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First Observational Test of the "Multiverse"

samzenpus posted more than 3 years ago | from the que-the-evil-doppelgangers dept.

United Kingdom 258

An anonymous reader writes "The theory that our universe is contained inside a bubble, and that multiple alternative universes exist inside their own bubbles – making up the 'multiverse' – is being tested observationally by UK physicists, who are searching for disk-like collision patterns in the cosmic microwave background (CMB) radiation. Though CMB is generally thought of as a uniform schmear of radiation extending in all directions in our universe, in fact, they say if a multiverse exists, there ought to be imprints trapped in the muck like footprints of where our universe banged into others."

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258 comments

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first (4, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#36978262)

in this universe at least.

first (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#36978326)

in an another universe

Nonexistent (1)

chronokitsune3233 (2170390) | more than 3 years ago | (#36978356)

in another universe

Nonexistent (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#36978454)

in this universe

(Ha!)

Re:first (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#36978350)

I beat you to fp in an alternate universe.

Re:first (1)

buanzo (542591) | more than 3 years ago | (#36978360)

in this universe at least.

COOLEST "first post" EVER.

Re:first (1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#36979072)

in this universe at least.

COOLEST "first post" EVER.

You have read them all? In all universes? ;)

Collision? (4, Insightful)

pushing-robot (1037830) | more than 3 years ago | (#36978274)

If universes can physically interact with each other, can each really be called a "Universe"?

Re:Collision? (4, Funny)

flaming error (1041742) | more than 3 years ago | (#36978302)

Yes. Inaccurately perhaps, but life goes on, the sun will still rise and fall.

Hume and the Irony Universe (1)

Oxford_Comma_Lover (1679530) | more than 3 years ago | (#36978378)

Yes. Inaccurately perhaps, but life goes on, the sun will still rise and fall.

"Flaming Error" is claiming the sun will rise tomorrow...

It reminds me of Hume.

Somewhere, an Irony Universe has just bumped into ours.

=)

Re:Hume and the Irony Universe (1)

Heed00 (1473203) | more than 3 years ago | (#36978554)

It reminds me of Hume.

Hmm, it reminds me of Sextus Empiricus [wikipedia.org] . Either way, it's formally known as the Problem of Induction [wikipedia.org] .

Re:Hume and the Irony Universe (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#36979122)

Which was, for the most part, solved by Richard Cox, see The Algebra of Probable Inference by same, or Probability Theory, the Logic of Science by E. T. Jaynes. Can we know that the Sun will rise tomorrow? No, we can't "know" much of anything. However it is easy to show on the basis of the simplest of axioms that it is overwhelmingly sensible to believe that it probably will. So overwhelmingly that the difference between this belief, founded in a mix of both direct empirical experience and consistent reason derived from other direct empirical experience, and "certain knowledge" is one that is really utterly irrelevant. Jaynes asserts that comparative probable knowledge is best expressed on a log scale, in decibels -- my belief that the Sun will appear on the Eastern horizon of a rotating Earth on schedule is many, many, many decibels larger than any of the alternative hypotheses one might care to offer. Infinitely certain, no, but best belief, absolutely, overwhelmingly, so much so that only a really, really silly person would seriously assert the contrary.

More on topic, I actually hate the term Multiverse with a passion because it is a direct contradiction of the concept and definition of the Universe. I personally use the term "cosmos" to refer to a space-time (possible) continuum in any discussion of the possibility of our spacetime being embedded in or a projection from a larger space, one that might possibly include other spacetimes or other forms of hidden dimensions. The Universe is everything that has objective being and hence includes all spacetimes and hidden dimensions that are "real" (have objective being). Note well that this definition works just fine in any theory of imperfect empirical knowledge and best belief. I may not know or have experience of everything that has objective being -- in fact I have little knowledge and no experience at all of most of what (apparently) has objective being in this one spacetime I seem to inhabit -- but that doesn't stop the parts I haven't seen and don't know about from existing, if they exist.

