silly https://scienceblogs.com/ en explaining turbulence in type II SNe https://scienceblogs.com/catdynamics/2012/08/29/explaining-turbulence-in-type-ii-sne <span>explaining turbulence in type II SNe</span> <div class="field field--name-body field--type-text-with-summary field--label-hidden field--item"><p>a video by John Cleese:</p> <iframe width="420" height="315" src="http://www.youtube.com/embed/FQjgsQ5G8ug" frameborder="0" allowfullscreen=""></iframe><p> I'm pretty sure that is what it is...</p> </div> <span><a title="View user profile." href="/author/catdynamics" lang="" about="/author/catdynamics" typeof="schema:Person" property="schema:name" datatype="">catdynamics</a></span> <span>Wed, 08/29/2012 - 06:29</span> <div class="field field--name-field-blog-tags field--type-entity-reference field--label-inline"> <div class="field--label">Tags</div> <div class="field--items"> <div class="field--item"><a href="/tag/random" hreflang="en">Random</a></div> <div class="field--item"><a href="/tag/brain" hreflang="en">brain</a></div> <div class="field--item"><a href="/tag/silly" hreflang="en">silly</a></div> </div> </div> <section> </section> <ul class="links inline list-inline"><li class="comment-forbidden"><a href="/user/login?destination=/catdynamics/2012/08/29/explaining-turbulence-in-type-ii-sne%23comment-form">Log in</a> to post comments</li></ul> Wed, 29 Aug 2012 10:29:54 +0000 catdynamics 66438 at https://scienceblogs.com The Ten Commandments https://scienceblogs.com/catdynamics/2012/07/08/the-ten-commandments <span>The Ten Commandments</span> <div class="field field--name-body field--type-text-with-summary field--label-hidden field--item"><p>In which we remind people of the Ten Commandments of the <a href="http://www.quickmeme.com/meme/368s5n/" title="Dare you" target="_blank">God Particle</a>.</p> <p>Now with added footnotes.</p> <ul><li>I I am the <em>Higgs</em>. Thou shalt have no other <em>Higgs</em> before me.<sup>1</sup></li> <li>II Thou shalt not make unto thee any graven image, or any likeness of any thing that is in heaven above, or that is in the earth beneath, or that is in the water under the earth:Thou shalt not bow down thyself to them, nor serve them: for I the <em>HIGGS</em> thy God Particle am a jealous God Particle, visiting the iniquity of the fathers upon the children unto the third and fourth generation of them that hate me. <sup>2</sup></li> <li>III Thou shalt not take the name of the <em>Higgs</em> thy God Particle in vain<sup>3</sup></li> <li>IV Remember the sabbath day, to keep it holy.<sup>4</sup></li> <li>V Honour thy fermion and thy boson<sup>5</sup></li> <li>VI Thou shalt not annihilate.<sup>6</sup></li> <li>VII Thou shalt not two-time.<sup>7</sup></li> <li>VIII Thou shalt not steal.<sup>8</sup></li> <li>IX Thou shalt not bear false witness against thy neighbour.<sup>9</sup></li> <li>X Thou shalt not covet thy neighbour's <em>mass</em> nor any thing that is thy neighbour's.<sup>10</sup></li> <p>So mote it be.</p> </ul><p><sup>1</sup> Orthodox, or Standard Model, theosophers interpret this commandment literally; Reformists who believe in Grand Unification have a complex explanation for how this really means the Higgs is One in Three and the Singlet is really a Trinary; modern theosophers tend to consider this a subtle mistranslation referring to Unitarity, especially those who espouse the Landscape Interepretation of modern theophysics.</p> <p><sup>2</sup> Modern theosophers tend to quietly ignore this, the most complex of the commandments, though the Schwingerites still insist it precludes the use of Feynman diagrams.<br /> Modern theophysicists tend to think this is a revelation of the number of flavour generations; while ultra-orthodox theosophers have argued that this prohibits neutrino detectors and such like and argue that theosophy should return to pure theoretical contemplation.</p> <p><sup>3</sup> I am doomed.</p> <p><sup>4</sup> Modern theosophers forget that until just a generation ago physics experiements were shut down at beer o'clock on fridays for the weekend. This is another of the commandments that is no longer observed except by the ultra-orthodox who refuse to even scribble on a lined notepad on their day off. </p> <p><sup>5</sup> One word: Anyons?<br /> O tempora, o mores.</p> <p><sup>6</sup> The orthodox still use this commandment to continue to argue against the ILC; but most theosophers argue that this is meant to forbid private annihilation by civilians on a retail basis, unless of course necessary to prevent one's own annihilation or that of others. Correspondingly most theosophers accept annihilation en masse, by professional theosophers only, of course, under the jurisdiction of a legitimate civil authority, if in a good cause, as rationalised by Lawrence in his classic tract on concept of the "Good Annihilation" and blessed by CERN.</p> <p><sup>7</sup> This apparently superfluous prohibition on closed timelike curves has long puzzled theosophers. Some suggest it speaks to the tachyonic nature of the naked Higgs, others consider it a mere tautology.</p> <p><sup>8</sup> Theft is of course absolutely prohibited, if it is of real massets. Modern theosophy has long appreciated the distinction between this and virtual theft, which is necessary to keep things normalized. Reformers feel that finanical theosophers have taken the concept to an excess.</p> <p><sup>9</sup> Modern theosophy considers this a cryptic allusion to the so-called accidental symmetries and associated quantum number. Reformers of the GUT persuasion keep pushing the false decay heresy, which enjoyed brief popularity during the hedonistic era.</p> <p><sup>10</sup> Many non-theosophers consider this commandment redundant, but advanced students of theosophy understand that this commandment is what underpins the hierarchy on which we depend and is the most inviolate of them all.</p> </div> <span><a title="View user profile." href="/author/catdynamics" lang="" about="/author/catdynamics" typeof="schema:Person" property="schema:name" datatype="">catdynamics</a></span> <span>Sat, 07/07/2012 - 18:03</span> <div class="field field--name-field-blog-tags field--type-entity-reference field--label-inline"> <div class="field--label">Tags</div> <div class="field--items"> <div class="field--item"><a href="/tag/random" hreflang="en">Random</a></div> <div class="field--item"><a href="/tag/science" hreflang="en">Science</a></div> <div class="field--item"><a href="/tag/higgs" hreflang="en">higgs</a></div> <div class="field--item"><a href="/tag/silly" hreflang="en">silly</a></div> </div> </div> <section> <article data-comment-user-id="0" id="comment-1895508" class="js-comment comment-wrapper clearfix"> <mark class="hidden" data-comment-timestamp="1341707865"></mark> <div class="well"> <strong></strong> <div class="field field--name-comment-body field--type-text-long field--label-hidden field--item"><p>This is just awesome.</p> </div> <drupal-render-placeholder callback="comment.lazy_builders:renderLinks" arguments="0=1895508&amp;1=default&amp;2=en&amp;3=" token="3cACKkV8MVI2IeLXW_nxJ7bl_i9LM4xQgeEVqlIIKLY"></drupal-render-placeholder> </div> <footer> <em>By <span lang="" typeof="schema:Person" property="schema:name" datatype="">bph (not verified)</span> on 07 Jul 2012 <a href="https://scienceblogs.com/taxonomy/term/134/feed#comment-1895508">#permalink</a></em> <article typeof="schema:Person" about="/user/0"> <div class="field field--name-user-picture field--type-image field--label-hidden field--item"> <a href="/user/0" hreflang="und"><img src="/files/styles/thumbnail/public/default_images/icon-user.png?itok=yQw_eG_q" width="100" height="100" alt="User Image" typeof="foaf:Image" class="img-responsive" /> </a> </div> </article> </footer> </article> <article data-comment-user-id="0" id="comment-1895509" class="js-comment comment-wrapper clearfix"> <mark class="hidden" data-comment-timestamp="1342017624"></mark> <div class="well"> <strong></strong> <div class="field field--name-comment-body field--type-text-long field--label-hidden field--item"><p>Hmm... yup, I just looked up "having way too much time on his hands." This was it. [BTW, bravo!]</p> </div> <drupal-render-placeholder callback="comment.lazy_builders:renderLinks" arguments="0=1895509&amp;1=default&amp;2=en&amp;3=" token="9ZCkGC-eGYP1dpQTbfJV3DN3I1XOQdaPlmDopIPDwCo"></drupal-render-placeholder> </div> <footer> <em>By <span lang="" typeof="schema:Person" property="schema:name" datatype="">Rajib (not verified)</span> on 11 Jul 2012 <a href="https://scienceblogs.com/taxonomy/term/134/feed#comment-1895509">#permalink</a></em> <article typeof="schema:Person" about="/user/0"> <div class="field field--name-user-picture field--type-image field--label-hidden field--item"> <a href="/user/0" hreflang="und"><img src="/files/styles/thumbnail/public/default_images/icon-user.png?itok=yQw_eG_q" width="100" height="100" alt="User Image" typeof="foaf:Image" class="img-responsive" /> </a> </div> </article> </footer> </article> </section> <ul class="links inline list-inline"><li class="comment-forbidden"><a href="/user/login?destination=/catdynamics/2012/07/08/the-ten-commandments%23comment-form">Log in</a> to post comments</li></ul> Sat, 07 Jul 2012 22:03:19 +0000 catdynamics 66412 at https://scienceblogs.com Ask Emmy Questions https://scienceblogs.com/principles/2012/05/25/ask-emmy-questions <span>Ask Emmy Questions</span> <div class="field field--name-body field--type-text-with-summary field--label-hidden field--item"><p>The blog is recovering from the transition to WordPress, but I'm still not fully confident in it. So We'll turn to another corner of the social media universe for my procrastinatory needs this morning: Having Emmy answer physics questions on Twitter.</p> <p>The same deal as when we've done this before: If you've got a physics question you'd like my dog to answer, post it to Twitter with the hashtag <a href="https://twitter.com/#!/search/%23dogphysics">#dogphysics</a> (or leave it in a comment, or email it to me), and Emmy will answer via Twitter, where she's <a href="http://twitter.com/queen_emmy/">@queen_emmy</a>.</p> </div> <span><a title="View user profile." href="/author/drorzel" lang="" about="/author/drorzel" typeof="schema:Person" property="schema:name" datatype="">drorzel</a></span> <span>Fri, 05/25/2012 - 03:31</span> <div class="field field--name-field-blog-tags field--type-entity-reference field--label-inline"> <div class="field--label">Tags</div> <div class="field--items"> <div class="field--item"><a href="/tag/book-writing" hreflang="en">Book Writing</a></div> <div class="field--item"><a href="/tag/how-teach" hreflang="en">How-to-Teach</a></div> <div class="field--item"><a href="/tag/physics" hreflang="en">Physics</a></div> <div class="field--item"><a href="/tag/physics-emmy" hreflang="en">Physics with Emmy</a></div> <div class="field--item"><a href="/tag/publicity" hreflang="en">Publicity</a></div> <div class="field--item"><a href="/tag/science" hreflang="en">Science</a></div> <div class="field--item"><a href="/tag/silliness" hreflang="en">silliness</a></div> <div class="field--item"><a href="/tag/dog-0" hreflang="en">dog</a></div> <div class="field--item"><a href="/tag/how-teach-physics-your-dog" hreflang="en">how to teach physics to your dog</a></div> <div class="field--item"><a href="/tag/silly" hreflang="en">silly</a></div> <div class="field--item"><a href="/tag/twitter" hreflang="en">Twitter</a></div> <div class="field--item"><a href="/tag/physics" hreflang="en">Physics</a></div> <div class="field--item"><a href="/tag/science" hreflang="en">Science</a></div> </div> </div> <section> <article data-comment-user-id="50" id="comment-1644812" class="js-comment comment-wrapper clearfix"> <mark class="hidden" data-comment-timestamp="1337944738"></mark> <div class="well"> <strong></strong> <div class="field field--name-comment-body field--type-text-long field--label-hidden field--item"><p>This is a test comment, to check something on the back end.</p> </div> <drupal-render-placeholder callback="comment.lazy_builders:renderLinks" arguments="0=1644812&amp;1=default&amp;2=en&amp;3=" token="x23pUdwMKm-w0wHFdx6hG-ob5iz56HGJt3K2Jq2Ejm0"></drupal-render-placeholder> </div> <footer> <em>By <a title="View user profile." href="/author/drorzel" lang="" about="/author/drorzel" typeof="schema:Person" property="schema:name" datatype="">drorzel</a> on 25 May 2012 <a href="https://scienceblogs.com/taxonomy/term/134/feed#comment-1644812">#permalink</a></em> <article typeof="schema:Person" about="/author/drorzel"> <div class="field field--name-user-picture field--type-image field--label-hidden field--item"> <a href="/author/drorzel" hreflang="en"><img src="/files/styles/thumbnail/public/pictures/after1-120x120.jpg?itok=XDhUCPqP" width="100" height="100" alt="Profile picture for user drorzel" typeof="foaf:Image" class="img-responsive" /> </a> </div> </article> </footer> </article> </section> <ul class="links inline list-inline"><li class="comment-forbidden"><a href="/user/login?destination=/principles/2012/05/25/ask-emmy-questions%23comment-form">Log in</a> to post comments</li></ul> Fri, 25 May 2012 07:31:05 +0000 drorzel 48061 at https://scienceblogs.com This Week's Reading in the Church of the Larger Hilbert Space https://scienceblogs.com/principles/2011/09/08/still-raining <span>This Week&#039;s Reading in the Church of the Larger Hilbert Space</span> <div class="field field--name-body field--type-text-with-summary field--label-hidden field--item"><p>1 And the LORD looked upon the earth, and, behold, it was corrupt; for all flesh had corrupted his way upon the earth.</p> <p>2 And the LORD said unto Noah, The end of all flesh is come before me; for the earth is filled with violence through them; and, behold, I will destroy them with the earth.</p> <p>3 Make thee an ark, and this is the fashion which thou shalt make it of: The length of the ark shall be three hundred qubits, the breadth of it fifty qubits, and the height of it thirty qubits.</p> <p>4 And Noah asked the LORD, What is a qubit?</p> <p>5 And the LORD replied unto Noah, A qubit is a two-level quantum system, that may be found in either the state which thou shalt term 0 or the state which thou shalt term 1.</p> <p>6 Or, verily, it may be found in any arbitrary linear superposition of those two states.</p> <p>7 And Noah said unto the LORD, Oh, right. And what am I supposed to make these of, gopher wood?</p> <p>8 The LORD replied, I hear <a href="http://scienceblogs.com/principles/2011/09/quantum_computing_with_microwa.php">trapped ions</a> are good for this sort of thing.</p> <!--more--><p>9 And error correction shalt thou make in thine ark, placing it within a decoherence-free subspace. </p> <p>10 And thou shalt take into thine ark all of the numbers, that you may make use of them for efficient finding of prime factors. And thou shalt--</p> <p>11 Not all of the numbers, Noah interrupted the LORD.</p> <p>12 And the LORD said unto Noah, What do you mean?</p> <p>13 Well, Noah replied, if the ark is to be 300 by 50 by 30 qubits, then the maximum number to be stored within it must be no greater than 2<sup>450000</sup>.</p> <p>14 While verily that is a large number, still it is finite. And thus it is not possible for the ark to contain all of the numbers.</p> <p>15 That is even before we implement error correction, further reducing the number of available qubits.</p> <p>16 And the LORD replied, I say unto thee, 2<sup>450000</sup> is greater than 10<sup>135463</sup>, which is greater than the grains of sand in the desert, or stars in the sky.</p> <p>17 Yea, verily, it is greater by far than the number of protons in the visible universe which I have made.</p> <p>18 Is this not close enough to infinite for all practical purposes, thou ungrateful wretch?</p> <p>19 And Noah replied, Yes, oh great LORD, it is a magnificiently large number. Verily.</p> <p>20 But even so, must we be restricted solely to positive integers?</p> <p>21 For truly, the number of reals is greater by far than the number of integers, to say nothing of 2<sup>450000</sup>. And then--</p> <p>22 And the LORD said, Speak not to me of the square root of negative one, lest I become wroth with thee, and start smiting things.</p> <p>23 But Noah spoke on, saying, How then shall we keep track of the phase of the wavefunction?</p> <p>24 For is not the Schrödinger Equation explicitly complex?</p> <p>25 And the LORD said, Look, this was obviously a terrible idea. Forget I said anything.</p> <p>26 And Noah held his tongue. Though he did continue to wonder for many days afterwards, what use hath the LORD for a quantum computer?</p> <p>------------</p> <p><i>(A silly idea, inspired by yet more rain and flooding in New York, which lodged in my head and wouldn't go away until I typed it out. Apologies to Peter Shor, Bill Cosby, and God.)</i></p> </div> <span><a title="View user profile." href="/author/drorzel" lang="" about="/author/drorzel" typeof="schema:Person" property="schema:name" datatype="">drorzel</a></span> <span>Thu, 09/08/2011 - 07:24</span> <div class="field field--name-field-blog-tags field--type-entity-reference field--label-inline"> <div class="field--label">Tags</div> <div class="field--items"> <div class="field--item"><a href="/tag/uncategorized" hreflang="en">Uncategorized</a></div> <div class="field--item"><a href="/tag/bible-0" hreflang="en">bible</a></div> <div class="field--item"><a href="/tag/computing-0" hreflang="en">Computing</a></div> <div class="field--item"><a href="/tag/physics" hreflang="en">Physics</a></div> <div class="field--item"><a href="/tag/quantum" hreflang="en">quantum</a></div> <div class="field--item"><a href="/tag/religion-0" hreflang="en">religion</a></div> <div class="field--item"><a href="/tag/silly" hreflang="en">silly</a></div> <div class="field--item"><a href="/tag/weather" hreflang="en">Weather</a></div> </div> </div> <div class="field field--name-field-blog-categories field--type-entity-reference field--label-inline"> <div class="field--label">Categories</div> <div class="field--items"> <div class="field--item"><a href="/channel/free-thought" hreflang="en">Free Thought</a></div> </div> </div> <section> <article data-comment-user-id="0" id="comment-1642922" class="js-comment comment-wrapper clearfix"> <mark class="hidden" data-comment-timestamp="1315482083"></mark> <div class="well"> <strong></strong> <div class="field field--name-comment-body field--type-text-long field--label-hidden field--item"><p>Yes, it needs to be done in this voice: </p> <p><a href="http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=bputeFGXEjA">http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=bputeFGXEjA</a></p> </div> <drupal-render-placeholder callback="comment.lazy_builders:renderLinks" arguments="0=1642922&amp;1=default&amp;2=en&amp;3=" token="x8avdDWnjitPhLRO9YaSCIzWIggujYnGU1llKe_qkkI"></drupal-render-placeholder> </div> <footer> <em>By <span lang="" typeof="schema:Person" property="schema:name" datatype="">CCPhysicist (not verified)</span> on 08 Sep 2011 <a href="https://scienceblogs.com/taxonomy/term/134/feed#comment-1642922">#permalink</a></em> <article typeof="schema:Person" about="/user/0"> <div class="field field--name-user-picture field--type-image field--label-hidden field--item"> <a href="/user/0" hreflang="und"><img src="/files/styles/thumbnail/public/default_images/icon-user.png?itok=yQw_eG_q" width="100" height="100" alt="User Image" typeof="foaf:Image" class="img-responsive" /> </a> </div> </article> </footer> </article> <article data-comment-user-id="0" id="comment-1642923" class="js-comment comment-wrapper clearfix"> <mark class="hidden" data-comment-timestamp="1315482596"></mark> <div class="well"> <strong></strong> <div class="field field--name-comment-body field--type-text-long field--label-hidden field--item"><p>Love the hat tip to Bill Cosby (hearkening back to when he was funny).</p> </div> <drupal-render-placeholder callback="comment.lazy_builders:renderLinks" arguments="0=1642923&amp;1=default&amp;2=en&amp;3=" token="eDVcSBFTTZkB4RtU4cUTqyjjq70JBtI4xelhtuon9Mo"></drupal-render-placeholder> </div> <footer> <em>By <span lang="" typeof="schema:Person" property="schema:name" datatype="">dean (not verified)</span> on 08 Sep 2011 <a href="https://scienceblogs.com/taxonomy/term/134/feed#comment-1642923">#permalink</a></em> <article typeof="schema:Person" about="/user/0"> <div class="field field--name-user-picture field--type-image field--label-hidden field--item"> <a href="/user/0" hreflang="und"><img src="/files/styles/thumbnail/public/default_images/icon-user.png?itok=yQw_eG_q" width="100" height="100" alt="User Image" typeof="foaf:Image" class="img-responsive" /> </a> </div> </article> </footer> </article> <article data-comment-user-id="0" id="comment-1642924" class="js-comment comment-wrapper clearfix"> <mark class="hidden" data-comment-timestamp="1315484363"></mark> <div class="well"> <strong></strong> <div class="field field--name-comment-body field--type-text-long field--label-hidden field--item"><p>Wrong Ark. It's was Moseses that was used as a communication device with aliensG-d.</p> <blockquote><p>Apologies to Peter Shor, Bill Cosby, and God.)</p></blockquote> <p>What? No Ayn Rand?</p> </div> <drupal-render-placeholder callback="comment.lazy_builders:renderLinks" arguments="0=1642924&amp;1=default&amp;2=en&amp;3=" token="vW35JihFHEB4gqfjCYv0L5dpsoRzJU1m_wG7pNZhwpM"></drupal-render-placeholder> </div> <footer> <em>By <span lang="" typeof="schema:Person" property="schema:name" datatype="">Sili (not verified)</span> on 08 Sep 2011 <a href="https://scienceblogs.com/taxonomy/term/134/feed#comment-1642924">#permalink</a></em> <article typeof="schema:Person" about="/user/0"> <div class="field field--name-user-picture field--type-image field--label-hidden field--item"> <a href="/user/0" hreflang="und"><img src="/files/styles/thumbnail/public/default_images/icon-user.png?itok=yQw_eG_q" width="100" height="100" alt="User Image" typeof="foaf:Image" class="img-responsive" /> </a> </div> </article> </footer> </article> <article data-comment-user-id="0" id="comment-1642925" class="js-comment comment-wrapper clearfix"> <mark class="hidden" data-comment-timestamp="1315484815"></mark> <div class="well"> <strong></strong> <div class="field field--name-comment-body field--type-text-long field--label-hidden field--item"><p>Obviously. Things became just a bit too complex... ;-)</p> </div> <drupal-render-placeholder callback="comment.lazy_builders:renderLinks" arguments="0=1642925&amp;1=default&amp;2=en&amp;3=" token="Nbhg97bru0zEhpv5Dms_rjksE_IDuMqeJncED9VGVS0"></drupal-render-placeholder> </div> <footer> <em>By <span lang="" typeof="schema:Person" property="schema:name" datatype="">Mausy5043 (not verified)</span> on 08 Sep 2011 <a href="https://scienceblogs.com/taxonomy/term/134/feed#comment-1642925">#permalink</a></em> <article typeof="schema:Person" about="/user/0"> <div class="field field--name-user-picture field--type-image field--label-hidden field--item"> <a href="/user/0" hreflang="und"><img src="/files/styles/thumbnail/public/default_images/icon-user.png?itok=yQw_eG_q" width="100" height="100" alt="User Image" typeof="foaf:Image" class="img-responsive" /> </a> </div> </article> </footer> </article> <article data-comment-user-id="0" id="comment-1642926" class="js-comment comment-wrapper clearfix"> <mark class="hidden" data-comment-timestamp="1315494135"></mark> <div class="well"> <strong></strong> <div class="field field--name-comment-body field--type-text-long field--label-hidden field--item"><p>That made my morning, and nearly made coffee come out my nose. Thanks Chad.</p> </div> <drupal-render-placeholder callback="comment.lazy_builders:renderLinks" arguments="0=1642926&amp;1=default&amp;2=en&amp;3=" token="xMQxQzNa6FgLs82ZoQBFzSjHwz-ucsAzUYY-pirPwio"></drupal-render-placeholder> </div> <footer> <em>By <span lang="" typeof="schema:Person" property="schema:name" datatype="">Splintex (not verified)</span> on 08 Sep 2011 <a href="https://scienceblogs.com/taxonomy/term/134/feed#comment-1642926">#permalink</a></em> <article typeof="schema:Person" about="/user/0"> <div class="field field--name-user-picture field--type-image field--label-hidden field--item"> <a href="/user/0" hreflang="und"><img src="/files/styles/thumbnail/public/default_images/icon-user.png?itok=yQw_eG_q" width="100" height="100" alt="User Image" typeof="foaf:Image" class="img-responsive" /> </a> </div> </article> </footer> </article> <article data-comment-user-id="0" id="comment-1642927" class="js-comment comment-wrapper clearfix"> <mark class="hidden" data-comment-timestamp="1315504526"></mark> <div class="well"> <strong></strong> <div class="field field--name-comment-body field--type-text-long field--label-hidden field--item"><p>What, you went that far without bringing up the (set theoretic) independence of the Continuum Hypothesis and its bearing on the cardinality of the reals? And why not do QM with p-adics anyway? At least then you can get the abstract complex i in a constructive fashion, starting with the p-adic integers as a limit of finite fields. Sheeeesh, they are both a couple of morons. Noah should have pointed out that the grains of sand in HIS, ie. Noah's, universe were not the grains of sand in some other guy's.</p> </div> <drupal-render-placeholder callback="comment.lazy_builders:renderLinks" arguments="0=1642927&amp;1=default&amp;2=en&amp;3=" token="sr1wFdfuPhyOAX6a1BxDoVny9cTnZMuhgKUk1XhLHoI"></drupal-render-placeholder> </div> <footer> <em>By <a rel="nofollow" href="http://pseudomonad.blogspot.com" lang="" typeof="schema:Person" property="schema:name" datatype="">Kea (not verified)</a> on 08 Sep 2011 <a href="https://scienceblogs.com/taxonomy/term/134/feed#comment-1642927">#permalink</a></em> <article typeof="schema:Person" about="/user/0"> <div class="field field--name-user-picture field--type-image field--label-hidden field--item"> <a href="/user/0" hreflang="und"><img src="/files/styles/thumbnail/public/default_images/icon-user.png?itok=yQw_eG_q" width="100" height="100" alt="User Image" typeof="foaf:Image" class="img-responsive" /> </a> </div> </article> </footer> </article> <article data-comment-user-id="0" id="comment-1642928" class="js-comment comment-wrapper clearfix"> <mark class="hidden" data-comment-timestamp="1315512986"></mark> <div class="well"> <strong></strong> <div class="field field--name-comment-body field--type-text-long field--label-hidden field--item"><p>Oh, my. That is most excellently well done, indeed.</p> </div> <drupal-render-placeholder callback="comment.lazy_builders:renderLinks" arguments="0=1642928&amp;1=default&amp;2=en&amp;3=" token="L5PA1BVEj7f62OasnKB0jMOadSg7QedCFDwcIzRDlfM"></drupal-render-placeholder> </div> <footer> <em>By <span lang="" typeof="schema:Person" property="schema:name" datatype="">Brooks (not verified)</span> on 08 Sep 2011 <a href="https://scienceblogs.com/taxonomy/term/134/feed#comment-1642928">#permalink</a></em> <article typeof="schema:Person" about="/user/0"> <div class="field field--name-user-picture field--type-image field--label-hidden field--item"> <a href="/user/0" hreflang="und"><img src="/files/styles/thumbnail/public/default_images/icon-user.png?itok=yQw_eG_q" width="100" height="100" alt="User Image" typeof="foaf:Image" class="img-responsive" /> </a> </div> </article> </footer> </article> <article data-comment-user-id="0" id="comment-1642929" class="js-comment comment-wrapper clearfix"> <mark class="hidden" data-comment-timestamp="1315568385"></mark> <div class="well"> <strong></strong> <div class="field field--name-comment-body field--type-text-long field--label-hidden field--item"><p>in Hilbert Space, no one can hear you scream.</p> </div> <drupal-render-placeholder callback="comment.lazy_builders:renderLinks" arguments="0=1642929&amp;1=default&amp;2=en&amp;3=" token="M6u8cZdd3UPb2Zw_KTokC9goRq0R8xeU4waUhGXKGvA"></drupal-render-placeholder> </div> <footer> <em>By <span lang="" typeof="schema:Person" property="schema:name" datatype="">rob (not verified)</span> on 09 Sep 2011 <a href="https://scienceblogs.com/taxonomy/term/134/feed#comment-1642929">#permalink</a></em> <article typeof="schema:Person" about="/user/0"> <div class="field field--name-user-picture field--type-image field--label-hidden field--item"> <a href="/user/0" hreflang="und"><img src="/files/styles/thumbnail/public/default_images/icon-user.png?itok=yQw_eG_q" width="100" height="100" alt="User Image" typeof="foaf:Image" class="img-responsive" /> </a> </div> </article> </footer> </article> </section> <ul class="links inline list-inline"><li class="comment-forbidden"><a href="/user/login?destination=/principles/2011/09/08/still-raining%23comment-form">Log in</a> to post comments</li></ul> Thu, 08 Sep 2011 11:24:17 +0000 drorzel 47717 at https://scienceblogs.com Scientific Commuting: When Does It Make Sense to Take Alternate Routes? https://scienceblogs.com/principles/2011/08/12/scientific-commuting-when-does <span>Scientific Commuting: When Does It Make Sense to Take Alternate Routes?</span> <div class="field field--name-body field--type-text-with-summary field--label-hidden field--item"><p>I am an inveterate driver of "back ways" to places. My preferred route to campus involves driving through a whole bunch of residential streets, rather than taking the "main" road leading from our neighborhood to campus. I do this because there are four traffic lights on the main-road route, and they're not well timed, so it's a rare day when I don't get stuck at one or more of them. My preferred route has a lot of stop signs, but very little traffic, so they're quick stops, and I spend more time in motion, which makes me feel like I'm getting there faster.</p> <p>That's the psychological reason, but does this make physical sense? That is, under what conditions is it actually faster to take the back route, rather than just going down the main road?</p> <p>Some parameters: the main road route covers 1.7 miles and contains four traffic lights. The back way covers 2.2 miles and has nine stop signs. The speed limit on all of these streets is 30mph, but I usually drive more like 35mph, or 16 m/s to put it in round numbers. I don't really gun my car after any of the stops, so the acceleration is around 2 m/s/s (I'm enough of a dork to have checked this with the accelerometer in my phone, as well as counting "one thousand one, one thousand two..." while accelerating up to speed).</p> <p>Given that information, how can I estimate the conditions under which it makes practical sense, rather than just psychological sense, to take the longer route rather than the main roads?</p> <!--more--><p>I'm a physicist, not an engineer, so I'm going to abstract away a lot of the difficult stuff about this problem. Let's imagine that both the traffic lights and the stop signs are evenly spaced (they aren't) along the route. This divides the 1.7 mile main-road route into five segments (each with a length of 547 m), and the 2.2 mile back way into ten segments (each with a length of 354 m). For each segment, I have to accelerate up to speed at the start, cruise at constant speed for some distance, then decelerate to a stop. In reality, the deceleration tends to be a little faster than the acceleration, but for simplicity, we'll say they're both the same.</p> <p>So, a little math. We know from introductory kinematics that the time required to accelerate up to some speed <i>v<sub>f</sub></i> at some acceleration <i>a</i> is:</p> <blockquote><p><img src="http://scienceblogs.com/principles/wp-content/blogs.dir/467/files/2012/04/i-41a002b54c5eda8e3923c7489ada3515-commute1.png" alt="i-41a002b54c5eda8e3923c7489ada3515-commute1.png" /></p> </blockquote> <p>And the distance <i>x</i> covered during that time is:</p> <blockquote><p><img src="http://scienceblogs.com/principles/wp-content/blogs.dir/467/files/2012/04/i-ba666bb9ef3cac3d529b4c56f5dc4299-commute2.png" alt="i-ba666bb9ef3cac3d529b4c56f5dc4299-commute2.png" /></p> </blockquote> <p>To find the time required to cover one of the segments, then, we need to include both the time required to speed up at the start and slow down at the end, and also the time to cover the remaining distance. That distance is the length of the segment minus the distance covered while speeding up and slowing down, so using the two equations above, we have:</p> <blockquote><p><img src="http://scienceblogs.com/principles/wp-content/blogs.dir/467/files/2012/04/i-154f5031a434f73f94b22c0eff927b67-commute3.png" alt="i-154f5031a434f73f94b22c0eff927b67-commute3.png" /></p> </blockquote> <p>That looks a little scary, but if you look carefully at that second term, the bit that's subtracted in the numerator simplifies to half of the first term in the equation. which means that the time to complete one segment is just:</p> <blockquote><p><img src="http://scienceblogs.com/principles/wp-content/blogs.dir/467/files/2012/04/i-d94297937363963691227ce7e4a3afb1-commute4.png" alt="i-d94297937363963691227ce7e4a3afb1-commute4.png" /></p> </blockquote> <p>Does this look right? Well, looking at the equation, we see that if we increase the acceleration, we decrease the total time. That makes sense, because we spend less time speeding up, and more time cruising at maximum speed. Increasing the final velocity is a little more ambiguous-- it decreases the second term, because the cruising speed is higher, but increases the first, because it takes more time to speed up. Whether this leads to a net increase or a net decrease will depend on the exact values of <i>a</i>, <i>x<sub>seg</sub></i>, and <i>v<sub>f</sub></i>.