Feynman on ‘Why’Edit

Thanks for posting the link to this video. Although I'm a big fan of his, I hadn't seen that one yet. The ‘cheating’ he explains at 6:45 reminds me of Gödel's first incompleteness theorem. ◅ Sebastian 11:34, 12 January 2022 (UTC)Reply[reply]

Regarding the "Need of closure for tasks"Edit

You wrote The OP was asking explicitly for literature about need for closure about tasks, not for "random opinions" that is exactly right. Thank you! (it was discussed in the Wikipedia:Reference_desk/Humanities starting from the 2nd of Feb 2022) --Pier4r (talk) 17:33, 5 February 2022 (UTC)Reply[reply]

Why did you delete my answer here?Edit

Here you deleted my answer and replaced it with your own. Why? --Jayron32 13:40, 1 April 2022 (UTC)Reply[reply]

I never saw your answer. Some glitch; whether my wetware's or someone else's software's is now lost in the dustbin of smashed bits.  --Lambiam 13:48, 1 April 2022 (UTC)
It's all good. Thanks for fixing it! --Jayron32 13:52, 1 April 2022 (UTC)Reply[reply]

A guidance requestEdit

Greetings @ Lambiam,

Many times I had requested for info @ reference desk humanities. Other than few curiosity driven queries most are for later referencing or research. Me being busy in multiple topics there is a time lag from my side in utilizing previous discussion. Though present archiving provides search facility still it is not structured enough to go back in more than few months old discussion.

Is there any bot which can help me in providing list of archived discussions I participated or some other way around which you may be aware of?

Many thanks for all the effort you always put in while providing information.

Bookku, 'Encyclopedias = expanding information & knowledge' (talk) 06:57, 22 April 2022 (UTC)Reply[reply]

You can search for your contributions while restricting the search to the Wikipedia namespace:
The section titles of relevant contributions can be used to search the Wikipedia:Reference desk/Archives. For example, for the line " 13:40, 19 November 2020 (diff |hist) . . (+1,556‎) . . Wikipedia:Reference desk/Humanities ‎ (→‎Turkish language sources help request: new section)", the search string "Turkish language sources help request" leads to Wikipedia:Reference desk/Archives/Humanities/2020 November 19 § Turkish language sources help request.  --Lambiam 08:25, 22 April 2022 (UTC)

Okay I got the idea you are suggesting, I will try to work out some system of my own like saving section headings by adopting suggestion given by you. Many thanks and warm regards

Bookku, 'Encyclopedias = expanding information & knowledge' (talk) 11:45, 22 April 2022 (UTC)Reply[reply]

Tragedies and DisastersEdit

I searched Google and the ones I found were... the Great Chicago fire 1871, Hurricane Katrina 2005, San Francisco earthquake 1906, the sack of Rome, the 2011 Joplin tornado, the 1980 eruption of Mount St Helens and the attack on Pearl Harbor. ( (talk) 21:06, 8 May 2022 (UTC)Reply[reply]

People in their 50s dying of old ageEdit

People in their 50s dying of old age

William Hartnell was about 55 years old when he played the original incarnation of the Doctor in Doctor Who and maybe 58 in his final story. While Richard Hurndall was about 72 or 73 when he played him in the 20th anniversary story The Five Doctors and David Bradley was 75 in the 12th Doctor's (Peter Capaldi) two final episodes The Doctor Falls and Twice Upon a Time. Here are images of 55 year old actors, 58, 72-73 and 75. And the cause of the First Doctor's regeneration was old age. (talk) 18:39, 25 May 2022 (UTC)Reply[reply]

Can people die if they've become old, weak and worn out in their 50s? And did the original Doctor look about mid-50s, 60s or 70s? (talk) 19:28, 26 May 2022 (UTC)Reply[reply]

New message from DuonautEdit

Thanks again for finding that source. Duonaut (talk | contribs) 05:32, 1 July 2022 (UTC)Reply[reply]

chinese bookEdit

i remembered more details and answered your questions, any thoughts? 2600:1700:9758:7D90:F1DF:BDC9:ECB4:8F4A (talk) 00:30, 27 July 2022 (UTC)Reply[reply]

Thank youEdit

Wikipedia:Reference_desk/Archives/Miscellaneous/2022_July_29#Recent_book_by_a_biologist - thanks for answers. Vyacheslav84 (talk) 18:31, 17 August 2022 (UTC)Reply[reply]

"Wikipedia:PETTIFOG" listed at Redirects for discussionEdit

  An editor has identified a potential problem with the redirect Wikipedia:PETTIFOG and has thus listed it for discussion. This discussion will occur at Wikipedia:Redirects for discussion/Log/2022 August 30#Wikipedia:PETTIFOG until a consensus is reached, and anyone, including you, is welcome to contribute to the discussion. FMecha (to talk|to see log) 16:23, 30 August 2022 (UTC)Reply[reply]

could you answer this?Edit Grotesquetruth (talk) 16:45, 9 September 2022 (UTC)Reply[reply]

