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Thread: Stuff you just don't get.

  1. #4561
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    My brothers kids grew up in a mining town of about 16,000 people 1,500 km north of Perth and passed their driving tests there. At that time there was one stop sign in the entire town, so every test had to take the same route. The nearest set of Traffic Lights was about 1,000 km south of them.

  2. #4562
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    Quote Originally Posted by The Backroad Astronomer View Post
    I don't get why this even had to asked, do you want another connections series from James Burke.
    https://twitter.com/DrJoeHanson/status/1389303711567130631?s=20
    Oh, I would like that. Connections was a favorite. I saw Burke maybe 30 years ago, he gave a speech at a conference I went to. I preferred the show, though. Good to see he is still going.

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  3. #4563
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    Quote Originally Posted by ozduck View Post
    My brothers kids grew up in a mining town of about 16,000 people 1,500 km north of Perth and passed their driving tests there. At that time there was one stop sign in the entire town, so every test had to take the same route. The nearest set of Traffic Lights was about 1,000 km south of them.
    Wow, only one light for that many people? That seems small to me for that many people. I guess traffic must be very light. There is a light on a connecting street to mine, not that far away from my house, for a pedestrian crossing. There are traffic lights all over of course, further on as the it connects to other streets.

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  4. #4564
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    Quote Originally Posted by Van Rijn View Post
    Oh, sorry, I didnít quite read that right the first time. I thought you were talking about a weaver. A weaver goes back and forth between lanes to weave through traffic a little faster than the regular flow. Iíve been cut off by the same weaver on multiple occasions because in practice it often doesnít work that well.

    In your case, it was one of those inconsiderate types, like the guy driving too slow in the fast lane. They just donít care about other drivers or maybe are trying to prove something (I figure the people in the fast lane going the speed limit like to force people to go around them or are protesting against people going faster).
    I think they probably didn't see me. If so, that means they believed themselves on an entirely empty motorway, and promptly moved into the leftmost lane (so in the US, the passing lane) in order to cruise there.
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  5. #4565
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    Quote Originally Posted by Torsten View Post
    Passing lanes on hills are common on our two lane highways (two lanes up and one down)
    This is a common phenomenon when I've driven in the US as well.

    The other phenomenon is the single-lane (each way) roadway that twists and turns through the hills, where passing is prohibited, until it reaches a straightaway, at which point passing is permitted.

    So there are people who drive so slowly that one needs special measuring equipment to detect that they are moving, until they get to the straightaway, upon which they start to drive like they are in the F1, making it impossible to pass them
    People who live in glass houses, should get undressed in the dark.

  6. #4566
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    Quote Originally Posted by Van Rijn View Post
    Wow, only one light for that many people? That seems small to me for that many people. I guess traffic must be very light. There is a light on a connecting street to mine, not that far away from my house, for a pedestrian crossing. There are traffic lights all over of course, further on as the it connects to other streets.
    Give way signs are far more favoured over here. And we have no "Give Way to Right" (or left) rule. Traffic operates on a "priority road system. At any 'T' junction all traffic on the terminating road must give way to any vehicle on their left or right. Almost all 4 way intersections are either sign posted or have painted markings - unbroken line for 'stop' and dashed line for 'give way'.

  7. #4567
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    Quote Originally Posted by The Backroad Astronomer View Post
    I don't get why this even had to asked, do you want another connections series from James Burke.
    https://twitter.com/DrJoeHanson/status/1389303711567130631?s=20
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  8. #4568
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    I'm amused by British shows like Midsomer Murders or Doc Martin that show beautiful countryside views, bisected by a single-lane paved road without so much as a gravel shoulder. The characters always manage to have the entire road to the horizon to themselves, which they drive at top speed. Never does a steady line of traffic come from the other direction, never do they come up on someone heading in their direction but a twenty-percent lower speed, and never do they get stuck in the mud when they are forced to veer off the road because of an on-coming tractor trailer.

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    Does it not rain all the time in England as I was raised to believe?

