There are more things in heaven and earth, Horatio, than are dreamt of in your philosophy—or even Albert Einstein’s philosophy. It was not long after people were confused by Relativity than ever stranger things were being noticed by physicists. Here’s what drove the great physicist to exclaim, “God does not play dice!” and to call the whole affair spooky action at a distance:
How appropriate for Halloween!
- Nothing travels faster than the speed of light (186,000 miles per second), right?
- There are experiments in which photons are fired in opposite directions, each going at the speed of light.
- If you change the charge of one of those photons, the one speeding away from it at the speed of light is changed to the opposite polarity.
- How is that possible, since the two photons would have to be communicating at a speed greater than the speed of light?
Let me express it another way, according to RawStory.Com:
But let’s begin with the paper, published in Nature, which proves that the world is inherently spooky. All systems described by quantum mechanics can display so-called entanglement. For example an electron, like a coin, can spin in two directions (up and down). But two electrons can be entangled so that a measurement of the spin of one electron will define the spin of the other.
According to quantum mechanics, the spin of one electron cannot be known in advance of a measurement yet will be perfectly correlated with the other, even if it is in a distant location. Einstein didn’t like this because it seemed to imply that the information can be sent from one electron to the other instantaneously—breaking a rule that says nothing can travel faster than the speed of light. He instead thought that there were “hidden variables” encoded in each electron that could determine the result if only we could access them.
Things just got all crazy and non-intuitive from that point on. Could it be that “things” can exist whose parts are far apart yet could communicate instantaneously with one another? Could I flash a thought wave to my brother on Planet XZ-74Ah several light years distant and tell him to put a quarter in the parking meter because it’s about to run out? Is all really one in a way that proves Einstein wrong?
Check out this video from Doctor Quantum on the subject of entanglement, which is what this phenomenon is called.
Hmmm, maybe. Meanwhile, I have to let Schrödinger’s cat out of his box.