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March 23[edit]

Special magnification software wanted[edit]

I am guessing the answer will be "no such software exits", but I'm going to ask anyway.

I often find spreadsheets (actually PDF snapshots of spreadsheets), which are so large that I can't view a cell and both the row and column headings at once on a single screen. For example, this frequently comes up when viewing a nutrition data grid for a restaurant.

So then, what I would like is software that would allow me to click on a spot on the screen, magnify that, but also scroll all the way to the left, take a snapshot of that heading, and display that magnified, and then scroll all the way to the top, take a snapshot of that heading, and magnify it. So, if I had spreadsheet PDF with items A-Z in one direction and 1-99 in the other, then cell Y98 should be magnified like this:

      |  98 |
+---+ +-----+
| Y | | Y98 |
+---+ +-----+

(Of course, "Y" would be something like "Chili-cheese fries", "98" would be something like "Trans fats (g)", and "Y98" would be something like "12".)

Now, once in a PDF, I don't think there's any concept of an actual cell any more, so the software would just have to magnify a certain area around the current selected point and a portion all the way to the left of it and all the way to the top of it. It might be necessary to be able to dynamically adjust the locations and sizes a bit to get it to work. Being able to toggle to view the right and bottom instead of left and top might also be useful, as I can imagine this tool being used to read a graph, too, and see the axis markings while doing so. Also, being able to scroll up and down while in this magnification mode would be useful, so I could scroll from cell Y98 to W93 without having to turn off the magnifier, find the new spot, then turn it back on.

So, does this tool exist, or do I need to write it ? StuRat (talk) 03:31, 23 March 2015 (UTC)

The tool you're looking for does exist. It's an accessibility feature. In Adobe Reader, it's found under View->Zoom->Loupe Tool. -- (talk) 03:38, 23 March 2015 (UTC)
Hmm... I just noticed that you're looking for more than just a magnifier. The loupe tool in Adobe Reader doesn't do everything you wanted it to do, but I hope it's still helpful to you. -- (talk) 03:47, 23 March 2015 (UTC)
No, magnification is simple enough without that tool. However, I did find exactly what I want as "Window > Spreadsheet Split" for Adobe Acrobat X Standard, described here:[1]. Unfortunately, that functionality doesn't appear to be included in Acrobat Reader. StuRat (talk) 04:17, 23 March 2015 (UTC)
The feature you mentioned is available in this freeware PDF viewer. -- (talk) 04:40, 23 March 2015 (UTC)
1) What are the commands to do so ?
2) Is that functionality only available during an evaluation period ? StuRat (talk) 18:09, 23 March 2015 (UTC)
1) To create a split view of a document, the command is Windows->Split. You can choose between Horizontal Split & Vertical Split. Let's say you choose Horizontal Split (which I think is incorrectly named), you now have 2 vertically=stacked panes showing different parts of the document. Adjust the zoom of both panes so that in both of them the width of the document fits the width of the pane. You can make the upper pane show only the header row of a spreadsheet, and use the bottom pane for the actual browsing. You can use the Loupe tool (View->Zoom->Loupe Tool) to magnify the tiny spreadsheet cells. If you want to see the corresponding column heading, move the loupe tool straight up to the upper pane to the upper pane. Unfortunately, you can't use this trick on both the column and row headings at the same time.
2) The basic version of the viewer is free. If you don't buy an upgrade, you just don't get the advanced features, but features in the free version don't expire. IMO, the publisher is really generous with features even with the free version. -- (talk) 00:57, 24 March 2015 (UTC)
Thanks. Re: "Unfortunately, you can't use this trick on both the column and row headings at the same time" ... that's rather critical, I'm afraid. StuRat (talk) 03:34, 24 March 2015 (UTC)

Note that while I mentioned PDF files in the Q, I would like a broader solution that works on any image or web page. I suppose other images can be converted to PDF files, but a web page too large for a screen grab and composed of multiple images might be difficult to convert to a single PDF image. Perhaps a browser add-on would be the best choice ? StuRat (talk) 18:14, 23 March 2015 (UTC)

For what it's worth, in excel the feature is called freeze panes . Vespine (talk) 22:53, 23 March 2015 (UTC)

Formatting numbers in Java with Swing[edit]

I have a JTextField which has a double in it that I'm trying to format with two places behind the decimal. It's a dollar figure, so two places would be best. I was able to use NumberFormat when I was running the program in the console but now that I'm trying to display it in a GUI I can't seem to get the code figured out. Right now, I have this:


When I was using the console, I had this:

System.out.println("Your sales were " + nf.format(sales));

Can anyone help me out? Thanks, Dismas|(talk) 05:37, 23 March 2015 (UTC)

As far as I'm concerned, you can use NumberFormat for this too. Or you can use String.format with "%.02f". But it may be best to use a JFormattedTextField with a genuine currency format (and not just the assumption that all currencies have the same format). This example uses all three (one per column) for some random values:
import javax.swing.*;
import javax.swing.text.*;
import java.awt.*;
import java.text.*;
import java.util.*;
public class Num extends JFrame{
    public static final void main (String [] args){
        new Num();
    public Num() {
        setLayout(new GridLayout(0,3));
        Container content = getContentPane();
        DecimalFormat df = new DecimalFormat("#.00");
        Random rnd = new Random();
        NumberFormat currency_format = NumberFormat.getCurrencyInstance(Locale.UK);
        NumberFormatter currency_formatter = new NumberFormatter(currency_format);
        content.add(new JLabel("String.format"));
        content.add(new JLabel("DecimalFormat"));
        content.add(new JLabel("FormattedField"));
        for(int i=0; i < 20; i++){
            float randval = rnd.nextFloat() * 1000f;
            content.add(new JTextField(String.format("%.02f", randval)));
            content.add(new JTextField(df.format(randval)));
            JFormattedTextField ffield = new JFormattedTextField(currency_formatter);
But considerable caution should be used when storing and doing calculations with currencies using floats or doubles - cf Effective Java (§31 in first ed., §48 in second ed.). -- Finlay McWalterTalk 14:47, 23 March 2015 (UTC)
Yes, storing currency (or any integer) as a real numbers (floats, doubles, etc.) introduces potential problems with rounding in different ways. For example, the TGI Friday's Give Me More Stripes loyalty club uses floats for their loyalty points, and rounds differently depending on whether you look your points up at home (rounds up) or at the restaurant (rounds down). To avoid this, always store as integers. (To include cents, store the currency as cents and divide by 100 when displaying.) Also, using reals, your calc for 1.01 + .37 likely ends up with something like 1.37999999999999999873, so rounding is needed even in places you wouldn't expect, as truncating would produce the wrong answer half the time.
One place you might want to use reals with money is in compound interest calculations, to preserve accuracy (just remember to round the final result consistently). StuRat (talk) 17:49, 23 March 2015 (UTC)

PHP function question[edit]

If I have 2 php files and in one php file:

function getMoneyRate($location){here is my if statement}

Okay so what would I need to write in the 2nd file to get the information from the function in the first php file into a variable in the 2nd file? — Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 11:15, 23 March 2015 (UTC)

Your question is very vague. This answer must, therefore, be very vague. Assume I have a PHP file with a function called getMoneyRate in it. I have another PHP file. In the second one, I want to use the function getMoneyRate. To do so, I just add this line in the second file: include("WhateverTheNameOfTheFirstPhpFileIs.php"); (talk) 12:12, 23 March 2015 (UTC)

Sorry for the vague question. I am looking for more of a example i think? I am struggling to understand this. If I have $MoneyRate in the file without the fuction how do I assign the if then statement to the variable? — Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 00:04, 24 March 2015 (UTC)

Your questions indicate structural misunderstanding rather than that of detail. Examples (unless they happen to be exactly your program — i.e., unless someone writes it for you) will be of limited use, because you will have to infer the structure from them, rather than deduce the correct program (for your purpose) from general rules. I'll try to dispel a couple of misunderstandings:
  1. Your function getMoneyRate should return a value (or, in rare cases, set or modify an output parameter). Then calling it from any file will return the information "to that file". In particular, it should not assign to a global variable, which would then have to live in exactly one file. This is a principle of modular programming.
  2. You don't assign statements to variables, but rather values; if statements have no value (in PHP). (There is the conditional operator, which may or may not be useful to you here.)
Hope that helps; do check your favorite PHP book for (generic) examples of functions and calls to them. --Tardis (talk) 02:11, 24 March 2015 (UTC)

All I want to know is if I have this code in one file: function getMoneyRate($location){10 + 5} How do I get the information of 10 + 5 to the other file based solely on what is seen in the code I just wrote. — Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 02:33, 24 March 2015 (UTC)

With a return statement? I said to return a value… --Tardis (talk) 13:38, 24 March 2015 (UTC)
This has nothing at all to do with "in one file" and "in another file". You apparently do not understand how to return a value from a function - even if the function and the rest of the code is in one file. You need to use the "return" statement to return the value from the function. Then, you can set a variable to the return value from the function. (talk) 13:52, 24 March 2015 (UTC)

I suggest reading Wikibooks: PHP Programming/Functions#Returning a value and Wikibooks: PHP Programming/PHP Include Files. If that doesn't make things clear, please make up 2 short files as an example of what you are trying to do -- example files that at least run and print something out, even if they don't print exactly the output you want -- and post those files with a more detailed question. You may get a quicker response by posting that question to Wikibooks: Talk:PHP Programming or (Stack Overflow) rather than to this reference desk. Once you've figured out this problem, please go back to Wikibooks: PHP Programming/Functions and make that book easier to understand for the next person. --DavidCary (talk) 16:02, 26 March 2015 (UTC)

March 24[edit]

Quest about jkflip flops and transition state diagramsg[edit]

_____So there are four inputs QdQcQbQa. I did the Karnaugh maps. But now how do I find the controls required by flip flops Jd Kd Jc Kc Jb Kb Ja Ka so that it goes to the next state. Lets say for example if Qa is the ones and Qd is the eights and we need to make a state transition table that also shows the controls required for the flip flops. and the counter is to the Fibonacci sequence from1 to 13 such that QdQcQbQa= 0001(one) to 2 (0010) , to 3 (0011), to 5 (0101) to 8 (1000) to 13 (1101), then repeat to 0001. how would one then create a state transition diagram then.

Note I do not understand what the teacher teaches in class because he teaches us things in backwards, unlike how it is suppose to be abcd he tells us that a is not the 8s but the ones a d is not the ones but the 8s.

The counter only uses a JK flip flop and no other type of flip flop.

Help? Please?Doorknob747 (talk) 00:15, 24 March 2015 (UTC)

I'm not sure I understand your statement of the problem, so I'll paraphrase. You have four flipflops, whose values at a given moment are the four Q bits. I assume the flipflops are "clocked" (if that's the word I want – it's been a long time since I thought about flipflops) by the counter input, so their JK inputs have no effect except when the counter triggers.
Each J and each K then depends only on the four Q bits, but 10 of the 16 values never happen, so there are many don't-cares in the Karnaugh map, which makes your logic simpler! The state transition graph is simply a cycle of the six Fibonacci values.
Before we go any further, please confirm that my paraphrase is accurate, and tell us what you've done so far. —Tamfang (talk) 07:41, 24 March 2015 (UTC)
Yes it is correct the paraphrasing that you just said. Doorknob747 (talk) 17:43, 24 March 2015 (UTC)
I will just comment here that there is no "right" association between the various flip-flops and bit values. Back in the day where we used flip-flops that came two to a 14- or 16-pin DIP, which flip-flop in which package was used for which bit was dictated more by what would make for a convenient printed circuit layout than any "obviously correct" relationship. The electrons don't care. Don't know where you learned that Qa is "supposed" to be the 1-valued bit, but there is no such association. You may be generalizing too much from an example you saw somewhere. I agree with you that Qa being the least significant bit makes more sense (if only because if in the future you add more bits, you don't have to re-assign all the others), but it's really just arbitrary. Jeh (talk) 10:03, 24 March 2015 (UTC)
Taking the first transition as an example, to make state 0001 change to 0010, the four JK inputs must make the four Q outputs do this: 0→0, 0→0, 0→1, 1→0 (that's Qd, Qc, Qb, Qa, respectively). Therefore the JK inputs have to be: 0x, 0x, 1x, x1 (again, d to a, where x = don't care), and those values are the result of the current state (0001). Repeating this approach for each of the defined states produces a table of JK values, and the control circuit consists of logic found from eight separate Karnaugh maps. As has been said, it does not make any difference whether the Q values are labeled ABCD or DCBA. Johnuniq (talk) 22:53, 24 March 2015 (UTC)
Do you care what happens if Q is not a Fibonacci number, e.g. if it's randomly initialized? —Tamfang (talk) 05:37, 25 March 2015 (UTC)
Now it is asking if one were to do it via a multipxer for Jd and Kd thru Ja and Ka and each gerated by using a multiplexer that is a 8 to 1 line multiplexer for each J and K controll. it says to write down the 8 input lines of each multiplxer, including alternatives. It says the least significant address lines is the ones and is connected to Qa and the most significant the fours, adress line is for each multiplexer is Qc. It states that Qb is connected to the twos adress lines in each case.

please helpDoorknob747 (talk) 16:29, 25 March 2015 (UTC)


Doesn't including a copy of the GNU General Public License (whose text cannot be modified) in a program make the program non-free? --Ricordisamoa 11:22, 24 March 2015 (UTC)

How do you define "free"? If you follow the definition provided by the Free Software Foundation (the same people who wrote the GNU General Public License), then releasing software using the GPL license is free. Other people may choose to use different definitions. Many people find that it is difficult to comply with license requirements of the GPL: they may choose to describe the requirements as "restrictive" of their freedoms, but that is in opposition to the way that the license uses the term.
Also, simply including the license text with the distribution may be legally distinct from actually licensing the software using this license. You may wish to consult an attorney on that point.
Nimur (talk) 15:20, 24 March 2015 (UTC)
OP, is what is being asked: if a package which includes the full text of the GPL (either as a text file within the package, or embedded within an executable, so for instance the user can run MyProgram --license), then this is one part of the package which someone distributing a modified version isn't allowed to modify. Is this fact compatible with the GPL which requires that people are able to distribute modified versions? davidprior t/c 22:52, 25 March 2015 (UTC)
Exactly, thanks for clarifying. --Ricordisamoa 03:48, 26 March 2015 (UTC)

All OSS software is free?[edit]

Is all open-source software freeware? I have seen some people sell OSS, but is this illegal? RocketMaster (talk) 13:38, 24 March 2015 (UTC)

Most common open source licences require that there are no restrictions on commercial usage of the source code, some would even suggest it's essential to be truly open source. So anyone is free to sell the software. However if it's a copyleft licence, then they would need to make their source code available, so anyone else is free to give it away for free, or sell it themselves. If it's not a copyleft licence, or if they otherwise include some proprietary code which is allowed by the licence, then it isn't completely open source any more. The more effective way to make money off truly open source software tends to be via offering support, which may include fixing bugs etc. Of course, since anyone is free to compete with you in doing so, you may need to make sure you offer value for money. (In practice, reputational inertia and luck, and other factors will likely still come in to play.) Nil Einne (talk) 13:45, 24 March 2015 (UTC)
One additional point I realised I forgot to mention. Even with copyleft licenced software, it may be possible for a proprietary version to exist. The copyleft licence will only affect those that need to obey the licence. Anyone who owns the copyright to the entire code can also licence it however they wish besides the copyleft licence. (I.E. the original programmers if they don't accept third party changes, or if they do but require copyright assignment.) So they could make a version which has additional stuff (or whatever) but is proprietary. But similar to the case of a non copyleft licence or other case where it was done in accordance with the licence, we aren't talking about selling an open source work any more, but instead selling a work which also has a version which is open source. Nil Einne (talk) 13:43, 28 March 2015 (UTC)
Richard Stallman's essay, Why Open Source misses the point of Free Software, explains the distinction from the perspective of the Free Software Foundation.
It is usually legal to sell free software and it is sometimes legal to sell open-source software. Among all the liabilities you must consider, you should carefully review the license terms for each piece of software. If you need more certainty about specific instances, you should consult an attorney. Nimur (talk) 15:25, 24 March 2015 (UTC)
See also Permissive_free_software_licence, MIT license, and BSD license. Have you heard people discuss "free as in freedom, not free as in beer?" If not, you could also read Gratis versus libre. Short answer: it is perfectly legal to sell many types of open source software. Each license works differently. Sometimes people sell support along with the software, other times they just charge a minimal fee for copying/distribution services. SemanticMantis (talk) 17:11, 24 March 2015 (UTC)
Almost all OSS licenses would allow someone to sell the software. However, many of those licenses generally require (or at least allow) that the source code for the software be available for use without restrictions - so the question is: Why anyone would buy software that they can get for free? Generally, they do that because they want convenience of packaging on DVD's or some simplified installation mechanism - or perhaps because after-sales service of some kind is offered.
The ikky grey area is when someone takes a piece of free software and modifies it in some manner before selling it.
With software licenses such as the GNU GPL, there is a requirement that someone who does this ALSO offers the source code with the modifications made to it to everyone who buys (or is given) that modified version. Clearly, the purchaser could then (perfectly legally) give the code away for free - so the guy who did the modifications might well only sell one or a few of that version before it would be 'out there' for people to get for free.
With other licenses, there is no such restriction - leaving open the possibility that an OSS package might be modified and slightly improved - and then sold commercially WITHOUT the source code and WITHOUT rights to redistribute. While the original version would still be available - a spiralling popularity of the modified version could become (in effect) "closed source". This has happened numerous times.
A good example of a company selling OSS code is with the Flightgear flight simulator package. It's free, you can just download it for Windows, Mac and Linux - it works great! Yet ProFlight is selling it for $49. There may be a few small changes made by the ProFlight people - but for sure, at least 99% of the code is OSS. They aren't breaking the law - but (IMHO), they are not playing nice with their customers.
SteveBaker (talk) 19:49, 24 March 2015 (UTC)

Simple GPS module[edit]

Is there a minimalistic GPS that's reliable and sensitive? I am trying to find something with just a button that outputs two coordinates. No maps, no routes no extras. If it is something that can be plugged to an electronic device (preferably through USB), than even better. Fend 83 (talk) 18:50, 24 March 2015 (UTC)

Maybe a GPS watch? This one from Garmin has no maps, but it does allow for wireless data transfer to a computer [2]. SemanticMantis (talk) 19:03, 24 March 2015 (UTC)
(REVISED!) THIS is a GPS module (costs $40) and THIS is an interface (costs $15) that plugs into an Arduino board (costs $5 to $30 depending on what you need and where you buy it from)...there is doubtless some kind of example code for it that would allow you to output the coordinates to USB. You'll need some minimal software skills to hook that up to a push-button - but it's not rocket science. The whole thing could run on batteries or get power from the USB. SteveBaker (talk) 19:33, 24 March 2015 (UTC)
Yes that's what I wanted exactly. The watch recommendation above might be a fine product, but kind of pricey and let's you little flexibility to adapt it to your needs. Fend 83 (talk) 21:24, 24 March 2015 (UTC)

March 25[edit]

Software Sought[edit]

When it comes to creating, editing/modifying, amending/updating a photo/image, graphics, animation, web design, what is the only one serious industry standard option(s) that most professionals use. -- (SuperGirlsVibrator (talk) 06:30, 25 March 2015 (UTC))

What makes you think there's only one ? StuRat (talk) 06:37, 25 March 2015 (UTC)
I recently found out that you can use a software to create little video clips for web pages (Amara - Flash Menu Builder)... I'm wondering and hoping to be honest, one that/each would have all the facilities, so that I never change the software and only use its updated versions... If not, whatever the industrial people use in order to create what's aforementioned. I can get the CDs here where I am. I wanna buy everything i.e required and keep'em for future use... -- (SuperGirlsVibrator (talk) 09:02, 25 March 2015 (UTC))
In computer software, there is no such thing as an "industry standard." Every company claims that what they do is the standard, but that is just business people blowing rainbows out their ass to make everyone feel warm and fuzzy. Take videos - what kind? Animated GIFs? I can make animated GIFs in a plethora of programs. None of them are standard. You want a MP4 video? I can make an MP4 video with anything from my phone to pasting a series of stills together with a command-line program. There is no standard. It comes down to what is supported. Pick a program that people who can talk to also use. They can support you. If you pick the most expensive program on the market, but nobody you know uses it, you won't be able to figure it out. (talk) 14:36, 25 March 2015 (UTC)
I feel like a victim...(lol) Good advice, thank you. -- (SuperGirlsVibrator (talk) 20:58, 25 March 2015 (UTC))
I have Autodesk 3ds Maya 2013, uninstalled, I done a bit of research, some say only the 'Maya' some say only the 3ds, a slight difference in functionality, one has this(Maya - more editing tools of ___________) and the other has that (3ds - something to do with AutoCAD; more editing tools of ___________)...
I do wish to create animation, knowing the things what they do in Disney is beyond my imagination and my capability, I don't know what software is the easiest. According to my imagination, I would prefer an image scanned, inserted in the software, manipulate it from their inwards...
Can you suggest me anything, please? -- (SuperGirlsVibrator (talk) 20:58, 25 March 2015 (UTC)) I went on a look out today, the advice you provided, no one has such interest as mine. Wikipedians are my only friends... I did meet one person a while back, who was suppose to be some kind of a far distant cousin, who gave me Sublime Text and some videos with it... -- (SuperGirlsVibrator (talk) 19:17, 26 March 2015 (UTC))
I can get the CDs here where I am. I wanna buy everything i.e required and keep'em for future use
If you you go and get all these CD's, then tomorrow morning will wake up to find 5% is already obsolete. In two years time you might find you have a find collection of drink coasters. S-L-O-W__D-O-W-N. (discalmer: Have draw fulls old CD's, Floppy's, Magnetic Tape, Punched tape, etc. that I thought, that one day, they would be useful.... Even got a collection of some books! --Aspro (talk) 19:01, 25 March 2015 (UTC)--Aspro (talk) 19:01, 25 March 2015 (UTC)
You are right, I'll take a break tomorrow (again), and rethink about my life and its goals. I wish to do a lot of things, but truly, I don't have the brain, money, time and facility. I know for a fact I'll get back to my addiction the moment I go back home. I just wanted to make my time useful while I'm in a different country... I'm doing something and this takes my day and night. I've been lagging for the last two month. For the last two day's I've been playing 'the legend of korra' though, awesome game (story is rubbish, the only thing i.e. good, she can bend the elements... And it works in my computer for some reason...)!
"S-L-O-W__D-O-W-N." - Thanks you for the smack in the back of my head buddy Sert - happy smile.svg -- (SuperGirlsVibrator (talk) 20:58, 25 March 2015 (UTC))

Video downloader[edit]

The Youtube downloader seems to restrict me from downloading video clips from certain webpages. Is there a video downloader which will not restrict me from downloading from any websites and possibly possess such facilites as youtube's (coverter and so on), even more...? -- (SuperGirlsVibrator (talk) 09:07, 25 March 2015 (UTC))

There are a lot of programs called "Youtube downloader", so I'm not sure which one you're using. In any case, I don't think it's blocking any web sites; it probably just doesn't support them. Every video streaming site is different, and someone has to figure out how to make the downloader work with each one, and fix it whenever the site changes in a way that breaks the old method. -- BenRG (talk) 09:17, 25 March 2015 (UTC)
YTD Video Downloader v4.8.9 (20.150.129).
So what do you suggest? Shall I download installers until I find the one works? -- (SuperGirlsVibrator (talk) 20:53, 25 March 2015 (UTC))
You could try youtube-dl. It's free and open-source and supports hundreds of sites (versus YTD's 50+). If you want a GUI for it you could try this one. -- BenRG (talk) 22:27, 25 March 2015 (UTC)
A site instead of a program, but I've had good luck with . Only supports 57 sites at the moment, but doesn't require any downloading except the actual file.
I remember reading a while back that VLC Media Player can also download pretty much any streaming video, but it requires digging through the page's code to get the information from the player, and I never bothered with it myself. Ian.thomson (talk) 22:55, 25 March 2015 (UTC)
I use Freemake Video Downloader, Bubba73 You talkin' to me? 01:21, 26 March 2015 (UTC)
Thanks guys, I'm gonna check it out now/soon... -- (SuperGirlsVibrator (talk) 19:15, 26 March 2015 (UTC))


Can I arrange for iTunes to open automatically when I switch on my Mac desk-top please? If so, how? (talk) 17:33, 25 March 2015 (UTC)

If you have iTunes icon on your dock you can right click the icon and under options you can selected run on login. If you don't have it on your dock in System Preferences select Users & Groups. Select your account and then Login Items then press the + icon and then find iTunes which should be in your Application folder. Dja1979 (talk) 19:07, 25 March 2015 (UTC)
Also if you do not close iTunes it will start itself after a power up. But you cannot leave it open all the time, as it gets updates and then you will have to quit it. Graeme Bartlett (talk) 23:07, 25 March 2015 (UTC)

Bit logic and state diagrams homework (part 2)[edit]

Now it is asking if one were to do it via a multipxer for Jd and Kd thru Ja and Ka and each gerated by using a multiplexer that is a 8 to 1 line multiplexer for each J and K controll. it says to write down the 8 input lines of each multiplxer, including alternatives. It says the least significant address lines is the ones and is connected to Qa and the most significant the fours, adress line is for each multiplexer is Qc. It states that Qb is connected to the twos adress lines in each see one question i asked before. please helpDoorknob747 (talk) 16:29, 25 March 2015 (UTC)

  • I changed the title to one that's actually useful. StuRat (talk) 18:36, 25 March 2015 (UTC)

please look at the last paragraph plese help (UTC)18:32, 25 March 2015 (UTC)Doorknob747 (talk)

What the reference desk is not:
“The reference desk is not a service that will do homework for others. It should be made clear to questioners
that we will give assistance in interpreting questions, help with ideas and concepts, and attempt to point them
to resources that might help them to complete their tasks, but that in the end they should do the actual work themselves.”

--Aspro (talk) 22:06, 25 March 2015 (UTC)
I suggest the OP read Multiplexer, State diagram and Boolean algebra. Graeme Bartlett (talk) 23:12, 25 March 2015 (UTC)
But, it does say on the top of this page that they will help you past the stuck point, so I am at a stuck point. If the desk does not do this then there is no reason for this desk, why do not we put this page up for speedy deletion due to its uselessness in fulfilling all of its responsibilities. And I did read this pages they did not help me much at all. Doorknob747 (talk) 01:01, 26 March 2015 (UTC)
Where are you stuck? What don't you know what to do, or what don't you understand? The only question I see is "Help?" which is not very specific. Graeme Bartlett (talk) 04:55, 26 March 2015 (UTC)
Is it possible to upload or link to the circuit diagram you are asking about? You need to be logged in to do so. Or are you asking about the conditions when a JK changes it's output "Q"? Simply said, a JK is a latch only. "Jump" sets and "Kill" resets Q. A multiplexer 8-to-3 sets one of the outputs active, pending on the 3 bit data value on it's input in the hex oder decimal values 0…7 are 8 posibilities. Which multiplexer is it? Some are low-active as negative logic, some usual high active. Bilateral switching mutiplexers have a common signal pin which is connected to the selected output pin by enableing FETs. Mutiplexers have also an enable and select pin, some in negative logic. You need to enable these to operate the output pins. --Hans Haase (有问题吗) 13:59, 26 March 2015 (UTC)

March 26[edit]

Dropbox String-Matching Algorithm[edit]

Dear Wikipedians:

I used to search for my pictures and videos by doing "2014-04" to pull up all all pictures and videos in April, 2014 for example. This used to work beautifully.

Today I did the same search again, and finds that Dropbox is breaking the 2014 and 04 apart and coming up with many irrelevant results such as 2014-05-03 12.04.05.jpg!!! It's driving me nuts!!!

How do I get the old, exact string-matching algorithm back?

Thanks! (talk) 13:52, 26 March 2015 (UTC)

I added a title OldTimeNESter (talk) 13:57, 26 March 2015 (UTC)
Thanks! OP (talk) 15:16, 26 March 2015 (UTC)
To clarify, are you doing the search within Dropbox or using an external search tool, such as Google, with the "" clause ? (If not, try using Google that way and see if it works any better.) StuRat (talk) 06:19, 27 March 2015 (UTC)
Thanks StuRat for your response. I am doing the search within Dropbox and it seems that recently they have changed the algorithm behind their filename-searching and matching. (talk) 01:11, 28 March 2015 (UTC)
OK. Did you try Google, as suggested ? (Annoyingly, Google also feels free to change how their search works, often making it worse, without telling anyone, but hopefully they didn't mess up this yet.) StuRat (talk) 01:54, 28 March 2015 (UTC)
Just tried it, it doesn't work. The search either returned public Dropbox corporate documents, or returned nothing (with the search string "" clause. But thanks for all your help! (talk) 20:21, 28 March 2015 (UTC)
Oh! What a joy! The search algorithm reverted to the old one! (talk) 20:28, 28 March 2015 (UTC)

March 27[edit]

TinyCore Linux[edit]


I am trying to get Tiny Core Linux v.6.1 up and running.

The PC is a Dell Optiplex 740 that boots and runs Tails (operating system) from a DVD or USB drive just fine, so I know the the BIOS is set properly.

TinyCore boots from a DVD that I made from a downloadable ISO, but instead of a GUI I get the shell/command prompt. Here is what I tried:

 tc@box: ls
 tc@box: pwd
 tc@box: startx
 -sh: startx: not found
 tc@box: tci
 -sh: tci: not found
 tc@box: tc-install
 -sh: tc-install: not found

The tci and tc-install setup commands are from this page.

I can move around the file system and ls the usual files in the usual places solscommand just shows that /home/tc is empty.

I tried both TinyCore and CorePlus downloaded from here

This looks like a really interesting distro to play around with (9MB command line, 15MB GUI!) if I can only get the installer working and put it on my (preformatted with ext2) thumb drive.

Somehow I just can't stop thinking that I am missing something blindingly obvious. --CypherPunkyBrewster (talk) 00:40, 27 March 2015 (UTC)

The tinycore FAQ has a section "Help X does not start. Why does my system boot up to a login prompt?" Does that help?-gadfium 22:52, 27 March 2015 (UTC)

Reboot Android to Safe Mode[edit]

  • Pipo m9pro wifi
  • Android 4.2.2 (rooted)

Something's wrong with my tablet. The popup dialog box says "Unfortunately, the process has stopped". I clicked OK. The dialog pops up within a second over and over.

I can't select reboot to safe mode because of that noisy dialog box.

I can't press volume + and - together to enter safe mode because this tablet does not have these two buttons. It only has ESC and power. I can only press the power button for several seconds to turn off the tablet. When I turn on the tablet again, it gives me the same dialog boxes.

What can I do to enter safe mode?

I am using this tablet mainly as a book reader. I can do factory reset. It's just I can't do anything now except for press OK. This tablet is not a phone. I am more than pleased to disable if I could. I am more than pleased to disable most of the crap put into the system by Google. -- Toytoy (talk) 09:58, 27 March 2015 (UTC)

According to this information there could be a reset hole on the side of the device which you can press with a paperclip. You might find that a short press will do a 'soft reset' - basically just power off and on again - while a long press (5 or 10 seconds) will do a 'hard reset'. If that doesn't work, there are instructions here (under 'WHAT TO DO IF FLASHING GOES WRONG') that require connecting a PC but seem to offer hope for re-flashing the ROM (i.e. resetting the firmware). - Cucumber Mike (talk) 12:04, 27 March 2015 (UTC)

Deinstalled a game but I still lost 7GB of total space...[edit]

I installed The Elder Scrolls:Skyrim after purchasing it on Steam, which left me with 93GB free on hard drive. It took up 7GB of space. Then I deinstalled it via "Delete local content" but still only have 93GB available. I even went into SteamApps and deleted its file there, but that didn't help. Where are these 7 worthless GB and how can I delete them? (talk) 12:06, 27 March 2015 (UTC)

In my experience, a Disk Defrag actually frees up disk space (sometimes). You can also use CCleaner (which is free). That should clean most of the content which is remaining. KägeTorä - () (もしもし!) 12:28, 27 March 2015 (UTC)
TFC (temp file cleaner) does a better job.[3] Depending on your OS you may have saved game files in your Documents folder or in your User folder. -- Gadget850 talk 13:16, 27 March 2015 (UTC)
Obvious but worth mentioning: Did you check the recycle bin? Are you sure the free space hadn't dropped to 86GB for some unrelated reason before you deleted Skyrim?
If there is a System Restore point from when the game was installed, that might prevent the space from being marked as free, but I'm not sure that's how free-space accounting works with System Restore.
WinDirStat or a similar utility will tell you which folders are using the most disk space (it will not see System-Restore-related disk space, though). -- BenRG (talk) 18:03, 27 March 2015 (UTC)
Defrag never conquers free disk space, is only moves blocks, a prefefined number of sectors, to anoter place of the disk to line up the whole file for accessing it at once. When ever it would result of recompressing uncompressed files, if ever the program an filesystem support this. More likely is freeing file fragments of inconsitent file systems. Such is to repair with the chkdsk command.
Games save you score, custom settings and some games inclde an editors to create own parts of the game. Online games need to store information about your game user identity to prevent cheating or store bought or achieved virtual items or keys to acces them on the games manufacturers server. See waht information and values are behind that if any and know this information will be stored on the computer's user profile as your data if not explicit removed. --Hans Haase (有问题吗) 12:51, 28 March 2015 (UTC)
Does Steam keep the installer file after you've installed the game (and then uninstalled it)? LongHairedFop (talk) 13:08, 28 March 2015 (UTC)
I have Steam, and Steam does not move anything to the recycle bin when deleting local content. I still recommend CCleaner and also Advanced System Care. Also, check your AppData folder for anything remaining. I can't check it now, because I am on a Mac at the moment. When I get back to my PC, I can do it, but that will be a bit later on. KägeTorä - () (もしもし!) 13:30, 28 March 2015 (UTC)
In my experience, the file system on current Macs will only notice removed files when the recycle bin is emptied, even if files are removed with rm and never show up in the bin. I don't know how or why that is, but I've observed this more than once. --Stephan Schulz (talk) 16:18, 28 March 2015 (UTC)
Sometimes after deinstalling a Steam game, I find that there isn't a noticeable gain in harddrive space until after I restart my computer. Ian.thomson (talk) 16:23, 28 March 2015 (UTC)

power point[edit]

how can one design a linking power point to the web — Preceding unsigned comment added by Aine Prosper (talkcontribs) 12:21, 27 March 2015 (UTC)

See this article. -- Gadget850 talk 13:18, 27 March 2015 (UTC)

Adding whitespace to pdfs in adobe[edit]

I have been sent a scanned PDF document that has text too close to the edge at the page at the top (it will be cutoff if I print and I don't want to reduce the size). So, I was wondering if there was a way to add whitespace to the top of the page, sort of the opposite of cropping whitespace. This is a multiple page document. I can think of some ways to do it and would if it was one or two pages, like printing, then scanning with the page moved a little bit down on the scanner. I suppose I could even convert to an image and move the image down in an image program then covert back to a pdf, but:

I was wondering if there is a direct way to do this with adobe acrobat professional (for mac)? Thanks in advance, even if the answer is you can't.-- (talk) 14:19, 27 March 2015 (UTC)

You may have more luck searching for "add margin" rather than "add whitespace". This thread seems to answer your question. -- BenRG (talk) 18:07, 27 March 2015 (UTC)
Thank you Ben. Unfortunately, while I did find the right place to do what I wanted from that discussion, when I try it gives me the message "Page size may not be reduced". No idea why. Oh well.-- (talk) 21:04, 27 March 2015 (UTC)
I feel quite certain that ImageMagick can do what you want. You can use it to convert the PDF file into images and use -crop, -repage, -resize, or some other options to process the images, then convert the processed images back into a PDF file. (The tool supports a large number of options, so you will probably need to do some research to find the right method to get the result you need.) -- (talk) 02:00, 28 March 2015 (UTC)
You could embed the PDF pages into a LaTeX document with \usepackage{graphicx} and \includegraphics[width=\textwidth, height=\textheigth]{pageX}, and process the thing with pdftex. You can adjust and move the printable area of the document with appropriate (La)TeX magic if the default has to large margins. --Stephan Schulz (talk) 19:26, 28 March 2015 (UTC)

One article redirecting to another one![edit]

I've found quite a few Wikipedia articles that redirect to something else unrelated. Wrex The Robo-Dog and Regretsy are two i could find. Sorry if i posted this in the wrong category, but someone needs to explain this to me. RocketMaster (talk) 19:28, 27 March 2015 (UTC)

