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Physicists Test Symmetry Principle With an Antimatter Beam

samzenpus posted about 7 months ago | from the what-does-it-look-like-over-there? dept.

Science 106

Hugh Pickens DOT Com writes "Jon Butterworth has an interesting article at The Guardian about the idea of standpoint-independence in physics and the absence of 'privileged observers.' The ASACUSA experiment at CERN plans to make a beam of antimatter, and measure the energy levels as the beam travels in a vacuum, away from the magnetic fields and away from any annihilating matter. The purpose of the experiment is to test CPT (Charge/Parity/Time) inversion to determine if the universe would look the same if we simultaneously swapped all matter for antimatter, left for right, and backwards in time for forwards in time. In string theory for example it is possible to violate this principle so the ASACUSA people plan to measure those antihydrogen energy levels very precisely. Any difference would mean a violation of CPT inversion symmetry. Physicist Ofer Lahav has some interesting observations in the article about how difficult it is these days for physicists to develop independent points of view on cosmology. 'Having been surrounded by a culture in which communication is seen as generally a good thing, this came as a surprise to me, but it is a very good point,' writes Butterworth. 'We gain confidence in the correctness of ideas if they are arrived at independently from different points of view.'

A good example is the independent, almost simultaneous development of quantum electrodynamics by Richard Feynman, Julian Schwinger and Sin-Itiro Tomonaga. They all three had very different approaches, and Tomonaga in particular was working in wartime Japan, completely cut off from the others. Yet Freeman Dyson was able to prove that the theories each had provided for the quantum behavior of electrons and photons were not only all equally good at describing nature, but were all mathematically equivalent — that is, the same physics, seen from different points of view. Whether we are using thought experiments, antimatter beams, sophisticated instrumentation, or sending spaceships to the outer solar system, Butterworth says the ability for scientists to loosen the constraints of our own point of view is hugely important. 'It is also, I think, closely related to the ability to put ourselves into the place of other people in society and to perceive ourselves as seen by them — to check our privilege, if you like. Imperfect and difficult, but a leap away from a childish self-centeredness and into adulthood.'"

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wth (5, Funny)

Impy the Impiuos Imp (442658) | about 7 months ago | (#46386849)

What's this icky nerd stuff doing on a political web site like Slashdot?

Re:wth (-1)

Anonymous Coward | about 7 months ago | (#46386893)

HOW TO BE A WORTHLESS, VILE, AMERICAN YARD-APE!!!!
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  • And give REAL honest black people a bad name.
  • Oh yes, make sure each nigger baby has a different father.
  • Bastardize the English language in the name of nigger culture.
  • Make sure that several terms have multiple meanings and others have ambiguous meanings and that only 50% of nigger words a re even complete words. Real niggers will know what you're trying to say.
  • As a culture, make sure there are always more blacks in prison than in college at any given time.
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  • Do drugs, sell drugs, make drugs. Okay, don't REALLY do this, but it IS what niggers do.
  • Turn your backyard into a junk yard. If you don't have a backyard, turn your mother's into a junk yard.
  • Travel around leaching off relatives, friends, salvation armies.
  • Drink cheap wine and malt liquor every day, forgetting that "malt liquor" is just fortified cheap beer.
  • If you're a nigger buck: fuck anything that moves, no matter how ugly she is. After two 40oz, even the ugliest, fattest nigger bitch will look good.
  • Be charitable and covet fat, ugly white chicks. After all, they're niggers too. They can't help being so undesirable to white men that they have to fraternize with black dudes on a 20/20 trip. And white ho's are a special trophy too, especially the not so ugly ones.
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  • Use the term "motherfucker" in every sentence. It's one of the most versatile words in the nigger language, being a noun, verb, adjective and complete mini-sentence in event you run out of thoughts.
  • Stop in the middle of the street, blocking all traffic to converse with fellow niggers and have complete disregard for everyone else.
  • Overcharge customers at Taco Bell and pocket the difference.
  • Drive your car while slouched so low that you can barely see over the wheel (gangsta drivin').
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Then you too can be a true nigger, and anyone who finds any fault with anything you do is automatically a racist. They don't dislike what you do and wish you would do something better with your life, nor do they wish you would realize that other people exist and should be treated with respect. No, they're just racists who hate you because of the color of your skin, and everything bad in your life is their fault. You nigger.

Re:wth (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 7 months ago | (#46387193)

The fuck?

Re:wth (5, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | about 7 months ago | (#46387363)

News that antimatters.

Lack of imagination, them. (1)

Anonymous Coward | about 7 months ago | (#46386859)

Seems like there are a lot more interesting uses for an antimatter beam. Let's take solving the situation in the Ukraine, for example.

Re:Lack of imagination, them. (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 7 months ago | (#46387089)

Or helping you clean your teeth.

Re:Lack of imagination, them. (1)

newcastlejon (1483695) | about 7 months ago | (#46389995)

You mean 063?

Better to use it in chopsticks if you ask me.

Re:Lack of imagination, them. (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 7 months ago | (#46387877)

Receive the antisharks without the antimounted antilaser antibeams.

Re:Lack of imagination, them. (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 7 months ago | (#46391195)

Sure. An antimatter beam would be great if you could get your enemy to stand still in a vacuum.

contentious kids spice of life here after (-1)

Anonymous Coward | about 7 months ago | (#46386901)

new clear options kids marching http://img.rt.com/files/news/23/08/00/00/1380713_keystone_web_480p.mp4?event=download our real heritage;;; 'Several hundred people have been arrested during a peaceful protest in Washington DC after they strapped themselves to the White House fence and laid out their demands on Pennsylvania Avenue in protest against the proposed Keystone XL oil pipeline.'''

