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Ancient Star Found, Estimated at 13.2 Billion Years Old

Zonk posted more than 7 years ago | from the insert-your-mom-joke-here dept.

Space 377

raguirre writes "An article on Physorg.org reports that a newly found star may be as old as the universe itself. Recent studies have concluded that the Big Bang occurred somewhere in the neighborhood of 13.7 Billion years ago. The star, a heavy-elements laden fossil labeled HE 1523-0901 on charts was probably born right around the same time; approximately 13.2 Billion years ago. 'Today, astronomer Anna Frebel of the the University of Texas at Austin McDonald Observatory and her colleagues have deduced the star's age based on the amounts of radioactive elements it contains compared to certain other "anchor" elements, specifically europium, osmium and iridium.'"

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Age of the universe. (5, Funny)

saintlupus (227599) | more than 7 years ago | (#19099401)

Of course, according to some pastors, that star is only a few thousand years old. It barely predates The Flood.

--saint

Re:Age of the universe. (0, Informative)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#19099573)

Why was this marked as a Troll. Some pastors and religious morons really do believe that.

Re:Age of the universe. (5, Funny)

goombah99 (560566) | more than 7 years ago | (#19099675)

A thousand, a billion, it still wants you off it's lawn.

Re:Age of the universe. (0, Offtopic)

Derosian (943622) | more than 7 years ago | (#19099773)

If it was made that way, yes it could be precisely a few thousand years old.

Re:Age of the universe. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#19099825)

Actualy that would be 6 God years. And many billions to those hurtling through space.

Re:Age of the universe. (2, Funny)

Weston O'Reilly (1008937) | more than 7 years ago | (#19099871)

Wow - right out of the gate! First post and we're already into creationism bashing!

Re:Age of the universe. (1)

Yusaku Godai (546058) | more than 7 years ago | (#19099907)

While I don't defend him for being completely off topic, he doesn't make such a bad point.

Re:Age of the universe. (-1, Flamebait)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#19099917)

Well, to be fair, Creationism IS perpetrated by sloped forehead idiots.

I think the post was made in jest, however.

Re:Age of the universe. (1)

Phoobarnvaz (1030274) | more than 7 years ago | (#19100127)

Of course, according to some pastors, that star is only a few thousand years old. It barely predates The Flood.

I'll take those pastors & raise you a Darwin & Gould & call...because my being around a few thousand years ago will trump your mistaken belief structure from the mid-19th century. ;)

"Right around the same time" (5, Funny)

LBArrettAnderson (655246) | more than 7 years ago | (#19099407)

Recent studies have concluded that the Big Bang occurred somewhere in the neighborhood of 13.7 Billion years ago. The star, a heavy-elements laden fossil labeled HE 1523-0901 on charts was probably born right around the same time; approximately 13.2 Billion years ago.

Since when was "right around the same time" the same thing as "500 million years later" ?

Re:"Right around the same time" (4, Funny)

Mateo_LeFou (859634) | more than 7 years ago | (#19099431)

Since the quantity in question (500m) represents only about 3% of the other quantity in question (13.7b)

Re:"Right around the same time" (1)

The Great Pretender (975978) | more than 7 years ago | (#19099951)

"...have deduced the star's age based on the amounts of radioactive elements it contains compared to certain other "anchor" elements, specifically europium, osmium and iridium."

Of course, who's to say that their method of dating stars isn't wrong.

Re:"Right around the same time" (3, Interesting)

VorpalEdge (967279) | more than 7 years ago | (#19099451)

This is astronomy. 500 million years is negligible if you're talking about the beginnings of the universe. :/ And if I remember correctly (it's been a while), conditions right after the big bang were such that stars could not form for a while. Can't remember much else then that, but this probably is one of the first stars the universe formed if their observations + math are correct.

Re:"Right around the same time" (2, Insightful)

Kristoph (242780) | more than 7 years ago | (#19099879)

Actually, given it's composition, it's likely a second or third generation star (although I have not RTFA so I could be full of crap). Anyway, relevant stuff certainly did happen in those 500 million years.

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Re:"Right around the same time" (1)

chuckymonkey (1059244) | more than 7 years ago | (#19099477)

Well if you look at the theoretical progression of the start of the universe from the big bang that's about when stars started forming and 500 million years is about 0.36496350 of the total life of the universe thus far if they're right. The big bang didn't just go BANG! ZOMG STARS!!!!!1111!!111!one1!

Re:"Right around the same time" (4, Funny)

click2005 (921437) | more than 7 years ago | (#19099591)

Yeah, you forgot part 3

1. Bang
2. Stars
3. Profit

Re:"Right around the same time" (5, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#19099781)

I'd like to Bang Stars for Profit as well!

