Search found 347 matches

by xtifr
Mon Jan 28, 2019 9:05 pm UTC
Forum: Individual XKCD Comic Threads
Topic: 2100: "Models of the Atom"
Replies: 34
Views: 5219

Re: 2100: "Models of the Atom"

what is the probability that someone from 1000 to 2000 years ago would imagine that "light" (em fields in the modern vernacular) would be the "foundation" of anything, let alone "everything" ("all the lower things" in the text). Given the huge volume of rando...
by xtifr
Wed Jan 16, 2019 8:59 pm UTC
Forum: Individual XKCD Comic Threads
Topic: 2098: "Magnetic Pole"
Replies: 21
Views: 4467

Re: 2098: "Magnetic Pole"

I'll award 2 DarkNets to anyone who can combine magnetic pole flip with a bobcat or a velociraptor I got nuthin' on bobcats, but I know of no reason not to think that velociraptors use magnetoreception, so the shifting of the poles could affect their migratory patterns, putting some of our cities a...
by xtifr
Tue Jan 15, 2019 8:13 pm UTC
Forum: Individual XKCD Comic Threads
Topic: 2095: "Marsiforming"
Replies: 31
Views: 5359

Re: 2095: "Marsiforming"

It always bugs me when terraforming is used do describe transforming the environment of earth to match another planet. Then it will probably really distress you to learn than Jack Williamson, who is credited with coining the term, actually published a novel named Terraforming Earth . :) (To be fair...
by xtifr
Tue Jan 15, 2019 7:50 pm UTC
Forum: Individual XKCD Comic Threads
Topic: 2098: "Magnetic Pole"
Replies: 21
Views: 4467

Re: 2098: "Magnetic Pole"

Am I the only one to worry for all the magnetoreceptive bacteria and pigeon babies who now cannot find their way back home (or wherever they are heading)? (What did happen to those last time?) https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Magnetoreception /Jon Yeah, that's my main concern. Ordinarily, it probably ...
by xtifr
Sun Jan 13, 2019 7:36 pm UTC
Forum: Individual XKCD Comic Threads
Topic: 2089: "Christmas Eve Eve"
Replies: 37
Views: 6478

Re: 2089: "Christmas Eve Eve"

Technically "eve" doesn't mean the day before, but just the evening of the day. Didn't mean. Once it only meant the evening of the day, but now it also (in certain contexts) means the day before. Because language changes. (Anyone who disagrees is welcome to explain why they no longer writ...
by xtifr
Fri Jan 11, 2019 8:01 pm UTC
Forum: Individual XKCD Comic Threads
Topic: 2097: "Thor Tools"
Replies: 39
Views: 6711

Re: 2097: "Thor Tools"

Dr. Who fans are probably upset at how far down (up?) the chart screwdrivers are located. Me, I'm wondering where staple removers fit. In any case, it's important to remember the lesson offered by the game Munchkin: anything can be a dangerous weapon as long as you describe it as "...of Doom&q...
by xtifr
Tue Jan 08, 2019 6:04 pm UTC
Forum: Individual XKCD Comic Threads
Topic: 2095: "Marsiforming"
Replies: 31
Views: 5359

Re: 2095: "Marsiforming"

nomaduk wrote:mixing Latin and Greek is always a bad idea

It could be worse. Consider, for example, "megatsunami". :)
by xtifr
Fri Jan 04, 2019 8:27 pm UTC
Forum: Individual XKCD Comic Threads
Topic: 2094: "Short Selling"
Replies: 44
Views: 8052

Re: 2094: "Short Selling"

I have to say that ponytail's explanation of short-selling is not the worst one I've heard. :)
by xtifr
Fri Dec 28, 2018 8:41 pm UTC
Forum: Individual XKCD Comic Threads
Topic: 2089: "Christmas Eve Eve"
Replies: 37
Views: 6478

Re: 2089: "Christmas Eve Eve"

So then logically your great-2 grandfather/grandmother is yourself, and your great-3 grandparents are your kids.

Extrapolating a little farther, your greati grandfather would be your grandparent's sibling. And so on...
by xtifr
Tue Dec 25, 2018 8:28 pm UTC
Forum: Individual XKCD Comic Threads
Topic: 2089: "Christmas Eve Eve"
Replies: 37
Views: 6478

Re: 2089: "Christmas Eve Eve"

Technically "eve" doesn't mean the day before, but just the evening of the day. Didn't mean. Once it only meant the evening of the day, but now it also (in certain contexts) means the day before. Because language changes. (Anyone who disagrees is welcome to explain why they no longer writ...
by xtifr
Sat Dec 15, 2018 5:58 pm UTC
Forum: Individual XKCD Comic Threads
Topic: 2085: "arXiv"
Replies: 16
Views: 4854

