Questioning the universe – Stephen Hawking

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In keeping with the theme of TED2008, professor Stephen Hawking asks some Big Questions about our universe — How did the universe begin? How did life begin? Are we alone? — and discusses how we might go about answering them.


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7 COMMENTS

  1. I find it most interesting and agreeable that both Professors Hawking and Krauss concur that the universe quite probably came into being spontaneously and from nothing.
    I just love listening to what comes from Stephen Hawking’s mind.

  2. Naturalist1- But the more I listen to Krauss, the more I’m convinced that “nothing” does not exist and did not exist at the time of the BB. Nothingness in space seems a very busy place with virtual particles blinking in and out of existence.

    Just as our recent belief the Milky Way was the entire universe now seems provincial, I think the notion that our universe is all there is will one day be similarly regarded. For all we know, the reactions that created our BB might be rather commonplace in the grander scheme.

    So many questions- so little access to people who might be able to answer them.

  3. In reply to #5 by rjohn19:

    Naturalist1- But the more I listen to Krauss, the more I’m convinced that “nothing” does not exist and did not exist at the time of the BB. Nothingness in space seems a very busy place with virtual particles blinking in and out of existence.

    Just as our recent belief the Milky Way was the entire universe now seems provincial, I think the notion that our universe is all there is will one day be similarly regarded. For all we know, the reactions that created our BB might be rather commonplace in the grander scheme.

    So many questions- so little access to people who might be able to answer them.

    Krauss does propose going deeper than this. Although very speculative this quantum behavior may apply to space and time as well as the laws of physics themselves. Two deeper nothings than the nothing you speak of. Which is still not absolutely nothing but it’s damn close and perhaps close enough. As nothing as nothing gets?

    It is a consequence of most successful inflationary theories that our visible universe and indeed all of our universe is not all there is. There are many more universes separated by inflating space. If inflation turns out to be verified (go Planck!) then this multiverse picture will become more serious. If so, then yes, big bangs happen all the time.

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