I'm ready for Armageddon...
The day before it's switched on, I'm going a GTA IV style rampage, seeing as the world is going to end the next day, when it's all sucked into the black hole...
Scientists operating from a hollowed-out lair deep beneath the Franco-Swiss border have announced that their enormous, unprecedentedly powerful 27-kilometre proton cannon will shortly be ready to open fire. To be precise, "first beam" is scheduled for 10 September. Uncharacteristically, perhaps, the boffins made their …
Chris Morris recently popped down to CERN to have a look round.
As did Kevin Eldon and Simon Munnery.
Podcasts and articles here:
If memory serves me, should the existence of the Higgs Boson be proven by the LHC then Prof Hawking may be up for a nobel prize, which is nice.
Excellent article, BTW, Lewis. I'm left wondering if this has anything to do with the "Henchmen Wanted" craigslist job ad from a few days ago.
I-I-I'd have an, an Apache attack helicopter.
I'd gan back to school. But first I'd take out the labs and then I'd type into the attack computer 'Mr Cragg, chemistry teacher'. Blow 'im to bits.
And then I'd go looking for Tom Donaldson. I'd be hovering just down the road from his house, there. And he'd see us, but I'd duck down behind the trees, and he thinks he's safe, right? And he's just about to put the key in his front door, and I come up from behind the hedge, 'Hello, you bastard.' He panics, right? And he goes in the house, so I get the 30-millimetre canon and I take out the fish pond, coy carp in there couple of rounds each, right? And then I just tilt the helicopter over to one side and the machine-gun bullets is chewing up the drive, right? He comes out. 'Oh no! Not me Triumph Stag! I've just had it resprayed!' I cut it right in half, right? And then he goes, 'Ahhh!' He runs up on to the garage roof. I say, 'Right. This is for you, Tom.' He goes, 'No, no!' He's begging us, he's begging us man, 'No, please don't!' And then I fly off to Cornwall and I just smash in the sea in a big ball of flames.
I find that statement essentially incomprehensible.
The machines are entirely comprehensible:
Lots of energy.
Been producing these machines for decades. Nothing incomprehensible about the machines.
Now if they don't produce a Higgs Boson but do produce items that have the scientists think "Huh. That's odd...", this will be unknown but not incomprehensible (unless God really is going to turn up and spell "Sorry for the inconvenience" for no reason.
Strangelets may be essentially incomprehensibe and so may be micro black holes (because they are smaller than the smallest particle that science can tell us anything about). But they probably won't even turn up. Partly because they *are* incomprehensible and hence unlikely to exist in a universe that we have so far had great success in comprehending. Failing to comprehend *just right now* would be a little odd.
Brian Morrison wrote:
"Analysing the data should prove interesting, apparently the LHC's experiments will be generating in excess of 700MB/s of data, so just getting it transported to where it will be analysed will be a feat in itself."
Already taken care of:
they've got the grid for that. and it is quite a feat, but it's been tested and seems to work. Of course, getting the physicists to actually analyse the results might take a bit longer (given that I spend all day reading el reg and all).
<--just in case it rains on the way back from the pub
A number of PHD level theoretical scientists have questions about LHC Safety and are concern about more than just a few "theories" being destroyed.
The most notable is Professor Dr. Otto E. Rossler, founder of Endophysics and most famous for his contributions to Chaos theory.
Dr. Rossler refutes CERN's safety arguments and proposes that if micro black holes are created (some say the odds are 1 in 1000, others say the odds are closer to 1 in 2) they would grow large enough to threaten Earth in 50 months to 50 years.
Firstly, @ Sarah Bee ........ LOL!
Secondly, there's a great book by James P. Hogan, "Thrice Upon a Time", which sounds a bit like this. Warning: Spoiler follows .....
A large collider creates micro black holes that orbit the Earth's centre of gravity ... right through the Earth and a few orbiting objects! Earth is doomed. But, in a twist of fate, a simultaneously developed experimental time machine allows a warning to be sent to save the Earth, but with tragic side consequences.
Hey, I'm just along the road in Lausanne at the moment. Does anyone know if I can visit CERN and see the boffins at work for myself (i.e. with my own eyes, they don't need to work for me)? It's a pretty momentous experiment and I'd love to be in there at the start before it all goes horribly wrong, some marvellous scientific breakthrough is made or it just whimpers out with a wee bang. Can I? Please? Pretty please? I'll stand in the corner and not say anything, honest.
...they will be held up by environMENTALISTS chaining themselves up in front of the beam complaining about the carbon footprint of the energy used.......
Who will then be catapulted back in time by the beam to a hunter gatherer existance, where ironically, they will be pecked to death by endangered penguins due to a lack of boltcutters.
