User talk:LouScheffer

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Welcome! Hi!

Hello LouScheffer, and welcome to Wikipedia! Thank you for your contributions. I hope you like the place and decide to stay. Here are a few good links for newcomers:

I hope you enjoy editing here and being a Wikipedian! Please sign your name on talk pages using four tildes (~~~~); this will automatically produce your name and the date. If you have any questions, check out Wikipedia:Where to ask a question or ask me on my talk page. Again, welcome! 

Thank you for your care in using an edit summary when contributing. Thanks for the new section in binomial theorem. Cheers, Oleg Alexandrov (talk) 01:29, 16 December 2005 (UTC)


Zinc Oxide and You[edit]

First of all, please sign your posts with ~~~~. About the article, since it's merely a section of a movie, its proper place, if it belongs anywhere, is on the page of that movie, Kentucky Fried Movie. --InShaneee 06:02, 17 December 2005 (UTC)

  • Let's keep this civil, I have nothing against you personally. Also, you CAN redirect to a specific point on a page. Here's the format: [[Blah#Specific Blah]], where Blah is the article name, and Specific Blah is the specific section header. That help any? --InShaneee 06:38, 17 December 2005 (UTC)
    • Bizzare...that page must be outdated, because I use that type of redirect all the time. I'll have to look into getting that info changed. In the meantime, go ahead and merge the info and try out the redirect to the anchor for yourself! --InShaneee 07:08, 17 December 2005 (UTC)
      • The 'allies' section of Teen Titans (animated series) is where I first encountered them. It appears to work for a section titled like this: ===Blah===, so try using three "="'s when you create your new subsection, that should work. --InShaneee 07:36, 17 December 2005 (UTC)
        • No, unfortunatly, it appears you were right. I was thinking of the wrong thing, my bad. Still, the merge/redirect seems to solve the problem. Since "Zinc Oxide and You" is the name of a segment within Kentucky Fried Movie, I see two possibilities. One, someone is looking for more info about KFM, which this takes them to. Two, people are looking for that specific segment in that movie, which is not only on that page, but the information about the rest of the movie may be of interest to the user as well. This is typically the policy, anyway, as once someone started creating articles about individual chapters of "Great Expectations", and the verdict on that was to merge them into the article about the book as a whole. --InShaneee 05:20, 18 December 2005 (UTC)


The reason I removed the TOCRight was that a while back it was up for deletion under the rationale that, if TOCRight is going to be used to remove whitespace in an article, then what's stopping us from using it in every article, or just making it the default altogether? In the end, the consensus was that it was only really appropriate for pages like this. And as for most users not scrolling down and only seeing the top of the page, well, that's why articles need good introductory paragraphs :) QVanillaQ 15:21, 21 February 2006 (UTC)


Excellent editing! Rklawton 19:51, 5 June 2006 (UTC)

Spacecraft propulsion[edit]

Spacecraft propulsion is up for a featured article review, and I noticed your name often in the edit history. Detailed concerns about the article may be found here. Please leave your comments if you're able to help us maintain this article's featured quality. Sandy 03:41, 3 October 2006 (UTC)

Academics at Caltech[edit]

That last edit of yours after mine works. My reason for adding-in the Art Center bit in the first place was personal. I added Scripps afterward just to make Tech look better. I later regretted starting this war. Thanks for ending it.

By the way, I tried InShanee's way of linking to a header on a page, and it works, but it's ugly. Any way to hide the "#"? GrammarmongerTALK 17:36, 3 January 2007 (UTC)

No, Lou, I was referring to the "#" symbol, which directs the browser to the specific article header. Grammarmonger 18:26, 3 January 2007 (UTC)

I thought I did this. Look at the heading above - it says Academics at Caltech, but goes to the right spot in the article. I thought this is what you wanted - the # is no longer visible to the reader, though it is to the editor. LouScheffer 18:32, 3 January 2007 (UTC)

Yeah, that's the ticket. I see it now. Thanks! Grammarmonger 18:55, 3 January 2007 (UTC)


I don't think that the image is creative commons. The website requires explicit written permission to be reused. Do you have a copy of that to link to from the image page? mikm 14:37, 28 March 2007 (UTC)

Yes, Prof. Davidson gave explicit written permission. Here is the email trail I have for this:

From: Louis Scheffer <> To: Michael W. Davidson <> Date: Jan 4 2006 - 10:40am

Thanks! I've included it on the page,

Lou Scheffer

Original Message-----

From: Michael W. Davidson [1] Sent: Wed 1/4/2006 8:48 AM To: Louis Scheffer Subject: RE: Can I use a picture of your on Wikipedia?


That will be fine.


Michael W. Davidson National High Magnetic Field Laboratory 1800 East Paul Dirac Drive The Florida State University Tallahassee, Florida 32310 Email: Phone: 850-644-0542 Web: Molecular Expressions (

Original Message-----

From: Louis Scheffer [2] Sent: Tuesday, January 03, 2006 6:58 PM To: Subject: Can I use a picture of your on Wikipedia?

Hi, Prof. Davidson!

I made a Wikipedia page for silicon art. It refers, of course, to your web site for examples.

I'd like to have an example for the page, and was wondering if I could I use one of your pictures? I was thinking of the picture on

because, as an original author, I can get the permissions for the design itself, so all I'd need is permission to use your picture of it.

Can I get this permission? I'd be more than happy to credit you, and your web site, which I think is great.

Thanks, Lou Scheffer

LouScheffer 15:48, 28 March 2007 (UTC)

Notability of ECAD, Inc.[edit]

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Good work, maybe I should tag few more articles for deletion to get people working. nice job --Witchinghour 17:48, 10 June 2007 (UTC)

By the way that was meant as a joke but somebody missed it :( --Witchinghour 20:07, 10 June 2007 (UTC)

Style note[edit]

Hi Lou. I have a small note. Per WP:MoS#Sections and headings, one should use lowercase in section headings, so one should write

==The binomial theorem in popular culture==

instead of

==The Binomial Theorem in Popular Culture==

Small thing, but I thought I'd let you know. Cheers, Oleg Alexandrov (talk) 03:30, 11 June 2007 (UTC)

License tagging for Image:ChipWorksLandShark.jpg[edit]

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Fermi Paradox[edit]

Your addition Intelligent life need not be technological is also touched on in the section They are too alien. Perhaps you might look at merging these? - Vedexent (talk) - 05:27, 21 June 2007 (UTC)

A reasonable question. I've moved it to Talk:Fermi paradox. LouScheffer 06:03, 21 June 2007 (UTC)


Well, I guess I'm being "re-bold." One thing I will say: if a section goes in unsourced, it should be removed. It's the bane of this page. Anyhow, we can save it for article talk. Marskell 16:59, 21 June 2007 (UTC)


HI the main Hubble Space article is superb but the Telescope artice is quite poor indeed, Is there any way you could help write it professionally with references into a GA encyclopedia article. I came acrosss it just now expecting to see another great article and was quite disappointed with it compared to other work on astronomy on wikpiedia. It didn;t even had a history -I've added it - it just needs condensing and structuring and a great deal of work. Thanks ♦ Sir Blofeld ♦ "Expecting you?" Contribs 16:59, 18 August 2007 (UTC)

Redirect of Council on EDA[edit]

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Makes it sound like a epic written by George Lucas[edit]

Yeah, some collateral damage was had there whilst cleaning up the nightmares of stupid edits. Something for me to clean up tomorrow when i've got a fair few more neurons firing. Thewinchester (talk) 16:06, 2 October 2007 (UTC)


beautiful job on fictional use of real materials. I suggest what is needed now is a few real sources from secondary works, to show it can be done. At the AfD I suggested dilithium, but most of these should be discussed in reviews, etc. then, perhaps for the biggies, like gold, and water, there should be a breakout to a separate article. As you know, what happens at AfD is unpredictable--please make sure you have a copy off-wiki to use in reconstructing it in other ways, which can be considered if necessary. I'd help more, but this is a busy day at WP. See [3]. DGG (talk) 22:19, 9 October 2007 (UTC)

Talk page comments[edit]

I'm sure no slight or malfeasance was intended, but please do not move my talk page comments into a different section that pertains to the same incident. I was neither replying to your comments already there nor discussing the same subject matter; placing them into the same section makes it difficult to have a threaded conversation on two different subjects. Thanks! /Blaxthos 14:22, 12 October 2007 (UTC)

Deletion of Fictional applications of real materials[edit]

  • Hi! I was busily cleaning up Fictional applications of real materials to address most of the objections when it was deleted. Since the AfD started, I added scope limitations at the top, removed a bunch of stuff that was just trivia, and was busy adding secondary and tertiary sources (For almost every remaining entry I was able to find a secondary source, and I have added about 5 so far). (You can compare the article from before the AfD to the current one to get a sense of these changes). You yourself say:

As a result, I vote, and recommend, the use of "Delete unless cleaned up", "Delete unless expanded", etc. — if somebody cares enough about the article to have it kept, then they will generally fix it up during the AFD vote, which is five days long, and drop me a line on my talk page to ask me to have another look.

