Search found 45 matches

by cantab314
Mon Sep 07, 2015 4:36 pm UTC
Forum: Individual XKCD Comic Threads
Topic: 1572: "xkcd Survey"
Replies: 366
Views: 123256

Re: 1572: "xkcd Survey"

More seriously, it's subject to the biases of whoever compiled the dictionary. It's almost certain to be grossly biased in favour of English words for a start.
by cantab314
Fri Sep 04, 2015 11:11 am UTC
Forum: Individual XKCD Comic Threads
Topic: 1572: "xkcd Survey"
Replies: 366
Views: 123256

Re: 1572: "xkcd Survey"

Automatic transmission isn't that rare. There are even emergency vehicles with it –which makes sense, really, because you can keep both hands on the steering wheel and your mind at the traffic. Modern automatic gearboxes are as good as or better than your average (manual transmission!) driver. In B...
by cantab314
Thu Sep 03, 2015 10:33 am UTC
Forum: Individual XKCD Comic Threads
Topic: 1572: "xkcd Survey"
Replies: 366
Views: 123256

Re: 1572: "xkcd Survey"

'Stick-shift,' - that would just be a normal car in the UK. Meaning I predict a small but measurable correlation between being able to drive a stick-shift and it raining when the person was taking the survey :) Is that number a reference to anything? I know it's the ISO standard for quality managem...
by cantab314
Thu Sep 03, 2015 1:48 am UTC
Forum: Individual XKCD Comic Threads
Topic: 1572: "xkcd Survey"
Replies: 366
Views: 123256

Re: 1572: "xkcd Survey"

Pfhorrest wrote:Wait, the type-cat question is supposed to see whether people type the quotes or not?
It looked like a (crude) CAPTCHA. And perhaps if the form gets hit by bots it will turn out to be a useful one. I was feeling contrary and entered "Dog" though.
by cantab314
Wed Sep 02, 2015 5:30 pm UTC
Forum: What If?
Topic: What-if 0139: "Jupiter Descending"
Replies: 30
Views: 21094

Re: What-if 0139: Jupiter Descending

HES wrote:Are solar-powered hot air balloons possible anywhere? I'd've thought that if there were sufficient sunlight, the surrounding air would also be hotter and the goalposts would shift.
Unheated greenhouses can be warmer inside than outside. The same should work for balloons.
by cantab314
Wed Sep 02, 2015 4:54 pm UTC
Forum: Individual XKCD Comic Threads
Topic: 1572: "xkcd Survey"
Replies: 366
Views: 123256

Re: 1572: "xkcd Survey"

I'm yet another who can't spell manouvre to save my life. And yes, I end up needing to type it because Kerbal. I wonder how many people will put in approximations of numbers like pi, e, phi, and so on? The form fields didn't take "pi" or "π" but it did take "3.14159265359&qu...
by cantab314
Mon Aug 31, 2015 5:48 pm UTC
Forum: What If?
Topic: What-if 0139: "Jupiter Descending"
Replies: 30
Views: 21094

Re: What-if 0139: Jupiter Descending

If you have sufficiently strong material for an envelope, then a balloon might be worthwhile for lingering in the Jovian atmosphere. It would have to be bigger than the equivalent on Earth though since the Jovian atmosphere is mostly hydrogen and helium, and you'd probably be filling the balloon wi...
by cantab314
Mon Aug 31, 2015 5:43 pm UTC
Forum: Individual XKCD Comic Threads
Topic: 1571: "Car Model Names"
Replies: 62
Views: 14538

Re: 1571: "Car Model Names"

Now redo the chart but count each model of the Porsche 911 individually :mrgreen:
by cantab314
Wed Sep 03, 2014 1:48 pm UTC
Forum: Individual XKCD Comic Threads
Topic: 1416: "Pixels"
Replies: 112
Views: 35931

Re: 1416: "Pixels"

Would it hurt to warn people that the comic is a browser stress test? My system is to blame for killing my programs and throwing me back to the login screen, but if I'd known I could have closed my virtual machines first.
by cantab314
Thu Aug 21, 2014 11:02 pm UTC
Forum: What If?
Topic: What-If 0108: "Expensive Shoebox"
Replies: 151
Views: 94367

Re: What-If 0108: "Expensive Shoebox"

NemeSys wrote:
cantab314 wrote:
Obviously antimatter would be off the scale, but suffers from the same issue as plutonium.



Antimatter? Pfff.

