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Random fashion thoughts - Page 4836
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when i was suit shopping i tried on a milano and fell in love with the fit on me. needed a suit asap though, so couldn't wait for sales and had to get something cheaper. if i end up in a business environment next summer I definitely want to get a milano.
Hmm, construction is very basic but very often they offer relatively nice material, the cut at asian Uniqlos is very nice if you're quite slender. I have never tried on a suit though, just regular jackets and quite frankly, they end up looking sorta like my Thom Browne, of course YMMV.
Where did you hear this comment? This is a very delicious, ironic joke.
For nearly 200 years, nobody could figure out how lift is generated, using the dynamical equations available. d'Alembert even had a famous example showing how lift seemed impossible (d'Alembert paradox)...yet birds seemed to soar, hover, glide, etc. The breakthrough came in 1905, with Prandtl's boundary layer approximation...genius, imho. Everything that has followed is just building on this, with lots of scaled-down experimentation and unleashing computers to crunch away at things, plus of course adding electronics, MEMS, etc.
But the basic approach to designing flying things hasn't changed much from Prandtl's approach.
There is so much more to that than just lift, though. the question that the below was in response to was actually "why can't we emulate a human brain in software," FYI. I thought it was a pretty cool read.
Warning: Words! (Click to show)
That's just it though, we don't understand the physical phenomena of how the brain works. We get the general principle; impulses go in, impulses go out (you can't explain that!), but the specifics of how neurons interact, how the different systems link together and especially how the whole mess creates the emergent phenomena of a person is still beyond us. Now, the logical response to this is "build some fuckhuge scanning thing and take it apart piece by piece", but that's still mostly beyond our abilities too. On top of that, doing that to a live human brain is (morally/legally) impossible because it would almost definitely kill, or traumatize beyond all reason, the person in the brain we're doing it to. Doing it to a dead human brain is what we've been doing, with the technology we currently have at our disposal. Unfortunately, a dead brain, especially one that isn't very freshly dead, is vastly different than a live brain.
To put this all into a metaphor:
The human brain is a trans-sonic plane, and the doctors studying it are engineers from 1900. They understand the the visible effects: push (a lot of random) button(s and weird glow-y panels that fill with changing words and may or may not be the result of the devil), receive thrust, and on some planes that are broken they've managed to tear off an engine and fiddle around inside it, but the avionics equipment, what with using semi-conductors and microprocessors, is basically black-box witchcraft to them, and the engines themselves are pretty much nonsense.
They recognize the basic idea of how the engines work; combustion of a hydrocarbon compound that isn't totally alien to them and is orders of magnitude more pure than anything they have outside of labs, much less in the quantities they need to run it for an extended period. The actual principles of the jet engine (compression from forced intake, fuel-air ratios, carefully tuned gear ratios and intelligent onboard systems in the engine itself to detect failures, damage and atmospheric conditions) are totally beyond them, and every engine they dismount to try to figure out stops working after two, maybe three, ignition runs since they're fueling it with total crap and have nothing hooked up to the diagnostic outputs and control inputs. Even the fucking landing gear is lightyears ahead of them; tires of vulcanized rubber, shocks based on pneumatic and hydraulic systems created through complex computer models to handle, y'know, a whole goddamn fucking plane bouncing off them. Even the goddamn metal itself that the plane is made of is alien to them, partly because aluminum was worth more than gold until some time in the late 1800's, and partly because the metallurgical techniques we use to create aircraft alloys, especially for trans-sonic planes, are utterly impossible given their level of technology.
So, to tie it all together: While the plane is in a running state, the engineers can't (from their perspective, with their tools and methods of figuring out how things work) touch a single damn thing that matters without everything breaking and flashing red. When the plane is disassembled and/or broken, they can't get anything working again and as far as they're concerned every single fundamental principle behind what we know to be how the plane operates istotally fucking impossible (remember that they hadn't even discovered heavier-than-air flight at this point. The wright brothers are still a ways off). Given a few decades or so, they'll eventually come to understand the principles behind some of the macro mechanical systems, and maybe even manage to mix up some fuel that will actually get the engine to do more than fail/explode, and at best even get an early start on powered flight in general. But actually replicating the plane itself is easily a generation or more out of their reach.
So, what does this mean for us and the brain? Basically, we're still a paradigm shift or two away from reallyunderstanding how the fuck the brain actually works. Unfortunately, until we understand how the brain actually works, we won't be able to replicate it without some disgustingly powerful hardware to emulate it at a near-molecular level.
To understand this, look at modern videogame emulator technology: it takes about a generation or two of hardware advancements to truly emulate previous consoles. Right now we're right at the level where we can just about comfortably emulate the N64. For the unfamiliar, many generations of emulators have bee built around literally disassembling the CPU of the system in question to figure out how it works on a hardware level and them emulatingthat in software. This is why many emulators, even though the emulated systems are fucking calculators by modern standards, have the tendency to lag like a motherfucker.
In conclusion: Can we emulate a brain without understanding how it actually works? Yes, but this will require a hardware-level emulation, which requires fucktons more horsepower than a software-level emulation. So rest assured, one way or another we WILL emulate a human brain in a computer. It's just a matter of which comes first: True understanding of a human brain (which will allow software-level emulation, and thus require much less computational resources), or the computational power required to emulate a few metric fucks of neurons at a molecular level. To radically over-simplify things, both the level of understanding required to emulate a brain in software and the flops required to emulate a brain in hardware are at the same point on the horizon. Personally, I think one or the other (or if we're lucky, both) will happen in the lifetime of the millenial generation.What I think is frequently glossed-over is that yes, we're about to hit the point where computers have equivalent processing power to what we believe the human brain to have, but that computational power WILL NOT let us emulate the brain at a hardware level (see the videogame hardware emulation example, and if you're so-inclined, check it out further, as the techniques used to do figure out and emulate old consoles are reallycool), only a software level, which is useless without actually understanding how the brain works.
tl;dr Human-brain-equivalent flops of computational power only allow for software-level emulation of the human brain, which is useless without understanding how the brain truly fundamentally works. Hardware-level emulation will require orders of magnitude more computational power, so in my incredibly oversimplified opinion, both hardware and software emulation of the brain are about a generation away, rather than some time in the 2020's, and this is factoring in exponential growth of technology and science.
- Random fashion thoughts
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