  9. #4569
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    Quote Originally Posted by jamesabrown View Post
    I'm amused by British shows like Midsomer Murders or Doc Martin that show beautiful countryside views, bisected by a single-lane paved road without so much as a gravel shoulder. The characters always manage to have the entire road to the horizon to themselves, which they drive at top speed. Never does a steady line of traffic come from the other direction, never do they come up on someone heading in their direction but a twenty-percent lower speed, and never do they get stuck in the mud when they are forced to veer off the road because of an on-coming tractor trailer.
    Well, I don't know about England, but yesterday I had exactly the experience you describe--bowling along on a single-track for miles on end without encountering any other traffic apart from a small covy of partridges. It's pretty common.
    But single-track roads have their own rules. They're supplied with passing places, so you can pass oncoming vehicles or pull over to let faster-moving vehicles get past without having to drop off the road surface. And if you do find yourself following someone, you fall back a good distance so that, if they need to pull over to let oncoming traffic past, you can pull over into the previous passing place. So really, queues of traffic don't form except behind panicky tourists who (presumably) haven't or couldn't read the road-signs about correct road-use.

    (And no-one would ever even attempt to bring a tractor-trailer along such a road.)

    Grant Hutchison

  10. #4570
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    Quote Originally Posted by jamesabrown View Post
    I'm amused by British shows like Midsomer Murders or Doc Martin that show beautiful countryside views, bisected by a single-lane paved road without so much as a gravel shoulder. The characters always manage to have the entire road to the horizon to themselves, which they drive at top speed. Never does a steady line of traffic come from the other direction, never do they come up on someone heading in their direction but a twenty-percent lower speed, and never do they get stuck in the mud when they are forced to veer off the road because of an on-coming tractor trailer.

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    Does it not rain all the time in England as I was raised to believe?
    Its not always like it is in those tv shows. There are more fatal accidents in England on roads like these than any other ( I know this because it was a statistic that was presented to me during my speed awareness course). Basically people do encounter head on collisions, along with dodging tractors, cyclists and horses/cattle etc... So as Grant mentioned the sensible approach is to drive with caution and anticipation for other road users.

    And yeah it feels like it always rains in England, though statistically, I don't think it is much different than any other country in this particular part of the northern hemisphere.

  11. #4571
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    It's all summarized in this splendid musical infomercial from 1973,which I remember fondly:
    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=fywNFe5ETt8

    Grant Hutchison

  12. #4572
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    Quote Originally Posted by cosmocrazy View Post
    There are more fatal accidents in England on roads like these than any other ( I know this because it was a statistic that was presented to me during my speed awareness course).
    Doesn't that refer to rural roads generally, rather than single-track roads?

    Grant Hutchison

  13. #4573
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    Quote Originally Posted by jamesabrown View Post

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    Does it not rain all the time in England as I was raised to believe?
    Not on Doc Martin. It never rains in Portwenn!
    It does, of course, rain in Port Isaac, so they have to work the filming schedule around it. We've got a full set of DVD's with extras showing behind the scenes. One shows them shooting a scene of Al and Morwenna (?? one of the receptionists, anyhow) on the balcony of the pub. It was about 40 degrees outside and they had to film in summer clothes, covering up between takes and freezing during them.
    Cum catapultae proscriptae erunt tum soli proscript catapultas habebunt.

  14. #4574
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    Quote Originally Posted by ozduck View Post
    Give way signs are far more favoured over here.
    "Give way". I noted this term in my journal last year as a difference in terminology used in NZ. I'm used to seeing "Yield" signs.

    This picture, taken on the Otago Peninsula near Dunedin, is one of many examples from NZ that I "didn't get". The signs indicated I was in a "Safety Speed Zone" with a limit of 70 km/h. I felt that 40 km/h might be too fast!
    Attached Thumbnails Attached Thumbnails Click image for larger version. 

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  15. #4575
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    Quote Originally Posted by Torsten View Post
    "Give way". I noted this term in my journal last year as a difference in terminology used in NZ. I'm used to seeing "Yield" signs.
    It's "Give Way" in Australia as well. I don't really remember what they tend to use in Africa, but in South Africa, they call traffic lights "robots"
    People who live in glass houses, should get undressed in the dark.

  16. #4576
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    In this:
    https://assets.publishing.service.go...eport-2019.pdf
    Lengthy analysis, the UK comes out quite well compared to most european countries, at about 27 fatalities per million pop 2019. Indeed more on rural roads , nearly 1000 that year, although other accidents are worse on urban roads. That is 5 fatalities per billion miles travelled. More statistics there than you can shake a stick at.
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    When we realize that patterns don't exist in the universe, they are a template that we hold to the universe to make sense of it, it all makes a lot more sense.
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  17. #4577
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    Quote Originally Posted by 21st Century Schizoid Man View Post
    This is a common phenomenon when I've driven in the US as well.

    The other phenomenon is the single-lane (each way) roadway that twists and turns through the hills, where passing is prohibited, until it reaches a straightaway, at which point passing is permitted.

