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Show ALL Forums  > Science/philosophy  > CERN/LHC starting up soon      Home login  
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 quietcowboy
Joined: 12/25/2007
Msg: 32
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CERN/LHC starting up soonPage 4 of 6    (1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6)

This collider may discover extra rolled up dimensions (by looking at gravitons) and may confirm supersymmetry.


LHC is unlikely to confirm extra dimensions - it isn't big enough.
 desertrhino
Joined: 11/30/2007
Msg: 33
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CERN/LHC starting up soon
Posted: 11/4/2009 7:27:42 PM
http://io9.com/5391989/a-black-hole-engine-that-could-power-spaceships?skyline=true&s=i

Just a tangential, interesting, article I stumbled across...
 stargazer1000
Joined: 1/16/2008
Msg: 34
CERN/LHC starting up soon
Posted: 11/4/2009 8:42:29 PM

http://io9.com/5391989/a-black-hole-engine-that-could-power-spaceships?skyline=true&s=i


I've read of this concept before years ago but I can't remember the novel I read it in. Also, in Star Trek NG - how the Romulans powered their warbirds. Not geeky at all!
 lsdime
Joined: 9/26/2009
Msg: 35
CERN/LHC starting up soon
Posted: 11/4/2009 9:38:10 PM
LHC is unlikely to confirm extra dimensions - it isn't big enough.


as long as it has the power to create a graviton (which many physicists think it does), then it has a chance to discover extra dimensions.
 lsdime
Joined: 9/26/2009
Msg: 36
CERN/LHC starting up soon
Posted: 11/5/2009 9:47:53 PM

No doubt proposals have been made, but zero progress in actually testing the theories of ST has been made. This isn't to say it never will, but an entire theory that is currently based on nothing that can be tested at the time is a highly questionable theory, and just plain bad science.


not necessarily so. Einstein was the king of the thought experiment. As long as your theory is consistent with the mathematics, its not necessarily bad science at all. Einstein's theory of special and general relativity were ONLY consistent with mathematics at first. It is only bad science if the theory can NEVER be tested.

I would also disagree that "zero" progress has been made in testing these claims. They havent been directly tested yet, but this is different than saying zero progess. String theorist have given many proposals for how to test it. And this month the LHC will start up, which may confirm supersymmetry, and may even confirm curled up dimensions if we are lucky. Thats alot better than zero progress.
 scorpiomover
Joined: 4/19/2007
Msg: 37
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CERN/LHC starting up soon
Posted: 11/6/2009 10:25:26 AM
RE Msg: 64 by lsdime:

Perhaps I'm wrong, though. Is it true to say that both "No Hair Theorem" and Liouville's theorem say that in a black hole, no information is lost, or have nothing to bear on black holes? Or are they not mentioned in the paradox?
these are not currently conflicting theories. The "no hair theorem" has fallen out of favor. This theorem was made before it was discovered that black holes had temperature and entropy.
The only reason that I mentioned it, was that it seemed to be the basis of Hawking's conjecture, and it seems to be that which led to the proposal of the Holographic Principle. Without that, I don't really see how the who discussion takes place. Perhaps you can explain the problem without the "No Hair Theorem", as it is that which suggests that black holes lose quantum information. Also, could you cite some links to authoritative sites that clearly say that the "No Hair Theorem" has been definitely refuted?

RE Msg: 69 by BukkRogers:

With our current Mathematics, Engineering, Computers(Like Penrose said, "They make up for dumbness by doing ultra fast computations"), and most of all human understand, it is unlikely we will get much further.
Heh.... false! Completely and utterly.

It's actually very likely we're going to be getting a hell of a lot further in the coming decades. This is one of the most exciting times in all of history for physics. Some of the biggest and most complex, sophisticated, and coordinated experiments ever devised are coming to fruition right now or in the near future. These experiments aim to (hopefully) uncover mysteries of nature never before attempted on such a scale. Computational power is increasing all the time. Mathematics is also an ever expanding field, and engineering will tend to advance at a steady rate as long as the other sciences continue.

With the way we're going, we've got a lot of great things in store for the future. Humanity is about to get some very exciting knowledge, one way or another.
I doubt that. Something simple like cracking the old RSA encryption algorithm took thousands of computers working together in a cloud network in their idle time, which is a lot of the time on almost every PC. We've still got huge problems with predicting 30m waves in shipping lanes. Many of the major problems in maths have still not been cracked, like the issue of how to understand infinity, and if the Zermelo-Fraenkel Axioms are correct. There have been some major advances in the last few decades. But most maths is still linear. Non-linear solutions tend to be absolute nightmares to solve, and have to be solved case by case, often involving major processing time on supercomputers, rather than providing a general solution like most mathematicians strive for. The problem is that most solutions to real-world problems now appear to be non-linear in nature. This is especially true of solutions for oceanographic studies. Right now, we've got a lot of problems in maths that we would like to be solved, with little idea on when that will be.

I guess it's a question of whether you are optimistic about the future of this society, or whether you are optimistic about the future of mankind, but more realistic about the future of this society. My view is that societies rise and fall, and this one is showing a lot of the same symptoms that was indicative of the fall of prior societies. This society might fall. But humanity may live on.

RE Msg: 75 buy desertrhino:
http://io9.com/5391989/a-black-hole-engine-that-could-power-spaceships?skyline=true&s=i

Just a tangential, interesting, article I stumbled across...
That was a film. The "Event Horizon" film proposed using a miniature black hole to compress all the localised space into a tiny hole, and the localised space on the other side of the space-time continuum, and then ripping the compressed mass of the spaceship through it. The idea of "folding space" was discussed in Dune. But this was a rather poor attempt at it. Rather, it was used to suggest that when the space passed from one spatial point to another, that it passed through another dimensional space that was "Hell", to explain how the ship would become a vessel for demonic entities, making the film a kind of space-age Christine. Really, just a lame way to come up with an evil spaceship.

It's not the first time that SF writers have considered the idea of using a form of gravity engine, or a matter-condensed drive. But other authors have done a far better job of it, often writers with science or maths degrees, and actual work in the field. For examples, I suggest that you read works by Asimov (scientist), Larry Niven (mathematician), or even the Skylark series by E.E.'Doc'Smith, in which he proposed a mysterious element X, that could yield incredible amounts of energy, much like nuclear fusion, but with far more power.
 scorpiomover
Joined: 4/19/2007
Msg: 38
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History
CERN/LHC starting up soon
Posted: 11/6/2009 11:48:29 AM
RE Msg: 83 by BukkRogers:
What is it that you doubted, exactly? It seems you're saying you doubt that we've got a lot of great knowledge to be uncovered in the future, and doubt our abilities to uncover any of it. But then in your post you seem to only have a problem with particular aspects of mathematics.
I was saying that there are lots of things that we know we don't understand yet. I was also saying that it seems quite unlikely that we will discover much of this in the next few years. I was also giving quite a few disparate examples to give a cross-section of these problems, to illustrate just how wide-ranging these problems are.

That doesn't mean that we won't discover the solutions to these problems in the next 10,000 years. Any solutions are possible given infinite time, even if you had no desire for progress, because the human mind is creative, and comes up with things without even trying.

As I explained, your views about progress seem overly optimistic. They are always possible, given infinite time, even with nothing we would call "progress" at all. It is therefore a question of whether or not we expect these problems to be solved in the near future, and so far, many of these problems are seriously evading any solution.