Darkmatter? Nah.

ANTIdarkmatter? Now you're talking.
Now you've got the opposite issue: how to keep it in the shoebox - or even on the same planet the shoebox is on.
by cantab314
Fri Aug 15, 2014 1:53 am UTC
Forum: What If?
Topic: What-If 0108: "Expensive Shoebox"
Replies: 151
Views: 94367

Re: What-If 0108: "Expensive Shoebox"

OK yet another idea:

Fill it with something that will preserve the shoebox indefinitely, while still leaving it usable as a shoebox.
Wait ten thousand years.
Even at a mere 1% inflation rate, the shoebox is now worth about 1043.
by cantab314
Wed Aug 13, 2014 10:03 pm UTC
Forum: What If?
Topic: What-If 0108: "Expensive Shoebox"
Replies: 151
Views: 94367

What-If 0108: "Expensive Shoebox"

Expensive Shoebox Obviously antimatter would be off the scale, but suffers from the same issue as plutonium. So how about filling the shoebox with nothing . The purest vacuum you can get. Just lofting it into LEO won't be too pricey, but getting it out into intergalactic space, I imagine that's goi...
by cantab314
Wed Aug 13, 2014 5:23 pm UTC
Forum: Individual XKCD Comic Threads
Topic: 1407: "Worst Hurricane"
Replies: 92
Views: 23917

Re: 1407: "Worst Hurricane"

I'm still pretty convinced that severe snowstorms/blizzards/ice storms are responsible for more deaths and damage in a year than hurricanes. It's quite difficult to find data on blizzard casualties, but I know that every year in southern Ontario there are dozens of people that die in weather-relate...
by cantab314
Tue Aug 12, 2014 6:52 pm UTC
Forum: Individual XKCD Comic Threads
Topic: 1406: "Universal Converter Box"
Replies: 162
Views: 39158

Re: 1406: "Universal Converter Box"

Where's the tribophysical waveform macro-kinetic extrapolator? Because if you want to convert universes, you're going to need to hook this thing up to a TARDIS.
by cantab314
Mon Jun 16, 2014 3:58 pm UTC
Forum: Individual XKCD Comic Threads
Topic: 1382: Rocket Packs
Replies: 36
Views: 7343

Re: 1382: Rocket Packs

"free medical care covering all my jetpack-related injuries" I have that. I call it the NHS Also, Jet Pack: Hard to control, but safe(ish). Not very high altitudes, <1 minute flight time . Rocket Pack: Hard to control, not safe (see comic, and the "Rocketeer" movie), high altitud...
by cantab314
Fri Nov 22, 2013 8:02 pm UTC
Forum: Individual XKCD Comic Threads
Topic: 1294: "Telescope Names"
Replies: 89
Views: 22229

Re: 1294: "Telescope Names"

Then there'll be Final Telescope II, FTIII, FTIV, and FTV. Only FTII and FTIII will both be exclusively for Japanese military, so Americans will end up callling FTIV FTII. Then they'll build FTVI, but then the next one won't be FTVII but FTV-2.
by cantab314
Mon Nov 11, 2013 1:57 pm UTC
Forum: Individual XKCD Comic Threads
Topic: 1289: "Simple Answers"
Replies: 50
Views: 10756

Re: 1289: "Simple Answers"

The first "yes" is wrong. Not every new technology will destroy whole industries. Consider the Frisbee, for instance. Just because it hasn't yet destroyed whole industries doesn't mean it won't. The time shall come when the popularity of Ultimate eclipses that of football, thereby destroy...
by cantab314
Fri Nov 01, 2013 1:56 pm UTC
Forum: Individual XKCD Comic Threads
Topic: 1285: "Third Way"
Replies: 163
Views: 30588

Re: 1285: "Third Way"

Either way, there will always be a fight before a period.
by cantab314
Mon Oct 28, 2013 2:50 pm UTC
Forum: Individual XKCD Comic Threads
Topic: 1283: "Headlines"
Replies: 58
Views: 17782

Re: 1283: "Headlines"

The one thing I've never seen explained is why "Mom invents perpetual motion machine" is meant to be better click bait than "physicist invents perpetual motion machine". Not that I'm complaining, since it's a useful element to spam filtering. Because if a mom can make one, so ca...
by cantab314
Tue Sep 17, 2013 5:08 pm UTC
Forum: What If?
Topic: What-If 0063: "Google's Datacenters on Punch Cards"
Replies: 58
Views: 20017

Re: What-If 0063: "Google's Datacenters on Punch Cards"

I was hoping the cards would be used to cover Rhode Island - then trampled under the feet of the world's seven billion people. And yeah, I can see the oil companies having a lot of data. I've only ever looked at simple processed stuff myself, but the raw data from seismic surveys is basically audio....
by cantab314
Thu Aug 29, 2013 3:02 am UTC
Forum: Individual XKCD Comic Threads
Topic: 1257: "Monster"
Replies: 84
Views: 18619

Re: 1257: "Monster"

If this were a blockbuster movie, the Frequently-Made Comparisons monster woul have been defeated by a robot the height of Nelson's column stacked on top of the Empire State Building, with a reactor core that could generate as much power as three thousand Bugatti Veyrons, and firing a laser that cou...
by cantab314
Mon Jul 22, 2013 2:34 pm UTC
Forum: Individual XKCD Comic Threads
Topic: 1241: "Annoying Ringtone Champion"
Replies: 68
Views: 21980

Re: 1241: "Annoying Ringtone Champion"

B-flat at 194 decibels? Randall must mean this.
by cantab314
Fri Jul 12, 2013 1:29 am UTC
Forum: Individual XKCD Comic Threads
Topic: 1190: "Time"
Replies: 106824
Views: 45895917

Re: 1190: "Time"

I can't believe this thing is still going.
by cantab314
Tue Apr 16, 2013 2:59 pm UTC
Forum: What If?
Topic: What-If 0041: "Go West"
Replies: 30
Views: 12072

Re: What-If 0041: "Go West"

Also, evidence points to the main force that moves the plates being "slab pull" Would we even be able to calculate the size of it? I mean, as more gets pulled under more get recycled and cuts it back down. We can use seismic tomography to map out the speeds of seismic waves in the deep Ea...
by cantab314
Tue Apr 16, 2013 1:40 pm UTC
Forum: What If?
Topic: What-If 0041: "Go West"
Replies: 30
Views: 12072

Re: What-If 0041: "Go West"

Randall has the plate thickness wrong. 35 km is about right for the continental crust, but the plate also includes the rigid upper part of the mantle. Together called the lithosphere, it's probably somewhere between 100 and 200 km thick under the continents (but thinner under the oceans). Also, evid...
by cantab314
Fri Apr 12, 2013 3:25 pm UTC
Forum: Individual XKCD Comic Threads
Topic: 1198: "Geologist"
Replies: 44
Views: 10978

Re: 1198: "Geologist"

SO, for those of you who are feeling lost, I'm surprised no one's explained yet - sometimes, geologists set up listening equipment along the ground, then shoot the earth with a gun to create a time-localized sound wave. It is the ping in underground sonar. I've heard of dropping weights on the grou...
by cantab314
Sat Mar 30, 2013 3:23 pm UTC
Forum: Individual XKCD Comic Threads
Topic: 1190: "Time"
Replies: 106824
Views: 45895917

Re: 1190: "Things that are on my side for 600, Alex!"

What the? It's gone!

I kept refreshing and it was briefly flashing up, before now staying put. Maybe this is the end though.
by cantab314
Thu Mar 28, 2013 7:20 am UTC
Forum: Individual XKCD Comic Threads
Topic: 1190: "Time"
Replies: 106824
Views: 45895917

Re: 1190: "Time"

New April 1st prediction: the screen zooms out, and we see it was all a Minecraft game.
by cantab314
Thu Mar 28, 2013 6:10 am UTC
Forum: Individual XKCD Comic Threads
Topic: 1190: "Time"
Replies: 106824
Views: 45895917

Re: 1190: "Time"

So now we're going to find out that whenever we thought they'd left, they'd actually been working on the sandcastle, which is going to be MASSIVE, and what we saw at first is merely the gatehouse. Or, should a dog come along, the outhouse.
by cantab314
Tue Mar 26, 2013 1:27 pm UTC
Forum: Individual XKCD Comic Threads
Topic: 1190: "Time"
Replies: 106824
Views: 45895917

Re: 1190: "Time"

Murphy's law, the Monday I miss checking xkcd is the Monday Randall comes up with something like this.

