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Famous Hawking Black Hole Bet Resolved?

simoniker posted more than 10 years ago | from the brittanica-please dept.

Space 500

Mick Ohrberg writes "In 1997 the three cosmologists Stephen Hawking, Kip Thorne and John Preskill made a famous bet as to whether information that enters a black hole ceases to exist -- that is, whether the interior of a black hole is changed at all by the characteristics of particles that enter it. It now looks like Stephen Hawking and Kip Thorne may owe John Preskill a set of encyclopedias of his choice, since physicists at Ohio State University 'have derived an extensive set of equations that strongly suggest that the information continues to exist -- bound up in a giant tangle of strings that fills a black hole from its core to its surface.'"

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Hawking radiation (5, Informative)

Space cowboy (13680) | more than 10 years ago | (#8434331)

Steven had posited in the 70's that the black holes leak (Hawking radiation), but the paradox is that they radiate a 'black-body' spectrum (entirely thermal radiation) in inverse proportion to their mass (so as they get smaller, the radiation increases). The problem here is that all the information went in, but it's very difficult to infer information from a black-body radiated spectrum (!). Steven therefore thinks that information is lost forever.

The article though is a bit hand-wavy over why the information is preserved in this new theory... (I guess Nth dimensional maths doesn't appeal to the reporter :-). I don't think the fact that the string-theory radius matches the black-hole radius is sufficient to prove the case, though it's an interesting pointer, a curious coincidence if indeed it is such ...

Effectively this is a conjecture - if the strings continue to exist, then they'd have the same size as the black hole appears to have. The throwaway statement " That means a black hole can be traced back to its original conditions, and information survives." seems a bit of a stretch though :-)

Simon

Re:Hawking radiation (5, Funny)

Gil-galad55 (707960) | more than 10 years ago | (#8434374)

In my physics experience, coincidence typically means you got the right answer... unless it's a test question, in which case you're probably wrong.

Re:Hawking radiation (5, Insightful)

kfg (145172) | more than 10 years ago | (#8434480)

My experience is that that sort of coincidence is suggestive, in other words you've gotten something right, but determining just what that something is is often a)problematic, and b)not always what you thought it was at first.

KFG

Re:Hawking radiation (5, Insightful)

Gil-galad55 (707960) | more than 10 years ago | (#8434534)

And then there are the times when you get lucky and get the right answer for the wrong reason... which is, I suppose, why we have peer review!

Re:Hawking radiation (5, Insightful)

dnoyeb (547705) | more than 10 years ago | (#8434611)

In my mathematical experience, coincidence usually means you have used circular logic/calculations somewhere. In effect proving your foundation.

But its always nice to figure out how you fooled yourself :)

Re:Hawking radiation (4, Funny)

dandelion_wine (625330) | more than 10 years ago | (#8434381)

No, NO, Space_Cowboy, you have got it ALL WRONG.

Now I want you to repeat after me:

- First
- Post
- !

Re:Hawking radiation (0, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#8434580)

Oh, I can't wait to read the Slashdotters trying to debate black hole phenomena with no education save some physics courses in high school.

It will sound as stupid to anyone with experience as the archetypical "your mom" and "your dad" debating computers sounds to your ears.

Re:Hawking radiation (5, Interesting)

SeanTobin (138474) | more than 10 years ago | (#8434593)

The thing about black holes emiting radiation is that they don't actually emit any radiation. Anything that enters the event horizon is gone - for good. It doesn't come back ever, even as black body radiation.

The way theorists get around this is through virtual particles. Assume that virtual particle pairs are blinking in and out of existance all the time, but are never noticed because before they become 'real' particles they destroy each other (think particle/anti particle). The fun part comes when the particles appear on opposite sides of an event horizon. One gets sucked into the black hole, and the other becomes a full-fledged particle with a small chance of escapeing. Because the escapeing particle was never in the event horizon to begin with, it can contain no information from within the black hole.

