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Food For Thought? French Bean Plants Show Signs of Intent, Say Scientists

By Linda Geddes | The Guardian

They’ve provided us with companionship and purpose during the darkest days of lockdown, not to mention brightening our Instagram feeds. But the potted cacti, yucca, and swiss cheese plants we’ve welcomed into our homes are entirely passive houseguests. Aren’t they?

Research suggests that at least one type of plant – the french bean – may be more sentient than we give it credit for: namely, it may possess intent.

The issue of whether or not plants choose their actions and possess feelings or even consciousness is a thorny one for many botanists, with the more traditional-minded strongly disputing any notion of sentient vegetation. Although plants clearly sense and react to their environments, this doesn’t mean they possess complex mental faculties, they argue.

Others, like Paco Calvo at the University of Murcia’s minimal intelligence lab in Spain, are more open-minded. Intrigued by the ability of climbing beans to sense structures such as garden canes and grow up them, he devised an experiment to investigate whether they deliberately aim for the cane, or simply bump into such structures as they grow, and then turn them to their advantage. “The question is, are they showing goal-directed behaviors consistent with anticipation and fine-scaled tweaking of their movements, as they approach?” Calvo said.

Together with Vicente Raja at the Rotman Institute of Philosophy in London, Canada, they used time-lapse photography to document the behavior of 20 potted bean plants, grown either in the vicinity of a support pole or without one, until the tip of the shoot made contact with the pole. Using this footage, they analyzed the dynamics of the shoots’ growth, finding that their approach was more controlled and predictable when a pole was present. The difference was analogous to sending a blindfolded person into a room containing an obstacle, and either telling them about it or letting them stumble into it.

“We see these signatures of complex behavior, the one, and only difference being is that it’s not neural-based, as it is in humans,” Calvo said. “This isn’t just adaptive behavior, it’s anticipatory, goal-directed, flexible behavior.”

The research was published in Scientific Reports. “Although the research seems sound, it is not clear that it teaches us much new about plant sentience or intelligence,” said Rick Karban, who studies plant communication at the University of California, Davis. “For more than a century, scientists have been aware that plants sense aspects of their environments and respond, and understanding how plants [do this] is an active area of current research. Whether you choose to consider these processes sentience or intelligence depends entirely on how to choose to define these terms.”

Calvo acknowledges that this experiment alone doesn’t prove intent, much less consciousness. However, if plants really do possess intent, it would make sense. All biological organisms require the means to cope with uncertainty and adapt their behavior to pass on their genes, but the timescale on which they operate makes this particularly imperative for plants: “They do things so slowly, that they can’t afford to try again if they miss,” Calvo said.

One possibility is that this “consciousness” arises out of the connections between plants’ vascular systems and their meristems – regions of undifferentiated dividing cells in their root and shoot tips, and at the base of leaves.

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For The First Time, Astronomers May Have Heard The Background ‘Hum’ of The Universe

By Michelle Starr | Science Alert

Based on what we know about gravitational waves, the Universe should be full of them. Every colliding pair of black holes or neutron stars, every core-collapse supernova – even the Big Bang itself – should have sent ripples ringing across spacetime.

After all this time, these waves would be weak and hard to find, but they’re all predicted to make up a resonant ‘hum’ that permeates our Universe, referred to as the gravitational wave background. And we may have just caught the first hint of it.

You can think of the gravitational wave background as something like the ringing left behind by massive events throughout our Universe’s history – potentially invaluable to our understanding of the cosmos but incredibly difficult to detect.

“It is incredibly exciting to see such a strong signal emerge from the data,” said astrophysicist Joseph Simon of the University of Colorado Boulder and the NANOGrav collaboration.

“However, because the gravitational-wave signal we are searching for spans the entire duration of our observations, we need to carefully understand our noise. This leaves us in a very interesting place, where we can strongly rule out some known noise sources, but we cannot yet say whether the signal is indeed from gravitational waves. For that, we will need more data.”

Nevertheless, the scientific community is excited. More than 80 papers citing the research have appeared since the team’s preprint was posted to arXiv in September of last year.

International teams have been working hard, analyzing data to try to refute or confirm the team’s results. If it turns out that the signal is real, it could open up a whole new stage of gravitational wave astronomy – or reveal to us entirely new astrophysical phenomena.

The signal comes from observations of a type of dead star called a pulsar. These are neutron stars that are oriented in such a way that they flash beams of radio waves from their poles as they rotate at millisecond speeds comparable to a kitchen blender.

These flashes are incredibly precisely timed, which means that pulsars are possibly the most useful stars in the Universe. Variations in their timing can be utilized for navigation, probing the interstellar medium and studying gravity. And, since the discovery of gravitational waves, astronomers have been using them to look for those, too.

That’s because gravitational waves warp spacetime as they ripple through, which theoretically should change – just very slightly – the timing of the radio pulses given out by pulsars.

“The [gravitational wave] background stretches and shrinks space-time between the pulsars and earth, causing the signals from the pulsars to arrive a bit later (stretch) or earlier (shrink) than would otherwise happen if there were no gravitational waves,” astrophysicist Ryan Shannon of Swinburne University of Technology and the OzGrav collaboration, who was not involved in the research, explained to ScienceAlert.

A single pulsar with an irregular beat would not necessarily mean much. But if a whole bunch of pulsars displayed a correlated pattern of timing variation, that could constitute evidence of the gravitational wave background.

Such a collection of pulsars is known as a pulsar timing array, and this is what the NANOGrav team has been observing – 45 of the most stable millisecond pulsars in the Milky Way.

They haven’t quite detected the signal that would confirm the gravitational wave background.

But they have detected something – a “common noise” signal that Shannon explained, varies from the pulsar to pulsar but displays similar characteristics each time. These deviations resulted in variations of a few hundred nanoseconds over the 13-year course of the observing run, Simon noted.

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Melting Icebergs Begin the Sequence that Triggers an Ice Age, Scientists Find

Source: Cardiff University

Scientists claim to have found the ‘missing link’ in the process that leads to an ice age on Earth.

Melting icebergs in the Antarctic are the key, say the team from Cardiff University, triggering a series of chain reactions that plunges Earth into a prolonged period of cold temperatures.

The findings have been published today in Nature from an international consortium of scientists from universities around the world.

It has long been known that ice age cycles are paced by periodic changes to Earth’s orbit of the sun, which subsequently changes the amount of solar radiation that reaches the Earth’s surface.

