Wikipedia:Reference desk archive/Miscellaneous/2006 July 28

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Meow. Question about cauterization of wounds...[edit]

Okay, I saw a movie once, in which a man was severely lacerated. He pulled a round out of his gun, removed the powder, poured it upon the wound, and ignited it, in an effort to: A) Cleanse the wound of bacteria and B) Cauterize the wound.

My question is, it actually seems like it might work (i'm into field medicine)...Would it?   
It might work, but it would be unspeakably stupid. Gunpowder isn't just imflammable, it's an explosive. It would have been better to just hold a match to the flesh and burn it (and that would still be stupid). Best method would probably have been to pour alcohol into the wound and ignite that. But I'm not a doctor and this is largely speculation from common sense. Emmett5 02:07, 28 July 2006 (UTC)
Gunpowder is not an explosive when it's not in a constrained space like a bullet.
Not true.--Anchoress 03:11, 28 July 2006 (UTC)
That article says that gunpowder "has a very slow decomposition rate and therefore a very low brisance. This same property that makes it a poor explosive makes it useful as a propellant." Whether it's the one or the other depends on whether the container it's in is completely closed or open on one side. Without a container it's neither, just very flammable. Saying it's an explosive is just an incorrect shortening of what would otherwise be too long a description for practical use. I suppose. DirkvdM 07:44, 28 July 2006 (UTC)
Ugh, no. Cauterizing a wound is not an effective way to disinfect it, because burned flesh is particularly susceptible to infection. Cauterization is meant only to staunch bleeding, particularly in the instance of amputation. Please, please do NOT pour ANYTHING flammable into a wound and light it for any reason. If you have a severely bleeding wound and feel competent to cauterize it yourself, build a fire, heat a piece of metal and cauterize locally (think of a soldering iron). Or better yet, go to a doctor. It is to be noted that alcohol is not a particularly good antiseptic, but cleaning a wound with alcohol is vastly superior to pouring it into a wound and lighting it. Assuming a worst case scenario (Post-apocalyptic Distopia or stranding on an island), severe wounds should be staunched with pressure, cleaned with soap and water or alcohol, dressed with clean bandages, and protected from further injury.--Anchoress 02:19, 28 July 2006 (UTC)
Dude, if you read my response carefully I answered that. It would not be effective at disinfecting, because it would make the wound more prone to infection. It would not be effective at cauterizing, because cauterization is done with more precise tools.--Anchoress 03:29, 28 July 2006 (UTC)
By the way, I think one of the movies in which this occurred was Rambo III. --Canley 03:38, 28 July 2006 (UTC)
I think someone did it in an episode of Lost too. --Richardrj 05:14, 28 July 2006 (UTC)
My god, pouring gunpowder into a wound and igniting it would not help the situation under any circumstances. First of all, burning flesh does not prevent infection. Second, the potassium nitrate, charcoal, and sulphur would hurt like hell and only help to get the wound infected. Third, by igniting it you would just burn the surface off the wound and remove any platelet or other coagulents that are there in the first place. Perhaps try a tourniquet. -- 21:42, 1 August 2006 (UTC)

do restaurants not have websites?[edit]

seems like many restaurants usually do not have their own website and when I search for them on the internet I always have to pull up some cob-webbed dining review server. Why is this?

