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Looking for Life in the Multiverse
Scientific American ^ | 01/01/2010 | Alejandro Jenkins and Gilad Perez

Posted on 12/18/2009 12:07:14 AM PST by ErnstStavroBlofeld

The typical Hollywood action hero skirts death for a living. Time and again, scores of bad guys shoot at him from multiple directions but miss by a hair. Cars explode just a fraction of a second too late for the fireball to catch him before he finds cover. And friends come to the rescue just before a villain’s knife slits his throat. If any one of those things happened just a little differently, the hero would be hasta la vista, baby. Yet even if we have not seen the movie before, something tells us that he will make it to the end in one piece.

In some respects, the story of our universe resembles a Hollywood action movie. Several physicists have argued that a slight change to one of the laws of physics would cause some disaster that would disrupt the normal evolution of the universe and make our existence impossible. For example, if the strong nuclear force that binds together atomic nuclei had been slightly stronger or weaker, stars would have forged very little of the carbon and other elements that seem necessary to form planets, let alone life. If the proton were just 0.2 percent heavier than it is, all primordial hydrogen would have decayed almost immediately into neutrons, and no atoms would have formed. The list goes on.

(Excerpt) Read more at scientificamerican.com ...


TOPICS: Culture/Society; Technical
KEYWORDS: cosmology; multiverse; particlephysics; physics; pseudoscience; quantummechanics; quantumphysics; science; theoreticalphysics; universe

1 posted on 12/18/2009 12:07:15 AM PST by ErnstStavroBlofeld
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To: sonofstrangelove

I suppose the good news is it can still happen.


2 posted on 12/18/2009 12:10:59 AM PST by tet68 ( " We would not die in that man's company, that fears his fellowship to die with us...." Henry V.)
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To: tet68

The main problem is getting to these other “universes”.


3 posted on 12/18/2009 12:13:09 AM PST by ErnstStavroBlofeld ("We will either find a way, or make one."Hannibal/Carthaginian Military Commander)
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To: sonofstrangelove

Albert Einstein once reportedly said “God does not play dice with the universe.”


4 posted on 12/18/2009 12:26:41 AM PST by HiTech RedNeck (I am in America but not of America.)
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To: HiTech RedNeck

I find it rather curious to see the histories of parallel Earths. The only problem would be running into these “toxic” universes.


5 posted on 12/18/2009 12:30:03 AM PST by ErnstStavroBlofeld ("We will either find a way, or make one."Hannibal/Carthaginian Military Commander)
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To: sonofstrangelove

All of this is dependent on the Universe being finite.

Have we gotten any proof it is finite?

We have looked very, very deep into the skies, and at the very limit of our perception, we see MORE. Every time the limit of our perception is extended, we still find the same thing.


6 posted on 12/18/2009 12:38:39 AM PST by UCANSEE2 (<I>)
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To: HiTech RedNeck
“God does not play dice with the universe.”

No, but many people believe he gambles a lot with Earth.

7 posted on 12/18/2009 12:41:31 AM PST by UCANSEE2 (<I>)
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To: sonofstrangelove

It’s possibile that there are infinite universes, each with different physical constants, such as proton mass. We happen to be in this one just because we can be. In the vast majority of the others (if they exist), life is probably impossible because no stable, evolving, self-replicating, complex structures can form.


8 posted on 12/18/2009 12:47:30 AM PST by Telepathic Intruder (The right thing is not always the popular thing)
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To: Telepathic Intruder
I agree with that. But what about "Schrödinger's cat" theory?
9 posted on 12/18/2009 12:55:18 AM PST by ErnstStavroBlofeld ("We will either find a way, or make one."Hannibal/Carthaginian Military Commander)
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To: UCANSEE2

The mainstream size estimates haven’t grown for many years. These aren’t based upon how far the best telescope can see, but upon other things.


10 posted on 12/18/2009 12:55:37 AM PST by HiTech RedNeck (I am in America but not of America.)
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To: sonofstrangelove

The coolest thing about the Multiverse Theory is it means in some universe somewhere there is a me that didn’t end this sentence with an ellipsis ...


11 posted on 12/18/2009 12:55:46 AM PST by spodefly (This is my tag line. There are many like it, but this one is mine.)
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To: sonofstrangelove
The definitive information about the cat's future life or lack thereof is not visible to us as trapped within the confines of this space-time continuum, but that does not mean there is no being that does have it.
12 posted on 12/18/2009 12:58:51 AM PST by HiTech RedNeck (I am in America but not of America.)
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To: spodefly

Admittedly it can get pretty silly. And is there a multiverse of multiverses?


13 posted on 12/18/2009 1:00:47 AM PST by HiTech RedNeck (I am in America but not of America.)
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To: spodefly

I think it would be interesting to see what my “duplicate”or “duplicates” is doing in a parallel worlds.


14 posted on 12/18/2009 1:11:41 AM PST by ErnstStavroBlofeld ("We will either find a way, or make one."Hannibal/Carthaginian Military Commander)
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To: sonofstrangelove

This is about as far as a secular mindset can get. Enough universes and you have a mulligan on everything. But you never transcend the blasted system.


15 posted on 12/18/2009 1:16:32 AM PST by HiTech RedNeck (I am in America but not of America.)
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To: HiTech RedNeck

There is nothing wrong to dream.


16 posted on 12/18/2009 1:20:54 AM PST by ErnstStavroBlofeld ("We will either find a way, or make one."Hannibal/Carthaginian Military Commander)
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To: sonofstrangelove

Gotta wake up sometime


17 posted on 12/18/2009 1:24:05 AM PST by HiTech RedNeck (I am in America but not of America.)
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To: HiTech RedNeck

Authors and television programs have made millions of dollars speculating on this subject.


