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Old April 24 2014, 05:48 PM   #571
Hober Mallow
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Re: Cosmos - With Neil deGrasse Tyson

If there's one religion that managed to nail those vast stretches and cycles of time described by science it's Hinduism.
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Old April 24 2014, 05:50 PM   #572
RAMA
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Re: Cosmos - With Neil deGrasse Tyson

My impressions/thoughts of the show so far(I missed the last 2, DVR later!):

1. The running time is 20 minutes less than the original, they seem short. There just isn't much time to express complete ideas.

2. The shows isn't bad but it lacks the wonder of the original. I remember being carried off by Sagan's words many times, while that rarely happens here.

3. As much as I find creation ideas repulsive, the show doesn't need to continually have direct refutation of their ideas. The science should speak for itself.

4. The SOTI is gorgeous. The FX are good, but no better than some of I've seen on other science channel or PBS shows.

5. I love Ann Druyan. She's really cool where ever I see her. She cares more about the world than any of us I think. I'd hug her.

6. The average viewership across all channels is 10 million a week!! That's pretty good for 2014 TV shows.

7. I've seen Neil DeGrasse Tyson in multiple videos on Youtube and I like him better at interviews and speeches than I do as host of the show.
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Old April 24 2014, 06:00 PM   #573
Hober Mallow
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Re: Cosmos - With Neil deGrasse Tyson

RAMA wrote: View Post
3. As much as I find creation ideas repulsive, the show doesn't need to continually have direct refutation of their ideas. The science should speak for itself.
When you have a sizeable group of scientifically illiterate Americans pushing for creationism to be taught in schools, and when scientifically illiterate adults are in charge of the world making scientific policy based on science dating to the third millennium B.C., then, yes, I think science needs to come right out and refute idiocy.

The SOTI is gorgeous.
It's a great effect, and yet... somehow I prefer the original shitty effect. The new one looks too realistic for a ship of the imagination.

7. I've seen Neil DeGrasse Tyson in multiple videos on Youtube and I like him better at interviews and speeches than I do as host of the show.
Yeah, he's much better and more inspiring when he's off-the-cuff than when he's scripted. The thing about Sagan is that even when he was scripted, he still came off as off-the-cuff. Still, I like Tyson and think he's a worthy successor.
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Old April 24 2014, 11:27 PM   #574
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Re: Cosmos - With Neil deGrasse Tyson

Ancient Mariner wrote: View Post
gturner wrote: View Post
in the 60's researchers in New York infected retarded children
I'll kindly ask that you not continue to use that term to describe people with irregular neurological, psychological or physiological conditions. Not only is it offensive, it's clumsy, overly generalized, and does nothing to properly describe the conditions and issues many people face.
Not only is "mental retardation" still a correct medical term, but it actually denotes more specificity than generalized terms such as "neurological condition". Additionally, in the 60's when whatever study gturner is referencing, it would have been not only the appropriate term used but also a term that had already been sanitized from previous "slur" connotations (words like "idiot", "imbecile", and "feeble" being the previous medical terms in the 1900s). But sure, today it's generally fallen into disuse because people have strong negative reactions to it.

The word "retard" has actually been around almost as long as the English language, and is a verb that quite literally means "to slow".

TL;DR: It's only offensive because people choose to be offended. In the next 20 years, "special" and "challenged" will probably also be considered slurs, and new terms will replace them.
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Old April 25 2014, 12:10 AM   #575
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Re: Cosmos - With Neil deGrasse Tyson

tighr wrote: View Post
TL;DR: It's only offensive because people choose to be offended. In the next 20 years, "special" and "challenged" will probably also be considered slurs, and new terms will replace them.
So things are offensive only because people find them offensive? Glad you cleared that up for us.
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Old April 25 2014, 12:19 AM   #576
davejames
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Re: Cosmos - With Neil deGrasse Tyson

gturner wrote: View Post
Actually the writer of Cosmos, Carl Sagan's wife, has written quite eloquently that science should become just that, replacing the function of religion by becoming something that inspires humanity's religious sensibilities, sense of awe, and all that.
I don't think she's trying to argue that the purpose of science should be to inspire and provoke wonder, only that those are things that can be derived from science if one is interested in looking for them.

And I don't see any conflict or contradiction at all with having feelings of wonder and spirituality that are grounded in a solid, physical world that can be measured and objectively analyzed. That's far different from religion, which asks us to ground them on nothing but... ancient texts, primal beliefs, and wishful thinking.
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Old April 25 2014, 12:36 AM   #577
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Re: Cosmos - With Neil deGrasse Tyson

Our sense of wonder at the universe is what inspires us to seek answers about it. Religion used to be the only way to do that, both where its physical nature and its spiritual meaning were concerned, but it wasn't very good at the former. Once the scientific method was formulated, it turned out to do a much better job at addressing the questions about the physical nature of the universe, so religion has been free to specialize in addressing the spiritual questions, and thus the two disciplines now complement each other rather than competing. The only people who see them as being in competition are those who don't understand their respective emphases.