Re: 2085: "arXiv"

--SNIP-- I still have no idea how archive.org works legally, but I use it for films and books pretty regularly. I'm in the middle of Village of the Damned , the one from 1960. I usually watch in 30 minute increments on the stationary bike. Everything they have is either gone into the public domain,...
by xtifr
Mon Dec 10, 2018 3:22 am UTC
Forum: Individual XKCD Comic Threads
Topic: 2076: "Horror Movies 2"
Replies: 41
Views: 8020

Re: 2076: "Horror Movies 2"

In any case, even if you personally don't like tragedy, it seems a bit Dunning-Krugerish to assume that there's something wrong with people who do . Especially since so much of it appears on so many different lists of great works of art. In fact, I think it might be more plausible to assume there's ...
by xtifr
Mon Nov 26, 2018 9:49 pm UTC
Forum: Individual XKCD Comic Threads
Topic: 2076: "Horror Movies 2"
Replies: 41
Views: 8020

Re: 2076: "Horror Movies 2"

I gave it a fair go, and I'd estimate that around 40% of it was actually pretty decent, and another maybe 20% was stuff I could see why people might like, even if it wasn't to my tastes. My later experience suggests those percentages hold pretty well for most stuff that's called "great literat...
by xtifr
Sat Nov 24, 2018 7:39 pm UTC
Forum: Individual XKCD Comic Threads
Topic: 2076: "Horror Movies 2"
Replies: 41
Views: 8020

Re: 2076: "Horror Movies 2"

Well, at least this time, Randall is acknowledging that some people might have reasons for liking things he doesn't. Which is an improvement over Horror Movies 1. On the other hand, he's now dismissing not just horror, but all of drama, which is a bit over the top, I think. On the topic of "gre...
by xtifr
Tue Nov 20, 2018 9:15 pm UTC
Forum: Individual XKCD Comic Threads
Topic: 2073: "Kilogram"
Replies: 97
Views: 13989

Re: 2073: "Kilogram"

If by pi you don't mean a specific number defined as exactly what it is defined as (which therefore couldn't drift), but the measured ratio of a circle's diameter to its circumference, then it's super easy to imagine what would make that drift across time and space, and we've seen it already: curva...
by xtifr
Tue Nov 20, 2018 8:47 pm UTC
Forum: Individual XKCD Comic Threads
Topic: 2074: Airplanes and Spaceships
Replies: 40
Views: 6470

Re: 2074: Airplanes and Spaceships

Research, communication, and manufacturing . Although there's still some (a lot of) bootstrapping required for that last, there are countless industrial tasks that are either only possible or much easier/cheaper in microgravity. SpaceX just completed the first stage of getting approval to launch ove...
by xtifr
Wed Oct 31, 2018 8:03 pm UTC
Forum: Individual XKCD Comic Threads
Topic: 2066: "Ballot Selfies"
Replies: 110
Views: 16472

Re: 2066: "Ballot Selfies"

Personally I think absentee voting should be limited to people overseas. What about people with mobility problems? Getting to the polling place at all is a big issue for a <em>lot</em> of people. And heck, why should "overseas" be the deciding factor? Maine is closer to the UK than it is ...
by xtifr
Sat Oct 13, 2018 7:43 pm UTC
Forum: Individual XKCD Comic Threads
Topic: 2056: Horror Movies
Replies: 57
Views: 9427

Re: 2056: Horror Movies

Adrenaline junkies. 'nuff said. Actually, it is possible to enjoy an adrenaline rush without necessarily being an adrenaline junky! I love roller coasters, but find the urge to go skydiving very resistible, for example. But yes, adrenaline rushes are definitely one of the things that some people (m...
by xtifr
Wed Oct 03, 2018 1:02 am UTC
Forum: Individual XKCD Comic Threads
Topic: 1654: "Universal Install Script"
Replies: 57
Views: 21034

Re: 1654: "Universal Install Script"

Yeah, I definitely don't think you're wrong. I mean, for language-specific installers, he's got pip and npm, but no cpanm or gem. And I know he's familiar enough with perl to know cpan (the granddaddy of them all), even if he doesn't know ruby and gem.
by xtifr
Wed Sep 26, 2018 11:02 pm UTC
Forum: Individual XKCD Comic Threads
Topic: 1654: "Universal Install Script"
Replies: 57
Views: 21034

Re: 1654: "Universal Install Script"

MarkGyver wrote:For example, only one Linux format was given, despite it being fairly common knowledge¹ that non-Debian-based distros don't use apt-get.