Cambridge Dogma (2, Insightful)

globaljustin (574257) | about 7 months ago | (#46386959)

What I found most interesting is what the head researcher found interesting:

Physicist Ofer Lahav has some interesting observations in the article about how difficult it is these days for physicists to develop independent points of view on cosmology

In other words: Cambridge (Hawking) Dogma

Cosmology has become a branding exercise for universities & their long research grant coat tails. It has been, in my view, hijacked by ideologically/branding driven pseudo-science that seeks to purvey an institutional view rather than reflect accurate science.

Stephen Hawking is a main offender. It's all about him being right that the universe does *not* end in heat death

Re:Cambridge Dogma (1)

Megol (3135005) | about 7 months ago | (#46387081)

I think you at least could link or describe alternative theories and/or researchers that doesn't follow this "pseduo-science".

As is now my kook detector is nearly exploding (with delight).

Culture Dogma (0, Flamebait)

MatthiasF (1853064) | about 7 months ago | (#46387151)

I think you would be surprised by just how much "science" is actually influenced by culture and religion.

For instance, the belief that the world began in flames is a religious ideology that is thousands of years old, yet persists to this day veiled beneath the Big Bang theory.

Even Evolution and Geology has it's roots in the Genesis poem, where God is said to have created the world in stages. If you compare the progression to the poem to the modern scientific narrative, you will see it pretty much lines up with what we know today (Light from Darkness, "Sky" or gas coalesces, planets form and plants begin to grow, animals appear, humans appear, party).

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/B... [wikipedia.org]

When people cannot explain what is happening, their brains fall back on what they know and often times it is cultural inferences.

It is not necessarily a bad thing but proves that cultural diversity is important to scientific progress. Without differing cultural backgrounds, theory and narratives will form around the dominant culture's dogmas.

Re:Culture Dogma (5, Insightful)

the eric conspiracy (20178) | about 7 months ago | (#46387207)

> For instance, the belief that the world began in flames is a religious ideology that is thousands of years old, yet persists to this day veiled beneath the Big Bang theory.

Correlation does not imply causation.

Re:Culture Dogma (1, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | about 7 months ago | (#46387245)

Who the hell modded up this bullshit. Fuck off, please.

There is good reasons to think there was a big bang, it has nothing to do with any ancient cultural ideas about the origin of the world.

Also, your assertions about evolution, geology are also totally bogus:

They are the antithesis of what Genesis says: namely that how the world was created is top-down, whereas science has shown us it is in fact bottom-up.

Please don't project your misunderstanding of basic scientific principles onto the entire science community.

Basically, you'd do well to just shut up about things you know very little about. You sound like a humanities student, frankly, stop embarrassing yourself.

Re:Culture Dogma (1)

ppanon (16583) | about 7 months ago | (#46389065)

Yeah, it sure does sound like somebody with an agenda trying to establish an unsupported equivalence between religious dogma based on belief and scientific theories developed to explain a diverse body of factual observations. Cue "evolution is just a theory" wilful ignoramuses.

Re:Culture Dogma (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 7 months ago | (#46390043)

There is good reasons to think there was a big bang,

But the question you really have to ask yourself is, "Is our children learning?"

Re:Culture Dogma (2)

hawkinspeter (831501) | about 7 months ago | (#46387799)

I think you'd be surprised by just how much "religion" is actually just made up shit. There's now so many different deities and religions that you can point at almost any idea and say that it was predated by some religious type.

However, there is a whole world of difference between some nutter saying that the voices told him that the world began in fire and scientists proposing actual mechanisms and refutable experiments.

I do agree that cultural diversity is useful and important to scientific progress as approaching problems from different angles is a good thing and can often lead to breakthroughs.

Re:Culture Dogma (3, Funny)

PvtVoid (1252388) | about 7 months ago | (#46387965)

I think you'd be surprised by just how much "religion" is actually just made up shit.

Let me take a stab at that: All of it?

Re:Culture Dogma (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 7 months ago | (#46391291)

What, even the bit that says "love thy neighbour" and "thou shalt not kill"?

I like to think of the made-up shit as being the delivery mechanism, and the nice moral message as being the payload. Not that major religions don't toss that stuff to one side as soon as it gets inconvenient....

Re:Culture Dogma (4, Insightful)

ceoyoyo (59147) | about 7 months ago | (#46388339)

Another "science" critic that doesn't understand what science is.

If you take a fuzzy creation story or prophecy you can make it fit anything you want. The myths that survive ARE the fuzzy ones that can be made to fit anything. It IS kind of like science actually: the scientific theories that survive are the ones that fit. Except science has the additional criteria that they have to also be as simple as possible and make specific predictions.

critical of Hawking =! creation science (1)

globaljustin (574257) | about 7 months ago | (#46389841)

Another "science" critic that doesn't understand what science is.

just wanted to chime in and say 'what the fuck?'

I know you're trolling, but for the record I absolutely am not promoting 'creation science' or whatever

Just because I criticize **cambridge dogma** and Lord Hawking doesn't mean I'm a "young earth creationist"

Re:critical of Hawking =! creation science (1)

Anonymous Coward | about 7 months ago | (#46390195)

I'm not a fan of some of Hawking's work for technical reason I don't feel like summing up here, and there are various waves of dogma issues within science. Yet your post seems rather disconnected from history and current reality still. The issue I see, and from the looks of it other posters agree, is not that you criticized "Cambridge dogma" but that you drew connections between things that have no connection, or historically were very opposed. Making some sort of guilt by association charge seems to show ignorance of that history and basic logic behind science, or maybe at best that you left out more pertinent points in favor of irrelevant points.