Gosh, while I'm ragging on Multiverses did I mention that I hate the multiple worlds interpretations of quantum theory too, on very similar grounds? Sometimes physicists get carried away while writing their science fiction novels...

rgb

Re:Hume and the Irony Universe (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#36979242)

However it is easy to show on the basis of the simplest of axioms that it is overwhelmingly sensible

"Sensible" is subjective. It's probably sensible to many people, though.

Re:Hume and the Irony Universe (1)

Heed00 (1473203) | more than 3 years ago | (#36979244)

Hehe , seems all he has said is, "yep, probable is the best we can do."

"Infinitely certain, no, but best belief, absolutely, overwhelmingly, so much so that only a really, really silly person would seriously assert the contrary."

And then invests that "probable" with enough weight to make someone dissenting "feel silly" -- I wonder how silly the guy who found the first black swan felt.

Re:Hume and the Irony Universe (1)

flaming error (1041742) | more than 3 years ago | (#36978898)

The irony is that the theory that the sun rises and falls proved overly simplistic, but we keep repeating the inaccurate terminology even today. And nobody really notices or cares.

Re:Collision? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#36978446)

For now.

Re:Collision? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#36978716)

"The sun would not have risen, a meer ball of flaming gas would have illuminated the world."

Re:Collision? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#36978310)

Are atoms uncuttable?

Re:Collision? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#36978344)

They are with MY butterknife!

Re:Collision? (2, Informative)

blair1q (305137) | more than 3 years ago | (#36978508)

"Can" and "Could" are two different things, especially when you're looking at the CMB. It emanates from the initial state of the universe, before the time when the laws of physics as we know them had formed. The other universes are not this universe because they degenerated to different laws. But before then, it was one big multiverse stew.

Or some silly shit like that.

Re:Collision? (1)

somersault (912633) | more than 3 years ago | (#36978636)

Also if our universe is a slice of a higher dimension (ie if our own universe is a 4 or more dimensional slice of an n dimensional universe), there may be others in other slices that we have no way of detecting (that I know of at least :p ). Such alternate universes would be pretty meaningless if we had no way of testing for their existence though..

Re:Collision? (1)

blair1q (305137) | more than 3 years ago | (#36979188)

Such alternate universes would be pretty meaningless if we had no way of testing for their existence though..

Unless they had a way of testing for our existence, and of developing a way to tell us of it.

Re:Collision? (2)

Sicily1918 (912141) | more than 3 years ago | (#36978812)

"Can" and "Could" are two different things, especially when you're looking at the CMB. It emanates from the initial state of the universe, before the time when the laws of physics as we know them had formed.

Uhhh... no.

Re:Collision? (4, Funny)

Dachannien (617929) | more than 3 years ago | (#36978848)

Yes, but our universe is called Universe A. You can be Universe B.

Re:Collision? (1)

geekoid (135745) | more than 3 years ago | (#36979018)

Bite my glorious golden ass.

Sure (1)

brokeninside (34168) | more than 3 years ago | (#36978876)

In the same way the router that sits in most living rooms is called a "cable modem."

It's not technically accurate, but most people know what it means.

It only gets confusing when discussing philosophical issues conflate the definition used in one realm for the definition used in another realm.

Re:Collision? (1)

MindStalker (22827) | more than 3 years ago | (#36978892)

Well theoretically they would each be started by separate big bangs, and possibly even have slightly different laws of physics. So yes Universe is what we are calling our enclosure that contains our physical realm, with multiverse being the larger unit.

Re:Collision? (2, Funny)

l0ungeb0y (442022) | more than 3 years ago | (#36979170)

Oh my god -- wow -- what a mind blowing concept...
If more than one universe, can it really be called a universe?

Maybe we will need to call it something else...
If more than one universe - hmmm - that'd possibly be very many.
Many is multiple of one...

I got it!

