Some people obviously haven't read comic 401...

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Some people obviously haven't read comic 401...

Postby upessimist » Fri Mar 28, 2008 2:39 am UTC

The builders of the world's biggest particle collider are being sued in federal court over fears that the experiment might create globe-gobbling black holes or never-before-seen strains of matter that would destroy the planet.


Clearly, they don't realize the worst that would happen is an increase in helicopter mortality rate from cancer.

Article here

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Re: Some people obviously haven't read comic 401...

Postby Artemis Leon » Fri Mar 28, 2008 3:28 am UTC

Article wrote:Former nuclear safety officer Walter Wagner has been raising such questions for years - first about an earlier-generation "big bang machine" known as the Relativistic Heavy-Ion Collider, and more recently about the LHC.


They've done this before? Seriously, fuck those guys.
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Re: Some people obviously haven't read comic 401...

Postby LilPixie » Fri Mar 28, 2008 4:00 am UTC

Wow.
That is a big one ain't it?
I surely do hope they (super collider people) win; it would fascinating to find out if the theories we hold as true today have any plausible value.
I should be interesting if the Big Bang theory were to be dethroned though... I wonder what would happen.
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Re: Some people obviously haven't read comic 401...

Postby 22/7 » Fri Mar 28, 2008 4:08 am UTC

I can only assume that they'll win. Who is more of an expert on the Hadron and what it is capable of than them?
Totally not a hypothetical...

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Re: Some people obviously haven't read comic 401...

Postby Robin S » Fri Mar 28, 2008 4:56 am UTC

The problem is that if, however slim the chances, they turn out to be wrong, it could destroy the Universe.
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Re: Some people obviously haven't read comic 401...

Postby LilPixie » Fri Mar 28, 2008 4:58 am UTC

Hm... I hear what you say; hahaha, I wonder if then people would believe in God or something, and try to make some last minute reservations.
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Re: Some people obviously haven't read comic 401...

Postby mazzilliu » Fri Mar 28, 2008 7:29 am UTC

how would this work if the judge weren't educated enough to even understand the supercollider people's defence :shock:

EDIT: the LHC isn't being built in the US though, its being built in europe. what makes them think they can do anything in a US federal court? they should countersue on the basis that allowing such a stupid court case to be considered seriously will cause god to destroy the earth.
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Re: Some people obviously haven't read comic 401...

Postby Zak » Fri Mar 28, 2008 7:34 am UTC

Honestly, this would be a pretty awesome way to go, i'm fine with it either way.
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Re: Some people obviously haven't read comic 401...

Postby schmiggen » Fri Mar 28, 2008 7:48 am UTC

I agree with that sentiment, to some extent. But I'm nowhere near ready to go.
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Re: Some people obviously haven't read comic 401...

Postby Princess Marzipan » Fri Mar 28, 2008 7:56 am UTC

Super collider?

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Re: Some people obviously haven't read comic 401...

Postby tiny » Fri Mar 28, 2008 12:32 pm UTC

What if the Super Collider is what caused the Big Bang, and we simply start over?

Kind of like this.
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Re: Some people obviously haven't read comic 401...

Postby lowbart » Fri Mar 28, 2008 1:53 pm UTC

I look forward to the days when it's financially feasible to build stuff like that in space. Or maybe on the moon.
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Re: Some people obviously haven't read comic 401...

Postby Robin S » Fri Mar 28, 2008 1:59 pm UTC

How will that help?
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Re: Some people obviously haven't read comic 401...

Postby hyperion » Fri Mar 28, 2008 2:17 pm UTC

Robin S wrote:How will that help?

It will be in space! :D
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Re: Some people obviously haven't read comic 401...

Postby segmentation fault » Fri Mar 28, 2008 3:04 pm UTC

hmm...scientific research at the cost of a black hole swallowing all matter on earth? i personally have no problem with this.
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Re: Some people obviously haven't read comic 401...

Postby mosc » Fri Mar 28, 2008 3:08 pm UTC

You know, if the entire universe goes with me, I'm OK with dieing. Something special about being at the very end, ya know?
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Re: Some people obviously haven't read comic 401...

Postby (╯°□°)╯︵ ┻━┻ » Fri Mar 28, 2008 3:18 pm UTC

The question is, if one of these things were to destroy the universe, how quickly an end are we talking? Like, will I have time to have sex one more time, or should I jump off a building because i won't have time to hit the ground, kind of thing?
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Re: Some people obviously haven't read comic 401...

Postby Blubb3r3ng3l » Fri Mar 28, 2008 3:32 pm UTC

Personally, I'd rather it be this than the zombies...
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Re: Some people obviously haven't read comic 401...

Postby Indon » Fri Mar 28, 2008 3:33 pm UTC

Meaux_Pas wrote:The question is, if one of these things were to destroy the universe, how quickly an end are we talking? Like, will I have time to have sex one more time, or should I jump off a building because i won't have time to hit the ground, kind of thing?


Well, if this 'strange' matter converts other matter into strange matter from any contact, we're probably looking at a chain reaction that travels near the speed of light. So you'd have like a second in that case (not even enough time to _start_ the jump).