Now, how the black hole doesn't gain mass from the anti-particle I'm not quite sure... I'll leave that up to all the ./ theoretical physisists.

stephen lost (5, Funny)

squarefish (561836) | more than 10 years ago | (#8434333)

and he looks really pissed [theonion.com] about it too.

Re:stephen lost (1)

FrostedWheat (172733) | more than 10 years ago | (#8434411)

Prior Art [4mg.com] !

Oh wait, this isn't about patents ... n/m!

Re:stephen lost (1)

Bobdoer (727516) | more than 10 years ago | (#8434536)

He may have to do another album [mchawking.com] just about his loss.

In Soviet Russia (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#8434344)

In Soviet Russia, hole HAWKINGS YOU!!!

Re: encyclopaediae (5, Funny)

gnu-generation-one (717590) | more than 10 years ago | (#8434350)

"Stephen Hawking and Kip Thorne may owe John Preskill a set of encyclopedias of his choice"

Do they take Wiki? [wikipedia.org]

Re: encyclopaediae (0, Troll)

dasmegabyte (267018) | more than 10 years ago | (#8434367)

No, they want the accurate kind of encyclopedia.

Re: encyclopaediae (2, Informative)

Raul654 (453029) | more than 10 years ago | (#8434492)

Bzzzt. Wrong. [wikipedia.org]

Re: encyclopaediae (2, Insightful)

frazzydee (731240) | more than 10 years ago | (#8434377)

"Stephen Hawking and Kip Thorne may owe John Preskill a set of encyclopedias of his choice"
I guess so, but only if wiki is what Preskill chose.

You're more right than you think (4, Interesting)

Raul654 (453029) | more than 10 years ago | (#8434457)

Jimbo Wales (founder / benevolent dictator of Wikipedia) was recently approached [wikipedia.org] by a major publishing company about the possibility of a printed version of Wikipedia.

Re:You're more right than you think (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#8434491)

+3, Funny

It was a Playboy subscription... (1)

rmdyer (267137) | more than 10 years ago | (#8434524)

I thought this was a Playboy subscription. Did someone change the wording here?

+1

Almost - wrong bet though (5, Interesting)

Raul654 (453029) | more than 10 years ago | (#8434589)

Hawking has made several bets. You are thinking of his naked singularities bet (A naked singularity is a black-hole without event horizons) Hawking bet Roger Penrose(?) a subscription to Penthouse (I think) that they could not exist. He lost.

Quick, the 1-2-3 Profit/encyclopedia jokes! (-1, Offtopic)

janbjurstrom (652025) | more than 10 years ago | (#8434355)

n/t

Is it me (-1, Offtopic)

Pingular (670773) | more than 10 years ago | (#8434360)

or does physics seem a bit weird? I mean, there's stuff that physicisists say, which makes sense, but it just sounds so illogical (like they're so determined to make something make sense, they blindly look for something that'll fit the problem, even if it's obvious that it's probably not right). Just my $0.01

Re:Is it me (5, Insightful)

microbox (704317) | more than 10 years ago | (#8434383)

Maybe the real workings of the universe can't be explained with everyday experiences. After all, quantum stuff and relativity has little bering on hunting, communicating and making little ones, and that's what our brains were designed to do.

Re:Is it me (4, Insightful)

Pingular (670773) | more than 10 years ago | (#8434424)

Maybe the real workings of the universe can't be explained with everyday experiences. After all, quantum stuff and relativity has little bering on hunting, communicating and making little ones, and that's what our brains were designed to do.
To me, it makes more sense that the real workings of the universe would be incredibly simple rather than complex. Not sure why, it just seems to make sense :)

Re:Is it me (5, Insightful)

mugnyte (203225) | more than 10 years ago | (#8434525)

I don't understand this at all. Our everyday experiences are simply products of the "real workings" of the universe. You may think Newtonian physics suffices for what you need, but your "little ones" wouldn't be able to dream of being an astronaut, science professor, astronomer, or a myriad of other things without these other new-fangled theories.