We'll call it a MANYVERSE!
No... wait .. that doesn't have a catchy enough ring to it.

Many... mega... multi... multiple... hmmm....
Multipleverse?? multiver..

Ahh yes that's it -- A MULTIVERSE!

Or you could have just read the damned summary.

They say a lot. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#36978284)

They say a lot.

Re:They say a lot. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#36978374)

They certainly do.

Re:They say a lot. (1)

somersault (912633) | more than 3 years ago | (#36978656)

That's what she said. You mom says that "she" says a lot too though. She also says "hi".

government funding? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#36978346)

I think it's just another alibi to get government funding. Multiverse collision can be seen? Are you kidding me? If it is true then we must have been collided into pieces!

Re:government funding? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#36978514)

"I don't understand it, so it can't possibly be valid!"

This... (1)

elsurexiste (1758620) | more than 3 years ago | (#36978380)

This is why I love Physics. The mere fact that we are considering such a colossal hypothesis and devise a method to verify/falsify it by observing reality...

Re:This... (1)

blair1q (305137) | more than 3 years ago | (#36978538)

This is why I love Physics. The mere fact that we are considering such a colossal hypothesis and devise a method to verify/falsify it BY OBSERVING REALITY!

FTFY

Re:This... (1)

elsurexiste (1758620) | more than 3 years ago | (#36978870)

This is why I love Physics. The mere fact that we are considering such a colossal hypothesis and devise a method to verify/falsify it BY OBSERVING REALITY!

FTFY

Sorry, I have a sore throat. ;)

Re:This... (2)

johanatan (1159309) | more than 3 years ago | (#36978904)

No, not verify. You can only say that the tiny amount of observation we've directed at the hypothesis is consistent or inconsistent with it.

Multiverse collisions? Oh really? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#36978390)

Does this mean if shown to be true we'll need to change the name of our universes birth to the Big Bang Bang Bang Bang Bang Bang Bang Bang?

Re:Multiverse collisions? Oh really? (1)

DarwinSurvivor (1752106) | more than 3 years ago | (#36978670)

Only if we can devise another test to show that the other universes experienced the big band at the same time as us.

Re:Multiverse collisions? Oh really? (1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#36978788)

Complete with Les Brown and his Band of Renown?

ansiotropies aren't emperical evidence (0, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#36978392)

There is nothing testable about any multiverse hypothesis and nothing being measured here. The.CMB's variability is indistinguishable from noise.

Re:ansiotropies aren't emperical evidence (-1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#36978458)

And get offa my lawn you damn kids, with yer crazy ideas and interference patterns... feh!

Re:ansiotropies aren't emperical evidence (1)

Oxford_Comma_Lover (1679530) | more than 3 years ago | (#36978564)

There is nothing testable about any multiverse hypothesis and nothing being measured here. The.CMB's variability is indistinguishable from noise.

I hypothesize that the multiverse exists, and that the portion of it that is that portion of our universe which I observe will continue to exist even if I type squee.

squee.

Oh sh--

Re:ansiotropies aren't emperical evidence (1)

rubycodez (864176) | more than 3 years ago | (#36978578)

There are experiments in progress to determine if that is true or not, you have a functioning crystal ball?

How long until multinet? (1)

improfane (855034) | more than 3 years ago | (#36978426)

Hopefully we can pick up some new television channels and radio stations. I'm getting pretty bored with the universe our universe offers.

Or multinet. Think of the porn!

in a galaxy far away (1)

alienzed (732782) | more than 3 years ago | (#36978492)

I'm way ahead of you.

