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Scientists show future events decide what happens in the past
June 12, 2015 05:30PM
An experiment by Australian scientists has proven that what happens to particles in the past is only decided when they are observed and measured in the future. Until such time, reality is just an abstraction.

Quantum physics is a weird world. It studies subatomic particles, which are the essential building blocks of reality. All matter, including ourselves are made up of them. But, the laws governing the tiny microscopic world seem to be different to those dictating how larger objects behave in our own macroscopic reality.

Quantum laws tend to contradict common sense. At that level, one thing can be two different things simultaneously and be at two different places at the same time. Two particles can be entangled and, when one changes its state, the other will also do so immediately, even if they are at opposite ends of the universe – seemingly acting faster than the speed of light.

Particles can also tunnel through solid objects, which should normally be impenetrable barriers, like a ghost passing through a wall. And now scientists have proven that, what is happening to a particle now, isn't governed by what has happened to it in the past, but by what state it is in the future – effectively meaning that, at a subatomic level, time can go backwards.

To bamboozle you further, this should all be going on right now in the subatomic particles which make up your body.

If all this seems utterly incomprehensible and sounds downright nuts, you're in good company. Einstein called it "spooky" and Niels Bohr, a pioneer of quantum theory once said: “if quantum mechanics hasn’t profoundly shocked you, you haven’t understood it yet.”

In this latest experiment, carried out by scientists at the Australian National University, lead researcher Andrew Truscott said in a press release that they have proven that "reality does not exist if you are not looking at it.”

Rest at [www.digitaljournal.com]
Re: Scientists show future events decide what happens in the past
June 12, 2015 08:22PM
So now we have the answer to the tree falling in the forest question.
Re: Scientists show future events decide what happens in the past
June 13, 2015 01:09AM
Richard Feynman once said, "I think I can safely say that nobody understands quantum mechanics."

Quantum mechanics works. That's really about all that's known about it for sure. Statements like, "Quantum reality doesn't exist until it's observed" is based on one interpretation of the theory. According to other interpretations of QM, such as the "Many Interacting Worlds" interpretation, for example, this is not the case.
Re: Scientists show future events decide what happens in the past
June 13, 2015 04:41AM
How does the MIW theory interpret the results of the double-slit experiments?
Re: Scientists show future events decide what happens in the past
June 13, 2015 05:24AM
I assume it's the same as the many worlds interpretation's take on it:

As with the other interpretations of quantum mechanics, the many-worlds interpretation is motivated by behavior that can be illustrated by the double-slit experiment. When particles of light (or anything else) are passed through the double slit, a calculation assuming wave-like behavior of light can be used to identify where the particles are likely to be observed. Yet when the particles are observed in this experiment, they appear as particles (i.e., at definite places) and not as non-localized waves.

Some versions of the Copenhagen interpretation of quantum mechanics proposed a process of "collapse" in which an indeterminate quantum system would probabilistically collapse down onto, or select, just one determinate outcome to "explain" this phenomenon of observation. Wavefunction collapse was widely regarded as artificial and ad hoc, so an alternative interpretation in which the behavior of measurement could be understood from more fundamental physical principles was considered desirable.

Everett's Ph.D. work provided such an alternative interpretation. Everett stated that for a composite system – for example a subject (the "observer" or measuring apparatus) observing an object (the "observed" system, such as a particle) – the statement that either the observer or the observed has a well-defined state is meaningless; in modern parlance, the observer and the observed have become entangled; we can only specify the state of one relativeto the other, i.e., the state of the observer and the observed are correlated after the observation is made. This led Everett to derive from the unitary, deterministic dynamics alone (i.e., without assuming wavefunction collapse) the notion of a relativity of states.

Everett noticed that the unitary, deterministic dynamics alone decreed that after an observation is made each element of thequantum superposition of the combined subject–object wavefunction contains two "relative states": a "collapsed" object state and an associated observer who has observed the same collapsed outcome; what the observer sees and the state of the object have become correlated by the act of measurement or observation. The subsequent evolution of each pair of relative subject–object states proceeds with complete indifference as to the presence or absence of the other elements, as if wavefunction collapse has occurred, which has the consequence that later observations are always consistent with the earlier observations. Thus the appearance of the object's wavefunction's collapse has emerged from the unitary, deterministic theory itself. (This answered Einstein's early criticism of quantum theory, that the theory should define what is observed, not for the observables to define the theory). Since the wavefunction appears to have collapsed then, Everett reasoned, there was no need to actually assume that it had collapsed. And so, invoking Occam's razor, he removed the postulate of wavefunction collapse from the theory.

[en.m.wikipedia.org]
Re: Scientists show future events decide what happens in the past
June 14, 2015 10:04PM
Thanks. I'm going to have to read that many times to wrap my head around it, though. winking smiley
Re: Scientists show future events decide what happens in the past
June 16, 2015 11:32PM
Good.

Once you understand it, maybe you'll be kind enough to explain it to me. winking smiley
Re: Scientists show future events decide what happens in the past
July 21, 2015 08:21PM
Watch the JJ Abrams' Star Trek reboot - that's what they're talking about.
Re: Scientists show future events decide what happens in the past
July 22, 2015 02:14AM
I wondered how you accumulated your "vast" knowledge of science. Turns out it's from Star Trek re-runs -- where else!
Re: Scientists show future events decide what happens in the past
July 22, 2015 02:50AM
You're going to feel so stupid when you find out I'm right on this.

And thanks for the generous characterization, but just because I obviously understand science better than you or Navy doesn't necessarily qualify my knowledge as "vast", grasshopper.
Re: Scientists show future events decide what happens in the past
July 24, 2015 01:46AM
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