Wikipedia:Reference desk/Miscellaneous

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January 26[edit]

What gun is this?[edit]

It appears to be a heavily modified AK rifle of some type due to the banana magazine, but can anyone tell what model of Kalashnikov? 98.27.241.101 (talk) 09:09, 26 January 2015 (UTC)

Not too sure about the model but the picture seems to be from Payday_2. Obviously there is the possibility someone used Artistic_license to make it look more bad-ass and there is no such gun at all. Will hunt some more...196.213.35.146 (talk) 12:43, 26 January 2015 (UTC)
See if you can find it here. I did a brief scan but found nada. http://payday.wikia.com/wiki/Weapons_%28Payday_2%29 Note: there are custom mods in the game so I'm guessing it's not a real rifle. 196.213.35.146 (talk) 12:55, 26 January 2015 (UTC)
The receiver seems based on an AK-74, but seems a little off along the bottom. The stock seems to be based on an M4 or HK416. The gas block and front sight I'm not recognising off the bat... but as 196.213.35.146 points out this is basically a kitbashed gun meant to look cool and/or scary. WegianWarrior (talk) 13:00, 26 January 2015 (UTC)

what is the meaning of swarajit (in bengali)?[edit]

Moved to the language desk, click here. μηδείς (talk) 20:10, 26 January 2015 (UTC)

Why do pants tear?[edit]

January 27[edit]

Where can I buy a postcard of the Greek town Kirra,_Phocis online?[edit]

Thank you Venustar84 (talk) 06:48, 27 January 2015 (UTC)

Well, a google search turns up no local businesses with an online presence - but that's no real surprise. A little greek village like that isn't likely to be heavily online - and besides, who buys postcards online? The whole point is to send them to friends while you're staying there! I did a Google Maps search for "Gift Shop" in the town - and the nearest gift shop that Google knows about seems to be in Delphi, which is just a couple of miles away to the north-east. Delphi is a massive tourist trap - with a decent museum and related gift shop. It should be possible to get a postcard of Delphi from there.
But if you absolutely need it to be from Kirra, you may have difficulties. I did a Google street view virtual drive along the main streets of the town, and there was really only one shop that looked like it might sell stuff like that (it's on Epar.Od. Iteas-Distomou at the end of the Metamorfoseos pier). The Google Maps photo of it shows a stand full of that look like guide books and calendars - but you can't really see any postcards. However, my bet is that if they don't have it, it doesn't exist!
Since Delphi is the reason most tourists would be visiting Kirra, I strongly suspect that if they have postcards, then they'd be of Delphi...because that's what most people went there to see.
If a postcard of Delphi is "good enough" then I suggest you get in touch with the gift shop at the Delphi Archaeological Museum...I'm sure they can help.
There are plenty of online stores that'll sell you postcards of just about anywhere: http://www.zazzle.com/delphi_greece_postcards-239562864219744677 ...for example. But these are not authentically postcards printed locally - they are just online services that collect photographs and print them on-demand. Since (I suppose) the entire point here is that the postcard should be from that town, that may not suffice for your needs. But you could find any number of photos of Kirra online and have one of those print-on-demand services print you a postcard from that picture...so I guess this boils down to "Why do you need a postcard from there?"...the answer to which would better inform our search.
SteveBaker (talk) 14:35, 27 January 2015 (UTC)
The reason is because Callisto in Xena Warrior Princess is from there and I'm going to a Xena Conventrion in four weeks and I wanna show people a postcard of the real Kirra. Venustar84 (talk) 21:24, 27 January 2015 (UTC)

Who is the most decorated editor \ admin on all of Wikipedia[edit]

I've noticed many editors have very ornate and elaborate user pages. Full of accolades, barn stars and medals. Some even speak of or are commended by others of great deeds and achievements. Others speak of illustrious careers in academia or even being members of Mensa.

So my question is, who is the most decorated and universally revered wiki user below Jimmy, of course. I vote for semanticmantis. — Preceding unsigned comment added by 82.19.76.217 (talk) 19:00, 27 January 2015 (UTC)

