Monday Morning Reading

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Monday Morning Reading

Post  Charles on Mon Dec 08, 2008 8:59 am

"Testing the Theory of Evolution"


"Whenever I get a package of plain M&Ms, I make it my duty to continue the strength and robustness of the candy as a species. To this end, I hold M&M duels.


Taking two candies between my thumb and forefinger, I apply pressure, squeezing them together until one of them breaks and splinters. That is the "loser," and I eat the inferior one immediately. The winner gets to go another round.


I have found that, in general, the brown and red M&Ms are tougher, and the newer blue ones are genetically inferior. I have hypothesized that the blue M&Ms as a race cannot survive long in the intense theater of competition that is the modern candy and snack-food world.


Occasionally I will get a mutation, a candy that is misshapen, or pointier, or flatter than the rest. Almost invariably this proves to be a weakness, but on very rare occasions it gives the candy extra strength. In this way, the species continues to adapt to its environment.


When I reach the end of the pack, I am left with one M&M, the strongest of the herd. Since it would make no sense to eat this one as well, I pack it neatly in an envelope and send it to M&M Mars, A Division of Mars, Inc., Hackettstown, NJ 17840-1503 U.S.A., along with a 3x5 card reading, "Please use this M&M for breeding purposes."


This week they wrote back to thank me, and sent me a coupon for a free 1/2 pound bag of plain M&Ms. I consider this "grant money." I have set aside the weekend for a grand tournament. From a field of hundreds, we will discover the True Champion.


There can be only one. "

Charles

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Re: Monday Morning Reading

Post  sukikohana on Mon Dec 08, 2008 3:26 pm

...where did you find this?

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Re: Monday Morning Reading

Post  g00eY on Wed Dec 10, 2008 12:03 am

I find it hard to believe that that person can squeeze an M&M till it breaks. That's intense.

This would be a good college essay for bioengineering or medicine or something.
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Re: Monday Morning Reading

Post  muriel burk on Wed Dec 10, 2008 12:21 am

that's funny...i looked at this more from a research point of view and find that the study design is seriously flawed and weakened by numerous confounding factors. based on his comparison methods, the best one can arrive at is "inconclusive". scratch

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Re: Monday Morning Reading

Post  Charles on Wed Dec 10, 2008 10:36 pm

When I read it, the first two lines made me think this had something to do with statistics...

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More Reading

Post  Charles on Thu Dec 18, 2008 6:59 pm

Santa Claus: An Engineering Analysis

1. No known species of reindeer can fly. But there are 300,000 species of living organisms yet to be classified, and while most of these are insects and germs, this does not completely rule out flying reindeer which only Santa has ever seen.

2. There are 2 billion children in the world (persons under 18 ). But since Santa doesn't appear to handle Muslim, Hindu, Jewish, or Buddhist children, that reduces the workload by 85% of the total -leaving 378 million according to the Population Reference Bureau. At an average census rate of 3.5 children per household, that's 91.8 million homes. One presumes there is at least one good child per house.

3. Santa has 31 hours of Christmas to work with, thanks to the different time zones and the rotation of the earth, assuming he travels east to west (which seems logical). This works out to 822.6 visits per second. This is to say that for each Christian household with good children, Santa has 1/1000 th of a second to park, hop out of the sleigh, jump down the chimney, fill the stocking, distribute the remaining presents under the tree, eat whatever snacks have been left, get back up the chimney, get back into the sleigh and move on to the next house. Assuming that each of these 91.8 million stops are evenly distributed around the earth which, of course, we know to be false but for the purposes of our calculations we will accept, we are now talking about .78 miles per household, a total trip of 75.5 million miles, not counting stops to do what most of us do at least once every 31 hours, plus feeding, etc.

That means that Santa's sleigh is moving at 650 miles per second, 3000 times the speed of sound. For purposes of comparison, the fastest man-made vehicle on earth, the Ulysses space probe, move at a poky 27.4 miles per second - a conventional reindeer can run, at tops 15 miles per hour.

4. The payload on the sleigh adds another interesting element. Assuming each child gets nothing more then a medium sized lego set ( 2 pounds ), the sleigh is carrying 321,300 tons, not counting Santa, who is invariably described as overweight. On land, conventional reindeer can pull no more than 300 pounds. Even granting that 'flying reindeer' can pull TEN TIMES that normal amount, we cannot complete the job with eight, or even nine; we need 214,200 reindeer. This increased the payload- not even counting the weight of the sleigh to 353,430 tons. Again for comparison - this is four times the weight of the Queen Elizabeth

5. 353,000 tons travelling at 650 miles per second creates enormous air resistance. This will heat the reindeer up in the same fashion as spacecrafts re-entering the earth's atmosphere. The lead pair will absorb 14.3 quintillion joules of energy per second. Each. In short, they will burst into flames almost instantaneously, exposing the reindeer behind them, and creating a deafening sonic boom in their wake. The entire reindeer team will be vaporized with 4.26 thousandths of a second. Santa meanwhile, will be subject to centrifugal forces 17,500.06 times greater than gravity. A 250 pound Santa ( which seems ludicrously slim) would be pinned to the back of the sleigh by a 4,315,015 pound force.

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Re: Monday Morning Reading

Post  Grace on Thu Dec 25, 2008 4:51 pm

those engineers..... unbelievers...
santa is magical of course.. and so are his reindeer.. his magical bag which has a bottomless bottom can also contain as much as is desired...

someone should do an engineering analysis on God
but they'd probably get laughed out of existence by God

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