What is Big Think?  

We are Big Idea Hunters…

We live in a time of information abundance, which far too many of us see as information overload. With the sum total of human knowledge, past and present, at our fingertips, we’re faced with a crisis of attention: which ideas should we engage with, and why? Big Think is an evolving roadmap to the best thinking on the planet — the ideas that can help you think flexibly and act decisively in a multivariate world.

A word about Big Ideas and Themes — The architecture of Big Think

Big ideas are lenses for envisioning the future. Every article and video on bigthink.com and on our learning platforms is based on an emerging “big idea” that is significant, widely relevant, and actionable. We’re sifting the noise for the questions and insights that have the power to change all of our lives, for decades to come. For example, reverse-engineering is a big idea in that the concept is increasingly useful across multiple disciplines, from education to nanotechnology.

Themes are the seven broad umbrellas under which we organize the hundreds of big ideas that populate Big Think. They include New World Order, Earth and Beyond, 21st Century Living, Going Mental, Extreme Biology, Power and Influence, and Inventing the Future.

Big Think Features:

12,000+ Expert Videos

1

Browse videos featuring experts across a wide range of disciplines, from personal health to business leadership to neuroscience.

Watch videos

World Renowned Bloggers

2

Big Think’s contributors offer expert analysis of the big ideas behind the news.

Go to blogs

Big Think Edge

3

Big Think’s Edge learning platform for career mentorship and professional development provides engaging and actionable courses delivered by the people who are shaping our future.

Find out more
Close
With rendition switcher

Transcript

Question: Could quantum entanglement be used to transmit information instantaneously between interplanetary spaceships? (Submitted by Matthew Del Favero)

Michio Kaku:  Matthew, the answer is yes and no.  First of all, Albert Einstein hated quantum entanglement.  He called it "spooky action at a distance."  He couldn’t get his head around it, but hey, Einstein was wrong.  We do this every day in the laboratory and here is how it works:  Let’s say we take two electrons very close together and they vibrate in unison.  Everything vibrates.  Two particles together vibrate in unison.  Now separate them.  As you separate these two coherent particles an umbilical cord, an invisible umbilical cord starts to develop between these two particles such that if you wiggle one particle then the other particle is aware of the fact that its partner is being wiggled. 

So far so good, right? But now separate these particles by the distance of a galaxy itself, so here at one end of the galaxy we wiggle an electron and on the other side of the galaxy, a hundred thousand light years distance, instantly, faster than the speed of light the other particle is aware of the fact that its twin is wiggling.  Now Einstein said: "This is ridiculous because nothing can go faster than the speed of light." But this affect has been measured.  However, you raise an interesting question.  Can you send a message this way?  And the answer is probably no.  You see, the information traveling from one electron to the other electron faster than the speed of light on the other side of the galaxy is random information.  It’s not Morse code.  You can’t send a love letter from one part of the universe to another part of the universe faster than the speed of light because a love letter has net information, so in some sense maybe Einstein has the last laugh.  It does mean that we have to revise the famous statement "Nothing can go faster than the speed of light."  Now what we have to say is "No useable information can travel faster than the speed of light." So in some sense Einstein still has the last laugh.

 

Why Einstein Gets the Last ...

Newsletter: Share: