Author Topic: Episode #682  (Read 1707 times)

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Online brilligtove

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Re: Episode #682
« Reply #15 on: August 08, 2018, 08:27:34 PM »
Cara is normally pretty good with etymology, but this time I don't think she went far enough. Scutoid derives from scutum, the Latin word for "shield". I believe the shield-shaped part of the bug carapace is also named for the same source, as are other animal parts that are vaguely shield-shaped.

Turns out, nope.



Toward the end of the interview with one of the people who defined the object (about 13 mins in), she explains how the name was based on the name of the lead researcher.
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Online The Latinist

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Re: Episode #682
« Reply #16 on: August 08, 2018, 08:45:19 PM »
It was a very quick comment during science or fiction but I would have to disagree with Cara.  Apes appear to be monkeys.

No, apes are not classified as monkeys. Apes are the members of the clade hominoidea, except that in the popular, non-scientific context the term ape usually excludes members of the genus homo, and therefore is not monophyletic.  Monkeys are a paraphyletic group including members of the family Cercopithecidae (the old world monkeys) and the superfamily Ceboidea (the new world monkeys).  While all are primates and simians, not all are monkeys.

Generally one can distinguish monkeys from apes in that monkeys have tails while apes do not.

Paraphyletic and polyphyletic groups don't make since with cladistics. Apes are monkeys and so are we.

I’m all for a cladistic understanding of taxonomy, but I strongly disagree with redefining terms of paraphyletic and polyphyletic terms of common usage to conform to clades. My all means, we should rigorously define taxa to create meaningful clades; and we are doing that.  But what reason is there to equate non-scientific terms like monkey and ape which were never cladistic in nature with those clades?  Simiformes is a perfectly fine clade and can be used in the scientific literature without boorishly insisting that popular usage of the term “monkey” must change to match.
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Offline arthwollipot

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Re: Episode #682
« Reply #17 on: August 08, 2018, 10:35:14 PM »
Toward the end of the interview with one of the people who defined the object (about 13 mins in), she explains how the name was based on the name of the lead researcher.

Well there you go.
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Offline God Bomb

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Re: Episode #682
« Reply #18 on: August 08, 2018, 11:37:55 PM »
guys i think we can all agree that apes and monkeys are basically the same thing
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Re: Episode #682
« Reply #19 on: August 09, 2018, 12:31:42 PM »
"Nothing matters. We're essentially all highly evolved monkeys clinging to a rock that's falling through space. And the rock itself is dying." - Frankie Boyle

Offline PabloHoney

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Re: Episode #682
« Reply #20 on: August 09, 2018, 04:20:34 PM »
guys i think we can all agree that apes and monkeys are basically the same thing

They are both marsupials; members of the marsupial family.

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Re: Episode #682
« Reply #21 on: August 16, 2018, 02:18:25 PM »
During the Science or Fiction item about the pyramids concentrating EMF radiation, they said that the frequency they were studying was in the radio spectrum.

This should have been apparent to us all since the word "radios" consist of Ra, the Egyptian sun god, and Dios, the word for God in Spanish.  True story.  /nod
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Online brilligtove

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Re: Episode #682
« Reply #22 on: August 16, 2018, 02:33:41 PM »
During the Science or Fiction item about the pyramids concentrating EMF radiation, they said that the frequency they were studying was in the radio spectrum.

This should have been apparent to us all since the word "radios" consist of Ra, the Egyptian sun god, and Dios, the word for God in Spanish.  True story.  /nod

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Online daniel1948

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Re: Episode #682
« Reply #23 on: August 20, 2018, 04:48:26 PM »
I don't think that astronauts are quite as special as the book seems to make out, based just on the interview. Yes, they take enormous risks, and yes, their willingness to put themselves at great risk has provided benefits to the rest of us. Extreme mountain climbers take even greater risks, so astronauts' willingness to take risks is not unique. And firefighters take enormous risks to save lives and property. I admire astronauts, but I admire firefighters a gazillion times more. I don't particularly admire mountain climbers, but if they want to climb I have no objection.

