Go Back   English Forum Switzerland > Off-Topic > Off-Topic > General off-topic
Reply
 
Thread Tools Display Modes
  #1481  
Old 02.07.2013, 11:35
marton's Avatar
Forum Legend
 
Join Date: May 2008
Location: Kt. Zürich
Posts: 8,673
Groaned at 256 Times in 222 Posts
Thanked 11,912 Times in 6,531 Posts
marton has a reputation beyond reputemarton has a reputation beyond reputemarton has a reputation beyond reputemarton has a reputation beyond reputemarton has a reputation beyond reputemarton has a reputation beyond repute
Re: Ask a Scientist

Quote:
View Post
They always talk about cooking food properly to kill bacteria and stuff, but how far can that work?

If you were in an eat or die situation and the only thing you could find on your desert island was a putrifying chicken casserole, would boiling it and simmering for a couple of hours render it safe to eat?
Active bacteria produce toxins (think of poisons). So cooking the chicken will kill the bacteria but the toxins are still there (think of boiling cyanide - does not remove it).
Then it is a gamble; are these relatively harmless toxins or did these bacteria create really nasty ones, for example, I quote "Bacterial protein toxins are the most powerful human poisons known"
Reply With Quote
  #1482  
Old 02.07.2013, 11:35
marton's Avatar
Forum Legend
 
Join Date: May 2008
Location: Kt. Zürich
Posts: 8,673
Groaned at 256 Times in 222 Posts
Thanked 11,912 Times in 6,531 Posts
marton has a reputation beyond reputemarton has a reputation beyond reputemarton has a reputation beyond reputemarton has a reputation beyond reputemarton has a reputation beyond reputemarton has a reputation beyond repute
Re: Ask a Scientist

Quote:
View Post
I THINK that cooking kills bacteria which therefore cannot get into your body live and cause havoc, but cooking won't render any toxins which have formed during rotting any less poisonous
Beat me to the draw
Reply With Quote
  #1483  
Old 02.07.2013, 11:39
mirfield's Avatar
Moddy McModface
 
Join Date: Apr 2007
Location: Basel
Posts: 8,549
Groaned at 58 Times in 52 Posts
Thanked 9,039 Times in 3,330 Posts
mirfield has a reputation beyond reputemirfield has a reputation beyond reputemirfield has a reputation beyond reputemirfield has a reputation beyond reputemirfield has a reputation beyond reputemirfield has a reputation beyond repute
Re: Ask a Scientist

Sounds obvious now you mention it.

Ah well, better get something else for tonight's tea.
Reply With Quote
  #1484  
Old 02.07.2013, 11:56
Caviarchips's Avatar
Forum Legend
 
Join Date: May 2010
Location: Basel Stadt
Posts: 4,004
Groaned at 110 Times in 83 Posts
Thanked 6,677 Times in 2,388 Posts
Caviarchips has a reputation beyond reputeCaviarchips has a reputation beyond reputeCaviarchips has a reputation beyond reputeCaviarchips has a reputation beyond reputeCaviarchips has a reputation beyond reputeCaviarchips has a reputation beyond repute
Re: Ask a Scientist

Quote:
View Post
Sounds obvious now you mention it.
It'll be fine. It'll be the bottled water which will kill you. Apparently
Reply With Quote
  #1485  
Old 02.07.2013, 13:54
adrianlondon's Avatar
Forum Legend
 
Join Date: Nov 2009
Location: Basel
Posts: 9,200
Groaned at 193 Times in 176 Posts
Thanked 25,643 Times in 6,892 Posts
adrianlondon has a reputation beyond reputeadrianlondon has a reputation beyond reputeadrianlondon has a reputation beyond reputeadrianlondon has a reputation beyond reputeadrianlondon has a reputation beyond reputeadrianlondon has a reputation beyond repute
Re: Ask a Scientist

Quote:
View Post
I THINK that cooking kills bacteria which therefore cannot get into your body live and cause havoc, but cooking won't render any toxins which have formed during rotting any less poisonous
Wouldn't it be better, then, to eat the chicken raw so that the bacteria can survive and keep breaking down the toxins once you've eaten it?
Reply With Quote
  #1486  
Old 02.07.2013, 20:20
FrankZappa's Avatar
Forum Veteran
 
