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Large Hadron Collider (LHC) Generates a 'Mini-Big Bang' 570

Posted by CmdrTaco
from the i-do-that-when-i-eat-chinese dept.
buildslave writes "The Large Hadron Collider has successfully created a 'mini-Big Bang' by smashing together lead ions instead of protons. The scientists working at the enormous machine on the Franco-Swiss border achieved the unique conditions on 7 November. The experiment created temperatures a million times hotter than the center of the Sun."
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Large Hadron Collider (LHC) Generates a 'Mini-Big Bang'

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  • Re:Next step... (Score:5, Insightful)

    by imamac (1083405) on Monday November 08, 2010 @11:39AM (#34162286)
    Last I checked they weren't mutually exclusive.
  • Re:Next step... (Score:4, Insightful)

    by nebaz (453974) on Monday November 08, 2010 @11:47AM (#34162392)

    I think if they created a real big bang we may all be silenced.

  • by Sonny Yatsen (603655) * on Monday November 08, 2010 @11:47AM (#34162404) Journal

    I thought religious fundamentalists are merely a subset of anti-science loons.

  • Re:Next step... (Score:2, Insightful)

    by Anonymous Coward on Monday November 08, 2010 @11:49AM (#34162426)

    Depends on your definition. You're probably thinking "Creationism as in God created it" which is general enough that they aren't mutually exclusive.

    Other people say that Creationism is more about using the Genesis section of the Bible to explain how life came to be as opposed to other biological answers like evolution.

    I assume the parent wants to disprove the later.

    Creationism and Evolution are not mutually exclusive either.

  • by dtjohnson (102237) on Monday November 08, 2010 @11:54AM (#34162496)
    The title is misleading. The LHC did not create a mini 'big bang' but created a miniature of the conditions that might have existed shortly AFTER the big bang. The 'big bang [wikipedia.org]' was the event that created all mass, space, and time in the entire universe in a single instant approximately 13.7 billion years ago. The LHC collision of lead ions did not create any mass, space, or time but did create a "hot dense soup of quarks and gluons known as a quark-gluon plasma" that might have existed after the 'big bang' event.
  • by X0563511 (793323) on Monday November 08, 2010 @12:00PM (#34162556) Homepage Journal

    Frankly I don't give a shit who gets pissed off. The objective is scientific understanding, not pissing people off or not.

  • by Kjella (173770) on Monday November 08, 2010 @12:01PM (#34162574) Homepage

    Your mission [dilbert.com], if you choose to accept it. You are dealing with people that mostly wouldn't remember what an "ion" is. When you say "smashing iron", they think of banging two iron bars together. And how exactly is iron atoms related to the creation of the universe, really? Answer: It isn't, but they will have skipped to some other headline long before you got to explain it to them.

    Do you think think this is related to science journalism in particular? There's so many wildly misleading titles all over the places. Like right now in the sports section is one "The coach didn't like their celebration" as if there was a conflict between the coach and the team. If you read the article he just think there's too many flashy gimmicks, spraying of champagne etc. and it's just not his style. Everything is fluff like that there days.

  • by Anonymous Coward on Monday November 08, 2010 @12:02PM (#34162586)

    Not necessarily. I am a religious fundamentalist, and science is all well and good in my book, to a point. And by to a point, I mean "this is what we've been able to prove thus far".

    Whereas the former seeks the better philosophy of "we've been unable to prove anything so far, but here's a story pulled out of the collective asses of village elders 3000 years ago; let's go on and pretend it's true, and let's ignore all of the horrible acts that have resulted from pretending that fiction is fact."

    Oy.

  • by Jah-Wren Ryel (80510) on Monday November 08, 2010 @12:02PM (#34162590)

    Uh, that's what "mini big bang" means. OK, so you don't like it, but who cares.

    It isn't cheap sensational BS, it's expensive evocative BS at worst.

    100% agreement. Its ridiculous for the OP to get a bug up his ass over that headline. Headlines need to be short and sweet (aka maximally informative to the intended audience) - the BBC's headline is both, the OP's version is far too long to use as a headline. Might fine for the title of a scientific paper, but not a general news website.

  • Re:Mini - Big ? (Score:3, Insightful)

    by istartedi (132515) on Monday November 08, 2010 @12:09PM (#34162676) Journal

    What kind of coffee shops are you attending?

  • by masmullin (1479239) <masmullin@gmail.com> on Monday November 08, 2010 @12:16PM (#34162746)

    We’re just a million little gods causing rain storms, turning every good thing to rust. I guess we'll just have to adjust.

  • by BubbaDave (1352535) on Monday November 08, 2010 @12:20PM (#34162814)

    Someone once used a car to kill someone.

    I'm sure because of that you do not drive or ride in a car.

    Dave

  • Re:Next step... (Score:1, Insightful)

    by Anonymous Coward on Monday November 08, 2010 @12:26PM (#34162878)

    Answer: Attaining that adaptability without attributing it to a designer.