</p> <p>The total time required is just the time per segment multiplied by the number of segments, <i>N</i>. This gives us a simple expression for the total time:</p> <blockquote><p><img src="http://scienceblogs.com/principles/wp-content/blogs.dir/467/files/2012/04/i-e4fa5c97bb90d65f1d3ee699bf310ff0-commute5.png" alt="i-e4fa5c97bb90d65f1d3ee699bf310ff0-commute5.png" /></p> </blockquote> <p>(where I've used the fact that <i>N</i> times the segment length is the total length).</p> <p>So, this gives a simple formula for the time spent to cover each route, which depends on the cruising speed, the acceleration of the car, and the total distance to be covered. this is a dramatic simplification, of course, but it gives you a good idea of the important factors.</p> <p>So, putting in the numbers from up above, we get a travel time of 210 seconds for the shorter, main-road route, and 300 seconds for the longer back way. Which makes the main-road route clearly better, right?</p> <p>There's one factor missing, though: the above model assumes that I stop at every light, but does not include time spent waiting for the light to change, which can even things out. The formula is the time spent driving, but if I end up sitting and waiting for more than about a minute and a half, then the two routes are equal in time.</p> <p>Of course, there's also a best-case scenario for the main-road route, namely hitting all of the lights perfectly so I don't need to stop at all (this essentially never happens, but it's conceivable that it might). The time in that case would just be the time for a single 1.7 mile segment, or about 179 seconds.</p> <p>So, to sum up: the back way is almost certainly slower, unless I end up sitting at the lights for more than a minute and a half, which isn't that unusual. The main-road route is almost certainly faster, but more variable in time, as there's an unknown waiting time to factor in.</p> <p>Ultimately, as I said, my reasons for going the back way are psychological, not practical-- sitting at traffic lights pisses me off in a way that having to stop at stop signs does not. So, taking the back way gets me to campus in a better mood than taking the main roads, and that's what really matters, particularly for students in my morning classes.</p> <p>This calculation does prove once again, though, that if you have a little knowledge of basic physics, there's nothing you can't <strike>overthink to a preposterous degree</strike> model mathematically.</p> </div> <span><a title="View user profile." href="/author/drorzel" lang="" about="/author/drorzel" typeof="schema:Person" property="schema:name" datatype="">drorzel</a></span> <span>Fri, 08/12/2011 - 04:51</span> <div class="field field--name-field-blog-tags field--type-entity-reference field--label-inline"> <div class="field--label">Tags</div> <div class="field--items"> <div class="field--item"><a href="/tag/education" hreflang="en">education</a></div> <div class="field--item"><a href="/tag/physics" hreflang="en">Physics</a></div> <div class="field--item"><a href="/tag/playing-graphs" hreflang="en">Playing-With-Graphs</a></div> <div class="field--item"><a href="/tag/science" hreflang="en">Science</a></div> <div class="field--item"><a href="/tag/travel" hreflang="en">travel</a></div> <div class="field--item"><a href="/tag/acceleration" hreflang="en">acceleration</a></div> <div class="field--item"><a href="/tag/driving" hreflang="en">driving</a></div> <div class="field--item"><a href="/tag/kinematics" hreflang="en">kinematics</a></div> <div class="field--item"><a href="/tag/math" hreflang="en">math</a></div> <div class="field--item"><a href="/tag/modeling" hreflang="en">modeling</a></div> <div class="field--item"><a href="/tag/silly" hreflang="en">silly</a></div> <div class="field--item"><a href="/tag/speed" hreflang="en">speed</a></div> <div class="field--item"><a href="/tag/velocity" hreflang="en">velocity</a></div> <div class="field--item"><a href="/tag/education" hreflang="en">education</a></div> <div class="field--item"><a href="/tag/physics" hreflang="en">Physics</a></div> <div class="field--item"><a href="/tag/science" hreflang="en">Science</a></div> </div> </div> <section> <article data-comment-user-id="0" id="comment-1642605" class="js-comment comment-wrapper clearfix"> <mark class="hidden" data-comment-timestamp="1313142058"></mark> <div class="well"> <strong></strong> <div class="field field--name-comment-body field--type-text-long field--label-hidden field--item"><p>Should be easy enough to get experimental data. Total travel time for each route and number of red lights.</p> <p>Length of stop lights also varies with locale. In Iowa, 90 seconds average over 4 lights seems like a reasonable time to me. But when I was down in Orlando I was mortified at how long the red stop lights were: some were easily five minutes in the Disney tourist-trap area (but reasonable times in downtown Orlando).</p> </div> <drupal-render-placeholder callback="comment.lazy_builders:renderLinks" arguments="0=1642605&amp;1=default&amp;2=en&amp;3=" token="4VArh9Yxn7A3nZxAeIYQIIbHmN4J1Kua1V01gpuDmoE"></drupal-render-placeholder> </div> <footer> <em>By <span lang="" typeof="schema:Person" property="schema:name" datatype="">Colin (not verified)</span> on 12 Aug 2011 <a href="https://scienceblogs.com/taxonomy/term/134/feed#comment-1642605">#permalink</a></em> <article typeof="schema:Person" about="/user/0"> <div class="field field--name-user-picture field--type-image field--label-hidden field--item"> <a href="/user/0" hreflang="und"><img src="/files/styles/thumbnail/public/default_images/icon-user.png?itok=yQw_eG_q" width="100" height="100" alt="User Image" typeof="foaf:Image" class="img-responsive" /> </a> </div> </article> </footer> </article> <article data-comment-user-id="0" id="comment-1642606" class="js-comment comment-wrapper clearfix"> <mark class="hidden" data-comment-timestamp="1313142308"></mark> <div class="well"> <strong></strong> <div class="field field--name-comment-body field--type-text-long field--label-hidden field--item"><p>What about fuel consumption?</p> </div> <drupal-render-placeholder callback="comment.lazy_builders:renderLinks" arguments="0=1642606&amp;1=default&amp;2=en&amp;3=" token="wDXa8jVKavjf_kNf7g8UQX3A42NBNg4Mnze5Qpiw3DY"></drupal-render-placeholder> </div> <footer> <em>By <span lang="" typeof="schema:Person" property="schema:name" datatype="">Andrew Gillett (not verified)</span> on 12 Aug 2011 <a href="https://scienceblogs.com/taxonomy/term/134/feed#comment-1642606">#permalink</a></em> <article typeof="schema:Person" about="/user/0"> <div class="field field--name-user-picture field--type-image field--label-hidden field--item"> <a href="/user/0" hreflang="und"><img src="/files/styles/thumbnail/public/default_images/icon-user.png?itok=yQw_eG_q" width="100" height="100" alt="User Image" typeof="foaf:Image" class="img-responsive" /> </a> </div> </article> </footer> </article> <article data-comment-user-id="0" id="comment-1642607" class="js-comment comment-wrapper clearfix"> <mark class="hidden" data-comment-timestamp="1313142408"></mark> <div class="well"> <strong></strong> <div class="field field--name-comment-body field--type-text-long field--label-hidden field--item"><p>You can make the psychological reasons fit into a mathematical model if you include variables besides time into your utility/cost model. </p> <p>Since you prefer the back roads route, you could even derive a bound on your preference for the tradeoff between time and variability.</p> </div> <drupal-render-placeholder callback="comment.lazy_builders:renderLinks" arguments="0=1642607&amp;1=default&amp;2=en&amp;3=" token="qQJVLbSpffun-usRlbQEiabCho0FFM8S-EbNxA-aYng"></drupal-render-placeholder> </div> <footer> <em>By <span lang="" typeof="schema:Person" property="schema:name" datatype="">Dave X (not verified)</span> on 12 Aug 2011 <a href="https://scienceblogs.com/taxonomy/term/134/feed#comment-1642607">#permalink</a></em> <article typeof="schema:Person" about="/user/0"> <div class="field field--name-user-picture field--type-image field--label-hidden field--item"> <a href="/user/0" hreflang="und"><img src="/files/styles/thumbnail/public/default_images/icon-user.png?itok=yQw_eG_q" width="100" height="100" alt="User Image" typeof="foaf:Image" class="img-responsive" /> </a> </div> </article> </footer> </article> <article data-comment-user-id="0" id="comment-1642608" class="js-comment comment-wrapper clearfix"> <mark class="hidden" data-comment-timestamp="1313144391"></mark> <div class="well"> <strong></strong> <div class="field field--name-comment-body field--type-text-long field--label-hidden field--item"><p>I agree that moving feels better than waiting, even if the elapsed time is greater. But, as I am now living in the DC area, the basic premise of getting frustrated with a 2-mile commute in Niskenectady seems ⦠flawed.</p> <p>Anyway, carpool. Commute with the Hamiltonian and you will conserve energy.</p> </div> <drupal-render-placeholder callback="comment.lazy_builders:renderLinks" arguments="0=1642608&amp;1=default&amp;2=en&amp;3=" token="bhyimAFqyUZ8QouaqrTzgG5jNskGZXsNjyBj7k8AMJ0"></drupal-render-placeholder> </div> <footer> <em>By <a rel="nofollow" href="http://blogs.scienceforums.net/swansont/" lang="" typeof="schema:Person" property="schema:name" datatype="">Tom (not verified)</a> on 12 Aug 2011 <a href="https://scienceblogs.com/taxonomy/term/134/feed#comment-1642608">#permalink</a></em> <article typeof="schema:Person" about="/user/0"> <div class="field field--name-user-picture field--type-image field--label-hidden field--item"> <a href="/user/0" hreflang="und"><img src="/files/styles/thumbnail/public/default_images/icon-user.png?itok=yQw_eG_q" width="100" height="100" alt="User Image" typeof="foaf:Image" class="img-responsive" /> </a> </div> </article> </footer> </article> <article data-comment-user-id="0" id="comment-1642609" class="js-comment comment-wrapper clearfix"> <mark class="hidden" data-comment-timestamp="1313144434"></mark> <div class="well"> <strong></strong> <div class="field field--name-comment-body field--type-text-long field--label-hidden field--item"><p>I would posit that sitting at traffic lights pisses you off and stop signs don't because with stop signs you're an active participant. The lights force you to be passive.</p> </div> <drupal-render-placeholder callback="comment.lazy_builders:renderLinks" arguments="0=1642609&amp;1=default&amp;2=en&amp;3=" token="AHlmPphkozfmwbePoTPfF65Fd7Wvc-M4Nc3p1NhjqRg"></drupal-render-placeholder> </div> <footer> <em>By <span lang="" typeof="schema:Person" property="schema:name" datatype="">Surgoshan (not verified)</span> on 12 Aug 2011 <a href="https://scienceblogs.com/taxonomy/term/134/feed#comment-1642609">#permalink</a></em> <article typeof="schema:Person" about="/user/0"> <div class="field field--name-user-picture field--type-image field--label-hidden field--item"> <a href="/user/0" hreflang="und"><img src="/files/styles/thumbnail/public/default_images/icon-user.png?itok=yQw_eG_q" width="100" height="100" alt="User Image" typeof="foaf:Image" class="img-responsive" /> </a> </div> </article> </footer> </article> <article data-comment-user-id="0" id="comment-1642610" class="js-comment comment-wrapper clearfix"> <mark class="hidden" data-comment-timestamp="1313144957"></mark> <div class="well"> <strong></strong> <div class="field field--name-comment-body field--type-text-long field--label-hidden field--item"><p>"Increasing the final velocity is a little more ambiguous... Whether this leads to a net increase or a net decrease will depend on the exact values of a, xseg, and vf"</p> <p>If you work it out, increasing vf will decrease the time taken up to where the max speed is reached halfway along the segment (obviously, you can't get any faster than that without increasing the acceleration). Logically, increasing the max speed couldn't increase the time taken but it's interesting (at least to me) how that comes out in the maths.</p> </div> <drupal-render-placeholder callback="comment.lazy_builders:renderLinks" arguments="0=1642610&amp;1=default&amp;2=en&amp;3=" token="lRFmBrpoJWe-5p_ClmGFhW194-haH3YaYu-QxWnh8K4"></drupal-render-placeholder> </div> <footer> <em>By <span lang="" typeof="schema:Person" property="schema:name" datatype="">Ciaran (not verified)</span> on 12 Aug 2011 <a href="https://scienceblogs.com/taxonomy/term/134/feed#comment-1642610">#permalink</a></em> <article typeof="schema:Person" about="/user/0"> <div class="field field--name-user-picture field--type-image field--label-hidden field--item"> <a href="/user/0" hreflang="und"><img src="/files/styles/thumbnail/public/default_images/icon-user.png?itok=yQw_eG_q" width="100" height="100" alt="User Image" typeof="foaf:Image" class="img-responsive" /> </a> </div> </article> </footer> </article> <article data-comment-user-id="0" id="comment-1642611" class="js-comment comment-wrapper clearfix"> <mark class="hidden" data-comment-timestamp="1313145666"></mark> <div class="well"> <strong></strong> <div class="field field--name-comment-body field--type-text-long field--label-hidden field--item"><p>Now you need to model how much more gas you use, and the wear and tear on your brakes. :) Sitting at traffic lights is a bit of a peeve of mine too, and I manage to find the best shortcuts (eventually) in any city we live in--we lived in Vancouver for two years. My wife used to be irritated at me trying all these alternate routes, but when she realized just how quickly we were able to get around (eventually), she started doing the same thing (exploring new routes, looking for the fastest route). Of course, now we live in a city small enough that pretty much any route is the best route so that takes the fun out of things.</p> <p>Incidentally, if you're so close to campus, why are you driving? That's 20-25 minute walk, and sounds like a nice walk through the suburbs too. I know the U.S. isn't big on making things pedestrian-friendly so maybe you're in one of those areas. </p> <p>I don't know how many times I've stopped for the night at some hotel only to find I can't actually walk anywhere to stretch my legs--my favourite time was when I asked hotel staff where a good place to walk was. The conversation went like this:</p> <p>"Walk? You want to walk?"</p> <p>"Yes, I've been driving all day and I need to stretch my legs"</p> <p>"Walk?" (calls a coworker over)"He wants to walk." (both now staring at me like I've asked for puppy-flavoured ice-cream).</p> <p>"Yes, walk"</p> <p>"You want to walk?"</p> <p>"Yes, walk. (my two fingers pantomime walking for them). "I saw a mall on my way in. How do I get there?"</p> <p>"Drive back out the way you came, turn left..."</p> <p>"No, I want to walk to the mall, not drive to the mall and walk around the mall".</p> <p>(More staring. Now they suspect I'm a terrorist trying to meet a contact)</p> <p>"I don't know if you can walk there from here, but you can walk around our parking lot. People take their dogs for walks in the parking lot". Pauses, leans forward confidingly, lowers voice, "We have security cameras on all areas of our parking lots". (Both nodding their heads now, second clerk glancing admiringly at first clerk for his 'subtle' way of letting me know they'll be watching me).</p> <p>I went walking off-property anyway, and know what, they were right. You can't walk to the mall (big fenced highway in the way). There were also no sidewalks, just roads, and even when I was stumbling along lumpy grassy margins well off the road, I still had cars honking at me. "Look, he's walking, how unnatural...he's probably a terrorist trying to meet a contact".</p> </div> <drupal-render-placeholder callback="comment.lazy_builders:renderLinks" arguments="0=1642611&amp;1=default&amp;2=en&amp;3=" token="UqVevmXTSDB3iysZdUu9esSUobH7QkjcAH3E-5j6ohA"></drupal-render-placeholder> </div> <footer> <em>By <span lang="" typeof="schema:Person" property="schema:name" datatype="">Daniel J. Andrews (not verified)</span> on 12 Aug 2011 <a href="https://scienceblogs.com/taxonomy/term/134/feed#comment-1642611">#permalink</a></em> <article typeof="schema:Person" about="/user/0"> <div class="field field--name-user-picture field--type-image field--label-hidden field--item"> <a href="/user/0" hreflang="und"><img src="/files/styles/thumbnail/public/default_images/icon-user.png?itok=yQw_eG_q" width="100" height="100" alt="User Image" typeof="foaf:Image" class="img-responsive" /> </a> </div> </article> </footer> </article> <article data-comment-user-id="0" id="comment-1642612" class="js-comment comment-wrapper clearfix"> <mark class="hidden" data-comment-timestamp="1313145859"></mark> <div class="well"> <strong></strong> <div class="field field--name-comment-body field--type-text-long field--label-hidden field--item"><p>The best route is the one that causes the least stress. I don't need them there fancy maths to figger that one out.</p> </div> <drupal-render-placeholder callback="comment.lazy_builders:renderLinks" arguments="0=1642612&amp;1=default&amp;2=en&amp;3=" token="HYbOInNVL2mhSleXmYIXEk4vPwEmtxMJNqnEb-wkWs8"></drupal-render-placeholder> </div> <footer> <em>By <span lang="" typeof="schema:Person" property="schema:name" datatype="">QuietDesperation (not verified)</span> on 12 Aug 2011 <a href="https://scienceblogs.com/taxonomy/term/134/feed#comment-1642612">#permalink</a></em> <article typeof="schema:Person" about="/user/0"> <div class="field field--name-user-picture field--type-image field--label-hidden field--item"> <a href="/user/0" hreflang="und"><img src="/files/styles/thumbnail/public/default_images/icon-user.png?itok=yQw_eG_q" width="100" height="100" alt="User Image" typeof="foaf:Image" class="img-responsive" /> </a> </div> </article> </footer> </article> <article data-comment-user-id="0" id="comment-1642613" class="js-comment comment-wrapper clearfix"> <mark class="hidden" data-comment-timestamp="1313145991"></mark> <div class="well"> <strong></strong> <div class="field field--name-comment-body field--type-text-long field--label-hidden field--item"><p>I've got to go with Andrew here.</p> <p>1.7 miles vs. 2.2<br /> 4 potential stops vs. 9 guaranteed stops</p> <p>You're probably cutting your gas mileage by 25% going the longer route.</p> <p>No doubt you're better off than people who spend 90 minutes on the local interstate parking lot, but still...</p> </div> <drupal-render-placeholder callback="comment.lazy_builders:renderLinks" arguments="0=1642613&amp;1=default&amp;2=en&amp;3=" token="Gnqih0Ylz5KKh_EcLiCeX-5LrvCUzHas0ovpWvHHeaY"></drupal-render-placeholder> </div> <footer> <em>By <a rel="nofollow" href="http://ogremk5.wordpress.com" lang="" typeof="schema:Person" property="schema:name" datatype="">OgreMkV (not verified)</a> on 12 Aug 2011 <a href="https://scienceblogs.com/taxonomy/term/134/feed#comment-1642613">#permalink</a></em> <article typeof="schema:Person" about="/user/0"> <div class="field field--name-user-picture field--type-image field--label-hidden field--item"> <a href="/user/0" hreflang="und"><img src="/files/styles/thumbnail/public/default_images/icon-user.png?itok=yQw_eG_q" width="100" height="100" alt="User Image" typeof="foaf:Image" class="img-responsive" /> </a> </div> </article> </footer> </article> <article data-comment-user-id="0" id="comment-1642614" class="js-comment comment-wrapper clearfix"> <mark class="hidden" data-comment-timestamp="1313146442"></mark> <div class="well"> <strong></strong> <div class="field field--name-comment-body field--type-text-long field--label-hidden field--item"><p>1.7 or 2.2 miles and you _drive_? And you take the route with more stops/starts? May I suggest you ride your bike or even walk? You'll arrive feeling better, lose weight (if desired), and be healthier.</p> </div> <drupal-render-placeholder callback="comment.lazy_builders:renderLinks" arguments="0=1642614&amp;1=default&amp;2=en&amp;3=" token="OxvGxSdClDxMsdw7qDv-_-OR0KyDNZqgN3qSlPtgKh8"></drupal-render-placeholder> </div> <footer> <em>By <span lang="" typeof="schema:Person" property="schema:name" datatype="">Robert Thille (not verified)</span> on 12 Aug 2011 <a href="https://scienceblogs.com/taxonomy/term/134/feed#comment-1642614">#permalink</a></em> <article typeof="schema:Person" about="/user/0"> <div class="field field--name-user-picture field--type-image field--label-hidden field--item"> <a href="/user/0" hreflang="und"><img src="/files/styles/thumbnail/public/default_images/icon-user.png?itok=yQw_eG_q" width="100" height="100" alt="User Image" typeof="foaf:Image" class="img-responsive" /> </a> </div> </article> </footer> </article> <article data-comment-user-id="0" id="comment-1642615" class="js-comment comment-wrapper clearfix"> <mark class="hidden" data-comment-timestamp="1313147155"></mark> <div class="well"> <strong></strong> <div class="field field--name-comment-body field--type-text-long field--label-hidden field--item"><p>I used to bike moderately regularly, but that turned out to be one of the primary causes of the crippling muscle spasms in my neck that made it impossible to turn my head. Once I stopped biking (at the suggestion of my physical therapist), I stopped having quite so much pain.</p> <p>At the moment, walking is out because I have plantar fasciitis in my foot, and after a lot of walking, it feels like I have a hot knife in my shoe. Also, now that SteelyKid is both verbal and mobile, it's more or less impossible to get any work done after I pick her up at 5:30, and driving rather than walking gets me an additional half-hour or so in my working day, which makes a difference.</p> </div> <drupal-render-placeholder callback="comment.lazy_builders:renderLinks" arguments="0=1642615&amp;1=default&amp;2=en&amp;3=" token="W9PxmSvIFidkiQTToWzQ3iKIz_JmTbLeFwFqEIdTr3Y"></drupal-render-placeholder> </div> <footer> <em>By <a rel="nofollow" href="http://scienceblogs.com/principles/" lang="" typeof="schema:Person" property="schema:name" datatype="">Chad Orzel (not verified)</a> on 12 Aug 2011 <a href="https://scienceblogs.com/taxonomy/term/134/feed#comment-1642615">#permalink</a></em> <article typeof="schema:Person" about="/user/0"> <div class="field field--name-user-picture field--type-image field--label-hidden field--item"> <a href="/user/0" hreflang="und"><img src="/files/styles/thumbnail/public/default_images/icon-user.png?itok=yQw_eG_q" width="100" height="100" alt="User Image" typeof="foaf:Image" class="img-responsive" /> </a> </div> </article> </footer> </article> <article data-comment-user-id="0" id="comment-1642616" class="js-comment comment-wrapper clearfix"> <mark class="hidden" data-comment-timestamp="1313149964"></mark> <div class="well"> <strong></strong> <div class="field field--name-comment-body field--type-text-long field--label-hidden field--item"><p>I thought you were an experimentalist.</p> </div> <drupal-render-placeholder callback="comment.lazy_builders:renderLinks" arguments="0=1642616&amp;1=default&amp;2=en&amp;3=" token="tk_lX4VFj54XMseEY_smOzQrjyOfg_Gqd5z0b27wlbs"></drupal-render-placeholder> </div> <footer> <em>By <span lang="" typeof="schema:Person" property="schema:name" datatype="">Clay B (not verified)</span> on 12 Aug 2011 <a href="https://scienceblogs.com/taxonomy/term/134/feed#comment-1642616">#permalink</a></em> <article typeof="schema:Person" about="/user/0"> <div class="field field--name-user-picture field--type-image field--label-hidden field--item"> <a href="/user/0" hreflang="und"><img src="/files/styles/thumbnail/public/default_images/icon-user.png?itok=yQw_eG_q" width="100" height="100" alt="User Image" typeof="foaf:Image" class="img-responsive" /> </a> </div> </article> </footer> </article> <article data-comment-user-id="0" id="comment-1642617" class="js-comment comment-wrapper clearfix"> <mark class="hidden" data-comment-timestamp="1313150241"></mark> <div class="well"> <strong></strong> <div class="field field--name-comment-body field--type-text-long field--label-hidden field--item"><p>If you miss bicycling, but want something more comfortable, you could get a recumbent bike. I've been riding one for over 10 years now, and it really helps. The seat is comfortable; you are sitting upright and so there is no need to contort your neck around; and there is no load on your wrists. Mine is one of the "compact long-wheelbase" types, which are designed for commuting (not racing). Unfortunately, I can't recommend the exact model as the one I ride (a BikeE), because the company went out of business just a couple of years after I bought it. But, Sun makes the EZ-1 bikes, which look to be pretty comparable and reasonably priced.</p> </div> <drupal-render-placeholder callback="comment.lazy_builders:renderLinks" arguments="0=1642617&amp;1=default&amp;2=en&amp;3=" token="gbvG8eT-PSNieE7tSQVXvd3grR6kBRwBWAtnmZuBzPc"></drupal-render-placeholder> </div> <footer> <em>By <a rel="nofollow" href="http://somethingscrawlinginmyhair.com" lang="" typeof="schema:Person" property="schema:name" datatype="">Tim Eisele (not verified)</a> on 12 Aug 2011 <a href="https://scienceblogs.com/taxonomy/term/134/feed#comment-1642617">#permalink</a></em> <article typeof="schema:Person" about="/user/0"> <div class="field field--name-user-picture field--type-image field--label-hidden field--item"> <a href="/user/0" hreflang="und"><img src="/files/styles/thumbnail/public/default_images/icon-user.png?itok=yQw_eG_q" width="100" height="100" alt="User Image" typeof="foaf:Image" class="img-responsive" /> </a> </div> </article> </footer> </article> <article data-comment-user-id="0" id="comment-1642618" class="js-comment comment-wrapper clearfix"> <mark class="hidden" data-comment-timestamp="1313150274"></mark> <div class="well"> <strong></strong> <div class="field field--name-comment-body field--type-text-long field--label-hidden field--item"><p>I share Chad's distaste for having to wait at red lights. I don't know about the area where Chad lives, but in most areas of this state traffic lights are timed to turn the light on the main road red when there is a gap in traffic. That's a perfectly reasonable thing to do when the nearest traffic light is several miles (or more) away. But when you have a bunch of lights closely spaced together, welcome to Plaza Purgatory (commercial strips are where you are most likely to find this scenario): the perverse effect is that having to stop at one light *increases* the probability that you will have to stop at the next light. If it were my goal to encourage speeding and tailgating, I could not design a better system.</p> <p>In my grad school days, when I often had to make long drives for work-related reasons, I would look for alternative routes just so I could see a different road. Some of these side roads worked out fine: not having to deal with trucks is a significant advantage for the Merritt Parkway over I-95 in SW Connecticut if you are just passing through the state. Others were less effective: Route 206 through Princeton, NJ (this section of I-95 never got built, thus the traffic load on the NJ Turnpike), is a pretty drive in the daytime, but accidents seemed unusually common--I saw three accidents in three one-way trips on that route. As with Chad's back road commuting, it was for psychological reasons.</p> <p>Nitpick: Unless there are traffic lights at the points Chad turns on and off the main road which are included in the total, the main road route will include at least one stop sign in addition to the traffic lights, and even if the turns account for two of the four traffic lights, Chad has to slow down there anyway (I am assuming that Chad doesn't take corners at 35 mph). So the advantage of the main road route will be less than Chad's inverted envelope suggests.</p> </div> <drupal-render-placeholder callback="comment.lazy_builders:renderLinks" arguments="0=1642618&amp;1=default&amp;2=en&amp;3=" token="k6SsHSDT_GB_abVpzmKB8IV5MMCbEqgbjZ_sSmVRfjI"></drupal-render-placeholder> </div> <footer> <em>By <span lang="" typeof="schema:Person" property="schema:name" datatype="">Eric Lund (not verified)</span> on 12 Aug 2011 <a href="https://scienceblogs.com/taxonomy/term/134/feed#comment-1642618">#permalink</a></em> <article typeof="schema:Person" about="/user/0"> <div class="field field--name-user-picture field--type-image field--label-hidden field--item"> <a href="/user/0" hreflang="und"><img src="/files/styles/thumbnail/public/default_images/icon-user.png?itok=yQw_eG_q" width="100" height="100" alt="User Image" typeof="foaf:Image" class="img-responsive" /> </a> </div> </article> </footer> </article> <article data-comment-user-id="0" id="comment-1642619" class="js-comment comment-wrapper clearfix"> <mark class="hidden" data-comment-timestamp="1313151978"></mark> <div class="well"> <strong></strong> <div class="field field--name-comment-body field--type-text-long field--label-hidden field--item"><p>Aside: Since full throttle acceleration in a modest sports car is only 3.5 m/s/s, 2 m/s/s is not as light footed as you think but might be all that is practical. </p> <p>You left out one important option: Make a sound physical argument to the local traffic engineers and get them to change the timing of the lights. Unless you are one of only a few people swimming against a spawning run to work, this could be a viable alternative. </p> <p>I recommend an uncontrolled experiment. Record your time-to-work using one route for a week, then swap routes for a week, rinse and repeat, while graphing the data. If you have a reliable trip mpg calculated off the fuel injectors, record that also. Might be interesting purely for statistical reasons: how regular are the traffic delays and what is the mpg impact of stops -vs- idling? </p> <p>Then rent a hybrid and see how this changes the answers.</p> </div> <drupal-render-placeholder callback="comment.lazy_builders:renderLinks" arguments="0=1642619&amp;1=default&amp;2=en&amp;3=" token="aSKmPZ-qCNd37bM4DtGPl4hc7BHzYd5kg6UvCDo1jt0"></drupal-render-placeholder> </div> <footer> <em>By <span lang="" typeof="schema:Person" property="schema:name" datatype="">CCPhysicist (not verified)</span> on 12 Aug 2011 <a href="https://scienceblogs.com/taxonomy/term/134/feed#comment-1642619">#permalink</a></em> <article typeof="schema:Person" about="/user/0"> <div class="field field--name-user-picture field--type-image field--label-hidden field--item"> <a href="/user/0" hreflang="und"><img src="/files/styles/thumbnail/public/default_images/icon-user.png?itok=yQw_eG_q" width="100" height="100" alt="User Image" typeof="foaf:Image" class="img-responsive" /> </a> </div> </article> </footer> </article> <article data-comment-user-id="0" id="comment-1642620" class="js-comment comment-wrapper clearfix"> <mark class="hidden" data-comment-timestamp="1313154936"></mark> <div class="well"> <strong></strong> <div class="field field--name-comment-body field--type-text-long field--label-hidden field--item"><p>2 miles and you DRIVE?</p> <p>No wonder we're all doomed.