Ha! You're joking, right? I like to help people find info here, but most of my edits to article space are minor, and I have very few awards (I do have an academic career, but I almost never mention it here unless it is directly relevant to a question ;)
As to your question, see Wikipedia:Teahouse/Badge/About#Hmm..._gamification.2C_isn.27t_that_wrong_for_Wikipedia.3F, which links to a few lists of editors who have many successful "good article" nominations [1] or many "did you know" entries [2], and a few other lists of Wikepedians who are ranked in different categories. SemanticMantis (talk) 20:55, 27 January 2015 (UTC)
Is there any record of Barnstars awarded?    → Michael J    21:37, 27 January 2015 (UTC)
Not that I could find. There might be a way to get a list of pages that use each template, or just scrape user pages directly, but that would be a decent amount of work. I suppose doing so would earn you a few barnstars :) SemanticMantis (talk) 17:48, 28 January 2015 (UTC)
Our OP votes for SemanticMantis - who is undoubtedly a wonderful person and a valued contributor...but sadly not even close to the most decorated. I count 1 actual barnstar and two other awards, 120 pages edited, and with 4 years of service and 4,300 edits, is entitled to the "Yeoman Editor"/"Grognard Extraordinaire" award level. That's not even close!
It's certainly tough to find any kind of exact award count since many people don't bother to collect them anyplace - and edit count totals are easily inflated by people who run automated edit scripts ("bots").
Wikipedia:List_of_Wikipedians_by_number_of_edits shows that to get into the top 5,000 most prolific, you're looking at needing at least 13,000 edits to your name. Clearly that level of commitment would be very hard for a relative newcomer to achieve. However, since the totals on that list include bot edits, we have no idea who the most active person from that list actually is. One data point I know is that I've never used a bot and I'm the 2,076th most prolific with 28,000 edits, so we know that you're going to need at least a few tens of thousands of 'real' edits to make "most prolific (excluding bots)". The most prolific editor (including bots) is User:Koavf who has performed over 1.4 million edits - but for sure that has to be overwhelmingly due to bots. A large fraction of what he does is things like recategorizing articles and refactoring links, removing double-redirects - which are easy to automate with scripts and such. One click of a mouse can get you 1000 edits if it entails renaming a category that contains 1000 articles.
In case you're interested, Jimbo Wales has only around 11.000 edits to his name - he's not even on the top 5,000 list...but his contributions are measured differently from mere mortal men.
Edit counts are easily inflated...and asking how many edits you've ever had deleted is perhaps as important as the number you've added! Does fixing a trivial typo in an obscure article count the same as adding an entire paragraph to a major article after having fought for months to get warring parties to agree on what it should say? Who can say what the 'value' of an edit is?
It's tough to figure out the most barnstars - and because many people don't bother to record them, you'd have to trawl back through talk page edit histories to find them. Again, I can tell you that the answer must be a more than my paltry total of 23...I'd bet it's in he hundreds...but that's a guess.
Then there are a bunch of other weird and wonderful accolades to consider. For example, Awesome Wikipedian Day is one where some guy is maintaining a list of (at most 366) Wikipedians whom he considers to be 'awesome'...there are still plenty of slots open - but Feb 16th is definitely taken!  :-)
Other accolades are counted by some people - including number of articles created, number of "Did You Know" entries created, number of Featured Articles and so forth.
Personally, I think that "number of featured articles" is a pretty good accolade - but even then, you don't generally create a featured article single-handedly...it's a team effort. So attributing the honors is tough. But most of the other stuff is vague, hard to track, very, very variable. Some people give away barnstars for the most trivial things - others give just a slice of a barnstar after outstandingly hard work...and most never bother to thank anyone. There are other "awards" that are given ironically or even disparagingly.
In the end, I think we mostly know who the good guys are...and there isn't a way to nail down who is the best of them...which is probably a good thing!
SteveBaker (talk) 21:35, 29 January 2015 (UTC)
@82.19.76.217: As pointed out above, there is no single method for awarding someone else: you can thank users for edits, give them WikiLove, award barnstars, promote featured or good content, participate in the WikiCup or links to disambiguation page competitions, and a few of us even have a holiday named after us. @SteveBaker:: I have never used a bot but have used many semi-automated tools, gadgets, and scripts. —Justin (koavf)TCM 21:41, 29 January 2015 (UTC)
@Koavf: Really? Wow! You must have the worst case of repetitive strain injury in history! Well, hats off to you for your many (many) excellent contributions. This place needs more people like you....and the world needs more places like this. Being by far the biggest contributor to by far he largest repository of knowledge in human history ought to put you up there with Aristotle, Newton, and a select number of others like them...well, we could hope - right?  :-) Thank you! SteveBaker (talk) 05:35, 30 January 2015 (UTC)
@SteveBaker: Something like that. Thanks, Steve. —Justin (koavf)TCM 05:38, 30 January 2015 (UTC)

Weather emergency bungling[edit]

So, as anyone living in and around the City (in this case, New York as it should always be in the context of the US except for LA in Cali and Chicago in its immediate area) knows that the so-called blizzard fell flat and wasn't all that much worse than most every week of last winter. The difference was that last winter I don't think there were states of emergency declared whereas this year there was all manner of panic, people were quite rude with one another trying to get supplies, and the NY and CT governors banned travel. This morning everyone awoke and saw that this blizzard was a lemon (if such a term can be applied here). So now I'm wondering, what other instances do we have of panic over giant weather events where government officials shut everything down and wound up with egg on their collect faces? I do recall one instance in the last decade where the City shut down all the schools ahead of another "massive snowstorm" and there was barely a flurry. Sir William Matthew Flinders Petrie | Say Shalom! 7 Shevat 5775 20:25, 27 January 2015 (UTC)

