Author Topic: Episode #516  (Read 4330 times)

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Offline Steven Novella

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Episode #516
« on: May 30, 2015, 01:37:57 PM »
Interview with Paul Braterman; Forgotten Superheroes of Science: Georges Méliès; News Items: Scam Charities, Creationist Talking Points, Twitter Demons; Who’s That Noisy; Your Questions and E-mails: Bird Feeders; Science or Fiction
Steven Novella
Host, The Skeptics Guide
snovella@theness.com

Offline frothy

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Re: Episode #516
« Reply #1 on: May 30, 2015, 03:04:35 PM »
Why would adding two new basepairs to DNA create an organism that is completely incompatible with existing life?

Offline lonely moa

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Re: Episode #516
« Reply #2 on: May 30, 2015, 03:46:03 PM »
An negative unintended consequence of feeding wild birds here is death by automobile collision.  Kea are being killed that way at Arthur's Pass.  Their numbers continue to decrease overall so this isn't a good thing.  One can only assume that they are still illegally targeted by farmers as kea do kill sheep in the high country.
« Last Edit: May 31, 2015, 01:25:19 AM by lonely moa »
"Pull the goalie", Malcolm Gladwell.

Offline ThorGoLucky

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Re: Episode #516
« Reply #3 on: May 31, 2015, 01:03:07 AM »
At time 39:51 on my iPhone, Jay's voice consistently activates Siri to search for "Is very accurate."

Online superdave

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Re: Episode #516
« Reply #4 on: May 31, 2015, 11:34:20 AM »
About charities using fundraisers.
In this ted talk, the speaker discusses fundraising and using professional fundraising for charities.
http://www.ted.com/talks/dan_pallotta_the_way_we_think_about_charity_is_dead_wrong

He argues that even though charities that use professional fundraising companies donate a smaller percentage of their revenue to the actual people in need, the net amount that they are able to donate is vastly increased through the use of professional fundraising companies. 

IE the percentage of the pie they give is smaller but the total size of the pie is much bigger.
I disavow anyone in the movement involved in any illegal,unethical, sexist, or racist behavior. However, I don't have the energy or time to investigate each person and case, and a lack of individual disavowals for each incident should not be construed as condoning such behavior.

Offline JohnM

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Re: Episode #516
« Reply #5 on: May 31, 2015, 03:31:03 PM »

interesting that a bird that is such a pest in America is in serious decline in britain  :-[ :-[ :-[ can we have them?

Offline Evil Eye

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Re: Episode #516 WTN guess
« Reply #6 on: May 31, 2015, 06:58:31 PM »
WTN... ONLY a guess but can be done this way...
(click to show/hide)
"We'll get that information to you later" - Richard Feynman to Mr. Rodgers.

Offline rcpena123

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Re: Episode #516
« Reply #7 on: May 31, 2015, 07:30:12 PM »
I think I remember this one. Someone set up a microphone to process speech, but the twist was the output was sent to a piano. So the computer 'translated' speech into piano notes.

Offline vespine

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Re: Episode #516
« Reply #8 on: June 01, 2015, 04:03:17 AM »
Dmmit! Beaten to it:) first time I thought I might actually get a wtn:) I believe the above is correct, it's a computer that synthesises speech using a piano

Offline McYak

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Re: Episode #516
« Reply #9 on: June 01, 2015, 10:38:12 AM »
First my disclaimer:  I work for a marketing firm that raises money for national and local charities.

The comment about avoiding charities that use professional fundraising firms was interesting. Honestly, you will not find many national or international charities that don't use such firms.  Mine for example raises money for the Salvation Army, Catholic Charities, and formerly the American Red Cross among others.  According to Give.org, the Salvation Army uses 2% of its money for fundraising purposes.  Another 18% goes to administration and the rest goes to their programs. 

This is NOT a defense of the SA in particular. They may or may not be worthy of donations depending upon many factors and beliefs.  But many of these charities have one development or donation director who then contracts other firms to raise money for them.  This is often cheaper and more effective than hiring a full time staff themselves.