</p> </div> <drupal-render-placeholder callback="comment.lazy_builders:renderLinks" arguments="0=1642620&amp;1=default&amp;2=en&amp;3=" token="c_xh3kckOhN7SRWkxn-m3A5zDauWKbUOjO1VvCxAY-I"></drupal-render-placeholder> </div> <footer> <em>By <span lang="" typeof="schema:Person" property="schema:name" datatype="">Paco (not verified)</span> on 12 Aug 2011 <a href="https://scienceblogs.com/taxonomy/term/134/feed#comment-1642620">#permalink</a></em> <article typeof="schema:Person" about="/user/0"> <div class="field field--name-user-picture field--type-image field--label-hidden field--item"> <a href="/user/0" hreflang="und"><img src="/files/styles/thumbnail/public/default_images/icon-user.png?itok=yQw_eG_q" width="100" height="100" alt="User Image" typeof="foaf:Image" class="img-responsive" /> </a> </div> </article> </footer> </article> <article data-comment-user-id="0" id="comment-1642621" class="js-comment comment-wrapper clearfix"> <mark class="hidden" data-comment-timestamp="1313164804"></mark> <div class="well"> <strong></strong> <div class="field field--name-comment-body field--type-text-long field--label-hidden field--item"><p>My brother (applied mathematician) studied his drive to work, too: <a href="http://lanseybrothers.blogspot.com/2011/04/how-long-it-takes-to-get-to-work.html">http://lanseybrothers.blogspot.com/2011/04/how-long-it-takes-to-get-to-work.html</a></p> </div> <drupal-render-placeholder callback="comment.lazy_builders:renderLinks" arguments="0=1642621&amp;1=default&amp;2=en&amp;3=" token="QMugqWCJcCKvyTABVySq00La6uKpM6NiorC7DLyXKpE"></drupal-render-placeholder> </div> <footer> <em>By <a rel="nofollow" href="http://eli.lansey.net" lang="" typeof="schema:Person" property="schema:name" datatype="">Eli (not verified)</a> on 12 Aug 2011 <a href="https://scienceblogs.com/taxonomy/term/134/feed#comment-1642621">#permalink</a></em> <article typeof="schema:Person" about="/user/0"> <div class="field field--name-user-picture field--type-image field--label-hidden field--item"> <a href="/user/0" hreflang="und"><img src="/files/styles/thumbnail/public/default_images/icon-user.png?itok=yQw_eG_q" width="100" height="100" alt="User Image" typeof="foaf:Image" class="img-responsive" /> </a> </div> </article> </footer> </article> <article data-comment-user-id="0" id="comment-1642622" class="js-comment comment-wrapper clearfix"> <mark class="hidden" data-comment-timestamp="1313174827"></mark> <div class="well"> <strong></strong> <div class="field field--name-comment-body field--type-text-long field--label-hidden field--item"><p>Your calculations are only useful if time is the only factor in the decision. But as you note and just about everyone else chimes in with, there are other factors.</p> <p>Dave X is right-- this really needs to be modeled as a utility problem.</p> </div> <drupal-render-placeholder callback="comment.lazy_builders:renderLinks" arguments="0=1642622&amp;1=default&amp;2=en&amp;3=" token="nY2niU_DZyFYCm5bpkqJZlhFBr-pLmqt-PBen-NkNko"></drupal-render-placeholder> </div> <footer> <em>By <span lang="" typeof="schema:Person" property="schema:name" datatype="">John Novak (not verified)</span> on 12 Aug 2011 <a href="https://scienceblogs.com/taxonomy/term/134/feed#comment-1642622">#permalink</a></em> <article typeof="schema:Person" about="/user/0"> <div class="field field--name-user-picture field--type-image field--label-hidden field--item"> <a href="/user/0" hreflang="und"><img src="/files/styles/thumbnail/public/default_images/icon-user.png?itok=yQw_eG_q" width="100" height="100" alt="User Image" typeof="foaf:Image" class="img-responsive" /> </a> </div> </article> </footer> </article> <article data-comment-user-id="0" id="comment-1642623" class="js-comment comment-wrapper clearfix"> <mark class="hidden" data-comment-timestamp="1313176457"></mark> <div class="well"> <strong></strong> <div class="field field--name-comment-body field--type-text-long field--label-hidden field--item"><p>Oh, this absolutely ought to be modeled as something more complicated than a simple time calculation. I did it this way because I got the idea when I was thinking about things I could do with my intro mechanics class, and this seemed like an angle that could make for an interesting discussion/ calculation.</p> </div> <drupal-render-placeholder callback="comment.lazy_builders:renderLinks" arguments="0=1642623&amp;1=default&amp;2=en&amp;3=" token="BusXLCqTiYbGdjYOwARDYMjKCKiO4KuKyu8D3d3Cazc"></drupal-render-placeholder> </div> <footer> <em>By <a rel="nofollow" href="http://scienceblogs.com/principles/" lang="" typeof="schema:Person" property="schema:name" datatype="">Chad Orzel (not verified)</a> on 12 Aug 2011 <a href="https://scienceblogs.com/taxonomy/term/134/feed#comment-1642623">#permalink</a></em> <article typeof="schema:Person" about="/user/0"> <div class="field field--name-user-picture field--type-image field--label-hidden field--item"> <a href="/user/0" hreflang="und"><img src="/files/styles/thumbnail/public/default_images/icon-user.png?itok=yQw_eG_q" width="100" height="100" alt="User Image" typeof="foaf:Image" class="img-responsive" /> </a> </div> </article> </footer> </article> <article data-comment-user-id="0" id="comment-1642624" class="js-comment comment-wrapper clearfix"> <mark class="hidden" data-comment-timestamp="1313186977"></mark> <div class="well"> <strong></strong> <div class="field field--name-comment-body field--type-text-long field--label-hidden field--item"><p>Another big reason for taking back routes is to minimize the variance of travel time. Main routes are more likely to have unpredictable travel times due to poorly timed lights, accidents, and heavy traffic inducing jams. I'd often take a slower route with a predictable travel time rather than use a highway which was usually faster, but often enough much slower.</p> <p>Of course, you are based in a part of the country which actually has alternate routes. An awful lot of new developments consist of complex side road system with a single linkage to a main road which is necessary to get anywhere. Growing up on an urban street grid, this suburban tree structure used to drive me nuts. Rather than growing the transportation system for everyone's benefit, developers and their customers would rather rely completely on a limited resource to their own detriment.</p> </div> <drupal-render-placeholder callback="comment.lazy_builders:renderLinks" arguments="0=1642624&amp;1=default&amp;2=en&amp;3=" token="fIyoMeK4z3tSKapFEz0egeddeDRO5KUtep0u5GRV9hU"></drupal-render-placeholder> </div> <footer> <em>By <span lang="" typeof="schema:Person" property="schema:name" datatype="">Kaleberg (not verified)</span> on 12 Aug 2011 <a href="https://scienceblogs.com/taxonomy/term/134/feed#comment-1642624">#permalink</a></em> <article typeof="schema:Person" about="/user/0"> <div class="field field--name-user-picture field--type-image field--label-hidden field--item"> <a href="/user/0" hreflang="und"><img src="/files/styles/thumbnail/public/default_images/icon-user.png?itok=yQw_eG_q" width="100" height="100" alt="User Image" typeof="foaf:Image" class="img-responsive" /> </a> </div> </article> </footer> </article> <article data-comment-user-id="0" id="comment-1642625" class="js-comment comment-wrapper clearfix"> <mark class="hidden" data-comment-timestamp="1313193348"></mark> <div class="well"> <strong></strong> <div class="field field--name-comment-body field--type-text-long field--label-hidden field--item"><p>As someone using the road less traveled, you are increasing the speed of everyone on the main route. Altruism!<br /> But also, consider changing the handlebars on your bike, so you can sit up more comfortably.</p> </div> <drupal-render-placeholder callback="comment.lazy_builders:renderLinks" arguments="0=1642625&amp;1=default&amp;2=en&amp;3=" token="x4GfnyH2sxpa0_g5tCJ5uyfQ2Do19TxSaSP9VofcrY0"></drupal-render-placeholder> </div> <footer> <em>By <span lang="" typeof="schema:Person" property="schema:name" datatype="">Whomever1 (not verified)</span> on 12 Aug 2011 <a href="https://scienceblogs.com/taxonomy/term/134/feed#comment-1642625">#permalink</a></em> <article typeof="schema:Person" about="/user/0"> <div class="field field--name-user-picture field--type-image field--label-hidden field--item"> <a href="/user/0" hreflang="und"><img src="/files/styles/thumbnail/public/default_images/icon-user.png?itok=yQw_eG_q" width="100" height="100" alt="User Image" typeof="foaf:Image" class="img-responsive" /> </a> </div> </article> </footer> </article> <article data-comment-user-id="0" id="comment-1642626" class="js-comment comment-wrapper clearfix"> <mark class="hidden" data-comment-timestamp="1313222315"></mark> <div class="well"> <strong></strong> <div class="field field--name-comment-body field--type-text-long field--label-hidden field--item"><p>That distance is so short that it really should be walked. It's kind of ironic that one remedy for plantar fasciitis is weigh loss, and walking is a good way to loose weight.</p> <p>I've walked to work even 7 km, which meant two hours per day, and showering at both ends. The route was along light traffic paths at seashore, and I often stopped at the local beach for an ice cream.</p> <p>Years ago when I visited Longmont (a one street satellite of Boulder, CO) I was surprised how difficult walking around was. The streets must have been designed by the car industry to discourage walking. Every mall and ice cream kiosk had its own parking lot. More asphalt was used to cover parking lots than streets. It must be a major factor in urban sprawl. Public transport? In USA? Eventually I had to rent a car.</p> <p>If fuel consumption is an issue, a moped makes sense. Fitting a seat for the SteelyKid isn't difficult. These days there are also electric bikes that can cover that distance, even without daily charging.</p> </div> <drupal-render-placeholder callback="comment.lazy_builders:renderLinks" arguments="0=1642626&amp;1=default&amp;2=en&amp;3=" token="C98OtM6s9uY2uykLdMGb0B-52tHYl-MhVI5BfhA1LT4"></drupal-render-placeholder> </div> <footer> <em>By <span lang="" typeof="schema:Person" property="schema:name" datatype="">Lassi Hippeläinen (not verified)</span> on 13 Aug 2011 <a href="https://scienceblogs.com/taxonomy/term/134/feed#comment-1642626">#permalink</a></em> <article typeof="schema:Person" about="/user/0"> <div class="field field--name-user-picture field--type-image field--label-hidden field--item"> <a href="/user/0" hreflang="und"><img src="/files/styles/thumbnail/public/default_images/icon-user.png?itok=yQw_eG_q" width="100" height="100" alt="User Image" typeof="foaf:Image" class="img-responsive" /> </a> </div> </article> </footer> </article> <article data-comment-user-id="0" id="comment-1642627" class="js-comment comment-wrapper clearfix"> <mark class="hidden" data-comment-timestamp="1313322589"></mark> <div class="well"> <strong></strong> <div class="field field--name-comment-body field--type-text-long field--label-hidden field--item"><p>It kind of amazes me how people refuse to read the comments in their eternal quest to give unsolicited advice.</p> <p>Seriously, people.</p> </div> <drupal-render-placeholder callback="comment.lazy_builders:renderLinks" arguments="0=1642627&amp;1=default&amp;2=en&amp;3=" token="RXwcShkIA9B9je6_YGzoZGA2upzrujiuZgZfaczgj28"></drupal-render-placeholder> </div> <footer> <em>By <a rel="nofollow" href="http://www.steelypips.org/weblog/" lang="" typeof="schema:Person" property="schema:name" datatype="">Kate Nepveu (not verified)</a> on 14 Aug 2011 <a href="https://scienceblogs.com/taxonomy/term/134/feed#comment-1642627">#permalink</a></em> <article typeof="schema:Person" about="/user/0"> <div class="field field--name-user-picture field--type-image field--label-hidden field--item"> <a href="/user/0" hreflang="und"><img src="/files/styles/thumbnail/public/default_images/icon-user.png?itok=yQw_eG_q" width="100" height="100" alt="User Image" typeof="foaf:Image" class="img-responsive" /> </a> </div> </article> </footer> </article> <article data-comment-user-id="0" id="comment-1642628" class="js-comment comment-wrapper clearfix"> <mark class="hidden" data-comment-timestamp="1313377498"></mark> <div class="well"> <strong></strong> <div class="field field--name-comment-body field--type-text-long field--label-hidden field--item"><p>Thanks for reminding me why I hate applied mathematics ;).<br /> And how lucky I am to be able to choose whether I drive to work or take the bus (takes about the same time, car's basically a backup in case I miss the bus on mornings when I teach early).</p> </div> <drupal-render-placeholder callback="comment.lazy_builders:renderLinks" arguments="0=1642628&amp;1=default&amp;2=en&amp;3=" token="yMy68I30QBWyrO6zf_YJo1Bfnv2plZ0u72mtEkh8vIg"></drupal-render-placeholder> </div> <footer> <em>By <span lang="" typeof="schema:Person" property="schema:name" datatype="">damigiana (not verified)</span> on 14 Aug 2011 <a href="https://scienceblogs.com/taxonomy/term/134/feed#comment-1642628">#permalink</a></em> <article typeof="schema:Person" about="/user/0"> <div class="field field--name-user-picture field--type-image field--label-hidden field--item"> <a href="/user/0" hreflang="und"><img src="/files/styles/thumbnail/public/default_images/icon-user.png?itok=yQw_eG_q" width="100" height="100" alt="User Image" typeof="foaf:Image" class="img-responsive" /> </a> </div> </article> </footer> </article> <article data-comment-user-id="0" id="comment-1642629" class="js-comment comment-wrapper clearfix"> <mark class="hidden" data-comment-timestamp="1330891633"></mark> <div class="well"> <strong></strong> <div class="field field--name-comment-body field--type-text-long field--label-hidden field--item"><p>There is nothing wrong with taking the route you prefer.</p> </div> <drupal-render-placeholder callback="comment.lazy_builders:renderLinks" arguments="0=1642629&amp;1=default&amp;2=en&amp;3=" token="5ufhU7WiXK6TsVr3TD647rM_5CCorUc7i_KBe5ET5YE"></drupal-render-placeholder> </div> <footer> <em>By <a rel="nofollow" href="http://www.lisastewartlaw.com" lang="" typeof="schema:Person" property="schema:name" datatype="">Lee (not verified)</a> on 04 Mar 2012 <a href="https://scienceblogs.com/taxonomy/term/134/feed#comment-1642629">#permalink</a></em> <article typeof="schema:Person" about="/user/0"> <div class="field field--name-user-picture field--type-image field--label-hidden field--item"> <a href="/user/0" hreflang="und"><img src="/files/styles/thumbnail/public/default_images/icon-user.png?itok=yQw_eG_q" width="100" height="100" alt="User Image" typeof="foaf:Image" class="img-responsive" /> </a> </div> </article> </footer> </article> <article data-comment-user-id="0" id="comment-1642630" class="js-comment comment-wrapper clearfix"> <mark class="hidden" data-comment-timestamp="1333381626"></mark> <div class="well"> <strong></strong> <div class="field field--name-comment-body field--type-text-long field--label-hidden field--item"><p>Chad -- a more pertinent question is: why are you driving to work when it's only 2.2 miles max? Try cycling! It costs nothing in fuel and keeps you fit.</p> </div> <drupal-render-placeholder callback="comment.lazy_builders:renderLinks" arguments="0=1642630&amp;1=default&amp;2=en&amp;3=" token="juzrhho3OACNLxHp2OH7fcXtiKcdvIZEtzfKen3xJ4Y"></drupal-render-placeholder> </div> <footer> <em>By <span lang="" typeof="schema:Person" property="schema:name" datatype="">Matin Durrani (not verified)</span> on 02 Apr 2012 <a href="https://scienceblogs.com/taxonomy/term/134/feed#comment-1642630">#permalink</a></em> <article typeof="schema:Person" about="/user/0"> <div class="field field--name-user-picture field--type-image field--label-hidden field--item"> <a href="/user/0" hreflang="und"><img src="/files/styles/thumbnail/public/default_images/icon-user.png?itok=yQw_eG_q" width="100" height="100" alt="User Image" typeof="foaf:Image" class="img-responsive" /> </a> </div> </article> </footer> </article> </section> <ul class="links inline list-inline"><li class="comment-forbidden"><a href="/user/login?destination=/principles/2011/08/12/scientific-commuting-when-does%23comment-form">Log in</a> to post comments</li></ul> Fri, 12 Aug 2011 08:51:22 +0000 drorzel 47661 at https://scienceblogs.com The Bat Diet: Live Longer Through General Relativity https://scienceblogs.com/principles/2011/06/23/the-bat-diet-live-longer-throu <span>The Bat Diet: Live Longer Through General Relativity</span> <div class="field field--name-body field--type-text-with-summary field--label-hidden field--item"><p>A scientific theory hasn't really arrived until the cynical and unscrupulous find a way to use it to extract money from the credulous and gullible. This has posed a significant obstacle for general relativity, dealing as it does with gravity, which requires really gigantic masses to produce measurable effects. That makes it a little difficult to sell wacky general relativity-based schemes to people.</p> <p>Until now, anyway-- recent advances in atomic clocks have made it possible to see <a href="http://scienceblogs.com/principles/2010/11/relativity_on_a_human_scale_op.php">relativistic effects on a human scale</a>. There was a really nice talk on this experiment in the <a href="http://meetings.aps.org/Meeting/DAMOP11/SessionIndex2/?SessionEventID=150237">fundamental symmetry session at DAMOP</a>, and talking about it afterwards revealed a great get-rich-quick scheme using general relativity. It follows the time-honored strategy of tying dodgy science to health, and promising people that they can extend their lives through crank physics.</p> <p>In this case, you can think of it as a sort of Bat Diet (no hyphen-- this isn't a superhero comic): you can exploit general relativity to extend your life by sleeping underground and upside down.</p> <!--more--><p>"How does that make any sense?," you ask. Well, general relativity tells us that clocks that are lower down in a gravitational field "tick" more slowly than clocks at higher altitudes. So, when you're standing upright, your brain is aging more rapidly than your feet, and when you're in an office on an upper floor, you're aging more rapidly than a person on the street below. In order to live longer, then, you want to stay at the lowest altitude possible, and if you care about the age of your brain, you want to keep it lower down. Thus, bats have the right idea: if you sleep upside down in an underground cave, you're helping your brain age more slowly.</p> <p>"That's completely ridiculous," you say. "Why would a clock care about the altitude?" The easiest way to understand it is by thinking about the <a href="http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Equivalence_principle">Equivalence Principle</a>, which tells us that the effects of gravity are indistinguishable from the effects of acceleration. The equivalence principle was the key insight that led Einstein to develop general relativity, extending his theory of special relativity from a simple description of motion to a complete theory of gravity.</p> <p>The key insight for Einstein was the realization that an observer falling freely in a gravitational field would feel no force of gravity-- everything else in their vicinity would fall at exactly the same rate, and thus appear to be floating in the air at rest. A dog sealed in an elevator, then, would be completely incapable of distinguishing between the case where the elevator was falling freely (say, because some dastardly cat cut the cable) and a case where the elevator was floating by itself off in outer space (say, because the dog was in a Roald Dahl novel). All the laws of physics must appear exactly the same to the dog in the free-falling elevator as in an elevator floating in space.</p> <p>So, let's think about a dog in a falling elevator shining a light from the top of the elevator to the bottom. She sees the light beam follow a straight-line path from top to bottom, and the beam hitting the floor is exactly the same color as the beam that left the ceiling. That's what you would expect in an elevator at rest, and is just common sense.</p> <p>This presents a problem for the cat outside the elevator, though, cackling maniacally while watching the dog fall. From the cat's perspective, the floor of the elevator is accelerating downward, and when the light reaches the floor, the floor is moving away from the light at a higher speed than when it was emitted. This means that the light hitting the floor should be Doppler shifted to the red. But the dog doesn't see the frequency change, and the cat has to agree that the dog sees the same frequency at both ends of the elevator. So, how do we reconcile these?</p> <p>The solution to the problem is a gravitational frequency shift: According to the cat, the light must <em>increase</em> in frequency by an amount that exactly counters the Doppler shift due to the acceleration of the elevator. Light moving down in a gravitational field gets more blue as it falls, while light sent upward in a gravitational field gets more red. this "gravitational redshift" has been experimentally confirmed in a number of different experiments.</p> <p>This still leaves a problem, though, namely that the shift must also occur when the source and the detector are not moving relative to one another. If a cat at the top of the elevator shaft shines a light down, a second cat at the bottom must see a higher frequency for the light coming down, and the top cat must see a lower frequency for the light coming up from the bottom. And yet, the cats aren't moving relative to one another, and each sees his own source emitting the same frequency at all times. So how do we explain the shift in that situation?</p> <p>In order to make everything work out right, we are forced to conclude that the rate at which time passes is different at different points in a gravitational field. The high-altitude cat looking down at his crony on the ground sees the lower cat's clocks ticking more slowly. This explains not just why the light coming up is at a lower frequency (because the lower cat's clock ticks too slowly, and he's sending lower-than-expected frequencies up), but also why that cat sees the light coming down at a higher frequency (each "second" on his clock is a little more than one second according to the cat at the top, and thus include a few more oscillations of the light from the top cat's source). And it can be turned around to explain the bottom cat's results in terms of a too-fast clock for the top cat.</p> <p>This gravitational time dilation is one of the strangest consequences of relativity, but it's been confirmed in numerous experiments. The most sensitive test is the atomic-clock experiment mentioned above, which includes this graph showing a clear difference between the rates of two identical clocks when one of them was hoisted up by one foot:</p> <p><img src="http://scienceblogs.com/principles/wp-content/blogs.dir/467/files/2012/04/i-75f6bcd6113c073347ab62a226c5693d-elevated_ion_clock.png" alt="i-75f6bcd6113c073347ab62a226c5693d-elevated_ion_clock.png" /></p> <p>This is also the prediction of general relativity with the most direct technological consequence: the atomic clocks orbiting the Earth as part of the Global Positioning System must be <a href="http://www.astronomy.ohio-state.edu/~pogge/Ast162/Unit5/gps.html">corrected for the effects of relativity</a>, with the largest correction coming from the fact that the clocks are at high altitude. Without that correction, the GPS clocks would drift out of synch with clocks on the ground by almost 40 μs per day, which amounts to a position error of around 11 km/day. The current accuracy of GPS-- my cell phone can get my position on the surface of the Earth to within several meters-- is possible only because the engineers who designed the system built in a correction for the gravitational time dilation.</p> <p>So, again, general relativity tells us that clocks that are lower down in a gravitational field tick more slowly than clocks at higher elevation. Which means that a person who spends their entire life at or a little below ground level will live longer than a person who spends a lot of time in tall buildings and airplanes. And also that your head ages slightly faster than your feet. Thus, the Bat Diet (which isn't really a diet, but it's a catchy name): if you spend your time underground and upside down, your brain will experience time moving more slowly than surface-based people standing upright.</p> <p>How big an effect is this? Well, the difference near the surface of the Earth goes like the difference in height multiplied by the gravitational acceleration <i>g</i>=9.8m/s<sup>2</sup>, divided by the speed of light squared. Which means that for every meter of altitude you manage to lower yourself, on average, you'll slow the rate of time by a bit less than 300 nanoseconds over an 80-year lifespan.</p> <p>OK, fine, that's not much of a difference. But then, the whole point of this sort of scam is to prey on people who are bad at math, so I bet you could still fool some people with more money than sense into constructing expensive subterranean dwellings, and shelling out big consulting fees for advice on the most relativistically appropriate way to live.</p> <p>Of course, I've just given this idea away for free on the Internet. Hmmm... Maybe I need to rethink my business model...</p> </div> <span><a title="View user profile." href="/author/drorzel" lang="" about="/author/drorzel" typeof="schema:Person" property="schema:name" datatype="">drorzel</a></span> <span>Thu, 06/23/2011 - 07:45</span> <div class="field field--name-field-blog-tags field--type-entity-reference field--label-inline"> <div class="field--label">Tags</div> <div class="field--items"> <div class="field--item"><a href="/tag/physics" hreflang="en">Physics</a></div> <div class="field--item"><a href="/tag/relativity" hreflang="en">Relativity</a></div> <div class="field--item"><a href="/tag/science" hreflang="en">Science</a></div> <div class="field--item"><a href="/tag/silliness" hreflang="en">silliness</a></div> <div class="field--item"><a href="/tag/aging" hreflang="en">aging</a></div> <div class="field--item"><a href="/tag/bats" hreflang="en">bats</a></div> <div class="field--item"><a href="/tag/eat-your-heart-out-deepak-chopra" hreflang="en">eat your heart out Deepak Chopra</a></div> <div class="field--item"><a href="/tag/general-relativity" hreflang="en">General Relativity</a></div> <div class="field--item"><a href="/tag/relativity-0" hreflang="en">Relativity</a></div> <div class="field--item"><a href="/tag/silly" hreflang="en">silly</a></div> <div class="field--item"><a href="/tag/time-0" hreflang="en">Time</a></div> <div class="field--item"><a href="/tag/physics" hreflang="en">Physics</a></div> <div class="field--item"><a href="/tag/science" hreflang="en">Science</a></div> </div> </div> <section> <article data-comment-user-id="0" id="comment-1641875" class="js-comment comment-wrapper clearfix"> <mark class="hidden" data-comment-timestamp="1308833112"></mark> <div class="well"> <strong></strong> <div class="field field--name-comment-body field--type-text-long field--label-hidden field--item"><p>Dogs are colourblind.</p> </div> <drupal-render-placeholder callback="comment.lazy_builders:renderLinks" arguments="0=1641875&amp;1=default&amp;2=en&amp;3=" token="ds1z0Ow7FpzjJsgIs8DejZf4akjVi6u_A5JKn2xeMdo"></drupal-render-placeholder> </div> <footer> <em>By <span lang="" typeof="schema:Person" property="schema:name" datatype="">hoelk (not verified)</span> on 23 Jun 2011 <a href="https://scienceblogs.com/taxonomy/term/134/feed#comment-1641875">#permalink</a></em> <article typeof="schema:Person" about="/user/0"> <div class="field field--name-user-picture field--type-image field--label-hidden field--item"> <a href="/user/0" hreflang="und"><img src="/files/styles/thumbnail/public/default_images/icon-user.png?itok=yQw_eG_q" width="100" height="100" alt="User Image" typeof="foaf:Image" class="img-responsive" /> </a> </div> </article> </footer> </article> <article data-comment-user-id="0" id="comment-1641876" class="js-comment comment-wrapper clearfix"> <mark class="hidden" data-comment-timestamp="1308833268"></mark> <div class="well"> <strong></strong> <div class="field field--name-comment-body field--type-text-long field--label-hidden field--item"><p>These dogs have high-precision spectrometers to measure frequency shifts at the part-per-quintillion level.</p> </div> <drupal-render-placeholder callback="comment.lazy_builders:renderLinks" arguments="0=1641876&amp;1=default&amp;2=en&amp;3=" token="i7aTrOh6j8vM9o8oMsAMVdCztjhBWC1agSQdwqTdna0"></drupal-render-placeholder> </div> <footer> <em>By <a rel="nofollow" href="http://scienceblogs.com/principles/" lang="" typeof="schema:Person" property="schema:name" datatype="">Chad Orzel (not verified)</a> on 23 Jun 2011 <a href="https://scienceblogs.com/taxonomy/term/134/feed#comment-1641876">#permalink</a></em> <article typeof="schema:Person" about="/user/0"> <div class="field field--name-user-picture field--type-image field--label-hidden field--item"> <a href="/user/0" hreflang="und"><img src="/files/styles/thumbnail/public/default_images/icon-user.png?itok=yQw_eG_q" width="100" height="100" alt="User Image" typeof="foaf:Image" class="img-responsive" /> </a> </div> </article> </footer> </article> <article data-comment-user-id="0" id="comment-1641877" class="js-comment comment-wrapper clearfix"> <mark class="hidden" data-comment-timestamp="1308835341"></mark> <div class="well"> <strong></strong> <div class="field field--name-comment-body field--type-text-long field--label-hidden field--item"><p>While it is true that the gravitational field one experiences gets stronger as you approach the surface of a planet from above, once you go underground, it starts to get weaker; the mass above you cancels-out part of the gravitational pull of the mass below. Therefore, a clock buried deep within the earth will actually tick *faster* relative to a clock on the surface.</p> </div> <drupal-render-placeholder callback="comment.lazy_builders:renderLinks" arguments="0=1641877&amp;1=default&amp;2=en&amp;3=" token="kpgAUpfPuNpJXP0Tkd9_hTI0WO7Ppe-nQWHTEXvz7j0"></drupal-render-placeholder> </div> <footer> <em>By <span lang="" typeof="schema:Person" property="schema:name" datatype="">Eric Andersen (not verified)</span> on 23 Jun 2011 <a href="https://scienceblogs.com/taxonomy/term/134/feed#comment-1641877">#permalink</a></em> <article typeof="schema:Person" about="/user/0"> <div class="field field--name-user-picture field--type-image field--label-hidden field--item"> <a href="/user/0" hreflang="und"><img src="/files/styles/thumbnail/public/default_images/icon-user.png?itok=yQw_eG_q" width="100" height="100" alt="User Image" typeof="foaf:Image" class="img-responsive" /> </a> </div> </article> </footer> </article> <article data-comment-user-id="0" id="comment-1641878" class="js-comment comment-wrapper clearfix"> <mark class="hidden" data-comment-timestamp="1308835563"></mark> <div class="well"> <strong></strong> <div class="field field--name-comment-body field--type-text-long field--label-hidden field--item"><p>You don't need to go deep underground-- a simple cave near the surface is the best bet. The real key is to stay out of airplanes and skyscrapers.</p> </div> <drupal-render-placeholder callback="comment.lazy_builders:renderLinks" arguments="0=1641878&amp;1=default&amp;2=en&amp;3=" token="YpdraW0jeIfksXHfIzdff1gTgDK3AuwRpzBzDdBSc1w"></drupal-render-placeholder> </div> <footer> <em>By <a rel="nofollow" href="http://scienceblogs.com/principles/" lang="" typeof="schema:Person" property="schema:name" datatype="">Chad Orzel (not verified)</a> on 23 Jun 2011 <a href="https://scienceblogs.com/taxonomy/term/134/feed#comment-1641878">#permalink</a></em> <article typeof="schema:Person" about="/user/0"> <div class="field field--name-user-picture field--type-image field--label-hidden field--item"> <a href="/user/0" hreflang="und"><img src="/files/styles/thumbnail/public/default_images/icon-user.png?itok=yQw_eG_q" width="100" height="100" alt="User Image" typeof="foaf:Image" class="img-responsive" /> </a> </div> </article> </footer> </article> <article data-comment-user-id="0" id="comment-1641879" class="js-comment comment-wrapper clearfix"> <mark class="hidden" data-comment-timestamp="1308836717"></mark> <div class="well"> <strong></strong> <div class="field field--name-comment-body field--type-text-long field--label-hidden field--item"><p>Skyscrapers, maybe, but are you sure about airplanes?</p> <p>Relative to a clock on the ground, a clock in an airplane goes faster due to the altitude, but slower due to the velocity. Which effect is bigger?</p> </div> <drupal-render-placeholder callback="comment.lazy_builders:renderLinks" arguments="0=1641879&amp;1=default&amp;2=en&amp;3=" token="m06HlAot5gAlz8Mr7PtAH5080UBIiVaAnS347IjjcG4"></drupal-render-placeholder> </div> <footer> <em>By <a rel="nofollow" href="http://twitter.com/#!