April_Winchell#Internet explains why Regretsy redirects there. You could change the redirect to that specific section if you like. I don't know whether there's ever been a WP page for the Regretsy web site. It may or may not be notable enough for inclusion in the encyclopedia. So in the mean time, someone has redirected that name to the coverage that is available on WP, rather than having a less helpful redlink. Roko's basilisk is in a similar situation. SemanticMantis (talk) 19:35, 27 March 2015 (UTC)
But, what about Wrex, the animated robotic dog? It's a toy. It redirects to something about Teen Titans. RocketMaster (talk) 19:41, 27 March 2015 (UTC)
"Wrex The Robo-Dog" is redlinked - there is a robot dog of that name that one can buy from WowWee, so that might be a good target, and Robo-Dog redirects to List of LazyTown episodes (probably due to the reference to a "vicious robotic dog" on that page). Which is the redirect that's causing the problem? (This might be a better question for the Help Desk (WP:HD), incidentally.) Tevildo (talk) 19:44, 27 March 2015 (UTC)
I'm having problems with Wrex the Robo-Dog. That one redirects to Johnny Rancid. I have no idea why. RocketMaster (talk) 19:48, 27 March 2015 (UTC)
I'm afraid I can't help with this particular issue, as the page in question doesn't even have an entry for Johnny Rancid. Perhaps a Teen Titans expert can assist? Incidentally, to make a factual correction to my previous post, WowWee's product is Wrex The Dawg™, not "Wrex The Robo-Dog". Tevildo (talk) 19:54, 27 March 2015 (UTC)
OK! Research has indicated that Mr Rancid and his dog appear in "Can I Keep Him?" (Season 3, Episode 10) - see List of Teen Titans Episodes. I think we may be slightly under the WP:GNG threshold at this point, and a more appropriate redirect target could be found. Tevildo (talk) 20:04, 27 March 2015 (UTC)

March 28[edit]

Wireless Module Not Found at Workplace[edit]

Hello. Each time I start up my laptop (HP dv6-2138ca running Windows 7) at my workplace, a black screen appears and claims "Wireless Module Not Found" then I continue to my Starting Windows screen. I cannot connect to my workplace wifi as a result. However, I have no difficulty finding wi-fi connections at home. What is wrong with my laptop? Thanks in advance. --Mayfare (talk) 03:27, 28 March 2015 (UTC)

One possibility is that they have extra security at work, and your laptop is denied access. StuRat (talk) 06:19, 28 March 2015 (UTC)
That would be a different message. Dbfirs 17:43, 28 March 2015 (UTC)
Looks like this is a BIOS message indicating the laptop does not sense the wireless module is physically installed. Seems like a fairly common issue.[4] A hard reset fixes this in some cases.[5] There are recommendations to do a system restore, but that does not make sense, as the error occurs before Windows ever starts. -- Gadget850 talk 07:53, 28 March 2015 (UTC)

Internet infrastructure and nuclear war[edit]

Is the internet infrastructure nowadays able to survive an atomic war? Wouldn't it be cheaper to have big nodes processing the traffic, instead of a distributed network? Noopolo (talk) 15:51, 28 March 2015 (UTC)

If there was a nuclear war, I think the last thing people will be worried about is the internet. However, as the internet operates mainly on underground cables, many cables would still be in operation, as the entire planet would not be carpet bombed by nuclear weapons. Some servers would be destroyed, but others would still exist, and connections between areas which have not been bombed may still be possible (e.g. Nauru and Tahiti). KägeTorä - () (もしもし!) 17:45, 28 March 2015 (UTC)
I think people would be extremely interested in the internet after a nuclear war, as it might be the only way remaining to get information (like where the radiation danger is the least) and contact distant relatives. Then, long term, there's the preservation of human knowledge to be used to rebuild civilization. StuRat (talk) 18:57, 28 March 2015 (UTC)
:Ah. But would our hardware survive the multiple EMP's. What's the good of an intact optic-fiber cable network when nothing above ground (that can connect to it) works? --Aspro (talk) 21:11, 28 March 2015 (UTC)


March 24[edit]

Follow on from Fluorescent Lamps question above[edit]

The OP states "turning on a fluorescent lamp requires a large energy use". I found this thought odd so I googled "do fluorescent lights use more energy to turn on" (sans quotes) and I got a lot of hits from seemingly reliable sources that this is a myth. So my question is: what gave rise to this misconception? (talk) 13:19, 24 March 2015 (UTC)

To my knowledge, it has never been the case that turning on a fluorescent lamp required that much of an energy spike. If you had a massive factory with thousands of bulbs, I am sure you would notice a major spike. In a home with 1 or 2 bulbs, it isn't much of anything. The catch is that old bulbs broke down a little every time they were turned on. So, turning them off and on shortened their life. It was also a bit rough on the ballast. Personally, I replaced ballasts more than bulbs when I worked in a theater in which the bulbs were turned off at the start of every movie and turned on at the end. (talk) 14:08, 24 March 2015 (UTC)
It is not so much a misconception as poor understanding of the sources you googled. In order for the gas in the florescent tube to conduct electricity it has to ionize. Mains voltage alone can not achieve this in a florescent lamp. Therefore the luminescent fixture contains a circuit which incorporates a 'ballast' or choke. Upon starting, the ballast windings create a magnetic field. When the ballast is connected to the tube (via the starter) that magnetic field collapses and all that energy within it is dumped into the tube – so striking the arc. So as watt = joule / second, then yes - they do indeed require more energy to start but it is the volts that do it.--Aspro (talk) 17:50, 26 March 2015 (UTC)

Star life cycles[edit]

Stellar evolution of low-mass (left cycle) and high-mass (right cycle) stars, with examples in italics

Hi all! After drawing this graphic, I wondered if I got it right, particularly whether red dwarfs form directly from nebulae or from protostars. Next, where do brown dwarfs fit in — do they start from protostars and end as white dwarfs? Thanks, cmɢʟeeτaʟκ 13:32, 24 March 2015 (UTC)

Brown dwarfs are explained here. They are low mass stellar objects that don't have enough mass to undergo hydrogen fusion. They will not form white dwarfsDja1979 (talk) 15:00, 24 March 2015 (UTC)
Who did you create this image for, people who wish to learn/know about stars or people who already know about it...? The whole thing looks like a mess to me, I wish to understand it simply, but beautifully. In other words, work is fine but confusing. Star forming nebula do have colourful stars by the way, can be seen with some UV specs... What colour is it? - Recalling (not sure), pink (active), grey outside, little pink inside (dead)... You have to find out I don't know it well...
Btw, what software did you use to create this picture?
(SuperGirlsVibrator (talk) 20:28, 28 March 2015 (UTC))

Light Refraction[edit]

This question was originally posted to the Help Desk. Robert McClenon (talk) 15:26, 24 March 2015 (UTC)

I am trying to find out what color will you get if you place a red filter over a red object and have searched the internet trying to find out to no avail. My question comes because I was told that if you place a red filter over a red object it will appear white for one red cancels the other. Boxy22 (talk) 09:35, 24 March 2015 (UTC)

There's some annoying imprecision in the language about filters, as explained here. Usually a phrase like "red filter" is interpreted to mean a filter that passes red light, and so a red object through a red filter is red. But sometimes, especially with "UV filter", it can mean one that blocks that color. In that rare instance, which I'd tend to think of as a misuse of the term, a red object hypothetically could appear entirely black because all its red light is blocked. However... no filter is absolute, the shoulders are often very wide, and since we're speaking of the intersection of what is filtered out by reflecting off the red object and what passes through the red filter (which includes some red light) I think what you see could be red, orange, yellow, even white ... it's hard to say because you're multiplying two entire absorption curves and seeing your eyes' overall determination of the dominant colors of what is left. Wnt (talk) 16:22, 24 March 2015 (UTC)
I would think that white and blue would be the colours you would not expect to see, but I agree with Wnt's comments about imprecise language and filters that can be surprisingly wide. In most cases, you will see red because red light is reflected from the object and is passed by the filter. Cancelling might happen if the filter is red-blocking (looks cyan) and just happens to block the exact extra red light reflected by the object, but even then your eye is unlikely to interpret the result as white, more probably a muddy grey. Where does refraction come in? Perhaps you are confusing filters with prisms where you can split up light then recombine it to get white. Dbfirs 16:53, 24 March 2015 (UTC)

Another question on brown dwarfs[edit]

What does [Kulkarni] mean in the lithium burning article? The page cites no sources by Kulkarni or by anyone else. (talk) 15:32, 24 March 2015 (UTC)

It is an incorrectlty-formatted citation that had existed for about eight years! Regrettably, I don't recognize the source, so I can't independently verify it. The name shows up in references for a few related articles, e.g. Brown dwarf, but it's a ton of work to track down a hypothetical ... from one name alone. We can more easily find alternate sources. If I were going to look for an alternate replacement source, I'd pull out my copy of de Pater & Lissauer: Planetary Sciences, which has great content on stellar evolution. Perhaps later today I can re-source that article. Nimur (talk) 15:44, 24 March 2015 (UTC)

White dwarf / Chandrasekhar limit questions[edit]

All this star talk reminds me that there are still essentials of white dwarf and Chandrasekhar limit that I don't understand. It is clear enough to me that there is electron degeneracy pressure because electrons can't have the same quantum state (whyever that is, the Pauli exclusion principle as observed). The tighter you press plasma together, the faster the electrons have to move. At a certain point, they move so fast that instead the pressure drives them to electron capture. But...

1. What says how much faster an electron has to move than its neighbors, or at how much of an angle relative to them, in order to get its own quantum state? (Fermi sea is less than informative for me, at least...)

2. When the Chandrasekhar limit is reached, that indicates that electron capture has become a feasible process. Is this determined by kinetics (how close you have to jam electrons and protons before they meet often enough to become neutrons) or thermodynamics (the electrons at this point are moving just fast enough to make neutrons lower energy than proton + relativistic electron)?

3. Above I assume it's protons that interact, based only on the name "neutron star", but presumably white dwarfs should be largely helium. Is it actually helium nuclei that capture the electrons?

4. Our article Chandrasekhar limit references the Tolman–Oppenheimer–Volkoff limit where neutron degeneracy pressure fails as sort of the next step on, but our article on neutron stars has a cute figure with a number of intermediate levels between white dwarf matter and quark-gluon plasma as one looks deeper and deeper into the neutron star. Oddly, there are no "just pure neutrons" layers listed, which makes me wonder if the TOV limit is just an approximation, something that doesn't purely happen? Are there more precise limits for explaining when each type of nucleus in the white dwarf breaks down by electron capture, or something?

Wnt (talk) 16:14, 24 March 2015 (UTC)

A question what says how much faster an electron has to move than its neighbors, or at how much of an angle relative to them? can only be answered indirectly in the framework of quantuum mechanics. Indeed, the way the quantum mechanics is prsently understood, the electrons are (a) indistinguishable and (b) can not be described by an exact value of the velocity vector in any spatiotemporally local sense. We can, however, make an oversimplified mental picture of electrons that (i) do not interact electrostatically with each-other and with the ions, and (ii) are confined to some hypothetical unit volume with impenetrable walls surrounding it. Electrons under such hypothetical conditions can assume single-electron states that look like resonator modes of that unit volume (that is, standing waves), two per mode because they are spin 1/2 fermions. At relatively low temperatures, single-electron modes will be filled from the ground up to the Fermi energy. The full (many-electron) state will be a fully anti-symmetric combination of all the single-electron states. If you do the math right, you will find that the extensive quantities (internal energy, entropy) in this model indeed come out extensive, that is, depend linearly on the volume for a given free electron density. Pressure, therefore, will depend on the free electron density but not on the (hypothetical) unit volume. Good! When free electron have a temperature, and the temperature - in energy units - is much lower than the Fermi energy, the most energetic occupied single-electron free electron states will have energy close to the Fermi energy. As you increase the temperature, chances of higher-energy free electron states to be occupied will increase as well. Does this help? --Dr Dima (talk) 17:30, 24 March 2015 (UTC)
(1) I don't know if you can understand fermion degeneracy in the particle picture. If you think of the electrons as waves, then the waves have to be orthogonal in spacetime. Classically, the Nyquist rate is analogous, I think. The number of independent samples you can encode in a signal with a maximum frequency is the same as the number of fermions you can pack into that space with a maximum energy (in the absence of any forces). (Edit: retracting my answers to 2-4 because I'm not knowledgeable about this.) -- BenRG (talk) 20:08, 24 March 2015 (UTC)
(1) As others have said, each electron needs to have its own quantum mode. In three dimensions, each mode can be described by three integer wave numbers, n_x, n_y, n_z such that the energy of each particle is:
E_{n_x,n_y,n_z} = E_0 + \frac{\hbar^2 \pi^2}{2m V^{2 / 3}} \left( n_x^2 + n_y^2 + n_z^2\right)
and where the integer indices are unique for each electron. For a system with a very large number of particles, this implies that some of the particles must have very large indices and be extremely energetic. In a degenerate Fermi gas, the most energetic particle will have energy approximately equal to the Fermi energy:
E_F = \frac{\hbar^2}{2m} \left( \frac{3 \pi^2 N}{V} \right)^{2/3}
Which depends only on the particle number density.
(2-3) These questions are premised on a mistake. The Chandrasekhar limit doesn't exist because of some other process taking over. It exists because there is a maximum mass sustainable by electron degeneracy period. Think of it this way, a star's radius can be described as a function of it's mass, R(M). As you add mass, the gravity increases, which increases the central density. For a normal star, sustained by nuclear fusion, increasing the central density will increase the rate of fusion, make the star hotter, and cause its radius to increase. Hence, most stars exhibit R(M) \propto M^x for some index x, typically between 0.5 and 1. However, in a white dwarf, the electron degeneracy pressure doesn't increase very quickly as mass increases. The end result is that radius decreases with increasing mass. It turns out that the combination of the relativistic electron degeneracy pressure and the Lane–Emden equation (governing pressure-density relationships in gravitational objects) predicts that for a finite mass the radius the white dwarf goes to zero, i.e. R(M_{Chandrasekhar}) = 0. If white dwarfs were an ideal Fermi gas, they would collapse into a black hole at the Chandrasekhar limit. Of course, they aren't ideal Fermi gases, but rather real stars made of atoms. The result is that as the collapse begins the increased density and temperature reaches helium fusion temperatures and the star detonates as a type Ia supernova.
(4) White dwarfs never become neutron stars because the supernova detonation intervenes. Neutron stars are heavily enriched in neutrons compared to ordinary matter (e.g. >10 times as many neutrons as protons), but they aren't pure neutron objects. A dynamic equilibrium exists between neutrons and protons / electrons depending on pressure and temperature. Dragons flight (talk) 21:47, 24 March 2015 (UTC)

Thanks for some great answers! I'll start unpacking @Dragons flight:.

(1) The difference in energy seems recognizable as the classic 1/2 m v2, where v is the momentum divided by the mass of the electron. That gives the 1/2m part; the sum of squares is vector addition for momenta in three dimensions; and the remaining part, the quantization, is Planck's constant h (unreduced) divided by the length - assuming that V is a cube, that is. I assume the cubical star is something of an approximation. :) This is the same as the momentum of a photon with a wavelength equal to the length of the cube. (But the angular momentum of a photon measured along its axis is h/ 2 pi rather than a length) Going a bit "out there", the subjective feeling I'm getting from this is that for each quantum state you have to string some distinct number of h's of momentum/angular momentum around some sort of loop to define it. Pushing the electrons together shortens the loop, and so the amount of momentum at each part of the loop increases, i.e. the pressure and observed momentum increases.

(2) This part is where I go off the rails. I've seen the phrasing that degeneracy pressure 'can't sustain' more than a certain force, yet the math from (1) shows an energy that clearly goes to infinity as V goes to zero. It doesn't make sense to me that you can press something together and create infinite energy; that's why I'm thinking some other process has to interfere (and can find sufficient energy to do so).

(3-4) It makes sense that the helium nuclei simply undergo fusion and set off the supernova; yet in a neutron star itself, the outer layers are something like white dwarf material, so it should be possible to find a continuous gradient... I think. The article is a bit vague about whether the outer layers are all iron nuclei or hydrogen and helium; actually I find myself wondering if there could be a long period of ongoing fusion near the surface of the neutron star. But I suppose it makes sense that at least the bottom layer of nuclei has to be iron, and so the iron nuclei ought to be what (if there is gradually accretion on top of it) would have to give way to capture the electrons? In which case... they aren't iron nuclei anymore, and should undergo more nuclear reactions. Hmmm. I wonder just how complicated this ecosystem really is! Wnt (talk) 02:44, 25 March 2015 (UTC)

Thinking about it further, I realize that we're saying the momentum between electrons has to differ by h/ V1/3. We know the position of the electrons is within the star, and so by the Heisenberg uncertainty principle the momentum cannot be measured more accurately than this amount. So the fundamental limit here is that not only do the electrons have to be in different quantum states - they have to be in measurably different states. It's funny though... a principle that I tend to think of as something you can't observe under a microscope would seem to be holding up the surface of a star. The article on electron degeneracy pressure makes this point, but ... it isn't very comprehensible where it does so. Wnt (talk) 11:27, 25 March 2015 (UTC)
Yep, the cubical star approximation.  ;-)
Yes, the particle energy goes to infinity as V -> 0, but the gravitational binding energy also goes to infinity as V -> 0. In fact, black holes have lots of infinities lying around. Let's look at it a different way. It takes thermodynamic work to compress a gas. In the isothermal limit, that work is W = P\, dV. The gravitational energy liberated by compressing a star is proportional to {G M^2 \over R^2}\, dR. A star is unstable towards gravitational collapse if the gravitational energy liberated by shrinking would exceed the work required to compress it. In that case, the internal energy of the star is increasing, but that increase is driven entirely by the energy liberated by gravitational collapse. The star's size naturally seeks out a local minimum state of total energy (internal energy - gravitational potential energy), by balancing the tension between the desire to collapse under gravity and the work required to further compress the star. For certain combinations of mass and temperature (e.g. white dwarfs above the Chandrasekar limit) no local minima in total energy exists except for the one associated with collapsing into a black hole. During that collapse other processes do intervene, i.e. helium fusion, but the primary effect is that the electron degeneracy pressure grows too slowly (P\propto \rho^{4/3}) for the work required to compress the star to effectively oppose the energy gained from infalling mass. Dragons flight (talk) 22:58, 25 March 2015 (UTC)

Star Trek and Science[edit]

Dear Ladies and Gentlemen.

It has come to my attention that many people claim, that the tv shows of the franchise Star Trek are supposed to be scientifically accurate. Even famous scientists like Neil deGrasse Tyson has touted the shows for their "scientific literacy". I have never seen Star Trek until very recently (I am from a different culture, Star Trek isn't as popular here as it is in the United States, in the UK or in Germany) but grew up with the books of various hard science fiction authors like Stanislaw Lem, Arthur C. Clarke and Herbert Werner Franke. Given that I am currently studying physics, it seems to me, that some of the Star Trek shows lack even some very basic knowledge about science. There are episodes, where the crew of Captain Picard encounters planets, that are colder (Theta 116 has a surface temperature of -291 °C. -291 °C is below absolute zero (-273.15 °C)) than the lowest possible temperatures and older than our universe (the same planet's age is estimated to be 7.2*10^10 or 72 billion earth years old; far older than the universe itself). I like Star Trek, but to me, it does not seem more scientifically accurate than Farscape, Stargate or Firefly (like most soft sci-fi products). So why do so many people make rather strange comments about the representation of actual science in these shows? I apologize for not being perfect in English, I started recently with the study of your beautiful language.

Kind Regards.-- (talk) 17:34, 24 March 2015 (UTC)

The difference is the time period. Star Trek is from the late 1960's, and in the time frame "sci-fi" shows were notoriously inaccurate. So, Star Trek was a step up from those earlier attempts. Of course, any sci-fi show set in space will have to make compromises, whether to keep from boring the audience with only sublight speed or keeping on budget by having 1 g of gravity in most every scene.
I did notice a reduction in the level of scientific realism from the original series to Next Gen, though. For example, in one original episode (The Tholian Web), Kirk is caught in an interdimensional rift, coming in and out of phase with the our universe. Next Gen did a similar episode, but there instead of being in a space suit with an air supply and floating freely about, the person so affected could still breath the air and walk on the floor, which made no sense whatsoever. StuRat (talk) 17:39, 24 March 2015 (UTC)
From the Next Generation series onwards they tried to get things as scientifically accurate as they could within the confines of telling a good story. For instance, having been told that a transporter couldn't work because of Heisenberg's uncertainty principle they introduced a "Heisenberg compensator". [6] Nobody knows what it does but it sounds good and gets round the problem. When Leonard Nimoy died it said on the NASA website that many of their scientists were originally inspired by Star Trek to go into their chosen field. Richerman (talk) 18:37, 24 March 2015 (UTC)
I strongly disagree! To take *just* the transporter system: The entire point of Heisenberg's uncertainty principle is that it's a fundamental property of nature - you can't conceivably "compensate" for it. The transporter violates conservation of momentum, conservation of mass/energy, it implies more data bandwidth between source and destination than is reasonable, not to mention the requirement to reassemble large objects without causing the air to move out of the way around them and without having any equipment at the far end. The range, capability and capricious nature of transporters is poorly maintained from one episode to the next...and the crew conveniently forget to use it in situations where it would be exceedingly useful. In STTNG, the ship has 'site to site' transport capabilities - and yet everyone still has to go to the "transporter room". Why do they even need a transporter room? Transporters frequently function in situations where getting even a simple voice radio link to work fails! The idea to transport bombs or other weapons on board other ships is rarely used. The shuttle craft have transporters - but they are never used to get them out of trouble on the surface of planets and such. We're told that the transporters are also able to 'filter' disease carrying organisms as aliens are beamed aboard - but never to cure people who carry those diseases while on board. On occasion they transport people aboard while selectively NOT transporting their weapons. That degree of selectivity would allow an enormous number of industrial processes within the ship to be carried out with them...but no sign of that either. We're told (in STTNG) that transporters are the safest form of transport devised by man - yet there are dozens of transporter screwups in just one starship over a matter of just a few years. It's evidently possible to reconstitute a human from copies of their recordings in the transporter "pattern buffer". Why are the crew not routinely recorded in this way before going on dangerous missions?
And that's just the transporters.
It's true that many scientists were inspired by StarTrek - but that's true for any number of other sci-fi books, TV and movies.
It's safe to say that there is very, very little scientifically accurate stuff in StarTrek. It's rarely even self-consistent from one episode to the next. HOWEVER, that doesn't prevent the genre from being able to produce some entertaining stories. SteveBaker (talk) 19:10, 24 March 2015 (UTC)
Related articles of ours are The Physics of Star Trek and Physics and Star Trek. -- ToE 19:05, 24 March 2015 (UTC)
  • Also tangentally related are Clarke's three laws, especially the third law. Clarke's Third Law the sine qua non for science fiction writing, and is what separates good, readable science fiction from the sort of "Moby Dick in Space" in the sense of being a massive technical work with some minor story going on in the background. Really good science fiction doesn't try to explain or even "get right" its violations of the laws of physics as we know them. The basic application of Clarke's Third Law for good writing is: get right what your audience would notice if it were wrong, and the rest isn't important to get right". That is, any technology which would allow faster-than-light travel would have to be "magic" under the current understanding of physics, so: let it be magic. Maybe you throw a MacGuffin into your work like "dilithium crystals" or "warp drive" or something like that, but as soon as you try to make the magic "real", you lose your audience (read any of the criticisms of midichlorians in the Star Wars universe to see what happens when you treat the Third Law with disrespect). Some authors do deal creatively with the "faster than light" problem in more realistic ways than Star Trek. For example the Enderverse by Orson Scott Card deals with the problems of relativistic aging due to the twin paradox and time dilation in FTL travel. But he still has to play the "it's magic" game when it comes to other aspects; for example in the Enderverse, instantaneous communication between distant points in space is still possible, and FTL travel still occurs, both of which require the author to just ignore some fundamental rule of physics. The balance must be made between "writing an engaging story set in a futuristic world" and "not getting the physics so bad that it distracts from the writing". A good way to avoid the latter is to ignore discussions of physics in general. The audience will forget that your story is impossible so long as you don't actually try to actively prove to them it is... --Jayron32 19:23, 24 March 2015 (UTC)
  • Star Trek (original series), like lots of "science fiction" wasn't originally about science so much as about exploring the human condition, in a setting unfettered by present society, politics, and technology. So Star Trek could talk about things like socialism, communism ([7]), inter-racial and multicultural relationships (etc. [8]), that would have been much harder to do on TV at the time with a contemporary setting. Lem does a bit of exploring the human condition too, but Lem of course also knew a lot of math and science. Think of it another way: has anyone ever criticized Kurt Vonnegut for lack of scientific realism in his works? Not really, because although they have elements of Sci-fi, Vonnegut's novels aren't really even about science. SemanticMantis (talk) 19:28, 24 March 2015 (UTC)
    Well, to flip it back on you, name any well regarded science fiction work which isn't fundamentally about "exploring the human condition". It's true that the level of realism with regards to the laws of physics is often what separates hard science fiction from soft science fiction, but ultimately, even the "hardest" science fiction in the world is still fiction, and still deals with issues of character development and plot arcs. You mention Lem as someone knowing a lot of "math and science", but even he had to leave as unexplained such issues as FTL travel and instantaneous communication, and has a lot of unexplained "Magical" phenomena in his works. You can't say Solaris isn't a work about the human condition; it's a novel which uses a science fiction setting to explore an aspect of the human condition in unique and novel ways, but it still does that. Without that, it wouldn't be fiction. --Jayron32 19:46, 24 March 2015 (UTC)
Well -- and don't take this to as critical as it's going to sound, but... -- I don't think you're telling SM anything he (or anyone here) doesn't already know; we're all familiar with the meaning of fiction, and of course we can all agree that any work of fiction bears on the human condition.
What SM was referencing was the specific bent of the show and the intentions behind it, which are the subject of a factual record that is more substantial than that which exists for probably any other work in the history of science fiction. As others have noted here, Star Trek has often been noted as a work which illustrates the difference between two broad approaches in science fiction: one can explore how scientific developments or concepts could change the nature of the human experience, or they can use such concepts as allegory (often in a manner that requires liberal reinterpretation of the actual science involved) to make observations about the world as it currently is/has been, typically focusing on social issues rather than empirical matters. Alternatively, you can use the setting as an excuse to have some Buck Rogers adventure or to shoe-horn in some exploding robots for the purpose of eye-candy or to tell stories in which the sci-fi elements are largely window-dressing, but we'll leave those confounding factors be here.
Gene Roddenberry and the Star Trek showrunners that followed him were incredibly open (indeed, in Rodenberry's case, incredibility vocal) about which of the above ends they were pursuing. Many episodes of the original series are (or contain) specific allusions to the major social issues which were facing American and global culture in the sixties, be it racism (and eugenics), gender roles, or war (including particularly military interventionism, and, in the midst of the nuclear threat of the Cold War, fear of annihilation as the result of runaway technical capability for destruction), to say nothing of the general themes of multiculturalism and social unity that the show consistently advocated upon.
So yes, as you say, there is always a balancing act between realism in the science and the other story elements that one might which to emphasize, but the creators of Star Trek decided very early on which of those priorities to focus on and they've mostly stuck with that decision ever since -- though to what extent this represents devotion to the original artistic/social vision and how much it is the result of other factors (not wanting to confuse an audience of highly varying degrees of science literacy and who may drawn to non-factual elements anyway; convenience for writers, who very often do not have a formal background in science themselves; the franchise lore taking on a life of its own), I wouldn't venture to guess. But I think SM's point was to the overall intention associated with the show, not a suggestion that good story-telling can't incorporate strong realism and hard science, that bad stories can't use weak or fantastical science and still be bad on other levels altogether (that clearly happens a lot), or that even the greats of "hard" sci-fi wouldn't find it necessary to "cheat" (as they often have, as you pointed out).
As to the OP's original question (why someone would say the series is scientifically sound) that's obviously an open-ended and highly subjective question which we can't answer in concrete fashion here with references, and is thus more appropriate to a fan forum than this reference desk, and the initial response to that question probably should have said as much, instead of allowing this becoming a jumping-off point for discussion of the scientific merits of the show itself in a very forum-like fashion. I would say the only speculative answer I think I could suggest to answer that question is that actual scientists probably by and large have very little time for science fiction and for comparing the qualities of works within the genre, since Star Trek, by modern standards, is about as "soft" on science as they come, but if you're thinking of other major past landmarks in the genre that everyone is aware of (Star Wars, for example) it probably looks pretty rooted in science by comparison. Snow let's rap 12:10, 25 March 2015 (UTC)
Can you point to a source where Tyson (or anyone) is quoted as saying that Star Trek is scientifically accurate? It seems unlikely he'd say that, since, well, it obviously isn't. People write books called "The Physics of Star Trek" because most people are not willing to buy books about physics unless they have "Star Trek" or "Einstein" in the title. They make tenuous connections between real science and Star Trek because they don't know how else to reach the lay audience that they want to educate. -- BenRG (talk) 20:36, 24 March 2015 (UTC)
(To BenRG's first question, can you point to a source ... saying that Star Trek is scientifically accurate?): Quite the opposite! A famous piece of Star Trek memorabilia is "The Writer's Guide", (widely believed to be) written by Gene Roddenberry. Unofficial copies are available online, and the most official copy is presently kept in the Houghton Library at Harvard University. In this very famous document, Gene Roddenberry (Creator of Star Trek) specifically warns his writers not to fixate on scientific accuracy, but to focus on good story-telling and character development.
(If you'd like to engage in hearty debate about whether the writers adhered to Roddenberry's advice - or whether Roddenberry himself backtracked on his own admonitions when he produced the later series and movies... there's a vibrant community of internet folks who would love to argue minutia with you. Consider perusing the official list of Star Trek fan sites to locate a forum).
Nimur (talk) 02:44, 25 March 2015 (UTC)
See here for the view of one of the NASA scientists and a discussion about the science. To sum up he says "The real science is an effort to be faithful to humanity's greatest achievements, and the fanciful science is the playing field for a game that expands the mind as it entertains. The Star Trek series are the only science fiction series crafted with such respect for real science and intelligent writing. That's why it's the only science fiction series that many scientists watch regularly... like me." Richerman (talk) 09:14, 25 March 2015 (UTC)
In general I think the Stargate SG-1 TV series (but more the first one than its knockoffs) had a somewhat more science-oriented approach than Star Trek. (Maybe some of the later Star Treks were roughly equivalent, but watching those stuffed shirts run their corporate empire is just too much to take. I mean, the only thing that could make Star Trek Voyager interesting would be a really bad transporter accident that left lumps of Janeway embedded in bulkheads and crew members throughout the ship) Wnt (talk) 11:41, 25 March 2015 (UTC)
Not meaning to give offense, Wnt, but let's try to keep WP:NOTAFORUM in our sights here; we could spend years comparing the relative merits of any of a countless number of sci-fi shows with regard to realism, but pointing out that another show was better than Star Trek in this regard is not going to get us any closer to a definitive or sourceable answer to the OP's question about why such shows get credited as scientifically accurate when they often aren't. And this is not otherwise the place for such comparisons. Besides which, while Voyager did take Star Trek to new heights of silliness, SG-1, despite initially being rooted to some extent in more realistic physics, ultimately "jumped the shark" early in its run and ended up being one of the biggest examples of goofy sci-fantasy out there by the end, despite retaining some good writing elements as regards...errr...nevermind... ;) Snow let's rap 12:52, 25 March 2015 (UTC)
The OP may be referring to this [9]. I didn't actually listen to it, but if [10] is right, Tyson said “They’ve made admirable attempts to do the correct things with physics.” Nil Einne (talk) 12:38, 25 March 2015 (UTC)
  • I'll just bring up Larry Niven as one author who makes a huge effort to stick to hard science in many of his stories, such as Lucifer's Hammer and his Belter (asteroid belt) series. Nevertheless he does introduce teleportation devices, FTL travel, and scrith. You pretty much have to have FTL travel or wormholes (in The Mote in God's Eye they are called jump points) to allow any inter-alien interaction on the scale of an interesting story. μηδείς (talk) 17:23, 25 March 2015 (UTC) Russell's The Sparrow is rather hard scifi, except that she places the aliens at Alpha Centauri for convenience's sake. (BTW, I most strongly recommend both those books.) μηδείς (talk) 17:23, 25 March 2015 (UTC)
  • I've heard that Larry Niven stopped writing Known Space stories because the setting had accumulated too much ‘magic’. Who said good sf gets to use one gross violation of physics? —Tamfang (talk) 08:44, 26 March 2015 (UTC)
  • The Sparrow is pretty good but unfortunately the numbers for time dilation are way off, iirc, not to mention the fuel requirement. —Tamfang (talk) 08:44, 26 March 2015 (UTC)
Not being a physicist, and only interested in the plot I did not check The Sparrow for accuracy, but at least she paid lip service to the principles. Yes, Niven did say at some point that once everything had become possible in his Known Space universe he found further writing in it fruitless. I wonder where I read that. It's probably in the forward to one of his later books. μηδείς (talk) 18:18, 26 March 2015 (UTC)
There are at least 3 kinds scientific blunders:
The Story Blunders. Some, like "All Aliens speak English" are extensions of well known narration conventions, which save time and keep the story interesting. Same for the near-omnipresent "Instant Translator" handwave. Without some (like FTL drives and aliens), there wouldn't even be a story to tell.
I.e. these are, from a story-telling perspective, virtues rather than blunders.
The Economy Blunders. The "Most Aliens look Human" cliché belongs here. This is not about telling the story, or telling an enjoyable story, but telling an affordable story. The teleporter belongs here, too; the first season didn't have a budget for small craft.
The "Nobody Gave a Fuck" Blunders. Laser beams moving like bullets, visible laser beams in vacuum, etc. Somebody did it that way, and almost everybody followed. The really stupid mistakes, like Theta 116's temperature and age, and the near-omnipresent "Engines quit, Ship stops" (on TV, only Babylon 5 got that one right) belong here, too.
The "Nobody ever teleports a torpedo" rule has actually been violated twice; they seem to "forget" about the teleporters when it's convenient for the plot, though. Sometimes, it's about an otherwise good story, but sometimes, it's an ugly case of NGaF. - ¡Ouch! (hurt me / more pain) 13:05, 27 March 2015 (UTC)

From electricity to electromagnetic wave and back[edit]

If I heat the filament of a light bulb with light, would electricity start flowing through the attached cables? That is, it would be the reverse of powering the light bulb to emit light. Instead of transforming electricity into light, we would be transforming heat into electricity.Fend 83 (talk) 18:34, 24 March 2015 (UTC)

Sometimes yes, and sometimes no. In your specific example, no, you would not. Heating the filament would produced stochastic motion of the atoms in the filament, and that motion and energy would not then generate an electric potential; no potential, no electromotive force, no EMF, no electricity. However, some electrical processes are reversible. Consider two examples, which are basically the same device used in reverse. Consider first a speaker and a microphone. What is the difference between them? Actually, basically nothing. A speaker is a device which vibrates in response to electric current fluctuations. If you send an AC current to a speaker, you get a sound from the speaker. If you do the reverse: if you take a speaker and shout into it, you generate an AC current in the wires attached to the speaker. That's all a microphone is: a speaker you shout in. Secondly, consider a motor and a generator. A motor is a device which spins in response to an electric current. If, however, you take a motor and drive it by hand, you've just made a generator: you can detect a current in the wires attached to the motor if you physically spin the motor. Why do these systems work that way, where the lightbulb doesn't? It has to do with the specific way they are constructed. Both a motor and a speaker work by means of a moving magnet. In the case of a speaker, fluctuations in the electric current in the wire causes an electromagnet (technically a solenoid) to vibrate back and forth; this vibration is amplified by the speaker cone, generating a sound. In the case of the motor, the motor spins because a fluctuating magnetic field (generated in this case by a commutator) caused by the electric current causes the magnet attached to the axle of the motor to spin. In each of these cases, the process is reversible because moving electrons generates a magnetic field, AND moving magnetic fields cause electrons to move. That's where electromagnetism comes in as a concept: The two processes are two sides of the same coin; you don't get electricity (moving electric charge) without generating a magnetic field in response. And if you move a magnetic field, you generate an electric current in response. So, reversible electric devices would be ones where the transducer is one that relies on magnetism to transfer its work. Processes that rely on heat to transfer their work are fundamentally non-reversible because heat is always lost as entropy. And entropy cannot be recovered as usable energy. The second law of thermodynamics is a mean bitch that way. However, processes that don't depend on heat are usually in some way reversible. --Jayron32 18:53, 24 March 2015 (UTC)
I should also note that it is possible, however, to generate electricity by shining light on things. Once we take heat out of the situation, there are some materials that generate electricity in response to shining light on them, which is the reverse process of using electricity to generate light (though not the exact reverse process that happens in an incandescent light bulb). See photoelectric effect, the explanation of which was one of Einstein's Annus Mirabilis papers of 1905. However, the photoelectric effect does not depend on heating anything. --Jayron32 19:01, 24 March 2015 (UTC)

Hypothetical heart control[edit]

The medical sources I've looked into say a person fades out after cardiac arrest in some 8–12 seconds (and "rather longer if the patient is recumbent"). In theory would it mean that if a particular person were able to control his heart, he would be able to stand or seat seemingly well for those 8-12 seconds (or at least, say, 5 seconds) with stopped heart before restarting it? Brandmeistertalk 19:31, 24 March 2015 (UTC)

The heartbeat is controlled by the Autonomic nervous system which, by definition, is not under conscious control, except tangentially (for example, being able to increase one's heart rate by imagining a stressful situation, for example). I am not aware of anyone who is actually able to control their own heart to the point where they can stop it and start it on command, and given the number of people who have lived in the history of history, that's a pretty good experimental sample for saying it isn't likely to be possible. --Jayron32 19:39, 24 March 2015 (UTC)
I know, that's why I wrote "in theory", despite several claimants like Guy Bavli or Cristian Gog. For the sake of argument, let's assume some ultra-rare mutation similar to dysautonomia or Ondine's curse, which enables a person to control the heartbeat until feeling of impending fadeout. Brandmeistertalk 20:05, 24 March 2015 (UTC)
"For the sake of argument"? Please don't post random suppositions without backup and ask us to cooment. μηδείς (talk) 21:16, 24 March 2015 (UTC)
Per Medeis, if you're going to invent a fictional magical power, you get to decide how it manifests itself. We have nothing to say on the matter in this forum, where our role is to provide you with references to further research factual questions you may have. Questions where we speculate about the effects of magical superpowers are not what we do here. --Jayron32 00:27, 25 March 2015 (UTC)
Indeed this is starting to sound like how much wood would a woodchuck chuck... it's not truly magical of course, since there's nothing impossible about such a "power", but certainly there's no reason to evolve it, and so we can't really predict the form it would take with any accuracy. As a rule, though, cardiac myocytes want to beat; they'll beat in a tissue culture dish; so they should keep contracting on their own if whatever mechanism is interrupted by unconsciousness. Fibrillation is the main worry. But of course fibrillation isn't really an intended mechanism and it's no great stretch to suppose the person has a good cardiac pacemaker that prevents death by this means, at least until it advances the plot to start dealing with it. So basically you need to mumble mumble inhibitory synapses mumble neurotransmitters mumble Eastern mystics mumble and you're good to go. :) Wnt (talk) 02:52, 25 March 2015 (UTC)
Superman supposedly had the ability to control his own heartbeat. However, Superman is most likely a fictional character. ←Baseball Bugs What's up, Doc? carrots→ 03:08, 25 March 2015 (UTC)
Brandmeister, you write that a person "fades out" in 8-12 seconds after cardiac arrest, and rather longer if the patient is recumbent, according to "medical sources" you have looked into. I would be interested to know what those medical sources are. The time seems way to long to me, if "fades out in 8-12 seconds" is interpreted to mean "maintains conciousness for 8-12 seconds". --NorwegianBlue talk 12:58, 25 March 2015 (UTC)
@NorwegianBlue: See [11] ("After some 8–12 seconds of cardiac arrest, rather longer if the patient is recumbent, there is loss of consciousness"), [12] ("Transient disruption of cerebral blood flow for 8 to 10 seconds results in loss of consciousness"). Brandmeistertalk 09:09, 26 March 2015 (UTC)
Thanks! The source seems reliable, but contrasts with other reliable sources linked to in Physiology of death by decapitation, which states that "[Consciousness is] probably lost within 2-3 seconds, due to a rapid fall of intracranial perfusion of blood.", although anecdotes where the decapitated head appeared to have been concious for longer are mentioned. In orthostatic syncope and micturition syncope, the time between the cause and the syncope may be several seconds, but then there is not a total loss of blood pressure. --NorwegianBlue talk 16:43, 26 March 2015 (UTC)
  • The heartbeat can't be stopped or started by the nervous system, only speeded up or slowed down. The muscle cells in the heart are intrinsically oscillatory -- in other words, they contract rhythmically all by themselves. Even during a heart attack the heart doesn't actually stop contracting: what happens is that the parts of the heart lose their synchrony, resulting in a chaotic pattern of contraction waves called fibrillation. Looie496 (talk) 13:50, 25 March 2015 (UTC)

Section on electron mobility in the article about Indium-Gallium-Arsenide semiconductors (specifically related to Gain-Bandwidth product)[edit]

I posted three questions on the article's talk page a few days ago, but I haven't gotten any response. Talk:Indium_gallium_arsenide Could someone knowledgeable about semiconductor physics or electron mobility please look it over?