Star of Christian Mythology (-1, Flamebait)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#19099493)

I just talked to some scholars on the topic of Christian mythology. They are specialists in the field. They tell me that this particular star is the star marking the birth of the fictional figure called "Jesus Christ".

Re:Star of Christian Mythology (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#19099507)

Jesus Christ existed. This is a fact. Whether or not he was the son of God is up to you're beliefs. That does not make him, his life, or his death fictional.

Re:Star of Christian Mythology (-1, Troll)

heinousjay (683506) | more than 7 years ago | (#19099547)

It's a fact? You have a photo of him? Maybe a copy of his birth certificate?

Re:Star of Christian Mythology (1, Offtopic)

edflyerssn007 (897318) | more than 7 years ago | (#19099633)

Photo's weren't invented until much later than Jesus Christ lived and died. I also don't think the Romans had birth certificates, and if they did how many actually survive? Just because you probably don't believe he was the messiah, doesn't mean he never actually existed.

Absence of evidence is not evidence of absence.

-Ed

Re:Star of Christian Mythology (0, Offtopic)

brusk (135896) | more than 7 years ago | (#19099663)

No, it just doesn't prove anything one way or the other. He may have existed (there is evidence consistent with his having done so), or he may not (that evidence may not be entirely reliable, since it contains claims that many find implausible).

Re:Star of Christian Mythology (1, Offtopic)

cheater512 (783349) | more than 7 years ago | (#19099901)

IMHO the man existed but the Bible is rather exaggerated.
He would have been just your ordinary religious fanatic.

Re:Star of Christian Mythology (2, Insightful)

setagllib (753300) | more than 7 years ago | (#19100117)

As typical as it is to suggest the acts of JC are hugely exaggerated, by modern standards they're pretty tame. All over the world, especially in some of the older surviving civilizations like Russia, China, India, etc. there are people who can show you much more impressive feats at a moment's natice, and they don't claim to have inherited any powers of God. There's just a lot about science we haven't charted yet, but that doesn't mean the practice of unscientific feats is impossible. As has been said, absence of evidence isn't evidence of absence. While I'm not suggesting JC performed the feats attributed to him, I am suggesting it wouldn't be otherworldly if somebody did. It's unscientific to insist upon impossibility, despite what most people seem to instinctively believe about science.

Re:Star of Christian Mythology (1)

HomelessInLaJolla (1026842) | more than 7 years ago | (#19099729)

I also don't think the Romans had birth certificates
They may not have had birth certificates but it's quite likely that they had marriage records. Keeping track of lineages is something which most cultures have been very interested in doing. I can't find the particular reference now (I came across it while reading various condensed histories of the world on Wikipedia--trying to figure out just how old the Biblically recorded world is) but it was a great tragedy for the Hebrews when a large fire wiped out the library holding their lineage records sometime in the first century AD (It may have been Nero's fire but I think that was separate). The official reason for keeping those records was that it was necessary to know who could marry to whom, especially when the marriages of priests or priestesses was being considered. The real reason is that keeping track of lineages was a way of keeping track of debt--and a way of hiding that purpose.

Since everyone was supposed to be working together for the greater benefit of the entire society it wouldn't be such a good idea to be forthright and honest and flaunt the fact that the socioeconomic system is now, and has been for ten thousand years, rigged. It was (and still is) a tool of social control; a kind of obfuscated nepotism designed to perpetuate the socioeconomic stratification of society across generations, centuries, and millenia. It's the very reason why we have (in the world) nobility, gentry, serfs, slaves, an upper class, a middle class, and a lower class.

So, yes, after some fashion the Romans probably kept birth and/or marriage records. Historical scholars might even know in which library they're still kept.

Re:Star of Christian Mythology (1)

brusk (135896) | more than 7 years ago | (#19099749)

More importantly, they had tax records. But surely on a few fragments at most survive from that period.

Re:Star of Christian Mythology (1)

edflyerssn007 (897318) | more than 7 years ago | (#19099815)

Even if they did have marriage records, Jesus was never married, (the evidence that says he was, is unreliable at best,) so he wouldn't have a marriage record. The best you would find would be that Joseph and Mary were married.

-Ed

Re:Star of Christian Mythology (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#19099927)

"Absence of evidence is not evidence of absence."

Yes, it is. However the strength of the evidence certainly varies depending on numerous criteria.

