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Thread: Coronavirus with an R0 of 3 or beyond

  1. #976
    Senior Member NotAPretender's Avatar
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    lol ... that's a gút one...
    “Chance is perhaps God's pseudonym when He does not want to sign” Anatole France, Le Jardin d'Epicure

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  3. #977
    Super Moderator Norway Elen's Avatar
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    Quote Originally posted by Aragorn View Post
    And women are from Venus. And politicians are from Uranus.
    Did you mean Ur Anus?
    Whatever is true. Whatever is noble. Whatever is right. Whatever is lovely. Whatever is admirable. Anything of excellence and worthy of praise. Dwell on these things. Jesus Christ (I agree)

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  5. #978
    Senior Member Hungary
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    Quote Originally posted by NotAPretender View Post
    lol ... so are 'Hungarians/Martians'
    You must have heard this anecdote then

    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/The_Martians_(scientists)

    The Martians (scientists)
    From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
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    Leo Szilard

    Planet Mars
    "The Martians" was a term used to refer to a group of prominent Hungarian scientists (mostly, but not exclusively, physicists and mathematicians) who emigrated to the United States in the early half of the 20th century.[1]

    Leó Szilárd, who jokingly suggested that Hungary was a front for aliens from Mars, used this term. In an answer to the question of why there is no evidence of intelligent life beyond Earth despite the high probability of it existing, Szilárd responded: "They are already here among us – they just call themselves Hungarians." This account is featured in György Marx's book The Voice of the Martians.

    Paul Erdős, Paul Halmos, Theodore von Kármán, John G. Kemeny, John von Neumann, George Pólya, Leó Szilárd, Edward Teller, and Eugene Wigner are included in this group.

    Dennis Gabor, Ervin Bauer, Róbert Bárány, George de Hevesy, Nicholas Kurti, George Klein, Eva Klein, Michael Polanyi and Marcel Riesz are also sometimes named,[weasel words] though they did not emigrate to the United States.

    Loránd Eötvös, Kálmán Tihanyi, Zoltán Lajos Bay, Victor Szebehely, Albert Szent-Györgyi, Georg von Békésy and Maria Telkes are often mentioned[weasel words] in connection.

    Elizabeth Róna, a Hungarian nuclear chemist who emigrated to the US in 1941 to work on the Manhattan Project and discovered Uranium-Y, is a colleague, but not usually included.

    Origin of the name

    Bela Lugosi in Dracula

    John von Neumann at Los Alamos
    Since they all spoke English with a strong accent (made famous by horror actor Bela Lugosi), they were considered outsiders in American society. The Hungarian scientists were seemingly superhuman in intellect, spoke an incomprehensible native language, and came from a small obscure country. This led to them being called Martians, a name they jocularly adopted.

    The joke was that Hungarian scientists are actually descendants of a Martian scout force which landed in Budapest around the year 1900, and later departed after the planet was found unsuitable, but leaving behind children by several Earth women, children who all became the famous scientists. John von Neumann cited as mock evidence to support this claim the close geographic proximity of the Martians' birthplaces and the well-traceable career path, which started with an interest in chemistry and led the individual in question to German universities where he moved towards physics, at which point the Martian left Europe for the US.

    The original story from György Marx's book The Voice of the Martians:

    The universe is vast, containing myriads of stars...likely to have planets circling around them.... The simplest living things will multiply, evolve by natural selection and become more complicated till eventually active, thinking creatures will emerge.... Yearning for fresh worlds...they should spread out all over the Galaxy. These highly exceptional and talented people could hardly overlook such a beautiful place as our Earth. – "And so," Fermi came to his overwhelming question, "if all this has been happening, they should have arrived here by now, so where are they?" – It was Leo Szilard, a man with an impish sense of humor, who supplied the perfect reply to the Fermi Paradox: "They are among us," he said, "but they call themselves Hungarians."


    When the question was put to Edward Teller – who was particularly proud of his monogram, E.T. (abbreviation of extraterrestrial)[2] – he looked worried, and said: "Von Kármán must have been talking."[3]

    According to György Marx, the extraterrestrial origin of the Hungarian scientists is proved by the fact that the names of Leó Szilárd, John von Neumann and Theodore von Kármán cannot be found on the map of Budapest, but on the Moon are craters bearing their names:[2]

    Szilard (crater)
    Von Neumann (crater)
    Von Kármán (lunar crater)
    There is also a crater on Mars named after Von Kármán.

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  7. #979
    Senior Member NotAPretender's Avatar
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    yeah, that's the one ...
    “Chance is perhaps God's pseudonym when He does not want to sign” Anatole France, Le Jardin d'Epicure

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  9. #980
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    Uranus, the planet name that appeals to the 12 year old boy in all of us!

