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    "The slovenliness of our language makes it easier for us to have foolish thoughts" ~ George Orwell

    "An effective way to deal with predators is to taste terrible." ~ Unknown

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    Wednesday, August 04, 2004

    The Arrow of Time=Chatkill

    "Well...what do you think about charge parity violations in B mesons?"
    ---Me, out of left field

    Universe Today Makes M@ Feel Validated For Bringing It Up: CP Violation in B meson Breakthrough

    I really do say that. It's my stock suggestion for a topic when the conversation lags from way back in the day. I don't claim mastery of particle physics by a long shot, but for some reason it is one of the concepts that stuck with me from reading pop physics books.

    There has been only small laboratory evidence so far for there being more to the story of matter and antimatter being exact opposites of each other. The reason that we see mostly matter in the universe around us and not much antimatter is a big mystery. The idea that time only flows in one direction is assumed in most cases, Yet the proof is difficult to come by. Tiny measured differences in the way B mesons decay compared to their antiparticles are examples of equations that can't be reversed and done backwards as most other particle equations can, hence pointing to a single direction of the flow of time. That's the way it was told to me around the campfire anyway.

    In the less abstract, the notion that matter is somehow better at not getting annihilated than its opposition is a prime mover in the entire scheme of things. Some of the first sorting out done after the Big Bang (what little we can say about that) was a giant deciding battle of sorts between matter and its almost exact opposite. Sort of like the universe being shaped by a battle between Good and Evil. Or Yin and Yang. Heady stuff. First things first, that antimatter be gotsin' ta go. So I like rattling it off as if I didn't already have it prepared. It sounds smart. Because...well I guess because it is. I actually *can* talk about it, on at least a laymans conceptual level. Don't ask me to do the math.

    No one usually wants to talk about it though. It sounds like I'm joking anyway. I usually get an emoticon in response. So imagine my thorough joy at coming across this article on a recent breakthrough in explaining a little more about why the universe is the way it is on a fundamental level. There is a place especially for talking about this! WOOT!

    posted by M@ at 4:49 AM   1 comments links to this post


    At 11:40 PM, Blogger kimberley said...

    so. what you're saying is, the party of the first part meets the party of the second part for a ragin' party..of the part of the..hold on.

    is the answer "c" ?

    wait, wait, wait.

    how's this: :/ ? i know, it's an emoticon. but it's the best i could do.


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