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    • CommentAuthorStefanJ
    • CommentTimeNov 20th 2012
     (10875.1)
    If Mars Curiosity hasn't found A) limestone, B), an identifiable fossil, or C) an unmistakable artifact, then I'm never paying attention to a NASA press release again.
    • CommentAuthorOddcult
    • CommentTimeNov 20th 2012
     (10875.2)
    Methane. It'll be methane.
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      CommentAuthorTF
    • CommentTimeNov 20th 2012
     (10875.3)
    Farts on Mars!
    • CommentAuthor256
    • CommentTimeNov 20th 2012
     (10875.4)
    It could definitely be methane, although methane has already been detected on Mars (albeit remotely and not consistently). And methane, ipso facto, isn't proof of life past or present because it can be produced abiologically.

    More interestingly, it appears that the SAM instrument can distinguish between isotopes of methane, which could suggest whether the gas has a biological and or abiological origin.

    Alas, speculation in that direction relies on interpreting NASA hints. Which is rarely useful and frequently disappointing.
  1.  (10875.5)
    • CommentAuthorWood
    • CommentTimeNov 22nd 2012
     (10875.6)
  2.  (10875.7)
    That's not Australia mate, that's just bloody Frankston. I've got a sticker on the back of my bus says "I (heart) Frankston" because it makes people decide against breaking into it. What's so special about Frankston? It's... uh... the Cronulla of Melbourne? How the hell can I explain bogans to anyone from overseas?

    Look, just imagine that someone tried tarring all of England with the brush of a few Southampton chavs. Or America with Guidos. That's what using Frankston bogans as synechdoche for Australians is like.
    • CommentAuthorWood
    • CommentTimeNov 22nd 2012
     (10875.8)
    South Pacific Sandy Island 'proven not to exist'
    A South Pacific island, shown on marine charts and world maps as well as on Google Earth and Google Maps, does not exist, Australian scientists say.

    The supposedly sizeable strip of land, named Sandy Island on Google maps, was positioned midway between Australia and French-governed New Caledonia.

    But when scientists from the University of Sydney went to the area, they found only the blue ocean of the Coral Sea.

    The phantom island has featured in publications for at least a decade.
    • CommentAuthorWood
    • CommentTimeNov 22nd 2012
     (10875.9)
    @Kay Orchison
    As they say in the video I linked to (about 0:24) :

    However some in the twittersphere pointed out that those sharing the video shouldn't be also voicing their own prejudices, such as stereotyping people because of where they live
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      CommentAuthorFoamhead
    • CommentTimeNov 22nd 2012
     (10875.10)
    • CommentAuthor256
    • CommentTimeNov 22nd 2012
     (10875.11)
    Secessionists, Mapped



    No big surprises, but this analysis from the University of North Carolina does pick out some interesting points:
    "we collected data on 915,601 signatures [...] 319,415 unique combinations of names, places and dates, suggesting that a large number of people were signing more than one petition"

    "In first week, of the 302,502 respondents with gendered names, 63% had male names and 38% had female names. This 26 point gender gap is twice the size of the gender gap for voters in the 2012 Presidential election. For signatures more recently, the gender gap has risen to more than 34 points."

    Also, that the petitioning appears to have peaked already - so, ~2 weeks? Good work, guys.

    The page also has a dynamic map that you can mouse over to find out how many petitioners there are in your county. (Orange County, NC, home of UNC's Chapel Hill campus: 41. )
    •  
      CommentAuthorGreasemonkey
    • CommentTimeNov 22nd 2012 edited
     (10875.12)
    •  
      CommentAuthorjohnjones
    • CommentTimeNov 22nd 2012
     (10875.13)
    @ Greasemonkey

    The thing I hate most about that story is that it forces me to agree with Saxby Chambliss.
    •  
      CommentAuthorGreasemonkey
    • CommentTimeNov 22nd 2012 edited
     (10875.14)
    I'm amazed the Americans are standing for this shit.
    •  
      CommentAuthorgroonk
    • CommentTimeNov 22nd 2012
     (10875.15)
    In other news, WalMart workers are mad as hell and not taking it anymore.

    STAND WITH WALMART STRIKERS ON BLACK FRIDAY
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      CommentAuthorMorac
    • CommentTimeNov 23rd 2012
     (10875.16)
    In response to 256's link, and other map links:

    map

    (for humour purposes only; I don't actually have an opinion)
  3.  (10875.17)
    @Wood - I have that sticker because I spent much of my childhood around there. I have had a few people say to me that they assume I must be some kind of hard man on the basis of it. I think they were even serious, which is pretty funny. The point is that like it or not, there's a lot of vicious, angry bigots in that town. Some towns do have more of them than others because they like to be together and nobody else likes to be around them. I understand the OP's nervousness about inciting some sort of class war, but a cunt's a cunt and having spent a lot of time on the Peninsula I feel qualified to say there are plenty of them down there and an awful lot of them are bogans.

    Further, boganism isn't based on the socio-economic status of any given family anyway. It's a subcultural lifestyle choice and attitude set as much as punk is. The Mornington Peninsula's got some of the most exclusive housing in Victoria on it. Plenty of bogans are well off.

    There are extremes of bogan that involve sexism, racism and all the unlovely shit you see in the video. Then there's another end to it that's fairly egalitarian and welcoming. See a film called The Castle for a pretty amusing take on that. I don't even really hate bogans, just the attitude that a lot of them have that they're better or more entitled than the rest of us. That attitude is real and while not universal to the subculture, it's very common.

    All that being said, I really do (heart) Frankston - I even wrote a bloody song about it. Say what you like about my attitude, but I stand by it - if I can't be honest about the failings of my own damn turf then I'm on my way to Jingo - and Frankly, I'd rather be in Frankston.
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      CommentAuthorgroonk
    • CommentTimeNov 23rd 2012
     (10875.18)
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      CommentAuthorcurb
    • CommentTimeNov 23rd 2012
     (10875.19)
    ^ I'm sad to say that I've seen worse things done to dolphins, round these parts.

    WW2 Pigeon Message Stumps GCHQ Decoders
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      CommentAuthorTF
    • CommentTimeNov 23rd 2012
     (10875.20)