Annotated Posts

56
votes
2answers
6k views

Are there any laws preventing the copying of keys containing a DO NOT DUPLICATE stamp?

While I worked at Walmart during college in the states, we would copy keys for customers, unless the key looked like this. We were told that it was illegal to copy such keys, however, customers ...
26
votes
3answers
2k views
+200

Was the golden ratio deliberately used for aesthetics in ancient or Renaissance times?

It's a famous claim that the golden ratio was both known to and deliberately used by artists and/or architects, for example in the Parthenon. I doubt this, and suspect that any observations about the ...
28
votes
0answers
1k views
+500

Is this shoe lacing technique effective at preventing blackened toe nails?

See: Reddit: LPT: How to lace your running shoes (June 7, 2015) Reddit: Black toes from ultimate? (May 20, 2015) Runner's World: How To Lace Shoes: Prevent Black Toe Nails (March 4, 2011) They ...
8

Let's address the claim piece by piece, in context: While the world celebrates gay marriage victory: Well, at least parts of the world other than Palestine, whether it be Gaza (where you get 10 years of prison officially for gay sex) or West Bank (where you merely live in a society that - according to Pew poll in 2014, has only 1% of people ...


-4

Definitely there is some necrobiosis in the brain after death and many neurons remain active for longer time. The rest of the claim is specualation, particularly that one experiences own life replayed. This is highly unlikely because such imagination would need a lot of power which is not available after blood circulation stopped.


-1

The only thing I can think of that would be a "positive electromagnetic charge" is a missing electron -- static electricity. The body is a pretty good conductor of electricity, much better than the skin. If it can discharge through your head being on the ground then it can discharge just about as easily from any body part touching the ground--or, more ...


16
votes
2answers
3k views

Does GPS use General Relativity?

Sources on the internet claim that the GPS system requires Relativity to work (xkcd). I've searched information about the GPS system, how it works and how it was set up, reading information from many ...
129

Commentators have interpreted President Obama's statement in a couple of ways. Some have insisted that the two sentences are separate statements, and have analysed both. The trouble with analysing the first statement separately (taking it to mean "mass shootings never happen at all outside the US") is that 1) it has been categorically stated by the White ...


17

There was a lot of discussion in the comments of DJClayworth answer and as I was quite interested I decided I wanted to recreate both his result, but go a bit further with the data analysis, take it a bit broader and make the data set available for everyone wishing to take a deeper look. With whom do we compare? This boils down to two questions: Which ...


4
votes
2answers
13k views

Could I safely use copper sulfate in my swimming pools as an algaecide?

I used cupric sulfate as an algaecide in my swimming pool for a while without problem. I was adding a very small quantity of it (one teaspoon when the season start and 1/4 teaspoon whenever I add ...
1

The waiting period absolutely decreases the chance of HIV transmission; HIV can take up to six months to become detectable. Once a person is infected with HIV, it generally takes about 3 months for the body to produce enough antibodies to be detected by an HIV antibody test. (For some people, it can take up to 6 months.) Some HIV tests can detect ...


0

I am a transgender woman so I am pretty qualified to discuss this topic :) Sex reassignment surgery (or gender confirmation surgery) will absolutely help some transgender individuals to feel better about their body. I think it is very important to understand that gender dysphoria (the underlying medical condition for one who is transgender - in this case ...


2

Any reference to a toxic potato is based on solanine, the toxin that potatoes have when their skins turn green, (its also in the leaves) other plants that contain this are other nightshade varieties including peppers, tomatoes, and tobacco. The sweet potato is a relative of the morning glory and not a nightshade. Check at http://www.nightshadejournal.com ...


0

This claim 'When a group of people laugh, people will instinctively look at the person they feel closest to in that group.' is not yet studied. However the sound of group laughter or group cheering typically makes individuals smile or laugh. Warren et al. (http://www.jneurosci.org/content/26/50/13067) wanted to know how the emotion of laughter can produce a ...


2

Stair climbing machine is pretty intense cardio exercise, but still not even remotely as intense as running a marathon, playing an ice hockey game, or playing a soccer game in hot weather. Yet those people are alive and well. All of them have enlarged hearts. Athletic heart syndrome - common in athletes who routinely exercise more than an hour a day - is a ...


-3

Just as the marathon runner needs water at certain intervals, the plant needs water when it's dehydrated. A healthy hydrated plant will be larger and actually require less water as it shades the ground. Water will cool the leaves and in many cases the plants actually does better when they are watered during the heat of the day. Certain plants will drop ...