This is exactly what I was busy doing. I'd be grateful if you could take another look. LouScheffer 22:19, 11 October 2007 (UTC)

Thanks for your message. I'm happy with the way I've closed this one but you're welcome to ask for a deletion review. Stifle (talk) 17:16, 12 October 2007 (UTC)


Thanks for the notice. /Blaxthos 21:26, 12 October 2007 (UTC)

EDASeeAlso template[edit]

While pointing out specific fee-based access to IEEE and ACM publications "servers a useful service", such service is not the purpose of Wikipedia. The template is a cookie-cutter that was very inacurrate about ATPG. It would have been more useful to pointout the International Test Conference. I suggest that you remove these templates as they break the style of "See Also", are not subject specific, and are a form of advertising. TeamX 03:13, 20 October 2007 (UTC)

Community member - I am attaching the following SPAM template. There are three key issues with your template:
1) It refers readers to external links where a fee is required.
2) It is not consistent with the "See Also" sections of the articles.
3) The wording of the template does not fit all articles.

Please discontinue use of this template and instead consider putting specific links to specific, relevant articles. Thank you. TeamX 00:16, 21 October 2007 (UTC)

Information.svg Welcome to Wikipedia. Everyone is welcome to contribute constructively to the encyclopedia. However, one or more of the external links you added do not comply with our guidelines for external links and have been removed. Wikipedia is not a collection of links; nor should it be used for advertising or promotion. Since Wikipedia uses nofollow tags, external links do not alter search engine rankings. If you feel the link should be added to the article, then please discuss it on the article's talk page before reinserting it. Please take a look at the welcome page to learn more about contributing to this encyclopedia. Thank you.

Your statement about adding the "template text" suggests that the template is not standard - and indeed it cannot be if it must be modified for each topic. PLEASE remove it. Also, you are breaking the "See Also" section style. TeamX 07:15, 27 October 2007 (UTC)

Fermi Paradox[edit]

The new wording is marginally better-- at least you didn't turn a sentence written in active voice into one written in passive voice-- but still reads awkwardly.

And, yes, I do find it a little disconcerting to find an article with a paragraph discussing my work, carefully written and rewritten in such a way to avoid mentioning my name. Geoffrey.landis 06:23, 10 November 2007 (UTC)

Aluminum v. aluminium[edit]

FYI, the reason the page uses aluminium is not b/c that's what the discoverer named it, but rather because that's what IUPAC decided as its official name. [Sulfur is the official name of that element; sulphur is an accepted, but incorrect, spelling.] Samer (talk) 15:30, 17 November 2007 (UTC)

Semiconductor device modeling[edit]

Hi Lou, I'm currently reading the semiconductor device modeling article. the article talks about a figure 1b which I cannot spot in the article. Can it be that the article is currently missing this figure? Thank you! --Abdull (talk) 11:23, 18 November 2007 (UTC)

Hi, thank you for adding the image so fast. To appreciate your work, I bestow you a little Kinkajou: Kinkajou.jpg. Don't feel worried. Their conservation status is of least concern. Bye, --Abdull (talk) 20:30, 19 November 2007 (UTC)

License tagging for Image:TCAD-circuit.jpg[edit]

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Impact probabilities[edit]

Hi! I want to thank you for the addition you made recently to the Near-Earth asteroid article. Your explanation of why the probability goes up and then down again, with the accompanying graphic, is really clear and easy to understand. Is there by any chance a source we could cite for this information? (I'm not myself challenging it as WP:OR, but I would hate to lose that content because someone else thought it violated that policy!) (sdsds - talk) 02:13, 15 January 2008 (UTC)

Hersheypark edit[edit]

Thanks for catching that. I dont know how I ended up misspelling that, lol. Must of been doing two things at once or something, and got mixed up on something. Thanks again :) Whammies Were Here 11:40, 24 January 2008 (UTC)

Kardashev Scale[edit]

Thanks for coming and checking the article out. Thanks for putting TNT equivalents for Type II, and Type III, it did add quite a bit of perspective for the laymen audience. I will be doing my best to refrain adding to the Kardashev scale, until the current dispute can be talked about more. I've responded to your discussion on the Talk:kardashev scale. Thanks again for coming by and be involved.--Sparkygravity (talk) 14:21, 31 January 2008 (UTC)

FAR for Hubble Space Telescope[edit]

Hubble Space Telescope has been nominated for a featured article review. Articles are typically reviewed for two weeks. Please leave your comments and help us to return the article to featured quality. If concerns are not addressed during the review period, articles are moved onto the Featured Article Removal Candidates list for a further period, where editors may declare "Keep" or "Remove" the article from featured status. The instructions for the review process are here. Reviewers' concerns are here. --Kaypoh (talk) 05:05, 21 March 2008 (UTC)

Hubble Space Telescope[edit]


I was so pleased to see that HST was kept at FA. It's always a bit daunting to copyedit a technical article - especially such a long one - and with the added pressure of this one being up for FAR, I was particularly concerned about getting it right. Thanks for all your hard work on it, and for being so receptive of my edits during the FAR. It was a pleasure to work with you. Maralia (talk) 05:37, 30 April 2008 (UTC)

Thanks for your work. It's always helpful to have another set of eyes look over an article, even when (and maybe especially when) they are not super familiar with the area. You noticed (and fixed) a whole bunch of issues I must have seen a hundred times, but did not even notice they could be improved until you fixed them. It was a pleasure working with you as well, LouScheffer (talk) 06:32, 30 April 2008 (UTC)
  • And my thanks, especially to you, Lou, for your continuing attention to this article. Sardanaphalus (talk) 08:18, 30 April 2008 (UTC)

Four and a half years later...and I am back to talk about the same article, in the same thread! I noticed that HST needs cleanup again. I will start tackling the ref formatting and excessive images and external links. If you have time, would appreciate if you could address the 'outdated' tag, and consolidate the STS-125 info that was added after FAR (it seems we have 'Servicing Mission 4' and 'Debate over final servicing mission'). Of course, there is no rush—just trying to keep it in good shape. Thanks. Maralia (talk) 16:15, 3 November 2012 (UTC)

DOI bot talk[edit]

Just a quick note - I took the liberty of moving your response to my posting about privacy concerns with the DOI bot. In trying to respond to it I couldn't figure how to do it so that my response would be clear to readers who didn't see the history. So I moved your response to after the initial post, and then indented my response below it. I hope that is okay. Thank you. Zodon (talk) 01:39, 3 May 2008 (UTC)

DOI bot[edit]

Hi, thanks for your "test" - it was good fun, and turned up one CrossRef bug I would never have spotted!

So... Did I pass?

