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(The Federalist)   I've got a blog where I can say anything, checkmate science   (thefederalist.com) divider line 27
    More: Dumbass, Giordano Bruno, global warming, first to invent, Brannon Braga, greenhouse effect, other things being equal, acid rain, pseudosciences  
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4032 clicks; posted to Geek » on 14 Mar 2014 at 12:35 PM (31 weeks ago)   |  Favorite    |   share:  Share on Twitter share via Email Share on Facebook   more»



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2014-03-14 12:24:41 PM  
4 votes:
For those who might even for a moment think he has a point about Venus let me explain:

He is correct that CO2 did not cause the climate of Venus to rise to 900 degrees, but it was caused by a greenhouse effect and another greenhouse gas: water vapor.

Water vapor is actually a greater greenhouse gas than CO2 in terms of how effectively it traps heat. The reason we don't care about it too much on Earth is 1) the sun and the ocean create a whole lot more of it than we do, and 2) it rains, keeping the amount in the atmosphere fairly constant. The problem with Venus is that it was just too close to the Sun, so it didn't rain. So instead of cooling off and regulating the amount of water vapor in the atmosphere, it just got hotter, which meant more evaporation, which meant more vapor, which meant more trapped heat, which made it hotter... and so on until there was no surface water left on the planet and the atmosphere is thick and immensely hot. So yeah, Venus has a 900 degree surface temperature because of the greenhouse effect.

The other points are just quibbling about artistic license.
2014-03-14 05:05:26 PM  
3 votes:
I read all the way to the last point and that is definitely the best part...

Oddly, a number of religious critics, Tyson included, insist that too many religious people believe the Book of Genesis is taken literally by people who read the Bible. Unless we accept that figurative comparisons help make large ideas manageable, a year is no more accurate than six days - it is instead a completely arbitrary metric invented to show some context for how things evolved.
It seems odd to be critical when religion does it and then invent a new timescale for how the universe came to be. It's almost like we are to believe that short timescales are opiates for the masses.


The part Beavis misses here is that Tyson explicitly stated that we were going to analyze the year because it made it easier to understand, but regularly discussed the extreme time scales to try and understand the universe.

He seems to admonish Tyson for generalizing the book of genesis when there are, in fact, many people that take the 6 days thing as real. He brushes it off as though no person would really believe such things, so Tyson is wrong to use it to help people understand. But, people DO believe it. There are countless examples of young earth creationism that explicitly talk about how Genesis is right word-for-word.

And, even if you ignore the small percentage of nutjobs that take it as an exact word, there are still far too many creationists that completely ignore evidence pointing to 14 billion years and use the 6 days to describe eras or whatever is needed to make the earth 6000 years old.

The time scales ARE used to explain things to the masses. It's the same reason the whole "if earth were the size of this tennis ball" discussions are used because people can't f*cking imagine what 200 million miles is. It is just a number to them.

Trying to poke holes in the program as a hole because there were sounds coming from a spaceship is petty...but trying to paint Tyson as just as evil as religious nuts for using scale to describe time when people actually BELIEVE in literal time of that size is laughable.
2014-03-14 11:02:58 AM  
3 votes:

ManateeGag: Lucky LaRue: Conclusion: Venus' climate is not the result of global warming.

Venus started pretty warm to begin with.


And here I always thought that the"greenhouse effect" was a process by which heat is trapped in an atmosphere.  I guess that doesn't happen on Venus because free market.
2014-03-14 08:49:37 AM  
3 votes:
There's a whole lot of herpaderp in that blog.

Venus is almost 900 degrees Fahrenheit and the clouds are sulfuric acid. Even the most aggressive climate change models and their 20-foot ocean rises don't predict that for Earth, no matter how many Chevy Volts we don't buy.

Conclusion:  Venus' climate is not the result of global warming.
2014-03-14 02:05:34 PM  
2 votes:

Feepit: He was also flogging around a bunch of craziness about Egyptian gods, mysticism, and other nonsense, which ultimately served to undermine Copernicus' ideas.


Which has nothing to do with the topic at hand. That his belief in the Copernican system wasn't the ONLY thing used against him at trial doesn't mean it WASN'T used against him. And since Cosmos isn't a theology show, the charges relating to him believing pantheistic nonsense instead of monotheistic nonsense are immaterial and had no place in the show, so were not included.

