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Topics - BillO

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Science & Alternative Science / TED
« on: September 20, 2022, 12:35:08 PM »
Any of you watch TED talks?

This one is one of the best ever.

Philosophy, Religion & Society / Who the f**k is Pierre Poilievre?
« on: September 11, 2022, 01:59:34 AM »
It looks like we'll be in for another 4 years of Justin with the nice hair.

And you Brits and Yanks think you have trouble.

Philosophy, Religion & Society / Liz Truss
« on: September 07, 2022, 02:35:34 PM »
So, what the consensus on her?

It seems she has very little support from either the people of the UK or her party.  Given that it looks like she will have a rough ride.  Is she up to it?

Science & Alternative Science / Debunker's tool kit.
« on: September 01, 2022, 02:27:18 PM »
Carl Sagan's list as presented by Mr. Skeptic himself.

Following these will help you decide what is bunk and what is not.

1. How reliable is the source of the claim?

2. Does the source make similar claims?

3. Have the claims been verified by somebody else?

4. Does this fit with the way the world works?

5. Has anyone tried to disprove the claim?

6. Where does the preponderance of evidence point?

7. Is the claimant playing by the rules of science?

8. Is the claimant providing positive evidence?

9. Does the new theory account for as many phenomena as the old theory?

10. Are personal beliefs driving the claim?

Always worth 15 minutes.

Arts & Entertainment / Friggin' Boomers!
« on: May 31, 2022, 11:30:49 PM »

Just presenting this here for those interested.  Not meant as an argument against FE or anything.  Some FE folk might even find it interesting.

In watching it I got to thinking that the mathematics used does not care about the shape of the earth but the science does.  However, if the science was bad, the math would kick us in the ass PDQ by giving useless results!

This is presented by Dr. Becky.  She is a PhD in physics at one of the most prestigious universities on the planet.  Oxford.  So if you have any interest in astronomy or astrophysics at all giver her channel a gander.  She presents some great stuff.

Suggestions & Concerns / Attachments
« on: May 25, 2022, 11:27:49 PM »
Can anyone give me an idea as to why I can't upload attachments?

I tried uploading a small jpeg file (85KB) earlier and got a "Upload folder is full" error.

This is a question asked by somerled in a topic that got locked in the Flat Earth Theory forum.

I thought it was a good question and should be addressed and this appears to be the right place to address it.

The easiest planet to see rotating is Jupiter.  Jupiter has a day of less than 10 hours, so on a long winter's night you can easily witness it do a full rotation.  You will need a decent telescope.  Let's make no mistake, your not going to be able to detect it rotating with binoculars or even a modestly priced 4".  However, with a well collimated and quality 6" scope or bigger it should be no issue at all to easily see enough detail (like the GRS) to see it rotate.

Mars is probably the next easiest to see rotating.  It's day is just a tad longer than earth, so you won't see it do a full rotation in one evening of viewing, but you could certainly see it rotate through 180 degrees or more.  And if you observe it every night over about 3 weeks, you can get to see the entire surface.  Again, a decent scope will be needed for this and if you're a skilled observer you could do it with an 8".

The next (and probably last) would be Saturn.  For this one you'll need at least 10" scope to see enough detail to detect rotation.  It's day is just under 11 hours, so it should be easy enough to see the entire surface in one (winter) night.

Although Venus can be fairly close to earth from time to time and easy to see, it appears featureless and detecting it's rotation is beyond what most amateurs can muster.  If you have a big scope (10"+) and a good set of filters, you might be able to see the notion of a bright spot, but that would be seeing the motion of the atmosphere, not the planet.  A day on Venus is about 5,800 hours.  So, even if we could see the surface features, it might be tough for the casual viewer to detect rotation.  The atmosphere, however, circles the planet in under 100 hours.

Mercury is tiny and far away.  It's day is also very long - nearly 1,408 hours.  I have access to an 18" scope and have never been able to even see details on Mercury, so I'm going to say it's not in the realm of reasonably easy to record rotation on Mercury for an amateur.

Uranus and Neptune are quite far off and even quite large high quality scopes have difficulty detecting any features, so again not in the realm of the casual viewer.

That being said, there are earth based instruments that can detect the rotation of all the planets.  It's just that you or me are likely never going to get to play with them.

Just a few of question for the FE community on this topic.

What does flat earth have to say about the expansion of the universe?

Is this expansion consistent with the concept that the celestial bodies are small and nearby?

How does flat earth hypothesis account for blue shifted galaxies?  Their velocities towards us can be considerable (up to 714 miles/s) and if they were only thousands of miles away they would pass by us in mere seconds.

Flat Earth Community / Behind the Curve: Discussion
« on: March 04, 2019, 02:12:15 PM »
Seeing as we are not supposed to have discussions the Media forum I bring this here:

I think the point is that they were not exactly out to document the community and try to find the best representatives to explain or defend it critically.  To do so would be political and career suicide, not to mention only "entertaining" to a select few, which is why none of us should expect any such main-stream source to provide one.  Like the socialist's feel of Bernie running for president, it sucks he's not really socialist... but at least he's raising the brand!  I feel the same way about this "documentary". They could have done much better, but it raises the brand.