If "people were quite rude with one another", isn't that just business-as-usual for NYC ? :-) StuRat (talk) 01:20, 28 January 2015 (UTC)
People in NY are usually quite nice outside the cesspool of Midtown. The rudeness was actually experienced in Greenwich (where people have money, but not necessarily class). Sir William Matthew Flinders Petrie | Say Shalom! 8 Shevat 5775 01:55, 28 January 2015 (UTC)
It's not clear to me this was a "bungle" - see e.g. Precautionary_principle or the adage better safe than sorry. I for one am happy to not be hearing stories of people dying while stranded in a blizzard. Cost-benefit analysis also comes in to play, and my understanding is that the officials in question would rather risk the costs of shutting down "unnecessarily" than risk piles of bodies that would have likely turned up in the case of no warnings/closures and a harsh storm coming to fruition. SemanticMantis (talk) 21:04, 27 January 2015 (UTC)
Essentially two days of business lost in the Northeast because of the reaction to a storm not all that much worse than those in prior years where they didn't shut down everything and nothing rally happened (except when things went further south to places like Atlanta where people had to sleep in their cars overnight in some cases). Usually as a result of these things New York, at least, is very wary of declaring emergencies again (that big snowstorm I mentioned made it so there were no more snow days in NY for many years after). Anyway, that doesn't quite answer my question. Sir William Matthew Flinders Petrie | Say Shalom! 7 Shevat 5775 21:13, 27 January 2015 (UTC)
Look, if I see a big heavy object flying at your head, and I yell "Duck", and you duck, and then later we re-analyze the video tape and find out that if you hadn't ducked, the object would have missed your skull anyways, you'd not get mad at me for telling you to duck. Based on the best available data, the precautions were reasonable and prudent. 2-3 feet of snow is a shitload of snow, and if it had fallen as predicted, no one would be bitching and moaning, in fact, the same people who are saying what you are saying now would have blamed the city for not doing enough to prepare. For the record, most of Massachusetts, Rhode Island, New Hampshire, Maine, and Eastern Connecticut is getting what was predicted for New York, and they are quite thankful for the travel ban. It's working to keep cars off the road, allowing plows to do their work, and it is cutting down on accidents and other problems. So, the travel ban works. Complaining because you got lucky doesn't mean it wasn't prudent to take reasonable precautions. --Jayron32 21:21, 27 January 2015 (UTC)
No, I didn't really answer your question, sorry. I saw it as a bit of a loaded question, so I thought I'd address the issue that it's not really objectively clear that anything was messed up or bungled, that's more a matter of opinion. I'll also point out that even though the storm wasn't all that bad in NYC, it seems pretty rough in other areas - almost 3' of snow, coastal flooding, and hurricane-force winds in parts of Mass [3] [4] [5]. -- I'd want things shut down for that, and no place in Mass. is very far from NYC. I'll stop challenging your assumption now, hopefully others can answer your specific question :) SemanticMantis (talk) 21:26, 27 January 2015 (UTC)
No worries, and in your defence, it was rather loaded (I normally try to avoid those) There's no question that Boston being shut down is necessary. A family member sent me video of people snowboarding and skiing down Beacon Hill around buried cars. New York (and apparently Greenwich, CT) are very well-equipped for storms like this and far worse. So even if you have snow falling continuously, the accumulation on the roads is never all that much as it gets salted and plowed rather quickly and throughout the night (in fact, a town snow plow was running through a neighbour's driveway at 4 AM).
When we headed out this morning, all the roads had been thoroughly plowed, but every business was closed (likely because people thought they were getting a day off and decided to take it anwyay. What I said only applies to New York and her surroundings though. I do rememeber the famous DC Snowpocalypse of 2010 when DC, being wholly unprepared, had to be shut down completely. What a vacation! Sir William Matthew Flinders Petrie | Say Shalom! 7 Shevat 5775 21:40, 27 January 2015 (UTC)
There's an old expression: "Better safe than sorry." ←Baseball Bugs What's up, Doc? carrots→ 23:10, 27 January 2015 (UTC)
You know the mayor said the exact same thing. Our Scottish clan has another old expression. This kind of thing can also lead to a Boy Who Cried Wolf scenario in the future which would likely lead to disaster. No one going to answer my question? :( Sir William Matthew Flinders Petrie | Say Shalom! 8 Shevat 5775 00:03, 28 January 2015 (UTC)
There was that time all those people thought the world was ending, so threw away their stuff. The apocalypse is weather, and those who preach it are as good as any government official, as far as the flock's concerned.
But yeah, this is is the fishiest thing I've ever seen from secular weathermen. InedibleHulk (talk) 00:46, January 28, 2015 (UTC)
Fantastic list, and I think you're referring to the 2011 instance, right? I think even remember reading about that story now. Though it's not a government reaction. Sir William Matthew Flinders Petrie | Say Shalom! 8 Shevat 5775 01:55, 28 January 2015 (UTC)
I was aiming to not single any one forecast out. The essence of them is undying. So long as there are old cryptic writings and troubling current events, there will be those who follow their leader in tossing earthly goods and waiting on a hill. Or murdering their families. Or just yelling "Wake up!" at strangers in public forums. That said, they all generally remind me of William Miller. Not a government official, but still an authority figure. InedibleHulk (talk) 21:37, January 28, 2015 (UTC)
Hurricanes are always a hit-or-miss proposition. By the time you know for sure where it will hit, it's too late for a full evacuation, so you just have to evacuate early on, if it might hit your city. StuRat (talk) 01:22, 28 January 2015 (UTC)
Hurricanes you can't do much about except sandbag, board, and evacuate. With snowstorms you can bring out those sweet heavy duty rigs. The thing you don't want happening is that people become so accustomed to drills and false alarms that they do nothing when a real emergency strikes. The tsunami that hit Hawai'i in 1946 is a good example as people had gotten used to the warnings being nothing and also thought it was an April Fool's joke as this was on 1 April. Over 160 people died as a result.
A less serious example is the lack of snow days in NYC because the government was so embarrassed by not having a storm show up that even on days of extreme snow storms, there were no cancellations, this may have predated even the great President's Day Blizzard of 2003 (during which I recall being at school and there being over a foot and a half of snow) and several other such days. On the people side of things, just think of kids and adults ignoring fire drills which are prompted by the same alarm as a real fire (instead of just training people in evacuation techniques without the alarm, but also making sure they've heard it before).Sir William Matthew Flinders Petrie | Say Shalom! 8 Shevat 5775
When I lived in/near Los Angeles, I never heard it called "the City". San Francisco is, tho. —Tamfang (talk) 08:16, 28 January 2015 (UTC)
I was being generous to LA people in case they got angry. Sir William Matthew Flinders Petrie | Say Shalom! 8 Shevat 5775 21:44, 28 January 2015 (UTC)

I noticed a huge roadkill fox. And a squirrel. They were missing eyeballs.[edit]

The rest of the corpse was virtually untouched.

And I was wondering, why do crows, corvids, in fact all manner of scavenging birds pick out and eat the eyeballs first. Thats who I saw dunnit. Sure, they are easy to access but surely the nutritional content must be virtually nill. Wouldn't it pay off better for the scavengers to go for the choice cuts first, and not the offal.