    So there are people who drive so slowly that one needs special measuring equipment to detect that they are moving, until they get to the straightaway, upon which they start to drive like they are in the F1, making it impossible to pass them
    Both that kind of road and that kind of driver are common where I live. Those twisty sections are sometimes referred to as "Double Solids", because of the centreline paint being two uninterrupted lines. And when speaking of drivers with a death wish, "They were passing on a double solid!"

    On our industrial resource roads, where loaded vehicles report their position by radio every 2 km, we have "pull-outs" where the "Empties" and pickups stop to let the loads safely go by.

  18. #4578
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    Current time: 11:16 AM (EDT)
    Time of last post in this thread: 11:25 AM.

    Is there some relativistic time dilation going on here?

    (I know, probably a time zone difference. I'm curious what this post's time stamp will be. It's 11:18 AM here now and I'm about to click post).

    Uhhh... post time is showing 11:36 AM. Unless the server is in a time zone 18 minutes ahead of my local time, something weird is going on. Probably server time is wrong, or Doc Brown's flux capacitor experiment worked.

  19. #4579
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    Quote Originally Posted by Van Rijn View Post
    Oh, I would like that. Connections was a favorite. I saw Burke maybe 30 years ago, he gave a speech at a conference I went to. I preferred the show, though. Good to see he is still going.
    Completely agree. I also loved "The Day the Universe Changed" (both the book and the TV series).
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  20. #4580
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    Quote Originally Posted by Torsten View Post
    I recall seeing signs in Alaska stating a requirement to allow others to pass you if the number of vehicles behind you has reached five, or something to that effect.
    Certainly that's the law in Washington State.

    As to the Connections thing, I actually wrote an article last week lamenting how hard it is to find older educational programming that specifically called out that Connections isn't available streaming anywhere in the US. In "things that make you happy," I mentioned at the end that there was a show I'd loved that I couldn't even remember the name of, much less find, and someone identified it for me--and I found it on a streaming site. Perhaps not an entirely legal copy, but I did manage to watch the whole thing again.
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  21. #4581
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    Quote Originally Posted by kpatz View Post
    Current time: 11:16 AM (EDT)
    Time of last post in this thread: 11:25 AM.

    Is there some relativistic time dilation going on here?

    (I know, probably a time zone difference. I'm curious what this post's time stamp will be. It's 11:18 AM here now and I'm about to click post).

    Uhhh... post time is showing 11:36 AM. Unless the server is in a time zone 18 minutes ahead of my local time, something weird is going on. Probably server time is wrong, or Doc Brown's flux capacitor experiment worked.
    There is a thread in Feedback about it. The clock on whatever server the forum sits on is off. It has been drifting for a while.

    You'd think people on this forum would like it - didn't you always want to know what it would be like to live in the future.
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  22. #4582
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    Quote Originally Posted by Swift View Post
    didn't you always want to know what it would be like to live in the future.
    Yes, but i was hoping for more "utopia" and less "dystopia."

    I'm reminded of something I wrote years back and posted on Facebook called the "Theory of Meeting Relativity". It boiled down to how time slows down inside meetings. Unfortunately my Facebook account went away permanently a couple years ago and I don't know if I still have a copy of this post anywhere. I might have to rewrite it and share it.

    As for the server, it must be traveling slower than we are for its time to be so far ahead.

  23. #4583
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    Quote Originally Posted by Torsten View Post
    I recall seeing signs in Alaska stating a requirement to allow others to pass you if the number of vehicles behind you has reached five, or something to that effect.
    Yep!

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    While the law applies to all 2-lane roads outside of urban areas, these signs seem most prevalent on the way down the Kenai Peninsula. They start before one leaves Anchorage on the Seward Highway and continue on the Sterling Highway to Homer. It's no wonder, what with all the RVs and boat haulers on these roads in high summer. I've been caught behind many a tourist and local weekender who couldn't be bothered to count past four.

