## $100,000 Prize: Prove Quantum Computers Impossible 324

mikejuk writes

*"Quantum computing is currently a major area of research — but is this all a waste of effort? Now Scott Aaronson, a well-known MIT computer scientist, has offered a prize of $100,000 for any proof that quantum computers are impossible: 'I'm now offering a US$100,000 award for a demonstration, convincing to me, that scalable quantum computing is impossible in the physical world.' Notice the two important conditions — 'physical world' and 'scalable.' The proof doesn't have to rule out tiny 'toy' quantum computers, only those that could do any useful work."*
## Easy, since it's the U.S. (Score:5, Funny)

## Re:Easy, since it's the U.S. (Score:5, Funny)

Just point a gun at his head and ask him "Convinced?"

This is the most concise explanation of a quantum computer I have ever read.

## Re: (Score:2)

Only if you seal him in a box.

## Re:Like the cat (Score:5, Insightful)

## Re: (Score:3)

I dismiss it because we now have some evidence that it took us down the wrong road.

BTW, science IS about being right or wrong - when you build a castle on a flawed hypothesis and aren't ready to question it and toss it on the trash-bin when it's wanting, that's not science, that's religion.

## Re:Like the cat (Score:5, Informative)

This is a gross misunderstanding of the Schrodinger's cat thought experiment, and something of a fallacious presentation of it.

I don't think there was ever any doubt that a cat locked in a box for a sufficient length of time would expire. That is neither in doubt nor interesting.

The formulation deals with the status of a cat in a box present with some measuring apparatus capable of detecting decay of some isotope, linked to a sealed capsule of some poison, in a sealed container with a cat. Supposing the isotope has a roughly 50% chance of decaying in the next five minutes, and iff it decays the poison is released (killing the cat), after five minutes

is the cat alive or dead?The "collapse the waveform pseudo-science b***s***" here is simply translating the simultaneous probabilistic states into a single actual one. The reason this is relevant is in quantum mechanics there are real, measurable effects that occur as a result of the probabilistic waveform that differ from the effects of the collapsed state -- once you know whether the cat is alive or dead, in other words, you have a fundamentally different system than before it was observed.

## Re: (Score:3)

The fact that simply viewing the state alters the state is the most interesting part to me, because that means what we know about the natural world is gonna have to be shitcanned once we find out how everything is connected at the quantum level. This kind of effects bugged Einstein so much he came up with his famous "God does not play dice" quote because all that he took as fact when reduced to the quantum state basically got a "LOL Goatse" because those rules simply didn't apply. The fact that the observer

## Re: (Score:3)

The smallest amount of time that can be measured is a Planck unit. And with regards to energy and mass, there may not be any limitation as to how small each unit can be. In fact, the resolution may be as infinite as calculating out Pi. So most assuredly, any "unit" that makes up the universe is purely a concept invented by man. Sorry, but I'm afraid it's turtles all the way down.

## Re: (Score:3)

You're assuming for a moment that there is even a natural "unit" of time yet to be discovered as though the universe's space and time are made up of some natural resolution that can be calculated. I'm simply stating that it's perhaps infinite in the true sense of the word.

The universe is what you make of it. Is that what your telling me?

## Proving something negative is impossible (Score:4, Insightful)

Ever try proving something that is not going to happen?

Try it, and you'll know that it's impossible to prove something that is negative - like proving quantum computer impossible

## Re:Proving something negative is impossible (Score:4, Insightful)

Hence my whole "just point a gun at him and ask if he's convinced" argument - it works on 2 levels:

1. At the quantum level, both he and the gunholder could be considered in a quantum state - any outside observer cannot state definitively whether he is dead or alive until he either pays the $100,000, or gets shot.

2. The whole "there are no atheists in foxholes" argument.

Also, it is definitely possible to prove a negative. I can prove that there are no lions in my refrigerator, no elephants hiding behind my couch, and no dead zombie typing this comment, to most people's satisfaction, for starters.

## Re:Proving something negative is impossible (Score:4, Interesting)

Also, it is definitely possible to prove a negative. I can prove that there are no lions in my refrigerator, no elephants hiding behind my couch, and no dead zombie typing this comment, to most people's satisfaction, for starters.

The lions in your refrigerator are microscopic. The elephants hiding behind your couch are invisible, and you actually are a dead zombie. You just don't realize it, because of a psychological hallucination that you are not actually dead.

