Elderly Cynic

Elderly Cynic

  • Commented on 2117 revisited
    Hmm. You have a point. I wasn't aware of a plant that excreted salt!...
  • Commented on The sudden eruption of news
    As in taking ruminants that had been condemned as unfit for human consumption, and turning them into feedstock for ruminants? Nah. Nobody could be that stupid .......
  • Commented on The sudden eruption of news
    There are reasons not to use UNTREATED human excrement as fertiliser, yes, but the methods of treatment to make it safe have been known and used for a very long time. Including in the UK :-) If we didn't put...
  • Commented on The sudden eruption of news
    So nice to hear the first cuckoo of summer - I think that it's going to be a good year for them....
  • Commented on The sudden eruption of news
    This is mainly for for Dave_the_proc (unless I have had another senior moment and got him confused with someone else!) Have YOU a clue what is likely to happen in Norn Iron in 2017/2018? Other than "nothing good", of course...
  • Commented on 2117 revisited
    I disagree. That's at a MUCH more subtle level of stupid than most of the questions of that type. It's been seriously considered (by scientists) for some contaminants, and has been used for mineral extraction since time immemorial (both potash...
  • Commented on 2117 revisited
    Almost certainly, yes. Any demigod that specialises in omniscience could do it :-) It is probable that understanding our own genetics and its expression completely is forever beyond us (i.e. Goedel's limit applies). That can't be proven, but the claims...
  • Commented on The sudden eruption of news
    And there's a readily available source everywhere there are humans: excrement. Unlike nitrogen and potassium, phosphorous is very stable in the soil and is almost all preserved in its passage through animals and composting....
  • Commented on The sudden eruption of news
    You are correct, but even Turing's mathematical work was irrelevant to the delivery of computing! The essential mathematics dates from the 18th century, with 19th as the hardware became more advanced. Turing's work etc. was critical to the understanding of...
  • Commented on The sudden eruption of news
    Interesting. https://www.ft.com/content/b8761bc8-2688-11e7-a34a-538b4cb30025...
  • Commented on The sudden eruption of news
    In that sense, considerably older - semaphore beacons date from 1792, and naval flag signalling from much earlier - make it automated WANs :-)...
  • Commented on The sudden eruption of news
    Programming things like masks was 1970s, at the latest, and would have been done much earlier if the computers had been up to it. They weren't software leaps - that sort of use dated from the 1960s - the only...
  • Commented on The sudden eruption of news
    VLSI was an extrapolation of the integrated circuit - 1950s - THAT was the real game-changer!...
  • Commented on The sudden eruption of news
    Medical/pharmaceutical progress has been continuous, at least for the past 70 years. It may have SEEMED stuck, but I can assure you that it wasn't. Major breakthroughs don't come to order, and simple things like proton-pump inhibitors have made an...
  • Commented on The sudden eruption of news
    A definite senior moment! I would have to search further to discover what powers he DID have :-)...
  • Commented on The sudden eruption of news
    I could explain why it's not as implausible as might appear, given what Thatcher and Scargill were up to, but won't bother; I neither believe it nor disbelieve it, as I have seen no convincing evidence either way....
  • Commented on The sudden eruption of news
    Right. A perfect match for Leadsom....
  • Commented on The sudden eruption of news
    I have some time for Diane Abbott - not great, but a notch or two up from bloody useless. And then there's John McDonnell - not so much bloody useless as bloody disastrous....
  • Commented on The sudden eruption of news
    Of course, it's quite impossible that the Home Secretary had had them sworn in as special constables. He had that power, under the Police Act 1996. If so, they would almost certainly have been there on standby, to be called...
  • Commented on The sudden eruption of news
    Johnson is not a Brexiteer - he took that line only to depose Cameron and become PM. He is an opportunist. If May loses, he might succeed this time, though I believe that he has been politically neutered. My money...
  • Commented on The sudden eruption of news
    You could be right that I have overstated but, reading between the lines, I think that it's clear. The UK has already got a huge discrepancy between what it has promised to do or is required to do, and what...
  • Commented on 2117 revisited
    I am fully aware of that - at one point in my career, I worked very closely with Rothamsted (not that part), but I don't limit my interest to what I am focussed on. The same point applies to blight,...
  • Commented on The sudden eruption of news
    While I can't speak for OGH, I can't find anywhere that either of us have even implied she is a tool of the bankers. Yes, some other people did, including your nemesis. All her behaviour (and reports of her, personally)...
  • Commented on The sudden eruption of news
    I like it! Currently, the majority of the pundits assume that May will use a large majority to push a soft Brexit, but a few think that she will do the converse. I side with the latter :-(...
  • Commented on The sudden eruption of news
    Not at all. Access to the English countryside (and preservation of important traditional ecologies) was another. And the general agreement that the country had to work together and compromise politically was a third, though the Brexiteers have no intent of...
  • Commented on The sudden eruption of news
    Yeah. And, as even a physicist should be able to understand, fails dismally when the important benefits or problems are properties of the system, rather than of the components - though many don't seem to. You need to know rather...
  • Commented on 2117 revisited
    Back before the PBI was (illegally?) sold off by Thatcher, eventually to Monsanto, it was experimenting with GM to introduce rust resistance into grass. But they pointed out that conventional plant breeding (including crossing with other species with desired characteristics)...
  • Commented on The sudden eruption of news
    I am slightly younger, and fully agree. There were other positive things, too, but a huge number of more seriously negative ones....
  • Commented on The sudden eruption of news
    A solid structure is much stronger than one with moving parts; that would increase the size and weight considerably. Plus, every complication is something that needs maintenance, and is likely to go wrong in a crisis....
  • Commented on The sudden eruption of news
    Oh, yes - if possible. But I am not joking about the government bringing in armed rentathugs - they already employ some really nasty unarmed ones, and give them near-immunity from the laws that constrain the police. There were rumours...
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