Restaurants are part of the service industry. Traditionally this industry has relied on word of mouth promotion, thus getting reviewed is the primary way restaraunts get their name out and build a reputation. Most restaraunts don't have a very large staff and may not have someone on their staff who has the time or experience to run a web site. They also may not think that the fees associated with getting commercial level webhosting.—WAvegetarian(talk) 00:21, 28 July 2006 (UTC)
Still, it's stupid for a business not to have a website, if only a simple one showing the basics, in this case the menu plus some photos of the restaurant. Any idiot can make that.
But more in general, companies often have lousy websites. So much so that I've developed the habit of, when I'm looking for information about a product, to avoid the manufacturer's website. The best info is found on usenet, where there are often links to some hobbyist's site, where you can compare it with similar products. Which of course companies don't want. So why are they so stupid? The most extreme example I came across was when I was searching for information about a certain type of lamp. Philips is the major lamp producer, and I once saw a good informative overview of their products in a leaflet, but on their website I found nothing of the sort. The very least they could do was scan the leaflet, put it on the website and tag it such that people looking for 'lamp overview' are given a link to that. Not too difficult, I'd say. And we're talking about one of the major companies in the world, and even one that sells computers and stuff. Why are companies so stupid? DirkvdM 10:43, 28 July 2006 (UTC)
Not really, no-one chooses their restaurant on its website, and you cant put the taste on the site. Also companies don't want you to make an informed choice between thier product and others, unless theirs is better in every single aspect, in which case they will never cease to boast about it. Companies will simply pick up on a few favourable aspects of their product, and make a big deal out of them. It's not stupidty, its business sense, they want to avoid people bacoming aware of the down sides to any of their products. Also in all fairness no-one really researches lamps, they just go to a shop and choose a nice looking one. So you could even argue that it wasn't worth the money to upload the leaflet onto their website. Philc TECI 21:44, 28 July 2006 (UTC)
I believe your initial premise is inaccurate. I know of many restaurants that have websites, both in big cities and in small towns. I have no actual data, but I would guess that the percentage of restaurants with website is no different than any other type of business. Smaller, less-well-known establishments with less money are more likely not to have a website. But even they are learning of the need for efficient advertising. And, Philc, I have used websites to pick restaurants. When planning a group trip to New York a while back, we checked several websites before coming up with the one we chose. — Michael J 22:18, 28 July 2006 (UTC)
Ok, I was speaking more in generality than in absolute terms, though I realise that wasn't clear. But the market of diners that use the internet to select restaurants by the restauarants websites, and not the reviews that are on the internet already must be very small, as it seems an ilogical practice. Philc TECI 13:32, 29 July 2006 (UTC)
My point was that if the companies were to give good information about their products, people wouldn't end up elsewhere where a comparison is made, the very thing they want to avoid. And the lamp I was looking for was a special fluorescent lamp to use for plants. If they make a whole range for various special purposes then it makes sense to explain which ones are meant for what. I didn't mean 'lamp' in the sense of table lamp or such. Is there no way to distinguish between the two in English? DirkvdM 04:27, 29 July 2006 (UTC)
Ah, ok, well light bulb? But more to the point, if you bought the bulb, then there was no benefit for the company having the thing on their site. Philc TECI 13:32, 29 July 2006 (UTC)
The linguistic problem is that this is not a bulb but a tube. Anyway, in this case you're right because whatever I buy will be Philips because they have pretty much a monopoly in the Netherlands (and elsewhere). But if there would have been competition and they did provide info then I would have picked one of their lamps. And if no manufacturer would have given any info then I would have asked elsewhere (preferably on the Internet, rather than in a shop), where the competition might have come out better. So putting the info on your site may stop some people from ending up getting their info elsewhere. DirkvdM 18:00, 29 July 2006 (UTC)

World's shortest reigning monarchs?[edit]

Where can I find a list of the world's shortest reigning monarchs?-in terms of height, not length of reign :) -- 00:09, 28 July 2006 (UTC)

When you say 'reigning monarchs', do you mean currently reigning? Otherwise, 'shortest monarchs' would probably be a more accurate description of your inquiry.--Anchoress 01:56, 28 July 2006 (UTC)
I don't think such a list exists. Perhaps you should begin creating one on wikipedia!?

signing the back of a credit card[edit]

My credit/debit card is "Not Valid Unless Signed" and I haven't signed it (no one has, it's blank). If it gets stolen and/or used without my permission, would I have a case for arguing that the card was invalid and therefore the charges were invalid? Could the bank/credit card company do anything about the previous 1000 purchases I made when my card was "invalid"?