It's a one hour show. They're not going to cover every last facet of the man just because they mentioned him in relation to the larger topic at hand. If you want a full rundown of his entire life and the details of every charge against him there are books on the topic, go read one. However, since this was just a segment about how even an amateur with no formal training can revolutionize scientific understanding with just an idea and persistence, Bruno, and the relevant parts of his life, were adequately and accurately portrayed.
What it comes down to at the end, however, is that every religion on the planet has committed barbaric acts throughout history. Simply acknowledging those facts is not done to hurt that religion's pwecious wittle feewings. Religious people need to own up to and make peace with their own histories and biatching and whining like crybabies every time the topic comes up in historical discussion is not how you do that. We're not going to gloss over or ignore the Crusades or Bruno or ritualistic sacrifice or 9/11 just because some people might want to pretend they never happened.

They happened. Discussion of them is sometimes appropriate. Get over it.
2014-03-14 01:47:05 PM  
2 votes:

give me doughnuts: Venus' atmosphere is 96.5% carbon-dioxide.
Water vapor measures in at 20 ppm, or 0.002%
There is more argon or sulfur-dioxide than water.


Now. Water vapor occasionally breaks down to O2 and H2, when it does this, the Hydrogen gas is light enough to escape Venus's gravity, leaving forever. There is very little Hydrogen left on Venus to make water vapor from anymore.
But don't trust me (or my bachelor's degree in astronomy):

Studies have suggested that billions of years ago, the Venusian atmosphere was much more like Earth's than it is now, and that there may have been substantial quantities of liquid water on the surface, but, after a period of 600 million to several billion years,[43] a runaway greenhouse effect was caused by the evaporation of that original water, which generated a critical level of greenhouse gases in its atmosphere.[44]
2014-03-14 11:24:21 AM  
2 votes:
I think the biggest red flag in his first part (assuming you weren't already familiar with how the greenhouse effect is involved with Venus) is how he never explains what the greenhouse effect is, what it means, how it works, or anything like that. He has no actual substance in that section. I kind of agree that the Giordano Bruno portion of Cosmos was a bit overstated, but not a crazy big deal, and of course there shouldn't be sound in space. But the sound in space section of this article seems to be thrown in so that it could have one thing correct to try and lend credence to the rest of his absurd ramblings. And I don't even know where to begin on that last part. Does he not know how metaphors work?
2014-03-14 09:23:55 PM  
1 votes:
And he missed the one thing that drives every astronomer I know up the wall - the density of objects in the asteroid belt.  It's nothing like Star Wars- it's a huge pile of empty with a couple of rocks strewn around.
2014-03-14 07:57:20 PM  
1 votes:
Here is a good article about how Bruno was misrepresented in Cosmos, which even got a response from a co-author of Cosmos. It clearly lays out what was wrong with the segment.
2014-03-14 05:14:06 PM  
1 votes:

Son of Thunder: Harbinger of the Doomed Rat: All of Bruno's "crimes" were various forms of blasphemy.

According to the learned intellects populating the thread, Bruno's crimes are in two categories: (1) irrelevant religious stuff, and (2) FOR SCIENCE!

Reality is closer to your statement, though. Bruno's trial was about religious stuff, and, as I said earlier, has jack-all to do with science.  This makes it disingenuous in the extreme to use (as many are) as an alleged case study in the debunked Conflict Thesis.


Except that at the time scientific matters WERE taken as religious matters.  But that doesn't matter to you because the only thing you're concerned about is spewing your ignorance at anyone in range and doubling down on it every time you are proven wrong.
2014-03-14 04:09:02 PM  
1 votes:

Feepit: My complaint is that someone who was not a scientist, did nothing to further science and arguably set it back by nearly transforming a legitimate theory into an occult belief, had nothing to do with science ... was used in a show supposedly about science as an example of someone persecuted for the sake of science.


No, your complaint is exactly what I said. A thirteen hour series devoted less than ten minutes to an interesting footnote in the Copernican model in order to end on the point that you don't have to be a scientist to help move science forward, just inquisitive and devoted.