I do not know why you are so overly optimistic. I can only guess that this is what you would like to believe. I too am optimistic about the future. But only about that which I can see is realistic. A lot of people might be inclined to call me a pessimist. But then a lot of people also like it about me too, because they've been promised so much by others, and been let down, they'd rather have someone who tells them the "hard truth", rather than what they want to hear. I don't really need to make up rosy views of life, though. That's what my imagination is for, and it is large.
 scorpiomover
Joined: 4/19/2007
Msg: 39
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History
CERN/LHC starting up soon
Posted: 11/6/2009 1:50:06 PM
RE Msg: 85 by BukkRogers:
What do you think I'm being overly optimistic about? The fact that we live in an exciting era of science when we are at the point where we may be able to realize some insight into long-standing problems in particle physics?
No. The hypothesis that more and more experiments will give us our answers, when we have plenty of experiments already. As Einstein said, the definition of insanity is doing the same thing over and over again, and expecting a different result. With the LHC, all we're doing is saying "it didn't work. let's do the same, but bigger."

It's weird for me to hear (see) someone call me overly optimistic, because most of my life I've been terribly pessimistic.
One can be unrealistically pessimistic in many parts of your life, like dating, and yet be unrealistically optimistic about other areas, like scientific development. In fact, it's more likely to be the case, because both are results of judging the world against an imagined view of reality that is not being checked and corrected against real life.

What I'm saying is that with the LHC at CERN, and a number of very productive neutrino experiments around the world running, we are currently working on two of the biggest things in particle physics, which have both been hugely chased foundations for decades.
Yeah, yeah. Heard the same things being said in the 90s, about string theory, and about fusion. Didn't really make a big impact then. I doubt it will now.

In reality, devices whose inventions went relatively unnoticed by the world when they first came out, the DNA replicator and the MRI scanner, had the largest effect on science in the last 20 years, because it suddenly made almost every scientist able to compare anyone's DNA very quickly, and made any scientist able to do 3-D scans of the brain, which opened up new approaches to genetics, evolutionary theory, neuroscience, and psychology, in ways that weren't available before, using data from 6 billion people, and that's a hell of a lot of data.

The LHC keeps being talked about with a lot of smoke. But there is precious little evidence for the bucks spent, and I really cannot think of much that had that impact with that kind of budget, except for space exploration, and its biggest impact was setting communication and spy satellites into orbit. Don't get me wrong. The LHC might tell us really amazing things. But right now, it's all smoke with no fire behind it.

Both the Higgs boson and the neutrino masses offer insights into new physics that is beyond the Standard Model, the most successful theory in all of science.
According to Roger Penrose, the most successful theory in all of science is Einsteinian relativity, because it is millions of times more accurate than any other theory in all of human science, including quantum mechanics. The standard model of atomic physics did give us semiconductors, and AFAIK, microwave ovens, and quite possibly mobiles using microwave signals. But then, we're barely understanding relativity, let alone its potential, as to have any theory that can be millions of times more accurate than any other, that can give us the ability to describe the movement of matter to an unprecedented level of accuracy, would be like discovering the gun in the stone age. I think we're like cavemen finding an AK-47 when it comes to relativity. We have almost no idea what to do with it.

Supersymmetry and the other things being chased at LHC also play huge roles in this. At this point in time, more than any other in history, we are closest to making SOME kind of discovery, whether it is an affirmative or unfavorable discovery.
That's what the current hype is about the LHC. But 20 years ago, the same hype existed, about string theory, and nuclear fusion. It's just hype.

You and I seem to be on very different pages in this thread. I am talking about specific problems in physics that I see finding some form of insight, solutions, or advancement in the near future, where as you are talking about something quite different - difficulties in mathematics that have not yet been overcome.... So until we are on the same page with all of this, and actually talking about the same thing, I don't think you can say I am being overly optimistic. I've seen the amazing progress in the last 30 years of this field and know quite certainly that my views are based on solid, promising developments that have been a long time in the making. You're still talking about problems totally unrelated to my original post.
Yes, we are. You seem to be talking about expensive scientific experiments that keep being done, that keep being hyped to be "the next big discovery". I'm talking about that I've been reading about scientific discoveries in the last 100 years, and we are converging to certain points, that were raised in the beginning of the last century, that the classical system of science has pretty much reached its limit of being deterministic in a useful way. We're tapping out our potential, because more and more of our results are showing contradictions that don't work with traditional views of science.

We're on the verge of a massive breakthrough to be sure. Everyone seems to agree on that. But the breakthrough looks set to be a paradigm shift in thinking to me. That paradigm shift seems to be slowly appearing in many different subjects simultaneously, and seems to be a paradigm shift of consciousness within our society, and what it means to actually research science in the first place. However, a paradigm shift in thinking, does not mean that any new experiments are needed, or will show anything useful, but will yield confusing results, that will only make sense in the new way of thinking, but that in that type of thinking, is largely superfluous, as it was already proved from the early 20th Century, and really only illustrates another example of theories that we will naturally realise are true based on simple daily evidence, once we accept the new way of thinking. So I really don't think it matters what happens at the LHC at all. It's not the problem, and it's not the solution.
 stargazer1000
Joined: 1/16/2008
Msg: 40
CERN/LHC starting up soon
Posted: 11/6/2009 2:10:43 PM
Well, scorpio, myopia and short-sightedness are a kind of "vision." Fortunately, we have scientists who can see a little wider and further.


As Einstein said, the definition of insanity is doing the same thing over and over again, and expecting a different result. With the LHC, all we're doing is saying "it didn't work. let's do the same, but bigger."


No, not really. It's about changing the conditions of the experiment. The LHC will employ matter moving at ever greater speed and energy, resulting in entirely new and unseen interactions, not possible with smaller accelerators. And with better, more advanced detectors. Or else,why do it?

You know, a few scientists have also heard and understand the meaning behind that quote from Einstein, too.


In fact, it's more likely to be the case, because both are results of judging the world against an imagined view of reality that is not being checked and corrected against real life.


Science and dating, eh! Well, I can see how one might be more prone to self-deception. However, science doesn't have that luxury.


Heard the same things being said in the 90s, about string theory, and about fusion. Didn't really make a big impact then. I doubt it will now.


Okay, I'll call up the CERN partners and have 'em pack it all up then. Scorpiomover says so.


In reality, devices whose inventions went relatively unnoticed by the world when they first came out, the DNA replicator and the MRI scanner, had the largest effect on science in the last 20 years, because it suddenly made almost every scientist able to compare anyone's DNA very quickly, and made any scientist able to do 3-D scans of the brain, which opened up new approaches to genetics, evolutionary theory, neuroscience, and psychology, in ways that weren't available before, using data from 6 billion people, and that's a hell of a lot of data.


Hey, you're mentioning evolutionary theory in that list? Oh, the irony! The IRONY!!!


According to Roger Penrose, the most successful theory in all of science is Einsteinian relativity, because it is millions of times more accurate than any other theory in all of human science, including quantum mechanics. The standard model of atomic physics did give us semiconductors, and AFAIK, microwave ovens, and quite possibly mobiles using microwave signals. But then, we're barely understanding relativity, let alone its potential, as to have any theory that can be millions of times more accurate than any other, that can give us the ability to describe the movement of matter to an unprecedented level of accuracy, would be like discovering the gun in the stone age. I think we're like cavemen finding an AK-47 when it comes to relativity. We have almost no idea what to do with it.


