Wednesday, September 30, 2009

The Hockey-Stick Crumbles

Well, well, well. Looks like someone has been cooking the books with climate change data, and now we have proof. Cherry-picking data is a big scientific no-no. Maybe that's why they were so reluctant to release their data, since it could then be used to prove the complete opposite of what they were claiming. If you include all the data, instead of just the bits you like, there is no evidence of global warming. Ooops.

Steve McIntyre of Climate Audit was tireless for TEN YEARS trying to get this data. He may possibly be an honorary Mountie, for he never gave up and he got his Mann. (oooo, science joke ...)

As CA readers also know, until recently, CRU staunchly refused to provide the measurement data used in Briffa’s Yamal reconstruction. Science(mag) acquiesced in this refusal in connection with Osborn and Briffa 2006. While the Yamal chronology was used in a Science article, it originated with Briffa 2000 and Science(mag) took the position that the previous journal (which had a different data policy) had jurisdiction. Briffa used the chronology Briffa et al (Phil Trans B, 2008) and the Phil Trans editors finally seized the nettle, requiring Briffa to archive the data. As noted before, Briffa asked for an extension and, when I checked earlier this year, the Yamal measurement data remained unarchived. A few days ago, I noticed that the Yamal data was finally placed online. With the information finally available, this analysis has only taken a few days.
(Translation: real scientists can't hide their data when they publish the results. Journal Philosophical Transactions B enforced this rule, and Mr. McIntyre went to town.) And looky what it shows (black line is all data, red is, um, "highly selective"). No Hockey Stick. Sorry Al, give back the Nobel.

Monday, September 28, 2009

William Safire: The Last Word

William Safire, apparently the only intelligent writer at the New York Times, has died. I thought for sure he was older than time and immortal. He loved the English language and wrote "On Language", a column that would delve into some of the more peculiar usages or interesting origins of words and phrases. He was the first columnist I can remember "following", purely for that column. Bill Clinton wanted to punch him in the nose for describing Hillary as a "congenital liar". That's pretty much proof Safire was a good guy, right there.

The word of the day is "apotheosis".

Pronunciation: \ə-ˌpä-thē-ˈō-səs, ˌa-pə-ˈthē-ə-səs\
Function: noun
Inflected Form(s): plural apo·the·o·ses
Etymology: Late Latin, from Greek apotheōsis, from apotheoun to deify, from apo- + theos god
Date: circa 1580

1 : elevation to divine status : deification
2 : the perfect example : quintessence

Sunday, September 27, 2009

Sunday Funnies

-Schlock Mercenary It is very important to test emergency explosives.
-TwoLumps Snooch generates greenhouse gases.
-Girl Genius Time to fix the generator. In the basement. Where Von Pinn is probably lurking ...
-No Need For Bushido New comic Monday! Plus, the Ken non-canon comic has been updated.
-Digger It would have been nice to know about the tunnel before falling into the cravasse...
-SHOCK! Antidiluvian comedian produces new Arrgggh!onauts comic! Faster than a speeding Cenozoic glacier, he is...

Not Updated, fie!

-Dresden Codak
-My Ninja Family
-Gone with the Blastwave

Saturday, September 19, 2009

AVAST! Ye Scurvy Dogs, the lot o' ye!

It's Talk Like A Pirate Day! Further proof of the great superiority pirates have over ninjas, since you can't talk like a ninja, CAN YOU? You can't.

Ooo, and Cap'n Slappy and co. have a book out, too! And what's this Pirate News Network thingy?

UPDATE: Also! Man kan auf Deutsch Piratikal sprechen!

Sunday, September 13, 2009

Sunday Funnies

-Schlock Mercenary Evil? Not Evil? Lota is the robot with the gun!
-TwoLumps Deep questions about water dishes.
-Girl Genius Are Gil's secrets about to be revealed? Or are the Foglios just being big teases again?
-No Need For Bushido New comic Monday, or I'll tell Ken they hid the sake.
-Digger Ghostly wombat relatives.
-Dresden Codak Big honking new comic, now with (cough)fanservice (cough).

Not Updated, fie!

-My Ninja Family
-Gone with the Blastwave

Saturday, September 12, 2009

I censure Joe Wilson

He didn't go far enough.

He should have done something like this:

Friday, September 11, 2009

I got yer Day of Service right here, pal

Do they really think they can paper over the memory of 9/11 with this nonsense? Cover over blood and fire and death by cleaning up a park or serving soup to the homeless? I have great faith in New Yorkers, who can carry a grudge to the moon and back. Who probably still have particles of their carbonized friends in their lungs. They won't forget what this day really is.

And why couldn't the "service" be appropriate to the day? Why not make this a day to go to fire and police departments and volunteer, or even bring them cookies and thank-you cards? Why not set aside the day to learn first aid? Learn hand-to-hand fighting techniques? Something USEFUL?

I, Snarkatron, hereby declare this day, in addition to 9/11 Remembrance Day, to be "I Am Not a Goddam Helpless Target Day". If you work in a tall office building, like I do, learn your surroundings.

- "The nearest exit may be behind you" is not just for airplanes. Do you know where *all* the stairwells are, and where they exit? How about the freight elevator?
- Do you know where the fire extinguishers are, and the first aid kit? Is that kit stocked, or have successive paper cut incidents emptied it?
- If you have to get out of Dodge, what are the best routes and where do you want to regroup? If there are crowds/falling debris/flame outside on the street, is there any way to get around this? (The building I work in has several clever tunnels that connect to neighboring buildings. Plus, the Seattle Metro has a handy, quite deep transit tunnel that can get a large number of people away from the city center.)
- Are there people in your office with mobility issues? Our fire and safety training covers how to carry such people down stairs in a chair, for example.
-If stairs are damaged, do you know where the strong points are? (Hint: Where the stairs connect to the wall is usually the strongest point.)
-If you are a Slave to Fashion and wear wobbly high heels, do you have some cheap fold-up slippers in a desk drawer you could wear just in case you have to run for your life at top speed?

It isn't comfortable to think about these things. Most people would rather not. But thinking about them NOW, when you aren't on fire, will make it easier when you have no choice but to think about them. Or die.

Sunday, September 06, 2009

Sunday Funnies

-Schlock Mercenary Meanwhile, back in orbit around Mars...
-TwoLumps Kitty dentures.
-Girl Genius What do you mean, you're out of lightning?
-No Need For Bushido Ina and Yori get interrupted. Blushes abound.
-Lackadaisy Even MORE pages!
-DiggerThe pet baby demon has moved away from home. Warriors don't know how to comfort sad wombats.

Not Updated, fie!

-Dresden Codak
-My Ninja Family
-Gone with the Blastwave