However, up until now, it has been a mystery as to how small variations in solar energy can trigger such dramatic shifts in the climate on Earth.

In their study, the team proposes that when the orbit of Earth around the sun is just right, Antarctic icebergs begin to melt further and further away from Antarctica, shifting huge volumes of freshwater away from the Southern Ocean and into the Atlantic Ocean.

As the Southern Ocean gets saltier and the North Atlantic gets fresher, large-scale ocean circulation patterns begin to dramatically change, pulling CO2 out of the atmosphere and reducing the so-called greenhouse effect.

This in turn pushes the Earth into ice age conditions.

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Global Temp Plunges 0.26C In A Month: “The Next Ice Age Has Just Started”

By Cap Allon | Electroverse

Temperatures on planet Earth have plummeted in line with the great conjunction, the ongoing magnetic reversal/excursion, and the ever-intensifying Grand Solar Minimum — the time to prepare is now: grow your own.

Since its February 2020 high of 0.76C, the UAH Satellite-Based Temperature of the Global Lower Atmosphere has plunged by almost half a degree Celsius to just 0.27C above baseline in December 2020 (the latest data-point).

UAH +0.27C Dec, 2020 [drroyspencer.com]

Looking at the Sun, the cycles, the past, and the graphs, it is reasonable to assume that there is only one way from here, and that’s down.

Sunspots (a good barometer for solar activity) were missing through most of 2020, and despite a violent uptick around the beginning of the third quarter, the magnetic signature of this cycle always appeared weak. And indeed, this uptick has proved brief as today, Jan 4, 2021, the Earth-facing solar disc is once again blank, there are zero sunspots:

Sunspots (a good barometer for solar activity) were missing through most of 2020, and despite a violent uptick around the beginning of the third quarter, the magnetic signature of this cycle always appeared weak. And indeed, this uptick has proved brief as today, Jan 4, 2021, the Earth-facing solar disc is once again blank, there are zero sunspots:

Jan 4, 2020: the sun is blank–no sunspots. Credit: SDO/HMI [spaceweather.com].

The Solar Minimum of cycle 24 was a long and deep one.

It began bottoming-out back in late 2017, and only “officially” came to an end in Dec-2019 (I say “officially” because Solar Minimum conditions actually prevailed until the third quarter of 2020–as pointed out above). The Minima has since entered the books as the longest and deepest of the past 100+ years.

Yearly mean sunspot number (black) up to 1749 and monthly 13-month smoothed sunspot number (blue) from 1749 to present [sidc.be].

It would appear that the effects of these historic conditions, combined with the preceding –and weak– Solar Minimum of cycle 23, are finally impacting Earth’s climate (events often considered the start of the next Grand Solar Minimum).

In addition, and as David Mauriello from the ORP explains, the gas giants have everything to do with the cooling/warming of the planet, on 30-year strokes via the Atlantic Multidecadal Oscillation (among other forcings). The great conjunction –combined with the magnetic reversal/excursion and the Grand Solar Minimum– means we’ve just hit the down-stroke, warns Mauriello, “and it’s down, down, down from here,” he says, adding in no uncertain terms that “the next ice age has just started”.

From November 2020 to December 2020, the global average temperature (if you believe such a thing can be measured) plunged from 0.53C above baseline to just 0.27C above baseline — the sharp drop is clearly visible in the UAH chart (shown again below), and it marks the sixth-largest drop in the datasets 504-month history.

Also worth noting is that this drop takes into account a warming Arctic –a phenomenon expected during bouts of global cooling (NASA)– and breaking down the numbers, the Arctic once again had the largest regional departure from the 30 years (1981-2010) average, at +0.59C.

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Searching For Invisible Axion Dark Matter with a New Multiple-Cell Cavity Haloscope

Figure showing the cross-sectional view of various multiple-cell (double-, quadruple-, and octuple-cell) cavities with the expected distribution of the axion-induced electric field by the resonant mode of interest. Credit: Jeong et al.

By Ingrid Fadelli | Phys.org

Over the past few decades, many experimental physicists have been probing the existence of particles called axions, which would result from a specific mechanism that they think could explain the contradiction between theories and experiments describing a fundamental symmetry. This symmetry is associated with a matter-antimatter imbalance in the Universe, reflected in interactions between different particles.

If this mechanism took place in the early Universe, such a particle might have a very small mass and be ‘invisible.” Subsequently, researchers proposed that the  might also be a promising candidate for dark matter, an elusive, hypothetical type of matter that does not emit, reflect, or absorb light.

While dark matter has not yet been experimentally observed, it is believed to make up 85% of the universe’s mass. Detecting axions could have important implications for ongoing dark matter experiments, as it could enhance the present understanding of these elusive particles.

Researchers at the Institute for Basic Science (IBS) have recently carried out a search for invisible axion dark matter using a multiple-cell  haloscope that they designed (i.e., an instrument to observe halos, parhelia, and other similar physical phenomena). Their results compared favorably to those of previous haloscope-based axion dark matter searches, highlighting the potential of the instrument they created for both dark matter searches and other physics research.

“The axion is detectable in the form of a microwave photon that it is converted into in the presence of a strong magnetic field,” SungWoo Youn, one of the researchers who carried out the study, told Phys.org. “A cavity haloscope, typically employing a cylindrical resonator placed in a solenoid to utilize resonance to enhance the signal, is the most sensitive approach to probe the well-established theoretical models.”

While cavity haloscopes could be promising tools for detecting axions, they are generally very sensitive to relatively low frequencies. This is mainly because resonant frequencies are inversely proportional to the cavity’s radius, which reduces the detection volume for high-frequency searches.

This is one of the reasons why the most sensitive axion search carried out so far, namely the Axion Dark Matter eXperiment (ADMC) by the University of Washington, set experimental limits below 1GHz. One of the possible ways to avoid this volume loss would be to bundle many smaller cavities together and combine individual signals, to ensure that all frequencies and phases are synchronized.

“This multiple-cavity system has been proposed earlier, but has not been successfully addressed, due to effects on the reliability and increased complexity of the system’s operation,” Youn said. “Our team at the Center for Axion and Precision Physics Research (CAPP) at IBS, located at the Korea Advanced Institute of Science and Technology (KAIST) in South Korea, led by myself, thus developed a novel cavity design, so-called multiple-cell cavity.”

