There's something very odd going on in space - something that shouldn't be possible. It is as though vast swathes of the universe are being hoovered up by a vast and unseen celestial vacuum cleaner.
Sasha Kaslinsky, the scientist who discovered the phenomenon, is understandably nervous: 'It left us quite unsettled and jittery' he says, 'because this is not something we planned to find'. The accidental discovery of what is ominously being called 'dark flow' not only has implications for the destinies of large numbers of galaxies - it also means that large numbers of scientists might have to find a new way of understanding the universe.
Dark flow is the latest in
a long line of phenomena that have threatened to re-write the
textbooks. Does it herald a new era of understanding, or does it simply
mean that everything we know about the universe is wrong?
"This isn't something we planned to find", says Sasha Kaslinsky. Well it is something I predicted as inevitable in SOTA as part of the only reasonable model of the universe I could come up with, the multidimensional one. I realise he may not have read SOTA.and as I have explained my only copy was stolen in the 1990s, but a few years ago I sent my prediction on what I assume I will hear about on Wednesday to Melvyn Bragg when he was hosting discussions on the structure of the universe. I explained the the so-called BIG BANG would be in symmetry with many inward collapses that would connect back to it in 'negatoive time. So if this programme confirms at least what it says in the introduction at least I can prove I am not being wise with hindsight.
I have just
discovered this page: http://www.space.com/scienceastronomy/080923-dark-flows.html
I should have been
paying more attention I suppose. Reading it, it does not seem to me
that those writing this stuff have yet got their heads round the
mulidimensional universe; we shall have to see
OCTOBER 12th 2010
Once again it is the Horizon program on BBC 2 (which by luck I spotted in the schedule) that has brought me some welcome news.
"They are the biggest questions that science can possibly ask: where did everything in our universe come from? How did it all begin? For nearly a hundred years, we thought we had the answer: a big bang some 14 billion years ago.
But now some scientists believe that was not really the beginning. Our universe may have had a life before this violent moment of creation.
Horizon takes the ultimate
trip into the unknown, to explore a dizzying world of cosmic bounces,
rips and multiple universes, and finds out what happened before the big
The narrator of this
compendium of some of the latest thinking amongst the recognized
professionals in these matters was faced with a good deal of diversity
which he grappled to make coherent. I was getting quite exasperated at
the naivety of some of the proposals as well as some of the points
which seemed to puzzle the contributors until we got quite close to the
end. Michio Kaku's ruminations on the 'vacuum' and ideas of 'nothing'
were hardly revolutionary. It is obvious, in spite of the habitual
misunderstandings pursuant to Special and General Relativity (some
caused by Einstein himself), that the three-dimensions of what we call
space contain energy that can be modulated, tuned, and made to resonate
and materialise. In other words, that it is a 'space-time fabric'.
I have dealt
with one aspect of this is my review on Amazon of Brian Greene's
"Fabric of the Cosmos" in which the author manages to tie himself in
knots without making much progress, but I digress. The universe is
indeed the product of a multidimesnional reality, the certainty of that
we can deduce from nature and relationship of the first 3 we familiarly
call 'space'. We experience a 4th as Time, but in categorising further
dimensions I caution against thinking of them as dimensions of space as
we know it or time as we know it.
Now, right at the end
of this Horizon program, I heard some words I had been waiting for from
Michio Kaku: that the 'big bang', even if it is at the origin of our
space-time, is not the origin of all existence. "Yes, there is a big
bang, and it's going on all the time!" That was what I attempted
to make clear back in the 1980s. I also try to explain that a
multidimensional universe is self recycling and evolving. Evolution of
a species requires death of each individual to enable natural selection
to work. That is not the case for a multidimensional universe. Our
universe does not have to die. Once the catastrophe of existence is a
done deal, all else follows. That does not answer the philosophical
questions of the reason for existence. However, creation of spacetime
and matter where there was not is not the mathematical problem it was
I recommend and commend some of the thinking of Dr Laura
Mersini-Hougton, University of North Carolina
She has correctly understood that we do not have to make any arbitrary assumptions beyond the simplest propositions of maths (even though she develops these through wave dynamics and into String Theory) for at least one 'big bang' to be inevitable.
But all these
thinkers and some others covered in the program are not yet at an
understanding that is anywhere near complete, nor should it be. They
are at least getting rid of some of the false problems. All I would
recommend to them now is to cease speculation about 'neigbouring
universes in the conventional sense of neighbouring in space, or
extended space. The nature of the universe can be best undertood by
examining what is in it that we can observe. These scientists are
taking the hard, hardest way to that. It is a worthwhile journey and
they seem to enjoy it and they get well paid by the rest of us. Any
single human can get as close without doing that work, but by other
work in their own lives. But if they get close to understanding it,
they will find it is quite impossible to explain to anyone else who has
not made the journey for themselves, through the puzzles that puzzled
Notes on the origin of SOTA [The State Of The Art]
text of the first 4 'Chapters' of SOTA was stolen in about
1990, in the laptop PC to which the text had been transferred from an
early Olivetti ETV Word Processor. The backup floppy disks were stolen
at the same time. The theft took place in a five minute period when a
car containing the PC and a large analogue mobile phone was left in an
Oxford street while I watched the first few minutes of the evening news
on the TV of some cousins. The car lock had been drilled by an expert.
My phone was later located in the posession of two young girls at a
reform school. They had been unable to switch it off. When I rang it
they answered and said: "Hello, is that Nathan?" I said "Yes", but they
wouldn't wear it and rang off. But when I rang again the noise
attracted staff in the reform school who took the phone and handed it
into the police. The next person to ring it was my cousin who told the
police it was mine and I went to collect it., but they did not have my
PC or disks.
It was clear to me that the PC and disks had been taken by a professional, probably employed by an organisation I had upset with my recent work on behalf of the Oxford Refugee Council. This work was largely concerned with trying to prevent the Immigration and Nationality Department of the Home Office from using arbitrary detention as a deterrent to selected categories of asylum seekers, including sending them to prisons where they were abused (by having their bedding set fire to by other prisoners for instance). I had just got one refugee off an airliner at Gatwick where he was within minutes of being removed to a country where his safety was seriously in doubt. Possibly someone in IND thought that by pinching my laptop they would get their hands on material that was either to their advantage or could compromise me. How wrong they were. They had all my email for the past few years, a lot of letters, and SOTA, but there was nothing I needed to hide.
I have often wondered what they did with SOTA, as they may not have understood much of it. The police asked me to attend as a witness when they prosecuted the two girls for the theft of my phone. I told them I would attend to give evidence in their defence, and that the phone had been dumped on them by a professional to disguise the real nature and reason for the crime. The police dropped the case and said I would have to instigate the prosecution myself. I decided not to bother. There was a printed record of the first draft of SOTA's first 4 sections (called Chapters) in circulation amongst staff at the Open University, from whom I received much support and encouragement, but I had lost track of who had it some time previously. To a certain extent SOTA had done its job. I had used excerpts to paste into computer mediated conferences is the UK, USA and elswhere.