Tuesday, April 15, 2008

So Silly

Large Hadron Collider - Risk of a Black Hole - Dennis Overbye - Physics - New York Times

It seems so silly to me to be talking about keeping the risk that an experiment will wipe out the globe to less than the odds that a meteor will strike to much the same effect. Such odds for a given year are apparently something like one in 50 million.

As humanity's time progresses, we go on as though we don't give a collective rat's ass about other calamities that are nearly certain by comparison.

I think it's safe to say that the risks of insufficient energy for an industrialized world, for example, would work out to tens or hundreds of millions of times more expected deaths than the not-impossible scenarios presented by strangelets and mini-black-holes.

For that matter, its seems very likely that the expected deaths stemming from the incremental ignorance resultant from NOT pursuing these experiments vastly outweigh those that could come from running them.

That's why I don't care about the risk of calamity from operating the Large Hadron Collider. It's silly.

More power to Dr. Calogero for anticipating the risk posed by this silliness to the operation of the experiment. The silliness isn't his.

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