It also has yum and dnf, which are used by Red Hat and Fedora.
by xtifr
Sun Sep 23, 2018 6:14 am UTC
Forum: Individual XKCD Comic Threads
Topic: 2049: "Unfulfilling Toys"
Replies: 36
Views: 5980

Re: 2049: "Unfulfilling Toys"

You want fiddly? My brother has a Rubik's Cube he made out of paper! It's fully functional, but very delicate. Not completely unfulfilling, but definitely a case of being more fun to make than to use. (Or so he assures me.)
by xtifr
Sun Sep 23, 2018 5:51 am UTC
Forum: Individual XKCD Comic Threads
Topic: 2039: "Begging the Question"
Replies: 145
Views: 20959

Re: 2039: "Begging the Question"

If a dictionary is out of touch with usage, it's the dictionary that's wrong. That's a bit harsh. True, but harsh. Lexicographers will freely admit that they can only try to keep up with changing language--especially for a language as widespread and dynamic as English. It's not an easy job. And it ...
by xtifr
Thu Sep 13, 2018 5:25 am UTC
Forum: Individual XKCD Comic Threads
Topic: 2039: "Begging the Question"
Replies: 145
Views: 20959

Re: 2039: "Begging the Question"

Claiming the new usage is wrong is not necessarily a manifestation of the etymological fallacy; it may be based on unrepresentative sample i.e. you deal mostly with people who use the traditional meaning, therefore assume the new one to be wrong, even though it might turn out that the populate at l...
by xtifr
Thu Sep 06, 2018 8:50 pm UTC
Forum: Individual XKCD Comic Threads
Topic: 2039: "Begging the Question"
Replies: 145
Views: 20959

Re: 2039: "Begging the Question"

This phrase drives me a little bonkers. It isn't that someone is using it wrong that bothers me. What bothers me is that when I hear someone use it incorrectly, I instantly think them a little less intelligent. Interesting. In my case, it's a complaint about the supposed "misuse" that mak...
by xtifr
Sat Sep 01, 2018 9:21 pm UTC
Forum: Individual XKCD Comic Threads
Topic: 2039: "Begging the Question"
Replies: 145
Views: 20959

Re: 2039: "Begging the Question"

This phrase drives me a little bonkers. It isn't that someone is using it wrong that bothers me. What bothers me is that when I hear someone use it incorrectly, I instantly think them a little less intelligent. Interesting. In my case, it's a complaint about the supposed "misuse" that mak...
by xtifr
Thu Jul 12, 2018 9:20 pm UTC
Forum: Individual XKCD Comic Threads
Topic: 2018: "Wall Art"
Replies: 32
Views: 7309

Re: 2018: "Wall Art"

Also, happy Convenience Store Day. (USA only; Euro calendar order doesn't work) It's actually International Convenience Store Day. Remember, there is only one correct way to write dates . The fact that most of the US and much of the EU continue to ignore this in favor of their own stupid methods do...
by xtifr
Fri May 11, 2018 8:15 pm UTC
Forum: Individual XKCD Comic Threads
Topic: 1991: "Research Areas by Size and Countedness"
Replies: 30
Views: 5184

Re: 1991: "Research Areas by Size and Countedness"

Although I think there's no practical distinction, I think it is theoretically possible for xenobiology to cover Earth-native non-DNA/RNA-based life forms--if such a thing were discovered to exist--but such creatures would not fall under exobiology. Likewise, if DNA/RNA-based life forms were discove...
by xtifr
Wed May 09, 2018 9:41 pm UTC
Forum: Individual XKCD Comic Threads
Topic: 1989: "IMHO"
Replies: 111
Views: 19986

Re: 1989: "IMHO"

I've always used IMO, but I guess my opinion is neither humble nor honest. I used to use IMAO ("arrogant"), just to avoid the image of annoying false humility I associate with the standard version, but I got tired of explaining it, and just went to IMO. Hey let's have a more interesting c...
by xtifr
Fri Apr 27, 2018 10:03 pm UTC
Forum: Individual XKCD Comic Threads
Topic: 1980: "Turkish Delight"
Replies: 95
Views: 20187

Re: 1980: "Turkish Delight"

orthogon wrote:
gmalivuk wrote:
orthogon wrote:
Quiche is pie.


No lid, though.

So it's as much a pie as pumpkin pie, lemon pie, or pecan pie.

Quite so. What those things are, is tarts. Are tarts.


