Higgs Boson Announcement Shines Light on Stephen Hawking Bet and Marshall Barnes

The historic news, that scientists found the Higgs Boson, recalls the bet that Stephen Hawking announced against it in 2008. Marshall Barnes accepted it and now, once again, Marshall proves Stephen Hawking wrong.
R&D engineer Marshall Barnes beat Stephen Hawking's bet (Copyright 2012)
R&D engineer Marshall Barnes beat Stephen Hawking's bet (Copyright 2012)
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* Peter Higgs

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July 5, 2012 - PRLog -- Wednesday, July 4th, scientists released the historic news that they have found sufficient evidence that the Higgs Boson particle is real. The Higgs Boson or "God Particle" as it has been called in popular media (much to the displeasure of scientists) is predicted by the Standard Model of physics and is the particle that would give all the others, mass. Named for physicist Peter Higgs, the search for it was one of the main purposes for the creation of the Large Hadron Collider, or LHC, at CERN in Switzerland. Renowned scientist Stephen Hawking, however, made an announcement on September 9, 2008 that he'd bet $100 that the Higgs would not be found. Research and development engineer Marshall Barnes emailed, both Hawking and his assistant S.T. Blackburn, about the bet, saying that he would not only take it, but would be willing to raise it by $900.

After attempts, to contact Hawking and his assistant via email, failed to get a reply beyond an auto responder, Marshall issued the following press release so that his position, versus Hawking's on the Higgs, would be a public record - http://www.prlog.org/10118485-stephen-hawking-bets-agains...

Now that it appears that the Higgs has been found, Marshall is cautiously coming forward to claim his victory over Hawking, his largest yet, as Marshall has consistently been able to find mistakes in Hawking's work dating back to his first book, A Brief History of Time. The latest is the error, in the Mad Scientist Paradox scene from his Discovery Channel TV special, Into the Universe with Stephen Hawking, where a mad scientist shoots himself through a time machine generated wormhole to the past. Marshall has shown that the problem is that the opening that the bullet travels through is the same one in the past that is only supposed to be connected to the past from its reference frame - there needs to be separate opening for the wormhole from the future. The scene in the past should show the wormhole created by the machine and another opening without a machine, which would be connected to the wormhole generated by the machine created by the original mad scientist in the future. Marshall says this failure is a critical example of Hawking not understanding the physics of multiply connected spaces in relation to the geometries of closed time-like curves. He dealt with this issue in his paper, Experimental and Theoretical Analysis of Chronology Protection Conjecture Failing On The Discovery Channel - http://network.nature.com/groups/time/forum/topics/10468


Marshall's response to Hawking's bet proves his confidence, that Hawking would be wrong, was higher than anyone else's.

"It's pretty simple," Marshall shrugged. "In my opinion, despite his accomplishments in physics, Hawking's the most overrated physicist in the business. His most ardent followers have no clue whether he's on the mark or just making it up, because they aren't interested in anything but physics on the most pedestrian, pop sci level. That's why I've been known to say that he's not the greatest mind on the planet, as the Discovery Channel said, but it's most intelligent comedian - because he constantly appears to be more concerned with being funny, than being factual..."

Marshall didn't always feel this way, he used to be a Hawking fan. However, after finding so many mistakes by the pop culture icon; many in the field of time research - with which Marshall has an intense professional interest, it became obvious to Marshall that Hawking is not this generation's Einstein, as proclaimed by some.

'It was just a matter of fact that the odds are, if Hawking is going out on a limb to say something, there's a good chance he's wrong. My willingness to see his $100 bet and raise it to $1,000, was a sign of my confidence. The LHC results simply prove my instincts were right - again. It's just fun that it's a part of the back story of a historic moment in physics."
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