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View Full Version : Which mystery do you think is important



spaceditto
2003-Mar-31, 08:06 PM
I was thinking about this when i read this article on the mysteries of our universe and then i decided to to a poll and see what most astronomer in this forum think is the most important. :D

Make a vote and would be nice if you giive an explanation as to why you chose it!!!!!!!!!
:wink:

R.A.F.
2003-Mar-31, 08:19 PM
I voted other. IMO, finding the true value of the Hubble constant, I think, is the most important mystery to be solved.

Glom
2003-Mar-31, 08:55 PM
I voted other aswell. I think the most important mystery to be solved at the moment is the Europa.

BTW, what do you mean by lunar conspiracies?

g99
2003-Mar-31, 09:03 PM
Other: Dark matter and what the heck it is interest me. Plus what life will look and act like.

Colt
2003-Mar-31, 09:37 PM
Other: Life throughout the universe.

RafaelAustin
2003-Mar-31, 09:41 PM
I'm with Colt, the search for extraterestrial life.

nebularain
2003-Apr-01, 04:35 PM
Dark matter and dark energy for me.

tjwojo
2003-Apr-01, 04:59 PM
I voted for Mars. I think that life on Mars (past or present) would be a driving force for the space program much as the race to the moon was in the 60s. Although the benefits of going to Mars are minimal compared to the myriad other options for exploration, I think the glamour of it might get everything else going.

sacrelicious
2003-Apr-01, 05:02 PM
umm, since the rest would be a moot point if the universe never began, I think the most important mystery is obvious.

gethen
2003-Apr-01, 05:13 PM
Dark matter, dark energy or quintessence or whatever the appropriate term for me. It seems like so much of our understanding of how the universe works hangs on it.

heliopause
2003-Apr-01, 08:30 PM
I don't think there's any bigger mystery than how the cosmos began. Even if one does buy the BB model, it would be nice to know what actually made it go BANG! And for those out there that are Anti-BBers, I'm sure they'd love to know if they are right as well.

JS Princeton
2003-Apr-01, 08:32 PM
I voted for other. The most important astronomical question right now I think is the nature of dark matter.

Josh_imported
2003-Apr-02, 12:21 AM
I voted "other." I agree that dark matter should be top of the list. I would also include c-p violation. Why is the universe mostly matter and not antimatter?

ljbrs
2003-Apr-02, 02:54 AM
I voted for other. The most important astronomical question right now I think is the nature of dark matter.

I also voted for "other." In addition to dark matter, I would have voted for the nature of the dark energy (my absolutely favorite subject) which is thought to be accelerating the expansion of the universe. In my estimation, the last ten years have been the greatest for cosmology.

ljbrs :D

Byrd
2003-Apr-02, 04:36 AM
"Other."

The only "Lunar Conspiracy" I can think of that might interest astronomers is "why do so many people believe such obviously silly stuff and how can we get them to quit believing every crackpot website?"

beskeptical
2003-Apr-02, 08:28 AM
Other:

I think understanding the fabric of space time is the next important mystery that will unlock greater understanding of many things. String theory, dark matter & energy, 11 dimensions, unification theory.... I see the underlying theme here is we don't have a complete grasp of the micro fabric and structure of the Universe.

As far as ET life, I think there is no question anymore that it is there. The only question is where and what's it like.

xriso
2003-Apr-02, 09:14 AM
As far as ET life, I think there is no question anymore that it is there. The only question is where and what's it like.

There's no question ... that we haven't found any yet. How can you be so sure it's out there?

beskeptical
2003-Apr-02, 10:11 AM
As far as ET life, I think there is no question anymore that it is there. The only question is where and what's it like.

There's no question ... that we haven't found any yet. How can you be so sure it's out there?

Too many planets per galaxy, too many galaxies per universe, too improbable for it not to be out there.

snowcelt
2003-Apr-02, 03:49 PM
other: I think that knowing whether or not if this is a determanistic universe would be useful. After all, if the universe is determined, it would not matter what we think---all those wonderful thoughts we think would have no relevance: they just are.

aurorae
2003-Apr-02, 10:53 PM
Too many planets per galaxy, too many galaxies per universe, too improbable for it not to be out there.

