June 9th, 2005

Small Handguns

What's a good, fairly light, extremely accurate handgun? Don't even think the words 'Desert Eagle', please. Something concealable, preferably.

I've been digging through Wiki, but a lot of it makes little sense. Thanks.

a question of animal biology

I'm writing a Doctor Who/science fiction fanfic with a species that uses echolocation as its primary sense. They're based off earth animals like bats. I have a few questions related to the implications of their biology.

I want their ship to be designed for their senses, much like humans design rooms with windows and other light sources for the best visual perception and aesthetics. Is there any particular shape of room that would aid in echolocating? Should the materials of the walls carry reflect sound in any particular way? Since echolocation happens mostly above or below the wavelengths humans hear at, how would such rooms sound to human ears?

Basically, if bat-like creatures evolved into intelligent creatures with an advanced society and culture, on what physical principles would their architecture be based?

Would it make sense for signs in their corridors to be raised symbols, or indented symbols? Which would they be able to "read" better?

Would it be reasonable for my protagonist, who has better hearing than a human, to identify what sort of ship he's being held on based on the shape of the rooms, and the way they sound?

Any thoughts on what their language might be like?

Sailing, sailing...

How long would a 10 mile trip by sea take?

Specifics: The ship is sailing to an island 10 miles south of Oahu, Hawaii. It's a ship built for about 300-400 passengers. It's summertime and the water is not choppy, but the ship is sailing slowly and taking its time. I know next to nothing about ships, so I hope I gave enough info to get a good answer. Thanks!

EDIT: I have an answer. Thanks, everyone!

Schizophrenia and Anti-psychotic Medication

Greetings! Everyone here was such a big help the last time that I asked a question so I figured that I'd pick your collective brains once more.

My character is an 18-year-old psychic who, due to the nature of his powers, has been misdiagnosed as a paranoid schizophrenic and institutionalized for the majority of his life. While I've found quite a bit of info about schizophrenia via google, wikipedia, and the like, it's all been rather generalized, and very little of it has focused on the results of treating the disorder via medication. I'm hoping this is what you guys can help me with, as I have oodles of questions regarding anti-psychotics and their effect on the body.

First and foremost, are anti-psychotics things that one would take individually; that is, not to be mixed with any other type of medication? Or are they prescribed in conjunction with other kinds of drugs? Would a person take more than one type of anti-psychotic at a time? And what are the negative side effects that one would encounter while on these drugs?

One of the things I'm most interested to discover is the effect of anti-psychotic drugs on a person with schizophrenia verses a person without. If a "normal" person is medicated what would happen to them? Would they react the same way, or would the drugs have a different effect?

As always I appreciate any help you guys can throw in my direction. Thanks a bunch!