Re:"Right around the same time" (1)

htaedtnelis (1050124) | more than 7 years ago | (#19099541)

Proportionally, it's like saying someone who turned just 16 is the same age as someone who is just about seven months older, or someone who just turned twenty is the same age as someone who is about 9 months older, which people do all the time.

So let there be light (4, Funny)

Colin Smith (2679) | more than 7 years ago | (#19099551)

Took 500 million years. So we should be able to work out how long God's days are!!!!

 

Re:So let there be light (2, Funny)

Cheezymadman (1083175) | more than 7 years ago | (#19099739)

Which will let us know how long of a break he took after doing each thing.

Using that evidence, we should be able to figure out (using some current day research and propotional math) how big God's beers were, and possibly even his brand!

My money is on Guinness Stout.

Re:So let there be light (1)

nosredna (672587) | more than 7 years ago | (#19099911)

Pabst Blue Ribbon. Beer for serious Revelation.

Re:"Right around the same time" (4, Funny)

bitt3n (941736) | more than 7 years ago | (#19099839)

Since when was "right around the same time" the same thing as "500 million years later" ?
"Hi honey, I'm on my way to pick you up for the movies, and I'll be there in half an hour."
"Great! I just have to get dressed, so I should be ready right around the same time."

I wonder (1, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#19099413)

given an object like this, with a time reference to the big bang, the knowledge of the rate of expansion of the universe etc.. wonder if the origin of the big bang could be pinpointed.

Re:I wonder (1, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#19099581)

This kind of extrapolation has already been done with galaxies. It shows that every part of the universe was denser in the past (and infinitely dense 13.7 billion years ago). The universe may have started as a point but today that point is everywhere.

Re:I wonder (5, Interesting)

AbsoluteXyro (1048620) | more than 7 years ago | (#19099645)

Doubtful. All objects in the universe are moving away from each other. We know this because when we look up into the sky, everything is red shifted... which would seem to indicate that Earth is the center of the universe, but it is not.

How is that possible? You can run a universal expansion experiment at home with a black magic marker and a balloon. First, blow up the balloon and draw a group of dots on it so that you can observe all the dots at once (don't draw dots on opposite sides of the balloon). Deflate the balloon. Now, choose a dot on the balloon, and watch it while you inflate the balloon. You will notice the dot remains stationary while all of the other dots move away from it. Deflate the balloon, choose another dot, and repeat the observation. You will see that this completely different spot also appears to remain stationary while all other dots move away from it. This is similar to what is happening with the expansion of the universe... and I would hazard a guess that such a mechanic makes pinpointing the origin nigh impossible.

Re:I wonder (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#19099805)

You argue that pinpointing the origin of the big bang is hard to do. A real astrophysist would instead argue that the question is wrong.

Re:I wonder (0)

Noishe (829350) | more than 7 years ago | (#19099851)

A question for you: How do you light doesn't lose energy as it travels? As a photon's energy is reduced, it becomes lower in frequency, so it appears to be red shifted.

The history of science is full of assumptions that were later proven wrong, we could easily be living in a stationary universe that is not expanding, but the light reaching us from so far away is losing energy through interaction of some unknown effect.

Of course, your'e perfectly free to believe whatever you want. I choose not to believe in "From Nothing into Creation (big bang), and From Creation into Nothing (Heat Death)".

Re:I wonder (3, Informative)

gkhan1 (886823) | more than 7 years ago | (#19099945)

That theory is called the tired light theory [wikipedia.org] and has been thoroughly debunked. No scientist worth the name believes in it. I'm sorry to say it, but you're simply wrong on that one.

Re:I wonder (1)

Canadian_Daemon (642176) | more than 7 years ago | (#19100011)

As a photon's energy is reduced, it becomes lower in frequency, so it appears to be red shifted.
Uh, no.
Redshift is a relativistic phenomenon, since the source is moving away from the observer, the wavelength increases.
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Redshift [wikipedia.org]
Of course, your'e [sic] perfectly free to believe whatever you want.

Re:I wonder (5, Funny)

bitt3n (941736) | more than 7 years ago | (#19100037)

I performed your experiment and discovered the answer to the question of whether the universe will continue to expand indefinitely, or one day begin collapsing inward. I solemnly report the existence of a unimaginably horrible third alternative, one that even at this relatively minor scale caused the cat to jump three feet in the air.

Re:I wonder (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#19100053)

If space is finite, when would the expansion of the universe cause it to crash against its edges?

Aye (5, Funny)

Mateo_LeFou (859634) | more than 7 years ago | (#19099415)

"a newly found start may be as old as the universe itself"

Well, that's why they call it a 'start' isn't it?

sigh (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#19099429)

The universe is infinite. Once science advances its observing capacity then the age of the universe will be cranked up another notch. Unfortunately an open, infinite universe completely trounces their beloved "big bang" theory which has Hollywood scrawled all over it.