The cavity haloscope designed by Youn and his colleagues is characterized by multiple partitions that vertically divide the volume of its cavity into identical cells. This unique design increases resonant frequencies with a minimal loss in volume. The researchers also ensured that partitions situated in the middle of the cavity are separated by a gap.

“By making all the cells spatially connected, our design enables a single antenna to pick up the signal from the entire volume and thus significantly simplifies the structure of the receiver chain,” Youn explained. “The optimally sized gap also allows the axion-induced signal to be evenly distributed over the space, which maximizes the effective volume regardless of machining tolerance and mechanical misalignment in cavity construction. I dubbed this cavity design ‘pizza cavity’ and compared the gap to a pizza saver, which keeps slices intact with its original toppings.”

The haloscope that the researchers used to conduct their experiment is the result of approximately two years of research based on simulations, followed by the fabrication of numerous prototypes. In their recent study, it was used to perform a search for axion dark matter utilizing a 9T-superconducting magnet at a temperature of 2 kelvin (−271 °C). This allowed the researchers to quickly scan a frequency range of >200 MHz above 3 GHz, which is 4~5 times higher than that covered by the ADMX experiment.

“Even if we have not observed any axion-like signal, we successfully demonstrated that the multiple-cell cavity would be able to detect high-frequency signals with high performance and reliability,” Youn said. “We also calculated that due to the larger volume and higher efficiency, this new cavity design can enable us to explore the given frequency range 4 times faster than the conventional one. I often make a humorous but meaningful statement: “If a traditional experiment takes 4 years to prove something, our experiment will take only 1 year. Our Ph.D. students can graduate a lot faster than others.'”

The study carried out by Youn and his colleagues prove the value and potential of the pizza-cavity haloscope they developed for conducting invisible  searches in high-frequency regions. In the future, it could thus aid the search for this elusive type of matter and someday perhaps even enable its detection.

“Currently, our center is also preparing for experiments by grafting several pizza cavities onto the existing systems to search for even higher-frequency axions,” Youn added.

More information: Search for invisible axion dark matter with a multiple-cell haloscope. Physical Review Letters(2020). DOI: 10.1103/PhysRevLett.125.221302.

Journal information: Physical Review Letters




2021 to Kick Off With Massive Asteroid Coming Close to Earth, Warns NASA

By | TheMindUnleashed.com

While people across the globe are bidding adieu to 2020 in hopes that the new year will bring prosperity, health, and good fortune after a bruising year, NASA is warning that 2021 will begin with a mammoth asteroid that is currently hurtling toward Earth.

The asteroid, which is known as 2003 AF23, measures 720 feet (220 meters) in diameter – or roughly as wide as the Golden Gate Bridge – and is expected to shoot past our planet at a relatively close 4.3 million miles (6.9 million km) on Jan. 3.

Another asteroid will approach our planet on Saturday. The asteroid, which has been named by NASA’s Center for Near-Earth Object Studies (CNEOS) as 2019 YB4, has an estimated diameter of roughly 26 meters, which is more than large enough to create a major blast in our skies if it strikes the Earth. It is currently en route in our direction at speeds of about 14,000 miles (22,530 km) per hour.

2019 YB4 is an Apollo asteroid, which means that it follows a very broad orbit within our solar system. The asteroid will only intersect Earth’s orbit twice as it makes its way around the sun, and its next intersection is expected on Jan. 4 at about 5:33 am EST, when it will fly by from a safe distance of 4 million miles (6.4 million km).

On the very next day, two more pieces of cosmic debris will fly by in the form of the 50-foot (15-meter) 2020 YA1 and the 69-foot (21-meter) 2020 YP4, which will make their pass at 932,00 feet and 1.3 million feet or 1.5 and 2.1 million kilometers respectively.

Prior to that, the year’s final asteroid – 2020 YB4, which measures just short of 120 feet (36 meters), or half the wingspan of a 747 – has passed by the Earth at a distance of 3.8 million miles (6.1 million km).

Fortunately, this means that at least in terms of the threat from outer space our planet managed to luck out in 2020.

As NASA’s Center for Near-Earth Object Studies explains, comets and asteroids – or near-Earth Objects (NEOs) – were nudged by the gravitational attraction of nearby planets into an orbit that allowed them to enter the “neighborhood” of our own planet Earth.

Made from water ice and embedded particles of dust, comets were originally formed in the cold outer planetary system while rocky asteroids formed in the warm, inner solar system lying between the orbits of Jupiter and Mars.

Scientists are extremely compelled by these chunks of rock and ice because they are the relatively unchanged remains left behind when the solar system formed about 4.6 billion years ago.




Researchers Achieve Sustained, High-Fidelity Quantum Teleportation

In a demonstration of high-fidelity quantum teleportation at the Fermilab Quantum Network, fiber-optic cables connect off-the-shelf devices (shown above), as well as state-of-the-art R&D devices. Credit: Fermilab

By | Phys.org

A viable quantum internet—a network in which information stored in qubits is shared over long distances through entanglement—would transform the fields of data storage, precision sensing, and computing, ushering in a new era of communication.

This month, scientists at Fermi National Accelerator Laboratory—a U.S. Department of Energy national laboratory affiliated with the University of Chicago—along with partners at five institutions took a significant step in the direction of realizing a .

In a paper published in PRX Quantum, the team presents for the first time a demonstration of sustained, long-distance teleportation of qubits made of photons (particles of light) with fidelity greater than 90%.

The qubits were teleported over a fiber-optic network 27 miles (44 kilometers) long using state-of-the-art single-photon detectors, as well as off-the-shelf equipment.

“We’re thrilled by these results,” said Fermilab scientist Panagiotis Spentzouris, head of the Fermilab quantum science program and one of the paper’s co-authors. “This is a key achievement on the way to building a technology that will redefine how we conduct global communication.”

The achievement comes just a few months after the U.S. Department of Energy unveiled its blueprint for a national quantum internet at a press conference at the University of Chicago.

Linking particles

Quantum teleportation is a “disembodied” transfer of quantum states from one location to another. The quantum teleportation of a qubit is achieved using quantum entanglement, in which two or more particles are inextricably linked to each other. If an entangled pair of particles is shared between two separate locations, no matter the distance between them, the encoded information is teleported.

