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Everything posted by dstebbins

  1. I understand that, from a scientific perspective, there is more than one kind of salt. The salt that we typically use as a seasoning on our food is called sodium chloride, aka table salt. My car is currently stuck in ice in a restaurant parking lot. I live within walking distance of this restaurant (and, as a direct result, I'm a regular customer there), but the walk (as opposed to the drive) is still F'ing brutal! I can't go forward, because that giant stone slab is in the way, and I can't back up because there's too much ice. I don't wanna pay out the ass for a towing service. My neighbor just told me that, in the morning, I can just sprinkle some salt onto the ice, and it will dissolve the ice enough for me to get out of there, but I didn't question him as to whether he actually did it himself, or just heard about it happening, before. See, the city will actually use some kind of salt to dissolve the ice on the streets, but I don't know if the city actually uses sodium chloride. Is this even theoretically possible? Can you really dissolve ice with sodium chloride? I don't have any table salt with me, so I can't just make some ice cubes and find out in my own qsuedo-lab (but, then again, that would probably be a totally different environment, right there), so I have no choice but to ask you guys.
  2. An area is considered to be a rain forest, based primarily on the amount of annual rainfall in that area (hence the name). What's the minimum amount of average annual rainfall before a given area is considered a "rain forest," by ecological standards? For example, according to this link right here, Miami, Florida gets over 58 inches of rain per year? Does it, technically, qualify as a rain forest, even though there isn't a whole lot of "forest" in the area?
  3. You have nine unique items. You must put them in groups of three, no more no less. Each unique item can be in more than one group, but cannot occupy two spots in the same group. How many possible groupings are there? I hope I'm making sense.
  4. A few years ago, I had a math class, which I needed a TI-83 calculator, for. I don't have the class, anymore, but I bought the calculator, myself, so I still have it. However, of all the nifty features that the TI-83 has over traditional "pocket" calculators, it seems to lack a memory function! Pocket calculators allowed you to save a number to memory. You could also add and subtract from that memory. If you wanted to multiply the memory by something, there was a way to do that. This allowed you to use a commonly-recurring, but large number, without having to tediously punch in that same number over and over again. How do I do that, on a TI-83?
  5. HIV is neigh impossible to create a vaccine for, largely due to the fact that it mutates so fast that, by the time a vaccine has been created and shipped out to all the pharmacies, it's already obsolete. However, HIV is a small virus, right? I mean, anything that can seep through your sweat pores has to be small. Therefore, it can't possibly have as many nucleotides as, say, the flu. So, by that logic, can't we just create a vaccine for every single possible incarnation of the HIV virus, and group all of those cells into a single, comprehensive set of vaccines? Keep in mind that you only need one HIV cell injected into your system to constitute a vaccine. A cell as small as HIV, you can probably store millions of of them in a single syringe. About ten or twelve injections should do the trick. Thoughts?
  6. Adrenaline is designed to give you a temporary boost in energy and power, in order to overcome danger. Well, for each milligram of adrenaline that your body produces, how many joules of energy does your body get? Feel free to group it into kilojoules or megajoules if you like.
  7. I've seen it played numerous times in the Clock Game. The goal is when you are faced with a ton of possibilities, and you try to eliminate as many possibilities as you can, so that you are left with only one possible answer. This can make the Clock Game easy to win, even if you have no earthly idea what the price of the item is. "five hundred" "Higher." "seven fifty" "Higher" "Nine hundred" "Lower" "Eight hundred" "Higher" "Eight fifty" "Higher" "Eight eighty" "Higher" "Eight ninety" "Higher" "91, 92, 93, 94, 95, 96, 97, 98, 99-" "THAT'S IT!" The fridge is worth $899. The Clock Game is the most common example, but not the only one, where this strategy is definitive. What is called?
  8. As you (should) know, little kids grow in stature because our bodies are constantly creating new cells. As a child, our body creates cells faster than old cells die, which cause us to become physically larger. At age 18, the rate at which cells are created start to cancel out with the rate at which cells die, causing us to stop growing. However, in our elderly years, our cells start to die faster than our body can manufacture new ones, causing us to, essentially, shrink. Does that mean that, at least in theory, if we could avoid all other forms of death, and live long enough, we could eventually shrink to the size of a fetus or zygote, and die THAT way?
