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1388670.  Wed Sep 01, 2021 9:05 am Reply with quote

In the 1960 Olympic 100m Men's Freestyle, why did the fastest man not win a Gold medal?

Klaxons for being disqualified or being at the wrong race or other similar answers.

The simple answer is he got a Silver medal.

1960 was the last Olympics where electronic touchpads were not used for timing and deciding the races, and this event probably did more to bring that change than anything else.

At the time there were three time keepers for each lane.

For the Australian swimmer, John Devitt, all three time keepers clocked him at 55.2 seconds.

For the American swimmer, Lance Larson, two time keepers clocked him at 55.1, and one at 55.0.

Seems simple, Lance Larson won?

Well, no, because for each position in the race there were also three judges with no stop watches or ability to watch replays.

The three judges for the first place position had two for Devitt and one for Larson.

The three judges for the second place also had two for Devitt and one for Larson.

This effectively meant a tie for first place for the two swimmers, and this was pointed out to the chief judge, who decided to break the deadlock and award first place to Devitt, ignoring the time keepers and video replay.

This meant that officially Devitt got the Gold medal and Larson the Silver, both at a time of 55.2 seconds, despite the fact that the time keepers showed a faster time for Larson.

Incidentally, despite the Americans' appeal against the result being rejected, it was later revealed that the rules at the time stated that a tie in first and second place judgments were to be decided by referring to the time keepers and not the head judge, so the Americans were doubly aggrieved because their challenge should not have been rejected according to the rules of the time.

1390820.  Fri Sep 24, 2021 6:54 am Reply with quote

So this question is determined by when the date is filmed, and for argument sake, let's select 16th May 2022.

This is based on who the guests are, but based on some common recent contestants, let's imagine we have Alan Davies, Jo Brand, Gyles Brandreth and Cariad Lloyd.

The question is, imagine you were in Korea, how old are you?

Alan Davies: 56 - Klaxon!
Jo Brand: 64 - Klaxon!
Gyles Brandreth: 73 - Klaxon!
Cariad Lloyd: 39 - Klaxon!

The actual ages would be:
Alan Davies: 57
Jo Brand: 66
Gyles Brandreth: 74
Cariad Lloyd: 41

This would have been true in many East Asian countries many years ago, because of the way ages were calculated, but most have adopted the universal calculation we all use, including many of the younger generation in South Korea (though some legal restrictions, such as being able to buy drinks, might still apply using the traditional method).

Simply stated, this traditional method states that your birthday is from your conception, not birth, and then at birth this is rounded up to 1. Then on the 1st January (using Gregorian calendar, in ancient times would have used a different calendar), you add another year to your birthday, which means you're always at least 1 year older than your "modern" age.

Because your age is recalculated on 1st January each year, if you haven't had your birthday yet, then this means adding another year. This means that, on the 16th May, if you were born on or before that date, you add another year to your "modern" age, but if you were born after that date (and not celebrated your birthday yet), then you add two years.

While government documents and legal processes use the "modern" international method of age, the school year you're assigned to, your ability to buy tobacco and alcohol, and several other restrictions are applied using the traditional method, or a variant.

1390821.  Fri Sep 24, 2021 7:39 am Reply with quote

Same as with thoroughbreds then...



1390833.  Fri Sep 24, 2021 9:39 am Reply with quote

Yes and no.

If a thoroughbred horse is born in the northern hemisphere are dated from 1st January, but are not already 1 year old already, so one born on 31st December will only turn 1 on 1st January.

It's different for the southern hemisphere, where this date is moved to 1st August.

This allows for controlling and keeping track of thoroughbred bloodlines, and of agreeing eligibility for some of the more famous races.

Alexander Howard
1390838.  Fri Sep 24, 2021 10:41 am Reply with quote

So, Koreans take the date of conception as the start of a lifetime: where we would have a place of birth on a birth certificate, do they give the place of conception? That could be interesting in some cases.

1390850.  Fri Sep 24, 2021 11:55 am Reply with quote

As mentioned, Government documents use the international standard, so birth certificates are for the date someone is actually born.

Someone people will always remember where their parents did the dirty deed because they were silly enough to name their children after the place they were conceived in...

