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  #701  
Old 22 February 2013, 01:38 AM
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About 1.8 ounces.

http://www.newser.com/story/132542/w...-2-ounces.html
  #702  
Old 22 February 2013, 08:48 AM
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Originally Posted by SatansHobbit View Post
Watt and ton/tonne don't really make the cut.
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Originally Posted by Moku View Post
The Building Trade and related folks (and I'm sure it covers other spheres too) pronounce 'tonnes', 'tunnies' for the avoidance of doubt when talking about estimates etc.
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Originally Posted by A Turtle Named Mack View Post
I didn't know it was actually pronounced differently - I thought it was just that odd Brit habit of throwing in excess letters, as in humour and aluminium.
Er, no - "ton" is an Imperial unit (2,240 pounds in the UK, although it seems to have different definitions in different places) and "tonne" is a well-defined metric unit (1000 kg). They're different things - in fact strictly speaking one is a unit of weight and the other is a unit of mass...

They're usually pronounced the same and they weigh about the same on earth, so informally people don't seem to bother with the distinction. But I can see why people who need to distinguish between the actual units in formal situations might deliberately pronounce them differently when they're trying to be precise.
  #703  
Old 22 February 2013, 12:45 PM
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Is the night sky in the Southern Hemisphere more spectacular than the night sky in the Northern Hemisphere? The center of the galaxy is below our feet in the North, so maybe there are more stars to see down there.
  #704  
Old 22 February 2013, 12:56 PM
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Originally Posted by Mr. Billion View Post
Is the night sky in the Southern Hemisphere more spectacular than the night sky in the Northern Hemisphere? The center of the galaxy is below our feet in the North, so maybe there are more stars to see down there.
I am not sure about that, as the distant parts of the galaxy , like the central bulge, are so far as to blend together or disappear to the naked eye. Most of what we see as individual stars are the relatively nearby stars. however the southern hemisphere has vastly less light pollution, so people tend to be overwhelmed by the night sky when they go below the equator. Unless of course they are in developed areas, like southern Brazil, the cities of SA and southeastern Oz
  #705  
Old 22 February 2013, 01:08 PM
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Originally Posted by Mr. Billion View Post
Is the night sky in the Southern Hemisphere more spectacular than the night sky in the Northern Hemisphere? The center of the galaxy is below our feet in the North, so maybe there are more stars to see down there.
The galactic center is below our feet (at night) in the north now, but it will be in the night sky in the summer.

What they do have are the large and small Magellenic clouds and some great globular clusters that are brighter than the ones visible in the north.

Nick
  #706  
Old 22 February 2013, 01:35 PM
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Originally Posted by Errata View Post
I'm still mad about how they mangled the spelling of platinium.
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Originally Posted by Stan The Man View Post
Imagine my embarrassment when I asked for a magnium of wine.
And how about playing football in a stadum?

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Originally Posted by Richard W View Post
Er, no - "ton" is an Imperial unit (2,240 pounds in the UK, although it seems to have different definitions in different places) and "tonne" is a well-defined metric unit (1000 kg). They're different things - in fact strictly speaking one is a unit of weight and the other is a unit of mass...
And to add to the confusion, there is a "short" ton and a "long" ton. A short ton equals 907kg and a long ton is 1016kg.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Mr. Billion View Post
Is the night sky in the Southern Hemisphere more spectacular than the night sky in the Northern Hemisphere? The center of the galaxy is below our feet in the North, so maybe there are more stars to see down there.
From memory, there seem to be a greater amount of lights in the sky in the northern hemisphere.
  #707  
Old 22 February 2013, 02:45 PM
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The Magellanic clouds are only visible in the Southern Hemisphere, possibly low latitudes north, but I don't know how low. They can be pretty spectacular.
  #708  
Old 22 February 2013, 03:32 PM
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[QUOTE]
Quote:
Originally Posted by JoeBentley View Post
About 1.8 ounces.
Well, not counting all those servers.

(and the DSL and other physical aspects of connectivity; and the individual computers hooked in and contributing at any given moment; and probably stuff I'm not thinking of)


thorny -- what mind/body distinction? -- locust

Last edited by thorny locust; 22 February 2013 at 03:33 PM. Reason: turn the quote back into a quote
  #709  
Old 22 February 2013, 03:34 PM
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1.8 ounces is the estimated weight of all the electrons, that is as close an estimate as weighing the actual, literal information as you can get.
  #710  
Old 22 February 2013, 03:38 PM
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If you're going to talk about the weight of the physical infrastructure that is needed to support the internet, then where do you stop? Do you include the AC units necessary to keep the server rooms cool? What about the electrical generation plants to make the power to keep the servers and AC units running? All the communication lines needed for interconnection?

