24,949 reputation
150104
bio website
location
age
visits member for 2 years, 9 months
seen 32 mins ago

2d
comment Mystery of the many-loaded muzzles
@Schwern - If some comments are obsolete, flag them and let the mods look them over.
2d
comment Mystery of the many-loaded muzzles
Interestingly, it looks like soldiers firing unusually heavy weapons were more likely to really fire them. There might be some physical explanations for that too, but it jibes well with the psychological one. If you're using one of the big guns and don't fire it, people are much more likely to notice (also, if you like firing guns, you'd likely gravitate toward the bigger ones, given a chance. The gun enthusiasts I know are certainly that way).
Jan
23
comment Before the Land Bridge Theory, how was human presence in the Americas explained?
@Drux - Kon-Tiki was not about the population of the Americas. What Heyerdahl was proposing was that Early Americans were ancestral to the Polynesians (not the other way around).
Jan
23
comment Before the Land Bridge Theory, how was human presence in the Americas explained?
Solutrean is a thing. However, it only dates back to about 1998, so it is not a pre-Beringa theory.
Jan
18
comment Is chain mail expensive?
What I think is being missed is that today it is expensive, because labor (at least outside the developing world) is very expensive today. However, in Europe between roughly the fall of the Roman Empire and the population contraction that came with The Black Plague, unskilled labor was very cheap. So while today "labor intensive" = "expensive", that was not the case then.
Jan
16
comment Identification of location and type of bi-plane
@mgkrebbs - Not that this means much, but there are other places that resemble that location. I know the AFB/Airport in Albuquerque happens to abut the (Sandia) mountains very much like that.
Jan
15
comment Was there a secret side-agreement between the USSR and Nazi Germany to summarily execute the Polish officer corp?
I believe I saw a version of this story from Churchill's point of view in his "History" (memoirs) of the war. I'll see if I can find it.
Jan
13
comment Why, in the US, is Japanese brutality ignored compared with the Nazi brutality in WW2?
I'm not convinced this answers the question. It attempts to affirm the basis of the question, but there's no answer to the "Why?" question in here.
Jan
12
comment When were the first mosques established in Constantinople?
Is it possible that bit was mistranslated? From the title, I gather that work was in Latin, which ceased to be a living language before Mosques existed.
Jan
9
comment What is the story behind the tall Northern offshoot on the West Virginia map?
FWIW, if you are often interested in such stories, you would probably find the book How the States Got Their Shapes a good read. There was a TV series too, but I haven't seen it, and can't bring myself to recommend a show produced by the History Channel that I haven't seen.
Jan
9
comment What is the origin of the Flower of Life symbol?
The question was what the origin of that pattern is. I might be missing something, but I don't see how this answers that question. Did you perhaps mean to leave this as a comment instead?
Jan
8
comment Identification of ship and seaplane type
As an "Okie" myself, it is really amusing to see that name on the Oklahoma's lifeboat.
Jan
8
comment What percentage of men, ages 18 to 35, from the northern states served in the Union Army?
This is probably as good an estimate as any. However, it is worth noting that this was an ideological war as much as a geographic one, and probably every state (and many families) had men serving on both sides. I know my dad's (Missouri-based) side of the family did.
Jan
8
comment Has the U.S. Navy ever commissioned the building of a warship overseas?
That's a tough one. I'd say it comes really close to counting. If it flops over the bar is up for debate. However, if this is the best anyone can come up with, I think that's a pretty telling point as well.
Jan
6
comment Has the U.S. Navy ever commissioned the building of a warship overseas?
I suppose those are technically "overseas" (so +1 for now, and for taking a good crack at an old unanswered question). However, I suspect the OQ was using that word as shorthand for "from another country", and those are all effectively under control of the USA.
Jan
6
comment How accurate or supported is Jared Diamond's “Guns, Germs, and Steel”?
A good crack at answering the question (so +1). I'm not sure I agree entirely about the two bodies of work being at odds with each other. GG&S deals with much larger units (continents) than does WNF (individual countries). However, Mr. Diamond happened to have another different book on the subject (Collapse) when WNF came out. He essentially used the cover of a theoretical dispute to pump his own book, so now I suspect the difference is personal.
Jan
6
comment Did a capital ship ever hit anything with a torpedo?
Lol. Upvoting because the question did say "anything". I guess theoretically an unlucky passing whale would count too.
Jan
5
comment Did a capital ship ever hit anything with a torpedo?
@Oldcat - Perhaps that's why it was descriptions of the Japanese fighting that way that convinced me (see the link).
Jan
5
comment Did a capital ship ever hit anything with a torpedo?
@Oldcat - What it looked like when I was researching is that blasting away at things with the main guns was what capital ship captains felt was "their job". The smaller ships couldn't do that. If they hurt an opponent badly enough for it to be safely approached and dispatched with torpedoes, they'd leave that job to a lesser ship designed for it (destroyer or torpedo boat).
Jan
5
comment Did a capital ship ever hit anything with a torpedo?
That incident I think illustrates what was going on well. There was a time right after the introduction of ironclads where they were nearly impenetrable to canon fire, and torpedo attacks against their (less armored) underside was a promising counter-measure. Raising the power of the main guns turned out to be the winning idea there for capital ships, but both approaches were developed on frigates, and it had to be proven in action before the lesser idea was abandoned completely.