In fact, I think a lot of animals do this. — Preceding unsigned comment added by 87.152.161.61 (talk) 20:44, 27 January 2015 (UTC)

Not every animal is fortunate enough to have sharp teeth or strong jaws for choice cuts. A crow would look especially stupid with them, to boot. They take what soft bits they can get. InedibleHulk (talk) 20:57, January 27, 2015 (UTC)
Yep. Also keep in mind that crows are facultative scavengers, not obligate scavengers. If there were turkey buzzards around, they would have broken the skin and feasted on flesh. Then the detritovore eventually eat what was left by the rest. SemanticMantis (talk)
Furthermore, a good knock on the head can pop the eyes out of their sockets, making the shiny white contrast even more apparent. Sort of like how you can pass people on the street without a second glance, except for the guy who's "eyeballing" you. Crows know what's normal and what's not in a face. If the tongue's hanging out of a slack jaw, that's even more reason to peck. InedibleHulk (talk) 22:27, January 27, 2015 (UTC)
Also, bear in mind, the eyes are full of liquid, so in addition to a soft and tasty snack, they get a bit of light refreshment. By the way, in Japan, it is common courtesy for the host of a meal to offer the eyes of a fish to the guest. KägeTorä - () (Chin Wag) 10:13, 28 January 2015 (UTC)
There's been a fairly common superstition throughout history that eating a body part gives you its attributes. Hearts give you courage, brains make you smart, eyes help you see further. I'd like to think modern bird brains are beyond that, but media pressure may be driving some toward the unattainable ideal. InedibleHulk (talk) 21:52, January 28, 2015 (UTC)
And don't forget, that birdbrain for stupidity was coined before ornithologists and cognitive scientists became aware of what the nidopallium is capable of! ---Sluzzelin talk 21:56, 28 January 2015 (UTC)
Crows and ravens are well known for attacking the eyes of live lambs and incapacitated sheep - Farmer forced to kill newborn lambs after horror attacks by crows was the first of many references that I found. Alansplodge (talk) 23:09, 28 January 2015 (UTC)
That seems more to do with the winds of winter than a regular feast for crows. If they were dying from heatstroke, would we blame the flies? InedibleHulk (talk) 23:20, January 28, 2015 (UTC)
Seeing is believing - Ravens Attack Newborn Lamb. Alansplodge (talk) 02:03, 29 January 2015 (UTC)
I believe I saw one of four ravens peck a lamb's ass a couple of times. It might have been two. Hardly terrifying, especially by creature of darkness standards. That saintly white momma sheep was about as aggresive, but nobody went blind. InedibleHulk (talk) 05:06, January 29, 2015 (UTC)
Why did a lamb have a donkey? KägeTorä - () (Chin Wag) 06:23, 30 January 2015 (UTC)
Backup. InedibleHulk (talk) 11:21, January 30, 2015 (UTC)
In the "got your back" sense, not like this. InedibleHulk (talk) 11:25, January 30, 2015 (UTC)

Would someone know where I could buy a online statue of the nymph Callisto_(mythology)?[edit]

Which brings me to the reason of how this question is related to my question up top about Kirra Greece, :The reason is because Callisto in Xena Warrior Princess is from there and I'm going to a Xena Conventrion in four weeks and I wanna show people a postcard of the real Kirra and a statue of the real Callisto. Venustar84 (talk) 21:46, 27 January 2015 (UTC)

Come, on Venustar84, you know how to google. Search for "kallisto/callisto statue reproduction/sale" and see what you find. (A hint, there's plenty.) This is not the sort of research you need us for. (Good luck, in any case.) μηδείς (talk) 01:27, 28 January 2015 (UTC)
Also, neither representation is really of the real Callisto. InedibleHulk (talk) 21:55, January 28, 2015 (UTC)

January 28[edit]

Nosebleeds[edit]

Is it only children that get nosebleeds 'apparently' for no reason? I haven't had a spontaneous nosebleed since I was a child, and I've never seen an adult have one [EDIT: except for my father]. Is there a reason for this? KägeTorä - () (Chin Wag) 10:05, 28 January 2015 (UTC)

I can't recall ever having one except after getting socked in the nose. Awhile back I took my 85-yr-old mom to the ER with a bad one, resulting from high BP and low humidity. Beyond that, I have nothing to contribute except this: Nosebleed. ―Mandruss  10:12, 28 January 2015 (UTC)
Thanks. That link almost answers my question. KägeTorä - () (Chin Wag) 10:21, 28 January 2015 (UTC)
(edit conflict) According to this source they are "Common in kids ages 3 to 10 years" and this one says the ages are 2 to 10 which suggests that the occurrences drop off after 10 years of age. But then the second source says that they're also common in adults from 50 to 80. The second source goes on to say that they're more common amongst those on blood thinners or those with high blood pressure which many people in that 50 to 80 range deal with. Dismas|(talk) 10:23, 28 January 2015 (UTC)
That's actually what I was thinking. Thanks! My father is on blood thinners and has high BP, causing him to be anaemic, essentially, and occasionally he breaks out in subcutaneous heamorrhages, as well as the occasional nosebleed. Thanks! KägeTorä - () (Chin Wag) 10:37, 28 January 2015 (UTC)
Resolved

OR, perhaps, but I get two or three "spontaneous" nosebleeds a year and am neither a child, nor 50+ nor on any blood thinning medication and my BP is usually noticeably low. Lol. My take is that the human body is wonderfully complex and inconsistent and we'll only ever get generalisations about this kind of thing at best. Now, I'm off to find some lunch. --Dweller (talk) 10:44, 28 January 2015 (UTC)

