Best Computer Science School in Utah

Steve smorrey at
Wed Sep 26 22:00:38 MDT 2007

I'm not saying they are either possible nor impossible.

I'm saying that given our current understanding, they appear to be impossible.
But I will take the patent office viewpoint on them.  I'll believe in
them when I can see a working prototype complete with an explanation
of how it works.

Same thing with computing.
How much of computing science is going to become irrelevant should
quantum computing take off?  How many new laws are waiting to be

On 9/26/07, Levi Pearson <levi at> wrote:
> Steve <smorrey at> writes:
> > Then again the basic assumptions are really just best guess models to
> > describe what we observe.
> >
> <nice history of scientific advancements and theory refinements snipped>
> Are you telling me that perpetual motion machines are, in fact,
> possible?  Because I'm aware of all that stuff you said (and you did
> say it well), but I still say perpetual motion machines are
> impossible, and I don't think I'm going to miss out on anything for
> believing so.
> By show of hands, who believes that perpetual motion machines are not
> impossible?
> Computing is another matter entirely.  We're not trying to uncover the
> basic laws of computation through experiment.  We know the basic laws
> because we invented them and built machines to exactingly implement
> them.  When a computer scientist tells you something is not computable
> and provides a proof, you can be quite certain that if the proof
> holds, he's 100% correct.  And I believe this is the real context
> we're discussing, not the realm of physics.
>                 --Levi
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