If you want to know about the complicated story of Bruno, his travels and his fate, go get a book about Bruno, his travels and his fate. Don't sit here and whine about a cartoon that used a distilled and truncated version of his history as a small portion of a larger story to make the point that dedication and inquisitiveness can be more important to science than being an actual scientist.

Again, the level of angst from the religious over this stupid cartoon is a far more damning indictment of the guilt of the church in this particular episode of its history than anything Cosmos could have managed even had it been trying. Bruno was murdered by Catholics. End of story. Also, not the point of the segment, but since you guys seem to really want to talk about how the church murdered him....
2014-03-14 03:53:52 PM  
1 votes:

Son of Thunder: Joe USer: He was imprisoned and executed for thinking differently and telling other people his beliefs.

Yes, and that was wrong, and still has jack-all to do with science.


Well, except that's a part of the entire concept of science. You observe, you theorize, and you tell others. If you're going to get burned alive for any part of that, it cripples science.
2014-03-14 03:50:41 PM  
1 votes:
skozlaw: You're complaining that a one hour show about science only discussed the man as was relevant to his place within the history of science

My complaint is that someone who was not a scientist, did nothing to further science and arguably set it back by nearly transforming a legitimate theory into an occult belief, had nothing to do with science ... was used in a show supposedly about science as an example of someone persecuted for the sake of science.
2014-03-14 03:36:26 PM  
1 votes:

Feepit: So if a newspaper ...


The Cosmos is not a newspaper nor was it reporting on an accused criminal. It was also not a documentary about Giordano Bruno, a historical discussion of the Protestant and Catholic power structures of the time or a documentary about the era.

You're complaining that a one hour show about science only discussed the man as was relevant to his place within the history of science and didn't meander into discussions of pantheism, the workings of the Inquisition, his religious backstory as a friar and the complete stem to stern details of the trial (which aren't even all available).

Cosmos presented a brief, accurate representation of the portions of Bruno's life that were relevant to the overarching point of an amateur's ability to contribute to the scientific world through curiosity and persistence. That it omitted details that were not relevant to the topic of the show is to be expected, otherwise it would not have been the Cosmos with a five segment about the man, it would have been a one hour documentary about Giordano Bruno with a five segment about the cosmos.

If you want to know all about Giordano Bruno, go find a book about Giordano Bruno. The entirety of his life was beyond the scope of the show.

Furthermore, the relentless whining from the religious and historical revisionists who are so pearl-clutching upset about the segment is a greater condemnation of what the church did to the man than what that segment could have possibly managed if it had actually been trying to do that.

Feepit: his lesser crime


It doesn't matter. Even if it was his least of his "crimes" (which it wasn't by a long shot in the eyes of the Inquisition) the fact remains that the church tried him over it, now doesn't it? And it was part of his conviction, now wasn't it?
2014-03-14 02:56:20 PM  
1 votes:

Codenamechaz: I somehow got to number 5

Wherein he unironically presents an argument that the universe wasn't created in a year, as if he lives in a world where metaphors and comparisons do not exist



His other points were bad enough, but at least they could be argued to some extent.  Number 5 is creationist-level willful ignorance.
2014-03-14 02:10:50 PM  
1 votes:

Son of Thunder: Except for the part where it didn't cost him his life. Going around telling everybody to drop Jesus and switch to a Greco-Egyptian mystery-religion cost him his life. Advocating Copernican astronomy was not a heresy in 1600, and the notion of Bruno as a free-thought martyr is entirely a construction of 19th-Century revisionists, no longer taken seriously by actual historians.


His Copernican beliefs, despite not being officially rejected or banned by the church, were used against him at trial alongside the other charges. In particular, they took great offense to his refusal to recant his teachings about multiple worlds populated by other living beings because it threw into question humanity's special place in the universe and need for a redeemer.

Your participation in this thread so far has been marked entirely by deceit. Again, I ask, why should anybody continue talking to you if dishonesty is going to be your only position?