26

All of the "Kung-fu" tricks performed by these people (and many more besides) are tricks and differ little from the sort of "strongman stunts" that have been performed for years in sideshows all over the world. The spear thing is downright silly if you have any concept of body mechanics and force direction. The spear point (quite dull) is placed in the ...


-2

Bradbury was not above revisionism of his own work and his attitude towards technology definitely became much more negative as he got older. He also obviously took much enjoyment in later years out of being able to use 451 as a bully pulpit to criticize the uses people put technology to. He died somewhat of a crochety old man. You should take anything he ...


-3

Breastmilk contains living organisms. You cannot safely stick many living organisms in the microwave. Whether or not microwaving or even specific heat will destroy certain vitamins is not the issue. Rule of thumb if the water will scald your skin it is too hot to use on breastmilk. Place frozen milk in a tolerably warm bath and gently ...


6

As far as US Special Forces training, the most efficient means to silently kill using a knife would be from behind, in between the ribs puncturing the lungs, using the off hand to cover the mouth and lower the fighter to the ground. Or through the use of a garrote. Knife throwing isn't practical in use for many reasons. Limited range and supply, along withe ...


2

Unfortunately, it seems to be an unfounded suggestion having no actual evidence to back it up, just unsubstantiated claims. I can't find any empirical evidence for or against it though. Note that most of the sites with an article on this subject also make other claims about what your feet say about you, like how they indicate temperament and other ...


6

The reason one feels physical addiction is because one is physically addicted to a substance, which is not a "toxin". For coffee drinkers, the substance is caffeine, which occurs naturally in coffee beans. For heroin addicts, the substance is the opium derivative that occurs naturally in opium poppies (or is synthesized chemically to resemble opium, but ...


79
votes
5answers
4k views

Is Wikipedia reliable?

I ask this question because in school, students are always told "do not quote wikipedia" or that "Do not believe everything you see on Wikipedia, we are teachers and we know when something is wrong ...
-4

Regarding these various shipwrecks, there are a number of very early reports within merely the time needed for the various eyewitnesses to reach the towns where these reports originated. There, nevertheless, does appear to be discrepancies. The report of Nov. 26, 1829 in the SIDNEY GAZETTE seems to contradict the report in a previous edition . Is this a ...


-3

Let me make the following observations: As you probably know some remains of the Mermaid were found in 2009. The reports state that various accounts of survivors were consulted. Since the expedition was done with the approval of the Government, they would have access to excellent information, some of which may still be "inedit" or unpublished. In any case ...


46
votes
6answers
4k views

What risks exist with GMO, but not with selective breeding?

Anytime you hear Genetically Modified Organisms (GMO) come up, someone always pipes in that it's perfectly safe because we've been doing it for thousands of years through selective breeding. ...
19
votes
1answer
4k views

How do sugar pills work according to homeopaths? [closed]

Sugar pill claims The reasoning behind dilution, 'potentiation' and the memory of water is known to me, and there are several good arguments to be made against those 'theories'. But I can't really ...
1

In the 1700's English cities faced overpopulation, increased crime, increased poverty, and no where to hold criminals who had only committed petty theft. The basis of the British penal colonies/transportation of criminals to colonies stems from the transportation act of 1717. Looking at sources about this document increased colonial population was not a ...


-4

The code cracking team wouldn't actually know the contents of any significant message, except by a huge coincidence. All encrypted messages were sent over radio and could be listened to and recorded by anyone, including the British. During any one day, all encrypted messages were encrypted with the same code. That meant if the code for one message was ...


2

The Catholic Church approved the beatification of the late Pope John Paul II after a Catholic nun, Marie Simon-Pierre, reported being cured of Parkinson's disease after praying to John Paul II. Wikipedia reports that the validity of the beatification has been criticised on a number of grounds, including a suggestion that the unusual rapidity with which it ...


21

The reaction of chlorine gas and water is reversible. That means that stirring chlorinated water will release the chlorine gas into the atmosphere, somehting you'd easily smell.


9

Flutterby was (or is) used by children as an expression for butterfly. Dialect Notes, Volume 4 was published by American Dialect Society in 1917. It mentions: Some instances of the transposition of syllables [...] are pillercat for caterpiller and flutterby for butterfly in the usage of children. However, the word for butterfly is not derived from ...


-3

It depends, at least somewhat, on what you want to define homosexuality as. And even more on how you define choice. During all of recorded history the vast majority of men would of had sex with other men and women [1]. It does not matter what culture we look at, they all seem to consider bi to be the only natural state. And even if you disagree, and find ...


-1

For xrays It wouldn't make that much difference at swelling is just fluid and radiation can penetrate that pretty easily, the tech would just bump up the exposure a bit if it was super swollen. So you could possibly argue that if it is very swollen you may have to receive a higher radiation dose to acquire a decent image, but the increase would be pretty ...