My point is just that this notion that astronauts are somehow "better" or more interesting than other people whose jobs or hobbies put them at great risk is not justified. Yes, the Apollo program is fascinating. And the book sounds interesting. But so are books about mountain climbers. People who dedicate their lives to helping others are the ones I admire most. And people who can play Bach especially well.  ;)
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Offline God Bomb

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Re: Episode #682
« Reply #24 on: August 20, 2018, 05:45:11 PM »
I don't think that astronauts are quite as special as the book seems to make out, based just on the interview. Yes, they take enormous risks, and yes, their willingness to put themselves at great risk has provided benefits to the rest of us. Extreme mountain climbers take even greater risks, so astronauts' willingness to take risks is not unique. And firefighters take enormous risks to save lives and property. I admire astronauts, but I admire firefighters a gazillion times more. I don't particularly admire mountain climbers, but if they want to climb I have no objection.

My point is just that this notion that astronauts are somehow "better" or more interesting than other people whose jobs or hobbies put them at great risk is not justified. Yes, the Apollo program is fascinating. And the book sounds interesting. But so are books about mountain climbers. People who dedicate their lives to helping others are the ones I admire most. And people who can play Bach especially well.  ;)

A case can be made that being a firefighter is a job that attracts people looking for an above average income with decent benefits, with relatively (for similar paid jobs) low educational requirements.  The prospects of helping people might factor into the decision, it might not, the risk factor might put some people off, for others it might not be something they worry about until they are faced directly with the danger.  Some people might enter the profession purely for the excitement and not particularly care about helping people.  I think who we admire and who we don't is largely unsubstantiated and mostly not very interesting anyway.

For the case of astronauts, I'm not sure by which metric they are considered "special" in the book.  But if I were to make the case I would say that anyone with that level of education, drive and opportunity could make a lot more money for less risk on Earth than by going into space.  They have a certain spirit of adventure above more "normal" human drives that can be considered special.
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Online daniel1948

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Re: Episode #682
« Reply #25 on: August 20, 2018, 06:37:43 PM »
I don't think that astronauts are quite as special as the book seems to make out, based just on the interview. Yes, they take enormous risks, and yes, their willingness to put themselves at great risk has provided benefits to the rest of us. Extreme mountain climbers take even greater risks, so astronauts' willingness to take risks is not unique. And firefighters take enormous risks to save lives and property. I admire astronauts, but I admire firefighters a gazillion times more. I don't particularly admire mountain climbers, but if they want to climb I have no objection.

My point is just that this notion that astronauts are somehow "better" or more interesting than other people whose jobs or hobbies put them at great risk is not justified. Yes, the Apollo program is fascinating. And the book sounds interesting. But so are books about mountain climbers. People who dedicate their lives to helping others are the ones I admire most. And people who can play Bach especially well.  ;)

A case can be made that being a firefighter is a job that attracts people looking for an above average income with decent benefits, with relatively (for similar paid jobs) low educational requirements.  The prospects of helping people might factor into the decision, it might not, the risk factor might put some people off, for others it might not be something they worry about until they are faced directly with the danger.  Some people might enter the profession purely for the excitement and not particularly care about helping people.  I think who we admire and who we don't is largely unsubstantiated and mostly not very interesting anyway.

For the case of astronauts, I'm not sure by which metric they are considered "special" in the book.  But if I were to make the case I would say that anyone with that level of education, drive and opportunity could make a lot more money for less risk on Earth than by going into space.  They have a certain spirit of adventure above more "normal" human drives that can be considered special.

I've known a few firefighters. Obviously, not a random sample. But they've all been people with a sense of responsibility toward others, and the belief that if they have the skills to save lives, they need to do it. None of the firefighters I've known have been motivated (as far as I can tell) by the desire for excitement or thrills, and none have lacked education.