Re:sigh (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#19099521)

Perhaps it is infinite in extent but finite in volume, just like the surface of any other celestial body. Or maybe it only appears infinite because we are looking at it inside out and the particles at the edges are moving so fast we'll never be able to see that far? See I can pull cosmology out of my ass, too.

Heavy elements? (5, Interesting)

Tablizer (95088) | more than 7 years ago | (#19099447)

The star, a heavy-elements laden fossil labeled HE 1523-0901 on charts was probably born right around the same time; approximately 13.2 Billion years ago.

I thought early stars had very few heavy elements because there had yet to be multiple generations of stars to produce such. Thus, where did the heavy elements come from?
           

Re:Heavy elements? (1)

MichaelSmith (789609) | more than 7 years ago | (#19099483)

I thought early stars had very few heavy elements because there had yet to be multiple generations of stars to produce such. Thus, where did the heavy elements come from?

The Big Bang?

Re:Heavy elements? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#19099763)

No.

Re:Heavy elements? (3, Informative)

BungaDunga (801391) | more than 7 years ago | (#19100079)

The big bang produced lots and lots of protons + electrons. Some got together and formed hydrogen and helium; beyond that, you need stars to produce heavier elements.

Re:Heavy elements? (4, Informative)

Beryllium Sphere(tm) (193358) | more than 7 years ago | (#19099503)

You're right, and this is one of the confusing things about the writeup, especially since they call it a metal poor star near the beginning and say it's rich in radioactives later.

The Big Bang stopped more or less at helium, and things like uranium have to cook in non-equilibrium processes like supernovas.

500 million years is enough time for that to happen, since a supergiant star can race through its entire lifetime in a few million years. This could have formed from the remnants of one of the earliest supernovas, or it could be several generations old.

Re:Heavy elements? (1, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#19099607)

or our estimate of the age of the universe could be wrong and this is just one of the oldest stars that 'still exists' in our vision, when in reality it's already using material from several generations of stars before it.

Re:Heavy elements? (1)

Derosian (943622) | more than 7 years ago | (#19099803)

Of course most of this is also Theoretical. In fact the big bang is also only a moderately good theory. It still leaves many questions, where did that little ball of mass that everything banged come from? It isn't perfect, but lets just say they found a really old star, or at least according to current knowledge they did.

Re:Heavy elements? (1)

digitalchinky (650880) | more than 7 years ago | (#19100027)

I'm far from being a supporter of the big bang, and certainly no expert, but my understanding is that the big bang didn't start from a single chunk of mass at some defined point, rather that it occurred everywhere at the same time.

If you were somehow instantly able to travel to the edge 13.7 billion light years away, what would you see? I would guess that there is no edge, and space is significantly bigger than that and filled with just as many galaxies as we can see from here.

ancient? (1)

Ep0xi (1093943) | more than 7 years ago | (#19099449)

older than clint eastwood or james bronson? that are stars!

Heavy elements? (2, Interesting)

sakdoctor (1087155) | more than 7 years ago | (#19099461)

I only had time to skim TFA, but it says this ancient star contains heavy elements (Heavier than iron). Since the fusion reaction that produces iron consumes energy, the heavy elements must have come from a different star.
0.5 billion years seems quite quick for a few stars to go super nova, then condense into another star with the required heavy elements in.

Re:Heavy elements? (1)

nbritton (823086) | more than 7 years ago | (#19099655)

0.5 billion years seems quite quick for a few stars to go super nova, then condense into another star with the required heavy elements in.
It's possible that two stars could have collided into one another. Doesn't this happen with planets all the time?

Re:Heavy elements? (5, Informative)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#19099657)

Because of the higher density of the universe back then, the first few dozen generations of star were probably all super-massive giants that only have a lifespan of between 10 and 100 million years. The first supernova-generated elements were introduced to the universe very early, in fact production of them used to be orders of magnitudes higher at the beginning.

Re:Heavy elements? (5, Informative)

Graymalkin (13732) | more than 7 years ago | (#19099745)

Supergiant and hypergiant stars (like Eta Carinae and SN 2006gy's progenitor) don't have long lifetimes and were likely prevalent in the early universe. Their deaths could have formed a lot of the heavy elements in HE 1523-0901. Five hundred million years is plenty of time for a lot of 100-120 solar mass giants to burn out and go supernova. It's likely the remnants of these early giants produced most of the stellar nurseries the next generation of less massive stars were born in.