## Re:Proving something negative is impossible (Score:5, Insightful)

The lions in your refrigerator are microscopic. The elephants hiding behind your couch are invisible, and you actually are a dead zombie. You just don't realize it, because of a psychological hallucination that you are not actually dead.

In which case you actually can't prove anything at all...

ever. For instance, the entire world (yourself included) could be figments of my imagination. Or maybe we're both characters in a book, and just don't know it.If you can prove anything, you can prove some negatives. Of course, you do need to accept some axioms on faith, or you'll be checked into a mental institution. (no offence intended)

## Re:Proving something negative is impossible (Score:5, Insightful)

In which case you actually can't prove anything at all...

ever. For instance, the entire world (yourself included) could be figments of my imagination. Or maybe we're both characters in a book, and just don't know it.For the strictest definition of "prove", indeed we cannot. As Decartes so eloquently stated, the only thing I can be sure of is my own mind. (After all, if my mind didn't exist in some form, then I wouldn't be able to even contemplate not-existing.) But just because I am sure of my own mind's existence, does not mean that I can definitively extend that to other people.

"Truth" is commonly accepted to be something that is so likely that to withhold provisional belief would be irrational. Sure everything (with a single exception) cannot be proven definitively, but at some point things are so likely true that not believing in them just makes you crazy.

So, proving this whole issue and claiming the prize money would involve demonstrating that believing in practical quantum computers would be unreasonable. And that is perfectly reasonably possible.

But one has to realize the ambiguity of the word "prove" here. There is absolute proof of certainty (for instance most mathematical proofs), while just about everything else lies in a range of "yeah, probably." Newton's Laws of Motion were proven correct time and time again, until we eventually started noticing very small errors, and even yet today, while we know that Newton's Laws of Motion aren't the most accurate model, we still know that it's often "good enough".

## Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

Proving that there are no lions in your fridge is a badly formed question.

The valid question, and scientifically provable question, is does your fridge currently contain a lion?

The difference is subtle but important. "does your fridge currently contain a lion?" is a positive statement that can be verified through observation and to which the answer is a positive assertion that is valid within the context of the question, "there is not currently a lion in my fridge."

## Re: (Score:2)

## Re: (Score:2)

## Re: (Score:2)

There have NEVER been lions in my fridge and there never will be.

## Re: (Score:3)

I broke into your house and put a lion in there yesterday. Check again. Or maybe it's wandered off... you should probably look under your bed too.

## Re: (Score:3)

Also, it is definitely possible to prove a negative. I can prove that there are no lions in my refrigerator, no elephants hiding behind my couch, and no dead zombie typing this comment, to most people's satisfaction, for starters.

One can not prove a negative but one can disprove a negative. To prove a hypothesis one must reduce the hypothesis to something that is already proven or traverse the set of all possible outcomes and prove the the hypothesis hold for all possible outcomes. It only takes one counter example to disprove a hypothesis but it is much harder to prove a hypothesis.

The reason the cited hypotheses are provable is that the set of possibilities is finite and easily traversed. The issue with proving that quantum comput

## Re: (Score:2)

## Re: (Score:3)

Give the fridge to somebody else, then kill yourself. Then it's not your fridge, and you cannot ever own another fridge because you're dead.

## Re: (Score:2)

a negative - not that it's impossible to proveeverynegative.I swear, people really need to learn (1) how to read, and (2) how to think logically - the quality of so-called trolls sucks.And yes, it is possible to prove one way or another whether there will never be a lion in my fridge - but the proof requires a LOT of time ... literally a lifetime. What next - a "proof by bad car analogy?"## Re: (Score:2)

Besides, the question was to prove it to the original author's satisfaction - NO outside interference is envisioned, and adding your extra observer is not part of the question as asked.

## Re:Proving something negative is impossible (Score:5, Insightful)

This is not true in mathematics and physics. Lots of things have been proved to be impossible. One can prove, without leaving room for doubt, that the halting problem is undecidable, that no arithmetic theory can be consistent and complete, that the universe cannot allow FTL propagation while obeying both causality and relativity, etc.

## Re: (Score:3)

Ah but prove causality. A lot of physics starts from what we consider to be reasonable assumptions for how the universe works and than goes from there. That was the whole screwiness with quantum theory it removed a clear predictive chain of causality from the universe. You have things that are much more likely but you essentially have no certainty.

