Derleth, You May Be Beyond Help

In this thread about “official” causes of death, and why people aren’t listed as dying of “old age” anymore, but rather some other cause, Brian Ekers opined ,

You hijacked with,

Suspecting a whoosh, I facetiously pointed out the “ignorance” of Grolier Encyclopedia, who define atomic bomb thusly:

To which your response was:

Now perhaps you are simply in a jaunty mood and are playing semantic games. I have been grandly whooshed, congratulations! Confess thy trollish behavior, be healed and forgiven, and let us be reconciled.

But I suspect otherwise.

Do you really not know that the type of bomb you describe is properly termed “chemical”, by the accepted definition of that term as it relates to particle-scale interaction? Or that the term “atomic bomb” has referred to fission weapons since their earliest conception?

Can you read the definition by those with a vested financial interest in publishing verifiable fact and not notice a strong discrepancy between their definition and yours?

Now, I’m a teacher, I’d like to see your ignorance fought, but there’s a reason I choose not to work with the mentally handicapped.

Get thee to a library before your own cause of death is listed as, “lone, strangled neuron firing desperately into the void finally gave up and expired.”

[The Tick] Oh, science . . . . boring . . . .interest . . . fading . . . .[/The Tick]

You’ve got him dead to rights…unless, as you said, it’s nerd humor.

Since before the atomic (nuclear) weapon was invented, the term “atomic” was used in conjunction with nuclear reactions.

Perhaps the invention of more powerful multi-stage fusion bombs (Hydrogen or H-bombs) has caused confusion? Those still use a fission core made from plutonium or uranium to start their destruction (tritium is then injected into the fission explosion to produce the fusion blast), so I assume it’s safe to call them atomic weapons as well.

Fertilizer bombs use Ammonium Nitrate, which might sound vaguely like “Atomic” if one wasn’t paying attention.

Kids, don’t try any of this at home.


He had to have been joking. How could someone not know what an atomic bomb is? :confused:

Cool! I made my Instant Cream of Wheat this morning with an atomic weapon, which vibrates the atoms inside so they move incredibly fast, otherwise know as a tea kettle.

Sounds like a WMD to me. :dubious:

A Weapon of Morning Deliciousness?

This is why I love this place.

Answered by: Yasar Safkan, Ph.D. M.I.T., Software Engineer, Istanbul, Turkey

Appeal to Authority

Actually, AFAIK, Dr. Safkan is technically correct that “nuclear” is more accurate, and it was perfectly reasonable for Liberal to post a link – but it’s not the point. Whether it’s a bad term or not, “atomic bomb” is a term that is very specifically synonymous with “nuclear bomb”.

But yeah, it seemed like Derleth was just being a wiseass, with all the obnoxiousness that implies.

OK, as I posted in the GQ thread:

And no, “we’ve always done it that way” is not a cogent explanation.

BTW, I do believe this is my very first pitting.

“We’ve always done it this way” takes a back seat to “so people know what the hell you’re talking about.”

Have you ever heard of the term ‘splitting the atom’?

Show me one cite where “atomic bomb” is used to describe a convention explosive weapon.

Most of you posting so far aren’t getting it. Enginerd has the best response so far, for simple pragmatic reasons, but it still is an inaccurate and sloppy use of the language.

Which has never been a good reason to abandon widely accepted and understood terminology.

Does anyone remember the US Atomic Energy Commission? I think the Father of the Atomic Bomb, Robert Oppenheimer did some work on it after WWII.

We all get it. I don’t think I’m alone in understanding you perfectly, and thinking you’re a pedantic ass.

There’s a “eats stupid food for breakfast” joke in there somewhere…oh, are we done with that now? Rats. And now we’ve got the science nerds arguing…

Appeal to Wikipedia.