Again, by your interpretation. Another would point out that we've applied Relativity relatively well. And in some not so nice ways, granted. However, since we have two theories that stand in opposition to one another - Relativity and Quantum Theory - then I guess we have a lot more to learn. Seems to me, the more instruments we bring to the effort, the better. Don't you think so?


That's what the current hype is about the LHC. But 20 years ago, the same hype existed, about string theory, and nuclear fusion. It's just hype.


Well, then I'll give Ed Witten a call and tell him to drop it. Again, Scorpiomover doesn't think much of the effort so there's no point in carrying on.


I'm talking about that I've been reading about scientific discoveries in the last 100 years, and we are converging to certain points, that were raised in the beginning of the last century, that the classical system of science has pretty much reached its limit of being deterministic in a useful way. We're tapping out our potential, because more and more of our results are showing contradictions that don't work with traditional views of science.


So is this where we start bringing God into the mix?


However, a paradigm shift in thinking, does not mean that any new experiments are needed, or will show anything useful, but will yield confusing results, that will only make sense in the new way of thinking, but that in that type of thinking, is largely superfluous, as it was already proved from the early 20th Century, and really only illustrates another example of theories that we will naturally realise are true based on simple daily evidence, once we accept the new way of thinking. So I really don't think it matters what happens at the LHC at all. It's not the problem, and it's not the solution.


Science marches forward, no matter how hard we want to hold it back I'm afraid.
 lsdime
Joined: 9/26/2009
Msg: 41
CERN/LHC starting up soon
Posted: 11/6/2009 3:16:50 PM

Einstein's two forms of relativity were not only consistent with mathematics, they were also consistent with a number of experiments and observations at the time, or very nearly after.


for about a year, they relied on mathematics alone. A year later, experimental evidence began cropping up for them peicemeal, but it took years for enough evidence to build up to convince most of mainstream physics. All that is required for the theory to be valid is that one continues to work on creating experimental tests. If it ultimately fails these tests, its rejected. If it passes, it sticks..at least for now. String theory is VERY powerful in terms of the mathematics. That is a big first step. Attempts will soon be made to test it. And it is still FAR from frowned upon in the theoretical physics community.
 scorpiomover
Joined: 4/19/2007
Msg: 42
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History
CERN/LHC starting up soon
Posted: 11/6/2009 4:30:41 PM
RE Msg: 88 by stargazer1000:
Well, scorpio, myopia and short-sightedness are a kind of "vision." Fortunately, we have scientists who can see a little wider and further.
I'm sure there are, and they are probably not myopic, and so are working on other things than the LHC. After all, it doesn't really matter who advances science, does it? So why not leave all the myopic people to the LHC, and if myopia yields more results, then we win, and if the non-myopics keep away from the LHC, and their investigations yield more results, then we win. Seems the smarter people would follow my advice, as it's got a higher probability of productive results.


As Einstein said, the definition of insanity is doing the same thing over and over again, and expecting a different result. With the LHC, all we're doing is saying "it didn't work. let's do the same, but bigger."
No, not really. It's about changing the conditions of the experiment. The LHC will employ matter moving at ever greater speed and energy, resulting in entirely new and unseen interactions, not possible with smaller accelerators. And with better, more advanced detectors.
That's still just "didn't work before, do bigger and faster and more advanced, and hope that this time, it will work". Of course, there is the other approach, the scientific one. You propose an exact hypothesis, by calculating the exact velocities and circumstances in which we would expect to see those interactions, and then testing those specific situations, and nothing else, and then seeing the results. If you have really worked out your theories correctly, then you'll only have to do one experiment, and the results will confirm that your theory is right, or wrong. But then, you'd done your one experiment 12 years ago, and you got your result. It just refused to be the result that confirmed the hypothesis. Of course, if you're just guessing, even with a very educated guess, then you've got a whole host of possibilities. But if you know your maths, then you know in such an eventuality, you're normally talking about an infinite number of possibilities, with an infinite number of possible experiments to try. Back to trial and error, until you get lucky. Me, I prefer the old-fashioned scientific approach. But it does take a hell of a lot of thinking, and as Edison pointed out, people would do anything to avoid that.

Or else,why do it?
Because they really don't have a clue what else will work. After all, as other posters have pointed out, they've been looking for the Higgs boson and lots of other things for a number of years, and have nothing to show for it. The real question is: what will they do next, if the LHC shows nothing? If you've got nothing better, why not?

You know, a few scientists have also heard and understand the meaning behind that quote from Einstein, too.
Yes, and quite a few bankers as well, far more than scientists. And yet, they were convinced that "this time, it would be different".


In fact, it's more likely to be the case, because both are results of judging the world against an imagined view of reality that is not being checked and corrected against real life.
Science and dating, eh! Well, I can see how one might be more prone to self-deception. However, science doesn't have that luxury.
Let's be honest: How many people in relationships get hurt enough to say that they don't have the luxury to be self-deceiving? About 99%. Humans are self-deceiving whether they have the luxury or not. In fact, humans are MORE self-deceiving when it matters, and they don't have the luxury, because that's exactly when they don't want to accept the results when they aren't what we want. Scientific experiments are conducted by humans. So, the body of scientific knowledge that we call science, is completely exposed to self-deception, and especially when we don't have the luxury.


Heard the same things being said in the 90s, about string theory, and about fusion. Didn't really make a big impact then. I doubt it will now.
Okay, I'll call up the CERN partners and have 'em pack it all up then. Scorpiomover says so.
Excuise me, but do they know me from Adam? Hardly. Why should they abandon the LHC just because of little ole moi? If they did, then either my fame is a lot larger than I could ever have imagined, which I seriously doubt, or they're stupid for taking such a thing seriously on the basis of your words about someone they know nothing about, and for all they know might be illiterate, and if so, shouldn't be allowed near such a dangerous experiment. So even though I might think they are wasting their time, the LAST thing I want them to do is just give up without a good reason.


In reality, devices whose inventions went relatively unnoticed by the world when they first came out, the DNA replicator and the MRI scanner, had the largest effect on science in the last 20 years, because it suddenly made almost every scientist able to compare anyone's DNA very quickly, and made any scientist able to do 3-D scans of the brain, which opened up new approaches to genetics, evolutionary theory, neuroscience, and psychology, in ways that weren't available before, using data from 6 billion people, and that's a hell of a lot of data.
Hey, you're mentioning evolutionary theory in that list? Oh, the irony! The IRONY!!!
Hey, just because I might not accept a theory, doesn't mean I don't keep up with it. I know how much evolutionary theory has been expanding based on the work of DNA examination. It might be wrong, but it's still expanding.


According to Roger Penrose, the most successful theory in all of science is Einsteinian relativity, because it is millions of times more accurate than any other theory in all of human science, including quantum mechanics. The standard model of atomic physics did give us semiconductors, and AFAIK, microwave ovens, and quite possibly mobiles using microwave signals. But then, we're barely understanding relativity, let alone its potential, as to have any theory that can be millions of times more accurate than any other, that can give us the ability to describe the movement of matter to an unprecedented level of accuracy, would be like discovering the gun in the stone age. I think we're like cavemen finding an AK-47 when it comes to relativity. We have almost no idea what to do with it.
Again, by your interpretation. Another would point out that we've applied Relativity relatively well.
Were you making that pun on purpose?

