Wikipedia:Reference desk archive/Miscellaneous/2006 July 29

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Boat Odometers[edit]

Do any boats come equipt with odometers? If not, then why? Are these not a desirable feature for boats or are they simply not made for boats? Thank you.

I don't see how a boat odometer could be very accurate, unless it used GPS or something. A car's odometer increases each time the wheels turn. Generally if the wheels aren't turning, the car isn't moving (the only exceptions would be things like skidding on ice). On the other hand, it's impossible to tell whether a boat is drifting without reference to some fixed position. —Keenan Pepper 00:41, 29 July 2006 (UTC)
If I'm not mistaken, boats have a gauge that measures hours that the engine is in use, instead of an odometer. Here is a page with several instruments for sale; you can see that some of the multifunction meters have measure fuel, RPMs, hours, etc. --LarryMac 00:54, 29 July 2006 (UTC)
LarryMac is correct: Boats do not have odometers. They have "hours of use" instead.

What are "Architectural plants"?[edit]

I know they are types of plants used in a garden, but how does an architectural plant differ from other types of plant? I once read the first few pages of a book about Architectural plants to find out, but it seemed to assume that the reader already knew what they were, and similarly with other gardening books I've looked at. Thanks. -- 00:33, 29 July 2006 (UTC)

Maybe this? Someday someone will make a website where you can just type in words and it will show you other websites about the words you type in... (just kidding, seriously though: searching is your friend) Digfarenough 02:08, 29 July 2006 (UTC)

North American Union[edit]

Why were all references to the North American Union deleted from Wikipedia, and then security protected to prevent the topic from being recreated?

-- 02:33, 29 July 2006 (UTC)

Please see Wikipedia:Articles for deletion/North American Union. Articles that are recreated after being deleted are deleted again and sometimes protected to prevent them from being created again. -- Rick Block (talk) 05:02, 29 July 2006 (UTC)

Peak Oil[edit]

Most geologists say that global oil production will peak about 30 years later from now.But in November 2005, an episode of the TV show Catalyst called "The Real Oil Crisis" [1] talked about the possibilty that global oil production might peak early, in only 3 years later rather 30.Just like Pascal's Wager, it said that because oil is so important for our economy, we should pay attention to this possibility just in case.

I don't understand.When will global oil production really peak?In 3 years or 30 years later.There must be a mistake.Either the geologists who believe oil will peak early or the geologists who believe oil will peak later must have made a mistake!

A passage of the episode said: "These (Arab) governments have not let anyone in to verify how much oil they have got for a quarter of a century and in the 1980s there was really suspicious treatment of oil reserves data." I don't understand.The rest of the comment has been removed as trolling. 03:09, 29 July 2006 (UTC)

