August 25th, 2008


Nearest book meme

1. Grab the book closest to you.
2. Open it on page 123.
3. Find the fifth sentence.
4. Copy the next five sentences into your blog.
5. Tag five people. Or not.

"In the most extreme example of this, some cosmologists have seriously suggested that the entire Universe may be a quantum fluctuation. Since the Universe is about 15 billion years old and contains rather a lot of particles, this may seem hard to swallow at first. But it happens that the energy of a gravitational field is negative, in the same sense that mass energy is positive. If a tiny bubble of energy corresponding to the mass of the Universe popped into existence on the quantum scale, its mass energy and its gravitational energy could, the theory tells us, exactly balance one another, allowing the quantum universe to have essentially zero overall energy and therefore a very long lifetime. The final step in making the Universe out of nothing at all is to invoke a process called inflation, which swooshes this vastly subatomic seed up to about the size of a basketball in a fraction of a second, after which it continues expanding in a more sedate way."
---"Schrodinger's Kittens and the Search For Reality: Solving the Quantum Mysteries" by John Gribbin (Pleasure reading)

I think I will actually tag people for once. I tag kengr, consortofvenus, ysabetwordsmith, brockulfsen, and dorkphoenyx. :-)