Join Date: Feb 2008
Location: France, near Geneva
Posts: 795
Groaned at 7 Times in 6 Posts
Thanked 2,503 Times in 621 Posts
FrankZappa has a reputation beyond reputeFrankZappa has a reputation beyond reputeFrankZappa has a reputation beyond reputeFrankZappa has a reputation beyond reputeFrankZappa has a reputation beyond reputeFrankZappa has a reputation beyond repute
Re: Ask a Scientist

Quote:
View Post
Wouldn't it be better, then, to eat the chicken raw so that the bacteria can survive and keep breaking down the toxins once you've eaten it?
No. They just carry on producing toxins, which they have lovingly created to stop other organisms sharing their food.
Reply With Quote
  #1487  
Old 02.07.2013, 20:55
22 yards's Avatar
Only in moderation
 
Join Date: Jul 2009
Location: Basel-Land
Posts: 7,400
Groaned at 215 Times in 173 Posts
Thanked 13,224 Times in 5,432 Posts
22 yards has a reputation beyond repute22 yards has a reputation beyond repute22 yards has a reputation beyond repute22 yards has a reputation beyond repute22 yards has a reputation beyond repute22 yards has a reputation beyond repute
Re: Ask a Scientist

Doesn't this desert island have alternative foodstuffs on offer, like coconuts, or lizards? Or roast pebbles with parboiled sand? Any of which would be preferable to mirfield's putrefying chicken casserole.

By the way, how come the famous Swedish rotten herring dish (the one they bury in the ground for several months to obtain optimal rottenness) isn't laced with obnoxious toxins? Does the obligatory accompanying vodka neutralise the toxins?
Reply With Quote
  #1488  
Old 02.07.2013, 22:00
marton's Avatar
Forum Legend
 
Join Date: May 2008
Location: Kt. Zürich
Posts: 8,673
Groaned at 256 Times in 222 Posts
Thanked 11,912 Times in 6,531 Posts
marton has a reputation beyond reputemarton has a reputation beyond reputemarton has a reputation beyond reputemarton has a reputation beyond reputemarton has a reputation beyond reputemarton has a reputation beyond repute
Re: Ask a Scientist

Quote:
View Post
Doesn't this desert island have alternative foodstuffs on offer, like coconuts, or lizards? Or roast pebbles with parboiled sand? Any of which would be preferable to mirfield's putrefying chicken casserole.

By the way, how come the famous Swedish rotten herring dish (the one they bury in the ground for several months to obtain optimal rottenness) isn't laced with obnoxious toxins? Does the obligatory accompanying vodka neutralise the toxins?
Apparently the way the fish rots associated with the brine used does not provide the correct environment for the bacteria that produce dangerous toxins.
Reply With Quote
  #1489  
Old 03.07.2013, 15:55
bubbles4352's Avatar
Forum Veteran
 
Join Date: Jan 2007
Location: Zurich
Posts: 572
Groaned at 0 Times in 0 Posts
Thanked 174 Times in 108 Posts
bubbles4352 is considered knowledgeablebubbles4352 is considered knowledgeablebubbles4352 is considered knowledgeable
Re: Ask a Scientist

How much does the bacteria/toxins effects depend on the body's natural immunity? I remember reading somewhere that you're only likely to catch typhoid (or is it cholera?) if you're already feeling poorly or if your immune system is somehow compromised. Is there any truth to that?
Reply With Quote
  #1490  
Old 03.07.2013, 17:55
Ace1's Avatar
A singular modality
 
Join Date: Sep 2011
Location: Morgins
Posts: 6,604
Groaned at 200 Times in 147 Posts
Thanked 10,404 Times in 4,616 Posts
Ace1 has a reputation beyond reputeAce1 has a reputation beyond reputeAce1 has a reputation beyond reputeAce1 has a reputation beyond reputeAce1 has a reputation beyond reputeAce1 has a reputation beyond repute
Re: Ask a Scientist

Quote:
View Post
How much does the bacteria/toxins effects depend on the body's natural immunity? I remember reading somewhere that you're only likely to catch typhoid (or is it cholera?) if you're already feeling poorly or if your immune system is somehow compromised. Is there any truth to that?
Not as stated. Clearly a weakened body will be less able to fight infection of any kind, but it's not a case of catching or not catching a disease, but how severe and/or long-lasting the symptoms may be.

