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Skeptic Summary #149

By The Staff
Posted on: 7/15/2007

CRASH!, origins, more origins, meaning, answers, galaxies and more!

Week ending July 14, 2007 (Vol 4, #26)

Welcome to the Skeptic Summary, a quick week-in-review guide to the Skeptic Friends Network and the rest of the skeptical world.

Forum Highlights:
Our servers are moving! - The servers moved okay, but then disaster struck.

Abiogenesis - 90 posts lost in the database crash didn’t make a difference.

Astronomers spot most-distant galaxies ever seen! - Do you call it hijacking if it’s your own thread?

What is your personal meaning of life? - Growing an apetite? Growing intestinal bacteria? Growing smart?

Editor’s Choice: What atheists can’t answer - A bunch of baloney? No, that’s easy to answer.
Kil’s Evil Pick:
Galaxiki is a web-based virtual and purely fictional galaxy project using wiki technology. The word Galaxiki is a portmanteau of the words galaxy and wiki. Galaxiki consists of over 1 million computer generated stars as well as their planets, moons and other orbital objects which are maintained by the Galaxiki Community.

The Galaxiki Community consists of volunteers filling the virtual galaxy with content — e.g. naming stars, planets and moons, editing/describing them, and describing their eventual life forms and their related history. The history of the galaxy is defined by the community, following some rules defined by the galactical board. Galaxiki users are called “Galaxicians.”
This is probably the first game I have recommended as a pick. Take the tour of the site and explore some of the many star systems that you can play around in and edit. Sure, it’s geeky. But hey…

And while you’re at it, visit the Galaxy Zoo thread on the forum that Dude started last week, coincidentally after I had chosen my Evil Pick for this week.

At that site you can catalog real galaxies!
Chat Highlights:
Sunday: The summary got lost in the server crash. Sorry…

Wednesday: Driving in Virginia, dodging trucks, and car puns got things rolling. It was at this point that Kil realized someone had blocked his driveway. Of course, since he was wearing a dress, it made things that much more difficult explaining the situation to the police. A little more punning around, and we arrived at playing with the words moored, more, and Moor. Then annoying songs: The Song that Never Ends, It’s a Small World and 100 Bottles of Beer on the Wall. Ricky tried playing himself, but could only get down to about 96. Things got a bit more devious when Dave shared a series of practical jokes he and his coworker were involved in. It was his turn, and everyone was trying to help think of ideas. Cut wires, glue on the keyboard, removing CMOS batteries, and oh! so much more. Things got a bit heated between Jerome and marf over the art market and how Jerome lacks any understanding of it. Just be glad it didn’t turn into a forum topic.

Come chat with us.
No New Members This Week.
(Not a member? Become one today!)

Elsewhere in the World:
Bad Science


Skepticality #056 - The Search for iPhones and Aliens Interviews: Rob Walch of Today in iPhone, Fraser Cain and Dr. Pamela Gay

What’s New by Bob Park

Got some skeptic news items? Send them to us, and we’ll think about adding them.
Book of the Week:
Defending Science — Within Reason: Between Scientism and Cynicism, by Susan Haack.

“Sweeping in scope, penetrating in analysis, and generously illustrated with examples from the history of science, this new and original approach to familiar questions about scientific evidence and method tackles vital questions about science and its place in society. Avoiding the twin pitfalls of scientism and cynicism, noted philosopher Susan Haack argues that, fallible and flawed as they are, the natural sciences have been among the most successful of human enterprises — valuable not only for the vast, interlocking body of knowledge they have discovered, and not only for the technological advances that have improved our lives, but as a manifestation of the human talent for inquiry at its imperfect but sometimes remarkable best.”

— Book Description

This Week’s Most-Viewed Pages:
Forum Topics:
  1. Taking back the default position (1,307 views)
  2. Astronomers spot most-distant galaxies ever seen! (873 views)
  3. Abiogenesis (774 views)
  4. Sicko (562 views)
  5. Big tent apologetics (342 views)
  6. Former Bush Surgeon General says he was muzzled (324 views)
  7. Our servers are moving! (302 views)
  8. Evolution caught in the act! (274 views)
  9. Gnome censorship conspiracy (247 views)
  10. Guide to ‘intelligent design’ disputation, redux (235 views)
  1. Evolving a Venom or Two (245 views)
  2. Miracle Thaw — The Bogus Miracle (82 views)
  3. Kent Hovind is a Big Phony! (58 views)
  4. Cold Reading (51 views)
  5. Skeptic Summary #148 (42 views)
  6. Miracle Thaw Tray (40 views)
  7. The Bible Answer Man (37 views)
  8. The Bible’s Bad Fruits (30 views)
  9. You’re an Idiot (27 views)
  10. TAM4 (27 views)
There were 5,131 daily visitors this week.

More issues of the Skeptic Summary can be found in our archive.

The Skeptic Summary is produced by the staff of the Skeptic Friends Network, copyright 2007, all rights reserved.

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