by Bill Conner
There was a time, long before men thought themselves omniscient, when people knew a universe of "powers" and "forces" and "entities", a place where intelligence and purpose inhabited every little corner and niche. It was believed that everything either possessed in itself or was connected to one of these powers. One gaining mastery over one of the powers could cause events to occur that would not otherwise and stop events that were destined to occur in the absence of their intervention. There were several ways these people went about doing this. There was incantation where one called out the power using special words spoken a special way. There was the combining of various odds and ends that would enable changes of various kinds and there was ritual that would obligate a power to do this or that.
The great mistake of these people in those times is that they kept their discoveries secret so that the same things were done many times, over many generations. There just weren't enough people working on the same problem to ensure any consistent successes. The success of modern science is not that the descriptions of reality are more accurate or precise or correct but that there are many more people involved in investigating each question being asked. These people agree with each other for the most part so that there is the appearance of certainty in their pronouncements. The "fact" is not about the thing studied but the consensus of those studying it.
The reality of reality is that everything is only appearance. More specifically, reality is how things appear to us, to human beings. We are, after all, the only ones interested. The electron exists not because it's there but because someone was looking for it. There is, for example, a species of electron that exists only in the southern hemisphere. This electron has the unusual property of turning blue and ceasing all motion as if frozen. This behavior is entirely random.
The Paraguay Telephone Company implemented this electron since its erratic behavior made it unsuitable for other uses and electricity generated using this electron was therefore less expensive. The PTC sold this technology to a U.S. corporation which incorporated it into their product line. The corporation, who I will not name here (its initials are, Microsoft) and the products it created (Windows Operating Systems) was able to prove that the behavior of this electron at the atomic level could be duplicated in their products. They called this a "feature".
The significance of all this is that, since an electron owes its existence to our perception of it, its properties are variable. While PTC and the un-named U.S. corporation (Microsoft) will vehemently deny the existence of the Blue Electron, their denial has no effect on its existence because they know better. There are many other instances of electrons being modified to suit a particular need. There is the Red Electron used in TV remote controls and CD players, the Gray Electron used in dimmer switches and volume controls, The Green Electron used in those self-flushing urinals and many other electron types. Once the electron is believed into existence, unbelief has no effect on its continued existence; it actually exists from it inception unto forever.
The electron used in the computers is specialized as well. An electronic circuit is a kind of maze through which the electron must pass. As the electron progresses through this maze it begins to "learn" its position and is able to advance more quickly through the remainder of the maze. This increase in the Maze Rate is exponential so that by the time the electron has passed through the first half of the maze the remainder of its journey exceeds the speed of light. This is why electrons are introduced into a computer where the maze is simplest, the Power Supply.
Experimenters discovered a unique power source of immense potential using this "Thinking Electron". Rather than introducing the electron flow into the simplest part of the computer circuitry, they connected it to the most complex circuit: the Esc key on the keyboard. As expected the electrons quickly learned the maze and the Maze Rate began to increase. By the time the electrons reached the power supply their increase in speed was such that their increase in mass (recall E=MC^2) was equivalent to over 4500 X 10^9 camels. This much mass confined to the volume of an electron is simply not allowed by any known Law of Physics. These electrons congealed in to a small Black Hole that immediately consumed all matter within 100m (the exact distance limit allowed for an Ethernet Segment), all the tables, the chairs, the desks, grad students and Principal Investigators fell into the event horizon.
This experience led to very stern warning labels on all electronic devices to ensure that small black holes would not proliferate. Fortunately this phenomenon has been limited, so far, to just a few research laboratories so the risk of annihilation is quite small.
This page was last updated February 9, 2007.