This will teach them: G.B. Trudeau cartoon
579 posts • joined 3 Sep 2012
"This is the Friday the Thirteenth Club, meeting in Paris in 1930 to dance underneath a ladder and carry open umbrellas indoors. Being a rational reader of Nature, you surely applaud this contemptuous attitude towards superstition, so you won't be at all concerned by the following sinister tale. In 1582, Pope Gregory XIII introduced a new calendar to replace the old Julian system, whose inaccuracies had made Easter slip slowly through the seasons. To bring the festivals back to their old positions, ten days disappeared from October 1582. Some people thought the days were being stolen from them. But rebuilding and resetting the calendar had a more subtle effect. The Gregorian cycle of 400 years contains exactly 20,871 weeks, and hidden in the calendar's machinery is a bias towards certain days of the week landing on certain dates in the month. The 13th is more likely to be a Friday than any other day (Brown, B. H. Amer. Math. Monthly 40, 607; 1933). Bernard Yallop now points out that with a personal computer it is possible to look for such peculiarities "without resorting to mathematics" (Spectrum October, 66; 1998). His table shows for example that there are 688 Friday-the-thirteenths every 400 years, but only 684 Thursdays; and a month (like a week) is most likely to begin on a Sunday. Did the Friday the Thirteenth Club know of their good fortune in having these extra opportunities to carouse? I only hope they didn't meet a sticky end before finding out."
Stephen Battersby, Nature, Vol 396, 12 November 1998, page 113
Too late. The use of the Internet has become so wide-spread that even people who generally look to escape "reality" for awhile in such a far-flung destination as Galapagos are constantly asking: Do the Galapagos Islands have internet? The simple answer: Yes.
Traditionally chroma-key uses the most irrelevant primary colour as key, that is blue.
in the 1950's we were promised electricity [from nuclear power plants] too cheap to meter ...
That is called the Pauli effect after Wolfgang Ernst Pauli (1900 - 1958). The most famous example is that of a chandelier in a lecture room at a German university which dropped down on the day Pauli passed the town by rail.
BTW For me Pauli is famous for the article Relativitätstheorie first published in 1921 (to put all young physics students to shame, as it is the complete and lucid recap of the (special and general) theory of relativity, published under that title by Pergamon Student Editions (241 pages).
Here is your new office with a direct broadband connection to Washington DC. BTW here are the keys for your Дaчa on the Krim.
Read Judging books by their covers in the bestseller "Surely you are joking Mr. Feynman".
Here we are only allowed to set off firework(bomb)s between 18:00 CET 2016-12-31 and 02:00 CET 2017-01-01. Not that anybody is paying any attention to that, but the extra second may be quite handy.
BTW. Scheduling the transition from 'wintertime' to 'summertime' v.v. has been a problem in broadcasting ever since the transmissions went 7/24.
to insert a chip blocking all reference to natural selection and the right honourable Mr. Darwin.
This will be much easier than blocking pornography as there are clinical cases of people who are sexually aroused by observing a police-officer in uniform.
As SunTzu said: All warfare is based on deception. Hence, when able to attack, we must seem unable; when using our forces, we must seem inactive; when we are near, we must make the enemy believe we are far away; when far away, we must make him believe we are near.
is 2.137 1036 erg and is proportional to the square of the angular velocity. A slowdown of 1.8 ms/day per century is a relative decrease of 0.5 10-10 in angular velocity per year, releasing 8.5 1026 erg/year.
World electricity production from all energy sources was (in 2014) 22433 TWh or 8 1026 erg/year.
Note that the rise in seawater level slows the eath's rotation, but does - in first approximation - not change the rotational energy.
But the Dutch know how to build on soft soil. The Royal Palace in Amsterdam was built as a town hall between 1648 and 1665 on 13659 wooden piles. It is still erect and in perfect condition standing on that same wooden piles (minus two, taken out for inspection) protected by groundwater.
Controlling groundwater levels is essential in the Netherlands, especially in the parts that are below sea level. For that they have elected councils with a tradition going back to the 13th Century.
B-52's are still flying (*) in anger.
(*) 27 minute War College podcast. North Korea sets off a nuclear bomb and how does the U.S. respond? The Pentagon sends a 65-year-old airplane to buzz Korean airspace. It wouldn't make a lot of sense if the warplane wasn't the B-52 bomber. Designed in the aftermath of World War Two, obsolete nearly before the last one rolled off the line in 1961 - the Stratofortress may remain in the air for another 25 years.
From A.N. Walker The UNIX™ Environment (1984): Unix can stop in three ways: out of control, in panic, or under user control. Out-of-control stops are caused either by catastrophic hardware failure, or by catastrophic bugs in Kernel (rare), or by idiotic user behaviour (such as switching off the power).
trust the Prophecies* of our good old friend Nostradamus. According to Google he both predicted that Hillary and Donald would win the US elections ....
* If you go to the Utrecht University Library you can ask for it. You may read it, but you can not take it out because it is a pre-1800 book.
I hope they still sell Greek Fire, Poison Arrows & Scorpion Bombs: Biological and Chemical Warfare in the Ancient World, Pdf here.
Scorpion bombs were used in naval warfare. Throw a couple of thin eathware pots with a scorpion inside at a hostile trireme and wait for the effect.