Also, I'm wondering if maybe that particular section should be included in the specific article about Gain-Bandwidth products, since it deals with math that is generally applicable to more than just InGaAs semiconductors? (talk) 21:45, 24 March 2015 (UTC)

If I don't get a response to either this comment or my comment on the talk page sometime tonight, I'm going to at least correct the formatting on the relevant equations, as I laid out on the talk page. (talk) 04:31, 25 March 2015 (UTC)
The equation doesn't look correct to me... at the very least, that equation is being quoted out of context, and in my opinion, it's just flat wrong. A source is provided: Photonics Essentials. Anyone have that book to check what the original authors meant? Nimur (talk) 04:54, 25 March 2015 (UTC)
I'm not sure what the SOP is here, so I removed the material in question and added a note about it on the talk page. It can be added back in after this gets sorted out. (talk) 09:54, 25 March 2015 (UTC)

March 25[edit]

Variable ginger sensitivity ?[edit]

I notice I am really sensitive to the spice, ginger. I don't have an allergic reaction or anything, it's just that the tiniest amounts make my food seem really hot. I don't seem to be any more sensitive to capsaicin than others, but that's known to have a variable response (or at least a resistance that builds up). Since I usually consume dried ginger, the active ingredient is shogaol, I believe. So, is there a variable "heat" response to this ingredient ? StuRat (talk) 06:12, 25 March 2015 (UTC)

Shogaol and capsaicin both bind predominantly to the TRPV1 receptor, which gives you the 'heat' effect, so it's hard to explain why you would be more very sensitive to one, but not the other. Must be secondary binging to other receptors, or a different component in ginger. (talk) 11:08, 25 March 2015 (UTC)
I didn't see anything jump at me from the literature, but this might be obscure and I didn't really look that hard. It is by no means sure that shogaol is the difference unless you test the pure compound. Even more generally, you should figure out first if you are a supertaster and whether a variety of compounds have stronger taste to you, in which case this one interaction may not be the point at which the pathway differs. Wnt (talk) 11:36, 25 March 2015 (UTC)
It's not impossible that you have an altered form of the TRPV1 or TRPA1 receptor, which binds shogaol with higher affinity than the more common allele. But the only way to tell for sure would be to sequence your genome, or at least the part that contains the genes for those receptors. It might be interesting to know whether any of your relatives have the same hypersensitivity. Looie496 (talk) 13:44, 25 March 2015 (UTC)
Stu could also do some quantitative experiments. Not by asking people "how hot/spicy is this to you" but by continual dilution until the ginger is undetectable, analogous to the scoville scale. Obviously this isn't a genetic test, but it could still detect if Stu or his clan is objectively more sensitive to ginger than the average population. SemanticMantis (talk) 14:52, 25 March 2015 (UTC)
I'd say any results of such an experiment are likely to be dubious. Notice that scoville scale is for detecting the relative pungency of the stimulus itself, not for assessing the sensitivity of individuals to the stimulus, and even in that case the number of confounding factors listed in just our article's review of the scale are significant and findings in this area are even harder to establish with empirical validity, given the reliance on subjective reporting by participants. In the case of establishing relative thresholds of sensitivity in individuals, you'd need to control for a huge number of factors, you'd have to have a significant number of participants, and even then the element of subjective assessment of qualia would remain a huge issue. Snow let's rap 15:42, 25 March 2015 (UTC)
Sure, it's not the most rigorous thing, and I wouldn't try to publish it. But if I tested 10 of my friends and found that one of them consistently could detect ginger in lower concentrations than the rest, I'd still find that interesting, and more compelling than "I think I have a high sensitivity to ginger". SemanticMantis (talk) 18:01, 25 March 2015 (UTC)
Maybe "more compelling" in the strictest technical sense, but both scenarios are well bellow the threshold to make even an idle assessment of veracity, imho. Snow let's rap 19:33, 25 March 2015 (UTC)
As long as it's a double-blind test using a control, then some people consistently being able to detect ginger at lower levels would seem to be good evidence for a variable detection threshold in the general population. Of course, that says nothing about the reason for the difference. StuRat (talk)
And just how are you going to conduct this as a double-blind (or even a single blind) procedure when the entire point is to assess your specific sensitivity relative to others, and you are aware of this fact? Are you sure you fully understand what that term means in relation to this kind of inquiry? Even putting the issue of the blinds aside, the methodology for perceptual studies that involve self-reports are more complex than you seem to think, especially when the individual involved knows what they are being tested for, is convinced of what they will perceive, and has a vested psychological interest in confirming that self-derived assumption. And your involvement is just the tip of the iceberg in the factors that are difficult/bordering-on-impossible to control here. As to the reason, if I can do so without insulting you, I'd like to suggest that the most likely explanation is that any difference in minimum perceptual threshold is in your head, at least in-so-far as it represents anything beyond normal human variation. Most anyone who's done work in testing any modality of perception will tell you that it's a fairly common thing for people to be convinced that they have a sense that is atypical or especially sensitive, only to have testing fail to verify it. Snow let's rap 05:30, 26 March 2015 (UTC)
The test would be very much like standard hearing frequency tests, where they play (or don't play) sounds at various frequencies, asking the person to click the button if they hear it. We've managed to figure out the range of human hearing with such tests, as well as to identify the range for individuals. So what's so different about this that would prevent getting comparable results ? In case it isn't obvious, what you don't do is say "now I've cut the amount of ginger in half, can you taste that ?". Instead you would have random concentrations in food samples, with code numbers on them that can later be used to correlate the results. As suggested, you would simply ask "Does this sample contain ginger or not ?". If a given person reported yes down to a certain concentration, then no below that, this is a fairly reliable indication that they can detect ginger above that level. If there's no single line below which they can't detect it and above which they can, then something has gone wrong with the experiment, such as the subject lying. StuRat (talk) 05:41, 27 March 2015 (UTC)
Stu, if you can't tolerate Ginger, you should probably stick with Mary Ann. μηδείς (talk) 17:09, 25 March 2015 (UTC)
Or maybe I should ask the Professor for the answer. I'm sure he can rig up some device, using coconut shells, to do the tests. :-) StuRat (talk) 19:01, 25 March 2015 (UTC)

I suspect the ratio of my reaction to ginger varies at different levels. So, I might be 10x as sensitive at low levels but normally sensitive at higher levels. I've been having meals at BD's Mongolian Barbeque, which has powdered ginger as one of the spices you can add. I started with one tiny spoonful. That was too strong, so I went to half a spoonful, also too strong. I am now down to just a few grains of ginger, and amazingly it still seems almost as hot, despite having maybe 1/20th as much ginger as before. (Or does heat perception just work like light perception, in that dropping the light level to half as many photons is barely detectable ?)

I suppose another possibility is that they just don't clean the grill very well between customers, so I'm getting the spices from the last customer's meal. I'll have to do some experiments at home. StuRat (talk) 19:08, 25 March 2015 (UTC)

Geoid: how far from the center of earth does gravity point?[edit]

What is the distribution of distances between the normals of the geoid and the earth's center of mass? NeonMerlin 08:06, 25 March 2015 (UTC)

The article Vertical deflection gives some brief detail. Dbfirs 08:23, 25 March 2015 (UTC)

What vacuums are the most approximate to the absolute vacuum?[edit]

What vacuums are the most approximate to the absolute vacuum, it is a liquid vacuum or gas vacuum?-- (talk) 08:42, 25 March 2015 (UTC)

A vacuum is the absence of matter; I don't know what you mean by a gas vacuum or a liquid vacuum. You might find it useful to see the list of examples listed in the vacuum article. Deep space is generally much more empty than any artificial vacuum.--Shantavira|feed me 09:22, 25 March 2015 (UTC)
Probably, a vacuum possible in all environments in which there is been pressure (dynamics pressure)!-- (talk) 12:12, 25 March 2015 (UTC)
Are you asking about how we create near vacuums for scientific experiments? If so, vacuum pump discusses several different types. SemanticMantis (talk) 14:54, 25 March 2015 (UTC)
The closest thing I can think of to a "liquid vacuum" is cavitation/supercavitation, but that's not really a vacuum at all, just an absence of liquid, filled in with a gas, such as air or water vapor. StuRat (talk) 18:58, 25 March 2015 (UTC)
The Sprengel pump uses liquid mercury. Some Diffusion pumps might use liquids. Rmhermen (talk) 22:28, 25 March 2015 (UTC)

Medication d codes[edit]

I have seen an identification code for medications that begins with a 'd', but I cannot find any reference to what this code is called. As an example, Altoprev 20 mg has the code d00280. This is not the NDC code (which is 59630-628). Anyone have an idea what those 'd' codes are? (talk) 12:15, 25 March 2015 (UTC)

It seems to be the drug id for Lovastatin (which is where Altoprev redirects to on wikipedia). See here: (talk) 13:38, 25 March 2015 (UTC)
"Drug ID" is a vague term. NDC is a drug ID. RxNorm CUI is a drug ID. FDA ID is a drug ID. They are all different IDs. I'm still looking, and it appears the the IDs that are preceded by a 'd' are Multum codes. (talk) 14:16, 25 March 2015 (UTC)

Social indicators of Asperger's syndrome[edit]

Is it absolutely necessary for someone with Asperger's syndrome to show some sort of deficiency in social interactions beyond what could easily be chalked up to personality quirks? If someone has that diagnosis, is it logical to assume that there are noticeable differences in the way they interact with others? Kurtis (talk) 16:53, 25 March 2015 (UTC)

If somebody is diagnosed with Asperger's syndrome, the only logical conclusion to draw is that they should talk to the professional, medically-licensed expert who diagnosed them. Different professionals may differ in their diagnostic opinions. Nimur (talk) 17:01, 25 March 2015 (UTC)

According to our article on the diagnosis of Asperger syndrome, which matches my understanding, it is absolutely necessary to have some sort of social interaction impairment in order for a diagnosis to be valid, according to both DSM-IV and ICD-10. (In DSM-5, Asperger syndrome no longer exists as a distinct entity.) Looie496 (talk) 18:51, 25 March 2015 (UTC)
Remember however you still need to consider what's considered am impairement of social interaction. "easily be chalked up to personality quirks" could cover a wide range of things. Nil Einne (talk) 01:40, 26 March 2015 (UTC)
What I was trying to say, and didn't manage to say very clearly, is that the standard psychiatry manuals list social impairment as mandatory for diagnosis. The way that any given psychiatrist uses the definition can vary. Looie496 (talk) 12:25, 26 March 2015 (UTC)

555 timer[edit]

hello, I just found out that apparently the upper resistor Ra (between Vcc and pin 7) must be at least twice the value of the lower resistor Rb (between pins 7 and 2/6) such that Rb < ⅓(Ra+Rb), i.e. Rb < ½Ra, otherwise it won't oscillate because the capacitor can't discharge to less than V=Vcc/(Ra+Rb)*Rb. In other words, Rb should pull to pin 7 stronger than the sum of Ra+Rb pulls to Vcc. Is this correct? Three books and not one to say this explicitly in words Asmrulz (talk) 17:17, 25 March 2015 (UTC)

Our 555 timer IC article talks about lots of timing characteristics and technical discussion of them, but I don't see your analysis noted there either. With WP:V, it should be added. DMacks (talk) 19:11, 25 March 2015 (UTC)
Some of the 555 timers is described in Ulrich Tietze, Christoph Schenk (1993) (in German), Halbleiter-Schaltungstechnik (10. ed.), Springer, pp. 190–191, ISBN 3-540-56184-6 , but that is written in German language. The article uses more weblinks than usual and links to data sheets so cover such details or provide such information from different authors. pending on the manufacturer you will find 555 timers with stronger outputs. Basics of the 3 resistors inside the 555 are their precise hysteresis, called window comparator, an used but never described word in the Wikipedia. This make the 555 change it's operation when the input voltage reaches 1/3 or 2/3 of VCC. The resistors needs to be selected by the wanted timing behavior and duty cycle or pulse duration when the 555 is used as a monoflop. This resistors need less ohms to make the circuit reliable under infuence and as many ohms as possible to save energy and not kill the transistors inside the 555. Then using a smaller capaitor, the same timing is being achieved with higher resistors. As the transistors inside the 555 are no ideal components that differ from a theoretical supra conducting switch. The external resistors need to be varible to use the 555 in different applications. The internal resistors are built-in to prevent a different temperature causing to shift the 1/3 ratio of VCC each where the 555 flips its status of operation. This is one of the essentials of the 555. --Hans Haase (有问题吗) 13:37, 28 March 2015 (UTC)
I meant the two external resistors in the (most common) astable configuration. I was saying that if the upper resistor R₁ is too small (less than half of the value of the lower one R₂), then there'll be more than ⅓Vcc dropping across R2 and the capacitor won't be able to discharge enough to trigger a new cycle (when the 555 internally shorts pin 7 to ground, the capacitor essentially sees R₂ to ground and R₁ to Vcc), and that I wished (assuming this is correct) that some of the books (or WP for that matter) said explicitly that even though the resistors' values can be varied over a wide range to achieve a certain duty cycle and frequency, it must be ensured they have this ratio (R₁>½R₂) Asmrulz (talk) 20:11, 28 March 2015 (UTC)


Where can I find the complete text of the study STAR*D (Sequenced Treatment Alternatives to Relieve Depression)? -- (talk) 04:58, 26 March 2015 (UTC)

A study is not a text object, it is a project that (hopefully) produces one or more text objects as a result. So there is no such thing as "the complete text of the study". You can find a comprehensive review of the results at Looie496 (talk) 12:52, 26 March 2015 (UTC)

Electronics problem[edit]

Example electronics problem with inductors and capacitors.png

I don't really understand what's going on here. What does the text in the boxes mean? I suspected something to do with power factor initially, but I'm sceptical as the real power of inductors and capacitors is zero. Can someone help me out?--Leon (talk) 10:13, 26 March 2015 (UTC)

It looks like the "VAR" values in the boxes are the reactive power in volt-ampere reactive. If that's what the VAR values mean, the loads are not purely reactive--they have resistive components. -- (talk) 11:27, 26 March 2015 (UTC)
I suspect that the small ind. and cap. beside each box indicates that the first two are pure inductors and the third is a pure capacitor. — LongHairedFop (talk) 13:02, 26 March 2015 (UTC)
But a pure inductor has a real power of zero, as does a pure capacitor.--Leon (talk) 14:18, 26 March 2015 (UTC)
Okay, with the help of I think I understand what the terms in the boxes mean. But, what I'm ultimately interested in finding the resistance R, and I still don't know what to do. I know nothing other than the diagram and that the voltages and currents written down are RMS values. Can anyone help?--Leon (talk) 19:49, 26 March 2015 (UTC)
The impedance of each of the loads has a resistive and reactive component, and can be represented as a complex value Z = R + jX, where R is the resistance, X is the reactance, and j is the unit imaginary number. The difference between capacitive reactance and inductive reactance is that the value of X is positive for one and negative for the other (off the top of my head I don't remember which is which). Impedance can be combined using the same formulas for combining resistance in series and parallel connections. Ohm's law applies to impedance too, when resistance is replaced by impedance. What you have now is a circuit analysis problem, much like one for a DC circuit except that you're now dealing with complex values. The power measured across a load is still V\cdot I, except that it has a real and a reactive component (which are given to you). You can solve for R by solving a system of linear equations. -- (talk) 02:12, 27 March 2015 (UTC)
What 173. said, except that you don't really need a system of equations, just a few algebraic steps. First work out the left-hand impedance using S=I^2 Z, S being apparent power (a complex number, with watts being the real part and inductive VARs being the negative imaginary part). Then work out the combined impedance of the other two loads by adding the apparent powers, remembering that capacitive VARs are positive and inductive ones negative, and using S=I^2 Z again. Now add those two complex impedances and you can work out the voltage at the right-hand side of R. --Heron (talk) 11:19, 28 March 2015 (UTC)
Okay, I think I've got it now. Cheers!--Leon (talk) 11:28, 28 March 2015 (UTC)

March 26[edit]

What type of mixture is smoke?[edit]

Smoke is homogeneous or heterogeneous mixture? Just a word plz. This is not my homework.

Learnerktm 13:47, 26 March 2015 (UTC)

Usually heterogeneous, because smoky air is usually turbulent. Looie496 (talk) 13:58, 26 March 2015 (UTC)
Looie496, but smoke isn't itself homogeneous when two or more gases are mixed in it without considering air?

Learnerktm 14:58, 26 March 2015 (UTC)

It really depends on how careful you want to be, and what exactly you're talking about. One the one hand, we can say smoke is clearly heterogeneous. Start a fire, freeze time, and examine a sample a liter of smoke. Parts of it are solid particles, parts are gas, and parts are liquid. Since we have different things in different places, we could say that it is heterogeneous.
On the other hand, looking at that same liter of smoke, we could look at the distribution of each particle size and type in any given cc volume. Unless you have highly sophisticated, accurate and precise measurements, you would find that the properties of any given cc are indistinguishable from any other cc. In that case, you could say that the mixture is homogenous, sometimes we would say well-mixed. So the "correct" answer really depends on why you are trying to answer the question, what you want to do with that info, and how you operationalize the concepts of homo/heterogeneity. For example we could use Mean_field_theory to analyze smoke, under the assumption that it is close enough to homogenous. Or, if we are interested in vortex dynamics of a specific plume, we could consider the anisotropic features, etc. SemanticMantis (talk) 15:13, 26 March 2015 (UTC)
Under the standard definition of homogeneous/heterogeneous as taught in most chemistry classes, smoke is clearly and unambiguously heterogeneous. The definitions are of course a bit "fuzzy" depending on context, but under the normal understanding, homogeneous mixtures feature molecule-sized particles evenly distributed with each other. Heterogeneous mixtures feature distinct particles of a clearly different phase from each other. The surface effects of the phase distinctions are clearly demonstrated through the Tyndall effect, which is often used as the main "test" for distinguishing a homogeneous solution from a heterogeneous suspension. Under that formal definition, smoke is unambiguously heterogeneous, as smoke particles scatter light, no matter how "well mixed" they are. --Jayron32 15:54, 26 March 2015 (UTC)
Condensed steam (white) and smoke (dark)from a steel plant
Yes, but smoke is rarely well-mixed -- as the picture illustrates. Looie496 (talk) 15:57, 26 March 2015 (UTC)
I think we all agree that smoke is heterogeneous, except for in rather non-standard situations and interpretations. Just wanted to allow for that possibility in my post above. SemanticMantis (talk) 18:55, 26 March 2015 (UTC)
  • It's hard to tell without a color picture, but white "smoke" is almost always steam, and one can assume they use electric heating and water cooling at a steel mill, neither of which generates smoke. The smelting process itself generates carbon dioxide. For real smoke you need to see an old coal-burning plant or locomotive or the like. μηδείς (talk) 17:50, 26 March 2015 (UTC)
"The largest single use of coal in the steel industry is as a fuel for the blast furnace" [13] - see also blast furnace and Bethlehem Steel. Apparently there are at least some electric powered blast furnaces, but our article says they are only used in countries that have low access to coal. SemanticMantis (talk) 18:55, 26 March 2015 (UTC)
There is a column, barely visible, of what looks like smoke in that picture, on the mid-right background. The rest is steam that has condensed to water vapor. μηδείς (talk) 19:35, 27 March 2015 (UTC)
  • Well, to be strictly speaking, the white smoke also isn't steam, it is fog. Steam is invisible and homogeneous in air, whereas the white stuff you see in what we commonly call "steam clouds" is actually condensed water droplets, which is fog, which is heterogeneous. The first paragraph of the article steam deals with these linguistic inaccuracies. --Jayron32 18:53, 26 March 2015 (UTC)
  • Coal used to run a blast furnace will produce black smoke, which it is possible one may see in the distant background of the picture given. (The image is of low quality, but I have no reason to insist the right center background plume is not actual smoke. AS far as my informants tell me, coal blast furnaces in the US are a thing of e distant past, even from the 1970 view.) But the clean white plumes are obviously steam, and CO2 is invisible.
The claim that white "smoke" is actual smoke (partially oxidized carbonaceous particles) is about as well-founded as saying that the steam that is sometimes released from nuclear containment plants is "smoke".
We simply can't judge certainly whether the fourth background plume from the given image is actual smoke (it very well may be) but the white plumes certainly aren't.
Fog is a weather phenomenon; Jayron32 may have meant smog, which in the US is nowadays usually caused by a combination of atmospheric inversions and automobile exhaust. Chinese smog is a different issue, given the "crony capitalist" oligarchy there can do as it pleases. μηδείς (talk) 02:50, 27 March 2015 (UTC)
Fog, mist, cloud, it's all the same stuff. Little droplets of water. Still not steam. I didn't mean smog, which isn't purely water droplets, but contains a lot of particulate matter of other stuff as well. Big puffy white plumes of water are still fog/cloud/mist etc and still not steam regardless of their source. --Jayron32 12:48, 27 March 2015 (UTC)
The image is not helpful. The OP asked about smoke. There are more generators of smoke than coal. How about car exhaust of badly tuned engines, volcanic smoke, wood/forest fire smoke, tobacco smoke, explosives smoke etc. Are they all the same in terms of physical homogeneity/heterogeneity. Richard Avery (talk) 10:01, 27 March 2015 (UTC)
Yes, any of these "clouds" are heterogeneous for most considerations and purposes. SemanticMantis (talk) 14:12, 27 March 2015 (UTC)


See colloid and you will see that smoke is listed as a colloidal dispersion of solid particles in gas. Any colloid is heterogeneous in that it consists of the dispersed substance and the medium in which it is dispersed. Whether the smoke particles themselves are homogeneous or heterogeneous is another question, which would depend on the source of the smoke. Robert McClenon (talk) 17:49, 27 March 2015 (UTC)

  • Regarding the picture, I spoke with an engineer who's built refineries, chemical, and nuclear plants. The two most obvious white exhaust plumes are condensed steam, the most distant tower in the right-mid background is giving off smoke, and the other tower may be giving of smoke, but the quality of the image makes it difficult to determine. I have changed the caption to reflect this. My expert suggested the fourth tower may also be a scrubbing tower which injects steam into a stream of smoke, allowing much of the particulate matter to condense out within the tower. μηδείς (talk) 21:37, 27 March 2015 (UTC)


I read the Wikipedia page on Condoms, but I have some more questions about the article's assumptions and implications.

  • Why does the (male) condom have to go on an erect penis? This seems counter-intuitive from what I learned in previous health classes, because an erection indicates a man is having an orgasm, and if a man is having an orgasm, then he wouldn't be entirely conscious of what he's doing and therefore cannot stop sexual intercourse, wouldn't he? Or perhaps, I am getting an incorrect understanding of the use of condoms or erection and male orgasm? Wouldn't it make more sense to put on the condom prior to erection and orgasm instead of during sexual intercourse?
  • When a man is putting on his condom, does that involve his partner, especially when the partner is of the opposite sex, to look at his penis? For the sake of body modesty, it would make sense to cover up the genitalia with a blanket, so during the act of sexual intercourse, the sex act and the genitalia are never seen.
  • Since the male condom seems to be covered in some sort of slimy, oily substance, can the slimy, oily substance be washed away? Or will that lower its effectiveness? I don't think the oily substance can be washed away, because if it is indeed oil, then that means it's non-polar and thus hydrophobic.
  • Is the female condom oily too?
  • Can the male condom be stretched to cover a man's penis, scrotum, and testicles? How much of the penis does the condom cover?
  • How many times does a man have to change condoms during sexual intercourse? How long does it take to put the condom on and to take it off? How many condom-covered penile penetrations can a single condom hold?
  • Can a man use a female condom instead of a male condom, since it's basically just a barrier, and the opening of the female condom may have a wider cirumference than the opening of the male condom?
  • Can cotton fabric and rubber bands be used as a condom? (talk) 14:03, 26 March 2015 (UTC)
  • Read human sexual response cycle and condom. We can't provide health advice here, but in general, the answer to most of your questions is "no," "don't do that," "why would you even want to do that," "seriously, no, don't do that," and "differs from couple to couple." --OuroborosCobra (talk) 14:26, 26 March 2015 (UTC)
The condom needs to go on an erect penis because erection gives the penis the necessary rigidity. Erection does not indicate a man is having an orgasm (although it is a prerequisite for orgasm to occur), but only that the man is sexually excited and the penis is physically ready for intercourse. It is common (though not universal) for the partner to assist with putting on the condom as part of sex play, and participants in sexual intercourse usually do not suffer from body modesty. It would certainly be possible for a man to put his condom on where his partner could not see, although this might offend the partner. The slimy, oily substance on the condom is lubricant. Removing it may irritate the vagina or rectum and may also cause the condom to tear, so it should not be washed away. A female condom also has lubricant. The male condom should cover the head of the penis and part or all of the shaft; it should not cover the testicles, which if tried would probably be quite painful. Usually a man does not change condoms during sexual intercourse. The length of time required to don the condom varies considerably, and an inexperienced man may be expected to take longer; a condom can be removed in a few seconds. A condom should not be re-used. Female condoms are not constructed to go on the penis; if a normal male condom is too small, there are larger sizes available (sometimes purchased by men who wish to pretend that their penis is larger than it really is). Cotton fabric and rubber bands would make a most unsatisfactory condom, as germs and sperm could go through the cotton, and cotton would provide less pleasant sensations for both participants. John M Baker (talk) 14:58, 26 March 2015 (UTC)
Thanks for the detailed answer. Now, I have a few more questions.
    • Is the condom used in oral sexual intercourse?
    • Is sexual excitement the same as sexual arousal?
    • Is sexual foreplay required to make a man sexually aroused or sexually excited in order to erect the penis and slip on the condom? Does that mean that a man cannot have an erect penis at will? Which part of the nervous system controls the erection of the penis?
    • Why must there be rigidity in the penis in order to slip on the condom?
    • How does a man know that he is having an erection or an orgasm or that he is sexually aroused or excited? Is he fully conscious and alert during sexual intercourse?
    • So, is sexual intercourse a time where body modesty does not exist at all?
    • Why would covering up the testicles be painful? Are there condoms that are designed to cover the testicles?
    • Why doesn't a man change his condom during sexual intercourse? If he ejaculates, then wouldn't the volume of the semen be located at the tip of the condom? Can the condom overfill, if it is not changed after every erection, penetration, and ejaculation?
    • Can a condom still be re-used, if it had been sterilized and then soaked in an oily lubricant?
    • Why do some men pretend that their penises are larger than they really are?
    • Can a piece of polyethylene fabric prevent leakages? (talk) 16:17, 26 March 2015 (UTC)
  • Note that the testicles are used to keep the sperm cool, by evaporation of sweat, etc., hence covering them with a waterproof material would be extremely uncomfortable. Also, the scrotum is larger than the penis, even when erect, meaning you would have to stretch the condom, resulting in high forces on the scrotum, a broken condom, or both. StuRat (talk) 17:22, 26 March 2015 (UTC)
  • Male sexual arousal does not require foreplay, at least in younger men. Visuals (a naked partner, video, or magazine) are usually enough or maybe just sexual thoughts. Sometimes nothing at all is needed, since erections occur periodically so that ejaculation can take place to clear out old sperm. StuRat (talk) 17:25, 26 March 2015 (UTC)
  • "Changing a condom during sexual intercourse" makes no sense. That would mean while the penis is inserted into the vagina. If you mean between closely spaced periods of sexual activity, yes, that might very well happen, during the refractory period. Note that after anal or oral intercourse a condom change is required before vaginal intercourse, for hygiene reasons. StuRat (talk) 17:36, 26 March 2015 (UTC)
  • Body modesty still exists for many, particularly if they fear they might be unattractive naked. Turning the lights out is usually enough to deal with this. StuRat (talk) 17:40, 26 March 2015 (UTC)
  • I have heard of the phrase that "spooning leads to forking", meaning that when a male and a female cuddle in bed, that will lead to sexual intercourse. But then, wouldn't sexual intercourse require the removal of clothing? Or perhaps, the clothes would act like a condom-barrier, even though it may ineffective at preventing pregnancy.
  • If the condom is used in oral sexual intercourse, then that implies that it is chemically non-toxic to the flesh or the digestive system, right?
  • If the lights are turned off, and the male and female are both wearing condoms, would the female condom serve as an aid to locate the vagina? (talk) 17:58, 26 March 2015 (UTC)
  • Why don't younger men require sexual foreplay to experience sexual arousal? How young is "young"?
  • Do sexually mature men wear condoms every day? Do men sexually stimulate themselves by masturbation, make sure the penis is erect, put on the condom, put on the underwear and trousers, and then go about the day wearing condoms? Do sexually mature men have to take off their condoms every time they need to urinate? (talk) 18:04, 26 March 2015 (UTC)
I think we're dealing with a troll... --OuroborosCobra (talk) 18:13, 26 March 2015 (UTC)
Probably true, given trolls lack penises. μηδείς (talk) 21:30, 28 March 2015 (UTC)
Think? I would have thought it was obvious by the poster's implied knowledge of the issue which clashed with the naivety of the questions. But as usual on the Ref Desk if sex is mentioned everybody weighs in. Richard Avery (talk) 07:27, 27 March 2015 (UTC)
  • Nobody should ever use male and female condoms at the same time, that is much less effective than either one used correctly and separately [14]. If you are actually in Columbus, OH as your IP seems to indicate, you can go to your local planned parenthood here [15] and get answers to all these questions. SemanticMantis (talk) 18:41, 26 March 2015 (UTC)
I don't watch South Park. I am just curious about condoms, because AIDS/HIV is a serious pandemic, and I want to be informed so that I understand what people are talking about when they are talking about sex-related issues. (talk) 19:49, 26 March 2015 (UTC)
Anyone who seriously has such outlandish questions, how many, two-dozen? should be asking a professional or their high school guidance counselor or college health service, not asking volunteers to entertain wild "thoughts". μηδείς (talk) 19:30, 27 March 2015 (UTC)

parallel universes, rainbow gravity, different color photons moving at different speeds, gravity leaking between dimensions, MAKING black holes in the lab, say what?[edit]

I'm seeing some crazy talk in the news about all this stuff. [16][17] Now, I'd like to say I applaud recent progress toward marijuana legalization, but ......... can someone talk some sense about this? Like, why does the second source claim light of different colors moves different speeds, what does that have to do with "rainbow gravity", what does that have to do with parallel universes, how does gravity leaking into parallel universes make it easier to make a mini black hole. Etcetera. Somebody throw me a clue here. Wnt (talk) 15:53, 26 March 2015 (UTC)

Here's the clue: Real science is esoteric, arcane, and boring. In order to make new discoveries either accessible to the lay reader, OR more interesting to the lay reader, people will use language, often borrowed from science fiction, which makes discoveries more interesting than they really are. "Scientists communicate with a parallel universe!!!" sounds much more exciting than "So, there's this stuff called "quantum mechanics" and it's really confusing, and we're not entirely sure how it works, but we know it does. We have lots of weird explanations for why it might work (see interpretations of quantum mechanics) and just recently, one group of scientists found one piece of evidence which looks like it supports one of the myriad explanations (the Many-worlds interpretation)." Explaining exactly what the "many-worlds interpretation" means is far less exciting than what we picture a "parallel universe" to mean from Science Fiction, and it also requires a lot of arcane mathematics and jargon and concepts most people are 5-10 years of heavy education away from understanding. So we say shocking things like "Scientists contact a parallel universe!" rather than "Scientists perform an experiment which seems to indicate that one of the many interpretations of quantum mechanics may have some empirical validity." Which is closer to the truth, but far less likely to get clicks. --Jayron32 16:53, 26 March 2015 (UTC)
Some real science seems fascinating to me. There's particles/waves seeming to behave differently when an observer is present, for example, as in the double-slit experiment. Then there seems to be faster-than-light transfer of info via quantum tunneling, despite that being theoretically impossible. StuRat (talk) 17:02, 26 March 2015 (UTC)
The "faster-than-light" quantum tunneling experiments agree with theory, and the theory doesn't need any faster-than-light process to explain them, so there's no excuse for making such claims to the press. -- BenRG (talk) 18:00, 26 March 2015 (UTC)
See this post by Sabine Hossenfelder. Summary from the last paragraph: "The authors work in a framework that combines rainbow gravity with a lowered Planck scale, which is already ruled out. They derive bounds on black hole production using existing data analysis that does not apply in the framework they use. The main conclusion that Planck length effects should suppress black hole production at the LHC is correct, but this has been known since 10 years at least. None of this has anything to do with parallel universes."
I'd never even heard of "rainbow gravity" before this, but if different frequencies of light have different speeds in the vacuum (which is a prediction of some versions of quantum gravity) then white light will separate into a rainbow after traveling long distances, and that's reason enough to call it "rainbow gravity", I suppose. I doubt it deserves a Wikipedia article.
In theories with large extra dimensions, gravity is fundamentally much stronger than it appears to be, and seems weak at larger scales only because it falls off like 1/rd−1 instead of 1/r3−1 at small distances (which someone might call "leaking into the extra dimensions" if they were feeling silly). That means it's easier than you'd expect to make black holes smaller than the scale of the extra dimensions. The extra dimensions are not "parallel universes", although in some of these theories our 3+1 dimensional world might be a brane and other branes could be called "parallel universes". This has nothing to do with the many-worlds interpretation. -- BenRG (talk) 18:00, 26 March 2015 (UTC)
Never heard about gravity rainbow? It is actually Gravity's rainbow. I wonder how renowned scientist like Faizal got it wrong. Senteni (talk) 01:25, 27 March 2015 (UTC)
If I got the details wrong, at least the general idea was right; it is just sensationalism and oversimplification. --Jayron32 18:49, 26 March 2015 (UTC)
@BenRG: Thanks for that great analysis by Hossenfelder. He ripped Faizal so many new ones that if this physics thing doesn't pan out he can always find a job as a church organ. :) The obvious problem I had with "rainbow gravity" is that people have observed abrupt, high energy events from very long distances and never a word about them changing colors in some set sequence; according to this I take it the paper simply assumed this contrafactual. Which is why the media went beyond what I perceive as their usual limits of sensationalism this time. Wnt (talk) 20:17, 26 March 2015 (UTC)
Theorists are quite good at evading experimental bounds. A speed difference comparable to frequency × planck time may be ruled out (I think it is), but there can be smaller effects. I think Hossenfelder (who is a she, by the way) believes there might be, so I don't think she'd criticize rainbow gravity on that basis. -- BenRG (talk) 21:10, 26 March 2015 (UTC)
Sometimes I feel that what reporters say is rather like quantum mechanics - what you get out is related to what you put in only by some probability distribution and fixing any one point will make everything else completely unreliable. Dmcq (talk) 10:32, 27 March 2015 (UTC)

March 27[edit]

Could pore cleanser have been an adjuvant?[edit]

Could pore cleanser have been an adjuvant? I have seborrheic dermatitis which is caused by an immune reaction to a yeast or yeasts of Malassezia genus which is a common skin commensal. When I was a spotty adolescent around 1998-2002 I used pore cleanser and Clearasil and the pore cleanser used to sting. I was wondering whether it might have been an adjuvant and resulted in this perpetual immune response. I'm not asking for a diagnosis or treatment advice which I've already had from GPs. -- (talk) 12:20, 27 March 2015 (UTC)

Your first sentence seems like an admissible question to me, but when you add personal history many people will think you are asking for medical advice no matter what you say. So in the future, just state your informational question and don't give any personal account.
As for references, Adjuvant#Types_of_adjuvants gives some common types. I suppose you could see if any of those are listed as ingredients in the cleanser you used. You might also be interested in reading through this patent. [18] SemanticMantis (talk) 14:21, 27 March 2015 (UTC)
We have an article Seborrhoeic dermatitis which may be of interest. PubMed is always worth consulting, returning bits of interesting research like [19] [20]. One of the papers [21] gives me the impression that the Malassezia essentially seeks out and annoys the macrophage (with a lectin called Mincle that recognizes specific sugars) rather than the other way around. Immunocompromised persons generally have more trouble with it. Still, there is good support for your model in [22] which emphasizes that IgE-mediated responses are at play in most cases. And indeed, failure of epithelial barrier function leading to exposure to the adaptive immune system is proposed as a part of that. One could argue that any substance interfering with barrier function in this way would be an adjuvant by definition, even if that is a different situation than a usual intramuscular injection. And the pain you mention might (but certainly might not) be indicative of such a barrier breakdown.
But to progress further, the exact brand and composition of the pore cleanser causing the burning must be identified. Are there components that interfere with epithelial barrier function? Was the burning already an indication that IgE responses were involved? I can't say; there's no reverse engineering a single case. But it should be looked into, because obviously, any component in a skin cream that causes a long-term increase in the severity of skin conditions makes very good business sense, and one would like the clever scientists involved to see full recognition for their work. Wnt (talk) 14:50, 27 March 2015 (UTC)

Different series of staples worldwide like 80 Series, 100 Series[edit]

I am a lay man. I have been reading material available on internet about staples and their different series. But I fail to understand what these different staples series mean. Eg. 80 Series staple. The same word is being used by staple manufacturers across the globe. There are other series too, like 100 series, N series, 90 Series, 92 Series, etc, But I do not understand what these different series mean.

