Destroying the Earth is harder than you may have been led to believe.
You've seen the action movies where the bad guy threatens to destroy the Earth. You've heard people on the news claiming that the next nuclear war or cutting down rainforests or persisting in releasing hideous quantities of pollution into the atmosphere threatens to end the world.
The Earth was built to last. It is a 4,550,000,000-year-old, 5,973,600,000,000,000,000,000-tonne ball of iron. It has taken more devastating asteroid hits in its lifetime than you've had hot dinners, and lo, it still orbits merrily.
So my first piece of advice to you, dear would-be Earth-destroyer: Do not think this will be easy.
( Editor's Note: This presentation was first published by Sam Hughes on his own website. Hughes' version is a living document that he updates as new information becomes available. This adapted version on LiveScience is presented with permission.)