A barnstar for you!Edit

  The Special Barnstar
thanks for the unwavering quality information and being able to comprehend questions correctly. Grotesquetruth (talk) 20:12, 9 September 2022 (UTC)Reply[reply]


Thank you very much for taking the time to clear up my confusion. Grotesquetruth (talk) 20:58, 11 September 2022 (UTC)Reply[reply]

A barnstar for you!Edit

  The Tireless Contributor Barnstar
special mention of the sheer perseverance you hold! Grotesquetruth (talk) 18:53, 13 September 2022 (UTC)Reply[reply]


how do I create a barnstar column like yours in my user page? could you guide me through if you don't mind? do I use some specific code? Grotesquetruth (talk) 17:41, 14 September 2022 (UTC)Reply[reply]

I think you should wait until someone actually gives you a barnstar. In general, if you want to see the wikicode that achieves some effect, just click "Edit" (or "View source" on a protected page). If you are using the visual editor, make sure to switch to source editing, or you will not see the wikicode.  --Lambiam 19:37, 14 September 2022 (UTC)

Reference desk confusionEdit

Hi, Lambiam. I don't mean to insult or belittle you, but in that reference desk thread, you accused me of "building my questions on false premises."[1] I don't see how I was intentionally doing so, I was merely going by what you had said in a separate thread. It was you who originally put forward the idea that there was no explosion and that this non-explosion ("fireball," as you described it) was only present on the north side of the building where the plane entered, away from the South Tower.[2] Your words, not mine. If my question was indeed built on false premises, they were certainly not false premises I had come up with; they were invented by you, and I was merely seeking clarification on whether or not your claims were true. Hmm1994 (talk) 08:05, 15 September 2022 (UTC)Reply[reply]


I did my best to answer your question, but then I was chided by an old hand at the Reference desk for trying. First I thought the issue was that the original question was too meaningless to be discussed, but that was not the reason. Instead, I was told, "One cannot meaningfully answer a question built on false premises. Instead, we need to provide clarification and seek further information as to what the question asker wants to know." I was puzzled, because I could not detect any false premises. I apologized, but (as I also stated in my last post in the thread) I still do not understand what was wrong with the question and am as puzzled as you are. I hope this clarifies the issue.  --Lambiam 10:31, 15 September 2022 (UTC)
Oh, I see. Thank you for clearing that up. Apologies for assuming you were accusing me on purpose. I might ask the admin how the question was based on false pretenses. Hmm1994 (talk) 14:55, 15 September 2022 (UTC)Reply[reply]

Abdi Ipekci Monument PhotoEdit

Hi @Lambiam. I'm just wondering if you are the author/photographer of the image of the sculpture

that is being discussed in the Good Article Nomination of the sculptures sculptor at Talk:Gürdal Duyar/GA1? Gazozlu (talk) 17:42, 15 October 2022 (UTC)Reply[reply]

Yes,   fixed.  --Lambiam 20:33, 15 October 2022 (UTC)
Thanks for the quick fix! Gazozlu (talk) 21:50, 15 October 2022 (UTC)Reply[reply]

"Planck's law and Hz−1" on the other sideEdit

Hi Lambiam, as I appreciate your answers and your analyze (effectively I am French and I think you are turkish living in Istambul area), I will ask you a private science question. In this extract of Graeme Bartlett answer "...Or you could look at the energy in one cycle of the emission. But that last one will still depend on the frequency and bandwidth...". More precisely, if you look at "E=hv", isn't there something that surprises you in this answer ? I am interested in corresponding with you for a publication that I'm about to write, may be at 4 hand with you if you are interested.

Thanks Malypaet (talk) 12:59, 18 October 2022 (UTC)Reply[reply]

You are correct in observing that W·sr−1·m−2·Hz−1 is the same unit as J·sr−1·m−2. Its dimension in base quantities is   so viewed that way there is a time component. Since a physicist does not see a conflict, it is difficult to answer the question, "How should we understand, interpret or justify this conflict?" It is like the question, "When did you stop beating your wife?" The usual concept of a quantity being time dependent is that the quantity is not constant but varies with time, and not that the units expressing them have a time dimension. These two are unrelated: the speed of light has dimension   yet it is constant, while the fraction of the Moon that is lit by the Sun, viewed from Earth, is a dimensionless yet time-dependent quantity.
I am afraid I'm not interested in corresponding about or working on a future publication.  --Lambiam 14:16, 18 October 2022 (UTC)
Ok I shall continue on my own,
for your information: with "E=hv" , "the energy in one cycle of the emission" contrary to what Graeme writes, as to have the energy of a cycle we divide the energy by the frequency, the energy of a cycle will always be equal to the value of "h", whatever the frequency. Malypaet (talk) 17:27, 18 October 2022 (UTC)Reply[reply]
Sorry, but I think you are confusing Planck's law with the Planck relation. The only thing they have in common is that both were invented by Max Planck to resolve the so-called ultraviolet catastrophe – a tremendous discrepancy between theory and actual observation. The formula of Planck's law was derived empirically to fit the actual observations. Planck came up with the formula now known as the Planck relation as a theoretical explanation of the observed law. Later the Planck relation was also experimentally confirmed. Other than this historical relationship, they are totally different and unrelated things.
Concept What is measured Its source Formula
Planck's law spectral density of
electromagnetic radiation
emitted by
a black body
Planck relation energy carried by
a single photon
--Lambiam 19:21, 18 October 2022 (UTC)