Old as the universe? (3, Funny)

jez9999 (618189) | more than 7 years ago | (#19099527)

Isn't everything as old as the universe; it just all shifted into different forms? (Like planet Earth)

Re:Old as the universe? (1)

adambha (1048538) | more than 7 years ago | (#19099609)

Isn't everything as old as the universe; it just all shifted into different forms? (Like planet Earth)
Sure, the fundamental 'elements' in everything are as old as the universe. But this star 'as a unit' has been in the same form for that long.

Re:Old as the universe? (3, Informative)

DrJokepu (918326) | more than 7 years ago | (#19099827)

Actually, not exactly. According to the Big Bang Theory, after the Bing Bang nucleosynthesis, almost no elements heavier than lithium have been formed. Most of the 'fundamental elements' as the parent said like carbon were not created until the formation of the first stars. According to the Wikipedia:

These stars fused heavier elements through stellar nucleosynthesis during their lives and through supernova nucleosynthesis as they died. The seeding of the interstellar medium by heavy elements eventually allowed the formation of terrestrial planets like the Earth.
Source: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Atoms#Atoms_and_the_B ig_Bang_Theory [wikipedia.org]
So we are children of stars indeed.

the creationists will not like this (1, Funny)

rucs_hack (784150) | more than 7 years ago | (#19099531)

With all these stars turning up that are considerably older then, what is it, 6000 years, they'll probably start foaming at the mouth. I wish I knew one nowadays so I could show them this article and watch the mental gymnastics as they sought to refute it.

ah yes, the funs.

Re:the creationists will not like this (-1, Flamebait)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#19099623)

I hope someone kills you. Oh the funs. lolz!!!111

Re:the creationists will not like this (2, Funny)

Jugalator (259273) | more than 7 years ago | (#19099665)

Simple. God created our "world" 6000 years ago, but God, in His infinite wisdom, has tried to support the human spirit to explore and discover by placing a star long away from us that it seems to be 13.2 billion years old.

Re:the creationists will not like this (1)

kitsunewarlock (971818) | more than 7 years ago | (#19099695)

This only confirms my theory that stars are in fact, undeniably, God's candles.

Re:the creationists will not like this (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#19099793)

Well, in that context God created everything 5 minutes ago. In his infinite wisdom he created all evidence and memories to fool us into beleaving that the universe is 13.6 billion years old.

or how about this one, we are but a figment of my imagination and you don't exist either.

Or how about this one

"SCIENCE" explains things. If things disagree with Science, we simply change the explanation to agree with the observation.

Or how about this one "RELIGION" explains things to begin with pseudo-scientifically . The gaps that pop up every now and then is just covered over with fairy dust.

It will always be consistent, but we will never be ably to use it to predict anything with it. Yet it is useful for morality and spirituality.

I am OK with the above, but so long as religion is not science. That is were the religious elites fall on their face.

Giorgis

PS: I am religious

It will always be consistent, but we will never be ably to use it to predict anything with it. Yet it is useful for morality and spirituality.

I am OK with the above, but so long as religion is not science. That is were the relegious elites fall on their face.

Giorgis

PS: I am relegious

Re:the creationists will not like this (4, Insightful)

rbarreira (836272) | more than 7 years ago | (#19099983)

Was that before or after punishing us for doing something which was his fault? Him being omnipotent and all, should have known what we were up to when he created us...

Re:the creationists will not like this (5, Insightful)

brit74 (831798) | more than 7 years ago | (#19099735)

I've seen a lot of mental gymnastics going on with creationists. They might claim that things had the 'appearance of age' when they were created. For example (supposedly), Adam and Eve were created as full-grown human beings without childhoods. They use this same sort of argument with stars (although, it doesn't stand up as well since God would've had a reasonable motive for creating full-grown humans, the reason for creating other things with the appearance of age is not at all clear - unless God were trying to fool us). One of the *new* claims a few creationists have been making is that somehow relativity allows the rest of the universe to actually be 14 billion years old even though the universe was created 6,000 years ago. They claim that something like time-dilation allowed a single-day passed on earth while the rest of the universe aged 14 billion years. The moral of the story? If you have an immutable belief in something + an all powerful God that can do whatever He wants, then all other evidence can be bended or ignored in service of that single immutable belief. Want to believe that God created the universe 10 seconds ago? No problem: God created you with memories of events that never occurred 'earlier' in your life, old newspapers with realistic-sounding events, light from the stars and the Sun were created partway in transit to the earth, etc etc. God can do that 'cuz He's all-powerful, don't ya know?

