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      CommentAuthorAngus
    • CommentTimeFeb 3rd 2013
     
    If you eat enough Dim Sum your gravitas will presumably improve?
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      CommentAuthorE-Man
    • CommentTimeFeb 3rd 2013
     
    Posted By: AngusBut if you're looking for gravitas, maybe here is not the place.

    No if you want Mexican you best go to Chipotle Grill.
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      CommentAuthoralsetalokin
    • CommentTimeFeb 3rd 2013 edited
     
    Dejame dos gravitas grandes con quenco, y un orden de e-gatos Rossi, para llegar.
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      CommentAuthorE-Man
    • CommentTimeFeb 3rd 2013
     
    Ha! Did you google translate that? The closest thing I have to an understanding to Spanish is the Quebecois which every Canadian is genetically gifted with.
  1.  
    Posted By: E-ManHa! Did you google translate that? The closest thing I have to an understanding to Spanish is the Quebecois which every Canadian is genetically gifted with.

    No, I live in San Antonio, which has its own sub-dialect of TexMex. I can speak it well enough to order in a restaurant on the West Side and badly enough to make the waitresses giggle at me in the kitchen. Obviously.
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      CommentAuthorAngus
    • CommentTimeFeb 3rd 2013
     
    I thought gravitas was a sort of Yiddish smoked salmon thingie you can get at the Deli?
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      CommentAuthorE-Man
    • CommentTimeFeb 3rd 2013
     
    Nice. I took Mrs. E-Man out for Japanese tonight and while we were waiting I was doodling Chinese on my placemat. Our server turned out to be Chinese and complemented me on my handwriting. After she took our order I switched to writing out the Hiragana syllabary - I have been using a tool on my phone to get me to write the strokes properly but I rarely practice with a pen. When the waitress came back with my soba she kind of made a big deal about being able to write both Chinese and Japanese*. Now most Japanese restaurants around these parts are usually run by Koreans so I didn't expect any actual Japanese speakers here. Before the end of the meal I had two other waitresses coming out to see the Secret-Asian Man. Man, do they talk fast. I doubt I could even attempt order in Japanese. Luckily all I had to say was things like "thank you" and "you flatter me". Which I'm sure I screwed up in terms of politeness.

    Mrs. E-Man said this was a good way to pick up Asian girls. I told her I'd take her word for it.

    *Not that long ago, I'm told by my relatives. You could go to Japan and easily find people who read and spoke Chinese. Likewise in Korea.
    • CommentAuthorAbd
    • CommentTimeFeb 3rd 2013
     
    Posted By: alsetalokinExcuse me.... I have been working on my gravitas, and I have to tell you, it's a grave affliction. It's very difficult not to take oneself seriously.

    But that's the problem, isn't it? Sort of like a five-star Chinese take-out. One from Column One, three from Column Two, some dim sum and boiled rice.... it's all good stuff, but somehow doesn't leave you quite satisfied. Volume, but little substance. Broth, quite salty but with no meat. Tastes great, less filling. But in order to get to the delicious bits, you still have to eat the whole thing.
    Dim sum is no good with gravitas, it only makes your sum dim.

    However, I could sell you a 100 gram bottle of heavy water, and it would convert your gravitas to gravigas.
    • CommentAuthorAbd
    • CommentTimeFeb 3rd 2013
     
    Posted By: maryyugo
    Posted By: korkskrewI nominate Abd for permanent owner of FWOTW until such time as he shuts the hell up or we get someone else to pick on. It will make it much easier to skip his posts.
    Please be hospitable. It is not all that easy to find someone like Abd. He is willing to argue that dowsing rods and homeopathy have value. That's rare in uncensored fora. forumorums? foramina?
    Formanifera. Di-atoms.

    :Anything has value, it depends on *for what*. Any harmless physical object can be used symbolically, and the *interesting question* is whether some forms of symbolic objects -- or ideomotor registers -- are more useful than others. I'll be addressing this in another form. It has zilch to do with cold fusion, in spite of pseudoscientific claims that cold fusion experimental results are created by wishful thinking.
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      CommentAuthorAngus
    • CommentTimeFeb 3rd 2013
     
    Worth mentioning that harmful objects are even more effective symbols than harmless ones. Wave a gun around and everybody does what you say.
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    Posted By: AngusWave a gun around and everybody does what you say.


    "You can get much further with a kind word and a gun than you can with a kind word alone."

    Al Capone.
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      CommentAuthoraber0der
    • CommentTimeFeb 3rd 2013
     
    A cynical person could argue that phenomena like homeopathy and dowsing can, in the long term, be beneficial for our species.
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      CommentAuthorAngus
    • CommentTimeFeb 3rd 2013
     
    Too slow. They have to take full effect before breeding age.
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      CommentAuthoraber0der
    • CommentTimeFeb 3rd 2013
     
    Posted By: AngusToo slow. They have to take full effect before breeding age.

    Only slower and less obvious.
  3.  
    Posted By: AngusI thought gravitas was a sort of Yiddish smoked salmon thingie you can get at the Deli?

    No, I think that's GravilexLax you are thinking of. Always a memorable experience, especially if you need to be ...er.... unloxed.
  4.  
    Posted By: Abd(snip)... cold fusion experimental results are created by wishful thinking.


