This question is motivated by Scott Aaronson's comment about his bet: "If P≠NP has indeed been proved, my life will change so dramatically that having to pay $200,000 will be the least of it."

Probably not as dramatic as some think. The reason is most of people already think that this is true, and complexity theorists also work on many other problems. See Steve Cook's comment on Scott's post.
– KavehAug 10 '10 at 4:53

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If this had been "what effect would proving the Riemann Hypothesis have on mathematics", I think the question would have been closed. What makesthis question different?
– András SalamonAug 10 '10 at 17:31

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People have strange self effects. I remember Odlyzko, a few days after PRIMES in P was released, at a conference speaking about his RH calculations, tangentially saying that it was a result that we did not expect, which was either a misspeak or a misthought, as everyone trusted it was true, and just getting around assuming GRH and exploiting the known analytic number theory to the maximal impact was the main trick in AKS. Techniques are more likely to have wide or dramatic "effects" that specific results. Grothendieck was annoyed that Deligne used a "trick" rather than build more theory
– JunkieAug 11 '10 at 6:43

PRIMES in Pwas released, at a conference speaking about his RH calculations, tangentially saying that it was aresultthat we did not expect, which was either a misspeak or a misthought, as everyone trusted it was true, and just getting around assuming GRH and exploiting the known analytic number theory to the maximal impact was the main trick in AKS. Techniques are more likely to have wide or dramatic "effects" that specific results. Grothendieck was annoyed that Deligne used a "trick" rather than build more theory – Junkie Aug 11 '10 at 6:43