It would depend on the policy of the bank or credit card company. That message means that merchants are not supposed to accept an unsigned credit card, so it's possible that if several did, you may be able to claim them as invalid. If you confirm you made the previous 1000 purchases, then I don't imagine the bank would care. If the card is stolen, however, and you haven't signed it, bear in mind that there is nothing stopping the thief from signing it themselves. --Canley 03:34, 28 July 2006 (UTC)
I'd recommend reading the terms and conditions carefully. Each issuer may be different. It might be that prompt signing is part of the contract, and that failing to sign it would remove any protection you might have, giving you unlimited liability. Notinasnaid 08:31, 28 July 2006 (UTC)
Its not valid unless signed, it doesnt specify who signed it. If a thief signs it, it is valid until you cancel it. Philc TECI 13:27, 29 July 2006 (UTC)

A mystery question[edit]

Hi to you all, this question is for those of you who are interested in mysteries, paranormal etc. On the net I saw this video(2: 04 minutes), and it shows a few short clips and some pictures, all supposedly paranormal, so I was hoping someone here can identify me everything in that video(what is it, where did it happen etc.).--Captain ginyu 01:49, 28 July 2006 (UTC)

In order, the ones that I can easily ID are: Bigfoot, Alien autopsy, UFO, another Bigfoot photo, your standard household Grey, a bigass shark, Stonehenge, some kind of giant bird, not sure, a ghost (is that Al Capone in the front seat?), another UFO photo, a ghost that made me jump, yet another ghost (looks like a multiple exposure to me), not a clue, possibly the silhouette of a werewolf, couldn't tell, and a crop circle.
Sorry I can't give details other than the links, but at least you've got a starting point. Tony Fox (arf!) 02:38, 28 July 2006 (UTC)
Thank you, but I was thinking if someone has some links to the articles on the net about those specific events, please, anyone?--Captain ginyu 22:53, 28 July 2006 (UTC)

I haven't seen the video (I don't have the necessary downloads to run it) but if the bird is large and ostrich-like, could it be the Moa supposely sighted in the 1990s? Grutness...wha? 01:24, 29 July 2006 (UTC)

The first, I believe is from the Patterson-Gimlin film, the second is definitely from the Alien Autopsy film mentioned above, the fifth is identified as "Casper E.T." on this site, the seventh is, of course, Stonehenge, the eighth reminds me of the Thunderbird and is shown on this site, the tenth with the ghost in the car is described on this site, the 15th (shadow on the wall) is from Nosferatu, the 16th I think is a photo of a phantom cat, and the last is a fractal spiral crop circle, which can also be seen on this site. --Joelmills 04:00, 29 July 2006 (UTC)

Thank you, thank you, thank you! But it still leaves a few things:

Picture number 4, with something looking like bigfoot(i'm interested in who pictured it), picture number 6, with a very big shark(anything about this particular case would be appreciated), picture number 9(with something hanging from a tree, also I am interested in this particular case) and a footage that comes after picture number 10(some ghost girl). If anyone knows anything about those particular cases that are left(links to that specific events like given by Joelmills), I would appreciate it very much!--Captain ginyu 15:57, 29 July 2006 (UTC)

Can someone please tell me what this is?[edit]

Is it a game? [1]

If so, which game? 02:36, 28 July 2006 (UTC)

It appears to be a parody of Mortal Kombat, SSBM-style. It has been assembled from clips of other games.Hyenaste (tell) 05:42, 28 July 2006 (UTC)
It's not a game, it's a cartoon made with images from the Mario games overlaid onto some footage from the Mortal Kombat games. Quite funny, but an old old idea. --Howard Train 05:41, 28 July 2006 (UTC)

I think it was made with a software called MUGEN. This is a PC software in which you import "sprites" (The characters) into this software and you can actually use any character. E.g. Street Fighter V.S. Fatal Fury.