In order to regulate the price of oil on world markets, the members of OPEC (Organization of the Petroleum Exporting Countries) have voluntarily agreed to limit their production and exports of oil. The amount of oil each OPEC member country is allowed to produce under this agreement is tied to the size of that country's oil reserves. By overstating its reserves, a country can snare a larger portion of the production quota and therefore a larger amount of oil revenue. There is strong suspicion that several OPEC countries have engaged in such overstatement of reserves; several countries also cheat on their quotas more directly, simply by exceeding the set quota limits. Because OPEC countries represent about two thirds of the world's total (estimated) oil reserves, misstatements about either their reserves or their production can significantly affect projections about peak oil. TenOfAllTrades(talk) 03:32, 29 July 2006 (UTC)
post-edit conflict
"If they're Muslims, how come they're not more honest?" That's an absurd generalisation. Why should Muslims be more scrupulous than anybody else? Maybe the people in question aren't very good Muslims. Devout people who scrupulously follow the laws of their religion tend to be taken advantage of. Those in power are more likely to be the ruthless, pragmatic individuals who are happy to bend or break the rules.
Besides, it's much more complicated than simply looking to see how much oil is in the ground. Oil reserves (good article, check it out) aren't huge underground caves with a defined volume of liquid crude sloshing around like some vast subterranean lake - they tend to be more like a sponge, with the oil filling the gaps in rocks such as sandstone. It's hard to tell how much oil there is in such circumstances, and harder to estimate ahead of time how much oil can be extraced before it becomes economically unfeasible to do so. The useful size of a reserve is more a matter of professional judgment than a simple measurement. Check out the article on Petroleum for a rundown on how oil is extracted, and the point at which it would take more energy to get the oil to the surface, transport it, refine it and transport it again than could ever be extracted from the oil itself.
In addition to that, some middle-eastern countries have very little in the way of assets besides oil - a dry climate means poor farming conditions, which means either a small population or large-scale importation of foreign foodstuffs; only Iran has notable iron ore reserves, nowhere in the middle east has much in the way of bauxite, copper or gold. Tourism is unlikely to become big business around there any time soon, thanks to the remoteness of the area and the history of conflict. It's good business practice for such a nation to obfuscate the details of their principle asset, perhaps driving up the price in the short term and delaying the day when their customers are able to look elsewhere for their needs. --Howard Train 03:54, 29 July 2006 (UTC)
What's with the muslim honesty? Was text you reacted to removed or something?
The tourism thing might not be entirely right. One of the bad things about Israel invading Lebanon is that it will chase away tourists. If that is such a bad thing then tourism must have been an important part of the economy, despite the troublesome recent history of the country. People have very short memories. DirkvdM 05:52, 29 July 2006 (UTC)
Yes, I removed part of the question when I posted my own answer: [2]. I didn't think that a paragraph whinging about those 'deceitful' 'fucking Arabs' was going to be useful. TenOfAllTrades(talk) 12:57, 29 July 2006 (UTC)
Hmmm, that's a bit iffy. Not to say 'not done'. You can't edit other people's contributions to the ref desks. The above shows one problem with that, but it's also rather rude, even if what you removed is itself rude. It's censorship. Not fine with freedom of speech, which includes the freedom to offend (a rather lively discussion in the Netherlands in recent years). DirkvdM 18:11, 29 July 2006 (UTC)
What does 'peak' mean? That production goes down after that. That largely depends on the relative prices of different energy sources. Suppose someone would find a miracle way to use solar energy that is very cheap. Then the demand for oil would go down, and the production with it, despite the fact there is still 'loads' of oil in the ground. And there is (notice the scare quotes, though). Maybe for another 100 years or more. But it will become more and more expensive to extract it. Canada has recently started tapping it's reserves of oil in sand, which is hard to extract. Rising oil prices have made that a viable source now. So on the one hand the cost of alternative energy goes down and on the other hand the proice of oil goes up. Where the two lines meet is where oil peaks. Determining that point is probably a hard thing to do. DirkvdM 05:52, 29 July 2006 (UTC)
Howard, lots of people go on holiday to the Middle East. The bloke who delivers my groceries has been twice this year already! If you go to the travel agents, there are loads of offers for Egypt, Qatar, Tunisia, Israel, UAE, etc.
The 'Peak' in this context is when the highest point in a bell shaped curve depicting total oil production over time. See Hubbert peak theory for more info. Essentially it is the point at which we've extracted half the oil reserves in the world. Up to the peak you could increase oil production (relatively) easily whereas after the peak it will cost (on average) more to extract each barrel of oil than it would have the previous barrel
Original Poster - It is impossible to tell when global oil production will peak until we've passed that peak and can look back with hindsight (though it may be hard to tell until a while after). That said there is a lot of evidence & comment coming from a range of retired geologists that indicates their belief (disputed by the United States Geological Survey & most national governments) that reserves are vastly overstated and that we're more likely to hit peak oil (if we haven't already) by 2012 (dates vary but I take this as the latest early date) at the outside. Personally I believe we're likely to feel the effects of peak oil in closer to 3 than 30 years but there is a lot of information on the internet about this, just search for peak oil or Hubberts curve on google. AllanHainey 12:52, 1 August 2006 (UTC)

So, the fact that we've thought oil would peak later than in reality is not completely the Arabs' fault?Then, those Arabs aren't really big villains like Osama bin Laden or Saddam Hussein?

History of Headstones/gravestones/tombstones[edit]

I heard a long time ago that the French invented the headstones. It was a way to mark a grave so the spirit wouldn't 'haunt' around looking for their bodies. Is that true?. Thank you so much in advance.

Headstone has information on this subject, and more links where you might find more information. I don't see anything in there about *why* they were used, however. Tony Fox (arf!) 05:29, 29 July 2006 (UTC)

Grave markers with engraved names go back thousands of years; many Roman and Greek epitaphs have been published. They were not invented by the french. Also there is no evidence they originated from such a belief. Stories about cultural practices were often "deduced" (i.e., invented) in early years of the 19th century when anthropologists were beginning to bring the first descriptions of primitive societies back to the West. There were a lot of theories about a unilinear evolution of society from primitive to advanced in which it was assumed that most of the cultural practices of "primitive" or "early" societies had magical purposes. In most cases these were "inferred" or "deduced" from the anthropolists' ideas of how "primitive man" thought. In many cases there was little or no evidence for such "why" explanations. The ones that made good stories continued to be told, but an educated person should learn to immediately recognize them as such. alteripse 11:50, 29 July 2006 (UTC)

Thank you so very much for answering my question! I really appreciate it.