Other scenarios are more promising, like the black hole. That might give you some nookie-time.
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Re: Some people obviously haven't read comic 401...

Postby (╯°□°)╯︵ ┻━┻ » Fri Mar 28, 2008 3:58 pm UTC

If the world is going to end in an instant, I don't think I care. I would rather we all blinked out of existence than wait for the end over the course of a few minutes or hours. Plus, it'd be kind of hard to have great sex under that much pressure, and who wants their last action to be having bad sex? Not me.
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Re: Some people obviously haven't read comic 401...

Postby mazzilliu » Fri Mar 28, 2008 4:09 pm UTC

in all seriousness, how in the world can a handful of electrons in a supercollider, even if it did create a black hole, ever produce an event horizon that would be big enough to swallow even a nearby atom, and if it were possible, wouldn't it evaporate much faster then it could grow? clearly i lack the decade of advanced particle physics training, but from my rudimentary highschool and college classes and scientific american magazine subscription it seems like these theories were just some physicists going nuts with math and making crazy "what if?" scenarios for the fun and the publicity of it, and now someone is trying to use that in federal court against them. it seems in all probability that if any of those assertions were real it would have already happened withinin the bodies of stars long ago rather then in a relatively small pipe with a handful of particles on earth, after billions of billions of years of more powerful reactions.

right? :?
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Re: Some people obviously haven't read comic 401...

Postby Micron » Fri Mar 28, 2008 6:22 pm UTC

mazzilliu wrote:it seems in all probability that if any of those assertions were real it would have already happened withinin the bodies of stars long ago rather then in a relatively small pipe with a handful of particles on earth, after billions of billions of years of more powerful reactions.

right? :?

That or from any of the cosmic rays that have been striking the Earth at much higher energies than the LHC can achieve for several billion years now.

From the article:
The cosmic-ray argument has been applied to the black-hole and strangelet scenarios as well. If such dangerous things can be created, why haven't they already eaten up Earth, along with other planets, stars or whole galaxies in the billions of years since the universe arose? To answer that question, Sancho and Wagner pose a counterargument: Perhaps cosmic-ray collisions really are creating tiny black holes or strangelets, but those little bits of doomsday zip by too fast to cause any trouble. In the LHC, they say, the bad stuff could hang around long enough to be captured by Earth's gravity and set off a catastrophe.

In response, particle physicists are developing counter-counterarguments - based on their theoretical work as well as data from astronomical observations and experiments at the Relativistic Heavy-Ion Collider. For instance, the physicists would say that enough of the doomsday particles still should have been captured by neutron stars or cosmic gas clouds to have an impact. No such impact has ever been seen. Therefore, no doomsday.

Amazingly it seems that the physicists designing the LHC might have a better grasp of high energy particle behaviors than the former nuclear safety officer filing the lawsuit.

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Re: Some people obviously haven't read comic 401...

Postby EsotericWombat » Fri Mar 28, 2008 6:33 pm UTC

Meaux_Pas wrote:If the world is going to end in an instant, I don't think I care. I would rather we all blinked out of existence than wait for the end over the course of a few minutes or hours. Plus, it'd be kind of hard to have great sex under that much pressure, and who wants their last action to be having bad sex? Not me.


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Re: Some people obviously haven't read comic 401...

Postby Silas » Fri Mar 28, 2008 6:44 pm UTC

I'd hate to be the defense's counsel. The nutjobs plaintiffs are sure to point out that any physicists who testify to the CERN project's safety have their careers tied up in the project's success. They may even be able to find a physicist from a rival particle accelerator who resents the project enough to back the doomsday crowd.
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Re: Some people obviously haven't read comic 401...

Postby 22/7 » Fri Mar 28, 2008 7:26 pm UTC

Blubb3r3ng3l wrote:Personally, I'd rather it be this than the zombies...

Fuck that. Bring on the zombies. I've got my running shoes on, my escape plans made, my strategy in place.
Totally not a hypothetical...

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Re: Some people obviously haven't read comic 401...

Postby schmiggen » Fri Mar 28, 2008 7:28 pm UTC

22/7 wrote:
Blubb3r3ng3l wrote:Personally, I'd rather it be this than the zombies...

Fuck that. Bring on the zombies. I've got my running shoes on, my escape plans made, my strategy in place.

Muhaha, sounds like someone is ready to experience Resident Evil For Real. :twisted:
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Re: Some people obviously haven't read comic 401...

Postby LilPixie » Fri Mar 28, 2008 9:01 pm UTC

Meaux_Pas wrote:If the world is going to end in an instant, I don't think I care. I would rather we all blinked out of existence than wait for the end over the course of a few minutes or hours. Plus, it'd be kind of hard to have great sex under that much pressure, and who wants their last action to be having bad sex? Not me.


Agreed. Not the sex part, the "in the blink of an eye" part. I think it's easier to nnot even see what hits you than to actually sit in your house or whatever it is you are at the time and wait for it to come. If that was the case and there was flights available to Switzerland (which I'm sure there wouldn't), I would get on a flight and dive in. And let the new adventure begin, if indeed there is one.
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Re: Some people obviously haven't read comic 401...

