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Lord Kelvin’s Core Values Defended

first_imgMyth: Lord Kelvin held back the progress of geology for 100 years by insisting the Earth was younger than geologists and evolutionists believed, but his model was refuted when radioactivity was discovered.  Fact: Radioactivity made no difference to Kelvin’s claims, and he was an exemplary scientist who rectified bad practices among geologists.  That’s the upshot of a claim that was made, criticized, then defended in the GSA Today, a publication of the Geological Society of America.1,2,3William Thomson, Lord Kelvin (1824-1907). Click for biography.Last January (2007),1 Philip England (Oxford), Peter Molnar (U of Colorado) and Frank Richter (Dept. of Geophysical Sciences, Chicago) wrote an iconoclastic piece defending Lord Kelvin.  William Thomson, later referred to as Lord Kelvin, has had a patchy reputation among modern scientists.  In his day, the physicist of Glasgow was the most eminent scientist in the British Isles (see online book).  Even Mark Twain confessed, “As Lord Kelvin is the highest authority in science now living, I think we must yield to him and accept his view.”  But between his many accomplishments and honors, he also made enemies – especially among geologists.One of his most controversial views was that the Earth’s heat output (and that of the sun) proved it could not be older than 100 million years.4  In the 20th century, Kelvin’s reputation suffered.  According to England et al, a myth arose that his claims about a young earth were overturned by the discovery of radioactivity:We are left with the question as to why the myth persists that the discovery of radioactivity simultaneously proved Kelvin wrong and provided the explanation for his error.  Part of the answer, perhaps, is that it makes a good story.  Rutherford’s biographer (Eve, 1939) reports that he repeated his tale of thinking on his feet in front of the “old bird” Kelvin on many occasions; it is entirely possible that the pleasing form of the anecdote, and the eminence of its author, led to the uncritical acceptance of the myth.  As Stephen Gould (who himself propagated this myth) wrote: “The most erroneous stories are those we think we know best—and therefore never scrutinize or question” (1996).  It is hard to dissuade aging scientists, as they slip into their anecdotage, from repeating stories that they find amusing, but their younger colleagues must not mistake such stories for the history of science.(Let our elderly readers take relief in that they said anecdotage, not dotage.)  Kelvin has also been pictured as somewhat of a bombastic figure inserting his physicist views into geology where they didn’t belong:The story of Kelvin and the age of the Earth is often told as a David-and-Goliath struggle, with the geologists in the role of the underdog armed only with the slender sword of geological reasoning, while Lord Kelvin bludgeoned them with the full force and prestige of mathematical physics.  Kelvin’s come-uppance is often taken as evidence that simple physics ought not to be applied to geological problems, but there have been numerous occasions when simple physical models have had great explanatory power in geology.The authors wrote to set the historical record straight.  It is not that they agree with his age estimate – not at all.  They affirm modern estimates to the tune of billions of years.  Kelvin was wrong, they wrote, not because of radioactivity, and not because his equations and calculations were erroneous, or because he was out of his field, but because his assumptions about the thermal structure of the Earth were questionable.  They described how one of Kelvin’s former assistants, John Perry, showed that the earth could sustain its heat for two billion years by convection if one assumed a firm crust and a liquid interior.  This had nothing to do with the discovery of radioactivity, which they said made no difference to Kelvin’s model.  The heat contribution from radioactivity was negligible; “consequently—even if Kelvin had included radioactive heat in his calculation—his estimate of the age of the Earth would have been unaffected.”While exonerating Kelvin of errors in his physics, mathematics and modeling, the authors also defended his reputation as a great scientist.  Some historians have tended to focus on some blunders Lord Kelvin made and predictions that did not come true.  England et al. give good press to the Scottish physicist.  They defended his use of physical models and equations.  They defended his explicit mention of his assumptions behind his models.  They defended his corroborating one conclusion (the age of the Earth) with another (the age of the sun).  They praised his use of thermodynamics, and they defended his scientific restraint in a milieu of hot air and passionate rhetoric.  Kelvin himself in 1899 “cites many examples of rhetoric from his opponents and, while Kelvin himself was generally quite measured in his replies,” they said.  His view on the age of the Earth fell into disfavor not due to any failings as a scientist, but because “all simple models are bound to fail, and we may learn as much by their failure as by their successes.”The ones who don’t come out smelling like a rose in this paper are the geologists of Kelvin’s day.  England, Molnarb and Richter described how they were under the spell of Lyell and Hutton:The early nineteenth-century formulation of Uniformitarianism was commonly expressed through Hutton’s aphorism, “No vestige of a beginning, no prospect of an end.”  The doctrine that the Earth was of unlimited age allowed geologists to explain any phenomenon not by the laws of physics, but by “reckless drafts on the bank of time” (Chamberlin, 1899).  For Kelvin, this game without rules was simply not scientific; indeed, it was forbidden by the laws of thermodynamics, which he had played such a large part in developing.Kelvin was good for geology, they explained, because he forced them to deal with the realities of physics.  