Re:critical of Hawking =! creation science (1)

globaljustin (574257) | about 7 months ago | (#46391287)

thanks for the response

you drew connections between things that have no connection, or historically were very opposed

i'm interested...i'm always looking to learn here so can you give me some examples?

i know that my perspective is a-typical, but like I said in another response on this thread, academics use **very** cautious language in the literature...you know this

im curious of your response, and I am willing to be educated in an area, but irrelevant specifics aside I think I'm just saying plainly what people are usually used to hearing in academic language

Re:critical of Hawking =! creation science (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 7 months ago | (#46392697)

I think there has been some confusion over who posted what in this thread, As a couple posts up you complain about someone drawing connections to creationism, but they were replying to someone else who was making historically inaccurate connections between science theories and religion, but then your post got misinterpreted as a defense by the person who was making such outrageous claims.

Re:critical of Hawking =! creation science (1)

globaljustin (574257) | about 7 months ago | (#46393629)

yes...I was confused & got lost in the threads...

i'm not a "young earth creationist" in any way, shape or form

that's all that I really want to be clear

Re:critical of Hawking =! creation science (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 7 months ago | (#46390345)

Hint: click the "parent" button. It's very useful.

Re:critical of Hawking =! creation science (1)

ceoyoyo (59147) | about 7 months ago | (#46393509)

You're aware I didn't reply to you, right? The post I DID reply to said this:

I think you would be surprised by just how much "science" is actually influenced by culture and religion.

and this

Even Evolution and Geology has it's roots in the Genesis poem, where God is said to have created the world in stages.

He's got pretty much everything, right down to the gratuitous capitalization.

In regards to your post, I think you're wrong, but it's not a ridiculous point of view. The media certainly goes in for the cult of personality, but there seem to be lots of actual cosmologists who disagree with Hawking, and I think Hawking himself very much likes being spiritedly disagreed with. He's got a penchant for betting on hypotheses after all. He's also changed his mind a few times. Cambridge? Well, university PR departments are run by marketers working for schmoozing business types out to score some donations. Read the papers, not the press releases.

Re:Culture Dogma (1)

MatthiasF (1853064) | about 7 months ago | (#46392335)

Either you can see it as something ludicrous that should be forgotten or something amazing that should be remembered.

It's all a matter of how you perceive it.

From my perspective, the original Genesis poem (the part prior to mentioning Adam and Eve, which predates almost every modern religion by thousands of years), proves to me that our ancestors were much smarter than we give them credit.

They were able to work out most of the major elements of our world's growth, create a narrative and make it important enough to pass it down possibly tens of thousands of years to survive today.

If you cannot see the power in that achievement, you are being clouded by some form of bias that does you a great disservice.

Re:Culture Dogma (1)

ceoyoyo (59147) | about 7 months ago | (#46393109)

I see it either of those two ways, hey? How small your world is.

Myths and legends are great. I love mythology. Particularly how it connects to actual, or probable, history. But believing that ancient people were brilliant and those myths somehow reflect how they figured everything out without all this technology and science stuff is just naive.

Ancient people made up stories. The stories people thought were good they remembered, and those stories survived. Kind of like how Americans think everyone thought the world was flat until Columbus came along and discovered America. Or how people believe some guy cured cancer but it's not patentable and so the pharma companies aren't interested.

The ancients were just like us except they told stories around fires instead of posting them on Facebook.

Re:Culture Dogma (4, Informative)

Gavagai80 (1275204) | about 7 months ago | (#46388379)

Your example defeats you nicely. Most scientists of the early 20th century (including Einstein and Eddington) had a strong belief in a basically static universe that was infinite in time, because that was the elegant solution with philosophical appeal. It took the indisputable evidence of the red shift to convince them that there was in fact a big bang which was the beginning of the current order, against their natural inclinations.

Re:Culture Dogma (1)

Livius (318358) | about 7 months ago | (#46391321)

It really wasn't about inclinations - before the discovery of the red shift, a static universe was what the available evidence indicated.

Re:Cambridge Dogma (2, Insightful)

UnknownSoldier (67820) | about 7 months ago | (#46387273)

Max Plank back in 1984 noticed how Science had become Dogmatic / Religious when he said:

A new scientific truth does not triumph by convincing its opponents and making them see the light, but rather because its opponents eventually die, and a new generation grows up that is familiar with it.

Which can be paraphrased as:

"Science advances one funeral at a time."

Science was never about the pursuit of Truth, but about the Removal of Falsehood. Unfortunately far too many scientists have their sacred cows that they are unwilling to give up: Standard Model, Big Bang, etc.

> Stephen Hawking is a main offender

Don't worry about him. He will be made a fool of in 10 years with his xenophobia.

--
Dark Matter / Dark Energy is the Ether of the new millennium.

Re:Cambridge Dogma (1)

Anonymous Coward | about 7 months ago | (#46387383)

Max Planck the black body research physicist was dead in 1984. Perhaps you meant 1894?

Re:Cambridge Dogma (2)

UnknownSoldier (67820) | about 7 months ago | (#46387421)

Thanks for the catch. Freudian slip, dyslexia, etc.. Meant 1948.

Lots of good quotes http://en.wikiquote.org/wiki/M... [wikiquote.org]
i.e.
Wissenschaftliche Selbstbiographie. Mit einem Bildnis und der von Max von Laue gehaltenen Traueransprache. Johann Ambrosius Barth Verlag (Leipzig 1948), p. 22, as translated in Scientific Autobiography and Other Papers, trans. F. Gaynor (New York, 1949), pp. 33â"34 (as cited in T. S. Kuhn, The Structure of Scientific Revolutions).