When we achieve enough proficiency in our understanding to make accurate predictions, and validate them with observations, then publish them, have them scrutinized publicly and repeated, we're making vast improvements to the knowledge humanity holds. The fact that we're in so esoteric topics for new things at the moment just goes to show how valid this system is; we've built a cohesive worldview in physics down to the quantum level. There, mysteries abound, but it doesn't mean we shouldn't be there.

Re:Is it me (4, Funny)

NotQuiteReal (608241) | more than 10 years ago | (#8434393)

Yes, it is just you. I knew everything, once - it came to me in a flash of insite... then, incoming email chimed for my attention, I read some spam, had another beer and read Slashdot until something on TV caught my eye.

Now, I forgot what it was that I thought I knew.

Re:Is it me (2, Funny)

pyros (61399) | more than 10 years ago | (#8434520)

Now, I forgot what it was that I thought I knew.

So would you call it an unknown unknown, or a known unknown?

Re:Is it me (3, Insightful)

sisukapalli1 (471175) | more than 10 years ago | (#8434426)

I am a layman when it comes to physics, but let me put in my layman's two cents in...

Science normally deals with things that we observe, and scientists try to find out the whys and the hows. Once in a while, though there are things that are sometimes theoretically identified before, and it may be a while before such things are actually observed.

S

Speak English: Is it I: +1?, Aristide Kidnapped (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#8434557)

Once again, our famous Thug-In-Chief [whitehouse.org] has ignored international law and has, as previous thugs have done, executed a coup d'etat [democracynow.org] in Haiti.

So much for "free nations don't attack other nations" (one of many Bushisms).

Very truly yours,
K. Trout

Re:Is it me (4, Funny)

E-Rock (84950) | more than 10 years ago | (#8434437)

I found that in physics, going with 'common' sense or your gut was a good way to look stupid while making it obvious that you didn't review the lecture material the night before.
On the flip side, the math always did a hell of a job predicting the outcome of experiments.

status of string theory (5, Interesting)

microbox (704317) | more than 10 years ago | (#8434361)

Is there any hard evidence that string theory is correct?

I'd be holding onto my bet a little longer I think=)

Re:status of string theory (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#8434384)

nope

Re:status of string theory (3, Informative)

illuvata (677144) | more than 10 years ago | (#8434408)

string theory does not predict anything that could be tested, so there is nno evidence for/against it.
this is also why quite a few people feel its more philosphy than science

Re:status of string theory (1)

kundor (757951) | more than 10 years ago | (#8434461)

My physics professor certainly thinks string theory is a load of bunk, and as he's the most authoritative figure on physics I know, I'm taking his word for it. ;) So I certainly wouldn't be ponying up the encyclopedia.

Re:status of string theory (0, Flamebait)

Stuwee (739059) | more than 10 years ago | (#8434545)

String theory is just what it says on the tin - a theory. And this new theory is exactly that too - a theory. So a theory based upon a theory looks rather shaky to me... not even the Aardvark tome in sight yet.

Re:status of string theory (1)

silicon not in the v (669585) | more than 10 years ago | (#8434570)

You can't prove a bet with theoretical equations! Geez, get back to us when they have:
a) proof
or
b) a real headline

Tangle of strings? (5, Funny)

ENOENT (25325) | more than 10 years ago | (#8434364)

Yikes! Sounds like all information that enters a black hole turns into spaghetti code!!! The horror! The horror!

Spaghetti code (1)

Hannes Eriksson (39021) | more than 10 years ago | (#8434404)

GOTO or COMEFROM?

Re:Tangle of strings? (5, Funny)

DoctorScooby (669432) | more than 10 years ago | (#8434432)

Yikes! Sounds like all information that enters a black hole turns into spaghetti code!!! The horror! The horror!

Now I know where Windows98 really came from.

Re:Tangle of strings? (1)

AndroidCat (229562) | more than 10 years ago | (#8434537)

the information continues to exist -- bound up in a giant tangle of strings that fills a black hole from its core to its surface.
I was thinking that it sounded a lot like Slashdot. :^P

Re:Tangle of strings? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#8434583)

So, that would be "garbage in, spaghetti out?" Gee, we could replace many &lt insert least favorite language&gt coders with one black hole.