And in some not so nice ways, granted. However, since we have two theories that stand in opposition to one another - Relativity and Quantum Theory - then I guess we have a lot more to learn. Seems to me, the more instruments we bring to the effort, the better. Don't you think so?
Nah. Cantor's theorem. n pieces of information => 2^n possible conclusions. Problem is, we've done a hell of a lot of experiments. We have trillions of amounts of information. If we still cannot figure out the conclusions with all that info, the physical instruments are not the solution. The difficulty is in sorting out the information, and for that, we need better mental tools.


That's what the current hype is about the LHC. But 20 years ago, the same hype existed, about string theory, and nuclear fusion. It's just hype.
Well, then I'll give Ed Witten a call and tell him to drop it. Again, Scorpiomover doesn't think much of the effort so there's no point in carrying on.
I thought everyone kept saying that string theory is untestable.


I'm talking about that I've been reading about scientific discoveries in the last 100 years, and we are converging to certain points, that were raised in the beginning of the last century, that the classical system of science has pretty much reached its limit of being deterministic in a useful way. We're tapping out our potential, because more and more of our results are showing contradictions that don't work with traditional views of science.
So is this where we start bringing God into the mix?
Not necessarily. I have considered that the final equations might end up needing a "G-d factor" in them. But that's not where the issues lies. The contradictions seem to cut across the deterministic-indeterministic line. We'd like to keep maths, science and philosophy firmly deterministic. Some would rather keep everything purely indeterministic. But the deeper we dig, the more we keep finding the line anyway. It the universe doesn't seem to care about doing what it wants. It seems to rather ignore all that, and just keeps saying "determinism, indeterminism, it's all an illusion".


However, a paradigm shift in thinking, does not mean that any new experiments are needed, or will show anything useful, but will yield confusing results, that will only make sense in the new way of thinking, but that in that type of thinking, is largely superfluous, as it was already proved from the early 20th Century, and really only illustrates another example of theories that we will naturally realise are true based on simple daily evidence, once we accept the new way of thinking. So I really don't think it matters what happens at the LHC at all. It's not the problem, and it's not the solution.
Science marches forward, no matter how hard we want to hold it back I'm afraid.
Science can march any way it likes. It's the laws of the universe that matter, and they are not ours to control. They control US. They control what we can discover. They control our discovery of scientific knowledge, our "science". So science can march forwards all it wants. If the laws of the universe dictate that we won't figure much more out, science will march over a cliff. If the laws of the universe dictate that we are going to know a lot of stuff that we don't want to know, then science will march forwards, and the universe will just change the space-time contiuum so that the direction science marches in, becomes left. We are not in control. We just like to pretend we are.
 scorpiomover
Joined: 4/19/2007
Msg: 43
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History
CERN/LHC starting up soon
Posted: 11/6/2009 7:14:26 PM
RE Msg: 91 by BukkRogers:
Well my friend, I can't help but say you aren't familiar enough with what's really going on to offer much useful criticism on this issue. Your comments, as much as I am sure you believe them to be true, are illustrative of someone who doesn't really grasp what's going on. I've heard the quote. Everyone's heard the quote. Some people (scientists!) even understand it in its proper context, as well as most of the things Einstein said. Were we doing the same thing over and over again with nothing to show for it, maybe it'd be an issue, no? But the reality of the matter is (you can argue against this all you want, but you can't change facts) that the things that HAVE been done "over and over again" have shown tremendous results. Those that do NOT show good results are not being done over and over again. Something you need to brush up on is what exactly is going on at CERN. I know you think it's "more of the same", but it's not. It's not just "the same, but bigger." Until you're able to really understand the science behind it you're going to be stuck in this rut of ignorance on a pretty pivotal topic in modern science. With all of the information out there it's really surprising that you have no idea what this really is.
Sorry. I do tend to figure out things ahead of everyone else. Maybe I'm just forgetting that many need to prove something 50 times, just to think that it's possible, when I already figured it out.

I was quite amazed when scientists declared it was OK to eat lots of eggs per week, but only if they weren't fried. I figured it out ages ago. Now all it will take is another 5 years for them to admit that eggs are only unhealthy to eat when they're fried in vegetable oil, particularly hydrogenated vegetable oil, but not in olive oil. If you don't understand why, ask, and I'll explain it to you.


One can be unrealistically pessimistic in many parts of your life, like dating, and yet be unrealistically optimistic about other areas, like scientific development. In fact, it's more likely to be the case, because both are results of judging the world against an imagined view of reality that is not being checked and corrected against real life.
I'm actually not so pessimistic about dating at all. Once again, you're making bogus claims that are quite the opposite of reality.
You said you were a pessimist, and where people tend to pessimistic the most, is about dating. You might be pessimistic about other areas of your life though and still be unrealistic.

In scientific development, to a practicing scientist, there is no notion of an "imagined view of reality that is not being checked and corrected against real life". What a scientist does is constantly, more so than anyone else on the planet, check and correct their understanding of reality against real life... Heh heh, I can't help but think you're either insane or making very bad jokes without punchlines.
An understanding of reality doesn't exist anywhere but in your own mind, and so is imagined. Come on, you surely spotted that, didn't you?

Alright, I'm starting to understand the problem now... you don't really know much about this world of science you keep referring to. What you heard about string theory in the 90's was no where close to being remotely as significant as what has been said about the LHC and other cutting edge physics experiments today. What you were getting was the usual media hype on string theory, which has been strong, and not listening to the thousands of dissenting words of other physicists around the globe.
Not unless the media was explaining that there were several different versions of string theory, that ranged from using 8 dimensions, to 26.

I still don't think you're getting it, man. It's really somehow not sinking into your skull. I don't know how to make it any more elementary, but let me try: Even IF the LHC utterly fails, and does not show us any sign of the Higgs boson, the entire community of physicists will have one large awakening... or eye-opening, whatever you wish to call it. It will mean that these theories which have long since been part of our foundations of modern physics will have been shown to be wrong and from this point, it REALLY gets exciting. It means the puzzle is much more complex than we thought, and the brightest minds in the world are going to need to figure out a new strategy for solving it... which makes particle physics a booming area of interesting research.
Except for one problem, that the way they seem to feel that they can determine that is only by a massive particle accelerator costing billions, and taking more than 10 years to build. People who rely on empirical methods continue to rely on empirical methods, as the need for them to rely on expensive empirical methods to determine things, is a strong belief in empiricism, and that really doesn't allow for switching to theoretical methods just because your empirical methods failed you. Invariably, when such projects fail, and they do, the next suggestion is just to build a better particle accelerator, or to find some way to add something to the current one to change the experiment. If the addition is possible, that happens. If not, then particle physicists might get excited, but only because they can dream that if they build an even bigger particle accelerator, or one in space, taking another 10 years, that in 10 years, they'll have the answer. But, turn around to them and say that no matter what, they'll not prove it the way they are going, and they will either go into denial or look very downcast, because they are taking a fundamentally empirical approach, that excludes the rational approach.

However, to a logical empiricist, theory and experiment are equally valid methods of discovery. But when billions and decades are involved, theory are more practical to fund than experiment. When dollars and days are involved, experiments are more practical than theory. It's horses for courses for them. But that approach would not require an LHC, except to confirm things for sure that we've already proved via other means.

