12 OCT 2014 by ideonexus

 The Absurd Visions from a Post-Hypnotic Suggestion

I hardly heard him for trying to keep track of what was going on in my skull. I knew it was just post-hypnotic suggestion, even remembered the session in Missouri when they'd implanted it, but that didn't make it any less compelling. My mind reeled under the strong pseudo-memories: shaggy hulks that were Taurans (not at all what we now knew they looked like) boarding a colonists' vessel, eating babies while mothers watched in screaming terror (the colonists never took babies; they wouldn't st...
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A character debunks all the crazy things running through his head with rationality.

24 DEC 2013 by ideonexus


However, the subject need not be an esoteric one for a gedankenexperiment to be fruitful. My own favorite is Galileo’s proof that, contrary to Aristotle’s view, objects of different mass fall in a vacuum with the same acceleration. One might think that a real experiment needs to be conducted to test that hypothesis, but Galileo simply asked us to consider a large and a small stone tied together by a very light string. If Aristotle was right, the large stone should speed up the smaller one...
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Gino Segre on the importance and validity of "thought-experiments," using Galileo's disproof of objects falling at different rates as an example.

13 JUN 2013 by mxplx

 Cheetah's acceleration, not speed,key to their success

Read more at: http://phys.org/news/2013-06-cheetah-power-key-success.html#jCp
Folksonomies: success strategy
Folksonomies: success strategy

latest issue of Nature, highlighted that the hunting success of the cheetahs is attributed to acceleration and ability to change direction very rapidly.

power to rapidly accelerate—not just speed alone—is the key to the cheetah's hunting success, said study lead author, Alan Wilson. He's professor of locomotive biomechanics at the Royal Veterinary College at the University of London.

23 JUN 2012 by ideonexus

 Why is Scientific Illiteracy Considered Acceptable?

A good many times I have been present at gatherings of people who, by the standards of the traditional culture, are thought highly educated and who have with considerable gusto been expressing their incredulity at the illiteracy of scientists. Once or twice I have been provoked and have asked the company how many of them could describe the Second Law of Thermodynamics. The response was cold: it was also negative. Yet I was asking something which is about the scientific equivalent of: Have you...
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When failing to read Shakespeare is considered unacceptable?