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https://www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2021/10/211018140504.htm

A half of our DNA consists of the infiltrated ancient viruses.

We are half-viruses...

This makes the viral diseases look even more immoral, as the evil viruses are fratricidal jerks making us undertake fratricidal countermeasures.

P.S.
DNA needs something like Norton Utilities, to perform DNA defragmentation by using GUI and mouse.

Edited by kerbiloid
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7 hours ago, kerbiloid said:

A half of our DNA consists of the infiltrated ancient viruses.

We are half-viruses...

This makes the viral diseases look even more immoral, as the evil viruses are fratricidal jerks making us undertake fratricidal countermeasures.

Spoiler

myshmyshelovkamudrost769555.gif

 

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In the sense of 'Things that are interesting', I bring you another tidbit (with a bit of backstory).

I grew up in California, which aside from just being California is steeped in the history and philosophy of the American West; in other words we respected 'rugged individualism'.  To me, being both self sufficient and willing to help a neighbor (who was already in the process of self-help) was a natural thing.  I know this cuts against some of the prejudicial impressions folks have about Cali, but it's a big state. 

I've also lived a good portion of my life in Arizona and Texas - and if you were a kid of my generation who could not fix your own car...  Well, you was 'one-a those.'   (Millennials, please don't hate me... I know you grew up in a disposable world).  My kind of people can fix their cars, build their own computers, repair a VCR or TV and yeah, do a little programming.  You grew up, worked your way through college and then got a job and visited your parents on holiday... or hosted them once you had kids.  The idea that you might owe anything to your parents, other than care when they were ill or needed a little help moving something was absurd.

Learning about other cultures in the world, I always struggled to understand places where collectivism was the norm.  The entire idea of filial piety, ancestor worship and putting the needs of the group ahead of individual rights was utterly foreign.  When I had friends who had to rearrange their household to have a parent move in with them, it was most commonly my first or second-generation Asian-American friends; and for them it was as natural as having a recent college grad living back at home these last couple of decades.  (For those of different cultural backgrounds, it was often a huge burden imposed upon them).

Point is: it's hard growing up in one culture to try to understand the cultural norms of another.  Clearly in parts of the world, collectivism and conformity work: they're the norm.  My political science and history studies often showed that the farther east one travels in the Eurasian land mass, the more collectivism is the norm - and conversely, the farther West, the more individuality and personal rights become the norm.  Thus, the American West is possibly the most extreme version of "West=individualism" and China the most "East=Collective/Conformist" - as far as 'natural' perceptions of those living in the disparate regions as they view their own duties to the societies they live in.

I've seen a lot of attempts to describe the causes of this - some based upon religion, some on population density, but this one strikes a chord.

It's about farming.

Historically rice-farming societies have tighter social norms in China and worldwide | PNAS

Hope you find it as interesting as I did.

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Cold climate vs Warm wet climate

East.
They don't have much room to migrate, as every place is already inhabited. So, they have to stay and grow, expanding locally.

West.
They had a room to expand by slash-and-burn agriculture. So, when a tribe/a family/an individual was gotten by the jerks around and lack of food, they moved to another forest and founded another village.
The abandoned villages turned into forests to found a village several years later by same or another group.


East.
The agriculture is based on organic sediments accumulated by water pools (wet fields or so).

West.
The agriculture was slash-and-burn, then turned into poorly fertilized, then got powered by the chemical industry.

 

East.
In both respects the individual skills were mitigated in favour of diligence

West.
In both respects, in a small migrating group the individual skills and efforts were significant for the survive-or-die final.
Btw compare to the vikingish self-nickname for "a freeman at arms", the "oarsman",  róþsmenn / róþskarlar.
As the vikings were swimming floating running in puny boats, and anyone at oars could effectively revenge the whole gang by one easy movement during the storm, they had to free a prisoner before letting him sit at the oar.

 

East.
Warm and short winters, huts of paper and bamboo. Less wood required for shorter for winter.
Quickly rotting in wet climate disposable houses requiring many little efforts to rebuild the village more-or-less yearly. See the Japanese "gates", which are "ancient" even being rebuilt every several decades.
Less food for cattle to be stored.
The agricultural activities are spread across the year in a thin layer.
All-year hunting/fishing.
Several harvests per year.
Diligence and patience.