Re:the creationists will not like this (0)

HomelessInLaJolla (1026842) | more than 7 years ago | (#19099761)

Want to believe that God created the universe 10 seconds ago? No problem: God created you with memories of events that never occurred 'earlier' in your life, old newspapers with realistic-sounding events, light from the stars and the Sun were created partway in transit to the earth, etc etc. God can do that 'cuz He's all-powerful, don't ya know?
Unless you're particularly attached to living in the past then what does it matter if God created the universe 100 billion years ago or 10 microseconds ago? It doesn't change what the present is and the future is still just as open-ended. Why get your underwear all knotted up over it?

Re:the creationists will not like this (1, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#19099791)

Why get your underwear all knotted up over it?


because it's childish to believe in god?

Re:the creationists will not like this (0)

Score Whore (32328) | more than 7 years ago | (#19099841)

It's childish to think you have a reason not to believe in god. There is exactly the same amount of evidence for the existence of god as there is for the non-existence of god.

Re:the creationists will not like this (1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#19099857)

Get thee to logic 101.

Re:the creationists will not like this (1)

jlarocco (851450) | more than 7 years ago | (#19100047)

There is exactly the same amount of evidence for the existence of god as there is for the non-existence of god.

I'd love to see your "evidence" of god.

In fact, if you could give hard evidence that god exists, I would convert to christianity immediately. But I won't hold my breath.

Re:the creationists will not like this (2, Funny)

Urza9814 (883915) | more than 7 years ago | (#19099787)

Wow, you don't know anything, do you? God hasn't created the universe yet. He just wants us to think he did!

Re:the creationists will not like this (1)

Derosian (943622) | more than 7 years ago | (#19099853)

And God created you to make us all question his existence, but not recently you were created last Tuesday. And then everyone's mind was altered and the past was altered so that you fit in. Truly, it doesn't take a genius to follow your logic.

But evidence shouldn't be ignored or bent, I am sad to say that there are obviously some creationists out there who chose to not listen to the arguments others place forward, on the other hand truth be told we really don't know enough about the universe and its creation at this point to say for sure whether my God created it or your large explosion. There are many unanswered questions about the universe and religion and us in general. As long as we keep moving forward in a positive matter, I feel I can get along on good terms with those who believe I am a total idiot for having a spiritual belief.

Re:the creationists will not like this (1)

HomelessInLaJolla (1026842) | more than 7 years ago | (#19099889)

There are many unanswered questions about the universe and religion and us in general.
And only God knows all of the answers. Every day he lets some of us in on a little bit more, some more than others, and everyone gets to know something just a little bit different.

But, at the end of the day, God is still the only one with all of the answers.

Re:the creationists will not like this (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#19099959)

A true creationist believes that God created Human and that's it. It does not matter how. Period.

God is before everything else.
God is everything.

No argument.

God, it feels lonely in here...

Re:the creationists will not like this (1)

BrewedInTexas (971325) | more than 7 years ago | (#19099881)

I would just rather believe that there is no god.
The only other alternative is that god does exist and he likes screwing with us.

The idea of a prankster god is not terribly comforting.

Re:the creationists will not like this (1)

HomelessInLaJolla (1026842) | more than 7 years ago | (#19099915)

The idea of a prankster god is not terribly comforting
You're far too easily discouraged.

If God felt like being a prankster for a day, for a year, or for a lifetime--what human being has the power to say "No" to God?

While we are counseled to love God it is also wise to fear a God who has the power to be a prankster without anyone who can question Him.

Re:the creationists will not like this (4, Funny)

ozbird (127571) | more than 7 years ago | (#19099995)

A more likely scenario is that God had one hell (Hell?) of a bender the night before "The Beginning".
"Let there be light." Eergh! (buries His head under the covers for a few hundred million years.)

Re:the creationists will not like this (1)

Dontgimmiethatlook (1099559) | more than 7 years ago | (#19100065)

"the reason for creating other things with the appearance of age is not at all clear - unless God were trying to fool us"

Okay five posibilities (unless you believe number five then their are no choices... I tink):

1: Human Error
Unless you proud willing to believe that we can remotly observe something billions of lightyears away without any error at all. Even if it is true that we can, are their factors that can mess with the dating meathod they use?

2: God created the stars mature for a purpose.
During their helium-burning phase, very high mass stars with more than nine solar masses expand to form red supergiants. They expand in size and could possibly be used to shield the other galaxies from oncoming debris from astroids or other things when drawing it into them with their stronger gravitational field at the time indirectly protecting us from the certin doom of an astroid impact. There is also a posibility that he made them for his own enjoyment (although you are probobly not going to take that as a valid answer).