Re:Cambridge Dogma (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 7 months ago | (#46388939)

Fred Hoyle presented with his colleagues the steady state theory during 1948. Depending of the timing of the events, Planck might have been referring to Hoyle.

Re:Cambridge Dogma (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 7 months ago | (#46393421)

Sorry, but again don't think so as he died in 1947 ;-) Which also negates the Hoyle comment of sibling comment. Not that its terribly important your point is well made.

Re:Cambridge Dogma (3, Insightful)

Baloroth (2370816) | about 7 months ago | (#46387543)

Except that's not really true. Our current Big Bang cosmological theory rose into the forefront (despite being derisively named the "Big Bang" by the proponents of the earlier reigning cosmological theory of the steady-state universe) when the cosmic microwave background was discovered. Quantum mechanics is the reigning theory for explaining particle behavior at very small scales, despite Einstein's well-known dislike for the theory. The fact is: you don't have to convince your opponents, you have to convince everyone else. It doesn't matter if you have a bunch of scientists unwilling to give up their "sacred cows", because you have a bunch of other scientists who have no stake in one theory or the other but are perfectly capable of judging between the evidence. Thats really the key: scientific progress is made by the community testing and accepting theories. Of course, some people (like Hawking) have a significant influence, but it's not like Hawking is never willing to admit he's wrong either: he has famously made several bets with John Preskill/Kip Thorne about singularities and black holes, which he has lost (and admitted to losing).

Re:Cambridge Dogma (1)

ceoyoyo (59147) | about 7 months ago | (#46388345)

It's never been true. It's a myth spouted by people who've had their pet theories shot down by people who rightly want more evidence.

Exactly right (1)

justthinkit (954982) | about 7 months ago | (#46387993)

Others have challenged you on this, but those same techies would agree that old tech never dies, it just co-exists alongside new tech. The same happens in physics.

What amazes me the most is how people will go off and try to prove some conjecture of some theory...when the larger theory has massive flaws. It smacks of graduate students and research dollars.

At least part of the cause, IMO, is that simple things are small, and complex broken things are big. And there is a lot of time to fill in a 45 minute "hour" of televsion. Or a 300 page book. So trotting out the old theories is what almost every physicist does. You do that enough, and you will start to smell like a museum but by then it is too late to change. The tar pit has you in its grasp.

My new [just-think-it.com] theory of physics.

funeral time (1)

globaljustin (574257) | about 7 months ago | (#46389865)

"Science advances one funeral at a time."

this is an amazing quotation...i hope its not true, but what a way to express a complex situation with simple terms

The Scientific Method CANNOT prove true theories! (1)

IgnorantMotherFucker (3394481) | about 7 months ago | (#46391445)

It can only disprove false ones.

From time to time I read - especially here at /. - that string theory is bogus because it is not falsifiable.

G-d Almighty Himself didn't create the Universe for the benefit of scientists. Just because a theory cannot be falsified, does not mean it is incorrect. It means we just don't know.

Re:Cambridge Dogma (5, Interesting)

PvtVoid (1252388) | about 7 months ago | (#46387377)

Whoah. Are you even remotely aware of what is being done in cosmology these days?

Planck [esa.int] Sloan Digital Sky Survey [sdss3.org]
Square Kilometer Array [skatelescope.org]
Ice Cube [wisc.edu]
Large Synoptic Survey Telescope [lsst.org]
Euclid [esa.int]

Hardly "ideologically/branding driven pseudoscience". Who the hell modded you up?

Re:Cambridge Dogma (1)

globaljustin (574257) | about 7 months ago | (#46389927)

Yes I'm remotely aware...

IANAC but its close enough to my research area (information science) that I keep up on 'the literature' as best I can

I am actually more of a 'fan' of cosmology. From a young age I was obsessed with space & cosmology asks alot of fun questions.

Look, it's not *only* Cambridge, and not everyone at Cambridge is evil, and I didn't say cosmology was evil...that's all overreaction

Hawking is totally trolling...that's not equivocation that's fact...but even though I'm a critic I must admit that reading "A Brief History of Time" was educational for me at the time, in the sense that it was a 'point of departure' that spurred me to seek out answers!

Re:Cambridge Dogma (4, Interesting)

SpankiMonki (3493987) | about 7 months ago | (#46387903)

What I found most interesting is what the head researcher found interesting:

Physicist Ofer Lahav has some interesting observations in the article about how difficult it is these days for physicists to develop independent points of view on cosmology

In other words: Cambridge (Hawking) Dogma

Ofer Lahav didn't say anything of the sort. What Lahev said was the reason for non-independent viewpoints was "...these days we communicate continuously and too much. Developing independent points of view on cosmology, or indeed other matters, is therefore very difficult." - which has nothing to do with "Cambridge (Hawking) Dogma" (or anybody else's dogma for that matter).

Perhaps you didn't read TFA and simply decided you "knew" what Lahev was referring to just by reading the summary. In other words: you put words in Lahev's mouth to validate your fear of pervasive "ideologically/branding driven pseudo-science". In any case it looks like you have some ax to grind - and given the mods, you're not alone.

Re:Cambridge Dogma (0)

globaljustin (574257) | about 7 months ago | (#46389957)

Obviously you're not used to reading scientific literature.

It's...ahem...kind of dry at times. He was choosing his words carefully.

No he doesn't mention Cambridge or Hawking by name. That I added of course, but I didn't just randomly pick a university & cosmologist...those are good examples of my point.

