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01:00 - 18:0018:00 - 00:00

1:02 AM
@rcollyer I've been on the BioBeta again today; it just makes me feel like we're on the right track. The user base needs maturity, but there's already good potential.
1:18 AM
@CHM For me, the fact that we got out of commitment shattering every record was a fantastic sign. Just a little time is needed, that's all.
1:52 AM
@rcollyer Speaking of getting out of commitment, over 25% of committers to the Mathematica site have fulfilled the commitment (by posting 10 times or whatever the formula is). You have to get all the way to Christianity (in beta 224 days) before seeing a beta with anything like that (in their case, above, at 30%). Most other betas have single-digit numbers.
@Verbeia thus, after being hotter than sex (in the beginning of the proposal), we are now competing with Christianity on commitment to our cause
surely we deserve some kind of recognition for these?
@Verbeia I think we're headed for an early graduation, relatively speaking, probably on the order of 6 mos.
Towards that end, we should discuss the idea of a community promotion ad, again. I think we need some info from WRI on what we can reasonably use without exposing SE to a lawsuit, though. Anybody know anyone who works at WRI? :P
@rcollyer I have no idea :)
I thought you might still be around.
@rcollyer I intended to just pop in and got held up by that question Jagra posted on mean residual life...
2:07 AM
There's a proposal to use a custom spikey in our ad/design. My concern is we could get into legal hot water over its use. Since your a programmer, I wouldn't expect you to know where we can tread there, but any insight?
Better, yet, who can we ask?
@AndyRoss I know that feeling.
Hmm.. let me think on that
@rcollyer arnoud had something on that...
I think he said that regardless of copyright and lawsuit concerns, we should try to generate a creative design from within the community
@yoda true, but I don't recall what it was, and I think it was along the lines of he didn't know.
I shot off an email to a friend who should be able to find out more.
Jan 26 at 2:29, by Arnoud Buzing
My personal feeling is that, even if there is no objection, it makes sense to have a user contest to design something unique and beautiful and signifying the community.
2:10 AM
I'm in agreement with Arnoud
@yoda Good find. Was it bookmarked?
@rcollyer no, I remembered the conversation. Search is your friend if you know what to search for :)
I agree with the sentiment, I just want to avoid getting sued.
@yoda and @rcollyer should be easy enough to hold a contest on meta
@AndyRoss exactly my thinking. The link above suggests that.
2:12 AM
@rcollyer just need to make sure its publicized heavily enough and that enough time is given for the voting.
@rcollyer Want to open up a design suggestions post? People can suggest stuff on a rolling basis whenever thoughts occur to them
@rcollyer would it be considered in poor form if one of the moderators put comments on some of the promising graphics-related posts saying, "you should take a look at this question"
@rcollyer temporary of course
I hadn't considered that.
I spammed countless people when trying to get this up and running, but it was in the name of a good cause. :)
My concern with just posting to meta is that a lot of people will miss it. I myself only check it when I'm really really out of things to do.
2:16 AM
I will try to get it marked that way it shows up in the links on the side.
Shouldn't be a problem.
@rcollyer that would certainly help
(getting it marked that is)
Well I'm out of here. Talk to you all later!
Thanks. Talk to you later.
btw, SO still gets about 50 questions/month... didn't realize there were that many
I've nearly ceased all activity on SO
2:21 AM
There's quite a few over there.
Some get migrated. Some aren't worth it.
Well, I haven't been active on dsp and gardening in a long time either... gotta head back there
Don't you moderate over there?
yes, I do... I take care of the moderation stuff, but haven't posted much in a while.
any chance to look at what we talked about earlier?
oh, no not yet. sorry
2:26 AM
thought I'd ask. no big deal.
anyway, speaking of dsp — there was a messy affair a few days ago and I just had to leave for a while after all the unpleasantness
Don't feel like it's a very happy place to hang out
doesn't sound like fun.
how's that site doing?