  • by Anonymous Coward on Monday November 08, 2010 @12:37PM (#34163030)

    I believe you have that reversed. I've met plenty of religious fundamentalists who weren't anti-science loons... Can't say I've met / heard of any anti-science loons who are not religious fundamentalists.

  • by MysteriousPreacher (702266) on Monday November 08, 2010 @12:43PM (#34163090) Journal

    The majority of fundamentalists are accepting of science until they feel it contradicts their scripture and/or beliefs. Religious fundamentalism is inherently incompatible with science in the same sense that one could not simultaneously be a both a humanist and a racist. There's no reason though why a racist couldn't be an absolute angel to white people, or why someone with fervent religious beliefs can't excel in a field of science that can be reconciled with their beliefs. Depends on the amount of proof required. Creationists are well known for demanding unrealistic levels of proof for evolution or big bang cosmology. In their case it's comparable to finding a corpse with a back full of bullets and refusing to accept that it's likely a case of murder - since no-one was there to witness it.

  • Re:Next step... (Score:5, Insightful)

    by Hotawa Hawk-eye (976755) on Monday November 08, 2010 @12:55PM (#34163210)

    What if there is a God, and he isn't happy about us playing with creation?

    Then He/She/It/They shouldn't have created us with a brain that was capable of designing and a body capable of executing those experiments, or He/She/It/They should have kept an eye on us and smacked our hand if we tried. IMO deadbeat deities shouldn't get to wander back into our lives after a long absence without any clear communication with us and immediately get to dictate what we can and cannot do.

  • Re:Next step... (Score:2, Insightful)

    by Gunnut1124 (961311) <rowdy.vinsonNO@SPAMgmail.com> on Monday November 08, 2010 @12:55PM (#34163212)
    The point is that the ability to adapt without outside assistance precludes the need for the original creation event. If an organism can adapt and roll with the changes, who needs God to help? The Creationists seem to forget that point when attempting to hybridize the two points of view. Either it happened with your God, or it didn't. If there is a possibility it didn't, then the God hypothesis is overly complex.
  • Fail (Score:2, Insightful)

    by mosb1000 (710161) <mosb1000@mac.com> on Monday November 08, 2010 @01:02PM (#34163296)

    ...simply refusing that fact throws out almost our entire understanding of...why the atom's we're composed of don't just fall apart

    You just posted this on an article about scientists who are spending billions of dollars trying to figure out why the atom's we're composed of don't just fall apart.

  • by nedlohs (1335013) on Monday November 08, 2010 @01:02PM (#34163300)

    From the point of view of science those two options are identical.

    If the 6000 years ago bit is true, we can just continue working on the old universe idea and since God made it look like it old experiment will keep matching theory. God can just giggle at us as his brilliantly faked universe tricks us into eternal damnation as we follow the evidence. We on the other hand keep doing good science - it's what the universe looks like, so the results and discoveries and technological innovations will all end up the same anyway.

  • by Logic and Reason (952833) on Monday November 08, 2010 @01:19PM (#34163544) Homepage

    God made the universe 6000 years ago as if it were made much longer ago.

    That contradicts the idea that God does not deceive, which most Christians believe.

  • by SETIGuy (33768) on Monday November 08, 2010 @01:24PM (#34163628) Homepage

    It's not merely a bang. It's a set of physical phenomena that heretofore have not been seen except at the inception of this universe.

    Except, of course, that your statement is not true. Collisions of similar or much higher magnitude happen quite frequently, even here on earth (or at least in the atmosphere). This would be better described as a recreation of a high energy cosmic ray collision rather than as a mini big bang.

    The headline is just about as accurate as it can be, and isn't hyperbolic in the slightest.

    Except that it's total hyperbole.

  • by joeyblades (785896) on Monday November 08, 2010 @01:24PM (#34163630)

    So your premise is that religion causes people to commit horrible acts? Is it not just possible that humans commit horrible acts all on their own and some merely use religion to justify their actions?

    Most religious people have never commited a horrible act... I think this alone refutes your premise.

    However, as further contra-evidence, I can think of many seriously horrible acts that were not done in the name of religion... the Holocaust, Hiroshima & Nagasaki, Rwanda, 9/11/2001, (in)human medical experimentation through the ages... the list goes on.

    Let's face it. Humans have always and will continue to commit horrible acts and they will try to rationalize some justification for it, be it religion, or politics, or scientific advancement... If you believe that religion causes people to do bad things, then you really don't understand people... or religion.

  • by John Hasler (414242) on Monday November 08, 2010 @01:26PM (#34163648) Homepage

    According to the theory, neither 'mass' nor 'space' nor 'time' existed prior to the singularity.

    And therefor the phrase "prior to the singularity" is devoid of meaning.