The joint team—researchers at Fermilab, AT&T, Caltech, Harvard University, NASA Jet Propulsion Laboratory, and University of Calgary—successfully teleported qubits on two systems: the Caltech Quantum Network and the Fermilab Quantum Network. The systems were designed, built, commissioned, and deployed by Caltech’s public-private research program on Intelligent Quantum Networks and Technologies, or IN-Q-NET.

“We are very proud to have achieved this milestone on sustainable, high-performing and scalable quantum teleportation systems,” said Maria Spiropulu, the Shang-Yi Ch’en professor of physics at Caltech and director of the IN-Q-NET research program. “The results will be further improved with system upgrades we are expecting to complete by the second quarter of 2021.”

Both the Caltech and Fermilab networks, which feature near-autonomous data processing, are compatible both with existing telecommunication infrastructure and with emerging quantum processing and storage devices. Researchers are using them to improve the fidelity and rate of entanglement distribution, with an emphasis on complex quantum communication protocols and fundamental science.

“With this demonstration, we’re beginning to lay the foundation for the construction of a Chicago-area metropolitan quantum network,” Spentzouris said.

The Chicagoland network, called the Illinois Express Quantum Network, is being designed by Fermilab in collaboration with Argonne National Laboratory, Caltech, Northwestern University, and industry partners.

“The feat is a testament to the success of collaboration across disciplines and institutions, which drives so much of what we accomplish in science,” said Fermilab Deputy Director of Research Joe Lykken. “I commend the IN-Q-NET team and our partners in academia and industry on this first-of-its-kind achievement in quantum teleportation.




Want to jump to another reality? Maybe you already have!

Have you ever wished you could jump into another world–another reality?  Maybe you already have!

There is an unspoken assumption that we all agree that there exists one consistent set of true historical events–and therefore can expect that all our individual memories ought to correspond to this singular, objective reality.  That’s an unspoken assumption, and it’s not really questioned.  We tend to expect that all of our individual experiences and memories map onto that one, singular, objective reality.  But what if that assumption is not true?

What if we exist within a holographic multiverse of ever-shifting realities, in which we sometimes find that rather than one fixed set of historical facts, we can find ourselves remembering something different from what official historical–culturally correct–records suggest?

If we do exist within something like a holographic multiverse of ever-shifting realities, we could expect to witness what we now know as the Mandela Effect.  The Mandela Effect is the phenomenon where we actually do remember foods such as Haas avocados, and Stouffer’s Stovetop stuffing, for example. I live in California, and I always pronounced the name of these California avocados as “haaas” and I would have pronounced the word “hass” if that was how it was spelled, but I didn’t do that because it wasn’t spelled that way.  And now, it’s supposedly always been spelled “Hass” avocados.  With Stovetop stuffing, that’s a case where I clearly remember the TV commercials that very clearly stated this popular product was Stouffer’s stovetop stuffing, but now supposedly it’s always only and ever been Kraft stovetop stuffing.

And, it’s important to point out that if we are living in a holographic multiverse, as I suggest in my book, Quantum Jumps, we could occasionally expect to witness dramatic changes–such as witnessing ourselves or others undergo spontaneous remissions from injuries and illnesses.

For those of us witnessing reality shifts, quantum jumps, and the Mandela Effect, there is no need to provide “extraordinary evidence,” since those of us who are experiencers are not simply making “extraordinary claims,” but rather are simply sharing the facts of our personal experiences.  Thousands of first-hand case studies of these observations have been documented with dates, geographic locations, first-hand reports, and commentary since 1999 on the RealityShifters website.  Our ‘evidence’ exists in our awareness–in the form of qualia, which is associated with the so-called “hard problem” of consciousness.  How can you prove the concept of our unique, subjective experiences of consciousness–and reality–that we see in qualia?  This is called a hard problem, because it is not a matter that can be easily translated to materialistic form.  Similarly, we cannot prove the concept of the Mandela Effect, since it is a similarly hard problem.

As widespread as the assumption of a singular objective reality is, it directly conflicts with the idea from quantum physics that “quantum physics prohibits a single history,” as well as some recent quantum physics experimental findings that two observational devices at the same place and time can literally observe two different subjective realities.  Also, experience of the Mandela Effect is gaining traction and gaining ground.

Quantum Physics Prohibits a Single History

The purpose of the science of physics is to understand how the universe behaves by studying the behaviors of matter and energy through space and time.  Through such scientific study, physics has found some truly paradigm-shifting principles in quantum physics.

Physicists Stephen Hawking and Thomas Hertog ca-authored a paper in 2006, claiming that the Universe has no singular or unique beginning.  Hertog states, “Quantum mechanics forbids a single history.”  Hawking and Hertog referred to their theory ‘top-down’ cosmology, because instead of focusing primarily on seeking a fundamental set of initial physical laws under which the cosmos unfolded, it starts ‘at the top,’ with what we see today, and then works backwards to see what the initial conditions must have been.

The Observer’s Perspective Effect

C. Brukner’s 2019 paper described recent physics research experiments showing that two observational devices set up at the same place and set to make and record observations at the same time can–and sometimes do–make very different observations.  When we see how this physics experiment challenges objective reality, we see experimental results providing validation that we can expect to sometimes witness alternate histories from what others observe.  And this is exactly what we are observing when we notice reality shifts, quantum jumps, and the Mandela Effect.

The ‘Hard Problem’ of Consciousness

The hard problem of memory has a precedent in the so-called ‘hard problem of consciousness,’ because it delves into areas that materialist science based on material realism cannot adequately address or describe.  This hard problem has to do with why and how we have qualia, or first-person experiences that feel like something.  This is referred to as a ‘hard problem’ in contrast to such ‘easier’ matters of explaining various cognitive functions including:  learning, memory, verbal communication, and perceptual integration.

What I love about the so-called ‘hard problem’ is that it reminds me of the philosophical question, “Why is there anything at all?”  By going directly to contemplate the idea of nothingness–and somethingness–we find ourselves contemplating a cosmos outside Time and Space.  What might exist in such imagined realms?  When I imagine what lies outside of time and space, I get a sense that there exists a sense of existence in the form of wisdom of being–the inspiration behind knowledge and meaning.  We gain a sense of our true selves in the form of pure consciousness.

How can we Recognize Adjacent Realities?

Returning to the original question:  What if you want to jump into another world?  Maybe you already have!  Once we recognize that we indeed likely have jumped into other worlds, other realities–how can we learn to recognize when we are next to these adjacent realities?  We can be quite close to other possible realities in every moment.