It's doing fine... not splendid, but growing steadily in both users and traffic.
Way too many subdomains and specialized topics for there to be experts in all... kind of like your theoretical physics problem
Exactly. Except th-phys isn't drawing in a diverse enough crowd.
Not enough imageprocessing experts. Halirutan and a couple of others also active on mma.se are the ones that answer those
2:30 AM
It's mostly high-energy/particle phys.
Apart from that, there are some very good knowledgable folks there, so it's a good place to go to
I feared that it will turn into a MATLAB/OpenCV dumpyard, and despite best efforts, it is turning into one
I even have a question on the top unanswered questions list, 15 question view!
@yoda that's not fun.
@rcollyer Yeah... I used to stomp out those when I was visiting actively, but then I took a break after qualifying and then a short "vacation" and I see it's all MATLAB everywhere.
At least, one saving grace is that the users answering are not (generally) giving them code solutions, but rather approaches and ideas, which is good
I've earned less than 1k rep since Sept last yr... I kind of lost interest in the site and now mostly do janitorial work.
Janitors are needed, but it is not a job I ever wanted.
The question is up. It will post in here soon.
@rcollyer It is fun when it's a community that you enjoy participating in. I like it on gardening. DSP, not so much.
2:37 AM
What's wrong with the community over there? Not cohesive enough?
SOB is still getting Enlightened badges ... :P
Exactly. It was one of those that languished for more than a year in Area51 and when we went into beta, folks found out that they couldn't invite others... no questions being asked, bored of seeing the existing ones... a good number of them left during private beta
And they've just extended the commitment requirements ...
Even now, it's mostly a non-cohesive community, but it's changing.
Well that makes me glad we got through as fast as we did. Our "loss" of cohesiveness did not begin until we were well into beta, and different people started to burn out.
I see a big difference in the kind of questions asked on gardening and dsp... no one has an "urgent" issue with their plant and even if they did (I wonder what it could be) it can't be fixed overnight. So mostly questions are thought out and written decently. On the other hand, where there are colleges, there are assignments. And where there are students, there are last-minute-joes. So...
2:41 AM
But, we've remained a community.
@yoda Hey, I've always been a member of the last-minute club ... and nearly failed out because of it, but that's beside the point!
@rcollyer heh, I'm in that club too :D but I don't like it when someone posts a messy pile asking for help and I've got to clean up
@rcollyer who isn't...
Hell, even if it is last minute, if they actually wrote it calmly and without any trace of urgency, people would gladly help
Yeah, if your going to belong, you need to at least deal with the risks.
Most folks are disinclined to help if you put URGENTTTTT! in the title
2:44 AM
Or type in all caps.
or paste the actual question literally
Or, don't format their damned code! Although, I will give a pass to the new users, for a question/answer or two.
@acl ha, another classic. Never fails to give me a chuckle
I love it when it is a scanned in picture of the assignment!
Especially, when it's text. Pictures, sure, but text?
@rcollyer what did they extend it to?
2:50 AM
I'm looking for it now.
wow, Verbeia is still active on discuss.area51
lol, my defense of mathematica proposal answer is the highest on area51!! Finally, that can go on my resumé now
still looking
btw, did you ever get to 100 on mso?
currently at 99.
I think you mean this one.. right?
2:54 AM
Yes, and it didn't show up in my search. should have started with Robert.
Ok, I think I read about that a while ago.
and it effects the Definition phase
@yoda Really?
@rcollyer lol.. didn't even see my comment there! Ok, so I definitely read it
I'm not likely to ever propose another site, or participate in one, for that matter.
Yeah, I'm pretty tired of it. If I ever do participate, it'll probably be when it's public
btw, approve that edit on your mso post... you'll get a stray vote
3:01 AM
thanks. wasn't paying all that much attention to it.
Q: What should our site design look like?

