Author Topic: Episode #503  (Read 5409 times)

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Offline Ambious

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Re: Episode #503
« Reply #15 on: March 01, 2015, 12:33:53 PM »
Oh and on the bladderwort. Many plants have undergone whole genome duplication. Common strawberries have 10 sets of chromosomes. Further many plants and animals have shrunk their DNA. Birds and other flying animals do it to reduce weight. Sounds strange but you have a lot of DNA. 700 G for an average human.

That is incredible! Where can I get this figure? Googling for "DNA weight" only brings up diet scams.

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Last thing. All praise DosBox. As a classic gaming enthusiast this many games would be unplayable now without a dos/win 3.1/win 95 virtual machine. Even still a 4 hour game can take a day or more to get running on a modern computer hopefully without massive glitches.

I actually saw a demo of someone running a DosBox on an Android Wear device and go on to install Windows 95 on it!
The title of the article was aptly "You Can Run Windows 95 On Android Wear, If You're Patient, Methodical, And Slightly Insane".
But I'd imagine the bigger issue would be to find the relevant software to work with said files, even if you COULD find the hardware to extract them (which in itself is probably insanely difficult). Most file types back in the day were proprietary and binary, not something you could easily crack open with Notepad++ and mess around with.
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"Teach thy tongue to say “I do not know”, and thous shalt progress."
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Offline Ah.hell

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Re: Episode #503
« Reply #16 on: March 01, 2015, 01:35:25 PM »
In the discussion on science denial and political affiliation,  you seem to conflating two separate issues.  The obvious fact the everyone, regardless of political affiliation, is prone to digging in and defending their deeply held ideological beliefs even when faced with contradictory science has little to do with the fact that in real life, conservatives are far more likely to defend beliefs that contradict science.  This is not because their brains are different,  but because -- as Stephen Colbert eloquently put it -- "Reality has a well know liberal bias".  Many issues that happen to be important to conservatives in modern first-world countries happen to be ones on which they tend to take a position that the is anti-science.  Issues that are important to liberals tend to be ones in which their position is consistent with science.  This is not because liberals are smart and conservatives are dumb, it's just how things happens to be at this point on history.  Why do you seem to be constantly search for false equivalency between liberals and conservatives?

The fact that it is so easy to come up with conservative anti-science positions,  and so difficult to come up with liberal anti-science positions puts further strain on your ongoing attempts to promote false equivalency.

You even frequently admit that Anti-Vax and Anti-GMO are hardly uniquely liberal positions, so why are you then insistent that studies would be better if they included them?  You suggested that they could focus only on the subset of anti-GMO or anti-Vaxxers would held those positions due to liberal ideology, but isn't that sort of focusing on the outliers exact what we criticize pseudoscientists for?


Totally agree with the first paragraph and completely disagree with the second and third.  To me it seems like the psuedo science the right is so attached to is really contrary to their fundamental belief systems.  Either the religious right and evolution or the economic right and AGW.  All though if it wasn't for the propaganda I think you could divorce AGW from the ideology of free markets and push for some sort of market based carbon controls.  I can't think of any equivalent currently popular lefty psuedo-science.  Maybe rent control laws or some of the anti free trade/globalisation stuff but probably not. 

 I If I had to guess, I suspect the reason Dr. Novella does this is as a sort of cautionary note.  I don't think I've ever seen a conservative suggest that conservatism is the natural or only philosophy consistent with skepticism but I've definitely read liberals make that argument on this forum and elsewhere.*  Its worth reminding lefties that they don't have a monopoly on reason and have the many of the same biases as the rest of us. 

I think these sorts of studies would be better if they include anti-vax and anti-gmo because they probably don't have a right/left split.  You can see how each side reacts to science they dislike that isn't strongly ideologically biased.

*I don't remember a libertarian making this sort of statement regarding libertarians and skepticism but I wouldn't be surprised if some do.

Offline Kwisatz Haderach

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Re: Episode #503
« Reply #17 on: March 01, 2015, 02:17:11 PM »
I If I had to guess, I suspect the reason Dr. Novella does this is as a sort of cautionary note.  I don't think I've ever seen a conservative suggest that conservatism is the natural or only philosophy consistent with skepticism but I've definitely read liberals make that argument on this forum and elsewhere.*  Its worth reminding lefties that they don't have a monopoly on reason and have the many of the same biases as the rest of us. 

*I don't remember a libertarian making this sort of statement regarding libertarians and skepticism but I wouldn't be surprised if some do.