A philosophical problem.[edit]

I'm a 16 year old guy in Australia and I'm interested in losing my virginity to an (unwed/unattached) pregnant woman). Where do I even start for something like that?

Sydney, Australia Consider either the personals section or the erotic services section. Expect to pay for the service.--Anchoress 03:09, 28 July 2006 (UTC)
Would "ladies" who charge tend to be pregnant? Not usually, I would have thought. JackofOz 03:26, 28 July 2006 (UTC)
Not usually, but occasionally. There's a demand for it in the STI, that's for sure, and SPs do exist to fill that demand.--Anchoress 03:30, 28 July 2006 (UTC)
How is this a philosophical question? —Daniel (‽) 08:23, 28 July 2006 (UTC)
Not a philosophical question, but a philosophical problem. Can't say I disagree there. :-) --Allen 10:38, 28 July 2006 (UTC)
Or more specifically Ages of consent in Australia and Oceania. - THE GREAT GAVINI {T-C} 17:24, 28 July 2006 (UTC)
I know it's none of my business, but I'd love to know why you would like her to be pregnant. -Richardrj 09:12, 28 July 2006 (UTC)
Maybe Pregnancy fetishism? --RiseRover|talk 11:00, 28 July 2006 (UTC)
Pregnancy porn is more common than you'd think... what mother would ever, ever, ever do that? --Bearbear 14:20, 28 July 2006 (UTC)
A mother who really, really, really needed money.--Anchoress 00:48, 29 July 2006 (UTC)
Indeed. He may be able to pay a price in order to fulfill his goals. --Proficient 18:23, 29 July 2006 (UTC)
The diversity of sexual tastes is truly astonishing. Money may have nothing to do with it. JackofOz 00:27, 30 July 2006 (UTC)

football books[edit]

Is there any fiction books on American football stories because I have a book called "Blitz" and I was wondering if any other title that is related to football?

Hundreds, thousands, millions. For a start, what kind of football are you referring to? I can think of five without even opening my brain. --Howard Train 05:43, 28 July 2006 (UTC)
Make that six --Howard Train 05:44, 28 July 2006 (UTC)
Have you opened your brain yet? If so, could you take a photo of it? The brain article hasn't got a photo of a live one yet. By the way, I can think of only four: association football (the original), Rugby, Aussie rules and 'American' football (which is an odd name, really, because in most of America the term 'football' (or 'fútbol') is used for association football). DirkvdM 10:53, 28 July 2006 (UTC)
There are two distinct types of rugby (league and union), and the one you are missing is probably Gaelic football. Are you sure most of America calls association football "football"? I was under the impression almost the whole place calls it "soccer"; and are one of very few countries that do so officially. But back to the question, I think the sport being referred to is the American version, as from my very little experience of watching the game, the "blitz" is some kind of set play. Like Offtherails says, there are probably heaps (sorry i can't help with specifics, try Amazon maybe) – AlbinoMonkey (Talk) 11:13, 28 July 2006 (UTC)
Rugby Union, Rugby League, American Football, Canadian Football, Aussie Rules, Gaelic Football, and (of course) Football. That's seven, excluding things like Rugby sevens, and any minor differences between AFL and VFL Aussie Rules. Grutness...wha? 01:34, 29 July 2006 (UTC)
Yeah, do an advanced amazon search with 'football fiction' as the subject [2], you will get a ton of results. Nowimnthing 13:42, 28 July 2006 (UTC)
By 'America' of course I meant the continent. I thought the use of the word 'fútbol' was a pretty solid give-away. Anyway, Spanish speakers could never use the word 'soccer' because in Spanish a word can't start with 's'. So it would have to become something like 'esoccer'. Weirder and weirder. :) DirkvdM 17:56, 28 July 2006 (UTC)
" Spanish a word can't start with 's'." Where'd you hear that one at? "San"? "Sabado"? "Sur"? "Segundo"? Admittedly, I can't think of many, but I'm sure there is no rule in Spanish that words can't start with the letter s. Danthemankhan 03:58, 29 July 2006 (UTC)
Oops, that was indeed wrong. I believe the rule is a word can't start with an 's' followed by a consonant, which is why Spain is called 'España' in Spanish. Same with estilo and especial. But that doesn't apply here. DirkvdM 04:32, 29 July 2006 (UTC)