No pictures of the background radiation??? (-1, Troll)

astrodot (2428728) | more than 3 years ago | (#36978450)

Shame, here [aeonity.com] you go

DO NOT CLICK (2)

XanC (644172) | more than 3 years ago | (#36978482)

goatse

Re:DO NOT CLICK (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#36978688)

too late :/

Re:DO NOT CLICK (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#36978766)

Thanks for the notice, I almost clicked

BS (0, Troll)

roman_mir (125474) | more than 3 years ago | (#36978470)

This can't be right, how can we, "inside" our own universe observe anything else "outside"our universe? Wouldn't anything we observe withing our universe be our universe? "Uni" - one. If there is some sort of a collision between "our" and "foreign" verses, wouldn't they be one verse? This is truly a bunch of bullshit.

If somehow there were multiple "universes" (whatever that would mean), why would they be colliding and what does it mean - colliding, in the sense that, our laws of physics with the gravity and space and time only make sense within our universe, so the word "colliding" wouldn't even mean anything on the outside, because on the so called outside there wouldn't be anything resembling what we have inside.

If there are multiple 'bubbles' of some sort, each one created from its own big bang, no way we can detect something that is on the outside, because anything we 'collide' with would mean that it can collide with us - it has similar enough physics to do it and whatever the bubbles are withing provides the opportunity for such collisions.

AFAIC this is all nonsense, there cannot be a division between physics that is used to observe our universe and physics that can be used to observe some form of external phenomena, so if somebody is getting a grant for it, they are just full of it and the government is again, paying for shit just because it can, it has money to burn and it has that type of a policy, not because it makes sense.

Re:BS (5, Insightful)

MightyMartian (840721) | more than 3 years ago | (#36978490)

Or maybe you just don't what what you're talking about, and think that playing a public game of semantics is a suitable replacement for knowledge.

Re:BS (0, Troll)

roman_mir (125474) | more than 3 years ago | (#36978526)

It's not semantics to say that if phenomena can be observed within our space, then there is no reason to say that this phenomena falls outside of purview of normal astro-physics, but then this grant doesn't make sense.

Re:BS (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#36978556)

Actually, yes it is.

Re:BS (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#36978692)

You aren't making a single bit of sense, in fact. Even in the first post.
All you are doing is arguing about semantics in a world that doesn't care about semantics of pitiful verbal languages. (worse, ENGLISH of all languages, the worst hackjob of a language ever)

Our universe is all we know of SO FAR.
There may very well be a huge bubble that containers universes bouncing around inside of it, colliding with each other in probably huge numbers of different, weird dimensions.
Blasting people thinking outside the box? What has science come to?
When did fringe-science become some taboo subject?
If it wasn't for people researching on the edges of science, you'd not be moaning about semantics right now, in fact, none of us would even be here.

Re:BS (-1, Flamebait)

roman_mir (125474) | more than 3 years ago | (#36978730)

I am fine with people searching for whatever outside of this universe, as long as I am not paying for any of it. Ever.

Re:BS (0)

MightyMartian (840721) | more than 3 years ago | (#36978756)

Then you'll gladly give back any benefits you got from the space program or basic research, since apparently you don't need it.

What a fucking retarted twat you are. Another stupid-ass Libertarian, the most pathetic, useless and creatively devoid people in the world. Selfish and self-defeating. I wish the lot of you would go found your own fucking country and in fifty years we could go back and look at the dead wasteland you created with your lack of vision.

Re:BS (-1, Troll)

roman_mir (125474) | more than 3 years ago | (#36978780)

I wish there was never any money spent by any government on any programs, ever. Of-course this is loose change, when talking about insignificant amounts spent on anything beyond military and social modification programs, but I still don't want any government doing anything beyond barest minimum of most bare minimums that is so bare, it barely exists. You can write that down.

Re:BS (1)

MightyMartian (840721) | more than 3 years ago | (#36978866)

Well of course you wish that, because you're a selfish sociopath like all your fellow Libertarians. Well, actually, most of them are just plain stupid. I haven't decided whether you're clinically dangerous or just clinically moronic.