Terrible, terrible possibility! Imagine Earth catapulted to a dimension where politicians are honest, people are paid for the work they actually do and motorists are curteous and understanding with each other ......
Hmmmm. OK, so when can we flash this thing up again?!
What if we were transported into a alternate dimension filled with millions of Paris Hilton and Hillary Clinton Clones......................
take your pick, dumb and vain or ugly and manipulative
Alien, cause this one is right bloody out there
Sounds like the film version of the Time Machine. Where you can't change the past, because if you do, you remove your reason for building the time machine, hence creating a paradox.
This leads me to my theory of reverse causality. I have a theory that events in the future can actually cause events in the past. For example, your wife dies, so you invent a time machine to go back and save her. But if you save her, then she wouldn't have died, and therefore no time machine would have been built.
Theories regarding time travel generally suggest that there is one past timeline, and an infinite number of possible future timelines - one for every permutation of every choice that any entity makes. I would suggest that there are also infinite past timelines that we are unable to observe. By using a time machine to go into the past, one may be going into _this_ past, or possibly some _other_ past. But in all the possible pasts, the wife still dies, because the act of going back in time to save her actually causes her death to be unavoidable. Reverse causality.
I have no idea if the math can even work, but it's an interesting thought experiment.
I know I am writiong this to the super brain scientist and I say that with respect to their fields of expertise, but I am a Christian and so I have the luxury of knowing from my faith in God's Word, the LHC will certainly not destroy the Earth, I for one am very interested in seeing what it reveals, I think my faith can certainly handle it. Dr. John David McElhaney PhD
So the super what ever is going to create a rift in space time?
Does this mean we'll get a bright shaft of light appear with lots of little stars floating in it?
"What is it?"
"Its a rift in the space time continuum"
"What is it?"
"Its a magic door into a parallel universe"
"Why didn't you say that in the first place?"
(With apologies to Red Dwarf fans everywhere)
Paris, because there's no icon for an android with a head shaped like a rubber on top of a pencil.
Thanks for your replies! Obviously it would have been excellent to get down to the underground caverns where the bleeding edge drips with excited hadrons but the visit looks fun and informative anyway (it must be a pretty amazing tour as the four yellow-helmeted individuals on the CERN page look insanely happy). I'd been talking to my host about wanting to pop along to CERN for my birthday so now I can sort something out. There aren't many things that make me feel like a big kid these days but I reckon I'm going to have a ball. Cheers!
P.S. I've just noticed that the form says that 3-4 months' notice is advisable. Wow. I suppose name badges take a while to print these days. That will no doubt scupper my plans as I'm only here for another couple of weeks but what the heck, like a particle at the speed of light I'm not going to let a lot get in my way, and I'll apply anyway and see how it goes.
1. Would these be "war on tera" electron-volts?
2. To quote the immortal Private Eye cover from the week after 9/11, showing that aide informing GWB of the unfolding events while he struggled to read a primary school children's story:
"It's armageddon, sir"
"Arm-a-geddon out of here!"
3. If the existence of the Higgs' boson is proven by LHC, Hawking gets a prize? That seems a bit unfair, doesn't Higgs deserve it more? Or does he get a nobel when some experiment proves the existence of Hawking radiation?
4. @Mark re: "essentially incomprehensible machines"
>"I find that statement essentially incomprehensible."
Perhaps you should try to comprehend it again, only this time engage your sense of humour first. Please don't make them have to get out the "JOKE" tags again!
5. @archie lukas, re: bag on your head-
BARMAN: Are you serious sir? I mean, do you really think the world’s going to end this afternoon?
FORD PREFECT: Yes. In just over one minute-and-thirty-five seconds.
BARMAN: Well isn’t there anything we can do?
FORD PREFECT: No, nothing.
BARMAN: Well I always thought we were meant to lie down and put a paper bag over our head or something.
FORD PREFECT: If you’d like, yes.
BARMAN: Well will that help?
FORD PREFECT: No.
Definitely worth trying to get there. It's a publicly-funded facility and so the public has a right to visit. I have some great photos showing big info screens labelled "MAGNET TEMPERATURE(K) 1.9". Brrrrr.
If you can get a suitable techy group together and have CERN stand you lunch, so much the better, the restaurant isn't half bad. I've had much worse lunches from paying customers...
Pardonez-moi, I live just down the road from there. Wondered what ze f*** was happening when all ze cutlery went flying down ze road at supersonic speed when they were testing ze super cooled super magnets last week!
Funnily enough, my car went missing too - thought it was nicked by some retard immigrant kid - but now I reckon its perched on top of the magnet with my cutlery! I will go on my bike tomorrow and check it out.......f*** me, someone has nicked my bike as well, or....????!!!!