Art owned by Rita Hayworth[edit]

I own 5 paintings that were supposedly owned by Rita Hayworth. They were supposed to be in her freize. The only signature is on one of them & it looks like an asian letter. I'm wondering if there is anyone that would be able to verify this for me.

Take pictures so we can see. --Proficient 18:27, 29 July 2006 (UTC)
Unless they came with letters of authenticity, I think it's unlikely you'll be able to verify this.--Shantavira 18:21, 3 August 2006 (UTC)

Australian larrikin[edit]

Is crocodile dundee considered an australia larrikin

thank you

In a word, yes. JackofOz 00:21, 30 July 2006 (UTC)
What is a Larrikin? AllanHainey 13:17, 1 August 2006 (UTC)
Larrikin.--Shantavira 18:15, 3 August 2006 (UTC)

My dog got skunked[edit]

I'm already doing the peroxide baking soda solution, but is there anything else anyone knows from personal experience that can help me? She took it mostly in the face, so I can't really use the solution there. I've got a vet's appointment tomorrow.--Anchoress 08:20, 29 July 2006 (UTC)

If memory serves, tomato sauce (the stuff you put on cooked pasta) will take away skunk stink. Raul654 08:31, 29 July 2006 (UTC)
Strike that - according to [3] - it simply masks it. Raul654 08:32, 29 July 2006 (UTC)
From the same article: If you are sprayed, a shower is your best first defense. If your pet was sprayed, a better solution is to mix a quart of three percent hydrogen peroxide with a quarter cup of baking soda and a teaspoon or two of liquid detergent, according William Wood, a chemistry professor at Humboldt State University. This will neutralize the smell, Wood says, which is much better than masking it. Don’t store this magic potion, however, because the oxygen buildup could blow off the top of the container, and it could also bleach your dog’s fur. Raul654 08:32, 29 July 2006 (UTC)
Yeah, thanks... as I said in my original post, I'm already doing the peroxide baking soda thing. The problem is tho that it can't be used near the mucous membranes, and she was sprayed right on the muzzle and around her eyes. She doesn't have any eye irritation, but she still really stinks there.--Anchoress 08:41, 29 July 2006 (UTC)
So, did the vet solve the problem? Hyenaste (tell) 02:41, 3 August 2006 (UTC)
Well, she got a rabies shot, but they didn't do anything about the smell. The peroxide wash is OK except I can't use it around her mouth. They said it'd just go away eventually.--Anchoress 02:45, 3 August 2006 (UTC)

I </3 peanut butter[edit]

I am by no means allergic to peanut butter or peanut oil, but the smell of peanut butter sickens me. I can smell it on peoples' breath, when used in cooking, or even in a non-peanut butter cookie that has been stored with peanut butter cookies. The odor makes the back of my throat feel dry and my nose stuff up and causes general displeasure. Is there any physiological explanation for this aversion? Hyenaste (tell) 09:09, 29 July 2006 (UTC)

This isn't a medical opinion, but if you're sure you're not allergic to peanuts, you might be allergic to the mildew that commonly grows on them. I find that certain foods, when they get musty, really choke up my throat and lungs and it sticks with me a while. It's kind of like a dry throat thing, I feel a little like I'm choking but it's not from a closed throat, it's cuz it's so dry and I'm almost dry-heaving. Peanuts don't do that to me but other things do.--Anchoress 12:33, 29 July 2006 (UTC)
One possibility is that you've experienced conditioned taste aversion which is a very powerful form of learning. Chances are it would have had to happen when you were rather young and hadn't had much experience with peanut butter. Your question is related to the interesting question of why some people like certain foods and others dislike the same foods, even though the chemicals (and, supertasters aside, the sensation of the taste and smell) are identical. Aside from conditioned taste aversion, I've heard the hypothesis that disliking foods can come from experiences with the food your mother ate while you were still in utero. 14:44, 29 July 2006 (UTC)
Oops, that was me, neglected to log in. Digfarenough 14:51, 29 July 2006 (UTC)
Yeah, I recently saw that in a documentary. First shot wolves were happily eating a sheep. Next shot they were fed some sheep meat with a pill in it that would make them very sick very fast. Last shot there were the two wolves again, with a sheep. They repeatedly snapped at the sheep, but instantly recoiled every time. At first the sheep stood there rather, ehm, sheepishly. :) But after a while it started noticing what was going on and even started attacking the wolves! DirkvdM 18:18, 29 July 2006 (UTC)
CTA is quite possible. I understand that when I was in utero, consumption of peanut butter caused my mother to throw up. Anchoress mentioned peanut butter mildew; could that have caused the reaction? And would that incident be enough to cause a lifelong peanut butter aversion? Hyenaste (tell) 22:23, 31 July 2006 (UTC)
This doesn't really relate to topic, but the fear of peanut butter sticking to the roof of one's mouth is arachibutyrophobia.
  • I think your aversion is psychological and so strong it has physiological effects. - Mgm|(talk) 13:04, 30 July 2006 (UTC)