Smith609 Talk 00:05, 10 May 2008 (UTC)

Looks good. I tried it myself but still got the old results (I guess you are running new code). As you find new examples that have problems, you can add them to the page, so you can verify new changes don't break the old fixes.... LouScheffer (talk) 04:43, 10 May 2008 (UTC)

QUIET telescope[edit]

Hi. I've just suggested the QUIET telescope article for a Did you know? entry on the Main Page; the nomination is at Template talk:Did you know#Articles created.2Fexpanded on May 23. Hopefully it will receive a surge of traffic from that in a few days. Thanks for starting the article. Mike Peel (talk) 18:03, 24 May 2008 (UTC)

Hi! I was quite surprised when you started to add to the article so quickly after it was created. Many times technical articles on rather specialized topics just sit there, but you expanded it from a near-stub to a real article almost instantly. (This was my eventual intention as well, but it would have taken a lot longer.) I really appreciate Wikipedia as a great resource for technical topics, and it's always great to see new stuff appear. And thanks as well for the pointer to the 'did you know' section - I had no idea of how snippets got there. Thanks again, LouScheffer (talk) 19:53, 24 May 2008 (UTC)
I noticed your additions of links to the article on Template:CMB experiments and Cosmic Background Imager, and thought that it would be a nice article to expand and get on DYK. It helps that I work in the field (but not on this experiment). At some point I plan on doing the same to the rest of the CMB articles, but I have a finite amount of time. :( I figure that they'd make a nice featured topic eventually. Mike Peel (talk) 20:26, 24 May 2008 (UTC)


Hi and thank you for your edit at Hubble Space Telescope. I didn't believe you so I decided to check for myself and contacted Lars Lindberg Christensen from the European Space Agency (ESO) regarding origins of the video file Image:Hst15 black hole2 1.ogg. I must concede with your arguments. Because of you, in turn, I have made a change to the file reference. The "reference" section is now called "annotated reference" and describes the issue you raised within the edit summary of your afformentioned edit. Thank you. --CyclePat (talk) 18:45, 24 May 2008 (UTC)


Updated DYK query On 28 May, 2008, Did you know? was updated with a fact from the article QUIET, which you created or substantially expanded. If you know of another interesting fact from a recently created article, then please suggest it on the Did you know? talk page.

--BorgQueen (talk) 16:47, 28 May 2008 (UTC)

halifax explosion[edit]

for the record, though the port chicago disaster involved a larger quantity of explosives, the blast-force recorded was actually less than that of the halifax explosion. amplification occurred due to the elevation of the blast in relation to the harbour bottom. it was a unique scientific discovery at the time, which eventually led to the decision to detonate the first atomic weapons at a specific altitude (rather than on the land surface), because they knew it would increase the weapon's power to devastate. this information comes from a documentary which periodically airs on the discovery channel. (talk) 18:54, 4 June 2008 (UTC)

To: Lou Scheffer, GPS Editor

I am somewhat confused by the sentence,

"Dividing the speed of light by the distance adjustment required to make the pseudoranges come as close as possible to intersecting results in a guess of the difference between UTC and the time indicated by the receiver's on-board clock."

in the subheading "Using the C/A code" of the "Calculating positions" heading in the article, GPS.

The confusion arises because the result of the division gives a quotient which is in inverse time whereas the later part of the sentence indicates that the dimensions of this quotient should be time rather than inverse time. Should this quotient be (distance adjustment)/(speed of light) instead? You may reply to my talk page if you wish. RHB100 (talk) 19:42, 27 June 2008 (UTC)

I did not write this section, but reading it, I agree completely. A distance divided by a speed gives a time, which is exactly what is mentioned in the second half. So your proposed change makes both physical and mathematical sense. LouScheffer (talk) 20:10, 27 June 2008 (UTC)

Equation Added to "Using the C/A Code" is Good, But Please Consider a Few Friendly Comments[edit]

I think the equation you added is good and I hope it will be judged readable by a general audience. I made a small change to the notation used for actual received time in order to avoid conflict with the r4 notation used below.

The material in the paragraph beginning with "The following description shows a straightforward iterative way." is good.

Although there are well known techniques for finding the root of a single non-linear equation, the problem is far more difficult for the case of multidimensional non-linear equations. In "Numerical Recipes" it is stated, "Why is that task (relatively) easy, while multidimensional root finding is often quite hard?" So with regard to your first bullet under the equation, I do not think the equations can be solved so simply.

In your second bullet, you mention the intersection of hyperbolas. But do we know of any reference to a GPS receiver vendor who uses the intersection of hyperbolas or hyperboloids. The Garmin User's Guide talks about the intersection of spheres but not hyperboloids. The Wikipedia article, Multilateration, does not mention GPS as an application.

The third bullet describes a technique which may work but the reference is not accessible to the general reader. The description of the overall approach is not enough for the general reader to understand how this algorithm works.RHB100 (talk) 23:44, 12 July 2008 (UTC)

Dr. Heinz Doofenshmirtz[edit]

Sorry, I thought that was a random comment on that article. I was in a sort of hurry, and I noticed that in the last minute. ~ Troy (talk) 23:23, 11 July 2008 (UTC)

Equation for Pseudorange[edit]

Thw equation, p_i = (tr_i - t_i)c, defines p_i as the value computed based on no clock error since the received time is tri and the sent time is ti. Since tri is defined as the received time it has no error. Since ti is defined as the sent time it has no error. To include the clock error, the pseudorange must be defined as p_i = (tr_i + b - t_i)c . The following is quoted from where the problem occurs. "Now the receiver has four measurements (the received time of the four messages) and four unknowns - the x, y and z coordinates of position and time t. Since the receiver already has a clock, what is solved for is not the actual time the messages arrived, but the clock bias b, which is the amount by which the receiver's clock is off. Let the coordinates of each satellite, and the time the message was sent, be [xi, yi, zi, ti] for i = 1, . . ., 4, the received time be tri for i = 1, . . ., 4, and c be the speed of light. Then the distance to each satellite should correspond to the signal travel time:

(x-x_i)^2 + (y-y_i)^2 + (z-z_i)^2 = \bigl((tr_i + b - t_i)c\bigr)^2,\qquad i=1,\ldots,4.

These equations are often written in terms of a pseudorange, which is simply the range computed without the clock correction included, or p_i = (tr_i - t_i)c." —Preceding unsigned comment added by RHB100 (talkcontribs) 03:12, 24 July 2008 (UTC)

Addition on the Optical telescope article[edit]

Hello. On this edit, I think you changed the sentence to reduce the tensity of the situation. Anyway, I was just going to ask you if it's alright if I change it to the sentence before—since it looked like a nice form of literature. :-) No offence. Anyway, it would look like this:

During the Middle Ages, the descriptions of Ibn Sahl, Robert Grosseteste, and Ibn Al-Haytham made monumental advances in not only the understanding of light and the law of refraction, but also the magnifying properties that abide by those laws.[1]

Your's looks like this:

Studies of properties of lenses and refraction in the Middle Ages[1] by scholars such as Ibn al-Haytham and Robert Grosseteste laid the groundwork for the development of telescopes.

Sincerely, InternetHero (talk) 09:17, 1 August 2008 (UTC)

Talk:Kardashev scale[edit]

Thank you for handling that. I got stuck on confrontation mode before I could back off enough to see where the actual misunderstanding was. Your explanation was very patient and lucid. - Eldereft (cont.) 08:15, 4 August 2008 (UTC)

GPS Method of Operation Statement on Inertial Navigation[edit]

To: Lou Scheffer

You have made the statement, "Also, in practice, receivers use additional clues (doppler shift of satellite signals, last known position, dead reckoning, inertial navigation, and so on) to give degraded answers when fewer than four satellites are visible."

in the Method of Operation section of the Global Positioning System article.

I do not believe it is true that GPS receivers in general use inertial navigation as you state. Military systems sometimes have both GPS and INS but I do not believe this is true in general for non-military systems as you state. Where is your reference to show that GPS receivers in general are supplemented with inertial navigation information? I am also skeptical with regard to the extent these other methods you mention are used. RHB100 (talk) 21:00, 21 August 2008 (UTC)

These methods are quite common, particularly in GPS built into cars. You can see it work quite easily - the map moves continuously when you go under a highway bridge, where a hand-held GPS will show there is no signal. In the built-in units, the car helps the GPS by telling how far it has gone since the last fix. The GPS extrapolates from the last fix and direction (dead reckoning)[4][5] or sometimes uses a gyroscope (or sometimes the car's steering wheel angle) to detect changes in direction [6]. This is a simple form of INS. Military systems, as you point out, often couple GPS with a sophisticated INS. LouScheffer (talk) 11:22, 22 August 2008 (UTC)

OK, thank you these references although lacking in some areas do have some good material. And you have provided a good explanation. You can call the system you describe as a simple form of INS if you want. I won't argue at least for now. The word inertial suggests to me that an INS must have an accelerometer but I guess it doesn't make too much difference.RHB100 (talk) 00:51, 23 August 2008 (UTC)

GPS Method of Operation Problem With 3 Satellites[edit]

To: Lou Scheffer

You have stated as a reason for one of your edits to the GPS article that, "The problem with 3 satellites is not that there are two intersections, but that the distances are uncertain since the timing is unknown."