FTL can have causality it is just our mindset that would make it difficult for us to understand. For example if you know the concepts of light cones, where everyt

## Re: (Score:2, Insightful)

One can prove, without leaving room for doubt, ...

All you can ever really do is gaining confidence in your hypothesis by repeated observation and experiments. Even in math it will be impossible to ever reach absolute certainty without leaving room for doubt, as you can never be fully sure that the proof you did is actually correct, as it could always contain a mistake. Having other people look over the work and repeat it will of course shrink the doubt to a negligible tiny fraction that allows you to assert for practical purposes that something is true.

## Re: (Score:2)

Ever try proving something that is not going to happen?

If you're using a quantum computer, it could go either way.

## Re: (Score:2)

Quantum computing is

math. In math it is possible to prove that some things are not possible,given sufficient constraints.But the problem as stated is not well enough bounded to admit the possibility of a proof. It needs to be restated precisely.

* with constraints on the hardware that define what is and isn't a quantum computer

* with a definition of what constitutes "useful work". A handheld calculator can do useful work, if useful work is defined as carrying out a few simple mathematical operations at use

## Re: (Score:2)

## Re: (Score:2)

The Novikov consistency principle asserts that if an event exists that would give rise to a paradox, or to any "change" to the past whatsoever, then the probability of that event is zero.

## Re: (Score:2)

## Re: (Score:2)

So, we take a vacuum well away from any other bodies and set a body in motion.

## Re: (Score:2)

## Re: (Score:2)

Just like quantum computing.

## Re: (Score:3)

.

It would be funny if quantum computers turn out to exist, but only if you

## Re: (Score:2)

I'd like a demonstration please.

## D-Wave sold a commercial Quantum computer in 2010 (Score:5, Interesting)

Err, uh,

Didn't D-Wave sell a commercial Quantum computer to Locheed Martin [hpcwire.com] in 2010? Almost a year to the day?

Someone explain to me the difference between this quantum computer and the one they're trying to prove doesn't exist, please.

## Re:D-Wave sold a commercial Quantum computer in 20 (Score:5, Informative)

D-Wave uses quantum annealing [wikipedia.org]. This works for minimization problems, although it's unclear whether it's better than "simulated annealing". This does not work for problems like factoring integers, which "real" quantum computers can do.

## Re: (Score:3)

From what my friend who is into Quantum computers tells me that was almost certainly a scam.

And even without knowing the specifics of quantum computers enough to have any opinion I know that one of the leading quantum computing places in the world, Waterloo Canada does not have a QC that is even close to being usable. It is just like a few quantum bits with a few rooms full of machinery that operates these bits and is both slow and has way to small a number of bits to really be useful.

## Re: (Score:3)

It is just like a few quantum bits with a few rooms full of machinery that operates these bits and is both slow and has way to small a number of bits to really be useful.

I don't know Jack - sorry, I don't know Werner - about quantum computing, but you did just describe the state of regular computing circa 1946 or thereabouts.

## Re: (Score:3)

I don't know Jack - sorry, I don't know Werner - about quantum computing, but you did just describe the state of regular computing circa 1946 or thereabouts.

The difference is that the way forward was clear in 1946. Scaling up was primarily a problem of cooling and maintenance. In other words, engineering problems, not theoretical ones.

The area of quantum computing today is nowhere near on par with where we were with classical computing in 1946.

## Re:D-Wave sold a commercial Quantum computer in 20 (Score:4, Insightful)

When the status quo was a room full of vacuum tubes, I doubt that the way forward (solid state transistors) was as clear as you suggest. Hindsight is 20/20 and all that. There is a vast world of difference between making smaller, faster, better vacuum tubes, and making a transistor. So I think GP's suggestion that we are in the vacuum tube era of quantum computing is reasonable, and we are waiting on the equivalent of a quantum transistor to make quantum computing feasible.

## Re:D-Wave sold a commercial Quantum computer in 20 (Score:4, Interesting)

People were already working on solid-state transistors in 1946. The main difficulty was growing pure enough crystals.

Even without solid state transistors, computers would have continued to get more powerful and require less maintenance per tube as vacuum tubes improved (nothing like what was possible with solid-state transistors, of course). Remember, vacuum tubes themselves were only about 35 years old at that time--lots of improvement in size, power and reliabililty was possible, but work on them stopped when it became clear that transistors were so much better.