Charged for postage twice[edit]

So I ordered a bulky item by mail order. The seller didn't give any indication of when it would be delivered. A couple weeks later, I went on holiday. When I got back, I found that the item had been kept in the post office for a week, then returned to the seller because I hadn't collected it. When I got in touch with the seller, they told me I had to pay the postage again in order for the item to be delivered again. Was this reasonable of them? Please note, I am not asking for legal advice, I don't want to know if they were within their rights to do this. I just want your opinions on whether it was a reasonable thing for them to do. Thanks. --Richardrj 09:27, 29 July 2006 (UTC)

Well it's not their fault you didn't pick it up from the post office, but IMO the problem is with the post office; I've never heard of items being held for that short a time. I'm in Canada, and I've never had anything held for less than 3 weeks.--Anchoress 09:31, 29 July 2006 (UTC)
This was in England, and it was a registered item. It's standard for these to be sent back after a week. --Richardrj 09:49, 29 July 2006 (UTC)
Assuming you didn't ask them not to post it while you were on holiday, I think they were perfectly reasonable. HenryFlower 11:54, 29 July 2006 (UTC)
My opinion: yes they were. It's a very unfortunate set of circumstances. Only if the seller had indicated delivery schedule A and then delivered on schedule B would I think it right for them to cough up. FWIW. --Tagishsimon (talk)
Yes, it is reasonable. --Proficient 18:33, 29 July 2006 (UTC)

Buisness practices[edit]

While most companies advertise encouraging you to buy more of their product, Hydro Ottawa (the main provider of electricity and water in Ottawa) advertises on radio stations and transit buses to use less water and electricity. What is the reason for this? Don't they want to make more money?! Do any other water/power providers do this? 13:15, 29 July 2006 (UTC)

Because there is only a finite amount of water and power, and since public utilities are required to meet customer demand, if they run short of demand they will have to either buy enough to cover the shortfall (from other utilities, at a premium) or build more infrastructure to make higher quantities of the commodity available. Either one is expensive. So they ask consumers to conserve so there will be enough for all, available at a (hopefully) reasonable rate.--Anchoress 13:53, 29 July 2006 (UTC)
Adam, I know you read my reply (because you then went and vandalised my userpage), so why didn't you acknowledge my answer? It's really nice to get a little 'thank you' from question posters, just so we don't run out of juice. Wouldn't you thank someone who answered a question like that in person?--Anchoress 14:31, 29 July 2006 (UTC)
I wanted to give an answer, but since you're a vandal I won't. I wanted to check your talk page to check if you've done this sort of thing before, but you remove everything from there, which looks rather suspicious. DirkvdM 18:30, 29 July 2006 (UTC) Your intentions weren't bad it seems, so I'll give you the answer after all.
They can't sell 'no'. Normally that is bad business, but here it's an absolute imperative. A difference with a normal business is that the amount of customers doesn't depend on how well you perform. The number is fixed and you have to perform well no matter what. This is why such services are normally in public hands (the free market system doesn't apply here). Their website isn't clear about that. It seems to be a private company, butbit's probably bound by certain rules. The main one being to deliver enough water of sufficiently high quality. It may also be a public/private cooperation, something that has become popular in the Netherlands in the last decade or so. DirkvdM 07:16, 30 July 2006 (UTC)

website dilemma[edit]

does somebody know any website where i can download free novels in html form. i dont need classic novels i need some recent novels by authors like stephen king, salman rushdie, sidney sheldon, john grisham etc. please help me. i will be very grateful to u. thank u very much

