black holes

Category archives for black holes

“Thus it seems Einstein was doubly wrong when he said, God does not play dice. Not only does God definitely play dice, but He sometimes confuses us by throwing them where they can’t be seen.” –Stephen Hawking You’ve no doubt heard that Stephen Hawking is claiming that the black hole information paradox has now been…

Earlier this week, Stephen Hawking shook up the world when he announced that he had uncovered the solution to the black hole information paradox at a conference in Stockholm. When particles fall into (or create) a black hole, information is encoded on the black hole’s surface, but when the black hole decays into radiation, that information…

“All enterprises that are entered into with indiscreet zeal may be pursued with great vigor at first, but are sure to collapse in the end.” –Tacitus If you want to form a structure like a planet, star or black hole, you need a large amount of mass together in one place. The way to bring…

There’s something puzzling about black holes, if you stop to consider it. On the one hand, they’re objects so massive and dense — compacted into such a small region of space — that nothing can escape from it, not even light. That’s the definition of a black hole, and why “black” is in the name.…

“Nothing is lost… Everything is transformed.” –Michael Ende If you take all the kinetic motion out of a system, and have all the particles that make it up perfectly at rest, somehow even overcoming intrinsic quantum effects, you’d reach absolute zero, the theoretically lowest temperature of all. But what about the other direction? Is there a…

They say ‘A flat ocean is an ocean of trouble. And an ocean of waves… can also be trouble.’ So, it’s like, that balance. You know, it’s that great Oriental way of thinking, you know, they think they’ve tricked you, and then, they have.” –Nigel Tufnel When you travel towards an object like a moon,…

Does a black hole have a shape? Is there a front and back or side view? Does it look the same from all vantage points? When you think about a black hole, you very likely think about a large amount of mass, pulled towards a central location by the tremendous force of gravity. It’s not…

“And no one showed us to the land And no one knows the where’s or why’s But something stirs and something tries And starts to climb towards the light” –Pink Floyd, Echoes It’s pretty difficult to imagine, but a little over 300 years ago, a supernova — a dying, ultramassive star — exploded, giving rise…

“I just think too many nice things have happened in string theory for it to be all wrong. Humans do not understand it very well, but I just don’t believe there is a big cosmic conspiracy that created this incredible thing that has nothing to do with the real world.” –Ed Witten So the cat…

“It is by going down into the abyss that we recover the treasures of life. Where you stumble, there lies your treasure.” –Joseph Campbell When we look at the centers of galaxies, it’s no surprise that there are large black holes there, millions or even billions of times the mass of the Sun. As we…