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2:17 AM
\documentclass[tikz,border=3.14mm]{standalone}
\begin{document}
\begin{tikzpicture}
\fill (0,-0.5) to[out=60,in=160,looseness=1.25] (0.9,-0.3)
to[out=-20,in=200,looseness=0.8] (1.95,-0.15)
to[out=-100,in=60] (1.8,-0.45)
to[out=-120,in=170] (1.8,-0.55)
to[out=-10,in=-140] (2,-0.45)
to[out=-120,in=45,looseness=1.25] (1.65,-1)
to[out=-135,in=10,looseness=1.1] (1,-1.25)
to[out=-170,in=40,looseness=1.1] (0,-1.85)
to (0,-0.85)
to[out=-72,in=-70,looseness=3.33] (0.65,-0.35)
to[out=-160,in=0] cycle;
\fill (0.2,-0.8) circle (2pt);
@crypto Try that for the moment if you like.
 
 
4 hours later…
6:13 AM
@yo' No, I thought something like "let's keep our problems secret"
 
 
2 hours later…
8:18 AM
@marmot Yes, but don't ask the other me's from parallel universes, they will disagree, but they don't have a good task to pick out the best universe :)
 
 
4 hours later…
12:15 PM
@DavidCarlisle I saw this just now (as it was starred three times). I have a hypothesis about it: For words that we type very often, we probably have very well established neuronal pathways for typing that word. (I imagine a single “the” neuron, which when firing causes a cascade leading to the typing of this word.) And it will be fast, being so well established. But the letters ‘e’ and ‘h’ are typed using different hands, so both hemispheres are involved. […]
 
@HaraldHanche-Olsen i have a simpler explanation: I can't type:-)
 
[…] Which induces a communication delay, with possible mistiming as a result. Hence, “teh” is the result. Doesn't quite explain why I often try to run emcas, however.
 
@HaraldHanche-Olsen you should use a simpler editor with a simple name that even ducks can type, such as vi
 
@DavidCarlisle Always a possibility. I have a more odd affliction: Doubling the wrong letter, writing, e.g., “toll” instead of “tool”. Which makes me think that there is a special circuit in my brain saying “double this letter”, and then it gets attached to the wrong letter, somehow.
@DavidCarlisle Or ed. ed is the standard editor, after all.
It doesn't happen as often now, as I generally only start emacs once, right after booting my laptop.
 
@HaraldHanche-Olsen ed might be a bit complicated for ducks, they need those visual prompts
 
12:22 PM
?
@DavidCarlisle ↑↑ Thats visual!
 
@HaraldHanche-Olsen true enough.
 
12:46 PM
@DavidCarlisle I have a simpler explanation: the z hand is faster.
 
in Homotopy Theory, 18 hours ago, by Aaron Mazel-Gee
@user2236 http://www.icm2018.org/wp/2018/08/04/now-im-much-more-famous-than-i-would-have-b‌​een-jokes-birkar/?utm_source=ICM+2018+NEWS+14&utm_campaign=77bb7c5850-EMAIL_CAMPA‌​IGN_2018_08_04_11_38&utm_medium=email&utm_term=0_9976d54d8c-77bb7c5850-149285337
 
@user1732 Oy. Somehow, I had never heard of this until now.
 
1:42 PM
@DavidCarlisle -- finally! he admits it!
@UlrikeFischer -- does it make a difference if one is left-handed or right-handed?
 
1:57 PM
@samcarter Does every parallel universe have tikzmarmots package? Or are you saying we live in the only one with that package, and that's why it's the best? (Would make a lot of sense. ;-)
 
2:14 PM
@barbarabeeton Sorry not enough data ;-) I know only one person with a z-hand and don't know if he is left or right-handed.
 
@marmot Assuming a finite number of cute animals, I would be surprised if this would be the only one with tikzmarmots. However the combination with both tikzmarmots and tikzducks should be less frequent.
 
@samcarter Marmots are beings, not animals! ;-)
@samcarter Small but very efficient. ;-)
 
@UlrikeFischer -- i know that i'm strongly right-handed, and i occasionally (not nearly always) produce "teh". but my usual switch is "matheamtics" -- same pattern of left/right keys. obviously this has something to do with how often one needs to type a certain word, but it would be interesting to have a testable hypothesis.
 
@barbarabeeton ah I thought I was safe writing it in English and you wouldn't understand the comment:-)
 
2:21 PM
@samcarter You are not alone ...
 