And as for neutrino masses, there's no smoke about that. We know they have mass, it's just a matter now of determining what that mass is...
If it's not a big deal, then there surely are a dozen methods, none of which really need a huge particle accelerator 27 miles long.

Well that's nice Penrose said that, but according to - just about every other physicist and scientist on the planet - the Standard Model is the most successful theory in all of science. The Standard Model affects every other field of science, not just physics. In physics, it effects literally everything - quantum mechanics, atomic physics, nuclear physics, plasma physics, electromagnetic theory... it effects chemistry and biology to an outstanding degree. Without the Standard Model most of modern science would not be understood the way it is. The Standard Model is not of atomic physics, but of particle physics. It is the very theory upon which the structure and behavior of matter is built, as well as all fundamental forces governing all of nature through out the entire universe. The Standard Model has been more accurate and precise than relativity, though both are notably accurate. But the standard model has made predictions that have been more accurate than any other theory in modern science to date. Again, this isn't something we're going to argue about because it's a fact. You can quote whoever you'd like on the issue, but it doesn't change facts. You need to do a lot of fact checking on the topics we're discussing before you just start typing away.
We covered the basics of the Standard Model in high school. Wasn't much that I hadn't already heard before, as I'd read up all the way to nuclear fusion by the age of 7. It was relativity that I only found out about by age 10. The standard model is useful in many ways. It helps in chemistry. But really, much of chemistry was already developed. It also helps in physics. But again, much of physics was already developed. Biology mostly extends to the Standard Model via biochemistry, which really comes via chemistry. The Standard Model has helped to put a unifying single background behind all the different subjects in physics and in chemistry, and thence to biochemistry. It's unifying aspects are quite nice. But really, not necessary, not unless you personally cannot build an extended model yourself, and feel the need. If I felt the need, I'd just make a model myself.

FYI, I've seen posts that say that according to most scientists, evolution is the most successful theory in all of science. So it seems that I really would not know who to believe anyway.

No, I am talking about one experiment that is hyped. The other experiments that I only glossed over have all produced outstanding results I'd like to add, though I notice you've not had one remark on them over this discussion.
So you're claiming that supersymmetry has produced such outstanding results that everyone has dropped String Theory and Quantum Gravity, and just focussed on that? I know the Lie Group E8 has been claimed to be a Unified Field Theory, as have many others. But I really don't see any of them proved any more than any others. But please, enlighten me, give me some nice examples of the outstanding results, excluding the given knowns such as quantum entanglement testing, quantum teleportation and quantum cryptography, unless you're telling me that the LHC is there to make a giant quantum cryptography system. Mind you, then we'll need another to decrypt, otherwise, what's the point of encrypting and decrypting the same message to the same people?

The "classical system" of science is no longer in use, so what do you mean? Determinism hasn't been a fundamental aspect of science for decades.
You're right. But it hasn't entered the scientific mainstream view of reality. Too many still talk in terms of a lack of free will, quantum theory proving determinism, a lack of pluralism of knowledge and of perspective and of views, and a rigid deterministic view that we will always progress, in a extremely linear and expectant way. It just doesn't fit the relativistic and indeterminate nature of the universe. If the scientific community was truly grasping this, then everyone would hail that string theory is a triumph, precisely because it has 5 different theories, for each theory would be a different relativistic perspective of the same fundamental theory. Rather, this seems to be seen as a criticism. Religion would not be seen negatively, for it too would be relativistically true, simply from a different perspective, and G-d would equally be possible, simply because indeterminacy would mean we could not say G-d could not exist. I can go on. But relativity and quantum mechanics are things that I adapted to as a youth, and yet, that adaptation seems to put me at odds with many in the scientific world.

What is happening in science is what has always happened in science for thousands of years - the problems are getting harder, always requiring the most up to date methods, knowledge, and available advancements, building upon our discoveries of the past. "Standing on the shoulders of giants", so to speak. This is the way it's always been and always will be. If it weren't this way, these problems would have been solved long ago.
Problems always get harder, like they did just before Newton. And then, someone invents calculus, and everything gets a lot easier. Same happened with the Greeks and geometry. Same happened with the invention of Hindu-Arabic Numerals. Science depends on its tools, its mental tools most of all. With the same tools, one tries to achieve more and more. But tools all have their limits, so the more you push them, the less effective they become. That continues until someone makes new tools, mental or physical. The "giants" are the tool-makers, the true inventors, the ones who are not so obsessed with themselves to be a great name, but to bother to spend the effort in inventing the tools that others will use.

You may find your (rather senseless and unqualified) pessimism to be one of your favorite characteristics in your day-to-day life, but in this discussion it's sadly unwelcome, because frankly, it's based on rubbish and lack of solid understanding. I get the impression you're trying to be pessimistic for pessimism's sake, and not really looking critically at what is being presented. Nothing you're saying is very accurate, because you're taking a very, very small fraction of what is going on in the popular science that you're reading, and blowing it up to interpret as the big picture of the entire climate of the current scientific community. It's just not the way you see it. When you say that more and more of our results are showing contradictions that don't work with traditional views of science, you make it sound like this is somehow a new phenomenon, or exclusive to modern science. This is how it's been for the last century or more. For someone who claims to have been reading up on discoveries of the last 100 years, you should be well aware of this, and should see what an exciting and outstanding time this is. But if you'd like to continue to be unrealistically pessimistic about vague, ethereal ideas, be my guest. I've got some science to do!
I get that you don't like my lack of agreement with your state of enthusiasm. But you keep it if you want. I don't read one or two things and make my mind up. I like to read and read and read, and then draw conclusions from that. I don't look at the picture of today, but recall many previous events of the past, and restructure the development of science in my mind into timelines of developments in fields. From that, I then have a topologocal landscape with which to work with. It's pretty freaky for most people, apparently. But it's natural to me. So yes, it can be very scary. If it scares you, then by all means criticise it. But make no mistake, it's built on thousands of different scientific reports, if not tens of thousands.


We're on the verge of a massive breakthrough to be sure. Everyone seems to agree on that. But the breakthrough looks set to be a paradigm shift in thinking to me. That paradigm shift seems to be slowly appearing in many different subjects simultaneously, and seems to be a paradigm shift of consciousness within our society, and what it means to actually research science in the first place. However, a paradigm shift in thinking, does not mean that any new experiments are needed, or will show anything useful, but will yield confusing results, that will only make sense in the new way of thinking, but that in that type of thinking, is largely superfluous, as it was already proved from the early 20th Century, and really only illustrates another example of theories that we will naturally realise are true based on simple daily evidence, once we accept the new way of thinking. So I really don't think it matters what happens at the LHC at all. It's not the problem, and it's not the solution.
I would ask you to be more vague, but I don't know if that's possible.
It's possible, but not from an empirical POV, which seems to be the main thing people are into right now.

AHHHH! You're a pure empiricist. That was disproved about the same time as quantum theory was being developed. Sorry, but that's been dead in the water, for almost a hundred years. One might as well be pre-Einstein and pre-Bohr, as they required more evidence that it took to disprove empiricism.

RE Msg: 92 by BukkRogers:
As I said, SR was originally conceived as a way to explain a number of confusing experimental discoveries. Upon the birth of SR, these experiments were explained fluidly. GR immediately explained the perihelion shift of Mercury, which had already been observed and questioned.
Come on. Tell us something we didn't learn in high school Physics.

