[Space]Stephen Hawking's Final Paper Proposes Way to Detect the 'Multiverse' - Overclock.net - An Overclocking Community

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[Space]Stephen Hawking's Final Paper Proposes Way to Detect the 'Multiverse'

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post #1 of 13 (permalink) Old 03-20-2018, 10:40 AM - Thread Starter
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[Space]Stephen Hawking's Final Paper Proposes Way to Detect the 'Multiverse'

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Stephen Hawking's final research paper could help astronomers find evidence that our universe is just one among many in a larger "multiverse," according to media reports.

The famed cosmologist, who died last week at the age of 76, is lead author of a study called "A Smooth Exit from Eternal Inflation?" which was originally submitted to an unnamed journal last July. On March 4 — just 10 days before Hawking's death — his co-author, Thomas Hertog, a professor of theoretical physics at KU Leuven University in Belgium, submitted a revised version of the manuscript for further review, according to British newspaper The Sunday Times.

The inflation referenced in the paper's title is the incredible expansion of space-time theorized to have occurred in the first few moments after the Big Bang, which created the universe. Many physicists believe that this dramatic ballooning wasn't limited to our neck of the cosmic woods but rather happened repeatedly, spawning multiple universes — perhaps an infinite number of them.
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post #2 of 13 (permalink) Old 03-20-2018, 10:55 AM
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post #3 of 13 (permalink) Old 03-21-2018, 12:54 AM
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Just our one Universe is supposedly so big that there are nearly infinite 1:1 copies of any given human being on Earth -- which is pretty unfathomable when you consider the precise chain of events required to produce any given human being, such as the circumstance of our solar system, or the evolutionary tree.. or just your dietary habits.
Quantum physics tells us that the light you see from 80 billion year old stars wouldn't have come if your eye wasn't here to see it.

A multiverse, beyond that? I'm quite content with the complexity of just this one Universe. Hell, the complexity of a single photon seems adequate,

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post #4 of 13 (permalink) Old 03-21-2018, 06:33 AM
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Quote: Originally Posted by Mookster View Post
Just our one Universe is supposedly so big that there are nearly infinite 1:1 copies of any given human being on Earth -- which is pretty unfathomable when you consider the precise chain of events required to produce any given human being, such as the circumstance of our solar system, or the evolutionary tree.. or just your dietary habits.
Quantum physics tells us that the light you see from 80 billion year old stars wouldn't have come if your eye wasn't here to see it.
Is this really mainstream scientific thinking? This is one implication I used to believe came from the notion that the universe has no end when I was younger, but even though the universe may be technically infinite, the matter in it is finite, no?
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post #5 of 13 (permalink) Old 03-21-2018, 09:38 AM
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Quote: Originally Posted by Drome View Post
Is this really mainstream scientific thinking? This is one implication I used to believe came from the notion that the universe has no end when I was younger, but even though the universe may be technically infinite, the matter in it is finite, no?
From a quick Google, opinion varies. It all depends on if the universe is curved in on itself or not.

My layman's understand is that the observable universe (the bits we can see) is finite, limited by how long ago something was created, how far away from us it is, and how fast light travels. The observable universe, from our perspective, is expanding at the speed of light.

The actual universe may or may not be infinite, depending on if it is curved or not. If it is curved back on itself then essentially we are living inside a bubble (highly simplified visualization), and what we see as a straight line is really a very slow curve. If this is the case it the begs the question, what is outside that bubble?

If it is infinite and homogeneous (the same everywhere on average) then there will be an infinite amount of matter in the universe. If that were the case than anything that can happen will happen, and will happen an infinite number of times.

That would mean that at this exact instant, there are infinite versions of me typing infinite versions of this post on infinite versions of OCN. I wonder if any of them know where our favourite pen went...

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post #6 of 13 (permalink) Old 03-21-2018, 10:11 AM
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If he's right, he would be still alive in some of those universes.

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post #7 of 13 (permalink) Old 03-21-2018, 06:01 PM
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post #8 of 13 (permalink) Old 03-21-2018, 08:07 PM
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post #9 of 13 (permalink) Old 03-21-2018, 11:07 PM
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Quote: Originally Posted by Mookster View Post
Quantum physics tells us that the light you see from 80 billion year old stars wouldn't have come if your eye wasn't here to see it.
What? Quantum physics doesn't tell you that... are you misunderstanding the observer effect? That has more to do with measurement results than completely obliterating things from existence.
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post #10 of 13 (permalink) Old 03-22-2018, 11:16 AM
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Quote: Originally Posted by spinFX View Post
What? Quantum physics doesn't tell you that... are you misunderstanding the observer effect? That has more to do with measurement results than completely obliterating things from existence.
You tell me.

For everyone else reading, I should probably clarify before I get right into this -- I'm equating the typical definition of human observation to the real, physical one. In experiments, the observation itself affects an outcome because we can't invent a measuring device that doesn't. I believe scientists generally agree that this not only because we can't invent a measuring device that doesn't impact results -- but rather, because unobserved matter doesn't exist (as matter) until observed. And it's important to remember that the definition of "observed" or "measured" here, is not the typical one -- it's the kind of measurement particles perform on each other, which just so happens to also be the kind of measurement your eye performs to enable your vision.. even if you don't typically think of it that way.

So when the particles in your eye are capturing light from a star that existed 80 billion years ago, it stands to reason that the photons themselves would never have been emitted from said star if not for the fact that you looked into the night sky, 80 billion years later.

I'll admit, it's a bit of a fantastical way of explaining it -- but I don't see any misinterpretation of the observer effect in there.. unless you want to argue that photons are still photons despite not being observed. I'd argue that a good example of "photons" that will never become photons are those on the event horizon of the Universe, and then we could argue about whether or not they can really be considered photons. I haven't found much scientific literature on how to define a particle that hasn't been and theoretically never can be observed, such as light moving into the vacuum of space at the edge of the Universe.

But anyway, to tie that back in -- the fact that there's an unsettled argument about whether or not matter exists until it can be observed, by my logic, means that I can say the photons you see from an 80 billion year old star never would have existed if not for you having "looked" at (measured/observed) them. So I'm subscribing to the Copenhagen interpretation, here.

Maybe you can dissuade me of that.


Edit: This is a good video on the Bohr-Einstein debate about it, for those interested.

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Last edited by Clovertail100; 03-22-2018 at 11:20 AM.
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