You can ask yourself how you would feel when you are adjacent to another reality?  What are the kinds of qualia–the internal consciousness, “hard problem” stuff that can’t yet be fully recorded in accordance with methods and practices that are part of materialistic science.  There is no way to objectively document or measure such experiences, because they are so uniquely individual to each of our experiences.

But the good news is that you can tell when you are adjacent to another possible reality.  Just as you can tell when something good is cooking in the other room, because you can smell it–similarly, you can feel and sense when there is a good reality adjacent to your own.

And if you sense that there isn’t yet any such good reality, then you can change your internal emotions and energies to make yourself much more positive.  You can feel gratitude, and feel grateful.  You can feel reverence, and choose to experience Revhumanism (rather than Transhumanism).  You can become aware of the amazing opportunities in every moment, as you keep asking, “How good can it get?” and you can keep finding out.  This works even when life is as chaotic as it sometimes gets, such as during this pandemic year of 2020 going into 2021.

Acknowledging our ability to make different observations from different perspectives, we do well to remember to keep asking, “How good can it get?”  Let’s find out together!

.  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .

And I invite you to watch the companion video to this blog at:

___________________________

QuantumJumps300x150adCynthia Sue Larson is the best-selling author of six books, including Quantum Jumps.  Cynthia has a degree in physics from UC Berkeley, an MBA degree, a Doctor of Divinity, and a second degree black belt in Kuk Sool Won. Cynthia is the founder of RealityShifters, and is president of the International Mandela Effect Conference. Cynthia hosts “Living the Quantum Dream” on the DreamVisions7 radio network, and has been featured in numerous shows including Gaia, the History Channel, Coast to Coast AM, One World with Deepak Chopra, and BBC. Cynthia reminds us to ask in every situation, “How good can it get?” Subscribe to her free monthly ezine at:
RealityShifters®



Discovery Sheds Light on the Great Mystery of Why the Universe Has Less ‘Antimatter’ Than Matter

It’s one of the greatest puzzles in physics. All the particles that make up the matter around us, such electrons and protons, have antimatter versions that are nearly identical, but with mirrored properties such as the opposite electric charge. When antimatter and a matter particle meet, they annihilate in a flash of energy.

If antimatter and matter are truly identical but mirrored copies of each other, they should have been produced in equal amounts in the Big Bang. The problem is that would have made it all annihilate. But today, there’s nearly no antimatter left in the universe – it appears only in some radioactive decays and in a small fraction of cosmic rays. So what happened to it? Using the LHCb experiment at CERN to study the difference between matter and antimatter, we have discovered a new way that this difference can appear.

The existence of antimatter was predicted by physicist Paul Dirac’s equation describing the motion of electrons in 1928. At first, it was not clear if this was just a mathematical quirk or a description of a real particle. But in 1932 Carl Anderson discovered an antimatter partner to the electron – the positron – while studying cosmic rays that rain down on Earth from space. Over the next few decades, physicists found that all matter particles have antimatter partners.

Scientists believe that in the very hot and dense state shortly after the Big Bang, there must have been processes that gave preference to matter over antimatter. This created a small surplus of matter, and as the universe cooled, all the antimatter was destroyed, or annihilated, by an equal amount of matter, leaving a tiny surplus of matter. And it is this surplus that makes up everything we see in the universe today.

Exactly what processes caused the surplus is unclear, and physicists have been on the lookout for decades.

Known asymmetry

The behavior of quarks, which are the fundamental building blocks of matter along with leptons, can shed light on the difference between matter and antimatter. Quarks come in many different kinds, or “flavors”, known as up, down, charm, strange, bottom, and top plus six corresponding anti-quarks.

The up and down quarks are what make up the protons and neutrons in the nuclei of ordinary matter, and the other quarks can be produced by high-energy processes – for instance by colliding particles in accelerators such as the Large Hadron Collider at CERN.

Particles consisting of a quark and an anti-quark are called mesons, and there are four neutral mesons (B0S, B0, D0, and K0) that exhibit a fascinating behavior. They can spontaneously turn into their antiparticle partner and then back again, a phenomenon that was observed for the first time in 1960. Since they are unstable, they will “decay” – fall apart – into other more stable particles at some point during their oscillation. This decay happens slightly differently for mesons compared with anti-mesons, which combined with the oscillation means that the rate of the decay varies over time.

The rules for the oscillations and decays are given by a theoretical framework called the Cabibbo-Kobayashi-Maskawa (CKM) mechanism. It predicts that there is a difference in the behavior of matter and antimatter, but one that is too small to generate the surplus of matter in the early universe required to explain the abundance we see today.

This indicates that there is something we don’t understand and that studying this topic may challenge some of our most fundamental theories in physics.

New physics?

Our recent result from the LHCb experiment is a study of neutral B0S mesons, looking at their decays into pairs of charged K mesons. The B0S mesons were created by colliding protons with other protons in the Large Hadron Collider where they oscillated into their anti-meson and back three trillion times per second. The collisions also created anti-B0S mesons that oscillate in the same way, giving us samples of mesons and anti-mesons that could be compared.

We counted the number of decays from the two samples and compared the two numbers, to see how this difference varied as the oscillation progressed. There was a slight difference – with more decays happening for one of the B0S mesons. And for the first time for B0S mesons, we observed that the difference in decay, or asymmetry, varied according to the oscillation between the B0S meson and the anti-meson.

LHCb. Maximilien Brice et al./CERN 

In addition to being a milestone in the study of matter-antimatter differences, we were also able to measure the size of the asymmetries. This can be translated into measurements of several parameters of the underlying theory. Comparing the results with other measurements provides a consistency check, to see if the currently accepted theory is a correct description of nature. Since the small preference of matter over antimatter that we observe on the microscopic scale cannot explain the overwhelming abundance of matter that we observe in the universe, it is likely that our current understanding is an approximation of a more fundamental theory.

Investigating this mechanism that we know can generate matter-antimatter asymmetries, probing it from different angles, may tell us where the problem lies. Studying the world on the smallest scale is our best chance to be able to understand what we see on the largest scale.

Author

By | The Conversation

Professor of Particle Physics, University of Glasgow




Things To Consider When Buying LCD Monitors For Bus

Transit companies install LCD monitors on buses for several reasons. For starters, it is a perfect way of entertaining passengers, enhancing their experience while on their daily commute. The company can take advantage of the LCD monitors for buses to show a variety of entertainment content ranging from news tickers to tourist information.

