Brownstone Blog

Monthly Archives: November 2011

Big Bang Goes the Theory – Say It Ain’t Slow

Unless you’ve been living in a galaxy far, far away and either a) already know this or b) reside on a planet devoid of news media, you will therefore be aware that a second experiment appears to confirm that neutrinos – sub-atomic particles with no mass that can move through objects, are in fact moving faster than the speed of light, thus turning the theory of relativity on its head.

 Back in the early 1990s, theoretical mathematicians at Cardiff University proved that it was theoretically possible to ‘warp’ space – creating an Einstein-Rosen bridge between two points and thus enabling interstellar travel. The only problem being while we can build the starship Enterprise, nobody could construct the system of propulsion to power it – yet.

 What does relativistic physics have to do with advertising? Will whether Einstein’s theory holds up in light of these new discoveries or not, effect the outcome of your latest social media campaign? Will CERN’s experiments not only tear a hole in the space/time continuum allowing the universe to implode via a hole the size of a quark, but also swallow your website in the process? We didn’t have to resort to consulting an outside expert such as Dr. Sheldon CooperImage to bring you the facts. The quantum team of experts at Brownstone are pleased to tell you that the answer is a categorical ‘No’. Your on-line (and off-line) advertising and marketing activities are safe – even from black holes.

 Along with this comes our prize for this year’s best web joke initiated by those jokers at – CERN, where else? On April 1st 2011, CERN sent out a Press Release informing the world that the worst fears of its critics had in fact come to pass. By firing up the Large Hadron Collider in clear violation of all of God’s laws, they had in fact torn the fabric of space and created a black hole. However, they reassured everyone that the Black Hole had in fact now been quarantined – most probably in a box in Brian Cox’s living room. The more gullible of the population immediately flew into a panic and much debate ensued as to how a black hole could be ‘quarantined’ and how they should be immediately shut down as this was proof they did not know what they were doing.

However, what we tend not to realise is that from quantum and relativistic research facilities such as CERN have emerged many of the tools we not only take from granted but which have fuelled the digital advertising revolution. Don’t believe us – well –how about GPS, semi-conductor circuits and precision magnets? Your smartphone, parts of your car, your computer – all have come out of facilities such as CERN and theoretical physicists such as Cambridge University’s Stephen Hawking.

 Now we’ve told you where your mobile copy of Angry Birds originated perhaps this gives you a mere inkling of how at some point in the future, in some way we yet can’t imagine, a faster-than-light sub-atomic particle may transform the way we all communicate and do business. As Carl Sagan put it:  ‘A necessary aspect of basic research is that its applications lie in the future, sometimes decades or even centuries ahead. What’s more, no one knows which aspects of basic research will have practical value and which will not. If scientists cannot make such predictions, is it likely that politicians or industrialists can?’

Our technology, so trendy and yet now a crucial part of everyday life, grew from theories formed in the 1920’s and 1930’s – the start of relativistic physics and owe their development to the work of men like Einstein and Plank. 100 years from now who knows what will have grown out of today’s discoveries – not just a world wide web but a galactic cloud of information you can access from your sub-space terminal while you move sub-dimensionally through space?

 Time travel may indeed be possible and in the same week, it appears that not just neutrinos are capable of doing it but everybody’s favourite ad man – Don Draper.


Mad Men creator Matthew Weiner has revealed he will end the series in the present day with Don now in his 80’s. We wonder how Don will have coped with today’s bottom-line (as opposed to Joan’s bottom) driven digital agency? No smoking or drinking on the job. Roger would have died of alcoholism long ago and Peggy would now be his boss. The median age of his clients would be that of his grandchildren and all peddling products he has no idea how to use. If you have a time machine Don, and can harness some neutrinos we recommend you stay in the 60’s!

 BREAKING NEWS: Google+ have announced they are now open for business. More on this in our next entry.