6
votes
1answer
8k views

What is the average number of legs per human?

Someone told me that the average number of legs in the human population is less than 2, because there are more amputees than those with multiple limbs. I found it odd at the time (a statistics teacher ...
4

Preamble: Every claim made in this answer that is expressed in terms that are measurable is supported by available references. I am not aware of any assertions that are not supportable as matters of fact. If there are any I'd welcome them being pointed out so I can improve or remove them. A commentless downvote does not tell me much more than that there are ...


-1

I think it might be quite credible to imply that outstanding logicians would or could tend towards having serious mental health issues at some point in their lives. A person's state of mind (and categorically, a person's sanity as well) can be considered to be 'floating points' - kept aloft moment to moment, and which can be broken down. This brings into ...


22
votes
2answers
7k views

Is nuclear fusion energy as safe as its proponents claim?

With my limited knowledge of the process of nuclear fusion energy, this seems like one of the most promising methods for producing huge amounts of energy, with relatively very low risk, once ...
14

Firstly these items although real are not 5,000 year old. Professor Simpson of the near eastern department of the British museum points out that the original excavation was poorly recorded and that the style of pottery is Sassanian period which is roughly from 220ce to 650ce (BBC article 2003). There was some speculation that the Sassanians who were fine ...


-3

Ancient Egyptian hieroglyphs are mainly phonetic writing system. A phonetic writing system is like English; the pretty pictures don't mean that's what is being described. Even if the ancient Egyptians saw these things and wrote of them, we would have not realistic looking glyphs but a normal hieroglyphic and thus phonetic description. If you were describing ...


-4

No. There is a general consensus among archeologists that there is not one bit of credible evidence for the Exodus. We know, for instance, through archeology that late Canaanite sites and early Israeli sites have some big differences but also many similarities that suggest societal change, not outside invasion. Turning to the written record, the evidence ...


-1

John Wilkes Booth did not die at the Garrett farm! How can a dead man write a will nineteen years after his supposed death? Any person that does not accept the 1883 will would have to believe that an imposter wrote it, but it was Ulysses S. Grant that called for an investigation to see if the will was valid. It took thirteen years, but the will was ...


0

It is not possible to answer this question as asked because: What do you mean by weather? Rainfall? Temperature? Wind? Where in the world are you talking about - different places have more or less climatic variation. However, just for fun, I downloaded the rainfall data for the Canterbury Racecourse Automatic Weather Station from the Australian Beureau ...


10
votes
3answers
1k views

Do prions qualify as living and, if so, do they argue for a second origin of life? [closed]

Not sure if there's a better Stack Exchange for this, but How could Darwin be sure all life has a common origin triggered this question. As I understand it, prions are pretty much protein-based ...
-6

Unfortunately, the previous answers take a poorly-worded Newegg product listing as an accurate description of the product, which is a shame. Look closely at the actual product photograph and see that it claims to be an "Electromagnetic radiation detector" which is an accurate description. It appears (from this alternative Amazon listing) to cover a frequency ...


-1

There never were any snakes in Ireland because Ireland took a long time to thaw out from the Ice Age Britain and the rest of Europe froze out before Ireland and as you know a snake is a reptile and reptiles like the warm climate and the snakes in Britain cant swim to Ireland


-2

It was stated this was the case in a BBC Documentary in North Korea: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=QSrcLC6Zz54&feature=youtu.be&t=1m46s This is by no means the answer: There may well, however been a translation error that they do not want to turn it off, instead of being unable to. Perhaps even it is only the case with certain (new?) homes in ...


-2

Apple cider vinegar is full of nutrients like potassium, which helps remove toxins and excess water, iron, calcium and amino acids that reduce toxin buildup and serve as antibiotics. The main ingredient thought to be the most effective in treating and preventing gout is acetic acid. What happens is acetic acid is turned alkaline inside the body forming a pH ...


-1

All Boeing 777 aircraft use a modular Flight Management Computer (FMC) system. The 777 was designed for software and hardware upgrades in the field, by authorised Licenced Aviation maintenance Engineers (LAME). This allows software and hardware versions to be controlled in much the same way as Microsoft controls upgrades and Service Packs for Windows. The ...


13

A doctor from the ABC science website says the following. ...if you drink 200 millilitres of beer, the end result is 200 millilitres of water. But you don't urinate just 200 millilitres of urine. No! You urinate a total of about 320 millilitres of urine. So in general, each shot of alcohol makes you urinate an extra 120 millilitres of urine on ...