Further more, EVERYTHING that happened to Bruno is EXACTLY the sort of thing that would make a person a "free thought martyr". Even if we took your dishonesty for truth he was still burned alive for saying things an authority didn't want him to say. It doesn't really get any more "free thought martyr" than being killed because people don't want to let you speak.
2014-03-14 01:57:43 PM  
1 votes:
By the way, for anyone interested in the climates of planets in the solar system, including Venus, Mars, and the ancient Earth, as well as exoplanet climates, a really good book is  How to Find a Habitable Planet.
2014-03-14 01:39:41 PM  
1 votes:

nmrsnr: For those who might even for a moment think he has a point about Venus let me explain:

He is correct that CO2 did not cause the climate of Venus to rise to 900 degrees, but it was caused by a greenhouse effect and another greenhouse gas: water vapor.


Venus' atmosphere is 96.5% carbon-dioxide.
Water vapor measures in at 20 ppm, or 0.002%
There is more argon or sulfur-dioxide than water.
2014-03-14 01:34:56 PM  
1 votes:

DarnoKonrad: It's not Galileo and Pythagoras. It's Bruno and Eratosthenes.


Which was really the larger point of the whole story. Lost in the whining about how mean it was for telling the facts of the church's behavior is that the entire thing ends with the reminder that you don't HAVE to be Galileo or Einstein to help revolutionize science. You just have to have an idea and the thick skin to stand by it no matter what.

Yes, Galileo is the one that found indisputable visual proof of Copernican ideas, but before it was even possible to know for certain thanks to technological constraints, Bruno was flogging the idea mercilessly before increasingly hostile audiences even though he had to know it might (and ultimately did) literally cost him his life.

You don't have to be a scientist to change the world, you just have to have an inquisitive mind and a dedication to advancing human knowledge even in the face of those who would do everything they can to hold us back (for example, this blog writer). Science doesn't demand that you come to it with all the answers, or even the knowledge to find the answers. It only demands that you bring smart questions, even if it means you have to wait for someone else to formally investigate and answer them.
2014-03-14 01:14:07 PM  
1 votes:
www.quickmeme.com
2014-03-14 12:54:19 PM  
1 votes:

StrangeQ: According to him it was just because he refused to recant his views that were contrary to those of the church...which apparently makes it perfectly okay to torture and execute a person.


That's missing the point, of course.  The execution wasn't even the point, but the idea that you could reject the status quo is an important feature of science, that hadn't yet been embraced by the western world.
2014-03-14 12:52:25 PM  
1 votes:

Cybernetic: I did think it was odd that the show spent so much time on Bruno. But overall I thought the show was very good.


It highlights how much we take freedom of thought for granted -- and like the original Cosmos, it profiles lesser known historical figures.   It's not Galileo and Pythagoras.  It's Bruno and Eratosthenes.
2014-03-14 12:22:08 PM  
1 votes:
Hmm. I wonder if this will be an insightful article, our just one of those overly-pedantic nerd rages...

"he thinks Venus is the way it is due to the greenhouse effect - which is another way of saying global warming. Venus is almost 900 degrees Fahrenheit and the clouds are sulfuric acid. Even the most aggressive climate change models and their 20-foot ocean rises don't predict that for Earth, no matter how many Chevy Volts we don't buy."

*facepalm.jpg*

Neither, I guess. Dunning Kruger in full effect.
2014-03-14 11:56:02 AM  
1 votes:

doyner: ManateeGag: Lucky LaRue: Conclusion: Venus' climate is not the result of global warming.

Venus started pretty warm to begin with.

And here I always thought that the"greenhouse effect" was a process by which heat is trapped in an atmosphere.  I guess that doesn't happen on Venus because free market.


You realize that this idiot probably would argue that the so-called "greenhouse effect" isn't responsible for keeping greenhouses warm, either.
2014-03-14 11:50:02 AM  
1 votes:

TheOmni: But the sound in space section of this article seems to be thrown in so that it could have one thing correct to try and lend credence to the rest of his absurd ramblings. And I don't even know where to begin on that last part. Does he not know how metaphors work?


I think that if he's serious about the sound in space thing, he has a world-class case of Asperger's, one worthy of lengthy study at a major research facility, a book, and a movie of the week.

If he's serious about that last part, he's probably suffered a stroke.
2014-03-14 11:13:39 AM  
1 votes:
I'm just...

I mean...

Wow.
2014-03-14 10:34:02 AM  
1 votes:
"Greenhouse effect" is just a name we've given to an observable phenomenon.
 
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