Thermodynamics proved the Earth had a finite age.  Lazy geologists, accustomed to infinite resources in the bank of time, needed to get real.  Kelvin forced them to realize that “quantitative reasoning was a crucial part of geological endeavor.”4  But have the lessons been learned?  They quipped that today’s geologists, by recklessly assuming inexhaustible heat from radioactivity, have merely changed banks: “In other words, Chamberlin’s ‘reckless drafts’ were now on the bank of heat, rather than on the bank of time.”Criticizing geologists in a geological journal may not have been the better part of discretion.  This month, two geologists seemed to take umbrage at this rehabilitation of Kelvin.2  Hofmeister and Criss from Washington University of Missouri said, “In touting John Perry, England et al. (2007) misrepresent modern and historical efforts to understand Earth’s cooling.”  They took issue with numbers England et al. gave for thermal conductivity and convection, and also pointed to “Kelvin’s fundamental error of using equations inappropriate” for cooling of the Earth.  They disagreed with the insufficiency of radioactivity as a heat source.  Then, they ended with this stinger: “Kelvin’s famous calculations, coupled with denial of observational data, impeded geoscience for ~100 yr.  It is a shame to see data ignored and Perry lionized given his statement ‘I dislike very much to consider any quantitative problem set by a geologist.’”England et al struck right back.3  “In touting their views, Hofmeister and Criss (2007) misrepresent what we wrote, what Perry wrote, and some simple aspects of heat transfer.”  After defending the technical points, they got to the personal matters of character and reputation:Their final paragraph is purely rhetorical.  Kelvin did not ignore observations; indeed, his attempts to use observations to constrain the age of the Earth forced geologists to abandon their reckless drafts on the bank of time.  Hofmeister and Criss’s dismissal of this history as Kelvin’s “impeding geoscience for ~100 years” is not supported by serious work on the matter.  Furthermore, their attack on Perry shows a complete misunderstanding of a modest and conciliatory person.  Perry’s reluctance “to consider any quantitative problem set by a geologist” should be taken as an expression of qualms about his ability to combine geology and physics, not as hubris.1Philip England, Peter Molnar, Frank Richter, “John Perry’s neglected critique of Kelvin’s age for the Earth: A missed opportunity in geodynamics,” GSA Today, Volume 17, Issue 1 (January 2007), pp. 4-9, DOI: 10.1130/GSAT01701A.1.2Anne M. Hofmeister, Robert E. Criss, Comment on England et al, GSA Today, Volume 17, Issue 7 (July 2007), p. 10, DOI: 10.1130/GSAT01707C.1.3Philip England, Peter Molnar, Frank Richter, REPLY to Hofmeister and Criss, GSA Today, Volume 17, Issue 7 (July 2007), p. 11, DOI: 10.1130/GSAT01707R.1.4They recounted a conversation Kelvin had with an old-earth geologist, who said, “I am as incapable of estimating and understanding the reasons which you physicists have for limiting geological time as you are incapable of understanding the geological reasons for our unlimited estimates.”  Kelvin gave him the memorable retort, “You can understand the physicists’ reasoning perfectly if you give your mind to it.”5Working through Kelvin’s equations, they said, “…this gradient yields an age of 96 Ma; Kelvin (1863a) gave bounds of 24 Ma and 400 Ma on the age to take account of uncertainties in thermal gradient and thermal conductivity.”  Kelvin used his calculations as an upper limit for the age of the Earth.  This should not imply that he believed it was actually that old.  This upper limit wreaked havoc among the Darwinians who needed much more time to evolve their tree of life, because at best, it is less than 1/10 the geologists’ assumed age of the Earth; at worst, 1/200.  This “odious spectre” caused Charles Darwin and his disciples extreme stress (02/02/2004 commentary).  In desperation, they tried to find workarounds to the clear scientific constraint Kelvin had imposed.  It forced Darwin to try to speed up the evolutionary process with Lamarckian mechanisms.  Darwin died before radioactivity was discovered, but the evolutionists jumped on it as the answer to Kelvin.  That was undoubtedly part of the reason it became a myth that few questioned with the kind of mathematical and physical rigor that marked Kelvin’s reputation (for a recent example, see Adam Kirsch in the New York Sun assuming radioactivity answered Kelvin, and the Bible).  It is notable, therefore, that England et al. here dismiss radioactivity as a cure-all for the heat problem.What a colorful phrase—“reckless drafts on the bank of time.”  Doesn’t that describe the banking habits of evolutionary biologists and geologists still today?  They think long ages provide a blank check for any miracles they need.  It was good for these three men to set the record straight.  Kelvin was not perfect, but he was a heck of a lot better scientist than many geologists of his day and thereafter who speculate with utter disregard for the realities of thermodynamics.  Unless someone holds them accountable, these reckless check writers will continue to commit fraud via time laundering and heat laundering.Pay attention to footnote 4 above: “You can understand the physicists’ reasoning perfectly if you give your mind to it.”  Kelvin was a Christian with a high regard for the Bible (see footnote 5 above), but notice how he appealed to his colleagues’ scientific integrity, not to religious arguments, to challenge the Darwinian revolution that was in full gear at the time.  That’s still an effective strategy in today’s debates against materialistic pseudoscience.  We need more Lord Kelvins.(Visited 112 times, 1 visits today)FacebookTwitterPinterestSave分享0last_img read more

