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British farmer's son speaks his mind 63% Posted Feb 2018

British farmer's son speaks his mind

Comment: 73 days ago

Lab-grown meat and solar-powered indoor vertical farming on a global scale. Food production issues solved. Deserts could become the most "fertile" land in times of extreme and unpredictable weather.

Tesla and Starman on their way to Mars 88% Posted Feb 2018

Tesla and Starman on their way to Mars

Comment: 73 days ago

My other car is a Saturn V.

Tesla and Starman on their way to Mars 88% Posted Feb 2018

Tesla and Starman on their way to Mars

Comment: 76 days ago

For the same reason you don't see stars on photos from the moon landing.

Camera exposures are set for the sunlight that illuminates the car and Earth, which are much brighter than the stars. It's the same reason you don't see stars at night when you are in a city - your eyes adjust to the surrounding city lights, which are much brighter than the stars, so the stars become too dim to be visible.

Climate change and America's military 87% Posted Jan 2018

Climate change and America's military

Comment: 78 days ago

I wish you'd just watch that video about what causes ice ages, then I wouldn't have to waste my time explaining it to you. 

The Quaternary ice age has had many glaciations, that's like little ice ages within the main ice age. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Quaternary_glaciation If humans were not around, the climate would be cooling towards the next glaciation reaching the coldest years in 25,000 to 50,000 years time before slowly warming again. The cooling is so slow it cannot account for a 1C temperature change in 100 years - and of course, it is COOLING, not warming.

So what about the sun's output? Here's the space.com article you referred: https://www.space.com/2942-sun-activity-increased-century-study-confirms.htm In it, it says: "The rise in solar activity at the beginning of the last century through the 1950s or so matches with the increase in global temperatures, Usoskin said. But the link doesn't hold up from about the 1970s to present. During the last few decades, the solar activity is not increasing. It has stabilized at a high level, but the Earth's climate still shows a tendency towards increasing temperatures" This article was published in 2006.

Now turn to the New Scientist article that was published in 2013. com/article/dn24512-solar-activity-heads-for-lowest-low-in-four-centuries/ The article begins with: "The sun’s activity is in free fall ..."

Now with both articles in mind, space.com's 2006 article and New Scientist's 2013 article, take a look at this graph that shows solar activity compared to global temperatures since 1880: https://static.skepticalscience.com/pics/TvsTSI.png

Factor in the dates of the articles, and you can see quite clearly what they are referring to. You can also see that something else is up the temperature.

So we now know it's not ice age cycles, and it's not the sun's output, what about that 40% increase in CO2? Why do you think increasing greenhouse gases won't warm the planet when greenhouse gases trap heat?

Climate change and America's military 87% Posted Jan 2018

Climate change and America's military

Comment: 79 days ago

When do you think the planet would have recovered from this ice age if humans were not on the planet? You didn't watch that video did you? The answer is there, but I'll summarise.

Right now we are in a warm period of the Quaternary ice age that began about 2.5 million years ago, heading towards the next glaciation (cold period) within the Quaternary period. If humans did not exist, the climate would be cooling, reaching the the coldest period in 25,000 to 50,000 years before it warms up again. These cycles are caused by a combination of factors that include the Earth's orbit around the sun, the Earth's tilt and wobble, and Jupiter's and Saturn's orbits. 

Also, we don't "recover" from ice ages. Ice ages last much longer than warm periods.

What year will it be now that humans are on the planet when all the ice is gone? That depends on what humans do. If we keep adding billions of tons of greenhouse gases to the atmosphere every year, then probably not very long. On geological time scales, pretty much instantly.

If you look at the whole picture, it's easy to see why humans are responsible for the warming today. 2 factors dictate the climate, the heat from the sun and the composition of the atmosphere. The ice age cycles are caused by the movement of planets, so only affect the heat from the sun. Because orbit changes cycle over tens of thousands of years, even hundreds of thousands, they cannot account for the rapid temperature change we have had - 1C in 100 years.