Request, please help to resolve my query in as much details as possible.MBJoshi1147 (talk) 17:14, 27 March 2015 (UTC)

Staple_(fastener)#Standards says that in the USA, ASTM_International covers standards for driven fasteners. You can see a copy of ASTM F1667-05 here [23]. SemanticMantis (talk) 18:22, 27 March 2015 (UTC)

March 28[edit]

Dropping an Object From Space[edit]

What is the heaviest an object may be to survive being dropped from space and land on Earth unscathed? Honeyman2010 (talk) 05:28, 28 March 2015 (UTC)

That would depend on its size, its shape, and its composition, as well as on where it landed. In other words, your question is unanswerable as asked, sorry. ―Mandruss  05:35, 28 March 2015 (UTC)

OK, let me ask it this way. If one dropped an empty Coke can from the International Space Station in a trajectory that would bring it back to Earth in the middle of a desert, would it survive without any damage? Honeyman2010 (talk) 05:58, 28 March 2015 (UTC)

I think it might, because the density is so low and heat wouldn't build up much because of the thin metal. StuRat (talk) 06:15, 28 March 2015 (UTC)
See Atmospheric reentry for our article. Orbit would also be useful. The answer to the OP's question depends on what they mean by "dropped". Just throwing the can out of the ISS's airlock wouldn't put it on a re-entry trajectory, it would stay in the same orbit as the ISS, which would only decay after a matter of decades - some sort of retro rocket would be needed. Putting it on the standard re-entry trajectory that the astronauts use would expose it to temperatures of about 7800 K, well above the melting point of aluminium (933 K). (Incidentally, having thin walls _increases_ the rate of heat buildup - see heat capacity). Using a spacecraft-sized retro rocket to bring it in on a subsonic trajectory would restrict its speed to its terminal velocity (according to my very approximate calculations, about 7 m/s), which should allow it to land undamaged on a soft surface. But there are too many variables to answer the question as stated. Tevildo (talk) 07:34, 28 March 2015 (UTC)
The verb "dropped" has no meaning in the context of "from space", especially regarding the International Space Station or any spacecraft in orbit. If an astronaut/cosmonaut on a space walk was to release an object in the same way we would "drop" something on Earth, as oppose to throwing it, then the object would continue in the same orbit as the International Space Station. Cullen328 Let's discuss it 07:46, 28 March 2015 (UTC)
An object with a higher surface area to volume ratio should be more effective at radiating heat away, hence limiting heat buildup. StuRat (talk) 07:50, 28 March 2015 (UTC)
Think it would be better to put it that the ratio of surface area to mass is great. Have often wondered though whether a paper airplane would make make down to terra firma without getting singed. It would make a good school project as it would be so cheap to do and engage kids interest in science. If it (or a few hundred paper airplanes) were over 10cm in size and aluminum coated, their re-entry could be tracked and possible a few could be recovered -if a suitable reward to the finder was offered. How about that Jimmy Wales? – you could promote this experiment by offering the finder(s) free editorship to Wikipedia...!--Aspro (talk) 15:55, 28 March 2015 (UTC)
To be a little bit pedantic: A reentering capsule would not reenter like a coke can. The center of mass in a capsule is arranged a little bit off the capsule's center line of axis, which provides a little bit of aerodynamic lift. Thus, allowing it to slowdown significantly before hitting the denser atmosphere. Those of us that can remember the return of the Apollo 13 had this drummed into them as to why the reentry angle from Moon to Earth return was so critical.--Aspro (talk) 16:11, 28 March 2015 (UTC)
Yes, although they would need to release the pop cans/paper airplanes either during launch or prior to landing, not while in a stable orbit, as noted earlier, to prevent it from becoming more space junk for decades until the orbit decays. StuRat (talk) 16:03, 28 March 2015 (UTC)

Thank you all for your efforts to answer this. I appreciate your knowledge. Honeyman2010 (talk) 08:08, 28 March 2015 (UTC)

This actually seems like a better question for What if?, a website by Randall Munroe. At the bottom of the linked page, there's a link to email questions. There's no guarantee your question will get answered, but if it is, it will probably be with more thoroughness than is usually given here. Matt Deres (talk) 12:49, 28 March 2015 (UTC)
Funny you should mention that website. I came here because of this xkcd comic about space-exploring squirrels. Somebody on the xkcd forum mentioned that a squirrel's terminal velocity is so low that it can fall from any height and survive. That made me wonder what would happen to the squirrel in the comic if it fell from a point well outside the atmosphere but close enough to Earth to be captured by Earth's gravity and fall more or less straight down. Would it be fried by aerodynamic heating? Let's assume it's an American red squirrel and let's further assume that it can breathe in space (the source in the link makes it clear that the squirrel is conscious halfway to the Sun, so it's clear those squirrels have mastered space suit technology). Sjö (talk) 16:22, 28 March 2015 (UTC)
If this hypothetical squirrel just droped perpendicular to earth ( meaning it was not at orbital velocity and thus having the kinetic energy to melt steel). Then at the hight of the ISS this critter would only have to dissipate 2 to 2 ½ kilowatts of energy per kilo of kinetic energy created by the gravity well . So, me thinks, it would certainly end up getting cooked on the outside but a still a little bit red raw on the inside. Makes you think though – does anybody have a spare sounding rocket and a pet squirrel so we can put this to the test?--Aspro (talk) 17:33, 28 March 2015 (UTC)

Falling from space? Cool. The following crudely approximates the effects of falling from space, please do not attempt with actual squirrels.

Let's assume a sphere of mass m and radius r is released at rest relative to the Earth's center of mass from a height h close enough to the Earth that we can assume constant acceleration (g = 9.8 m/s2). Let's further assume the density of the atmosphere decreases exponentially with a scale height of 8 km, that atmospheric temperature can be ignored, and that supersonic effects can also be ignored. The total force (gravity + drag force) on the object is approximately:

-mg + {1 \over 2}\rho_{air} v^2 0.47 \pi r^2 \approx -mg + {1 \over 6}{\rho_{air} \over \rho_m} v^2 {m \over r}

At terminal velocity:

0 = -mg + {1 \over 6}{\rho_{air} \over \rho_m} v^2 {m \over r}
v = \sqrt{ 6 g r {\rho_m \over \rho_{air}} } = \sqrt{ 6 g r {\rho_m \over \rho_{air,0} e^{-h / 8\, \text{km}}} } = e^{h / 16\, \text{km}} \sqrt{ 6 g r {\rho_m \over \rho_{air,0} } }

The power dissipated at terminal velocity would be:

P = Fv = {1 \over 6}{\rho_{air} \over \rho_m} {m \over r}e^{h / 16\, \text{km}} \left( 6 g r {\rho_m \over \rho_{air,0} } \right)^{3/2}
= \sqrt{6rg^3 {\rho_m \over \rho_{air,0}}}m e^{3 h / 16\, \text{km}}

As a rule of thumb, the fraction of the power captured by the object is approximately 1/2 the drag coefficient, which implies at terminal velocity:

P_{heating} \approx \sqrt{{3\over 8}rg^3 {\rho_m \over \rho_{air,0}}}me^{3 h / 16\, \text{km}}

If we assume we are talking about normal objects without heat shields and other technical aids and good thermal conductivity, then we can imagine it has a uniform temperature and dissipates heat via radiation, leading to a quasi-equilibrium temperature of:

\sigma 4\pi r^2 T^4 \approx \sqrt{{3\over 8}rg^3 {\rho_m \over \rho_{air,0}}}me^{3 h / 16\, \text{km}}
T = \left({ 9m \over 256 \pi \sigma}\right)^{1/4} \left({g^3 \rho_m \over r^3 \rho_{air,0}}\right)^{1/8} e^{3 h / 64\, \text{km}}

Finally, let's put in some numbers. Impact velocity reduces to:

v_{impact} = \sqrt{ 6 g r {\rho_m \over \rho_{air,0} } } = \sqrt{ {9 g m \over 2 \pi r^2 \rho_{air,0}} } \approx 3.7 \text{ m/s } \left( {1 \text{m} \over r }\right) \sqrt{ m \over 1 \text{kg} }

At 100 km, the temperature due to drag would be (in crude approximation):

T \approx 50 \text{K}\left({ m \over 1 \text{kg} }\right)^{1/4} \left({ 1 \text{m} \over r }\right)^{3/8} \left({\rho_m \over \rho_{air,0}}\right)^{1/8} \approx 40 \text{K}\left({ m \over 1 \text{kg} }\right)^{3/8} \left({ 1 \text{m} \over r }\right)^{3/4}

Feel free to enter your favorite squirrel / soda can / whatever numbers to see what happens. Personally, I'd suggest unscathed is probably velocities < 10 m/s and temperatures less than 320 K for living things, though obviously higher for inanimate objects or living things with some form of protection. Incidentally, the time required to fall from orbit under these assumptions is approximately:

 t \approx 4.4 \text{hr} \left( {1 \text{m/s} \over v_{impact}} \right) \left(1 - e^{-h / 16 \text{km}}\right)

Dragons flight (talk) 19:35, 28 March 2015 (UTC)

P.S. For sufficiently slowly moving objects (e.g. insects) they are actually more likely to freeze in the upper atmosphere than burn up. Dragons flight (talk) 20:41, 28 March 2015 (UTC)
That, I think, is a really thorough answer. But it was the heat generated in the supersonic phase of deceleration is what I was thinking about. It may not last long but that is that phase where much of the deceleration and heat is generated. The atmospheric density may increase according to log e but the body (or in this case the squirrel) is still accelerating at G and will be traveling much, much faster than than the speed of sound at STP. Just the 'tail' of Concord reached over 90°C. Our furry hypothetic friend may have insulating furr but it has one hell of a temp differential to survive. In this experiment, I would graciously step-aside and let the squirrel jump first. P.S. And as for bacteria - maybe Fred Hoyle was right.--Aspro (talk) 20:50, 28 March 2015 (UTC)
The Concorde did about 650 m/s (Mach 2) at 20 km altitude. At the same elevation a falling "squirrel" (r = 10 cm, m = 0.5 kg) would be subsonic at a leisurely Mach 0.25 and dissipate only 1/500 the energy per unit area. That "squirrel" wouldn't be supersonic below 40 km, and above that point you've lost > 99% of the atmosphere. Supersonic corrections twiddle with the drag coefficient and the coefficient of heat transfer, but personally I don't think they change the rough picture. For the current parameter values the squirrel should be more worried about freezing than burning. Dragons flight (talk) 22:10, 28 March 2015 (UTC)

Linear thermal expansion of technetium[edit]

[Question from banned user and responses deleted] Tevildo (talk) 22:58, 28 March 2015 (UTC)

Why don't bedbugs carry disease?[edit]

Why don't bedbugs carry disease?2601:7:6580:5E3:E8FB:21E2:7FA2:947 (talk) 17:23, 28 March 2015 (UTC)

This U. Penn. article indicates that they can. The recent outbreak of Bedbugs in the US as been traced chicken farms, I remember reading that either Delaware or Maryland was ground zero. In the US Northeast diseases like malaria and Chagas disease are simply not endemic, so the bugs have no pathogens to spread. (There's also the difference between bug-type mouthparts and mosquito mouthparts.) No one knows if this may change in the future. μηδείς (talk) 18:47, 28 March 2015 (UTC)
Bedbugs tend to feed off the same person or people each night, so there's less opportunity to spread disease than from something that feeds on different people or animals each night. Of course, they do occasionally spread to a new location, and could then spread disease with them. StuRat (talk) 18:50, 28 March 2015 (UTC)
Although it is not unequivocally been determined that bedbug don't transmit disease, it is never the less a good question -as other anthropoids (like mosquitoes) do. However, as disease vectors, such as mosquitoes, can easily move onto a new host if it dies and pass on disease from the last host... the bedbug has a very long walk ahead of it if its host dies. So it may be that evolution has selected bedbugs that don't kill their host. Got no references however to back that hypothesis up and on Ref Desk we don't like to speculate. There are other anthropoids and tetrapods (lobster etc.), isopods (woodlice etc.), that people can eat raw without any known or recorded risk. So maybe no zoonotic disease has had found a need to evolve to make them a vector.--Aspro (talk) 19:09, 28 March 2015 (UTC)
ITYM arthropods. --Trovatore (talk) 19:18, 28 March 2015 (UTC)
  • Humans would not catch actual diseases that bedbugs themselves suffer from--we are far to different physiologically. We would get diseases for which they would be a disease vector. In other words, they would consume an infectious agent in the blood of another host, and according to the UoP article I quoted, pass the pathogen along in their feces, with the disease being transmitted when the bedbug host scratched open wounds and rubbed in the feces. This model has been verified in mice, and is the same method of transmission of Chagas disease by kissing bugs, which are in the same biological order. As a side comment, bedbugs are not that sedentary, they will travel on clothing and infest entire buildings. This is exacerbated by urban living conditions.
Humans don't eat bedbugs, and most diseases that are transmitted by eating involve mammals and fowl. Pigs cary flukes, and we can get schistosomiasis by consuming the living eggs of the worm. We get E. coli infections from the feces of others when they prepare food with unwashed hands (ground beef) or defecate in crop fields. We get listeria from undercooked poultry products and contact with reptiles like turtles which are carriers. μηδείς (talk) 21:20, 28 March 2015 (UTC)
Avoid eating any chicken prepared by the housewives on Listeria Lane (unless you happen to be desperate). StuRat (talk) 22:23, 28 March 2015 (UTC)

Deep sea bases: comet proof?[edit]

With all due respect to Aquarius (laboratory), it is not what I'd call comet proof (or even hurricane proof). I entertain some suspicion that militaries might, for various purposes, have adapted their existing deep submersibles to be permanently placed and docked in larger complexes. Questions:

  • Are there any technical barriers to making a large complex several miles under the ocean, provided one is willing to pay proportionally more than the $50 million cost for DSV Alvin? (By military standards I think ten or twenty billion really isn't that much, especially if you can store nukes there you want to keep off the records for arms control)
  • For example, is there a limit to how long something like Alvin could be kept submerged before it gives way to the pressure?
  • Would an undersea complex be protected from a hit by a comet, provided it wasn't near to the impact site? Or would a pressure wave run through all the oceans and crush it like a tin can?
  • If such a base had been constructed, could the military plausibly keep it secret for decades by supplying it with stealthy submarines, etc.? Or would it be detected by some sort of scanning (kind of like [24] but one hopes with more sophistication ;) Wnt (talk) 23:40, 28 March 2015 (UTC)


March 24[edit]

Pauli Matrices[edit]

Defining a vector \sigma_i for i=0,1,2,3 where \sigma_0 is the 2 \times 2 identity and the other elements are the pauli matrices. I believe there is a simple form for the rank-4 tensor given by T_{ijkl} = \frac{1}{2} \mathrm{tr} \left[ \sigma_i \sigma_j \sigma_k \sigma_l \right] but I can't seem to find it. If anybody is able to point me in the right direction I would be quite grateful.

Since pinged, I could point out the first boxed eqn of Pauli matrices leads directly to, I think, T_{ijkl} =\delta_{ij} \delta_{kl} -\delta_{ik} \delta_{jl}+ \delta_{il} \delta_{jk} , which appears to have the right symmetries. Cuzkatzimhut (talk) 13:38, 24 March 2015 (UTC)
I think this would be correct if the indices only cycle over i=1,2,3, but the inclusion of the identity as \sigma_0 makes things more complicated. — Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 14:23, 24 March 2015 (UTC)
Apologies, yes, I took only indices 1,2,3. If 3 indices are 0, the expression vanishes. If two, say k,l, it is a delta of the other two. If one, l=0, it is i εijk. Cuzkatzimhut (talk) 15:13, 24 March 2015 (UTC)

In a related question if there is similarly a closed form for the orthogonal matrix O_{ij} = \frac{1}{2} \mathrm{tr} \left[ \sigma_i A \sigma_j A^{-1} \right] in terms of operations in the 4-space involving the vector  a_i = \frac{1}{2} \mathrm{tr} \left[ \sigma_i A \right] where A is a general invertible complex 2 \times 2 matrix it would be very useful to know.

Thank you. — Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 11:42, 24 March 2015 (UTC)

Hmm. I don't know, but I might know the right person to ping. YohanN7 (talk) 12:33, 24 March 2015 (UTC)
So, utilizing the above, you should first take out the inert determinant of A killed by the inverse A in your expression, and supplant it with −|a| the length of your 3-vector a, and the determinant of your now normalized A, which is thus now reduced to the mere Pauli vector a⋅σ. The inverse of A is just the similar Pauli vector with  a_i/a^2 instead of  a_i, and using the above expression, O_{ij}= (-\delta_{ij} + 2 a_i a_j /a^2) orthogonal, all right. Cuzkatzimhut (talk) 14:22, 24 March 2015 (UTC)
This I think is correct if we restrict only to the case that A is traceless.
Of course! take the trace out as an identity piece, if you like. Otherwise, you have to do the calculation with a A= bI + i a⋅σ, invert it, etc... In "customary" applications, A is not arbitrary, but a unitary, rotation matrix, whose form is then substantially constrained. Cuzkatzimhut (talk) 15:09, 24 March 2015 (UTC)
I was looking at similarity transformations on a system of spin-\tfrac{1}{2} particles, and so any spectrum preserving transformation is relevant. For what its worth, writing A= a0 I + i a⋅σ, I obtained O_{ij} = \frac{1}{a_0^2-a^2} \left[ \left( a_0^2+a^2 \right) \delta_{ij} - 2 a_i a_j + 2 i a_0 \epsilon_{ijk} a_k \right]. Thanks anyway.

Logarithmic number[edit]

Has there been any proof that pi is not a logarithmic number?? (This means a number that can be written as b in a^b = c where a and c are natural numbers and a > 1.) It is known that all non-negative rational numbers are logarithmic, as are many irrational numbers. Georgia guy (talk) 19:37, 24 March 2015 (UTC)

Since no-one yet has answered your question, and I'm uncertain if I've understood it correctly, could you (or someone else) give an example of an irrational number b and two natural numbers a and c that satisfy the equation a^b = c? --NorwegianBlue talk 12:27, 25 March 2015 (UTC)
There is a definition of "logaritmic number" at I'm having trouble seeing that that definition and Georgia guy's definition are the same. --NorwegianBlue talk 12:38, 25 March 2015 (UTC)
They're not the same. The mathworld definition only includes rational numbers. For an irrational example of Georgia guy's notion, consider \log_2 3. It's irrational, and 2^{\log_2 3} = 3.-- (talk) 12:52, 25 March 2015 (UTC)
Thanks! --NorwegianBlue talk 13:20, 25 March 2015 (UTC)

March 25[edit]

Identify map projection in NASA eclipse atlas[edit]

Miller cylindrical projection?

Can anyone tell

  1. What map projection is used in this image (original at ), and
  2. What the latitude of the top edge of the map is?

Cheers! cmɢʟeeτaʟκ 13:35, 25 March 2015 (UTC)

It looks like a Miller projection, and the mapping from y pixel coordinate to latitude is \varphi = \frac{5}{4}\tan^{-1}\sinh \, 0.002956 \, (682 - y), putting the top and bottom at about ±85°. -- BenRG (talk) 18:31, 25 March 2015 (UTC)

March 26[edit]

Question that is harder than it looks[edit]

Each episode of the TV quiz show Pointless features four couples, one of which wins the show. Non-winning couples get asked back for one more appearance (two shows in total). Winning couples do not get asked back. Assuming that all four couples in each show have an equal chance of winning, what is the long-term average number of returning couples present in each show? This is not homework. It is a question that I devised myself out of interest. I have arrived at an answer but I am not certain it is correct. I would like to check it against someone else's answer. (talk) 02:47, 26 March 2015 (UTC)

I get 1\tfrac57. -- BenRG (talk) 06:47, 26 March 2015 (UTC)
I get that too. Abecedare (talk) 07:42, 26 March 2015 (UTC)
Likewise. It's a Markov chain problem, with the transition matrix \begin{bmatrix}0&0&0&1\\0&0&3/4&1/4\\0&1/2&1/2&0\\1/4&3/4&0&0\end{bmatrix}. -- Meni Rosenfeld (talk) 11:12, 26 March 2015 (UTC)
Also, for a general number n of couples, I get \frac{n(n-1)}{2n-1}. -- Meni Rosenfeld (talk) 11:19, 26 March 2015 (UTC)
  • (OP) Thanks for the replies everyone. I'm wondering now about the necessity for the condition "all four couples in each show have an equal chance of winning". I believe that the answer would be different if the likelihood of winning was somehow influenced by whether a couple was a returning couple or a new couple. However, suppose that some couples are inherently better than others at the game, and that couples retain the same ability for each show on which they appear. Does this make a difference to the 12/7 answer? At first I thought not, but now I am having doubts. (talk) 13:28, 26 March 2015 (UTC)
What matters is the probability that a returning couple wins vs. a new couple. If there is no "experience" factor, so an individual couple has the same chance if winning whether they are new or returning, then the probability of a returning couple winning is the same as if all couples have the same chance of winning and you get the same answer. But if returning couples have learned from experience and have a better chance of winning than they had as new couples, or if their morale is so broken by there loss that they have a lower chance of winning on the second try, that will change the answer. --RDBury (talk) 13:47, 26 March 2015 (UTC)
Thanks, I understand all the part about the "experience" factor. However, it seems to me that "an individual couple has the same chance of winning whether they are new or returning" is not possible unless all couples have 1/4 chance of winning (or the numbers are artificially fixed in a way that does not make sense in reality). This is because they will be with different contestants in each case. If the contestants' chances add up to 1 in the first game, then, when couples come back and are mixed up with a different group, the chances won't generally add to 1. The way I tried to think of it was to assign a "strength" number to each couple, which they retain throughout. The chance that a couple will win is their "strength" divided by the total of all couples in the game. For example, if couples' strengths are 1, 3, 2 and 2, then the chance that the first couple wins is 1/(1+ 3 + 2 + 2). In this model, does the 12/7 result still hold? (talk) 14:27, 26 March 2015 (UTC)
I don't think what RDBury said is true. Returning couples are likely to be less skilled, and this affects the result. It's not trivial to model symbolically, but I ran a simulation on a model that assumes there are "winners" and "losers", in equal amounts. A winner will always win against a loser (losers have a strength of 1, winners have an arbitrarily high strength). I got a ratio of ~1.658 - with a small, but statistically significant, difference from 12/7.
You're right, I missed the "weeding out" factor. --RDBury (talk) 16:56, 26 March 2015 (UTC)
If couples are inherently similar, but affected by experience, this is easier to model. -- Meni Rosenfeld (talk) 14:39, 26 March 2015 (UTC)
Here's an approximate graph of the value, as a function of the percentage of losers: (Edit: see below for an accurate graph) -- Meni Rosenfeld (talk) 15:14, 26 March 2015 (UTC)
Thanks, I think your comment "Returning couples are likely to be less skilled" is very useful, and would explain why the 12/7 number is no longer correct if varying skill levels are allowed. (talk) 15:00, 26 March 2015 (UTC)
Also, to further clarify why this results in a lower value: Returners are less skilled, thus less likely to win, thus it is more likely that a newcomer will win and be denied the opportunity to return. Thus, this result in an overall lower level of returners. In the winner/loser model, the value is minimal with roughly 68.8% losers, and a value of ~1.6438. -- Meni Rosenfeld (talk) 15:14, 26 March 2015 (UTC)
Ok, I have symbolic results now. With an equal number of winners and losers, the value is 735718463 / 443497368, which is 1.65890... . The minimal value of 1.643630087... is obtained for 69.08278956...% losers. The closed-form formula for a general proportion p of losers is:
4 (12960 - 1440 p - 3632 p^2 - 13328 p^3 + 30922 p^4 - 10636 p^5 + 797 p^6 - 14780 p^7 + 21384 p^8 - 12394 p^9 + 4417 p^10 - 1120 p^11 - 1199 p^12 + 1302 p^13 - 338 p^14 + 96 p^15 - 63 p^16 + 12 p^17) /
(30240 - 2400 p - 6960 p^2 - 28496 p^3 + 68202 p^4 - 27554 p^5 + 1419 p^6 - 29175 p^7 + 48060 p^8 - 31547 p^9 + 10440 p^10 - 2597 p^11 - 126 p^12 + 1113 p^13 - 471 p^14 + 160 p^15 - 84 p^16 + 16 p^17)
An accurate graph can be found at
Mathematica code:
 n = 4;
 States = {{0, 0, 0, n}}; Clear[RevState];
 RevState[x_] := (AppendTo[States, x]; RevState[x] = Length[States])
 TransitionMatrix[p_] := (
   trans[x_, y_] := 0;
   i = 1;
   (*Run over source states*)While[i <= Length[States],
     {RL, RW, NL, NW} = States[[i]];
     y = Table[0, {n}];
     (*Choose whether newcomer or returner wins*)Do[
      If[RW + NW > 0,
       y[[1]] = NL;
       y[[2]] = NW - j;
       q = If[j == 0, RW/(RW + NW), NW/(RW + NW)],
       y[[1]] = NL - j;
       y[[2]] = 0;
       q = If[j == 0, RL/(RL + NL), NL/(RL + NL)]
      new = n - y[[1]] - y[[2]];
      (*Choose how many winners for next round*)Do[y[[3]] = k;
       y[[4]] = new - k;
       If[q > 0, 
        trans[i, RevState[y]] = 
         q Binomial[new, k] If[k == 0, 1, p^k] If[new == k, 
           1, (1 - p)^(new - k)]], {k, 0, new}], {j, 0, 1}];
    Table[trans[i, j], {i, 1, Length[States]}, {j, 1, Length[States]}]
 Val[p_] := Module[{x},
   x = Eigenvectors[Transpose[TransitionMatrix[p]]][[1]];
   x = x/Total[x];
   Sum[x[[i]] States[[i, j]], {j, 1, 2}, {i, 1, Length[States]}]]
-- Meni Rosenfeld (talk) 18:04, 26 March 2015 (UTC)
Wow! (talk) 21:51, 26 March 2015 (UTC)

Decoupled mathematical models[edit]

I am trying to find a good source that describes and defines decoupled mathematical models. I'm thinking less of situations where there is truely no interaction between variables, as described here. I'm thinking more of situations where decoupling is used as a choice to simplify a problem when modelling. Such a choice will lead to two or more models where the output from one model is used to define the input of the other, but there is no feedback between the two (except in special cases where iteration is used). I was hoping there would be something on this on Wikipedia, but I can't find it. Any ideas on the best place to look? A Google search turns up lots of things, some irrelevant and many just being examples of decoupling, rather than a good general description.