Re:Cambridge Dogma (2)

SpankiMonki (3493987) | about 7 months ago | (#46392345)

Obviously you're not used to reading scientific literature.

It's...ahem...kind of dry at times. He was choosing his words carefully.

I guess you have a different understanding than I of what constitutes scientific literature. Personally, I don't believe the Guardian article where you've taken Lahav's quote qualifies as scientific literature, but perhaps you do. You seem to be saying as much.

No he doesn't mention Cambridge or Hawking by name. That I added of course...

...along with an assertion that what Lahav was really saying was that there's pseudo-scientific dogma that's holding back science. Are you aware of Lahav making such statements in the past? Perhaps you've spoken with Lahav on the matter?

...but I didn't just randomly pick a university & cosmologist...those are good examples of my point.

Who (besides you) believes that astrophysicists and other scientists don't want to challenge Hawking's "dogmatic" theories? Seems to me that if someone's smart enough to refute Hawking, they could make quite a name for themselves...wouldn't that provide an incentive for others to overthrow Hawkings dogma?

s/cosmology/climatology/g (-1)

Anonymous Coward | about 7 months ago | (#46388431)

And watch yourself get modded down.

Hell, odds on this gets modded down.

Amazing how pervasive religions are.

Charlie Brown's Teacher (1)

cgfsd (1238866) | about 7 months ago | (#46386975)

Anyone else read that and hear Charlie Brown's teacher in their heads?

Re:Charlie Brown's Teacher (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 7 months ago | (#46387171)

No.

Re:Charlie Brown's Teacher (1)

Hentai (165906) | about 7 months ago | (#46388293)

No, but I reached "beam of pure anti-matter" and started reading it in Richard O'Brien's voice.

I tried thought experiements. (1)

Anonymous Coward | about 7 months ago | (#46386993)

Whether we are using thought experiments, antimatter beams, sophisticated instrumentation, or sending spaceships to the outer solar system, Butterworth says the ability for scientists to loosen the constraints of our own point of view is hugely important.

That's why I failed at physics. My thought experiments always ended up with me surrounded by beautiful naked women.

Re:I tried thought experiements. (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 7 months ago | (#46387191)

You'd make a fortune writing physics textbooks.

Re: I tried thought experiements. (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 7 months ago | (#46387249)

Nah, I made my fortunes pimping out your mom

Re: I tried thought experiements. (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 7 months ago | (#46388157)

I tried that with your mom, but ended up losing money.

Last post! (4, Funny)

K. S. Kyosuke (729550) | about 7 months ago | (#46387017)

The purpose of the experiment is to test CPT (Charge/Parity/Time) inversion to determine if the universe would look the same if we simultaneously swapped all matter for antimatter, left for right, and backwards in time for forwards in time.

Uh...last post, anyone?

Re:Last post! (1)

Anonymous Coward | about 7 months ago | (#46387351)

So long and thanks for all the fish.

Re:Last post! (1)

PvtVoid (1252388) | about 7 months ago | (#46387433)

Uh...last post, anyone?

!tsop tsriF

Koch brothers fund evil Republican! (-1)

Anonymous Coward | about 7 months ago | (#46387033)

Try this for symmetry at the slashdot socialist club!

http://www.nationalreview.com/campaign-spot/371275/biggest-all-time-donors-american-politics-are-jim-geraghty

"The top donor overall donor that gave a majority of its donations to Republican candidates, parties, Leadership PACs and other committees from 1989 to 2014 is . . .

        You’re not going to believe this. Really, you won’t.

        The United Parcel Service.

Keep this in mind the next time you hear about those sinister Koch brothers who are using their wealth to control American politics."

Now all of you go back to your basement and don't come out until you mommies call you up for dinner. Adults are talkiing.

Colliding matter and antimatter (0, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | about 7 months ago | (#46387067)

What a waste of energy all those tunnels with expensive magnets and complex electronics.

To do matter vs antimatter collisions all it needs is 2 fast fighter jets, you put the presidents of Russia and US in each plane and have them kabooom!!!

I let it up to the readers of my insightful comment to decide which one is the matter, which one is the antimatter :)

Re:Colliding matter and antimatter (1)

u38cg (607297) | about 7 months ago | (#46387759)

I'm not sure it does matter...

just about anything is possible (1)

Lawrence_Bird (67278) | about 7 months ago | (#46387071)

in string theory so I'm not sure that has any relevance.

to check our privilege, if you like (2)

Intrepid imaginaut (1970940) | about 7 months ago | (#46387085)

I don't like, actually. While I generally agree that a new orthodoxy is bad news in science and scientists shouldn't fear being shunned for putting forward new theories which go against that orthodoxy, I find it disturbing that the language of murky social engineering is finding its way into "scientific" commentary. The only people I've ever heard talk like that are those interested in equality of outcome, not of opportunity, which is pretty much the opposite of science.

Re:to check our privilege, if you like (1)

Anonymous Coward | about 7 months ago | (#46387849)

Strange stance, given that equality of opportunity has never existed, and in a literal sense, "equality of outcome" (i.e. death) is scientific fact.

But, I'll bite... how is trickle-down "scientific" and redistribution the "opposite of science"? Seems science has no reason to be other than absolutely neutral on the issue of how we subjectively allocate human resources.

Re:to check our privilege, if you like (3, Insightful)

Sockatume (732728) | about 7 months ago | (#46388107)

I think that says more about your misconceptions regarding "check your privilege": the idea is that you become aware of your own observer biases and account for them. It's an idea that's practically created for scientists.