    In addition to the slow vehicle pullouts, we also have occasional stretches of road where two lanes become three for about 1-to-1Ĺ miles, with one side getting the extra lane. Slower traffic moves to the extra lane on the right, allowing folks to pass on the left. Another such stretch comes along a couple-few miles later for the other side to get their turn. These weren't plentiful when I first moved here but the state has done a pretty good job of upgrading these highways over the last 20 years.
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  24. #4584
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    Quote Originally Posted by Swift View Post
    There is a thread in Feedback about it. The clock on whatever server the forum sits on is off. It has been drifting for a while. ...
    One of our longtime Members (and Moderators) was playing around awhile back and found a way to post a reply that was time stamped before the post to which he was replying. I don't think he ever told us how he did it. I can't prove a connection but the problems with the server clock started after that. I think he broke the clock ... if not the space-time continuum.
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  25. #4585
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    Quote Originally Posted by Jim View Post
    I think he broke the clock ... if not the space-time continuum.
    Easy fix, just reverse the polarity of the neutron flow.
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  26. #4586
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    Quote Originally Posted by Jim View Post
    One of our longtime Members (and Moderators) was playing around awhile back and found a way to post a reply that was time stamped before the post to which he was replying. I don't think he ever told us how he did it. I can't prove a connection but the problems with the server clock started after that. I think he broke the clock ... if not the space-time continuum.
    Some years back, a discussion board that I frequented had a brief problem wherein posts got time-stamped several days in the future. Once it was fixed, newer postings got proper timestamps, but the future ones stayed in place, and would until later new ones overtook them in whatever forum it happened to be.

    I was sufficiently motivated to get up in the middle of the night (alarm clock), log in and create a message that would appear just before a certain post-from-the-future, in which I was able to say "I'll bet that any time now, ol' Joe Blow will chime in here with a boring defense of that awful film Invaders from Nowhere."

    And, of course, said boring defense followed as predicted.

    I think it was worth it.

  27. #4587
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    Quote Originally Posted by Jim View Post
    One of our longtime Members (and Moderators) was playing around awhile back and found a way to post a reply that was time stamped before the post to which he was replying. I don't think he ever told us how he did it. I can't prove a connection but the problems with the server clock started after that. I think he broke the clock ... if not the space-time continuum.
    I don't know whether it is the same here, since the board software is different. But this technique has worked on other boards.

    a) Keep a stack of posts ready, somewhere in a hidden moderator area. These posts will be time-stamped when they are created.
    b) When ready, move one of the ready posts, with an appropriate time stamp, into its own thread.
    c) Edit the post to read whatever it is supposed to read. (This seems like the critical step - does the board software mark it as "last edited" at the time it was last edited? Some board software won't do it if the post is the last one in the thread.)
    d) Merge the post, which now reads the way it is supposed to, into the thread where it is supposed to be.
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  28. #4588
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    Quote Originally Posted by 21st Century Schizoid Man View Post
    I don't know whether it is the same here, since the board software is different. But this technique has worked on other boards.

    a) Keep a stack of posts ready, somewhere in a hidden moderator area. These posts will be time-stamped when they are created.
    b) When ready, move one of the ready posts, with an appropriate time stamp, into its own thread.
    c) Edit the post to read whatever it is supposed to read. (This seems like the critical step - does the board software mark it as "last edited" at the time it was last edited? Some board software won't do it if the post is the last one in the thread.)
    d) Merge the post, which now reads the way it is supposed to, into the thread where it is supposed to be.
    If you have moderator or administrator access to the site that trick would work. If you have SQL access to the database it's trivial to change the date stamp of an existing post.

    I can't think of any way for a regular member to do something like this, except perhaps on a board that stores "local" time stamps on posts rather than UTC timestamps, then a user could do it by changing their timezone before making a post.

  29. #4589
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    I don't get (how appropriate for this particular thread ) why people are so amazed about the time stamp issues with this forum. I don't know of any two computer systems or smart devices I deal with that show the exact same time and lots of those clocks show some degree of change in the delta T over time. Unless one makes the effort to regularly sync a system to some sort of calibrated clock, this kind of drift happens all the time.

    Yes, you can sync to such systems (GPS being one of the easier ones to access, NIST over the Internet being another), but few system creators or administrators bother because it doesn't really matter.
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  30. #4590
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    Quote Originally Posted by Swift View Post
    I don't get (how appropriate for this particular thread ) why people are so amazed about the time stamp issues with this forum. I don't know of any two computer systems or smart devices I deal with that show the exact same time and lots of those clocks show some degree of change in the delta T over time. Unless one makes the effort to regularly sync a system to some sort of calibrated clock, this kind of drift happens all the time.

    Yes, you can sync to such systems (GPS being one of the easier ones to access, NIST over the Internet being another), but few system creators or administrators bother because it doesn't really matter.
    Most server software (whether Windows or Linux based) comes with some sort of NTP client ready to go or even installed by default, so drifting times on servers tend to be the exception rather than the rule these days.

    Every system in my house is synced via NTP.

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