VMware on Amazon Web Services or How the Cloud Becomes a Data Fabric

first_imgThe news today from Amazon Web Services (AWS) which is now importing VMware virtual machines. The news reinforces how the cloud is far less about data centers and public clouds than about one extended network that allows for data to flow without distinction between the two.According to a post on the AWS blog, VMware images can now be imported into AWS. That means a data center can essentially be imported into AWS.The cloud is becoming far more than AWS or a data center built on VMware technology. It’s now an infrastructure that supports a data fabric more than anything else. That data is like dust, blanketing the entire network, seeping everywhere. The virtualized data network is changing the definition of cloud computing. The network is flattening. That allows for data to pass from on-premise systems to cloud environments. CPUs can be moved to where they are needed, based on the network load.According to Amazon’s Jeff Barr:“VM Import lets you bring existing VMware images (VMDK files) to Amazon EC2. You can import “system disks” containing bootable operating system images as well as data disks that are not meant to be booted.This new feature opens the door to a number of migration and disaster recovery scenarios. For example, you could use VM Import to migrate from your on-premises data center to Amazon EC2.”But there are some questions that come out of this. For instance, when is Amazon going to allow the full export of data?All Barr would say on Twitter is that AWS will listen to its customers.In the meantime, here’s what the new service means.You can start importing 32- and 64-bit Windows Server 2008 SP2 images right now. Amazon supports the Standard, Enterprise and Datacenter editions.Barr says AWS is working to add support for other versions of Windows, including Windows Server 2003 and Windows Server 2008 R2. It will support several Linux distributions including CentOS, RHEL and SUSE. Images can be imported into the Amazon Virtual Private Cloud.This is just another example that shows how a company can move out of the so-called private cloud, a term that is becoming far less relevant than ever before.Instead, what we see is a world where the cloud extends beyond data centers into services like AWS. This will be a dominating trend in the next year. The data center will be fully connected to the cloud.The significant issues to emerge will center around storage and networking. But we will save that topic for another day. alex williams 8 Best WordPress Hosting Solutions on the Market Why Tech Companies Need Simpler Terms of Servic… A Web Developer’s New Best Friend is the AI Wai…center_img Related Posts Top Reasons to Go With Managed WordPress Hosting Tags:#cloud#news#Virtualization last_img read more

