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Thread: Read that again?

  1. #3271
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    Quote Originally Posted by schlaugh View Post
    I recently bought something from Costco and received the now-standard "please review your product for our web site" plea.

    It's a fire extinguisher.

    So...no, I don't think I'll be trying the product any time soon. Or hope not anyway.
    Over at the auto parts store, I bought two jack stands. They asked me if I wanted the extended warranty, which covers any kind of breakage.

    I asked, "Do you think they'll break? Because I don't want to be under there if they do..."
    Solfe

  2. #3272
    Quote Originally Posted by Solfe View Post
    Over at the auto parts store, I bought two jack stands. They asked me if I wanted the extended warranty, which covers any kind of breakage.

    I asked, "Do you think they'll break? Because I don't want to be under there if they do..."
    While working at the call center I got a call from a woman who said that he will be late because a car fall on his hand. He was changing a tire and it fall.
    From the wilderness into the cosmos.
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  3. #3273
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    I know this is a bit of a nitpick, but I saw some articles this morning about the possibility that medication for high blood pressure might prevent severe cases of COVID-19. But I was surprised by one of the lines in the press release, which was picked up by some of the news outlets.

    Researchers studied 28,000 patients taking antihypertensives - a class of drugs that are used to treat hypertension (high blood pressure).
    To me, that makes it sound either like antihypertensives are one type of drug used to treat hypertension, or that antihypertensives are a single class of drugs. In fact, the study (a metaanalysis) found that two (related) classes of antihypertensives, i.e. ACE inhibitors and angiotensin receptor blockers, are associated with a lowered risk of severe disease.
    As above, so below

  4. #3274
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    Headline in today’s paper, “Home of Rosa Parks on display in Italy”. Wait, what?

    *Reads article* Yup, her house has been on display in Germany and now Italy.


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  5. #3275
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    This is pretty bad, and I expect they will correct it soon. But I saw this headline from this article on my Yahoo news feed...

    Nick Cordero's widower Amanda Kloots says America 'should have been prepared better' for COVID-19
    I know that gender is becoming more fluid, but that's a bit much...
    As above, so below

  6. #3276
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    I'm a bit flabbergasted at this. It's not what a journalist wrote, but rather what they corrected. In this article about convalescent plasma therapy:

    https://www.salon.com/2020/08/25/tru...al-convention/

    There is a sentence that reads:

    "What I should have said better is that the data show [sic] a relative risk reduction not an absolute risk reduction."
    What in the world is that "sic" in there for? I realize that a lot of people use data as a singular, and I don't think it's necessary to correct, but to take the plural as incorrect is going a bit far...
    As above, so below

  7. #3277
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    Quote Originally Posted by Jens View Post
    What in the world is that "sic" in there for? I realize that a lot of people use data as a singular, and I don't think it's necessary to correct, but to take the plural as incorrect is going a bit far...
    Of course I had to research this a bit. From this site:

    http://www.grantcentral.com/data-sho...ch-is-correct/

    is an argument that data can’t show anything, but a person can use data to show something. Going by that argument, “data show” or “data shows” would both be wrong. On the other hand, it is a type of shorthand in common usage. The post also goes into the plural vs singular issue. Personally, I would typically say the “data shows” and that is what I suspect the article writer was thinking, but I agree it isn’t something I would comment on. I very rarely use “sic” when I’m quoting someone. I usually reserve that for something particularly egregious. After all, I rarely manage perfect grammar myself, even if I am making a real effort. I’ve forgotten most of the rules I ever learned, at least at the conscious level. I typically check my grammar and spelling using the pattern recognition method: I only make changes if something looks wrong. Of course, speaking is worse, since one doesn’t have a chance to go back and proofread.

    "The problem with quotes on the Internet is that it is hard to verify their authenticity." — Abraham Lincoln

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  8. #3278
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    On another topic, I don’t subscribe to Discover magazine, but I saw an online link to this article:

    https://www.discovermagazine.com/tec...will-look-like

    which discusses how amazing the future “quantum internet” should be. Among other things, it is claimed early in the article that:

    Capable of sending enormous amounts of data over vast distances, it would work not just faster than the current internet but faster than the speed of light — instantaneously, in fact, like the teleportation of Mr. Spock and Captain Kirk in Star Trek.
    What? Sadly, I found no discussion in the article about what research has demonstrated relatively theory to be wrong. It’s sad this got past the magazine editors, but it is a good argument not to get a subscription. I expect they will be getting a lot of emails on this one.