So when someone called Brooklyn decides to look up what his name means, and finds the original Dutch would have meant "marshland", how wonderful is that?

Alexander Howard
1390854.  Fri Sep 24, 2021 12:07 pm Reply with quote

Yes, my pal Austin Allegro Smith would agree with you. So would his brother Parkbench.

1390855.  Fri Sep 24, 2021 12:07 pm Reply with quote

I work with a guy from Nepal, who does not know how old he is. His parents had 7 children, of whom 4 survive, and they remember the year the first was born, but get a bit vague after that. He is probably late 30s, early 40s. Born in a fairly remote village, where accurate record keeping was not really a priority.

Alexander Howard
1391511.  Fri Oct 01, 2021 7:23 am Reply with quote

In our age we are acutely aware of the measurement of time and the passing of each second because we have clocks and devices that divide even microseconds. It is just cultural. We are no more intelligent than our ancestors or the inhabitants of that timeless Nepali village, but have a perception shaped by our possessions.

One of history's most perceptive characters was an African; Augustine of Hippo, writing as the Roman Empire was about to fall. His consideration of the nature of time reads as remarkably modern. Today, following Einstein, physicists take time as a relative concept moving at different rates in different places, and that the passage of time itself began at he Big Bang; the moment of creation.

Augustine, in an age before mechanical clocks, essentially says the same. To answer the question "What was God doing before He made heaven and earth?" he examines the nature of time and concludes that time was created by God at the moment of Creation, just as Einstein would have it.

1391553.  Fri Oct 01, 2021 10:56 am Reply with quote

Often, when I'm drawn into an evolution v creationism discussion I find people promoting creationism go back to how did it all begin, which I tend to point out is not what evolution deals with, nor the argument of creationism against it, but because they then draw in the Big Bang theory et al, I point out that St Augustine wrote quite a bit about Creatio ex Nihilo, which argues similar to the current understanding of "what was before the Big Bang" which is that while energy was at rest there would have been no time.

This concept actually existed for several hundred years before Christianity came along with Greek and Jewish philosophers discussing variations of it nearly a thousand years before St Augustine.

1391952.  Wed Oct 06, 2021 1:29 pm Reply with quote

What's strange about the song "I'm Gonna Be (500 Miles)" by the Proclaimers?

Klaxons for either or both of the brothers, Peter Kay or anyone else.

The song is officially 3 minutes and 37 seconds long - or 217 seconds. It also sings about walking 500 miles twice, so having walked 1000 miles in all.

The ISS - International Space Station, orbits the Earth every 92.68 minutes, which works out at a speed of 7.66km per second.

If you were to play the song aboard the space station, this calculates at 7.66km times 217 seconds, which equals 1,662km in total.

1,000 miles is 1,609km, which means that by difference of a split second you will have travelled exactly 1,000 miles while playing a song about walking 1,000 miles!

1392335.  Mon Oct 11, 2021 1:29 pm Reply with quote

How did Captain Chen Sheng avoid being punished for being late to his post?

Answer - he decided to lead a rebellion and overthrow the Qin Empire.

It all started when Chen Sheng, with another captain, Wu Guang, were leading a small number of soldiers to Yuang when their progress was slowed by storm floods and they realised they will be late.

Under Qin rules, being late to your post was punishable by death, so realising they had nothing to lose, the two captains convinced their soldiers and about 900 villagers they were fighting a real civil war with a number of false claims.

While it soon became obvious these claims were soon proved false, the repressive regime of the Qin led thousands more people to flock to the rebellion, and soon Chen Sheng convinced them to follow him as King of Rising Chu after he wrote "King Chen Sheng" on some silk, placed it in the belly of a fish, and got one of his soldiers to "discover" the fish and make this miracle known.

Soon the rebellion gathered more than 20,000 men from all over China as more and more people decided to rebel against the Qin Empire, and a new capital city was announced.

However, you need to remember Chen Sheng and Wu Guang were only Captains, leading a large army of untrained men, so the defeats started piling up and both leaders eventually executed by their own men.

While this rebellion was defeated, it set the minds of many people against the Qin and within 3 years a greater and more professional rebellion succeeded in ending the Qin Empire and replacing it with the Han Empire.


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