Why is the Universe so Friggin’ Confusing?

Should we really expect the Universe to fit nicely with our perceptions of the world? Should it agree nicely with ‘common sense’? Some people think so, but there’s no reason it should. In fact the Universe doesn’t really fit in with common sense at all, especially in the quantum world. There are some profoundly disturbing and philosophically challenging facts about the Universe that have come to light through modern cosmology. Whilst you may think ‘this doesn’t make any logical sense, how can this be true?’, things such as quantum physics do actually ensure that everything works. Without it protons, neutrons and electrons wouldn’t be able to stick together to make the elements and so on.

Now, I’m no expert, I don’t pretend to be, but I want to discuss the most disturbing theory of modern science: string theory. Or, to be more precise, the Multiverse, where there are many, perhaps and infinite number of, universes.

Here is a recent video from TED presented by Brian Greene, a very well respected theoretical physicist. The video is 20 minutes long but it is very interesting (apart from the annoying sound effects).

Pretty remarkable, huh? And my hunch (I know I shouldn’t have hunches) is that the Multiverse theory is correct. The disturbing thing though, something that Brain Greene forgets to mention is that this can also mean that there are Universes in which I have written all of this backwards, or in another language, or indeed a Universe in which I actually became an astronaut (can I go to that Universe please?) This, I find, is profoundly disturbing though and I end up asking myself some very deep, unanswerable questions.

What do you think of it all?

It’s almost here

Brace yourselves.

I’ve been anticipating this for some time (as have many others) for Prof Brian Cox’s new series ‘Wonders of the Universe’. The second his previous series ended the first question was ‘So, what’s next?’ He said on Twitter there would be another series. I’ve followed him tediously (but non-stalkerish!) seeing where abouts the BBC Wonders team are. Where are they filming today? What’s been going on? Thankfully the team have been keeping loyal twitterers informed by posting the occasional photo or video. They’ve been to Africa again, a huge glacier and up in Norway. All to make us jealous too I expect.

Anyway the trailer, here it is, accompanied by the superb music by John Murphy that was originally on the movie ‘Sunshine‘. I cannot wait, this series is truly going to rival Cosmos as the best scientific TV programme in history.

And if you’re on twitter Brian Cox is there @ProfBrianCox and the Wonders team are there @BBC_Wonders

Enjoy the series! :D