In the case of quantum computers, there are lots of ideas floating around, but no one actually has any clear idea of what will be needed to maintain quantum coherence across a large number of bits. In fact, it is not yet clear that it is possible.

The D-Wave computer uses quantum annealing which does not require coherence across a large number of bits, but which is also a LOT less useful than one that does.

## You owe me... (Score:3)

HPCwire: Can you prove that quantum computing is actually taking place?Rose: This was the question we set out to prove with the research published in the recent edition of Nature. The answer was a conclusive "yes."

And this is the clincher:

HPCwire: What's next?Rose: This is a very significant time in the history of D-Wave. We've sold the world's first commercial quantum computer to a

large global security co## Re:D-Wave sold a commercial Quantum computer in 20 (Score:4, Interesting)

The physics of oscillating crystals, such as those used in microphones and phonograph needles as well as radio transmitters, indicates that quantum computing could never not exist. Matched oscillating crystals have been in use for thousands of years and the mathematical model is proven by hundreds of different laboratory and home appliances; eg. an infrared spectrophotometric detector. The emission and absorption frequencies predicted by the mathematical model of the particle [wikipedia.org] in a box (the basis for calculating electron dispersion around the nucleus and the fundamental beginning for subatomic calculations).

Particle in a box model translates into equations known as the Hamiltonian and, in combination with Eigenvalues calculated from the variables used in particle in a box modeling, generates the Schroedinger equation. Quantum computing could never be nonexistent because the mathematics of matched oscillating subatomic particles already has been proven millions of times over.

The marathon runner was not reporting a successful war campaign. The marathon runner was part of a system proving that those crystals do indeed oscillate, matched, from across the universe (at least 26.2 miles), in real time. Begin counting, begin running, when you arrive, repeat what they said back to them and report your current number. They will determine if your number matches theirs and if you repeat the exact words they said.

One aspect of the inside joke is that, when the marathon runner arrived and made his report, the response from the priests was,"That's _NOT_ what we said!" and they promptly hit him over the head with a baseball bat in frustration over the not completely failed experiment. "Don't tell anyone that he made it."

## Re: (Score:3)

Disclaimer: i have worked for a group competing with dwave.

What dWave has, and they claim not much more, is a system which is stable enough to use thermal noise (their unproven claim: with a small addition by quantum tunnelling) to find the ground state of a Hamiltonian to construct. This solves some tasks, but by far not all.

What the rest of the QC community wants is a computer which can generate and manipulate entangled state superpositions, enabling to execute arbitrary operations on exponentially scalin

## Re: (Score:2)

Wrong. See: Bell inequality.

## Re: (Score:2)

http://www.timecube.com/ [timecube.com]

Your argument is invalid.

## The ultimate Schroedinger's Cat problem! (Score:3, Interesting)

Now there's a challenge!

Prove that something which already exists CAN'T exist!

Methinks their money might be safe on this one... :P :P :P

## Re: (Score:2)

Prove man is NOT responsible for Global Warming.

WTF is it with Science these days where it wants people to prove a negative, something which I was explicitly told over and over again in class is impossible.

Except that we've proven that Caloric Theory does not accurately explain reality.

"Proving a negative" is a complicated topic, but falsifying a theory is not. In order to claim the reward specified, one would have to prove that the quantum theory as we understand it is false, by demonstrating a falsifying experiment. I don't know if that's particularly possible...

## Re: (Score:2)

Proving a negative is

notimpossible. For example, I can proof that I didn't murder JFK by just noting that I wasn't yet born when he got killed.## Re: (Score:2)

something other than Manis responsible for global warming"## The jokes on them (Score:5, Funny)

I will prove Quantum Computers both possible AND impossible at the SAME TIME!

## Re:The jokes on them (Score:5, Funny)

Yeah, and you'll both get and not get the money at the same time. However don't complain if you find out that you didn't get it: It was you looking which caused the superposition to collapse into that state.

## Re: (Score:2)

## You can't prove a negative (Score:5, Funny)

So I guess the proof would be that they do exist, but only if you don't observe one.

## Re:You can't prove a negative (Score:5, Informative)

'You can't prove a negative'

If that were true, it would be unprovable. But, anyway, it's not true. Some of the most important (and proven) results in 20th century mathematics were negative: Goedel's proof that arithmetic is INcomplete, Church's proof that polyadic first-order logic is UNdecidable, Tarski's proof that truth is UNdefinable, Cohen's proof that the continuum hypothesis is UNprovable in ZFC, etc.