    "The problem with quotes on the Internet is that it is hard to verify their authenticity." — Abraham Lincoln

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  9. #3279
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    Quote Originally Posted by Van Rijn View Post
    Of course I had to research this a bit. From this site:

    http://www.grantcentral.com/data-sho...ch-is-correct/

    is an argument that data can’t show anything, but a person can use data to show something. Going by that argument, “data show” or “data shows” would both be wrong. On the other hand, it is a type of shorthand in common usage. The post also goes into the plural vs singular issue. Personally, I would typically say the “data shows” and that is what I suspect the article writer was thinking, but I agree it isn’t something I would comment on. I very rarely use “sic” when I’m quoting someone. I usually reserve that for something particularly egregious. After all, I rarely manage perfect grammar myself, even if I am making a real effort. I’ve forgotten most of the rules I ever learned, at least at the conscious level. I typically check my grammar and spelling using the pattern recognition method: I only make changes if something looks wrong. Of course, speaking is worse, since one doesn’t have a chance to go back and proofread.
    I hadn't thought about the possibility they were using "sic" to point out the issue about data "showing," and kind of doubt that it was. It us true that data can't show anything, but like you say, I think it's very typical non-precise language, like when we say that a book "tells the story of" when a book can't really tell anything. Or that "the paper argues that," when a paper is completely incapable of arguing and it should be "the author of the paper argues..." Also, just to add, like you, I think that I would typically say "the data shows" but would certainly not correct "the data show."
    As above, so below

  10. #3280
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    Quote Originally Posted by Van Rijn View Post
    On another topic, I don’t subscribe to Discover magazine, but I saw an online link to this article:

    https://www.discovermagazine.com/tec...will-look-like

    which discusses how amazing the future “quantum internet” should be. Among other things, it is claimed early in the article that:



    What? Sadly, I found no discussion in the article about what research has demonstrated relatively theory to be wrong. It’s sad this got past the magazine editors, but it is a good argument not to get a subscription. I expect they will be getting a lot of emails on this one.
    Quantum entanglement?
    Cum catapultae proscriptae erunt tum soli proscript catapultas habebunt.

  11. #3281
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    Quote Originally Posted by Trebuchet View Post
    If you’re asking if quantum entanglement allows FTL communication that we could use, no, not by any experiment ever done, and not per theory. If someone actually managed it, it would be massive news, since it would overturn much of physics as we understand it. Also, there is no such thing as “instantaneous” in relativity. As the old line goes: FTL communication, relativity, causality - pick any two. If FTL communication existed, either relativity would have to be wrong, or effect could precede cause. The author’s claim is a common misunderstanding, but something they should have checked, and failing that, something the editor should have caught.

    "The problem with quotes on the Internet is that it is hard to verify their authenticity." — Abraham Lincoln

    I say there is an invisible elf in my backyard. How do you prove that I am wrong?

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  12. #3282
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    Quote Originally Posted by Jens View Post
    What in the world is that "sic" in there for? I realize that a lot of people use data as a singular, and I don't think it's necessary to correct, but to take the plural as incorrect is going a bit far...
    I have to say I'm not surprised. The singular use of data is now so common that a lot of younger people hardly ever encountered the plural usage, and imagine it to be an error when they do. I know this because for twenty years I used to give a regular tutorial on data presentation, and I routinely treat data as a plural. It was increasingly common to see puzzled frowns, exchanged glances and head shaking going on when I said things like, "These data are ..." And I'd stop and ask people what was bothering them, and it was always because of the plural usage of data. When I pointed out the Latin origin, and the pairing of datum with data, the responses used to vary from incredulity to stunned enlightenment. It did wonders for my reputation as an eccentric font of obscure information, but it got a little tedious.
    So I'd bet the person who marked the usage with [sic] was just flagging what they thought was a typo in the original text, rather than pursuing a more sinister agenda. Sorry, agendum.

    Grant Hutchison

  13. #3283
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    Is it just me, or is this article bonkers?

    https://www.yahoo.com/lifestyle/pilo...214845486.html

    The headline reads,

    Pilot performs death-defying stunt at unnervingly high altitude: ‘Truly extraordinary’
    I always thought that it was low altitudes that are dangerous. After all, it's the lithobraking at low altitudes that is undesirable! Plus, as an aside, they call barrel rolls "death defying." Really?