/ricksheppe" lang="" typeof="schema:Person" property="schema:name" datatype="">Rick (not verified)</a> on 23 Jun 2011 <a href="https://scienceblogs.com/taxonomy/term/134/feed#comment-1641879">#permalink</a></em> <article typeof="schema:Person" about="/user/0"> <div class="field field--name-user-picture field--type-image field--label-hidden field--item"> <a href="/user/0" hreflang="und"><img src="/files/styles/thumbnail/public/default_images/icon-user.png?itok=yQw_eG_q" width="100" height="100" alt="User Image" typeof="foaf:Image" class="img-responsive" /> </a> </div> </article> </footer> </article> <article data-comment-user-id="0" id="comment-1641880" class="js-comment comment-wrapper clearfix"> <mark class="hidden" data-comment-timestamp="1308837152"></mark> <div class="well"> <strong></strong> <div class="field field--name-comment-body field--type-text-long field--label-hidden field--item"><p>Gravity would only get weaker underground if the Earth had a uniform density; as it does not, gravity actually gets stronger with depth for quite some distance before it starts to decrease.</p> </div> <drupal-render-placeholder callback="comment.lazy_builders:renderLinks" arguments="0=1641880&amp;1=default&amp;2=en&amp;3=" token="dt6Qa4btexSGukDDUdRT3zUuNEbpSUFVH9yDUO2pSxM"></drupal-render-placeholder> </div> <footer> <em>By <span lang="" typeof="schema:Person" property="schema:name" datatype="">Andrew G. (not verified)</span> on 23 Jun 2011 <a href="https://scienceblogs.com/taxonomy/term/134/feed#comment-1641880">#permalink</a></em> <article typeof="schema:Person" about="/user/0"> <div class="field field--name-user-picture field--type-image field--label-hidden field--item"> <a href="/user/0" hreflang="und"><img src="/files/styles/thumbnail/public/default_images/icon-user.png?itok=yQw_eG_q" width="100" height="100" alt="User Image" typeof="foaf:Image" class="img-responsive" /> </a> </div> </article> </footer> </article> <article data-comment-user-id="0" id="comment-1641881" class="js-comment comment-wrapper clearfix"> <mark class="hidden" data-comment-timestamp="1308837386"></mark> <div class="well"> <strong></strong> <div class="field field--name-comment-body field--type-text-long field--label-hidden field--item"><p>@Eric A â It's not the gravitational pull (g) that matters, it's the gravitational potential. The deeper you are in a gravity well, the slower your clock ticks. Despite the reduction in g, it takes more energy top get out of a well the deeper it is; you just can't use gh/c^2 as an approximation.</p> </div> <drupal-render-placeholder callback="comment.lazy_builders:renderLinks" arguments="0=1641881&amp;1=default&amp;2=en&amp;3=" token="2k_-YtjO5GtZSEQjVcsv2qFHKEBVNT9r2ekLPLo77Qo"></drupal-render-placeholder> </div> <footer> <em>By <a rel="nofollow" href="http://blogs.scienceforums.net/swansont/" lang="" typeof="schema:Person" property="schema:name" datatype="">Tom (not verified)</a> on 23 Jun 2011 <a href="https://scienceblogs.com/taxonomy/term/134/feed#comment-1641881">#permalink</a></em> <article typeof="schema:Person" about="/user/0"> <div class="field field--name-user-picture field--type-image field--label-hidden field--item"> <a href="/user/0" hreflang="und"><img src="/files/styles/thumbnail/public/default_images/icon-user.png?itok=yQw_eG_q" width="100" height="100" alt="User Image" typeof="foaf:Image" class="img-responsive" /> </a> </div> </article> </footer> </article> <article data-comment-user-id="0" id="comment-1641882" class="js-comment comment-wrapper clearfix"> <mark class="hidden" data-comment-timestamp="1308837693"></mark> <div class="well"> <strong></strong> <div class="field field--name-comment-body field--type-text-long field--label-hidden field--item"><p><i>Relative to a clock on the ground, a clock in an airplane goes faster due to the altitude, but slower due to the velocity. Which effect is bigger?</i></p> <p>It depends on the plane. The famous <a href="http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Hafele%E2%80%93Keating_experiment">Hafele and Keating experiment</a> with atomic clocks on planes had the two effects being of comparable size. For the westbound clocks, they add to give a significant increase, while they have opposite signs for eastbound flights, and gave a small net decrease.</p> </div> <drupal-render-placeholder callback="comment.lazy_builders:renderLinks" arguments="0=1641882&amp;1=default&amp;2=en&amp;3=" token="rDA8NtcU7xgcBOSHAQOfl8QPTYBmkn2U4n-4xU0ewYk"></drupal-render-placeholder> </div> <footer> <em>By <a rel="nofollow" href="http://scienceblogs.com/principles/" lang="" typeof="schema:Person" property="schema:name" datatype="">Chad Orzel (not verified)</a> on 23 Jun 2011 <a href="https://scienceblogs.com/taxonomy/term/134/feed#comment-1641882">#permalink</a></em> <article typeof="schema:Person" about="/user/0"> <div class="field field--name-user-picture field--type-image field--label-hidden field--item"> <a href="/user/0" hreflang="und"><img src="/files/styles/thumbnail/public/default_images/icon-user.png?itok=yQw_eG_q" width="100" height="100" alt="User Image" typeof="foaf:Image" class="img-responsive" /> </a> </div> </article> </footer> </article> <article data-comment-user-id="0" id="comment-1641883" class="js-comment comment-wrapper clearfix"> <mark class="hidden" data-comment-timestamp="1308839084"></mark> <div class="well"> <strong></strong> <div class="field field--name-comment-body field--type-text-long field--label-hidden field--item"><p>@Andrew- Quite right; the uneven density does indeed make a difference.</p> <p>@Tom- I stand corrected! Interesting to imagine that at the center of a large gravitating body, one would experience local weightlessness, yet still be at a different gravitational potential. Cheers!</p> </div> <drupal-render-placeholder callback="comment.lazy_builders:renderLinks" arguments="0=1641883&amp;1=default&amp;2=en&amp;3=" token="AkIMJBgd8rNWktxIWy0xma3ucZGvg3gzOfzA0yFD05g"></drupal-render-placeholder> </div> <footer> <em>By <span lang="" typeof="schema:Person" property="schema:name" datatype="">Eric Andersen (not verified)</span> on 23 Jun 2011 <a href="https://scienceblogs.com/taxonomy/term/134/feed#comment-1641883">#permalink</a></em> <article typeof="schema:Person" about="/user/0"> <div class="field field--name-user-picture field--type-image field--label-hidden field--item"> <a href="/user/0" hreflang="und"><img src="/files/styles/thumbnail/public/default_images/icon-user.png?itok=yQw_eG_q" width="100" height="100" alt="User Image" typeof="foaf:Image" class="img-responsive" /> </a> </div> </article> </footer> </article> <article data-comment-user-id="0" id="comment-1641884" class="js-comment comment-wrapper clearfix"> <mark class="hidden" data-comment-timestamp="1308842703"></mark> <div class="well"> <strong></strong> <div class="field field--name-comment-body field--type-text-long field--label-hidden field--item"><p>Cute. One of the more obscure issues with the EP, is what happens to a free-falling charge. The charge is in free-fall, in it's own RF there is no acceleration, "no gravity" (but some tidal field dep. on circumstances.) Suppose the charge is either orbiting the earth (Chiao's paradox) or in my example here and there (actually predating that other one), it falls back and forth in a diameter tunnel in Earth etc. (SHM from the changing g.) Well, in that case the local E field changes and their should be EM radiation. </p> <p>But w/o felt gravity (from inertial accelerometer, not to be confused with dot dot of coordinate position), there is no basis for Lorentz-Abraham radiative self force to oppose the motion. Hence it looks like "free energy." This is still argued about. The supposed explanation involves the charge getting back EM waves diverted by the gravity field but that strains my credibility. Heard of this, any ideas?</p> </div> <drupal-render-placeholder callback="comment.lazy_builders:renderLinks" arguments="0=1641884&amp;1=default&amp;2=en&amp;3=" token="9ht72MdoyduSMAkeODTyydWiyhh7HMJBXUAJ27fF68s"></drupal-render-placeholder> </div> <footer> <em>By <a rel="nofollow" href="http://fqxi.org/community/forum/topic/949" lang="" typeof="schema:Person" property="schema:name" datatype="">Neil Bates (not verified)</a> on 23 Jun 2011 <a href="https://scienceblogs.com/taxonomy/term/134/feed#comment-1641884">#permalink</a></em> <article typeof="schema:Person" about="/user/0"> <div class="field field--name-user-picture field--type-image field--label-hidden field--item"> <a href="/user/0" hreflang="und"><img src="/files/styles/thumbnail/public/default_images/icon-user.png?itok=yQw_eG_q" width="100" height="100" alt="User Image" typeof="foaf:Image" class="img-responsive" /> </a> </div> </article> </footer> </article> <article data-comment-user-id="0" id="comment-1641885" class="js-comment comment-wrapper clearfix"> <mark class="hidden" data-comment-timestamp="1308856647"></mark> <div class="well"> <strong></strong> <div class="field field--name-comment-body field--type-text-long field--label-hidden field--item"><p>To clarify: the reason the east- and westbound clocks had a different sign is that the surface of the earth is not in an inertial frame, and the comparisons were made to a clock ensemble on the earth (at the US Naval Observatory).</p> <p>For a proper special relativity analysis the speeds must be measured with respect to an inertial observer, e.g. at rest with respect to the earth but not spinning. So the ground clock is moving to the east. Flying east means you are going faster than the ground clock, and your clock slows down relative to it. Going west means you have slowed down, and the clock speeds up.</p> </div> <drupal-render-placeholder callback="comment.lazy_builders:renderLinks" arguments="0=1641885&amp;1=default&amp;2=en&amp;3=" token="j38XydcMeLEyVzjFf2PGiUqXv2qAZczEzBN7cQsTm_M"></drupal-render-placeholder> </div> <footer> <em>By <a rel="nofollow" href="http://blogs.scienceforums.net/swansont/" lang="" typeof="schema:Person" property="schema:name" datatype="">Tom (not verified)</a> on 23 Jun 2011 <a href="https://scienceblogs.com/taxonomy/term/134/feed#comment-1641885">#permalink</a></em> <article typeof="schema:Person" about="/user/0"> <div class="field field--name-user-picture field--type-image field--label-hidden field--item"> <a href="/user/0" hreflang="und"><img src="/files/styles/thumbnail/public/default_images/icon-user.png?itok=yQw_eG_q" width="100" height="100" alt="User Image" typeof="foaf:Image" class="img-responsive" /> </a> </div> </article> </footer> </article> <article data-comment-user-id="0" id="comment-1641886" class="js-comment comment-wrapper clearfix"> <mark class="hidden" data-comment-timestamp="1308897633"></mark> <div class="well"> <strong></strong> <div class="field field--name-comment-body field--type-text-long field--label-hidden field--item"><p>Very good article and very well explained. BUT, (yes there is often a "but"), you've got it wrong about the observed red and blue shifts. When we look up, we see blueshift because our clocks are slower than the light source and the frequency cycles complete before our unit of time has fully passed. Similarly, when we look down, we see redshift because our clock is faster than the ground based light source and the frequency cycles are too slow to complete in our faster time cycles.<br /> Also, you got the experience wrong. When your clock is slower or faster, either due to gravity or speed, you don't notice and everything stays normal within your frame of reference. If you look out of your moving porthole for instance, the rest of the universe is passing by temporally faster than you. Or, if you prefer, when you look down on Earth from geostationary orbit, the whole Earth is living slower than you, but you feel the same, quite normal. Even your electrons still spin around at the same speed as before within your frame, but they do so slower than all those on Earth.</p> </div> <drupal-render-placeholder callback="comment.lazy_builders:renderLinks" arguments="0=1641886&amp;1=default&amp;2=en&amp;3=" token="igZ_H9t8OtlkTX7yI7IDVcfvssCP7MSYl84oeaZQvOE"></drupal-render-placeholder> </div> <footer> <em>By <span lang="" typeof="schema:Person" property="schema:name" datatype="">Ken Hughes (not verified)</span> on 24 Jun 2011 <a href="https://scienceblogs.com/taxonomy/term/134/feed#comment-1641886">#permalink</a></em> <article typeof="schema:Person" about="/user/0"> <div class="field field--name-user-picture field--type-image field--label-hidden field--item"> <a href="/user/0" hreflang="und"><img src="/files/styles/thumbnail/public/default_images/icon-user.png?itok=yQw_eG_q" width="100" height="100" alt="User Image" typeof="foaf:Image" class="img-responsive" /> </a> </div> </article> </footer> </article> <article data-comment-user-id="0" id="comment-1641887" class="js-comment comment-wrapper clearfix"> <mark class="hidden" data-comment-timestamp="1308903689"></mark> <div class="well"> <strong></strong> <div class="field field--name-comment-body field--type-text-long field--label-hidden field--item"><p>This is described in hindu holy book : Mahabharata.Lord krishna tells his disciples to achieve the state of no-being (free of worries) by doing good deeds throughout their life.</p> </div> <drupal-render-placeholder callback="comment.lazy_builders:renderLinks" arguments="0=1641887&amp;1=default&amp;2=en&amp;3=" token="fdGanaG9uYxjqkWDpqVbBQKYe_2gtxHPA_y3_I5q92k"></drupal-render-placeholder> </div> <footer> <em>By <span lang="" typeof="schema:Person" property="schema:name" datatype="">veena singh (not verified)</span> on 24 Jun 2011 <a href="https://scienceblogs.com/taxonomy/term/134/feed#comment-1641887">#permalink</a></em> <article typeof="schema:Person" about="/user/0"> <div class="field field--name-user-picture field--type-image field--label-hidden field--item"> <a href="/user/0" hreflang="und"><img src="/files/styles/thumbnail/public/default_images/icon-user.png?itok=yQw_eG_q" width="100" height="100" alt="User Image" typeof="foaf:Image" class="img-responsive" /> </a> </div> </article> </footer> </article> <article data-comment-user-id="0" id="comment-1641888" class="js-comment comment-wrapper clearfix"> <mark class="hidden" data-comment-timestamp="1308917344"></mark> <div class="well"> <strong></strong> <div class="field field--name-comment-body field--type-text-long field--label-hidden field--item"><p>Of course, the time spent contriving to spend time at or below sea level would wipe out the nanoseconds "saved" - and indeed waste many hours, ending in a HUGE net loss of time available to enjoy life.</p> </div> <drupal-render-placeholder callback="comment.lazy_builders:renderLinks" arguments="0=1641888&amp;1=default&amp;2=en&amp;3=" token="yuiw2PwIpuKBDBQ2WVuBnUQ8Uk-VU_p5qJbIJx0cR0A"></drupal-render-placeholder> </div> <footer> <em>By <a rel="nofollow" href="http://www.ginarex-angerbydesign.blogspot.com" lang="" typeof="schema:Person" property="schema:name" datatype="">borex (not verified)</a> on 24 Jun 2011 <a href="https://scienceblogs.com/taxonomy/term/134/feed#comment-1641888">#permalink</a></em> <article typeof="schema:Person" about="/user/0"> <div class="field field--name-user-picture field--type-image field--label-hidden field--item"> <a href="/user/0" hreflang="und"><img src="/files/styles/thumbnail/public/default_images/icon-user.png?itok=yQw_eG_q" width="100" height="100" alt="User Image" typeof="foaf:Image" class="img-responsive" /> </a> </div> </article> </footer> </article> <article data-comment-user-id="0" id="comment-1641889" class="js-comment comment-wrapper clearfix"> <mark class="hidden" data-comment-timestamp="1308919612"></mark> <div class="well"> <strong></strong> <div class="field field--name-comment-body field--type-text-long field--label-hidden field--item"><p>How soon before CEOs move their offices to the 2nd floor?</p> </div> <drupal-render-placeholder callback="comment.lazy_builders:renderLinks" arguments="0=1641889&amp;1=default&amp;2=en&amp;3=" token="a3JosTrUWMPeDf5yUWc_qNX16N2cXUYhjS3s36AQ3Ko"></drupal-render-placeholder> </div> <footer> <em>By <span lang="" typeof="schema:Person" property="schema:name" datatype="">CCPhysicist (not verified)</span> on 24 Jun 2011 <a href="https://scienceblogs.com/taxonomy/term/134/feed#comment-1641889">#permalink</a></em> <article typeof="schema:Person" about="/user/0"> <div class="field field--name-user-picture field--type-image field--label-hidden field--item"> <a href="/user/0" hreflang="und"><img src="/files/styles/thumbnail/public/default_images/icon-user.png?itok=yQw_eG_q" width="100" height="100" alt="User Image" typeof="foaf:Image" class="img-responsive" /> </a> </div> </article> </footer> </article> <article data-comment-user-id="0" id="comment-1641890" class="js-comment comment-wrapper clearfix"> <mark class="hidden" data-comment-timestamp="1308983192"></mark> <div class="well"> <strong></strong> <div class="field field--name-comment-body field--type-text-long field--label-hidden field--item"><p>how about always living in a moving car? [of course, that is only special relativity]</p> </div> <drupal-render-placeholder callback="comment.lazy_builders:renderLinks" arguments="0=1641890&amp;1=default&amp;2=en&amp;3=" token="8aJRxYh-qSbbFDT9vgNZoenRDJbmzk8IieOKbIWkeOw"></drupal-render-placeholder> </div> <footer> <em>By <span lang="" typeof="schema:Person" property="schema:name" datatype="">Fakrudeen (not verified)</span> on 25 Jun 2011 <a href="https://scienceblogs.com/taxonomy/term/134/feed#comment-1641890">#permalink</a></em> <article typeof="schema:Person" about="/user/0"> <div class="field field--name-user-picture field--type-image field--label-hidden field--item"> <a href="/user/0" hreflang="und"><img src="/files/styles/thumbnail/public/default_images/icon-user.png?itok=yQw_eG_q" width="100" height="100" alt="User Image" typeof="foaf:Image" class="img-responsive" /> </a> </div> </article> </footer> </article> <article data-comment-user-id="0" id="comment-1641891" class="js-comment comment-wrapper clearfix"> <mark class="hidden" data-comment-timestamp="1309078585"></mark> <div class="well"> <strong></strong> <div class="field field--name-comment-body field--type-text-long field--label-hidden field--item"><p>Veena Singh @ 13<br /> How is that relevant? I don't see a connection.</p> </div> <drupal-render-placeholder callback="comment.lazy_builders:renderLinks" arguments="0=1641891&amp;1=default&amp;2=en&amp;3=" token="7V7LRhRl2zQBd6yzPzK3hyki9aA73jNXypt6v2vW1Hs"></drupal-render-placeholder> </div> <footer> <em>By <span lang="" typeof="schema:Person" property="schema:name" datatype="">Artor (not verified)</span> on 26 Jun 2011 <a href="https://scienceblogs.com/taxonomy/term/134/feed#comment-1641891">#permalink</a></em> <article typeof="schema:Person" about="/user/0"> <div class="field field--name-user-picture field--type-image field--label-hidden field--item"> <a href="/user/0" hreflang="und"><img src="/files/styles/thumbnail/public/default_images/icon-user.png?itok=yQw_eG_q" width="100" height="100" alt="User Image" typeof="foaf:Image" class="img-responsive" /> </a> </div> </article> </footer> </article> <article data-comment-user-id="0" id="comment-1641892" class="js-comment comment-wrapper clearfix"> <mark class="hidden" data-comment-timestamp="1309099364"></mark> <div class="well"> <strong></strong> <div class="field field--name-comment-body field--type-text-long field--label-hidden field--item"><p>Artor, it isn't relevant and you don't see a connection because there isn't one. It's blogspam, whose whole point is the hyperlink on "veena singh"'s name. (Either in the hope that someone will be stupid enough to follow it, or to get extra Google page-rank -- the latter won't actually work for technical reasons, but blogspammers aren't always clueful enough to know that.)</p> <p>The same goes for angelalyons26 @16, of course, but that one's rather more blatant.</p> </div> <drupal-render-placeholder callback="comment.lazy_builders:renderLinks" arguments="0=1641892&amp;1=default&amp;2=en&amp;3=" token="zsJDO19wgxArKpx1uT77JEe-ios-bCCcO6EIx2E7npI"></drupal-render-placeholder> </div> <footer> <em>By <a rel="nofollow" href="http://www.mccaughan.org.uk/g/" lang="" typeof="schema:Person" property="schema:name" datatype="">g (not verified)</a> on 26 Jun 2011 <a href="https://scienceblogs.com/taxonomy/term/134/feed#comment-1641892">#permalink</a></em> <article typeof="schema:Person" about="/user/0"> <div class="field field--name-user-picture field--type-image field--label-hidden field--item"> <a href="/user/0" hreflang="und"><img src="/files/styles/thumbnail/public/default_images/icon-user.png?itok=yQw_eG_q" width="100" height="100" alt="User Image" typeof="foaf:Image" class="img-responsive" /> </a> </div> </article> </footer> </article> <article data-comment-user-id="0" id="comment-1641893" class="js-comment comment-wrapper clearfix"> <mark class="hidden" data-comment-timestamp="1309167523"></mark> <div class="well"> <strong></strong> <div class="field field--name-comment-body field--type-text-long field--label-hidden field--item"><p>As g notes, #13 is a spam comment that snuck past the filters. I usually delete these quickly, but I spent the weekend visiting family in the Land of No Broadband, and was not going to attempt to delete comments from my phone. Since it's become a topic of discussion, I'll just edit it to remove the link, because spammers suck, and even trivial victories should be denied them.</p> </div> <drupal-render-placeholder callback="comment.lazy_builders:renderLinks" arguments="0=1641893&amp;1=default&amp;2=en&amp;3=" token="58eem-lIAzmLMvHwnh2JTeR8ShMWpIr6eMC4OKGBwsE"></drupal-render-placeholder> </div> <footer> <em>By <a rel="nofollow" href="http://scienceblogs.com/principles/" lang="" typeof="schema:Person" property="schema:name" datatype="">Chad Orzel (not verified)</a> on 27 Jun 2011 <a href="https://scienceblogs.com/taxonomy/term/134/feed#comment-1641893">#permalink</a></em> <article typeof="schema:Person" about="/user/0"> <div class="field field--name-user-picture field--type-image field--label-hidden field--item"> <a href="/user/0" hreflang="und"><img src="/files/styles/thumbnail/public/default_images/icon-user.png?itok=yQw_eG_q" width="100" height="100" alt="User Image" typeof="foaf:Image" class="img-responsive" /> </a> </div> </article> </footer> </article> <article data-comment-user-id="0" id="comment-1641894" class="js-comment comment-wrapper clearfix"> <mark class="hidden" data-comment-timestamp="1310705967"></mark> <div class="well"> <strong></strong> <div class="field field--name-comment-body field--type-text-long field--label-hidden field--item"><p>Where did the other cat come from</p> </div> <drupal-render-placeholder callback="comment.lazy_builders:renderLinks" arguments="0=1641894&amp;1=default&amp;2=en&amp;3=" token="my9ylqzDYySKm6XJs3O7yzsolQEBmiavSV7Fg9zab-U"></drupal-render-placeholder> </div> <footer> <em>By <span lang="" typeof="schema:Person" property="schema:name" datatype="">DOG (not verified)</span> on 15 Jul 2011 <a href="https://scienceblogs.com/taxonomy/term/134/feed#comment-1641894">#permalink</a></em> <article typeof="schema:Person" about="/user/0"> <div class="field field--name-user-picture field--type-image field--label-hidden field--item"> <a href="/user/0" hreflang="und"><img src="/files/styles/thumbnail/public/default_images/icon-user.png?itok=yQw_eG_q" width="100" height="100" alt="User Image" typeof="foaf:Image" class="img-responsive" /> </a> </div> </article> </footer> </article> </section> <ul class="links inline list-inline"><li class="comment-forbidden"><a href="/user/login?destination=/principles/2011/06/23/the-bat-diet-live-longer-throu%23comment-form">Log in</a> to post comments</li></ul> Thu, 23 Jun 2011 11:45:14 +0000 drorzel 47535 at https://scienceblogs.com Calendrical Innovation https://scienceblogs.com/principles/2011/05/27/calendrical-innovation <span>Calendrical Innovation</span> <div class="field field--name-body field--type-text-with-summary field--label-hidden field--item"><p>Union operates on a trimester calendar, with three ten-week terms (September-November, January-March, April-June), rather than the two 14-15 week semesters used by most other colleges and universities. This has some advantages in terms of flexibility-- even science and engineering students get to take terms abroad, which is harder to swing in a semester system-- and some disadvantages in terms of scheduling-- we run much later than most other schools (the last day of classes is <em>next</em> Friday), which closes our students out of a lot of summer programs that begin in early June.</p> <p>As you can imagine, this is a topic of intense discussion among the faculty, with both systems having their strong partisans. And as often happens, there has been an attempt to revive the debate in email this week, when everybody is cranky and exhausted at the end of the Spring term.</p> <p>I find myself somewhat distressed by the constrained nature of the discussion, though. By considering only the trimester and semester options, we are missing out on a major opportunity to differentiate Union from other colleges, as called for in the <a href="http://www.union.edu/about/leadership/president/strategic-plan/index.php">strategic plan</a>. Thus, I think we need to think more "outside the box," and consider some more innovative and distinctive calendrical changes.</p> <ul><li>For example, there's the <a href="http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Julian_calendar">Julian Calendar</a>, used successfully for centuries, but tragically abandoned starting in 1582. Not only would this reform fit with the best traditions of the liberal arts, it would provide a great opportunity: when Tsarist Russia finally abandoned the Julian calendar in 1918, they needed to "skip" 13 days to synch up with the <a href="http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Gregorian_calendar">Gregorian calendar</a>. Moving back to the Julian calendar now would require us to <em>add</em> two full weeks, not part of any existing month or academic term. Think what a boon that would be for faculty productivity!</li> <li>Adopting the <a href="http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Maya_calendar">Maya calendar</a> would not only show respect to non-Western traditions, its current trendiness would give us a hip and edgy sort of senibility that would be attractive to bright and creative students. The disadvantage of such a switch would be that the system of three interlocking calendars used by the Maya is very complex, but if we move quickly, we could take advantage of the fact that all three cycles start over from zero next December. This is an opportunity not to be missed.</li> </ul><!--more--><ul><li>Moving even further out of that pesky box, we could consider a rationalization of the whole calendrical system. For example, while there are 365 days in the year, we mark the passage of time in 7-day weeks, leading to all sorts of mathematical inconveniences. If we switched to a system of five-day weeks, all the problems of incommensurate numbering would be avoided. This would also likely be a big hit with students, especially if we kept the two-day weekend, which would give them at least 40% weekend time, which is what many of them are really after.</li> <li>Going even more rational, we could adopt the second-based system used by the spacefaring Qeng Ho in Vernor Vinge's <cite>A Deepness in the Sky</cite>, where time is marked off in "kiloseconds," (16 minutes and 40 seconds) and "megaseconds" (about 11.6 days). This would provide great advantages for those of us in the physical sciences, who would no longer need to worry about confusion induced when converting between archaic units like "miles per hour" and the clean and sensible "meters per second." The down side of this system is that it doesn't match very well with natural day-night and seasonal cycles, but then, we <em>are</em> academics, and nobody expects us to know what time it is, anyway.</li> <li>The most extreme rationalization would be to move to the "natural units" of theoretical physics, marking the passage of time in <a href="http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Planck_time">Planck times</a>. If coupled with a switch to a natural length standard, this would eliminate the need to remember the speed of light (which is 1 in these units). As a bonus, having classes lasting 7.2x10<sup>46</sup> time units would force students to become more comfortable with scientific notation.</li> </ul><p>I am sure there are countless other historical, fictional, or physical systems we could use as inspiration. Feel free to suggest your favorite in the comments. We shouldn't miss this great opportunity to set ourselves apart from the pack, and boldly lead the academy forward into the Century of the Anchovy.</p> </div> <span><a title="View user profile." href="/author/drorzel" lang="" about="/author/drorzel" typeof="schema:Person" property="schema:name" datatype="">drorzel</a></span> <span>Fri, 05/27/2011 - 05:51</span> <div class="field field--name-field-blog-tags field--type-entity-reference field--label-inline"> <div class="field--label">Tags</div> <div class="field--items"> <div class="field--item"><a href="/tag/academia" hreflang="en">Academia</a></div> <div class="field--item"><a href="/tag/culture" hreflang="en">Culture</a></div> <div class="field--item"><a href="/tag/humanities" hreflang="en">humanities</a></div> <div class="field--item"><a href="/tag/silliness" hreflang="en">silliness</a></div> <div class="field--item"><a href="/tag/calendar" hreflang="en">calendar</a></div> <div class="field--item"><a href="/tag/century-anchovy" hreflang="en">century of the anchovy</a></div> <div class="field--item"><a href="/tag/it-summer-yet" hreflang="en">is it the summer yet</a></div> <div class="field--item"><a href="/tag/semesters" hreflang="en">semesters</a></div> <div class="field--item"><a href="/tag/silly" hreflang="en">silly</a></div> <div class="field--item"><a href="/tag/trimesters" hreflang="en">trimesters</a></div> <div class="field--item"><a href="/tag/union-college" hreflang="en">union college</a></div> <div class="field--item"><a href="/tag/academia" hreflang="en">Academia</a></div> <div class="field--item"><a href="/tag/culture" hreflang="en">Culture</a></div> <div class="field--item"><a href="/tag/humanities" hreflang="en">humanities</a></div> </div> </div> <section> <article data-comment-user-id="0" id="comment-1641487" class="js-comment comment-wrapper clearfix"> <mark class="hidden" data-comment-timestamp="1306490527"></mark> <div class="well"> <strong></strong> <div class="field field--name-comment-body field--type-text-long field--label-hidden field--item"><p>How about the French Revolutionary Calendar? It would show a healthy contempt for royalty which many of us would appreciate after the transatlantic fawning over the royal wedding.</p> <p>Even more fun, every day of the year has a unique name, which could lead to no end of amusement. "Our meeting to address underage drinking problems will meet on absinthe."</p> </div> <drupal-render-placeholder callback="comment.lazy_builders:renderLinks" arguments="0=1641487&amp;1=default&amp;2=en&amp;3=" token="_jFjiElPbfEeg_8gefYA1pVko2MN80a_E0nxXAfCQaw"></drupal-render-placeholder> </div> <footer> <em>By <span lang="" typeof="schema:Person" property="schema:name" datatype="">chem undergrad (not verified)</span> on 27 May 2011 <a href="https://scienceblogs.com/taxonomy/term/134/feed#comment-1641487">#permalink</a></em> <article typeof="schema:Person" about="/user/0"> <div class="field field--name-user-picture field--type-image field--label-hidden field--item"> <a href="/user/0" hreflang="und"><img src="/files/styles/thumbnail/public/default_images/icon-user.png?itok=yQw_eG_q" width="100" height="100" alt="User Image" typeof="foaf:Image" class="img-responsive" /> </a> </div> </article> </footer> </article> <article data-comment-user-id="0" id="comment-1641488" class="js-comment comment-wrapper clearfix"> <mark class="hidden" data-comment-timestamp="1306491114"></mark> <div class="well"> <strong></strong> <div class="field field--name-comment-body field--type-text-long field--label-hidden field--item"><p>I do so like the Mayan system. And you really don't need to mess with the Long Count over the average academic's career -- the Calendar Round gives a unique name for every day over about 52 years. Plus, 5 day new year! </p> <p>The calendar in Steve Brust's Dragaera has a 289-day year, with 17 months of 17 days, each named after one of the 17 Houses of the Dragaeran Empire (all named after animals). We might have to rename some things to make it more comforting to Earth-based students -- they might remember 'panther' more than 'dzur' for example, though I think 'dragon' and 'phoenix' would pass, and 'hawk' and 'orca' need no change.