Author Topic: Episode #597  (Read 3160 times)

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Offline Steven Novella

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Episode #597
« on: December 17, 2016, 07:53:11 AM »
Forgotten Superheroes of Science: Barbara Liskov; News Items: Trust of Scientists and GMOs, Cryogenic Energy Storage, Deorbiting Space Junk; What’s the Word: In Situ; Your Questions and E-mails: Premium Gas, Porn Follow Up; Science or Fiction
Steven Novella
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Offline dorbie

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Re: Episode #597
« Reply #1 on: December 17, 2016, 01:57:46 PM »
John Glenn was grounded after his first space flight because the administration did not want to risk killing their space hero. It was not his choice, for his heroism he was made the victim of administrative cowardice.

Offline lonely moa

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Re: Episode #597
« Reply #2 on: December 17, 2016, 03:24:27 PM »
Since the vast bulk of edible GE crops are maize, soy and rape (and some sugar beet), one could argue that these crops are not good for human health, GE notwithstanding.

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Offline fuzzyMarmot

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Re: Episode #597
« Reply #3 on: December 17, 2016, 06:30:02 PM »
One of the coolest variants of Cara's word of the week is in silico, which refers to an experiment performed using computer simulation.

The response to last week's interview with Marty Klein left a big question unanswered: Why interview this guy at all? What does he have to do with science? I still think he seems like a self-help guru who is really good at self-promotion and selling books. Am I missing the science angle? Does he have peer-reviewed research?

Creating reservoirs to store energy has major environmental disadvantages, including methane emissions:
http://bioscience.oxfordjournals.org/content/early/2016/10/02/biosci.biw117.short
https://www.washingtonpost.com/news/energy-environment/wp/2016/09/28/scientists-just-found-yet-another-way-that-humans-are-creating-greenhouse-gases/?utm_term=.e85ca76f0d17

Offline arthwollipot

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Re: Episode #597
« Reply #4 on: December 18, 2016, 02:15:26 AM »
The response to last week's interview with Marty Klein left a big question unanswered: Why interview this guy at all? What does he have to do with science? I still think he seems like a self-help guru who is really good at self-promotion and selling books. Am I missing the science angle? Does he have peer-reviewed research?

I thought about this some since posting pretty much the same question in last show's thread. Basically as far as I can tell, it's the idea that some subjects aren't commonly given skeptical thought - there is a lot of received wisdom, pop psychology and outright woo in the porn industry, and that's why it's appropriate to give it a thorough skeptical examination.

Unfortunately I don't think this single interview was that.

Offline Eternally Learning

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Re: Episode #597
« Reply #5 on: December 18, 2016, 02:44:40 AM »
In principle, I am fine with the subject matter being covered and if this guy is a crank or an expert, having a big name on for an interview makes sense too.  The main problem for me is that there was no introduction to it at all.  No context given for his book.  No Bone Fides given for him.  Also, very little of his arguments as stated had any kind of evidence to back them up and seemed very assumption based.  I think Steve's comments this episode about how he failed to explain to the listeners things which he knew of via his research and explained some of the responses Klein gave which seemed off, hit the nail on the head for the whole thing.  I think he just forgot to include us in his line of thinking about the subject and the man.

Offline 2397

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Re: Episode #597
« Reply #6 on: December 18, 2016, 03:53:29 AM »
John Glenn was grounded after his first space flight because the administration did not want to risk killing their space hero. It was not his choice, for his heroism he was made the victim of administrative cowardice.

I was surprised they didn't know that. If you had asked me where I learned that John Glenn was grounded as a political decision, I might as well have said the SGU, for all the astronomy related material they have.

Edit: It might be speculation that it was a political decision, since there doesn't seem to be an official statement about it.

Edit2: And there's the ad;

Steve: "Well everyone, let's take a quick break from our show to talk about our sponsor this week, [redacted]"
Cara: "Yeah you know, we talk about it a lot, and that's because we love it so much"

That's where it all falls apart. If anyone was looking for my input on how skeptics could improve doing ads.
« Last Edit: December 18, 2016, 05:17:25 AM by 2397 »

Offline daniel1948

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Re: Episode #597
« Reply #7 on: December 18, 2016, 11:23:11 AM »
I was surprised that they thought that "in situ" and "in vitro" and "in vivo" were not commonly-known terms. If indeed they are not commonly known, then I am even more surprised. Are people really so ignorant that most don't know these terms?

Regarding premium gas: They left out one interesting bit of information: Premium gas has less energy per unit volume than regular gas. A price you pay for a high-compression, high-power engine is that you pay more per gallon and get less energy.