I think that it is certainly not the case that there is either one problem or the other. Actually the fact that are two intersections is a problem in addition to the problem that there is a clock error. The problem with your approach is that you start talking about the errors before the fundamental concept has been explained. It is better to explain the fundamental concept of GPS to the readers before explaining the clock error and the topic, Correcting the GPS Receiver Clock Introduction.

Also I think saying " using geometry and trigonometry" with a reference to [trilateration] does not satisfy the scientific curiosity of the readers. It is better to explain the fundamental concept rather than leave them bewildered knowing nothing more than that it has something to do with geometry and trigonometry. RHB100 (talk) 22:10, 21 August 2008 (UTC)

The "GPS Guide for Beginners", December 2008, Revision A, part number 190-00224-00 produced by Garmin explains on page 8 how a fourth satellite enables the GPS receiver to resolve the ambiguity associated with the two point intersection of three sphere surfaces. RHB100 (talk) 19:06, 25 August 2008 (UTC)

Also it is stated in [7] that "But if you want to calculate the altitude of an airplane or how high some mountaineers have climbed, you need a fourth satellite to yield that dimension.] It should be kept in mind that GPS receivers include all GPS receivers, those used for military purposes and for any other purpose." RHB100 (talk) 20:06, 25 August 2008 (UTC)

Your statement, "In other words, the receiver uses four measurements to solve for four variables: x, y, z, and t." is extremely misleading. There are many people who operate under the delusion that anytime you have four equations you can solve for four unknowns. This is true for the case of four independent linear equations but it is not true in general. With your misleading statement, you perpetuate this delusion. RHB100 (talk) 20:31, 25 August 2008 (UTC)

I agree that you cannot always solve 4 equations for 4 variables, in general. But in GPS you can, by design, and it's exactly what the receiver does. The fact that there are other systems of equations that cannot be solved this way is not relevant here, since we are explicitly talking about GPS. At least this is the way I read it. Clearly you read this differently. Let's add it to the talk page and see what others think. LouScheffer (talk) 20:43, 25 August 2008 (UTC)

Sorry for the gory details[edit]

About the edit you've undone in the GPS article. "It might seem that three satellites would be enough" (for calculating the position) No, it might not. Please, this is not trilateration as you undid my edit and put the reference to it again; and it's not like "3 satelites to solve 3 variables xyz and 4 satelites to solve xyzt".

I dont want to go much deep here, but it's 4 satellites for 3 dimensions as an analogue situations would need 3 points for 2 dimensions, 2 points for 1 dimension and so on. This is about Locus. Time is some quite more complex thing you're putting in, and it gets more precise with the more satellites you have. But having more satellistes has the only function of increasing precision - if we had a planck time clock we would need 4 satellites and that's it.

Well, you see, two people have undone my edits so far, none of them seemed to understand too much about satellites (a guy that did understand something about the matter said my images were good illustration, maybe he isnt a much good Professional Engineer in the field of Control System Engineering or wrote Philosophy on How GPS Article Should be Written just to play with people). The other guy that undone my edit just didnt answer when I asked the reasons for his undo - just as I don't really expect that you'll answer me at all. Anyway, I'll probably just give up as It seems my text is just too poor for this and people don't want to be bothered with the geometry behind the GPS concept. Almighty001 (talk) 16:26, 5 November 2008 (UTC)

Basic concept of GPS - Some statements are cute sounding but not informative[edit]

The statement "In other words, the receiver uses four measurements to solve for four variables: x, y, z, and t." is cute but not informative. The receiver needs 4 measurements of time message sent, 4 measurements of time message received, and 2 measurements of distance of intersections to earth just to name a few. There is no basis for saying there are 4 measurements and 4 unknowns other than to come up with a cute sounding statement. The term user-friendly is trite, uninformative, and sounds like an ad for juveniles. Don't you understand that the readers have enough sense to tell if it is user friendly or not. This unsophisticated language is certainly not needed.RHB100 (talk) 00:46, 10 November 2008 (UTC)

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Thanks for your support, but these guys are just trying to bully me---they hate me for some reason. I think its coz I mass-convasses one time... Ya, I was wrong to do that, but I seriously just want to get the right information on the telescope... Thanks for your support---I put your paragraph instead of mine after a while, coz I thought they got you to bully me as well. I ended up looking at your version, and it was good. Don't be to obliged for this article---I think they're acting out of hate, and sometimes, its a bit stronger since they have something to prove. Thanks anyway, InternetHero (talk) 17:27, 27 November 2008 (UTC)


I don't have any problem with the idea of the IC-->SCPA shift. But there are a number of technical inaccuracies in the summary. I hope you won't mind if I just correct them.
PraeceptorIP (talk) 19:41, 4 December 2008 (UTC)

History section of telescope[edit]

Just an FYI, This discussion is already on-going at Talk:Telescope. Fountains of Bryn Mawr (talk) 16:28, 6 December 2008 (UTC)


PLEASE DO NOT Modify my TALK as you did here with unsigned inserted comments. Also you should refrain from "voting" for other editors and signing their names to it as you did here. Such edits can be considered vandalism. I appreciate your trying to organize the discussion but you should follow the guidelines re:inserting comments sequentially. Fountains of Bryn Mawr (talk) 17:18, 7 December 2008 (UTC)

Fermi Paradox page improved I think... well done[edit]

Hi! OK, I just broke out 'It is dangerous to communicate' into its own sub-section, under 'They choose not to communicate'. I hope this addresses some of your points, although I realize it does not appear in the table of contents (the major section, 'they choose not to communicate', does). LouScheffer (talk) 03:23, 11 December 2008 (UTC)

Thanks for looking at that Lou. I think you did a good job and it makes the text more logically correct I think. I dont mind it not making it into the main table of contents because as a heading in the section '...choose not to...' it still achieves 'a skim read can get the main points' idea. I am faintly disappointed that the 'Crying baby in the woods' metaphor didnt make the cut but I can see it is possibly too over-the-top and might be seen as a bit histrionic.

Thanks for you time and efforts.WalrusLike (talk) 23:46, 12 December 2008 (UTC)

Support on speed of light[edit]

Lou: Thanks for the support. I hope you will maintain some interest. Brews ohare (talk) 05:11, 13 February 2009 (UTC)

Please take a look at Talk:Speed_of_light#Merged_proposal. See what you think, and thanks for the help. Brews ohare (talk) 18:33, 14 February 2009 (UTC)


Lou, I notice you've joined in editting some articles related to this discussion Noticeboard#Comments_by_an_expert_in_a_.22letter_to_the_editor.22_pure_opinion_Vs_plausible_expert_opinion_and_fact.. Your opinion there could be useful. Email me if you'd like a copy of the sources in question. Dicklyon (talk) 00:08, 23 February 2009 (UTC)

SETI and falsifiability[edit]

Hi. I noticed your cogent points on the talk page of SETI. The criticism section is rather ridiculous right now (I even had to remove a quote by Michael Crichton, of all people!). While I believe there are good criticisms one can make of SETI, the current section is currently bogged down with weak ones. For example the notion that SETI is not falsifiable. And the idea that claims are not scientific unless they are falsifiable. I left a remark on the talk page. Regards. --C S (talk) 03:53, 26 February 2009 (UTC)

Cassegrain reflector[edit]

In my revert of vandalism I noticed my inadvertent revert of of your following edit but I did not restore it. See Talk:Cassegrain reflector#Mention of Bonaventura Cavalieri for my reason. Sorry for the confusion. Fountains of Bryn Mawr (talk) 06:12, 26 February 2009 (UTC)

Speed of light[edit]

Hi Lou:

You're making great progress here.