## Re: (Score:2)

This whole thing strikes me as if a Christian would put up $ for someone to prove to him that God doesn't exist with said Christian as both judge and also having no real incentive to part with the $.

## Re: (Score:3)

Absurd things happen all the time. Perhaps you mean "impossible"?

## No useful work... (Score:3)

## Theoretical vs practical (Score:2)

Yesyes...maybe Lockheed bought a quantum computer. It's real? I don't see why not. I can imagine you can program existing hardware to simulate the quantum effect. Does it mean that you get a quantum computer - no...but it simulates it, so in effect...you have one, expensive - not sure how useful, but it'll prove some working theory.

It's like a double douche - here's one, the other proves the existence of the first one. It's like perpetual energy theory, there will always be believers, and if you make it com

## I guess ... (Score:2)

Even my brother-in-law can do useful work if you stretch the definition far enough.

## Sorry, what? (Score:5, Insightful)

A similar question could've been asked years ago, back when transistors didn't exist: 'I'm now offering a US$100,000 award for a demonstration, convincing to me, that scalable personal computing is impossible in the physical world.'

Using only technology available then, the answer would've to scale down tubes to the minimal size and go "well this computer's too weak to do anything useful, ergo it's impossible to have a personal computer that isn't just a toy computer." Then transistors happened.

These kinds of things are stupid, because you're asking for a demonstration to an engineering problem, when engineering is always capped by scientific research. You could have a perfectly "convincing" proof today and tomorrow a new discovery crumbles it all to the ground.

Unless a

theoreticalandfundamentalproof can be made that quantum computing is impossible, there's no reason to say that it is, and I have serious doubts such a proof can be made considering what has been accomplished thus far. Current limitations are engineering issues, but nothing fundamental is stopping a useful and practical quantum computer from existing.## Re: (Score:3)

Unless a

theoreticalandfundamentalproof can be made that quantum computing is impossible, there's no reason to say that it is, and I have serious doubts such a proof can be made considering what has been accomplished thus far. Current limitations are engineering issues, but nothing fundamental is stopping a useful and practical quantum computer from existing.I think the whole area of what causes quantum behavior to disappear as systems scale up to macroscopic size is not well understood at all. A fundamental proof that large-scale quantum computing is not possible would be monumental in improving our understanding this area.

## Re:Sorry, what? (Score:4, Interesting)

I'm not sure what you mean by this. Quantum behavior disappears at macroscopic sizes simply because all lengths involved are microscopic. Take a hallmark of quantum mechanics as a simple example: the Heisenberg uncertainty principle. It has been shown that the standard deviation of the position times that of the momentum MUST equal or exceed Planck's reduced constant divided by two. Considering the latter is in the order of 10^(-34), it's no surprise that macroscopic measurements are not affected by this limit at all, but nanoscopic ones most definitely are. In the same way, quantum tunneling is also an effect which could theoretically happen at macroscopic sizes, but with a probability

so lowit's effectively impossible. There's no hard limit, it's just a spectrum which rapidly becomes negligible as size increases.As I said, the biggest problem is an engineering one: how do you scale up the number of qubits to an appreciable amount while keeping errors below an acceptable threshold? How do you operate on said qubits without measuring them so as to preserve the wavefunction? Some cases have answers, but this is still overall an open question, unlike classical computing where the first question's been answered by transistors and the second question has no bearing.

## Re:Sorry, what? (Score:5, Insightful)

In _Profiles of the Future_, Arthur Clarke collected a long series of well-thought-out, quantitative, proofs of the practical impossibility of aviation and space flight. The people he quoted were willing to agree that future breakthroughs such as antigravity might allow aviation to work, but that it was an engineering impossibility.

## Re: (Score:2)

Thank you! I wanted to compare this to flight, but I didn't have sources or references at hand.

## Re:Sorry, what? (Score:4, Informative)

A similar question could have been asked of perpetual motion machines, and in that case there would have been a payout, which I think is partially his point

The impetus for this prize was a post on Dick Lipton’s blog, entitled “Perpetual Motion of the 21st Century?” (See also this followup post.) [...] Anyway, in the comments section of the post, I pointed out that a refutation of scalable QC would require, not merely poking this or that hole in the Fault-Tolerance Theorem, but the construction of a dramatically-new, classically-efficiently-simulable picture of physical reality: something I don’t expect but would welcome as the scientific thrill of my life.I think he's saying that while a general quantum computer might be a very long way off, the underlying theory that allows such a thing to exist is on very solid ground (which is why he's putting up the money). Of course this prize might still cost him since if the news of the prize goes viral he's going to spend the next decade getting spammed by kooks.