You won't find them, cuz they are a) copyvios, and b) very very easy to find and shut down. You might find rips of e-books thru a filesharing program like Kazaa, or if it's to your taste some mp3s of books on tape. But also, those kinds of authors are very popular in second hand bookstores, and you can often find paperbacks there for under a dollar each.--Anchoress 14:29, 29 July 2006 (UTC)
Actually they can be found (or could in the past) pretty easily. Not gonna mention any places here though, but if someone had blatant disregard for the law or lived in a country where the books either aren't available or where laws wouldn't forbid such activity, said person could probably track them down with a little effort. But everything you say is true :) Digfarenough 14:51, 29 July 2006 (UTC)
I respectfully disagree with you. Text is extremely easy to search for, and the publishers of famous authors are always on the lookout for copyvio uploads; if they were online, they would be so well-hidden that they would be virtually impossible to find.--Anchoress 15:38, 29 July 2006 (UTC)
And I'm going to respectfully disagree with you - if you can access usenet there are many, many e-book channels. There are also many, many e-books available on bitorrent sites. If you know how to use google you shouldn't have any trouble finding free books. They're not usually in html format, though - .pdf and .doc are more common formats. Natgoo 16:36, 29 July 2006 (UTC)
The author must be dead for quite some time before they are released into the public domain, thus have no copyright and can be edited, re-published etc. etc. This website may be the best bet. And here are some questions about when a book can be published on the internet. Hope this helps. Iolakana|T 14:33, 29 July 2006 (UTC)
Most popular p2p programs are distributing extremely popular books and such, but not many people usually share lesser, not-as-popular books. Not that I am telling you to download books illegally. --Proficient 18:37, 29 July 2006 (UTC)

Project Gutenberg has lots of public domain novels. User:Zoe|(talk) 03:17, 30 July 2006 (UTC)

Baen has some of their older titles available online for free: see the Baen free ebook library. --Serie 23:50, 31 July 2006 (UTC)

Time zone in Alaska before the present one came in to bing.[edit]

I am looking for an older map of the time zones of Alaska before the present one that is now in use. A map of the older one is needed.

can send to (please don't use an e-mail address, wait for a reply here) Thank You Allan Fuller

I don't understand: the position of Alaska hasn't changed since many, many, many years ago. However, although you say you do not want a modern time, Alaska is -9 (minus nine) hours from GMT time. Iolakana|T 16:23, 29 July 2006 (UTC)
See Alaska Time Zone where there is some history. It's a little complicated. Did you have a specific year and settlement in mind? Before 1900 the inhabitants observed local time, i.e by the sun, even though it was officially all on Central Alaska Time. From 1900 to 1967 Alaska was divided into four time zones. Then it was divided into three time zones until 1975.--Shantavira 18:39, 29 July 2006 (UTC)
When alaska belonged to russia, surely they wouldn't have had a nearly 24 hour difference with the nearest part of the empire, surely they would have been in a time zone so that they were in the same day as the rest of russia. Philc TECI 18:44, 29 July 2006 (UTC)
When it belonged to Russia, it operated on the Julian calendar, so I thought it best not to go that far back. But like most of the world at that time they would have used local time anyway. I'm assuming we want figures for the twentieth century. From 1967 to 1975 the Yukon Standard Time Zone (UTC-9) was applied to the area between 127° 30' and 141° 00' longitude; the "Alaska-Hawaii time zone" as it was then called (UTC -10) was applied to the area between 141° 00' and 157° 30' longitude; and Bering Standard Time (UTC -11) was applied between 157° 30' and 172° 30'.--Shantavira 18:57, 29 July 2006 (UTC)
Two things,
  1. Julian calender doesnt affect time zones, just month lengths/names
  2. Even if people are using local time, the date line has to be somewhere, so when alaska was russian, which side was it on.
Philc TECI 19:12, 29 July 2006 (UTC)
You refer to "the rest of Russia", assuming that Russia uses one time zone for the whole country. In fact, its spread is so wide that is uses, from memory, no less than 14 (!) time zones. When it's dawn in Vladivostok, it's already evening in Kaliningrad. JackofOz 00:19, 30 July 2006 (UTC)
Isn't it (by the most reasonable conventions) always earlier in Kaliningrad than Vladivostok? —Blotwell 07:03, 30 July 2006 (UTC)
How very true. Right principle, wrong direction. My bad. JackofOz 23:39, 30 July 2006 (UTC)


What sport was played first in the space by the astronauts? baseball, football, golf or volley ball?