@marmot Everything else than "Small but very efficient" would also be bad as larger tunnels would be needed.
@marmot the tikzmarmots package docu should be used as standard literature for biology students :)
 
@samcarter Well, you know that a state-of-the-art smartphone has more computational power than the computer that was used in the first Apollo mission. We marmots are simply very advanced. ;-)
@samcarter I agree on that without any reservation. That will also prevent them from killing and opening these cute beings. ;-)
 
@marmot related to mice who have been running the planet for years, so that is not surprising
3
 
@DavidCarlisle That's not a fair point. All the mammals trace back to mice-like creatures that were around even in the dinosaur era.
 
@marmot but not all of them know the question to which the answer is 42
 
2:29 PM
@marmot Thanks for the picture. I can't help but wonder how you accomplished it. Any hints?
 
@DavidCarlisle Correct. Another reason not to speak in an inappropriate way about rodents. (Biologists claim marmots belong to the squirrel family, but they are clearly wrong as squirrels are animals, though cute ones, whereas marmots are beings. ;-)
@crypto Well, you load the picture you want to draw in the background and then read off some coordinates. Then you use the to[in=Y,out=X] syntax to connect the things, and play with looseness until the contour matches. And if the contour is smooth at the point, in and out of two successive coordinates need to differ by 180.
 
@marmot Nice! Thanks so much!
 
@marmot so marmots are beings and ducks are lunch OK I see the difference now.
2
 
@DavidCarlisle I am waiting for the day at which you smuggle \duck[crisp] into the tikzducks package. (Not that I would support this.)
 
3:11 PM
@crypto You're welcome. If you want an automatic grid over the pic to read off the coordinates more easily, perhaps consider this post. I am not claiming it is very elegant, though.
 
yo'
3:54 PM
@mickep no, I went to visit @PauloCereda
 
 
1 hour later…
5:16 PM
\long\def\UTFviii@two@octets#1#2{%
 \edef\unicodedomino@tmp{#1\unicodedomino@last{\string#2}}%
 \expandafter\unicodedomino@octets\unicodedomino@tmp\empty%
}%
\long\def\UTFviii@three@octets#1#2#3{%
 \edef\unicodedomino@tmp{#1\unicodedomino@last{\string#2}\unicodedomino@last{\string#3}}%
 \expandafter\unicodedomino@octets\unicodedomino@tmp\empty%
}%
\long\def\UTFviii@four@octets#1#2#3#4{%
 \edef\unicodedomino@tmp{#1\unicodedomino@last{\string#2}\unicodedomino@last{\string#3}\unicodedomino@last{\string#4}}%
can someone rewrite this to be expandable (i.e. skip the temp var)?
I guess this needs a lot of \expandafter, but this is way beyond me
the called macro is
\def\unicodedomino@octets#1\empty{%
 \expandafter\UTFviii@defined\csname u8:#1\endcsname%
}%
in case it’s easier to inline that
 
@marmot Oh surly they would not dare! Such cute beings!
 
hmm, moving the check for being protected into these macros also helps, as a workaround, for now…
 
@mirabilos Give me a few minutes
 
@mirabilos it's a bit odd that you need \expandafter\UTFviii@defined\csname u8:#1\endcsname% it's that way because of history mostly, originally it only needed the csname and the reverse mapping to print the hex code was added later, and without redefining everything using the csname was easiest as the original byte tokens have gone by that point. but if you keep that form you can't avoid a def somewhere as you can not expandably define a csname.
@JosephWright ^^ (you did say somewhere recently that you like redefining everything....)
 
@DavidCarlisle Ah, right
 
5:29 PM
@mirabilos @JosephWright but the actual zzz@octets definitions could be made expandable so long as \unicodedomino@last is
 
@DavidCarlisle All looks OK using \romannumeral trick I think ...
 
@JosephWright or \expanded :-)
 
@DavidCarlisle Er, yup
@DavidCarlisle Still have nothing back on XeTeX
 
hmmh
 
I could ask? Just to make a change..
 