    And the article also says:

    Aerobatics is when an aircraft is flown at unusually high altitudes to do tricks like tail-slides, rolls, loops and hammerheads.
    At unusually high altitudes, so that people can't see it? I always thought the point was to do it at low altitudes, so that people could see the plane...
    As above, so below

  14. #3284
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    Quote Originally Posted by Jens View Post
    Is it just me, or is this article bonkers?

    https://www.yahoo.com/lifestyle/pilo...214845486.html

    The headline reads,



    I always thought that it was low altitudes that are dangerous. After all, it's the lithobraking at low altitudes that is undesirable! Plus, as an aside, they call barrel rolls "death defying." Really?

    And the article also says:



    At unusually high altitudes, so that people can't see it? I always thought the point was to do it at low altitudes, so that people could see the plane...
    If it is you then it is me as well, it is definitely bonkers. Apart from the obvious non-sequiturs you pointed out the article reads like something written in the 1920's when the 'barnstormers' were about. I almost expected it to tell me what these new-fangled flying machines were.

    I was also impressed that "He uses the control system to direct the plane". So mind control of planes is not yet normal?

  15. #3285
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    This minor grammar error in the article caught my eye.

    If you’ve ever been amazed by the jaw-dropping stunts of aerobatic aircrafts, you’ll want to watch this dizzying glimpse at how one such pilot trains.
    I've been seeing that attempt to pluralize aircraft with an 's' crop up a lot lately on the internet. So far, I haven't stumbled across any mention of a flock of sheeps, but I suspect it's out there somewhere too.
    Last edited by Selenite; 2020-Oct-22 at 08:49 AM.

  16. #3286
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    Quote Originally Posted by ozduck View Post

    I was also impressed that "He uses the control system to direct the plane". So mind control of planes is not yet normal?
    Good catch. I also, believe it or not, have met people who use a steering wheel to direct their automobiles!


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    As above, so below

  17. #3287
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    Quote Originally Posted by Jens View Post
    Good catch. I also, believe it or not, have met people who use a steering wheel to direct their automobiles!


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    Wow, what will they think of next!

  18. #3288
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    Quote Originally Posted by Jens View Post
    I also, believe it or not, have met people who use a steering wheel to direct their automobiles!
    Tish-tosh and balderdash!
    "I'm planning to live forever. So far, that's working perfectly." Steven Wright

  19. #3289
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    Quote Originally Posted by Jens View Post
    ... At unusually high altitudes, so that people can't see it? I always thought the point was to do it at low altitudes, so that people could see the plane...
    Honor system.

    "Trust me, it was death defying and beautifully executed."
    Never attribute to malice that which can be adequately explained by ignorance or stupidity.
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    You know, the very powerful and the very stupid have one thing in common. They don’t alter their views to fit the facts. They alter the facts to fit their views.
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  20. #3290
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    Quote Originally Posted by Jens View Post
    Is it just me, or is this article bonkers?

    https://www.yahoo.com/lifestyle/pilo...214845486.html

    The headline reads,



    I always thought that it was low altitudes that are dangerous. After all, it's the lithobraking at low altitudes that is undesirable! Plus, as an aside, they call barrel rolls "death defying." Really?

    And the article also says:



    At unusually high altitudes, so that people can't see it? I always thought the point was to do it at low altitudes, so that people could see the plane...
    I wonder if they were confusing "attitude" for "altitude".
    Cum catapultae proscriptae erunt tum soli proscript catapultas habebunt.

  21. #3291
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    Quote Originally Posted by Jim View Post
    Honor system.

    "Trust me, it was death defying and beautifully executed."
    A sneaky person could save a lot on aircraft and fuel that way.
    "I'm planning to live forever. So far, that's working perfectly." Steven Wright

  22. #3292
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    Quote Originally Posted by ozduck View Post
    If it is you then it is me as well, it is definitely bonkers. Apart from the obvious non-sequiturs you pointed out the article reads like something written in the 1920's when the 'barnstormers' were about. I almost expected it to tell me what these new-fangled flying machines were.

    I was also impressed that "He uses the control system to direct the plane". So mind control of planes is not yet normal?
    I get it! The author is actually a time traveler from the future. They aren’t used to aircraft flown manually instead of by AI or neural implant, so the idea of a human manually flying an aircraft seems inherently risky to them. They are also unaware that to the primitives they are writing for, manually flown barrel rolls are old hat. In fact, the first took place 115 years ago by 2020 standards (they were also a tad more risky back then). Essentially, the readers are more familiar with this than the author.