EPA Sued Over Inaction on Paint Stripper

first_imgThe U.S. Environmental Protection Agency has been sued for its failure to ban methylene chloride, a chemical used in some paint strippers that has been linked to a number of deaths. E&E News reported that a group including the mothers of two men who died while using paint strippers containing the chemical filed suit in a federal district court in Vermont on January 14. The Vermont Public Interest Research Group, and Safer Chemicals, Healthy Families also are parties to the complaint. Andrew Wheeler, the acting administrator of the EPA, also is named in the complaint. Methylene chloride is a common chemical in paint removers, the suit says, that is responsible for more than 50 deaths, as well as incapacitation, loss of consciousness, and coma in people who came into contact with it. Despite earlier promises to ban products that contain the chemical, the EPA has failed to follow through, the suit alleges, and has violated terms of the Toxic Substances Control Act.RELATED ARTICLESAmazon Will Ban Controversial Paint StrippersGetting Dangerous Paint Strippers Off the ShelvesThe Takeover of the EPAEPA Ordered to Speed Up New Lead Rule The plaintiffs include Lauren Atkins of Pennsylvania and Wendy Hartley of Tennessee. Both had sons who died after using paint remover containing the chemical. If the EPA has been slow to get the chemical off the market, a number of major U.S. retailers are acting on their own. In December, Amazon announced that beginning in March it would no longer sell paint removers containing either methylene chloride or a compound called NMP. A number of other retails had already taken that step, including The Home Depot, Lowe’s, Walmart, True Value and AutoZone. In an email earlier this month, GBA asked the EPA’s press office when the agency could be expected to issue new rules on methylene chloride. The office said that “due to a lapse in appropriations,” it would only respond to questions about the government shutdown or an environmental emergency that threatened human life.last_img read more

New Brilliant Beer Pong Invention Removes Need For Water Cups

first_imgSlip Cup new Beer Pong invention.Slip Cup New Idea Beer PongLet’s face it – beer pong, for as fantastic a tailgating game as it is, is also a bit unhygienic. Players throw ping-pong balls onto the ground, clean them off with dirty water, and then drink the beer they’ve come in contact with. After you’ve played a while, you get used to it. But apparently, you no longer have to. Five friends from Connecticut have invented the “Slip Cup”, which sits on top of each cup, blocking the balls from hitting the beer. They also don’t interfere with gameplay at all – they’re basically smaller versions of the normal cups you already use. It’s a genius idea. slip cup beer pong inventionKickstarterThe Slip Cup is trying to raise $70,000 on Kickstarter to get the product into major retailers. So far, they’ve racked up just over $13,000.Here’s the video from the Kickstarter page. Needless to say, this is a game-changer both for tailgating and house parties. Would you buy one?[Patch]last_img read more