## Re:Sorry, what? (Score:5, Informative)

There's some needed context.

Aaronson himself works on quantum complexity theory. Much of his work deals with quantum computers (at a conceptual level--what is and isn't possible). Yet there are some people who reject the idea the quantum computers can scale to "useful" sizes--including some very smart people like Leonid Levin [bu.edu] (of Cook-Levin Theorem fame)--and some of them send him email, questions, comments on his blog, etc. saying so. These people are essentially asserting that Aaronson's career is rooted in things that can't exist. Thus, Aaronson essentially said "prove it."

It's true that proving such a statement would be very difficult, and you raise some good points as to why. But the context is that Aaronson gets mail and questions all the time from people who simply

assertthat scalable QC is impossible, and he's challenging them to be more formal about it.He also mentions, in fairness, that if he

doeshave to pay out, he'd consider it an honor, because it would be a great scientific advance.## Re: (Score:3)

Except that wasn't really the question being asked. The challenge was to offer a proof to Scott Aaronson that will convince _him_ that quantum computers will never work. It doesn't have to be correct, just convincing.

Unless the guy has no ego at all this is still impossible though, just not for the reasons you think. It might have been easier if he hadn't put up the $100k...

## Notice the third important condition (Score:2)

"Convincing to me".

## the answer is right in front of us (Score:2)

## I know what this is... (Score:2)

...and no, it 'in't 'cos I'm a black man. This is a CS guy looking for potential problems in QC to solve before a mature solution can be even considered ready for promotion from drawing board to prototyping - 'cos once you go physical shit gets expensive.

## How about a reverse ontological proof? (Score:2)

2. I cannot imagine a quantum computer.

3. Therefore, quantum computing is further beyond what is possible than my imagination.

4. By (1), quantum computing is beyond the possible.

At least it's valid. If you give me half the money, I can work out rest of the kinks.

## Do I get $50.000... (Score:2)

## bad grammar in the article (Score:2)

Maybe it's just me, but I had a hard time accepting the credibility of TFA when it misused "effects"/"affects".

## Re: (Score:2)

http://xkcd.com/326/ [xkcd.com]

## I'm suspicious of Quantum Computers (Score:2)

The idea is nice but it seems like you're trying to get something for nothing which generally doesn't tend to work out in the real world. This prize is probably a good idea to take a look at things from the other end rather than just trying to scale up small-scale experiments (and continually failing if it's genuinely not possible).

I'd love to be wrong in this case but it seems possible it's something that's in the realm of perpetual motion, FTL travel and anti-gravity to my mind.

## Disprove a negative?? (Score:2)

Um, you can't disprove a negative... so, anyone that is offering $100 grand to... is a fool.

-AI

## Solution is in! (Score:2)

I examined all of the possibilities simultaneously and I have the answer.

## I think quantum computers do not scale (Score:3)

I am a layperson, though I studied quantum computers a bit at the university, and (years ago) I came to conclusion that quantum computers do not scale as well as normal computers. That's what will make them impractical.

In QC, unlike in normal computers, every qubit needs to be interlinked with all other qubits, otherwise the superposition won't work. In normal computers, once you can create a computer with X bits, creating a computer with X*2 bits is pretty easy, just build X twice (and add an address line). With quantum computers, creating a computer with even X+1 qubits from computer of X qubits can be hard, because you need to entangle the extra bit with all others. So the QC will scale only logarithmically to normal computer, and that will make it impractical (respectively, any advantage will be nullified by this problem).

At least that's what I think; I would like to hear a debunking argument.

## Re:I think quantum computers do not scale (Score:4, Informative)

## gazillion dollar counter prize (Score:3, Informative)

Prove there is a god

I'm willing to bet all I own that neither will ever be successfully claimed. You need faith to accept either to be met.

## Re: (Score:3)

Prove there is a god

I'm willing to bet all I own that neither will ever be successfully claimed. You need faith to accept either to be met.

Well, proving that there are no gods at all is impossible, as "there exists some form of god" is an unfalsifiable claim.

However, proving that specific gods don't exist is a whole lot easier when they make outrageous claims that do not conform to the world that we witness today. For instance, if their holy book ascribes cities that have no archaeological evidence to suggest that they ever existed, or did not exist at the time described.

