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The Almighty Buck Science Technology

Neutrino-Powered Financial Trading In Our Future? 275

An anonymous reader writes "In a new feature on the future of high-frequency trading, Wired suggests that neutrino-powered financial trading systems may be coming soon, which would enable extremely low-latency information to be transmitted directly through the center of the Earth between major financial exchanges. If finance becomes the killer app for neutrino communication technology, it may ultimately make Neutrino SETI feasible. Quoting: 'It is only a matter of time, perhaps a few decades, says Alexander Wissner-Gross, a Harvard physicist, before some hedge fund decides it needs a particle accelerator to generate neutrinos, and then everyone will want one. Yes, they travel slower than light, but they indisputably can tunnel through the earth, cutting thousands of miles off an intercontinental message. And just a few days before the Battle of the Quants, right before the bad news about faster-than-light neutrinos, researchers announced they had sent a message by neutrino from the Fermilab accelerator in Chicago to a detector a kilometer away. According to Dan Stancil of North Carolina State University, the signal traveled at "very close to" the speed of light. Unfortunately, the data rate was only about 0.1 bits per second, meaning it would be useless for much more than sending a yes/no signal. "With the right modulation scheme, this could be increased by at least one or two orders of magnitude," Stancil said, adding "I don’t know of a compelling commercial application." But we’ve all heard the (apocryphal) story that Thomas J. Watson of IBM predicted "a world market for maybe five computers."'"
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Neutrino-Powered Financial Trading In Our Future?

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  • Re:Nope Nope Nope (Score:4, Insightful)

    by ThePeices ( 635180 ) on Saturday August 04, 2012 @11:26PM (#40882891)

    Never will happen. too hard to detect don't care what anyone says.

    Uh huh, and we couldnt go to the moon either.

    Never will happen. too hard to do don't care what anyone says.

    Did you put your fingers in your ears and scream NANANANANA when you finished saying that rubbish sentence?

  • by Taco Cowboy ( 5327 ) on Saturday August 04, 2012 @11:27PM (#40882899) Journal

    If you send the neutrino on too weak a power it will face interferences from other neutrinos produced by natural radioactive decay and solar processes
    But if you want to send your neutrino and to ensure people on the other side of the planet can receive it, you have to send it at least with a power of in the order of millions of electron-volts - that is a lot of juice we are talking about !!

  • by Anonymous Coward on Saturday August 04, 2012 @11:43PM (#40883005)
    Uh, really? That's your position? []

    While you're back there in 1983, buy some Apple stocks.

  • Depressing (Score:5, Insightful)

    by Anonymous Coward on Saturday August 04, 2012 @11:46PM (#40883033)

    Some of our highest technological achievements end up being used to do one of two things: manipulate capital markets, or blow people up. Expect a neutrino-powered civilian obliterator any day now.

  • by Dyinobal ( 1427207 ) on Saturday August 04, 2012 @11:50PM (#40883073)
    I find it depressing for some reason, that we would develop a technology specifically so a few guys will be able to trade stocks .0000001 second faster.
  • by Alex Belits ( 437 ) * on Sunday August 05, 2012 @12:23AM (#40883341) Homepage

    This is absolutely disgusting, and any society where such a thing is a feasible way of extracting profit, is completely morally bankrupt.

    And we thought, nuclear war is the worst thing that can come from fundamental Physics research. Now nuclear war seeme to be a valid solution to the society that is run by financial companies who run DoS and man in the midle attack on all trade and production, to extract money from everyone.

  • by Anonymous Coward on Sunday August 05, 2012 @12:27AM (#40883367)

    How the fuck do you reach that conclusion? No sell = 0 and sell = 1? With absolutely no way whatever to detect whether it's valid data?

    Actually yeah, Knight would probably buy one of those...

  • by jmerlin ( 1010641 ) on Sunday August 05, 2012 @12:43AM (#40883461)
    should involve regulations that limit the rate at which trades can be made or that put a cost on high-frequency trades such as to remove their profit incentives. It's an investment market, we don't need thieves grabbing mismatched buy/sell orders and sitting in the middle shaving pennies off transactions. You know all those movies where someone proposes "rounding" sub-penny transaction losses down to the nearest penny and adding them all to a bank account? Someone on Wall Street saw that and said "bro, we can totally do this lulz! Just give us a way to trade faster than anyone else, and we'll make BILLIONS!" How is this still legal? I mean by every definition this is theft. I, for one, don't want to see us trying to come up with technologies to help these billionaires continue robbing you, me, and everyone else.
  • by dabblah ( 18703 ) on Sunday August 05, 2012 @12:56AM (#40883543) Homepage

    It's worse than depressing. There is no socially redeeming value to high frequency trading. At best the practice steals a small amount of value from any affected fundamental (or non high speed technical for that matter...) trade. At worst, it may have caused the flash crash or be able to trigger a similar event.

    If we as a world collectively had reasonable securities laws, the idea of high frequency trading would soon become moot. For the right to host the capital markets, the exchanges should be required to be neutral to latency, and certainly not co-host high frequency trading with the exchange computer systems. Also, a very small Pigovian tax on financial transactions would clean up a lot of undesirable activity in the securities markets, this included, while being a source of revenue proximate to provision of a societal good (that being regulation for efficiency sake of the capital markets).

1 Mole = 007 Secret Agents