Friday, April 28
Morons. Leftists. Telstra. Possums. Grrrr.
Tuesday, April 11
There are few things more thoroughly screwed up than video on Windows. The endless range of differing, pointless, and poorly designed containers and codecs, and the endless bugginess of the programs themselves, makes it agonising to do anything serious with video created by someone else. You find one program that works, and stick with it - and then you get a file from someone else created with their program that works, and suddenly your program crashes mid-way or corrupts the video or the audio drifts out of sync or it just plain refuses to open the file.
All I was trying to accomplish today was to convert the opening credits of Hand Maid May into a good-quality AVI file. I have at least a dozen programs that purport to do this, but not one of them produced respectable results. Two of them crashed repeatedly, and one would not even recognise the straight-off-the-DVD MPEG-2 file.
To the rescue: VirtualDubMod. I use VirtualDub for all my AVI editing, because while it is not even slightly fancy, it actually does what you tell it to. But it only handles AVI files. VirtualDubMod is a modified version of VirtualDub (which makes sense) that can also cope with Ogg and Matroska and MPEG files. What is not immediately obvious (because it doesn't show up anywhere) is that it can just as easily read the VOB files you find on a DVD.
A little bit of tweaking of the DivX 6.11 codec (never needed to de-interlace the video before) and viola! There are still some compression artifacts, so I'm going to have one more shot at it and then upload whichever version looks best.
Monday, April 10
The current issue of New Scientist has a cover story about water: You Need It, But You Won't Believe Why: Water's Quantum Secret. It's mostly about the hydrogen bonds between water molecules, and how they make water act quite unlike otherwise similar compounds. It's not anything new, but interesting enough if you haven't run into the topic before.
And then the article suddenly careers off the cliff into the Great Homeopathic Swamp:
That there is something more to water than hydrogen and oxygen is something many researchers welcome. But Rustum Roy, a materials scientist at Pennsylvania State University in University Park goes further. He thinks it is time for a radical overhaul of the scientific view of water - one which, he believes, has been dominated by chemistry for too long. [Oy. — Ed.] "It's absurd to say that chemical composition dictates everything," he says. "Take carbon, for example - the same atoms can give you graphite or diamond."Well, duh, Mr Materials Scientist. That's due to the chemical properties of carbon.
In a review paper published in Materials Research Innovations in December, Roy and a team of collaborators called for a re-examination of the case against the most controversial of all claims made for water: that it has a "memory".And I call for a re-examination of your head, Mr Roy. I think you were dropped on it.
The physical nature of water is quite straightforward: It does not have a memory. This has been verified experimentally so often that only the very deeply stupid and outright frauds suggest otherwise.
The idea that water can retain some kind of imprint of compounds dissolved in it has long been cited as a possible mechanism for homeopathySee my comment on the stupid and the fraudulent.
which claims to treat ailments using solutions of certain compounds.But doesn't.
Some homeopathic remedies are so dilute they no longer contain a single molecule of the original compound -Exactly so. And homeopaths, who knowingly sell their customers distilled water and sugar pills, claim that these are the most effective.
- prompting many scientists to dismiss homeopathic effects as imaginary.Bullshit, Mr New Scientist Editor.
What has prompted all competent and honest scientists to dismiss homeopathic effects as imaginary is that it doesn't do anything. It's been tested. It doesn't do anything. Yes, all physical, chemical and biological theory tells us that it won't do anything, but that pales beside the experimental evidence for it not doing anything.
Roy believes that by taking homeopathy seriously scientists may find out more about water's fundamental properties.Pixy Misa believes that Roy was dropped on his head as a child.
The present editors of New Scientist, though, are merely an irresponsible bunch of scoundrels in it for the money.
Friday, April 07
Trackback spam capital of the universe.
I know that you didn't expect or want an answer, Doug, and were merely seeking an opportunity to parade your ignorance and arrogance in front of the world, but you did ask:
...wait a minute, you're telling me that scientists have been preaching Godless evolution all this time without a legit fish-to-tetrapod missing link?! Well what were you using all this time on the fossil tree, science fiction? Luckily, no gap is so great between species that can make some scientists lose their faith in a dogmatic fundamentalist allegience to Materialist Darwinism.And the answer is no.
Saturday, April 01
For a forum devoted to high-end video systems, this is mind-bogglingly hideous.
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