Transcript: Delving Ever Deeper into Space | Jun 08, 2016

Steve sits in the studio. He's slim, clean-shaven, in his fifties, with short curly brown hair. He's wearing a gray suit, white shirt, and striped gray tie.

A caption on screen reads "Delving ever deeper into space."

Steve says DARK MATTER, DARK
ENERGY AND GRAVITATIONAL WAVES.
IT'S BEEN A BANNER YEAR FOR
SCIENCE IN GENERAL, AND
COSMOLOGY IN PARTICULAR.
HERE TO HELP THE REST OF US
UNDERSTAND WHAT IT ALL MEANS:
LAWRENCE KRAUSS, DIRECTOR OF THE
ORIGINS PROJECT AT ARIZONA STATE
UNIVERSITY AND FOUNDATION
PROFESSOR IN THE SCHOOL OF EARTH
AND SPACE EXPLORATION.

Lawrence is in his late fifties, clean-shaven, with longish wavy gray hair. He's wearing small round glasses, a brown tweed suit, purple sweater and black shirt.

Steve continues IT'S GOOD TO HAVE YOU IN THAT
CHAIR AGAIN.

Lawrence says IT'S GREAT
TO BE BACK HERE WITH YOU AGAIN.

The caption changes to "Waves making waves."

Steve says OKAY.
IN FEBRUARY, WE WERE TOLD THAT
FOR, QUOTE, FOR THE FIRST TIME
THE UNIVERSE HAS SPOKEN TO US
THROUGH GRAVITATIONAL WAVES.
UP UNTIL NOW, WE HAVE BEEN DEAF.
THAT'S THE QUOTE.
WHAT WERE WE DEAF TO BEFORE THIS?

The caption changes to "Lawrence Krauss. The Origins Project."

Lawrence says WE WERE
DEAF TO SOMETHING THAT'S
HAPPENING IN THIS ROOM ALL THE
TIME, TO RIPPLES IN SPACE.
EVERY TIME I WAVE MY ARMS, WHICH
I DO A LOT, I'M ACTUALLY,
ACCORDING TO EINSTEIN, FROM
1916, WHO TOLD US THAT MATTER
CURVES SPACE, IF MATTER MOVES
AROUND, IT PRODUCES A
DISTURBANCE IN SPACE THAT
PROPAGATES OUT AT THE SPEED OF
LIGHT AND THERE ARE
GRAVITATIONAL WAVES, AS THEY'RE
CALLED, GOING THROUGH THIS ROOM
ALL THE TIME WHICH MEANS THE
DISTANCE ACROSS THIS SIDE OF THE
ROOM IS GETTING SMALLER AND
LARGER EVERY TIME AND THIS TIME
SMALLER AND LARGER.
WE DON'T NOTICE IT, AT LEAST IF
WE'RE SOBER.
THAT'S BECAUSE GRAVITY IS SO
WEAK AND OSCILLATIONS ARE SO
VERY SMALL, YOU WOULD NEVER HAVE
THOUGHT YOU COULD ACTUALLY EVER
DETECT THEM.
WHAT'S AMAZING IS, AN EXPERIMENT
WAS BUILT CALLED LIGO, WHICH HAS
TWO BIG DEVICES IN WASHINGTON
STATE AND IN LOUISIANA INVOLVING
TWO BIG ARMS THAT ARE EACH 4
KILOMETRES LONG AT RIGHT ANGLES
TO EACH OTHER.
WHEN A GRAVITATIONAL WAVE COMES
BY FROM A DISTANT GALAXY, AND
WE'LL TALK ABOUT THE WAVE THAT
WERE PRODUCED, WHAT THEY HAVE TO
BE ABLE TO MEASURE AND IT'S
AMAZING THEY CAN DO THIS.
ONE ARM GETS A LITTLE SHORTER,
THE OTHER GETS A LITTLE LONGER,
AND THEY HAVE TO MEASURE A
DIFFERENCE IN LENGTH OF
4-KILOMETRE ARMS, TWO OF THEM,
IF THEY CHANGE BY AN AMOUNT
EQUAL TO one thousandth THE SIZE OF
A PROTON.
SCIENCE FICTION WRITERS WOULD
NEVER IMAGINE YOU CAN DO THAT.

Steve says YOU CAN'T DO THAT
WITH THE NAKED EYE?