Re:BS (-1, Offtopic)

roman_mir (125474) | more than 3 years ago | (#36978908)

Those selfish sociopaths built the country and the economy you are wasting now on social modification programs as well as wars and all the other nonsense that you want your government to do for you. You wasted all of that wealth on that nonsense, so spare me the 'who is stupid' comment.

Re:BS (1)

MightyMartian (840721) | more than 3 years ago | (#36978922)

The economy was built in all sorts of ways. One of the chief ways from WWII onward was via defense contractors.

Oh, I forgot, you're the chronically confused halfwit who probably thinks the taxpayer didn't pay for the invention of such critical items like the Internet.

Re:BS (-1, Flamebait)

roman_mir (125474) | more than 3 years ago | (#36978978)

The Darpa funded TCP/IP is a trivial consequence of the computers and networks that proceeded it, as the ideas for packet protocol were lifted from pots.

As to your idiotic belief, that US economy was built past WWII as opposed to past the Civil war and before the Fed and IRS were created, well that's the problem with government education in US, I can't blame you for that much.

Re:BS (1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#36978890)

then move to Somalia, you'll love it

Re:BS (0)

roman_mir (125474) | more than 3 years ago | (#36978942)

I like Somalia, it's good for investment, everybody is bearish, they are obviously wrong. But it's quite telling that some idiots today in US believe it makes sense to tell people who actually believe in first principles of individual freedoms, on which the country was founded, that those people must leave it. I think it's not a bad advice, by the way.

Re:BS (-1, Troll)

roman_mir (125474) | more than 3 years ago | (#36978830)

Oh, and by the way, you schmuck, USA was that country that you "wish the lot of you would go found" etc.etc. The problem became that morons like you multiply and destroy it by voting for ever more government, which is only happy to become ever more powerful.

Re:BS (1)

MightyMartian (840721) | more than 3 years ago | (#36978852)

The problem was that the Jeffersonian-Madisonian state tore itself to pieces and Lincoln came along and had to redefine it so there still would be a United States. Look at pictures of the Civil War. There's your fucking Libertarian state, lying their in ruins.

Libertarianism doesn't work.

Re:BS (0)

roman_mir (125474) | more than 3 years ago | (#36978884)

US past civil war and before 1913 was extremely libertarian and it became the country that was able to fund all of this nonsense, including wars and so called social obligations (human freedom modification programs) etc. You are squandering the wealth that was acquired by the country that was libertarian.

Re:BS (2, Insightful)

MightyMartian (840721) | more than 3 years ago | (#36978948)

Wow, you're just making it up now. Typical Libertarian. Go back to jerking off to pictures of Ron Paul, and leave serious historical and economic analysis to people who don't treat politics and economics like some sort of a religious statement.

Re:BS (1)

NeverVotedBush (1041088) | more than 3 years ago | (#36978818)

Well, I don't want to pay for any of the roads you drive on, or for the police and firemen that protect you.

So there.

(See how that works?)

Re:BS (-1, Offtopic)

roman_mir (125474) | more than 3 years ago | (#36978856)

I agree with you 100%, you shouldn't pay for anything that is not for you. It works, it only doesn't work in a broken society that doesn't care about freedoms anymore that US became.

Re:BS (1)

MightyMartian (840721) | more than 3 years ago | (#36979198)

Since the society you described has never existed, not even in the pre-Civil War United States, would you care to describe how you could possibly describe how your ideal society isn't the broken one?

Re:BS (1)

MightyMartian (840721) | more than 3 years ago | (#36978770)

The point is that it isn't our space. That two manifolds can influence each other in some way doesn't somehow make them the same manifold, any more than two balloons colliding suddenly share the same internal structure.

This is pretty basic cosmological principles here.

Re:BS (1)

EdIII (1114411) | more than 3 years ago | (#36979096)

I don't think you listened to what he said, and your snarky and denigrating remarks are not constructive to a really interesting conversation we could all be having. This is most certainly not an issue of semantics.

The multiverse theory, as I have always understood it, posits that for every possible "choice", universes are created to express each on the possibilities, or "choices". This could be purely causality, or could be free will. Who really knows.

