Also the next one after that. And the one after that.
It’s been a very tiring summer so far.
(For starters, we STILL don’t have enough Pfizer or Moderna vaccines, doses are get wasted left and right as the elderly randomly cancel reservations and the bureaucratic pinheads in charge refuse to give them to others, and several students at my school went out drinking and guess what happened…)
I haven’t even posted any science news lately.
But I promise that I’ll make up for it. Soon.
In the meantime, here’s a neat little article about some wild theories of the universe, starting with the Brane Universe and the Big Splat.
It’s becoming increasingly common to see social media posts claiming that the mRNA COVID-19 vaccines, which include those made by Pfizer and Moderna, could alter a person’s DNA. Some posts even suggest that nano-machines are being injected into the body.
The link above to the kit also outlines some of the most important logical fallacies to avoid, with number 8 and 9 being the most difficult to explain and convince people about (because they involve education about basic statistics).
So will this convince anti-vaxxers who make outlandish claims online?
Diving into the topic doesn’t reveal that the world quietly experienced the opening salvos of the Terminator timeline in 2020. But it does point to a more prosaic and perhaps much more depressing truth: that no one can agree on what a killer robot is, and if we wait for this to happen, their presence in war will have long been normalized. It’s cheery stuff, isn’t it? It’ll take your mind off the global pandemic at least.
Actually, the truly scary “killer robots” would be much less like Terminator and more like the self-replicating ones in PDK’s “Second Variety” (or Screamers for those who haven’t read the original short…my recommendation? forget the B movie, read the story).
But there are already plenty of “semi-automated” machines that kill. It’s relatively easy to program a device to wait until someone approaches, and then shoot/radiate/explode. Strictly speaking, even basic landmines fit this definition.
What would help is the media stopping sensationalistic yellow journalism that throws around fear-mongering hyped-up headlines to sell copy.
Yeah, right. Like that’ll happen any time soon.
Machines killing without a human operator? Already here.
Machines seeking out and killing humans without pre-programmed responses and of their own accord?
As the training progressed, the participants changed the way they used the device, which resulted in new finger coordination patterns. This was recorded in their hand movements as well as in their brains.
Using blobs of skin cells from frog embryos, scientists have grown creatures unlike anything else on Earth, a new study reports. These microscopic “living machines” can swim, sweep up debris and heal themselves after a gash.
“Many people in the field of science are aware of the Alcubierre Drive and believe that warp drives are unphysical because of the need for negative energy,” said Alexey Bobrick, scientist and astrophysicist at Lund University, according to a press release. “This, however, is no longer correct.”
If you are looking to find evidence to prove your theory, it’s much easier to find what you’re looking for.
You should instead try to find evidence to disprove your theory, and then ask at least two more people you don’t know (or even better, generally disagree with) to try to find evidence to support your theory.
“Seek and ye shall find” is a terrible way to support a claim. Have the courage to challenge your beliefs.
Also, it’s Planet X, not 9. Pluto is a planet. So there, Neil deGrasse Tyson. :-p
On February 9, 1998, Star Trek Deep Space 9 broadcast one of the most important episodes in the entire history of the franchise.
And what it said about society back in 1953 was just as relevant as for 1998. And perhaps even more important for 2021.
Others have written more eloquently about the plot line, the characterizations, the background, the actors (Avery Brooks directed himself, and his performance should have earned him an Emmy). So I’ll just link to: