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Everything posted by dstebbins

  1. As you know, a large paper clip weighs approximately one gram, give or take a few milligrams to accommodate the fact that each paper clip is different. Is there a similar common, around-the-house object that I can hold in my hand to get an idea of how much a single ounce weighs?
  2. Many elements of science fiction contradict the laws of physics, fundamentally. For example, a spaceship going faster than light on pure fuel power alone. But, would teleportation, theoretically, comply with the laws of physics? I don't think so, as that would imply infinite velocity, which violates Einstein's rule of e=mc^2. Thoughts?
  3. Can someone who actually has an education respond?
  4. Look it up in the dictionary. Attorney, not lawyer. Supervisor, not assistant manager. Big rig, not 18-wheeler. They are still, fundamentally, similar. So, if it is unprovable, then what about religion? Just because the existence of God cannot be disproven, should we all accept God? Should atheism be bashed?
  5. When I say "tap into," I mean harness. I say the 11th dimension because that was the dimension that gave way to the respectability of the many-worlds theory. It was the introduction of the 11th dimension that enabled Lisa Randall of Harvard University to provide an explanation for the weakness of gravity, but only by introducing a parallel universe. If it weren't for the 11th dimension, the many worlds theory would be about as crackpot and aristotle-like as the believe that the natural state of an object is rest. Without the eleventh dimension, there would be no proof of the many worlds theory, any more so than there is proof of extraterrestrial life (just because it CAN happen doesn't mean it DOES happen).
  6. The multiple universes hypothesis states that, anything that can happen does happen in one of the alternative universes. It is also my personal belief that, if these universes exist, we should be able to travel to them, for practical or vacation purposes. It seems, to me, to be a mere matter of tapping into the eleventh dimension. So, if the multiple universes theory is true, then there must also be a universe that plays out exactly like ours, but get started at a different point in time. For example, there might be a universe where George W. Bush is being sworn into office, not nine years ago, but as we speak. For a visual picture of what I'm talking about, open up a youtube video. Then, copy that URL, and open that same youtube video in another tab or window, without taking down the first one, and without pausing the first one. The exact same video is playing, and the video will play out exactly the same way, but they are a few seconds apart. So, there might be a universe out there that took place exactly five minutes after ours did, but other than that, has the exact same course of events, meaning that, as we speak, I am sitting down to write this thread. So, if we can tap into the eleventh dimension, perhaps we could use that as a ghetto form of time travel by traveling to a universe that plays out exactly the same way ours does, but a small amount of time apart. It's April 15, 2010 for us, but it's July 4, 1776 for the destination universe that the tourist went to to witness the signing of the Declaration of Independence. Do you think that might be a plausible option, provided we can find a way to tap into the eleventh dimension?
  7. Note, I'm putting this in the biology forum because there is no "sexology" forum. Also, I'm using this site (a science site) because I am not just looking for the reasons that you, personally, like lesbians, but rather, the scientific reason why they're so popular on a general level. Think about it: Why do men enjoy homosexual porn of the opposite sex, but that same fetish is not near as widespread among women? How, exactly, does testosterone accomplish one thing, but estrogen does not accomplish the exact opposite? Most guys give the reason of "twice the fun" for why they like lesbians, but that logic does not work with women liking gay men. It is the job of scientists to inquire as to why lesbians are so popular among the sex they aren't attracted to, yet that does not work vice versa. Why is that?
  8. Even if that happens, and even if she wins, she won't take office until January 2013. But, I doubt that Palin will run. Considering how horribly she did as Republican VP candidate, having her run for the real thing would kill what little motivation the Republicans have gotten from Obama's faux pas.
  9. What is the mainstream's scientific basis for believing that? Ok, the Mayan Calendar predicts that the world will end. What is the Mayan's logical basis for making that prediction? Does the Mayan Calendar actually give a CAUSE of the apocalypse? Or, does it just awkwardly stop in much the same way as our ability to tell history awkwardly stops at the Big Bang? I've watched so many documentaries on this conspiracy theory, and I have not seen one of them, not one, that I couldn't poke a HUGE hole the logic of. Specifically, why does everyone thing the world will end in 2012?
  10. Spam is defined as a completely irrelevant post that in no way, shape, or form, contributes to the discussion of the topic at hand. So yes, it was spam.