However, and this is not semantics, a universe is generally defined as " the totality of everything that exists".

If we use that definition, then he is correct about this being nonsense because then every newly created universe is in fact splitting into two universes. Quasi-Mitosis on a grand scale if you will. If this is true, then we have been expanding at an exponential rate since the beginning of the universe itself, and all of these "bubbles" are in fact, part of a single universe.

If there is a center bubble universe, it must split into two. So do all the other bubbles simply get pushed out of the way at speeds clearly above the speed of light itself? Think about it. In the space of a "choice", countless "bubble" universes must move to make way for the two "bubbles" that just got created.

It really is nonsense.

The multiverse theory, as I have always understood it, states that new universes get created. This strongly implies, by the definition of the words, that no interaction is possible between universes naturally . If we can travel from one universe to another universe, it won't be through conventional space travel, wormholes, or space folding, since the two universes are not actually connected.

I am more willing to accept the possibility that there are multiple, if not infinite, big bangs going on in the universe. What we understand to be the universe is really just a cohesive collection of galaxies and spaces between them that may, or may not, be in a constant state of expansion and contraction. Perhaps a "universe" expands without stopping and eventually the energy and matter of that collection of galaxies collides with another collection. Quite similar to how galaxies are colliding with each other now.

Who could ever really know?

I just know that roman_mir has a pretty damn good point, and I would hardly call it pedantic and solely based on semantics. There is some logical reasoning behind it, and if we are going to keep language and terms consistent in science, then this whole idea is nonsense on the face of it.

Re:BS (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#36978576)

The universes were once connected but somehow the space-time between two regions of the same biverse expanded rapidly (read faster than "c"). so we can no longer get any information from that region except what was available when that inflation started. That information is what is observable. Anything that happened after that time in the other universe is not observable.

Re:BS (1)

rubycodez (864176) | more than 3 years ago | (#36978608)

The multiverses are hypothesised to have been a part of and able to interact with our universe in the past, but not now. The scientists wish to see if there is any lasting imprint on our universe from that past time

Re:BS (0, Troll)

roman_mir (125474) | more than 3 years ago | (#36978650)

and I wish to see who is paying for this mumbo jumbo.

Re:BS (1)

rubycodez (864176) | more than 3 years ago | (#36978808)

Multiverses are considered one viable interpretation of quantum mechanics, why pass up a chance to check it out? Next to cost of another resource or power war against a brown-peopled non-christian country, the cost will be minuscule and no one will get hurt.

Re:BS (1)

geekoid (135745) | more than 3 years ago | (#36979082)

mumbo jumbo... OK, clearly you are a troll or an ignorant knuckle dragger.

Re:BS (2)

Blackwulf (34848) | more than 3 years ago | (#36979174)

I am going to make the assumption that you are living in the US (based on your other posts.)

Considering that the summary says that "UK Physicists" are researching this, my guess is that neither you nor I are paying for this as a US taxpayer.

Re:BS (1)

blair1q (305137) | more than 3 years ago | (#36978642)

We are looking at the dents on the inside surface of our universe made by something that bumped into it from outside, way in the past.

And our laws of physics hold only inside our universe, and only after a certain time since the Big Bang. Before that time, anything could have happened. This is one hypothesis we can check.

My question is how they're supposed to tell what caused a particular distortion in the background radiation. A quick look at the COBE plot [chaos.org.uk] shows it to be a swiss cheese. So how do you differentiate between multiverses and sharp sticks poking into it?

Re:BS (0, Troll)

roman_mir (125474) | more than 3 years ago | (#36978690)

"inside surface"? Inside surface?

I have a bridge on some inside surface and it can be acquired for an insignificant amount of only a couple of million.