5:34 PM
I’m not entirely sure that this is the actual problem, even
I ran into an error when using a non-ASCII char (defined or not) in a section title, with a tableofcontents, and worked around it by this patch
 
@mirabilos who cares about actual problems? @JosephWright and I like making things expandable:-)
 
this builds on the earlier check for being protected I added to fix things in tocs, but back then I still used the original unchanged definition of \\UTFviii@two@octets and friends
@DavidCarlisle ah cool ;-)
 
@mirabilos There are some plans to make utf8 handling safer by default so that should not be needed (eventually) but for now....
 
not using the csname sounds like a plan as well…
my current workaround seems to have broken listings again (I think the \string#1\string#2 is not quite right)
hm, or I suck at creating a testcase
 
@mirabilos you need to use \string if you are writing to files or \noexpand or \protect in other cases (depending).. the details of exactly what are needed when are more complicated than you might hope, which is why we didn't do it while making utf-8 the default earlier this year
 
5:41 PM
yeah…
 
@samcarter Marmot cubes. ;-)
 
@marmot Ohh! I just hope the marmots don't get dizzy!
 
@samcarter The ones on the upper face do because they flip so fast. ;-)
 
hm, turns out I just suck at making examples
 
@marmot On the other hand legend has it that marmot fat is good against nausea, so maybe marmots are impervious to it?
 
5:49 PM
@samcarter That's just a legend. Marmots in fact get car sick very easily. This is why you don't see many on the streets. ;-)
 
@marmot -- hey, on the red faces, the tail switches from marmot-right to marmot-left as the cube turns. or are my eyes deceiving me?
 
@barbarabeeton Happens on all of them. The marmot is wagging its tail :D
 
@barbarabeeton No, you are right. This is because marmots live in 3 space dimensions, and the tail is on the back. This will get more pronounced once the 3D option is publically available. ;-)
 
6:04 PM
the repo now has a testcase for most of what ought to work; my workaround I mentioned above seems to be stable enough
 
6:21 PM
@mirabilos thanks if I update the core UTF-8 handling I'll try not to break your package, or at least I'll try to rember to ping you to try a new version before we release.
 
@DavidCarlisle thanks a lot (either is welcome)
 
6:38 PM
@mickep It is "The marmot is wagging her or his tail"! ;-)
 
7:18 PM
@marmot In this case, you should warn your driver:
Jun 29 at 17:35, by marmot
user image
 
@samcarter She is very careful (unlike many other Italians ;-)
 
@marmot Oh, good to hear!
 
@samcarter And she knows where the good pizzerias are. Another bonus. ;-)
 
@marmot the ones that sell Hawaiian Pizza.
 
@DavidCarlisle Yes, after the BREXIT decision more people from the UK are invading and show really weird behavior.
 
7:24 PM
@DavidCarlisle Last night I watched on TV an "Italian" restaurant in London which serves French fries with spaghetti :O
 
@CarLaTeX I hope they put a curry sauce on top
 
@CarLaTeX Maybe strange combinations of spaghetti are a general problem of English speaking countries. The other day I saw a documentary about New Zealand and they had spaghetti with tomato sauce on toast for breakfast.
 
@samcarter you can tell this must be Genuine Italian as it has plenty of I's at the end, just warm it up and tip it on your toast, just as if you were in Rome:
Of course @egreg, being a mathematician, prefers this one: heinz.co.uk/Products/Pasta/Ranges/Alphabetti-Numberetti/…
 
7:42 PM
@DavidCarlisle Good classification scheme :) Some time ago the @ was added to alphabet soup - I wonder if this is because a \makeatletter without \makeatother :)
 
@samcarter how large a bowl would you need for Unicode alphabet soup?
 
@DavidCarlisle One can't roll them
 
@samcarter Well, did you take into account the time difference? To me it seems that they just synchronize their pasta eating with the Italians.
 
@egreg you can roll the tins
 
@DavidCarlisle I wouldn't want to eat this - I think it includes a pile of s***
@marmot Oh, that sounds about right! Clever thinking!
 
7:46 PM
@samcarter it says it is yummy on the tin, according to the picture. So it must be true.
 
@samcarter I also saw Germans eating spaghetti for breakfast, but many years ago :)
 
@CarLaTeX actually, they sat down for an evening meal, but it was breakfast time and they were still working out how to get the stuff off the plate.
 
@DavidCarlisle Maybe, foreigners have big problems in rolling up spaghetti on the fork :)
 
@samcarter I wonder if you want to add your nice \begin{frame}[t] trick to this question.
 
8:07 PM
@marmot Thanks for the suggestion! I think it could be useful - I'll write something.
 
8:33 PM
@samcarter That was fast and I was only second to upvote. Would you mind to answer this as well? I'd be more than happy to delete my answer after you copied the useful parts from it.
 
