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Feb 16

Physicists may have glimpsed a particle that is a leading candidate for mysterious dark matter but say conclusive evidence remains elusive.

A 9-year search from a unique observatory in an old iron mine 2,000 feet underground has yielded two possible detections of weakly interacting massive particles, or WIMPs. But physicists, who include two University of Florida researchers, say there is about a one in four chance that the detections were merely background noise -- meaning that a worldwide hunt involving at least two dozen different observatories and hundreds of scientists will continue.

It's important to note, that two detection events does not mean that dark matter has been physically observed.  Needless to say, these two detection events will have to be duplicated before anything definitive can be known.  To read the rest of the article, click here.

Big Bang Quark-Gluon Plasma Created at Brookhaven

"The goal has been a state of matter called a quark-gluon plasma, which theorists believe existed when the universe was only a microsecond old."

Feb 16

Kelvin's "None Dare Call It Reason"

Posted by: JackSarfatti |
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Thought-provoking reviews of important books spanning C. P. Snow's "Two Cultures."



This pretty much sheds considerable doubt on Max Tegmark's refutation of the Hameroff-Penrose idea in my opinion.

Feb 15

Worst Case Scenarios?

Posted by: lensman |
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Just as an exercise, I'm going to present some worst case scenarios for the prospects of humanity ever getting to other star systems. These are purely technical and pragmatic scenarios, and do not include other possible scenarios like humanity annihilating itself in global warfare, poisoning the planet with their waste products, or triggering catastrophic global climate changes, along with all the other non-human induced planetary extinction level events that have occurred, and will continue to occur, such as mega-solar storms, asteroid impacts, mega-volcanoes, not to mention extra-solar cosmic events like supernovae and gamma ray bursts, etc.. Did I miss anything?  I'm sure I did.  Anyway, here we go:

Scenario #1: Warp drives of any kind are proven to be impossible, according to the best physics known on Earth.

Scenario #2: Traversable wormholes of any kind are proven to be impossible, according to the best physics known on Earth.

Scenario #3: Given even the most advanced and accepted theory, and best possible propulsion technologies known on Earth, such as nuclear fusion, or matter-anti-matter annihilation drives, the vast distances of interstellar space, and the long transit times that sub-luminal velocities result in, prove too hostile for humans to overcome, much less survive.

Depressing, isn't it. But all may not be lost.

None of the above bleak scenarios takes into account the long history of anecdotal evidence that humans have been observing anomalous objects in Earth's skies, as well as interacting with extra-terrestrial, or non-terrestrial beings, for as long as art and language have been around to document such events. So, it may still be possible that highly evolved and technologically advanced extra-terrestrial, or non-terrestrial beings, have figured out how to travel to other star systems. And if these advanced extra-terrestrial, or non-terrestrial beings have figured it out, then it is certainly possible that we terrestrials will eventually figure out how it is done.

And then there's Scenario #4: That all the above accounts by humans are the product of an as yet unidentified form of mass cultural delusion or psychosis. And that we are truly alone in the Universe. I don't know about you, but I can't even allow myself to go there, because it's so utterly depressing.

Here's the good news: None of the above four scenarios have definitively been proven to be the case.  Yet.

Kim Burrafato, a.k.a. Lensman



Feb 14

Advance in Quantum Optics

Posted by: JackSarfatti |
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Feb 14

A Star Drive Video

Posted by: JackSarfatti |
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Needs Real Player


Feb 12

How Human Are We?

Posted by: lensman |
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WHEN, in 2001, the human genome was sequenced for the first time, we were confronted by several surprises. One was the sheer lack of genes: where we had anticipated perhaps 100,000 there were actually as few as 20,000. A bigger surprise came from analysis of the genetic sequences, which revealed that these genes made up a mere 1.5 per cent of the genome. This is dwarfed by DNA deriving from viruses, which amounts to roughly 9 per cent.

On top of that, huge chunks of the genome are made up of mysterious virus-like entities called retrotransposons, pieces of selfish DNA that appear to serve no function other than to make copies of themselves. These account for no less than 34 per cent of our genome.

All in all, the virus-like components of the human genome amount to almost half of our DNA. This would once have been dismissed as mere "junk DNA", but we now know that some of it plays a critical role in our biology. As to the origins and function of the rest, we simply do not know.

The human genome therefore presents us with a paradox. How does this viral DNA come to be there? What role has it played in our evolution, and what is it doing to our physiology? To answer these questions we need to deconstruct the origins of the human genome - a story more fantastic than anything we previously imagined, with viruses playing a bigger part than you might care to believe.

The above excerpt is from one of the most riveting pieces of science journalism I've read in many a day.  Be sure to read Frank Ryan's excellent article in the 29 January 2010 issue of New Scientist, "I virus: Why you're only half human." This gives new meaning to all those anecdotal stories of humans being abducted by aliens, and their DNA being extracted and used for purposes as yet unknown.  Highly recommended!


Feb 12

Is our universe a hologram?

Posted by: JackSarfatti |
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We are all agreed that your theory is crazy. The question that divides us is whether it is crazy enough to have a chance of being correct.