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  11. #981
    Senior Member NotAPretender's Avatar
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    The 1st time I ever heard a reference to that joke I was working in a convent (doing repairs). It's a long story but the guy who made the statement (toward our boss) had the nerve to later sarcastically joke that he had more class than me. I responded, the way you talk, in a convent no less, I don't think so. He thought he was cool because he was part of an acting troop that did old west recreations. He was actually a pretty good guy just annoying as a m*therf*cker.

    Now that I think about it there was another guy working that had done a few commercials in Hollywood. He dated one of the Bergen sisters and claimed that Natalie Wood had made a pass at him at a party... (I think it was her ... someone connected to Robert Wagner)
    “Chance is perhaps God's pseudonym when He does not want to sign” Anatole France, Le Jardin d'Epicure

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  13. #982
    Super Moderator United States Dreamtimer's Avatar
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    Chris, urinalysis of the planets is a very good one. (say it aloud )

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  15. #983
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    My recovery from Covid-induces Pneumonia is going well, I can now take long walks and can even manage stairs reasonably well.

    My blood sugar levels are normal and it seems my year-long odyssey with IBS symptoms (regular, even constant diarrhoea, stomach cramps and bloating) were actually caused by high blood sugar levels as the digestive symptoms I used to have are now mostly gone. I still have the lactose intolerance I developed as a result, but that one's no biggie.

    Last evening I took a long walk before the 8 PM curfew (yes, we are effectively under martial law here, with increasingly ridiculous covid-restrictions, that make little sense and would only make sense in wartime), had quite a big dinner, drank 3 glasses of (dry) red wine and munched a packet of salted cashews. I expected my blood sugar levels to be off the charts as a result, but surprisingly, they were normal. It seems that as long as I avoid added sugar, and take my insulin, I can avoid blood sugar spikes and can even have some booze on occasion (I haven't had wine for nearly a month). Thankfully, I don't like beer, which I was told to avoid, and I can live without imbibing sweet, sugary drinks, ciders and fruit juices. Thankfully, dry wine seems to have no effect on my blood sugar levels, so I can indulge a bit.

    I live in a wine region and we used to have our own small vineyard, so I need to have some wine on occasion. It is a relief that I can still enjoy some. Btw, if you can get your hands on some rarer varieties where you live, I would thoroughly recommend a red variety called Portugieser, especially if it comes from Villány. Another one to try from my neck of the woods is called Egri Bikavér also known as Bull's Blood from Eger, another dry red.

    For white varieties, Furmint from Tokaj is all the rage now, but I also like Green Veltelini, which is especially popular in Austria, but is produced here in my region too. There is a variety called Red Veltelini (a white wine too, but the grapes themselves it is made of are reddish, hence the name), but that one is never exported, it is only for the locals to enjoy and is a real gem.

    I know these are unfamiliar names for wine, but there is a reason, these are indigenous varieties, that have been developed from local wild grapes centuries ago and cannot be found anywhere else in the world, at least not yet. If you can find them, they can be so refreshing after your run of the mill merlots and cabernets.

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  17. #984
    Senior Member NotAPretender's Avatar
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    thanks for the tip, my niece's husband is a bit of a connoisseur only because he can afford it. He spends hundreds of dollars on a bottle of wine which is totally out of my price range. I've asked him for his advice on good wines at a more reasonable price. I'll let him know about those you mentioned.
    “Chance is perhaps God's pseudonym when He does not want to sign” Anatole France, Le Jardin d'Epicure

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  19. #985
    Senior Member Hungary
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    Quote Originally posted by NotAPretender View Post
    thanks for the tip, my niece's husband is a bit of a connoisseur only because he can afford it. He spends hundreds of dollars on a bottle of wine which is totally out of my price range. I've asked him for his advice on good wines at a more reasonable price. I'll let him know about those you mentioned.
    These are all affordable varieties (depending on the vinery), but finding them in the US might be a challenge. You can probably get Tokaji wines, including Furmint.

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  21. #986
    Administrator Aragorn's Avatar
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    Source: Sky News


    'New variant' of coronavirus identified in UK, health secretary says

    It is "highly unlikely" the new mutation will not respond to a coronavirus vaccine, Mr Hancock told the Commons today.




    A "new variant" of coronavirus has been identified in the UK, which is believed to be causing the faster spread in the South East, Health Secretary Matt Hancock has said. More than 1,000 cases of the new variant have been found, "predominantly in the south of England", Mr Hancock told the House of Commons this afternoon.

    It is spreading faster than the existing strain of coronavirus and is believed to be fuelling the "very sharp, exponential rises" in cases across the South East, he said.