Yaris678 (talk) 12:12, 26 March 2015 (UTC)

Before I get too deep in a possibly irrelevant answer, is KAM theory at all relevant? There one starts with an integrable system (so "decoupled" into harmonic oscillators), and then perturbs away from the integrability. Sławomir Biały (talk) 12:40, 26 March 2015 (UTC)
It sounds like you're talking about operator splitting (wut, no article? try a book's introduction), although maybe you had another kind of modeling in mind. --Tardis (talk) 14:01, 26 March 2015 (UTC)
Hi guys. Thanks for the suggestions, but I don't think what I am talking about is those things. It is more like submodelling, as described here. In that example, in reality, the motion in the stress-concentration area will feed back and affect motion far from this area, but the detailed model of the stress concentration area just takes its boundary conditions from the coarser model, and doesn't feed back. Yaris678 (talk) 14:25, 26 March 2015 (UTC)
I think Central_limit_theorem#CLT_under_weak_dependence might spirit you're looking for. But in that case, the theorem just holds without the assumption of strict independence. Probably more appropriate is anything that's called "separation of time scales" or similar. See e.g. this paper [25] about Michaelis–Menten_kinetics and how similar modeling ideas can be applied elsewhere. The idea is not the the fast and slow time scales are truly independent/decoupled, just mostly independent, and that's often good enough. Searching google scholar for thinks like /model [simplify/simple] decouple (assumption) [area of application]/ [26] should also help you find relevant materials. SemanticMantis (talk) 15:31, 26 March 2015 (UTC)
Also, "mean field assumption" or "mean field approximation" will get you models where a sort of decoupling assumption is made, even though it is often known to not be literally true. This type of thing comes up a lot in my field (ecological modeling, e.g. the pair approximation [27]), but it's a rather different sort of modeling than the examples you've given. But if you want refs in ecological modeling, I can give you plenty of those. SemanticMantis (talk) 15:37, 26 March 2015 (UTC)
Hi SemanticMantis, You are in the right area and I think it has helped me clarify in my mind what I am after. Simplifying a model by approximating a system by two or more decoupled systems is exactly what I am talking about. I don't know if I will find source that describes this exactly. I'm looking for quite a general source. I suppose if there is an application it is in modelling mechanical systems. Yaris678 (talk) 16:59, 26 March 2015 (UTC)
I'm glad I got at least the right area, but I'm not aware of a good general reference on the topic. Sadly, mathematical modeling is divided into fairly distinct silos - so model techniques in physics, engineering, biology, chemistry etc. are often uninformed by what the others are doing. There's also the fact that advances in pure and applied math are fairly decoupled :) Further, approaches are fairly distinct in their methods: discrete/continuous, analytic/simulation, etc. Anyway, another thing you might be interested in is multiscale modeling, and this book [28]. Moment_closure is another common way that an assumption of decoupling can help provide tractable and informative models.
The general idea of decoupling (or approximating weak dependence by indenpendence) assumptions should be at least mentioned in any good book on mathematical modeling, but types of decoupling assumptions will vary (by field of application and mathematical methods).
At the risk of stating the obvious, if you are at a university, you could also contact your local reference librarian, or perhaps a professor of mechanical engineering or applied math. Hope that helps, SemanticMantis (talk) 18:36, 26 March 2015 (UTC)
I'm not in a university, unfortunately.
Multiscale modelling is a great example of the sort of thing I am talking about. I can imagine that there will be a small-scale model, which informs a coarse-scale model on certain physical properties and then the coarse-scale model informs a different small-scale model with boundary conditions. So information goes up and down the scale but never feeds back, keeping the models decoupled.
Yaris678 (talk) 10:42, 27 March 2015 (UTC)
Ok, well that's about all I can come up with right now. FYI, many universities will grant library cards to members of the public, you might want to look into that if there is a university near where you live. SemanticMantis (talk) 14:15, 27 March 2015 (UTC)

Laplace transform understanding[edit]

I am trying to understand the meaning of the Laplace domain, as it seems to be weirder than the Fourier domain. I asked a question on that page: Talk:Laplace_transform#Intuition_and_inverse_transforming_the_Dirac_delta feel free to answer it there as I think my confusion points to a shortcoming in that page. —Ben FrantzDale (talk) 18:46, 26 March 2015 (UTC)

I think what's going on is just what you said: the Laplace transform is massively redundant, so you can't expect an arbitrary CC function to be the Laplace transform of something. In particular, per Inverse Laplace transform#Mellin's inverse formula, for any sufficiently large γ the values on the line Re(s) = γ are sufficient to reconstruct the original function (and hence the whole Laplace transform).
If you consider a Laplace transform restricted to Re(s) = γ, call it F_\gamma(s) = \int_0^{\infty} e^{-(\gamma+is)t} f(t)\, dt, then Mellin's inverse formula becomes f(t) = \frac{1}{2\pi i} \int_{-\infty}^{\infty} e^{(\gamma+is)t} F_\gamma(s)\,ds. This looks a lot like the Fourier transform and its inverse. If you like, you could think of the Laplace transform as a bunch of side-by-side Fourier-like transforms of the function (one of which (F0 in my notation) actually is the Fourier transform). If there are no singularities, any one of them is sufficient to recover the original function. -- BenRG (talk) 01:44, 27 March 2015 (UTC)
Thanks for the reply. That makes sense. The fact that the Fourier transform appears along the complex axis is also mentioned here, which I just watched for the first time. Very interesting! —Ben FrantzDale (talk) 02:50, 27 March 2015 (UTC)

March 28[edit]

Chances of hitting triple 20 on a dartboard[edit]

Assume that your throws on a dartboard follow a circular Gaussian with standard deviation σ, centered on the middle of the triple 20 region. What are your chances of hitting triple 20? Has anybody made a graph or table of this? -- (talk) 09:12, 28 March 2015 (UTC)

If the region is a disc of radius r, and the x and y coordinates are independently normal with sd \sigma, then the probability is 1-\exp\left(\frac{-r^2}{2\sigma^2}\right). -- Meni Rosenfeld (talk) 18:02, 28 March 2015 (UTC)
The triple 20 region isn't a disk. It's a sector of a circular ring. – b_jonas 18:34, 28 March 2015 (UTC)
Dartboard diagram.svg
With the assumptions listed by Meni Rosenfeld above, the distance r from the center follows the Rayleigh distribution with parameter \sigma, while the angle is uniformly distributed. Hence the chance for hitting a triple-20 is
\frac{1}{20}\left[\exp\left(\frac{-r_{\text{in}}^2}{2\sigma^2}\right) - \exp\left(\frac{-r_{\text{out}}^2}{2\sigma^2}\right)\right]
where r_{\text{in}} and r_{\text{out}} are the inner and outer radii of the ring respectively. Abecedare (talk) 20:56, 28 March 2015 (UTC)
This would have been true if the dart was aimed at the center of the board. I assumed this to be the case, since I assumed the target region is in the center; however, now that I see what region we are really talking about, the OP's specification "centered on the middle of the triple 20 region" is crucial, and complicates things. It should be easy to find numerically, given the radii. -- Meni Rosenfeld (talk) 23:12, 28 March 2015 (UTC)
One would still need to define "the middle of the triple 20 region" precisely. Would this be the region's centroid, or a point midway between the inner and outer arcs? —Quondum 23:20, 28 March 2015 (UTC)
(edit conflict)True. I had missed the "centered on the middle of the triple 20 region" in the question. Its trivial to write the integral expression for the solution, but I too doubt that it will result in a closed form expression, or at least one that is easily interpretable. Numerical computation would be the way to go.
Interesting side question: what is the optimal point within the triple 20 region to aim at? Center of mass? At mean radii? My guess is neither. Abecedare (talk) 23:27, 28 March 2015 (UTC)


In the transreal numbers, can anyone explain the kind of number nullity is?? Any examples of mathematical equations that equal nullity?? Georgia guy (talk) 23:39, 28 March 2015 (UTC)


March 23[edit]

A "credit bank" that gives interest on postive balances?[edit]

Is there such a thing as a "credit bank", where withdrawal overdraft fees do not occur, there's a credit limit, and a two way interest that charges the customer on negative balances but provides FDIC protection and deposit interest on positive balances? -- DMahalko (talk) 11:20, 23 March 2015 (UTC)

You don't say where you are, but in the UK such an account is commonplace. --TammyMoet (talk) 12:20, 23 March 2015 (UTC)
The FDIC is a US organisation apparently, so presumably that's the country of interest. But yes, should have been mentioned. And yes, I would agree, that sounds like a pretty normal account to me? (talk) 13:32, 23 March 2015 (UTC)
I don't know that it's widely available in the US, but I found one such while searching for examples: "Checking Line of Credit" As this is a credit union rather than a bank, it's probably NCUA-insured rather than FDIC. I may be misreading this, though, as all other "line of credit" examples that I found were clearly not a restrictionless hybrid of checking account and credit card -- nearly all had per-overdraft fees and/or per-month transaction limits. — Lomn 14:58, 23 March 2015 (UTC)


Are or were there octachies, ennearchies et ecc?-- (talk) 14:54, 23 March 2015 (UTC)

I assume you're talking about collective government leadership, akin to a troika or a triumvirate or the Diocletian tetrarchy. Technically, Switzerland is a heptarchy. See Swiss Federal Council. There is no single Swiss head-of-state. The entire seven-member council serves as a collective head-of-state. There are also situations where the land of a country has historically had divided sovereignty, where multiple monarchs ruled effectively independent states within what had historically been a cohesive country. In that case, you have situations like the Heptarchy of the island of Britain during the early middle ages, or the Herodian Tetrarchy of the Levant in antiquity. Under that notion, China has been a decarchy during the Five Dynasties and Ten Kingdoms period, while Korea had been a Triarchy for quite a while. --Jayron32 16:19, 23 March 2015 (UTC)
Who is 'we'? You appear to be based in Italy? Is that the country you are talking about? LongHairedFop (talk) 16:32, 23 March 2015 (UTC)
The OP never used the pronoun "we". Are you responding to the correct question? --Jayron32 16:37, 23 March 2015 (UTC)
No,I speak in general and not only about italy.-- (talk) 17:00, 23 March 2015 (UTC)
Ooops show how I managed to read 'were' as 'we', and then parsed the rest of the sentence around that. Mia culpa. LongHairedFop (talk) 17:42, 23 March 2015 (UTC)
Keep Mia out of this. It's mea culpa. Clarityfiend (talk) 19:30, 23 March 2015 (UTC)
We have the Five Eyes watching and flying over us, wherever "we" are. Pentophthalmocracy, maybe. InedibleHulk (talk) 06:10, March 24, 2015 (UTC)
It seems that anything with more than sever rulers is an oligarchy. — Kpalion(talk) 11:20, 24 March 2015 (UTC)

March 24[edit]

brother jonathan[edit]

How can I contact the author of the article on Brother Jonathan?

Grafton Tanquary The Jonathan Heritage Foundation The Jonathan Club Los Angeles, CA — Preceding unsigned comment added by Grafton tanquary (talkcontribs) 08:10, 24 March 2015 (UTC)

Each article may have hundreds of authors. If you see a flaw in an article, bring it up on its discussion page, e.g. Talk:Brother Jonathan. —Tamfang (talk) 08:19, 24 March 2015 (UTC)
To see who has edited an article, (and what they did), visit Brother Jonathan, and click on View History in the top-right. This will bring up a summary list of all edits, and who made on them. Click on the Talk link to leave that person a message. To see what the edit changed, click on the "prev" link. Also, if you click on the article's Talk link, you are taken to a page where you can leave comments/queries/corrections etc about the article. LongHairedFop (talk) 10:42, 24 March 2015 (UTC)
If you want to edit the article go ahead, just make sure your source is reliable. If your are adding new information, the easiest way is to add <ref>[]</ref> immediately after your change, this provides a footnote to the webpage you took the information from, and allows other editors to check that it is factually correct, and other readers to look up more information if they want. See WP:CITE for more information about references, but don't worry if you make a mistake; it will be corrected soon enough. LongHairedFop (talk) 10:53, 24 March 2015 (UTC)
Why do you want to contact the author(s)? If you think there is an error that should be corrected please just identify it. If you want to know where a piece of information in the article came from, you will have to go through the edit history to find who added it. If you tell us what it is another editor may be able to help. Paul B (talk) 13:52, 24 March 2015 (UTC)

This wonderful tool tells us that the most prolific author, both in terms of number of edits and amount added to the text, has edited anonymously. You're unlikely to be successful in contacting them. #2 on the list is User:Wighson. Click here to liaise with them directly, although note that they've not edited regularly in over a year. Please do not edit the article yourself, unless you're confident you fit into the exceptions in this essential Wikipedia guideline. Thanks, --Dweller (talk) 14:02, 24 March 2015 (UTC)edited --Dweller (talk) 14:11, 24 March 2015 (UTC)

I don't see how representing the Jonathan Club makes one COI for the Brother Jonathan article. The two have no connection beyond the fact that the former is named from the mythological latter figure. Paul B (talk) 14:05, 24 March 2015 (UTC)
Amended. --Dweller (talk) 14:11, 24 March 2015 (UTC)

According to the brothers Hopper (first brother, second brother) in their book The Puritan Gift, the phrase, 'Art thou troubled, brother Jonathan?' was a mocking question, lifted from the Bible, and used by Cavaliers to mock Puritans, ultimately resulting in the term 'brother Jonathan' being applied to Puritans and, by extension, Americans. Before Uncle Sam, apparently, there was brother Jonathan as a caricature embodiment of a generic American (rather than 'the national emblem [sic.] of the glorious states of New England'). Apparently various trains and steamers were named after this character.

I have my doubts about this assertion; the wonders of the internet allow me to check the bible quickly, and the nearest that I can get to the phrase is from 2 Samuel 1 v. 26: I am distressed for thee, my brother Jonathan: very pleasant hast thou been unto me: thy love to me was wonderful, passing the love of women. (talk) 18:10, 24 March 2015 (UTC)

The actual quotation from The Puritan Gift is "How did the expression originate? The most likely origin is the Biblical saying 'I am distressed for thee, my brother Jonathan'. Used as a term of abuse for their Bible-thumping Puritan opponents by Royalists during the English Civil War, it was applied by British officers to the rebellious colonists during the American Revolution" (p.63). Paul B (talk) 20:30, 24 March 2015 (UTC)
Many thanks - I'd misremembered the quotation and given my book away. From memory, isn't there a bit more about the term in the book? I seem to remember that John Bull came into it somehow. (talk) 11:00, 25 March 2015 (UTC)

Pirates and venereal diseases[edit]

I watched a documentary on H2 (TV Network), and the documentary was about pirates. One thing that lodged in my mind was that European pirates of the 1700s could not bring women on board of the ship. At the same time, there were venereal diseases, and the treatment for them was pretty crude and painful by modern standards. Could it be that the men had sex with each other, as men would do in modern-day prisons? Or could it be that the men had sex with local women on land? Or could it be that the venereal diseases had spread around non-sexually? (talk) 13:49, 24 March 2015 (UTC)

Yes, all those things could be, though diseases that are "spread around non-sexually", are not typically called "venereal diseases", even if they affect the genital area. Paul B (talk) 13:54, 24 March 2015 (UTC)
No, I meant that a venereal disease that someone acquired by sexual means landed on someone else by non-sexual means (i.e. sharing drinking cups, sharing clothes, poor sanitary conditions in the 1700s). I am wondering which one could have been the most likely culprit of the venereal diseases? Did the male pirates in the 1700s had sex with each other? Is it still called "gay sex" when you merely have someone of the same sex sexually stimulate you by performing fellatio? (talk) 14:16, 24 March 2015 (UTC)

Ye scurvy swab! Ve poirates hast no truck viv 'gay sex' an' 'fellatio' - nae, ve leave such foul practices to foreign curs - arr - ven good Sir Dick zed Let us bang these dogs of Seville 'ee baint talkin' 'bout 'avin' sex vith each utha! Ye got a durty mind, ye. Arr! (talk) 19:27, 24 March 2015 (UTC)

Some historians, notably B.R. Burg in B. R. Burg (1995). Sodomy and the Pirate Tradition: English Sea Rovers in the Seventeenth Century Caribbean. NYU Press. ISBN 9780814712351. , have suggested that homosexuality was common amongst pirates. As you will see from our article on buccaneers, other historians question this position. We certainly know that homosexual behaviour is common in other environments where men are unable to meet women for extended periods of time - see our article on situational sexual behavior. It is certainly possible for venereal diseases to spread in such all male populations. RomanSpa (talk) 22:06, 24 March 2015 (UTC)

As a pirate myself, I can assure you that we pirates are not interested in gay sex at all, other than, of course, lesbianism, which is entirely normal and a delight to everyone. We are, of course, highly-sexed, as this documentary makes clear. (talk) 12:31, 25 March 2015 (UTC)

"Rum, buggery, and the lash" referred to the British Navy rather than pirates, as I understood it. (talk) 00:03, 26 March 2015 (UTC)

This and this give some indication that the Cabin boy had some additional relevant duties. Ian.thomson (talk) 00:10, 26 March 2015 (UTC)
That reminds me of a Cheech and Chong bit from a few decades ago. They're watching TV and there's a pirate movie on. One of the crew (perhaps a cabin boy) is to be punished:
[sound of whip} Oh!
[sound of whip] Oh!!
[sound of whip] Oh!!! YES!!!!
Baseball Bugs What's up, Doc? carrots→ 00:18, 26 March 2015 (UTC)
  • Regarding the general question of venereal disease on sailing ships (regardless of whether they were legally licensed and registered or pirate ships), the article History of syphilis may be an interesting read. --Jayron32 00:43, 26 March 2015 (UTC)

Incorrect British Empire Medal List[edit]

I am writing to you concerning this page:

I find this page incorrect and incomplete as there are 293 people awarded the British Empire Medal as of June 2012.

I would like to add my deceased grandfather to this page.

My grandfather was Staff Sergeant John Farrugia who served in the Royal Army Service Corps.

He was awarded the B.E.M medal and I have an army statement showing this and the initials B.E.M atfer his name on this statement.

Therefore please update this list at your earliest convenience to include his name.

If you do not update your records accurately concerning this matter I will look to seek legal advice and also bring this to the attention of the local media how you are not giving the recognition to those honoured by missing their names of this list.


Mr Matthew Farrugia (talk) 14:57, 24 March 2015 (UTC) 24/03/2015 at 14:57 GMT

No threats of legal action have any validity here. It seems strange that the name and Corps you mention doesn't have an entry in the British Forces war records site but perhaps your grandfather is one of the John Farrugias mentioned there. You are powerless to make Wikipedia include any names, but all you have to do is find an official site that mentions your grandfather's award, or a press report, and we will gladly add his name to the list. If fact, you could do it yourself. This is the encyclopaedia that anyone can edit. Dbfirs 15:26, 24 March 2015 (UTC)
I should add that the Category:Recipients_of_the_British_Empire_Medal is not an article giving a complete list of everyone who received the medal. It's a category. Its role is to group together everyone with the medal who has an article on Wikipedia. We also have categories like "People from London", but that's not a list of everyone alive or dead who ever lived in London (which would be impossible). If your grandfather is not independently sufficiently famous in his own right he will not have an article about him, and so will not be in the category. Paul B (talk) 15:35, 24 March 2015 (UTC)
Sorry, yes, I missed noticing that it was a category not a list. Your grandfather must be notable in his own right to have his own article. Even if we created a list, the only surnames beginning with F would be Fenwick, Ralph; Filer, Ernest Francis; Files, George Edward; Formby, John Raymond; Foster, Ronald Charles; Fry, Arthur Ernest; according to WW2 awards but perhaps the medal was not a wartime award? Dbfirs 15:44, 24 March 2015 (UTC)
John Mary Farrugia, listed as "Clerk of Works, Air Ministry Works Department, Kalafrana, Malta", was awarded the BEM on 2 June 1943, according to the London Gazette. It was in the Civil Division, though, not the Military Division. If that is him, then neither his position nor the fact that he was awarded a low-level honour would appear to indicate on their own that he meets the notability criteria. Proteus (Talk) 14:06, 25 March 2015 (UTC)
293 were awarded the medal in June 2012. See British Empire Medal#From 2012. I don't know whether a total count is recorded. PrimeHunter (talk) 14:44, 25 March 2015 (UTC)

Women's Headgear[edit]

Did the headgear common Christian women wore in earlier centuries have a religious meaning? Like Islamic Hijab? Thanks for comments. --Omidinist (talk) 15:26, 24 March 2015 (UTC)

It was never quite the same as hijab, but our article Christian headcovering makes it clear that all or most churches required women to cover their heads, until about the 1960s. Indeed, until then, women in Christian-majority countries routinely covered their heads in public. Itsmejudith (talk) 15:48, 24 March 2015 (UTC)
In addition to the headcoverings worm by the laity, there's also the wimple, worn by many current nuns as part of the religious habit. SemanticMantis (talk) 16:35, 24 March 2015 (UTC)
See also the mantilla for Catholics (more common in Mediterranean countries I believe) and the wedding veil. Alansplodge (talk) 21:28, 25 March 2015 (UTC)

Masculine versions of female names[edit]

A la "Julia" (feminine of Julius) or "Pauline" (feminine of Paul). The thought occurred to me while discussing Vin Diesel's naming of his daughter after the late Paul Walker. What masculine names are verifiably derived from older names for females? Evan (talk|contribs) 20:30, 24 March 2015 (UTC)

Have you tried looking through any of those "lists of boys names" that would be all over the internet, and see if any of them look like masculized feminine names? I was thinking Mario (given name) was a good candidate, but it really isn't - it has a separate origin from "Maria". I would suspect that if there are any, it's a pretty short list. ←Baseball Bugs What's up, Doc? carrots→ 20:46, 24 March 2015 (UTC)
Hymen ? (I bet Hymen Lipman had trouble with bullies growing up. Maybe some of them called him "pencil neck" and gave him ideas ?) StuRat (talk) 21:42, 24 March 2015 (UTC)
Hymen is the Greek god of marriage - god, not goddess.[29] Hymen also is or was a fairly common Jewish given name. I don't know what that version's origin is. ←Baseball Bugs What's up, Doc? carrots→ 22:10, 24 March 2015 (UTC)
According to this, "Hyman" as a Jewish name comes from "man". ←Baseball Bugs What's up, Doc? carrots→ 22:13, 24 March 2015 (UTC)
That's no consolation to Misty Hyman. -- Jack of Oz [pleasantries] 22:14, 24 March 2015 (UTC)
See Wikipedia:Reference desk/Archives/Language/2013 July 3#Given names (male from female).
Wavelength (talk) 21:46, 24 March 2015 (UTC)
Ah, excellent. I should have checked the archives. Thanks. Evan (talk|contribs) 19:32, 27 March 2015 (UTC)

Unconscious thought theory[edit]

Many years ago I discovered that my brain solves problems quite efficiently in the “backoffice” whilst I am consciously thinking about something entirely unrelated. Presumably my experience is no exception. As a consequence, I now often just analyse a tricky problem and synthesise one / more solutions (there are cases where none of the solutions is without major disadvantages and there are cases where there does not seem to be a solution in loop 1 of the analysis / synthesis phase) and then just ignore the matter.
At some random time later - during dinner / in the shower / whilst asleep / whilst sitting in my favourite wine-bar idly gazing at the Gothic vaulting - a solution (not necessarily the best) pops up unexpectedly paralleled by some “Eureka” surge of cerebral bliss.
I suspect that there is a term for this, but googling does not get me far. We have an article on Unconscious thought theory, but this seems to imply that UT is best at solving trivial stuff / that it does not exist / that it is not superior to deliberate mental processes.
In my case I have been / am solving problems in database design and digital 3D modeling, many of which I would not consider to be trivial. Of course, the last point may well be correct, but why waste time and effort on conscious thought when you can “outsource” it to neurons lazing around in the subconscious.
Sorry about the lengthy pre(r)amble. Question: 1) which other WP references may be useful to research that? 2) is there a less clunky name (colloquial) than unconscious thought theory? 3) POV and anecdotal, but is this “phenomenon” experienced / utilised habitually by other ref deskers? --Cookatoo.ergo.ZooM (talk) 21:28, 24 March 2015 (UTC)

There might be something about stress and how it affects thinking. I think this was explored on Brain Games recently. Notice how you come up with these answers in non-stressful situations, or at least when you're focused on something else. Anecdotally, after a long day at work, solutions will often occur to me on the drive home, when I'm focused on traffic. ←Baseball Bugs What's up, Doc? carrots→ 22:06, 24 March 2015 (UTC)
Q.3. All the time. All my life. See Recall (memory) @ Involuntary memory retrieval. -- Jack of Oz [pleasantries] 22:12, 24 March 2015 (UTC)
You're talking about the subconscious, although our article on it is horrible. The phenomenon is universal, if not universally recognized. It's the source of expressions "on the tip of my tongue" and "sleep on it." If you can't think of a term or name, often the best thing is simply to leave it aside. It will then pop into your head unbidden after a while. It's the reason why people say not to make big decisions on a hurry, but to sleep on them. The subconscious can work at the problem and find solutions and objections that might not come to mind during a short focused effort of concentration.
Here are a list of [sources], some of which may be poor, but it will show the commonness of the idea. As for myself, I often think of various things that have been at question during the day as I lay down to sleep, and it does help. μηδείς (talk) 22:30, 24 March 2015 (UTC)
Are you confusing "subconscious" with "unconscious"? The word "subconscious" is certainly common in self-help books, but I don't think it's scientific. -- BenRG (talk) 00:58, 25 March 2015 (UTC)
I am using subconscious to refer to those parts of the mind not immediately the object of (or ofttimes immediately recoverable by) focus: below consciousness. I am using unconscious to refer to either the lack of consciousness at all, or those regulatory processes mediated by the brain but not accessible internally by the mind. The subconsciousness would be the place where the words we speak are spontaneously generated; we only become conscious of them when we say them or vocalize them to ourselves. BenRG has posted some great links below which I highly recommend.
I'm certainly not selling Freudianism or any New Age stuff. I'll mention the novelist and playwright/screenwriter Ayn Rand's The Art of Fiction which mentions "subconscious" 28 times, and which also defines the subconscious as the contents of your mind not currently accessible or accessed by conscious focus. She speaks of "stocking" the unconscious by taking time to consider notable events, actions, and subjects as you go about daily life to provide a source, sometimes only used much later, as artistic inspiration. μηδείς (talk) 01:59, 25 March 2015 (UTC)
Denying you are "selling" widely-discredited bullshit psychological theorists only to then cite a widely discredited bullshit political theorist on a neuroscience concept. Interesting ploy. --Jayron32 02:02, 25 March 2015 (UTC)
Jayron that's three highly hostile edits in a row, across the desks. You may not know it, but Rand wrote almost no political theory, and the book I mention has nothing to do with politics. It's a well-reviewed book on fiction writing and nothing else respected even by non-libertarians and Rand-fans. You're even confabulating strawmen, at whom you throw obscenities. What psychological theorists did I advocate? I said our article was terrible. This is uncharacteristic of you. μηδείς (talk) 02:22, 25 March 2015 (UTC)
Creativity#Incubation and Sleep and creativity may be relevant. -- BenRG (talk) 00:58, 25 March 2015 (UTC)
The basic phenomenon is discussed under varying rubrics in contemporary psych literature: incubation, sub-/un-/non-conscious problem solving, mind wandering etc. So try those as search terms. Keep in mind though that while there is plenty of anecdotal evidence for such unconscious processing, there is yet no universal agreement on the mechanism, effect size, or whether it is a net negative or positive if consciously employed. And as you can expect the field is saturated with pop/outdated psychology, self-help/new-age literature. Here is a 2009 review article that provides a broad overview. Abecedare (talk) 03:55, 25 March 2015 (UTC)
@Cookatoo.ergo.ZooM: this is a most awesome thread and you sir, are a most awesome person. Personally, I've been looking into this for a while now, from the perspective of an amateur. I've found hints of insight into the problem in many different disciplines, so you may want to broaden your interdisciplinary approach to take into account other ways of looking at the problem. For example, you may find something valuable that will help you connect the dots over at art of memory, jhāna, and flow. I would also recommend looking into some of the findings in music therapy as they may provide some additional answers. Oh, and before I forget, I've found that the neurobiological effects of physical exercise can help get you half of the way there. If I think heavily about a problem an hour before I workout, I will get some incredible insight during the workout, to the point where I have to stop exercising and write it down. Good luck. Viriditas (talk) 20:45, 27 March 2015 (UTC)

Taddea Visconti's cause of death[edit]

Is there any source saying why Taddea Visconti died at age 30? I couldn't even find whether it was natural cause or not (maybe there's some Italian source, more familiar with that than those in English). Brandmeistertalk 21:43, 24 March 2015 (UTC)

Italian Wikipedia doesn't say but following its sources, this one says she died in childbirth. [30]
P.S. NB both the German and Italian wikipedias contract the English re the place of her burial; both say it was in the Munich Frauenkirche, though her grave has never been discovered. [31]
See also [32] (page 539) which I think says something like (I'm not good with old fonts): Anno dni MCCCLXXXI. obiit dna THADAEA fila de Mediolano, ducissa Babarie (Vxor I. Stephani I. Ingolstad.) (talk) 23:51, 24 March 2015 (UTC)

March 25[edit]

I seek data on ancient Hx, and find nothing prior to the 1600's for ancient native Americans in NJ's Seacaucus area from where I have a 3,000 plus era stone axe-head.[edit]

How can Wikipedia improve posted data?? I've searched your site with no avail. Data for my inquiry, which I have sent and requested is non-engaging and responsive. It shouldn't take an hour to ask a question or suggest an idea!.

I seek data on ancient Hx, and find nothing prior to the 1600's for ancient native Americans in NJ's Seacaucus area from where I have a 3,000 plus era stone axe-head. — Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 00:19, 25 March 2015 (UTC)

You question as stated is unclear. Can you define "ancient Hx"? Googling that term I get flashcards for words that deal with ancient Near Eastern civilizations, and the archeology of Halifax. I see your IP geolocates to Parsippany, and you mention Secaucus. The indigenous people during that time were the Lenape people and their predecessors.
This desk is run by volunteers who cannot necessarily guess what you are looking for without a better explanation, and the guidelines at the top of the page advise you to expect an answer within days (if possible), not "while you wait". μηδείς (talk) 02:09, 25 March 2015 (UTC)
Are you asking about ancient hand axes? If so see Hand_axe#History_and_distribution - our article says they were used in North America since the Pleistocene, but doesn't have many good examples or citations for that. There's some related info at Folsom point - but those are knapped projectile points, not axes. It does look like our article on hand axes could use some attention and citations for North America, if anyone wants to help with that. SemanticMantis (talk) 15:35, 25 March 2015 (UTC)
Hx is typically an abbreviation of "history", at least in a medical context (although not in the field of history itself). So I suppose the OP is asking about ancient history. Adam Bishop (talk) 23:15, 25 March 2015 (UTC)

That's unAustralian[edit]

In Australia, there's a catchphrase/ catchcry/ not sure what you'd call it, but it consists of calling something "unAustralian". The meaning is that the other person is not very laid back, and is taking rules too seriously, or just being plain unfair, or something like that. I've asked others about their national "word" and what it means, and heard one surprising answer: apparently in Singapore, it has a negative meaning - if you show you are obsessed with money, "that's very Singaporean." Can anyone tell me what the national word means around the world? IBE (talk) 15:48, 25 March 2015 (UTC)

Not exactly what you're after, but you may be interested in No true Scotsman. --Dweller (talk) 15:59, 25 March 2015 (UTC)
No true Australian would complain about that answer ;) IBE (talk) 16:07, 25 March 2015 (UTC)
We have articles on un-American and un-Australian. The latter, perhaps surprisingly, considerably predates the former. -- Jack of Oz [pleasantries] 16:13, 25 March 2015 (UTC)
The term "un-American" was presumably already established when Mark Twain spoke of the unfairness of condemning Satan without hearing his side of things: "To my mind, this is irregular. It is un-English; it is un-American; it is French!" ←Baseball Bugs What's up, Doc? carrots→ 16:55, 25 March 2015 (UTC)
Very interesting, Jack. I would add that "unAustralian" had a simpler meaning, before being politicised, and was more about a "fair go". I first remember it in serious (so to speak) discussion in the media, on a current affairs show. Pubs were going off at restaurants for serving liquor without a meal, against the licensing conditions. Now restaurants pay something like $1000 a year for a restaurant liquor licence; pubs, maybe 10 times that. So at a restaurant, you can't order alcohol just on its own; it has to go with a meal. Bummer if the restaurants ignore it, but the pubs were complaining, obviously. But a restaurant spokesperson called that "unAustralian," with an obvious vested interest that sounds, well, very Singaporean. IBE (talk) 17:16, 25 March 2015 (UTC)
I Am Canadian may be interesting. --Jayron32 16:43, 25 March 2015 (UTC)
I speak German and have heard Germans describe something as deutsch in a disparaging way, often implying that the thing in question is rigid, narrow-minded, or authoritarian. Marco polo (talk) 16:44, 25 March 2015 (UTC)
Now that German one really interests me. From the Xenophobes' travel guide (or similar such title): "Contrary to popular belief, Germans are very funny people, in fact, Germans take their humour very seriously." IBE (talk) 17:10, 25 March 2015 (UTC)
I agree that Germans can be very funny, and this usage is an example of self-disparaging irony. Marco polo (talk) 17:52, 25 March 2015 (UTC)
That's a possible view. I'd prefer to understand it as a shortcut meaning "un-federal", "un-tribal" among the younger generations.--Askedonty (talk) 08:24, 26 March 2015 (UTC)
  • The essence of un-American would be counter to what makes us distinctive, especially the principles of the Declaration and the Bill of Rights, and less so a dislike of July 4th and Thanksgiving. Meriam Webster: Of course there's HUAC, which many consider to have itself been un-American. I'd assume the other major anglophone countries would share this sense of fair play for the defendant as a common English heritage. When I was young, one also used to hear "It's a free country" all the time, but I don't think I've heard that since the '90's. μηδείς (talk) 18:36, 25 March 2015 (UTC)
  • Yes, HUAC was a committee which engaged in un-American activities. Rarely has a political group been named so honestly. :-) StuRat (talk) 21:42, 25 March 2015 (UTC)
"Former Prime Minister Sir John Major brands Ukip 'profoundly un-British in every way' ahead of key by-election" [33] "Un-British" seems to be rather similar to "UnAustralian" except without the "laid back" part, although the related virtue of sangfroid is highly valued. Alansplodge (talk) 21:21, 25 March 2015 (UTC)
Given recent talk page debates... I can only assume that someone will soon complain that all of these answers (at least the ones that don't simply point to references) as being unWikipedian... or unReferencedeskian... or un-something like that. Blueboar (talk) 21:34, 25 March 2015 (UTC)

The negative version is called a cultural cringe. (talk) 07:34, 26 March 2015 (UTC)

In Turkish there are a couple of words, "alafransa" (in a French manner) which means something like "modern, European or civilized", and its opposite "alaturka", which means "backwards, uncouth or jerry-built". Not very self-flattering. --Xuxl (talk) 18:26, 26 March 2015 (UTC)
That's very useful, thanks XuXl. Whenever I have occasion to refer to Mozart's "Rondo alla Turca" now, I'll be sure to think of it as "Rondo alaturka". Homophones have their uses. :) -- Jack of Oz [pleasantries] 22:19, 26 March 2015 (UTC)

There is "osvensk" - un-Swedish - which confers spontaneity, outgoingness, talking to people you don't know, having a good time without worrying too much about the consequences etc. — Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 22:33, 26 March 2015 (UTC)

Did Nietzsche commit coprophagia?[edit]

I have read a few articles that briefly mention it, but haven't found a definitive answer, I have always been interested, and have considered writing an essay based around coprophagia and its correlation to Nietzsche's illness/philosophy JacobSmiley (talk) 18:44, 25 March 2015 (UTC)JacobSmiley

Cite some sources. ←Baseball Bugs What's up, Doc? carrots→ 18:52, 25 March 2015 (UTC)
There's a discussion (with some sources) at Talk:Friedrich_Nietzsche/Archive_10#Nietzsche.27s_scatological_breakdown. ---Sluzzelin talk 18:57, 25 March 2015 (UTC)
If Nietzsche went crazy, that would seem to be the main story. ←Baseball Bugs What's up, Doc? carrots→ 19:12, 25 March 2015 (UTC)
That is exactly what I was looking for, thank you, Sluzzelin. JacobSmiley (talk) 21:26, 25 March 2015 (UTC)
If you read German, here is a note stating that he smeared feces (not ate feces, hence no coprophagia) and there (PDF, 4 pages) is a diagnosis. --Stuhlsasse (talk) 03:18, 27 March 2015 (UTC)
I wouldn't want to leap to the conclusion that the feces-smearing is part of the illness, given that asylums were hardly known for their kindness. Throughout the "Security Housing Units" (i.e. solitary confinement) of American prisons today, the same behavior frequently occurs. Feces is often one of the last things a broken prisoner retains control of. Wnt (talk) 20:49, 27 March 2015 (UTC)

March 26[edit]

Confusion of Priorities[edit]

I see that a school of 400 in the middle of Saskatchewan has its own page, however the page of an influential and respected professor has been twice removed. I would like to understand the process behind that specific case, as well as other related cases. — Preceding unsigned comment added by Acidic Biscuit (talkcontribs) 01:01, 26 March 2015 (UTC)

Who? ←Baseball Bugs What's up, Doc? carrots→ 04:03, 26 March 2015 (UTC)
As I think BB means to imply, it‘s hard to say much without linking or naming the articles to which you refer. But I guess you’re after the notability guideline found at WP:N. Beyond the general principles there are specific criteria for various categories of topic; see in particular WP:ORG and WP:PROF.—Odysseus1479 04:20, 26 March 2015 (UTC)
True, and what I'm really getting at (not stated well) is that we need to know who he's talking about and whether there was a deletion request page so that we could review the specifics. ←Baseball Bugs What's up, Doc? carrots→ 04:26, 26 March 2015 (UTC)
(edit conflict) I was just about to add that articles are often deleted for e.g. copyright violation or complete lack of sourcing, without prejudice to the creation of policy-compliant replacements.—Odysseus1479 04:30, 26 March 2015 (UTC)
BB and questioner, it's not for the Ref Desk to review deletion decisions, if that's what's happened here. There's a WP:AfD process for that. -- Jack of Oz [pleasantries] 05:08, 26 March 2015 (UTC)
I strongly agree with User:JackofOz that it is not the job of the Reference Desk to question or review deletion or other content decisions. However, the reader may find it useful to be aware that he is not the only person who has concerns about this problemfeature. Unfortunately, Wikipedia's "schools" policy was, and to some extent remains, a vexed subject. About 9 years ago the policy was one of the principal battlegrounds between two different factions within Wikipedia, each of which had a different interpretation of the concept of "notability". Unfortunately, this debate occurred at a time when there was a large influx of new editors to Wikipedia, many of whom were less experienced and highly enthusiastic, and many of whom were readily persuaded that their own high school was notable (because, hey, they went there themselves and so it was obviously notable, and it got the necessary media coverage in the local newspaper). Further, there was a small but determined group of editors who felt for a variety of reasons, some expressly political, that schools were educational institutions on a par with major universities, and who were determined to add as many schools as possible to Wikipedia. Finally, participation in "deletion debates" about schools was highly co-ordinated by the people who wished to retain such articles - mailing lists were maintained, both within Wikipedia and in private communications between editors outside the Wikipedia environment. As sometimes happens in such cases, the debates became polarised, and compromise became difficult. Unfortunately, the better organisation of the side who wished to ascribe notability to all schools prevailed, and thus we now have the rather unfortunate precedent that all high schools are more-or-less automatically notable. There is no easy solution to this problem. I myself was involved last year in a proposal to move most schools into a new "educational supplement" to Wikipedia, but, like other attempts to address this problem, the proposal came to nothing.
As for the many, many articles on schools themselves, they have become a wasteland. Inspection of their edit histories shows that these articles are now largely out-of-date, with an unfortunately high number of edits consisting of vandalism and assorted personalia. As you'll see from my personal edit history, from time to time I've expended a lot of effort in attempting to clean up these articles, but it's a thankless task, and the Schools Wikiproject is utterly overwhelmed by the volume of work required to keep them at an acceptable standard. (The proponents of retaining all these articles have mostly vanished, of course.) My personal approach is, as far as possible, simply not to think about the problem. Wikipedia isn't perfect, so the best approach is to just accept things the way they are and move on. RomanSpa (talk) 10:48, 26 March 2015 (UTC)
The other day I came across this. Note the speedy tag clearly says "Note that educational institutions are not eligible under this criterion." and of course I declined the speedy, which was a bit of a surprise to the tagger. I pointed out Wikipedia:Criteria for speedy deletion#A7. No indication of importance (individuals, animals, organizations, web content, events), Wikipedia talk:WikiProject Schools/Criteria for Speedy Deletion A7and Wikipedia:Schools#Notability. And now it's at Wikipedia:Articles for deletion/Learnium International School. At least nobody has accused the nominator of anything. CambridgeBayWeather, Uqaqtuq (talk), Sunasuttuq 11:58, 26 March 2015 (UTC)
Just to expand on RomanSpa's response: if the professor you mention is still alive, their article would fall under the purview of WP:BLP. Deletion discussions on articles about living people often err on the side of deletion due to concerns that the person is/will be libeled and/or given incorrect information. A shitty article about a school is just a shitty article, but a shitty article about a person is an ethical and legal minefield. So, when it comes to living people, it's often the case that no article is better than a poor one. So, it's possible the article was wiped out just due to the poor nature of it - something that would be less likely to happen if it was a different kind of subject. Matt Deres (talk) 15:51, 26 March 2015 (UTC)
In the case of living American politicians, they don't need anything notable written about them. I tried to delete Harry Lehman, but it was simply impossible. InedibleHulk (talk) 10:45, March 27, 2015 (UTC)
Actually there's a case right now at WP:ANI that is arguing for the speedy deletion of a candidate, see the subentry under Jesus "Chuy" Garcia. μηδείς (talk) 19:29, 28 March 2015 (UTC)

Adele bloch bauer[edit]

I read that Adele Bloch Bauer received many famous guests, at her salon, but I think I spotted an error. Johannes Brahms, was mentioned, but he died in 1897, when Adele, was just a teenager (talk) 15:05, 26 March 2015 (UTC)

Note: Brahms is mentioned in the Maria Altmann article. We do not have an article on Adele Bloch Bauer. Rmhermen (talk) 15:41, 26 March 2015 (UTC)
How do you decide when a subject needs to be followed by a comma? —Tamfang (talk) 07:52, 28 March 2015 (UTC)

Congressional Monitor[edit]

I initially asked this on the talk page of Congressional Quarterly, but then realized it is probably better asked here.

