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The Large Hadron Collider is Colliding

The LHC began shooting subatomic particles at each other on Tuesday underground across the borders of France and Switzerland, and the world did not end.
Following two false starts due to electrical failures, protons whipped to more than 99 percent of the speed of light and to energy levels of 3.5 trillion electron volts apiece around a 17-mile underground magnetic racetrack outside of Geneva a little after 1 p.m. local time. They crashed together inside apartment-building sized detectors designed to capture every evanescent flash and fragment from microscopic fireballs thought to hold insights into the beginning of the world.

The soundless blooming of proton explosions was accompanied by the hoots and applause of scientists crowded into control rooms at CERN, the European Organization for Nuclear Research, which built the collider.

Link -via Boing Boing

See the video. Link

Of course the world did not end! BHut hey, let's face it-atom smashing is like smashing mirrors-all you get is smaller and smaller pieces-some with almost unique properties-oh, the nerds are get all uppity about that comment-and then you name the pieces. What fun!

I'm not anti-science, but let's face it-all it really is, is doing random stuff to various things, and then observing what happens-which is prittinear mostly what the alchemists and 'sorcereors' back in the day done did. Also, what are the roots of science. Then one builds a sort of library of observed effects, and voila! Magic!, er, science.

That is to say, sure, science is neat, but let's not venerate it. And anyways, think of all that money, that could be used to help build infrastructure and educational opportunities in many poor countries. Cause all that'll happen with this? well, they'll probably find something like the alleged Higgs-Bosun particle, and that'll be about it-it'll take years to work any technology around it, and even then, said technology will be insanely difficult to maintain, and ridiculously expensive, exotic, and mostly with uses only in the super collider field.

I think that pigeon had the right idea.
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Wow, if everyone thought like you do we would still be sitting around fires, dying in our twenties, and cowing in fear during an eclipse.
The contribution to knowledge that we can expect from CERN is immense. As an example you should look at the list of advances that were made possible because of the accelerator at Fermi Lab.
We have superconducting wires to transmit electricity with little loss, mag-lev train, PET and MRI scans, proton therapy to kill tumors, medical isotopes, parallel computing, nuclear waste transmutation, and advanced drug development. There wouldn't be an internet if it wasn't for Tim Berners-Lee, a physicist at CERN. This is a small part of a large list of very real advancements that we have because of particle accelerators.
There are virtually no sciences that have not been advanced because of the work done in particle accelerators.
This doesn't even take into account the pure scientific understanding that we will gain through this tool. How can you argue against understanding the universe better than we do now?
Also, if you spent the money that it takes to build and run a facility like this is would do little to help the poor or alleviate their suffering. It would disappear with little obvious changes. But the advances that we will make through the work at CERN will impact everyone. Should we stop all research to try and feed the hungry? Who gets to decide what legitimate research is? I think that the support of the worldwide scientific community shows the importance of CERN.
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