Big 12 Basketball Tournament: Start Date, Game Times, Bracket, Location

first_imgA general view of the Kansas Jayhawks basketball court.LAWRENCE, KS – NOVEMBER 24: A general view during the game between the Rider Broncs and the Kansas Jayhawks at Allen Fieldhouse on November 24, 2014 in Lawrence, Kansas. (Photo by Jamie Squire/Getty Images)Get ready college basketball fans. It is March, which means Madness is right around the corner. Before it’s time to fill out our NCAA Tournament brackets, however, we have the conference tournaments, which can be amazing events in their own right.The Big 12 has been arguably the best and most competitive league in college basketball this year, and the conference tournament kicks off next Wednesday, March 9, at 6 p.m., with the No. 8 and No. 9 seeds playing on ESPNU. Seeding for the tournament isn’t set yet, but we have an idea of how things will shake out when the Big 12 standings are set on Saturday.With Monday night’s domination of the Texas Longhorns, Kansas has clinched the No. 1 seed in the tournament. The Jayhawks face the winner of the 8 vs. 9 game, currently slated to be Kansas State vs. Oklahoma State.There is a large gap between the top seven teams in the conference, and the bottom three. Texas Tech, currently No. 7, is 8-8 in the league, four games ahead of Kansas State. Oklahoma State and TCU each have 14 conference losses.The tournament will take place at the Sprint Center in Kansas City, Mo.Wednesday’s first round games will be broadcast on ESPNU. On Thursday, the first two games will be on ESPNU, and the second two will be on ESPN2. Friday’s games are on ESPN2, and Saturday’s championship game will be broadcast on ESPN at 5 p.m.Here is the bracket, which includes the tournament schedule, via the Big 12’s official website. The Big 12 standings won’t be finalized until after Kansas plays Iowa State at 3:00 p.m. on Saturday, March 5.More Big 12 Tournament notes:Iowa State won the 2015 Big 12 Tournament, defeating Kansas 70-66 in the final. The Cyclones also won the 2014 tournament, topping the Baylor Bears in the final.Kansas, winner of 12 straight Big 12 conference regular season titles, last won the tournament in 2013, blowing out Kansas State 70-54.Big 12 Tournament tickets are available at StubHub.Kansas will enter the tournament as a favorite, but Baylor, Iowa State, Texas, and West Virginia have all been very strong this year, and will vie for the Big 12 championship. We can’t wait for things to kick off from Kansas City.Information on the ACC Tournament is available here, and learn about the Big Ten Tournament here.last_img read more

Michigan’s Jim Harbaugh Threw The First Pitch Tonight At Wrigley Field

first_imgANN ARBOR, MI – OCTOBER 10: Michigan Wolverines head football coach Jim Harbaugh watches the action during the second quarter of the game against the Northwestern Wildcats on October 10, 2015 at Michigan Stadium in Ann Arbor, Michigan. The Wolverines defeated the Wildcats 38-0. (Photo by Leon Halip/Getty Images)Tonight, Coach Jim Harbaugh swapped his Michigan swag for Cubs attire.The crosstown rivalry game between the Chicago Cubs and White Sox tonight was kicked off by none other than Harbaugh himself.Harbaugh is no stranger to throwing off the mound, as he threw out the first pitch at a San Diego Padres game last year. Tonight, decked out in a Cubs jersey, he lifted his hat to the cheering crowd in thanks before taking his arms above his head in preparation for his throw.You can see Harbaugh’s powerful throw to the Cubs’ Matt Szczur here:Jim Harbaugh throws the first pitch and #CrosstownCSN Game 3 is underway! pic.twitter.com/kNwVIdDt9d— Comcast SportsNet (@CSNChicago) July 27, 2016While it was way too high to be a strike, the coach’s pitch was still an impressive attempt!last_img read more

Domestic Production Up

first_imgAgriculture and Fisheries Minister, Hon. Roger Clarke, is reporting a boost in the production for some 12 crops cultivated locally during 2012, and a massive reduction in imports of some of these produce.Minister Clarke was making his presentation in the 2013/14 Sectoral debate in Parliament on Wednesday, May 8, under the theme: ‘Grow Agriculture – Grow Jamaica’.The crops, which are seeing increased yields of between three per cent and 160 per cent, include cucumber, pak choi, pumpkin, scallion, ginger, onion, hot pepper, sweet pepper, cantaloupe, corn, Irish potato and sweet potato. These crops recorded their highest outputs for the 10 year period dating back to 2003.The level of production ranged between just over one million kilograms, in the case of ginger and onions, to just over 52 million kilograms for pumpkin.Consequent of the increase in domestic production there was a reduction in the quantities of several of these foods imported into Jamaica.The Minister informed that Irish potato imports fell by 9.9 per cent; pork – 37.4 per cent; cucumber – 69 per cent; cabbage – 9.3 per cent; cantaloupe – 17.6 per cent; sweet pepper – 28 per cent; carrot – 41 per cent; and iceberg lettuce – 67 per cent, while noting a two per cent increase in tomato imports. Minister Clarke, however, reported a two per cent increase in the country’s food import bill, which saw the figure moving from US$938 million in 2011 to US$959 million last year.He attributed the “marginal increase” to a seven per cent increase in world food prices, as indicated by the Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO), particularly for cereals “which constitute the bulk of our imports.”Mr. Clarke underscored the need to review the items that can be produced locally in an effort to reduce the quantity of imports.“It’s not an easy thing to do. We have to go through and put some serious programmes in place. But also, we have to deal with our own eating habits, to deal with some of those difficulties that we face,” he stated.Contact: Douglas McIntoshlast_img read more