I'd say that in today's scientific community, while you will still have the close minded purists, the overall climate is accepting of changes and radical new ideas.
I'd say that since the 70s, the holy grail of Physics has become coming up with a UFT (Unified Field Theory), with dozens of scientists claiming to have the magic answer. Scientists either come up with their own UFT, or believe in a UFT and hope it will be proved true, or hope that one will be proved true, so that we have all the answers to understand the universe. To that end, the LHC is hoped to the be the cup of Jesus, in that it seems to me that each scientist has pinned his or her hopes that his or her theory that they adopted will be proved right, that, or one will be proved right, and all the others proved wrong (I use the word proved loosely here to mean that the theory fits the data very well, well enough for it to be accepted as a viable theory).

However, I really do wonder how that fits with the Uncertainty Principle and the Wave Equation, because that suggests a model in which the results really cannot be deterministic enough to get a UFT. It might be possible, but on the other hand, maybe not. I'm not sure, because I never thought to run that model in that way before.

RE Msg: 93 by BukkRogers:

Hey, just because I might not accept a theory, doesn't mean I don't keep up with it. I know how much evolutionary theory has been expanding based on the work of DNA examination. It might be wrong, but it's still expanding.
Whoa! DING DING DING DING! I knew there was something off about you other than your unnaturally high levels of pessimism and scientific ignorance, and THERE IT IS. Now our entire back and forth exchange and how little sense you have made makes PERFECT SENSE.

Thank you Stargazer1000 for pointing this out.

A man who can't accept the theory of evolution based on its overwhelming success and evidence, as anyone with even a high school education in biology would, has no place in a science forum, much less trying to discuss earth-shaking scientific issues.

Whewww. That's a load off. Now I don't have to take your comments seriously or worry about responding to them, because I know you've just made up your mind to block out all forms of scientific information that you don't like or that you find challenging.

Cheers to Stargazer for this eye-opener.
Yes, just as I realised when I grasped you were an empiricist, someone who accepts the status quo, and jumps to conclusions on that basis, that rejects anyone who chooses to think for himself against current scientific dogma. Seriously, you didn't read what I wrote, only what Stargazer1000 wrote, and jumped to conclusions that I'm a creationist/ID proponent, and anti-evolution. For one, I'm not anti-evolution, as I've stated before. I simply don't think the evidence is presented in a clear and logical fashion, but is rather claimed to be "mountains of evidence", rather like piling 15 coats on top of someone and then saying "He must have stolen them, look, he has them all". It's not scientific to do that. For another, I'm not pessimistic on all aspects of science. I thought adult stem cells and artificial matrices used to build parts of organs are fantastic inventions. For a third, I like to keep up with the latest trends in science. I'm just not afraid to admit what I don't know.

But if it makes you feel better, you label everyone who disagrees with you even slightly as a nutcase. Don't worry, with that attitude, you'll be here for years to come. Me? I'm here just to amuse myself, keep myself occupied when I am bored, and improve my social skills. If not for that, I have plenty more important things to do. But then, I'm working on building the confidence to do them, and in the meantime, I would just self-sabotage myself without the confidence, for my subconscious to keep its self-image.
 scorpiomover
Joined: 4/19/2007
Msg: 44
view profile
History
CERN/LHC starting up soon
Posted: 11/7/2009 4:26:02 PM
RE Msg: 96 by BukkRogers:
Oh, every scientist is, to some degree, an "empiricist". I am by no means a pure empiricist at all. I am more highly trained in theoretical physics than in experimental physics, and for quite a long time placed more value in theory than the experimental validity. I still do, to an extent. I love it more and still lean toward it, in fact,
I am glad that you realise that reason is very important, especially in theoretical physics.

but any real scientist (i.e. one who actually understands science and its implications, importance, and methodology, much as you do not no matter how much you like to boast and build yourself up only to be later torn down to scratch by your very own words) must place a significant amount of importance on empiricism as that is, after all, the basic of scientific discovery.
Doesn't everyone?
Don't programmers have to test their programs?

You do not know this and must have glossed over this
There is a difference between a programmer and a physicist. If a programmer's program is not tested thoroughly, and it's implemented in a business, he is very likely to get the sack, if not far worse. What happens if a physicist gets his theory wrong?
This requires you to adjust your skewed worldview of what you perceive as scientific discovery, as the definition clearly escapes you. But the value of empiricism is inherent to all of science, and although physics is a highly sophisticated theoretical science, by necessity it requires an empirical approach to bring validity to the theory. Again, this is something basic that high schoolers learn.

only to use this oustanding (fictional) child-prodigy potential of yours to chase the dream of writing programs.
I already wrote why. Read my post again.

But it is imperative that in science, once a theory has been developed and predicts the existence of something we cannot see, we must attempt to SEE this very thing to evaluate the accuracy of such theories and to look critically at the direction in which the theoretical work is going.
Of course. The same is true in programming. But it is just not cost-effective to spend 6 months on a possibility in programming. If you are going to implement a very lengthy system of testing for a particular program, you already have to be sure that it's going to produce the required results, and you are just ironing out the kinks.

I know your type.
Well, I'd be very surprised. But if you can point me to lots of people who also knew relativity and basic atomic physics by age 11, please, introduce me, because I've never met anyone else who had.

You're the typical angry pseudo-intellectual who holds no real knowledge or merit or understanding of the things he rants on and on about, and who has always believed, without justification, that he is always right about all matters being discussed, no matter what they are, and no matter how far out of his league or experience they lie.
You're just p*ssed that I rained on your parade. If you're going to stay in physics and make a contribution, you need a stronger resistance to criticism than that. The universe is far more unyielding than I am to giving out answers.

But, if you want to feel more joyful about the LHC than I do, who am I to stop you? Moreover, how could I? I cannot control you. I made my point, and that's it. If you don't like it, you don't need to agree with it. The results will come in the fullness of time.
 quietcowboy
Joined: 12/25/2007
Msg: 45
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History
CERN/LHC starting up soon
Posted: 11/25/2009 4:41:09 AM
And its up and going!
http://www.dailytech.com/CERNs+LHC+Completes+First+Collisions/article16928.htm
 RocketMan_Len
Joined: 7/5/2006
Msg: 46
CERN/LHC starting up soon
Posted: 4/2/2010 5:36:29 AM

Mr Cole, who was wearing a bow tie and rather too much tweed for his age,


Bowtie and tweed...? It's a shame that he didn't identify himself merely as 'The Doctor'...
 Bloke_up_North
Joined: 12/13/2008
Msg: 47
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History
CERN/LHC starting up soon
Posted: 4/3/2010 1:39:16 PM


Breaking news !!!

The LHC has exploded and destroyed most of Eastern France and all of Switzerland ..

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=KeTOydmtLaU



Well at least something good has come out of it. When they rebuild it lets see if they can take out the rest of France.
 stargazer1000
Joined: 1/16/2008
Msg: 48
CERN/LHC starting up soon
Posted: 4/3/2010 6:47:19 PM

Who says mad scientists are only in fiction? The Frankenstein complex is alive and well, at the LHC.