Anyway, it looks to me like she's trying to build a sea wall to stop the tide washing away their sandcastle.
by cantab314
Tue Mar 05, 2013 11:58 am UTC
Forum: What If?
Topic: What-if 0035: "Hair Dryer"
Replies: 100
Views: 32057

Re: What-if 0035: "Hair Dryer"

Heating a gas while keeping the volume and the number of moles present fixed increases the pressure of the gas. If the temperature inside the box gets high enough, then you start getting fusion taking place. Higher still, and you get a quark-gluon soup. Higher still and you break known physics... A...
by cantab314
Wed Feb 27, 2013 1:31 pm UTC
Forum: What If?
Topic: What-if 0034: "Twitter"
Replies: 74
Views: 38660

Re: What-if 0034: Twitter

YellowYeti wrote:What proportion have to spell 'lose' as 'loose' before it becomes the correct spelling?
I don't know, but I'm tipping "weary" to become the correct spelling for "wary" first.
by cantab314
Mon Jan 14, 2013 4:59 pm UTC
Forum: Individual XKCD Comic Threads
Topic: 1160: "Drop Those Pounds"
Replies: 67
Views: 13987

Re: 1160: "Drop Those Pounds"

The pound is a unit of mass. "Since 1 July 1959, the international avoirdupois pound has been defined as exactly 0.45359237 kg."
by cantab314
Wed Dec 26, 2012 3:29 pm UTC
Forum: Individual XKCD Comic Threads
Topic: 1152: "Communion"
Replies: 124
Views: 23170

Re: 1152: "Communion"

Mammalian red blood cells don't contain DNA, so the victim must be either fish, bird or reptilian Oh god.. OH GOD http://userserve-ak.last.fm/serve/_/15635077/Raptor+Jesus+1372088372_l.jpg raptor jesus is upon us! This isn't actually what is meant by the Jesus Christ dinosaur hypothesis.
by cantab314
Fri Dec 14, 2012 10:02 am UTC
Forum: Individual XKCD Comic Threads
Topic: 1147: "Evolving"
Replies: 82
Views: 18652

Re: 1147: "Evolving"

musashi1600 wrote:Should've used a species that needs an evolution stone or a trade to evolve; no need to press B there.
We did. S. Aureus needed the Antibiotic used on it to evolve, and we went and did that.
by cantab314
Wed Dec 12, 2012 11:40 am UTC
Forum: What If?
Topic: What-If 0024: "Model Rockets"
Replies: 44
Views: 17508

Re: What-If 0024: Model Rockets

I'm skeptical on the N1 explosion being larger than Minor Scale. I've found no source but Wikipedia, which has no citation, for the yield. It appears like it might have been possible, considering the probably mass of the fuel on board, though I can't find any definite figure for that either.
by cantab314
Mon Dec 10, 2012 8:06 am UTC
Forum: Individual XKCD Comic Threads
Topic: 1145: "Sky Color"
Replies: 211
Views: 65516

Re: 1145: "Sky Color"

Yeah, my immediate answer to "Why isn't the sky violet?" was that the Sun doesn't emit as much violet. But the response of human vision I'm sure is also important. A related one, it's clear the sun's output peaks in the green, so why isn't the Sun green? It turns out that a black body can ...
by cantab314
Sat Dec 08, 2012 3:57 pm UTC
Forum: Individual XKCD Comic Threads
Topic: 1144: Tags
Replies: 100
Views: 37081

Re: 1144: Tags

Mercurywoodrose wrote:After reading all the comments here, i still have no insight into what this comic is about.
It's the HTML equivalent of starting a

new paragraph in the middle of a sentence.

(With the comic not showing the first paragraph.)
by cantab314
Mon Dec 03, 2012 9:46 pm UTC
Forum: Individual XKCD Comic Threads
Topic: 1142: "Coverage"
Replies: 62
Views: 18022

Re: 1142: "Coverage"

Yeah, I don't get this one. I know what a Faraday cage is, I know what a cage match is, and I know that not all xkcd comics are meant to be funny. But this one just leaves me feeling "What?" Now a John Cage match would be more interesting. The good news is each round lasts just over four a...
by cantab314
Thu Oct 04, 2012 5:34 pm UTC
Forum: Individual XKCD Comic Threads
Topic: 1116: "Traffic Lights"
Replies: 171
Views: 46844

Re: 1116: "Traffic Lights"

I think actually the main reason they build roundabouts is because it obstructs traffic flow. They want to slow traffic down, and speed limits aren't a good way since they are ignored by most motorists. I came across a residential street in Reading which has a small roundabout about halfway along i...

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