    Results, and their interpretations, are different. Interpretations are a lot more susceptible to wishful thinking.

    "What's the probability that the data are true, given the hypothesis" is very different question from "What's the probability that the hypothesis is true, given the data."
    • CommentAuthorAbd
    • CommentTimeFeb 3rd 2013
     
    Posted By: AngusWorth mentioning that harmful objects are even more effective symbols than harmless ones. Wave a gun around and everybody does what you say.


    Depends on what you are trying to accomplish. Wave a gun around and they might do what you say for a while and then they kill you or lock you up. No, I was specifically talking about homeopathy or dowsing rods. Homeopathic remedies are harmless. Only abuse would be harmful (i.e, a person *believes in homeopathy* and avoids treatment.)

    To my mind, the *only possible power of homeopathic remedies is symbolic," I.e, operating through language. After all:

    There is no difference between the remedies but the labels. The labels are correlated with a set of beliefs or conditions.

    No, this is, to me, the interesting question, and it's *difficult to answer.* Is there something about the homeopathic system that enhances the power of self-healing? I.e., the so-called "placebo effect"?

    It's common said that the remedies operate through the "placebo effect," but that's said as an implication that they "don't work."

    It is obvious that the remedies are not *physically* operating. I pretty much believe in only one realm, the physical realm, but within that realm there is something that is not itself "physical," and it's pattern. Pattern is life. Pattern will die, entropy is busy erasing it. Symbols are pattern, correlated by the mind. What is the power of symbol?

    Of "word"?

    There is a lot of possible woo here, but I'm not positing some theological realm of existence different from the physical. What we call "meaning," though, is that "physical"?
  5.  
    Is it possible to reconcile your last paragraph with religious faith?
    • CommentAuthorAbd
    • CommentTimeFeb 3rd 2013 edited
     
    Posted By: alsetalokin
    Posted By: Abd(snip)... cold fusion experimental results are created by wishful thinking.
    Results, and their interpretations, are different. Interpretations are a lot more susceptible to wishful thinking.

    Quite correct. That, in fact, is why that claim about wishful thinking is so outrageous. Instead of looking at the experimental results, those results were dismissed by imagining that they were created by wishful thinking.

    So if the *interpretations* were created by wishful thinking, then, what would *not* be a wishful thinking intepretation? If a series of 33 gas samples were taken from "cold fusion cells," under various conditions of anomalous heat, with the anomalous heat recorded, and were sent for blind analysis, is the correlation found between the heat and the helium results caused by "wishful thinking"?

    How?

    Now, yes, I've claimed that this result, and the many confirmations of it, with increased accuracy, are "conclusive evidence" of deuterium fusion (because of the value of the ratio found). That's an intepretation. Is it a "wishful" one? How?

    More to the point, what would be an alternate hypothesis that could explain those results?

    "Conclusive" doesn't mean certainty. That I have been unable to sustain alternate hypotheses that have not already been ruled out by the experimental results does not mean that it's impossible for one to be invented or found. However, we routinely form conclusions and consider them solid with less evidence than this.

    In the discussions here, I estimated the probability of the full heat/helium results being the operation of coincidence as being a billion to one. So, I conclude that it's appropriate to reject that particular hypothesis. A systematic artifact, though, could explain the results. Given that it's been twenty years since that discovery, the original series (a shorter one) has been known and reviewed, and no alternate explanation than a nuclear reaction has been proposed -- except for those ruled out by the experimental results themselves, they are armchair speculations, only possible if one doesn't actually look at the work -- I think it unlikely that anyone will come up with such an explanation.

    (What's been proposed is that the heat is measurement error and the helium is leakage from ambient. But, then, that would leave the correlation as coincidental. So we would be up against that billion to one figure. The 33 results included 12 cells with no heat and no helium. So it's not leakage.)

    "What's the probability that the data are true, given the hypothesis" is very different question from "What's the probability that the hypothesis is true, given the data."


    So, yes. I do not ask the former question. I have answered the latter.

    There are levels of hypothesis involved. The simplest one is:

    In experiments with highly loaded palladium deuteride, helium is correlated with anomalous heat, at the deuterium fusion ratio.

    A more complex one would be:

    The cause of the heat release in highly loaded palladium deuteride is the fusion of deuterium to helium. This is more interpretive, but it follows fairly cleanly from the first, as a default conclusion.

    Very important: "fusion" is a term for *any process that converts low-Z elements to higher-Z ones. By the laws of thermodynamics, any process that converts deuterium to helium will release the same energy: 23.8 MeV/He-4. "Fusion" or even "deuterium fusion" does not mean "d-d fusion," that is only one possibility.
    • CommentAuthorAbd
    • CommentTimeFeb 3rd 2013
     
    Posted By: alsetalokinIs it possible to reconcile your last paragraph with religious faith?
    Yes. God is Reality and Reality is God. ("Allah Haqq") By the way, I'm not asserting that Reality is visible, indeed, it's Unseen (ghayb), and "faith" is trust in the Unseen, that's in the first words of the Qur'an, the Qur'an is specifically for those who trust in the unseen. (alladhiyna yuwminuwna bi l-ghayb.)

    What we see are reflections, not reality itself.