Wednesday, September 10, 2008

World still here, so far

Well, the Large Hadron Collider has been switched on, and as far as I can tell, we haven't all been slurped into a black hole to Narnia or whatever alternate universe might await us at the end of one. It's an amazingly ambitious experiment, and one that will certainly reshape a lot of what we understand (or don't) about the early universe. I like Stephen Hawking's take on the whole thing. He's banking on that wonderful unpredictability you so often find in science. Hawking has bet £100 that, in fact, the LHC will not confirm the existence of the elusive Higgs boson, but will in fact lead us to discover things we may never have dreamed of. We'll see how it pans out, won't we? Unless I wake up tomorrow with a winged octopus perched on my nightstand singing Beatles tunes while feeding me breakfast in bed. I might get suspicious I was in another universe at that point.


  1. C'mon guys! Everyone knows that there is no threat to the world until the beams are crossed. Protons trotting a single lap around this magnetic race track proves nothing.

    Wait until the beams have been crossed and then we can push to have the doomdayers banished to live out the remainder of their lives in stone age vintage caves.

  2. ok, the dooms day claims are laughable.

    However, no collisions will take place until next month at the earliest.

    For the moment protons are just running round-n-round.

  3. Well, where's the fun in that! Come on, create some universes already! Blow stuff up! :-)

  4. Ah man! I really wanted to witness firsthand another Big Bang! How amazingly cool would that be? Not to mention just the sheer amount of energy needed for a reaction like that....

    But honestly, I am eagerly awaiting whatever discoveries they come up with! Ah, the fundamental building blocks of matter!

  5. The Large Hadron Rap is required viewing.

    It literally brings me to tears (of joy). You GO, CERN!

  6. wait, what? 5 comments without an anti-LHC trolls showing up to do drive by postings of their semi-conspiratorial rhetoric? How in the hell to you keep the trolls away? I make a post about hawking radiation and have a post within an hour...

    on a side note: I'd gladly bet against Hawking. Nothing better than scientists finding the higgs AND robbing a person who is paralyzed out of a medium sized lump of cash.

    *notices people staring*

  7. There's a very nice live webcam from LHC where you can see them actually working on it:

    Live LHC Webcam

  8. that webcam was the funniest thing I've seen all day.

  9. I was reading Scienceblogs when I saw an ad and clicked to:


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