have equal and opposite E and P. Normally, these are short lived (almost instantaneous), but if one gets destroyed by something it is annihilated by the other, say a black hole eating it, the other one will remain (and is this case of a black hole, will appear to be emitted from the black hole)
There is another way to look at these than a particle/anti-particle pair appearing and then anhilating. An anti-particle on a feyman diagram looks the same as a normal particle travelling backwards in time. So another model is a single particle oscilatting backwards and forwards in time. I.E. Time travel, but heavily restricted by the energy-time version of the Heisenberg uncertainty principle and therefore useless for getting next week's lottery results.
Of course if this model is correct then it rather messes up the Hawking radiation theory, since I'm not sure how half of the pair falls into a black hole if its really a single particle. Just need the LHC to generate some quantum black holes so we can establish which is happening experimentally (by getting hawking radiation or not).
But it so happens that light travels at speed c - most of the time.
c would still exist and would still be the cosmic speed limit if there wasn't any light.
One apparent, but only apparent exception - the nature of the expansion of the universe is that distant space and distant objects are getting farther away from us although they are not moving farther away from us. So a distant object might appear to be moving away from us at more than the speed of light, but that is because space between here and there is stretching. It is indeed getting farther away, but it is not moving. And if it's receding at > c then you can't get there. We can see its past but never its present. And people there will say the same of us. If there are people there, which we can never know, see above.
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