There's lots of puddles in the road near my house. So many, there has to be a tuna in one of them, it would be too improbable to think otherwise!

:P

The Shade
2003-Apr-02, 11:31 PM
I also voted for other. But since all the other good others are already taken, I will choose Gamma Ray Bursters, even though there has been a major breakthrough lately.

DaveC
2003-Apr-03, 12:06 AM
Too many planets per galaxy, too many galaxies per universe, too improbable for it not to be out there.

There's lots of puddles in the road near my house. So many, there has to be a tuna in one of them, it would be too improbable to think otherwise!
:P

And I guess if tuna traditionally inhabited puddles, that might be a good analogy. But as we know, tuna inhabit large, deep, saltwater bodies populated with a lot of other fish that tuna rely on for food. As far as I can tell, puddles are zero for four on the tuna environment list.

I'll throw my lot in with Beskep. It is so improbable that there isn't life of some sort elsewhere in the universe that it doesn't even warrant consideration. Billions of galaxies with billions of stars tells me that somewhere out there the conditions for life arose just like they did here. Not necessarily the same kind of life as on Earth now, because its the product of billions of mutations over billions of years, but life nonetheless.

BTW, I vote for fully understanding the "right" cosmology from start to finish. Is that that too much to ask?

beskeptical
2003-Apr-03, 02:32 AM
Too many planets per galaxy, too many galaxies per universe, too improbable for it not to be out there.

There's lots of puddles in the road near my house. So many, there has to be a tuna in one of them, it would be too improbable to think otherwise!
:P

And I guess if tuna traditionally inhabited puddles, that might be a good analogy. But as we know, tuna inhabit large, deep, saltwater bodies populated with a lot of other fish that tuna rely on for food. As far as I can tell, puddles are zero for four on the tuna environment list.



Dave, you took the words right out of my mouth. :) Somehow, I don't think there are as many puddles in the road as there are planets in the Universe either. Then there's that matter of ingredients for life that have been detected outside of the Earth, and don't forget 12 or so billion years for the process to occur, (took about a billion to get started on the Earth I think). I don't think the puddles have been there that long and they probably don't have the ingredients to make the tuna as well as not having the materials to sustain tuna as Dave said.

DaveC
2003-Apr-03, 03:14 PM
This morning it's raining in Toronto, and when I came out of my house, I noticed an empty tuna can laying in a puddle on the street. Must have fallen off the recycling truck. Anyway, the timing of my observation gave me a chuckle to think maybe that was what aurorae had in mind.

Reacher
2003-Apr-03, 04:05 PM
i picked other. i am more interested in the implications of transferring the properties of an atom over a certain amount of space.

Incedentally, i read that scientists have recorded a sound eminated a few seconds before the big bang. reportedly, it was "uh, oh"

beskeptical
2003-Apr-04, 10:16 AM
This morning it's raining in Toronto, and when I came out of my house, I noticed an empty tuna can laying in a puddle on the street. Must have fallen off the recycling truck. Anyway, the timing of my observation gave me a chuckle to think maybe that was what aurorae had in mind.

Coincidence,....or conspiracy? :o

Toronto, you poor boy. I hope you're keeping your hands washed.

DaveC
2003-Apr-04, 03:04 PM
Coincidence,....or conspiracy? :o

Toronto, you poor boy. I hope you're keeping your hands washed.

Especially after picking tuna cans out of puddles. :)

Seriously, though there's a lot of paranoia here about SARS. When hospitals are being closed it's a bit scary - even though in a city of over four million, the number of confirmed cases is pretty small. Toronto has quite a large Chinese population and during he March break, there were a lot of trips made to Hong Kong and back. I don't think we yet have very good screening for potential exposure or symptoms at the federal level so there's a hodge podge of ad hoc approaches. The school my wife works in sent a kid home who'd just returmed from Hong Kong - for no reason other than he'd been in Hong Kong. The Asian communities here - one north east of the city center and one in the downtown - are normally bustling with activity. They're like ghost towns right now.

I think it will get a lot worse before it gets better. We seem to be dealing with a particularly virulent disease that is easily communicated. Maybe it's one of Saddam's biological weapons of mass destruction.