The early astronauts were all (or mostly?) test pilots. I think that's a job path that requires a strong desire for excitement, in addition to whatever loyalty to the branch of service. They're helping others in the sense that someone has to be the first to fly a plane still in development, for it to become safe for others. But you don't take on that job if you don't also want the excitement.

Plenty of people become firefighters just because they want to save lives. Or in the case of wildland fire fighters (and I've known several of these as well) because they want to prevent the destruction of forests. One of my hiking guides from past years fought fires last year. The pay was excellent, but she also was motivated by a love of the mountains. And while the pay is high, so is the risk.
Daniel
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Online brilligtove

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Re: Episode #682
« Reply #26 on: August 20, 2018, 07:41:45 PM »
Daniel, I think you underestimate the rarity of people who are willing to plunge into the unknown with a high risk of death. Even being the first to climb a particular mountain is barely analogous to the first humans to go to space. Those astronaughts were exceptional not in their willingness to take risks, but in their willingness to step into an unknown abyss.
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Online daniel1948

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Re: Episode #682
« Reply #27 on: August 20, 2018, 10:13:20 PM »
Daniel, I think you underestimate the rarity of people who are willing to plunge into the unknown with a high risk of death. Even being the first to climb a particular mountain is barely analogous to the first humans to go to space. Those astronaughts were exceptional not in their willingness to take risks, but in their willingness to step into an unknown abyss.

According to Jon Krakauer, 25% of the people who make it to the top of Everest die on the way down. That's far worse odds than astronauts face. I submit that the "abyss" of an 8,000 meter mountain is greater than the "abyss" of a space capsule. Yes, the Apollo astronauts went where nobody has gone before and there were unknowns involved. But a climber on a first ascent faces greater unknowns finding a route for the first time and similarly goes where nobody has gone before. And every time a firefighter enters a burning building he or she has no way of knowing what is going on inside.

Space holds a special fascination for the average Joe. I just think that a firefighter or a mountain climber has to have an even greater tolerance for risk than an astronaut and both face more unknowns. It may seem to some that going into space is scarier. But walking into a burning building is IMO far more frightening. And even climbing, once you get into the hard stuff and high elevation, is scarier than going into space. Hell, even I have done some scrambles that scare me more than a trip to space would, except that I'd get space-sick. And I've never done anything over a 5.6, and that only for a single move on a few occasions. Start talking about a 5.10 or 5.12 and I'd rather go into space even with the space-sickness.

Nope. Astronauts are indeed a special breed, but they can't hold a candle to firefighters for sheer courage and dedication and heart.
Daniel
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Online brilligtove

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Re: Episode #682
« Reply #28 on: August 21, 2018, 10:18:21 AM »
I did not say space was more dangerous than a mountain or a fire. That is a separate consideration from 'unknown'. When those astronaughts went up they knew many of the risks, just as an mountaineer or firefighter knows many of the risks. The difference the astronaughts also knew there were completely unknown risks. Would they melt because of radiation? No idea. Go insane in 0G? No idea. Something no one has thought of? No idea. A mountain and a fire both present unknowns, but these are much more circumscribed. If, with each call, firefighters were deeply concerned about how likely it was that a disease would kill them all, or that the building would fly up into the air, or that [something having no known connection to fires, buildings, firefighters or anything else they normally deal with] kills them outright, then sure: that's The Right Stuff.

I agree that going into space today is much more like climbing a mountain or fighting a fire is today. The unknowns are largely circumscribed by what we know. Back then, the situation was not at all the same. For a mountaineer to have The Right Stuff in the same way as those astronaughts did they would have to be the first to climb any mountain ever, not the first to climb that particular mountain.
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Online daniel1948

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Re: Episode #682
« Reply #29 on: August 21, 2018, 11:19:53 AM »
Well, I guess we see these things differently.
Daniel
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