Re:BS (1)

blair1q (305137) | more than 3 years ago | (#36979168)

The universe started as a point and is expanding. The event horizon of this expansion is the inside surface. We can't see it, but we can see just inside of it. The radiation reaching us from it was sent to us at an instant after the big bang, and has taken this long to get here, even though we started out less than a femtometer away from it.

At least, that's the theory. There's another theory that you can have it your way at Burger King. Both are testable.

Re:BS (1)

Chris Burke (6130) | more than 3 years ago | (#36978928)

This can't be right, how can we, "inside" our own universe observe anything else "outside"our universe? Wouldn't anything we observe withing our universe be our universe?

We can't, and it would.

What we would hypothetically be observing is the effect, in our universe, of interactions with another universe. Things in our universe from which we would infer the existence of others.

It is certainly possible that there are interactions between these universes that are not possible within them, and vice versa. For example we live within a (nominally) 4-dimensional space-time. This bubble of space time could interact in a higher dimension with other bubbles of space-time, having an observable effect on the nature of our space-time bubble, but not allowing us to directly look across into the other.

If we expand our notion of "universe" to include these extra interactions and ergo anything capable of producing them, then sure we've automatically ruled out any kind of falsifiable multiverse, because if we can observe it then it's not a multiverse, and if a multiverse exists we can't observe it. By definition. Meaning, not with any consequence for reality.

Meaning, it would still make sense to look for indications in the CMBR of such interactions, regardless of what you'd call it if they were found.

Re:BS (1)

QuasiSteve (2042606) | more than 3 years ago | (#36979100)

Perhaps a simple analogy is the search for extrasolar planets.

Although recently some have been imaged directly, the way to usually find them is not to look for the planets themselves.. they tend to be too dim and small ..but to look for the effect they have on their nearby star(s). Be it a periodic shifting in the star's velocity relative to Earth or a periodic dimming of its apparent output, etc.
So we don't observe the planet directly, but by looking for the signs we'd expect a planet to have on something else, we can infer their existence.
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Extrasolar_planet#Detection_methods [wikipedia.org]

Re:BS (1)

Chris Burke (6130) | more than 3 years ago | (#36979220)

Unfortunately, a planet is too "normal" to be of any use as an explanatory device in situations like this. I've tried using the example of inferring the existence of exoplanets from gravitational evidence to explain how we infer the existence of dark matter from gravitational evidence. But dark matter is "too weird", so even though it's relying on the same force, one is perfectly acceptable, but the other must just mean that our understanding of gravity is wrong.

A multiverse, inferred from evidence in the CMBR and created by a presumably unknown form of interaction? Yeah, not going to help.

But aside from that it is a good analogy about inference. :)

Re:BS (1)

geekoid (135745) | more than 3 years ago | (#36979068)

Person who doesn't understand something monumentally complex claims it can't be true, news at 11.

Stop taking the literal mean of the words which are just an abstract way to explain something incredible complex. If they jsut laid out the math and said 'there you do, that's why' would understand it?

OTOH, anyone who thinks that video in correct probably can't think more then two steps anyways.

Re:BS (-1, Offtopic)

roman_mir (125474) | more than 3 years ago | (#36979116)

Yeah, more like: person who understands how money is extracted from tax payers by government and distributed through various programs on, what amounts to basically welfare for these 'findings' is asking the question: why are governments doing anything when they need to cease all of their operations immediately, including this?

I can easily accept that there maybe other so called 'universes' out there. What I accept with much less enthusiasm is government spending on it or anything, actually.

Not a uniform schmear of radiation (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#36978506)

A lightly-toasted half-torus of spacetime with knots of matter surrounding some capers and a brane of smoked salmon describes the perfect universe.

Multiverse "pressure" (4, Interesting)

Reality Master 101 (179095) | more than 3 years ago | (#36978602)

You know, my 11-year-old son said something kind of interesting last night, on this subject. This month's article in Scientific American is about multiverse theories, and he asked me (paraphrase), "If the universe is contained among a bunch of other universes, and the universe is expanding, isn't it possible that the other universes are exerting pressure on our universe as it's expanding?"