I find that last bit extremely hard to believe.  Steve has mentioned on the podcast may times that it is quite common for libertarians to confuse their Libertarian Political positions for skeptical positions; it is something of a cliche in the skeptical community.  Additionally, a rather famous skeptic called "Michael Shermer" has written several books in which he openly proclaims libertarian political ideals to be scientific.  The only thing close to a liberal skeptic claiming that liberal politics are scientific would be Massimo Pigliucci's frequent citations of the studies that show that socialist democracies with lower levels of wealth disparity tend to have higher over all levels of happiness.  Of course, that is a very specific claim backed up with evidence, as opposed to the claims of a certain prominent Libertarian skeptic/juggler who insists climate change is not really happening because Al Gore, and that even if it were happening human's aren't causing it because freedom, and even if humans were causing is there is nothing we can do about it because socialism.

We both filter our experiences through our own political biases, but seriously... you have been active in the skeptical community far too long to not have heard at least one libertarian respond to a scientific argument by passionately invoking the US Constitution.

Offline MikeHz

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Re: Episode #503
« Reply #18 on: March 01, 2015, 02:59:01 PM »
Loved the segment on Mary Anning, who I'd heard about on the podcast Stuff You Missed in History Class a couple of years back. Very interesting person. Not totally forgotten by the general public, however. I'm sure everyone has heard the tongue-twister, She sells seashells on the seashore," but doubt many realize that Anning was the subject of that rhyme, written in Terry Sullivan in 1908.

Good show, as always. I knew the thing about burning rabbits for fuel, having read it some time ago. However, as a boiler plant operator myself, I doubt the bunnies serve as the only, or even primary, fuel for the boiler. Most likely it's similar to my own local waste-to-energy power plant, which burns all sorts of material to make high-pressure steam.
"It's easier to fool people than to convince them they have been fooled." Mark Twain

Offline seaotter

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Re: Episode #503
« Reply #19 on: March 01, 2015, 03:56:21 PM »
@AUseaotter: space toilet http://t.co/zsZJDnotJ6
"There is no use trying," said Alice; "one can't believe impossible things." Lewis Carroll

Offline Ambious

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Re: Episode #503
« Reply #20 on: March 01, 2015, 04:27:23 PM »
Oh look, my previous analysis is already defunct:
SanDisk stuffs 200GB into a microSD card for your phone



Sent from my Nexus 7 using Tapatalk

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"Teach thy tongue to say “I do not know”, and thous shalt progress."
–Maimonides

Offline mabell_yah

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Re: Episode #503
« Reply #21 on: March 01, 2015, 04:57:54 PM »
Science or fiction: My first reaction to the excrement burning was to question the mechanism to convert burning turd to electricity. It's doubtful that it would get hot enough to generate the steam you would need to run a turbine. Then Evan tipped me off to the gas issue. Sure, let's convert precious oxygen to smoke-filled CO and CO2. Finally, I'm pretty sure that getting things to burn efficiently in 0G is problematic. You can't compete with solar panels for free energy in space, at least this close to the sun.

Online werecow

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Re: Episode #503
« Reply #22 on: March 01, 2015, 05:19:44 PM »
Oh and on the bladderwort. Many plants have undergone whole genome duplication. Common strawberries have 10 sets of chromosomes. Further many plants and animals have shrunk their DNA. Birds and other flying animals do it to reduce weight. Sounds strange but you have a lot of DNA. 700 G for an average human.

That is incredible! Where can I get this figure? Googling for "DNA weight" only brings up diet scams.
Regarding genome duplication, look up polyploidy.

As for DNA shrinkage, from what I've read it does not have to do with the weight of the DNA so much as with bulk. This is selected against indirectly through metabolic activity; smaller cells are more efficient at transporting oxygen and fuel, and so a strong selection pressure for efficient metabolism indirectly selects for smaller cells, and by extension for smaller genomes.
Mooohn!

Offline lucek

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Re: Episode #503
« Reply #23 on: March 01, 2015, 06:38:44 PM »
Oh and on the bladderwort. Many plants have undergone whole genome duplication. Common strawberries have 10 sets of chromosomes. Further many plants and animals have shrunk their DNA. Birds and other flying animals do it to reduce weight. Sounds strange but you have a lot of DNA. 700 G for an average human.

That is incredible! Where can I get this figure? Googling for "DNA weight" only brings up diet scams.

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7.11*10-15 kg of DNA per cell
http://madsci.org/posts/archives/nov99/941864488.Cb.r.html
Multiply that by the number of cell in the human body and you get ~700 G.

That doesn't account for mitochondrial DNA or bacteria that colonies us or the wide range of estimations for how many cells we have or that some cells have multiple nucleoli and others have none but it is a good jumping off number.
« Last Edit: March 01, 2015, 06:43:16 PM by lucek »

Offline ImadZaheer

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Re: Episode #503
« Reply #24 on: March 01, 2015, 10:49:09 PM »
I always find the lack of engagement with political issues as well as the lack of transparency about the SGU member's own political views disappointing. This seems to be a general trend towards many skeptic/athiest communities away from philosophy and values, which are of course implicitly still there. The whole skeptic movement itself is based on moral principles that are never fully articulated. Even ignoring these issues though, it would nice to get skeptical and critical thinking on political and moral issues, as these essential topic to our society as well as science itself.