The sun also has its own cycles. There's an 11 year cycle for something, can't remember exactly what. And there are other cycles as well. In the 20th century, the sun's output did rise, and so did the temperature of the climate. But since the 1970s, the sun's output has been reducing yet the temperature has continued to rise. So global warming today is not caused by more heat coming from the sun, because less heat is actually coming from the sun.

The other factor that affects the climate is the composition of the atmosphere. Many things can affect the atmosphere, like an asteroid strike, over active volcanos; global algae bloom, nuclear war etc. The atmosphere has dramatically changed in the last 100 years, or at least the greenhouse gases in the atmosphere. CO2 has increased by over 40%. Methane by 250%. Both are powerful greenhouse gases, meaning they trap heat.

So there you have it, It's those pesky greenhouse gases that done it.

Climate change and America's military 87% Posted Jan 2018

Climate change and America's military

Comment: 81 days ago

Thinking about it a bit more, I don't think climate science is agnostic. Climate science is a subset of science. Climate science commits to established scientific theories, like the quantum effect that causes CO2 to trap heat.

But science itself is fundamentally non-committal. The underlying principle is that the knowledge we have is only as good as the best evidence so far.

Russell Brand & Brian Cox - 'Under The Skin' teaser 86% Posted Jan 2018

Russell Brand & Brian Cox - 'Under The Skin' teaser

Comment: 81 days ago

You are confusing science (a method for acquiring knowledge) and scientists (people who use that knowledge - the theories).

Scientists commit to what works. Whether a theory is correct or even understood, is not the issue - as long as it works. Newton's laws are not technically correct, but they work accurately enough for most cases, and are much easier to use than Relativity. 

"But science doesn't know there's a better theory out there." I think science does "know" there is a better theory out there. Until we know everything, then there will always be a better theory out there. Isn't that logical?

"It (science) only ever tweaks its commitments if it is forced to." You're right in some sense. In evolution, mutations are tweaks but tweaks are not all equal, and they add up. Some tweaks make a huge difference to survival chances, other tweaks less so. Evolution of the cortex, the part of the brain that deals with thinking, gave humans an enormous advantage over other species. Evolution of our big toe, probably less so.

Same goes for our scientific knowledge. In 1998, we discovered the expansion of the universe is actually accelerating, which led to ideas about dark energy and the nature of empty space itself. I'd class that as a pretty big tweak in our knowledge. And what if we come to understand the nature of consciousness, that would be the mother of tweaks. I wonder how big the tweaks we have to look forward to if we find alien life.

"Falsification doesn't mean scientists must constantly scrutinise every theory." True. Scientists are too busy to be constantly scrutinising well established theories. But we are not talking about scientists, we are talking about the discipline of science. Every scientific theory is open for falsification, and that door is never closed. That is why science is fundamentally non-committal.

Great quote from Sarton. Then you follow it with " Science is fundamentally committal otherwise it wouldn't be progressive" No, scientists are committal otherwise they wouldn't progress. Scientists commit to (accept as truth) theories otherwise they wouldn't progress. But science itself has to be non-committal to be able to progress.

I think you are describing something fundamental about how scientists work in the real world - that they commit to established theories; I'm describing something more abstract and fundamental about the nature of science itself - that only when everything is known, that it can fully commit to anything, therefore it is fundamentally non-committal.

Great Asimov quote, but what's the relevance?

Climate change and America's military 87% Posted Jan 2018

Climate change and America's military

Comment: 81 days ago

You are confusing 'climate science' and 'climate scientists'. Climate science is agnostic - the possibility that global warming is an expression of god's wrath is not ruled out.

Climate scientists commit to the current version of climate change theory - that global warming is caused by human activity changing the composition of the atmosphere.

