Sunday, January 27, 2019

Wednesday, January 16, 2019

Fwd: China weapons tech

---------- Forwarded message ---------
From: utahtrout

An unclassified report by the Defense Intelligence Agency says Beijing has made enormous military strides in recent years, thanks partly to domestic laws forcing foreign partners to divulge technical secrets in exchange for access to China's vast market.

As a result of "acquiring technology by any means available," China now is at the leading edge on a range of technologies, including with its naval designs, with medium- and intermediate-range missiles, and with hypersonic weapons -- where missiles can fly at many times the speed of sound and dodge missile-defense systems.

"The result of this multifaceted approach to technology acquisition is a PLA (People's Liberation Army) on the verge of fielding some of the most modern weapon systems in the world," states the report, entitled "China Military Power."

"In some areas, it already leads the world."

Beijing has said it will not hesitate to use force if Taipei formally declares independence, or in the case of external intervention -- including by the United States, the island's most powerful unofficial ally.

"The biggest concern is that as a lot of these technologies mature... (China) will reach a point where internally within their decision-making they will decide that using military force for a regional conflict is something that is more imminent," the official said on condition of anonymity.

Saturday, November 17, 2018

Quantum field theory

Every elementary particle in the universe is a point excitation of an underlying field that permeates the entire universe. There are different fields for different types of particles and those fields can interact with each other. Some fields carry force like the electromagnetic. Combine the fields and you get all the matter in the universe and the forces that drive them. And what makes the whole thing work is energy. Lots and lots of energy.

I sometimes refer to this as "God's computer program."


Sunday, November 4, 2018

How do psychopaths behave as children, especially around other children their age?

I find it interesting that 1% of the population are psychopathic, which is an innate condition, whereas another 3 to 4% are sociopaths, which is acquired through environment.  Either way, these people completely or mostly lack empathy for other people.  Psychopaths also don't feel anxiety the way other people do.  Bad things don't stress them as much.

It is sad that people are this way, but I am a bit curious about the fact that we have all these people running around in society.  They claim that most corporate CEO's are psychopaths, which sounds plausible, and many claim that Steve Jobs was a psychopath, which also sounds possible.  

Maybe it is an evolutionary survival strategy.  In the event that "the shit hits the fan", maybe the psychopaths will be more likely to survive.  I am certain of it.

Sunday, October 14, 2018

The future

Beginning around 5 billion years from now, the Sun will expand, becoming a swollen star called a red giant. By 7.5 billion years in the future, its surface will be past where the Earth's orbit is now, consuming the Earth.

In 500 million years the tectonic plate movement and geological activity on planet Earth will have stopped, causing it to have a fate similar to Mars. The planet will be dry, lifeless and very cold.

Within half a million years it is extremely likely that the Yellowstone supervolcano will erupt, wiping out life in several nearby states, and causing an environmental catastrophe worldwide. However, we are already due for an eruption, and the underground volcano has shown increased activity over the last 30 years. This is a disaster of enormous scale waiting to happen; we just don't know when it will happen. Fortunately people are looking for ways to relieve some of the pressure that is building up beneath the National Park.

Within 100 years we will be almost completely out of fossil fuels, so we will have to rely on other energy sources. The last remaining fossil fuel will be coal, which is estimated to be gone by the year 2150.

Within 50 years machine intelligence will surpass that of all humans combined. This event has been dubbed "the singularity", and it will forever change our fate. From that moment on machines will make most of the technological advances, and possibly at an ever accelerating rate. Over time humans will become more integrated with technology, and we will no longer be purely biological.

Friday, October 5, 2018

Origin of birds

The present scientific consensus is that birds are a group of theropod dinosaurs that originated during the Mesozoic Era. A close relationship between birds and dinosaurs was first proposed in the nineteenth century after the discovery of the primitive bird Archaeopteryx in Germany.

I keep hearing that dinosaurs are not extinct, but still exist in the form of birds.

I do not think that birds are dinosaurs in the way that the vast majority of people would think of dinosaurs, which is as very large reptiles, with maybe a few smaller versions. Instead, they are evolved from dinosaurs.

However, theropods are one type of dinosaur that is now thought to have more resemble birds in both their morphology and behavior, with many of them having feathers, including the mighty T-Rex. Birds are also theropods.

Some people are trying to activate dormant genes in chickens to see if they if they can produce some dinosaur characteristics. For example, with a little fiddling they produced a chicken with teeth.

Wednesday, August 29, 2018

Battery advancement

Chemists have successfully resolved two of the most challenging issues surrounding lithium-oxygen batteries, and in the process created a working battery with near 100 per cent coulombic efficiency. The new work demonstrates that four-electron conversion for lithium-oxygen electrochemistry is highly reversible. The team is the first to achieve four-electron conversion, which doubles the electron storage of lithium-oxygen, also known as lithium-air, batteries