    "The problem with quotes on the Internet is that it is hard to verify their authenticity." — Abraham Lincoln

    I say there is an invisible elf in my backyard. How do you prove that I am wrong?

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  23. #3293
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    From New Scientist this week, in an article about wild wallaby populations in the UK.
    Outside Britain, there has been a thriving population on the Isle of Man, where the photo above was taken, in the Irish Sea since the 1960s.
    I wonder where the Isle of Man was prior to 1960.

    Grant Hutchison

  24. #3294
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    Quote Originally Posted by grant hutchison View Post
    From New Scientist this week, in an article about wild wallaby populations in the UK.I wonder where the Isle of Man was prior to 1960.

    Grant Hutchison
    The Manx Sea?
    Cum catapultae proscriptae erunt tum soli proscript catapultas habebunt.

  25. #3295
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    Quote Originally Posted by Trebuchet View Post
    The Manx Sea?
    The Manx would claim they've always been in the Manx Sea.

    Grant Hutchison

  26. #3296
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    Interesting composition, as the Associated Press deals with football math ...

    Wisconsin, which lost last week to West Division leader Northwestern, is now down to five regular-season games, and at this point would not be eligible to play in the Big Ten championship game. The conference mandated that a team must compete in at least six games to play in the title game this season.

    If the average number of Big Ten games falls below six, then teams must play no less than two fewer games than the Big Ten average to be considered for the league title. The champion will be determined in each division by its winning percentage, unless there is an unbalanced schedule because of the cancellation of games.


    That sounds like a contradiction. If I recall, the Big Ten Conference put together an 8-game schedule for this peculiar season, but with just eight weeks available, had no room to make up any games. They originally said you'd have to play at least six, but added the codicil quoted in the second paragraph here.

    In explaining that, the writer decided that he needed to employ both "less than" and "fewer." Here, you'll be comparing an integer (the number of games completed) to an average, which will probably involve a fractional number.

    I suppose that they have a detailed explanation that includes any rounding-off, but good luck in explaining that to a team that comes up short!

  27. #3297
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    Quote Originally Posted by DonM435 View Post
    In explaining that, the writer decided that he needed to employ both "less than" and "fewer." Here, you'll be comparing an integer (the number of games completed) to an average, which will probably involve a fractional number.
    I see a couple of English problems there, but no math problems. I don't think anybody would be confused about whether or not 4 is less than 4.5, would they?

    (Okay, obviously, there are some people out there who might not get it, but not a widespread problem, I don't think).
    Sometimes you win, sometimes you learn

  28. #3298
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    With 14 teams in the mix (yeah, "Big Ten" is an misnomer, an anachronism for the sake of trademark) the average will involve increments of 0.071 (1/14).
    I was just wondering about details. Like, if the average were 5.7, would they (rounding up) set the bar at 6 - 2 = 4 games, or (rounding down) at 5 - 2 = 3 games. What if the average is 5.5 exactly? I would guess that the agreed-upon wording was more complicated.
    If Ohio State ends up on the cusp of eligibility, there's sure to be a flap. Disqualifying them from the conference championship game would enrage many fans. On the other hand, they would still have a shot at the national championship without risking a loss here -- depending upon how that committee looks at unplayed games.

  29. #3299
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    Quote Originally Posted by DonM435 View Post
    With 14 teams in the mix (yeah, "Big Ten" is an misnomer, an anachronism for the sake of trademark) the average will involve increments of 0.071 (1/14).
    I was just wondering about details. Like, if the average were 5.7, would they (rounding up) set the bar at 6 - 2 = 4 games, or (rounding down) at 5 - 2 = 3 games. What if the average is 5.5 exactly? I would guess that the agreed-upon wording was more complicated.
    If Ohio State ends up on the cusp of eligibility, there's sure to be a flap. Disqualifying them from the conference championship game would enrage many fans. On the other hand, they would still have a shot at the national championship without risking a loss here -- depending upon how that committee looks at unplayed games.
    If the average were 5.7, the bar would be 3.7. So playing 4 games would be enough, 3 games wouldn't be.
    Sometimes you win, sometimes you learn

  30. #3300
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    Quote Originally Posted by DonM435 View Post
    If the average number of Big Ten games falls below six, then teams must play no less than two fewer games than the Big Ten average to be considered for the league title.
    I think others have already made this clear, but if the average number is say 6.5, then "no less than two fewer" would be "no less than 4.5," so they would have to have played at least 5 games. If the average is exactly 6, then it would be "no less than 4", so 4 games they would have to play.
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