Um... the question (as it reads now) specifically says "American football." While there aren't nearly as many football novels as baseball ones, you can try Semi-Tough and the semi-fictional North Dallas Forty. -- Mwalcoff 23:48, 28 July 2006 (UTC)

In America "soccor" is association football and "football" is American football. The rest of the other "footballs," the vast majority don't know nor care about. In fact, most Americans don't even like soccer. --Proficient 18:25, 29 July 2006 (UTC)
You mean in the US. America's a bit bigger, at least in the view of most association football playing nations (many of those are in South America). So it makes sense her to disambiguate. DirkvdM 06:57, 30 July 2006 (UTC)

may i boy from kentucky ask you big city folks some questions[edit]

hi am from kentucky i just wanted to ask a few questions the first i heard somewhere that Kathleen Harrington was an extra in the godfather. sorry i forgot what my second question was. —The preceding unsigned comment was added by (talkcontribs) 06:38, 28 July 2006 (UTC)

  • In the future, please use some punctuation marks. Also, volunteers around here are from all over the place, not neccesarily the big city. - Mgm|(talk) 08:52, 28 July 2006 (UTC)
Techinically you did not ask a question. There is no reference to anyone named katheleen harrrington being an extra in the godfather at the Internet Movie Database. That does not mean that she wasn't. Jon513 10:26, 28 July 2006 (UTC)
This user has been blocked for vandalism before, and has made some strange edits today (on the same subject) to the talk page of Kathleen Kennedy Townsend, whose middle name was Hartington (not Harrington). --Richardrj 11:05, 28 July 2006 (UTC)

Cargo ship off the coast of Perth[edit]

There's currently a HUGE container ship moored off the coast of Perth, Western Australia. Bigger than any I've ever seen. Is there any way I can find out what it is? The light blue hull makes me suspect it could be the Regina Maersk. Battle Ape 07:00, 28 July 2006 (UTC)

I just found this cool website which tracks the positions of ships in real time. But clicking on the Perth part of the map only reveals one ship moored there, something called 56544. Further clicking shows this to be a drifting buoy, which doesn't sound like what you are looking for. The site says that it "contains only a small fraction of the ships worldwide, those that participate in the World Meteorological Organization's program of voluntary at-sea weather reporting." So presumably your ship isn't one of those.
You can also search the website by the ship's name. Entering Regina Maersk puts it somewhere off the coast of China. So that's probably not your baby either. --Richardrj 07:50, 28 July 2006 (UTC)
Weather stations at sea are rare and in high demand, so ships should be obliged to have a weather station. especially in view of the ever more important issue of climate change. But that's a bit off topic.DirkvdM 10:58, 28 July 2006 (UTC)
Check to see what flag the vessel is flying. If you know which country the ship IDs herself with you may be able to find out what it is. TomStar81 01:12, 29 July 2006 (UTC)
Your local newspaper will probably have a section saying what ships are in port in Frematle. Checking the last couple of days for arrivals and departures might give you a list of possibles to work from. Grutness...wha? 01:38, 29 July 2006 (UTC)
The Fremantle Ports website has a lot of infomation available about the ships in port, as well as future and past visits. Here: [3]. dave_au

New British Passport and Identity Service?[edit]

With whom do this newly created agency share "customers'" personal data and under what circumstances?

