September 29, 2009

If you like bad drivers, you’ll enjoy this collection

Filed under: Randomness — Tags: — Nicholas @ 13:07

Twelve stupid car crashes, including this one, which illustrates that you don’t need to be travelling fast to flip your vehicle:

H/T to Lois McMaster Bujold, “Whom the Internet has lately taught the definition of the word ‘schadenfreude‘. Plus how to spell it.”

Calling it “bubbly” is highly appropriate

Filed under: Science, Wine — Tags: — Nicholas @ 12:48

According to a recent study, the bubbles in Champagne do more than just tickle your nose:

Research shows there are up to 30 times more flavour-enhancing chemicals in the bubbles than in the rest of the drink.

Wine experts say the finding changes completely our understanding of the role of bubbles in sparkling drinks.

The study is reported in the journal Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences (PNAS).

Commenting on the research, Dr Jamie Goode, founder of wineanorak.com, said: “In the past, we thought that the carbon dioxide in the bubbles just gave the wine an acidic bite and a little tingle on the tongue, but this study shows that it is much more than this.”

A broken hockey stick graph

Filed under: Environment — Tags: , , — Nicholas @ 12:12

The red line in the following graph should be familiar to you, if you’ve been following the Global Warming/Climate Change debate:


The trick here is the black line:

A comparison of Yamal RCS chronologies. red — as archived with 12 picked cores; black — including Schweingruber’s Khadyta River, Yamal (russ035w) archive and excluding 12 picked cores. Both smoothed with 21-year gaussian smooth. y-axis is in dimensionless chronology units centered on 1 (as are subsequent graphs (but represent age-adjusted ring width).

The “blade” of the hockey stick was a data artifact of the careful selection of only twelve samples. Including a wider sample produces a very different picture, as you can see above.

The Guild, Season 3 Episode 5

Filed under: Gaming, Humour — Tags: , , , — Nicholas @ 12:07

<br /><a href="http://video.msn.com/video.aspx?mkt=en-US&#038;vid=d492d422-9f08-481f-a6c7-e0f096cf614e" target="_new" title="Season 3 - Episode 5: Application&#39;d">Video: Season 3 &#8211; Episode 5: Application&#39;d</a>

QotD: Confessions

Filed under: Quotations, USA — Tags: , , , — Nicholas @ 09:01

Whew, I’m pooped. Jimmy Carter has got me run ragged with all the hating I’m supposed to do. Jimmy says I’m a racist because I oppose President Obama’s health care reform program. Even Jimmy Carter can’t be wrong all the time. And since Jimmy Carter has been wrong about every single thing for the past 44 years, maybe — just as a matter of statistical probability — he’s right this time.

I hadn’t noticed I was a racist, but that was no doubt because I was too busy being a homophobe. Nancy Pelosi says the angry opposition to health care reform is like the angry opposition to gay rights that led to Harvey Milk being shot. Since I do not want America to suffer another Sean Penn movie, I will accept that I’m a homophobe, too. And I’m a male chauvinist due to the fact that I think Nancy Pelosi is blowing smoke — excuse me, carbon neutral, biodegradable airborne particulate matter — out her pantsuit.

Also, I’m pretty sure Rahm Emanuel is Jewish, and you can’t be against (or even for) President Obama without the involvement of Rahm Emanuel, so I’m an anti-Semite. Furthermore, although I personally happen to be a libertarian on immigration issues, I do agree with Joe Wilson that you can’t say you’re expanding health care to the poor and then pretend you’re going to turn those poor away if their driver’s licenses look a little Xeroxy and what’s on their Social Security cards turns out to be a toll-free number for a La Raza hotline. Thus I’m prejudiced against Hispanics as well.

P.J. O’Rourke, “Outsourcing Hate: The burdens of conservatism in the Obama age”, The Weekly Standard, 2009-10-05

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