Higgs bosun is 'running out of places to hide'.

#3
Sorry Mr Higgs,,,,it is all smoke and mirrors,they need to get everyone excited every now and then in order to justify the gigantic amount of other folks money they spend bolstering their own ego's..............
 
#4
And what exactly are the application of the Higgs Boson? What's the betting as soon as they discover this we'll find out that it is in fact composed of seven different flavours of other particles which will require an even bigger accelerator to find? CERN is merely a scientist's circle **** of diminishing returns.

We should have ploughed all that dosh into something that might actually be of use to humanity, like Fusion Power or other such solution to energy security. Alternatively how about GM crops so we don't have to spunk cash at the Africans every ten years?
 
#6
I'm aware of that, but apart from 'simply for the joy of discovery' what practical applications does CERN have, how will it improve our lives?
 
#7
The only reason these experiments are being carried out is simply to verify the idiotic theories that have been proposed over the years,,,,,Oh and it pays bloody good wages and carries alot of kudos.
 
#8
I'm aware of that, but apart from 'simply for the joy of discovery' what practical applications does CERN have, how will it improve our lives?
In science the goal is not always for the 'practical' or tangible answers. The testing of theories (to prove or disprove) are just as credible and important.
 
#9
In science the goal is not always for the 'practical' or tangible answers. The testing of theories (to prove or disprove) are just as credible and important.
Maybe but it is still very expensive,,,The scientists at Cern seem to think proving/diproving theories far more important than using their vast funding programe to help feed the starving children of East Africa......
 
#10
In science the goal is not always for the 'practical' or tangible answers. The testing of theories (to prove or disprove) are just as credible and important.
Fine, but we're not talking about Newton tinkering away in his sh*d with a couple of prisms or Marie Curie cooking up some tasty radium in her cellar. This is heavily government funded science which, IMHO, should exist to benefit the nation not as a job-creation scheme for 90s pop stars. If people wish to test theories let them do so, just not with my cash!
 
#11
Part of the point of fundamental research is that no one knows what might be found in the course of the investigations. Invariably, completely unexpected but useful information or discoveries emerge at some point, even if via serendipitous routes. As it is, part of the building of the new facility required the solving of many scientific and engineering problems that are already beginning to have real-world applications. Two that spring to mind are the manufacturing and control of very large industrial magnets and the design, realisation and testing of new electronic data transmission methods, evaluation algorithms and storage with direct application in web-based technologies.

One of the other side effects of the latest set of experiments is to train the next generation of the brightest physicists, electronics experts, programmers, engineers etc., and do so with access to the brightest of other nations with all information shared freely. If we are to maintain and grow an information- and technology-based economy the investment made is more than worthwhile and a tiny fraction of what it would be if we tried to do the same work in isolation. As it is, the cost to each UK taxpayer is, IIRC, less than £5 a year. Opinions will naturally differ, but that to me seems a very cost effective investment in UK’s industrial future.

Oh, and the last time CERN did something on this scale one of the side results involved the setting up of an electronic method of quickly sharing information and facilitating discussions in an easy a way as possible. They called it the World Wide Web. It’s ironic in the extreme to see people on a web site asking what the point is instead of actually carrying out a Google search to find out. :shock:
 

Trans-sane

LE
Book Reviewer
#13
Part of the point of fundamental research is that no one knows what might be found in the course of the investigations. Invariably, completely unexpected but useful information or discoveries emerge at some point, even if via serendipitous routes. As it is, part of the building of the new facility required the solving of many scientific and engineering problems that are already beginning to have real-world applications. Two that spring to mind are the manufacturing and control of very large industrial magnets and the design, realisation and testing of new electronic data transmission methods, evaluation algorithms and storage with direct application in web-based technologies.

One of the other side effects of the latest set of experiments is to train the next generation of the brightest physicists, electronics experts, programmers, engineers etc., and do so with access to the brightest of other nations with all information shared freely. If we are to maintain and grow an information- and technology-based economy the investment made is more than worthwhile and a tiny fraction of what it would be if we tried to do the same work in isolation. As it is, the cost to each UK taxpayer is, IIRC, less than £5 a year. Opinions will naturally differ, but that to me seems a very cost effective investment in UK’s industrial future.

Oh, and the last time CERN did something on this scale one of the side results involved the setting up of an electronic method of quickly sharing information and facilitating discussions in an easy a way as possible. They called it the World Wide Web. It’s ironic in the extreme to see people on a web site asking what the point is instead of actually carrying out a Google search to find out. :shock:
I was going to make that point you thunder stealing bastard! Probably the single most important inovation mankind has come up with since Scientific Method in the mid-late 1600s.
 
#14
Oh, and the last time CERN did something on this scale one of the side results involved the setting up of an electronic method of quickly sharing information and facilitating discussions in an easy a way as possible. They called it the World Wide Web. It’s ironic in the extreme to see people on a web site asking what the point is instead of actually carrying out a Google search to find out. :shock:
I'm not convinced that we wouldn't have the internet if it weren't for CERN. Computer networks existed before that and it was only a matter of time before somebody came along and created the internet. I don't question the need for research - I question where we focus that research at a time when money is tight. You could either go hunting in the dark for tiny particles which, when you find them, give you more questions that you started with or you can start with a focussed goal which will demonstrably benefit your nation or humanity. Hunting for particles is like continually zooming into a fractal image, hoping eventually you will find the smallest constituent. Pointless and an unproductive use of cash and expertise.
 