What information is stored on the RFID chip in the new E-passport? (Particularly interested in whether changes of name are recorded, i.e divorced woman reverting to maiden name-is the married name still on the passport in the information on the chip?-obviously not printed on the page)--Toblemory 08:33, 28 July 2006 (UTC)Toblemory

I recently got a new passport with the RFID chip, and apparently its used to store measurements of the distances between facial features which they find out from your passport pic, apparently they'll be introducing (of at least thinking about) retina data. So, apparently that's all on the chip, but question is, are you going to believe them? -Benbread 18:02, 28 July 2006 (UTC)


Yeah someone vandalised the pokemon page just dont know where to report cheers.

Looks like it's been fixed already. --Richardrj 11:14, 28 July 2006 (UTC)
Report them at Wikipedia:Administrator_intervention_against_vandalism, cheers —Minun Spiderman 11:18, 28 July 2006 (UTC)

Most viewed article?[edit]

What is the most viewed article on Wikipedia (except the main page)? Is there a way to find out? 12:44, 28 July 2006 (UTC)

No, Wikipedia doesn't track how often an article is viewed, as it would cause an even greater load on the servers (and the servers are already very heavily loaded). See the VFAQ (very frequently asked questions). — QuantumEleven 12:59, 28 July 2006 (UTC)
For a fair idea, strip the topical articles out of Wikipedia:Popular pages; the answer is probably Current events. HenryFlower 22:00, 28 July 2006 (UTC)
I hear that cheese is vandalized about once a minute. I figure that must mean it is viewed quite a bit, as there are a LOT of passive non-vandal users for every vandal. -- 07:00, 4 August 2006 (UTC)

Adding an Entry with the Exact same title as an Existing Entry[edit]

I want to add an entry for the French Canadian Singer-songwriter and actor, Claude Gauthier. There is already a page for a hockey player with exactly the same name. How do I go about adding this new topic without causing confusion? Do I first try to set up a "disambiguity" page? Detailed help welcome. Bob em 15:02, 28 July 2006 (UTC)

This question is better suited for the Help Desk. --LarryMac 15:40, 28 July 2006 (UTC)
Simply edit Claude Gauthier (singer) - I've added a link to it from the Claude Gauthier page. - THE GREAT GAVINI {T-C} 17:21, 28 July 2006 (UTC)

competency-based education[edit]

Competency-based education, a model often used to train physicians and psychologists, appears to be based on the principles of outcomes-based education (OBE). Is anyone aware of a good discussion of the pros and cons of this model--designed for primary and secondary education--being used for training professionals?

I'm not sure precisely what you are looking for - maybe [4]? Searching under "competency based assessment" may give you more success than "competency based education". BenC7 10:04, 31 July 2006 (UTC)

Image troubles[edit]

How do I merge A Map of Suffolk with Media:a map of Suffolk --Qho 16:23, 28 July 2006 (UTC)

People are unlikely to respond to your talk page. It's extra effort for them and it means fewer people are likely to see the answer, which means they'd be doing more work for less benefit. Have you considered adding the RD to your watchlist? --Howard Train 17:10, 28 July 2006 (UTC)
Or taking the question to the Help Desk? --LarryMac 17:39, 28 July 2006 (UTC)
Yes, someone told me to come here.


The Idatarod[edit]

Hi guys, I need to know how many miles the Idatarod race across Alaska covers. Also, I need to know how many dogs the racers actually use throughout the race.

Thanks. -- 17:55, 28 July 2006 (UTC)Sunny

ugh!!! is it really easier to type a sentence asking us that than to type Iditarod in the search box??? Maybe not since he spelled it wrong... Nowimnthing 18:05, 28 July 2006 (UTC)
iDataRod? Sounds like a new memory stick from Apple... Digfarenough 19:44, 28 July 2006 (UTC)

M/Sgt. Hewitt T. (Buck) Dunn[edit]

M/Sgt Hewitt T. (Buck)Dunn was in the 390th Bomb Group during WW ll, flew 104 combat missions. Was he the most decorated enlisted man of WW ll?