@CarLaTeX and @samcarter -- wrapping spaghetti around a fork is no problem. the only time i've ever had a problem eating spaghetti was once during my college freshman year "scut week" when we were given only a knife. (the wrapping technique also works well with hashi and ramen.)
and here's a challenge -- what do you think of cincinnati "chili spaghetti" (en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Cincinnati_chili)? (i rather like the cinnamon, after the initial surprise. i'm inclined to order five-way, but realize you might find that rather barbaric.)
 
@barbarabeeton barbaric because done by barbara? ;-)
 
@marmot -- no, because cinnamon isn't used in spaghetti sauces prepared by italians. (although in my youth, i was continually called "the little barbarian" by my older sister. my middle name happens to be "ann"; sadly, this fate was foisted upon me by my mother.)
 
@barbarabeeton Could be worse... ;-)
 
@marmot -- i won't ask.
 
8:53 PM
@marmot Please don't delete your answer to tex.stackexchange.com/questions/444895. It is very good and I wouldn't be able to add anything essential (maybe you could suggest to replace the \,\,\,\,\,\, with a \phantom or \hspace?). Besides this I am not really keen on having other endless discussion with this OP - caused by the lack of a MWE...
 
@barbarabeeton you could have been called marmot and been mistaken for a small furry animal that does nothing useful except squeak
 
@samcarter I guess I know what you mean ;-)
@samcarter And yes, I didn't pay attention about the \,\,\,.
So thanks
 
@DavidCarlisle small furry being
@barbarabeeton Never tasted chili with cinnamon, but with a bit of dark chocolate it is really good!
 
@samcarter -- almost anything is good with a bit of dark chocolate. (well, i might draw the line at artichokes, but then i've never tried that.)
 
9:11 PM
Jan 12 '16 at 12:15, by David Carlisle
@PauloCereda finished your thesis?
 
9:22 PM
@JosephWright Can you add tex.stackexchange.com/q/44868 as second duplicate to (the already closed) tex.stackexchange.com/q/444856.
 
@AlanMunn Done
 
@JosephWright Thanks.
 
@JosephWright the travis test with the pdf fails travis-ci.com/u-fischer/tagpdf/builds/81075931. I think one must remove also the /PTEX lines. And perhaps even the xref table.
 
@UlrikeFischer Did you load regression-test.tex?
 
@JosephWright oh. No. Will try with it asap.
 
9:32 PM
@UlrikeFischer You need to do that or otherwise set/disable manually the various bits of meta-data
 
@JosephWright I just tried to resave (with regression-test) but I still see absolute pathes in the tpf /PTEX.FileName (c:/texlive/2018/texmf-dist/tex/latex/duckuments/example-image-duck.pdf).
 
@UlrikeFischer Ah, right: is that an included image? I did say I still need to look at stuff ...
@UlrikeFischer I guess I should apply the same path stuff as we have for .tlg files
@UlrikeFischer I'll look at that, and the issues outstanding for building releases, in the morning
 
@JosephWright yes. The second problem is the /PTEX.Fullbanner which is different. And as I said the xref table: as it records byte positions it is different if pathes are different, so imho it should be better removed.
 
@UlrikeFischer Ah, right
@UlrikeFischer I'd not considered pictures ... I guess I was primarily thinking of internal structures (one can test graphics from the macro layer)
@UlrikeFischer I wonder how this impacts on reproducible build stuff ...
 
9:50 PM
@JosephWright well I could remove the picture, I simply copied an example (which tested alternative text around a graphics) as test. But then one should probably document that graphics are a problem.
@JosephWright we will have to learn a bit what works and is sensible ;-).
 
10:03 PM
@AlanMunn I think your missing tikzmarmots in your list ;-)
 
@JosephWright I just remembered: you can suppress the problematic info with \pdfsuppressptexinfo=15 and with luatex with \pdfvariable suppressoptionalinfo. Will check this tomorrow.
 
@marmot Yes perhaps all of its users, (I mean both) will complain. :)
 
@AlanMunn No, @samcarter is not that kind of person... ;-)
 
@marmot btw your "both/all" joke depends on the same kind of pragmatic properties that are behind the "Can you pass the salt?" 'questions' so you can't plead linguistic ignorance. :)
 
@AlanMunn I thought "both" would imply two. BTW, this was Christian Hupfer's joke (on this site), I think.
 
10:16 PM
@marmot Yes, it does. But the joke depends on the fact that given two alternative true statements, you should pragmatically choose the stronger one. So If "Both X" is true, "All X" is also true, but because 'both' also includes an explicit cardinality, it's the stronger statement, and therefore the pragmatically appropriate one.
 