The same virus, for example a common cold one, may leave one infected person with just a slight runny nose for a few days while completely knocking someone else for six. The reasons for this are not always clear, as with the cold thing studies have failed to conclude that it's "weaker" people who get worst hit.
Reply With Quote
  #1491  
Old 20.09.2013, 07:23
Forum Veteran
 
Join Date: Aug 2011
Location: Zurich
Posts: 1,140
Groaned at 101 Times in 60 Posts
Thanked 1,820 Times in 623 Posts
Busby has a reputation beyond reputeBusby has a reputation beyond reputeBusby has a reputation beyond reputeBusby has a reputation beyond reputeBusby has a reputation beyond reputeBusby has a reputation beyond repute
Re: Ask a Scientist

I've just started to read Bill Bryson's 'A Short History of Almost Everything'. Right in the first chapter he states that each one of us is made of trillions of atoms. Atoms which scientists often refer to a 'stardust'. Somewhere else I have read that each of us carries a couple of atoms which belonged to Napoleon. I remember also once reading that when a female child is born she already carries in her the number of eggs she will need for her monthly cycle - and once they are 'used up' her fertility is finished.
So, lying in bed last night I started to think about these atoms which form myself and have a couple of questions:

At the moment of conception, when each of us were about the size of a pinhead (say), were the atoms, like the eggs, already there, just closer together?

If not, and probably not, how do they become part of us, is it from our nutrition, or do they just appear out of the air? If it's from the food we eat is then food in the first place the deliverer of atoms or of sustenance?

When Napoleon died did his atoms just float off? How did the atoms forming his body know he was dead? If atoms are their own source of energy they don't need nutrition presumably?

Bill Bryson has a lot of explaining to do!!!!!!
Reply With Quote
  #1492  
Old 20.09.2013, 07:44
Motorschweitz's Avatar
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Apr 2009
Location: Bassersdorf
Posts: 389
Groaned at 4 Times in 3 Posts
Thanked 666 Times in 247 Posts
Motorschweitz has a reputation beyond reputeMotorschweitz has a reputation beyond reputeMotorschweitz has a reputation beyond reputeMotorschweitz has a reputation beyond reputeMotorschweitz has a reputation beyond repute
Re: Ask a Scientist

Quote:
View Post
I've just started to read Bill Bryson's 'A Short History of Almost Everything'. Right in the first chapter he states that each one of us is made of trillions of atoms. Atoms which scientists often refer to a 'stardust'. Somewhere else I have read that each of us carries a couple of atoms which belonged to Napoleon. I remember also once reading that when a female child is born she already carries in her the number of eggs she will need for her monthly cycle - and once they are 'used up' her fertility is finished.
So, lying in bed last night I started to think about these atoms which form myself and have a couple of questions:

At the moment of conception, when each of us were about the size of a pinhead (say), were the atoms, like the eggs, already there, just closer together?

If not, and probably not, how do they become part of us, is it from our nutrition, or do they just appear out of the air? If it's from the food we eat is then food in the first place the deliverer of atoms or of sustenance?

When Napoleon died did his atoms just float off? How did the atoms forming his body know he was dead? If atoms are their own source of energy they don't need nutrition presumably?

Bill Bryson has a lot of explaining to do!!!!!!
At the moment of conception, we are a small collection of atoms (which are actually bonded together in special ways to form "molecules"). As we grow, we add more and more atoms to ourselves.

Conservation of mass and energy dictates that we don't just make stuff, including ourselves, out of nothing, so obviously what "builds" us is coming from the food we eat (or in the case of the womb, what the mother eats), the water we drink, and the air we breathe.

When Napoleon died, his atoms were returned to the earth by decomposition processes carried out by microorganisms that needed his molecules for their own sustenance. The molecules (which are built of atoms) of his body knew that he was dead because upon his death the various biochemical processes that require the circulatory system etc. to operate simply stopped operating.