We're never going to colonize the stars because long before we have the necessary technology, the Earth is going to be surrounded by an impenetrable shell of orbiting space junk. On a related note, the answer to Fermi's paradox is that technological civilizations end up hidden and imprisoned by their orbiting space junk.
Daniel
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Offline daniel1948

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Re: Episode #597
« Reply #8 on: December 18, 2016, 11:27:12 AM »
I beat all the rogues! I got Science or Fiction right! I was stressed and depressed in college and did poorly, so I figured that one was the fiction. I get SoF right about one time in ten or fifteen (considerably worse than chance, for whatever that's worth) so getting it right is a big deal for me. And getting it right when all the rogues got it wrong, is pretty special. I'll brag about that any time it happens.  :dance:
Daniel
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-- Otto von Bismarck

Offline daniel1948

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Re: Episode #597
« Reply #9 on: December 18, 2016, 11:50:10 AM »
Since the vast bulk of edible GE crops are maize, soy and rape (and some sugar beet), one could argue that these crops are not good for human health, GE notwithstanding.

I would argue that there's nothing inherently bad about maize, soy, rapeseed, or even sugar. The problems arise when we eat too much of them. Too much of anything is harmful.
Daniel
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-- Otto von Bismarck

Offline lonely moa

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Re: Episode #597
« Reply #10 on: December 18, 2016, 11:52:48 AM »
The Rogues are still not worried about (at least on air) about the looming anti-scemce US administration.  I guess I'll just have to rely on other sceptical podcasts like the FFRF, Sam Harris, Rationally Speaking, More or Less...  whatever, to keep up with radically changing face of science in the US.

Since the US is so influential and starting at such a publicly low base of scientific awareness, this change is alarming.
"The home of the brave and the land of the free; the less you know, the better off you'll be"

Warren Zevon

Offline lonely moa

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Re: Episode #597
« Reply #11 on: December 18, 2016, 11:54:08 AM »
For one, Daniel, http://www.wsj.com/articles/is-sugar-killing-us-1481303447

All things in moderation, balanced diet, energy in, energy out... all crap, really.  Humans have become fat, weak and sick following tis advice.
« Last Edit: December 18, 2016, 12:36:00 PM by lonely moa »
"The home of the brave and the land of the free; the less you know, the better off you'll be"

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Offline daniel1948

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Re: Episode #597
« Reply #12 on: December 18, 2016, 01:35:11 PM »
For one, Daniel, http://www.wsj.com/articles/is-sugar-killing-us-1481303447

All things in moderation, balanced diet, energy in, energy out... all crap, really.  Humans have become fat, weak and sick following tis advice.

That's only because we eat so much of it. And calories in, calories out, is physics. Conservation of energy. You cannot gain weight unless you eat more calories than you burn; and you cannot lose weight unless you burn more calories than you eat. Anything else is magic.
Daniel
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"Anyone who has ever looked into the glazed eyes of a soldier dying on the battlefield will think long and hard before starting a war."
-- Otto von Bismarck

Offline 2397

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Re: Episode #597
« Reply #13 on: December 18, 2016, 03:01:25 PM »
We're never going to colonize the stars because long before we have the necessary technology, the Earth is going to be surrounded by an impenetrable shell of orbiting space junk. On a related note, the answer to Fermi's paradox is that technological civilizations end up hidden and imprisoned by their orbiting space junk.

Just have to invent cryosleep so that we can wait out the decaying orbits for a few centuries. Or maybe someone decides to take over the planet while the world sleeps.

The Rogues are still not worried about (at least on air) about the looming anti-scemce US administration.  I guess I'll just have to rely on other sceptical podcasts like the FFRF, Sam Harris, Rationally Speaking, More or Less...  whatever, to keep up with radically changing face of science in the US.

Since the US is so influential and starting at such a publicly low base of scientific awareness, this change is alarming.

It could become a lot less influential.

Offline fuzzyMarmot

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Re: Episode #597
« Reply #14 on: December 18, 2016, 03:03:05 PM »
The Rogues are still not worried about (at least on air) about the looming anti-scemce US administration.  I guess I'll just have to rely on other sceptical podcasts like the FFRF, Sam Harris, Rationally Speaking, More or Less...  whatever, to keep up with radically changing face of science in the US.

Since the US is so influential and starting at such a publicly low base of scientific awareness, this change is alarming.

Word. I'm with you on feeling disappointment about this. I've given up hope that they will tackle these topics. I still love the SGU, but now I listen to it as a diversion/entertainment. I used to listen primarily because I viewed it as a leading voice of an activist movement. I don't want to be too negative about their choices. I still really enjoy the podcast, and am grateful that the SGU puts so much work into it.

 

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