</p> </div> <drupal-render-placeholder callback="comment.lazy_builders:renderLinks" arguments="0=1641488&amp;1=default&amp;2=en&amp;3=" token="rTapm8YZ1Q4tS6T2908M0-GH55BIC37ol-suNZpIdiI"></drupal-render-placeholder> </div> <footer> <em>By <span lang="" typeof="schema:Person" property="schema:name" datatype="">Becca Stareyes (not verified)</span> on 27 May 2011 <a href="https://scienceblogs.com/taxonomy/term/134/feed#comment-1641488">#permalink</a></em> <article typeof="schema:Person" about="/user/0"> <div class="field field--name-user-picture field--type-image field--label-hidden field--item"> <a href="/user/0" hreflang="und"><img src="/files/styles/thumbnail/public/default_images/icon-user.png?itok=yQw_eG_q" width="100" height="100" alt="User Image" typeof="foaf:Image" class="img-responsive" /> </a> </div> </article> </footer> </article> <article data-comment-user-id="0" id="comment-1641489" class="js-comment comment-wrapper clearfix"> <mark class="hidden" data-comment-timestamp="1306493528"></mark> <div class="well"> <strong></strong> <div class="field field--name-comment-body field--type-text-long field--label-hidden field--item"><p>I propose a new unit of cumulative academic time: the mester. A typical lecture would last 10 centimesters, a course lasts one mester, and you'd need to accumulate at least a kilomester to graduate. I call it "the mestric system." </p> <p>(The Standard Reference Mester, consisting of pure, unalloyed navel-gazing, to be housed under a bell jar in the basement of the Sorbonne.)</p> </div> <drupal-render-placeholder callback="comment.lazy_builders:renderLinks" arguments="0=1641489&amp;1=default&amp;2=en&amp;3=" token="JyyWFKuvOVJJ4cOnAYHscFm6Y8IDLLNziDh5pRAWeh0"></drupal-render-placeholder> </div> <footer> <em>By <span lang="" typeof="schema:Person" property="schema:name" datatype="">HP (not verified)</span> on 27 May 2011 <a href="https://scienceblogs.com/taxonomy/term/134/feed#comment-1641489">#permalink</a></em> <article typeof="schema:Person" about="/user/0"> <div class="field field--name-user-picture field--type-image field--label-hidden field--item"> <a href="/user/0" hreflang="und"><img src="/files/styles/thumbnail/public/default_images/icon-user.png?itok=yQw_eG_q" width="100" height="100" alt="User Image" typeof="foaf:Image" class="img-responsive" /> </a> </div> </article> </footer> </article> <article data-comment-user-id="0" id="comment-1641490" class="js-comment comment-wrapper clearfix"> <mark class="hidden" data-comment-timestamp="1306494662"></mark> <div class="well"> <strong></strong> <div class="field field--name-comment-body field--type-text-long field--label-hidden field--item"><p>If years are important, you could measure everything in years or fractions thereof. A milli-year is approximately a workday, which is convenient.</p> </div> <drupal-render-placeholder callback="comment.lazy_builders:renderLinks" arguments="0=1641490&amp;1=default&amp;2=en&amp;3=" token="Il2kbkICOFCbkj5hESBsvid9sxFGbLDzTujGlwoBHuo"></drupal-render-placeholder> </div> <footer> <em>By <span lang="" typeof="schema:Person" property="schema:name" datatype="">Johan Larson (not verified)</span> on 27 May 2011 <a href="https://scienceblogs.com/taxonomy/term/134/feed#comment-1641490">#permalink</a></em> <article typeof="schema:Person" about="/user/0"> <div class="field field--name-user-picture field--type-image field--label-hidden field--item"> <a href="/user/0" hreflang="und"><img src="/files/styles/thumbnail/public/default_images/icon-user.png?itok=yQw_eG_q" width="100" height="100" alt="User Image" typeof="foaf:Image" class="img-responsive" /> </a> </div> </article> </footer> </article> <article data-comment-user-id="0" id="comment-1641491" class="js-comment comment-wrapper clearfix"> <mark class="hidden" data-comment-timestamp="1306496779"></mark> <div class="well"> <strong></strong> <div class="field field--name-comment-body field--type-text-long field--label-hidden field--item"><p>If you want a rational calendar try the ancient Egyptian one. 12 months of thirty days, divided into three 10 day weeks, plus five non-days! Is approximately one quarter of a day too short and so slides backwards against the natural year, which didn't bother the old Egyptians who retained it for four thousand years!</p> </div> <drupal-render-placeholder callback="comment.lazy_builders:renderLinks" arguments="0=1641491&amp;1=default&amp;2=en&amp;3=" token="pD8PfGdliJJIUAZb9nS06VgT3RLbpBdUPJol_KhGeTA"></drupal-render-placeholder> </div> <footer> <em>By <a rel="nofollow" href="http://thonyc.wordpress.com/" lang="" typeof="schema:Person" property="schema:name" datatype="">Thony C. (not verified)</a> on 27 May 2011 <a href="https://scienceblogs.com/taxonomy/term/134/feed#comment-1641491">#permalink</a></em> <article typeof="schema:Person" about="/user/0"> <div class="field field--name-user-picture field--type-image field--label-hidden field--item"> <a href="/user/0" hreflang="und"><img src="/files/styles/thumbnail/public/default_images/icon-user.png?itok=yQw_eG_q" width="100" height="100" alt="User Image" typeof="foaf:Image" class="img-responsive" /> </a> </div> </article> </footer> </article> <article data-comment-user-id="0" id="comment-1641492" class="js-comment comment-wrapper clearfix"> <mark class="hidden" data-comment-timestamp="1306499683"></mark> <div class="well"> <strong></strong> <div class="field field--name-comment-body field--type-text-long field--label-hidden field--item"><p>Of course the best is the Shire Reckoning of the Hobbits.<br /><a href="http://shire-reckoning.com/calendar.html">http://shire-reckoning.com/calendar.html</a></p> <p>You can use the same calendar every year, because the weekdays don't creep around.</p> </div> <drupal-render-placeholder callback="comment.lazy_builders:renderLinks" arguments="0=1641492&amp;1=default&amp;2=en&amp;3=" token="SAM7MV4SRxlkgKQCc99gsKtDFdzTrJpLQcDieuty_1s"></drupal-render-placeholder> </div> <footer> <em>By <span lang="" typeof="schema:Person" property="schema:name" datatype="">Lassi Hippeläinen (not verified)</span> on 27 May 2011 <a href="https://scienceblogs.com/taxonomy/term/134/feed#comment-1641492">#permalink</a></em> <article typeof="schema:Person" about="/user/0"> <div class="field field--name-user-picture field--type-image field--label-hidden field--item"> <a href="/user/0" hreflang="und"><img src="/files/styles/thumbnail/public/default_images/icon-user.png?itok=yQw_eG_q" width="100" height="100" alt="User Image" typeof="foaf:Image" class="img-responsive" /> </a> </div> </article> </footer> </article> <article data-comment-user-id="0" id="comment-1641493" class="js-comment comment-wrapper clearfix"> <mark class="hidden" data-comment-timestamp="1306502608"></mark> <div class="well"> <strong></strong> <div class="field field--name-comment-body field--type-text-long field--label-hidden field--item"><p>Come on, nobody's mentioned the <a href="http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Discordian_calendar">Discordian Calendar</a> yet? As a bonus, the <a href="http://www.panix.com/~wlinden/ddate.cgi">ddate</a> utility already exists on unixlike systems.</p> </div> <drupal-render-placeholder callback="comment.lazy_builders:renderLinks" arguments="0=1641493&amp;1=default&amp;2=en&amp;3=" token="QvXaLGPVGJMJGi0rkCVEhpAAnlx1yLQdW3TNKCV6VgQ"></drupal-render-placeholder> </div> <footer> <em>By <span lang="" typeof="schema:Person" property="schema:name" datatype="">Garret (not verified)</span> on 27 May 2011 <a href="https://scienceblogs.com/taxonomy/term/134/feed#comment-1641493">#permalink</a></em> <article typeof="schema:Person" about="/user/0"> <div class="field field--name-user-picture field--type-image field--label-hidden field--item"> <a href="/user/0" hreflang="und"><img src="/files/styles/thumbnail/public/default_images/icon-user.png?itok=yQw_eG_q" width="100" height="100" alt="User Image" typeof="foaf:Image" class="img-responsive" /> </a> </div> </article> </footer> </article> <article data-comment-user-id="0" id="comment-1641494" class="js-comment comment-wrapper clearfix"> <mark class="hidden" data-comment-timestamp="1306505608"></mark> <div class="well"> <strong></strong> <div class="field field--name-comment-body field--type-text-long field--label-hidden field--item"><p>Calendars? Just get rid of them! Let anarchy rule!</p> </div> <drupal-render-placeholder callback="comment.lazy_builders:renderLinks" arguments="0=1641494&amp;1=default&amp;2=en&amp;3=" token="bxskvGNwe4RNPW5Ww2zqNdSt7ZFcw_AvDfzwCPMa0mQ"></drupal-render-placeholder> </div> <footer> <em>By <span lang="" typeof="schema:Person" property="schema:name" datatype="">Sherri (not verified)</span> on 27 May 2011 <a href="https://scienceblogs.com/taxonomy/term/134/feed#comment-1641494">#permalink</a></em> <article typeof="schema:Person" about="/user/0"> <div class="field field--name-user-picture field--type-image field--label-hidden field--item"> <a href="/user/0" hreflang="und"><img src="/files/styles/thumbnail/public/default_images/icon-user.png?itok=yQw_eG_q" width="100" height="100" alt="User Image" typeof="foaf:Image" class="img-responsive" /> </a> </div> </article> </footer> </article> <article data-comment-user-id="0" id="comment-1641495" class="js-comment comment-wrapper clearfix"> <mark class="hidden" data-comment-timestamp="1306514687"></mark> <div class="well"> <strong></strong> <div class="field field--name-comment-body field--type-text-long field--label-hidden field--item"><p>I second the revolutionary calendar! You can amend it to have <i>two</i> days off in each ten-day week, instead of just the one. I'm sure you can find a good use for the extra work days.</p> <p>Although the moment of the Revolution is rather arbitrary, of course. I suggest you start your counting of years at the moment of Creation, like the Jewish calendar does. </p> <p>You could call it the Rankine calendar ;)</p> </div> <drupal-render-placeholder callback="comment.lazy_builders:renderLinks" arguments="0=1641495&amp;1=default&amp;2=en&amp;3=" token="7d_A0_85LqyjnPxul-N-tQ2DgbfX5ue52-obeQ3fojI"></drupal-render-placeholder> </div> <footer> <em>By <a rel="nofollow" href="http://nescia.nl/anna/" lang="" typeof="schema:Person" property="schema:name" datatype="">Anna (not verified)</a> on 27 May 2011 <a href="https://scienceblogs.com/taxonomy/term/134/feed#comment-1641495">#permalink</a></em> <article typeof="schema:Person" about="/user/0"> <div class="field field--name-user-picture field--type-image field--label-hidden field--item"> <a href="/user/0" hreflang="und"><img src="/files/styles/thumbnail/public/default_images/icon-user.png?itok=yQw_eG_q" width="100" height="100" alt="User Image" typeof="foaf:Image" class="img-responsive" /> </a> </div> </article> </footer> </article> <article data-comment-user-id="0" id="comment-1641496" class="js-comment comment-wrapper clearfix"> <mark class="hidden" data-comment-timestamp="1306535015"></mark> <div class="well"> <strong></strong> <div class="field field--name-comment-body field--type-text-long field--label-hidden field--item"><p>Just to point out that Caltech is also on a quarter system, and has been for at least 40 years.</p> </div> <drupal-render-placeholder callback="comment.lazy_builders:renderLinks" arguments="0=1641496&amp;1=default&amp;2=en&amp;3=" token="NpqQv8kV32BLAvp4XShdMGJOLc1n2GdtqoRdE6d3ktA"></drupal-render-placeholder> </div> <footer> <em>By <span lang="" typeof="schema:Person" property="schema:name" datatype="">Lyle (not verified)</span> on 27 May 2011 <a href="https://scienceblogs.com/taxonomy/term/134/feed#comment-1641496">#permalink</a></em> <article typeof="schema:Person" about="/user/0"> <div class="field field--name-user-picture field--type-image field--label-hidden field--item"> <a href="/user/0" hreflang="und"><img src="/files/styles/thumbnail/public/default_images/icon-user.png?itok=yQw_eG_q" width="100" height="100" alt="User Image" typeof="foaf:Image" class="img-responsive" /> </a> </div> </article> </footer> </article> <article data-comment-user-id="0" id="comment-1641497" class="js-comment comment-wrapper clearfix"> <mark class="hidden" data-comment-timestamp="1306572182"></mark> <div class="well"> <strong></strong> <div class="field field--name-comment-body field--type-text-long field--label-hidden field--item"><p>We're on quarters at OSU as well. We're switching over to semesters beginning in the 2012-13 academic year. The administration promises a smooth transition, but much of the student population, myself included, suspect that it's going to be a mess in which a lot of people get screwed in various ways. Gargantuan institutions like OSU rarely move gracefully. Personally I'm graduating Spring 2012, and couldn't be happier to be getting out in time. </p> <p>@ Anna. Good point about the second day off. We might also want to put a third somewhere in the middle of the workdays, thus providing a half-time break.</p> </div> <drupal-render-placeholder callback="comment.lazy_builders:renderLinks" arguments="0=1641497&amp;1=default&amp;2=en&amp;3=" token="9j6hQlm7VKltViw8Chs1a4BvW2MMEKWuHzJV9UgDmbU"></drupal-render-placeholder> </div> <footer> <em>By <span lang="" typeof="schema:Person" property="schema:name" datatype="">chem undergrad (not verified)</span> on 28 May 2011 <a href="https://scienceblogs.com/taxonomy/term/134/feed#comment-1641497">#permalink</a></em> <article typeof="schema:Person" about="/user/0"> <div class="field field--name-user-picture field--type-image field--label-hidden field--item"> <a href="/user/0" hreflang="und"><img src="/files/styles/thumbnail/public/default_images/icon-user.png?itok=yQw_eG_q" width="100" height="100" alt="User Image" typeof="foaf:Image" class="img-responsive" /> </a> </div> </article> </footer> </article> <article data-comment-user-id="0" id="comment-1641498" class="js-comment comment-wrapper clearfix"> <mark class="hidden" data-comment-timestamp="1306577955"></mark> <div class="well"> <strong></strong> <div class="field field--name-comment-body field--type-text-long field--label-hidden field--item"><p>I thought the calendar described @5 was of Babylonian origin and, like many other things in our timekeeping system, reflected a base 60 number system. The 5 (or 6, in a leap year) extra days were basically an extended New Year or Saturnalia festival. </p> <p>That would mean five or six days of bowl games, in our system. </p> <p>Obsessive numerology note:<br /> The beauty of base 60 is that it is 5x4x3 and thus divisible in many ways. The flaw is that it is not divisible by 7, the day that the Hebrew God rested.</p> </div> <drupal-render-placeholder callback="comment.lazy_builders:renderLinks" arguments="0=1641498&amp;1=default&amp;2=en&amp;3=" token="RW9JlCvbEUt5AtlHA4uz4Et2dBuPS8rEM3El-VTMHBQ"></drupal-render-placeholder> </div> <footer> <em>By <span lang="" typeof="schema:Person" property="schema:name" datatype="">CCPhysicist (not verified)</span> on 28 May 2011 <a href="https://scienceblogs.com/taxonomy/term/134/feed#comment-1641498">#permalink</a></em> <article typeof="schema:Person" about="/user/0"> <div class="field field--name-user-picture field--type-image field--label-hidden field--item"> <a href="/user/0" hreflang="und"><img src="/files/styles/thumbnail/public/default_images/icon-user.png?itok=yQw_eG_q" width="100" height="100" alt="User Image" typeof="foaf:Image" class="img-responsive" /> </a> </div> </article> </footer> </article> <article data-comment-user-id="0" id="comment-1641499" class="js-comment comment-wrapper clearfix"> <mark class="hidden" data-comment-timestamp="1306580848"></mark> <div class="well"> <strong></strong> <div class="field field--name-comment-body field--type-text-long field--label-hidden field--item"><p>The OSU or one of the others? (Ah, Google tells me it is THE OSU.) I am sure they are being driven by the Football Calendar, a calendar that somehow escaped Chad's notice. </p> <p>Chad, part of your discussion might include a comparison of your current calendar, the current OSU calendar (a full 10 weeks, that is 50 class days, plus finals week in the fall) to their proposed one (which looks identical to ours) with a total of 141 days (plus two weeks for finals) in a year. </p> <p>You can do a lot of physics in those 9 days. Think about what two weeks of physics you will omit from your first-year course. I'll tell you from experience that it is not a small effect. </p> <p>I'll also add that you only think your faculty are burned out right now. Semesters, even with a spring break, are a long haul for students and faculty alike. </p> <p>Side comment: The OSU Fall 2012 calendar (Wed start to Tue finish with a weekend in the middle of final exams) is both innovative and potentially problematical. Students with Thurs and Friday finals will party all weekend and into the next week while the poor kids with Monday finals try to study.</p> </div> <drupal-render-placeholder callback="comment.lazy_builders:renderLinks" arguments="0=1641499&amp;1=default&amp;2=en&amp;3=" token="5pRXypMltsmO7D2oWq-xxSWAHYWlSzDxS-JtQzXU9zM"></drupal-render-placeholder> </div> <footer> <em>By <span lang="" typeof="schema:Person" property="schema:name" datatype="">CCPhysicist (not verified)</span> on 28 May 2011 <a href="https://scienceblogs.com/taxonomy/term/134/feed#comment-1641499">#permalink</a></em> <article typeof="schema:Person" about="/user/0"> <div class="field field--name-user-picture field--type-image field--label-hidden field--item"> <a href="/user/0" hreflang="und"><img src="/files/styles/thumbnail/public/default_images/icon-user.png?itok=yQw_eG_q" width="100" height="100" alt="User Image" typeof="foaf:Image" class="img-responsive" /> </a> </div> </article> </footer> </article> <article data-comment-user-id="0" id="comment-1641500" class="js-comment comment-wrapper clearfix"> <mark class="hidden" data-comment-timestamp="1306586077"></mark> <div class="well"> <strong></strong> <div class="field field--name-comment-body field--type-text-long field--label-hidden field--item"><p><i>You can do a lot of physics in those 9 days. Think about what two weeks of physics you will omit from your first-year course. I'll tell you from experience that it is not a small effect.</i></p> <p>We've already done that. The local practice is to claim that our ten-week trimester courses are actually equivalent to semester courses at other institutions; as a result, our engineering students only take two terms of physics, not a full year. As a result, we're already trying to cram two semesters of physics into only 80 class meetings (3 lectures/week plus lab). As a result, we skip a lot of stuff that would be in a one-year intro program at a semester school.</p> <p>The issue of quarters for Caltech or THE Ohio State University is a very different one as far as student opportunities go. It's very difficult for even our best students to do REU programs at other institutions, because most of the summer programs start before our classes end. This puts our students at a disadvantage when it comes to graduate school admissions-- they can do lots of REU-type stuff here, but it's not the same thing. If a student at Caltech or tOSU gets excluded from off-campus REU because of schedule conflicts, well, they're not losing that much by doing REU stuff at Caltech or tOSU. Certainly not as much as our students lose by staying here (though it's good for our faculty, I suppose...).</p> </div> <drupal-render-placeholder callback="comment.lazy_builders:renderLinks" arguments="0=1641500&amp;1=default&amp;2=en&amp;3=" token="Qu9NXI29zUYSHe9FVjOijLh21ayeJwxC2_eVtCttbAY"></drupal-render-placeholder> </div> <footer> <em>By <a rel="nofollow" href="http://scienceblogs.com/principles/" lang="" typeof="schema:Person" property="schema:name" datatype="">Chad Orzel (not verified)</a> on 28 May 2011 <a href="https://scienceblogs.com/taxonomy/term/134/feed#comment-1641500">#permalink</a></em> <article typeof="schema:Person" about="/user/0"> <div class="field field--name-user-picture field--type-image field--label-hidden field--item"> <a href="/user/0" hreflang="und"><img src="/files/styles/thumbnail/public/default_images/icon-user.png?itok=yQw_eG_q" width="100" height="100" alt="User Image" typeof="foaf:Image" class="img-responsive" /> </a> </div> </article> </footer> </article> <article data-comment-user-id="0" id="comment-1641501" class="js-comment comment-wrapper clearfix"> <mark class="hidden" data-comment-timestamp="1306791805"></mark> <div class="well"> <strong></strong> <div class="field field--name-comment-body field--type-text-long field--label-hidden field--item"><p>What you are doing makes me wonder how your engineering school stays accredited. They must have some extra classes to make up for what you leave out, unless you are very careful to teach to exactly what ABET requires. But then you mess up what physics majors see, and fix that with an extra class. (Actually, that might be a better way in general.) </p> <p>The REU problem is caused by the pressure of R1 football programs to have students on campus in August to fill the stands. (I know that is what drove two universities to make the change, even though they would deny it.) Your students could, for example, participate in the ones at tOSU. </p> <p>I wonder if anyone has studied success rates in the two systems. You can actually see students burn out in those last 5 weeks, especially in the spring.</p> </div> <drupal-render-placeholder callback="comment.lazy_builders:renderLinks" arguments="0=1641501&amp;1=default&amp;2=en&amp;3=" token="SiIsbLKAkl6QH7mgmYedF_DapYFBi3ZDyVHkvgRjplQ"></drupal-render-placeholder> </div> <footer> <em>By <span lang="" typeof="schema:Person" property="schema:name" datatype="">CCPhysicist (not verified)</span> on 30 May 2011 <a href="https://scienceblogs.com/taxonomy/term/134/feed#comment-1641501">#permalink</a></em> <article typeof="schema:Person" about="/user/0"> <div class="field field--name-user-picture field--type-image field--label-hidden field--item"> <a href="/user/0" hreflang="und"><img src="/files/styles/thumbnail/public/default_images/icon-user.png?itok=yQw_eG_q" width="100" height="100" alt="User Image" typeof="foaf:Image" class="img-responsive" /> </a> </div> </article> </footer> </article> <article data-comment-user-id="0" id="comment-1641502" class="js-comment comment-wrapper clearfix"> <mark class="hidden" data-comment-timestamp="1306806381"></mark> <div class="well"> <strong></strong> <div class="field field--name-comment-body field--type-text-long field--label-hidden field--item"><p>How about getting rid of the year and just using days? You can divide the days into centidays, millidays, and microdays, and for bigger units you can have dekadays, hectodays, and kilodays.</p> <p>P.S., restoring the Julian calendar would require adding *13* days, not two full weeks.</p> </div> <drupal-render-placeholder callback="comment.lazy_builders:renderLinks" arguments="0=1641502&amp;1=default&amp;2=en&amp;3=" token="BsG_nVg_bAmm2LDGh7a7d4xTJ7KGifjmoim-p97qSRI"></drupal-render-placeholder> </div> <footer> <em>By <span lang="" typeof="schema:Person" property="schema:name" datatype="">Christina (not verified)</span> on 30 May 2011 <a href="https://scienceblogs.com/taxonomy/term/134/feed#comment-1641502">#permalink</a></em> <article typeof="schema:Person" about="/user/0"> <div class="field field--name-user-picture field--type-image field--label-hidden field--item"> <a href="/user/0" hreflang="und"><img src="/files/styles/thumbnail/public/default_images/icon-user.png?itok=yQw_eG_q" width="100" height="100" alt="User Image" typeof="foaf:Image" class="img-responsive" /> </a> </div> </article> </footer> </article> </section> <ul class="links inline list-inline"><li class="comment-forbidden"><a href="/user/login?destination=/principles/2011/05/27/calendrical-innovation%23comment-form">Log in</a> to post comments</li></ul> Fri, 27 May 2011 09:51:54 +0000 drorzel 47468 at https://scienceblogs.com Tim Lenton is silly https://scienceblogs.com/stoat/2011/05/05/tim-lenton-is-silly <span>Tim Lenton is silly</span> <div class="field field--name-body field--type-text-with-summary field--label-hidden field--item"><p><a href="http://www.flickr.com/photos/belette/5691557588/" title="timlenton by wmconnolley, on Flickr"><img src="http://farm6.static.flickr.com/5270/5691557588_a99ca071bf_o.jpg" width="100" height="150" alt="timlenton" align="right" /></a> However, I'm inclined to think that he isn't a tosser, just naive (as someone said, <i>I don't think Tim understands the policy world very well</i>). He looks a bit naive in his picture, doesn't he? And that is a sure-fire way to tell. But maybe that is me being naive. Well, let me tell you and you can make up your own mind.</p> <p>Assuming you can be bothered, go off and read his piece in Nature: <a href="http://www.nature.com/news/2011/110504/full/473007a.html?WT.ec_id=NATURE-20110505">2 °C or not 2 °C? That is the climate question</a> (you ought to; please don't rely on my biased reporting of him :-). Tim has a laudable aim: he wants to <i>ensure that global efforts to tackle the climate problem are consistent with the latest science</i>. But alas he immeadiately goes off the rails, by talking about the</p> <blockquote><p>target to limit the global temperature rise to 2 °C above the average temperature before the industrial revolution...The target is linked to the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC), which aims to "prevent dangerous anthropogenic interference with the climate system"</p></blockquote> <p>But note the rather weaselly words "linked to". Where exactly is the scientific basis for 2 oC? Tim is very interested in making our politics consistent with the science, so why isn't he mentioning it? Is he, perhaps, continuing the rather dishonourable tradition of pretending that because lots of people have taken 2 oC for granted, then it must have a solid basis? I don't think it has such as basis, and have <a href="http://scienceblogs.com/stoat/2009/03/yet_another_bunch_of_people_ki.php">said so</a> <a href="http://scienceblogs.com/stoat/2009/05/meinshausen_et_al.php">before</a>.</p> <p>Continuing, <i>Target setters need to take into account all the factors that threaten to tip elements of Earth's climate system into a different state...</i> Well, Tim is a Tipping Points man, so it is no surprise to see him pushing his stuff. <a href="http://scienceblogs.com/stoat/2007/08/runaway_tipping_elements_of_no.php">I still don't believe it</a> though.</p> <p>But anyway, onto the pointless naive policy suggestions: <i>I suggest that the UNFCCC be extended. The climate problem, and the political targets presented as a solution, should be aimed at restricting anthropogenic radiative forcing to limit the rate and gradients of climate change, before limiting its eventual magnitude... The 2 °C target would translate into a radiative forcing of about 2.5 Watts per square metre (W mâ2), but to protect major ice sheets, we might need a tougher global target of 1.5 W mâ2"</i>. Wonderful: we can't meet the existing targets, because we lack political will. So rather than actually address that problem, let us fiddle the targets around and make them harder to meet. That will certainly be useful. Somehow or another this is supposed to connect to regional initiatives, in a way that didn't appear to make any sense but I didn't bother thinking about much as it was too obviously doomed to be very interesting.</p> <p>Update: on reflection, I'm being too kind to Tim Lenton. This kind of get-yer-face-in-Nature stuff is malign.</p> <h3>Refs</h3> <p>* <a href="http://www.thedailymash.co.uk/news/society/it's-not-telly-if-you-watch-it-on-a-computer,-say-middle-class-people-201105043770/">It's not telly if you watch it on a computer, say middle class people</a>.</p> </div> <span><a title="View user profile." href="/author/stoat" lang="" about="/author/stoat" typeof="schema:Person" property="schema:name" datatype="">stoat</a></span> <span>Thu, 05/05/2011 - 10:58</span> <div class="field field--name-field-blog-tags field--type-entity-reference field--label-inline"> <div class="field--label">Tags</div> <div class="field--items"> <div class="field--item"><a href="/tag/uncategorized" hreflang="en">Uncategorized</a></div> <div class="field--item"><a href="/tag/naive" hreflang="en">naive</a></div> <div class="field--item"><a href="/tag/silly" hreflang="en">silly</a></div> <div class="field--item"><a href="/tag/targets" hreflang="en">targets</a></div> <div class="field--item"><a href="/tag/tim-lenton" hreflang="en">tim lenton</a></div> <div class="field--item"><a href="/tag/tipping-points" hreflang="en">tipping points</a></div> <div class="field--item"><a href="/tag/unfccc" hreflang="en">unfccc</a></div> </div> </div> <div class="field field--name-field-blog-categories field--type-entity-reference field--label-inline"> <div class="field--label">Categories</div> <div class="field--items"> <div class="field--item"><a href="/channel/policy" hreflang="en">Policy</a></div> </div> </div> <section> <article data-comment-user-id="0" id="comment-1770154" class="js-comment comment-wrapper clearfix"> <mark class="hidden" data-comment-timestamp="1304621316"></mark> <div class="well"> <strong></strong> <div class="field field--name-comment-body field--type-text-long field--label-hidden field--item"><p>WG II would be a good place to start or <a href="http://rabett.blogspot.com/2007/12/return-of-fat-bird-eli-and-ms.html">Rabett Run</a> if you prefer the picture version.</p> </div> <drupal-render-placeholder callback="comment.lazy_builders:renderLinks" arguments="0=1770154&amp;1=default&amp;2=en&amp;3=" token="hCsGqSWU6Shw7HRHNRgj5kfgXvfTwGYudrT_YIffrMU"></drupal-render-placeholder> </div> <footer> <em>By <a rel="nofollow" href="http://rabett.blogspot.com" lang="" typeof="schema:Person" property="schema:name" datatype="">Eli Rabett (not verified)</a> on 05 May 2011 <a href="https://scienceblogs.com/taxonomy/term/134/feed#comment-1770154">#permalink</a></em> <article typeof="schema:Person" about="/user/0"> <div class="field field--name-user-picture field--type-image field--label-hidden field--item"> <a href="/user/0" hreflang="und"><img src="/files/styles/thumbnail/public/default_images/icon-user.png?itok=yQw_eG_q" width="100" height="100" alt="User Image" typeof="foaf:Image" class="img-responsive" /> </a> </div> </article> </footer> </article> <article data-comment-user-id="0" id="comment-1770155" class="js-comment comment-wrapper clearfix"> <mark class="hidden" data-comment-timestamp="1304623548"></mark> <div class="well"> <strong></strong> <div class="field field--name-comment-body field--type-text-long field--label-hidden field--item"><p>I just wonder how this happens. If wrote a vacuous essay, attached my photo and sent it to Nature, would it also get published? Don't think so... but of course I'm not as pretty as Timmy. The last issue of Nature Geoscience contained a number of similarly uninformative articles. I guess its the pre-AR5 lull - and the editors are commissioning these essays just to keep climate change in the news. ...?...</p> <p>[I think you're prettier. But, are your eyes as blue? -W]</p> </div> <drupal-render-placeholder callback="comment.lazy_builders:renderLinks" arguments="0=1770155&amp;1=default&amp;2=en&amp;3=" token="bmKBzDbZloGMdj7m4bBYTZkYA67XAB5las3vhQADSl0"></drupal-render-placeholder> </div> <footer> <em>By <a rel="nofollow" href="http://pickturs.blogspot.com" lang="" typeof="schema:Person" property="schema:name" datatype="">jules (not verified)</a> on 05 May 2011 <a href="https://scienceblogs.com/taxonomy/term/134/feed#comment-1770155">#permalink</a></em> <article typeof="schema:Person" about="/user/0"> <div class="field field--name-user-picture field--type-image field--label-hidden field--item"> <a href="/user/0" hreflang="und"><img src="/files/styles/thumbnail/public/default_images/icon-user.png?itok=yQw_eG_q" width="100" height="100" alt="User Image" typeof="foaf:Image" class="img-responsive" /> </a> </div> </article> </footer> </article> <article data-comment-user-id="0" id="comment-1770156" class="js-comment comment-wrapper clearfix"> <mark class="hidden" data-comment-timestamp="1304696531"></mark> <div class="well"> <strong></strong> <div class="field field--name-comment-body field--type-text-long field--label-hidden field--item"><p>The specific phraseology and figures may be sub-optimal, and certainly the suggestion of shrinking a target that already isn't being taken seriously. But I thought society needed to act in the face of uncertainty. Therefore the POTENTIAL for substantially accelerated climate change should be considered by policymakers. Isn't that the bottom line? And people wonder why there's confusion over whether we need to act more quickly - there's still much quibbling (sans any acknowledgment of reasonable intent). Most people, especially policymakers, need something a bit less equivocal.