Looking forward to experiencing the "mini" black-holes next month. Should be great fun! Wey hey!!!! Beam me up Scottie - off this mad planet !
A reminder to all Black Mesa personnel: Regular radiation and biohazard screenings are a requirement of continued employment in the Black Mesa Research Facility. Missing a scheduled urinalisys or radiation check-up is grounds for immediate termination. If you feel you have been exposed to radioactive or other hazardous materials in the course of your duties, contact your radiation safety officer immediately. Work safe, work smart. Your future depends on it.
..welcome our new man-munching, alternate-universe-dwelling reptillioid overlords.
Alternatively, I welcome our bespectacled, lab-coated, flop-sweat-generating, poindexter overlords.
(No, I actually read New Scientist and love scientists, so I am well aware they make scientists in the sexy female model nowadays, too.)
Physicists who may not have studied LHC Safety arguments in any detail proclaim that more powerful cosmic rays hit Earth regularly and Earth is still here. Why is this argument nonsense?
A micro black hole created by a cosmic ray collision with Earth would travel through Earth at nearly the speed of light, leaving the Earth unharmed. CERN’s LHC Safety Assessment Group acknowledged this in a March 2008 email.
Abstract from Dr. Rosslers plea to the world, copy available on LHCFacts.org.
A nightmarish situation, that can still be hoped to be averted in time through communication within the scientific community, is drawn attention to. Only a few weeks remain to find out whether the danger is real or nothing but a mirage. After this time window is closed, it will take years until we know whether or not we are doomed. The story line has all the features of a best-selling novel. The reader is asked to contribute constructively.
Quote from Dr. Otto E. Rossler, Professor Theoretical Biochemist, visiting Professor of Theoretical Physics, inventor of the Rossler Attractor, founder of Endophysics, winner of the 2003 Chaos Award of the University of Liege and the 2003 Rene Descartes Award.
Neil Stephenson's new novel mentions something about how scientists got all their big toys taken away when some unknown, but probably scientist-caused events sort of destroyed most of life on the planet. I'd really hate to see that come true before the franchise capitalism America from Snowcrash!
...I first read about him in El Reg, in fact. Wasn't he supposed to be "certifiable" or something?
Yeah, he thinks a particle accelerator is going to rip the fabric of space-time, or some shit, and throw us back into some kind of parallel-universe Stone Age, directed by Spielberg, where we're all eaten by dinosaurs or something. Dumbass.
Is there any way we can accelerate Walter Wagner to near-lightspeed and see what kind of particles are busted loose when he slams into something? No?
D'ahh, too bad. I'd have paid actual money to see that.
any of u played half life 1 and 2 this is prob wats goin 2 happen so im goin to hide behind gordon freeman yes i like half life basically this is also like sumthin from stargate that i also watch a lot its one where earth nearly gets f*****ed up by a blck hole well were all dead so im goin 2 finally meet that girl i like but scared to ask her out kiss her then prepare for getting riped apart by a black hole
And how do you or he know that the collision will be EXACTLY inelastic 100% and absolutely NO energy left over?
Now, how much of the energy of collision would be needed to get this particle to the 11kps that is the escape velocity of this pretty damn small lump of rock? A billionth? A billionth of a billionth?
I suspect if you accelerated two sheep together at astonishing speed, rather then sheeplets, you'd get a gooey red mess.
Experience with a mates Vauxhall Cavalier SRi impacting a sheep at 50ish mph suggests that they'll need a pressure hose to stop the think honking up the place the next time they try to turn it on, too.
Dead vulture, because after a few weeks the smell off the Cavaliers heater matrix and the dead vulture would be pretty similar. *retch*
PS: Bring on the apocolypse.
Craig Roberts> "Scientists have just built the world's biggest supercollider, and they're doing experiments to see what makes up protons. I hope that if the experiment's successful, the whole of our reality will dissolve, and a big sign will up come that says: Level Two."
There is another theory which states this has already happened.
(I don't need to quote it all, do I?)
"What will happen if we collide two sheep in this thing, especially near the upper limiting speed for a sheep in vacuo, as determined by reg scientists?" -- "you'd get a gooey red mess."
Though this is a typical consequence when using the Vauxhall and similar apparatus, the aim is that CERN's sheep will transmute into the HIggs Bison as a result of their special alchemy. The bison is a bit like a unicorn: everyone believes in them but no one has one as a pet.
Unlike unicorns, Higgs Bisons are very very big and come from the dark side of the universe; which is why some people are worried about releasing them. We must hope that Buffy the Vampire Slayer has gone on one of those 'skills for life' retraining courses that the government promotes.
Mike: Yep but they are going very, very fast and what I really want to know is whether they are going for an 'in-off' the neutron or a cannon.....I mean any poor player can just go for the hole......
