Saturday, March 29, 2008

It's (maybe) the End of the Woooorld As We Know It....

So today I am browsing around on the front page of the NYT web page.

And I see that yeah more fighting in Iraq, more news from the Treasury, over in the Book Review section I see that John Grisham is putting out his like 4,856th book...

Then I read the story in the middle - click on the image to see it bigger:


A giant particle blaster that could make a black hole that could eat up the Earth!??!?!

Now, I was so amazed that I immediately check to see the date because this seems like something they'd publish on April Fools Day.

(Which, FYI, is on Tuesday so watch out!). Today however is only March 29th.

Ok, but back to the particle blaster. I mean GIANT particle blaster.

The whole thing reeks of a Hollywood blockbuster really. It seems that some scientists spent $8 billion (half the price of the Big Dig!) to build this massive proton smasher to see if they can reconstruct the Big Bang.

The blaster being built by Swiss researchers in Hawaii. It seems that they haven't filed any safety reports, which seems to be the basis for the lawsuit.

Or something like that. The article is actually really well written, so you should read it.

Science gives me a massive headache, so I am extremely grateful that there are thousands of other people being scientists to invent stuff like medicine, and spaceships, and low-fat potato chips. Most of the article involved words like "quantum gravity", "elementary particles", and "quark-gluon plasma". So pretty much my eyes glazed over quickly.

I do believe the scientist who says that the chances of the giant particle blaster creating a black hole that will swallow the earth are about the same as it also creating an enormous dragon to eat us up.

However I also believe the scientist who says that it could make a black hole and just saying that the probability that it won't is not good enough.

Like one original researcher said: the "possibility that a black hole eats up the Earth is too serious a threat to leave it as a matter of argument among crackpots."

And according to the article, there were those who believed that the atom bomb would make the atmosphere catch on fire. Well that didn't happen, but that didn't make the atom bomb any safer to mankind.

I am just saying.

Ugh. All this science talk. I need a Bloody Mary and some aspirin.

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