You should stop banging your face against trees, mate :) KägeTorä - () (Chin Wag) 11:00, 28 January 2015 (UTC)
I think young children get nosebleeds for several reasons. They have thinner blood vessels, are more likely to "rough house" and they pick their noses often. StuRat (talk) 19:22, 28 January 2015 (UTC)
Cocaine users often get nosebleeds, and are rarely children. InedibleHulk (talk) 21:59, January 28, 2015 (UTC)
But on the other hand some people say that nose picking causes nosebleeds and did you ever see a young kid that didn't pick their nose. Richard Avery (talk) 08:25, 29 January 2015 (UTC)
Classic British joke. Q. What's the difference between bogeys and Brussells sprouts? A. Kids won't eat Brussells sprouts. Like all great jokes, it's the truth behind it that makes it funny. And I think I just found my all-time favourite Wikipedia article title. --Dweller (talk) 09:29, 29 January 2015 (UTC)
You may think that's the funniest article title, but it snot. StuRat (talk) 13:12, 29 January 2015 (UTC)
I haven't read that article, so I don't know if what I am going to say is in it, but I did once read that eating snot was a natural way for children to boost their immune system, as they are taking in the unwanted germs and bacteria in small quantities, and the immune system can learn how to deal with them. This is off-topic a little, but still interesting. KägeTorä - () (Chin Wag) 19:06, 29 January 2015 (UTC)

Why doesn't Ukraine default on its Russian debt?[edit]

Article on the issue of Russian debt default: [6]

Ukraine wants to avoid a default because it would have consequences. But why is that the case? If Ukraine defaulted on Russian debt citing the invasion by Russia and continued to pay other creditors, would the international debt market view Ukraine as more risky? If the default was viewed as just retaliation against the Russian invasion, why would it raise interest rates or have some other adverse consequence for Ukraine?

Muzzleflash (talk) 19:13, 28 January 2015 (UTC)

Russia might use that as an excuse to invade all of Ukraine and "take what is theirs". StuRat (talk) 19:19, 28 January 2015 (UTC)
Indeed, if Ukraine does have to lose any more territory, the leaders apparently just want to shave off some of the more Russian areas, not lose the whole country (though those same areas have a good deal of Ukraine's industry). That's what I got from discussions with Kievan friends anyway. Sir William Matthew Flinders Petrie | Say Shalom! 8 Shevat 5775 21:26, 28 January 2015 (UTC)
Ukraine may default on its debt anyway[7], precipitating a bailout. And as the EU has underwritten about $2B of that debt, that's going to add come from the European government debt market. Business Insider tends to being rather excitable (one might say linkbaitey), and in this case they're saying what Russia could do, not what anyone thinks they're likely to do (despite what they may say). With a pro-western government in place, that bailout would surely come from the IMF and the EU (per the Bloomberg article). And Russian's #1 geopolitical concern about Ukraine is whether the country is aligned to them or to the EU (e.g. Ukraine–European Union Association Agreement#Russia). Economically, it's in the interest of neither country to escalate a trade war between them. Ukraine is heavily dependent on Russian gas [8], but Russia is dependent on Ukraine both as a major customer of that gas, and for transit to western European countries (as most of its pipeline network, and 80% of its capacity, runs through Ukraine [9]). Russia–Ukraine gas disputes notes the recent unhappy history between the two countries; a great chunk of that debt is for gas[10]. In the longer term, unease about Russia's using gas supply for political leverage is driving expansion of alternate supplies to Western and Central Europe, especially the Trans-Anatolian gas pipeline - which erodes Russia's strength in the European market (diminishing both its economic and political bargaining power). Russia's in serious economic trouble, and really would like that debt paid down; Ukraine is too (worse), and is heavily dependent on a country it's almost at war with. -- Finlay McWalterTalk 23:05, 28 January 2015 (UTC)

Cleggmania[edit]

In UK politics, What is 'Cleggmania' and does it still exist? --Coístingad (talk) 19:46, 28 January 2015 (UTC)

Very first hit on Google: Cleggmania spreads across Britain . And no, it most definitely doesn't exist any more, the opposite in fact. 82.21.7.184 (talk) 22:39, 28 January 2015 (UTC)
Agreed, see Popularity of Miliband and Clegg falls to lowest levels recorded... from July 2014. See also our Nick Clegg article. Alansplodge (talk) 23:03, 28 January 2015 (UTC)
I have added a brief note to our article, so it should appear on any future searches. Alansplodge (talk) 01:40, 29 January 2015 (UTC)
In case you're wondering why, it's a combination of the formation of a coalition government with the Tories and the fact that student tuition was hiked as a result of the coalition government. (Ask any UK student especially international ones like I was...) Students made up a large portion of the LibDem's voter base, you see. Sir William Matthew Flinders Petrie | Say Shalom! 9 Shevat 5775 03:08, 29 January 2015 (UTC)
Added to the fact that the LibDems had promised in their manifesto NOT to raise tuition fees (of course, the LibDems didn't actually win the election, so those promises aren't binding). Also, the LibDems have by necessity been associated with other aspects of the Conservatives' austerity programme, which is never popular. Alansplodge (talk) 10:35, 29 January 2015 (UTC)
It wasn't a manifesto promise conditional on winning the election. Nick Clegg signed the Vote for Students pledge, the text of which is “I pledge to vote against any increase in fees in the next parliament and to pressure the government to introduce a fairer alternative.". He then voted for the government's plans to increase fees. I think it's worth noting that, as a member of the cabinet, Nick Clegg has to vote with the government or resign; he can't be in the government and oppose it, because of Cabinet collective responsibility. AlmostReadytoFly (talk) 11:16, 29 January 2015 (UTC)
I stand corrected. Alansplodge (talk) 17:59, 29 January 2015 (UTC)

Why does....[edit]

Semen smell like fish. There's definitely a fishy odor about it. Seems odd that there should be any smell at all as the prostate gland and gonads are a sterile area? — Preceding unsigned comment added by 126.62.121.217 (talk) 20:01, 28 January 2015 (UTC)