West.
Extremely cold and long winters, but a lot of forest around. Houses made of logs and standing for decades, a lot of wood required for winter heating.
A lot of food for cattle to gather and store, because the winter is coming long. 
The agricultural activities are concentrated in short summer.
Hunting/fishing in summer, because in winter the water pools are frozen, and the animals either sleep, or have flown away.
One-two harvests per year.
A shorter but more intense effort. 

So, for half-year you eat what you collected in another half-year, and warm the house with wood mostly gathered in summer. Who didn't - dies.
Everyone helps a  valuable, strenuous neighbour, because later he can help in return. Nobody has excessive food&wood for a non-valuable neighbour.

 

East.
Short winter vacation.

West.
Several months of the winter, when no agriculture to fill the time.

 

East.
Wars take place when the mud gets dry.

West.
Short periods to undertake wars, because you should spend the short summer on agriculture. 
Winter wars taking a lot of resources to be taken.

 

East.
Middle-sized bodies are enough in warm climate to supply the same brain. Requiring less food.

West.
Larger and heavier bodies have more chances to survive, both because of more concentrated physical work in short summer, and because of surface/volume ratio. Requiring more food.


***

So, the survivability of a commune in the cold climate is more depending on individual and small group efforts than in warm wet climate.

On the other hand, big wars require big armies, so the survivability depends on their ability to operate under higher commandment.

And as a large army gives more opportunities for an individual career, so makes an individual less dependent on his tribe.

Edited by kerbiloid
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On 10/17/2021 at 7:31 AM, mikegarrison said:

I find it depressing how many people play a game like KSP and instantly want to add weapons. It would be so nice if we didn't have to militarize everything. (And I say that despite working for the world's biggest defense contractor.)

For me, the thunderous roar of SRBs during a liftoff or the roaring plasma during reentry still gives me satisfaction comparable to watching artillery battery going off. I rarely make military stuff in KSP, but if I make something, it has to be BIG (dunno why, but I always find it fascinating to build big stuff)

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It looks like a US hypersonic missile test failed in some way today. We know that it was an issue with the (test) booster stack, which was three-staged, and that this weapon/test article is considerably longer ranged than the other announced programs. It was supposed to fly from Kodiak to Kwajalein Atoll, which is about 6500 km. The joint Army/Navy "Dark Eagle" weapon only has a stated range of >2800 km.

Very interesting, after the Chinese FOBS tests...

Of course, just a week ago some general complained about how China can see what we're doing by looking at our NOTAMs. Maybe we're seeing one superpower trolling another? :lol:

Edited by SOXBLOX
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3 hours ago, SOXBLOX said:

It looks like a US hypersonic missile test failed in some way today.

I wrote a comment that Tyler answered once, about how the incompetence and corruption of defense contractors is the single biggest military threat the US faces, and that he should investigate it. He wasn't in disagreement, but hinted that he feared for his life if he did so.

I've heard the arguments that it's REALLY the procurement officers screwing things up by writing unrealistic requirements, but you know, I work for a small-time engineering firm, and we tell our clients NO all the time when we think their ideas are infeasible. Then we work to get them a good solution. That's your JOB as a consultant. I really hope any of the younger folks on this forum who thinking of going into engineering take that to heart. Ethical behavior isn't difficult, and you'll have a much more successful and rewarding career that way--Not to mention repeat clients.

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5 hours ago, FleshJeb said:

I've heard the arguments that it's REALLY the procurement officers screwing things up by writing unrealistic requirements, but you know, I work for a small-time engineering firm, and we tell our clients NO all the time when we think their ideas are infeasible

Why I felt this starts to look like WW2 German wundewaffe project in a nutshell, history repeats itself

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44 minutes ago, ARS said:

Why I felt this starts to look like WW2 German wundewaffe project in a nutshell, history repeats itself

Wunderwaffe had several contributing factors, one of which was the inherent anti-rationalism of the ruling ideology, sure. But there was also a lot of "industry-led procurement": it's when the engineers (or rather, their bosses) force an ill-advised project upon the military, such as by cutting past the military and appealing to the political leadership, or by hype and bamboozling. Your engineers were so preoccupied with whether or not they could, they didn’t stop to think if they should, et cetera et cetera.

The Soviet Union was equally afflicted by this, and it led to many triumphs of novel engineering over common sense and mission requirements.

