big bang

Category archives for big bang

“The radiation left over from the Big Bang is the same as that in your microwave oven but very much less powerful. It would heat your pizza only to -271.3°C, not much good for defrosting the pizza, let alone cooking it.” -Stephen Hawking One of the most powerful predictions of the Big Bang — the…

“Much later, when I discussed the problem with Einstein, he remarked that the introduction of the cosmological term was the biggest blunder he ever made in his life. But this “blunder,” rejected by Einstein, is still sometimes used by cosmologists even today, and the cosmological constant denoted by the Greek letter Λ rears its ugly…

“Scientific discovery and scientific knowledge have been achieved only by those who have gone in pursuit of it without any practical purpose whatsoever in view.” -Max Planck Tomorrow morning, at 8 AM my time, the press conference that cosmologists have spent the past decade waiting for will finally happen, and the Planck satellite — the…

An Atom in the Universe

“The atoms come into my brain, dance a dance, and then go out – there are always new atoms, but always doing the same dance, remembering what the dance was yesterday.” -Richard Feynman Here you are, a human being, a grand Universe of atoms that have organized themselves into simple monomers, assembled together into giant…

From Nothing to You in 10 Sentences

“It surprises me how disinterested we are today about things like physics, space, the universe and philosophy of our existence, our purpose, our final destination. It’s a crazy world out there. Be curious.” -Stephen Hawking One of the most existential questions humanity has ever asked is the question of our origins: where do I come from? Inspired by…

When the Universe was twice as hot

“Hell must be isothermal; for otherwise the resident engineers and physical chemists (of which there must be some) could set up a heat engine to run a refrigerator to cool off a portion of their surroundings to any desired temperature.” -Henry Albert Ben One of the most amazing ideas to come out of our observations…

“Every man has a right to utter what he thinks truth, and every other man has a right to knock him down for it.” – Samuel Johnson I have a six-sided die. I’m going to roll it ten times, and record each roll. And when I’m done, I’m going to have an incredibly rare, bet-you-can’t-reproduce-it result!…

What we learn just by being here

“Everyone carries a piece of the puzzle. Nobody comes into your life by mere coincidence. Trust your instincts. Do the unexpected. Find the others.” -Timothy Leary Here we are, on planet Earth, the product of generations of civilization-building, maybe four-billion years of evolution on our world, around 13.7 billion years into the existence of our…

“We have been forced to admit for the first time in history not only the possibility of the fact of the growth and decay of the elements of matter. With radium and with uranium we do not see anything but the decay. And yet, somewhere, somehow, it is almost certain that these elements must be…

Weekend Diversion: Discovering the Universe

“The vastness of the heavens stretches my imagination. It does not do harm to the mystery to know a little about it. For far more marvelous is the truth than any artists of the past imagined it.” -Richard Feynman What did you think about, wonder about, and dream about the first time you saw the…