Clearly, when people cite cartoon caricatures in the guise of cautionary warnings, reasoned and intellectual debate is pretty much done. Yup, wild-eyed Colin Clive (or Gene Wilder or Kenneth Branaugh) throwing the big switch and shouting "It's alive! IT'S ALIVE!" is App's vision of how science is actually done.
 AtomicGogol
Joined: 4/4/2008
Msg: 49
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History
CERN/LHC starting up soon
Posted: 4/6/2010 12:16:11 PM
I applaud you on your brave assault on woo-dom, Cheshire. And by the way, the Earth has already been destroyed, so you're all wrong.

http://qntm.org/board
 stargazer1000
Joined: 1/16/2008
Msg: 50
CERN/LHC starting up soon
Posted: 4/18/2010 3:27:36 PM

The universe's own particle smashers easily exceed the smashing capabilities of the LHC.


Or even the synchrotron radiation from the magnetic field of a neutron star? Or even collisions within the relativistic jets that are emitted from these same neutron stars? Or the atmospheres of supermassive stars? All prime locations for the development of microscopic black holes through particle interactions. And yet, nothing. Interesting.
 stargazer1000
Joined: 1/16/2008
Msg: 51
CERN/LHC starting up soon
Posted: 4/23/2010 1:42:32 PM
So now Professor Stargazer is saying that there are LHC-energy head on collisions occurring in the atmospheres of supermassive stars? I'd heard that some stars were hot, but who would have guessed... :-)


Love how you get that little tone of condescension in there. Okay, I'll explain it slowly for you again....

Some stars are hot. Some are really hot and some are super duper hot. See? Two can play at the condescension came. Now, let's try something a little more mature and productive. Think you can stretch yourself a bit there, app?

You see, supermassive stars are exactly that. They produce prodigious amounts of heat, magnetic fields and hard radiation. A single university first-year astronomy text would have that information. So heat in the "infrared" spectrum is irrelevant to this discussion. However, it makes a nice diversion from the point at hand. So good avoidance there, apps.


Car-chaser, though the jets may be relativistic, that doesn't mean that there are relativistic head on collisions within the jets :-)


Car chaser? So basically, you don't have an answer to that one. Sure. Got it. But are you saying that relativistic collisions within the jets are impossible? Please do explain that exclusionary principle.


That sounds like speculation. If you're saying that head-on collisions with LHC energy occur around neutron stars, could you show your calculations by which you determined that, or the sources where you read of it?


Why should I show you anything. You've actually yet to produce anything resembling a meaningful objection beyond the usual "because I said so." But do please explain for the rest of us how your speculations are any more relevant or exclusionary than anyone else's.
 stargazer1000
Joined: 1/16/2008
Msg: 52
CERN/LHC starting up soon
Posted: 4/26/2010 5:08:38 PM

Are you saying that some are so hot that their particles possess the energy of an LHC proton? I wasn't aware that stars interiors got that hot, but we learn things like that by listening to Professor Stargazer.


Ah, I see deliberate obtuseness and belittling is still App's modis operandi.

Case in point:


Did I say anything about infrared? Though some stars are very hot, are you sure that they're so hot that their particles have as much energy as an LHC particle?


Did I just mention infrared? We're talking supermassive fusion reactors producing prodigious energies across the electromagnetic spectrum.


If a jet leaves the vicinity of a neutron star at relativistic speeds, that doesn't mean that material within the jet is experiencing internal collisions at relativistic speeds. Saying that you don't know that there are or aren't relativistic collisions within the jets isn't enough. To show that fast moving black holes can't hurt a neutron star, you'd have to show that they're being formed and enter the star, and the star is still there.

And, in this jet relativistically leaving the neutron star, what makes you think that a collision-formed black hole in that jet is going to come back in the other direction and enter the star?


Who says the collisions occuring within the jet alone. Cannot cosmic rays intersect relativistic jets? Is it then impossible for them to then enter orbit and even intersect the neutron star?


I'm not saying that there shouldn't be any physics experiements, or that we should return to prehistoric technology. I'm only quoting people, who know more about the subject than you or I do, who have questioned the Earth's safety if the LHC generates black holes.


And yet, there are even more people who, as you point out, know more about the subject you or I do who aren't concerned. Why do you selectively listen to only one group of experts and not to the other?


That sounds like speculation. If you're saying that head-on collisions with LHC energy occur around neutron stars, could you show your calculations by which you determined that, or the sources where you read of it?


My sources are varied over the past 30 years. And nothing I've stated is anything more or less speculative than anything you've offered.


As I said, the technological benefits of the LHC are down the road anyway. So the delay of waiting till we can build it in space isn't so important.


Really!? I didn't know Professor App could predict the future of technological development. Who's engaging in speculation now?
 abelian
Joined: 1/12/2008
Msg: 53
CERN/LHC starting up soon
Posted: 4/26/2010 5:25:57 PM
The safety claims depend on certain theories being correct.

On the one hand, you believe in black holes, but on the other, you don't believe what the same theory tells you about black holes.

As I said, if you want the knowledge that the LHC could bring, that knowledtge can't be accessible to anyone other than a physicist. What does the public get?

Quite a lot, actually. The first people to mass manufacture superconducting magnets did so because it was needed for the (never built) supercollider. The public received the benefit of the research done on superconducting wire and mass manufacture of the cryostats. There are lots of commercial uses for superconducting magnets. Then there is the rf system. The drift tubes require very high power rf that isn't available in commercially built power supplies. Although there are lots of potential commercial applications (like ion implantation) for such power supplies, private industry doesn't do much in the way of research. Processes like Plasma Source Immersion Ion Implantation can be used to produce things like very high precision bearings and medical prostheses wihich are very corrosion and wear resistant in much greater quantities than current deposition processes are able to do. PSIII can also be used to produce diamond-like carbon films. The detectors developed for use in nuclear and high energy physics made it possible to build things like PET scanners, used in medicine.

Simplified descriptive articles. The public doesn't get the benefit then, only the risk.

The first problem is a red herring. You can read the non-simplified articles for free at arxiv.org. The second problem is your own problem. You don't actually know what the public gets. As a rather obvious example, the world wide web itself was conceived at CERN for the purpose of easily looking at data from experiments.
(Other than the technical benefit that would take a long time anyway, and which therefore won't be significantly delayed if we wait till we can build an LHC in space).

It costs a half-billion dollars for each shuttle lift-off, so it's unlikely that an accelerator will be built in space. On the other hand, if a real space station ever gets built, building it as part of an accelerator lab may be the only way it ever gets done. Private industry will never spend the money to do it.
 stargazer1000
Joined: 1/16/2008
Msg: 54
CERN/LHC starting up soon
Posted: 4/27/2010 1:05:02 PM
We hear that cosmic ray collisions can exceed the LHC's collision-energy, but (so far as I've heard) no one but you has ever suggested that star interiors are hot enough to have such collisions


So you're dismissing it as a possibility? Or that a cosmic ray in the lifetime of the universe cannot collide with atoms accelerated in the magnetic field of a supermassive star? Who said anything about their interiors?


But just because the jets are relativistic doesn't mean that they're as fast or as energetic per particle as a cosmic ray or LHC proton.


Hence the phrase "relativistic" meaning "approaching the speed of light." So yes, plenty powerful enough. Meaning that, given the likelihood of such events occurring i.e. the generation of a "black hole" from energetic collisions between energetic particles, then surely we should have far fewer pulsars and neutron stars than we currently do. Indeed, collisions with the neutron star itself could conceivably be more than energetic enough to produce even microscopic black holes. By the way, that is one of the proofs used by the risk assessment groups in determining the safety of the LHC.