I see that Congressional Monitor redirects to Congressional Quarterly, but nothing there mentions anything by that name. There appears to be a website, but it doesn't look like anything I'd ever associate with CQ. This came up because I recently received a survey in the mail from what appears to be the same Congressional Monitor as the web site, with somewhat slipshod multiple-choice questions that appear to presume a very narrow range of political possibility. E.g.:

4. What is the best solution for reducing the national deficit?
(A) Cut discretionary spending
(B) Reduce Farm subsidies [Um, those are somewhere under 2% of the budget - JM]
(C) Reduce Defense Spending [which, by the way, is part of discretionary spending, see item A]
(D) Enact the recommendations of the Bowles-Simpson Plan

Note that D is the only one that involves any increased taxes, and that within a large proposal that is seen as leaning to the conservative side. Is this really from the same people as CQ? If so, there seems to be a deterioration that we must somehow be able to document; if not, then that redirect is a problem. - Jmabel | Talk 16:06, 26 March 2015 (UTC)

The CM page was last edited eight years ago when it was still owned by the same company which owned CQ. Now the economist has purchased the company so I've changed the redirect to the new parent's article. Though for your question, it seems like CQ and CM were owned by the same company but were sister organizations and it would not be surprising if these two targeted different consumers to sell ads to. (talk) 17:49, 26 March 2015 (UTC)
So are you saying that you know confidently that is owned by the Economist, or that you are just conjecturing that? - Jmabel | Talk 23:16, 26 March 2015 (UTC)
Sorry, I did rely upon another editor for the idea that CQ owned an organization named CM. Now that I look closely, the CM you are linking to is an insignificant blog and the most notable use of the term CM is a database created by the Institute for Palestine Studies. (talk) 01:52, 27 March 2015 (UTC)

Nice to fix the link to something a bit more appropriate, but that still gives me nothing on my original attempt to work out who precisely is the "Congressional Monitor" that is sending out the biased surveys. Can anyone here help me? - Jmabel | Talk

If you do a search for '"Congressional Monitor" survey', you'll probably find a lot of people asking the same question (and at least one person implicitly criticising their methodology [34]) but I didn't see anyone answering. (It seems you can have them send surveys to you if you want one [35].) The domain was only registered in 2013 but the registrant details are hidden [36]. Their FAQ says they are incorporated in Washington DC. Perhaps you could fine some info on this incorporation by looking at Washington DC records (here perhaps [37]) and the information they've provided, perhaps not. It wouldn't surprise me if any info is fairly uninteresting and they're started by random people looking to profit and/or push their POV. Nil Einne (talk) 15:52, 28 March 2015 (UTC)

March 27[edit]

Panagia Church territory in Farsala[edit]

I'm having a hard time trying to geolocate the area where the fragment of the The Exaltation of the Flower was found. Léon Heuzey said he discovered it embedded in the walls of a church in a neighborhood called "Paleo-Loutro" in Farsala.[38][39] I suspect that name has been changed or is spelled wrong, or the translation is bad, because I can't find anything by that name. However, I did find an archaeologist who said the piece was "found in the Panagia Church territory".[40] It looks the archaeologist is referring to the Panagia Demerliotissa, but I don't know for sure.[41] Does anyone have any ideas? Viriditas (talk) 09:48, 27 March 2015 (UTC)

Just one point, the Panagia Demerliotissa church can't be the one; it's in the village of Stavros, some 15 km west of the town of Farsala. Still looking for further hints. "Palaeo-Loutro", in the mid-19th century, could refer to all sorts of things and may very well no longer be common as a name; more likely than not it was simply an area known locally as the location of an old hamam. "Panagia", in turn, is of course also an extremely common name for a church; you'd find one in pretty much any village. Fut.Perf. 21:34, 28 March 2015 (UTC)
This is not answering to the question but a place named Paleo-Loutro can be found on the internet. It also has an article in Wikipedia: Palaio Loutro, however it is located not very far from Sparta so it has to be a different place. Our article states that "palaio loutro" means "old bath". Perhaps this has been determining which area to look for in Farsala. --Askedonty (talk) 11:09, 27 March 2015 (UTC)
Thanks. That will at least give me something to go on. Also, I've been having fun working with street view, looking around the area. :) Viriditas (talk) 20:31, 27 March 2015 (UTC)
Then you must have seen the same than I just did. Léon Heuzey writes about the western part of the city and they had to avoid the bazaar, there is a Market Street somewhere the left on the map and then a probable Panagia further to the left. --Askedonty (talk) 21:01, 27 March 2015 (UTC)
Are you referring to the large church on the hill? Viriditas (talk) 21:13, 27 March 2015 (UTC)
I don't know. On [42] some places of interest that are marked. That's the view I get using street view. --Askedonty (talk) 21:18, 27 March 2015 (UTC)
It's quite possible that the church no longer exists? OR, but the Greek Wikipedia article on Farsala (per the google translatation) says the town was damaged in the second world war and in earthquakes after 1950 and in the last 30 years, many old buildings have been demolished.
P.S. on a hill doesn't seem right since Heuzey in your first link refers to the lower town? (talk) 22:10, 27 March 2015 (UTC)
According to this [43] local website, the church known as "Panagia" to locals of Farsala today would be the one seen on the photo with the caption "Πάρκο δίπλα στην εκκλησία της Παναγίας". That photo can be identified on Google maps with a location just north of Thetidos Street, at 39°17′46″N 22°22′36″E / 39.2960733°N 22.3767442°E / 39.2960733; 22.3767442. It's the one seen in Askedonty's Google street view link too. That may well match the description of "western part of the lower town", although it seems to be further west than the boundaries of the ancient city according to the diagrams seen here [44], and may well be outside of what was the town area in the 19th century. The present church is also certainly bigger and more modern than the one referred to in Heuzey's article from 1868, and the area certainly doesn't look like preserving anything of 19th-century old-town architecture. Fut.Perf. 22:07, 28 March 2015 (UTC)

Doublûres of Characters[edit]

In this picture, a caricature by James Gillray, seven leading Whigs are ridiculed by being shown as kind-hearted in public but essentially villainous. I have some problems with identification. The NPG ( lists the following seven:

They are, however, ordered alphabetically, not the way they appear in the picture. I is obviously Fox, while IV is most likely Tierney, V is Burdett and VII is Bedford. Still, I am not able to assign Derby, Norfolk and Sheridan to II, III and VI, so I would appreciate some help in that. --The Theosophist (talk) 18:17, 27 March 2015 (UTC)

Sheridan is II (see, for example, Uncorking Old Sherry), Norfolk is III (see, for example, A Norfolk Dumpling] and Derby is VI (see, for example, Peep at Christies). Tevildo (talk) 18:47, 27 March 2015 (UTC)
@Tevildo: Thank you very much! --The Theosophist (talk) 20:33, 27 March 2015 (UTC)

England & Wales Common Law Offences[edit]

Are common law offences in E&W restricted to criminal matters, or do they also concern civil matters? Do any common law offences relating to criminal matters have maximum penalties of less than life in prison? I have never encountered any and am interested in the answer. Thanks. asyndeton talk 18:31, 27 March 2015 (UTC)

Please see Common law offence#England and Wales, English Criminal Code, Law Commission (England and Wales) and Civil Procedure Rules, which may help with your research. --Jayron32 19:01, 27 March 2015 (UTC)
To answer the OP's specific questions - by definition, an "offence" is a criminal matter. For civil cases, tort is the appropriate term, and there are still many common-law (as opposed to statutory) torts. The only common-law offence (that I can find immediately) for which the penalty is not at large is contempt of court, the maximum sentence being set at two years by the Contempt of Court Act 1981. Note that the act does not create a new stautory offence; it defines additional rules and procedural requirements for prosecution of the still-extant common-law offence. Tevildo (talk) 19:11, 27 March 2015 (UTC)

Name this nasheed[edit] This is a faux-documentary, by Ahrar ash-Sham (I think). There is a song that starts at 10:12 into the video. Could someone identify it, or if it is not known, could an Arabic speaker write the lyrics so I can try to find it? — Preceding unsigned comment added by Radioactivemutant (talkcontribs) 21:08, 27 March 2015 (UTC)

Haven't figured out the song but this sounds like the full version. (talk) 22:47, 27 March 2015 (UTC)
Thanks a lot man Radioactivemutant (talk) 01:51, 28 March 2015 (UTC)

March 28[edit]

Help with Romanian written in Cyrillic characters[edit]

Bucharest - Biserica Sf. Anton 06.jpg

I'm trying to make sense of the texts in this image, which are Romanian written in Cyrillic characters. Also I'd love to know if it is possible to identify the saint.

The first word at the top is certainly cuviousul (definitive article form of the Romanian word for "pious"); I can't make sense of the second (maybe something to do with birth, because I would expect that to transliterate as something like naciomie). Then below we have something like Cine vǎ putea îndura ziua venirii lui, but I can't quite make sense of that (my moderate foreigner's Romanian gives me something like [He?] who can endure the day of his coming).

Any help? Oh, and if someone has a lot of patience or a Cyrillic keyboard, feel more than free to transcribe the original texts, which would be nice to have on the image file! - Jmabel | Talk 04:11, 28 March 2015 (UTC)

  • Just worked out one part of it myself! What had looked to me like naciomie was Antonie. So given that it is in a St. Anthony church, this is certainly St. Anthony. I'd still like to understand the Cine vǎ putea îndura ziua venirii lui, though. - Jmabel | Talk 04:35, 28 March 2015 (UTC)
    • Maybe, "He who can endure, his day will come"? But I'd still really like to hear from a native Romanian speaker. - Jmabel | Talk 04:46, 28 March 2015 (UTC)
How do you get Antonie (or even naciomie) out of пахомие pakhomie? —Tamfang (talk) 07:59, 28 March 2015 (UTC)
Pachomius the Great (talk) 13:19, 28 March 2015 (UTC)
to start you off, though I am not sure about the one I used Yu for – you should try the Language Desk or Romania Wikiproject. Google translate renders this as Venerable Pachomius: Who can ____ day of his coming. (talk) 13:30, 28 March 2015 (UTC)
You may already know this, of course - "But who can endure the day of his coming?" comes from the Book of Malachi, Chapter 3, Verse 2; a modern Romanian translation is "Cine va putea să sufere însă ziua venirii Lui?" [45] For Christians, this verse predicts the Second Coming of Christ and is a well known (to me at least) chorus aria in George Frideric Handel's oratorio, Messiah. Alansplodge (talk) 17:37, 28 March 2015 (UTC)
  • When the cross-lines are hard to make out, it's hard to distinguish 'Н' from 'П'.
  • Thank you so much! - Jmabel | Talk 21:56, 28 March 2015 (UTC)
    • Ooh. And I got Anthony by looking at the wrong image: this one, which I mistook for being another photo of the same picture. - Jmabel | Talk 22:05, 28 March 2015 (UTC)

The Afterlife in Judaism[edit]

I have asked several Jewish friends of mine this question, but even they don't seem to have a clear-cut answer. Does Judaism in the Old Testament describe an afterlife, such as Christians have in the Heaven and Hell described in the New Testament? Obviously, Moses was taken up into Heaven by God, but what about everyone else? If it is not in the Old Testament, is it in Talmudic tradition? Honeyman2010 (talk) 08:19, 28 March 2015 (UTC)

V'Zot HaBerachah is the relevant Torah portion regarding the death of Moses, which does not mention heaven. Jews do not use the term "Old Testament" as they give no religious recognition to any "New Testament". Nowhere in the Torah does it say that Moses went to "heaven", but rather that he died and was buried. So, what is obvious? Normative Judaism talks about a fairly vague "world to come" not a more specific "heaven" as described in parts of various Christian traditions. Please read Jewish eschatology for more information. Cullen328 Let's discuss it 08:47, 28 March 2015 (UTC)
I'm gonna go ahead and take issue with the characterization of Jewish conceptions of the afterlife as "vague." There is a great deal of Talmudic and post-Talmudic literature on the topic, much of which gets quite involved in discussing quite specific facets of the world to come (ha-olam ha-ba), even down to minute agricultural details. This is not to say that there is a monolithic and systematic conception of how the afterlife "works," as there may be in certain forms of Christianity and other religions—but Jewish theology in general is not monolithic either, and despite appearances, neither is it systematic. There are a variety of opinions on eschatology within the Jewish tradition.
Perhaps the most important thing to keep in mind is that, for much of its history, Judaism was (and Orthodox Judaism still is) an apocalyptic religion. The world to come is not something to be experienced "up there" after death in a place full of clouds and singing angels. It is believed to be a future earthly reality that will be inaugurated by the Messiah when he arrives (coincident with a resurrection of the dead), destroys the enemies of Israel, and ushers in a thousand-year worldwide reign.
None of this should be interpreted as somehow discounting the idea of a "present" heavenly realm. Enoch went somewhere, after all, as did Elijah. This is one point where "vague" (or, at least, "not currently fully understood by scholars") does become an apt descriptor of certain Jewish beliefs. The "bosom of Abraham" mentioned by Jesus in connection with the story of Dives and Lazarus seems to have become a rather more pleasant counterpart to Sheol (by this time identified with the Greek realm of Hades). By this point in the story, though, Hellenism has already had its way with much of Jewish culture, so it becomes quite hard to disentangle the historical origins of this particular idea. "Abraham's bosom" may owe more to the Elysian fields than to anything specific in the Hebrew Bible. Evan (talk|contribs) 16:40, 28 March 2015 (UTC)
Curious - where did the Bible obtain that textual fragment concerning the corpse of Moses from? Surely, it wasn't just conjured out of thin air! Plasmic Physics (talk) 12:32, 28 March 2015 (UTC)
To which "textual fragment" do you refer? The end of Deuteronomy? I'm not sure how that qualifies as a fragment, but in any case, the answer to your question is presumably, "The same place the rest of Deuteronomy came from." Evan (talk|contribs) 16:40, 28 March 2015 (UTC)

Thank you for your answer. I will read further what you suggested. Honeyman2010 (talk) 08:58, 28 March 2015 (UTC)

Dead Jews go to Sheol, whether they were good or bad. That stops mattering, because they stop having personalities or will. Shadows, basically. When the Old Testament was translated to Greek, Sheol became Hades. InedibleHulk (talk) 09:46, March 28, 2015 (UTC)
Yes Robinson's Essential Judaism agrees with that as the mainstream view. Whereas Catholics pray for the dead and believe in progress of a personality from purgatory to heaven, Judaism as Robinson explains it holds that there is no such thing as an accomplishment or change after death. μηδείς (talk) 19:22, 28 March 2015 (UTC)

The Annotated Alice[edit]

Is Martin Gardner's exegesis of Lewis Carroll's major works The Annotated Alice. ISBN 9780393048476.  still regarded as authorotative or has it been superseded by later work? Roger (Dodger67) (talk) 11:15, 28 March 2015 (UTC)

Assuming you mean The Annotated Alice, it's been through several versions since 1960. Since he titled that the "definitive edition" (1998/1999/2000) he probably didn't intend to do any more work on it. There is nothing later listed in his bibliography (and he died in 2010). A "150th Anniversary Deluxe Edition" is due out later this year, but it's unlikely to contain further material.--Shantavira|feed me 11:41, 28 March 2015 (UTC)
Thanks! (yes, "The Annotated Alice" I've fixed the template) Are there any rivals to Gardner's work? Thanks for the tip on the special edition, I'm going to try to pre-order one from my usual bookstore, for my niece/goddaughter. Roger (Dodger67) (talk) 12:01, 28 March 2015 (UTC)


March 22[edit]

Whatquam ex ungue leonem?[edit]

Johann Bernoulli, after reading an anonymous paper in 1697, said that its author was obviously Isaac Newton. And he commented in Latin: "Tanquam ex ungue leonem", which is often translated as "I recognize the lion by his claw".

But in my Cassell's Latin Dictionary, there's no verb that tanquam could be an inflection of. (The nearest thing is tango, tangere, meaning "touch", which would produce "tangeam" in the present subjunctive.) However, there is an adverb tamquam, for which an alternate spelling tanquam is shown in parentheses. The direct translations are given as "so as", "just as", or "like as".

Now Cassell's shows classical Latin, but Bernoulli would have been using the Latin of a Renaissance-era scientist, which might therefore include words or senses not in that dictionary. So is his tanquam actually a verb as the common translation implies, and if so, what are its principal parts? Or was he using the adverb? Oh, I just realized: I bet he meant "just as a lion from its claw", meaning simply that that he recognized Newton "just as" he would recognize "a lion from its claw". Have I answered myself correctly, then? Or was my first thought, that this was a non-classical Latin word, right after all? -- (talk) 04:32, 22 March 2015 (UTC)

An implied verb makes more sense to me. —Tamfang (talk) 05:04, 22 March 2015 (UTC)
Tamquam is a conjunction. The verb is implied by the context. “As if from the lion´s claw”. --Cookatoo.ergo.ZooM (talk) 10:03, 22 March 2015 (UTC)
Cassell's says adverb, but anyway, thanks for the responses. -- (talk) 18:01, 22 March 2015 (UTC)
It seems that Bernoulli didn't invent the expression, though. See this letter by Laevinus Torrentius in 1587: "...ingenii tui, quod ex disputatione Parisiis abs te instituta, tanquam ex ungue leonem, agnovi": "...your genius, which I recognized from the debate undertaken by you in Paris, just as (one would recognize) a lion from its claw." Lesgles (talk) 02:56, 23 March 2015 (UTC)
Ah, agnovi, "I have recognized". Yes indeed. That settles it. And if this passage was familiar to Bernoulli, it makes sense that he'd just quote the key phrase. Thanks for finding that! -- (talk) 03:36, 23 March 2015 (UTC)

Official status missing on language infobox[edit]

It has come to the attention of many users such as myself that the official status section on the infobox language template is now blank, not showing a list of countries where a certain language is official. However, on an article's edit page, the list of countries is still visible and editable. This problem is found both on articles with collapsable country lists such as English language and French language, as well as on articles that list one to a few countries with no collapsable list such as Japanese language and Norwegian language. Is this a system error or is there a new policy to not show where languages are official on their respective article page? — Moalli (talk) 05:56, 22 March 2015 (UTC)

This might be a better question for the Help Desk (WP:HD) - the question has also been asked (with no answer so far) at Template talk:Infobox language. Kwamikagami seems to be primarily responsible for this infobox, so is probably the best person to give an answer. Tevildo (talk) 10:36, 22 March 2015 (UTC)
I recently added some new fields to the info box, so I might have messed it up. I'll take a look. — kwami (talk) 05:48, 23 March 2015 (UTC)
Yup. I'd failed to renumber all the fields. Fixed. — kwami (talk) 05:57, 23 March 2015 (UTC)

Persian help and Arabic help? (transcription needed)[edit]

This is for German Embassy School Tehran. What is the transcription of the Persian in this image?

Also what is the Arabic in this image? For École Française Internationale Djeddah and in this image? For German International School Jeddah

Thanks WhisperToMe (talk) 17:03, 22 March 2015 (UTC)

"Friends Council of German Schools in Tehran" (انجمن دوستان مدارس آلمانی تهران). Omidinist (talk) 18:20, 22 March 2015 (UTC)
Thank you! I look forward to the Arabic as I'm starting the stubs about the French and German schools in Jeddah soon! WhisperToMe (talk) 18:22, 22 March 2015 (UTC)
1) المدرسة الفرنسیة العالمیة في جدة
2) المدرسة الالمانیة العالمیة في جدة. Omidinist (talk) 18:32, 22 March 2015 (UTC)

Thank you so much! If you don't mind one more, should have the Arabic name of the American school. WhisperToMe (talk) 18:34, 22 March 2015 (UTC)

You are welcome. (المدرسة الأمریکیة العالمیة بجدة) Omidinist (talk) 19:11, 22 March 2015 (UTC)
With the Arabic names I will post requests for these schools at the Arabic Wikipedia, to see if anybody is interested in starting Arabic language articles about them WhisperToMe (talk) 19:20, 22 March 2015 (UTC)

March 23[edit]

"coffee grounds" vs "coffee grinds"[edit]

Having always heard (and used) the phrase "coffee grounds," in the past week I've met two people who use "coffee grinds." Is this a matter of dialectal variation or idiosyncratic? Evan (talk|contribs) 15:26, 23 March 2015 (UTC)

I've only ever heard "coffee grounds", but Google ngrams shows that "coffee grinds" has bumbled along at a very low level since about 1960 (the occasional appearances before are probably accidental instances of this sequence of words with a different syntax). Since about 1986 it's taken off (though still far lower incidence than "coffee grounds"). --ColinFine (talk) 15:33, 23 March 2015 (UTC)
Thanks. I suspect ngrams wouldn't be too useful in this case, though, as there is the other meaning of "coffee grinds" that can refer to specific coarseness (e.g., a "coarse coffee grind" or a "fine coffee grind"), which is more of a descriptor of the grounds than a generic term for them. There's a technical term for that which is eluding me at the moment, probably because I have a head cold--a type of reverse gerund, perhaps? It's syntactically similar to something like "a rough chop" or "a close shave." The key is to somehow weed out instances like that from the cases where "coffee grinds" is used in place of the usual "coffee grounds." Hard to do with a computerized search. Evan (talk|contribs) 16:43, 23 March 2015 (UTC)
FWIW, our own article Coffee preparation refers to "spent coffee grinds", and that references a source that uses the term in its title and body. The Wikipedia article also uses "grounds". ―Mandruss  17:58, 23 March 2015 (UTC)
I've heard both terms, with "grounds" used more commonly. Not sure what this illuminates or doesn't but I did an Ebsco database search for both terms, and this is what I found: "Coffee grinds" yielded 960 results, dating from 1991. The types of titles the term appeared in tended toward four main clusters: British, Canadian, & Australian publications, restaurant trade journals, environmental magazines like Mother Earth News, Organic Gardening, and E: the Environmental Magazine, and literary journals like Southwest Review (where the term showed up in poetry). "Coffee grounds" yielded 12,607 results, dating from 1885 (though the database was behaving strangely and wouldn't let me see those oldest results). There was less noticeable clustering of types of titles, but academic and scientific journals in fields like radioanalytical & nuclear chemistry and advanced applied bioceramics did show up in the results set, along with titles like Men's Health and Businessweek. Now, this is just based on what I noticed looking through the results, and not good science, but there was the suggestion of a difference in where the two terms predominate, if someone were to want to pick up the thread and run with it. --some jerk on the Internet (talk) 13:16, 24 March 2015 (UTC)

Lightnin' up the mood[edit]

What's the proper form for the possessive form of Lightnin': Lightnin's, Lightnin' '​s or "Lightnin'"'s? Clarityfiend (talk) 18:23, 23 March 2015 (UTC)

I doubt there's a rule covering that situation, so I'd bypass the problem by using "Slim's", "Lightnin' Slim's", or "his". The majority of that article refers to him as "Slim", so why would "Slim's" be problematic? ―Mandruss  18:28, 23 March 2015 (UTC)
So circumlocution for Hiadeľ and its ilk too? Clarityfiend (talk) 18:34, 23 March 2015 (UTC)
If writing of Hiadel' is circumlocution, I'd say yes. But I'm not familiar with names of that form (is that a contraction of some kind?), so if the ending apostrophe isn't an essential part of the name perhaps it would be acceptable to write its possessive as Hiadel's.
The last letter of Hiadeľ is U+013E LATIN SMALL LETTER L WITH CARON (LATIN SMALL LETTER L HAČEK). Why the diacritic looks like a little ‹9›, I cannot say. —Tamfang (talk) 06:23, 24 March 2015 (UTC)
I see, so there is no apostrophe there, and it's a different animal from Lightnin'. Still, considering zero Google hits for Hiadeľ's, the circumlocution of Hiadeľ seems preferable to non-linguist me. ―Mandruss  07:16, 24 March 2015 (UTC)
  • The proper phrase is to lighten up the mood, "lightening" wouldn't normally take a possessive, but it would be "lightening's". μηδείς (talk) 18:45, 23 March 2015 (UTC)
  • Taking the general prescription literally and without thought, we'd have e.g. /lightnin''s gun/. Obviously this isn't covered in our WP:MOS. I'd think /lightnin's gun/ would be acceptable in most cases. I suppose you could check a copy of Strunk & White or Fowler's A_Dictionary_of_Modern_English_Usage - but I don't recall they address the issue. Agree that /Lightnin' Slim's gun/ would be more common. Usually people with names like that go by both, or by the second name. Sometimes this has humorous effect. When asked by 2 Chainz for rights to sample a song, Tom Lehrer responded
Hope that helps. SemanticMantis (talk) 18:54, 23 March 2015 (UTC)

Strange things among English irregular verbs[edit]

Hello, this question is posted from France. In the list below, I don't understand why only some verbs are in bold letters. It comes from a recent and good grammar : Bescherelle "L'anglais pour tous" Editor Hatier, 2014

I rejected some hypothesis.

H1) It has nothing to do with verbs that can be regular. This last verbs have a (R) in exponent.

H2) I don't think it has something to do with their frequency in English. They seem to be all very common.

H3) I don't think it has something to do with transitive verbs.

So what is there hidden below these verbs in bold letters? I thank you all to be courageous enough to read up to this end.--Jojodesbatignoles (talk) 21:40, 23 March 2015 (UTC)

I don't know.
But I noticed "ate" has the suggested pronunciation /et/. To the best of my knowledge this is considered obsolete, but there may be pockets of resistance where it's still said that way. In my experience, children who say /et/ are corrected and told to pronounce it as written, viz. a homophone of "eight". I dimly remember hearing adults say /et/, but they were of my grandparents' generation and are long dead now. -- Jack of Oz [pleasantries] 22:01, 23 March 2015 (UTC)
I think that's a lower case e followed by a capital i, which would make sense. But you're right that saying "ate" as "et" sounds like something hillbillies would say. ←Baseball Bugs What's up, Doc? carrots→ 22:17, 23 March 2015 (UTC)
Oh, and check quickly (or download it), because they're about to delete it. ←Baseball Bugs What's up, Doc? carrots→ 22:18, 23 March 2015 (UTC)
Actually, /ɛt/ is the IPA for the archaic past tense that rhyme with "set" and the chart says /eɪ/ (not et) which is the proper IPA rendering of the RP and SAE pronunciation of vowel of "ate" that rhymes with "eight". The authors are not using standard IPA, however, since simple /e/ is not found in RP or SAE, and is the "clipped" vowel of "eight" in Scottish and some varieties of Welsh English. In other words, say and said are /seɪ/ and /sɛd/ in RP and SAE. But since /e/ nd /ɛ/ never contrast without the /eɪ/ dipthongization in the two standards, they may simply be simplifying by avoiding the extra /ɛ/ symbol. μηδείς (talk) 22:27, 23 March 2015 (UTC)
Re the hillbilly thing: I seem to remember /et/ was once considered the 'proper' way to say "ate", and I'd give that some credence. I couldn't say when and why it changed, but it might have been chucked out in the same batch as "ain't", which I still maintain is the correct, legitimate and proper word to use for the tag question to "I am", viz. in expressions like "I'm wonderful, ain't I?". I'd much rather that than "aren't I" or "amn't I". -- Jack of Oz [pleasantries] 22:34, 23 March 2015 (UTC)
"How many eggs did you have for breakfast, Juli?" "Et two, Brute." --Trovatore (talk) 17:35, 24 March 2015 (UTC)
Lay's Potato Chips have or had a slogan that "no one can eat just one". In some print ads in the 1960s, featuring Bert Lahr as Caesar, they used that same idea. You're either very good or very old. :) ←Baseball Bugs What's up, Doc? carrots→ 20:32, 24 March 2015 (UTC)
Lo and behold, here it is:[46]Baseball Bugs What's up, Doc? carrots→ 20:35, 24 March 2015 (UTC)
[The French "à voir avec" is equivalent to the English "to do with". In your three hypotheses, you evidently mean "nothing to do with" and "something to do with".
Wavelength (talk) 22:52, 23 March 2015 (UTC)]
I can't see the image (I suspect it has been removed as a copyright violation). Is it available online, so that you could link to it? As for "ate" /ɛt/ is absolutely standard in my native (Southern England, somewhat close to RP) pronunciation. --ColinFine (talk) 11:07, 24 March 2015 (UTC)
In my dialect, we pronounce 'ate' as 'et', because prouncing it as 'eit' makes it sound like 'hate', as we do not pronounce the 'h'. A - "What do you think about the dinner I made for you?" B - "I /eit/ it." <- could cause some domestic misunderstandings, and we are not hillbillies - we don't live in the hills and we are not called Billy. KägeTorä - () (もしもし!) 11:13, 24 March 2015 (UTC)
If you are suggesting that you rhyme ate with set in your dialect, KT, you should either use the ett re-spelling or the phonemic transcription /ɛt/ with the symbol for what in English is called short e. The sounds [et] and [eit] are either nonexistent or only found in contexts I can't think of in RP and SAE. As mentioned before, say and said are [seɪ] and [sɛd] in RP and SAE.
Some people cannot read IPA. I was following Jack's example above of using 'normal' writing. Apologies. Also, I believe it is called 'phonetic transcription' and not 'phonemic transcription'. KägeTorä - () (もしもし!) 13:05, 25 March 2015 (UTC)
Phonemic transcription is in /slashes/ and phonetic transcription is in [brackets]. By the way, in my dialect, if someone answered that question with "I ate it" it would sound like they didn't particularly like it and were making a thinly-veiled attempt to be diplomatic. — Ƶ§œš¹ [lɛts b̥iː pʰəˈlaɪˀt] 14:40, 25 March 2015 (UTC)
It's perfectly alright not to use IPA, but you should avoid /*/ or [*] if not doing so. Anything between // is interpreted as a phoneme, which is usually a distinctive sound-symbol that exists across an entire language, or at least most of it. For example, English has only one /r/ sound. But anything in [] indicates how the sound is precisely said in a specific context in a specific dialect, or even by a specific person. One way to put it is that if you know the phonemes of a language you can speak it with a foreign accent, but if you master its phonetics you will speak a dialect like a native. Again, for example, the entirety of English has only one /r/ phoneme, but phonetically in SAE it is always [ɹ] (which British actors imitate to sound American). In British accents it may be [ɹ], [ɾ] (flap or [r] )trill) or even [w] word initially, and [ɹ], [ɾ] or [r] or even [0] (with vowel lengthening or colouring) in non-rhotic dialects. Spanish, however has two R (capitals imply generality) phonemes, spelt "r" and "rr" and realized as a flap [ɾ] and a trill [r]. Russian also has two R phonemes, one with a following "y" sound, and one without. When not speaking technically, it is best to use quotes and examples rather than slashes or brackets, as the latter will be taken to mean something different by the initiated from what the layman intends. μηδείς (talk) 00:08, 27 March 2015 (UTC)

Hello, I asked the same question hear and on the French equivalent (called The Oracle) where I got an insight that I consider is correct. The verbs in bold letters are the most important to learn. That was nearly impossible for you, native English speakers, to measure what verbs are more important to know for a French learner. I thank you all for your long answers.--Jojodesbatignoles (talk) 13:30, 24 March 2015 (UTC)

Unfortunately, it is impossible for us, both native or not, to confirm whether your insight is correct or not. Is it possible to reload the scan to a third-party image hosting and give a link?--Lüboslóv Yęzýkin (talk) 04:42, 27 March 2015 (UTC)
Someone was overzealous in removing that image. A chart of verbs is not copyrightable, and the image was obviously not orphaned. It should of stayed up for at least a week. μηδείς (talk) 19:12, 28 March 2015 (UTC)

Korean punctuation[edit]

Does the hyphen exist in Korean? According to the article the tilde (~) is used for ranges in numbers, but what happens if you transliterate double-barrelled names into Korean? Is there a hyphen, a space or nothing? The linked article talks about something different and I have yet to find an article about a person with a double-barrelled name which has a link to a Korean article. -- (talk) 23:38, 23 March 2015 (UTC)

Tim Berners-Lee has an article in Korean. Unfortunately his surname is rendered as ಬರ್ನರ್ಸ್ ಲೀ in the article title but as ಬರ್ನರ್ಸ್-ಲೀ in the lead sentence, and both versions occur again in the article. I think a more reliable source is needed. -- (talk) 04:48, 24 March 2015 (UTC)
That's Kannada, not Korean. FWIW, his Korean article is here, and I don't see any hyphen there.--William Thweatt TalkContribs 06:24, 24 March 2015 (UTC)
  • Dang, sorry about the bum steer there. I was fooled by the abbreviation "kn" in combination with Wikipedia's practice of providing interlanguage links in that language (and with Korean therefore alphabetized under G, not K) rather than the language of the source article. It makes perfect sense if you can actually read the language, but I don't know either Korean or Kannada. -- (talk) 05:28, 25 March 2015 (UTC)
Korean writing looks very different in style from South Indian writing. —Tamfang (talk) 23:48, 26 March 2015 (UTC)
Agreed. In Korean, Japanese, and Chinese, no hyphen or tilde is used for double-barrelled names. The tilde actually just means 'from'. In Japanese, a ・ would be used between the first part of the name, i.e. the first name, , but an = sign for the hyphen, but not so in Korean. In Chinese, the hyphen could be used, but I doubt it is obligatory. KägeTorä - () (もしもし!) 11:26, 24 March 2015 (UTC)
Googling turns up some Korean pages that use hyphens or spaces to separate his last names. The = sign is a double hyphen. -- BenRG (talk) 18:41, 24 March 2015 (UTC)

March 24[edit]

ASL sign in "Unbreakable" theme song?[edit]

At 55 seconds into this video, I'm presuming that the girl in the dark school uniform is making some American Sign Language sign. (The kids in the white school uniforms, in contrast, look like they either aren't intended to be signing, or they're just really bad at it.) What is that girl signing, if she is indeed signing? From the context, my guess would be that she might be signing something that would translate to "unbreakable" or perhaps "miracle", but I haven't been able to confirm or disprove that by googling. Red Act (talk) 22:24, 24 March 2015 (UTC)

March 25[edit]

Seven deadly sins - multilingual![edit]

A friend told me that he's planning to get a tattoo with the seven deadly sins, in various languages. Having seen the horror that can come from bad translations and transcriptions, I advised him to get advice. Could you please help me check them? I'm interested in:

  • Correct spelling
  • Suitable word choice: suitably serious/biblical tone.
  • Font choice danger (what letters look similar to others in fanciful fonts? Are certain diacritics or similar marks crucial to meaning?)