@StefanKottwitz Can I get SSH access to the TeXwelt server? I would like to fix the HTML.
@StefanKottwitz My public key is: ssh-rsa AAAAB3NzaC1yc2EAAAADAQABAAABAQDimZjdkMz/6KvobcvXDzPcHhqICrpcQxvkBusOkm/LKrb/Oy9w‌​oTRbS2jm1Getdb7iIwXGcJ9oQ7TJj4FLf0OBPSjSMk29F69CU7kjAvv39sb5T8VfKNKpRRnnOzRgqhgtk‌​bDKsLJ8IZ3BjGbo/nP1QXPjXUDCSb+JkMNt2Fgk9T5TbtZTlRPTXPZ2voa9tXFR2zrM5g2mKxVo3bUhIv‌​KVdKmfk7WbMsOoc7ujDgrw2n0j1jFg/pV3BahigN8q3GfJjRcpYwELmEe+ben+f4xO3jq4i1D2XPxSiLq‌​O1omkdpYdXWp8hZxiVO4fhKyZMUgKRTDqX56w7YsqNNaNgTdL
 
@AlanMunn But isn't very different from "Can you pass the salt, please?" which seems to have changed its meaning over the centuries. (For nonnative speakers, the phrase "I'm not sure if ... " is also tricky, I had to learn the hard way that it means "I doubt that ...")
@AlanMunn A nice real life example, just wondering if that could happen in English. Assume someone walks into a gas station and says "I would like to drive to Ann Arbor". Is that considered a polite way to ask for directions? (In German it is and the response was "I have no objections" ;-)
 
10:32 PM
@marmot I agree it's not exactly the same thing, but both are based on there being a pragmatic component to the meaning as well as a purely semantic component.
 
@AlanMunn Sure. It's just that if I am familiar with one English subtlety this doesn't know that I know all (not both! ;-) of them. The question "Can TikZ/PGF experts be lenient with the existence of MWE?" did at first really not strike me as request to waive MWE's, but of course after your nice explanation I got the point. The literal translations of "all" and "both" seem to have the same meaning in German and English.
 
10:57 PM
@marmot "I'd like to drive to Ann Arbor" is a pretty indirect way of asking for directions. Not to mention that these days, we all have phones... :) But I don't think it's really the same.
 
@AlanMunn Sure. And why would anyone want to drive to Ann Arbor? ;-)
 
@marmot Fair enough. Definitely the stronger/weaker statement kinds of effects are pretty robust cross-linguistically. And English is quite well known for its use of indirect ways of saying things.
@marmot For (i) the culture and (ii) Parmigiano Reggiano (iii) bread (The latter two from a really good food store there.)
 
@AlanMunn Very often they are so exaggerated that it is clear what is meant. If the question would have read "Could TikZ/PGF experts please be lenient with the existence of MWE?" I would have gotten the point. However, in the present version I read it similar to "Can a top quark decay into lighter quarks?" and the answer is "yes". I still struggle to see the difference...
 
@marmot Unfortunately our university arts organization is addicted to touring Broadway musicals. The U of Michigan arts organization has world class programming.
 
@AlanMunn Yes, I confirm they had Parmigiano Reggiano there, only $5 per 100g. ;-)
 
11:02 PM
@marmot Have you spent time in Ann Arbor?
 
@AlanMunn I was there only for workshops. Once during summer, when it was hot and humid, and once in the winter when it was really cold. (In fact, it was -22 degrees Celsius as opposed to the +28 degrees Celsius, which we had in California at the same time. ;-)
@AlanMunn But they have a rather strong and active physics group, which is also very well funded by US standards...
 
@marmot The difference is context, plain and simple, really. So the claim is that 'can' has a very weak 'possibility' meaning and then various kinds of contexts fill in more of the meaning. Your quark example is unambiguous because requests can presumably only be fulfilled by sentient beings.
 
@AlanMunn How about "Can you hold your breath for 3 minutes?" ?
 
@marmot Yeah, but we have a cyclotron. :) And are building an FRIB.
 
Is that a request to do that or just the question if you are able to?
@AlanMunn Never heard about the cyclotron. (Spent some time at CERN, so I guess the one in Ann Arbor is harder to detect. ;-)
 
11:11 PM
@marmot It would depend on the context. :)
@marmot No, I'm not in Ann Arbor, I'm in East Lansing (different university).
 
@AlanMunn And "Can TikZ/PGF experts be lenient with the existence of MWE?" does not depend on the context? Or are you saying that the title is clear if one reads the complete question?
 