Mine doesn't, but Google suggests it's common. Answers range from fishy diets to pH changes to not washing properly to trichomoniasis. InedibleHulk (talk) 22:06, January 28, 2015 (UTC)
I don't know about you two, but I have never actually taken the liberty of smelling my own (or anyone else's) semen (I'm not really into that kind of thing), so I wouldn't know. Girls have never remarked on the smell, either. As for taste, apparently, what you eat can affect it, so this may be relevant. KägeTorä - () (Chin Wag) 08:29, 29 January 2015 (UTC)
I've tried my own. If that makes me gayer than giving myself a handjob, so be it. And if trying it a few times to know if it gets better and worse (it does) makes me a scientist, I guess I'm a scientist. Like Stephen Baldwin. InedibleHulk (talk) 08:50, January 29, 2015 (UTC)
Not to be confused with Stephen Baldwin. InedibleHulk (talk) 08:52, January 29, 2015 (UTC)
A scientist would keep detailed records. Have you? ―Mandruss  08:54, 29 January 2015 (UTC)
I'm not Hans Christian Andersen or anything. InedibleHulk (talk) 08:56, January 29, 2015 (UTC)
Speaking of science, here are some psychological nutrition facts. InedibleHulk (talk) 08:55, January 29, 2015 (UTC)

January 29[edit]

Mystery Object[edit]

What is the thing on the left? [11] --Viennese Waltz 08:04, 29 January 2015 (UTC)

Spork and a melon baller, I'd say. InedibleHulk (talk) 08:19, January 29, 2015 (UTC)
I like the melon baller but I'm not sure about the spork. Those aren't fork tines at the top end, they don't stick out. They're like grooves or ridges, it's a corrugated effect. --Viennese Waltz 08:51, 29 January 2015 (UTC)
"Melon spoon" gets similar Google Images. Not sure why you'd need a baller and a spoon, but then, I'd use a fork. InedibleHulk (talk) 09:11, January 29, 2015 (UTC)
I believe that it produces fluted curls of melon, rather than balls (sorry, I couldn't find a picture). There's a similar widget for butter - see File:Butter curls.jpg. Alansplodge (talk) 10:29, 29 January 2015 (UTC)
There's also the butter spreader. If anyone ever needed one. InedibleHulk (talk) 12:32, January 29, 2015 (UTC)

What's the point of a nine thousand year lease?[edit]

I'm currently sorting out my late mother's estate, and have been looking through the deeds of her house. The parcel of land the house was built on was leased to the man who built it in 1932, for a period of nine thousand five hundred years, with an annual ground rent of £10. Every time the house has been sold, the lease has been assigned to the new owner. The ground rent has not increased in that time (£10 a year would have been a significant sum of money in 1932, but is a peppercorn now), and I've found no record of my mum ever paying it, or even who it would be paid to after all this time. But why on earth would anyone find it necessary to set a lease length of nine and a half thousand years? --Nicknack009 (talk) 11:48, 29 January 2015 (UTC)

I'm no lawyer, but I think I've heard that sometimes some kind of restrictive covenant prevents freehold sales of land. --Dweller (talk) 12:09, 29 January 2015 (UTC)
If you don't pay the nickel each month (or whatever the lease says), the landlord (or his grandkid) can repossess the land, which, conveniently enough, now has a house (or large brewery) on it. And now we're talking future dollars. At least that's how I understand things work in Baltimore, per ground rent. Here's the UK legislation on that sort of thing. Lots of rules about needing notice, seems unlikely you'll be swooped down upon. InedibleHulk (talk) 12:26, January 29, 2015 (UTC)
The land was effectively sold sans "freehold rights". In some places, the right to vote was restricted to freeholders. All I can think of quickly <g>. Collect (talk) 12:35, 29 January 2015 (UTC)
Don't think that was relevant in 1932. A landowner collecting £10 a year ground rent in 1932 was assuring himself of some income. If the lease is long enough he can collect it indefinitely, and so can his children (unless they've failed to account for inflation). But does anybody really need to guarantee that income for nine thousand years? Surely a few hundred would be more than enough. --Nicknack009 (talk) 13:39, 29 January 2015 (UTC)
Enough for the current generation. No harm in doing something nice for the descendants you'll never meet. They're still family.
And there are still many breakthroughs to be made regarding immortality. Wouldn't you feel a bit stupid if you thawed out (or whatever) just to find you'd lost prime land (or all your land) through shortsightedness? Better to err on the side of caution, if someone's willing to sign. InedibleHulk (talk) 10:25, January 30, 2015 (UTC)
It's sort of like how social media data agreements give sites dibs on anything you upload "irrevocably" and "perpetually". They probably won't need it forever, but maybe. InedibleHulk (talk) 10:29, January 30, 2015 (UTC)


I'm not certain, but I think the following is probably relevant. Centuries ago, the legal mechanisms associated with real property became some cumbersome that the practice grew up of inventing a fictitious owner and a lease from that owner, so that the title (which was in practice to the freehold) could be treated in law as a lease: see ejectment. I believe it was the Common Law Procedure Act 1852 that changed this[1], but leases were not necessarily converted to freehold until much later: I own a property that was leased in 1707 for 500 years, and changed hands several times after 1852 before being converted by a Deed of Enlargement into an estate of fee simple in 1919. My guess would be that the 9500 years was the remainder of a previous lease that dated to before 1852. --ColinFine (talk) 17:42, 29 January 2015 (UTC)
References