Since the electrons existed (most of them anyway) before the internet, are they really the weight of the internet?
  #711  
Old 22 February 2013, 03:52 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by JoeBentley View Post
1.8 ounces is the estimated weight of all the electrons, that is as close an estimate as weighing the actual, literal information as you can get.
Yes, I got that.

The question "what does the Internet weigh?" seems to me to have different answers depending on just what you mean by Internet. The weight of the information contained therein is one reasonable meaning for the question; the weight of the infrastructure needed for that information to actually be delivered is another reasonable meaning. If that physical infrastructure didn't exist, neither would the Net.

Determining the weight of the physical infrastructure is difficult, partly because it undoubtedly varies from moment to moment as well as more generally over time, and partly for the reasons GenYus mentioned. I nearly included the cooling equipment in my first post, and I did include the connecting lines; though it occurs to me that in the case of DSL connections (such as mine) most of the connecting lines pre-existed the Net. So, probably, does most of the generating capacity; and do we deduct from the electric needs those uses of energy that may be reduced by the availability of the net? if I research product costs online instead of driving from store to store, for instance? So it gets complicated, and a single clear answer isn't going to be obtainable. But just ignoring the physical components, when their existence is absolutely essential to the function of the whole enterprise, looks shaky to me; unless the original question is clearly phrased so as to exclude them.
  #712  
Old 22 February 2013, 04:00 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by GenYus234 View Post
Since the electrons existed (most of them anyway) before the internet, are they really the weight of the internet?
Since the atoms of your body existed before you did, should they count as part of your weight?

If not, we've discovered a way to help people lose weight through the wonders of philosophy.
  #713  
Old 22 February 2013, 04:05 PM
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But the weight of my body is the weight of a physical entity assembled from components, there is not such thing when talking about the internet. The weight of my conciousness is a closer comparison.
  #714  
Old 22 February 2013, 04:10 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Nick Theodorakis View Post
The galactic center is below our feet (at night) in the north now, but it will be in the night sky in the summer.
I think I was wrong about that. Using the program Stellarium, I see that the constellations Scorpius and Sagittarius (which have the galactic core behind them) were visible on the horizon in the south-southeast just before dawn tonight/this morning in Kansas.
  #715  
Old 22 February 2013, 05:01 PM
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Originally Posted by GenYus234 View Post
But the weight of my body is the weight of a physical entity assembled from components, there is not such thing when talking about the internet. The weight of my conciousness is a closer comparison.
Ah, but can the weight of your conciousness really be separated from the weight of your nervous system?

And how much of your nervous system needs to be included?

And how much of your conscious thought is actually coming from parts of your body outside the nervous system, such as your glands?

-- And the internet certainly does include physical components assembled into an entity. Or at least it relies on those physical components; couldn't exist without them. Whether that means it includes them; or is included within them; or can or should indeed be considered separately from them; is probably going to depend on the framework of the discussion. I didn't think the original question set that framework in a fashion that rules the physical aspect out.
  #716  
Old 22 February 2013, 05:10 PM
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Sure their weights can be seperated. If my conciousness were to depart this body*, the nervous system would still weight the same as it did before. As would the other parts of the support structure.

While both the internet and my conciousness depend on a support structure, that support structure can exist without the "entity" in question. So it is not a given that the weight of the entity automatically includes the support structure.

* Hopefully not today, I have so much to do.
  #717  
Old 22 February 2013, 05:45 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by GenYus234 View Post
While both the internet and my conciousness depend on a support structure, that support structure can exist without the "entity" in question. So it is not a given that the weight of the entity automatically includes the support structure..
Here is where our minds are working differently.

The support system of the entities in question can exist without the entities, yes, at least briefly.* But the entities can't exist without the support structure. So it really doesn't seem to me that the net, or the mind, are separable from their physical components; and it doesn't seem to me that their weight is separable either. While it can certainly be considered theoretically as if separate for a specific purpose, again, the original question didn't specify this. You apparently think it's the default position; I don't.



*in the case of the human nervous system not very long; barring massive medical intervention it starts to break down quite soon after death; and in the case of the net's support structure, if there were no functioning net, there'd be no need or reason to maintain much of it and I don't suppose it would last very long either.
  #718  
Old 22 February 2013, 11:56 PM
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I guess what bothers me about their calculations is that they used electrons whereas much of the information is being sent in photons.
  #719  
Old 23 February 2013, 12:20 AM
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My English/UK friends: what's the difference between a barrister and a lawyer? (Watching A Fish Called Wanda and that came up.)
  #720  
Old 23 February 2013, 12:35 AM
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LizzyBean, that question came up earlier in this thread.
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