rcollyerAs we are approaching 90 days, it is time to get us back to answering the 7 Essential Questions. In terms of site design, we ultimately need to consider a number minutiae such as logo, the top banner, the look of our badges, the color scheme used, etc. As this is a large topic, this question sho...

Wow, the queue on one of the clusters is nearly empty of queued jobs. All but 2 are running, and 64 of the nodes are about to free up in the next 10 hours. Hmm... should get some stuff queued up.
3:47 AM
I like how it improves my flair:
4:10 AM
Speaking of Gold badges: 21 days to go until Fanatic is given out to quite a few people.
6 hours later…
10:23 AM
@yoda, ping me when around
2 hours later…
12:19 PM
It looks like chat had an upgrade as well
Had some more fun with the grab-plot-data question. The answer is now way over the top as far as length is concerned. Mods should do something against that. ;-)
1:15 PM
@Heike looks nice.
@SjoerdCdeVries you'd think the mods would be on top of excessively long answers like that! After all, there's this trouble maker, he just keeps making these excessively long posts!
@SjoerdCdeVries Did you get auto-flagged for it? :)
@rcollyer not yet
Oh well. It would be ironic.
@rcollyer made your meta featured
Awesome. Thanks.
I'm not a designer
so I have not really aninput here
1:19 PM
I'm not a designer either, but it is something that is worthwhile discussing.
And, it is pro-active enough that when the real designers come along we've already put some thinking into it.
I can say that any given design is ugly, but I can't make myself a nice one, nor could I describe what makes it look good
Very true. That's why I suggested working on the logo. less likely to screw it up.
@SjoerdCdeVries I am amazed at your automatic plot extractor code
it is fantastic
@EliLansey Glad you like it
1:55 PM
Looking through the SystemOptions[], and I was wondering what SymbolicAutomaticDifferentiation under DifferentiationOptions does. Any thoughts?
@acl ping!
@EliLansey I saw that, but it discusses another option which relates to getting D to not ignore different commands, like it does Equal.
That should read: "getting D to ignore" The "not" should not be there.
@EliLansey Hmm, that has given me an idea for that question about differentiating functions involving Re and Im
2:30 PM
@Heike I hadn't thought of that application. Could be interesting.
I really should have looked at the Experimental` package before now. There's two very interesting functions in there: CompileEvaluate and ValueFunction.
@rcollyer Looks interesting, especially ValueFunction.
@Heike CompileEvaluate compares favorably against Leonid's JIT solution, so it was an interesting find. But, I agree ValueFunction looks like a very interesting function.
2:47 PM
Trying to use the corn maze solvers posted on the wolfram blog a while back to solve this maze:
but having trouble at the binarize step
too much glare from the board, and weak lines at the bottom
@EliLansey I love the picture, and it's so true.
I had a classmate in E&M II (the grad version) who just wanted the answer. He failed out that semester ...
@rcollyer yup. this one is also one of my favorites:
@EliLansey seen it before, and also true.
If we knew the answer it wouldn't be called research!
There was this one problem from that class that I want to try my initial method again: using $\mathbf{E}$, $\mathbf{B}$, and $\mathbf{E} \times \mathbf{B}$ for circularly polarized light as the coordinate system you're working in. Didn't have time to work out the effect on the derivatives or the integrals at the time, so I had to put it aside. But, it gave me interesting results before that point!
@yoda hey
so, I am afraid I have a question about the performance of matlab vs mathematica...
let me know when you are done screaming so I can ask
3:33 PM
@EliLansey I wonder what the matrices look like if it takes 84 seconds to multiply.
@Heike yeah. pretty frightening.
part of me wonders if they're realizing the "sometimes MMA is slower but if you refine your situation it will be faster" phenomenon
@EliLansey me too.
like, if Leonid had the opportunity to multiply those things in MMA, would he beat Maple
And what type of machine they are using.