</p> <p>[" I thought society needed to act in the face of uncertainty" - yes, I quite agree: it does. And in the case of economics, or foreign policy, it very frequently does. If TL had said that, I'd have been happy. The naive/stupid approach he is using, though, is the "more of the same failed approach" stuff, and it will go nowhere -W]</p> </div> <drupal-render-placeholder callback="comment.lazy_builders:renderLinks" arguments="0=1770156&amp;1=default&amp;2=en&amp;3=" token="U2dV-D8bHOCsHxeHOsDAatNj2eAvurDQX-AXUpwVd5c"></drupal-render-placeholder> </div> <footer> <em>By <span lang="" typeof="schema:Person" property="schema:name" datatype="">Ryan T (not verified)</span> on 06 May 2011 <a href="https://scienceblogs.com/taxonomy/term/134/feed#comment-1770156">#permalink</a></em> <article typeof="schema:Person" about="/user/0"> <div class="field field--name-user-picture field--type-image field--label-hidden field--item"> <a href="/user/0" hreflang="und"><img src="/files/styles/thumbnail/public/default_images/icon-user.png?itok=yQw_eG_q" width="100" height="100" alt="User Image" typeof="foaf:Image" class="img-responsive" /> </a> </div> </article> </footer> </article> <article data-comment-user-id="0" id="comment-1770157" class="js-comment comment-wrapper clearfix"> <mark class="hidden" data-comment-timestamp="1304709620"></mark> <div class="well"> <strong></strong> <div class="field field--name-comment-body field--type-text-long field--label-hidden field--item"><p>Your [redacted], you haven't read his article properly at all. He acknowledges that 2C is utterly arbitrary and actually if you must know the 2C target came from early cost benefit economic impact studies done in the 1980's by Nordhouse where the choice was utterly arbitrary but ended up being coopted into the literature as some kind of consensus.</p> <p>[If you want "imbecile" to be convincing, then spelling it correctly would be a good idea ;-). As to the substance of your comment: you are wrong. He nowhere acknowledges 2 oC as arbitrary -W]</p> </div> <drupal-render-placeholder callback="comment.lazy_builders:renderLinks" arguments="0=1770157&amp;1=default&amp;2=en&amp;3=" token="_6G9JNzCMr7mbWdLKZgfqtNHxCKW9cnHJpV8ACoMkw8"></drupal-render-placeholder> </div> <footer> <em>By <span lang="" typeof="schema:Person" property="schema:name" datatype="">Sam (not verified)</span> on 06 May 2011 <a href="https://scienceblogs.com/taxonomy/term/134/feed#comment-1770157">#permalink</a></em> <article typeof="schema:Person" about="/user/0"> <div class="field field--name-user-picture field--type-image field--label-hidden field--item"> <a href="/user/0" hreflang="und"><img src="/files/styles/thumbnail/public/default_images/icon-user.png?itok=yQw_eG_q" width="100" height="100" alt="User Image" typeof="foaf:Image" class="img-responsive" /> </a> </div> </article> </footer> </article> <article data-comment-user-id="0" id="comment-1770158" class="js-comment comment-wrapper clearfix"> <mark class="hidden" data-comment-timestamp="1304715566"></mark> <div class="well"> <strong></strong> <div class="field field--name-comment-body field--type-text-long field--label-hidden field--item"><p>A 2 K increase is way, way too much.</p> </div> <drupal-render-placeholder callback="comment.lazy_builders:renderLinks" arguments="0=1770158&amp;1=default&amp;2=en&amp;3=" token="VRL3deWMyN-5tOiTgSkFreocqwOjroLGfpZXXoj4YeY"></drupal-render-placeholder> </div> <footer> <em>By <span lang="" typeof="schema:Person" property="schema:name" datatype="">David B. Benson (not verified)</span> on 06 May 2011 <a href="https://scienceblogs.com/taxonomy/term/134/feed#comment-1770158">#permalink</a></em> <article typeof="schema:Person" about="/user/0"> <div class="field field--name-user-picture field--type-image field--label-hidden field--item"> <a href="/user/0" hreflang="und"><img src="/files/styles/thumbnail/public/default_images/icon-user.png?itok=yQw_eG_q" width="100" height="100" alt="User Image" typeof="foaf:Image" class="img-responsive" /> </a> </div> </article> </footer> </article> <article data-comment-user-id="0" id="comment-1770159" class="js-comment comment-wrapper clearfix"> <mark class="hidden" data-comment-timestamp="1304771204"></mark> <div class="well"> <strong></strong> <div class="field field--name-comment-body field--type-text-long field--label-hidden field--item"><p>"Ongoing negotiations for a new climate treaty aim to establish a target to limit the global temperature rise to 2 °C above the average temperature before the industrial revolution."</p> <p>I understand why this may be a good idea but will it ever be possible to put a figure that baseline and bolt it down?</p> <p>Given the existence of a propensity to contest everything, adopting a baseline that is open to claim, counter-claim, and new evidence, is hostage to fortune.</p> <p>Alex</p> <p>[No single number will ever make sense, given the uncertainties -W]</p> </div> <drupal-render-placeholder callback="comment.lazy_builders:renderLinks" arguments="0=1770159&amp;1=default&amp;2=en&amp;3=" token="EMGW9gA3oq7_yif9HVHjoZ0ra5Qy2dzxUpfvM3KjSrQ"></drupal-render-placeholder> </div> <footer> <em>By <span lang="" typeof="schema:Person" property="schema:name" datatype="">Alexander Harvey (not verified)</span> on 07 May 2011 <a href="https://scienceblogs.com/taxonomy/term/134/feed#comment-1770159">#permalink</a></em> <article typeof="schema:Person" about="/user/0"> <div class="field field--name-user-picture field--type-image field--label-hidden field--item"> <a href="/user/0" hreflang="und"><img src="/files/styles/thumbnail/public/default_images/icon-user.png?itok=yQw_eG_q" width="100" height="100" alt="User Image" typeof="foaf:Image" class="img-responsive" /> </a> </div> </article> </footer> </article> <article data-comment-user-id="0" id="comment-1770160" class="js-comment comment-wrapper clearfix"> <mark class="hidden" data-comment-timestamp="1304818055"></mark> <div class="well"> <strong></strong> <div class="field field--name-comment-body field--type-text-long field--label-hidden field--item"><p>Last year, a paper about the origin of the 2ºC target was published in Wiley Interdisciplinary Reviews (under paywall):</p> <p>Samuel Randalls 2010. <a href="http://onlinelibrary.wiley.com/doi/10.1002/wcc.62/abstract">History of the 2°C climate target</a>. Wiley Interdisciplinary Reviews: Climate Change. Vol. 1, Issue 4, pp 598â605, July/August 2010</p> </div> <drupal-render-placeholder callback="comment.lazy_builders:renderLinks" arguments="0=1770160&amp;1=default&amp;2=en&amp;3=" token="v5yjHwU1Q1O6lir7IyJbQrunB8TFRdjyzAi1NSrfRqg"></drupal-render-placeholder> </div> <footer> <em>By <a rel="nofollow" href="http://aziroet.com/cambioclimatico/" lang="" typeof="schema:Person" property="schema:name" datatype="">Jesús R. (not verified)</a> on 07 May 2011 <a href="https://scienceblogs.com/taxonomy/term/134/feed#comment-1770160">#permalink</a></em> <article typeof="schema:Person" about="/user/0"> <div class="field field--name-user-picture field--type-image field--label-hidden field--item"> <a href="/user/0" hreflang="und"><img src="/files/styles/thumbnail/public/default_images/icon-user.png?itok=yQw_eG_q" width="100" height="100" alt="User Image" typeof="foaf:Image" class="img-responsive" /> </a> </div> </article> </footer> </article> <article data-comment-user-id="0" id="comment-1770161" class="js-comment comment-wrapper clearfix"> <mark class="hidden" data-comment-timestamp="1304829767"></mark> <div class="well"> <strong></strong> <div class="field field--name-comment-body field--type-text-long field--label-hidden field--item"><p>The 1.5C is based on the behavior of the ice sheets during the interglacials, and so does seem to have a firm footing. Irritatingly, it seems clear that we're already committed to exceeding it.</p> <p>But is interesting to see one of that crowd giving a nod toward Hansen; it wasn't that long ago that Myles Allen publicly attacked him (in Nature again, IIRC).</p> </div> <drupal-render-placeholder callback="comment.lazy_builders:renderLinks" arguments="0=1770161&amp;1=default&amp;2=en&amp;3=" token="bWcwM-Mk7CNZoaHeLKk0lzBka0Ctyi-KtUaAZ4DEt3c"></drupal-render-placeholder> </div> <footer> <em>By <span lang="" typeof="schema:Person" property="schema:name" datatype="">Steve Bloom (not verified)</span> on 08 May 2011 <a href="https://scienceblogs.com/taxonomy/term/134/feed#comment-1770161">#permalink</a></em> <article typeof="schema:Person" about="/user/0"> <div class="field field--name-user-picture field--type-image field--label-hidden field--item"> <a href="/user/0" hreflang="und"><img src="/files/styles/thumbnail/public/default_images/icon-user.png?itok=yQw_eG_q" width="100" height="100" alt="User Image" typeof="foaf:Image" class="img-responsive" /> </a> </div> </article> </footer> </article> <article data-comment-user-id="0" id="comment-1770162" class="js-comment comment-wrapper clearfix"> <mark class="hidden" data-comment-timestamp="1304834814"></mark> <div class="well"> <strong></strong> <div class="field field--name-comment-body field--type-text-long field--label-hidden field--item"><p>"[No single number will ever make sense, given the uncertainties -W]"</p> <p>It is not the figure I take issue with but the baseline which is inherently unknowable.</p> <p>Perhaps someone knows by how much the HADcrut3 1961-1990 climatology baseline is currently considered to be above "the average temperature before the industrial revolution"?</p> <p>I think that fundamentally we are talking about modelled temperatures for which such an average temperature does exist. E.G. the average temperatures achieved by the pre-industrial forcing spin up phase.</p> <p>So the proposition becomes one of restricting the rise in modelled temperatures to 2ºC above what they would have averaged if they had motored on from 1750 (or from whichever date the forcings start to vary) to 2050 without modification.</p> <p>If that is what it means that is fine. It is a statistic that is well defined in principle.</p> <p>Unfortunately I do not believe it is the statistic used for IPCC graphics which seem to favour a 1901-1950 climatology and do not indicate the pre-industrial forcing period temperatures, which may for all I know have a considerable spread and offset. So knowing the how much the 1901-1950 baseline is modelled to be above pre-industrial would be handy and if anyone can tell me where this value or set of values is lodged I will go look for it.</p> <p>If we are talking about modelled values and are clear about that, a lot of concepts become meaningful. We could set targets to prevent various levels of modelled sea level rise, modelled deglaciation, modelled desertification, modelled rain forest decarbonisation, etc. Targets to achieve or prevent well considered and demonstrable modelled effects seem logical to me and may not necessarily driven by temperature as much as some other climatic disturbance.</p> <p>The only quantified future that can currently exists is a modelled one. The only domain in which the 2050 ice and glacial patterns exist is the modelled domain. I am quite content to consider the merits of modelled policies or scenarios on the basis of modelled outcomes but I really do think it should be made clear to all concerned what we are talking about.</p> <p>If we are not discussing future real world temperatures and other outcomes, which of course do not exist, but future modelled temperatures and outcomes which are quantifiable then that is coherent and meaningful.</p> <p>I am content with trying to plot or navigate a future using computer models. But I think it needs to be made clear that modelled droughts are different in nature to real world droughts. We can attempt to navigate away from modelled droughts for they exist.</p> <p>Non-correspondence between modelled events and real world events do not invalidate model use anymore than is the case with weather forecasts. Failure of the real world to confirm a modelled outcome is inevitable and we may need some luck in that respect.</p> <p>We can never know how much real world pain, suffering and death we will cause or avoid but we can know how much modelled misery is down to our actions or in actions.</p> <p>Here I expect I part company.</p> <p>Those that believe in the value of modelling should be braver and clearer. By stating that the models chart the only futures that can be said to exist in any meaningful way. By giving force to the concept that modelled lives inherit rights from the real world and to kill them off is a culpable act.</p> <p>So if the object is to prevent certain modelled consequences in a modelled world then that is fine by me, but I think it should be made clear that this is a different thing from preventing real world outcomes.</p> <p>Alex</p> </div> <drupal-render-placeholder callback="comment.lazy_builders:renderLinks" arguments="0=1770162&amp;1=default&amp;2=en&amp;3=" token="vLzcYvHPG_vGX5flwbnCoFQ5FTfWSxl2D9dw3fPlfZE"></drupal-render-placeholder> </div> <footer> <em>By <span lang="" typeof="schema:Person" property="schema:name" datatype="">Alexander Harvey (not verified)</span> on 08 May 2011 <a href="https://scienceblogs.com/taxonomy/term/134/feed#comment-1770162">#permalink</a></em> <article typeof="schema:Person" about="/user/0"> <div class="field field--name-user-picture field--type-image field--label-hidden field--item"> <a href="/user/0" hreflang="und"><img src="/files/styles/thumbnail/public/default_images/icon-user.png?itok=yQw_eG_q" width="100" height="100" alt="User Image" typeof="foaf:Image" class="img-responsive" /> </a> </div> </article> </footer> </article> <article data-comment-user-id="0" id="comment-1770163" class="js-comment comment-wrapper clearfix"> <mark class="hidden" data-comment-timestamp="1304922525"></mark> <div class="well"> <strong></strong> <div class="field field--name-comment-body field--type-text-long field--label-hidden field--item"><p>Yes, Alex, if there was data about the future, we would use that.</p> </div> <drupal-render-placeholder callback="comment.lazy_builders:renderLinks" arguments="0=1770163&amp;1=default&amp;2=en&amp;3=" token="SU-5Y4xYdfGCo_D4NdPgDWbbXJ-tDoMJK89FKv7fvjk"></drupal-render-placeholder> </div> <footer> <em>By <a rel="nofollow" href="http://rabett.blogspot.com" lang="" typeof="schema:Person" property="schema:name" datatype="">Eli Rabett (not verified)</a> on 09 May 2011 <a href="https://scienceblogs.com/taxonomy/term/134/feed#comment-1770163">#permalink</a></em> <article typeof="schema:Person" about="/user/0"> <div class="field field--name-user-picture field--type-image field--label-hidden field--item"> <a href="/user/0" hreflang="und"><img src="/files/styles/thumbnail/public/default_images/icon-user.png?itok=yQw_eG_q" width="100" height="100" alt="User Image" typeof="foaf:Image" class="img-responsive" /> </a> </div> </article> </footer> </article> <article data-comment-user-id="0" id="comment-1770164" class="js-comment comment-wrapper clearfix"> <mark class="hidden" data-comment-timestamp="1304981486"></mark> <div class="well"> <strong></strong> <div class="field field--name-comment-body field--type-text-long field--label-hidden field--item"><p>What's silly is measuring success by the measurement most affected by natural variation.</p> </div> <drupal-render-placeholder callback="comment.lazy_builders:renderLinks" arguments="0=1770164&amp;1=default&amp;2=en&amp;3=" token="c77X4I3PGp1L5gbvoTQHFxd3bSRnYdTF2jYpeNxVBqA"></drupal-render-placeholder> </div> <footer> <em>By <a rel="nofollow" href="http://replacefossil.com" lang="" typeof="schema:Person" property="schema:name" datatype="">Paul Kelly (not verified)</a> on 09 May 2011 <a href="https://scienceblogs.com/taxonomy/term/134/feed#comment-1770164">#permalink</a></em> <article typeof="schema:Person" about="/user/0"> <div class="field field--name-user-picture field--type-image field--label-hidden field--item"> <a href="/user/0" hreflang="und"><img src="/files/styles/thumbnail/public/default_images/icon-user.png?itok=yQw_eG_q" width="100" height="100" alt="User Image" typeof="foaf:Image" class="img-responsive" /> </a> </div> </article> </footer> </article> <article data-comment-user-id="0" id="comment-1770165" class="js-comment comment-wrapper clearfix"> <mark class="hidden" data-comment-timestamp="1304982755"></mark> <div class="well"> <strong></strong> <div class="field field--name-comment-body field--type-text-long field--label-hidden field--item"><p>A better measure of success is the ratio of carbon-less energy in place to the total amount of energy necessary in 2050.</p> </div> <drupal-render-placeholder callback="comment.lazy_builders:renderLinks" arguments="0=1770165&amp;1=default&amp;2=en&amp;3=" token="fpeHW8zcOO3a1eHj0drYrjT_OqlavG5CgyN80Dfc-4I"></drupal-render-placeholder> </div> <footer> <em>By <span lang="" typeof="schema:Person" property="schema:name" datatype="">Paul Kelly (not verified)</span> on 09 May 2011 <a href="https://scienceblogs.com/taxonomy/term/134/feed#comment-1770165">#permalink</a></em> <article typeof="schema:Person" about="/user/0"> <div class="field field--name-user-picture field--type-image field--label-hidden field--item"> <a href="/user/0" hreflang="und"><img src="/files/styles/thumbnail/public/default_images/icon-user.png?itok=yQw_eG_q" width="100" height="100" alt="User Image" typeof="foaf:Image" class="img-responsive" /> </a> </div> </article> </footer> </article> <article data-comment-user-id="0" id="comment-1770166" class="js-comment comment-wrapper clearfix"> <mark class="hidden" data-comment-timestamp="1305019757"></mark> <div class="well"> <strong></strong> <div class="field field--name-comment-body field--type-text-long field--label-hidden field--item"><p>Yss, Eli, and the simulators are getting pretty good.</p> <p>I suspect that the best of the latest round of climate models may be able to allow us to answer a question that I think is significant.</p> <p>Can we fly the planet.</p> <p>Given that we may have some models that are controlled not by concentrations but by emissions from which the concentrations are modelled, we have an opportunity to practice flying the planet. We would make decisions and adopt strategies with the intention of avoiding certain unfavourable outcomes. As those strategies unfold they will need corrections based on information gleened from instrumentation. Requirements to adapt will emerge and tactics to achieve adaptation adopted.</p> <p>I have a nasty feeling that the first attempts to navigate the climate future will end with crashing the planet even with the safest of pilots. You see I think that it may be a lot harder task than signing a few agreements and setting some targets. I think that we may find that mitigation is not a simple matter of setting a course and then sleeping at the controls. I also suspect that the requirements to adapt may occur in such an ill-mannered way that we will start projects and then abandon them as more urgent tasks are revealed. </p> <p>I may be wrong, but if it turns out that we are ill-equipped and trained to fly planet Earth it might be nice to find out in advance.</p> <p>I suspect that we may finally come to terms with some home truths. That natural variability is a nightmare not some get out of gaol free card. That we are institutionally ill-equipped to adapt in a timely manner in that it may require dictatorial powers to achieve those ends.</p> <p>If we took the best of our climate simulators and the best ancillary models for population, industry, economics and ran them at a week for a year, I suspect that even the most well intentioned pilots would emerge dazed, shell-shocked, humbled and apologetic before 50 modelled years were up. But I do think that we could practice and learn.</p> <p>I am deeply troubled by the current approach as I understand it. That we can somehow make agreements that are workable and will achieve favourable outcomes. I also worry that some of the necessary measures will be counter-intuitive or at least the timing of those measures. Mostly I worry that we will discover that we are flying almost blind, that it will not be obvious whether various mitigation stategies are working. That we will not foresee adaption needs in a timely fashion, and that embarking on them far ahead of time in a preemptive move will lead to a waste of resources as the regions or cities fall into decline for other reasons.</p> <p>If it turns out that attempts to fly a simulated planet leaves us with a very different to-do list I think this would be very nice to know. And if, as is likely, we cannot make much progress in the real world, attempting to pilot the modelled Earth and having to react to particular realisations as they onfold is a possibility, and it might show that we need to build capacity in otherwise overlooked fields.</p> <p>Alex</p> </div> <drupal-render-placeholder callback="comment.lazy_builders:renderLinks" arguments="0=1770166&amp;1=default&amp;2=en&amp;3=" token="Vr6hsBk4hR5dZenVhQAw77Ofsn2qKRan23koB2XWI68"></drupal-render-placeholder> </div> <footer> <em>By <span lang="" typeof="schema:Person" property="schema:name" datatype="">Alexander Harvey (not verified)</span> on 10 May 2011 <a href="https://scienceblogs.com/taxonomy/term/134/feed#comment-1770166">#permalink</a></em> <article typeof="schema:Person" about="/user/0"> <div class="field field--name-user-picture field--type-image field--label-hidden field--item"> <a href="/user/0" hreflang="und"><img src="/files/styles/thumbnail/public/default_images/icon-user.png?itok=yQw_eG_q" width="100" height="100" alt="User Image" typeof="foaf:Image" class="img-responsive" /> </a> </div> </article> </footer> </article> <article data-comment-user-id="0" id="comment-1770167" class="js-comment comment-wrapper clearfix"> <mark class="hidden" data-comment-timestamp="1305023899"></mark> <div class="well"> <strong></strong> <div class="field field--name-comment-body field--type-text-long field--label-hidden field--item"><p>Thanks to Jesús R.</p> <p>I looked in Scholar for the author's name and turned up another paper covering the same history:</p> <p><a href="http://scholar.google.com/scholar?cluster=6629091340574097001&amp;hl=en&amp;as_sdt=0,5">http://scholar.google.com/scholar?cluster=6629091340574097001&amp;hl=en&amp;as_…</a></p> <p>Five versions; the middle one has a HTML link so you can read it online.</p> </div> <drupal-render-placeholder callback="comment.lazy_builders:renderLinks" arguments="0=1770167&amp;1=default&amp;2=en&amp;3=" token="69AQOOwjK7WyN-esx88yh8cr_MZ5o40hA1qXeq7gQNs"></drupal-render-placeholder> </div> <footer> <em>By <a rel="nofollow" href="http://hankroberts.wordpress.com" lang="" typeof="schema:Person" property="schema:name" datatype="">Hank Roberts (not verified)</a> on 10 May 2011 <a href="https://scienceblogs.com/taxonomy/term/134/feed#comment-1770167">#permalink</a></em> <article typeof="schema:Person" about="/user/0"> <div class="field field--name-user-picture field--type-image field--label-hidden field--item"> <a href="/user/0" hreflang="und"><img src="/files/styles/thumbnail/public/default_images/icon-user.png?itok=yQw_eG_q" width="100" height="100" alt="User Image" typeof="foaf:Image" class="img-responsive" /> </a> </div> </article> </footer> </article> <article data-comment-user-id="0" id="comment-1770168" class="js-comment comment-wrapper clearfix"> <mark class="hidden" data-comment-timestamp="1305028417"></mark> <div class="well"> <strong></strong> <div class="field field--name-comment-body field--type-text-long field--label-hidden field--item"><p><a href="http://www.scientificamerican.com/blog/post.cfm?id=temperature-tantrum-james-hansen-sp-2011-05-09">http://www.scientificamerican.com/blog/post.cfm?id=temperature-tantrum-…</a></p> </div> <drupal-render-placeholder callback="comment.lazy_builders:renderLinks" arguments="0=1770168&amp;1=default&amp;2=en&amp;3=" token="IkJa_7SiQ14KfL-H64d3_oeO6lV1d5MqWgJ4fwjp9No"></drupal-render-placeholder> </div> <footer> <em>By <a rel="nofollow" href="http://hankroberts.wordpress.com" lang="" typeof="schema:Person" property="schema:name" datatype="">Hank Roberts (not verified)</a> on 10 May 2011 <a href="https://scienceblogs.com/taxonomy/term/134/feed#comment-1770168">#permalink</a></em> <article typeof="schema:Person" about="/user/0"> <div class="field field--name-user-picture field--type-image field--label-hidden field--item"> <a href="/user/0" hreflang="und"><img src="/files/styles/thumbnail/public/default_images/icon-user.png?itok=yQw_eG_q" width="100" height="100" alt="User Image" typeof="foaf:Image" class="img-responsive" /> </a> </div> </article> </footer> </article> <article data-comment-user-id="0" id="comment-1770169" class="js-comment comment-wrapper clearfix"> <mark class="hidden" data-comment-timestamp="1305031400"></mark> <div class="well"> <strong></strong> <div class="field field--name-comment-body field--type-text-long field--label-hidden field--item"><p>Hank,</p> <p>Do you agree with Hansen that nuclear power, which Hansen views as our best hope for replacing fossil fuels?</p> </div> <drupal-render-placeholder callback="comment.lazy_builders:renderLinks" arguments="0=1770169&amp;1=default&amp;2=en&amp;3=" token="mjeQB-FxZASBeeAAF6YmxbXi8AB1cPJEOivX3-w4rJo"></drupal-render-placeholder> </div> <footer> <em>By <span lang="" typeof="schema:Person" property="schema:name" datatype="">Paul Kelly (not verified)</span> on 10 May 2011 <a href="https://scienceblogs.com/taxonomy/term/134/feed#comment-1770169">#permalink</a></em> <article typeof="schema:Person" about="/user/0"> <div class="field field--name-user-picture field--type-image field--label-hidden field--item"> <a href="/user/0" hreflang="und"><img src="/files/styles/thumbnail/public/default_images/icon-user.png?itok=yQw_eG_q" width="100" height="100" alt="User Image" typeof="foaf:Image" class="img-responsive" /> </a> </div> </article> </footer> </article> </section> <ul class="links inline list-inline"><li class="comment-forbidden"><a href="/user/login?destination=/stoat/2011/05/05/tim-lenton-is-silly%23comment-form">Log in</a> to post comments</li></ul> Thu, 05 May 2011 14:58:03 +0000 stoat 53204 at https://scienceblogs.com The Unexpected Leaping Ability of Bovines https://scienceblogs.com/principles/2010/11/04/the-unexpected-leaping-ability <span>The Unexpected Leaping Ability of Bovines</span> <div class="field field--name-body field--type-text-with-summary field--label-hidden field--item"><p>I'm spending the day trying to get some work done on the book-in-progress, so I'm avoiding both work- and blog-related stuff. I don't want to leave the site completely quiet, though, so here's a question to ponder, relating to <a href="http://scienceblogs.com/principles/2010/10/the_astrophysics_of_bedtime_st.php">SteelyKid's continuing fascination with <cite>Goodnight Moon</cite></a>:</p> <blockquote><p>How does a cow jump over the moon?</p> </blockquote> <p>The father of one of SteelyKid's classmates, who is not originally from the US, asked why there's a cow jumping over the moon in that (or, as SteelyKid puts it: "Cow jumping MOON!!"), and I don't have a good answer. I'm aware of the <a href="http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Hey_Diddle_Diddle">nursery rhyme</a> and the <a href="http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/The_Man_in_the_Moon_Stayed_Up_Too_Late">Tolkien joke</a>, but why anybody would posit a cow jumping over the moon in the first place, I don't know.</p> <p>If you run the numbers (and yes, I'm dorky enough to do this), it's awfully improbable.</p> <!--more--><p>The Moon orbits at a distance of around 400,000 km from Earth, meaning that an 800-kg cow would require something like 800,000,000 J of energy to just barely clear the Moon's orbit. So, where would a cow get that kind of energy?</p> <p>Well, I grew up in a dairy farming area in New York, so I know that one of the things cows regularly eat is corn. The Internet helpfully tells me that there are <a href="http://www.calorieking.com/foods/calories-in-fresh-or-dried-vegetables-corn-sweet-white-raw_f-Y2lkPTE0Nzc1JmJpZD0xJmZpZD0xMTY5MTYmZWlkPTYwMjkwMDk3OCZwb3M9MyZwYXI9JmtleT1jb3Ju.html">262 kJ in an ear of corn</a>, so a cow would need to eat a bit more than 3,000 ears of corn to get enough energy to be able to jump over the moon. That works out to about a tenth of a cow's <a href="http://www.extension.org/faq/25593">annual corn consumption</a>. Of course, you'd probably need to include at least some of the mass of the corn in the calculation, which would inflate the total a bit. That, or include the propulsive effect of ejecting that much waste corn in the effect of the "jump," but that's not really an image I want to pursue.</p> <p>So, clearly, the cow must be making use of some higher-efficiency method of generating energy. If we were to assume a nuclear-powered cow, running off uranium fission reactions that release 200 MeV per fission, the energy required works out to about 2.5x10<sup>19</sup> uranium atoms fissioning. Which sounds like a lot, but the mass of an atom is pretty tiny, so that's only about 9.8 micrograms of total material. Even if you account for a relatively low conversion efficiency, you're not looking at a huge amount of fissionable material.</p> <p>Clearly, then, the cow jumping MOON!! must come from some Western state with lots of uranium in the ground and water, and has evolved sophisticated energy-extraction abilities through the many years of ranching out west. If we can track this sucker down, and harness this power for more productive activities than the frivolous leaping of orbiting satellites, the whole climate change problem will be licked in no time.</p> <p>(What? It's not any less plausible than anything else that will come out of Congress in the next few years...)</p> </div> <span><a title="View user profile." href="/author/drorzel" lang="" about="/author/drorzel" typeof="schema:Person" property="schema:name" datatype="">drorzel</a></span> <span>Thu, 11/04/2010 - 06:12</span> <div class="field field--name-field-blog-tags field--type-entity-reference field--label-inline"> <div class="field--label">Tags</div> <div class="field--items"> <div class="field--item"><a href="/tag/books-0" hreflang="en">Books</a></div> <div class="field--item"><a href="/tag/environment-0" hreflang="en">Environment</a></div> <div class="field--item"><a href="/tag/physics" hreflang="en">Physics</a></div> <div class="field--item"><a href="/tag/pop-culture" hreflang="en">Pop Culture</a></div> <div class="field--item"><a href="/tag/science" hreflang="en">Science</a></div> <div class="field--item"><a href="/tag/silliness" hreflang="en">silliness</a></div> <div class="field--item"><a href="/tag/steelykid" hreflang="en">Steelykid!</a></div> <div class="field--item"><a href="/tag/books" hreflang="en">Books</a></div> <div class="field--item"><a href="/tag/cow" hreflang="en">cow</a></div> <div class="field--item"><a href="/tag/education" hreflang="en">education</a></div> <div class="field--item"><a href="/tag/energy-0" hreflang="en">energy</a></div> <div class="field--item"><a href="/tag/fission" hreflang="en">fission</a></div> <div class="field--item"><a href="/tag/goodnight-moon" hreflang="en">goodnight moon</a></div> <div class="field--item"><a href="/tag/kid-stuff" hreflang="en">kid-stuff</a></div> <div class="field--item"><a href="/tag/math" hreflang="en">math</a></div> <div class="field--item"><a href="/tag/moon" hreflang="en">Moon</a></div> <div class="field--item"><a href="/tag/silly" hreflang="en">silly</a></div> <div class="field--item"><a href="/tag/physics" hreflang="en">Physics</a></div> <div class="field--item"><a href="/tag/pop-culture" hreflang="en">Pop Culture</a></div> <div class="field--item"><a href="/tag/science" hreflang="en">Science</a></div> </div> </div> <section> <article data-comment-user-id="0" id="comment-1638914" class="js-comment comment-wrapper clearfix"> <mark class="hidden" data-comment-timestamp="1288866209"></mark> <div class="well"> <strong></strong> <div class="field field--name-comment-body field--type-text-long field--label-hidden field--item"><p>Oh, please.