The experiment would need proof beyond a shadow of a doubt that the black hole disaster can't happen. The safety-assuring theories are contested.


It's been pointed out that you reject the safety assurances of those who were involved in the planning of the LHC and the science behind it yet you insist on using the same physics as justification for your fear mongering. As Cheshire has already pointed out, the standards of safety have all been met. Where's the discussion.

If you're looking for a mathematical 100 per cent assurance that the thing is safe, you're not going to get it. However, from all indications, the chances of disastrous outcomes is so remote, it might as well be zero. So again, where is the discussion?


You're missing this point: The burden of proof is on the person who wants to take the risk of big disaster. If you're saying the LHC experiment should proceed, then "maybe" won't do as reassurance.


Who said anything about "maybe." See above.

Anyone can precict that. Technology has been advancing steadily, exponentially. The capability of building an LHC in space is hardly a bold prediction.


Not the question. You were talking about the benefits that accrue from the discoveries at LHC. You attempted to argue that discoveries are too far away to justify the perceived "risk." I pointed out that you were presuming to predict future discoveries. Did you have some precognitive ability we weren't aware of?
 abelian
Joined: 1/12/2008
Msg: 55
CERN/LHC starting up soon
Posted: 4/28/2010 8:55:52 AM
As I understand it, there isn't just one theory about what will happen with a mini black hole. That's the problem, isn't it.

Well, actually, there is. Once you accept black holes, quantum field theory predicts the radiation. In order to predict otherwise, you have to speculate using a model with zero evidence to support it.

The things gotten from spinoffs could have been gotten more reliably, efficiently and cheaply by more practically-dedicated resesarch and developement. That makes sense, doesn't it.

It would make more sense only if someone was willing to pay for the dedicated research and development. However, if someone was willing to pay for that, accelerator labs wouldn't have to do the R&D they apparently have to do. I'm also not sure that dedicated research would be less expensive or efficient (at least not if left up to private industry.) The world wibe web is an obvious example to which anyone could relate. It was built on open standards that didn't constrain further development. If you'll recall, microsoft tried to avoid even seriously supporting internet network protocols, instead trying to push non-routable protocols like NetBEUI on people. Companies like Novell were not much better. R&D was limited to people who paid those companies for licenses which restricted what they could do. In the end, the world wide web appeared as a spinoff from CERN and it took microsoft until 1994 to see reality. However, their plunge into web browsing has not been much of a benefit. That only moved the spread of viruses from floppy disks and local networks to world wide networks. So, I can't really see that dedicated R&D is better (at least in the hands of private enterprise.) In the hands of private enterprise, R&D depends on factors other doing something well, like the possibilty for market lock-in.


The public that is paying for these experiments and sharing the black hole risk can't share the knowledge from the experiments, because that knowledge is understandable only to physicists.

If the public has an issue with that, they should not pay for physics research. Nobody from CERN held a gun to anyone's head to make them pay for the LHC. Furthermore, I seriously doubt that those who made the public appeals to sell it to the public did so by extolling any scientific merits in terms any more sophisticate than the types articles you mention as bing accessible to the general public. If they were happy with the articles that sold them on the LHC, they will be happy with the articles about the physics that coms from the LHC. Large projects like that get sold by appealing to things like national pride in having the world's number 1 high energy physics lab or whatever. If people buy it on that sort of a sales pitch, they do (and apparently did). I personally am rather skeptical that much in the way of new physics is going to come out of it, but nobody asked for my opinion.


Nothing approaching what physicists get, becaue the public doesn't have the necessary background to understand the knowledge gained from the experiments.

I'd also wager that greater than 99% of the people who use computers can't write the basic ``Hello World'' program in `c' (or any other programming language) much less understand how a computer executes instructions. That hasn't stopped people from getting any benefit from computers. I don't really know many people who care about understanding basic physics.

As for tecnical benefits, I already answered about that. As Krebby said, they tend to be some way down the line,

That is simply not true and I know this from personal experience. When I wanted information on building a pulsed high voltage-high current power supply (100 kV, 100 A, 20 us square pulses) to use for doing plasma source immersion ion implantation (for commercial use), guess where I found the most up to date information? CERN and SLAC. They were doing the research for the accelerators. When I was in graduate school, MD Anderson used to drive patients to the lab every week to use the cyclotron to treat cancer patients. Thet didn't want to build their own until they had some assurance that doing so would be useful.

Besides, putting the LHC in space won't solve the hypothetical issue you've brought up. The scenario you've posed only requires a mini black hole to be captured by the Earth's gravitational field. It doesn't matter where that black hole is actually produced.


So you don't deny that it could probably eventually be done.

I'm sure it could be done, even now if there was public support to fund it. However, there isn't public support for it now and I really doubt that ther ever would be as long as building it in space is more expensive than building it on Earth.
 abelian
Joined: 1/12/2008
Msg: 56
CERN/LHC starting up soon
Posted: 5/3/2010 12:41:25 PM

So you're saying that that theory that predicts the radiation.

Well, quantum field theory is the ONLY theory known to give the correct answers to real experiments. To that extent, it's the most precise theory of anything ever proposed. QFT agrees with the experimentally measured electron magnetic moment to 13 decimal places. Quantum field theory also correctly predicts the running of the electromagnetic coupling constant which sets the upper limit of the electron radius to be smaller than 10^-17 meters. That means quantum field theory works at distances at least that small.

Are you also saying that that theory's correctness is certain, that no alternatives to it are possible?

At some level, quantum field theory is probably wrong. On the other hand, since quantum field theory is correct at the distance scales given above, any althernative will have to reduce to quantum field theory at those distance scales.

You see, that's the problem.

No, I don't see. Newton's theory of gravity is not precisely correct and general relativity might not be correct, so I can make up a theory that predicts the destruction of the Earth by some hypothetical scenario that is coneniently just out of reach of an experient. That doesn't mean what I made up should be given any credibility just because it was created specifically to explain some hypothetical phenomenon that hasn't been ruled out by an experiment.

As for observational supporting evidence, I heard that the rapid decay of mini black holes hasn't been observed.

However, the standard model of particle physics and general relativity have been extensively tested, to the extent that every experiment ever done agrees with the theoretical predictions. That beats theories which were created specifically to deviate from the predictions of the standard model of particle physics and general relativity for an energy regime that (conveniantly) happens to coincide with the capabilities of the lhc. Last I heard, no one has ever dropped an elephant from a balloon at an altitude of 100,000 feet, but, based on the same theories, I'm pretty sure that the elephant will fall and also that it won't destroy the Earth.

You say or imply that there is just one theory about what will happen with a mini black hole.

Do you know of any other theories for which there exists any experimental evidence?

That would be news to the physicists who contest the theories that say that it will evaporate before it can do anything, or that it won't grow fast enough to be a danger any time soon.

I don't think it would be a surprise. Unfortunately, the standard model has been way too successful. Every attempt to find an experiement that disagrees with it has failed and particle physics has gotten boring over the last 25 years. There's not one shred of evidence that suggests a departure from the standard model is necessary or that such a departure will be found by the lhc. One could therefore make up anything and call it a possibility. Maybe the lhc will produce leprechauns. Hard to say, since the lhc was built to look for things that no one has observed yet. Call the world court. We don't know if those leprechauns will be friendly and they could destroy the world with magic shamrocks.
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