Atoms are not their own sources of energy, I don't know what you mean by that. The energy required for life comes from chemical processes - the exchange of electrons from one molecule to another.
Reply With Quote
  #1493  
Old 20.09.2013, 07:55
Forum Veteran
 
Join Date: Aug 2011
Location: Zurich
Posts: 1,140
Groaned at 101 Times in 60 Posts
Thanked 1,820 Times in 623 Posts
Busby has a reputation beyond reputeBusby has a reputation beyond reputeBusby has a reputation beyond reputeBusby has a reputation beyond reputeBusby has a reputation beyond reputeBusby has a reputation beyond repute
Re: Ask a Scientist

Thanks, that's pretty clear.

I had always assumed that as atoms are (apparently) eternal that they would be self-supporting.
Reply With Quote
  #1494  
Old 20.09.2013, 09:13
Motorschweitz's Avatar
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Apr 2009
Location: Bassersdorf
Posts: 389
Groaned at 4 Times in 3 Posts
Thanked 666 Times in 247 Posts
Motorschweitz has a reputation beyond reputeMotorschweitz has a reputation beyond reputeMotorschweitz has a reputation beyond reputeMotorschweitz has a reputation beyond reputeMotorschweitz has a reputation beyond repute
Re: Ask a Scientist

Quote:
View Post
Thanks, that's pretty clear.

I had always assumed that as atoms are (apparently) eternal that they would be self-supporting.
Well, atoms aren't really eternal, because nuclear processes can change them.

Going past the basic proton/neutron/electron model of an atom is in the realm of particle physics and beyond what I know, so I have no idea which particles are eternal and which aren't, if any. I don't think anyone really knows. From the perspective of human life on earth, however, you could say that atoms are more or less eternal, I suppose.
Reply With Quote
  #1495  
Old 27.09.2013, 15:45
MusicChick's Avatar
modified and reprogrammed
 
Join Date: Feb 2008
Location: La Cote
Posts: 11,466
Groaned at 125 Times in 101 Posts
Thanked 13,700 Times in 6,816 Posts
MusicChick has a reputation beyond reputeMusicChick has a reputation beyond reputeMusicChick has a reputation beyond reputeMusicChick has a reputation beyond reputeMusicChick has a reputation beyond reputeMusicChick has a reputation beyond repute
Re: Ask a Scientist

This will be probably for a psy sci more than anything...some kind of theories of adjustment, info processing, theories on development of intelligence, or so.

So, what makes us stick to our guts, instinct, sometimes and not knowledge, like kids confidently, creatively and daringly would, and the other times use our experiences and knowledge to guide us to make the right decisions and moves when we are facing a new situation. What are the skills that help with this, are they inborn, acquired..is it intelligence?
Reply With Quote
  #1496  
Old 27.09.2013, 16:44
FrankZappa's Avatar
Forum Veteran
 
Join Date: Feb 2008
Location: France, near Geneva
Posts: 795
Groaned at 7 Times in 6 Posts
Thanked 2,503 Times in 621 Posts
FrankZappa has a reputation beyond reputeFrankZappa has a reputation beyond reputeFrankZappa has a reputation beyond reputeFrankZappa has a reputation beyond reputeFrankZappa has a reputation beyond reputeFrankZappa has a reputation beyond repute
Re: Ask a Scientist

Quote:
View Post
This will be probably for a psy sci more than anything...some kind of theories of adjustment, info processing, theories on development of intelligence, or so.

So, what makes us stick to our guts, instinct, sometimes and not knowledge, like kids confidently, creatively and daringly would, and the other times use our experiences and knowledge to guide us to make the right decisions and moves when we are facing a new situation. What are the skills that help with this, are they inborn, acquired..is it intelligence?
Excellent question to which there is no simple answer. As so often, "a bit of both", i.e. nature and nurture. Humans are uniquely useless animals when they are born, because they so good at learning, both from experience and each other (folk wisdom). Two books that I recommend are the wonderful (apart from his haircut) Stephen Pinker's "How the Mind Works" & my latest hero Gerd Gigerenzer's "Simple heuristics that make us smart".
Reply With Quote
  #1497  
Old 03.11.2013, 19:20
bubbles4352's Avatar
Forum Veteran
 
Join Date: Jan 2007
Location: Zurich
Posts: 572
Groaned at 0 Times in 0 Posts
Thanked 174 Times in 108 Posts
bubbles4352 is considered knowledgeablebubbles4352 is considered knowledgeablebubbles4352 is considered knowledgeable
Re: Ask a Scientist