  11. Your spam post has been reported.
  12. Here's the gist of my problem: I did NOT get a flue shot this year. Alkaselzer doesn't work. When I scratch an itch, I feel like I'm ripping my skin right off, and the feeling lingers for a few minutes. Fearing the worst, I did a google search on how to tell the flu from the common cold. Here's what I found. http://www.ehow.com/how_2173382_tell-have-flu.html On the first test, I don't know for sure if I have a fever (I have no thermometer), but I definitely feel like I do. Cough? Sore throat? Stuffy nose? Yeah, all three of 'em. Diarreha and vomiting? No. Weakness? Yes. I can't afford to go to the doctor because it's too damned expensive. Any thoughts? If you think I most likely have flue, what kind of OTC medicine would you suggest I go and pick up?
  13. Okay, let me get this straight. A sodium atom and a chlorine atom just happen to be in the same place at the same time, so they combine into a molecule of table salt. Likewise, the theory of abiogenesis argues that a lot of molecules that we now recognize as "organic," like O2 and amino acids, were at the same place at the same time, started engaging in chemical reactions that were physically possible under those conditions, and then BAM, the first organism. Is that the gist of it?
  14. The theory of spontaneous generation has been disproven. It is now a scientific law that all lifeforms must come from at least one parent life form (if it is at only one, it is called "asexual reproduction"). Maybe the parent dies in the first place, but it has to have been alive at some point in time because organisms don't just pop up out of nowhere. But, if that's the case, then how did the world's first organism come into existence? It had to have come from somewhere, and if it just spontaneously generated, why is that organism the sole exception to the rule? Science doesn't deal in "unique exceptions;" science follows the notion "If you repeat the conditions, you repeat the actions," which means if we allow for one instance of spontaneous generation, we have to allow for many, many more. So, where did the first organism come from?
  15. If you're a contestant on Deal or No Deal, and you're down to two cases, you're given the option to switch your cases. I know that, mathematically, it is a good idea to switch the cases, due to the Monty Hall paradox; however, would your chances of getting the better case go to 1/13, or 25/26?
  16. It is usually taken as a matter of faith that it takes eight minutes for the Sun's light to reach the earth. But, my math says otherwise. The average distance between the earth and the sun is called an "Astronomical Unit." According to the International Astronomical Union (the same guys who said that Pluto isn't a planet), define an Astronomical unit as 149,597,871,000 meters. Let's call that a (for "astronomical unit"). The speed of light in a vacuum © is 299,792,458 meters per second. Therefore, the time it takes for the Sun's light to reach the earth (t) is computed by the equation t = a / c. Well, by that logic, t comes out to 499.004784836849 seconds; round it down to 499 seconds. That comes out to eight minutes and nineteen seconds. Now, I understand that that would normally round down to eight minutes, but nineteen seconds is a good bit to slice off. That's almost a third of a minute; almost four percent of the accuracy is taken off. Why do we slice off nineteen whole seconds for the sake of convenience? Isn't it worth learning to say "eight minutes and nineteen seconds," instead of simply saying "eight minutes" if it would give us a more accurate statement of time? Seriously, it's just five more syllables! For example, we often say that the speed of light is "three hundred million meters per second," but that is because it is a lot less of a mouthful to say "two hundred ninety-nine million, seven hundred ninety-two thousand, four hundred fifty-eight meters per second." THAT is where an estimate would better.However, is it really that much more difficult to tack on "and nineteen seconds" to "eight minutes?" Besides, the speed of light estimate is still about 99.9% accurate; not 96%. What do you think?
  17. Think about it: Jupiter is a gas planet. Stars are made almost entirely of gas. It has sixteen satellites that orbit it, some of which are even bigger than Mercury (now, the smallest planet). Stars have similar rocky objects orbiting them; they're called "planets." Jupiter emits its own radio waves. So do dwarf stars. Jupiter is so darn big, that if it were just a little bigger, it could probably perform fusion at its core (in fact, it already does; just not enough to heat a planet). Dwarf stars tend to be around that size. It seems to me that, had the conditions been only slightly different, we'd be living in a dual-star solar system right now. Would you agree?
  18. Exactly. For example, the shrinking spell can simply tighten the spaces between electrons and the nuclei. The confundus charm can confuse its victim by temporarily altering its brainwaves. The levitation charm can simply put a blanket of energy underneath the object being levitated, like an invisible flying carpet. However, super-imposed on top of the universe that we know of, if M-Theory and parallel universes are true, is there actually a universe where the events of Harry Potter DID take place (as in, a guarantee?) Also, actually traveling to these other universes doesn't seem all that impossible (maybe it's impossible with current technology, but not impossible altogether). The 11th dimension is supposed to be the one dimension that is shared by every universe in the entire multiverse, right? So, it seems like a mere matter of tapping into the eleventh dimension. A person traveling to another universe could potentially appear to just instantaneously vanish into thin air, like the time machine in Back to the Future, when in fact, it would have a similar effect to us looking at a sheet of paper from the side; it's their, just in the wrong dimensions. It would be kind of like in the video game Super Paper Mario, where Mario switches from a side-scrolling view to a 3D view, and side-scrolling NPCs remark about how he appeared out of nowhere, while 3D NPCs remark that he just disappeared. Merged post follows: Consecutive posts merged The BBC documentary I mentioned in the OP is where I got that. Isn't that what parallel universes are about? Each one has a different law of physics? Again, that conflicts directly with the documentary that I'm referring to. That doesn't seem to convince me of much.