  • Re:Mini - Big ? (Score:5, Insightful)

    by SETIGuy (33768) on Monday November 08, 2010 @01:28PM (#34163700) Homepage

    It's time axis is perpendicular to ours. From our point of view the new universe existed for an infinitesimal time. I don't think there's any way to tell how long it existed from its point of view.

    Please don't mod this insightful, I'm trying to be funny.

  • Re:Next step... (Score:3, Insightful)

    by afabbro (33948) on Monday November 08, 2010 @01:31PM (#34163742) Homepage

    Last I checked most scientists in the field no longer even accept the big bang as likely. They consider it the same "something from nothing" unanswer as religions offer, looking for a cyclic model [wikipedia.org] instead. :D

    ...which, of course, is still something from nothing.

  • Re:Next step... (Score:3, Insightful)

    by DrgnDancer (137700) on Monday November 08, 2010 @01:31PM (#34163752) Homepage

    This is precisely why they aren't asking you. Look, asking the average person for their opinion on the function, safety, or usefulness of a particle collider is like walking down the street and asking a random person for algorithm advice on your latest programming project. The chances that s/he will have even the vaguest idea what you're talking about are slim. The chances that s/he will understand your question well enough to answer you are slimmer still. The chance that they will be able to offer a helpful and correct answer answer is probably one in a million. Now consider that there are probably 100 knowledgeable programmers for every knowledgeable particle physicist.

    Now personally, I know very little about particle physics. I also know very little about brakes. When I take my car to the mechanic and he tell me my brakes are fine, I take his work for it. The chance exists that he's wrong and I'll go careening off a mountain, but that's the nature of a specialist society. When a whole community of particle physicists tells me that particle colliders are safe, I take their word for it too.

  • by mangu (126918) on Monday November 08, 2010 @01:40PM (#34163900)

    Is it not just possible that humans commit horrible acts all on their own and some merely use religion to justify their actions?

    Let's see how that works:

    -"Hey, I have a great idea, let's hijack a couple of jet planes with 200 passengers each and crash them into a skyscraper!"
    -"Great idea! But, wait, what excuse shall we use for it?"
    -"Hmmm, I'm not quite sure... How about religion?"
    -"Well, maybe. OK, unless someone gets a better idea, we will justify it through religion"

    No, I think religion is the *prime* motive for a lot of shit people does, not a "mere justification".

    If you believe someone can become a suicide terrorist without religion, then you really don't understand people... or religion.

  • by BobMcD (601576) on Monday November 08, 2010 @01:50PM (#34164036)

    God can just giggle at us as his brilliantly faked universe tricks us into eternal damnation as we follow the evidence.

    This, this right here is key to understanding the essential gap between atheist fundamentalists and normal people. Observe how the very meaning of life is illustrated in two points:

    A) God is amused by our suffering (or at least by our bewilderment.)
    and
    B) The point of science is to tempt us into damnation.

    Neither of these concepts are presented anywhere within the Christian dogma, so where did they come from?

  • by 99BottlesOfBeerInMyF (813746) on Monday November 08, 2010 @02:23PM (#34164536)

    It's people's morals - often based on or at least supported by what you blithely dismiss as "fiction" - that stop us from doing those sorts of things.

    Those of us that aren't sociopaths don't need religion to keep us from inflicting pain and suffering upon others. Those who are sociopaths use religion as an excuse as often as it prevents them from harming others.

  • by TheBilgeRat (1629569) on Monday November 08, 2010 @02:34PM (#34164680)
    I would guess that most of that line of thought came out of the Council of Trent, or in response to it at least.
  • by Roger W Moore (538166) on Monday November 08, 2010 @02:42PM (#34164786) Journal

    we've been unable to prove anything so far, but here's a story pulled out of the collective asses of village elders 3000 years ago...

    Actually, if you replace "village elders" with "theorists" and 3,000 years with "several" this is almost exactly like science: we come up with a theory which we have not yet proved and then act on it as if it were true to see what the implications are and then test those implications. The slight, but very important, difference being that if someone manages to prove the "story" wrong we'll listen to them, give them a nobel prize and rewrite the story whereas religion has a bad track record of burning them at the stake (although even science's record is not blemish free [wikipedia.org]).

  • by cforciea (1926392) on Monday November 08, 2010 @02:44PM (#34164818)
    That's funny. I'm not religious in the least and I haven't killed a single person or experimented on a single prisoner of war.

    In fact, if you do the research, I think you will find that a-religious people are way under-represented in our country's prison system. There isn't a single solid metric that you can come up with to demonstrate that religion and what most people would consider moral behavior are even positively correlated much less causally so.
  • by jmottram08 (1886654) on Monday November 08, 2010 @04:22PM (#34166362)
    I dont think that many Christians would call that deception. God didn't abandon Job, and Job didn't think that he was abandoned.

    Is it deception when a teacher wont answer questions students have during a test?

    Despite your religious views, there is a difference between a test and deception, and nothing in the book of Job really points to deception, except the actions of Satan.

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