So (-1, Flamebait)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#8434371)

Who has to give who a blow job?

Of course (5, Insightful)

FreeLinux (555387) | more than 10 years ago | (#8434375)

This all works on the assumption that you accept string theory in the first place. While string theory may be the darling of astro physicists at the moment, it remains far from proven. If I were Haking, I'd defer payment for a while.

Re:Of course (4, Insightful)

Bingo Foo (179380) | more than 10 years ago | (#8434582)

String theory has not been proved, but neither has any physical theory. Perhaps you are complaining that unlike other physical theories, it is unlikely that an experimentally accessible test for disproving string theory can be found. This makes string theory not really "science," in the sense that we normally understand it.

Additionally, people's names are conventional rather than scientific, but their legal usage has necessitated their meticulous recording. While it can't be proven, it can be verified beyond a reasonable doubt that the Lucasian Chair of Mathematics at Cambridge is Stephen Hawking.

Re:Of course (1)

techno-vampire (666512) | more than 10 years ago | (#8434585)

I'm thinking that all you can tell from this is what particles went into the black hole, and nothing else. That is, you can't tell what atoms they came from or anything about larger structure. Of course, said structure would have been ripped apart by the time the particles were engulfed anyway so that makes sense. Still it's rather interesting that you may be able to find that much out, even though the "information" seems to be useless.

Re:Of course (1)

hauer (569977) | more than 10 years ago | (#8434602)

This all works on the assumption that you accept string theory in the first place.

Not really. (Apart from the fact that that non-string theories very often become "stringy" at extreme conditions, thus it just might be that everything is stringy...)

The information paradox suggests that any black hole sucks up all the incoming the information (which then disappears). This is a purely theoretical question with absolutely no way of testing experimentally. The answer by Mathur is similarly theoretical: he constructs one black hole (happens to use string theory for it) for which this is apparently not true, i.e. the information is preserved. One counterexample is enough.

Sad news - Stephen Hawking, dead at 58 (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#8434385)

I just heard the sad news on the intarweb superhighway, reviled paraplegic adulterer and gangsta rapper Stephen "M.C." Hawking was found dead in his Cambridge crib early this morning. Funkmaster Hawking apparently died due to multiple gunshots to the head. His assistant is being held by Scotland Yard for questioning.

You may not have understood the deep cosmological significance of "A Brief History of Rhyme", but there is no denying his crucial role in the establishment of gangsta cosmology. Truly an English perverted icon. He will be missed.

YOU 4R3 TEH L4M3R (-1, Flamebait)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#8434422)

These "jokes" are so old and over done that you have got to be the biggest lamer in the universe to post it.

So the question is... (0, Offtopic)

NeoTheOne (673445) | more than 10 years ago | (#8434386)

is this like an infinite number of monkeys with those typewriters? And since time passes so strangly there, why the heck haven't we detected x-rays sending Shakespear?

Re:So the question is... (1, Funny)

frazzydee (731240) | more than 10 years ago | (#8434412)

is this like an infinite number of monkeys with those typewriters? And since time passes so strangly there, why the heck haven't we detected x-rays sending Shakespear?
No, i think that we haven't detected Shakespear because we've been looking for him rather than Shakespeare

Re:So the question is... (1)

Narcissus (310552) | more than 10 years ago | (#8434567)

Except that seeing as William himself spelt his name in different ways, including Shakespear (apparently [houseofnames.com] ), maybe the grand parent post is on to something!

Re:So the question is... (1)

Gil-galad55 (707960) | more than 10 years ago | (#8434496)

Actually, if you work out the math, even using super-super-monkeys, the probability of a bunch of them producing the proverbial Hamlet in the lifetime of the universe is absolutely nill. But that's beside the point anyway!