I have some questions about the ideas behind your revisions. For example, in changing the link to Michelson-Morley back to the article on that subject and away from the discussion on Speed of light, what is the objectve? The Michelson-Morley article is referred to in the Speed of light section. It seems to me to be helpful to show the reader the section on Speed of light and then let them elect to go elsewhere if more detail is needed. The idea is: why have a section about this topic on Speed of light if it is better to go directly to Michelson-Morley? In principle (at least) the purpose of having it on Speed of light is to fit the topic into this context, or perhaps to provide a simpler summary that might be all the reader of this introductory article wants.

Another question is GPS: my prejudice is to spell out Global Positioning System because GPS is an acronym the reader may not understand. It is super-annoying to have things sprinkled with unidentified acronyms.

And another question is why the link to relativity is removed from the first appearance of relativity and placed at the second appearance?

Any thoughts? Brews ohare (talk) 23:29, 5 March 2009 (UTC)

Speedy deletion nomination of Ed Kane's Water Taxi[edit]

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A tag has been placed on Ed Kane's Water Taxi requesting that it be speedily deleted from Wikipedia. This has been done under section A7 of the criteria for speedy deletion, because the article appears to be about a company or corporation, but it does not indicate how or why the subject is important or significant: that is, why an article about that subject should be included in an encyclopedia. Under the criteria for speedy deletion, such articles may be deleted at any time. Please see the guidelines for what is generally accepted as notable, as well as our subject-specific notability guideline for companies and corporations.

If you think that this notice was placed here in error, you may contest the deletion by adding {{hangon}} to the top of the page that has been nominated for deletion (just below the existing speedy deletion or "db" tag), coupled with adding a note on the talk page explaining your position, but be aware that once tagged for speedy deletion, if the page meets the criterion it may be deleted without delay. Please do not remove the speedy deletion tag yourself, but don't hesitate to add information to the page that would render it more in conformance with Wikipedia's policies and guidelines. Lastly, please note that if the page does get deleted, you can contact one of these admins to request that they userfy the page or have a copy emailed to you. -- Alan Liefting (talk) - 21:02, 24 May 2009 (UTC)

Proposed deletion of Ed Kane's Water Taxi[edit]

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A proposed deletion template has been added to the article Ed Kane's Water Taxi, suggesting that it be deleted according to the proposed deletion process because of the following concern:


All contributions are appreciated, but this article may not satisfy Wikipedia's criteria for inclusion, and the deletion notice should explain why (see also "What Wikipedia is not" and Wikipedia's deletion policy). You may prevent the proposed deletion by removing the {{dated prod}} notice, but please explain why you disagree with the proposed deletion in your edit summary or on its talk page.

Please consider improving the article to address the issues raised because, even though removing the deletion notice will prevent deletion through the proposed deletion process, the article may still be deleted if it matches any of the speedy deletion criteria or it can be sent to Articles for Deletion, where it may be deleted if consensus to delete is reached. -- Alan Liefting (talk) - 22:36, 24 May 2009 (UTC)

Articles for deletion nomination of Ed Kane's Water Taxi[edit]

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I have nominated Ed Kane's Water Taxi, an article that you created, for deletion. I do not think that this article satisfies Wikipedia's criteria for inclusion, and have explained why at Wikipedia:Articles for deletion/Ed Kane's Water Taxi. Your opinions on the matter are welcome at that same discussion page; also, you are welcome to edit the article to address these concerns. Thank you for your time.

Please contact me if you're unsure why you received this message. Hipocrite (talk) 00:14, 1 June 2009 (UTC)

Logic simulation[edit]

it is now in "Electronic circuit verification", which is in "electronic design automation". If you think it is important to include in both, no objections. I agree it is a major design step. - Altenmann >t 17:14, 29 June 2009 (UTC)

I am afraid you are pointing to the wrong piece of FAQ: nobody argues that a page may be in many categories. The issue at hand is whether a page may be in several categories along the same hierarchy chain. You don't want a page, say, Synopsys to be in Category:Electronic design automation companies&&Electronic design automation &&Category:Electronic design && Category:Design &&Category:Visual arts &&Category:Skills && Category:Knowledge &&Category:Information &&Category:Fundamental && Category:Articles] && Category:Contents] (and it is probably not the longest chain :-). A more appropriate rule is Wikipedia:Categorization_and_subcategories#Duplicate_categorization_rule. - Altenmann >t 17:39, 29 June 2009 (UTC)

This is the wrong question, I think. Perhaps better is whether EDA is too big to understand flat, or needs to be sub-divided. I think it's not too big, and there should be a flat characterization (too big in my mental model is more or less whether it fits ona page). So I don't think it *needs* to sub-divided, and forcing it to be sub-divided removes important relationships. On the other hand it's handy and useful to have categories of only sub-topics, and it surely does not hurt to have both. That's why there are books and conferences on both EDA in general, and on specific sub-fields such as formal verification. So I'm not against smaller categories, just don't remove from the big one until and unless it becomes too big. LouScheffer (talk) 13:54, 3 July 2009 (UTC)

Finding references vs adding tags[edit]

Thanks very much for adding citations to the Agneau/Agnew section in Professor Moriarty. Of course it makes articles better the more citations there are, but surely the onus is on the contributor to back up his/her amendments to the article, rather than the reader? I far more frequently cruise around wikipedia idly reading articles than I do contribute to them, and if I encounter points which don't seem to be supported with sources I'll just tag them, I won't start searching around for supporting evidence. Wikipedia is there for the reader's convenience, not that of its contributors. Opera hat (talk) 20:16, 8 July 2009 (UTC)

I understand the convenience factor. But if you add a "cite needed" to a fact that is both true and easily verified, you have introduced unnecessary doubt in many (21000 each month for this article) reader's minds, for no good reason. So if I come to a dubious statement I'll type in *one* google query with the relevant terms, and if it finds the answer I'll add the cite, otherwise the tag.
Sure, the original editor *should* have done this. But they didn't for whatever reason, and who knows when they will return to the page, or if they even know the syntax for adding references and cites. Conversely, I know how to add references, so if it's super easy to verify I'll add them. I like Wikipedia a lot and enjoy improving it when it's simple to do so. LouScheffer (talk) 03:40, 9 July 2009 (UTC)
Fair points. Maybe I am being overly lazy, and your one-google-search test seems a good one; I'll probably apply it more frequently in future. Opera hat (talk) 18:58, 9 July 2009 (UTC)

Speed of light[edit]

Bravo! Thanks for fixing this. I was prepared for a 3 week argument with Martin over this, as previous encounters suggest he believes in a Platonic universe of absolutes more real than anything measurable. Brews ohare (talk) 18:34, 15 July 2009 (UTC)

Well Lou, this is never going to end unless you play a part. Please take a look at Talk: Speed of light. Brews ohare (talk) 15:33, 16 July 2009 (UTC)

Fermi Paradox[edit]

Hi, I don't mind that you deleted my new paragraph because it is similar to what is already in the Drake's equation section. Fair point. However, that part (in the Drake's section) is in parentheses at the very end. I think this idea, that no civilization can use itself as a basis for statistical extrapolation on the chances of finding life elsewhere in the galaxy, is the most powerful idea in the whole Fermi's Paradox litany. It is abuse of this (what should be a) restriction that is causing so much of the misinformed debate. So it should not be relegated to footnote status in a section bearing a different name (Drake viz-a-viz Fermi) than the main article. So I would ask that you look at promoting this essential point to a much more prominent place in the article.

As an example, look at the new (9 July) comment on the discussion page, titled "Foolishness, all of it". This is typical misinformed commentary, oblivious to the restriction that we can't use Earth as a starting point for statistical deductions. Most people think along these lines. Wikipedia should be highlighting the basic flaw here. EricFlesch (talk) 22:15, 16 August 2009 (UTC)

This is a reasonable point, but also has some limitations when applied to the Fermi paradox. It's currently in the Drake equation portion since it's a very standard part of the Drake equation discussions, where it's pretty widely accepted. However, it's not as clear when applied to other sections of the Fermi paradox, since it only applies when a prerequisite MUST be attained before the question can be contemplated. For example, a civilization would not need to be technical, or self-destructive, or mathematical, or expansionist, or paranoid, to think about the Fermi paradox, whereas it *does* need to be intelligent. Therefore the anthropic bias argument has much less weight when applied to most other explanations of the Fermi paradox. However, at least a somewhat greater weight in the article seems reasonable.

