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Everything posted by Severian

  1. No, it was called the God particle by Leon Lederman's publisher in order to sell books. Lederman himself didn't like the title, he claims. What is your problem with renormalisation? In physics we are in the business of making predictions that can be tested by experiment. It really doesn't matter how we do that - the proof of the pudding is in the eating, so to speak. The experimental results will speak for themselves, and unless you can provide predictions that turn out to be correct (and the mainstream ones wrong) no-one will take your objections seriously.
  2. What about other organs? For example, if someone wanted a hand transplanted on (if that were possible) would it be OK to buy one from someone?
  3. What is the problem with posting in an old thread? If they have a valid point to make, why shouldn't they make it? Maybe they have just been mulling it over for 3 years or so...
  4. As long as you don't deport them to my neck of the woods.
  5. I don't really see the attraction of Starcraft II. Can anyone explain to me why it has so much hype?
  6. That may be true, but there is absolutely no evidence for that statement. Why do you think the energy of the universe is zero? (Technically, since only differences in energy are significant, one could define the energy of the universe to be "zero", but I don't think that is what you mean.)
  7. We are not here to "enjoy life" - we have much more important things to do. If everyone started "enjoying" their lives, just imagine the chaos!
  8. Now that is just irresponsible.
  9. Yes, you do. And it is intentional. Admit it.
  10. The whole notion of the universe coming out of a quantum fluctuation really doesn't make sense since the very word 'fluctuation' implies it is a change from something before. There really is no need for a "before", so why do people like Krauss keep trying to introduce one?
  11. Well, you obviously changed something again, because "SFN" style is back to the same problem I mentioned in the OP (exactly like the screenshot). "-- SFN Blue" is fine. I am using Firefox. Edit: Actually, a forced refresh worked for me too. Strange how the problem came back though.
  12. 11.1 In reality, I would try to stop and fail, killing the pedestrian. I wouldn't have perfect knowledge, so I wouldn't know if I could or could not stop, or whether or not I would kill him or her, or indeed if I could swerve to avoid, or if they would jump out of the way. Away from reality, ie. assuming I know that there are only two options, I think it would depend on who the person was. If it was someone just like me, I would probably let him die. But if it were a pregnant woman, or a child, or someone who I look on more favourably then I might sacrifice myself. 11.2 and 11.3 Neither should be charged. It was an accident.
  13. The particles in your body all have a finite, non-zero chance of spontaneously tunnelling to the other side of the wall. So if you just keep walking into the wall, eventually you will tunnel through. (It might take a few trillion years though.)
  14. If you listen to the commentary, he was actually doing this in a competition, so presumably he is trying to get more points. As to the original question, probably the best thing you can do is to be limp and relaxed. The worst thing is to take all the impact on one go, which is what you do if you are rigid. It is is the impulse which kills you, so you want to reduce that as much as possible.
  15. You too are shifting the goal posts. Did anyone here say that religious beliefs should be taught at public school (other than in history or social studies)? Did anyone here say that we are only Christians may be elected officials? If they did, I must have missed them. While it is undoubtedly true that many so-called Christians have done terrible things in the past, and many so-called Christians of today have very questionable attitudes, why to you tar the entirety of believing Christians with the same brush? I hope that no-one on this site (which I like to think might have readers of above average intelligence) would hold all Muslims responsible for the terrorism of Al Qaeda, so why perform the analogous dis-service for Christians? Maybe one day we will get to the point where people don't judge you based on categorization, whether that is race, gender, sexuality, religion or whatever. Maybe one day we will regard people as individuals. But it is quite clear from this thread, and posting on SFN in general, that we are not there yet.
  16. Yes, absolutely. They would be identical. This has lead some people to consider that some galaxies could be made of antimatter rather than matter. In fact Nasa have an experiment looking for them.
  17. We have never built a lens out of antimatter, simply because we have never gathered than much antimatter. But we have investigated positrons (the antimatter of electrons) with light and found no difference, and indeed have investigated every type of antimatter we know about with light, and found that they all interact in exactly the same way that matter does. So I think it is pretty certain that a composite object made up from them would also interact in the same way.
  18. I completely agree with that. We should be pushing forward with science irrespective of what it reveals because it is one of our primary endeavours as human beings. I am a scientist after all. But that was not the question in the thread. The question was to ask if all scientific advances benefit us, and I think the answer to that is no.
  19. You have the right to your opinion. But no-one is twisting their arms - they only give if they think it is a good cause, and what right to you have to tell them to stop? If you wake up tomorrow thinking gay sex is wrong, will you try to stop charities raising money to help gay aids sufferers? It is part of being in a liberal democracy with free speech. I get annoyed with atheist bigots all the time, but I don't try and curb their right to free speech. So why was this on your list of things that you "get angry" about? I have never done any of those things. Have you?
  20. *sigh* You are just making this up as you go along, aren't you? We were discussing intelligent life. You yourself earlier said "In that vein I was thinking of aliens who also worship a god who is personified by their planets moon."If you keep moving the goal-posts...
  21. I was considering god was included in the 'we'. But you make a good point - since we can never prove a property of an omnipotent god, I suppose we could never prove this anyway. So let me weaken my statement - I would stop believing in god if it were proved that I had no free will.
  22. If you have no free-will, you are not sentient. Also, a god with no ability to do what he wants seems in contradiction to most views of god.
  23. I think there is a lot of social pressure for scientists to declare themselves as atheists. It is a self feeding thing. If more scientists are atheists than average, then a 'new' scientist is going to be exposed to more atheist arguments and is more likely to become an atheist himself. I have certainly never heard of anyone being converted to theism in a scientific environment. A second factor is that scientists tend to be more self confident and therefore more open and honest about their beliefs. I think a lot of "ordinary" people, when asked about their religion, will lie about what they believe for the sake of appearances. So in a religious society like the US, it will appear that there are less atheists in the general population than there really are. If you did the same study (as mentioned in the OP) in the UK (where I think people are embarrassed to say they are Christians, and not embarrassed to say they are atheists) I think you would find a different result.
  24. I personally see no reason to believe that any of you exist at all. The universe is just me, imagining it all. I dare you to disprove this to me.
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