Hadron Collider Thoughts

“As you know,” my friend Rahul writes in, “the Large Hadron Collider starts its experiments on Wednesday. The most extreme view is that the world will end. I don’t believe that for a second. But you wonder: How anti-climactic would it be if the world actually ended, and we never did get around to doing all those things we said we’d do if we knew our date of extinction?”

I used the limited sample size of the one car accident I’ve been in to tell him that if the world did end, we would probably be dead before we knew what was happening, with no time for any last thoughts. But I have two questions for you?

1] If the world was to end, would you prefer that it end suddenly without your being aware of it, or that you had some time to contemplate your end, and maybe do some things still left undone?

2] If your answer is that you’d like some time, how much time would you like?

Okay, now here’s the deal: you’ve got that time. It starts now.