Re:to check our privilege, if you like (1)

Intrepid imaginaut (1970940) | about 7 months ago | (#46389937)

"Controlling for observer biases" is a perfectly adequate, accepted, and well recognised way of putting it.

I'm extremely wary of any politicisation of science (and like it or not "check your privilege" is a very political phrase, being used not for a normalisation of perspective but rather to infer a hierarchy of social advantages which may or may not have any grounding in reality) not least due to the real horrors of politicised science brought to us by the 19th and early 20th century, many of which still haunt us to this day. See for reference scientific racism and eugenics.

So yeah, language like this being used in association with actual scientific progress is a big red flag as far as I'm concerned.

Feynman tutored me in QM at Caltech (5, Interesting)

IgnorantMotherFucker (3394481) | about 7 months ago | (#46387097)

At first I understood quantum mechanics well enough to get good grades on my problem sets and exams, but I regarded it as delusional because I was heavily into the deterministic Newtonian idea of The Clockwork Universe.

He was able to give me a deep insight into QM without ever once doing a derivation or even simple arithmetic. For the most part it was purely conceptual discussions of the two-slit experiment.

What convinced me of quantum indeterminism in the end was Feynman pointing out that the two-slit also works for electrons, not just photons, and that one can use Shot Noise to determine when individual electrons are leaving the hot wire filament used to produce them.

Even if you send over just one electron at a time, you still get the rippled interference pattern at the detector.

It turns out that an antiparticle going back in time is exactly the same as a regular particle going forward in time. Just by watching an individual particle, or only a few of them, you cannot determine which direction time is going on.

It's only when you have enough particles for their measure of entropy to make sense that you can determine which direction time is going in. Entropy ALWAYS increases with time, so if you watch a system of particles, and their entropy is steadily decreasing, they are going backwards.

I've never heard anyone mention it, but what about smaller systems of particles, where entropy can be measured, but whose entropy fluctuates? Does time go back and forth? I don't know.

"MAYBE THERE'S JUST ONE ELECTRON!" Feynman once shouted.

We don't think that's the case - that just one electron goes from the beginning of the Universe to the end, then returns as a positron - because if there were significant amounts of antimatter in the Universe, we would expect there to be lots of 0.511 MeV gamma rays in the cosmic radiation but there is not.

I am STILL stymied by a question he asked once:

"Why does a mirror reverse left-and-right but not up-and-down?"

Re:Feynman tutored me in QM at Caltech (5, Informative)

Artifakt (700173) | about 7 months ago | (#46387143)

Here's a nice video of Dr. Feynman explaining why a mirror works the eay it does - be thou unstymied!

https://www.youtube.com/watch?... [youtube.com]

Re:Feynman tutored me in QM at Caltech (3, Informative)

wonkey_monkey (2592601) | about 7 months ago | (#46387157)

t turns out that an antiparticle going back in time is exactly the same as a regular particle going forward in time.

I thought determining the truth of that is what this experiment is all about.

I am STILL stymied by a question he asked once:

"Why does a mirror reverse left-and-right but not up-and-down?"

It doesn't. It reverses back-and-front.

Hold up a print-out of writing on paper you can see through, so that you can read it. Do so with a mirror beyond the paper, and you'll be able to read the writing (through the back of the paper) just fine.

Re:Feynman tutored me in QM at Caltech (1, Insightful)

Culture20 (968837) | about 7 months ago | (#46387221)

I am STILL stymied by a question he asked once:

"Why does a mirror reverse left-and-right but not up-and-down?"

Turn your head 90 degrees so that one eye is higher than the other. Ta Da, it now "reverses up and down."

Re:Feynman tutored me in QM at Caltech (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 7 months ago | (#46388471)

Or maybe the 3D universe is really a hologram projected from a 2D plane?! That, and in string theory that there are tiny 2D rings that are 3D because they're in the form of a Möbius strip.

Re:Feynman tutored me in QM at Caltech (3, Interesting)

UnknownSoldier (67820) | about 7 months ago | (#46387397)

> Does time go back and forth? I don't know.

Or it could be both :-)

The classic fallacy of Scientists is duality. Matter behaving as _both_ a wave AND particle is the best proof that:

    One truth does not negate another truth

But to answer your question, Time is multi-dimensional. It depends on which level you are talking about ...

From our human, biological perspective / perception time is linear (male) (to prevent insanity.)
The higher reality is that time flows in all directions (female) (non-linear) BUT one hasn't _experienced_ it all yet.

The Buddhists would say "There is only Now; the past, present and future are all Allusions" and they would partially be correct.

> "MAYBE THERE'S JUST ONE ELECTRON!" Feynman once shouted.

Indeed that is one possibility. That would explain the "Spooky Action From a Distance". It is the _same_ photon, just appearing in different phases at a different time/space.

That's the greatest thing about Feynman. He always kept an open mind. He was never a pseudo-skeptic. If he didn't know, he was motivated to suspend judgement until he knew more.

Modern science has become "Cargo Cult" thinking.

> because if there were significant amounts of antimatter in the Universe, we would expect there to be lots of 0.511 MeV gamma rays in the cosmic radiation but there is not.

First, the problem is we don't _know_ how much antimatter there is. We are making assumptions about 99.99999% of the universe based on less then %0.0000001 of what we can directly measure.

Second, how do you reckon that?

--
The question is not "Does extraterrestrial life exist?" but
"Why the hell do we look so similar??"
News in 2024.

Re:Feynman tutored me in QM at Caltech (0)

PvtVoid (1252388) | about 7 months ago | (#46387899)

> Does time go back and forth? I don't know.

