I'm not surprised -- I was really just guessing about the distilled water, and I wasn't trying to rebut the idea -- I actually thought it would be pretty cool if we could qualify to be metalRustyIron wrote: ↑Thu Jun 25, 2020 6:29 amI am by no means knowledgable on the atomic structure of metals... but then again... nobody is. That's why this avenue of inquiry has the potential to be so revolutionary.
But the reason I'm typing is because your basic premise is flawed. Distilled water is a pretty awful conductor of electricity. It's pretty easy to prove via experiment using household stuff.
I agree with this. I was going to say that the definition metal is not an absolute of nature but a useful set of characteristics that are agreed upon.JacksonKnives wrote: ↑Thu Jun 25, 2020 11:53 pmIt's important to remember that a technical definition like "metal" is fairly arbitrary. The topic for discussion is not really "what is metal?" but rather "in what way is 'metal' actually a useful category to talk about?"
"Science" (verifiable human knowledge, or the process or enterprise of growing that knowledge) cannot teach you the definitions of "metal." Experiments can help you learn about properties, and help you find ways some materials are more or less alike, but to decide what gets called "metal" you need to get scientists to agree on a useful definition that they will actually use.
If this student is trying to find out more about solvating electrons in exotic compounds, good for him, but it can't really change the definition of metal unless the findings allow for an entirely new way of looking at elements that replaces all the old definitions.
Imagine someone said "I'm going to use science to prove that a drop point blade is actually a clip point." Those names are not scientific facts. Science can't tell us what to call a knife. You could make a good argument based on scientific comparison, but that doesn't dictate definitions we use all by itself, the definition also has to work well for the people who will use it.
He did emphasize the part about his being allowed to rinse it himself, but at the time I thought about smearing a mixture of tar and other unmentionables on the sides of the container. I did volumetric analysis in a herbicide and pesticide factory for a couple of years in my youth, and the three-rinse technique worked fine for that, but we had to get all of our reagents in solution first Also, if you're really going to apply this in real life, be sure to rinse the entire inner surface each time, and a fourth rinse wouldn't hurt if you're in doubt. And of course we're just talking about chemical contamination and not bacterial, viral, fungal, etc.JacksonKnives wrote: ↑Fri Jun 26, 2020 3:32 pm
As someone who handles both herbicide containers and kids' sippy cups that have been abandoned with milk in them, I would hesitate to make that statement. (I'd want to add some sort of scrubbing mechanism for sticky/clumpy substances during the first rinse.) But the triple-rinse principle is a valuable life lesson well worth learning and practicing daily.