(edit conflict) The Thousand-Year Lease tries to explain the puzzle, but I'm not sure that I really understand the answer. It seems to hinge on the landlord and his/her descendants being able to keep some control of how the land is used. R.I.P. Ultra-Long Leases mentions the town of Paisley in Scotland, which "can boast (if that term be apt) 11 leases granted for a million years".
The article lists the disadvantages (presumably for the tenant, which may be advantages for the landlord!) of ultra-long leases as follows: (i) they tend to beget subleases which can become needlessly complex; (ii) they may be vulnerable to the landlord terminating them without the tenant’s consent for a breach of the terms of the lease – such as non-payment of rent; (iii) they may allow for an inappropriate degree of control by the landlord in relation to things like permitted uses of the property; and (iv) they may allow a landlord to extract a payment from the tenant in exchange for the landlord’s not insisting on particular conditions in the lease. Just as important perhaps as those practical reasons is the fact that ownership of land in Scotland was, until 2000, largely “feudal”: in other words land tenure was, essentially, hierarchical. That was swept away by the Abolition of Feudal Tenure (Scotland) Act 2000 ". In other words, people just want to keep the land in the family for prestige purpose, even if they have no direct control over it.
The article goes on to say that "Since 2000 it has no longer been possible to grant any type of lease for more than 175 years" (in Scotland that is). Alansplodge (talk) 17:49, 29 January 2015 (UTC)

Depending on where it is, a rule against perpetuities may eventually kick in, typically after 120 years or so. 50.0.205.75 (talk) 02:45, 31 January 2015 (UTC)

Could someone explain the math behind this musical concept ?[edit]

Someone once told me: "The circle of fifths - C increased by a fifth is G; G increased by a fifth is D; D increased by a fifth is A; A increased by a fifth is E; E increased by a fifth is B; B increased by a fifth is F#; F# inceased by a fifth is C#; C# increased by a fifth is G#; G# increased by a fifth is D#; D# increased by a fifth is A#; A# increased by a fifth is F; F increased by a fifth is C - produces the 12 notes of the octave."

How is this expressed with math, how is this exactly found?
PS: I already know the formula to 12 tone equal temperament. 440*2^(2/12). The fact that octave (on our 12tet) is 2x.
Posting this here on miscellaneous because its a mix or math and music subject. 201.78.189.0 (talk) 14:50, 29 January 2015 (UTC)

A Perfect fifth is a frequency ratio of 3:2 This means that the frequency is increased by 50% going from C to G, and another 50% going from G to D and so on. The complete circle has twelve such increases. Now 1.5 to the power of 12 is 129.7463 so a complete circle of perfect fifths would represent an increase in frequency of almost 12,975%. An octave represents a doubling of the frequency, so seven octaves (from almost the lowest note to nearly the highest on a piano) represents an increase of 2 to the power of 7 which is 128 (i.e. 12,800%). A perfect circle of fifths would give slightly more than seven octaves (1.36% too much) so piano tuners slightly flatten the fifths to give perfect octaves. There is a much better explanation at Circle of fifths. Dbfirs 14:10, 29 January 2015 (UTC)
(edit conflict) Start with Musical_tuning#Systems_for_the_twelve-note_chromatic_scale which explains some of the math involved. Technically speaking, the circle of fifths only works under systems of Musical temperament which adjust perfect just intonation so that the notes of the octave cycle back properly. You can read any of those articles, or follow links, to see how the math works. --Jayron32 14:14, 29 January 2015 (UTC)
I am reading those articles and still not finding or not understanding the math. Lets imagine we hade 3 tone equal temperament and instead of perfect fifith we have 1.618. What would be the note symbol order?201.78.189.0 (talk) 16:27, 29 January 2015 (UTC)
Sorry, your last question doesn't make any sense to me. The twelfth power of 1.5 is very close to the seventh power of 2, and if you divide each member of the finite series 1.5, 2.25, 3.375 ... by a suitable power of 2 to bring it within the range [1,2] (in musical terms, move them to the fundamental octave) they are all reasonably close to the powers of 2 ^ (1/12), though some are closer than others. What is it you don't understand? --ColinFine (talk) 17:50, 29 January 2015 (UTC)
Its not miscalculation, the number 1.5 is used to make the 12 tone equal temperament (at least to select the note order number, what will have flat or not, how many letters without flats or sharps we will have...). I was just asking how the thing would work if we had 3 tones instead of 12 and 1.618 instead of 1.5. I made that expecting people to answer what the note order would be in this case, by showing how they calculated it to this alternate tuning I would be able to discover how it is done.
(edit conflict)In the normal equal tempered scale, an octave is divided into twelve intervals, so each semitone represents a frequency ratio of the twelfth root of two (that's 1.0594630943593 or about a 6% increase in frequency). When you ask about a 3-tone equal temperament, do you mean just three notes in an octave? If so, then the ratio would be the cube root of two (about a 26% increase for each interval). Alternatively, do you mean tuning in Major thirds? That's four semitones, so the sequence would be C to E to G♯ to B♯. There is the same problem here of a mismatch because a perfect third is a ratio of 5:4 (a 25% increase) whereas the equal tempered third is almost 26%. Dbfirs 17:52, 29 January 2015 (UTC)
(edit conflict)I am asking/mean the tuning: 3 tones equal temperament, that uses still use octave (2x), but instead of using 1.5 to do the maths, it use 1.618