Well, Audie Murphy is generally recognized as the most decorated American soldier of WWII, according to our article, but he was awarded a battlefield commission before he won the Congressional Medal of Honor, so not sure if that counts or not. (Impressive guy, though!) A Google on Hewitt Dunn turns up nothing on him specifically other than the fact he was the only man to fly more than 100 missions, usually as a reference regarding the 390th. I can't pinpoint anything specifically to enlisted men, unfortunately. Tony Fox (arf!) 05:36, 29 July 2006 (UTC)
Only 'American' to fly more than 100 missions. Guy Gibson for example flew over 174 missions over Germany. Lisiate 00:07, 31 July 2006 (UTC)

mimosa tree[edit]

do all mimosa's bloom? If so,what age do they start blooming?

You may find Mimosa a good place to start looking for a response on this one. Tony Fox (arf!) 20:44, 28 July 2006 (UTC)

Captains performing marriage[edit]

I am informed (though only by Humphrey Bogart films) that ship captains can perform marriages. Is this true (in any jurisdictions), or just a Hollywood convention? HenryFlower 19:10, 28 July 2006 (UTC)

Please suitly emphazi your answer. HenryFlower 19:19, 28 July 2006 (UTC)

What does basic research turn up? [5][6][7] Weregerbil 21:37, 28 July 2006 (UTC)
My research on Wikipedia turned up nothing. Though I did find this. HenryFlower 21:57, 28 July 2006 (UTC)
Captain Picard married people all the time, it must be true! Adam Bishop 22:25, 28 July 2006 (UTC)
A quick Google search reveals the answer to be an unambiguous "maybe": [8] --Serie 22:38, 28 July 2006 (UTC)
If Sea Captains are legally allowed to marry people then it must either:

1. Say they have that power in national law/Naval regulation or be an accepted custom/practice; or
2. Be part of the Law of the Sea or general accepted practice for international waters.

AllanHainey 12:13, 1 August 2006 (UTC)

No for the most part, I believe. But there are probably places where it's legal. --Proficient 17:53, 1 August 2006 (UTC)

Native American Bushcraft[edit]

Are there any articles about or containing sections on the buschcraft or other survival skills used by the preferably apache or any other native american tribes. I have tried searching from the Apache and Survival skills articles, but haven't found anything with any relevance to the other.Philc TECI 20:38, 28 July 2006 (UTC)

Can't help ya with your question, but have you ever seen any of Ray Mears' bushcraft shows? They're quite interesting, filled with all sorts of survival skill related things. Worth checking out if you haven't seen them and are interested in the subject. Digfarenough 21:16, 28 July 2006 (UTC)
Yeh, I regularly watch them, and they are very interesting, however the programmes alone are more of a "did you know" thing, there is not nearly as much information in them, as is available, I was particularly interested in an episode on the apache, and wanted to look further into how they survived in their envirioment. Philc TECI 13:25, 29 July 2006 (UTC)

Catalytic Converters[edit]

I know many automotive parts are serialized in some way to assist in identification. Does anyone know whether a standard, factory-installed CatCon has a serial number or other unique number, other than the general production number?


Do names deserve their own articles?Jmatt1122 22:21, 28 July 2006 (UTC)

They do if they are notable. See Michael and Alexander for examples. —Keenan Pepper 00:42, 29 July 2006 (UTC)
Or Dirk. Most notable! :) DirkvdM 04:57, 29 July 2006 (UTC)
Damn! It's been moved to a disambiguation page. Seems I'm no longer notable enough to deserve my own namespace. DirkvdM 04:59, 29 July 2006 (UTC)
  • But Dirk wears white socks!-hotclaws**==( 08:37, 30 July 2006 (UTC))
Only when I'm around Adam. DirkvdM 06:52, 31 July 2006 (UTC)

Intelligence Quotients: Changing Ratios[edit]

Here's the situation: I am familiar with the classic definition of IQ and the normal distribution along the Bell curve. But I recently ran into an article that claimed that IQ scores above 120 actually mean a higher basic intelligence than the standard numbers would indicate- that is, a score of 150 on an IQ test would ordinarily mean that person was "one-&-one-half times as smart" as a person with an IQ of 100. The article I was reading implied that the 150 IQ individual would actually have an intelligence somehow "skewed" higher than the numbers would indicate. I realize this is somewhat vague, but is there someone out there who understands this phenomenon and can clarify it for me? Thank you!