"Art tarts." If thou must stick with 17th century definitions of words, thou should conjugate thy verbs like a proper Elizabethan. :P
by xtifr
Tue Apr 03, 2018 7:17 pm UTC
Forum: Individual XKCD Comic Threads
Topic: 1975: "Right Click"
Replies: 42
Views: 18258

Re: 1975: "Right Click"

It seems to be somewhat confused about whether I'm running Windows or Unix. I wonder if it would be differently confused if I were running Windows (or Mac) instead of Linux? (In other words, is there any OS-sniffing code involved?)
by xtifr
Tue Mar 27, 2018 9:55 pm UTC
Forum: Individual XKCD Comic Threads
Topic: 1969: "Not Available"
Replies: 38
Views: 7803

Re: 1969: "Not Available"

If you REALLY want to piss people off, use https. If you really want to piss people off, don't use https! I think you'll find there's a whole lot more people (especially smart people) who would like to kill unencryted http for once and for all than there are people stuck with insecure and un-upgrad...
by xtifr
Mon Mar 12, 2018 7:57 pm UTC
Forum: Individual XKCD Comic Threads
Topic: 1965: "Background Apps"
Replies: 33
Views: 10423

Re: 1965: "Background Apps"

The ones that tend to use up your battery in the background also have a distressing tendency to do so whether or not you try to shut them down. The FB app and Kindle have both been banished from my phone for their non-stop CPU-hogging and incessant battery draining. It is a source of constant amazem...
by xtifr
Mon Mar 12, 2018 7:33 pm UTC
Forum: Individual XKCD Comic Threads
Topic: 1964: "Spatial Orientation"
Replies: 77
Views: 14016

Re: 1964: "Spatial Orientation"

When giving directions, I tend to only use n/s/e/w with locals--people I know--since I can be fairly sure they know which direction the local streets run. With passing strangers, I'll start by pointing and use left/right beyond that. As a west-coast boy, I instinctively think of downhill as west, wh...
by xtifr
Sat Feb 24, 2018 8:09 pm UTC
Forum: Individual XKCD Comic Threads
Topic: 1953: "The History of Unicode"
Replies: 60
Views: 13411

Re: 1953: "The History of Unicode"

You know what the "uni" in unicode stands for, right? Egyptian hieroglyphs have (allegedly) been used as a script by a whole civilization. A dead civilization. A dead civilization which is the subject of tons of research and which regularly generates scholarly papers. The fact that you ma...
by xtifr
Thu Feb 15, 2018 8:58 pm UTC
Forum: Individual XKCD Comic Threads
Topic: 1953: "The History of Unicode"
Replies: 60
Views: 13411

Re: 1953: "The History of Unicode"

So yes, why does the forum block random unicode characters like Egyptian Hieroglyphs? I can understand blocking things like the bidi control characters, and I can maybe understand blocking the penis hieroglyph (and the ejaculating penis heiroglyph), but the whole code block? That's just bizarre. In ...
by xtifr
Thu Feb 15, 2018 8:15 pm UTC
Forum: Individual XKCD Comic Threads
Topic: 1952: "Backpack Decisions"
Replies: 38
Views: 9767

Re: 1952: "Backpack Decisions"

In general us nerds celebrate pi day, e day, and tau day without regard for the year, but at the exact time of day when the hh:mm:ss help. Thus March 14 at 1:59 and 26.536 seconds (AM or PM as you will) That doesn't work either. ISO 8601 covers times as well as dates, and that would be written as: ...
by xtifr
Thu Feb 08, 2018 10:13 pm UTC
Forum: Individual XKCD Comic Threads
Topic: 1952: "Backpack Decisions"
Replies: 38
Views: 9767

Re: 1952: "Backpack Decisions"

I'm terribly disappointed to see that Randal Munroe did not make a comic for e-Day. It was even the e-Day of the century! 2.718 ==> 2/7/18. Sheesh! Why does pi get it's own day but e is forgotten about? :cry: What are you on about? e-day is in late July, as all good little-endians know! The Interna...
by xtifr
Mon Feb 05, 2018 10:10 pm UTC
Forum: Individual XKCD Comic Threads
Topic: 1950: "Chicken Pox and Name Statistics"
Replies: 56
Views: 9817

Re: 1950: "Chicken Pox and Name Statistics"

I took the liberty of relabeling the time axis as (birth) years so it doesn't depend on being viewed in 2018. But now it looks like the "1995" point on the graph happens in 1990.... Maybe this comic was meant for the year 2023? Vaccines are not given at birth, and I can easily imagine a b...
by xtifr
Wed Jan 24, 2018 12:44 am UTC
Forum: Individual XKCD Comic Threads
Topic: 1945:"Scientific Paper Graph Quality"
Replies: 21
Views: 5645

Re: 1945:"Scientific Paper Graph Quality"

One thing I noticed is that at just about the same time that TeX came along and made the fonts and layouts of papers look much nicer, gnuplot came along and made the fonts and labels on graphs look much worse.
by xtifr
Sun Jan 14, 2018 10:15 pm UTC
Forum: Individual XKCD Comic Threads
Topic: 1940: "The Food Size Cycle"
Replies: 52
Views: 9933

Re: 1940: "The Food Size Cycle"

For some reason, I'm reminded of the Shepard scale, an auditory illusion where a sequence of chords appears to rise (or fall) indefinitely. It uses a similar mechanism.

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