Here in Australia we held back from giving certain vaccines (the mRNA vaccines we have available here) to some demographics when the virus was suppressed here, until the risk from a new outbreak meant it was safer to get the vaccine than not. The adenovirus vaccine we have available was not held back in the same way.

The contention in this discussion, I think, is that we haven't established an absolute yardstick for an 'impeccable safety record'.

You rightly point out the adverse effects we're seeing from these new vaccines, and that they appear more frequent than adverse effects from past vaccines, but that doesn't make them significantly less safe.

Suppose we have an old vaccine that has adverse effects 1% of the time (this would be terrible, but still), and a new vaccine that has twice as many adverse effects. The old vaccine would be 99% safe and the new vaccine 98% safe - quite similar (though still terrible)!

When we start talking about the actual rate of excess adverse effects for the covid vaccines it's on the order of 10 per million doses [0]. Even if this is 10 times worse than old vaccines we're talking about vaccines that are 99.9999% safe vs 99.999% safe.

Based on the evidence we have these vaccines are extremely safe, and I would feel comfortable accepting the 'impeccable safety record' label even though I probably wouldn't choose it myself.

The original claim was a qualified 'impeccable' - "the current ones with an impeccable record" - that is the original response was that the current covid vaccines are as safe as the other safe vaccines we have.

The follow up was saying "the covid vaccine doesn't have a perfect safety record therefore it's not really impeccable is it!" while not comparing to other safe vaccines at all.

You can't use a broad definition in the original claim and then try and use a narrow definition when refuting counter claims.

> 2. I expect a vaccine to significantly (VE >90%) reduce infection probability for at least 10 years. These vaccines ain't that.

Why do you expect this, and do you think it's a reasonable expectation? Do you shrug off flu vaccines because they're only effective for a year or so? (I understand the difference between reduction in efficacy over time against a single strain vs against new variations)

> While I'm vaccinated, I have not signed up for an endless stream of "boosters" every 6 months or so. Probably I'll be declared "unvaccinated" with a straight face and excluded from society in the not-so-far future.

I don't understand this point of view at all. Do you only take the first pill in a course of antibiotics? Why wouldn't you follow the vaccine schedule that offers the best overall protection, and best reduction in total risk, that we're aware of and is available to you?

It's never "all mosquitos" it's "all of these 2-3 types (Anopheles) of mosquitoes that are vectors for human pathogens".

The ecosystem impact is still super important to understand, but it's reasonable to think that other mosquitos, or similar insects, could fill the niche left behind.

Your example is misleading because of your choice of characters (and to some degree typeface), not your choice of alphabet. You would have the same problem (and people have had the problem) using the characters 1, I, and l in identifiers.

This argument does not apply to the original example and it's an odd argument to make.

The biggest downside to using 'φ' over 'phi' is how hard the first is to type on most keyboards, and how it might be harder to google (although I just tested and copy+paste+search gives me the right answer immediately).

I'm a fan of reducing jargon, but this is a very standard symbol and I like its use in a codebase - especially one targeted at people studying mathematics.

I don't have any specific resources to recommend, however I'll give my take on the foundations of 'numbers'.

We use the label 'number' to refer to a broad swathe of mathematical objects, objects that are different but also so similar they often appear interchangeable (for example counting numbers and fractions).

In the formal mathematical sense, a specific type of number is a group of objects which have been defined to have specific properties. I'm going to leave object and property as defined in the usual sense, I think most people have a good idea about what those are and not sure I can add anything to them.

There are no rules as to what properties you are allowed to give to objects, nor what group of objects you want to include, but generally if you are learning about some specific thing it's because people find them useful or interesting; the definitions we have for different types of numbers are the ones we have found useful or interesting.

Remember that the different types of number appear very similar. It is common to build a 'hierarchy' of differnt types of numbers, where we start with a simple type of number and then add new properties and objects when we find limitations we don't want.

The first type of number in this hierarchy are the natural numbers (sometimes called counting numbers). The most common properties defined for these today are called the Peano axioms [0]. There are quite a few of them, and the history of how we came to the formalisation is very interesting (a lot of it is about avoiding inconsistencies/contradictions) but the key ideas are:

- there is a natural number called 0

- every natural number has a successor, which is also a natural number - we can write S(n) is the successor of n

Most of the other axioms define what it means for two natural numbers to be equal (=).

Just having these objects isn't particularly useful, we typically want to do things like add, multiply, and compare numbers. To do that we include some operations: addition (+), multiplication (*), and total ordering(<=).

These are defined as, taking a, b, c as natural numbers:

- a + 0 = a

- a + S(b) = S(a + b) (this is recursive, so if we define 1 as 1:=S(0) then we have 1+1 = 1+S(0) = S(1+0) = S(1))

- a * 0 = 0

- a * S(b) = a + (a * b)

- a <= b if (and only if) there exists some c such that a + c = b

Importantly, using these definitions, we can say that the natural numbers are closed under addition and multiplication; whenever you add or multiply two natural numbers together you get another natural number.

To continue building the hierarchy we notice that there are operations we would like to do but are not possible for every natural number (please note I am skipping over the formalisations from hereon and talking about the motivation for different types of numbers).

We notice that if we can add two numbers together we should be able to subtract them again. If a + b = c, then c - b = a. However (for example) 0 - 1 is not a natural number. So we extend the natural numbers to the integers, such that the integers are closed under subtraction.

If we can multiply it makes sense to try and divide, but 2 / 3 is not an integer so we extend integers to the rationals (ratios of integers) which are closed under division. We add an object called 2/3 so that now when we can say 2 / 3 = 2/3.