Is this part of a trivia quiz? Might want to check out Apollo 14 for the answer. Hyenaste (tell) 15:48, 29 July 2006 (UTC)
I seem to recall astronauts playing golf on the moon (!) - could be that... - THE GREAT GAVINI {T-C} 16:09, 29 July 2006 (UTC)
On the Moon is not "in space". :)
The first astronauts were Russian, and the Russians had almost all the firsts in space travel for the first ten years, so it's more likely to be something Russians play. And something that requires little space, because it would have to be done in a space craft. Space walks are too risky to play around. And it would have been more likely if they had some time on their hands, a wish to relax and some stuff lying around to play with (Russians don't have such a wish to show off, so it was probably done out of a genuine desire to relax). So my guess it would have been on a spacestation, probably a Salyut. Chess is very Russian and something astronauts, being well educated, might like, but pieces flying around would not help (could have been a magnetic board, though). Actually, it would probably have been something that makes use of the weightlessness, playing around with that new phenomenon. most likely something with throwing a ball. Volley ball wouldn't work because the ball goes in a straight line (the net would be pointless). And for the others you need too much space (no pun), at least if you want to play it as a real sport, not putting in a glass or something. Are you sure it's one of those four you mention? DirkvdM 18:50, 29 July 2006 (UTC)
The Salyuts were not launched until after the US moon landings. The first sport in space was golf. User:Zoe|(talk) 03:19, 30 July 2006 (UTC)
Like I said, that's not in space. The Moon may be in space, but so is Earth. DirkvdM 07:19, 30 July 2006 (UTC)
I think golf is what's being looked for. How can you play a real sport out in the middle of nowhere? No nets, no goals, no holes, no nothing. I don't think the engineers would be too happy with astronauts whacking a ball around in their expensive craft. And anyway, chess is more of a game than a sport - see its article and its Wiktionary definition. - THE GREAT GAVINI {T-C} 09:52, 30 July 2006 (UTC)
Depends on how you play it, playfully or seriously. Chess played competitively is a sport. Golf played by yourself without any 'holes' and therefore any well-defined goals is a game. So that's a second reason golf can't be the answer.
And calling chess a game based on the article is like saying they don't play any sports at the olympic games. It's playing with words. DirkvdM 07:10, 31 July 2006 (UTC)
Is saying that the moon is not in space anything different? Where does "space" begin? JackofOz 09:54, 31 July 2006 (UTC)
Space is all around. But when you're on the surface of an object on space, you're not in space. That's a physical thing, not linguistic. Of course, there are border cases, like being on a asteroid. To make sure, I'll ask this at Talk:Outer space. DirkvdM 07:25, 1 August 2006 (UTC)

Thank you very much.

I don't know what sports have been played in space, but surely table tennis is a viable one. although the ball will travel in a straight line, you still have to bounce off the opponents half of the table and avoid the net. Spin would work. and controlling your floating body would compensate for the ball going straight. -- SGBailey 20:18, 30 July 2006 (UTC)
I'm not willing to speculate on the answer of the question because I would tend to doubt that most spacegoing vehicles have enough room for any sport other than aerobics (exercycle, treadmill specifically). That said, I have heard in soft SF (specifically the early-80s incarnation of Tom Swift) of the idea of zero-g racquetball. In theory, you could also have variants of tennis, soccer/team handball, possibly hockey, and even quidditch. Some sports would be pretty much impossible -- baseball, rugby, and American football don't seem to lend themselves to zero-g play, for example. Some form of basketball seems possible, though it would be radically different from anything played on Earth. Haikupoet 20:47, 30 July 2006 (UTC)
I suppose that in those SF stories they have spacecrafts that are big enough to play such sports. Or maybe it was done outside any craft, in 'open space'. But neither option is realistic at the moment (let alone in the first decades of space travel). So it would have to have been something small, preferably with nothing flying around. My bet is still on chess. DirkvdM 07:10, 31 July 2006 (UTC)


In the cat family, among tiger, lion, wild cat, leopard, etc. which of them go hunting in group, not alone?

I think lions do, although the article doesn't really make it clear. - THE GREAT GAVINI {T-C} 16:16, 29 July 2006 (UTC)
Lions certainly do. And I can't think of any other cat that does. Cats are generally pretty solitary. DirkvdM 18:52, 29 July 2006 (UTC)
Male Cheetahs may hunt together and Jaguars might during breeding season. CambridgeBayWeather (Talk) 22:18, 29 July 2006 (UTC)
Lions are sometimes described as the only social cat, so maybe none of the others do. Jameswilson 00:19, 30 July 2006 (UTC)
What do you mean by "groups"? Females and their cubs hunt in groups. User:Zoe|(talk) 03:20, 30 July 2006 (UTC)

Thanks very much.