LCD monitors for buses also allow transit companies to show advertisements for local companies, hence, increasing their revenue. Using GPS technology, transit companies can also choose to run ads based on the current location of their vehicles.

While there are several advantages of LCD monitors for buses, there are several things you will need to consider before purchasing and installing them.

In this post, we will take a quick look at some of the things you should consider when purchasing LCD monitors for buses.

TIPS FOR BUYING LCD MONITORS FOR BUS

There are a few things that you need to consider to ensure that the LCD monitors you intend to buy for your buses will meet your needs and those of your passengers. Here are a few of them:

  • CHECK THE COLOR DEPTH OF THE LCD MONITOR: When it comes to ensuring that your passenger has a great commute experience, prioritizing a high-quality display ranks first. This is why the color capabilities of LCD monitors for buses play a huge role in enhancing the experience of your passengers. When buying LCD monitors for your buses from reputable online stores like the Eyeride website, the first thing you should check is the color range. A good LCD monitor must have at least 260,000 colors for it to rank as a quality display. A monitor with a wide color range will have better display quality than the one with less.
  • PAY ATTENTION TO THE LCD MONITORS’ SIZE: LCD monitors for buses come in a variety of sizes up to 24 inches. Other sizes include 15”,17” 19”, and 22”. You will need to buy the LCD monitor size that suits your bus. Buying LCD monitors that are too large will cost you more and may not fit into your available space. If your bus is no longer than 7 meters, you should opt for 15-inch LCD monitors for your bus. The 17 and 19 inch LCD monitors will fit buses that are between 7 meters and 10 meters in length. Only go for the 22 and 24-inch LCD monitors for your bus if you own a large and luxury bus.
  • CHECK THE INSTALLATION METHOD FOR THE LCD MONITOR YOU INTEND TO BUY: LCD monitors for a bus can normally be installed in 3 methods which are; motorized, fixed, and manual. The best installation method for your bus will depend on your needs. For instance, the majority of city buses go for LCD monitors that are installed in a fixed way. This ensures that their screens are always available for displaying ads. Coaches and other buses often go for screens with motorized or manual installations.

CONCLUSION

Looking out for the right things before buying LCD monitors for a bus will not only ensure that you spend less. It will ensure that you get the best value for your investment.




Diet Modifications – Including More Wine and Cheese – May Help Reduce Cognitive Decline, Study Suggests

ScienceDaily

The foods we eat may have a direct impact on our cognitive acuity in our later years. This is the key finding of an Iowa State University research study spotlighted in an article published in the November 2020 issue of the Journal of Alzheimer’s Disease.

The study was spearheaded by the principal investigator, Auriel Willette, an assistant professor in Food Science and Human Nutrition, and Brandon Klinedinst, a Neuroscience Ph.D. candidate working in the Food Science and Human Nutrition department at Iowa State. The study is a first-of-its-kind large scale analysis that connects specific foods to later-in-life cognitive acuity.

Willette, Klinedinst, and their team analyzed data collected from 1,787 aging adults (from 46 to 77 years of age, at the completion of the study) in the United Kingdom through the UK Biobank, a large-scale biomedical database and research resource containing in-depth genetic and health information from half-a-million UK participants. The database is globally accessible to approved researchers undertaking vital research into the world’s most common and life-threatening diseases.

Participants completed a Fluid Intelligence Test (FIT) as part of a touchscreen questionnaire at baseline (compiled between 2006 and 2010) and then in two follow-up assessments (conducted from 2012 through 2013 and again between 2015 and 2016). The FIT analysis provides an in-time snapshot of an individual’s ability to “think on the fly.”

Participants also answered questions about their food and alcohol consumption at baseline and through two follow-up assessments. The Food Frequency Questionnaire asked participants about their intake of fresh fruit, dried fruit, raw vegetables and salad, cooked vegetables, oily fish, lean fish, processed meat, poultry, beef, lamb, pork, cheese, bread, cereal, tea, and coffee, beer and cider, red wine, white wine and champagne, and liquor.

Here are four of the most significant findings from the study:

  1. Cheese, by far, was shown to be the most protective food against age-related cognitive problems, even late into life;
  2. The daily consumption of alcohol, particularly red wine, was related to improvements in cognitive function;
  3. Weekly consumption of lamb, but not other red meats, was shown to improve long-term cognitive prowess; and
  4. Excessive consumption of salt is bad, but only individuals already at risk for Alzheimer’s Disease may need to watch their intake to avoid cognitive problems over time.

“I was pleasantly surprised that our results suggest that responsibly eating cheese and drinking red wine daily are not just good for helping us cope with our current COVID-19 pandemic, but perhaps also dealing with an increasingly complex world that never seems to slow down,” Willette said. “While we took into account whether this was just due to what well-off people eat and drink, randomized clinical trials are needed to determine if making easy changes in our diet could help our brains in significant ways.”

Klinedinst added, “Depending on the genetic factors you carry, some individuals seem to be more protected from the effects of Alzheimer’s, while other seem to be at greater risk. That said, I believe the right food choices can prevent the disease and cognitive decline altogether. Perhaps the silver bullet we’re looking for is upgrading how we eat. Knowing what that entails contributes to a better understanding of Alzheimer’s and put this disease in a reverse trajectory.”

Willette and Klinedinst acknowledge the valuable contributions of the other members of the research team: Scott Le, Colleen Pappas, Nathan Hoth, Amy Pollpeter and Qian Wang in the Iowa State Department of Food Science and Human Nutrition; Brittany Larsen, Neuroscience graduate program at Iowa State; Yueying Wang and Li Wang, Department of Statistics at Iowa State; Shan Yu, Department of Statistics, University of Virginia; Karin Allenspach, department of Veterinary Clinical Sciences at Iowa State; Jonathan Mochel, department of Biomedical Sciences at Iowa State; and David Bennett, Rush Alzheimer’s Disease Center, Rush Medical Center, Rush University.


Story Source:

Materials provided by Iowa State University. Originally written by Dan Kirkpatrick. Note: Content may be edited for style and length.