Phil: It's the day AFTER my birthday so the answer to Life, the Universe and Everything was out by a decade.....the wrong way out by the way
David: It is a well established fact that the fastest thing in the universe is a 17 year old pizza delivery person driving a white Vauxhall Astra Diesel Estate......
Now here's a thing. The Ancients (some would have it we are the ancients and they are the Beginnerers) considered there to be celestial music of the spheres. You know what happens if you run your wetted finger round and round the top of a glass.....is this to be result of the experiment? The biggest musical instrument in the World? The first indication might be every dog in the world simultaneously howling.......no, wait, that's a portent of doom is it not?
....you take two 17 year old pizza delivery persons in two similar (white) Vauxhall Astra Diesel Estates, two tanks full of fuel and start them off going in opposite directions around the M25. After a few laps to ramp up the accelleration and at an appropriate moment, to be decided by the boffins of CERN cos they are good at that sort of thing, the crash barriers in the middle are taken away and we see if they will somehow graviate towards each other at horrendeous speed......
Of course we would have to shut the M25 for the duration of the experiment and the cost of that would probably exceed the cost of the CERN infrastructure for their experiment......so we're quids in then, the Boffins at CERN are cheap as chips really.....
According to the LHC website (http://lhc-machine-outreach.web.cern.ch/lhc-machine-outreach/) the aim of the experiment is to:
'......smash protons moving at 99.999999% of the speed of light into each other and so recreate conditions a fraction of a second after the big bang. The LHC experiments try and work out what happened.'
Hmmm. Me, that's what happened. And you of course. And the Earth and all those other rocks and stuff. And did it occur to them that 0.000001% of the speed of light might be 0.000001% too late to draw any conclusion other than the one I just put forward? Cosmic innit?
But return the alternative experiment which suddenly appears that much more attractive. Speed of light = 1,079,252,848.80 kph so 0.000001% of that is 10.79 kph. Now given the speeds that a 17 year old in a white Vauxhall Astra Diesel Estate can attain I think we can safely offer this alternative as a means of 'bridging the gap' that the CERN experiment will leave.........
The world has mocked the US for being a bunch of gun-totin-morons for years... but when head-crabs start teleporting out of thin air, you're all gonna wish 2 things. One, that the stupid collider was built in the US (the mother of all the world's man-made disasters), and Two, that you all hadn't been quite as zealous about gun control.
Mines the one with "Kimber Custom II" written on it...
Welcome ladies and gentlemen of the press to this historic switching on of the large hadron collider. You've enjoyed the tour and filled on sarnies and now the time has come to flick the big read switch ... hctiws daer gib eht kcilf ot emoc sah emit eht won dna seinras no dellif dna ruot eht deyojne v'uoY ...
For the Large Hadron Collider to work it is required to assume that time has no dimension. Reality is a series of sequential unrelated reference frames. Otherwise CERN is a time machine more than capable of rewriting reality.
Now to look at the proton just in points of simultaneity lets assume all the beam paths away from the directing, kicking and focus magnets are not subject to anything other than relative difference in velocity. It is your Einstein classic train in the tunnel relativity conundrum in micro scale.
Take the bulk of the beam path not subject to stress and divide it into paper thin sections. From the point of view of the along side the accelerator observer the option is to capture the proton between the paper thin section between the front of the sheet and the back of the sheet. Once the proton is in the page you can close the book and reopen before the proton leaves the page. Just as in the larger example of the train in the tunnel the gates of the tunnel so for our proton the closed book happens at different points of simultaneity.
So it can't be proven that the proton is different over the three quarter hour mark before impact or in the ten hour user time before dumping the entire beam into a carbon sink. But one can use the already accepted rules for matter for relativistic behavior at each point along the experiment and state that simultaneity does not exist for the protons in use. It is a leap of logic to therefore extend the concept to the entire windup and wind-down or ten hours and dump-stage.
So it is not the same proton at any point in reference frames of time equals zero or the whole machine is a time machine if time has any relevance to reality and symmetry breaking indicates that something is stretched beyond breaking point and now all that remains is to see is if there is a safety point.
Simply according to the math time has no significance and is not included otherwise the LHC is a very large and powerful time machine. Time is not included in the calculations because it means the protons injected into the machine are not the same ones getting smashed up during the hours in the machine. I don't know about the end of the universe but this machine has the capacity to rewrite to a trillionth of a second after the big bang some small part of our reality.
Just off topic momentarily it was pretty crude how the Olympics were used as a look away feel good to see the dogs of the old cold war given a run. I am so glad science didn't use global celebration as a foil for dumping the bad news. Just don't tell the kids there are no more shopping days until Christmas ... ever.
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