They found what they found, they documented what they documented. No one learned anything, everyone went home thinking "those lonely deluded idiots, how sad" and went back to their daily grind. To the average viewer, the existing prejudice that flat earth supporters are stupid ("Behind the curve") and suffering from psychological malady will be further solidified.
What would you expect them to find?  While we will probably never know what was left on the cutting room floor, I think it did a decent job of sharing the thoughts of the FE community and did go to the biggest wigs in that community.  The FE and RE paradigms are different in the extreme, and I don't think there is room for any kind of spectrum so one group or the other has to be stupid, deluded idiots.  Or the same ides expressed in politically correct terms, if such dribble cranks you mojo.

I did really like the fact that it encouraged, in several scenes, the "learned" to reach out and engage with flat-earther's as opposed to immediately ostracize and deride them.  This stands in harsh juxtaposition to the only clips of experimentation and/or critical evaluation of flat earth being used to demonstrate to the audience that the flat earther's are incompetent, misguided, and deluded.
Like I sad, one group or the other is incompetent, misguided and deluded.  They both can't be logical, rational and intelligent if they view the same universe and come up with such polarized views.  As for one group reaching out to the other.  Well, there are many around here that employ far more 'political correctness' and moderation of temperament than I do, or even could in this case, and have tirelessly engaged this FE community with reason, intelligence and consideration only to be insulted and dismissed out of hand by people that don't even bother to try to understand.

What do you guys think about the laser gyroscope? I had misremembered something and thought it was all garbage/hoax especially because the scene is SO HOKEY, but it turns out Michelson-Morley did end up detecting the rotation of the earth, just not it's motion in any direction through space/ether.
Ring Laser Gyroscopes are a thing.  A very accurate instrument for measuring rotation about their axis.  They were specifically developed for and have been employed for decades in the navigation of aircraft.  At least some of those in the show were knowledgeable enough to know what it was telling them.  However, they seemed to want to 'manufacture' yet another hokey nonsensical explanation, like the rotation of the sky influencing the RLG, a concept they have to be formulating for the FE community exclusively.  However, the very fact they knew the reality, but wanted to devise a lie for their own community really tells us a lot about their intellectual honesty, doesn't it?

Anyway, do you guys think the laser gyroscope (or any gryoscope, pendulum) proves that the earth is rotating around a center point?  Is this really a problem for the flat earth concept?
Yes on both counts.  You can easily find information on how these work.  It would, by the physics inherent in it, have to detect the rotation of the earth.

Especially since one could argue that the laser gyroscope (interferometer) also proves that the earth is not moving through space which would be a major monkey wrench for the heliocentric model and a hell of a lot more.
How on earth does a RLG prove that the earth is not moving through space?  You'll need the explain that, because this in not what its physics tells us.

Flat Earth Community / Behind the Curve
« on: February 17, 2019, 04:59:02 AM »
Behind the curve is a new documentary regarding the flat earth on Netflix.  It features many flat earth top rollers like Mark Sargent.  Worth checking out one way or the other.

Suggestions & Concerns / Question: TEX editing
« on: August 02, 2018, 05:09:36 PM »
Does this forum software have TeX or LaTeX support?  Can it be enabled?

We get asked a lot to 'do the math' and it would be far easier if such support, or something similar was available.

Flat Earth Theory / Query: Gyroscopes on the flat earth
« on: July 29, 2018, 03:45:35 PM »
Given the information here:

And given these handsome representations here:

And here:

How is one of these gyroscopic heading indicators supposed to work?

For example, if you traveled from east to west on line of latitude on either of those maps, the gyroscopic HI would indicate a continual change of direction, yet your magnetic compass would not.  This creates a paradox from contradiction.  As far as I can see the only ways to resolve this paradox are:

  • Gyroscopes do not work
  • Magnetic compasses do not work
  • The earth s not flat

Which of these resolutions is most accurate?  Are there other ways to resolve the paradox?

Some resources to help with the discussion:

Flat Earth Theory / Query: Age and formation of the Flat Earth
« on: July 18, 2018, 02:51:38 PM »
I have searched this site and cannot find anything about how and when the Flat Earth was formed.

Is there any accepted estimate on when it formed and how that formation occurred?

Suggestions & Concerns / Disrespectful behavior from moderators.
« on: July 15, 2018, 10:03:28 PM »
I posted this thread: and although it is a valid test for the flat earth, it was immediately moved to the 'Complete Nonsense' forum with a vulgar and disrespectful comment from the moderator.

That same moderator calls the poster 'smug' in this thread: and when the OP points out the name calling he gets chastised and his post is categorized as 'Angry Ranting'  which it obviously is not.  The OP was merely pointing out the moderator breaking the forum rules.

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