Haircut clipper lengths[edit]

I usually get my head shaved with the clippers when I go to SuperCuts... and I usually ask for a 6 on the top and a 3 on the sides. But always been curious, what length of shave do these clipper numbers correspond to, and how high do they usually go? --Rc251 16:11, 29 July 2006 (UTC)

Six on top? You long-haired hippie!  :P
Based on my set, #1=1/8" (3mm), #2=1/4" (6mm), #3=3/8" (9.5mm), and #4=1/2" (13mm). My set doesn't go up to six.
Is that the length it cuts off? Because where I've always gone, 1 is the shortest cut (leaving the head almost shaved) and 6 leaves a fair bit amount of hair on the top. --Rc251 17:33, 29 July 2006 (UTC)
Surely the length that it doesn't cut off. HenryFlower 17:35, 29 July 2006 (UTC)

That's the length that is left behind, all else is cut off. 1 gives you the closest shave, and 4 leaves your hair quite long. Curiously, I measured each of the attachments and the measurements I got were different from what was printed on each attachment. I suspect that it has to do with your hair being bent over at an angle by the attachment, as for example, the #1 attachment measured less than 1/8" thick.

Turks and Caicos joining Canada[edit]

I see the benefit to Canada for these islands to join - tax dollars being spent in the own country, an excuse for exotic holidays for politicians(!), etc. But why would these islands want to join Canada? Surely this is taking a step backwards since many of these islands are becoming independant (I know the population is very small). Why do they have a good relationship anyway? Finally, would Britain allow the 'capture' of one of its dependencies? --Bearbear 16:12, 29 July 2006 (UTC)

Well this Briton doesnt mind - full of expat tax-dodgers and swindlers! Jameswilson 00:22, 30 July 2006 (UTC)
Sadly, Proposals for new Canadian provinces and territories doesn't really answer this either, although a little bit of the background history can be found at Canada-Caribbean relations. Grutness...wha? 01:21, 30 July 2006 (UTC)
I can't find any detailed information on why they might want it, but it's possible to speculate. Like you say, the population is small — if they believe they're too small to be independent, they're going to be part of someone, and if their links with Canada are stronger than those with their nominal "owner", they may well want to change. Maybe Canada is just deemed more likely to pay attention to the islands than Britain — Britain is further away, and has many other territories to deal with, and the Turks and Caicos might feel neglected. If there is significant tourism or investment from Canada in the islands, being part of Canada would encourage and facilitate that — Canadians (and their money) could visit the islands with a minimum difficulty, as they wouldn't actually be leaving the country. The Turks and Caicos might also anticipate development assistance.
As for whether Britain would allow it — I don't know, but if the Turks and Caicos expressed a definite, democratic wish to transfer, I wouldn't expect the British to block it. They don't really gain much from the islands that I can see. There are precedents in history, too — the Cook Islands and Niue were both British until they were transferred to New Zealand (although that was a century ago, when New Zealand would still have been regarded by the British as a colonial possession itself). -- Vardion 08:05, 30 July 2006 (UTC)
I think we need to examine the most important aspect of this; what will happen to cricket in Turks and Caicos. Currently Turks and Caicos are part of the West Indies cricket team but presumably under this proposal would become part of the Canadian cricket system. I doubt they get any financial support from the England Cricket Board and the West Indies Cricket Board is habitually broke. If they could source funding from Canada and in turn supply cricketers to the Canadian national teamm, then surely everyone is happy. On the other hand, if the Turks & Caicos are forced to take up Lacrosse at the expense of cricket, then there would be wailing & gnashing of teeth down Turks & Caicos way. --Roisterer 09:15, 30 July 2006 (UTC)
Thanks for the lengthy answers everyone! --Bearbear 10:39, 30 July 2006 (UTC)
I'd like to see the Turks & Caicos Canadian football, baseball and ice hockey teams.  :) User:Zoe|(talk) 21:27, 30 July 2006 (UTC)
First I've heard of it, but our retired snowbirds might want to vacation there rather than Florida if George Dubya insists on requiring passports. That being said, I just have this grotesque image of our Mounties in red t-shirts and brown bermuda shorts (shudder). Clarityfiend 02:06, 6 August 2006 (UTC)


Who was the game designer for the classic Racko game? --WAC 17:52, 29 July 2006 (UTC)

I found it for you, Travis Fischer, [4] hope it helps, cheers —Minun Spiderman 18:57, 29 July 2006 (UTC)


Is it possible to use Honey in Homebrewing instead of sugar for carbonation? helohe (talk) 18:26, 29 July 2006 (UTC)