Read the article on Inflation Theory - it is considered a scientific theory as it makes testable predictions - all of which have been verified to date. Also, even if it's not science, the entire subject of the Fermi Paradox is mostly pure speculation to begin with. I doubt we'll ever be able to test the Simulation Argument, but that's in the article. Mjk2357 (talk) 03:36, 25 January 2011 (UTC)

I agree that inflation, by itself, has lots of testable predictions. (The CMBR spatial anisotropies being the most well known, and not explained by any other theory.) But the multiverse versions seem inherently untestable, by the definition of universe as "all we can sense by any means". I agree that the simulation argument is also untestable, or very nearly so. That's why I don't think this point should be removed - just shortened, in particular since the author himself doesn't think too much of it. LouScheffer (talk) 05:04, 25 January 2011 (UTC)
I'm fine with your shorter edit. To the degree to which I understand the math, it seems that multiverses are an inevitable consequence of inflation. Actually, there have been a number proposals to test directly for the existence of multiverses that have to do with black hole physics, the so-called "Dark Flow," etc., though none have yet returned conclusive results to my knowledge. Mjk2357 (talk) 18:31, 25 January 2011 (UTC)

Speed of light arbitration evidence[edit]

In accord with the edit notice ([8]), a portion of your evidence submission has been moved to the talk page.[9][10] None of the information has been deleted. Everything moved from the main evidence page is entirely preserved on the talk page. It is possible that the moved portion may require more supporting links to be appropriate for evidence or that the portion moved is simply more commentary than evidence. Please review the moved portion to decide if it needs revision as an evidence submission or if it should remain on the talk page as commentary. If you feel that this contribution was moved in error, please feel free to contact me to discuss the matter. Thank you for your understanding. Vassyana (talk) 07:48, 13 September 2009 (UTC)

Hi Lou, want to help with 2009 flu pandemic?[edit]

I'm trying to find good science writers who may wish to help out. And with your sustained work on the Fermi Paradox, you classify as a good science writer. So, with swine flu (H1N1), I'm trying to get a good baseline of information, as well as key points such that, in children, a relapse with high fever may be bacterial pneumonia (presumably in adults as well). I think we can make a real difference. Please help out if you can. Thanks. Cool Nerd (talk) 21:44, 25 September 2009 (UTC)

Flip-flop idea[edit]

Here's a possible further extension you might want to consider:

In unusual situations, a set of NOR gates with an incomplete set of mutual inhibitory connections has been used to realize a circuit with a set of meaningful stable states that is not a one-hot code, and having a number of stable states not equal to the number of NOR gates, but otherwise resembling the NOR-based flip-flap-flop.

Since the source is my own work, I won't touch it. See here. Dicklyon (talk) 18:29, 17 October 2009 (UTC)

Graffitti is EVERYWHERE![edit]

Thanks for the link to Chip art, I enjoyed that. ;) Paradoctor (talk) 17:55, 22 November 2009 (UTC)

Book citation in Speed of light article[edit]

In the FAC for Speed of light, I was asked for a page number in the citation you added in this edit. Could you please provide it? Thanks in advance. ― A._di_M.2nd Dramaout (formerly Army1987) 19:34, 11 January 2010 (UTC)

Sure. It's on page 1. LouScheffer (talk) 20:45, 11 January 2010 (UTC)
Thanks again. ― A._di_M.2nd Dramaout (formerly Army1987) 21:09, 11 January 2010 (UTC)

Your revert[edit]

This revert goes against just about every policy and guideline. I asked you for good sourcing several times on the talk page and you produced none. Your revert also removed identifying characteristics essential to the topic, namely, that of an unpublished hypothesis. Can you give a reasonable explanation for your changes on the talk page please? Please refer to the MOS and our citation guidelines and content policies if this isn't making sense. Continuing to add unsourced OR is against policy. When your changes are disputed because of a failure to provide sources, you do not continue to add the dispute content. You use the talk page to discuss your proposed changes. Viriditas (talk) 01:32, 25 January 2010 (UTC)

I have done this, and provided the sources, direct from the source document. Please tell me, using these statements, where I am mistaken. And let other editors weigh in. LouScheffer (talk) 01:34, 25 January 2010 (UTC)
You have not done this at all. Is there a language barrier here? You used the talk page to present an interpretation of a Wikipedia article. We do not do that. Do you understand what it means to "provide sources" and how to use them? Viriditas (talk) 01:38, 25 January 2010 (UTC)
Well, we are not allowed to use huge quotes without permission, so we need to paraphrase. You may call this interpreting, but it seems to me that "Astronomical observations have shown no signs of intelligent life" is about as clear of a summary as is possible of the arguments I quoted. How would you summarize the lines I have quoted on the talk page? LouScheffer (talk) 03:55, 25 January 2010 (UTC)
"Observable universe" encapsulated the paraphrase and does not indulge in OR. I still fail to see how your latest revert improved the previous version. Perhaps you forget what site this is and what we are doing here. Let me remind you then: This is a general encyclopedia where we formally describe concepts in the context of their adherents and attribute whenever necessary. This idea is classified as a hypothesis, and we describe it as such. The American social scientist who proposed this hypothesis in an unpublished paper, is properly described per encyclopedic style. That is to say, while you may not personally find it important in the short term, an encyclopedia takes a long term perspective, and we write for the general reader who may not be aware of who coined the concept. In other words, the information that you feel is useless has an intended purpose, and good encyclopedia style attempts to inform the reader whenever possible. Your continued removal of basic information from this article demonstrates your misunderstanding of how articles are written and for whom. In other words, the article is not being written for you. It is composed for readers who do not know the topic. Until you understand and acknowledge this fact, we will continue to have problems. The idea is correctly referred to as a hypothesis in the sources and the author is appropriately referred to as an American social scientist. You may not find this information important, but it is how we write for the reader, providing them with as much information as necessary to know who is proposing the idea and what kind of idea it is. Your most recent revert also removed a simple explanation of the idea in terms of the FP, and placed it in parentheticals, which is generally the opposite way of doing things; Parentheticals do not help the reader when a clear explanation will do. So again, I am confused by your edits, and fail to see how they have improved the coverage for our readers. Our job is not to muddy the waters, but to clarify and explain. Viriditas (talk) 07:03, 25 January 2010 (UTC)

Can you please stop adding unsourced original research to Wikipedia? The Fermi paradox is not dependent on "centuries of astronomical observations". Surely you must know this by now? Viriditas (talk) 13:22, 25 January 2010 (UTC)

Please stop adding unsourced material to Great Filter. Hanson does not say anything about "centuries of astronomical observations". Please stop adding it. Viriditas (talk) 09:27, 26 January 2010 (UTC)

"Our job is not to muddy the waters, but to clarify and explain." Exactly. Explanations (which do not advance positions i.e. conclusions) are permitted. Viriditas is editing against the consensus.--Michael C. Price talk 12:02, 26 January 2010 (UTC)

Consensus does not override core policies. You cannot interpret a primary source to say something it does not when we have reliable secondary sources that accurately describe the topic. It's also a good idea to stop removing maintenance tags when the problem has not been addressed and discussion is ongoing on the talk page. Viriditas (talk) 13:37, 26 January 2010 (UTC)

Being constructive[edit]

I don't mind criticism, but I wonder why you didn't do it yourself. I hope you'll forgive me when I consider this a conversation between fluid containers. ;) Paradoctor (talk) 17:07, 9 March 2010 (UTC)