  9. Assuming that I invest a certain amount of money into a single corporate bond, with a rate of 7.5%, then, assuming the corporation does not default, and that the bond is automatically renewed each term unless I explicitly ask for it, how long will it take before the value of the bond doubles? For example, if I invest $10,000 into a 7.5% corporate bond, how long will it take me to rack up $20,000? If I invest $25k into that same bond, how long will it take me to rack up $50k? Thanks. EDIT: By the way: Interest would compound quarterly, because I feel that is the most common compounding period when an individual is the one investing, rather than a finance institution.
  10. How thick is a single, 8.5" x 11" sheet of standard printer paper? I saw this article on Cha Chathat said it was about nine millimeters, but that CAN'T be right! How thick is a sheet of printer paper?
  11. Sure, desktops may SEEM cheaper than laptops, but keep in mind that those prices only include the tower, unless the store is having a special. You also have to buy a monitor (a good $100 to $200), a keyboard and mouse ($15 each, for a total of $30), and a set of speakers (another fifteen bucks). This raises the price of a desktop computer, for even basic functionality, by a good $245. These "peripherals" typically come standard on a laptop - physically built into the core laptop itself. So, all else being equal, which is cheaper, overall? a desktop + keyboard + mouse + monitor + speakers, or a laptop?
  12. Why is it that, in video games, AI that is real-time is easy to defeat, yet AI in turn-based games is virtually impossible to beat? I mean, I've played racing games against AI-controlled cars, and come in first place, yet, when I go online and race real people, I end up coming in dead last. Yet, I find that I have a LOT better luck kicking a real person's ass in Chess than I do a computer. What makes AI take such a 180 in difficulty?
  13. Ok, let me try this one. I need something that is EXACTLY one inch long. And, here's an idea of what I would ask for. If I needed something that is exactly eight inches, you would probably say "the width of a sheet of looseleaf paper." However, do not say "the height of a DVD case," because that isn't commonly occurring anywhere in the world; some third world countries don't have that yet. So, no longer do I need six inches and nine inches. Just give me an item that is ONE inch, and I'll just put 6 and 9 of those together.
  14. I need a pair of items... commonly occurring items that you can find virtually anywhere in the world. One of them needs to be EXACTLY six inches long, by standard design, and the other needs to be EXACTLY nine inches long, by standard design. When I say "standard design," I mean something like how a large paper clip, by standard design, weighs about a gram. Any ideas?
  15. Well, hopefully, in my final six months, when I won't need the maximum amount, I can take out the maximum amount, and use the excess to pay large amounts on my private loans, knocking my overall, average interest rate down, and knocking the balance that has 15% interest to only a couple of thousand dollars. I'll have to correspond with them to see if they'll let me do that. Wish me luck on that. But, in any case, with my stafford loans, I might qualify for income-based repayment.
  16. I can't do that. They won't let me.
  17. WARNING: LONG POST AHEAD! I am about to transfer to a new college. Only two of my current classes will transfer, so, almost completely, I have to start all over. The college is private. It is online, so living expenses are paid for myself. However, the tuition for the entire bachelor's degree is $54,000. Officially, it is 123 credit hours, with $439 per credit hour. However, as I said, two classes will transfer. Those are English Comp 1 and Finite math (because those classes are universal). This will knock my credit hours down to 117, and, therefore, knock my tuition down to $51,366. However, I must also buy an expensive laptop to perform my classes on. This will cost $3,100. My entire cost for the school will become $54,466. The course is a bachelor's degree, but, since it's online, it only takes 32 months to complete. Since I am transferring two classes, that will knock my time down to 30 months. An extra six months will be used as a grace period before I must start repaying my loans. Here's the gist of my FAFSA situation: I get $2,600 in Pell Grants each year (since the income of my parents and myself are stagnant, I do not anticipate an increase in income in the next year). I also get the maximum in subsidized stafford loans, but I will also max-out my unsubsidized stafford loans. These loans are even greater than normal because my parents do not qualify for a PLUS loan, therefore, allowing me to get FAFSA income as if I were an independent student (normally reserved for age 24 or above, or for orphans). This means that, for the first year (my first year is, effectively, both my freshman and sophomore year), I will have $2,600 in gifted funds, $4,500 in loans that have 0% interest while I'm in