Or it could be both :-)

The classic fallacy of Scientists is duality. Matter behaving as _both_ a wave AND particle is the best proof that:

One truth does not negate another truth

But to answer your question, Time is multi-dimensional. It depends on which level you are talking about ...

From our human, biological perspective / perception time is linear (male) (to prevent insanity.) The higher reality is that time flows in all directions (female) (non-linear) BUT one hasn't _experienced_ it all yet.

The Buddhists would say "There is only Now; the past, present and future are all Allusions" and they would partially be correct.

> "MAYBE THERE'S JUST ONE ELECTRON!" Feynman once shouted.

Indeed that is one possibility. That would explain the "Spooky Action From a Distance". It is the _same_ photon, just appearing in different phases at a different time/space.

That's the greatest thing about Feynman. He always kept an open mind. He was never a pseudo-skeptic. If he didn't know, he was motivated to suspend judgement until he knew more.

Modern science has become "Cargo Cult" thinking.

> because if there were significant amounts of antimatter in the Universe, we would expect there to be lots of 0.511 MeV gamma rays in the cosmic radiation but there is not.

First, the problem is we don't _know_ how much antimatter there is. We are making assumptions about 99.99999% of the universe based on less then %0.0000001 of what we can directly measure.

Second, how do you reckon that?

-- The question is not "Does extraterrestrial life exist?" but "Why the hell do we look so similar??" News in 2024.

Are you the Time Cube [timecube.com] guy?

Re:Feynman tutored me in QM at Caltech (2)

UnknownSoldier (67820) | about 7 months ago | (#46389589)

Sorry to disappoint, but no. He used to post on /. but I haven't seen him in years. Why, do you miss him? ;-)

The point though is that never hurts to keep an open mind. At one time you would be thought crazy if:

* one suggested light is solely matter (shown incomplete with Double Slit Experiment)
* one suggested the universe is non-deterministic (shown incomplete with Quantum Mechanics)
* one thought they could infinitely divide space or time (shown incomplete with Planck Length and Planck Time proving the universe is digital as far as we can measure)
* one suggested that there is intelligent life outside earth (will be shown true in ~10 years)

There are only around a few absolutes in the universe, everything else is open to interpretation / perception.

Think of the changes in your own life -- what did you used to believe that is no longer true? What changed? Your perception?

Re:Feynman tutored me in QM at Caltech (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 7 months ago | (#46390633)

You'd do well to excise that feminist sex supremacy language from your explanations.

Re:Feynman tutored me in QM at Caltech (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 7 months ago | (#46392799)

> because if there were significant amounts of antimatter in the Universe, we would expect there to be lots of 0.511 MeV gamma rays in the cosmic radiation but there is not. First, the problem is we don't _know_ how much antimatter there is. We are making assumptions about 99.99999% of the universe based on less then %0.0000001 of what we can directly measure. Second, how do you reckon that?

The thing your "first" discounts gives you the answer to your "second." Any place that matter and antimatter meet is going to produce characteristic release of gamma rays. We do know that antimatter is out there to some degree, because we can observe and map out those gamma rays. But there is not enough to suggest things like some galaxies are matter and others are antimatter, considering the amount of gas there is between galaxies would produce a lot more where they met. There are also direct observations of cosmic rays that show a clear lack of anti-nucli that would be expected if the big bang produced a lot of antimatter, and a lack of high energy anti-protons that would suggest other galaxies are spewing out both matter and anti-matter.

"Why does a mirror reverse left-and-right but not (1)

famebait (450028) | about 7 months ago | (#46387771)

It does neither. Which dimension reversed is left as an exercise to the reader. Hint: it's not time.

Re:Feynman tutored me in QM at Caltech (1)

u38cg (607297) | about 7 months ago | (#46387773)

Reflection is not rotation which is what you are doing when you "reverse" left and right. They are not reversed, they are still in the same places.

A rock in a pond (1)

justthinkit (954982) | about 7 months ago | (#46387869)

Even if you send over just one rock at a time, you still get the rippled interference pattern in the pond.

Sounds like an ether to me...

Re:Feynman tutored me in QM at Caltech (1)

hamburger lady (218108) | about 7 months ago | (#46387931)

I am STILL stymied by a question he asked once:

"Why does a mirror reverse left-and-right but not up-and-down?"

because our eyes are left and right, not up and down. i figured that out in 2nd grade.

Re:Feynman tutored me in QM at Caltech (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 7 months ago | (#46388151)

Hope I'm not heading for a whoosh here, but it's my favourite answer to a question ...

You have eyes left and right, but the effect still works with one eye closed so that can't be the reason. The truth is the mirror doesn't reverse anything - you do the reversing, by turning the paper round so that you can see the reflection of the words. If you flip the paper vertically instead, you'll see their reflection is reversed up-down instead of left-right.

Re:Feynman tutored me in QM at Caltech (1)

dylan_- (1661) | about 7 months ago | (#46388357)

I'm afraid you've been wrong since 2nd grade then.

The mirror is actually misleading. Here's an alternative question:

Why, when you're facing another person, are your left and right reversed, but your up and down the same?

Bonus question: It's easy to describe what up and down are (down is closer to the Earth, up is further away). How would you describe left and right?

Re:Feynman tutored me in QM at Caltech (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 7 months ago | (#46391425)

I don't understand the question!

If I stand and look in a mirror, my head is at the top, my left arm is on the left, my right arm is on the right, and my feet are down at the floor.

No reversal involved.

If I hold up a piece of translucent paper with writing on it, then I can see the text backwards by staring through the paper, or I can hold it up to the mirror and see the other side through there. Either way, it's back to front.

