The two towering achievements of modern physics are quantum theory and Einstein’s general theory of relativity. Together, they explain virtually everything about the world in which we live. But almost a century after their advent, most people haven’t the slightest clue what either is about. Radio astronomer, award-winning writer and broadcaster Marcus Chown talks to fellow stargazer Fred Watson about his book Quantum Theory Cannot Hurt You.
Marcus Chown is an award-winning writer and broadcaster. Formerly a radio astronomer at the California Institute of Technology, he is now cosmology consultant of the weekly science magazine New Scientist.
The Magic Furnace, Marcus' second book, was chosen in Japan as one of the Books of the Year by Asahi Shimbun. In the UK, the Daily Mail called it "a dizzy page-turner with all the narrative devices you'd expect to find in Harry Potter". His latest book is called Quantum Theory Cannot Hurt You.
Fred Watson is astronomer in charge of the Anglo-Australian Observatory at Coonabarabran, where his main scientific interest is gathering information on very large numbers of stars and galaxies. He is an adjunct professor at the Queensland University of Technology, the University of Southern Queensland and James Cook University.
Watson is well-known for his astronomy slots on ABC radio. His books include Stargazer: The Life and Times of the Telescope and Why is Uranus Upside Down?, which won the 2008 Queensland Premier’s Award for Science Writing.
He worked on the ABC's new blockbuster Universe as chief consultant. In 2003 Fred received the David Allen Prize for communicating astronomy to the public, and in 2006 was the winner of the Australian Government Eureka Prize for Promoting Understanding of Science.
Marcus Chown, author of Quantum Theory Cannot Hurt You: A Guide to the Universe, discusses the mechanics behind quantum computers, explaining that they function by having atoms exist in multiple places at once.
He predicts that quantum computers will be produced within 20 years.
My thoughts on quantum mechanics and nature of reality...
Imagine yourself inside the atoms as you are also part of the atoms anyway.
How would you know which one is you, if you are inside it..
So the only thing that makes you, is the awareness of you…
and that is the only thing that exists, that makes it all relevant to you,
The five senses are the touch points or interfaces or the limits of your awareness
think of it as the only plugs that are connected out of many
So the life of you is the sensory awareness that makes it look like you are separate.
and keeps the vision limited.
Perhaps that why in deep meditation they say you realize yourself…
And find the infinite that is you….similar to you realizing that everything is you once you see it completely.
perhaps that realization is the only thing that can answer all scientific questions,
or maybe once you realize, there is no one to question then ?
Creation of something from nothing is a violation of conservation law. Wrong Dave. Gravity has negative energy, perhaps exactly the right amount so that the total energy oif the universe equals zero. In this case, energy conservation is not contradicted. Do some more reading.
Old Bible story:
"He...hanged the Earth upon nothing." / Job 26:7 /
New Bible story:
According to the many scientific experts however,
space and time didn't exist prior to the Big Bang.
It is possible to say,
"He...hanged the Big Bang upon nothing."
Isn’t this situation strange?
But if we think that ‘nothing’ is some Reference Frame
( for example – Vacuum) then the situation will be more practicable.
" Science is the belief in the ignorance of the experts",
/ Richard Feynman. /
A BIG BANG FILLED WITH STELLAR PARTICIPATION?
The stars were not created until the third day of creation, long after the creation of light. So, how would the Christian concept of intelligent design account for a BIG BANG? (Sounds like a banging theory to me.)
We talk of matter and anti-matter as if they are of different fundamental stuff yet when they combine they don’t cancel each other out; they convert to the same stuff – energy. In this use of the term “energy” we are making the assumption of a single fundamental stuff of the universe. Why not just start there and explain what are the properties of this stuff that promotes our observed physical existence really is? You may be surprised at the results!
I would almost agree with you, except for one thing:
"..it is normal(and healthy) to reject such a claim with very little prof."
It might be normal (although that would be more of a commentary on the poor state of our educational system than anything else) but it is certainly not healthy to do so if the claim comes from someone who has actually professionally devoted their lives to these things. Why? Because the same types of educated people who make claims about black holes also make claims about public health threats like contagious diseases. They make scientific claims about global warming and peak oil and a host of other issues which have the potential to threaten the future lives of billions of people.
I would love to see a world where it is "normal" for adults to have an educated opinion about most scientific topics of importance, rather than one where it is normal to reject things that are hard or inconvenient to wrap ones mind around.
I think a lot of people have a distorted view of what a black hole is.
Like that man asking,"How can there be holes?".
This, in my opinion happens because; usually when someone is learning about black holes, they also hear about the strange things like the mass of 5 million stars compressed to a single point, space/time stretching and so on
..it is normal(and healthy) to reject such a claim with very little prof. Also a lot of bad sci fi has added to the general confusion.
It is much more easy to think about it simply as and astronomical object with an escape-velocity larger then the speed of light.
The behaviour/properties of such an object is what is referred to as a "black hole".