Re:So the question is... (1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#8434596)

Actually, no. Think about it in the sense of work = rate * time. Hamlet is a finite piece of work, let's call it H.

H = R * T

We're talking an infinite number of super-super monkeys. Hell, even an infinite number of retarded monkeys would have rate = infinity.

H = (infinity) * T or T = H / (infinity) or T = 0

So, given these infinite retarded monkeys, all works produced and ever to be produced instantly.

Re:So the question is... (1)

NeoTheOne (673445) | more than 10 years ago | (#8434597)

ah yes, but RTFM and you will see that exist in MULTIPLE DIMENSIONS! (insert gasp of awe here) So that's like parallel processing with hyper-dimensional-threading!

....meanwhile Intel patents Multi-Dimensional Monkey Technology (MDM Technology! tm) and is promptly sued by SCO for copyright infrigement since all those monkey would have had to have writen system V code in all that hyper-dimensional time


and indeed, yea verily, I welcome our multi-dimensional monkey overlords but remember that in Soviet Blackhole, singularity observes YOU!

Tracing origins... (5, Insightful)

Theaetetus (590071) | more than 10 years ago | (#8434387)

From the article: Since Mathur's conjecture suggests that strings continue to exist inside the black hole, and the nature of the strings depends on the particles that made up the original source material, then each black hole is as unique as are the stars, planets, or galaxy that formed it. The strings from any subsequent material that enters the black hole would remain traceable as well.

That means a black hole can be traced back to its original conditions, and information survives.

But, if the information about the origins is contained in the strings inside the black hole, that information is inside the event horizon, and can not be observed by anything outside the event horizon. Maybe the information survives, but there's no way to get at it... Unless I'm missing something here? Cosmologists?

-T

Re:Tracing origins... (4, Funny)

Tumbleweed (3706) | more than 10 years ago | (#8434398)

> Unless I'm missing something here? Cosmologists?

"Is there a cosmologist in the house? Anyone? My god, get this man a cosmologist!"

Re:Tracing origins... (1)

PhuCknuT (1703) | more than 10 years ago | (#8434475)

Maybe there's a relationship between vibrations in the strings within the black hole and hawking radiation (or something similar) releasing energy from the black hole. Maybe hawking radiation could be caused by strings near the surface tunneling out? In which case, the information going in could be related to the info coming out. Just what came to mind while reading the article, IANAP.

Re:Tracing origins... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#8434554)

hawking radiation doesn't come from the blackhole, so what you are saying makes no sense.

Sweet (0, Redundant)

Laconian (578463) | more than 10 years ago | (#8434389)

I wonder when the day will come when our computers have built-in singularities for mass data storage.

Re:Sweet (1)

Revek (133289) | more than 10 years ago | (#8434423)

yes but how would you carry them around.

I'll tell you when [in relativistic terms] (1)

NotQuiteReal (608241) | more than 10 years ago | (#8434444)

Three Months after you buy a storage solution that is almost as massive, but was twice the price. D'oh.

Re:Sweet (5, Funny)

Lehk228 (705449) | more than 10 years ago | (#8434449)

FAT32 is a pretty good data singularity, goes in but won't come back out

Re:Sweet (1)

Ashtead (654610) | more than 10 years ago | (#8434608)

Actually, the closest equivalent to a black hole is the /dev/null -- everything sent there can never reappear.

Let's get closer... (5, Funny)

Lattitude (123015) | more than 10 years ago | (#8434391)

I say we send someone to find out for sure... Darl, you interested?

Re:Let's get closer... (4, Funny)

McBride, Darl (699981) | more than 10 years ago | (#8434448)

Yes.

Re:Let's get closer... (1)

Biege (128246) | more than 10 years ago | (#8434581)

Wouldn't the black hole evaporate after that?

No need (1)

bad_fx (493443) | more than 10 years ago | (#8434594)

...Darl's already got his head really far up a big black hole...

SHit (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#8434392)

Out come all the 'expert physicists' to give their opinions.