201.78.189.0 (talk) 18:01, 29 January 2015 (UTC)
I think the OP is wondering what the note symbols would be if we used slightly different systems? The answer is: the same systems. The 12 notes are still the same 12 notes (A A# B C C# D D# E F F# G G#), the distinction is the exact relationship between the 12 notes. Under any two intonation/temperament systems, the notes other than the root will be a tiny bit different from each other from one system to the other. --Jayron32 17:57, 29 January 2015 (UTC)
Where are you getting 1.618 (the Golden Ratio)? We have an article on Musical tuning. For tuning in fifths, you might like to read Pythagorean tuning. Dbfirs 18:03, 29 January 2015 (UTC)
I said 1.618 (with 3 tone equal temperament and octave), just as a different way to ask the question, since I was not able to find the math concept, on the said articles (or didnt understood them), I was expecting, that if people answered hwhat the symbols of 3 tones equal temperament with octave and 1.618 instead of 1.5 are, I would be able to find the math by myself (or people would post it while solving the problem). — Preceding unsigned comment added by 201.78.151.47 (talk) 18:53, 29 January 2015 (UTC)
... but why choose 1.618 ? It wouldn't sound tuneful, and you couldn't get an octave, so the tuning wouldn't work. Only simple ratios such as 2:1 , 3:2 , 5:4 etc are considered to be pleasant intervals in Western music, so early instruments were tuned this way. Perhaps if you study all the articles that people have linked above, you might grasp the maths of tuning, but come back and ask again if there are some bits that you don't understand. Dbfirs 19:19, 29 January 2015 (UTC)
I'm sorry, IP user, but I don't think anybody understands what you're asking. The trouble for me is that I haven't the slightest idea what you mean by "3 tones equal temperament" or what "symbols" you are talking about. I get that you're asking about a "dominant" ratio of 1.618 instead of 1.5, but I don't know why. I observe that the cube of 1.618 is somewhere near 4 (but not very close), so is that what you mean by a "3 tones equal temperament"? --ColinFine (talk) 21:08, 29 January 2015 (UTC)
If there were a musical culture whose most important intervals are 1:2 and 5:8 (rather than 1:2 and 2:3), their tempered scale could indeed have three notes to the octave; log(8/5) is a bit more than two-thirds of log(2). If the notes were named (in order of pitch) P Q R, then the "circle of minor sixths" would go P R Q. —Tamfang (talk) 00:53, 31 January 2015 (UTC)

While the OP does mention that they understands the ratios, it seems to me that the original question is not actually about the frequency ratios, but about the fact that we get back to C after completing 12 steps. What matters in this case are only two facts:

  1. You have 12 steps, which you call C, C#, D, .... B.
  2. The next step, after B, gives you a C again. (You may say that this would be an octave above the original C, but since we want to use this for comparing keys, not notes, the octave doesn't matter. A key of C is a key of C, regardless the octave.) Mathematically, this circular behavior is expressed with the modulo operation. Just use 0 for C, 1 for C#, and so on.

Now we can combine the two facts, and get what's called modulo 12. Conveniently, most of us have a device in our homes that does that operation every day - twice: A clock. A jump of a musical fifth corresponds to a clockwise move of the hour hand of 7 hours, or, which is the same thing, a counterclockwise move of 5 hours. You can easily try for yourself that if you repeat these jumps often enough, you will end up where you started. In this case, you have to do 12 such jumps. — Sebastian 05:46, 30 January 2015 (UTC)

Yes, I agree that's what the OP seems to be asking, but it is impossible to do this with a ratio of 1.618. The OP has never explained whether this is just a miscalculation, or some attempt to link music with the Golden ratio. Dbfirs 08:26, 30 January 2015 (UTC)
The ratios between individual notes don't matter for the question why we get back to C; they only distract from the underlying mathematics. You can use any tuning system for the twelve-note chromatic scale and even some idiosyncratic system based on the golden ratio, and the above two facts still apply. — Sebastian 20:36, 30 January 2015 (UTC)
That's not true. Try your clock analogy with a jump of \pi minutes. I agree that you can approximate the octave, but 1.618 doesn't get close within the range of human hearing. Dbfirs 11:15, 31 January 2015 (UTC)
  • Howard Goodall's "Big Bangs" series has an excellent 45 minute episode on Equal Temperament. Unfortunately the best link I can find is a very low--audio-quality version at youtube. If you can find this somewhere, it's well worth watching. μηδείς (talk) 22:41, 30 January 2015 (UTC)

35 Battery Royal Artillery[edit]

Hello I am a former member of 35 Bty when it was with 25 Regiment. As you will be aware it is the 250th anniversary of the Bty this year. I am told it was formed from the 1stMadras Artillery and a re-organization was ordered in the February of 1765 Unfortunately I cannot find a date that the Bty was formed. Not being very good with computers and researching I was wondering if you could be of any assistance as myself and former 35 Bty members of 25 Regt would like to have a get together and celebrate the 250th Birthday.

Many Thanks

Tony Pearson ( 35 Bty 1971-1978) — Preceding unsigned comment added by 95.149.229.246 (talk) 20:03, 29 January 2015 (UTC)

I had a good go at it, but couldn't get closer than the year. Perhaps you might try the National Army Museum; it seems to be fairly easy, see their Research Enquiries page and click on "online contact form". You could also try the Royal Artillery Museum; see their page Our Research Policy which has an email address for the librarian at the bottom of the page that you can click. Good luck. Alansplodge (talk) 22:45, 29 January 2015 (UTC)

January 30[edit]

Locations listed in background of WWI VAD recruitment poster[edit]

Our Voluntary Aid Detachment article includes a WWI recruitment poster File:VAD_poster.jpg. (It's non-free, so I won't embed it here.) In the background of the poster there is a list of locations, presumably where service is needed. On the right I can make out Egypt, Mesopotamia, Holland, Switzerland, and Russia, and on the left France, Italy, Malta, Gibraltar, and then one that starts "Salon...". What is that last location? -- ToE 13:54, 30 January 2015 (UTC)

Salonica spring to mind. {The poster formerly known as 87.81.230.195} 212.95.237.92 (talk) 14:09, 30 January 2015 (UTC)
Ah! And I see we have the article Salonican Front, a redirect to and alternate name for Macedonian Front. Thanks! -- ToE 14:45, 30 January 2015 (UTC)

Super Collapse 2[edit]

Is there world record for highest scores in Super Collapse 2? If there are, can you tell me the world record for TRADITIONAL, RELAPSE, and STRATEGY? Deaths in 2013 (talk) 19:38, 30 January 2015 (UTC)

I think what you want is HERE...but I don't see it broken out by those three modes. SteveBaker (talk) 05:40, 31 January 2015 (UTC)

January 31[edit]