Russell Brand & Brian Cox - 'Under The Skin' teaser 86% Posted Jan 2018

Russell Brand & Brian Cox - 'Under The Skin' teaser

Comment: 82 days ago

"Do you see the difference between someone that might break a commitment under certain circumstances (in order to make a new commitment), and someone who would never commit in the first place?" I'm talking about someone who publicly advertises that they will break a commitment if they find someone better, and that they are constantly on the lookout for someone better, and that they will never be satisfied with whoever they are with because they know there's someone even better out there, and history shows that is how they have acted in the past. If you want to call a temporary commitment, a commitment, then that's up to you.

Scientists commit to what works. Science itself is fundamentally non-committal otherwise it wouldn't progress. That is an underlying principle of falsification. Every scientific theory is under continual scrutiny - at least in theory. In practice, scientists need to get on with stuff, so they use the theories that work and discard ones that don't.

Climate change and America's military 87% Posted Jan 2018

Climate change and America's military

Comment: 82 days ago

Watch the video about ice ages: http://www.boreme.com/posting.php?id=46056 Once you understand what causes them, you can answer your questions all by yourself.

You will learn that the current "movement" in terms of ice age cycles, is that we are cooling ie. moving towards the next glacial period. If humans were not around, the climate would be cooling.

Have you watched the video yet? Until you do that, you won't understand why you're wrong.

zzzz

So now you understand why today's global warming has nothing to do with ice age cycles, why do you think increasing CO2 by 40%, and methane by 250%, is NOT what is causing the warming? Maybe you know something climate scientists don't?

Juno, an epic journey to Jupiter 94% Posted Feb 2018

Juno, an epic journey to Jupiter

Comment: 82 days ago

Van Gogh must be proud.

Russell Brand & Brian Cox - 'Under The Skin' teaser 86% Posted Jan 2018

Russell Brand & Brian Cox - 'Under The Skin' teaser

Comment: 85 days ago

We've entered the world of sillymantics. "If she was fundamentally non-committal, she wouldn't commit; get it?" Sure. But if she keeps breaking commitments, then she's not commitiing in the first place - hence she's fundamentally non-committal. Also, she has pledged to break any commitment if she finds something better. That's not the trait of a committing type, that's the trait of someone who is fundamentally non-committal. I hope you're not so gullible in real-world relationships.

"So ultimately, when a scientist like Cox says he's agnostic about something and says 'I don't know', just listen!" How many scientists do you think would say "I do know"?

Climate change and America's military 87% Posted Jan 2018

Climate change and America's military

Comment: 85 days ago

"Interesting that you found another article that now states the sun is cooling" Actually, that was the first link in my previous comment. Scroll up to check if you can be bothered.

The warming we are experiencing is not the result of ice age cycles. The rise in temperature is far too fast. Ice age cycles act over many thousands of years. Over a few decades, the effects are negligible. Watch this video, which was on BoreMe a while ago, to understand about ice ages. http://www.boreme.com/posting.php?id=46056

If you watch the whole video, you'll learn that we are actually in a cooling period in the ice age cycle. So that totally blows your theory out of the water.

So now that we know ice age cycles are definitely not responsible for global warming, let me ask you this: Why does increasing CO2 by 40%, and methane by 250%, NOT warm the planet, when both gases are powerful greenhouse gases?

Climate change and America's military 87% Posted Jan 2018

Climate change and America's military

Comment: 88 days ago

The sun has been cooling according to this New Scientist article from 2013. https://www.newscientist.com/article/dn24512-solar-activity-heads-for-lowest-low-in-four-centuries/

To answer your water heating question - the water temperature will increase until it reaches an equilibrium where the heat input from the flame equals the heat loss of the water from the pot. At that point the temperature will stabilise. 

What do you think would happen if I put a lid on the pot, slowing down the heat loss from the water? That is the effect of increasing greenhouse gases in the atmosphere.

How can increasing greenhouse gases NOT warm the planet? After all, that's what greenhouse gases do.

Climate change and America's military 87% Posted Jan 2018

Climate change and America's military

Comment: 89 days ago

Oh, it's you again, still frozen in the ice age. How disappointing. We've been through this before. Let me remind you. The warming we are experiencing cannot be attributed to ice age cycles because they cycle over many thousands of years. They are caused by the changing Earth's orbit around the sun while wobbling on its axis.