As soon as we figure out how to retrieve ... (5, Funny)

burgburgburg (574866) | more than 10 years ago | (#8434397)

the information in the black hole, we'll finally find Amelia Earhart. And Jimmy Hoffa. And hundreds of millions of socks. And Duke Nukem Forever.

Re:As soon as we figure out how to retrieve ... (5, Funny)

psoriac (81188) | more than 10 years ago | (#8434511)

And Duke Nukem Forever.

Hey, this is theoretical physics, keep your pseudo science out of here!

Re:As soon as we figure out how to retrieve ... (1)

brain1 (699194) | more than 10 years ago | (#8434517)

OMG... Nasa is launching Geraldo to the nearest one. He's going to have a special on what they (didnt?) find inside!

Of course (2, Funny)

stratjakt (596332) | more than 10 years ago | (#8434402)

Information wants to be free!

Yuk Yuk

Shut up, I could have posted a goatse link and referring to black holes.

Troll (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#8434406)

*slurp slurp slurp*

Tangle of Strings (5, Funny)

Gleng (537516) | more than 10 years ago | (#8434414)

bound up in a giant tangle of strings that fills a black hole from its core to its surface

Sounds like the back of my desk!

Simple question maybe (1, Flamebait)

198348726583297634 (14535) | more than 10 years ago | (#8434419)

The gears turn slowly in processing that article, and I'm left with a question someone smarter than me ought to know - what is a string? What would one look like or how could one be described?

Re:Simple question maybe (1)

Ruzty (46204) | more than 10 years ago | (#8434476)

C?
char *stringVar[1024];

Or perhaps Java?
String stringVar = new String();

Maybe you prefer PERL?
my $stringVar = '';

That's how I describe some of my strings...
-Rusty

Re:Simple question maybe (5, Informative)

benna (614220) | more than 10 years ago | (#8434501)

Why not consult Official String Theory Web site [superstringtheory.com] :)

Re:Simple question maybe (1, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#8434531)

An array of characters.
Computer Science 101, fool.

Re:Simple question maybe (4, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#8434600)

A very tiny dimension all curled up on itself as opposed to extending to infinity (like we're typically familiar with). If a foam in a bubble bath is the whole universe, a bubble in the foam might be analogous to a string. Space is soap, we're not allowed to see it directly, but we can see its effect.

String theory has modest successes with some things, and monsterous problems with others. It's essentially built to explain why gravity is so weak. At distances smaller than strings gravity is as strong as all the other forces. But it doesn't overwhelm everything at large scales because gravity is the only force which can see the strings, and so it leaks off into these other dimensions untimately becoming very dilute.

The hope of theoreticall physicists is to unite gravity with the other forces, understanding everything about it's divergance, hopefully uniting quantum electro/chromodynamics with general relativity creating one theory to explain them all, and, in mathmatics, bind them.

OMFG!!! Black holes abound!!! (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#8434420)

See this [lickmewhereipee.com] story at JPL for more info. It will shed a lot more light on an area that is not normally well lit.

Yeah, right. (2, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#8434421)

... physicists at Ohio State University 'have derived an extensive set of equations that strongly suggest that the information continues to exist -- bound up in a giant tangle of strings that fills a black hole from its core to its surface.'

Sure they do. Physics is the new theology.

Shoot it first, then ask questions (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#8434428)

With a vector cannon! That's what you do to farked space.

*sob* It must be so sad in there. (5, Funny)

Andy Smith (55346) | more than 10 years ago | (#8434450)

the information continues to exist -- bound up in a giant tangle of strings
Aw! Information wants to be free.

all those lost by that article, raise your hands.. (4, Funny)

The Other White Boy (626206) | more than 10 years ago | (#8434504)

*raises hand*

Re:all those lost by that article, raise your hand (1)

CowboyNick (612553) | more than 10 years ago | (#8434584)

HA! I couldn't even understand the summary....