Time for another question... Today's solar eclipse got me thinking. I remember hearing years ago that some early civilisations were advanced enough that they could calculate when eclipses would happen. Is there any truth to this? How do you go about calculating when an eclipse is going to happen, and what level of maths is required to do so? I imagine the answer is: a lot... I guess it also requires accurate measurements of things like the length of a day/year etc, and an understanding that the earth revolves around the sun...
Reply With Quote
  #1498  
Old 03.11.2013, 19:23
adrianlondon's Avatar
Forum Legend
 
Join Date: Nov 2009
Location: Basel
Posts: 9,200
Groaned at 193 Times in 176 Posts
Thanked 25,643 Times in 6,892 Posts
adrianlondon has a reputation beyond reputeadrianlondon has a reputation beyond reputeadrianlondon has a reputation beyond reputeadrianlondon has a reputation beyond reputeadrianlondon has a reputation beyond reputeadrianlondon has a reputation beyond repute
Re: Ask a Scientist

All you wanted to know. More than you wanted to know, no doubt.

http://www.jqjacobs.net/astro/eclipse.html

There was a BBC4 documentary series on maths which covered it briefly, too.
http://www.bbc.co.uk/programmes/b00dxjls/episodes/guide
Reply With Quote
  #1499  
Old 03.11.2013, 19:45
marton's Avatar
Forum Legend
 
Join Date: May 2008
Location: Kt. Zürich
Posts: 8,673
Groaned at 256 Times in 222 Posts
Thanked 11,912 Times in 6,531 Posts
marton has a reputation beyond reputemarton has a reputation beyond reputemarton has a reputation beyond reputemarton has a reputation beyond reputemarton has a reputation beyond reputemarton has a reputation beyond repute
Re: Ask a Scientist

Quote:
View Post
Time for another question... Today's solar eclipse got me thinking. I remember hearing years ago that some early civilisations were advanced enough that they could calculate when eclipses would happen. Is there any truth to this? How do you go about calculating when an eclipse is going to happen, and what level of maths is required to do so? I imagine the answer is: a lot... I guess it also requires accurate measurements of things like the length of a day/year etc, and an understanding that the earth revolves around the sun...
As was posted it was less a question of maths - more a question of making & keeping very accurate astronomical records & then using these records to forecast future eclipses which show up at fixed time intervals.
Reply With Quote
  #1500  
Old 03.11.2013, 20:11
Pancakes's Avatar
Forum Legend
 
Join Date: Nov 2009
Location: Zurich
Posts: 2,899
Groaned at 96 Times in 64 Posts
Thanked 4,524 Times in 1,799 Posts
Pancakes has a reputation beyond reputePancakes has a reputation beyond reputePancakes has a reputation beyond reputePancakes has a reputation beyond reputePancakes has a reputation beyond reputePancakes has a reputation beyond repute
Re: Ask a Scientist

Okay, I have a question...

When my husband makes hot dogs, he boils them in water for a bit while the hot dogs are still inside the plastic wrapper. I've always found this strange and told him that it's probably not a good idea, as I would think that the heated plastic could break down and leach chemicals into the hot dogs. Now I just caught him making hot dogs this way to give to our two-year old, and it really pissed me off.

He said it's fine and how hot dogs are usually cooked here. But I'm not sure I believe him.

Am I over-reacting?
Reply With Quote
Reply




Currently Active Users Viewing This Thread: 1 (0 members and 1 guests)
 
Thread Tools
Display Modes

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Trackbacks are Off
Pingbacks are Off
Refbacks are Off


Similar Threads
Thread Thread Starter Forum Replies Last Post
Average salary for post-doctoral scientist barish Employment 87 01.10.2008 14:27
Wanted: Drug Metabolism Scientist to work in major Pharma, Basel Caroline Jobs wanted 0 20.09.2007 19:00
Surfing Scientist!!! Sarge Jobs wanted 2 24.05.2007 03:38


All times are GMT +2. The time now is 09:50.


Powered by vBulletin® Version 3.8.4
Copyright ©2000 - 2018, Jelsoft Enterprises Ltd.
LinkBacks Enabled by vBSEO 3.1.0