## Re: (Score:2)

See Swinburne's

Revelation [amazon.com]: From Metaphor to Analogy(Oxford University Press, 2nd ed. ) for a case that scientific or historical errors in the Bible (or Qur'an, Vedas, Mahayana canon, etc.)## Re: (Score:2)

See Swinburne's

Revelation [amazon.com]: From Metaphor to Analogy(Oxford University Press, 2nd ed. ) for a case that scientific or historical errors in the Bible (or Qur'an, Vedas, Mahayana canon, etc.) do not necessarily undermine religious claims.Indeed, one can shift the goalposts and re-root their religious claims on other matters. However, archaeological, and geographical evidence don't support many religious scriptures.

I suppose it's not possible to falsify every possible notion of a specific god, but one can falsify the literal interpretation of most gods based on the inconsistency of their religious scriptures and data that we can observe. (e.g. It is well known now, that there is no evidence for gods up on Mount Olympus.)

Note, this doesn't ma

## Re: (Score:2)

## Re: (Score:2)

But what if the Bible is often stated by archaeologists to be the most accurate archaeological textbook? There are literally thousands of obscure facts in the Bible (name of the king's eunuch, etc) backed up by archaeological evidence. Most of these were argued to be false at one time or another.

I'm not necessarily referring to the Bible here... the stronger evidence on this front is against the Book of Mormon.

As for the Bible, Nazareth didn't exist during Jesus's lifetime.

## Re: (Score:2)

I'm willing to bet all I own that neither will ever be successfully claimed

I'll do you one better: If all the man-hours that have been wasted over the last 2000 years trying to "prove" or "disprove" the existence of "God" had been spent doing constructive, positive things on behalf of all Mankind, we might have abolished war, have an abundant, clean, renewable energy source, conquered all disease, and maybe even moved out to colonize other planets. Instead we sit on this increasingly smaller chunk of rock and water and contemplate our "spiritual" navels, and fire bullets and lob b

## Re: (Score:2)

I believe the same is true of quantum computers

Because things we don't yet completely understand must have godlike properties.

## Re: (Score:2)

Done [wikipedia.org], jackass.

## The Definition of "God" (Score:2)

We can only prove and disprove what we can measure. We need the definitions of the dimensions we wish to measure to prove or disprove something "exists" (can "be found"). The first definition I think is most important is whether or not said "god" can interact willfully with the universe and change what would otherwise be natural consequence. If it cannot, then god is of no consequence. If it can, then how can you reproducibly show the god's interaction? If someone cannot repeatedly find god for others,

## Re: (Score:2)

Nonsense.

Does that count as a rant?

## Re: (Score:2)

I can't resist.

If we take it as read from observation that there is only finitely much time before the present (there are theories otherwise, but more or less all of them have a special event of some kind about 13.7 billion years ago), why does this require "something that started everything"? Without a working theory of quantum gravity, we have to accept that the universe has a number of time-space singularities where GR breaks down -- one in every black hole and one at the Big Bang. This tells us that we

## Re: (Score:2)

(Darwin stated in his own theory that if it could be proven someday that there is some irreducible complexity of an organism, that his theory would fall apart. That has been found.)Cite please. And in any event, saying "God did it" is not an explanation.

When you take what we know today, the reason stands that there is something that has brought everything into existence with intelligence. You must now deny the evidence that there is God by providing it. There is proof that there is intelligent design behind## Re: (Score:3)

Take a look at the Bacteria flagellum. You'll see a full motor inside of it. 27 unique parts that none can have a purpose outside of it being an entire motor.I'll see your Michael Behe and raise you some scientists who actually understand evolution.

http://www.talkdesign.org/faqs/icdmyst/ICDmyst.html#bactflag [talkdesign.org]

## Re: (Score:3)

I forgot to add that in Genesis 19:32, that same righteous man tricks is daughters into thinking he's the last man on earth so he can knock up his own daughters.

This is the same Lot that is such a wonderful person god goes out of his way to spare him from the burning of soddom. Yet god kills his wife just for looking back at the city where her friends and relatives are dying and screaming.

Lot is really god's kind of fellow.

## Re: (Score:2)

no, it's a prize/award, not a conditional loan.

## Useless "info" (Score:2)

Well, then translate the book to English, so someone unbiased can take a look.