</p> <p>Clearly, cows are aliens, with access to zero-point energy technology far beyond your puny little quantum physicist's mental abilities to grasp. Of course, the gummint does not want us to acknowledge this fact, so this is a case of "hiding in plain sight"--reports of cows jumping over the moon (or "Cow jumping MOON!") will be dismissed as fairy-tale conflations.</p> <p>The motive is clear, if you just know where to look. Cows have threatened us with the use of that same zero-point energy technology; intimidated, we have taken to protecting them, housing and feeding them, giving them medical care (yes, milking and eating them, but apparently that is an acceptable deal to the aliens, who simply look to the relative populations of cows and of other megafauna on our planet, note their numbers large and rising, and do whatever the alien equivalent of smiling is. Perhaps a contented "moo".). </p> <p>If we fail to adequately care for our alien cow overlords, they have promised vast destruction. Even their "warning shot" is unimaginably terrifying--they would tear our beloved satellite from its familiar orbit, blinking it from existence in a nanosecond.</p> <p>That's right... it would be... </p> <p>Goodnight Moon.</p> </div> <drupal-render-placeholder callback="comment.lazy_builders:renderLinks" arguments="0=1638914&amp;1=default&amp;2=en&amp;3=" token="H0gtw5ngwZrsQyJcUzfOZvMFDR5kDIMG8stFUIOhAvQ"></drupal-render-placeholder> </div> <footer> <em>By <a rel="nofollow" href="http://digitalcuttlefish.blogspot.com" lang="" typeof="schema:Person" property="schema:name" datatype="">Cuttlefish (not verified)</a> on 04 Nov 2010 <a href="https://scienceblogs.com/taxonomy/term/134/feed#comment-1638914">#permalink</a></em> <article typeof="schema:Person" about="/user/0"> <div class="field field--name-user-picture field--type-image field--label-hidden field--item"> <a href="/user/0" hreflang="und"><img src="/files/styles/thumbnail/public/default_images/icon-user.png?itok=yQw_eG_q" width="100" height="100" alt="User Image" typeof="foaf:Image" class="img-responsive" /> </a> </div> </article> </footer> </article> <article data-comment-user-id="0" id="comment-1638915" class="js-comment comment-wrapper clearfix"> <mark class="hidden" data-comment-timestamp="1288867493"></mark> <div class="well"> <strong></strong> <div class="field field--name-comment-body field--type-text-long field--label-hidden field--item"><blockquote><p>...and has evolved sophisticated energy-extraction abilities through the many years of ranching out west.</p></blockquote> <p>Not that sophisticated. We called it Project Moorion.</p> </div> <drupal-render-placeholder callback="comment.lazy_builders:renderLinks" arguments="0=1638915&amp;1=default&amp;2=en&amp;3=" token="IzZdR8lL9oGI_PLG0AQvGhIU2U9f3Wm-C_v7CXgKHH4"></drupal-render-placeholder> </div> <footer> <em>By <span lang="" typeof="schema:Person" property="schema:name" datatype="">cisko (not verified)</span> on 04 Nov 2010 <a href="https://scienceblogs.com/taxonomy/term/134/feed#comment-1638915">#permalink</a></em> <article typeof="schema:Person" about="/user/0"> <div class="field field--name-user-picture field--type-image field--label-hidden field--item"> <a href="/user/0" hreflang="und"><img src="/files/styles/thumbnail/public/default_images/icon-user.png?itok=yQw_eG_q" width="100" height="100" alt="User Image" typeof="foaf:Image" class="img-responsive" /> </a> </div> </article> </footer> </article> <article data-comment-user-id="0" id="comment-1638916" class="js-comment comment-wrapper clearfix"> <mark class="hidden" data-comment-timestamp="1288867809"></mark> <div class="well"> <strong></strong> <div class="field field--name-comment-body field--type-text-long field--label-hidden field--item"><blockquote><p>...and has evolved sophisticated energy-extraction abilities through the many years of ranching out west.</p></blockquote> <p>Not that sophisticated. We called it Project Moorion.</p> </div> <drupal-render-placeholder callback="comment.lazy_builders:renderLinks" arguments="0=1638916&amp;1=default&amp;2=en&amp;3=" token="oDaGOCbmaroP5h2Zx4SatkjRZzn4AhRbJRNJw0g5o8s"></drupal-render-placeholder> </div> <footer> <em>By <span lang="" typeof="schema:Person" property="schema:name" datatype="">cisko (not verified)</span> on 04 Nov 2010 <a href="https://scienceblogs.com/taxonomy/term/134/feed#comment-1638916">#permalink</a></em> <article typeof="schema:Person" about="/user/0"> <div class="field field--name-user-picture field--type-image field--label-hidden field--item"> <a href="/user/0" hreflang="und"><img src="/files/styles/thumbnail/public/default_images/icon-user.png?itok=yQw_eG_q" width="100" height="100" alt="User Image" typeof="foaf:Image" class="img-responsive" /> </a> </div> </article> </footer> </article> <article data-comment-user-id="0" id="comment-1638917" class="js-comment comment-wrapper clearfix"> <mark class="hidden" data-comment-timestamp="1288869200"></mark> <div class="well"> <strong></strong> <div class="field field--name-comment-body field--type-text-long field--label-hidden field--item"><p>Let's see... you need 800,000,000 J for the cow to go into orbit, and each ear of corn has 262 J. Then I get that you will need 3,000,000 ears of corn, not 3,000. You seem to be off by a factor of 1000.</p> </div> <drupal-render-placeholder callback="comment.lazy_builders:renderLinks" arguments="0=1638917&amp;1=default&amp;2=en&amp;3=" token="Jq5DJabyiK48RdjSCHCnAh8yZCR-1sdSP91zaGZHr5s"></drupal-render-placeholder> </div> <footer> <em>By <span lang="" typeof="schema:Person" property="schema:name" datatype="">Fred Smith (not verified)</span> on 04 Nov 2010 <a href="https://scienceblogs.com/taxonomy/term/134/feed#comment-1638917">#permalink</a></em> <article typeof="schema:Person" about="/user/0"> <div class="field field--name-user-picture field--type-image field--label-hidden field--item"> <a href="/user/0" hreflang="und"><img src="/files/styles/thumbnail/public/default_images/icon-user.png?itok=yQw_eG_q" width="100" height="100" alt="User Image" typeof="foaf:Image" class="img-responsive" /> </a> </div> </article> </footer> </article> <article data-comment-user-id="0" id="comment-1638918" class="js-comment comment-wrapper clearfix"> <mark class="hidden" data-comment-timestamp="1288869307"></mark> <div class="well"> <strong></strong> <div class="field field--name-comment-body field--type-text-long field--label-hidden field--item"><p>Let's see... you need 800,000,000 J for the cow to go into orbit, and each ear of corn has 262 J. Then I get that you will need 3,000,000 ears of corn, not 3,000. You seem to be off by a factor of 1000.</p> </div> <drupal-render-placeholder callback="comment.lazy_builders:renderLinks" arguments="0=1638918&amp;1=default&amp;2=en&amp;3=" token="v4MEu0M_fH5QvMd5Igtq9Y01cUEdM8lIhZqQi4x9cFw"></drupal-render-placeholder> </div> <footer> <em>By <span lang="" typeof="schema:Person" property="schema:name" datatype="">Fred Smith (not verified)</span> on 04 Nov 2010 <a href="https://scienceblogs.com/taxonomy/term/134/feed#comment-1638918">#permalink</a></em> <article typeof="schema:Person" about="/user/0"> <div class="field field--name-user-picture field--type-image field--label-hidden field--item"> <a href="/user/0" hreflang="und"><img src="/files/styles/thumbnail/public/default_images/icon-user.png?itok=yQw_eG_q" width="100" height="100" alt="User Image" typeof="foaf:Image" class="img-responsive" /> </a> </div> </article> </footer> </article> <article data-comment-user-id="0" id="comment-1638919" class="js-comment comment-wrapper clearfix"> <mark class="hidden" data-comment-timestamp="1288869528"></mark> <div class="well"> <strong></strong> <div class="field field--name-comment-body field--type-text-long field--label-hidden field--item"><p><i>Let's see... you need 800,000,000 J for the cow to go into orbit, and each ear of corn has 262 J. Then I get that you will need 3,000,000 ears of corn, not 3,000. You seem to be off by a factor of 1000.</i></p> <p>It's 262 kilo-joules, not joules. That's a typo, and I'll fix it directly.</p> </div> <drupal-render-placeholder callback="comment.lazy_builders:renderLinks" arguments="0=1638919&amp;1=default&amp;2=en&amp;3=" token="oAHZqtR14_Gh1QJkhoVkF9ksx2I_6UGD3E6xJatt2kA"></drupal-render-placeholder> </div> <footer> <em>By <a rel="nofollow" href="http://scienceblogs.com/principles/" lang="" typeof="schema:Person" property="schema:name" datatype="">Chad Orzel (not verified)</a> on 04 Nov 2010 <a href="https://scienceblogs.com/taxonomy/term/134/feed#comment-1638919">#permalink</a></em> <article typeof="schema:Person" about="/user/0"> <div class="field field--name-user-picture field--type-image field--label-hidden field--item"> <a href="/user/0" hreflang="und"><img src="/files/styles/thumbnail/public/default_images/icon-user.png?itok=yQw_eG_q" width="100" height="100" alt="User Image" typeof="foaf:Image" class="img-responsive" /> </a> </div> </article> </footer> </article> <article data-comment-user-id="0" id="comment-1638920" class="js-comment comment-wrapper clearfix"> <mark class="hidden" data-comment-timestamp="1288870242"></mark> <div class="well"> <strong></strong> <div class="field field--name-comment-body field--type-text-long field--label-hidden field--item"><p>Stephen Colbert has alerted us to the possibility that these cows, if they are from Oklahoma, might be Moo-slims.</p> </div> <drupal-render-placeholder callback="comment.lazy_builders:renderLinks" arguments="0=1638920&amp;1=default&amp;2=en&amp;3=" token="0gDrDR2qtWr2I4Ov2KQ7P0fM2yt5UBNgXa6r3fhXEvw"></drupal-render-placeholder> </div> <footer> <em>By <span lang="" typeof="schema:Person" property="schema:name" datatype="">RickD (not verified)</span> on 04 Nov 2010 <a href="https://scienceblogs.com/taxonomy/term/134/feed#comment-1638920">#permalink</a></em> <article typeof="schema:Person" about="/user/0"> <div class="field field--name-user-picture field--type-image field--label-hidden field--item"> <a href="/user/0" hreflang="und"><img src="/files/styles/thumbnail/public/default_images/icon-user.png?itok=yQw_eG_q" width="100" height="100" alt="User Image" typeof="foaf:Image" class="img-responsive" /> </a> </div> </article> </footer> </article> <article data-comment-user-id="0" id="comment-1638921" class="js-comment comment-wrapper clearfix"> <mark class="hidden" data-comment-timestamp="1288871241"></mark> <div class="well"> <strong></strong> <div class="field field--name-comment-body field--type-text-long field--label-hidden field--item"><p>For some reason I'd always pictured it with the moon lying very low on the horizon, so that if the cow is very close to the observer (and it would help if said observer was lying at ground level), the cow may well be able to "jump over" the moon, without ever leaving our cozy atmosphere.</p> </div> <drupal-render-placeholder callback="comment.lazy_builders:renderLinks" arguments="0=1638921&amp;1=default&amp;2=en&amp;3=" token="RFr23BBBRFcVOwpor8eExjYoIcoB5n-3o0WYICIKdkU"></drupal-render-placeholder> </div> <footer> <em>By <span lang="" typeof="schema:Person" property="schema:name" datatype="">Richard Morton (not verified)</span> on 04 Nov 2010 <a href="https://scienceblogs.com/taxonomy/term/134/feed#comment-1638921">#permalink</a></em> <article typeof="schema:Person" about="/user/0"> <div class="field field--name-user-picture field--type-image field--label-hidden field--item"> <a href="/user/0" hreflang="und"><img src="/files/styles/thumbnail/public/default_images/icon-user.png?itok=yQw_eG_q" width="100" height="100" alt="User Image" typeof="foaf:Image" class="img-responsive" /> </a> </div> </article> </footer> </article> <article data-comment-user-id="0" id="comment-1638922" class="js-comment comment-wrapper clearfix"> <mark class="hidden" data-comment-timestamp="1288882969"></mark> <div class="well"> <strong></strong> <div class="field field--name-comment-body field--type-text-long field--label-hidden field--item"><p>I have another theory. See "Cartman Gets an Anal Probe, South Park Season 1, Episode 1."<br /> "I love to sing-a<br /> About the moon-a and the June-a and the spring-a,<br /> I love to sing-a,<br /> About a sky of blue-a, or a tea for two-a,<br /> Anything-a with a swing-a to an "I love you-a,"<br /> I love to, I love to sing!"</p> </div> <drupal-render-placeholder callback="comment.lazy_builders:renderLinks" arguments="0=1638922&amp;1=default&amp;2=en&amp;3=" token="8D4Tqt4zlq5gcvH3RnrRPSZA3Ci0ok2pq7WK1P3UUyg"></drupal-render-placeholder> </div> <footer> <em>By <span lang="" typeof="schema:Person" property="schema:name" datatype="">ScienceAndHonor (not verified)</span> on 04 Nov 2010 <a href="https://scienceblogs.com/taxonomy/term/134/feed#comment-1638922">#permalink</a></em> <article typeof="schema:Person" about="/user/0"> <div class="field field--name-user-picture field--type-image field--label-hidden field--item"> <a href="/user/0" hreflang="und"><img src="/files/styles/thumbnail/public/default_images/icon-user.png?itok=yQw_eG_q" width="100" height="100" alt="User Image" typeof="foaf:Image" class="img-responsive" /> </a> </div> </article> </footer> </article> <article data-comment-user-id="0" id="comment-1638923" class="js-comment comment-wrapper clearfix"> <mark class="hidden" data-comment-timestamp="1288910043"></mark> <div class="well"> <strong></strong> <div class="field field--name-comment-body field--type-text-long field--label-hidden field--item"><p>How much TNT would it take to propel the cow over the moon?</p> </div> <drupal-render-placeholder callback="comment.lazy_builders:renderLinks" arguments="0=1638923&amp;1=default&amp;2=en&amp;3=" token="_VKrASEzR8l2QrpHS8sr9gXB5ru64tz2bDa3BRPirlE"></drupal-render-placeholder> </div> <footer> <em>By <span lang="" typeof="schema:Person" property="schema:name" datatype="">becca (not verified)</span> on 04 Nov 2010 <a href="https://scienceblogs.com/taxonomy/term/134/feed#comment-1638923">#permalink</a></em> <article typeof="schema:Person" about="/user/0"> <div class="field field--name-user-picture field--type-image field--label-hidden field--item"> <a href="/user/0" hreflang="und"><img src="/files/styles/thumbnail/public/default_images/icon-user.png?itok=yQw_eG_q" width="100" height="100" alt="User Image" typeof="foaf:Image" class="img-responsive" /> </a> </div> </article> </footer> </article> <article data-comment-user-id="0" id="comment-1638924" class="js-comment comment-wrapper clearfix"> <mark class="hidden" data-comment-timestamp="1288930224"></mark> <div class="well"> <strong></strong> <div class="field field--name-comment-body field--type-text-long field--label-hidden field--item"><p>In keeping with ruminants' four-stomach system for digestion, the cows have a four stage nuclear reaction that extracts energy from diffierent stages in the decay of uranium to lead.</p> <p>Other than that, I'd go with the MOON! low on the horizon theory.</p> <p>Re: becca, with a catapult, you can get one over a castle wall.</p> </div> <drupal-render-placeholder callback="comment.lazy_builders:renderLinks" arguments="0=1638924&amp;1=default&amp;2=en&amp;3=" token="GtXd904iMcdXoXoHeV0TpMqsv7ZEiMI4-W5F9r5f4Mw"></drupal-render-placeholder> </div> <footer> <em>By <span lang="" typeof="schema:Person" property="schema:name" datatype="">eddie (not verified)</span> on 05 Nov 2010 <a href="https://scienceblogs.com/taxonomy/term/134/feed#comment-1638924">#permalink</a></em> <article typeof="schema:Person" about="/user/0"> <div class="field field--name-user-picture field--type-image field--label-hidden field--item"> <a href="/user/0" hreflang="und"><img src="/files/styles/thumbnail/public/default_images/icon-user.png?itok=yQw_eG_q" width="100" height="100" alt="User Image" typeof="foaf:Image" class="img-responsive" /> </a> </div> </article> </footer> </article> <article data-comment-user-id="0" id="comment-1638925" class="js-comment comment-wrapper clearfix"> <mark class="hidden" data-comment-timestamp="1288939079"></mark> <div class="well"> <strong></strong> <div class="field field--name-comment-body field--type-text-long field--label-hidden field--item"><p>Naah, it is just a matter of probablility and quantum physics. An individual atom might indeed jump over the moon, it is just improbable. Now, calculate the probability of all the atoms in a cow jumping over the moon simultaneously, and feed the result into the Inifinite Improbability Drive (first tested by a certain Zaphod Breeblebox).</p> <p>Re: becca, eddie -it is much easier with a wooden badger.<br /> Re. 1, 2 11:<br /> -Have you checked the thread about what makes Godzilla work? A 40.000 ton reptile obviously needs a lot of GM engineering, including integrating nuclear power into the metabolism</p> </div> <drupal-render-placeholder callback="comment.lazy_builders:renderLinks" arguments="0=1638925&amp;1=default&amp;2=en&amp;3=" token="m79vwiTZpdDrEySSylV67anZNhnaDMiBjGZ7iDTz1vY"></drupal-render-placeholder> </div> <footer> <em>By <span lang="" typeof="schema:Person" property="schema:name" datatype="">Birger Johansson (not verified)</span> on 05 Nov 2010 <a href="https://scienceblogs.com/taxonomy/term/134/feed#comment-1638925">#permalink</a></em> <article typeof="schema:Person" about="/user/0"> <div class="field field--name-user-picture field--type-image field--label-hidden field--item"> <a href="/user/0" hreflang="und"><img src="/files/styles/thumbnail/public/default_images/icon-user.png?itok=yQw_eG_q" width="100" height="100" alt="User Image" typeof="foaf:Image" class="img-responsive" /> </a> </div> </article> </footer> </article> <article data-comment-user-id="0" id="comment-1638926" class="js-comment comment-wrapper clearfix"> <mark class="hidden" data-comment-timestamp="1288958807"></mark> <div class="well"> <strong></strong> <div class="field field--name-comment-body field--type-text-long field--label-hidden field--item"><p>"...the energy required works out to about 2.5x10^19 uranium atoms fissioning. Which sounds like a lot, but the mass of an atom is pretty tiny, so that's only about 9.8 micrograms of total material."</p> <p>Wrong! 2x10^23 atoms of U-235 is about one mole, which by definition weighs 235 grams. And 2x10^19 atoms is 1/10,000th of that, which would be about 24 milligrams.</p> </div> <drupal-render-placeholder callback="comment.lazy_builders:renderLinks" arguments="0=1638926&amp;1=default&amp;2=en&amp;3=" token="U7YfGOj5TwnJMoBVHVd8FaymYBRFHZvhTwS-CRaqqfA"></drupal-render-placeholder> </div> <footer> <em>By <span lang="" typeof="schema:Person" property="schema:name" datatype="">Bill K (not verified)</span> on 05 Nov 2010 <a href="https://scienceblogs.com/taxonomy/term/134/feed#comment-1638926">#permalink</a></em> <article typeof="schema:Person" about="/user/0"> <div class="field field--name-user-picture field--type-image field--label-hidden field--item"> <a href="/user/0" hreflang="und"><img src="/files/styles/thumbnail/public/default_images/icon-user.png?itok=yQw_eG_q" width="100" height="100" alt="User Image" typeof="foaf:Image" class="img-responsive" /> </a> </div> </article> </footer> </article> <article data-comment-user-id="0" id="comment-1638927" class="js-comment comment-wrapper clearfix"> <mark class="hidden" data-comment-timestamp="1289336247"></mark> <div class="well"> <strong></strong> <div class="field field--name-comment-body field--type-text-long field--label-hidden field--item"><p>Oh, you wacky fundamentalists. Clearly the cow didn't <i>literally</i> jump over the moon, but merely jumped high enough that it was higher in the sky than the moon on that night. If the moon were low in the sky, this would be relatively easy.</p> <p>Moreover, recent research suggests that the dish and the spoon may have been in a same-sex relationship.</p> </div> <drupal-render-placeholder callback="comment.lazy_builders:renderLinks" arguments="0=1638927&amp;1=default&amp;2=en&amp;3=" token="iBgOAvFtLRMHRw0m2B_QxMsDeuBQZu4mDFTBGsR8FWs"></drupal-render-placeholder> </div> <footer> <em>By <span lang="" typeof="schema:Person" property="schema:name" datatype="">Pseudonym (not verified)</span> on 09 Nov 2010 <a href="https://scienceblogs.com/taxonomy/term/134/feed#comment-1638927">#permalink</a></em> <article typeof="schema:Person" about="/user/0"> <div class="field field--name-user-picture field--type-image field--label-hidden field--item"> <a href="/user/0" hreflang="und"><img src="/files/styles/thumbnail/public/default_images/icon-user.png?itok=yQw_eG_q" width="100" height="100" alt="User Image" typeof="foaf:Image" class="img-responsive" /> </a> </div> </article> </footer> </article> </section> <ul class="links inline list-inline"><li class="comment-forbidden"><a href="/user/login?destination=/principles/2010/11/04/the-unexpected-leaping-ability%23comment-form">Log in</a> to post comments</li></ul> Thu, 04 Nov 2010 10:12:43 +0000 drorzel 47015 at https://scienceblogs.com Experiment vs. Theory: The Eternal Debate https://scienceblogs.com/principles/2010/10/13/experiment-vs-theory-the-etern <span>Experiment vs. Theory: The Eternal Debate</span> <div class="field field--name-body field--type-text-with-summary field--label-hidden field--item"><p>Melissa at Confused at a Higher Level offers some thoughts on <a href="http://arjendu.wordpress.com/2010/10/09/the-experimenttheory-divide/">the relative status of experimental vs. theoretical science</a>, spinning off a <a href="http://academic-jungle.blogspot.com/2010/10/experiment-or-theory.html">comprehensive discussion of the issues at Academic Jungle</a>. I flagged this to comment on over the weekend, but then was too busy with SteelyKid and football to get to it. since I'm late to the party, I'll offer some slightly flippant arguments in favor of experiment or theory:</p> <p>Argument 1: <strong>Experimentalists are better homeowners</strong>. At least in my world of low-energy experimental physics, many of the skills you are expected to have as an experimental physicist translate very directly to real-world problems. If you can wire up an electrical circuit for precision measurements, you ought to be competent enough to change a light switch or electrical socket. If you can change the oil in a Welch rotary vacuum pump, you should be able to change the oil in your car. At the very least, it gives you a better appreciation of what you're paying professionals to do for you.</p> <p>Theorists, on the other hand, spend all their time playing with computers, and are thus less likely to be able to repair physical objects. The obvious counter-argument, though, is that high-energy experimental physicists spend at least as much time dinking around with computers as low-energy theorists do, so this may not be a general advantage of experiment over theory.</p> <!--more--><p>Argument 2: <strong>Theorists are better with computers</strong>. People who do theoretical science these days are usually very comfortable with computer code, which leaves them better prepared to deal with our modern computerized world than experimentalists, whose preferred mode of solution is likely to involve a big hammer.</p> <p>The obvious counter-argument (aside from the high-energy experimentalists, who screw everything up) is that most physics theory involves esoteric things like FORTRAN code running on Unix machines, meaning that most theoretical physicists are just as befuddled by Windows as everybody else.</p> <p>Argument 3: <strong>Experimentalists get better toys.</strong> Experimental physics apparatus looks like this:</p> <p><img src="http://scienceblogs.com/principles/wp-content/blogs.dir/467/files/2012/04/i-520459b343215ad90faba1f7b23419a3-sm_orzel_wmd.jpg" alt="i-520459b343215ad90faba1f7b23419a3-sm_orzel_wmd.jpg" /></p> <p>That's something you can show off on a tour of the department and it's guaranteed to make an impression on prospective students and parents. Hot theoretical apparatus, on the other hand, looks like a <a href="http://arstechnica.com/old/content/2000/04/klat2.ars">stockroom at Best Buy</a>. That could be a supercomputer, or it could be a rack full of discount desktops with some additional blinking LED's.</p> <p>The counter-argument, of course, is that when experimental apparatus breaks, it's all expensive and custom-built stuff that takes ages to repair. When a theoretical apparatus breaks, you just order an identical replacement machine and have it overnighted to you.</p> <p>Argument 4: <strong>Theorists have better <s>boondoggles</s> workshops</strong>. Theoretical scientists get to go to all sorts of summer schools and month-long workshops in California and Italy and so on. The nature of theoretical science is such that you can get a whole bunch of theorists together in some place within easy reach of a beach or a ski resort, and productive work can come from having them just hang out and talk to each other.</p> <p>Experimentalists, on the other hand, are tied to their labs. Even if you're the kind of experimentalist who uses a billion-dollar facility somewhere other than your home institution, you're stuck in the lab when you go there. While a given user facility may be located someplace nice, when you're there, you're on the clock, with limited beam time or whatever. You don't get a lot of time to enjoy the ambience before you have to go home and analyze your data.</p> <p>The weak counter-argument for this is that experimentalists are occasionally invited to these theoretical events, to serve as a reality check. This only works for a small and select group of experimentalists, though.</p> <p>Argument 5: <strong>Experimentalists have to know a bit of theory, while theorists don't need to know anything practical</strong>. Most experimental physicists need to be able to hack a bit of theory. For one thing, you can't really begin to interpret your results without some understanding of the underlying theory. And it's often extremely useful to be able to bang together a quick-and-dirty theoretical model to see if your results have the right basic shape before you call in the real theorists to do the model without extreme simplifying assumptions.</p> <p>Theorists, on the other hand.... Experimentalists are mildly amazed when a theorist manages to find two matching <a href="http://www.randomhouse.com/catalog/display.pperl?isbn=9781400044177&amp;view=excerpt">socks</a>. Nobody expects a theorist to be able to debate the relative merits of round vs. square wire or solder two wires together, let alone align a Ti:Sapph laser. Thus, training in theory requires less breadth of expertise, and is the clear choice for students seeking an easier path to the Ph.D.</p> <p>(In case the note at the beginning of the post and the general tone of the arguments wasn't clear enough, this is not entirely serious. While the arguments have some small basis in reality, they are exaggerated for humorous effect, and should not be taken as an accurate representation of my opinion of my theoretical colleagues.)</p> </div> <span><a title="View user profile." href="/author/drorzel" lang="" about="/author/drorzel" typeof="schema:Person" property="schema:name" datatype="">drorzel</a></span> <span>Wed, 10/13/2010 - 03:27</span> <div class="field field--name-field-blog-tags field--type-entity-reference field--label-inline"> <div class="field--label">Tags</div> <div class="field--items"> <div class="field--item"><a href="/tag/academia" hreflang="en">Academia</a></div> <div class="field--item"><a href="/tag/experiment" hreflang="en">Experiment</a></div> <div class="field--item"><a href="/tag/physics" hreflang="en">Physics</a></div> <div class="field--item"><a href="/tag/science" hreflang="en">Science</a></div> <div class="field--item"><a href="/tag/theory" hreflang="en">Theory</a></div> <div class="field--item"><a href="/tag/experiment-0" hreflang="en">experiment</a></div> <div class="field--item"><a href="/tag/silly" hreflang="en">silly</a></div> <div class="field--item"><a href="/tag/theory-0" hreflang="en">Theory</a></div> <div class="field--item"><a href="/tag/academia" hreflang="en">Academia</a></div> <div class="field--item"><a href="/tag/physics" hreflang="en">Physics</a></div> <div class="field--item"><a href="/tag/science" hreflang="en">Science</a></div> </div> </div> <section> <article data-comment-user-id="0" id="comment-1638438" class="js-comment comment-wrapper clearfix"> <mark class="hidden" data-comment-timestamp="1286958893"></mark> <div class="well"> <strong></strong> <div class="field field--name-comment-body field--type-text-long field--label-hidden field--item"><p>Wait, what are the merits of square vs. round wire? Please don't take my experimentalist id card away.</p> </div> <drupal-render-placeholder callback="comment.lazy_builders:renderLinks" arguments="0=1638438&amp;1=default&amp;2=en&amp;3=" token="ZrX5H6uNgzGBB9kYuF3tWoLhKypHFWN0AK8KCGE1tvs"></drupal-render-placeholder> </div> <footer> <em>By <span lang="" typeof="schema:Person" property="schema:name" datatype="">Grad (not verified)</span> on 13 Oct 2010 <a href="https://scienceblogs.com/taxonomy/term/134/feed#comment-1638438">#permalink</a></em> <article typeof="schema:Person" about="/user/0"> <div class="field field--name-user-picture field--type-image field--label-hidden field--item"> <a href="/user/0" hreflang="und"><img src="/files/styles/thumbnail/public/default_images/icon-user.png?itok=yQw_eG_q" width="100" height="100" alt="User Image" typeof="foaf:Image" class="img-responsive" /> </a> </div> </article> </footer> </article> <article data-comment-user-id="0" id="comment-1638439" class="js-comment comment-wrapper clearfix"> <mark class="hidden" data-comment-timestamp="1286959139"></mark> <div class="well"> <strong></strong> <div class="field field--name-comment-body field--type-text-long field--label-hidden field--item"><p>Everyone know that there is no difference between theory and practice.</p> <p>-- Theorist.</p> </div> <drupal-render-placeholder callback="comment.lazy_builders:renderLinks" arguments="0=1638439&amp;1=default&amp;2=en&amp;3=" token="QoCQrw4lBpIcnNNPrPnGlWyJySV0bkPXhaCx_nyb5yk"></drupal-render-placeholder> </div> <footer> <em>By <span lang="" typeof="schema:Person" property="schema:name" datatype="">Alex Besogonov (not verified)</span> on 13 Oct 2010 <a href="https://scienceblogs.com/taxonomy/term/134/feed#comment-1638439">#permalink</a></em> <article typeof="schema:Person" about="/user/0"> <div class="field field--name-user-picture field--type-image field--label-hidden field--item"> <a href="/user/0" hreflang="und"><img src="/files/styles/thumbnail/public/default_images/icon-user.png?itok=yQw_eG_q" width="100" height="100" alt="User Image" typeof="foaf:Image" class="img-responsive" /> </a> </div> </article> </footer> </article> <article data-comment-user-id="0" id="comment-1638440" class="js-comment comment-wrapper clearfix"> <mark class="hidden" data-comment-timestamp="1286959578"></mark> <div class="well"> <strong></strong> <div class="field field--name-comment-body field--type-text-long field--label-hidden field--item"><p>I disagree somewhat with points 4 and 5.</p> <p>My field involves space flight hardware, so the dynamics of boondoggles a.k.a. workshops is different from other fields that don't. The experimentalists may be too busy working on the next instrument at certain times, but once the instrument is launched the experimentalists are just as free as the theorists to live it up in Hawaii or Aspen. And I suspect that even in fields where people are tied to labs, experimentalists who are sufficiently near the top of the food chain can go to these workshops and take the credit for the work their minions are doing back in the lab.</p> <p>While it's true that mediocre theorists may be able to get away with not knowing practical stuff, IME the best theorists understand the limitations of data. Think Feynman, who immediately realized a conclusion was suspect because it relied on a single data point at the extreme of the range (he retells the story in <i>Surely You're Joking, Mr. Feynman!</i>, in the section "The Seven Percent Solution"). Or consider the nature of prediction: being able to tell the experimentalists that if their theory is right, then experiment X should yield result Y, and if it yields Z instead then the other guy is right.