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Reality? What reality?

I guess now that Annie has linked to me about it, I’d better post this.

Recent experimentation  confirms a strong interpretation of Bell’s Inequality.

Some physicists are uncomfortable with the idea that all individual quantum events are innately random. This is why many have proposed more complete theories, which suggest that events are at least partially governed by extra “hidden variables”. Now physicists from Austria claim to have performed an experiment that rules out a broad class of hidden-variables theories that focus on realism — giving the uneasy consequence that reality does not exist when we are not observing it (Nature 446 871).

What does this mean?  Well, in a short version, it means this:

  •  you can’t explain the universe at a quantum level without “spooky action at a distance.”  Two quanta, once they’ve interacted, “know” their mate’s state.  instantly.
  • you can’t explain the universe with rules that say there is a “reality” that exists without someone to see it.  Schrödinger’s Cat is neither alive, nor dead, until you open the box.
  • And the universe isn’t just odder than we imagine, it may be odder than we can imagine.

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