Offline Zerowantuthri

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Re: Episode #503
« Reply #25 on: March 02, 2015, 12:57:46 AM »
As regards a storage solution for all your stuff I cannot imagine an online backup will suffice.  Most consumer data packages from your ISP will not have much better than 10 Mb/s up bandwidth.  That is 1.25 MB/s.  If you want to move 4TB of data it seems to me it'll take you over 37 days to move it.  Not good.

You will be much better off with a NAS solution.  I use a Synology Diskstation 1515+ at work.  Combine that with Western Digital Red 4TB drives (biggest this NAS will take) and you'll net about 15TB of storage (you "lose"* one drive to RAID-5 and 1TB to the file allocation table).  I forget the final cost but all told it was around $1500 (including the drives which are bought separately from the NAS).

I know there was worry about hard drive longevity but the WD-Red drives are built with NAS in mind so while not the speediest performers they are built to last.  Additionally, since you have these in a RAID setup, when a drive dies you are ok.  Pop out the dead drive and pop in a new one (if two drives go at once you are screwed but that is unlikely).  Buy a sixth drive to sit on a shelf and be ready to go in case you worry about shipping time for a new drive.

These NAS stations come with all sorts of extra bells and whistles.  For instance it can be your own "cloud" storage device which you can access from anywhere including your cell phones.  Upload and download stuff to it just as you would with any other cloud storage service (the ability to do this will depend on your ISP...some don't give you the necessary control over your network to make it happen and setting it up is not easy if you are a new to this) .  They can also be added on to down the road if you need even more storage.

You can of course opt for even bigger NAS or more robust fault tolerance.  It is all a matter of cost and your pain threshold (how bad it would be to lose the stuff).  It also is a single point of failure.  If you are robbed or have a fire or a pissed off person goes at it with a bat you are SOL.  All of these things can be protected against to some extent but again more money and effort.  All things you need to balance when making a decision.  Few things will be bullet proof and those that are will cost accordingly.

FTR:  I do not work for or own stock in any of these companies.  The Synology Diskstation has plenty of competition and it is worth your time to compare other manufacturers.  I only mention that one because I have personal experience with it.  YMMV.

* I am fully aware of how data striping works and that you do not literally "lose" a drive to it.  Just noting you lose that much storage space out of the system to cover the overhead for the RAID.  The more drives you have the less "expensive" the RAID becomes (three drives lose 33%, four drives lose 25%, five drives lose 20% and so on).
« Last Edit: March 02, 2015, 01:06:46 AM by Zerowantuthri »

Offline Zerowantuthri

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Re: Episode #503
« Reply #26 on: March 02, 2015, 01:44:31 AM »
The highest capacity of a commercially available microSD card is 128GB.

SanDisk just announced they have that beat.

SanDisk announces 200GB Ultra Premium Edition microSDXC card at MWC 2015

Offline Swagomatic

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Re: Episode #503
« Reply #27 on: March 02, 2015, 10:51:59 AM »
Apropos of the science and politics discussion, here's a new article from Chris Mooney in the Washington Post:

http://www.washingtonpost.com/news/energy-environment/wp/2015/03/02/this-is-where-distrust-of-science-really-comes-from-and-its-not-just-your-politics/
Beware of false knowledge; it is more dangerous than ignorance.
---George Bernard Shaw

Offline clavicorn

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Re: Episode #503
« Reply #28 on: March 02, 2015, 12:18:44 PM »
Gwyneth, not "Gwenyth".

Offline Zerowantuthri

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Re: Episode #503
« Reply #29 on: March 02, 2015, 02:13:01 PM »
Apropos of the science and politics discussion, here's a new article from Chris Mooney in the Washington Post:

http://www.washingtonpost.com/news/energy-environment/wp/2015/03/02/this-is-where-distrust-of-science-really-comes-from-and-its-not-just-your-politics/

It is weird how the author is trying to make the case that science denial doesn't adhere to political ideology yet he makes the case pretty persuasively that conservatives are more likely to distrust science.

It's right in the article:

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“Overall, these results show that perceptions of science are polarized, but this political discord reflects deeper cultural belief systems that cohere on the political right,” wrote Gauchat.

So fine, there are deeper and more nuanced reasons than being conservative for being anti-science but the people who hold to those deeper reasons are far more likely to be conservative.

In the end putting everyone in the US into one of two baskets (conservative or liberal) is too blunt a tool to get much understanding of the "why" of it all.  Yet it remains that conservatives, on the whole, are more hostile towards science than liberals are.

 

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