#15
I'm not convinced that we wouldn't have the internet if it weren't for CERN. Computer networks existed before that and it was only a matter of time before somebody came along and created the internet. I don't question the need for research - I question where we focus that research at a time when money is tight. You could either go hunting in the dark for tiny particles which, when you find them, give you more questions that you started with or you can start with a focussed goal which will demonstrably benefit your nation or humanity. Hunting for particles is like continually zooming into a fractal image, hoping eventually you will find the smallest constituent. Pointless and an unproductive use of cash and expertise.
Pedantic head on, the www is only part of the internet. Granted it's the most widely accessed but it is quite the Johnny-come-lately as far as the internet developed.

Pedantic head off, and waiting for a betterererer pedant to come along.
 
#16
Maybe but it is still very expensive,,,The scientists at Cern seem to think proving/diproving theories far more important than using their vast funding programe to help feed the starving children of East Africa......
Long term it probably is, we don't know what useful results will come from Cern but I think it's fairly safe to predict that saving one starving child in Africa now will probably mean that there will be three starving children to save in Africa in another generation or so.
 
#17
Long term it probably is, we don't know what useful results will come from Cern but I think it's fairly safe to predict that saving one starving child in Africa now will probably mean that there will be three starving children to save in Africa in another generation or so.
A harsh but fair assessment. If money had not been thrown into R&D and the scientific community had not been patronised we would not have got far in the industrial revolution.
 
#18
A harsh but fair assessment. If money had not been thrown into R&D and the scientific community had not been patronised we would not have got far in the industrial revolution.
Industrial Revolution came about through necessity (Necessity being the Mother of Invention)....Science also came about for the same/similar reasons...Research for the sake of research is an empty Science and benefits nobody except the scientist (in this instance)....
 
#19
Industrial Revolution came about through necessity (Necessity being the Mother of Invention)....Science also came about for the same/similar reasons...Research for the sake of research is an empty Science and benefits nobody except the scientist (in this instance)....
That is only an opinion.
 
#20
I'm not convinced that we wouldn't have the internet if it weren't for CERN. Computer networks existed before that and it was only a matter of time before somebody came along and created the internet. I don't question the need for research - I question where we focus that research at a time when money is tight. You could either go hunting in the dark for tiny particles which, when you find them, give you more questions that you started with or you can start with a focussed goal which will demonstrably benefit your nation or humanity. Hunting for particles is like continually zooming into a fractal image, hoping eventually you will find the smallest constituent. Pointless and an unproductive use of cash and expertise.
Apologies in advance for the long post…

I agree that it was only a matter of time before the web, in some form or other, became a reality, but the fact is it was a by-product of fundamental research and, because it was the result of academic and not commercial research, made more or less freely available to everyone and not controlled by the likes of individual governments or, god forbid, large media companies (again, more or less). The planet got possibly the most important piece of technology ever invented and for a comparative pittance. However, the web is only the most visible of the hundreds if not thousands of by-products of fundamental particle research. In particular, solving the problems associated with such an undertaking have resulted in huge advances in modern materials (such as those used in computers and the modern defence industry) as well as techniques; mathematical, statistical, computational and so on, for analysing proteins, developing hydrogen fuels etc. etc.

That’s to say nothing of the training ground (as mentioned in my previous post) for scientists and engineers, many of whom then go on to use their newly gained post-doctoral research skills in countless areas, including the commercial sector generating jobs and exports. The number of papers published by those that have worked at CERN and then returned to academia or industry is truly enormous. Again, that says nothing of them also being able to pass their skills and experience on to others; many CERN scientists work there part-time and are university lectures the rest of the time. In terms of training generations of top academics CERN is only a tiny fraction of the cost of the more usual methods, and the results are out of all proportion to the investment made.

We could of course use the money for something else, but the reality is is that simply wouldn’t happen. The UK’s contribution is comparatively small and would simply be absorbed into central coffers. We are of course also engaged in targeted research, such as the European fission reactor project and that too involves a great deal of fundamental research. Many of the senior scientists were trained at CERN. Without such a facility there simply wouldn’t be enough scientists with the right training and experience to work on fission or a host of other projects that hope to achieve tangible results. If we want people with expertise we have to train them.

Again, as I alluded to in my previous post, if the UK wants to remain commercially competitive and provide jobs and maintain a lifestyle we need to invest in the brightest people we have so that new technologies and industries can be developed. Such training is never cheap, but CERN provides a way of accessing the best of the best and being part of it, and doing so far more cost effectively than any traditional method. As I also said, the latest project has already brought about returns that are starting to put money back into our economy.

As for looking for new particles, when should we stop? Now? 20 years ago? 100 years ago? When will there be so much cash around so we can have another look? When will all of the world’s problems have been solved to the extent that we can start again? As it stands there are hundreds of particle research programmes that can’t get started for a lack of funding. It’s not as if money for such projects is easy to come by, in fact it’s almost impossible and has indeed been cut in recent years. Our annual contribution to CERN is about as much as, or in many cases less than, building one mile (just one) of new motorway or railway. Successive governments of whatever shade, in this country and others, and on almost every continent, understand that there are real financial and other benefits and that’s why they are all still funding particle research. Ultimately it contributes far more than it takes.

Part of the problem here is that the press firstly don’t have the expertise to understand what’s going on and so can’t pass it to the public, and secondly, as is the way of the press, concentrate on only the big headlines. This leads to the false view that huge amounts of money are being poured into a plaything for scientists to do nothing other than find a particle. The already hundreds of papers published, in subjects ranging from physics to methods of taking scientific discoveries to market, simply as a result of the construction process for the new facility and its associated technologies, says otherwise. Of course, the scientists, or their press officers, really need to start doing a much better job of informing both the press and the public.

Still, having said all that (!), there will always be people who disagree and would prefer not to have the research done at all for whatever reason. Fair enough, it’s a free world and we have the our modern computers, electronic infrastructures and web in order to express out views. They should have stopped there and bought everyone a take away a year for a few years instead ;-P :)
 
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