Quantum bogodynamics

Quantum bogodynamics

Quantum bogodynamics is a humorous theory arising within hacker culture that characterises the bogosity of the universe.

Bogosity is a humorous term used to describe the degree to which something is bogus. The unit of bogosity is the microlenat, named after Douglas Lenat. The lenat, like the farad, is considered too large a unit for practical use. When bogosity is measured as a field strength, it is referred to as bogoflux.

Bogosity is the property carried by fictional fundamental particles: bogons. The bogon is the elemental particle of bogosity, and has both particle and wave-like characteristics. Its wave-like nature explains its propensity for interfering with complex electrical circuits, which act as waveguides selectively tuned to the natural resonant frequency of bogons. Conversely, its particle behavior explains failures in lower density microcircuitry, as a bogon can become wedged in the corner of a trace, blocking the flow of packets, in the same manner as a fat electron (fat electrons are explained in The Jargon File as being introduced into the power grid when the power plant operator switches to backup brushes at the bottom of generator dynamos, thus picking up the heavier electrons).

There are bogon sources (such as politicians, used-car salesmen, TV evangelists, uninformed philosophers, and suits in general), bogon sinks (such as taxpayers, gullible students, and computers), and bogosity potential fields. Bogon absorption causes human beings to behave mindlessly and machines to fail (and may also cause both to emit secondary bogons). The precise mechanics of bogon-computron interaction are not well-understood, but when a heavy particle such as a computron is impacted by a bogon, which is a fast, low-mass particle, computrons appear to preferentially decompose into multiple bogons and fat electrons, creating a cascade of failures in nearby equipment.

Quantum bogodynamics is most often invoked to explain the sharp increase in hardware and software failures in the presence of suits; the latter emit bogons, which the former absorb. This explains the failure of software and hardware products when demonstrated by engineers for managers and executives.

The bogon has an antiparticle though its precise name is disputed. Some claim it is called the cluon while others claim the proper name is validon.

Quantum bogodynamics reflects the emphasis in hacker culture on rationality and distaste for empty form and authority.

Article based on quantum bogodynamics (etc) at FOLDOC, used with Foldoc license. Also featured in the Jargon File.

Usage in popular culture

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