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About Ouroboros

  • Birthday 02/14/1989


  • Quark

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  • College Major/Degree
    MPhys, Edinburgh
  • Favorite Area of Science

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  1. Yes, why not? We think life is somehow special because of its complexity and rarity, yet our sample size is still just one planet. If you think of life as just a system, interrelated parts functioning as an orderly whole, it doesn't sound so unfamiliar. You could simplify the functions of a virus to the point where the line between life and lifeless are blurred (..which is pretty much the case to start with).
  2. I couldn't imagine seeds would naturally become completely dehydrated. Most climates would oppose this. So osmosis is responsible for kick starting growth by breaking the seed husk..?
  3. At a guess, I can imagine future generations might be taller (subject to natural selection). Digestive and circulatory systems wouldn't work as well since they partly rely on gravity at 1g. Coordination might become tricky since your sense of balance would be altered.
  4. Yesterday I was sowing tomato seeds and came up with a few fundamental questions.. Apologies if they are indeed stupid questions. Firstly, why am I buying seeds? -Surely I could just plant a whole tomato or its fresh seeds? If indeed the seeds do need to be dried before planting, why? Surely this doesn't happen naturally.. Secondly, what is the purpose of fruit pulp? -I always presumed that it was to give the seeds the necessary nutrients to start growing (when the fruit has fallen to the ground). I know that some fruit are 'designed' to be eaten so that the seeds travel with a host and is relocated (..along with lots of fertiliser). But surely thats not the case for say.. mangos. Thirdly, how can a seed be dried and then kick start into life several years later? I've heard of seeds (found in Egypt) that will still grow after hundreds (possibly thousands) of years after being dried. I believe some Arthropod eggs share this property?
  5. Ouroboros


    'Max iPad', 'glorified clipboard'. comical. Its definitely the next logical step in consumer electronics. Unifying the features of smart phones, laptops and ebook readers into one device. And all at a very respectable price. Impressive, but still fairly useless.
  6. anything you ingest/breathe is technically psychoactive, as even the slightest change to your chemical balance will alter the way your brain functions. off topic, but as far as I am aware, hallucinations can be induced by sleep deprivation and even just closing your eyes. 'Phosphenes' occur naturally due to magnetic feedback from the brain, and can be induced by applying pressure/over exposure to the retina. You also get them if you have low blood pressure (or stand up too fast).
  7. The human body functions at an average 37*C (oral reading). All organs usually function at temperatures close to this figure(?). Given that people with different genetic structures from different parts of the world will function at different temperatures, does anyone know the average figures for the following.. Optimum operating temperature for the human brain? Optimum ambient temperature for humans? (I heard somewhere it was around 18*C?) Thanks in advance.
  8. Its not the end of the world, I found myself in a similar situation It may be a little beyond your current level of study, but MIT have some of the best online lectures, available free on YouTube and iTunes U. All the best
  9. Ahhhh, Kaku. I'm reading 'Hyperspace' at the moment. His writing style makes it so easy to read and visualise. If 'Physics of the Impossible' is as good as you say it is, I'll have to get that one next. Cheers
  10. Ouroboros


    In dim light we predominantly see with the rod cells of the retina (those responsible for black and white), so under cover of night, the best camouflage would definitely be a grey blend/pattern. Merged post follows: Consecutive posts merged Maybe not if your looking for an invisibility cloak, but genetics could certainly be the way to go! There has been a lot of research over the last decade looking into the genetic make-up of jelly fish and other translucent deep sea creatures...
  11. If you used a high enough current, yes. Given enough power (or enough heat dissipated from the hair), the water would eventually vaporise. But having said that, bare in mind your body is also 65% water, and the power needed to heat your hair to near 100°C for the water to evaporate, would definitely kill you. As clear cut as 'Bob_for_short' has put it, he is right. You do not mess around with Van de Graaf generators, especially with water. You have clearly been watching too many cartoons
  12. Ouroboros


    Mr Skeptic living up to his name there. In terms of bending light around an object, a huge gravitational force would do the trick. Though given we are talking about cloaking your head, black holes probably aren't the best solution. (Maybe try standing next to the LHC and crossing your fingers..) Travelling along another time line. Or travelling along the same timeline at a slightly faster/slower speed. I can imagine its easy to alter the way the observer sees the object, than altering the object its self. Try exploiting the flaws of the mind through optical illusions or psychological trickery. Failing that, the more materialist and obvious solution is fibre optics. the 007 suggestions above etc
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