The things that destroy us also better us, your opinion?
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Thread: The things that destroy us also better us, your opinion?

  1. #1
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    The things that destroy us also better us, your opinion?

    A friend emailed me this:

    When NASA first started sending up astronauts, they quickly discovered
    that ball-point pens would not work in zero gravity.

    To combat this problem, NASA scientists spent a decade and $12 billion
    developing a pen that writes in zero gravity, upside down, on almost any
    surface including glass and at temperatures ranging from below freezing
    to over 300 C.
    The Russians used a pencil.

    Enjoy paying your taxes -- they're coming due again
    This is why I hate politics. What does that email have to do with politics you might say? Americans are not stupid, we were aware we could use a pencil but what we wanted to do was make it look as if we (capitalism) were superior to them (communism). Imagine being in a room and the other guy has just a pencil but you have this zero gravity, writes on anything, all temperature pen. Itís an ego thing. This type of behavior I think causes a lot of problems but at the same time these behaviors lead to great technology. Such as how the first computer was used by the government to target enemies (basicly aiming a big gun) but now look at computers. Even the internet, TCP/IP has patterns based upon the idea that the technology in use before would have communications disabled if a nuclear war would occur. The things that destroy us, literally or in character, also seem to better us.

    Any thoughts?
    A mind full of questions has no room for answers

  2. #2
    AO Decepticon CXGJarrod's Avatar
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    Re: The things that destroy us also better us, your opinion?

    Originally posted here by hiddeninclouds
    This is why I hate politics. What does that email have to do with politics you might say? Americans are not stupid, we were aware we could use a pencil but what we wanted to do was make it look as if we (capitalism) were superior to them (communism). Imagine being in a room and the other guy has just a pencil but you have this zero gravity, writes on anything, all temperature pen. Itís an ego thing. This type of behavior I think causes a lot of problems but at the same time these behaviors lead to great technology. Such as how the first computer was used by the government to target enemies (basicly aiming a big gun) but now look at computers. Even the internet, TCP/IP has patterns based upon the idea that the technology in use before would have communications disabled if a nuclear war would occur. The things that destroy us, literally or in character, also seem to better us.

    Any thoughts?
    hmmm... you can write with a ballpoint pen in space according to this weblog

    http://www.esa.int/export/esaCP/SEM9...D_index_0.html
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  3. #3
    Just a Virtualized Geek MrLinus's Avatar
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    The things that destroy us, literally or in character, also seem to better us.
    This is a very true statement (although the example may not be accurate). People learn a lot more when they fail at something than when they are successful every time. My students express huge frustration when a lab doesn't go right (Umm... re-read the lab and you forgot a step), they can't install because of some hardware issue (Ummm... go do "reeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeesearch" on Google and learn how to be self-sufficient), or don't know what the application is (Umm... go Read the Fine Manual -- aka RTFM).

    The examples that were given to prove this comment aren't quite accurate. They are just indications of military being used to drive technological advance, which in of itself may or may not be a bad thing. A better (albeit unpleasant example) is what the Nazi doctors did to humans during WW II. The reality is that those people were tortured to the sake of science and medicine. And the results of those tests have benefitted society. It did better us, unfortunately.
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  4. #4
    I just checked on the website http://www.esa.int/export/esaCP/SEM...MD_index_0.html the guy who went tripping to out of space said
    "The ink doesn't fall", they said. "Just try for a moment writing face down with a ballpoint pen and you will see I'm right", they said.
    I think even with a zero gravity level writing face down wont let the ink drip

    I really can't get the relevance of the story to politics, let me just analize it one more time. Sorry I'm slow

  5. #5
    Senior Member RoadClosed's Avatar
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    It's interesting that someone would believe a ball point pen cost 12 billion dollars. When Endeavor, cost around 2.1 billion. That was an entire space shuttle built to replace Challenger after it's 1986 accidental destruction. The pen the astronauts carry cost 12 times that of an entire shuttle? Wow and all it consists of is a canister of ink under pressure.

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    The examples that were given to prove this comment aren't quite accurate. They are just indications of military being used to drive technological advance
    Yes, but this military drive for technological advance comes from these negative behaviors: having to build a machine to calibrate a gun to shoot people you can't see, having to develop a way to communicate after a nuclear war
    A mind full of questions has no room for answers

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    I don't know about the cost but they did develop the pen. My dad bought one as a novelty item back about ~15 years ago. It was silver (coloured) and it could write upside down and such. I don't remember much else about it as it was fairly plain jane and we had no access to spacecraft to truely test it out.
    Do unto others as you would have them do unto you.
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    Um. The nazis genetic- bio experiments aim was not benefit society at all but to create a master race. Many were tortured during these lab studies.

    Some clarification of your example would be helpful.
    Trappedagainbyperfectlogic.

  9. #9
    Just a Virtualized Geek MrLinus's Avatar
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    The nazis genetic- bio experiments aim was not benefit society at all but to create a master race. Many were tortured during these lab studies.
    I never said that the aim was to benefit society. But the results that were discovered were used and have benefitted society.

    For further clarification (and for those that want to debate it start a new thread please) visit some of the following:

    The Ethics of Using Medical Data from Nazi Experiments

    Bioethical Codes, Oaths and Prayers

    Memories of Nazi Past Stirred by Debates Over Embryo Research and Euthanasia

    Jenner on Trial


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    I see. Thks for the clarification and links.
    Trappedagainbyperfectlogic.

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