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Links With Your Coffee - Friday


The course of research into so-called alternative medicine (CAM) over the last 20 years has largely followed the same pattern. There was little research into many of the popular CAM modalities, but proponents supported them anyway. We don’t need science, they argued, because we have anecdotes, history, and intuition.

In fact I think I will.

They are already acting beyond the limits set by U.N. Security Council Resolution 1973, which on March 17 authorized the use of limited force to protect Libyan civilians. It has become a campaign to overthrow Col. Gadhafi, and they hardly even bother to deny it any more.

“I believe that we have built enough momentum that, as long as we sustain the course we are on, (Gadhafi) will step down,” said Obama in London. “Ultimately this is going to be a slow, steady process in which we are able to wear down the regime forces.” Well maybe so, and maybe not, but in either case that’s not what Resolution 1973 said. No wonder Russia condemned the latest air raids as a “gross violation” of the resolution.



"Skirts" is kind of a stretch for their headline, no? Also, "eased" on the subtitle or whatever that's called in mag articles.

Steinberg stresses that his group's work does not challenge the uncertainty principle, pointing out that the results could, in principle, be predicted with standard quantum mechanics.

Is SciAm going the New Scientist "Darwin Was Wrong" way?

Yea that headline is a bit at odds with the content.

So-Called Alternative Medicine...


Like it!

It's worth pointing out that the generalized uncertainty principle (which applies to all kinds of measurables and not just position/momentum) can be derived from the basic postulates of quantum mechanics. If the uncertainty principle was actually violated, that would imply that quantum mechanics is wrong and would get a much, much bigger headline.

What this experiment did was to trace out the average trajectory of interfering photons. There's no violation of the uncertainty principle as long as they weren't able to make too-precise predictions about individual particles.

Stuff like this has been making the news forever, but the result is always the same, namely that quantum mechanics continues to work (at least in the regimes accessible to most laboratories). They are claiming that this experiment matches pilot wave theory, but it also matches every other major interpretation of quantum mechanics, so who's surprised, really?

People who get upset over silly shit like “went missing” or “I could care less” need to step back and get a bit of perspective (and get a life while they are standing back there). Personally, I have bigger linguistic fish to fry, like learning the subjunctive in Romance languages or getting my little brain around the fact that Arabic has no verb for “to be,” or that in Greek they decline almost every word in the damn language.

Instead of bothering yourself over petty matters, try to explain to someone learning English the definition of our verb “to get.” That should keep you busy for about three lifetimes.

re: "Went Missing",

I too could care less, but,like, if you 'Ask me if I care', I'd speak to a preference for 'gone walkabout.' Have you noticed how often ALL instances of some thing will disappear all at once for days at a time, then one day, they all just turn up again. Yup. Gone walkabout is what they do.

I don't even mind the notion of 'Google' as a verb. But I'm putting my foot down about Cisco Systems new TV ad, where they try to make "Cloud" an action verb. They say, "oh yes, now you can 'cloud'!" Good grief. As if, a willingness to flit off all one's intellectual, economic and personal information off into the ether to be tended by invisible hands is a good thing.

What's the world coming to... we now pass our time twittering in "the cloud". Are we becoming more bird like? euh. I mean, I like the chickens well enough. I admire that raptor-like strong legged strut some display, and the quirky personalities others shine with. But I don't know that it's quite a good thing for us to pretend that physical reality doesn't exist, to disassociate the bricks and mortar, glass fiber, routers, computing, electronics, power for air conditioning, and microwaves that go along with 'the cloud'. And I prefer to pretend I'm not a bird brain. So, I'm getting kinda uncomfortable with this notion of Twitters in the Clouds being something we ought admire and buy into as an alternative to thoughtful and articulate action.

The least we can do is not pretend that "clouding" is a verb.

The least we can do is not pretend that "clouding" is a verb.

Can I pretend it's a gerund?

Or does that cloud the issue?

re: gerund

Wiki says: "As applied to English, [gerund] refers to the usage of a verb (in its -ing form) as a noun (for example, the verb "learning" in the sentence "Learning is an easy process for some" which would suggest that 'clouding' could only be a gerund if 'cloud' was a verb to begin with. But I take your point, you've certainly clouded the issue. Or maybe my brain is just foggy this morning. Better foggy than old fogie I suppose.


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