Re:Feynman tutored me in QM at Caltech (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 7 months ago | (#46388303)

It's only when you have enough particles for their measure of entropy to make sense that you can determine which direction time is going in. Entropy ALWAYS increases with time, so if you watch a system of particles, and their entropy is steadily decreasing, they are going backwards.

Hum, are you sure Feynman taught you that? Because this arrow of time = entropy thing is Penrose's idea, not Feynman's. And this watching a system of particles to determine their arrow of time thing cannot be true. If entropy always increases with time, how can you possibly ever watch a system particles whose entropy is steadily decreasing? For this method to work, there would need to be closed systems in which entropy tended to decrease, which is in violation of the 2nd Law. And if the 2nd Law can ever be violated, you can't create measurement methods that depend on it.

In fact, temperature differences in an antimatter plasma should diffuse across the plasma in exactly the same way as they would in a matter plasma.

Re:Feynman tutored me in QM at Caltech (1)

ppanon (16583) | about 7 months ago | (#46389183)

Seriously, you expect us to believe that you got tutored by Feynman in quantum mechanics for the double slit experiment, but that you can't figure out that the orientation of mirror reversal is due to the horizontal alignment of binocular vision (a trivial optics problem)? Bad troll.

Re:Feynman tutored me in QM at Caltech (1)

Anonymous Coward | about 7 months ago | (#46390065)

Given that binocular vision has nothing to do with that problem that's an odd way to respond to someone.

Re:Feynman tutored me in QM at Caltech (2)

PvtVoid (1252388) | about 7 months ago | (#46390907)

Seriously, you expect us to believe that you got tutored by Feynman in quantum mechanics for the double slit experiment, but that you can't figure out that the orientation of mirror reversal is due to the horizontal alignment of binocular vision (a trivial optics problem)? Bad troll.

So you think that if you close one eye and hold a book up to a mirror, you'll suddenly be able to read it?

Re:Feynman tutored me in QM at Caltech (1)

Xerxes314 (585536) | about 7 months ago | (#46389477)

"MAYBE THERE'S JUST ONE ELECTRON!" Feynman once shouted.

Actually, that's basically right. Our current understanding (in quantum field theory) is that there's only one electron field, and all electrons and positrons are quantum excitations of that field. It's a bit more complicated, in that there are actually four electron fields, which cover left-handed/right-handed and electron/positron degrees of freedom. But if you think of those four fields as being the "one" electron, the idea works perfectly.

Re:Feynman tutored me in QM at Caltech (1)

idji (984038) | about 7 months ago | (#46389707)

Because your eyes are left and right of each other. Tilt your head 90 and try again.

Re:Feynman tutored me in QM at Caltech (2)

Zalbik (308903) | about 7 months ago | (#46390279)

Of course! That's must be why mirrors don't reverse anything if you close one eye (or are a cyclops).

What's really weird is what happens if you have 2 people in the room with a mirror, one with their head tilted and one vertical. If you hold up a piece of paper with letters on it, one sees the letters reversed, and the other not!

(for our humor-impaired mods, the above is sarcasm).

Re:Feynman tutored me in QM at Caltech (1)

phorm (591458) | about 7 months ago | (#46391925)

"Why does a mirror reverse left-and-right but not up-and-down?"

It doesn't reverse left and right. It reflects.

The image from the mirror is as it would be from an observer facing you, kinda like the difference between "stage left" and "personal left"

Re:Feynman tutored me in QM at Caltech (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 7 months ago | (#46392057)

You don't get an interference pattern from a single electron...you get it from the ensemble...but yes, the propensity to strike at a certain place is consistent with the interference pattern.

Re:Feynman tutored me in QM at Caltech (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 7 months ago | (#46392105)

It inverts the direction perpendicular to the plane of the mirror about the plane of the mirror....it reverses "front" and "back," not "left" and "right"

Antimatter beam... (1)

taiwanjohn (103839) | about 7 months ago | (#46387123)

What? No dilithium crystal jokes yet?

I blame it on the redesign.

good stuff. (1)

Pumpkin Tuna (1033058) | about 7 months ago | (#46387177)

You had me at "antimatter-beam."

Interesting... (1)

tonywestonuk (261622) | about 7 months ago | (#46387535)

from TFA:
"It will not be used as a disintegrating death ray, but to study symmetries and invariants. This is much more interesting..."

Oh, no its not! :-p

Everything looks okay... moving forward. (3, Funny)

shrikel (535309) | about 7 months ago | (#46388001)

The purpose of the experiment is to test CPT (Charge/Parity/Time) inversion to determine if the universe would look the same if we simultaneously swapped all matter for antimatter, left for right, and backwards in time for forwards in time.

"As long as no red flags are raised in the experiment, we plan to move forward with the project in November," said top engineer Fedwick McGillicutty. "Our hope is that, by reversing time itself, we can do away with the whole debacle that is 'daylight savings time.'"

Romanization (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 7 months ago | (#46388285)

Jesus, no one still uses the Hepburn system, do they? Spell it like it's pronounced: Shinichirou.

Re:Romanization (1)

Valdrax (32670) | about 7 months ago | (#46389829)

Jesus, no one still uses the Hepburn system, do they? Spell it like it's pronounced: Shinichirou.

Thank goodness I'm not the only one bothered by that.

Re:Romanization (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 7 months ago | (#46392619)

Except it'd need to be Shin'ichirou (or nn if you want to go max wapuro) to preserve the break between [shin] and [ichi]

Also, Hepburn uses Shi not Si, it looks like this was nihon-shiki (ie how a Japanese guy would write it, before the invention of QWERTY).

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