  • Superbia: גאוותנות
  • Avaritia: תאוות בצע
  • Luxuria: תאווה
  • Ira: זעם
  • gula: זוֹלְלוּת זללנות
  • Invidia: קנאה
  • Acedia: עצלנות
Just for the sake of clarity: This list has now been adjusted directly by a Hebrew speaker (diff). ---Sluzzelin talk 13:03, 26 March 2015 (UTC)
...and revised again due to afterthought, but I still stand by my statement below (third bullet). -- Deborahjay (talk) 19:17, 26 March 2015 (UTC)
  • The entry for Gula is inconsistent with the others, as it has a couple of vowels in it, when the others are unpointed. Worse, one of the two vowels present (the chirik under the lamed) is just incorrect (should be a shva, if you want vowels). --Dweller (talk) 13:17, 26 March 2015 (UTC)
  • Be aware that Hebrew can be written in Hebrew block or Hebrew script, both of which have a multiplicity of fonts. In either script and in any font, some letters look similar and can be rendered incorrectly by someone unskilled, changing what you write to gibberish or something with a different meaning. --Dweller (talk) 13:17, 26 March 2015 (UTC)
  • Be likewise aware that the Hebrew language is associated with Judaism which sticks with the Ten Commandments, the Torah, and all the centuries of interpretation and their unending study - making this exercise in finding Hebrew-language equivalents for the Latin largely a travesty. Is this some sort of reverse cultural appropriation? People: getting a "correct translation" doesn't make this authentic. It's fundamentally bogus. -- Deborahjay (talk) 18:58, 26 March 2015 (UTC)
    • Christianity (in this case Catholicism, the branch most associated with the notion in question) claims to hold universal truths for all mankind. If Catholics are correct, then they are correct also for the Jews. You can certainly take the position that they are not correct. I take that position too, at least for some things (if I didn't I would be Catholic, which I'm not). But you can't say "well, Catholicism is OK for cultures that are traditionally Catholic, but keep it away from the things associated with the Jews". That's just not coherent. --Trovatore (talk) 19:50, 26 March 2015 (UTC)
      • My point is that the "Seven Deadly Sins" is a concept foreign to Judaism and any Hebrew rendering of the individual terms is just that, not to be taken as a definitive, "canonical" translation. To rephrase User:Trovatore's contention I'd say: Catholic concepts are not necessarily "translatable" with an exact word-for-word correspondence in a foreign language (Hebrew) lexically embedded in cultures (Judaic, Israeli) to which Catholicism is itself foreign. -- Deborahjay (talk) 10:46, 28 March 2015 (UTC)


  • Superbia: كبرياء
  • Avaritia: طمع
  • Luxuria: ترف
  • Ira: غضب
  • gula: نهم
  • Invidia: حسد
  • Acedia: كسل


  • Superbia: غرور
  • Avaritia: طمع
  • Luxuria: نعمت
  • Ira: خشم
  • Gula: شکم پرستی
  • Invidia: حسادت
  • Acedia: کاهلی


  • Superbia: 自豪
  • Avaritia: 貪心
  • Luxuria: 豪華
  • Ira: 憤怒
  • Gula: 暴食
  • Invidia: 羨慕
  • Acedia: 樹懶


  • Superbia: 자존심
  • Avaritia: 욕심
  • Luxuria: 사치
  • Ira: 분노
  • Gula: 대식
  • Invidia: 선망의 대상
  • Acedia: 나무 늘보


  • Superbia: гордость
  • Avaritia: жадность
  • Luxuria: роскошь
  • Ira: гнев
  • Gula: обжорство
  • Invidia: зависть
  • Acedia: ленивец

Thank you in advance! --Slashme (talk) 13:58, 25 March 2015 (UTC)

Your Russian one is not correct. As it has been advised you'd better go to appropriate articles and look for yourself. For example in Russian even if you cannot read the article you'll find your answer.--Lüboslóv Yęzýkin (talk) 05:03, 27 March 2015 (UTC)


I note you use the Latin terms for the Seven deadly sins. The English equivalents thereof are, in the order you've chosen:
  • Superbia: Pride
  • Avaritia: Avarice
  • Luxuria: Lust
  • Ira: Wrath
  • Gula: Gluttony
  • Invidia: Envy
  • Acedia: Sloth
(I make it a badge of honour to commit at least 4 before breakfast.) -- Jack of Oz [pleasantries] 16:23, 25 March 2015 (UTC)
Sloth, Lust, Gluttony, then Pride, in that order, right? :) KägeTorä - () (もしもし!) 17:06, 25 March 2015 (UTC)
Hmm, gluttony before breakfast, eh? That doesn't quite work for me, I'm afraid. Best I can do on an empty stomach is avarice and envy. But I do have an overweening pride in my assorted lusts and appetites. :) -- Jack of Oz [pleasantries] 23:44, 25 March 2015 (UTC)
OK, so maybe for me, pride comes after breakfast. Does sloth count twice if I add it before gluttony, while I watch her cook? So, sloth, lust, sloth, gluttony, then pride? Then go to work (avarice), envy my boss for having an easy job and his not having a clue what mine is supposed to be, then going to the pub afterwards to calm my wrath. Then sloth, lust, and pride, sloth and gluttony again, and maybe lust again. There - all seven in one single working day - multiple times. Pride! :) KägeTorä - () (もしもし!) 12:25, 26 March 2015 (UTC)
Someone should write a paper on how sloths express their lust. Or slugs. I'm sure I've experienced sluglust now and again. Not yet advanced to slothlust. There's still time. -- Jack of Oz [pleasantries] 23:24, 26 March 2015 (UTC)
I don't know from sloths, but slugs are known for their orgies, which we like to call a "slugfest". ←Baseball Bugs What's up, Doc? carrots→ 23:26, 26 March 2015 (UTC)
And speaking of slugfests, congratulations to Australia for getting to the World Cup final. :) ←Baseball Bugs What's up, Doc? carrots→ 23:29, 26 March 2015 (UTC)
Thanks. Now we have to beat our trans-Tasman co-hosts. Rest of the world, take a break and enjoy the carnage. -- Jack of Oz [pleasantries] 23:34, 26 March 2015 (UTC)
Funny how England is terrible at every single game we invented. :) By the way, Jack, I would see a psychiatrist about your, ahem, preference for small, snotty, homeless snails. :) Having said that, they do make a tasty snack. Just add salt. KägeTorä - () (もしもし!) 12:39, 27 March 2015 (UTC)
Pity. One of my phantom alternative user names is Sluglust Slutglut. -- Jack of Oz [pleasantries] 13:26, 27 March 2015 (UTC)
Don't do this before a native speaker verifies every single translation. Seriously, it's a bad idea. In the Chinese list of sins:
  • Superbia: 自豪
  • Avaritia: 貪心
  • Luxuria: 豪華
  • Ira: 憤怒
  • Gula: 暴食
  • Invidia: 羨慕
  • Acedia: 樹懶
The first one, 自豪, does mean "proud", but it doesn't have a negative connotation. The second is correct. The third means "luxurious" or "extravagant", not "lust". The fourth and fifth are correct. The sixth means "admiration", with the same positive connotation as the English word. The seventh is sloth, meaning the lazy animal that climbs on trees.
I suggest this alternative list, from the Chinese Wikipedia (in the same order as above): 傲慢, 贪婪, 色欲, 愤怒, 暴食, 嫉妒, 懒惰 --Bowlhover (talk) 18:06, 25 March 2015 (UTC)
  • "A friend told me that he's planning to get a tattoo with the seven deadly sins, in various languages." Advise him not to. (talk) 20:35, 25 March 2015 (UTC)
  • Agreed. No point in getting tattoos in foreign languages, because A) It will make it a bit difficult to get a job in some cultures, and B) They will be in languages he doesn't understand and possibly can't even identify. KägeTorä - () (もしもし!) 21:40, 25 March 2015 (UTC)
  • There are actually services to certify accuracy of tattoos! Or at least there's one. --jpgordon::==( o ) 03:54, 26 March 2015 (UTC)
  • 傲慢 superbia pride
  • 憤怒 ira wrath
  • 怠惰 acedia sloth/acedia
  • 嫉妬 invidia envy
  • 強欲 avaritia greed/avarice
  • 色欲 luxuria lust
  • 暴食 gula gluttony
  • An easy way to do this would be to go to our Seven deadly sins article (linked to above), then scroll down and look on the far left. It has a huge number of languages to choose from, presumably all written by native speakers. 08:52, 26 March 2015 (UTC)KägeTorä - () (もしもし!) 08:55, 26 March 2015 (UTC)

Thanks all! Really good advice. --Slashme (talk) 09:04, 26 March 2015 (UTC)

Slashme: I strongly urge you read WP:CHINESECHARACTERTATTOO. Pete AU aka --Shirt58 (talk) 10:16, 26 March 2015 (UTC)


If you go for Latin, give all the words consistent capitalisation (some of the selections above are inconsistent), or every copyeditor you pass will want to get out a biro and write on you for the rest of your life. --Dweller (talk) 15:45, 26 March 2015 (UTC)

Unless using Mediaeval Latin, in which uncials are perfectly acceptable. Rome only adopted Christianity in the 4th Century AD. KägeTorä - () (もしもし!) 16:19, 26 March 2015 (UTC)
According to our article, uncials are "written entirely in capital letters", in which case they're extremely consistent. --Dweller (talk) 16:28, 26 March 2015 (UTC)
You only have to look at the picture in the article to see that the lower case letters of today are derived from uncials, and those in turn are derived from capitals, therefore, this is the reason we essentially have two writing systems in English. One is ALL CAPS and the other is small letters KägeTorä - () (もしもし!) 02:03, 28 March 2015 (UTC)
Strictly speaking in the time of uncial there were no such things as "capital and small letters". Better to say uncial was unicase (like many scripts of the East today). So our article is misleading.--Lüboslóv Yęzýkin (talk) 05:08, 27 March 2015 (UTC)

Pronunciation of "wrath"[edit]

Lately I keep hearing people saying it to rhyme with the non-word "math". But until recently it always rhymed with "moth". In my experience, that is. What could explain this? -- Jack of Oz [pleasantries] 22:26, 26 March 2015 (UTC)

I have always rhymed it with "math". To me the word that rhymes with "moth" is "wroth", as in that which one waxes, though to be honest I've never been quite sure whether it should rhyme with "both" instead. Maybe it's just more progressive Yank contamination of the purity of the Strine language? --Trovatore (talk) 22:57, 26 March 2015 (UTC)
Ah, just checked Wiktionary. "Wroth" doesn't rhyme with either "moth" or "both"; it rhymes with "cloth". --Trovatore (talk) 23:00, 26 March 2015 (UTC)
In the American Midwest, "wroth" is a homophone of the surname Roth, and rhymes with both cloth and moth. The word "wrath" comes from the same root as "wroth". (And this saved me the trouble of linking to a specific joke by Groucho on the subject.) In the American Midwest, "wrath" rhymes with bath, math and path. ←Baseball Bugs What's up, Doc? carrots→ 23:07, 26 March 2015 (UTC)
You both puzzled me. Do you in America pronounce both with the "short O" (RP /ɒ/)? Or moth and cloth with "long O" (RP //)? Bath, math and path? Could you IPA-ize your answer as I do not understand this "rhyme notation", it mostly confusing.--Lüboslóv Yęzýkin (talk) 05:28, 27 March 2015 (UTC)
There is no uniform answer for what we do in America. See cot–caught merger. Short answer is, it's complicated. --Trovatore (talk) 14:37, 27 March 2015 (UTC)
And wiktionary features "wrath" on two lists of English rhymes: -ɒθ (with "moth") marked "UK", and -æθ (with "math") marked "one pronunciation". ---Sluzzelin talk 23:07, 26 March 2015 (UTC)
The OED allows both /rɒθ/ and /rɔːθ/ for British pronunciation, and has /ræθ/ as the US pronunciation, but the entry hasn't been updated since 1928. I've heard the pronunciation marked US used in England, and, of course, in Scotland it is usually /raθ/. Here in northern England, it rhymes with moth and cloth (/rɔθ/), not with math[s], path and hath (/haθ/). Dbfirs 08:53, 27 March 2015 (UTC)
Creeping Americanisation means that in London, younger people tend to rhyme it with math rather than cloth. Another annoying example is sloth which traditionally in England rhymes with "both" rather than "cloth". Alansplodge (talk) 14:02, 27 March 2015 (UTC)
I was given to understand that it rhymes with "both" when it refers to the vice, but with "cloth" when it refers to the mammal. Is that distinction not made in the UK? --Trovatore (talk) 14:36, 27 March 2015 (UTC)
Yes it is made. In southern English at least, it's /slɒθ/ for the mammal; /slθ/ for the sin. The former rhymes with moth, cloth and wrath; the latter with both. Bazza (talk) 17:33, 27 March 2015 (UTC)
Citation needed please. Sloths were slothful and pronounced the same when I went to school in London. Alansplodge (talk) 01:07, 28 March 2015 (UTC)
The OED has /sləʊθ/ for all senses, but the entry hasn't been updated since 1928. (That's essentially the same as Bazza's /slθ/, though it would be /slo̞:θ/ in my native Cumbrian or Yorkshire dialect.) Dbfirs 09:04, 28 March 2015 (UTC)
  • Wrath and wroth have been related but separate words since Old English, wrath has always had the math vowel. See etymology on line.
Not "always". (Apologies for interrupting Medeis' paragraphs.) The OED says " Old English wrǽððu , -o , = wrǽþþu , < wráþ wroth adj. + -þu . The original long vowel (ǣ) was shortened before the double consonant, and gave the two Middle English types wreþþe and wraþþe. From the latter comes the modern wrath, with later lengthening of the a, as in path, lath. The pronunciation /rɑːθ/ , regarded by Walker (1791) as ‘more analogical’, and formerly common in English use but now displaced by that with the rounded vowel /rɔːθ/ , and later by /rɒθ/ , is still given as the standard by American dictionaries." Dbfirs 09:04, 28 March 2015 (UTC)
By always I meant since OE. μηδείς (talk) 19:03, 28 March 2015 (UTC)
Любослов Езыкин, Americans in the blue areas of this map have lost the ability to distinguish between the vowels of cot and caught, which are the second and third vowels of the word хорошо. In the red areas they still distinguish the two vowels, in the blue areas they have merged with two results:
In New England they use only the third vowel of the Russian word for both cot and caught. In the remaining areas they only use the second vowel of the Russian word. When I was a receptionist, we had a salesman named Don. Some people would call asking if Dawn was available. I said there was no Dawn working for the company. Finally, someone asked if he had been fired, "Dawn" being a girl's name, "Don" being short for Donald. He probably lost a few potential clients until I caught on. μηδείς (talk) 02:20, 28 March 2015 (UTC)
The word sloth (for the vice) comes from the Middle English slow-th. In the US it is usually pronounced to rhyme with moth, nowadays, but one does still hear it rhymed occasionally with growth. The animal was named for the vice by the Portuguese, and the English name is based on the translation of the Portuguese word. See Etymology Online.
It is curious whether the British study calcs, and have dogs catchers and birds feeders. μηδείς (talk) 02:20, 28 March 2015 (UTC)
Not sure what a "calc" is, and no we don't have "dogs catchers and birds feeders". "Math" versus "maths" has been argued many times on the Refdesk and I think we have to agree to differ. Alansplodge (talk) 18:24, 28 March 2015 (UTC)
Calculus, hence *calcs. You do have "drugs" offenses rather than drug offenses, which strikes us as odd. μηδείς (talk) 19:01, 28 March 2015 (UTC)
I'm not sure whether we usually abbreviate "calculus", but then I'm no maths expert. Alansplodge (talk) 21:10, 28 March 2015 (UTC)
A mathematic in the past was a mathematician or astrologer, or one who studied Pythagoras' proofs. I've never heard the singular used in modern English. Calculus isn't abbreviated on this side of the pond; calc is an abbreviation for calcareous over here. We have drugs offences (offences involving drugs, not offenses involving drug). Dbfirs 21:37, 28 March 2015 (UTC)
Interesting. They were not official names, but my high school had Calc I, Trig, and Calc II. μηδείς (talk) 22:00, 28 March 2015 (UTC)

Is this a catalog? What kind of publication is Livres-Hebdo (French language help)[edit]

I'm trying to find information on a manga series for an AFD discussion. I wanted to see if this source has any bearing on notability but I'm not hopeful that it does.

Livres hebdo - Issues 547-550 - Page 100. Éditions professionelles du livre, 2004

  • See the end of this search page, See Snippet view #1 of page 100,
    "TSUKIRINO Yumi Pikachu adventures. 1. - Grenoble : Glénat. 2004. - l92p.:ill.cncoul.;18xl2cm Une nouvelle aventure de Pikachu et ses amis, prêts à tout pour devenir les meilleurs éleveurs pokémon de la planète. Lecteurs débutants ( à partir de 6 ans). Br. 7,50€ ISBN 2-7234- 3687-X 782723H36878' 00100 VANOLI"

This shows another Snippet view of page 100.

This looks like a catalog listing, but is it that, or is it "book news"? I wonder if any people familiar with France understand Livres-Hebdo and what it's reporting on. WhisperToMe (talk) 16:42, 25 March 2015 (UTC)

According to the article on this publication in the French Wikipedia, it is a weekly magazine targeted to professionals in the book publishing and distribution world, including librarians and proprietors of bookstores. It includes feature articles about new books and presumably listings of new publications. Marco polo (talk) 17:48, 25 March 2015 (UTC)
I presume that this would be a list of new publications in France. I wonder if there's a way to check which books are covered in feature articles? WhisperToMe (talk) 18:05, 25 March 2015 (UTC)

Science Fiction World[edit]

Hi! I wonder if anyone has an idea if and how it might be possible to get one's hands on the magazine Science Fiction World (科幻世界) in North America. Thanks!

Duomillia (talk) 20:33, 25 March 2015 (UTC)

Somehow I doubt if the market for Chinese language sci-fi magazines in NA is enough for anyone to set up a distribution system. That would leave you the option of searching for issues on e-bay, etc. StuRat (talk) 21:19, 25 March 2015 (UTC)

Amazon China μηδείς (talk) 02:50, 26 March 2015 (UTC)



THANK YOU — Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 23:36, 25 March 2015 (UTC)

Here's a page with some audio files, and here's a list of resources and dictionaries. It is easier to find resources for Swahili, though according to Uganda#Languages it is not as popular in the south of the country. (By the way, it's best to turn off your caps lock when posting on the Internet; people read it as "shouting"). Lesgles (talk) 03:37, 26 March 2015 (UTC)
  • Although I would certainly advise learning the local languages, I did spend some time in Jinja, and found that English is very widely and well spoken. Fgf10 (talk) 07:45, 26 March 2015 (UTC)
Much depends on your goal. If you take all it seriously and you plan to live in the particular region for more, say, 3 months and most importantly to interact actively and routinely with the locals (not all ex-pats do this, many live in their "ex-pat districts" and speak only with their ex-pat compatriots) you may do a little effort and sign to a language course or at least to find in library or buy books on the language. But if you plan just a short trip, I wouldn't recommend study such a very local small language. Firstly, there are much less materials, very few of not at all courses available, very few natives around to practice with, all these make learning process more difficult. Second, you'd hardly learn the language properly with the problems mentioned above. Better to study lingua francas of the country. For Uganda it would be English (you know it), Swahili and (maybe) Luganda. Though Luganda is a little more "robust" language than Lusoga, it also has the quite same problems (but at a less degree). So I'd recommend to study a little Swahili to impress the locals. It the simplest of Bantu languages, it has a LOT of available resources. At least a basic phrasebook will do.--Lüboslóv Yęzýkin (talk) 06:06, 27 March 2015 (UTC)

March 26[edit]

The Giver[edit]

Hi I was just wondering what view Lois Lowry's the Giver was written from (3rd person? 1st person?) (talk) 02:49, 26 March 2015 (UTC)

You can read the first few pages at Google Books, which should make it pretty clear. Lesgles (talk) 03:16, 26 March 2015 (UTC)
You can also see Narration#Narrative point of view if you're having trouble with the distinction. — Ƶ§œš¹ [lɛts b̥iː pʰəˈlaɪˀt] 03:43, 26 March 2015 (UTC)


I know that 'Tazer' is a brand name for tasers that are used by law enforcement, but I always thought that the verb was 'to tase', rather than 'to taser'. This BBC article, however, seems to disagree. Which is correct? KägeTorä - () (もしもし!) 08:43, 26 March 2015 (UTC)

My UK dictionary says that "taser" is the verb form. Tase is a back-formation based on the assumption that a Taser is "a thing that tases" - in fact the word is an acronym: "Thomas A. Swift's electric rifle". Of course, "correctness" is a slippery concept in language, especially when dealing with neologisms. AndrewWTaylor (talk) 09:52, 26 March 2015 (UTC)
And keep in mind that Tom Swift, as well as his electric rifle, are fictional.[47]Baseball Bugs What's up, Doc? carrots→ 20:41, 26 March 2015 (UTC)
Other sources checked via give the verb form as follows:
Note: By Oxford I mean whatever dictionary the web site gives you; they don't make clear which of their many print dictionaries it corresponds to. It certainly isn't the full OED. Oxford and Macmillan, like Collins, have separate American and British dictionary listings on their web site, but Collins is the only one of the three that gives different verb forms in American and British use.
-- (talk) 04:21, 27 March 2015 (UTC)
The big OED (Third Edition) in its update of 2008 has "Taser" for the verb, and also the shortened or back-formation "Tase". It doesn't recognise the "z" spellings, but it comments: "also with lower case initial". Dbfirs 08:37, 27 March 2015 (UTC)
There's one more thing to say, which is that since "Taser" is a trademark, the trademark user is required to take the point of view that it must be used only in the way they use it when designating their product. So if you were writing for publication and used any version of the word as a verb—or if you spelled it with a Z, or with a lower-case T, or used the word to include a similar weapon of another brand—then in any of these cases they might well send you a letter complaining about your "abuse" of their trademark. In fact, many companies insist that their trademark can only be used as an adjective, not a noun. They'd particularly make a fuss about it if you were actually in a related business. However, they can't police unpublished uses, and the general public has a habit of ignoring such instructions from trademark holders. See also trademark genericization. -- (talk) 19:39, 27 March 2015 (UTC)
I can agree with that, however, I can add to it that as 'Tazer' (or whichever spelling you want to use) is a proper noun or just a noun, its adjectival use would be called an attributive noun, so any letter complaining that it can only be used as an adjective would be technically not usable in court. It would be like saying it could only be used as a cheese sandwich. KägeTorä - () (もしもし!) 20:26, 27 March 2015 (UTC)
Also the examples listed at OED for tase/taser as a verb are from New York Times, Denver Post, Edmonton Sun, Metro, a book from Humana Press, and a book from Verso Books and date back to 1976. So even regular publishers sometimes feel free to ignore trademark-holders' instructions about allowed use. Cf. Google (verb) (not yet in OED in that sense). Abecedare (talk) 20:46, 27 March 2015 (UTC)
"Google" was added to the OED (Third edition) in March 2006, with cites from 1998 onwards, including two using lower-case "google". Dbfirs 08:28, 28 March 2015 (UTC)

Gender-specific language[edit]

Do we know of any human society where males and females speak different languages, or different dialects of the same language? If I learn Chinese from a Chinese woman, for example, I'd probably have no trouble at all talking to Chinese men. Is there any society where this is not true, and I'd have to learn the language twice? -- (talk) 08:50, 26 March 2015 (UTC)

I seem to remember that some Australian Aborigine languages do have different 'languages' for male and female, but, of course, they understand both. I read this about 25 years ago, so I am not clear on which languages they are. KägeTorä - () (もしもし!) 09:33, 26 March 2015 (UTC)
Sumerian had two distinct forms, one of which seems to have been primarily used by women. AlexTiefling (talk) 09:53, 26 March 2015 (UTC)
See Gender differences in spoken Japanese for another example, though I don't think the variations could be said to constitute different dialects. AndrewWTaylor (talk) 09:56, 26 March 2015 (UTC)
Some examples (including Sumerian) are given in our article on gender role in language too, but that article probably needs quite a bit of work ("Among the Kaffir of South Africa ...") ---Sluzzelin talk 09:57, 26 March 2015 (UTC)
Some more examples, mostly historical, are given in our Language and gender article (Language and gender#Gender-specific vocabulary).--William Thweatt TalkContribs 10:23, 26 March 2015 (UTC)
A really interesting case, though not quite what you're looking for, is the Tucano people, who practice what's called linguistic exogamy. The incest taboo is carried over into language identity so that men can't marry women who speak the same language. That's the idea, anyway. Tocano people are generally multilingual and there are ways of using ancestry to determine which one language a person is categorized as speaking. The differences between these languages are probably not very significant, though, and might otherwise be considered separate dialects were there not so much importance ascribed to their differences. — Ƶ§œš¹ [lɛts b̥iː pʰəˈlaɪˀt] 15:35, 26 March 2015 (UTC)
  • One phenomenon is avoidance speech where one doesn't use normal terms in the presence of certain relatives (often mothers-in-law) and uses a special, limited vocabulary. There are also examples such as the Lakota language and other Siouan languages that have Men's v Women's Speech. There are also phonetic differences that are skewed by gender, such as dropping of fnal -s in Mexican Spanish, which is associated with men, and creaky voice which is found in young female urban English speakers according to this study. There are no examples where the men and women actually speak fully different languages (outside the sort of multilingualism Auesoes1 mentions) as an ongoing phenomenon under normal social circumstances. μηδείς (talk) 19:20, 26 March 2015 (UTC)
See "Láadan".—Wavelength (talk) 01:58, 27 March 2015 (UTC)
Fashionese is indecipherable to most English-speaking males, with few exceptions. Clarityfiend (talk) 08:48, 28 March 2015 (UTC)

Can someone generate IPA pronunciation guide for me?[edit]

I'd like to add a pronunciation guide to the Grodziskie article for how to say the name. IPA mystifies me, so I'm not the best person to take a stab at it. It's a Polish word, and sounds like grew-JISK-yuh, with some extra rolling of the R. here is a youtube video with the speaker saying the word at the 1:45 mark. Thank you for any help you can provide. Neil916 (Talk) 18:07, 26 March 2015 (UTC)

See Help:IPA for Polish.—Wavelength (talk) 18:42, 26 March 2015 (UTC)
The beer is named after the town of Grodzisk Wielkopolski. In our article on the town, we give the IPA for the first part of that name as /ˈɡrɔd͡ʑisk/. Based on Help:IPA for Polish, I believe that the Polish pronunciation of the beer's name would be /ɡrɔ'd͡ʑiskʲɛ/. Marco polo (talk) 18:51, 26 March 2015 (UTC)
Thank you @Marco polo:, that is helpful. Neil916 (Talk) 19:06, 26 March 2015 (UTC)

March 27[edit]

Is the root of damn the babylonian damu; and the root of ritual the Indian ritu?[edit]

I recently read said claim in an an online version of the magazine Herizons, and was wondering if the claim can be verified by another source. [1] Bullets and Bracelets (talk) 21:19, 27 March 2015 (UTC)

The Oxford Dictionary of English traces both to Latin ("damnāre" and "rītuālis" respectively), and mentions nothing about Babylonian or 'Indian' (the latter isn't a language). Because most Indian languages are from the Indo-Aryan language family, along with Latin, it is of course quite possible that something like "ritu" exists in some Indian language, but that doesn't appear to be the origin of the English word (according to OED at least). - Lindert (talk) 22:53, 27 March 2015 (UTC)
Ritual comes from a PIE root, *rei- "to count, to number", with cognates in English "read" and Greek "arithmetic". [48] "Damn" probably comes from a PIE root *dap-n- "to apportion (food)", later, "to apportion (blame)" (Mallory & Adams, Oxford Introduction..., p257) which is much more likely to be cognate with Japanese taberu than anything from Sumerian, if that is what is meant by Babylonian. μηδείς (talk) 00:30, 28 March 2015 (UTC)
By ritu Richards' is referring to Sanskrit ऋतुः (ṛtuḥ), which in the Vedas (say, ~1500 BCE) was used for "order" or "the right time"; and, in the Mahabharata (~500BCE) also for "menstrual discharge"; and whose popular contemporary meaning (in Sanskrit and Hindi) is "seasons". And yes, it shares a PIE root with the ritual, arithmetic etc (see [49], [50]). But I have seen no indication that the Sanskrit "word `ritu', meaning menstrual blood, became the root of the word ritual"; more likely that the two are cousins IMO. Abecedare (talk) 12:50, 28 March 2015 (UTC)
  1. ^ Richards, Beth (1994). "Blood of the Moon". Herizons: 28. 
@WP:RD/L regulars: rather than explaining that anyone who has taken Linguistics 101 would understand why is incorrect, but in terms that require Linguistics 101, how about explaining it in terms that don't require Linguistics 101? Grrr.
(Linguistics 101 wasn't available at no, seriously, there really is a University in Tasmania; and Tasmania is not a fictional place. I've lived there, though that counts as WP:OR, I guess. I auto-didacted up to the level of maybe Linguistics 50.5, and WP:RD/L is my Linguistics MOOC.)
@Bullets and Bracelets: just because words sound the same doesn't mean they are related.
Think back to high school biology, and Phylum, Class, Order, Family, Genus, Species.
A platypus looks and acts a lot like a beaver or an otter. They all live in rivers, they have fur, and so on.
But the platypus lays eggs instead of giving birth to live young. It's of the order Monotremata and is only very distantly related to beavers (ordo Rodentia) and otters (ordo Carnivora)
It's (broadly speaking) the same with languages.
English is an Indo-European language. That's kind of analogous to calling it a species of mammal. (And it just goes all downhill from here. For my next colourful blunder, I'll be describing Semitic languages as amphibians, and the CJKV sprachbund as fish.)
There are lots of mammal species. Think of English as a species of the sub-order Caniformia. English is a West Germanic language. It's a dog, German is a Jackal and Dutch is a fox.
All of those species are closely related to bears. When you next see a picture of a bear, remember what the nose of a Labrador Retriever looks like.
Has this gone some way to answer your question?
Erm... this may also be a very good example of Mansplaining--Shirt58 (talk) 11:20, 28 March 2015 (UTC)
No need to worry. As in the case of Will Rogers, we're all ignorant, only on different subjects. Elementary evolution of mammals, I know some. Elementary evolution of languages, I know less, so for me the analogy works. It won't work for someone who is more ignorant of mammals than I am and less ignorant of, say, the evolution of locomotives. Jim.henderson (talk) 14:34, 28 March 2015 (UTC)
Our explanation of Root (linguistics) would need some attention, too. -- (talk) 14:38, 28 March 2015 (UTC)
  • To answer the question as succinctly as possible, the answer in both cases is no. The modern Hindu ritu and the English read, and Greek arithmetic all descend from a common ancestor, Proto-Indo-European which was spoken in about 3500-4500BC in the area of the Don river, now in souther Russia. Descendants of these people moved into various areas and became the early Germans (then the English in England) the Greeks and the speakers of Sanskrit and a whole host of other ethnicities with their own languages like Latin and Armenioan and Welsh. But English, Greek, and Sanskrit are simply distant cousins, and none of them is descended from the other. As for Babylonian, that is not a language, and it can refer to a place ruled by the Sumerians, the Assyrians, the Persians, and so forth. But the English damn certainly comes from no such root. μηδείς (talk) 21:55, 28 March 2015 (UTC)

March 28[edit]

Do sign languages borrow from each other?[edit]

I would think that it’s certainly possible for a sign language to borrow a word from another, but I am unconscious of examples. I’m not extremely involved in sign languages, though. -- (talk) 21:06, 28 March 2015 (UTC)


March 22[edit]

Women in Baseball, Pre-1900?[edit]

Hi, so the Women in baseball page gives a quick outline of female baseball players and executives, mostly from the 20s on, but I remember watching Ken Burns' Baseball, and there being some discussion of women's leagues from before the beginning of the live-ball era. There was one woman in particular who owned and played on her own team. I know there must sources, for Ken Burns to have worked from, but I can't seem to find any. Any help is appreciated! Anarchyshake (talk) 12:55, 22 March 2015 (UTC)

I don't know how well-documented the women's game is, but this is an 1868 illustration of women playing the game. There various other examples in google images. The Hall of Fame has a women's section and probably has data as well. ←Baseball Bugs What's up, Doc? carrots→ 17:17, 22 March 2015 (UTC)
Here is something about "bloomer girls" baseball,. ←Baseball Bugs What's up, Doc? carrots→ 17:22, 22 March 2015 (UTC)
Thank you, Baseball Bugs, the Hall of Fame is really helpful, and the blog post has some good references as well. It's certainly a good start. I still can't think of the name of the woman the Baseball documentary was talking about, but maybe I'll just have to rewatch it! Anarchyshake (talk) 23:08, 22 March 2015 (UTC)
I'm not sure what "owning" a baseball team would have meant, before organized leagues. If you just have informal pick-up games, then you can own the equipment, but nobody "owns" the team if they are all unpaid, have no contracts, etc. StuRat (talk) 17:56, 22 March 2015 (UTC)
There's actually a long history of loosely-organized semi-pro leagues all across America from the 1860s onwards, StuRat so it was totally possible to "own" a team, though it probably didn't mean the same thing as it does now. Anarchyshake (talk) 23:08, 22 March 2015 (UTC)

Gynemorphising of male historical figures[edit]

So, I'm watching Sengoku Collection and have seen The Ambition of Oda Nobuna. While they're quite hilarious, I'm wondering if this practice of turning male historical figures (whether their own nation or foreign) into women and young girls exists outside of Japanese media. Also, when was the first instance of this? Japanese and/or foreign. Lastly, in Japan, has this kind of thing been done with male characters outside of the Sengoku Jidai? I should specify I mean just in books, TV shows, games, and movies. I'm sure there plenty of political comics that have done this. By the way, any grammar Metaxists that want to correct the phrase I used in the header, feel free. Sir William Matthew Flinders Petrie | Say Shalom! 2 Nisan 5775 13:49, 22 March 2015 (UTC)

I can think of a reverse example, where female pharaohs would apparently strap on a pharaonic beard. StuRat (talk) 00:33, 23 March 2015 (UTC)
Well, that's just politics and Hatshepsut being Hatshepsut (though I still don't buy that whole TEDtalk about her memory being erased because she was a woman, and I'm a feminist). Sir William Matthew Flinders Petrie | Say Shalom! 3 Nisan 5775 01:09, 23 March 2015 (UTC)
Tedtalks can be fun but a wikipedian would ask, where is the reliable source for it? (as it stands we don't know, occams razor might point to her memory being erased just cuz the new ruler wanted all the attention).Popish Plot (talk) 20:27, 23 March 2015 (UTC)
The hypothesis that is most accepted these days (or at least three years ago, haven't checked) by Egyptologists and archaeologists with an interest in the area (I kind of still have some), which that TEDtalk dismissed, is that her nephew and successor, Thutmose III, was supremely pissed over her assuming rule as Pharaoh and basically pushing him into the shadows. A while after he came to power he inflicted epic pwnage upon her memory to seek vengeance. As an archaeologist, I'm inclined to agree with your conclusion about using Occam's razor. It just makes sense. The TED Talk dismissed that whole idea saying, "Would someone really hold onto anger like that for thirty years?" Uhh... yes? They claimed that Egyptian nobles couldn't stomach the idea that a woman had ever ruled and so this blemish on their patriarchy needed to be erased from existence. While no one would question that Ancient Egyptian was a patriarchal society (and an arrogant one at that), I think it's a huge stretch to try and pin this whole thing on Hatshepsut's sex rather than just a really angry nephew (who went on to be one of Ancient Egypt's greatest badasses, but still). The most difficult thing to do (there's some pyramid about it somewhere) to do when trying to reconstruct prehistoric society is attempting to reconstruct their values and ideas, and a huge problem is that your own biases and what's considered to be societal norms at the time will impact any interpretation. So, I think that trying to dismiss the idea that someone, who most likely had a massive ego (you're a living god, so not a stretch), would hold onto such a massive slight against him in favour of some complex unsubstantiated hypothesis about a battle of the sexes is silly, and dishonest if you're trying to persuade people it's the truth without any real evidence. Anyway, that's my thought on the matter. I need some amaretto. Sir William Matthew Flinders Petrie | Say Shalom! 4 Nisan 5775 03:19, 24 March 2015 (UTC)
It's not the first time in history statues of previous rulers got destroyed when someone new took over. I bet there were many reasons, jealousy, economics, religion, who knows maybe she did something to deserve it like pull a Nero. I wasn't there. Popish Plot (talk) 04:21, 24 March 2015 (UTC)
Here's a nice article on gender benders from Utne reader [51]. Not exactly what you want, but might be useful. "Gender swap" is the term usually used when a literary character is reimagined as a different gender see here [52] for fictional characters. See also "genderflip" at TV tropes: [53]. This anime seems to be a loosely gender swapped romance of the three kingdoms, with an all female cast [54].
The most direct thing I can find that answers your question: this non-Japanese all-women production of Julius Caesar [55]. SemanticMantis (talk) 18:38, 23 March 2015 (UTC)
All fantastic finds. I do remember the furor over Starbuck and not caring about whatever the original was like as Kyra Thrace was a badass of the highest calibre. I may have to watch that anime though. I think for the Japanese it's a combination of a desire to make harem anime, comedy, and some bizarre desire to make samurai in bikinis marketable (could you imagine TR in a bikini?—he would clearly rock a speedo in any reality), at least when it comes to whatever audience in Japan it is that actually likes fan service. Does this happen outside of Japan? Sir William Matthew Flinders Petrie | Say Shalom! 4 Nisan 5775 03:19, 24 March 2015 (UTC)
Does fan service happen outside of Japan? Absolutely, though I guess it doesn't always go by that name, see e.g. Transformers, and many other popcorn action blockbusters... or do you mean harem shows? I dunno, Three's_Company is sort of like that, also the popular webcomic Questionable Content [56] is sort of a deconstructed harem anime. As for the gender swapped historical figures, the Caesar play was the best I could find. You might have some luck googling things like /[name of western male historical figure] as a female/ That's how I got to Caesar, as /historical figure gender swap/ wasn't working well. SemanticMantis (talk) 16:31, 24 March 2015 (UTC)

instrument identification[edit]

I desire to know what instruments are used in the first few dozen seconds here. I’m guessing that it’s from an electronic piano in the ’80s, but I don’t know what it’s called (if anything). Does anybody know what’s used here? -- (talk) 14:08, 22 March 2015 (UTC)

That history of Charles de Gaulle seems to use period music, so I'd guess that's just a normal (not very impressive) organ. Definitely not a cathedral organ. StuRat (talk) 00:58, 23 March 2015 (UTC)
There seems to be some wobble in the playback speed, causing weird effects that might well make you think of an electronic instrument. —Tamfang (talk) 08:57, 23 March 2015 (UTC)
Sounds like a bad recording of normal orchestra music, low strings and brass. I don't hear anything remotely like an organ or electronic instrument. (talk) 19:09, 23 March 2015 (UTC)

March 23[edit]

Does Melinda_Clarke currently have a offical website that works and that updates news about her?[edit]

I did a google search and came up with The website is not working properly.Venustar84 (talk) 00:49, 23 March 2015 (UTC)

  • Probably not old boy. Those dashed clever chaps at Google are pretty darned good at getting their search engine to pick up any official site as the first result on a celebrity name. Since there is nothing in the top ten that looks kosher I think you are out of lock. Sorry old chap. Quintessential British Gentleman (talk) 03:20, 24 March 2015 (UTC)


I just recently remembered this scene—almost certainly from The Simpsons—where a structure was being bulldozed, in favour of a minimall, whilst people were still in it. I have no idea where exactly it’s from, I just recall an announcer telling people to get out before it was turned into a minimall. I attempted to look for this on‐line, but hardly found anything. Is this a false memory? -- (talk) 06:27, 23 March 2015 (UTC)

I google [bulldozed minimall simpsons] and it appears it's from HOMR. See e.g. the page quote here. -- BenRG (talk) 06:03, 24 March 2015 (UTC)

March 24[edit]

Unmentioned controversy[edit]

I understand the Federal Communications Commision took action in the wake of the Janet Jackson wardrobe malfunction. They also took action before Saving Private Ryan aired. But no action was taken after 44 Minutes: The North Hollywood Shoot-Out aired. That TV movie showed graphic up-close images of bloody wounds and when the first perpetrator was shot, or he committed suicide. In addition, the S-word was said about a few times. Why wasn't the FCC notified about this? (talk) 04:44, 24 March 2015 (UTC)

The general difference is that 44 Minutes was on cable television (FX Network), while the Janet Jackson/Super Bowl XXXVIII halftime show controversy (on CBS) and that airing of Saving Private Ryan (on ABC) was on broadcast television. The FCC historically has had little or no rules on the content of programs on cable, since it has always been a paid subscription service. On the other hand, broadcast television is transmitted over the air via the publicly owned spectrum, and thus can still be picked up for free easily by anyone (even kids) with an antenna. Thus those stricter indecency laws regarding content on broadcast stations remain on the books. Of course, the FCC has been trying to gain more rules to regulate cable content in recent years, but they just did not have that back in 2003 when 44 Minutes aired on FX. Zzyzx11 (talk) 06:51, 24 March 2015 (UTC)

Michelle Knight wiki page?[edit]

Why is this a redirect to Ariel Castro Kidnappings. She is more than notable, a #1 author, etc. The Michelle Knight page should be created. — Preceding unsigned comment added by IPRBal (talkcontribs) 06:03, 24 March 2015 (UTC)

You could take that issue up on the kidnapping talk page. ←Baseball Bugs What's up, Doc? carrots→ 12:14, 24 March 2015 (UTC)

Where did tortoiseshell cats get the name tortoise shell[edit]

I am guessing at some point in history someone thought they looked like the shell of a tortoise? But is there a source for this. I feel it could be a good addition to the page Tortoiseshell cat if there is a reliable source for the name. Does anyone know? Popish Plot (talk) 14:34, 24 March 2015 (UTC)

See Tortoiseshell, which is a common decorative material made from the shells of specific tortoises known for a particular coloration pattern. By extension, other things which have a similar coloration pattern are also named "Tortoiseshell", like tortoiseshell cats. --Jayron32 14:44, 24 March 2015 (UTC)
Ok I guess it's because the cats look like that tortoise shell material? I would need a reliable source saying that tho to put it in the cat article, not just because it looks similar which would be original research. How did you know that?Popish Plot (talk) 14:52, 24 March 2015 (UTC)
It's surprisingly hard to google just "why" they are called tortoiseshell, maybe because it's assumed to be obvious. As for how Jayron knew it? Because (1) he knew where to look and (2) he's a fount/font of knowledge on most any subject you'd care to name. (Probably the blessing/curse of a high IQ and a good education - along with being a grizzled veteran of academia.) ←Baseball Bugs What's up, Doc? carrots→ 15:08, 24 March 2015 (UTC)
 :) I knew that he knew it because he was smart I was just thinking in terms of how to get a reliable source! Thanks for the help, this led to a positive change for a wiki article. Popish Plot (talk) 16:30, 24 March 2015 (UTC)
That's a great edit you made IMO! I will pay attention to see if anyone objects, but it does seem to fit that sky is blue policy, shouldn't be controversial. Popish Plot (talk) 16:27, 24 March 2015 (UTC)
  • Kinda silly that we have separate articles for torty and calico; a calico is precisely a tortoiseshell that also has the unrelated white spotting gene. (Which makes it technically possible to have a pure white calico.) --jpgordon::==( o ) 14:44, 26 March 2015 (UTC)

Episode of Farscape[edit]

Dear All.