I didn't add it myself since (in my opinion) it was quite well referenced already (click on Milky way, and there is the star count, with 3 references, right in the infobox). Now if you think that's too indirect, that of course is your right, and I certainly have no quarrel with it. But if you care enough to add a rather complex "citation needed" type template, why not add a citation directly? The use of such a template indicates you have more than enough technical skill to find, and add, a good reference.
In my opinion, "citation needed" type templates can easily confuse the reader, who might wonder whether the claim is controversial, original research, or simply not referenced. So I prefer not to add them, and instead whenever I find a claim that seems unproven, if a one click search (google or another article) finds a good reference I'll add the reference instead. LouScheffer (talk) 18:05, 9 March 2010 (UTC)
Nothing complex about typing {{code|{{cn}}}}. As far as the necessity of the cite is concerned, you suffer from being knowledgeable in the field. I wouldn't have tagged it on my own, as I recalled something like 100 million, but it has been challenged, so an uncommented revert does not suffice. Would of course simplify things if we could just rely on the experts. ;)
As far as referencing another article is concerned, there are two problems with that. First, our articles are currently not reliable sources. Second, articles should be self-contained, because they might be reproduced in contexts outside of Wikipedia.
"confuse the reader": I wish someone finally did some solid research on our "target" audience. If you ask me for my personal opinion, I'd rather have a confused reader than one unaware of concerns about the stuff s/he's reading. But that's of course only me. Paradoctor (talk) 18:34, 9 March 2010 (UTC)

Multi-layer insulation[edit]

Hi, I'm not sure whether you are watching this page that you created 4 years ago, but could you have a look at Talk:Multi-layer insulation? Han-Kwang (t) 17:26, 12 May 2010 (UTC)

How does a 2007 edit of yours appear in a 2010 publication?[edit]

This edit [11] is word for word in google scholar search, a Czech article - so did they copy our article I wonder? Dougweller (talk) 21:17, 29 May 2010 (UTC)

If you type "although four satellites are required for normal" into Google scholar, you find 7 papers that use this very sentence (or other similar versions from Wikipedia) in scholarly references. Using the maxim that anything is possible if you don't care who gets the credit, I treat this as a complement. LouScheffer (talk) 22:16, 29 May 2010 (UTC)
Yes, there seems to be quite a bit of copyvio from our article, I've mentioned several on the talk page. If I have time, I shall be forwarding some edits to some editorial boards. Dougweller (talk) 11:09, 30 May 2010 (UTC)

Removing citation tags[edit]

Hi Lou.

I just reverted an early July edit of yours on Atlas V where you removed a {{nonspecific}} tag. The tag had been added in good faith by an editor who actually could not verify the information in the cited source. Your edit comment did, however, supply sufficient info where a non-rocket scientist—one who does not know the esoteric meaning of the term "mass fraction" and who, in any case, could not have searched the 8-page article for "mass fraction" since mass fraction was not the term used in the original Wikipedia assertion. Of course, once your edit summary moves back into deep history, other non-rocket-scientist editors would not have been able to see your comment; so it would be lost again.

I have now fixed the citation, and removed the {{nonspecific}} tag for the right reason: the citation is now specific enough to verify.

In short, I don't think you should remove such tags unless the citation is fixed. Cheers. N2e (talk) 21:55, 6 August 2010 (UTC)

Silentium universi/the Great Silence[edit]

You might be interested in some edits I've recently made to Fermi paradox (also see the talk page) and comments I've posted on Talk:Silencium universi. In particular, I have done some research which not only confirms my original claim that 'the Great Silence' is often used as a synonym for 'the Fermi Paradox', but suggests that it is not used otherwise. However, I do not want the article to be wrong, and if you know of any sources that demonstrate a distinct use of the 'Great Silence' (or 'silentium universi') terminology (other than the many copies of the old WP article), I'd like to see them. Also, no offence has been taken, and thanks for your interest. False vacuum (talk) 00:36, 7 September 2010 (UTC)

New arguments on "data is" issue[edit]

Dear Lou, please see new arguments on HST article discussion page, section that concerns "data is" issue. Here is the link for your convenience: —Preceding unsigned comment added by Nyq (talkcontribs) 14:55, 7 November 2010 (UTC)

You are now a Reviewer[edit]

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San Francisco meetup at WMF headquarters[edit]

Hi LouScheffer,

I just wanted to give you a heads-up about the next wiki-meetup happening in SF. It'll be located at our very own Wikimedia Foundation offices, and we'd love it if some local editors who are new to the meetup scene came and got some free lunch with us :) Please sign up on the meetup page if you're interested in attending, and I hope to see you soon! Maryana (WMF) (talk) 20:43, 10 January 2012 (UTC)

Natural Philosophy Alliance[edit]

It looks credible to me (the article, not the fruitcakes). Is there any reason why the New Scientist article isn't linked directly to that publication? Cheer, Jimfbleak - talk to me? 18:56, 11 January 2012 (UTC)
Yes, the New Scientist article has a much less intuitive title, "Outsider physicists and the oh-my-god particle", and I thought the reader would be less likely to follow the link. LouScheffer (talk) 19:04, 11 January 2012 (UTC)
OK, how do I do this?? Creation of this article seems to be blocked.... LouScheffer (talk) 21:01, 11 January 2012 (UTC)

I never thought to check. Protection now removed, so you should be able to move the page to article space. The New Scientist bit isn't a big deal, I just prefer first hand refs. I suppose you could include a link to the original article in your ref, or add it as a second ref, but that's up to you Jimfbleak - talk to me? 06:58, 12 January 2012 (UTC)
Thanks. Added article and fixed the ref to include links to both sources. LouScheffer (talk) 12:35, 12 January 2012 (UTC)

Thank you for taking my "hint" and "acting boldly" about Wertheim vis a vis "circlons". Phaedrus7 (talk) 17:19, 29 April 2013 (UTC)

You are invited to join Stanford's WikiProject![edit]

View of Hoover Tower from Main Quad.

As a current or past contributor to a related article, I thought I'd let you know about WikiProject Stanford University, a collaborative effort to improve Wikipedia's coverage of Stanford University. If you would like to participate, you can visit the project page, where you can join the project and see a list of open tasks and related articles. Thanks!

Good revert[edit]

Good call. The entry added by the IP was based on the entirely fictional tale told in Daylight (film), one of Sylvester Stallone's not-very-good movies. TenOfAllTrades(talk) 02:53, 15 May 2012 (UTC)

A barnstar for you![edit]

Original Barnstar Hires.png The Original Barnstar
I'm more and more appreciating your contributions. Thanks! Woz2 (talk) 01:13, 19 May 2012 (UTC)

Global Positioning System[edit]

Mr. Scheffer, you made some comment recently to the effect that most users won't know what the Bancroft algorithm is. This provides a very good reason why we should mention the Bancroft algorithm as one of the methods we use to solve the navigation equations. By so doing we will have educated this person. He will know we use the Bancroft algorithm and he may have his curiosity stimulated to find out more about this very interesting mathematical algorithm. RHB100 (talk) 00:47, 6 September 2012 (UTC)

Berkeley Design Automation[edit]

Hi LouScheffer, thanks for your offer to edit the Berkeley Design Automation article. Unfortunately I do not see a response from the editor that blocked the original article. How do I go about requesting that it gets unblocked so you can edit it? (talk) 19:40, 11 January 2013 (UTC)

HVAR references[edit]

Thank you for the followup on the references I added to the HVAR article. It is certainly a worthwhile convenience for anyone to be able to call up the "EATON CANYON" article with a simple click at the end of the article. HVAR seems to be very popular with model airplane builders. I get inquiries for details about HVAR and complaints about the confusing misinformation floating around about it and the so-called 3.5" family of Caltech rockets which are actually based on a 3.25" diameter motor. "EATON CANYON" and Mulvaney's Ordnance Tech Data Sheet should help eliminate much of the persistant confusion, at least w.r.t. HVAR. I've collected a fair amount of general information about these and several other rocket programs that might be of interest to you. Some has already been placed in Wiki articles (e.g. SM-65 Atlas) but most has not. It's a PDF file of about 17 MB that I will be glad to email to you (no charge) if you are interested. I like the sort of articles you are into and the help you give to less experienced Wikipedians such as myself. Magneticlifeform (talk) 06:57, 28 January 2013 (UTC)

Drake equation[edit]