Journal Reference:

  1. Brandon S. Klinedinst, Scott T. Le, Brittany Larsen, Colleen Pappas, Nathan J. Hoth, Amy Pollpeter, Qian Wang, Yueying Wang, Shan Yu, Li Wang, Karin Allenspach, Jonathan P. Mochel, David A. Bennett, Auriel A. Willette. Genetic Factors of Alzheimer’s Disease Modulate How Diet is Associated with Long-Term Cognitive Trajectories: A UK Biobank StudyJournal of Alzheimer’s Disease, 2020; 78 (3): 1245 DOI: 10.3233/JAD-201058



How Hope Can Make You Happier With Your Lot in Life

Source:

University of East Anglia

Summary:

New research finds that that having hope for the future can make you happier with your lot – and protect you from risky behaviors such as drinking and gambling.

FULL STORY

Having hope for the future could protect people from risky behaviors such as drinking and gambling — according to new research from the University of East Anglia.

Researchers studied ‘relative deprivation’ — the feeling that other people have things better than you in life.

They wanted to find out why only some people experiencing this turn to escapist and risky behaviors such as drinking alcohol, taking drugs, over-eating or gambling, while others do not.

And they found that the answer lies in hope.

Postgraduate researcher Shahriar Keshavarz, from UEA’s School of Psychology, said: “I think most people have experienced relative deprivation at some point in their lives. It’s that feeling of being unhappy with your lot, the belief that your situation is worse than others, that other people are doing better than you.

“Roosevelt famously said that ‘comparison is the thief of joy’. It’s that feeling you have when a friend buys a new car, or your sister gets married, or a colleague finds a better job or has a better income.

“Relative deprivation can trigger negative emotions like anger and resentment, and it has been associated with poor coping strategies like risk taking, drinking, taking drugs or gambling.

“But not everyone scoring high on measures of relative deprivation makes these poor life choices. We wanted to find out why some people seem to cope better, or even use the experience to their advantage to improve their own situation.

“There is a lot of evidence to show that remaining hopeful in the face of adversity can be advantageous, so we wanted to see if hope can help people feel happier with their lot and buffer against risky behaviors.”

The research team carried out two lab-based experiments with 55 volunteers. The volunteers were quizzed to find out how much they feel relative deprivation and hope.

The researchers also induced feelings of relative deprivation in the volunteers, by telling them how deprived they were compared to their peers, based on a questionnaire about their family income, age and gender.

They then took part in specially designed gambling games that involved risk-taking and placing bets with a chance to win real money.

Dr Piers Fleming, also from UEA’s School of Psychology, said: “The aim of this part of the study was to see whether feeling relatively deprived — elicited by the knowledge that one has less income than similar others — causes greater risk-taking among low-hopers and decreased risk-taking among high-hopers.

“We looked at the people who scored high for relative deprivation, the ones that thought their situation in life was worse than those around them. And we looked at those who also scored high for hope.

“We found that the volunteers who scored high for hope, were much less likely to take risks in the game. Those who weren’t too hopeful, were a lot more likely to take risks.”

Another experiment looked at whether hope helped people in the real world. They worked with 122 volunteers who had gambled at least once in the last year. The volunteers took part in questionnaires to gauge how hopeful they are, whether they feel relatively deprived and to measure problem gambling.

Of the participants, 33 had no gambling problems (27 per cent), 32 had low level of problems (26 per cent), 46 had moderate level of problems leading to some negative consequences (38 per cent) and 11 were problem gamblers with a possible loss of control (9 per cent).

Mr. Keshavarz said: “When we looked at these scores compared to scores for hope and relative deprivation, we found that increased hope was associated with a decreased likelihood of losing control of gambling behavior — even in those who experienced relative deprivation.

“Interestingly, our study found no significant relation between hope and gambling severity among relatively privileged persons. We don’t know why this is, but it could be that they are gambling recreationally or better able to stop when the fun stops.”

The research team say that nurturing hope in people who are unhappy with their lot could protect against harmful behaviors like drinking and gambling.

ScienceDaily is one of the Internet’s most popular science news web sites. Since starting in 1995, the award-winning site has earned the loyalty of students, researchers, healthcare professionals, government agencies, educators and the general public around the world. Now with more than 6 million monthly visitors worldwide, ScienceDaily generates nearly 20 million page views a month and is steadily growing in its global audience.




WATCH Online: Jupiter and Saturn’s Great Conjunction on December 21


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Watch the Great Conjunction Webcast Live on Monday, December 21, 2020, starting at 4:30pm PST

The December 21, 2020 great conjunction of Jupiter and Saturn is highly conspicuous in the west after sunset each evening now. On December 21, the pair will be only 0.1 degree apart. Some say the pair will look like an elongated star on that date. Will they? Or will they look like a double planet?

Jupiter-Saturn conjunctions happen every 20 years; the last one was in the year 2000. But these conjunctions aren’t all created equal. The 2020 great conjunction of Jupiter and Saturn will be the closest since 1623 and the closest observable since 1226! 2020’s extra-close Jupiter-Saturn conjunction won’t be matched again until the Jupiter-Saturn conjunction of March 15, 2080.

For all of the reasons above, Jupiter and Saturn are now an appealing and mind-expanding sight. Don’t miss them!




Scientists Think They’ve Detected Radio Emissions from an Alien World

© Provided by Space An artist’s depiction of the exoplanet Tau Boötes b shows a magnetic field, which may cause the radio emissions…

The astronomers behind the new research used a radio telescope in the Netherlands to study three different stars known to host exoplanets. The researchers compared what they saw to observations of Jupiter, diluted as if being seen from a star system dozens of light-years away. And the one-star system stood out: Tau Boötes, which contains at least one exoplanet. If the detection holds up, it could open the door to better understanding the magnetic fields of exoplanets and therefore the exoplanets themselves, the researchers hope.

“We present one of the first hints of detecting an exoplanet in the radio realm,” Jake Turner, an astronomer at Cornell University and lead author of the new research, said in a statement. “We make the case for emission by the planet itself. From the strength and polarization of the radio signal and the planet’s magnetic field, it is compatible with theoretical predictions.”

However, Turner and his colleagues aren’t yet positive that the signal they detected really is coming from the planet, dubbed Tau Boötes b; the researchers called for additional observations of the system, which is about 51 light-years away from Earth in the constellation Boötes.

The new research actually began at Jupiter; the researchers had previously studied that planet’s radio emissions and then tweaked those measurements to reflect the effect they expected closeness to the host star and distance from Earth would have had on their observations of an exoplanet.