I'd never really thought about that before, and it may be an unanswerable question (along the lines of, "what are the multiverses contain in"), but I thought that was an intriguing thought.

Meanwhile on earth ... (0)

alexibu (1071218) | more than 3 years ago | (#36978764)

Others worked on more pressing problems, like preventing catastrophic global warming, trying to avoiding using the remaining oil by fighting over it and making sure we are all fed.

Re:Meanwhile on earth ... (1)

aix tom (902140) | more than 3 years ago | (#36978906)

Probably not so long ago, someone probably told the person experimenting with agriculture to stop that nonsense, and go find some nuts to feed the tribe for a day.

Re:Meanwhile on earth ... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#36979250)

Others worked on more pressing problems, like preventing catastrophic global warming, trying to avoiding using the remaining oil by fighting over it and making sure we are all fed.

Why?

Failing geometry (0)

ynotds (318243) | more than 3 years ago | (#36978894)

Two arbitrary lines in a 2D plane will meet with probability 1.0.
Two arbitrary lines in 3D space will meet with probability 0.0.
(In each case, the exceptions are vanishingly few relative to the norm.)

Extrapolating this to expanding 3D bubbles in almost any higher dimensional space the probability is again 0.0. Even more obviously, there is nowhere for collisions to happen if those bubbles are each creating their own space, not infecting some pre-existing space. The latter would have way too many other observable consequences to be a serious proposal.

(I have played with enough simplistic models [twistet.com] to be currently comfortable with a notion [meme.com.au] that the implosion of a Type 1a supernova might be a good model for a cosmic egg which gives rise to a chaotic larval stage in which such conservative bubbles arise. (The political metaphor is not lost either.))

Re:Failing geometry (1)

mj1856 (589031) | more than 3 years ago | (#36979094)

Two arbitrary lines in a 2D plane will meet with probability 1.0.
Two arbitrary lines in 3D space will meet with probability 0.0.

What you should be considering is:

Two arbitrary lines in a 2D plane will meet with probability 1.0.
Two arbitrary planes in 3D space will meet with probability 1.0.
Two arbitrary cubes in 4D space will meet with probability 1.0.

Re:Failing geometry (1)

SoftwareArtist (1472499) | more than 3 years ago | (#36979186)

Two arbitrary lines in a 2D plane will meet with probability 1.0.
Two arbitrary planes in a 3D space will meet with probability 1.0.
Two arbitrary N-1 dimensional slices through an N dimensional space will meet with probability 1.0.

But of course, universes are not lines, planes, or anything of the sort. And the question is not, "Will two arbitrary universes collide," but rather, "What is the average number of collisions a universe will experience with the infinite other universes in the multiverse?"

So what's your point?

Through the Wormhole (1)

mj1856 (589031) | more than 3 years ago | (#36978968)

Morgan Freeman already told me all I needed to know about this a couple of months ago. [youtube.com] Start around 14:14 in the video for the relevant info. Seriously - it's worth watching.

Re:Through the Wormhole (1)

mrxak (727974) | more than 3 years ago | (#36979228)

My favorite part is where the guy is playing with a balloon inside a dodecahedron, which probably took significant time to assemble, and he's all like "we looked for these circles, and uh, we didn't find any." In my head, I imagine him thinking to himself, "did I just get punked?"

Hidden Reality, by Brian Greene (2)

rocket rancher (447670) | more than 3 years ago | (#36979214)

Just finished reading The Hidden Reality [wikipedia.org] by Brian Greene, a respected string theorist. He explicitly mentions mining the CMB data for exactly this kind of observation.

Double-slit Experiment (1)

Steneub (1070216) | more than 3 years ago | (#36979226)

I tend to think the double-slit experiment is evidence of a multiverse. The other 'verses are collide and cause the interference pattern on the other side of the slit.
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