What it boils down to is research your charities, make sure that at LEAST 75-80% of their money goes to a cause, and donate via your conscious and abilities.  What is very true is that the on the spot\over the phone donation is rarely the way you want to go.  (hmmm... did I walk a fine enough line there?)

Offline amysrevenge

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Re: Episode #516
« Reply #10 on: June 01, 2015, 10:39:21 AM »
What will be the issues that people being born today will in the 40s and 50s  look back on the 00s and 10s the way we look back today on the 60s and 70s and say "what were they thinking" the way we do about the pervasive systemic sexism and racism in that period (or even littering - I remember my parents in the 70s tossing any and all trash out the window of the car in every circumstance).

Possibilities:
1) Desire for personal privacy
2) Diet - likely either meat or carbs (depending on who wins the Diet Wars)
3) Aversion to technological implants as per Google Glass
Big Mike
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Offline lonely moa

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Re: Episode #516
« Reply #11 on: June 01, 2015, 02:26:31 PM »
I dunno, around here it'll be why didn't they do something about CO2 when our major cities are being submerged in the next century and folks are killing each other over access to water.
"Pull the goalie", Malcolm Gladwell.

Online Friendly Angel

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Re: Episode #516
« Reply #12 on: June 01, 2015, 02:48:22 PM »
About charities using fundraisers.
In this ted talk, the speaker discusses fundraising and using professional fundraising for charities.
http://www.ted.com/talks/dan_pallotta_the_way_we_think_about_charity_is_dead_wrong

He argues that even though charities that use professional fundraising companies donate a smaller percentage of their revenue to the actual people in need, the net amount that they are able to donate is vastly increased through the use of professional fundraising companies. 

IE the percentage of the pie they give is smaller but the total size of the pie is much bigger.

You know if you're the charity and your objective is the TOTAL money that goes to the cause, then of course the professionals make sense.  But if you're the charitable contributor, then maybe it bothers you that the lower PERCENTAGE of your money goes to the cause. 

I'm not convinced the professional fundraiser marker is a valid metric or even that anyone cares... most people just want to know they're not supporting some top-heavy fake charity like Cancer Fund of America.


Amend and resubmit.

Offline gehnofdni

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Re: Episode #516
« Reply #13 on: June 01, 2015, 03:36:27 PM »
Your children's children will probably admonish your generation (I was born on the dividing line between gen X and gen Y, so I am probably closer to your kids' generation than yours and will never have kids of my own; sorry about it):
1.   For doing NOTHING about climate change.
2.   For holding onto the crime & punishment model of criminal justice (let alone punishing people for 'victimless crimes').
3.   For holding onto the usurious Capitalist economic system.
4.   For permitting multiple, do-nothing, partisan congresses and presidencies to set back American progress a full generation.
5.   For eating meat, yes, probably.

Online superdave

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Re: Episode #516
« Reply #14 on: June 01, 2015, 08:10:05 PM »
About charities using fundraisers.
In this ted talk, the speaker discusses fundraising and using professional fundraising for charities.
http://www.ted.com/talks/dan_pallotta_the_way_we_think_about_charity_is_dead_wrong

He argues that even though charities that use professional fundraising companies donate a smaller percentage of their revenue to the actual people in need, the net amount that they are able to donate is vastly increased through the use of professional fundraising companies. 

IE the percentage of the pie they give is smaller but the total size of the pie is much bigger.

You know if you're the charity and your objective is the TOTAL money that goes to the cause, then of course the professionals make sense.  But if you're the charitable contributor, then maybe it bothers you that the lower PERCENTAGE of your money goes to the cause. 

I'm not convinced the professional fundraiser marker is a valid metric or even that anyone cares... most people just want to know they're not supporting some top-heavy fake charity like Cancer Fund of America.

a valid point, there is a difference between using a professional fundraiser and an all out money making scam, but you have to look at more than the percentage overhead to figure out which one is which.
I disavow anyone in the movement involved in any illegal,unethical, sexist, or racist behavior. However, I don't have the energy or time to investigate each person and case, and a lack of individual disavowals for each incident should not be construed as condoning such behavior.