Physicist-speak (2, Funny)

jasondlee (70657) | more than 10 years ago | (#8434530)

I think these physicists think that they're so much smarter than the rest of us that they can string a bunch of big words together in a sentence that really makes no sense at all and pass it off on us as the greatest discovery ever, assuming that we're ignorant enough to take their word for it. After reading that article intro, I think they're making a safe bet... :)

It has to be said (2, Funny)

Guspaz (556486) | more than 10 years ago | (#8434532)

1. Read up on advanced physics
2. Make bet against famous physicists
3. ???
4. Profit!

Re:It has to be said (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#8434599)

That's just plain ol' not funny anymore.

Information? Not Matter? (5, Funny)

ackthpt (218170) | more than 10 years ago | (#8434533)

In 1997 the three cosmologists Stephen Hawking, Kip Thorne and John Preskill made a famous bet as to whether information that enters a black hole ceases to exist

Slashdot, where information goes to die.

Oh my God! (1, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#8434539)

'have derived an extensive set of equations that strongly suggest that the information continues to exist -- bound up in a giant tangle of strings that fills a black hole from its core to its surface.'

They have, of course, been to my companys headquarters, which explains their source. If he could only explain how to get information back, I might be able to do my job...

The Catch? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#8434544)

It now looks like Stephen Hawking and Kip Thorne may owe John Preskill a set of encyclopedias... in bed!

Ohio State University? (-1, Offtopic)

Whispers_in_the_dark (560817) | more than 10 years ago | (#8434555)

Ok it's offtopic, but as a former attendee of the mentioned university, I must note that it is "The Ohio State University", not just (implied any) "Ohio State University". And for God's sake will someone please tell the local PBS announcer that the station's initials (WOSU) are not pronounced double-you-oh-ess-shoe.

Would this have any bearing on evaporation? (1)

myowntrueself (607117) | more than 10 years ago | (#8434564)

IIRC, the guys at CERN are about to start pumping out black holes on the assumption that this is safe since the Emminent Mr Hawkings Predicts that they will 'evaporate' before they can eat anything and that Mr Hawkings couldn't *possibly* be wrong about something like that...

Does this 'discovery' change anything in this regard?

Wow, what a gig (4, Funny)

digrieze (519725) | more than 10 years ago | (#8434565)

I have to change careers. These physicists (sp?) have just created the biggest manefestation of a quantom physics illustration ever (namely scrondiggers (sp?) cat). The black hole is the box, the information entering the event horizon is the cat. Anything at the singularity is not observable and is therefore in a permanent state of flux between states (not really, but our ignorance of what's going on creates that condition). When we make observation our predispositions on the data influence the observation and change the reality. In other words YOU CAN'T BE WRONG NO MATTER WHAT YOU SAY!

Is there some way I can get this gig?

Too bad for Kip Thorne (1)

overbyj (696078) | more than 10 years ago | (#8434569)

If I remember correctly, Kip Thorne would have received a subscription to Playboy if he had won. Too bad for him that he didn't when. He could have done theoretical astrophysics and found out what Ms. March's turn-offs are.

Itchy Ass (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#8434576)

The Famous Hawking Black Hole is on his ass, seeing as how he can't wipe it himself. Man! Wonder what he does when it itches?

The least of his worries... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#8434577)

"It now looks like Stephen Hawking and Kip Thorne may owe John Preskill a set of encyclopedias of his choice, since physicists at Ohio State University 'have derived an extensive set of equations that strongly suggest that the information continues to exist"

I'm sure that losing a bet is the least of his worries...

http://www.nytimes.com/2004/01/24/international/ eu rope/24HAWK.html?ex=1390280400&en=e88eb4bbbbd9a343 &ei=5007&partner=USERLAND

What we really want to know is... (1)

freeze128 (544774) | more than 10 years ago | (#8434592)

Which one went into the black hole to find out?

I'm sure the bet will be collected... (1, Informative)

BigBadBus (653823) | more than 10 years ago | (#8434595)

when Professor Hawking is released from hospital following a recent health scare...and also when the police have finished their investigation into who has been abusing and torturing him for months now.

Paul
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