There are two factors here:
  1. IQ scores only provide a relative ranking, not an absolute one. You can say that someone with a score of 150 is smarter than someone with a score of 100, but not how much smarter.
  2. Most IQ tests have trouble with scores outside the range 70-130. So someone who tests at 150 could actually have an IQ anywhere above 130.
--Serie 22:49, 28 July 2006 (UTC)
Well, that assumes there is such a thing as "smarter." :) Really all it tells you is that one person answered more questions right than the other, for whatever reason... Digfarenough 23:28, 28 July 2006 (UTC)
The usual intelligence quotient tests are designed to generate a roughly Gaussian distribution of scores, with a standard deviation of 15 points about a mean of 100. In other words, you can rank individuals by score and place them relative to the population—someone scoring 115 would have scored higher than about 84% of the population; someone scoring 130 (two standard deviations above the mean) would have done better than nearly 98% of the population.
I wouldn't be surprised if most tests had poor resolving power above a score of 130, just because there would be few individuals taking the test expected to score at that level and few questions aimed at that score regime. Only 2.3% of the population should score above 130, and less than 0.4% should score above 140. If someone creates an intelligence test on which only 0.4% of people achieve a perfect score, you couldn't assign an IQ to those individuals; you would only be able to say that they had an IQ equal to or greater than 140.
So what does it mean that a person is, for example, 'one-and-a-half-times as smart'? It's sloppy use of math, language, and any science that might be kicking around. Can an individual who is 1.5 times smarter add numbers together 50% faster? Could such an individual play the Minute Waltz in only forty seconds? Trying to say that one person is 1.5 times smarter than another based on an IQ score is meaningless. TenOfAllTrades(talk) 23:54, 28 July 2006 (UTC)
I don't know about high IQ's, but at the lower end the distribution doesn't quite follow normal distribution all that nicely - there's a breakpoint, sort of like there is a minimum level of intelligence for 'normal people'. A score below that often indicates there's something wrong. I believe that is indeed around IQ70, as Serie indicated. He also mentions above 130, which is the Mensa criterium, so I wonder if that is the reason. There are however different tests for different intelligence levels. Someone with a high intelligence might perform worse on a test for lower intelligences because they can't believe any serious test can be that simple and start double guessing. DirkvdM 05:16, 29 July 2006 (UTC)

deck of cards[edit]

Yea I remeber a while back they came out with a deck of cards that had 'terrorists' on it, with Saddam being the ace of spades. I was looking for the article here and just wondering it there is one about it here. Thanks....Coasttocoast 23:13, 28 July 2006 (UTC)

I don't know about a "terrorist" one, but there's Most-wanted Iraqi playing cards -- Finlay McWalter | Talk 23:15, 28 July 2006 (UTC)
Yea thats what I was talking about, I just didn't know the name for it, thanks....Coasttocoast 23:20, 28 July 2006 (UTC)
So the most wanted Iraqis are all terrorists? If so, the US were quite right to invade. DirkvdM 05:18, 29 July 2006 (UTC)
  • You're switching cause and effect. They became most wanted because they are terrorists. I still don't think invasion is ever a good thing. Too many innocent people die even if you try to stop it from happening. - Mgm|(talk) 08:54, 29 July 2006 (UTC)
It was an ironic remark. :) DirkvdM 18:04, 29 July 2006 (UTC)
Oh, and also, I interpreted 'wanted' literally, in the sense of 'desired' or 'popular'. But I was already afraid most people wouldn't get that. DirkvdM 06:59, 30 July 2006 (UTC)