Search found 18 matches

by garaden
Sat May 10, 2014 4:11 pm UTC
Forum: Individual XKCD Comic Threads
Topic: 1366 - "Train"
Replies: 64
Views: 16490

Re: 1366 - "Train"

If I get a train up to speed, I have to invest a lot of energy; some function of mass and speed difference. But if I instead of accelerating the train accelerate the earth beneath it (and the athmosphere (and the universe)), the amount of energy required would be enormous. Yet there in the comic we...
by garaden
Mon Dec 30, 2013 6:21 pm UTC
Forum: Individual XKCD Comic Threads
Topic: 1310: Goldbach Conjectures
Replies: 65
Views: 15814

Re: 1310: Goldbach Conjectures

I find the comic mildly amusing, but a logical fail, since the logical chain is "stronger being true automatically implies weaker being true". Actually I think it does if you allow the blasphemy of counting 1 as prime... ok, let's give the comic a bit of leeway there, otherwise I wouldn't...
by garaden
Wed Aug 28, 2013 6:01 pm UTC
Forum: Individual XKCD Comic Threads
Topic: 1256: "Questions"
Replies: 215
Views: 44625

Re: 1256: "Questions"

Yet; Maybe it destroyed the Earth. Maybe it did. Maybe is still chewing its way to the Core. Maybe; This is the reason for Global Warming. It is an exothermic reaction. right? OH! Nashing of Teeth and Blaming the Scientists and the Industrialists! We could have lived simply and long. But; No! You g...
by garaden
Tue Aug 27, 2013 9:15 pm UTC
Forum: Individual XKCD Comic Threads
Topic: 1256: "Questions"
Replies: 215
Views: 44625

Re: 1256: "Questions"

Yes, Kit, those are all the complications I was trying to sweep under the rug :P ...generally speaking, you don't need PCBs to implement electronic schemes from components. You can just solder the components (and maybe some additional wiring) together. Doing it with PCBs is just more practical (usua...
by garaden
Tue Aug 27, 2013 6:27 pm UTC
Forum: Individual XKCD Comic Threads
Topic: 1256: "Questions"
Replies: 215
Views: 44625

Re: 1256: "Questions"

I don't know if anyone's even interested in this, but I thought it was weird too and had to find out about it a few years ago :) Why is there a 0 Ohm resistor? One use is to allow traces on the same side of a PCB to cross: one trace has a zero-ohm resistor while the second trace runs in between the ...
by garaden
Fri Aug 16, 2013 5:24 pm UTC
Forum: Individual XKCD Comic Threads
Topic: 1252:"Increased Risk"
Replies: 45
Views: 11873

Re: 1252:"Increased Risk"

Another annoyance along these lines are Bad Thing rates with no context. "186 construction workers were killed on the job in Texas last year". How do we know whether that represents a problem? What's the rate per 100,000 workers, and how does that compare to the national rate or that of si...
by garaden
Sun Jul 14, 2013 9:17 pm UTC
Forum: Individual XKCD Comic Threads
Topic: 1236: "Seashell"
Replies: 40
Views: 15285

Re: 1236: "Seashell"

... why coulombs etc. are so friggin' huge is beyond me... Because it's set sensibly for current electricity (an ampere-second); and current electricity is very different from static electricity. Just to put the things into a "proper" perspective: my mobile phone's battery is rated @1200 ...
by garaden
Fri Jul 12, 2013 6:08 pm UTC
Forum: Individual XKCD Comic Threads
Topic: 1236: "Seashell"
Replies: 40
Views: 15285

Re: 1236: "Seashell"

Of course in practice, all events are considered independants (otherwise it is too complicated to compute). Often it works rather well, but when it does not, this could lead to dire consequences like the sub-primes crisis. ...yeah. "Most major investment banks, strongly correlated to the housi...
by garaden
Fri Jul 12, 2013 3:21 am UTC
Forum: Individual XKCD Comic Threads
Topic: 1236: "Seashell"
Replies: 40
Views: 15285

Re: 1236: "Seashell"

Wait, where did P(seashell) go? You can't just drop it, it depends on P(near ocean)! He treated P(seashell) as a constant and changed his equation to "is proportional to". It works mathematically. :) Sure, I agree that algebraically it's a perfectly fine thing to do :) But in terms of pro...
by garaden
Thu Jul 11, 2013 8:10 pm UTC
Forum: Individual XKCD Comic Threads
Topic: 1236: "Seashell"
Replies: 40
Views: 15285