  19. Oh yes, I understand that. Essentially, gravity is actually from another universe, but by the time it gets here, it's only a faint signal. This would essentially mean that magnetism and the other forces are actually to our universe, so in the gravity universe, MAGNETS are much weaker than gravity. Yes, I understand that, but how does one come to the conclusion that "On top of the universe that we know of, there's an alternative universe where Al Gore is President and Elvis Presley is still alive." So, "plotholes" are not possible? Like, when I said that there's a universe where the events of Harry Potter really did happen, that can't be true, since a few minor inconsistencies exist in those novels? How can they be unreachable? It seems to me that the "ultimate flight of fancy" of creating a universe in your own basement is not really the "ultimate" goal at all. Imagine the following: "Mr. President, the world is at war. There's famine and disease. Let me go to another universe, and I'll go get Superman, and bring him back to this world, and he'll help us clean this world up." It seems to me to just be a matter of learning how to tap into the 11th dimension.
  20. I enjoy watching the BBC documentary "Parallel Universe." However, does this idea that M-Theory can lead to other universes really hold water? Is there REALLY a universe where the events of Harry Potter actually took place? Is there REALLY a universe that I rule over with an iron fist? I know it seems extremely bizarre, but is it actually a valid theory that some degree-carrying scientists actually believe? Or, is BBC just a ratings whore?
  21. We need a new source of energy, one that can provide limitless quantities of energy, but without polluting the environment. Solar and wind power are prime candidates, since the energy is renewed naturally and frequently. However, we don't know how to create energy from these sources sufficient to power the whole world yet. Or do we? Do you think it's probable (not just possible, but probable) that some energy companies, like Exxon Mobile, already have a formula for the perfect energy source, yet keep it a secret for the time being, enforcing this secret with impenetrable security and rigorous non-disclosure contracts? Think about it: Energy prices are at an all-time high. Even when you adjust for inflation, energy costs more now than every in the history of human kind, and while that's bad for the consumers, it's good for the people who sell it. Remember, the price of an item is directly proportional to the demand for that item and inversely proportional to its supply. Exxon Mobile is the most profitable company in the world right now, which just goes to show that high demand for energy + low supply of energy = major epic $$$! I believe it is very probable that someone, somewhere, has a working formula, but is riding it out until the very last moment, and when we do exhaust our fossil fuels, that company, like the climax of a movie, will come out with a "miracle breakthrough" that saves the planet form destruction. If they were to release that formula now, then all the money that comes from selling energy would go up in smoke. Let's ride it out, squeeze every last possible penny from those suckers at the pump, and THEN we'll step in and save the world. What do you think?
  22. A few years ago, I took out a private student loan at loantolearn.com, and opted to pay the interest while in school. My cosigner passed away earlier this year. Now the debt is mine, all mine. I just made a huge payment on it, knocking the outstanding balance to $4580.65. The interest is 7%. Since I'm currently only paying the interest, what would my minimum monthly payments be?
  23. But by doing that, you're essentially comparing adrenaline rushes to masochism. We don't take a hammer and bash in our own skulls, just because we like the way it feels. We don't stop eating food because we like the feeling in our stomachs of being hungry. We don't refrain from sex because it hurts to have sex (there are many reasons to be abstinent, but physical discomfort is not one of them). Shouldn't adrenaline be similar? Shouldn't it be one of discomfort? Sort of like how, if we're shot in the arm, we go to the hospital and get it taken out ASAP, just so the pain will subside. If we're hungry, we try and eat something, just so that the hunger will go away. Shouldn't we get ourselves out of harms' way, just so that we don't have to feel the adrenaline anymore? It's my hypothesis that, if we can find the cause of adrenaline's pleasurable feeling, it would provide a hot lead towards signficantly reducing crime, for obvious reasons.
  24. That doesn't explain why it feels good. When we aren't in danger (whether we put ourselves in danger, or whether danger finds us), shouldn't it feel bad? Just as how our knee feels the same way if a hammer is taken to it, whether we bash our own knee with the hammer, or whether someone else is trying to mug is, it still hurts like hell, right? The keyword here is, why does it feel good?!
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