@marmot I would say that the existence of the question on Meta is sufficient for it to be interpreted as a request.
 
@AlanMunn If you say so ;-)
 
@marmot For example, Can you hold your breath for 3 minutes, I'm going to release a noxious gas into the room. It will be gone in 3 minutes. :)
 
@AlanMunn Well, in this example the "For example, Can you hold your breath for 3 minutes, " is not particularly relevant, I'd hold my breath regardless of whether or not this is added.
 
11:15 PM
@marmot I do. :)
@marmot Ok then, how about: Can you hold your breath for three minutes. Why? I'm not going to tell you, but you'll be sorry if you don't. :)
 
@AlanMunn I am not sure I would do it after that sentence. Would you?
 
Notice that "You'll be sorry if you don't" also shows the request interpretation, as opposed to "You'll be sorry if you can't" which brings out the ability reading.
@marmot I think with a spoken utterance, yes. I think the request interpretation also comes with some subtle intonational differences. Also, the 'don't' vs 'can't' part helps too.
 
@AlanMunn This part I understand. My concern is just that the "Can you..." part does not necessarily imply a request. And yes, the "don't" part of course fixes it. But to me it is the same as "You will be sorry if you don't hold your breath for 3 minutes.". That is' I do not necessarily see the relevance of the "Can you ... " part.
Having said this, by now I also have understood that "Excuse me" in the supermarket means "Get out of my way! Now!" ;-)
 
@marmot Sure, but I was just trying to point out that it's the context that determines whether the 'can' question is a request or not by making a context in which your sentence (which under most circumstances would be a question) might also have a request meaning.
@marmot lol
 
@AlanMunn This part I agree. I am just not sensitive enough to see that in the meta question. ;-)
 
11:24 PM
@marmot One way of thinking about it would be to assume something like the Principle of Charity.
 
@AlanMunn To the best of my knowledge, this principle does not exist. ;-)
 
@marmot You're a cutthroat bunch, you physicists, I guess. :)
 
@AlanMunn No. I am donating to the marmot recovery foundation. Seriously! I am just saying that the principle does not exist. This is an important difference. ;-)
 
@marmot I'm not sure what it means to say it doesn't exist. Or are you bothered by the term 'principle'?
 
@AlanMunn This probably again a semantics issue but would you say that a principle can be false?
 
11:32 PM
@AlanMunn lol when I read your message I thought you were talking about cyclotomic polynomial xD
 
@marmot I don't have a formal definition of 'principle', just like most other nouns. But Principle of Charity is just the name of a way of dealing with people or arguments. So it's not rigorous, but that doesn't mean it's not a 'thing'.
@manooooh Nope. :) A big very big thing for looking at very little things.
@manooooh It's pretty well accepted in philosophy. And in a way it underlies much of normal everyday conversational interactions.
 
@AlanMunn I see. So it is not something like Mach's principle or so... ;-)
 
@AlanMunn wooa!
 
@marmot Is Mach's principle true? Or is it the best working hypothesis?
 
@AlanMunn It is not true but guided Albert Einstein to the theory of special relativity.
 
11:43 PM
@marmot So it was contingently true, like most other things in science.
 
@AlanMunn I see. So "contingently true" is a nice expression for "wrong but useful". ;-)
 
@marmot Not exactly. At the time such principles are proposed, people may believe them to be true, and in the absence of a better theory, they are true, where truth in science is always something like 'best current approximation'.
@marmot If you don't have a kind of short term belief in the truth of your theories, then you end up with a kind of nihlist anti-science viewpoint. Of course in the long term we all know that our theories are wrong.
 
@AlanMunn I guess that there are some scientists who would disagree with that, one of them being Albert Einstein, who said that theories can only be falsified, never be proven. I think Albert is right. ;-)
 
@marmot But that's what I'm saying.
 
@AlanMunn OK, didn't read the "where truth in science is always something like 'best current approximation'." part. Well, for this definition of truth I agree but I'd hesitate to define truth like this because then it will be a time-dependent feature.
 
11:56 PM
@marmot Well there's a whole philosophical literature on the notion of 'truth', of course. And strictly speaking I would agree with you, but in science we do tend to have a kind of short term belief in the truth of our theories.
@marmot Of course, we also are often quite aware of the parts that are total BS. :)
 
@AlanMunn Yes, but belief \ne true, I'd say. Actually one of the most cited physics paper starts with "Physics thrives on contradictions." So there is always some great excitement if two common beliefs clash.
 

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