Re: 1236: "Seashell"

Is it just me, or has Randall been invoking the Bayes a lot lately? I think this is a misunderstanding of Bayes rule. Let's consider the corrected version of the equation in the comic, P(near ocean | seashell) ~ p(seashell | near ocean) * P(near ocean), where "~" means proportional to. (I'...
by garaden
Wed Apr 17, 2013 10:04 pm UTC
Forum: Individual XKCD Comic Threads
Topic: 1200: "Authorization"
Replies: 47
Views: 17751

Re: 1200: "Authorization"

Obligatory mention of 2-step verification for Gmail. It makes it practically impossible to get into your Gmail from another cookie store (this term would be a lot more confusing if bakeries routinely offered WiFi) if someone doesn't also have your cell phone. It's really not a pain: you only have to...
by garaden
Mon Feb 25, 2013 3:00 am UTC
Forum: Individual XKCD Comic Threads
Topic: 0936: "Password Strength"
Replies: 893
Views: 317934

Re: 0936: "Password Strength"

...This means my xkcd account is precisely as secure as my gmail account. This is the weak link in almost all systems I've worked with, and is why people should use very secure email passwords. I don't think most people realize how central their email account is to all their other accounts. USE TWO...
by garaden
Tue Nov 13, 2012 4:13 am UTC
Forum: Individual XKCD Comic Threads
Topic: 1132: "Frequentists vs. Bayesians"
Replies: 169
Views: 50577

Re: 1132: "Frequentists vs. Bayesians"

Even if the sun (or a similar star) could go nova at any time, for the sun to go nova specifically today is very unlikely simply by selection (a lot of days it could go nova). See, low probability, by frequentist reasoning. Then you get exact same Bayes theorem after you count all the days that Sun...
by garaden
Sun Nov 11, 2012 11:56 pm UTC
Forum: Individual XKCD Comic Threads
Topic: 1132: "Frequentists vs. Bayesians"
Replies: 169
Views: 50577

Re: 1132: "Frequentists vs. Bayesians"

As far as the self-proclaimed "Bayesians", all they appear to do with the self-proclaimed super rationality is to ignore their own mistakes and fall into groupthink. The most obvious one is the absolute certainty of the many worlds hypothesis of quantum physics. It might be becoming more ...
by garaden
Sat Nov 10, 2012 4:25 pm UTC
Forum: Individual XKCD Comic Threads
Topic: 1132: "Frequentists vs. Bayesians"
Replies: 169
Views: 50577

Re: 1132: "Frequentists vs. Bayesians"

Using Bayesian approach, though, you can proclaim that a number you have made up for the sun exploding is truly a probability akin to the probability of a die rolling 6, and then start collecting money for sun explosion prevention fund, claiming that you save something like 10 lives per dollar by m...
by garaden
Sat Nov 10, 2012 2:39 am UTC
Forum: Individual XKCD Comic Threads
Topic: 1132: "Frequentists vs. Bayesians"
Replies: 169
Views: 50577

Re: 1132: "Frequentists vs. Bayesians"

So two years ago this forum linked me to HPMOR , which led to a thorough and highly beneficial trip down the rabbit hole of Bayesian reasoning. In light of that, here's a link to An Intuitive Explanation of Bayes' Theorem for anyone interested in seriously improving their ability to hold true belief...
by garaden
Mon Aug 13, 2012 2:49 pm UTC
Forum: News & Articles
Topic: College busts student for register service, then yanks idea
Replies: 49
Views: 6425

Re: College busts student for register service, then yanks i

Well, this one does ruffle my open-source feathers, as I'm sure is happening with many here. If it was just the DDOS, I'd agree that the punishment is excessive and he should have just been slapped on the wrist by their IT department. But I think I'll side with the university on this one, for two re...
by garaden
Thu Aug 11, 2011 4:20 am UTC
Forum: Individual XKCD Comic Threads
Topic: 0936: "Password Strength"
Replies: 893
Views: 317934

Re: 0936: "Password Strength"

I think the dangers of writing passwords down is exaggerated, especially if you can get people to put the bit of paper with the password somewhere safe, like a wallet. The proverbial password on a sticky on your monitor may be easily seen by your co-workers, but the hacker on another continent can'...

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