We are talking about the warming in the last 40 years, when the sun's activity has dramatically dropped. https://www.newscientist.com/article/dn24512-solar-activity-heads-for-lowest-low-in-four-centuries/ The study you cite found an increase of solar activity until the 1970s, then it dropped but global temperatures have continued to rise. https://www.space.com/2942-sun-activity-increased-century-study-confirms.html

Let's summarise:

1. We know it's not ice age cycles because they cycle over many thousands of years, not the 40 years we are concerned with here. 

2. We know the sun has been cooling in the last 40 years - see New Scientist article linked above. 

3. We know humans have changed the composition of the atmosphere by adding greenhouse gases - CO2 by 40%, methane by 250% etc.

So what do you think is causing the temperature rise?

Russell Brand & Brian Cox - 'Under The Skin' teaser 86% Posted Jan 2018

Russell Brand & Brian Cox - 'Under The Skin' teaser

Comment: 89 days ago

It's not the first time you've come up with rubbish analogies. I wouldn't bother in future.

She keeps breaking her commitments because she is fundamentally non-committal. It's in her DNA. 

Climate change and America's military 87% Posted Jan 2018

Climate change and America's military

Comment: 89 days ago

What percentage of the climate change is human caused and what percentage is natural? In the past few decades, solar activity has been declining, yet temperatures on Earth are still rising. So I would say pretty much all of the warming is caused by human activity.

If humans were not on the planet, what year would we need to get to in order to have today's current climate? Human activity before the Industrial Revolution was probably not significant enough to have a measurable effect on the climate, so probably around the late 1800s. 2 main things affect the climate on the timescales we are talking about - solar activity and the composition of the atmosphere. Solar activity since the 1970s has been declining, but temperatures are rising because since the Industrial Revolution, we have increased CO2 in the atmosphere by over 40%, and methane by 250%. Both of these gases are powerful greenhouse gases - that means they trap heat that would otherwise be released into space.

If animal populations were left uncontrolled, would there be more or less methane in the atmosphere? Less. If there were no humans around, there would be 1.5 billion fewer cows. And fewer pigs, chickens, dogs, cats etc. Animal populations would then be controlled naturally, basically survival of the fittest. Also, huge carbon sinks like rainforests would not be cut down to grow crops to feed animals. And of course there's the transportation, refridgeration and winter heating that all increase the greenhouse gases in the atmosphere.

Let me ask you: If human activity is NOT warming the climate, then what is?

Russell Brand & Brian Cox - 'Under The Skin' teaser 86% Posted Jan 2018

Russell Brand & Brian Cox - 'Under The Skin' teaser

Comment: 90 days ago

Imagine you and your girlfriend are intensely committed to each other because everything is just fine and dandy. But deep down you know she is compelled to find a better partner - and if she does, she will leave you. Science is a bit like your girlfriend.

Russell Brand & Brian Cox - 'Under The Skin' teaser 86% Posted Jan 2018

Russell Brand & Brian Cox - 'Under The Skin' teaser

Comment: 91 days ago

People commit to scientific theories. Science as a discipline, is non-committal. It has to be, otherwise it wouldn't function. If science is NOT non-committal, we'd still be on the world's first scientific theory, whatever that was.

Russell Brand & Brian Cox - 'Under The Skin' teaser 86% Posted Jan 2018

Russell Brand & Brian Cox - 'Under The Skin' teaser

Comment: 92 days ago

I think 'non committal' fits science perfectly. Science only commits to the best evidence so far. Crucially, that is how our theories improve. First, the world was flat. As new evidence appeared, it became round and at the centre of the universe. Then the sun took over the centre ... and today, the Earth is in an unimaginably large universe that is expanding faster than the speed of light. You don't get more non committal than that. That is fundamentally how science progresses. 

The perception of science is the opposite - that a scientific theory like evolution will remain fact forever. Maybe that's what's throwing you.

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