Of course it is. You can use any sort of sugar. Or no added sugar at all, because the malt is supposed to supply that. But there are all sorts of variations on beer. In kriek, for example, cherries are added. And other lambics use other types of fruit. None of them very tasty, if you ask me. And that's the more relevant question. You can do anything you like, but will you like the result. There's only one way to find out .... DirkvdM 18:56, 29 July 2006 (UTC)
I don't know anything about brewing beer, but IIRC from a cooking show I saw on home brew, you have to get a special recipe if you use honey because of the moisture content and relatively lower sugar content, and I think you have to pasturise it right before, to kill any microbes, because honey is friendly to some nice, harmless bugs that are fine for us to eat but wouldn't be so nice feeding off the starch in beer. However... this site makes no mention of any issues with using honey, other than that it will take longer to mature.--Anchoress 19:02, 31 July 2006 (UTC)
Do you mean mead? Skittle 21:02, 31 July 2006 (UTC)
You can use honey for homebrewing, with some adjustments (see some example recipes here and here and an overview on using it here). A number of commercial brewers also manufacture honey beers, off the top of my head I can think of Young's' Waggledance and Lefebvre's Barbar. --Daduzi talk 19:04, 1 August 2006 (UTC)


I think I have termites in my house. (In the Termite article it doesn't show the termite holes). The holes are vertically 1 inch high and about 2 mm wide. Thanks, SoaP 19:50, 29 July 2006 (UTC)

If you take a photo of the termite holes, and upload them to wikipedia, you'll solve two problems. FIrstly, people will be able to confirm whether they're termite holes, and secondly (if they are) we'll have a photo of termite holes with which to enhance the termite article. -- Finlay McWalter | Talk 22:59, 29 July 2006 (UTC)
If you search Google Images for "termite hole" you get just one result, which seems to match your description exactly.--Shantavira 09:41, 30 July 2006 (UTC)


--Frank london 20:04, 29 July 2006 (UTC)slender, non-stinging insect that lives and dies around waterways and whose wings fold when at rest?--Frank london 20:04, 29 July 2006 (UTC)--Frank london 20:04, 29 July 2006 (UTC)fr

Practically anything in the odonata order of insects would fit.--Shantavira 09:29, 30 July 2006 (UTC)
  • One signature is enough though... - Mgm|(talk) 13:00, 30 July 2006 (UTC)
He actually wants us to identify the insect from that description? Or what? Jayant,17 Years, Indiacontribs 19:45, 30 July 2006 (UTC)

Criss Angel: Mindfreak[edit]

How does Criss Angel (of the popular A&E series Mindfreak) create the illusions of levatating and walking on water?

  • By learning how other magic effects were done and building on that knowledge. Anyone who knows how this is done is likely a magician who would be breaking their oath by revealing the secret to you. If you're still interested in finding out, you could simply buy the levitation effect Criss developed. - Mgm|(talk) 12:58, 30 July 2006 (UTC)
Actually you can usually find explanations of illusions online, if you want to spoil the mystery for yourself. If you do so, perhaps spend some time trying to figure it out for yourself first to better appreciate the cheap tricks used. :) digfarenough (talk) 15:26, 30 July 2006 (UTC)
Th links from levitation and the article walking on water will give you some strong hints. The secret to most illusions of this sort can be found on the web if you search hard enough.--Shantavira 17:20, 30 July 2006 (UTC)
Whenever people ask this sort of question, people always say camera tricks and paid audience or to look hard enough on google and find it. They never actually give a link or describe how the feat is actualy done. ._. --Proficient 17:55, 1 August 2006 (UTC)

What are the USA's busiest airport by departing passengers only?[edit]

Can we add a Wikipedia page listing the busiest USA airport's by departing passengers? There are several pages listing world airports by arriving/departing/connecting passengers. Along with aircraft landings/departures.

It's not a stat that I've ever seen. I suspect the actual number of passengers is just an estimate anyway. CambridgeBayWeather (Talk) 01:38, 30 July 2006 (UTC)
O'Hare International Aiport in Chicago is very large, as is JFK International Ariport, and the ariport in Atlanta (I forget the name, you can check yourself). Viva La Vie Boheme
Hartsfield-Jackson Atlanta International Airport. Both "Hartsfield" and "Jackson" were former Atlanta mayors. Mike H. I did "That's hot" first! 00:10, 3 August 2006 (UTC)
I can't think of a reason why the number of passengers departing an airport would be significantly different from the number arriving, under normal circumstances. DJ Clayworth 16:03, 2 August 2006 (UTC)