The US for a while seemed relatively immune. I think it was Niven who wrote that anything like the V-2 would have been laughed out of the room by the US military at the time, and the space age would look very different as a result. The idea is to have something like 30% new tech, 70% old tech in each platform, and just gradually iterate to avoid development quagmires.

It seems that the last wave of Cold War projects (e.g. F-22, Seawolf-class) did become afflicted by technofetishism. It's probably thanks to Ustinov-era Soviet achievements in categories where the US had traditionally maintained a strong enough edge to haughtily look down on Soviet kit. The post-Soviet era set an even higher bar of technological edge and turkey shoots, so now that superior position is once again challenged, we're likely to be seeing a rush of ill-advised projects.

After all, it seems the Pentagon were largely twiddling their thumbs on hypersonics until a balding guy with some 3D graphics and a defense budget the size of Britain's said "Listen to us now!"

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3 hours ago, DDE said:

we're likely to be seeing a rush of ill-advised projects.

After all, it seems the Pentagon were largely twiddling their thumbs on hypersonics until a balding guy with some 3D graphics and a defense budget the size of Britain's said "Listen to us now!"

I agree, it seems like there's been a strong panic reaction in the Pentagon with regards to hypersonics and space capabilities. Probably, that's cause we thought we were so great that no one could ever make tech as good as ours. :lol:

I do wonder how the recent developments in digital design will impact this. If we can crank out a design for a trainer jet (T-7) in a couple years, how will that affect production of "ill-advised projects"?

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26 minutes ago, SOXBLOX said:

If we can crank out a design for a trainer jet (T-7) in a couple years, how will that affect production of "ill-advised projects"?

I don't think it's the limiting factor. Pork-spreading in megaprojects is a separate, and very real trend that dates back to at least dreadnought construction in Austria-Hungary.

27 minutes ago, SOXBLOX said:

that's cause we thought we were so great that no one could ever make tech as good as ours. :lol:

Well, I guess we're still not up to a point where the US starts playing sour grapes with enemy military tech.

I've thought better than to post my filibuster on how the US public (and inevitably the military) has had a warped perception of its place in the world for at least three generations, as based on the media they oroduce and consume. But one element that varies from case to case is the relationship to tech: either US №1 (or insert any other faction the American author identifies with) because of advanced technology, or the enemy faction is furnished with mad scinetists and US №1 specifically because advanced technology is somehow evil.

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32 minutes ago, DDE said:

because advanced technology is somehow evil

Not enough Jeebus.

Look, when USSR decided to stop being Evil and become Russia, it left a vacuum.  The US rushed in to fill the void, playing both roles.

We run around telling ourselves we are Luke - but to much of the world, we are Vader.

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32 minutes ago, kerbiloid said:

minor inattention could cost you a foreign career

I understand Russian to be a fairly precise and rules-bound language.  American English is much more forgiving.  Heck; most of us don't know the rules, ourselves!

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31 minutes ago, JoeSchmuckatelli said:

I understand Russian to be a fairly precise and rules-bound language.  American English is much more forgiving.  Heck; most of us don't know the rules, ourselves!

Maybe. But it's like cross a 7 with dash.

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1 hour ago, JoeSchmuckatelli said:
1 hour ago, kerbiloid said:

cross a 7 with dash

Always do. 

In my Soviet pupilhood we were told that such minor things give the spies razvedchiks away in English-speaking countries (I was sure that my English would do this first).

Be careful, tovarishch Joe.

https://zen-yandex-ru.translate.goog/media/dossier/na-kakih-melochah-legko-lovili-sovetskih-shpionov-v-vermahte-i-nato-60af8d96198e2d195fe65e56?_x_tr_sl=ru&_x_tr_tl=en&_x_tr_hl=ru&_x_tr_pto=nui

Every Soviet boy was aware.

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50 minutes ago, kerbiloid said:

Every Soviet boy was aware

I'm always amazed that the US can even catch foreign spies.  Especially since the 1980s; we've such a pluralistic society that we literally have someone from everywhere... everywhere.  We have our stories of displaced African kids who were refugees from the child-soldier days staring in wonder at water from a tap.  We have enclaves of 'Little' everywhere in many major cities.  Best thing: they all bring their food with them!

Frankly, the most common give-away for being an American Stranger in a Strange Land is this: :D

 

 

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