The next step in the hierarchy is a bit more complex. We notice that we can define a subset of rational numbers that all meet a certain criteria, for example all rational numbers that are less than 2. We call 2 an upper bound of that subset. Notice that 2 is a rational number, and that there are no rational numbers smaller than 2 that are also an upper bound of our subset - 2 is the least upper bound. Define a new subset, where we say a rational number x is in the subset if x * x < 2. We can easily see that 2 is an upper bound for this set, but so is the rational number 1.5, and 1.42, and 1.415. In fact, there is no least upper bound for this set that is a rational number. We extend the rational numbers to include a least upper bound for every subset of rationals, and we call this the real numbers. The real numbers have a lot of nice properties, most notably they are complete under the normal ordering, which essentially means that there are no gaps.

The reals don't have everything though! We notice that we can create polynomial equations, like x * x - 1 = 0 and that sometimes these can be solved (in this case x = 1 or x = -1 solves the equation) and in other cases they can't. For example, there are no real numbers that are the solution to the equation x * x + 1 = 0. We can extend the real numbers to the complex numbers by adding a new object called i, which has the property i * i = -1. A complex number has the form a + b * i, where a and b are real numbers. The complex numbers are called algebraically closed, and there is a really nice result that shows that all polynomials have solutions in the complex numbers.

The hierarchy actually keeps going, but hopefully you can see that numbers are just objects with properties that behave in useful and interesting ways under different operations. The formal definitions we have today have been refined over a long period of time to avoid contradictions and other issues, but there is nothing stopping you from making up your own numbers with their own properties. If they are useful or interesting other people will probably use them too!

> > New Colonies may be either agricultural or mining colonies; rarely, resort colonies

> Maybe resort colonies are not fun to write about. Actually... Star Trek TNG has a bunch of episodes about Risa, which is a whole fricking fully climate-controlled resort planet.

I think one was more about the fact that entire planets are "just" colonies: farming, mining, or resort. It's far more likely that it's a planet with lots of different things going on.

----

More generally, I think each item can be categorised by what type of shortcut is being taken by authors of huge universes.

- This physical problem will be easily solved by technology

- Yes this system is complex, let's not worry about the details

- It's easier to treat an entire planet like a single town, as our protaginist's journey becomes easily relatable to other story forms we are familiar with

I think audiences are ok with shortcuts a lot of the time, and often the really glaring holes in a world aren't even obvious unless pointed out (like his example where there is no law enforcement, but also no one underage in the bar).

Some things are just not believeable at all, and by reaching for a shortcut to make the story relatable introduces huge conceptual issues. So for example, it's fine to think that there may be some technological advancement that means spaceships don't have to worry about orbital mechanics, but if there is then that technology would be used everywhere as it's essentially vast amounts of energy or gravity generation.

Scifi in the near future gets to borrow the complexity of our world. So things like black mirror can ask "what would happen if we had a social credit score" and explore that in a very complex environment that it gets mostly for free.

The more alien your setting the less you can borrow from your audience's own experience. If you introduce some 'magic' (cryosleep, faster than light travel, fast travel between planets, etc) it is your responsibility to explain why it is only used for the one specific plot device you want it used for. This is one of the reasons why world building is hard, and even worse when you have hundreds of worlds to build. It's easier to just pretend the universe is made up of little towns that correspond directly to stereotypes from whatever culture you are from.

I remember reading something about the legality of changing lanes in an intersection in different jurisdictions, and a quick google gives me this [0].

The consensus seems to be that it's legal in many places, however a dangerous lane change is always illegal and changing lanes in an intersection is almost always dangerous.

Just in case you missed it, the person you're replying to asked a focused question about the new FSD Beta software.

The investigation you reference stems from previous versions of the softawre.

The broader context can't be ignored when discussing the new software, but it's reasonable to point to progress as demonstration that the chosen technology path is a viable one.

No idea if you know this or not, but I use the thread collapse button judiciously to skip these long sidethreads (after reading the first few subcomments...)

An aspect of this I find fascinating is the different ways photos from Mars are coloured.

The cameras they have sent are quite good and can take 'true colour' images.

From the raw images they can be coloured as if a human was standing on Mars, but more often are coloured as if that part of Mars was on Earth. The reason for this is so that scientists can use their Earth-adjusted eyes to study the images - you want minerals in the photo to look familiar to the Earth scientist.

A mathematician was exploring a proof, and was shown that the avenue of inquiry they were making could not possible lead where they wanted to go. As a consequence they stopped investigating that path and potentially, as they were shown why that path was invalid, can see possible ways around the problem.

Perhaps the most effective thing a person can spend their time on is pointing people along paths likely to lead to success, and guiding them away from dead ends.

Git is (has been) in the process of rewriting many shell commands etc in C. There are a few reasons for this, but part of the reason is to make Git more portable.

This work is slow, and a lot of the progress seems to be driven by the Google Summer of Code program (sort of like open source interns), so I suspect it will be a while before all the shell scripts are rewritten.

Proving that one branch of a tunnel system does not lead to the open air is advancing the knowledge frontier. It's not as 'advancing' as finding a tunnel that does lead to the surface, but it is still useful.

I think I agree with the rest of what you have said.

Was about to reply with this exact sentiment. If the page is about you or your service, propose the updates in the talk page (ideally with reliable third-party sources).

This part might not be entirely accurate due to a lack of image data around takeoff and landing. I had to make my best guess from reference video taken by the Perseverance rover on a previous flight. That landing was a little rough and showed some bounce, so I recreated that.