3: The evolutionists who descovered are lying to us.
Hey could be a posibity. Who knows what for though.

4: Creation is a lie
This is the one you might accept. That their is no God, only chance... Wait, would that make chance a god? This belief basicly states that creation is a fairy tale.

5: Their is no absolute truth
I'm thinking this one conradicts itself. Is it absolutly true that their is no absolute truth? If so how is that posibble? It has to either be true or false... Accually no it doesn't if this statement is true... Wait... What? Bah! My brain hurts O_o
Well this absurdity would state that it doesn't matter because the universe doesn't exist and that nothing exists except for you. Well what about the person who made up this theory? Does he exist? O_o... I forgot what crackpot religion this one is. Hindu I think? Maybe buddist.

I hope I gave a good perspective of things ^_^; Ehehe... I'm not very good at being non-biased. Well... Overview your choices.

Re:the creationists will not like this (1)

xtral33t (1101365) | more than 7 years ago | (#19099833)

Or they will just point out that these "scientists" use stars of unknown age to try and date another star, also of unknown age. The real mental gymnastics come from "big bang experts" as they use a random number generator to get a number, then try their hardest to rationalize why it's the correct answer. Articles like this are just a slap in the face of the scientific community because it makes us look like the irrational zealots.

Re:the creationists will not like this (0, Flamebait)

Jarjarthejedi (996957) | more than 7 years ago | (#19100023)

Precisely. I always enjoy it when scientists put dates on objects based on earlier dates placed on other objects and assumptions. How many assumptions can you stack on one another before it all comes crumbling down?

Oh, and as an intelligent religious person allow me to demonstrate to you a very simple thought that makes this dating process irrelevant thereby allowing the universe to be whatever age you want it to be. Just like carbon dating this process assumes that the initial amount of radioactive material was equal to a certain value. What if this star, created 6000 years ago (for argument), was simply created with more radioactive material than another star or similar age? Is there anything in physics that makes that impossible? I highly doubt it. (And just for reference I'm ignoring the whole "dating by distance" issue as it's easily solved by the VSL theory, which is unacceptable to most scientists, and offtopic anyhows). There is absolutely no proof that this started with a balanced mixture of the observed elements, or that it even started with the standard ratio, and yet we can deduce it's age because we know that it had to have started with ratio X of materials because then it's age would be 13.2 billion years which makes perfect sense if you accept our theory which is obviously true because this star is 13.2 billion years old!

This star may well be 13.2 billion years old but until a method of measuring it's age that doesn't depend on a huge number of assumptions is developed I don't see any reason to concern myself with it honestly. If you want to pull it out as evidence that the universe is 13.7 billion years old and I'm an idiot for believing it's not then fine, be my guest. I'll be over there pondering some of the current science, you know, the observable stuff that you can apply the scientific method to?

- Is totally prepared for a troll or flamebait mod, doesn't care because he's tired of seeing religious people bashed as idiots over and over again because they disbelieve something that is based on a number of assumptions and the belief that we're the smartest things that have ever and will ever live and that we understand everything...

Re:the creationists will not like this (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#19100045)

Atheists are the most narrow-minded, superstitious people around. They never listen to anyone, create lies about others to make themselves seem intelligent in comparison, then perpetuate myths and label them as "scientific" facts.

Can you prove that creationists believe this absurd idea that the universe is 6000 years old? No.

Can you prove that the universe is truly X years old? No.

Can you even prove that there was a "big bang"? No.

This whole thread has only proven that Slashdotters will believe anything that makes them sound intelligent no matter how idiotic it proves them to be. The truth is that it is all ridiculous and defamatory.

Re:the creationists will not like this (1)

MobileTatsu-NJG (946591) | more than 7 years ago | (#19099941)

"With all these stars turning up that are considerably older then, what is it, 6000 years, they'll probably start foaming at the mouth."

Ah yes, we can't stand the noise they generate, so we generate noises that sound like what we think they might sound like.

Star Social Security... (1)

Ice Wewe (936718) | more than 7 years ago | (#19099539)

HE 1523-0901 also wanted to know if it was elegible for social security, and when the first cheque is arriving. It was also heard complaining about how expensive it's perscription medication is, as it has a heavy-elements imbalance.

Re:Star Social Security... (1)

jd (1658) | more than 7 years ago | (#19100099)

Since heavy stars should not have formed that early on, it is clearly an illegal immigrant from another universe and therefore not eligible for Social Security. Indeed, reports are that a team of astrophysicists has been deployed to deport it to an acceptable parallel realm of existence.