Thank you for reviewing and editing my changes to the Drake equation article. Your edits and edit summaries are quite precise and greatly appreciated. Cheers, BatteryIncluded (talk) 16:37, 21 April 2013 (UTC)

Again, thank you. 'Guesstimate' is slang, and in the in the first line was too much. Cheers, BatteryIncluded (talk) 00:21, 29 April 2013 (UTC)

Gas-generator cycle Cleanup[edit]

I'm not angry, but I wanted to let you know that you shouldn't have cleaned up the complainer's mess on the Gas-generator cycle (rocket) page. If someone is going to go around selectively enforcing Wikipedia policy on their pet pages they need to know that passive aggression cuts both ways. Even if it just took a few minutes to fix doing so still enables the behavior. Non-constructive nitpicking is what drives potential editors away from this site so I try to take a stand against it.Sturmovik (talk) 06:37, 22 May 2013 (UTC)

August 2013[edit]

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  • based on the duration of sixty historical Earthly civilizations.<ref name="Why ET Hasn’t Called">{{cite journal | first = Michael | last = Shermer | authorlink = Michael Shermer | title = Why ET

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Nomination of Natural Philosophy Alliance for deletion[edit]

A discussion is taking place as to whether the article Natural Philosophy Alliance is suitable for inclusion in Wikipedia according to Wikipedia's policies and guidelines or whether it should be deleted.

The article will be discussed at Wikipedia:Articles for deletion/Natural Philosophy Alliance (2nd nomination) until a consensus is reached, and anyone is welcome to contribute to the discussion. The nomination will explain the policies and guidelines which are of concern. The discussion focuses on high-quality evidence and our policies and guidelines.

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[12]. -- Green Cardamom (talk) 16:54, 1 October 2013 (UTC)


I can assure you that Spherical cow is far more relevant to Unobtanium than Widget, an entry I moved to place the list of links in alphabetical order. Furthermore, Adamantium, Mithril and Vibranium are all part of the List of fictional elements, materials, isotopes and atomic particles already linked in the same section. There's no need to list them again. Why just those three? Why not all the others too? They have virtually nothing in common with Unobtanium beyond the notion that they're fictional. (talk) 16:22, 25 October 2013 (UTC)

I certainly agree on taking out any entries that already appear in the article. On the other hand, spherical cow is not related to unobtainium, in my opinion. The only thing they have in common is that they are both imaginary. The cow would not work better for any application if was spherical, nor is there an application that works poorly for normal cows but would be much better with spherical ones. Instead, it's an approximation used since the real cow is complex. There is no sense of whether this approximation is better or worse than a real cow; it's just that it's possible to analyze it where the real cow cannot be used. This is very different from the idea underlying unobtainium. LouScheffer (talk) 18:18, 25 October 2013 (UTC)
Removed widget. Also removed the link to (real) materials in science fiction, since they really exist. Pointed out that the 3 examples are just that, examples. (But they are among the more common examples. At least I had heard of them, as opposed to many materials in the list). Also, they share with unobtainium that they are hard to get but have spectacular properties. Further changes and improvements are of course welcome, LouScheffer (talk) 18:30, 25 October 2013 (UTC)


Thanks for starting it. I heared one of the Maven people say: Nasa said the electra module is on the payload system, so we said yes we will take it with ous, but Nasa said no you also have to connect it. So Maven like all other orbiters does not like to be the relay for the rovers, but somebody must do the job. --Stone (talk) 21:30, 14 November 2013 (UTC)

IEEE technical societies[edit]

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Waveguide filter[edit]

Do you have to be edit warring in the article that is on the front page? Don't you think it would be better to discuss instead? What's more you have now littered the article with spelling errors. It's duplexer, not diplexer. Yes, a diplexer can be used in reverse, but so can any multiplexer. This article is about filters and as you said yourself in the edit summary, duplexers do not "have" to be a filter design. SpinningSpark 13:27, 10 January 2014 (UTC)

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July 2014[edit]

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Boeing 777[edit]

Hello LouScheffer,

Re the missile, please see background to issue and my more detailed reasoning at Talk:Malaysia Airlines#Missile?. Regards, 220 of Borg 15:40, 20 July 2014 (UTC).

  • If there was any dispute, then I'd agree with you. But I've seen zero dispute over *whether* it was shot down, though plenty of dispute over who did it. At this point, saying merely that is was downed are a case of Wikipedia:Avoid weasel words, implying that there is some controversy where none exists. LouScheffer (talk) 18:36, 20 July 2014 (UTC)
Perhaps the way it was worded wasn't the best, but what I was trying to do was mainly keep consistency within WP. The level of detail other editors were adding at Boeing 777 was not really necessary. Let alone causing inconsistency between the 777 page, Malaysian Airlines(MA) (also causing inconsistent text on the same page) and inconsistent with the 'main' article page at Malaysian Airlines Flight 17.--220 of Borg 04:46, 21 July 2014 (UTC)
My opinion is that consistency here is not what is needed. For a reader of the 777 article, high odds of an outside force are enough, and plenty of reputable sources state this. For the Malaysian Airlines Flight 17 article more detail is warranted. For example, if an air-to-air missile was the cause, the picture would change completely. So it makes sense that the flight 17 article makes the point that a (ground to air) missile is not yet formally confirmed. LouScheffer (talk) 20:55, 21 July 2014 (UTC)
Yep, I have no problem with it, in general. I just realised, literally,that what was at the back of my mind was probably the mid-air explosion of TWA Flight 800 in 1996. Initial speculation blamed that on a missile, but after a long investigation turned out to be a fuel tank explosion caused by short-circuited wiring. 220 of Borg 02:49, 22 July 2014 (UTC)

Otelbaev 'solution'[edit]

It is not just that mathematicians have found a flaw in his argument, they have shown that it is impossible to use a strategy such as Otelbaev's to prove wellposedness:

Terrence Tao is a fields medallist. It should be noted that such a obstruction to such strategy has been known for decades by the fluids community.

Otelbaev's paper does not belong on the wiki. There are many influential papers that are not on the wiki such as:

Partial regularity of suitable weak solutions of the navier‐stokes equations, L Caffarelli, R Kohn, L Nirenberg Direction of vorticity and the problem of global regularity for the Navier-Stokes equations, P Constantin, C Fefferman Navier-Stokes equations with lower bounds on the pressure,G Seregin, V Šverák

or for possible blow-up of related Euler equations

Finite Time Blow-up of a 3D Model for Incompressible Euler Equations, Thomas Y. Hou, Zhen Lei

Although I don't think the wiki should be a list of papers on the NSE, especially those which have been discredited.

AnonymousMath (talk) 12:52, 9 August 2014 (UTC)

The goal of a Wikipedia article is not to interpret the latest mathematical thinking on the problem (as Tao does). The main criteria is notability, and you cannot get much more notable than by being the subject of an article in Nature, perhaps the pre-eminent scientific journal in the world. Discredited proofs are part of the history of the problem, as well. They are features in the articles on the four color theorem and Fermat's last theorem, for example. LouScheffer (talk) 22:48, 9 August 2014 (UTC)
This is a news article of Nature not a journal article on Nature. Indeed Nature has no mathematical journals. So I would disagree, Nature is not at all notable in the area of mathematics. If this work was notable then he would be cited by other experts in the field which it clearly is not. Those two wikis mention proofs that stood for a long time and introduced new ideas. Otelbaev's proof was very quickly discredited and is widely believed to contain no new ideas -- indeed that article you referenced says as much. AnonymousMath (talk) 10:58, 10 August 2014 (UTC)
I think you have this backwards. A news article is evidence of notability - something that Nature thinks will be of general interest (not just to mathematicians, who as you point out are not Nature's audience anyway.) And the P versus NP problem shows a discredited result can still be news-worthy. LouScheffer (talk) 13:19, 10 August 2014 (UTC)


Proposed deletion of International Symposium on Physical Design[edit]

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Proposed deletion of AvTurf[edit]

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The article AvTurf has been proposed for deletion because of the following concern:

Appears promotional. GNG is questioned. FAA source appears to be misused.

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  1. ^ Richard Powers (University of Illinois),Best Idea; Eyes Wide Open, New York Times, April 18, 1999. (page 4)