18 posted on 12/18/2009 1:24:21 AM PST by ErnstStavroBlofeld ("We will either find a way, or make one."Hannibal/Carthaginian Military Commander)
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To: HiTech RedNeck

Exactly


19 posted on 12/18/2009 1:24:38 AM PST by ErnstStavroBlofeld ("We will either find a way, or make one."Hannibal/Carthaginian Military Commander)
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To: sonofstrangelove

Well that’s slightly different, a split-universe theory. For every random quantum fluctuation, the universe splits and all possibilities are ultimately played out. However, I hate the thought of a universe where certain things that could have happended, actually did. But maybe that’s offset by the possibility of another universe where I won the mega-lottery. By the way, these ideas of multiverses and split universes are just hypothetical at best, but interesting to think about.


20 posted on 12/18/2009 1:25:51 AM PST by Telepathic Intruder (The right thing is not always the popular thing)
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To: Telepathic Intruder

I agree with you.


21 posted on 12/18/2009 1:26:36 AM PST by ErnstStavroBlofeld ("We will either find a way, or make one."Hannibal/Carthaginian Military Commander)
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To: sonofstrangelove

The compelling thing about this split-universe theory, btw, (I think it’s called many-worlds theory officially), is that it’s unexplainable to science why quantum events are random. There’s no way of knowing which direction a photon will travel, or when a radioactive nucleus will decay. Einstein was also baffled by this seemingly unaccountable randomness, claiming instead that “God does not play dice”. Scientists by their very nature prefer order and predictablity, but quantum physics itself states that events must happen at random (Heisenberg Uncertainty Principal). If a photon goes left instead of right completely at random, then can it also go right in some other universe, and still appear random in both? That at least explains what otherwise cannot be explained by present science.


22 posted on 12/18/2009 1:45:25 AM PST by Telepathic Intruder (The right thing is not always the popular thing)
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To: Telepathic Intruder

I agree with you.


23 posted on 12/18/2009 1:46:17 AM PST by ErnstStavroBlofeld ("We will either find a way, or make one."Hannibal/Carthaginian Military Commander)
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To: sonofstrangelove

24 posted on 12/18/2009 2:07:15 AM PST by Lancey Howard
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To: sonofstrangelove

God is in the details...


25 posted on 12/18/2009 2:20:43 AM PST by BigCinBigD (")
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To: BigCinBigD

I agree. He is.


26 posted on 12/18/2009 2:21:32 AM PST by ErnstStavroBlofeld ("We will either find a way, or make one."Hannibal/Carthaginian Military Commander)
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To: Lancey Howard

27 posted on 12/18/2009 2:23:38 AM PST by Jonah Hex ("Never underestimate the hungover side of the Force.")
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To: sonofstrangelove

Time is the forth dimension, alternate reality is the fifth dimension.


28 posted on 12/18/2009 3:33:57 AM PST by The Duke (Socialism is cool until somebody loses their paycheck.)
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To: The Duke

BREAKING NEWS - President Palin just approved the final nuclear strike in the mideast that will turn Saudi Arabia, the last muslime country, into glass. This will eliminate all final muslimes from the earth. Palin also announced the completion of the last “relocation camp” for the few remaining liberals in the western hemisphere at Guantanamo Bay in the State of Cuba. ...... Oh shoot, I’m sorry, guess I bumped over from the real universe, carry on.


29 posted on 12/18/2009 3:49:37 AM PST by AUH2O Repub ( SPalin/Hunter 2012)
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To: Telepathic Intruder
Home many quantum events are occurring just this instant? Each one creates a separate universe. Then each one of those universes has it's own set of branches the very next instant, etc. etc. etc.
How could you even express such a number?
30 posted on 12/18/2009 3:55:08 AM PST by conejo99
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To: conejo99

Infinite means infinite. The number is probably inexpressible. How many atoms in the visible universe? Maybe 10^80. And how many quantum events for each second per each atom? We don’t know for sure, but certainly millions at least.

And, to blow your mind away even more, each one of these permutations represents another universe with equal permutations. In other words, the number of of them grows exponentially by a factor impossible to imagine. You make a good point, one I’m aware of.


31 posted on 12/18/2009 4:14:19 AM PST by Telepathic Intruder (The right thing is not always the popular thing)
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To: HiTech RedNeck
The mainstream size estimates haven’t grown for many years. These aren’t based upon how far the best telescope can see, but upon other things.

This is true. You are speaking of a mathematical estimate based on a ton of presumptions about the 'beginning' of the Universe, and the 'weight' (amount of mass).

It is also well-known that this 'model' doesn't fit the facts (kinda like the GW issue), and scientists had to make up a fudge factor called dark-matter.

Still, it is a 'guess', and I was talking about the 'observed' (whether visually or via other parts of the EM spectrum).

So, mainstream size 'estimates' may be correct, or may not. We have no proof yet.

If and when we are able to 'observe' the 'extent' of the Universe, what will we see just beyond that?

32 posted on 12/18/2009 5:11:07 PM PST by UCANSEE2 (<I>)
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To: sonofstrangelove

I live again, a million, a billion, a trillion times.


33 posted on 01/17/2010 8:40:26 PM PST by onedoug
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To: onedoug

34 posted on 01/17/2010 8:45:47 PM PST by ErnstStavroBlofeld ("I have learned to use the word "impossible" with the greatest caution."-Dr.Werner Von Braun)
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To: sonofstrangelove
You might find this interesting. I sure do. I'm about half-way into Lecture 2.

Best....

35 posted on 01/17/2010 9:13:47 PM PST by onedoug
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To: onedoug

Thank you very much for the link.


36 posted on 01/17/2010 10:56:23 PM PST by ErnstStavroBlofeld ("I have learned to use the word "impossible" with the greatest caution."-Dr.Werner Von Braun)
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