I am looking for an episode of Farscape, where the enemy gets shot in the stomach, but regenerates with ease his wounds. I do not remember anything more.

Thank you for your answers.

All the very best.-- (talk) 17:10, 24 March 2015 (UTC)

Take a look through List of Farscape episodes and see if anything rings a bell. ←Baseball Bugs What's up, Doc? carrots→ 20:38, 24 March 2015 (UTC)
  • The Episode is "DNA Mad Scientist" where a lab "rat" gains extraordinary powers though genetic manipulation, including the ability to regenerate a blast through the abdomen. It is the ninth episode of the first season. If you email me privately, I own the DVD copy and will send you a copy or link. We do not have a separate article on it, although any decent comprehensive encyclopedia would. If you create it, email me, and I'll assist. It was quite magnificent,one of the best ever of the show's episodes. You'll have to register and post some useful edits first, though. μηδείς (talk) 06:59, 26 March 2015 (UTC)

Titanic (1953 film)[edit]


I just want to find out some more information about an article. It's the Titanic (1953 film) wikipedia page. Titanic (1953 film)#Reception

One of the historical inaccuracies is listed as: "A general alarm, consisting of a siren, is portrayed as informing the passengers about the collision. No such system, though, existed on the Titanic; passengers in all three classes were informed about the sinking through stewards knocking on their cabin doors."

I'm researching the film and am wondering where this information came from? I'd like to have a specific reference to there being no siren or alarm.

Hope you can help.

Many thanks (talk) 23:40, 24 March 2015 (UTC)

See Sinking of the RMS Titanic, where it states, in the section titled Preparing to evacuate (00:05–00:45): "...stewards went door to door, rousing sleeping passengers and crew – Titanic did not have a public address system – and told them to go to the Boat Deck." --Jayron32 00:25, 25 March 2015 (UTC)
The fist Public address system wasn't invented until after the sinking. Presumably they could have had sirens, but it might not have occurred to anyone to build them into Titanic's specs. ←Baseball Bugs What's up, Doc? carrots→ 03:12, 25 March 2015 (UTC)

This site contains transcriptions of both the British and the American inquiries into the disaster. On this page, the British Attorney-General is interrogating a Paul Mauge, who was the chef's secretary at one of the ship's restaurants:

20086. Did he call you?
  • No; I got up after when I saw him come back, but one steward said to me "Oh, there is no danger; it is better you go to sleep." I had been sleeping again. At the moment I heard the alarm signal, and I went to the front, but the stewards sent me back to my cabin.
20087. I think I heard you saying there was an alarm signal?
  • Yes, an alarm signal.
20088. What do you mean by that?
  • A ringing.
20089. A bell ringing?
  • Yes.
20090. Down where you were on the third class corridor?
  • Yes.
20091. Alarming everybody on that corridor?
  • Yes.
20095. When you heard the bell ringing, giving the alarm in the third class corridor, did you see other persons coming out of that third class corridor?
  • Yes, a lot of persons came from the front and went to the back, some of them with luggage, some with children. Some showed us a piece of ice.
20096. What I want to understand from you is, the effect apparently of the ringing of the bell there was to alarm the third class passengers in that corridor?
  • Yes, it was to alarm the third class passengers.

On the other hand, here is Canadian first-class passenger Arthur Peuchen testifying to the American inquiry:

5625. Do you know of your own knowledge whether any alarm was sounded to arouse the passengers from their rooms after the impact?
  • There was no alarm sounded whatever. In fact, I talked with two young ladies who claimed to have had a very narrow escape. They said their stateroom was right near the Astor’s, I think almost next to it, and they were not awakened.
5628. I think you said that from your judgment and from your own observation there was no general alarm given?
  • No, I did not hear one. I was around the boat all the time.
5673. Do you mean to say, too, that so far as you knew and heard and observed no general alarm was given throughout the ship, arousing the passengers, and advising them of their danger?
  • I did not hear any alarm whatever.
5674. Do you know what the method is of giving an alarm in an emergency of that kind?
  • I have never had the experience of an accident at sea before.

Today we'd assume that an "alarm signal... a bell ringing" was an electric bell (a technology that was in use on the Titanic), but Mauge doesn't say that. Conceivably the third-class stewards walked down the corridors ringing handbells, while in first class they knocked on people's doors. I can't say. -- (talk) 06:03, 25 March 2015 (UTC)

Surely someone would have rung the ship's bell. That article has a photo of the one on the Titanic.--Shantavira|feed me 09:02, 25 March 2015 (UTC)
On a ship the size of the Titanic, the Ship's Bell would have been basically ornamental and served no purpose to sound a general alarm. I suspect, based on the testimony above and other cites, just as 65.94 notes, the "Bell ringing" alarm would have been the Stewards ringing handbells as the means of alerting passengers. Protocol may have dictated a more personal approach on the first-class berths. In addition, as noted in our article and in other sources, there was a much better passenger-to-steward ration in the first-class areas (as would be expected, first class gets better service!), so each steward could personally contact each passenger in a timely fashion. There were much more passengers for each steward to be responsible for in third-class, it would be unlikely that they had time to personally notify everyone, so they probably rang handbells to sound the alarm. The article I cite above notes this discrepancy (though not the handbells) when it says "The thoroughness of the muster was heavily dependent on the class of the passengers; the first-class stewards were in charge of only a few cabins, while those responsible for the second- and third-class passengers had to manage large numbers of people. The first-class stewards provided hands-on assistance, helping their charges to get dressed and bringing them out onto the deck. With far more people to deal with, the second- and third-class stewards mostly confined their efforts to throwing open doors and telling passengers to put on lifebelts and come up top. In third class, passengers were largely left to their own devices after being informed of the need to come on deck." I hope that helps as well. --Jayron32 14:52, 25 March 2015 (UTC)

March 25[edit]

Info Related To Rock Songs & Albums[edit]

I'm researching specifics about Rock Songs & Albums such as the Song's: Lead Guitarist(s), Album, Year published, Length (info re. varying lengths; in a few cases Artist/Group that made the song. It seems a rather slow process using the overall Wikipedia search. Is there a "Music" category search that would produce this info quicker / more efficiently? Thanx (talk) 16:20, 25 March 2015 (UTC)

See Allmusic, which is a fantastic resource for this information. If it exists anywhere in one place, Allmusic is perhaps your best source. --Jayron32 16:45, 25 March 2015 (UTC)
Discogs is a better source for this kind of thing. --Viennese Waltz 20:18, 25 March 2015 (UTC)

March 26[edit]

question regarding deletion of a section[edit]

How can I know why my production section entry for Extra TV's page was deleted? My sources were cited and reliable. (talk) 06:12, 26 March 2015 (UTC)(four tildes)

You can both search the history (at the top, it says "history") of this page "search wikipedia" if it was not a ref desk question, or click on "talk"/"discussion" and post the same question at our talk page. There's also the Wikipedia:Help desk which will help if you created an article that was deleted. It will also help if you register, since tracking you by your IP address is useless in many cases, including this one. μηδείς (talk) 06:42, 26 March 2015 (UTC)
This isn't really a question for the Reference Desk. However a very quick check of the article in question, and the reversion of your edit appears to be based on the fact that you use "" as a source. You may wish to take this discussion up with the editor who removed your contribution, that's @Corkythehornetfan:. The Rambling Man (talk) 07:21, 26 March 2015 (UTC)
Someone on your own subnet also zapped your posting on the talk page, which is not kosher, and I restored it. ←Baseball Bugs What's up, Doc? carrots→ 08:26, 26 March 2015 (UTC)

MLB equivalents in different nations[edit]

What are the Afghani equivalent to MLB? What are the French equivalent to the MLB? What is the Swiss equivalent to the MLB? What is the UK equivalent to the MLB? What is the Australian equivalent to MLB? What is the Iranian equivalent to MLB? What is the Iraqi equivalent to MLB? — Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 14:49, 26 March 2015 (UTC)

It is unclear what you are asking. Do you want to know "What are the highest level of baseball in each of these countries" OR "What is the highest level professional sports league in each of these countries". If you clarify what you are asking for, we can help you better. Alternately, you could research the answer yourself by looking at articles titled "Sport in XXXXX", for which Wikipedia has articles for most countries. For example Sport in Afghanistan, Sport in France, etc. --Jayron32 16:01, 26 March 2015 (UTC)

2015 WC[edit]

On what TV channel can I see the 2015 Bandy World Championship? In the US in particular, but in other countries too... — Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 16:33, 26 March 2015 (UTC)

I can't find anywhere that it is carried on broadcast, cable, or satellite TV in the U.S., but you can watch live streams of the games here --Jayron32 16:57, 26 March 2015 (UTC)
In Sweden you can see it on TV12. — Preceding unsigned comment added by Skogsvandraren (talkcontribs) 19:31, 26 March 2015 (UTC)

March 28[edit]

Olympic bandy?[edit]

Why is bandy not in the Olympic Games? It would fit well in the Winter Games, I think. Outer Image (talk) 12:47, 28 March 2015 (UTC)

Because no one has successfully lobbied for it. There are plenty of sports which the International Olympic Committee could add to (or subtract from) both the summer and winter games, and the current list is at their discretion. ←Baseball Bugs What's up, Doc? carrots→ 14:30, 28 March 2015 (UTC)
In case you didn't already, see Bandy#Olympic_Games. Staecker (talk) 17:16, 28 March 2015 (UTC)


March 23[edit]

I have a question about the historical woman named Valasca?[edit]

It says she is mentioned in a book called history of Bohemia by Aeneas Silvius. Would this book be available in the library and is she mentioned in any other books? Thanks! Venustar84 (talk) 00:46, 23 March 2015 (UTC)

Well, it's obviously not by Aeneas Silvius, who (if he was a real person at all) lived about 1,800 years before Valasca. But see the note at the top of that article: the actual author of the book is Pope Pius II, who was also known as Aeneas Silvius Piccolomini. I'll fix the link in the article. The book itself can be found in an edition dated 1591 as a free ebook here on Google Books, but it's in Latin. I tried Google Books's search function to search for the word Valasca in it, but there were no hits; however, I suspect that the OCR of book type from that period is not reliable, so that doesn't mean she's not mentioned in the book.
I think it's safe to say that most public libraries will not include books like this, but some university libraries might. However, if you want it in English, that would be harder. I tried a Worldcat [57] search for the original title Historia Bohemica with "Silvius" as author, but this did not turn up any editions in English; but when I put "Pius" as author, it found copies at the British Library, at Oxford University, and in microform at the Morris Library at Southern Illinois University. Possibly there are editions under other titles also. -- (talk) 04:21, 23 March 2015 (UTC)
Even at a local public library, OP may be able to get a copy (or a digital scan) via interlibrary loan. Could also try at WP:REX. SemanticMantis (talk) 20:40, 23 March 2015 (UTC)
The abovementioned free ebook tells the history of princess Libuše in chapter five and Valasca's story in chapter seven. There are German and Czech translations of the text available, but no English translations. The text by Thomas Lodge may serve as an introduction. --Stuhlsasse (talk) 11:06, 24 March 2015 (UTC)

March 24[edit]

i am women[edit]

Can I take Viagra. — Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 19:24, 24 March 2015 (UTC)

[Thanks to Medeis for the reply below, this is inserted here in line with policy:] please read our Medical Disclaimer first, before considering any responses. Please note we do not provide medical advice, and are not in any way qualified to do so. IBE (talk) 15:29, 25 March 2015 (UTC)
Women are indeed prescribed viagra off-label Johns Hopkins for sexual disfunction, and the active ingredient, Sildenafil is prescribed in other formulations for pulmonary hypertension. This article may not be reliable but it mentions other uses. As to yourself, see a physician, the Ref Desks cannot provide medical advice. It is a prescription medication with serious side-effects and counter-indications. μηδείς (talk) 20:18, 24 March 2015 (UTC)

March 25[edit]

What words could describe the opposite of a raspy voice?[edit]

Just wondering. Venustar84 (talk) 02:43, 25 March 2015 (UTC)

Have you googled "raspy antonym"? μηδείς (talk) 03:08, 25 March 2015 (UTC)
"Melodic" comes to mind. ←Baseball Bugs What's up, Doc? carrots→ 03:16, 25 March 2015 (UTC)
‘mellifluous’ —Tamfang (talk) 05:51, 25 March 2015 (UTC)
"Smooth and clear". StuRat (talk) 06:30, 25 March 2015 (UTC)
"Dulcet" (talk) 09:03, 25 March 2015 (UTC)
"Silky" LongHairedFop (talk) 09:47, 25 March 2015 (UTC)
"Euphonious" RomanSpa (talk) 12:17, 25 March 2015 (UTC)
"Honeyed" or "honey-toned" {The poster formerly known as} (talk) 13:52, 25 March 2015 (UTC)
For older and more verbose examples from literature, see also Voice in Frank J. Wilstach's Dictionary of Similes (1916). Of course not all examples are the opposite of a raspy voice, in fact some are funny descriptions of a raspy voice, but others examples might fit. ---Sluzzelin talk 14:32, 25 March 2015 (UTC)
"Not raspy" (talk) 16:51, 25 March 2015 (UTC)
"Smooth" would seem to be the most usual, and especially if we're talking about a singing voice, "pure" or "pure-toned" are quite common. --Nicknack009 (talk) 18:41, 25 March 2015 (UTC)

Capital Market[edit]

hai I am studying in first year i have a seminor on "participants in government securities" but i am not getting the relevant information .. please help me ... — Preceding unsigned comment added by Chetan Mcom (talkcontribs) 15:40, 25 March 2015 (UTC)

What specific questions do you have? --Jayron32 16:46, 25 March 2015 (UTC)
Start by looking at our article on US Treasury securities. The US government securities market is the largest and most well-developed in the world, so understanding this will give you a good grounding for understanding other markets. Next, read our article on primary dealers and our article on secondary markets generally. Then read our article on market makers to understand how primary dealers make their money, and then take a look at article on open market operations, which describes how the markets for government securities are used to allow central bank intervention in the money markets.
For broader reading, you should fully read and understand the latest edition of "Stigum's Money Market" by Marcia Stigum and whoever her current co-author is (earlier editions of this book were sometimes titled "Inside the Money Market"). If your college library does not have a copy of this book, you should borrow a copy from your lecturer. If your lecturer does not have a copy of this book, you are being taught by an incompetent. You should also fully read and understand "The Handbook of Fixed Income Securities" by Frank Fabozzi and whoever his current co-author is. The same principle for borrowing applies to this book as applies to Stigum. Between them, these two books will provide you with all the information you need to understand the US fixed income securities markets, will provide you with a thorough grounding in their functions and operations, and will give you a clear vocabulary and basis of understanding that can be applied to understanding all other government securities markets. Both are classics, well over 35 years old, but both have been through multiple editions and revisions, and both are on the desks of every serious theorist and every serious practitioner. RomanSpa (talk) 18:46, 25 March 2015 (UTC)

Continuing my question about publication of a wedding photograph in Slovakia[edit]

I recently asked about publication of a photograph I took of a completely unknown newly-wedded couple at the Bratislava Technical Museum. I never asked for permission from them or their photographer, but none of them seemed to mind. And it's not like I was at a private space like their home or church or whatever.

Now someone commented that freedom of panorama would prevent me from publishing pictures of the museum without permission. I don't think that applies. The picture was taken at the museum, not in the museum. It was out in the open, in the inner courtyard, where the museum holds real railway cars taken out of service as exhibits. The only thing other than the newly-wedded couple themselves visible in the picture is the outer wall of the museum building, and only a very small part of it. No museum exhibits are shown, not even the railway cars.

The real issue here is the couple's privacy. Does anyone know whether I can publish a picture of a completely unknown couple in Slovakia, just because I took it at a public place? JIP | Talk 19:21, 25 March 2015 (UTC)

This appears to be a request for legal advice, which we are not allowed to answer here. -- (talk) 23:20, 25 March 2015 (UTC)
JIP, you can read and interpret the text and images at Freedom of panorama for yourself, but we can neither tell you that wikipedia (or an image at wikipedia) is a reliable or up-to-date source, nor can we advise you whether or not other issues than freedom of panorama apply. In fact, we can tell you that by its own standards, wikipedia is unreliable.
You really, really, should contact a lawyer. And it need not be a Slovak; you should be able to find a lawyer specializing in EU law in any country in the EU. Regarding giving professional advice, you are a regular user. If you look at the talk page you will see that about half the discussion there centers around how not to give professional advice. In other words, if you were taken to court, and facing 100,000 Euros in damages, would you want to say, "But anonymous people at the Wikipedia reference desk told me it was okay"? μηδείς (talk) 02:17, 26 March 2015 (UTC)
I personally wouldn't say you necessarily need a lawyer - I don't go to one every time I want to find out the law on a particular matter. Maybe you do, maybe you don't - even that isn't for us to say. But if we answered the question directly, we would be out of bounds, so whether you need a lawyer or not, the exact answer is certainly over our heads. Hopefully our references are helpful, but see WP:Legal disclaimer. IBE (talk) 18:53, 27 March 2015 (UTC)

Daughters named after their fathers[edit]

It's common for a male child to be named after his father, at least for the main given name (the two John Adamses, the two George Bushes, et al). And daughters are commonly named after their mothers.

But I've never heard of a case like the two Carmen Dragons (the conductor's daughter, a harpist, received exactly the same given name as her father). Or a son receiving his mother's name.

Do we know of any such cases? -- Jack of Oz [pleasantries] 20:05, 25 March 2015 (UTC)

The birth name of Barack Obama's mother, Ann Dunham, was Stanley Ann Dunham, named for her father, Stanley Armour Dunham. ←Baseball Bugs What's up, Doc? carrots→ 20:56, 25 March 2015 (UTC)
Nigella Lawson seems to have been named after her father Nigel, though obviously with a feminised version of his name. AndyTheGrump (talk) 21:01, 25 March 2015 (UTC)
Daughters are often given feminized versions of their fathers' names. Charlize Theron comes to mind. Sons being given masculized feminine names of any kind is pretty rare, as recently discussed on one of these pages. Some names are neutral and can work for both: Dana, Terry, etc. ←Baseball Bugs What's up, Doc? carrots→ 21:29, 25 March 2015 (UTC)
Radclyffe Hall was the daughter of Radclyffe Radclyffe-Hall, but she was born Marguerite Antonia Radclyffe-Hall (all according to The Cambridge Guide to Women's Writing in English, not in the article). ---Sluzzelin talk 21:33, 25 March 2015 (UTC)
Someone can search for "christened OR named" "after OR for" "her father OR his mother".
Wavelength (talk) 21:22, 25 March 2015 (UTC) and 21:27, 25 March 2015 (UTC)
Slightly further afield (sorry about that), Richard Gere's middle name is Tiffany which was his mother's maiden name. Dismas|(talk) 22:06, 25 March 2015 (UTC)
I see that Evelyn Waugh, whose first wife was also named Evelyn, had a daughter with his second wife, who was given the name Margaret Evelyn. ←Baseball Bugs What's up, Doc? carrots→ 23:44, 25 March 2015 (UTC)
Not exactly the same thing, but Lord Anne Hamilton was apparently named after his godmother, Queen Anne. - Lindert (talk) 17:29, 26 March 2015 (UTC)
Sidney Poitier has a daughter, Sydney Tamiia Poitier. (The first female Sydney to come to my attention was an assassin played by Brenda Vaccaro in The Streets of San Francisco, when Miss Poitier was a toddler.) —Tamfang (talk) 21:39, 26 March 2015 (UTC)
The author O. Henry changed his middle name from Sidney to Sydney, although I've usually seen Sidney used as a male name and Sydney as a female name. The derivation of the name may be of interest.[58]Baseball Bugs What's up, Doc? carrots→ 23:22, 26 March 2015 (UTC)
I never knew that. Thankyou. -- Jack of Oz [pleasantries] 10:53, 28 March 2015 (UTC)

March 26[edit]

Website to host travel blog, preferably using MediaWiki[edit]

Hello :-)

I would like to write a travel blog, with pictures I will take, on an upcoming holiday. I don't think Wikivoyage allows this sort of thing so I am looking for a website to host the blog. Ideally I want to use MediaWiki (the software that powers and en.wikivoyage) as I am comfortable with it. Are there any websites that meet my needs?

Otherwise I will use a website like

Note: I have cross-posted this at Wikivoyage but I think I will get more responses here.--Commander Keane (talk) 01:55, 26 March 2015 (UTC)

Have you looked into Wikia? --Jayron32 02:25, 26 March 2015 (UTC)
I just had a quick look at Wikia, there is which I have asked a question at, or should I consider starting a new Wikia - I am not sure how it works?--Commander Keane (talk) 04:21, 26 March 2015 (UTC)
In answer to my own question, Wikia has "blogs" which it says "Blogs are used by wiki communities for fan fiction or original work, news and announcements, questions or recommendations to the community, or reviews or op-eds" so that suits my needs. Of course if there are any other options, apart from Wikia, I would like to hear about them.--Commander Keane (talk) 06:01, 26 March 2015 (UTC)
You need to get yourself a blog hosted at Blogpost or Wordpress. I prefer Wordpress. --Viennese Waltz 09:52, 27 March 2015 (UTC)
Is Blogpost like Blogspot? — I once had dinner with the founders of Blogger/Blogspot. At the time, I didn't see the point. —Tamfang (talk) 08:20, 28 March 2015 (UTC)

Pilots of Germanwings Flight 9525[edit]

Have any sources published the name of the pilot and co-pilot of Germanwings Flight 9525 and any biographical information? Thanks. μηδείς (talk) 04:04, 26 March 2015 (UTC)

Names have not yet been released by the airlines, or the German or French authorities, although the airline has said that, "the captain was a 10-year veteran with more than 6,000 hours of flying time in A320s".
Of course, the internet being the internet, there is ample uninformed speculation about the identities, mostly reflecting the the biases of the commentators with names like "Muhammad" and "Malaysian pilot Anning Wong" being thrown around. Note that I am mentioning those two names only because they are so obviously wrong, with the latter being a fictional pilot in an online air traffic simulator VATSIM. We should be very wary of mentioning names of potentially real persons, unless they are backed by very, very solid sourcing. Abecedare (talk) 08:27, 26 March 2015 (UTC)
How obviously wrong would depend on the actual names. Hack (talk) 09:01, 26 March 2015 (UTC)
Some sourced names are now in Germanwings Flight 9525#Passengers and crew. -- ToE 13:10, 26 March 2015 (UTC)

It's all over the press today. I only heard rumors on the radio last night. Thanks. μηδείς (talk) 17:18, 26 March 2015 (UTC)



Is it possible to get pumpkins (small ones) this time of year in the UK? I have searched all round my local markets, and can't find any. They only seem to be in the shops just before Halloween. I'm not bothered about carving them into faces and putting candles in them. I actually like eating them. KägeTorä - () (もしもし!) 12:03, 26 March 2015 (UTC)

If fresh pumpkins are not in season in your area, you may be able to get canned pumpkin: [59]. --Jayron32 12:34, 26 March 2015 (UTC)
My local branch of Lidl was selling trays of pre-prepared squash and sweet potato yesterday. RomanSpa (talk) 13:23, 26 March 2015 (UTC)
As for why they are likely less common/available right now: If you're getting live small pumpkins grown in the UK, they are from last fall. I suppose theoretically they could be fresh if grown in certain parts of the world, but I'm not sure if anyone is growing pumpkins in S. America for export to UK. No curcurbita spp. bear fruit in the early (local) spring. SemanticMantis (talk) 15:20, 26 March 2015 (UTC)
Thanks for the answers. I'm looking for an actual whole pumpkin, not processed or canned, for a specific recipe I have for soup (with soy sauce, sugar, sake, garlic, and assorted vegetables), and a side dish of the seeds fried in salt and light soy sauce until they are crispy. But I only want a small one, because I'll be the only one eating it. KägeTorä - () (もしもし!) 16:32, 26 March 2015 (UTC)
It seems that effectively the entire UK pumpkin crop (most of which is grown by Dave Bowman in Spalding, Lincolnshire) is used for carving ("95% will be carved into hollowed-out lanterns for Halloween") with no market after Halloween ("there’s just no market for them after the 31st"). That Farmers World article says the UK is the EU's largest producer of pumpkins; this lists the world's leading pumpkin producing countries. There doesn't seem to be the usual market gardening supply chain (from greenhouses in NL, and warmer places in e.g. Spain and Africa) that supplies the UK with produce like tomatoes outside the UK season - that's not surprising given how little demand for eating pumpkins the UK has. You could grow your own, with the harvest being Sep->Nov. -- Finlay McWalterTalk 17:14, 26 March 2015 (UTC)

Pumpkins grow on a large vine that takes all summer to mature, (at 40 lat N) so they're most likely almost non-existent out of season. But it might be possible to get a cooking pumpkin from South Africa or Australia, given it's the end of their summer now. μηδείς (talk) 17:24, 26 March 2015 (UTC)

But on the other hand ripe pumpkins will keep for months if stored in a cool dry place. Tesco have butternut squashes available right now. Richard Avery (talk) 07:34, 27 March 2015 (UTC)
Your recipe sounds Japanese. Do you have any Japanese groceries within range of your home? You might phone first to see if they have what you want. I shop at a Chinese market near me, but I must say I don't recall seeing pumpkins recently. As others have said, they are out of season in the northern hemisphere. Marco polo (talk) 19:01, 26 March 2015 (UTC)
Come to think of it, I have seen pumpkins at the grocer here in TX, USA, where they are also out of season. But November wasn't that long ago, and a small pumpkin for eating should be able to be stored for a few months... so OP may have some luck yet :) SemanticMantis (talk) 19:04, 26 March 2015 (UTC)
Assuming you can't find an actual pumpkin, I'd go with the earlier advice to use canned pumpkin. It is designed for cooking pumpkin pies and such, therefore is rather unprocessed, so it can be used in any recipe (if they added sugar and spices in a certain ratio, that would make it unusable for recipes with different ratios). I am assuming your recipe doesn't call for cooking the intact pumpkin. You also won't have the fresh pumpkin seeds, though, so will need to wait for autumn for that part. Also, if you haven't cooked using a whole pumpkin before, I have to warn you that scooping the innards out is very messy. I'd do it outside, to minimize the mess.
Another option, as alluded to earlier, is using squash. Some types of squash are very similar to pumpkins, so could be substituted in the recipe. This option might be best if the recipe does call for cooking an intact gourd. StuRat (talk) 16:37, 28 March 2015 (UTC)

March 28[edit]

Legality of prostitution in Taiwan[edit]

The map in the article Prostitution law suggests that prostitution is legal in Taiwan, yet our article Prostitution in Taiwan says that prostitution "remains illegal under a 1991 law" and goes on to say basically that it's a murky situation following a 2009 Constitutional Court decision. Most other sources I can find suggest that it is illegal. Can someone clarify? (talk) 02:58, 28 March 2015 (UTC)

One possibility is that it remains technically illegal but the law is no longer enforced. StuRat (talk) 16:26, 28 March 2015 (UTC)

State of the Art in Snowboarding Equipment[edit]

I just came back from a week of snowboarding. I'm very happy with the Rossignol Levitation that I bought on sale back in 2001. However, old things will eventually break, and I may have to look out for something new in the next years. I wonder if there has been significant development in snowboarding technology. Will an average good-quality board today be as good as my lucky buy 14 years ago? Or has nothing much changed and I have to be careful not to take a step down? --Stephan Schulz (talk) 13:06, 28 March 2015 (UTC)

Vending Machines in Pub Toilets in UK[edit]

I went to a pub yesterday, and whilst in the toilet I was looking around (as you do), and there was a vending machine selling three products. Of course, as usual, they were sex-related, but instead of the usual condoms, they had three products which I had never seen before in a vending machine. One was a substitute for viagra. The second was a vibrator. The third was a blow-up doll in the shape of a sheep. I was wondering if the first and third are legal in the UK or not, as viagra is prescription-only here in the UK, and blow-up dolls of sheep are a bit....weird. This is not a joke question, and I am not looking for legal advice, as I did not buy any of these products and I am not thinking of reporting the company that owns the vending machine to any authorities. I was just bewildered. KägeTorä - () (もしもし!) 13:12, 28 March 2015 (UTC)

You really should add an image. If this is to be believed then they are just herbal pills and why would an inflatable sheep be illegal. Just out of curiosity but how realistic are the sheep? CambridgeBayWeather, Uqaqtuq (talk), Sunasuttuq 13:27, 28 March 2015 (UTC)
I don't like taking photographs in toilets. Sorry. I would guess they are herbal pills - they were blue. The inflatable sheep looked like a balloon with head and legs and tail on the advertisement (in fact, it looked more like a cow - it had black 'spots' on it - but the advertisement on the machine clearly said 'sheep'). I believe it's probably a joke present for someone's birthday or something. I may be overreacting, but if it is in fact a usable sex-toy, wouldn't it be tantamount to promoting bestiality? In that image you posted, the ones on the right and left are the exact ones I saw. The one in the middle is different. KägeTorä - () (もしもし!) 14:10, 28 March 2015 (UTC)
It might be promoting sex with inflatable plastic animals, but inflatable plastic animals are self-evidently not animals, so it's not promoting bestiality. RomanSpa (talk) 14:25, 28 March 2015 (UTC)
Where else would one expect inflatable sex-sheep to be sold except in the restrooms of British pubs? Gags like chairs nailed to the ceiling are typical of bars in the US. They add ambiance.μηδείς (talk) 18:32, 28 March 2015 (UTC)
Perhaps. :) We do _not_ have an article on inflatable fetishism - we have balloon fetish, but that's not the same thing. See also inflatable doll. Promoting bestiality is not illegal in the UK - various forms of sexual activity with animals are prohibited under the Sexual Offences Act 2003, and photographs and videos are classified as extreme pornography and are therefore illegal to possess, but merely advocating it is not an offence. Tevildo (talk) 23:13, 28 March 2015 (UTC)


Create for me an Acess using theses procedure.

Start Microsoft Acess and create an Address Book database.

Click the tables in the database window

Click new

The New Table wizard appears

Select table wizard and click OK — Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 16:11, 28 March 2015 (UTC)

You seem to already have the instructions (although to create a database table, not an "Acess"), so what is your question for us ? StuRat (talk) 16:17, 28 March 2015 (UTC)
Part of a homework assignment? -- Jack of Oz [pleasantries] 21:47, 28 March 2015 (UTC)

Cabin Crew of Germanwings Flight[edit]

Does anyone have any details of the names of the four cabin crew of the Germanwings flight that crashed? All I have is the names of the pilot and co-pilot. KägeTorä - () (もしもし!) 18:28, 28 March 2015 (UTC)

Lars Kottner

Georg Ludwic

Horst Erghart

Kurt Gauck

RIP. (talk) 18:57, 28 March 2015 (UTC)

Thank you. Where did you get this information from? KägeTorä - () (もしもし!) 21:18, 28 March 2015 (UTC)

Transcripts and licenses[edit]

I was thinking of making some transcripts of Allen Ginsberg's classes at the Jack Kerouac School, which are hosted in audio form at under CC-BY-ND-NC. I have two questions: (1) is a transcript from audio considered a derivative and therefore prohibited by the license? (2) If not, is there a Wikimedia project that could host such transcripts? Wikisource seems the most likely candidate but they seem to require sources be originally published in print; I couldn't find a clear answer one way or the other on their site though. – Arms & Hearts (talk) 20:34, 28 March 2015 (UTC)