@Heike well, i assume they're doing both benchmarks on the same machine
without running something else at the same time
(well, MMA was really slow, but we were rendering a scene for Pixar at the time...)
3:36 PM
@EliLansey They don't mention any of that. They also don't mention how many kernels they are using for the mathematica bench mark.
Nor do they display what code they were using for mma, which as we all know can make all the difference.
Luckily for me I rarely need to multiply large polynomials.
4:06 PM
@acl I'm back
4:19 PM
@EliLansey "Mathematica 8 is not able to use more than 1 core!"
@CHM I believe this is being said about polynomial multiplication, not about mma in general
I don't want to annoy people with the Biology Beta, but I really think they're a prime example of a beta that'll stay such.
Take a look at this
There were good answers, and it can be considered a legitimate question, but some people are just playing with fire there.
Or so I think.
The impression I get is that a lot of questions are asked by people who simply do not bother looking anywhere else for answers.
I feel bad for them.
5:02 PM
Given that the DIY site on stackexchange is still in the proposal phase, does anyone here know how I can get superglue off my fingers?
@Heike I'd try nail polish remover.
Preferably warm.
@CHM Sounds like a plan.
But since it's a polymer, you might want to have something rough to rub it off, like sand
(Meaning it shouldn't dissolve, merely "bloat")
@heike I'm always disappointed in superglue. It doesn't glue that well to earn the label super, and if it glues something it's mostly your fingers
@SjoerdCdeVries it's good stuff for treating cuts, actually
5:08 PM
I have this stuff that's called (in translation) liquid band-aid. It's some kind of glue, but not superglue
@SjoerdCdeVries I'm usually a bit sceptical about superglue as well, but in this case it worked really well (so far)
@SjoerdCdeVries Is that the stuff in a spray can?
Yep it is
@Heike @SjoerdCdeVries Superglue can't be used for anything, obviously. What is it that you tried to glue that didn't work?
@heike Used it a lot for my regularly occurring cheese slicer cuts
@SjoerdCdeVries Ah, yes, cheese slicers. I always get my thumb nicked when using one.
5:11 PM
superglue = acryl acetate isn't it?
@Heike uhh what?
But to answer your question, soaking in warm water and gently scrubbing should do it
@yoda do you know this one?
I used to think they were typically Dutch, but may be Dutch chauvinist pig here
@SjoerdCdeVries I thought they were a Norwegian or Swedish invention?
5:13 PM
yeah, I've gotten superglue on my fingers so many times... Sometimes, the best way to get superglue off is to put more superglue in a thick layer
Then it hardens to a shell and you can easily peel off your fingers
@Heike really??
I'm disappointed
Or, rub it off with a warm organic solvent (like acetone or ethyl acetate, found in nail polish remover)
It should be better than water.
@SjoerdCdeVries It's a Norwegian invention according to wikipedia.
@Heike I just checked it, indeed
I'll quit eating cheese then
@Heike Nail polish remover is the recommended solvent, as CHM said.
5:16 PM
@SjoerdCdeVries No need for that. Just don't slice it.
@rcollyer Unfortunately, I don't have nail polish remover at home and the shops are closed, so I'll try warm water for now.
@SjoerdCdeVries That thing just looks silly.
@Heike and potentially dangerous.
It's the best cheese grater ever
Or finger grater, depending on your needs.
5:18 PM
@heike Grating cheese has never been so easy as with this one
Maybe I should try one then. I'm always making a mess when grating cheese.
@rcollyer the slicer has cost me numerous wounds, the grater never
Not nearly as dangerous as this type.
@rcollyer Looks good, but fails in practice
and potentially removes finger tips
anyway, enough interjecting myself into others conversations. :) later.
5:22 PM
@heike Perhaps you could try to cheese-slice the glue from your fingers ;-) Would wrap up two threads
@SjoerdCdeVries Maybe another time. I need my fingertips for rehearsal tomorrow.
@heike Rehearsal? What do you play?