Postby Robin S » Fri Mar 28, 2008 10:16 pm UTC

segmentation fault wrote:hmm...scientific research at the cost of a black hole swallowing all matter on earth? i personally have no problem with this.
You don't see the irony of an experiment designed to gain knowledge resulting in the end of the world before that knowledge is gained?
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Re: Some people obviously haven't read comic 401...

Postby Stief » Fri Mar 28, 2008 10:25 pm UTC

schmiggen wrote:Muhaha, sounds like someone is ready to experience Resident Evil For Real. :twisted:

I believe most of the fora is ready for a zombie invasion...why aren't you?
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Re: Some people obviously haven't read comic 401...

Postby schmiggen » Sat Mar 29, 2008 12:42 am UTC

Stief wrote:
schmiggen wrote:Muhaha, sounds like someone is ready to experience Resident Evil For Real. :twisted:

I believe most of the fora is ready for a zombie invasion...why aren't you?

I once took out a zombie using only a piece of broccoli I was halfway finished eating, after the zombie disarmed me and my fork was unreachably lodged in its face. I am so ready. (Broccoli + cheese = awesome, and therefore I always have a ready supply of broccoli, often as close as my own mouth)
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Re: Some people obviously haven't read comic 401...

Postby Token » Sat Mar 29, 2008 1:23 am UTC

Hold on, what? They're claiming they need at least four months to assess the safety concerns? The damn thing was approved fourteen years ago, construction began ten years ago, and they start complaining THREE FUCKING MONTHS before it's due to power up? Are they deliberately wasting people's time?
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Re: Some people obviously haven't read comic 401...

Postby lorenith » Sat Mar 29, 2008 2:32 am UTC

Token wrote: Are they deliberately wasting people's time?


Probably, maybe they thought it would never get off the ground or something.

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Re: Some people obviously haven't read comic 401...

Postby 22/7 » Sat Mar 29, 2008 2:51 am UTC

Surely they're not actually concerned about it being a doomsday device? Are there other reasons not to have it up and running (i.e. who benefits from it not running)?
Totally not a hypothetical...

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Re: Some people obviously haven't read comic 401...

Postby Ashbash » Sun Mar 30, 2008 12:44 pm UTC

I'm still not sure how black holes, even miniture ones can decay. I'm not denying that they do, just unsure as to why/how. Can someone point me in the right direction?

This whole event is pretty interesting. I spent most of yesterday learning about stranglets (and not discovering much :p)

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Re: Some people obviously haven't read comic 401...

Postby Rysto » Sun Mar 30, 2008 8:59 pm UTC

Ashbash wrote:I'm still not sure how black holes, even miniture ones can decay. I'm not denying that they do, just unsure as to why/how. Can someone point me in the right direction?

Black holes are predicted to lose mass to Hawking radiation.

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Re: Some people obviously haven't read comic 401...

Postby EsotericWombat » Sun Mar 30, 2008 9:17 pm UTC

Check out this strip and the ones following it from Overcompensating
http://www.overcompensating.com/posts/20080326.html
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Re: Some people obviously haven't read comic 401...

Postby benjhuey » Sun Mar 30, 2008 9:52 pm UTC

Robin S wrote:
segmentation fault wrote:hmm...scientific research at the cost of a black hole swallowing all matter on earth? i personally have no problem with this.
You don't see the irony of an experiment designed to gain knowledge resulting in the end of the world before that knowledge is gained?

If we could die of irony, I would be perfectly fine with it.

The Article wrote:"We see no evidence of this bizarre theory," [Kaku] said. "Once in a while, we trot it out to scare the pants off people. But it's not serious."

Ha ha.

Also, weren't scientists somewhat uncertain of the capabilities of the nuclear bomb, you know, back in the day before they tested it?
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Re: Some people obviously haven't read comic 401...

Postby lorenith » Sun Mar 30, 2008 10:37 pm UTC

benjhuey wrote:
Also, weren't scientists somewhat uncertain of the capabilities of the nuclear bomb, you know, back in the day before they tested it?


No, they weren't, there had been worried thrown around, but as far as I'm aware there wasn't any truely scientific worry for testing one. Granted I may be remembering it wrong.

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Re: Some people obviously haven't read comic 401...

Postby mazzilliu » Sun Mar 30, 2008 10:45 pm UTC

lorenith wrote:
benjhuey wrote:
Also, weren't scientists somewhat uncertain of the capabilities of the nuclear bomb, you know, back in the day before they tested it?


No, they weren't, there had been worried thrown around, but as far as I'm aware there wasn't any truely scientific worry for testing one. Granted I may be remembering it wrong.

from what i remember the only thing they didnt anticipate was the nuclear fallout, they thought the radioactive particles would go straight back down rather then high winds in the upper atmosphere carrying it away[citation needed]
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Re: Some people obviously haven't read comic 401...

Postby Azrael001 » Sun Mar 30, 2008 10:48 pm UTC

I seem to remember hearing something about the scientists not being sure if the bomb would ignite the atmosphere and kill us all. They just figured that it would be better if we did it than them doing it.
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