Personally, I've never found it necessary to believe in anything spiritual or supernatural to have a sense of wonder about the universe. To me, a universe where incredibly complex and amazing things can happen spontaneously by the operation of simple, inbuilt laws is far more wondrous than a universe where nothing amazing ever happens unless a conscious being decides it will. So it's wrong to assume that religion has a monopoly on inspiring awe and wonder.
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Old April 25 2014, 01:00 AM   #578
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Re: Cosmos - With Neil deGrasse Tyson

tighr wrote: View Post
Ancient Mariner wrote: View Post
gturner wrote: View Post
in the 60's researchers in New York infected retarded children
I'll kindly ask that you not continue to use that term to describe people with irregular neurological, psychological or physiological conditions. Not only is it offensive, it's clumsy, overly generalized, and does nothing to properly describe the conditions and issues many people face.
Not only is "mental retardation" still a correct medical term, but it actually denotes more specificity than generalized terms such as "neurological condition". Additionally, in the 60's when whatever study gturner is referencing, it would have been not only the appropriate term used but also a term that had already been sanitized from previous "slur" connotations (words like "idiot", "imbecile", and "feeble" being the previous medical terms in the 1900s). But sure, today it's generally fallen into disuse because people have strong negative reactions to it.
I wasn't suggesting replacing one word with another generalized term. I was pointing out that the word in question is too vague because it covers a whole range of conditions and I was suggesting replacing that one (generalized and offensive) word with the specific condition - such as cerebral palsy, autism, Down Syndrome, etc. The vast majority of people seriously working in the field - from psychologists to educators, do not use the term. As such, usage of the term results in statements that are too lazy to specify the actual condition of the person in question, as well as statements that are too obtuse to acknowledge the inherent offensiveness of the term. If you're still in need of generalized catch-all phrase, Intellectual Disability (ID) is now the accepted term.

tighr wrote: View Post
The word "retard" has actually been around almost as long as the English language, and is a verb that quite literally means "to slow".
But that's not how it was used above. And its use, in reference to humans, is outdated, lazy and offensive.

tighr wrote: View Post
TL;DR: It's only offensive because people choose to be offended. In the next 20 years, "special" and "challenged" will probably also be considered slurs, and new terms will replace them.
Welcome to the evolution of language. Enjoy your stay.
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Old April 25 2014, 04:54 AM   #579
tighr
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Re: Cosmos - With Neil deGrasse Tyson

Robert Maxwell wrote: View Post
tighr wrote: View Post
TL;DR: It's only offensive because people choose to be offended. In the next 20 years, "special" and "challenged" will probably also be considered slurs, and new terms will replace them.
So things are offensive only because people find them offensive? Glad you cleared that up for us.
Well yeah, that's only part of it. The other part is obviously how it's said, but in the case of how gturner used it, he wasn't being disparaging towards those children, they actually do have a condition. I'm not saying I use the word in general practice (like I said, it's fallen into disuse due to it's stigma) but I don't think his intention was offensive.
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Old April 25 2014, 05:01 AM   #580
Dennis
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Re: Cosmos - With Neil deGrasse Tyson

Christopher wrote: View Post
...so religion has been free to specialize in addressing the spiritual questions, and thus the two disciplines now complement each other rather than competing.
Religion is not a discipline.
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Old April 25 2014, 07:55 AM   #581
gturner
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Re: Cosmos - With Neil deGrasse Tyson

tighr wrote: View Post

Well yeah, that's only part of it. The other part is obviously how it's said, but in the case of how gturner used it, he wasn't being disparaging towards those children, they actually do have a condition. I'm not saying I use the word in general practice (like I said, it's fallen into disuse due to it's stigma) but I don't think his intention was offensive.
It may seem strange, but the professional definition of DSM-I through DSM-IV was mental retardation, with subcategories of mild, moderate, severe, and profound retardation. Those terms held until May of 2013 when DSM-V was published. So my terminology was 11 months out of date.

Also dropped in DSM-V were Aspergers and schizophrenia. The new term for the R word is "intellectual developmental disorder", which oddly sounds like something that afflicts everyone who isn't an intellectual. So for all you people who don't have an ivy league degree in French literature studies with a minor in opera (and Duke doesn't count), yeah, you're retarded. Welcome to the short bus.
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Old April 25 2014, 12:20 PM   #582
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Re: Cosmos - With Neil deGrasse Tyson

gturner wrote: View Post
So for all you people who don't have an ivy league degree in French literature studies with a minor in opera (and Duke doesn't count), yeah, you're retarded. Welcome to the short bus.
That is just a mean-spirited, shameful statement.

Getting back to Cosmos, it has portrayed science exactly as it should: inspiring and rigorous. It was Sagan himself who said "to find the truth we will need imagination and skepticism both. We will not be afraid to speculate, but we will be careful to distinguish speculation from fact. The cosmos is full beyond measure of elegant truths of exquisite interrelationships of the awesome machinery of nature." In other words, you can be inspired by science, you can let it fire your imagination ... but you must also hold your thoughts to scientific rigor, so as to tease out the truth from your imagination and speculation. This is where the climate change deniers fail. Their "evidence" has not withstood scientific scrutiny - the evidence overwhelmingly supports the source and dangerous effects of climate change, just as it overwhelmingly supported the source and dangerous effects of lead.
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Old April 25 2014, 12:31 PM   #583
Dennis
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Re: Cosmos - With Neil deGrasse Tyson

gturner wrote: View Post
So for all you people who don't have an ivy league degree in French literature studies with a minor in opera (and Duke doesn't count), yeah, you're retarded. Welcome to the short bus.
I've always appreciated the briefer walk to the exits.
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Old April 25 2014, 01:07 PM   #584
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Re: Cosmos - With Neil deGrasse Tyson

We can't say retarded any more? That's so gay!
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Old April 25 2014, 05:21 PM   #585
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Re: Cosmos - With Neil deGrasse Tyson

It's funny how slurs are created. They start out as perfectly normal words, and because they are misused over time, they get bleeped out.

I still insist on using gay as a normal word, for example. When something is "gay", it's brighter, colorful, cheerful, happier.
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