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(The New York Times)   New York Times insists modern chemistry sets are superior to the ones of days gone by, because they teach children modern-day skills like writing turd-polishing articles about nancified chemistry sets for the New York Times   (nytimes.com) divider line 64
    More: Obvious, chemistry, polishing, beakers, test tubes, history of science, writings  
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2290 clicks; posted to Geek » on 25 Dec 2012 at 12:27 AM (1 year ago)   |  Favorite    |   share:  Share on Twitter share via Email Share on Facebook   more»



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2012-12-25 02:33:46 PM
no you're not getting it - - formic smells REALLY bad - - you wouldn't even want to be the manufacturer of said kit with formic involved - - it's the kind of smell that follows your sleeves out of the hood.
 
2012-12-25 02:35:26 PM

Twilight Farkle: How 'bout this? Put both vials in the fridge for a few hours. Shake the vials, just in case one of them contains a supercooled liquid, because if it does,


go to work with dad, use NIR, get vs. library search results, in 5 seconds.
 
2012-12-25 02:36:07 PM

utah dude: go to work with dad, use NIR, get vs. library search results, in 5 seconds.


works through the vial, b.t.w.
 
2012-12-25 02:49:47 PM
Lawyers and sissy-marys, the lot of you. Oooh, I'll try to find some loophole technicality. Oooh, I'll use daddy's machine to do the work for me. Don't you get it? Chemistry sets are for learning about what's inside you, not what's inside the vial.

This is why grandpa semiotix stopped putting water in any of the vials.
 
2012-12-25 03:47:29 PM
semiotix: There is no vial?
 
2012-12-25 03:57:20 PM
Well, it's not like the hayseeds and rednecks in the GOP who hate regulation generally have any capability of or interest in understanding science anyhow.
 
2012-12-25 05:20:06 PM

semiotix: This is why grandpa semiotix stopped putting water in any of the vials.


Hey, that's an even better moral: always assume people are lying to you and trying to kill you.
 
2012-12-25 05:45:59 PM
I had a great chemistry set and it's part of the reason I'm a chemist today

/my phys chem prof, a Nobel laureate, said the same thing.
 
2012-12-25 07:20:08 PM
More entertaining, educational and accessible than earlier products, which relied heavily on a child's inner motivation

... dude. The way most people would phrase "a toy that relies on a child's inner motivation" is "a toy that a child actually wants to play with". If kids do not feel a motivation to play with your toy, then any educational value in your toy is effectively zero.

//Home chem sets were always a bit silly anyhow. Do kids these days not have appliances to take apart and the internet to give them recipes? I got my HCl as a kid the traditional way: by nicking it from the pool cleaning supplies when I was helping a neighbor maintain his pool over the summer. Then I used it to fill balloons with H2, which I then set on fire. Because fire is awesome.
 
2012-12-25 08:00:48 PM
This thread has me jonesing for all the 1950's children's books I had in the eighties as a kid. Things to Make and Do assumed you had access to axes and saws, and I always wanted to build their teepee. But then, I was a girl, so...
 
2012-12-25 08:04:50 PM
haha i've got a bottle of 3.7% HCl cut with 18 MOhm water in my bathroom. sometimes i use it for cooking in the kitchen, but store it in the bathroom to keep it safe from the son.
 
2012-12-26 12:02:57 AM

utah dude: haha i've got a bottle of 3.7% HCl cut with 18 MOhm water in my bathroom. sometimes i use it for cooking in the kitchen, but store it in the bathroom to keep it safe from the son.


Everyone with a pool thinks you're so cute.
 
BHK
2012-12-26 12:03:37 PM

assjuice: Twilight Farkle: No thread on chemistry sets is complete without Robert Brent and Harry Lazarus's Golden Book of Chemistry Experiments. After you've been introduced to introductory elements like oxygen, hydrogen, carbon, nitrogen, and chlorine (!), work your way through the book all the way to making your own synthetic fibers and plastics, such as rayon (synthesis of bakelite was left as an exercise for the student).

50 years later, you'll probably get arrested just for posessing the equipment on page 8, and banned from public office for daring to use the metric system on page 14, but hey, America's safer for it. And its leaders wonder why their citizens are falling behind in STEM.

Do you have evidence that such chemistry kits are available in countries with higher science and math scores? If so it would make an interesting infographic.


Looking on Amazon UK, it seems like there are a number of sets that contain chemicals not suitable for young children nor terribly safe if mishandled.

http://www.amazon.co.uk/Trends-UK-Ltd-SM01-Chemistry/dp/B000CEB152/re f =pd_cp_k_h_b_cs_0

I can't find the same item in the US Amazon. You are right, it would make an interesting infographic.
 
2012-12-27 09:56:14 AM

semiotix: SnarfVader: The chemistry kit I had as a kid specifically stated that I should ask my Dad for some Everclear to fuel the burner. Good times. Good times.

I remember that!

I thought it was weird that they mentioned your dad specifically by name, but he was great. Didn't even bat an eye at all these 9-year-olds asking him for hooch.


I see what you did there, and yes, I thought all the kids knocking on the door was kind of weird.
 
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