Cool!. Bit difficult to put in your handbag, though.
That's approximately what I have. Never had any problem with that.
5:26 PM
@SjoerdCdeVries depends on the size of the handbag.
@heike I shouldn't say about it, trying to become a drummer
@SjoerdCdeVries I'm glad I'm not your neighbour ;-)
@heike I have an electronic kit, and practice with headset on, so no worries
@CHM but does it work for this type of cheese?
For that I'd use a simple knife.
I was thinking of parmesan, or cheddar.
@Heike this is it
5:31 PM
@SjoerdCdeVries lovely.
@SjoerdCdeVries Looks spiffy. The only drum kit I've ever played on is one that comes with RockBand.
It's even got a double bass pedal
@heike I have that too (well guitar hero)
I avoid slicing my fingers with a cheese grater by eating the piece whole when it gets small enough :P
@yoda I don't have that, but I do have a classic high-hat stand with a moveable hihat instead of the electronic padle version
5:33 PM
@SjoerdCdeVries Some of my friends have almost the whole set of rockband/guitar hero games
@yoda Three years underway, still feel like a beginner
Do you play in a band?
I used to, very briefly. Haven't played in nearly 7-8 years. Pretty much forgotten everything
@Heike No, not really. It all started with my youngest son who had to chose an instrument, and who choose drums but was a bit shy to go to the music school alone. So, I decided to join him and we now have a weekly hour with a private tutor (a drumming student) here in the Utrecht conservatory.
@yoda I've only started playing again a few years ago after a hiatus of 10 years. I was surprised at how quickly everything came back to me.
5:37 PM
@heike How long had you been studying cello before that?
@SjoerdCdeVries That sounds like a nice thing to do with your son.
@SjoerdCdeVries About 10 years or so.
Ha, no wonder it came back to you so soon ;)
@Heike And how much practice/week?
I don't study enough
@SjoerdCdeVries When I was young my parents made me practice about half and hour to an hour a day.
But things slowed down a bit when I went to university.
@heike Autch, was it still fun then?
5:40 PM
Not always.
I do, like, 3 times half an hour/week
@EliLansey ideally one shouldn't use ordinary superglue on wounds since it doesn't stick strongly enough (compared to medical superglue) and eventually breaks down into toxic by-products. However, I still do it, with no apparent ill effects so far...
@SjoerdCdeVries That's more than the amount of time most of the people in my orchestra practice.
I should practice more as well.
@heike Yeah, but then there's Mathematica.SE ...
@Heike I never found acetone particularly effective for dissolving it; in the lab I use a mixture of isopropanol and butanol (also good for dissolving perfluoropolyether vacuum grease) but at home I just use soap and hot water (both the soap, and the temperature of the water seem to be important).
5:49 PM
@OleksandrR you'd probably be cleaving the ester by using soap and hot water.
Which could explain the effectiveness, but still the most probably helpful effect is that of temperature, I think. If you say acetone doesn't work well..
Also, nail polish remover here now only contains EtOAC, Acetone being deemed dangerous.
I wonder what's the typical DP of superglue.
Would you know, by chance?
@CHM not sure that soap is alkaline enough or that hot water is hot enough, but yes, probably to some extent. However, superglue isn't a polyester; it polymerizes by a nucleophilic mechanism. I think the soap and water mainly serve to get underneath the glue and lubricate and soften the top layer of the epidermis, allowing it to be rubbed off more easily.
@CHM what is DP?
@OleksandrR DP is degree of polymerization
Average number of monomers per chain.
@CHM oh, ok. No, I don't know, sorry.
Superglue does contain esters
Although it is not a polyester, in the synthetic sense.
It's methyl or ethyl cyanoacrylate. So, even if you hydrolyse the ester, I don't think it'll help very much in solubilizing the polymer.
5:59 PM
But yeah... you'd probably need NaOH to properly cleave the bond.
No, I agree.
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