OAK RIDGE, TN—After six grueling years of Herculean research, scientists at the Oak Ridge National Laboratory pronounced EHC-1 Alpha, the new hyperbolic chamber, "an unquestionably, undeniably, fantastically revolutionary milestone in the history of science, mankind, and the universe, all of which it will undoubtedly change forever."

"Hyperbole researchers have arrived at, without possibility of argument or refutation, the single greatest moment in all of creation, now and forevermore," said the project's lead scientist, Dr. Lloyd Gustaveson, activating the hyperbolic chamber's gazillion-ultra-watt semantic resonator at a gala launch party Monday. "The divine flame kindled by our new hyperbolic chamber will cast its light down through the centuries, making the Promethean fire that brought forth life on earth seem like a brief and guttering spark. Behold—we recast the cosmos in the image of the ultimate!"

A federally funded program launched during the Clinton administration, the hyperbolic-chamber project was roundly criticized at its inception by lawmakers who argued that it was too expensive and had no industrial or military applications. Republican senators were particularly vocal, with one congressman claiming that the project would "run Jesus-kabillion dollars over budget," and be "more useless than 12 rows of tits on an NFL fullback."

The EHC-1 Alpha survived many rounds of budget cuts, however, in no small part because of the tireless efforts of lobbyists who decried the chamber's congressional detractors as "Philistine Nazi Neanderthals."

"Today, we do not merely silence our critics," Gustaveson said. "We commit them to that newest, foulest level of eternal indignity and unending infamy: the dark, ignorant era before the amazing, incredible hyperbolic chamber!"

"There has never been anything as amazing as this awesome machine," Gustaveson added.

Responses from within the scientific community have been positive.

Writers from Scientific American dedicated the May issue to the chamber's development and technology, calling it "brilliant... unsurpassed and unsurpassable. No mere milestone, the EHC-1 Alpha hyperbolic chamber is the achievement from which all future milestones shall be measured."

Not to be outdone, Nature is planning a June special issue in which it will call the device "singular in its quasi-divine perfection... the ne plus ultra of human ingenuity."

And Popular Science quickly placed the chamber on the fold-out cover of its next issue, which reads, "FUCKING AWESOME!!! THE BALLS-OUT H.C. IS 40 TIMES BETTER THAN SEX... AND COUNTING!!!"

Although it is difficult to find critics of the EHC-1 Alpha, those who oppose the machine do so vocally. The project's most prominent critic is Sandia National Laboratories' Dr. Owen Comstock, who argues that hyperbolic-chamber research has little social value and that federal funds would be better spent on his project, the high-energy, lowest-common-denominator-inductive Supercolloquial Mundane Adjectival And Onomatopoeic Accentuator.

"EHC-1 Alpha?" Comstock said. "Pfft. More like the craptastic crapobolic crapulator of crappity-crap-crap. Blarf. In addition, it is ugly as ugly can get, raises several safety issues, and is so freaking stupid I had to puke at how stupid it is."