THE HANDMAIDS TALE AMONG PRODUCTIONS BRINGING STARDOM TO CAMBRIDGE

center_img Login/Register With: Cambridge was a little more star-studded on Monday as filming for a popular television show began again.Crews were on location shooting scenes for the upcoming season of The Handmaid’s Tale, part of a growing TV and film industry in Cambridge.Dozens of on-lookers packed the sidewalk on Water Street to try to get a glimpse of the cast. Facebook Twitterlast_img

Football Ohio State wide receivers remain a priority for the offense into

OSU redshirt junior wide receiver Parris Campbell (21) jukes a Scarlet player during the 2017 Spring Game at Ohio Stadium on April 15, 2017. Credit: Mason Swires | Assistant Photo EditorWhen the wide receivers met with their position coach, Zach Smith, and the rest of the offensive coaching staff in the offseason between the Fiesta Bowl and the start of spring camp, they knew things had to change.Following Saturday’s spring game where the top five wideouts reeled in 24 catches for 327 yards and four touchdowns, it appears that the unit has been resurrected for the time being.But it remains a priority for the offense moving into summer workouts and fall camp.“I saw some guys, some receivers really step up and make some nice plays,” OSU coach Urban Meyer said Saturday postgame.Redshirt junior Parris Campbell grabbed five receptions for 46 yards in one quarter of play, redshirt sophomore K.J. Hill had six receptions for 62 yards, redshirt junior Terry McLaurin scored twice with 80 yards on four catches, and redshirt junior Johnnie Dixon led the team with six catches for 108 yards and two scores.OSU’s passing struggles last season were most evident when the lights were brightest, throwing for an average of 112 yards in the final three games. Redshirt senior quarterback J.T. Barrett ranked 55th in passing efficiency in 2016, while the team was 81st in passing yards per game with 213.9. Barrett said after the spring game that with a group of experienced receivers this coming season, the mindset has changed.“Now, I think we’re at the point where we have older guys in that room now just understanding what we’re trying to do offensively,” he said. “I think a lot of times … you’re just like, ‘I have my route, I see my coverage and then that’s it.’ But now really understanding what we’re trying to do on offense with certain plays and who’s going to get open and be able to help those guys — help each other in that room — not just saying (it’s) just me getting the ball.”OSU’s new offensive coordinators, Kevin Wilson and Ryan Day, unleashed the passing game in Saturday’s annual Scarlet-Gray spring game. The quarterbacks threw for 654 yards with seven touchdowns to one interception. While that’s the start the two wanted, the receiving unit had a similarly strong showing in the 2016 annual team scrimmage that didn’t carry over to the real stage and often floundered even more in crucial moments. Now that the receiving corps has its base to build on, the rest of the offseason up until Aug. 31 in Bloomington, Indiana, will be dedicated to continuing to return to the electrifying offense OSU had in 2014, when the Buckeyes averaged nearly 250 yards per game through the air.Barrett said now that the receivers have displayed their potential, it’s time for he and the receivers to polish the details.“I remember, for example, me and Noah (Brown) last year, we worked on back-shoulder fades all the time,” he said. “And then it came up in the game several times whether it be Oklahoma or it came up against Wisconsin (in) overtime. So those are the little things that you work on. Red-zone timing, because that’s when you really have time for that, but also too, that’s the little details that you need, especially in the red-zone area.”Dixon finally had his breakout game after missing nearly the entirety of the past three seasons, so his confidence in the wide receivers being showstoppers in 2017 might seem a bit skewed. However, Meyer will be looking closely at the unit to make that leap before August.“I think the unit, Zone 6, we can make a big impact,” Dixon said. “Right now, we just know we have to enhance everything because we felt like this spring, we’ve done so good. What we do, we just have to enhance it and keep going and get better.” read more