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clarity needed in statementEdit

if you could clarify your response statement made previously. here Grotesquetruth (talk) 10:24, 2 December 2022 (UTC)Reply[reply]


Please, can you search if Friedrich Fromm, Günther Korten, Heinz Brandt, Rudolf Schmundt, Walther Buhle, Ernst John von Freyend, Henning von Thadden, Heinz Buchholz, and Leonhard von Moellendorff were devoted nazists (inscripted to the Nazi Party) or even them in contrary to the Nazi regime? In Operation Valkirye (film 2008), who were the captain and the sergeant of Reich centraline during that operation? Are there information about Sergeant Kolbe's life, the guard of Wolf's Liar in July 1944? Thank you very much. — Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 10:32, 19 December 2022 (UTC)Reply[reply]

doubt.Edit,_market,_balance? would like to have your view. Grotesquetruth (talk) 16:59, 23 December 2022 (UTC)Reply[reply]

whether you'd be able to give your view of understanding? — Preceding unsigned comment added by Grotesquetruth (talkcontribs) 10:19, 25 December 2022 (UTC)Reply[reply]

your view?Edit

What is the most effective way to promote social justice in a democracy governed by the rule of law? can we say that market-based approaches, such as economic development and job creation, are the most effective way to lift people out of poverty and promote social mobility? Or that more direct interventions, such as redistributive policies or social welfare programs, are necessary to address deep-seated inequalities and ensure that all members of society have a fair chance to succeed? how can we strike a balance between market-based and more direct interventions in order to achieve the greatest benefit for all members of society? Grotesquetruth (talk) 15:57, 25 December 2022 (UTC)Reply[reply]

The question is too broad to have a reasonably comprehensive answer. Which ways one may hope to be effective depends critically on the social, political and economical situation. What works in situation A will not work in situation B. And who precisely is doing the intervention, what authority do they have to intervene, and what instruments do they have at their disposal? Is there even a social consensus that more social justice is desirable, or are there powerful opposing actors? All these aspects must be taken into consideration. Economic development and job creation are not by themselves market-based approaches, but potential policy objectives that (depending on the situation and the methods employed, but also on uncertain factors), if attained, may or may not help to promote social justice. Pure market-based approaches as advocated by laissez-faire liberals are unlikely to further social justice, because the external costs are always borne the most by the least privileged – that's the way the cookie crumbles.  --Lambiam 16:27, 25 December 2022 (UTC)
I took the question "What is the most effective way to promote social justice in a democracy governed by the rule of law?" and posed it to ChatGPT. Here is the answer:

Obviously, this answer assumes that the person asking the question is an activist asking for advice what they themselves can do.  --Lambiam 16:44, 25 December 2022 (UTC)

Wikipedia:Reference desk/MathematicsEdit

I don't think this edit accomplished what you intended to accomplish. General Ization Talk 00:55, 30 December 2022 (UTC)Reply[reply]


  The Reference Desk Barnstar
Thank you for all your help and guidance on the ref desk over the years. Viriditas (talk) 10:08, 9 January 2023 (UTC)Reply[reply]

A barnstar for you!Edit

  The Tireless Contributor Barnstar
Another barnstar for your dedication to the mathematics reference desk over many years! cmɢʟeeτaʟκ 07:28, 4 March 2023 (UTC)Reply[reply]

Thanks for the chuckleEdit

2008 source: [1], the "Impacting the world..." article. And one more 2009:[2]. Per "This is a list of some well-documented cases where Wikipedia has been the source." IMO that's not clear enough here. It seems likely Will Smith was the source, this is not a Julius Pringles situation. Gråbergs Gråa Sång (talk) 08:48, 23 April 2023 (UTC)Reply[reply]

It is indeed not clear that later occurrences were copied from Wikipedia, so I've removed the "incident". Those that include the words "Light up the darkness" were definitely not copied from Wikipedia.  --Lambiam 09:35, 23 April 2023 (UTC)
Your version of the quote deserves wider use, though. Gråbergs Gråa Sång (talk) 10:13, 23 April 2023 (UTC)Reply[reply]