  • "Said by Niels Bohr to Wolfgang Pauli after his presentation of Heisenberg's and Pauli's nonlinear field theory of elementary particles, at Columbia University (1958), as quoted in Symposium on Basic Research (1959) by Dael Lee Wolfle, p. 66
  • Your theory is crazy, but it's not crazy enough to be true.
    • As quoted in First Philosophy: The Theory of Everything (2007) by Spencer Scoular, p. 89
  • There are many slight variants on this remark:
  • We are all agreed that your theory is crazy. The question which divides us is whether it is crazy enough.
  • We are all agreed that your theory is crazy. The question is whether it is crazy enough enough to be have a chance of being correct.
  • We in the back are convinced your theory is crazy. But what divides us is whether it is crazy enough.
  • Your theory is crazy, the question is whether it's crazy enough to be true.
  • Yes, I think that your theory is crazy. Sadly, it's not crazy enough to be believed."

Einstein's theory of gravity has walls of light called horizons. Some of them are observer-dependent like the Rindler horizon for a uniformly accelerating observer in flat spacetime with no intrinsic gravity curvature fields. So is our future de Sitter event horizon. The discovery of dark energy accelerating the speed of expansion of 3D space almost proves that we are 3D hologram images but the hologram "screen" is in our future not in our past! These 2D walls of light are spherical surfaces that we are inside of at the precise centers. They have fractionally charged anyonic quanta with weird quantum statistics living on them and they emit advanced Wheeler-Feynman thermal blackbody Hawking radiation whose temperature is proportional to the Newtonian g-force acceleration of gravity on the "wall"  spherical surface itself. The repulsive anti-gravity dark energy we observe on our past light cone therefore comes from the advanced Wheeler-Feynman Hawking radiation back from our future hologram de Sitter horizon in what Igor Novikov calls a "globally self-consistent loop in time." You can see a picture of this in Tamara Davis's 2004 PhD dissertation online Fig 1.1 (especially the lowest conformal time picture). Essentially at any moment along our timeline we sit at the precise centers of two spherical shells or walls of light called our past particle and our future de Sitter event horizons. However, it is our future event horizon spherical wall of light that is the most important. It is a VALIS (P.K. Dick) quantum cosmic computer with asymptote ~ 10^123 BITs (each a Planck area of 10^-66 cm^2). Indeed, the entropy of our observable piece of the multiverse is essentially the area of this future spherical shell we are inside of. In contrast, we are outside of black hole event horizons. The Arrow of Time of the Second Law of Thermodynamics is simply explained by this retro-causal hologram picture because the area/entropy of our cosmic horizon hologram screen increases from 1 BIT at inflation to 10^123 BITs rather quickly according to Tamara Davis's computer simulation in Fig 5.1 of her Ph.D work where she plots the evolution of the area/entropy of our future horizon 2D hologram screen from one BIT at inflation before the hot Big Bang to its asymptote at ~ 10^123 BITS that is creating us now as 3D IT hologram images back from our far future. That's the theory behind John Archibald Wheeler's delayed choice IT FROM BIT. Here is the Big Picture from Figs 1.1 & 5.1 of Tamara's PhD.

Our Hologram Universe adapted from T. Davis Fig1.1

Fig 5.1 below, central thin solid line shows the time evolution of the area/entropy/channel capacity of our future event horizon/hologram post-quantum conscious Omega Point VALIS super-computer (the "brane" of Hawking's "Mind of God"?). This area quickly approaches a constant value. 

Saturation of the area of our future horizon

What is important is the intersection of our future light cone with the computing spherical shell surface - that's part of the Wheeler-Feynman mechanism's "future absorber" influence functional. The anti-gravitating dark energy density in our past light cone is essentially the reciprocal area of our future horizon at its intersection with our future light cone in a globally self-consistent Novikov loop in time. Obviously, the entropy of our early universe is ~ 123 powers of ten smaller than the final asymptotic entropy of our future observable universe. This solves both the Arrow of Time mystery in Sean Carroll's From Eternity to Here as well as the cosmological constant problem in one fell swoop -- or so it appears to my mind.  Eternity is obviously in our future since our past is only 13.7 billion years old. Was Sean Carroll aware of the retro-causality implication of his title? Bernard Carr, former assistant to Stephen Hawking has mentioned my idea about this in a June 2008 paper he delivered to the Society of Psychical Research. 

Can Psychical Research Bridge the Gulf Between Matter and Mind?" Bernard Carr Proceedings of the Society for Psychical Research, Vol 59 Part 221 June 2008

This original idea of mine is crazy, no doubt, but is it crazy enough to be true?


Feb 12

Origin of inertia from hadron colliders

Posted by: JackSarfatti |
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The macro-quantum coherent vacuum superconducting condensate Higgs-Goldstone fields provide the small rest masses of lepton and quark spinors by the QCD analog of the Meissner effect in electrical superconductors via an additional Yukawa coupling to the spinors. The Meissner effect gives a rest mass to the photon inside the superconductor. The analog here is the rest masses of the three flavor SU2 weak force W-mesons,  The much larger hadron masses are from the confined zero point vacuum fluctuations of virtual particles inside the vacuum of the quarks bound by stringy virtual gluon flux tubes like rubber bands where the sticky QCD color SU3 force varies linearly with the separation between the quarks.

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