school (remember, it is also my sophomore year, so I can get sophomore funding), and $5,000 in loans that have 6.8% interest while I'm in school. However, these $9,500 in stafford loans have a 3% processing fee that will reduce the amount of financial aid that I actually get down to $9,215, but not reducing my debts. This means that my remaining outstanding balance for my first year is $11,831.40 (including the one-time charge for the laptop). Since neither I, nor my parents, have the credit for a private loan, this college has a loan of their own. It is a last resort loan and has an interest rate of 15%, compounding monthly. I must take out a loan like that in the amount of $11,831.40 for the first year. For the second year, it is much the same, except that I now have access to $5,500 in subsidized loans, and I don't have to buy the laptop again. I still have the $5,000 in unsubsidized stafford loans. Take out the 3% processing fees, and we have a remaining balance of: $20,546.4 - $2,600 - $10,500*.97 = $7,671.40 in private loans at 15%. Remember that, for the second year, the interest will compile for 24 months (including the six month grace period after I graduate). For the third year, I only attend for half the year. This means I will only need $10,273.20. My Pell Grant will knock out $2,600 of that, leaving me with a relatively meager $7,673.20 that I must borrow. Divide that by 0.97 to accommodate for the processing fee, and we have a borrowing amount of 7,911 (rounded up). The $5,500 in subsidized loans will reduce my unsubsidized (but still stafford) loans to $2,411. Remember, the interest in my third year piles for 12 months. Now, here's the kicker: My Pell Grants don't contribute to my balance after my degree is over at all. My subsidized loans will have the same outstanding balance. The unsubsidized loans will pile at a rate of 6.8% APR for as long as they are in deferment, and my school's loan will have 15% APR for as long as it is in deferment. If this were all one giant loan, with one interest rate, and with one start date, it would be a LOT easier to compute! But, since there is so many factors to consider, what would my outstanding balance be when repayment begins?
  18. If you're lost in the wilderness with no clue where you are or where the nearest civilization is, can you eat grass for sustenance until help arrives?
  19. How can I find a network willing to peer with me?
  20. Yes, I can understand that, but the QUESTION was how do you do it? Or, and that whole "peering" thing sounds illegal (using someone else's Internet connection).
  21. You can CREATE your own electricity if you have your own windmill or solar panel. You can't exactly get FREE electricity unless you have a lot of solar panels or windmills, but it can substantially lower your electricity bill. That being said, how can you create your own Internet connection? I understand that you will probably have to do it in terms of data transfer, rather than total data transfer per second (kinda like you do on a cell phone), but it should still be possible, right? How, exactly, does that work?
  22. He accrues interest only on the OUTSTANDING principal, but not the outstanding BALANCE! For example, if he starts out with $10,000, pays $1,000, and then, disappears for two years, he will have $9,900 one year after his only payment, and $10,800 after his second payment. But, what if he CONSISTENTLY makes payments? I hope I'm making sense. Remember, this isn't some hypothetical math class problem; this is REAL law.
  23. John has just sued Company, Inc. for P dollars. Company, Inc, due to the state of the economy, cannot afford to pay the debt in one lump sum, so he has to use a payment plan. In the applicable state, judgment debts (debts from lawsuits that are not settled out of court) are subject to a 9% APR. However, here's the kicker: In every state (not just this one), Interest on judgment debts is NOT compounding! What this means is that Interest does not accrue on previously-accrued interest. The outstanding balance, as a whole, does not gain interest, like in any ordinary debt. Instead, interest accrues only on the remaining principal. So, if he has a starting balance of $10,000, if the company pays nothing on it for one whole year, he will have a balance of $10,900. However, if he pays nothing on it for two whole years, in a compounding-interest debt, he would have $11,881, but, since the interest is not compounding, he only has $11,800. See? Well, that's easy enough. If, however, he DOES make payments, it's exponentially more complicated, and this is coming from a man who's extremely good at math! If the company is sued for P dollars, with I in non-compounding interest per annum, and he makes payments of D amount each month, what equation is used to determine the following? 1. How many months it will take to pay off the debt. 2. How much he will end up paying in total. Can someone help me out?
  24. It's both. An ounce is either 1/8 of a cup, or 1/16 of a pound. You're not from America, are you?
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