China has never had a formal privatisation programme. Instead, as Minxin Pei, a professor of government at Claremont McKenna College in California, writes in China's Crony Capitalism, decentralising the rights of control over state property without clarifying the rights of ownership gave those who rule maximum advantage to extract wealth from society. Rights of control have been separated from rights of ownership in China - and where ownership is uncertain, control is key.
With clinical precision, Mr Pei explains how corruption operates at every level, perverting each branch of the party-state and subverting the political authority of the regime. The party cannot mitigate, let alone eradicate, "crony capitalism" because, since 1989, it has been "the very foundations of the regime's monopoly of power", the author argues. The conclusion, he believes, is that far from saving the regime, President Xi Jinping's anti-corruption drive may accelerate its demise by creating divisions within the ruling elite even as it reinforces strong popular resentment of corruption. (Cit, from The Economist)
China's Crony Capitalism: The Dynamics of Regime Decay. By Minxin Pei. Harvard University Press.
Experiments to answer the question Does antimatter fall down? were proposed in A Catching Trap for All Antiproton Seasons. The question is simple and relevant. The experiment is very difficult to perform. Electrostatic forces will dominate over gravity for falling antiprotons and antihydrogen, which is electrically neutral, is harder to make and handle.
Sitting in a century old steakhouse staring out at the Brooklyn Bridge thirty years ago Hank Greenburg (the pollster not the baseball player) explained an election that could only happen in the grubby circus of New York politics: Given a choice between a Crook and a Fool, he said, voters take the Crook. His theory was simple: You can predict what a Crook will do but you never know what a Fool may do.
Rosa Brooks, a former Pentagon staffer and author of "How Everything Became War and the Military Became Everything: Tales From the Pentagon," argues that U.S. citizens and lawmakers should shake off fears of appearing unpatriotic to challenge the U.S.'s unchecked, unilateral and covert military activities abroad. If that doesn't happen soon, the United States may have to pay for the dangerous example it's setting for powers like Russia and China.
And is she pregnant?
let's do the calculation: a maximum jail term of 10 years for stealing 117 to 185+ million passwords is 170 to 270 milliseconds per theft. Admittedly time spend in American jails count double.
who had trained his dog to recognize slides with geometric figures. He toured from town to town to show the clever dog. Until one day the lamp of the projector failed and the dog still made the right barks; he was trained on the sounds the slides made when they were put in the projector. Something simular happened when neural networks were first used to train driverless cars. The side of the road was recognized not by the curb, but by green grass and the car refused to cross a bridge.
there is ongoing criticism of attempts to introduce electronic voting in the Netherlands. The most recent vote, the non-binding referendum on the EU-Ukraine Association Agreement, was all done by red pencil on paper (at least by the 32.2 % of the electorate that turned up to vote). BTW, there are indications that some initiators of this referendum were more than inspired by Russia.
For an update on electronic voting see http://wijvertrouwenstemcomputersniet.nl (in Dutch).
Watch a chilling interview with survivors of the armed attack on South Africa's nuclear plant at Pelindaba that holds enough fuel for a dozen atomic bombs. Even just the first few minutes will give you a new appreciation of the risk we face.
With thanks to http://nuclearrisk.org/ for providing the link.
What will the University of Edinburgh charge for printing the output? Did they make a deal with the printer ink mafia?
colonization of Mars by humans get interesting after the first transistor is manufactured there from locally mined raw materials, otherwise the colony is doomed.
One of my uncles ran an industrial washing service for 5* hotels etc. with rows of ~4 meter long W/Ms (and an in-house steam engine). They were switched on by pressing 2 buttons simultaneously at either end of the device by two men to prevent it chopping off a finger. Of course my uncle frequently found one of the buttons taped down.
would approve the
misuse of his name by Salesforce, as long as it is not a quantum computer :-).
"There are three different kinds of
brains users, the one understands things unassisted, the other understands things when shown by others, the third understands neither alone nor with the explanations of others. The first kind is most excellent, the second is also excellent, but the third is useless." Niccolò Machiavelli, Il Principe (1513), Cap. XXI.
I do find it rather amusing to see people with fully open Fb profiles getting dozens of birthday greetings from people they only know online...
Worse has happened. On 21 september 2012 a birthday party in Haren published on FB got out of hand. The police made 108 arrests. The damage was 843000 Euros. The mayor of Haren resigned on march 12 2013 after publication of the official report on the riots.
For our US readers: Water boards are since the 12th/13th century A.D. the elected (!) institutions responsible for regulation of waterlevels and maintenance of dikes.
For our US readers: Water boards are since the 11th/12th century A.D. the elected (!) institutions responsible for regulation of waterlevels and maintenance of dikes.
@Destroy All Monsters: The failed launch of a Long March 3 rocket on feb 14 1996 killed an estimated 500 subjects of the People's Republic of China ....
See also a chilling eyewitness report at http://www.airspacemag.com/history-of-flight/disaster-at-xichang-2873673/?no-ist
was good enough for the Pope and Desiderius Erasmus: A, B, C, D, E, F, G, H, I, K (seldom), L, M, N, O, P, Q, R, S, T, V, X and (in Greek words only) Y and Z. XXIII letters.
BTW one of the early proposals for ASCII was to to restrict it to CAPITALS only, like Morse code.
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