</p> <p>On the issue of homeownership, I'm not so sure. A little knowledge is a dangerous thing, as I am occasionally reminded at my house (the previous owner was a civil engineering professor whose DIY projects have been an occasional source of amusement and/or head-scratching for my contractor). Being able to diagnose a problem is useful, but sometimes it's better to recognize that this repair job or renovation is beyond your skill and call in the experts.</p> </div> <drupal-render-placeholder callback="comment.lazy_builders:renderLinks" arguments="0=1638440&amp;1=default&amp;2=en&amp;3=" token="Je1GgdNXBc12xnn034NtC_-_fwoUiylEB2b3zUanGN4"></drupal-render-placeholder> </div> <footer> <em>By <span lang="" typeof="schema:Person" property="schema:name" datatype="">Eric Lund (not verified)</span> on 13 Oct 2010 <a href="https://scienceblogs.com/taxonomy/term/134/feed#comment-1638440">#permalink</a></em> <article typeof="schema:Person" about="/user/0"> <div class="field field--name-user-picture field--type-image field--label-hidden field--item"> <a href="/user/0" hreflang="und"><img src="/files/styles/thumbnail/public/default_images/icon-user.png?itok=yQw_eG_q" width="100" height="100" alt="User Image" typeof="foaf:Image" class="img-responsive" /> </a> </div> </article> </footer> </article> <article data-comment-user-id="0" id="comment-1638441" class="js-comment comment-wrapper clearfix"> <mark class="hidden" data-comment-timestamp="1286959608"></mark> <div class="well"> <strong></strong> <div class="field field--name-comment-body field--type-text-long field--label-hidden field--item"><p>The round wire vs. square wire thing is an old joke from NIST. The BEC groups there used to have a joint weekly meeting of both theoretical and experimental groups. They split into two meetings after a large fraction of one meeting was devoted to debating whether to wind the magnetic field coils out of copper tubing with a round cross-section, or a square cross-section. After that, the experimentalists still came to the theory meetings, but the theorists wouldn't go anywhere near the experimental meetings.</p> <p>(Square wire is the clear winner, by the way.)</p> </div> <drupal-render-placeholder callback="comment.lazy_builders:renderLinks" arguments="0=1638441&amp;1=default&amp;2=en&amp;3=" token="iJ0DMFfB7AhRFlVPZKkgOADECxWr3nU_s6lZhp45VUY"></drupal-render-placeholder> </div> <footer> <em>By <a rel="nofollow" href="http://scienceblogs.com/principles/" lang="" typeof="schema:Person" property="schema:name" datatype="">Chad Orzel (not verified)</a> on 13 Oct 2010 <a href="https://scienceblogs.com/taxonomy/term/134/feed#comment-1638441">#permalink</a></em> <article typeof="schema:Person" about="/user/0"> <div class="field field--name-user-picture field--type-image field--label-hidden field--item"> <a href="/user/0" hreflang="und"><img src="/files/styles/thumbnail/public/default_images/icon-user.png?itok=yQw_eG_q" width="100" height="100" alt="User Image" typeof="foaf:Image" class="img-responsive" /> </a> </div> </article> </footer> </article> <article data-comment-user-id="0" id="comment-1638442" class="js-comment comment-wrapper clearfix"> <mark class="hidden" data-comment-timestamp="1286962104"></mark> <div class="well"> <strong></strong> <div class="field field--name-comment-body field--type-text-long field--label-hidden field--item"><p>Good points overall, but I'm confused about one thing. Spending your day worrying about square versus round wires is an advantage or a disadvantage? </p> <p>Either way, I think I'll stick with theory (point 4 is a winner, but it's not like I have a choice really).</p> </div> <drupal-render-placeholder callback="comment.lazy_builders:renderLinks" arguments="0=1638442&amp;1=default&amp;2=en&amp;3=" token="jal3qk11RFc1GuCW9YDxDLBXiC7gVViKsktufi3ldy0"></drupal-render-placeholder> </div> <footer> <em>By <span lang="" typeof="schema:Person" property="schema:name" datatype="">Moshe (not verified)</span> on 13 Oct 2010 <a href="https://scienceblogs.com/taxonomy/term/134/feed#comment-1638442">#permalink</a></em> <article typeof="schema:Person" about="/user/0"> <div class="field field--name-user-picture field--type-image field--label-hidden field--item"> <a href="/user/0" hreflang="und"><img src="/files/styles/thumbnail/public/default_images/icon-user.png?itok=yQw_eG_q" width="100" height="100" alt="User Image" typeof="foaf:Image" class="img-responsive" /> </a> </div> </article> </footer> </article> <article data-comment-user-id="0" id="comment-1638443" class="js-comment comment-wrapper clearfix"> <mark class="hidden" data-comment-timestamp="1286965517"></mark> <div class="well"> <strong></strong> <div class="field field--name-comment-body field--type-text-long field--label-hidden field--item"><p>As a theoretical biologist, I have a bit of a different perspective. This is especially true because of the divide in "real biology" (c.f. theoretical biology) between field biologists and bench biologists. Field biologists seem to have it pretty good... get to go on trips to exotic places and capture animals to understand some esoteric aspect of their demography or history. Of course, it's QUITE hard work and requires a lot of begging for funding among other things. Bench biologists have a different lifestyle (though I should mention that field biologists often become bench biologists when they get back from the field). They are probably more similar to experimental physicists, in that they will devise elaborate experimental procedures to test their ideas. These tests often fail and moreover I imagine that biological systems are even more uncooperative than physical apparata.</p> <p>Theory in biology occupies an interesting position. In some sense it is derided and relegated to highly technical journals that have what seems to be the lowest standards of writing in the world. However, especially recently, theory has come back into fashion because data has been so much more forthcoming. This is especially relevant in population genetics (my area) because modern DNA sequencing methods allow field biologists to go out and collect a VAST amount of data, and they need to be able to say something about it. </p> <p>Another interesting aspect of the theory/"experiment" divide in biology is that in my experience most biologists don't know very much math (especially more molecular-oriented types) and while they understand the qualitative behavior of many common models (e.g. the Wright-Fisher diffusion, coalescent theory, branching processes, Lotka-Volterra equations, etc.) they are utterly helpless when it comes to any quantitative analysis. On the other hand, my sense is that most experimental physicists could probably analyze the kinds of models I devise better than I could!</p> </div> <drupal-render-placeholder callback="comment.lazy_builders:renderLinks" arguments="0=1638443&amp;1=default&amp;2=en&amp;3=" token="Rl-pxBb-9Np4ewhbPdwS_g5F6ugsrsgKZsYK7SKaUZU"></drupal-render-placeholder> </div> <footer> <em>By <span lang="" typeof="schema:Person" property="schema:name" datatype="">Josh (not verified)</span> on 13 Oct 2010 <a href="https://scienceblogs.com/taxonomy/term/134/feed#comment-1638443">#permalink</a></em> <article typeof="schema:Person" about="/user/0"> <div class="field field--name-user-picture field--type-image field--label-hidden field--item"> <a href="/user/0" hreflang="und"><img src="/files/styles/thumbnail/public/default_images/icon-user.png?itok=yQw_eG_q" width="100" height="100" alt="User Image" typeof="foaf:Image" class="img-responsive" /> </a> </div> </article> </footer> </article> <article data-comment-user-id="0" id="comment-1638444" class="js-comment comment-wrapper clearfix"> <mark class="hidden" data-comment-timestamp="1286968079"></mark> <div class="well"> <strong></strong> <div class="field field--name-comment-body field--type-text-long field--label-hidden field--item"><p>I have to disagree with a lot of what I read above. Maybe the theoretical physicists I know are an exception, but it seems like we know and do just as much as the experimentalists. When something goes wrong in their labs (meaning unexpected results), they come to us. I'm a theoretical physicist who has spent just as much time in a laboratory setting as my experimentalist counterparts! And let's not forget Richard Feynman, who was a renowned theoretical physicist whose work was later applied experimentally! In my opinion, the theoretical physicists are the groundbreakers. The experimentalists need us because while they are tinkering around, we generate the new ideas. And we need them because they check to make sure our ideas work practically.<br /> And, I'm a theoretical physicist who changes my own oil, works on my own cars and motorcycles, and tinker with things around the house. And all of my theoretical physicist buddies are pretty much the same!</p> </div> <drupal-render-placeholder callback="comment.lazy_builders:renderLinks" arguments="0=1638444&amp;1=default&amp;2=en&amp;3=" token="5US8UGFYiolX3JE_6JF7aSK9Vt4ZKk9JqSq7_-RTmns"></drupal-render-placeholder> </div> <footer> <em>By <span lang="" typeof="schema:Person" property="schema:name" datatype="" content="Theoretical physicist">Theoretical ph… (not verified)</span> on 13 Oct 2010 <a href="https://scienceblogs.com/taxonomy/term/134/feed#comment-1638444">#permalink</a></em> <article typeof="schema:Person" about="/user/0"> <div class="field field--name-user-picture field--type-image field--label-hidden field--item"> <a href="/user/0" hreflang="und"><img src="/files/styles/thumbnail/public/default_images/icon-user.png?itok=yQw_eG_q" width="100" height="100" alt="User Image" typeof="foaf:Image" class="img-responsive" /> </a> </div> </article> </footer> </article> <article data-comment-user-id="0" id="comment-1638445" class="js-comment comment-wrapper clearfix"> <mark class="hidden" data-comment-timestamp="1286976356"></mark> <div class="well"> <strong></strong> <div class="field field--name-comment-body field--type-text-long field--label-hidden field--item"><p>As with every question about academia, the answer is "it depends on what field you're in" -- and "physics" is way too broad to specify the field. Most of the experimentalists I know spend much more time with computer programming than I do, because they're working in several-thousand-person particle physics collaborations, and while they might have had some role in building part of a detector, now the machine is running and experiment is all about data analysis. They also go to summer schools in nice places, and seem to have more conferences that revolve around skiing than I do.</p> </div> <drupal-render-placeholder callback="comment.lazy_builders:renderLinks" arguments="0=1638445&amp;1=default&amp;2=en&amp;3=" token="NVXJPPbpnQPuRwIYYbkfYMgZeBOqvD4rUbbfqC6vNdQ"></drupal-render-placeholder> </div> <footer> <em>By <span lang="" typeof="schema:Person" property="schema:name" datatype="">onymous (not verified)</span> on 13 Oct 2010 <a href="https://scienceblogs.com/taxonomy/term/134/feed#comment-1638445">#permalink</a></em> <article typeof="schema:Person" about="/user/0"> <div class="field field--name-user-picture field--type-image field--label-hidden field--item"> <a href="/user/0" hreflang="und"><img src="/files/styles/thumbnail/public/default_images/icon-user.png?itok=yQw_eG_q" width="100" height="100" alt="User Image" typeof="foaf:Image" class="img-responsive" /> </a> </div> </article> </footer> </article> <article data-comment-user-id="0" id="comment-1638446" class="js-comment comment-wrapper clearfix"> <mark class="hidden" data-comment-timestamp="1287000501"></mark> <div class="well"> <strong></strong> <div class="field field--name-comment-body field--type-text-long field--label-hidden field--item"><p>Theoretical Physicist at 1:07 ... OMG, you sound like a string theorist, although I guess you are probably having a go at our host, lol! I am a theory person who spent most of my youth working as an experimental physicist. I find that even though I was raised on practical skills, a dedication to Theory does eventually lead to a sock problem. And real theorists know bugger all about code. As an experimentalist I used FORTRAN etc, but a real theorist just does maths.</p> </div> <drupal-render-placeholder callback="comment.lazy_builders:renderLinks" arguments="0=1638446&amp;1=default&amp;2=en&amp;3=" token="lVxHGZ1t5QKx3jMPXNeY87cLaz0auXpem6NB2L6IGos"></drupal-render-placeholder> </div> <footer> <em>By <a rel="nofollow" href="http://pseudomonad.blogspot.com" lang="" typeof="schema:Person" property="schema:name" datatype="">Kea (not verified)</a> on 13 Oct 2010 <a href="https://scienceblogs.com/taxonomy/term/134/feed#comment-1638446">#permalink</a></em> <article typeof="schema:Person" about="/user/0"> <div class="field field--name-user-picture field--type-image field--label-hidden field--item"> <a href="/user/0" hreflang="und"><img src="/files/styles/thumbnail/public/default_images/icon-user.png?itok=yQw_eG_q" width="100" height="100" alt="User Image" typeof="foaf:Image" class="img-responsive" /> </a> </div> </article> </footer> </article> <article data-comment-user-id="0" id="comment-1638447" class="js-comment comment-wrapper clearfix"> <mark class="hidden" data-comment-timestamp="1287021704"></mark> <div class="well"> <strong></strong> <div class="field field--name-comment-body field--type-text-long field--label-hidden field--item"><p><i>Experimentalists have to know a bit of theory, while theorists don't need to know anything practical.</i></p> <p>Hahaha...that makes my night! I can now stop browsing blogs looking for that final fulfilling tidbit of humor/info before retiring for the evening...</p> <p>I'll deal with the damn socks in the morning...</p> </div> <drupal-render-placeholder callback="comment.lazy_builders:renderLinks" arguments="0=1638447&amp;1=default&amp;2=en&amp;3=" token="6X5X6ss8tiW4VBQkLZyucGUd3_U9ZSdDW1TKQxC2diA"></drupal-render-placeholder> </div> <footer> <em>By <span lang="" typeof="schema:Person" property="schema:name" datatype="">yogi-one (not verified)</span> on 13 Oct 2010 <a href="https://scienceblogs.com/taxonomy/term/134/feed#comment-1638447">#permalink</a></em> <article typeof="schema:Person" about="/user/0"> <div class="field field--name-user-picture field--type-image field--label-hidden field--item"> <a href="/user/0" hreflang="und"><img src="/files/styles/thumbnail/public/default_images/icon-user.png?itok=yQw_eG_q" width="100" height="100" alt="User Image" typeof="foaf:Image" class="img-responsive" /> </a> </div> </article> </footer> </article> <article data-comment-user-id="0" id="comment-1638448" class="js-comment comment-wrapper clearfix"> <mark class="hidden" data-comment-timestamp="1287024801"></mark> <div class="well"> <strong></strong> <div class="field field--name-comment-body field--type-text-long field--label-hidden field--item"><p>In quantum optics theory we pretty much always care what people can measure, so we do need to know at least the state of the art in experiments, if not the cross-sectional form of the charged fermion transport tubes. However I fully admit to not having a clue about electrical circuit design more than can be done with Kirchoff's laws (what ARE those triangle things?).</p> </div> <drupal-render-placeholder callback="comment.lazy_builders:renderLinks" arguments="0=1638448&amp;1=default&amp;2=en&amp;3=" token="A9SZF1d02zTpNrAw0LOTMTjiZv83p3DFKdsZBCq477A"></drupal-render-placeholder> </div> <footer> <em>By <span lang="" typeof="schema:Person" property="schema:name" datatype="">The lane ranger (not verified)</span> on 13 Oct 2010 <a href="https://scienceblogs.com/taxonomy/term/134/feed#comment-1638448">#permalink</a></em> <article typeof="schema:Person" about="/user/0"> <div class="field field--name-user-picture field--type-image field--label-hidden field--item"> <a href="/user/0" hreflang="und"><img src="/files/styles/thumbnail/public/default_images/icon-user.png?itok=yQw_eG_q" width="100" height="100" alt="User Image" typeof="foaf:Image" class="img-responsive" /> </a> </div> </article> </footer> </article> <article data-comment-user-id="0" id="comment-1638449" class="js-comment comment-wrapper clearfix"> <mark class="hidden" data-comment-timestamp="1287024914"></mark> <div class="well"> <strong></strong> <div class="field field--name-comment-body field--type-text-long field--label-hidden field--item"><p>As a theoretical physicist who has worked with microbiologists and ecologists, I can relate to what Josh says. We do indeed have a better grasp of the models than the ecologists and we have a hard time explaining them how to appropriately modelize. On the other hand, I think microbiologists are kind of laughing our simplistic models away as not sufficiently realistic or interesting. They want to go to serious biological stuff immediately like resilience and function-diversity relationship, while we are still grappling with a very basic model for diversity.</p> </div> <drupal-render-placeholder callback="comment.lazy_builders:renderLinks" arguments="0=1638449&amp;1=default&amp;2=en&amp;3=" token="JqqvPA5Mh1LvMx257Gepr9443nO2kECfyXNh__RFE94"></drupal-render-placeholder> </div> <footer> <em>By <span lang="" typeof="schema:Person" property="schema:name" datatype="">Raskolnikov (not verified)</span> on 13 Oct 2010 <a href="https://scienceblogs.com/taxonomy/term/134/feed#comment-1638449">#permalink</a></em> <article typeof="schema:Person" about="/user/0"> <div class="field field--name-user-picture field--type-image field--label-hidden field--item"> <a href="/user/0" hreflang="und"><img src="/files/styles/thumbnail/public/default_images/icon-user.png?itok=yQw_eG_q" width="100" height="100" alt="User Image" typeof="foaf:Image" class="img-responsive" /> </a> </div> </article> </footer> </article> <article data-comment-user-id="0" id="comment-1638450" class="js-comment comment-wrapper clearfix"> <mark class="hidden" data-comment-timestamp="1287030152"></mark> <div class="well"> <strong></strong> <div class="field field--name-comment-body field--type-text-long field--label-hidden field--item"><p>Thereotical and Experimental scientists, both are dependent on each other. There are limitations to both the approaches. Like, if you go only with the theory, you may over-idealize the system and end-up with practically impossible solutions. On the other hand, if you go with the experimental approach, you need to have atleast basic knowledge of the theory in order to design your experiments and to predict the result. Unless you have an Idea about what to expect, you may not be able to draw any conclusions from the results. Experimental and therotical approaches, both are two sides of the same coin.</p> </div> <drupal-render-placeholder callback="comment.lazy_builders:renderLinks" arguments="0=1638450&amp;1=default&amp;2=en&amp;3=" token="i38JTtog_Ndu79qjPLq3p2LVUcSK5i9B_m5IT2OMjaY"></drupal-render-placeholder> </div> <footer> <em>By <span lang="" typeof="schema:Person" property="schema:name" datatype="">Yuvraj (not verified)</span> on 14 Oct 2010 <a href="https://scienceblogs.com/taxonomy/term/134/feed#comment-1638450">#permalink</a></em> <article typeof="schema:Person" about="/user/0"> <div class="field field--name-user-picture field--type-image field--label-hidden field--item"> <a href="/user/0" hreflang="und"><img src="/files/styles/thumbnail/public/default_images/icon-user.png?itok=yQw_eG_q" width="100" height="100" alt="User Image" typeof="foaf:Image" class="img-responsive" /> </a> </div> </article> </footer> </article> <article data-comment-user-id="0" id="comment-1638451" class="js-comment comment-wrapper clearfix"> <mark class="hidden" data-comment-timestamp="1287046215"></mark> <div class="well"> <strong></strong> <div class="field field--name-comment-body field--type-text-long field--label-hidden field--item"><p>if you arrange theoretical and experimental alphabetically, experimental comes first.</p> <p>cogitate on that theorists!</p> </div> <drupal-render-placeholder callback="comment.lazy_builders:renderLinks" arguments="0=1638451&amp;1=default&amp;2=en&amp;3=" token="vhaU-K7dBPyX78P1wJahbfLCgidGfHt0GqdorGMqqr4"></drupal-render-placeholder> </div> <footer> <em>By <span lang="" typeof="schema:Person" property="schema:name" datatype="">rob (not verified)</span> on 14 Oct 2010 <a href="https://scienceblogs.com/taxonomy/term/134/feed#comment-1638451">#permalink</a></em> <article typeof="schema:Person" about="/user/0"> <div class="field field--name-user-picture field--type-image field--label-hidden field--item"> <a href="/user/0" hreflang="und"><img src="/files/styles/thumbnail/public/default_images/icon-user.png?itok=yQw_eG_q" width="100" height="100" alt="User Image" typeof="foaf:Image" class="img-responsive" /> </a> </div> </article> </footer> </article> <article data-comment-user-id="0" id="comment-1638452" class="js-comment comment-wrapper clearfix"> <mark class="hidden" data-comment-timestamp="1287206813"></mark> <div class="well"> <strong></strong> <div class="field field--name-comment-body field--type-text-long field--label-hidden field--item"><p>Nice ventilators on that supercomputer.. Like superman on crutches.</p> </div> <drupal-render-placeholder callback="comment.lazy_builders:renderLinks" arguments="0=1638452&amp;1=default&amp;2=en&amp;3=" token="MBJiFJ9kcXwQTbFt-wCztvZ_IQmROMwdw3gY2ya2ajI"></drupal-render-placeholder> </div> <footer> <em>By <span lang="" typeof="schema:Person" property="schema:name" datatype="">rijkswaanvijand (not verified)</span> on 16 Oct 2010 <a href="https://scienceblogs.com/taxonomy/term/134/feed#comment-1638452">#permalink</a></em> <article typeof="schema:Person" about="/user/0"> <div class="field field--name-user-picture field--type-image field--label-hidden field--item"> <a href="/user/0" hreflang="und"><img src="/files/styles/thumbnail/public/default_images/icon-user.png?itok=yQw_eG_q" width="100" height="100" alt="User Image" typeof="foaf:Image" class="img-responsive" /> </a> </div> </article> </footer> </article> <article data-comment-user-id="0" id="comment-1638453" class="js-comment comment-wrapper clearfix"> <mark class="hidden" data-comment-timestamp="1287263785"></mark> <div class="well"> <strong></strong> <div class="field field--name-comment-body field--type-text-long field--label-hidden field--item"><p>Why are you still using an oil sealed pump??</p> </div> <drupal-render-placeholder callback="comment.lazy_builders:renderLinks" arguments="0=1638453&amp;1=default&amp;2=en&amp;3=" token="xy36bNS1plsxyLPJWkNpL9bWxgjGiquwPpnVHkCnObI"></drupal-render-placeholder> </div> <footer> <em>By <span lang="" typeof="schema:Person" property="schema:name" datatype="">KarthikB (not verified)</span> on 16 Oct 2010 <a href="https://scienceblogs.com/taxonomy/term/134/feed#comment-1638453">#permalink</a></em> <article typeof="schema:Person" about="/user/0"> <div class="field field--name-user-picture field--type-image field--label-hidden field--item"> <a href="/user/0" hreflang="und"><img src="/files/styles/thumbnail/public/default_images/icon-user.png?itok=yQw_eG_q" width="100" height="100" alt="User Image" typeof="foaf:Image" class="img-responsive" /> </a> </div> </article> </footer> </article> <article data-comment-user-id="0" id="comment-1638454" class="js-comment comment-wrapper clearfix"> <mark class="hidden" data-comment-timestamp="1287310601"></mark> <div class="well"> <strong></strong> <div class="field field--name-comment-body field--type-text-long field--label-hidden field--item"><p>I wish stupid Blogger would cross-link stuff, I just happened to come across the post. This was a fun read!</p> <p>I will just proudly say that I run esoteric home-made FORTRAN codes on my Windows cluster! To the disgust of many of my UNIX-purist theorist brethren. :)</p> <p>I work really really closely with experimentalists, and have picked up a lot of details (materials processing, device design and fabrication...) which definitely make for way better models and overall better physics. Dirty, nonideal systems are fun! Plus people ask me about experimental details when I give talks anyway. Not sure if my experimental colleagues have picked up any details on the theoretical aspect of the work -- every time I throw any equations out there, they start looking very drowsy. ;)</p> </div> <drupal-render-placeholder callback="comment.lazy_builders:renderLinks" arguments="0=1638454&amp;1=default&amp;2=en&amp;3=" token="Ork0rIUWgi4OmYCaPAJXzj13_lHMrrzhlu5U_RVQPKw"></drupal-render-placeholder> </div> <footer> <em>By <a rel="nofollow" href="http://academic-jungle.blogspot.com/" lang="" typeof="schema:Person" property="schema:name" datatype="">GMP (not verified)</a> on 17 Oct 2010 <a href="https://scienceblogs.com/taxonomy/term/134/feed#comment-1638454">#permalink</a></em> <article typeof="schema:Person" about="/user/0"> <div class="field field--name-user-picture field--type-image field--label-hidden field--item"> <a href="/user/0" hreflang="und"><img src="/files/styles/thumbnail/public/default_images/icon-user.png?itok=yQw_eG_q" width="100" height="100" alt="User Image" typeof="foaf:Image" class="img-responsive" /> </a> </div> </article> </footer> </article> <article data-comment-user-id="0" id="comment-1638455" class="js-comment comment-wrapper clearfix"> <mark class="hidden" data-comment-timestamp="1287386727"></mark> <div class="well"> <strong></strong> <div class="field field--name-comment-body field--type-text-long field--label-hidden field--item"><p>"Argument 2: Theorists are better with computers."</p> <p>That would ignore experimentalists writing complicated programs to control their experiments (LabView anyone?) and to take data, and to reduce data, and to fit the data to models.</p> <p>Though any given experimental lab usually needs or has only one or two such programmers at a time.</p> </div> <drupal-render-placeholder callback="comment.lazy_builders:renderLinks" arguments="0=1638455&amp;1=default&amp;2=en&amp;3=" token="vM0AIya-s8J0kZhnPZOqIlbldj7AwB3VO510eKl7OEo"></drupal-render-placeholder> </div> <footer> <em>By <span lang="" typeof="schema:Person" property="schema:name" datatype="">ChrisK (not verified)</span> on 18 Oct 2010 <a href="https://scienceblogs.com/taxonomy/term/134/feed#comment-1638455">#permalink</a></em> <article typeof="schema:Person" about="/user/0"> <div class="field field--name-user-picture field--type-image field--label-hidden field--item"> <a href="/user/0" hreflang="und"><img src="/files/styles/thumbnail/public/default_images/icon-user.png?itok=yQw_eG_q" width="100" height="100" alt="User Image" typeof="foaf:Image" class="img-responsive" /> </a> </div> </article> </footer> </article> <article data-comment-user-id="0" id="comment-1638456" class="js-comment comment-wrapper clearfix"> <mark class="hidden" data-comment-timestamp="1287403017"></mark> <div class="well"> <strong></strong> <div class="field field--name-comment-body field--type-text-long field--label-hidden field--item"><p>According to Yogi Berra, "In theory, theory and practice are the same, but in practice they are different."</p> </div> <drupal-render-placeholder callback="comment.lazy_builders:renderLinks" arguments="0=1638456&amp;1=default&amp;2=en&amp;3=" token="Nlwsv9AWSk1AgFqoS7_mBx-jkj6EyHcwjhaqW9EBQEI"></drupal-render-placeholder> </div> <footer> <em>By <span lang="" typeof="schema:Person" property="schema:name" datatype="">BrucePeterson (not verified)</span> on 18 Oct 2010 <a href="https://scienceblogs.com/taxonomy/term/134/feed#comment-1638456">#permalink</a></em> <article typeof="schema:Person" about="/user/0"> <div class="field field--name-user-picture field--type-image field--label-hidden field--item"> <a href="/user/0" hreflang="und"><img src="/files/styles/thumbnail/public/default_images/icon-user.png?itok=yQw_eG_q" width="100" height="100" alt="User Image" typeof="foaf:Image" class="img-responsive" /> </a> </div> </article> </footer> </article> <article data-comment-user-id="0" id="comment-1638457" class="js-comment comment-wrapper clearfix"> <mark class="hidden" data-comment-timestamp="1287435558"></mark> <div class="well"> <strong></strong> <div class="field field--name-comment-body field--type-text-long field--label-hidden field--item"><p><i>high-energy experimental physicists spend at least as much time dinking around with computers as low-energy theorists do,</i></p> <p>I swear I thought it said they spend as much time DRINKING around the computers as low energy-theorists do. :)))</p> </div> <drupal-render-placeholder callback="comment.lazy_builders:renderLinks" arguments="0=1638457&amp;1=default&amp;2=en&amp;3=" token="MMTBPnH2YEOdDsJPVcdy9vBlbkmpAK9ARQQdapEAevE"></drupal-render-placeholder> </div> <footer> <em>By <span lang="" typeof="schema:Person" property="schema:name" datatype="">AppliedPhysicsProf (not verified)</span> on 18 Oct 2010 <a href="https://scienceblogs.com/taxonomy/term/134/feed#comment-1638457">#permalink</a></em> <article typeof="schema:Person" about="/user/0"> <div class="field field--name-user-picture field--type-image field--label-hidden field--item"> <a href="/user/0" hreflang="und"><img src="/files/styles/thumbnail/public/default_images/icon-user.png?itok=yQw_eG_q" width="100" height="100" alt="User Image" typeof="foaf:Image" class="img-responsive" /> </a> </div> </article> </footer> </article> <article data-comment-user-id="0" id="comment-1638458" class="js-comment comment-wrapper clearfix"> <mark class="hidden" data-comment-timestamp="1287608652"></mark> <div class="well"> <strong></strong> <div class="field field--name-comment-body field--type-text-long field--label-hidden field--item"><p>Herpetology version, very short:</p> <p>Experimentalists have it better because they can say "Today I got to work with a majestic 14-foot long King Cobra!"</p> <p>Theoreticians have it better because they never have to say "Speaking of which, is there any hospital with large anti-venom stocks within a 10-minute drive?"</p> </div> <drupal-render-placeholder callback="comment.lazy_builders:renderLinks" arguments="0=1638458&amp;1=default&amp;2=en&amp;3=" token="dyd1X_tLU8npGltjFwaY6IgIYXvrCpLvpWWei2JXd8Q"></drupal-render-placeholder> </div> <footer> <em>By <span lang="" typeof="schema:Person" property="schema:name" datatype="">Mokele (not verified)</span> on 20 Oct 2010 <a href="https://scienceblogs.com/taxonomy/term/134/feed#comment-1638458">#permalink</a></em> <article typeof="schema:Person" about="/user/0"> <div class="field field--name-user-picture field--type-image field--label-hidden field--item"> <a href="/user/0" hreflang="und"><img src="/files/styles/thumbnail/public/default_images/icon-user.png?itok=yQw_eG_q" width="100" height="100" alt="User Image" typeof="foaf:Image" class="img-responsive" /> </a> </div> </article> </footer> </article> <article data-comment-user-id="0" id="comment-1638459" class="js-comment comment-wrapper clearfix"> <mark class="hidden" data-comment-timestamp="1287810827"></mark> <div class="well"> <strong></strong> <div class="field field--name-comment-body field--type-text-long field--label-hidden field--item"><p>Demo of how to unbefuddle Windows:<br /><a href="http://www.flipp-explainers.org/demonstration.htm">http://www.flipp-explainers.org/demonstration.htm</a></p> </div> <drupal-render-placeholder callback="comment.lazy_builders:renderLinks" arguments="0=1638459&amp;1=default&amp;2=en&amp;3=" token="NHGpLpV-kTy1Ivb8CiBvLv5Teh96R9eWlnUPJKdbojs"></drupal-render-placeholder> </div> <footer> <em>By <a rel="nofollow" href="http://www.flipp-explainers.org/" lang="" typeof="schema:Person" property="schema:name" datatype="">Dave Cox (not verified)</a> on 23 Oct 2010 <a href="https://scienceblogs.com/taxonomy/term/134/feed#comment-1638459">#permalink</a></em> <article typeof="schema:Person" about="/user/0"> <div class="field field--name-user-picture field--type-image field--label-hidden field--item"> <a href="/user/0" hreflang="und"><img src="/files/styles/thumbnail/public/default_images/icon-user.png?itok=yQw_eG_q" width="100" height="100" alt="User Image" typeof="foaf:Image" class="img-responsive" /> </a> </div> </article> </footer> </article> </section> <ul class="links inline list-inline"><li class="comment-forbidden"><a href="/user/login?destination=/principles/2010/10/13/experiment-vs-theory-the-etern%23comment-form">Log in</a> to post comments</li></ul> Wed, 13 Oct 2010 07:27:06 +0000 drorzel 46960 at https://scienceblogs.com