I didn't even know she was missing! (1)

cheftw (996831) | more than 7 years ago | (#19099641)

Cher? Is that you?

That was us (1)

HomelessInLaJolla (1026842) | more than 7 years ago | (#19099669)

That star was what we looked like 26.4 billion years ago. Not we as in you and I, but we as in an area--and not just volummetric, but similar in mass and energy as well--roughly the same size as the observed star. The pictures that we take with the Hubble, ESO's VLT, and other deep space scanning arrays only see the radiation which has been reflected. They don't see the radiation which has kept going. We're not observing radiation which is coming from that star--we're seeing radiation which came from here, went to there, and is now reflecting back off of some deep space mirror--maybe a reflective atmosphere of some distant planet.

If I want to take that to the extreme one could hypothesize that we really are at the center of the universe, the Big Bang did start right here, and the light (or energy) which we are calling "HE 1523" started out here 26.4 billion years ago and now we're recording (photographing) the light which has reflected back off of something on a distant side of the universe.

Taking that to a further extreme one could say that every picture--each and every single one--or recording made of radiation observed from outer space is a mere reflection of radiation which originated here. That the stars and galaxies look different is only because the pictures are taken at different angles.

Imagine standing on the inside of an irregularly shaped egg with a perfectly reflective inner surface and looking around you. Conceptually the universe is somewhat similar to the spacecraft that young Superman travelled in as portrayed in the first Superman movie--except the boundaries are constantly shifting and changing according to God's whim.

The only thing left is to tie it in with string theory and envision a matrix of these irregularly shaped eggs, each infinitely enormous, each with its own 27.4 billion year old big bang.

Re:That was us (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#19099685)

Who told Adam that he couldn't smoke marijuana? An unjust law is no law.

As your post demonstrates, that still doesn't mean it's a good idea.

Re:That was us (1)

Robert1 (513674) | more than 7 years ago | (#19099783)

So if they're all reflections, how do you explain the different observed spectra? You know, how each star has a unique elemental composition?

Re:That was us (2, Informative)

HomelessInLaJolla (1026842) | more than 7 years ago | (#19099843)

a unique elemental composition?
Wow. You really don't know anything about the science behind this, do you?

Stars do not, for certain, have a unique elemental composition. They have a characteristic fingerprint of radiation which we interpret to correspond with various elemental compositions. The fact is that we've only recorded sets of photons and then drawn conclusions, some of them are well-founded but they are still interpreted conclusions nevertheless, about what elements those photons most likely were emitted from.

Recognizing that astronomical observers are recording radiation leads back to my initial explanation:

That the stars and galaxies look different is only because the pictures are taken at different angles...Imagine standing on the inside of an irregularly shaped egg with a perfectly reflective inner surface and looking around you
That perfectly reflective inner surface is irregularly shaped--like crinkled up aluminum foil. Take a piece of crinkled aluminum foil, spread it somewhat flat, and then begin looking at it from different angles. The pattern of colors reflected back to you will be different every time you change the angle--yet it's still the same piece of aluminum foil.

Re:That was us (1)

Robert1 (513674) | more than 7 years ago | (#19099905)

hahahaha

Take a piece of crinkled aluminum foil, spread it somewhat flat, and then begin looking at it from different angles. The pattern of colors reflected back to you will be different every time you change the angle--yet it's still the same piece of aluminum foil.

nope!

Re:That was us (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#19099947)

hahahaha...nope!
Wow. You truly are an idiot. How did you even manage to turn your computer on and why are people like you even allowed to have a computer?

Re:That was us (2, Funny)

Yusaku Godai (546058) | more than 7 years ago | (#19100097)

Dude, that's like, so deep man.

"Ancient Star Found, 13.2 Billion Years Old" (3, Funny)

Brad1138 (590148) | more than 7 years ago | (#19099689)

Did someone dig up Bob Hope again?

That means... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#19099789)

Nibblonians were .5 billon plus 17 years old by that time.

Dating Meathod (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#19099797)

Today, astronomer Anna Frebel of the the University of Texas at Austin McDonald Observatory and her colleagues have deduced the star's age based on the amounts of radioactive elements it contains"

Doesn't the amount of radiaton a star puts out vary from time to time depending on the stage of the star's life?
If so I don't know if you can accurately predict the age just by radiation. What if something outside stimulated the amount of radiation the star is putting off? This could probobly throw it off a couple hundred million years.

Cap'n Kirk (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#19099993)

Yeah, the star of Boston Legal is 13.2 billion years old!
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