Sunday, July 25, 2004

Be warned, this could be the matrix
Sydney Morning Herald, Australia - Jul 21, 2004
Paul Davies is professor of natural philosophy at Macquarie University's Australian Centre for Astrobiology

'Multiverse Theory' Holds That the Universe is a Virtual Reality Matrix.

The multiverse theory has spawned another - that our universe is a simulation, writes Paul Davies. If you've ever thought life was actually a dream, take comfort. Some pretty distinguished scientists may agree with you. Philosophers have long questioned  whether there is in fact a real world out there, or whether "reality" is just a figment of our imagination.

Then along came the quantum physicists, who unveiled an Alice-in-Wonderland realm of atomic uncertainty, where particles can be waves and solid objects  dissolve away into ghostly patterns of quantum energy. Things get interesting when the multiverse theory is combined with ideas from sub-atomic particle physics. Evidence is mounting that what physicists took to
be God-given unshakeable laws may be more like local by-laws, valid in our particular cosmic patch, but different in other pocket universes.

He even suggests that a glitch in our simulated cosmic history may have already been discovered, by John Webb at the University of NSW. Webb has analysed the light from distant quasars, and found that something funny happened about 6 billion years ago - a minute shift in the speed of light. Could this be the simulators taking their eye off the ball?