    So far it has been found in 60 local authority areas and is thought to be similar to the mutation discovered in other countries in recent months. It was first identified in Kent last week during routine surveillance by Public Health England (PHE), with ministers told about it on Friday.

    The health secretary said that there is currently no evidence that the new variant will not respond to the COVID-19 vaccines being rolled out across the country.

    "I must stress at this point there is currently nothing to suggest that this variant is more likely to cause serious disease," he told MPs. "And the latest clinical advice is that it's highly unlikely this mutation would fail to respond to a vaccine."

    Speaking at a Downing Street news briefing later, chief medical officer Professor Chris Whitty said the new strain will still show up on tests and is not "more dangerous" than existing ones. He said it is possible vaccine efficacy might be affected, but that would be "surprising".

    Dr Bharat Pankhania, senior clinical lecturer at the University of Exeter, told Sky News he is "very confident that we won't have to refashion our vaccines" because of the new strain. But he said the fast rate of the new spread could mean this variant becomes the most dominant nationwide.

    "The best way to describe it is, imagine a giant oak tree, and then a little branch that breaks off from that tree. Then that branch becomes the main trunk and the main artery of that tree," he explained.

    Mr Hancock said government scientists are studying the new variant at its Porton Down facility and the World Health Organisation (WHO) has been informed.

    WHO's top emergency expert Mike Ryan told a news briefing in Geneva it was aware of the new strain and said: "Authorities are looking at its significance. We have seen many variants, this virus evolves and changes over time."

    The surge in cases in parts of the south of England saw the health secretary also announce that London, some of Hertfordshire and Essex will go into the toughest Tier 3 restrictions at midnight on Wednesday.


    Analysis: New strain makes another surge more likely in the New Year
    By Thomas Moore, science correspondent


    The virus that causes COVID-19 has been mutating every couple of weeks. It's so regular that it has allowed scientists to track the spread of the infection around the world.

    Almost all of the mutations have no consequence for the disease whatsoever.

    But occasionally a mutation does alter the properties of the virus.

    Many of the mutations are in the genetic information for the spike protein, which coats the surface of the virus and latches on to the ACE2 receptors of human cells.

    The right mutation can cause tighter binding and help the virus invade.

    But that doesn't mean it is necessarily a more virulent virus, causing more serious disease. If anything, as viruses with animal origins adapt to life in the human body they gradually cause milder symptoms.

    Some scientists have suggested that other coronaviruses that now cause the common cold in humans would once have caused serious illnesses, but they have weakened over millennia.

    The bigger concern is whether this new strain is resistant to the vaccine.

    The jabs are based on the genetic blueprint that codes for the spike protein. If the virus has mutated, changing that information, then there is a chance that the vaccine will be less effective.

    It's not inevitable though and the health secretary has said that it is "highly unlikely" to be the case with this variant. Tests are being carried out at Porton Down to confirm this.

    What the strain does do is make another surge in the New Year more likely. Rolling out the vaccine to vulnerable people needs to be done as fast as possible.



    Source: Sky News
    = DEATH BEFORE DISHONOR =

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  23. #987
    Senior Member NotAPretender's Avatar
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    Does anybody know why the UK mutated virus is 'more' contagious?
    “Chance is perhaps God's pseudonym when He does not want to sign” Anatole France, Le Jardin d'Epicure

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    Good question, but I don't think there's any definite answer yet.

    The general idea with Novel viruses, such as this one, is that due to evolution, over time they mutate to be less deadly, but more contagious. It is to the advantage of any virus that it evolves in a way that allows it to spend the maximum amount of time in as many host bodies as possible. This would indicate that the new UK strain will become the dominant one globally, until another one comes along.

    It is scary stuff, the tier 4 restrictions they have just introduced in large parts of the UK are essentially wartime measures. The UK is being cut off from the rest of Europe, and this is on top of a no-deal Brexit which will happen in a matter of days. Things are bleak over here in MittelEuropa, but the UK looks like its bearing the brunt of this pandemic.

    Meanwhile, I'm reading that Thailand, a semi-third-world country, with high levels of corruption, government incompetence and a pretty thread-bare healthcare system has only had 5000 Covid cases so far during the whole year, even though they were the first country to be hit after China.

    What the actual fuck and what the hell am I doing in frosty, locked down Europe, when I could be sipping cocktails on a (deserted) Thai beach if I had made slighty different life choices a few years ago...

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  27. #989
    Senior Member NotAPretender's Avatar
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    lol, such is life ...
    “Chance is perhaps God's pseudonym when He does not want to sign” Anatole France, Le Jardin d'Epicure

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    Super Moderator Wind's Avatar
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    The vaccinations have slowly started here in Finland too.

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