Then, the scientists consulted observations made in 2016 and 2017 by the Low-Frequency Array (LOFAR) in the Netherlands. In addition to the potential signal from Tau Boötes b, the researchers also report that they may have picked up a signal from the star Upsilon Andromedae or its planet, but that detection was even fainter than the one from Tau Boötes b.

The researchers are interested in detecting radio emissions from planets because such information may help scientists decipher what’s happening in the same worlds’ magnetic fields. Those magnetic fields, in turn, influence conditions on the surface of the planet — Earth’s magnetic field protects the atmosphere that makes the world one we can survive, for example. Such magnetic fields can also tell scientists about other qualities of a world, like its structure and history.

But so far, studying those magnetic fields directly has been difficult for scientists to manage, despite the fact that nearly every planet in our solar system has had one at some point in its history. Hence the interest in using radio emissions as an intermediate.

“We learned from our own Jupiter what this kind of detection looks like,” Turner said. “We went searching for it and we found it.”

But that’s just the beginning of the story, not the end of it, he emphasized, since the radio emissions could still be coming from the stars or another source instead of the planet. “There remains some uncertainty that the detected radio signal is from the planet. The need for follow-up observations is critical.”

By Meghan Bartels / Senior Writer, Space.com
Meghan Bartels graduated from Georgetown University with a major in classics and a minor in biology. After college, she worked at a small environmental book publisher, where she learned that writing about science is fun when you get to use sentences that include both nouns and verbs. She also enjoys learning about history, drinking tea, and cheering on the Georgetown men’s basketball team.

@meghanbartels




A Quantum Experiment Suggests There’s No Such Thing As Objective Reality

| MIT Technology Review

Physicists have long suspected that quantum mechanics allows two observers to experience different, conflicting realities. Now they’ve performed the first experiment that proves it.

Back in 1961, the Nobel Prize-winning physicist Eugene Wigner outlined a thought experiment that demonstrated one of the lesser-known paradoxes of quantum mechanics. The experiment shows how the strange nature of the universe allows two observers—say, Wigner and Wigner’s friend—to experience different realities.

Since then, physicists have used the “Wigner’s Friend” thought experiment to explore the nature of measurement and to argue over whether objective facts can exist. That’s important because scientists carry out experiments to establish objective facts. But if they experience different realities, the argument goes, how can they agree on what these facts might be?

That’s provided some entertaining fodder for after-dinner conversation, but Wigner’s thought experiment has never been more than that—just a thought experiment.

Last year, however, physicists noticed that recent advances in quantum technologies have made it possible to reproduce the Wigner’s Friend test in a real experiment. In other words, it ought to be possible to create different realities and compare them in the lab to find out whether they can be reconciled.

And today, Massimiliano Proietti at Heriot-Watt University in Edinburgh and a few colleagues say they have performed this experiment for the first time: they have created different realities and compared them. Their conclusion is that Wigner was correct—these realities can be made irreconcilable so that it is impossible to agree on objective facts about an experiment.

Wigner’s original thought experiment is straightforward in principle. It begins with a single polarized photon that, when measured, can have either a horizontal polarization or a vertical polarization. But before the measurement, according to the laws of quantum mechanics, the photon exists in both polarization states at the same time—a so-called superposition.

Wigner imagined a friend in a different lab measuring the state of this photon and storing the result, while Wigner observed from afar. Wigner has no information about his friend’s measurement and so is forced to assume that the photon and the measurement of it are in a superposition of all possible outcomes of the experiment.

Wigner can even perform an experiment to determine whether this superposition exists or not. This is a kind of interference experiment showing that the photon and the measurement are indeed in a superposition.

From Wigner’s point of view, this is a “fact”—the superposition exists. And this fact suggests that a measurement cannot have taken place.

But this is in stark contrast to the point of view of the friend, who has indeed measured the photon’s polarization and recorded it. The friend can even call Wigner and say the measurement has been done (provided the outcome is not revealed).

So the two realities are at odds with each other. “This calls into question the objective status of the facts established by the two observers,” say Proietti and co.

That’s the theory, but last year Caslav Brukner, at the University of Vienna in Austria, came up with a way to re-create the Wigner’s Friend experiment in the lab by means of techniques involving the entanglement of many particles at the same time.

The breakthrough that Proietti and co have made is to carry this out. “In a state-of-the-art 6-photon experiment, we realize this extended Wigner’s friend scenario,” they say.

They use these six entangled photons to create two alternate realities—one representing Wigner and one representing Wigner’s friend. Wigner’s friend measures the polarization of a photon and stores the result. Wigner then performs an interference measurement to determine if the measurement and the photon are in a superposition.

The experiment produces an unambiguous result. It turns out that both realities can coexist even though they produce irreconcilable outcomes, just as Wigner predicted.

That raises some fascinating questions that are forcing physicists to reconsider the nature of reality.

The idea that observers can ultimately reconcile their measurements of some kind of fundamental reality is based on several assumptions. The first is that universal facts actually exist and that observers can agree on them.

But there are other assumptions too. One is that observers have the freedom to make whatever observations they want. And another is that the choices one observer make do not influence the choices other observers make—an assumption that physicists call locality.

If there is an objective reality that everyone can agree on, then these assumptions all hold.

But Proietti and co’s result suggests that objective reality does not exist. In other words, the experiment suggests that one or more of the assumptions—the idea that there is a reality we can agree on, the idea that we have freedom of choice, or the idea of locality—must be wrong.

Of course, there is another way out for those hanging on to the conventional view of reality. This is that there is some other loophole that the experimenters have overlooked. Indeed, physicists have tried to close loopholes in similar experiments for years, although they concede that it may never be possible to close them all.

Nevertheless, the work has important implications for the work of scientists. “The scientific method relies on facts, established through repeated measurements and agreed upon universally, independently of who observed them,” say Proietti and co. And yet in the same paper, they undermine this idea, perhaps fatally.

The next step is to go further: to construct experiments creating increasingly bizarre alternate realities that cannot be reconciled. Where this will take us is anybody’s guess. But Wigner, and his friend, would surely not be surprised.

Ref: arxiv.org/abs/1902.05080 : Experimental Rejection of Observer-Independence in the Quantum World

By Emerging Technology from the arXiv

Emerging Technology from the arXiv covers the latest ideas and technologies that appear on the Physics arXiv preprint server. It is part of the Physics arXiv Blog. Email: KentuckyFC@arxivblog.com