Lawrence says I WOULD
HAVE NEVER THOUGHT IT WAS
POSSIBLE.
AFTER 40 YEARS OF TRYING, THEY
FINALLY WERE ABLE TO GET TO THAT
LEVEL AND THAT MEANS, YOU KNOW,
IF A TRUCK HITS A POTHOLE
20 MILES AWAY, IT CREATES A
BIGGER SIGNAL.
THAT'S WHY THEY HAVE TWO
DETECTORS, ONE IN LOUISIANA AND
ONE IN WASHINGTON, SO THEY HAVE
TO SEE THE SAME THING.
IF A GRAVITATIONAL WAVE COMES
BY, IT TAKES ABOUT TEN
MILLISECONDS TO GO FROM ONE END
OF THE STATES TO THE OTHER.
THE VIBRATIONS OF THE MIRRORS
THEY'RE DOING, BECAUSE IN ORDER
TO MEASURE LENGTH THEY SEND
LASER BEAMS AND SEE HOW LONG IT
TAKES FOR THE WAVE TO COME BACK,
THE MIRRORS ARE BIGGER THAN
THAT, SO IT'S AMAZING THEY COULD
DO THAT.
WITHIN AN HOUR AFTER TURNING ON
THE APPARATUS AND REFINED, THEY
SAW THIS BEAUTIFUL SIGNAL WHICH
YOU COULD ALMOST HEAR BECAUSE
IT'S A VIBRATION OF TWO BLACK
HOLES ORBITING EACH OTHER AND
FINALLY COLLIDING 1.3 BILLION
LIGHT YEARS AWAY FROM US, THAT
MEANS THAT THE EVENT HAPPENED
1.3 BILLION YEARS AGO AND LUCKY
ENOUGH THEY TURNED ON THE
DETECTOR JUST IN TIME.
IF YOU THINK ABOUT WHAT THEY
SAW... YOU SEE, IN ORDER...
BECAUSE GRAVITATIONAL WAVES ARE
SO WEAK, YOU HAVE TO LOOK AT
CATACLYSMIC EVENTS, COLLIDING,
AND THIS IS THE OTHER THING I
FIND AMAZING, THEY COLLIDED IN
ABOUT two tenths OF A SECOND OR SO
IN THE FINAL BURST OF RADIATION.
ONE WAS 36 TIMES THE MASS OF THE
SUN, THE OTHER WAS 29 TIMES THE
MASS OF THE SUN.
I'M NOT GOING TO PUT YOU ON THE
SPOT HERE.
I WAS GOING TO ASK 36 PLUS 29.

Steve says 65.

Lawrence says YOU'VE GOT IT.
IT'S AMAZING.
AN AMERICAN T.V. HOST WOULDN'T
BE ABLE TO DO THAT.
SO THE BLACK HOLE IS 65 TIMES
THE MASS OF THE SUN.
IN FACT IT WAS 62 TIMES THE MASS
OF THE SUN.
YOUR MATH IS NOT WRONG.
IN THAT TENTH OF A SECOND IT
EMITTED THREE TIMES THE MASS OF
THE SUN IN GRAVITATIONAL WAVES,
WHICH IS SO WEIRD TO THINK
ABOUT.
THAT MEANS YOU TURNED THREE
TIMES THE MASS OF THE SUN INTO
ENERGY.
OUR SUN IS BURNING ABOUT
10 BILLION HYDROGEN BOMBS EVERY
SECOND AND OVER ITS
10 BILLION-YEAR LIFETIME, IT
WILL CONVERT MAYBE 1 percent OF THE
MASS OF THE SUN TO ENERGY.
OVER 10 BILLION YEARS.
IN ONE-TENTH OF A SECOND OR SO
THIS CONVERTED THREE TIMES THE
MASS OF THE SUN TO ENERGY.
IT PRODUCED MORE ENERGY IN
GRAVITATIONAL WAVES THAN ALL THE
STARS IN THE VISIBLE UNIVERSE DO
IN THAT ONE-TENTH OF A SECOND.

Steve says THAT IS MIND
BLOWING.

Lawrence says IT'S MIND
BLOWING.
IT'S AMAZING.
WHAT IS NEAT ABOUT THIS IS IT
HAS OPENED A NEW WINDOW ON THE
UNIVERSE, AS THAT QUOTE YOU
MENTIONED SAID IT WOULD.
WE WERE DEAF.
WE WERE ALSO BLIND.
WE NOW HAVE A NEW WINDOW,
GRAVITATIONAL WAVES THAT ALLOW
US TO PROBE THE PHYSICS OF BLACK
HOLES.

Steve says NOW THAT WE CAN SEE
AND HEAR, WHAT DOES THAT HELP US
DO THAT WE COULDN'T DO BEFORE?

Lawrence says WE CAN
LOOK AT PLACES WE COULD NEVER
SEE BEFORE.
WE COULD LOOK AT THE MOST
CATACLYSMIC EVENTS THAT CAUSED
SPACE TO CURVE UP LIKE ROILING
SEA.
IN THE CENTRE OF OUR GALAXY,
THERE'S A MILLION SOLAR MASS
BLACK HOLE.
IT'S KIND OF A CHICKEN AND EGG
QUESTION, WE DON'T KNOW THE
ANSWER TO.
DID THE BLACK HOLES FORM FIRST,
THEN THE GALAXIES AROUND THEM,
OR THE OTHER WAY AROUND?
WE'LL LEARN ABOUT THAT BUT
ULTIMATELY AS WE IMPROVE OUR
GRAVITATIONAL WAVE DETECTORS.
THE GREATEST THE GRAVITATIONAL
WAVE SIGNAL AND THE MOST
CATACLYSMIC WAS THE BIG BANG.
WE MAY EVENTUALLY BE ABLE TO
DETECT GRAVITATIONAL WAVES FROM
ESSENTIALLY ALMOST THE BIRTH OF
OUR UNIVERSE.

Steve says THE BEGINNING OF TIME.

Lawrence says EXACTLY.
WHICH MEANS WE CAN HAVE AN
EMPIRICAL HANDLE.

Steve says DO YOU THINK THAT
WILL HAPPEN IN YOUR LIFETIME?

Lawrence says I'M NOT SURE.
I THINK IN ORDER TO BE ABLE TO
DO THAT... IN THIS CENTURY I
EXPECT WE MAY BE ABLE TO.
IF ALL GOES WELL, I MIGHT STILL
BE AROUND.
YOU KNOW, THE NEATEST PART OF
ALL OF THIS IS EVERY TIME YOU
OPEN A NEW WINDOW ON THE
UNIVERSE, WE'RE SURPRISED.
EVERY DAY I'M SURPRISED IF I'M
NOT SURPRISED IN A SENSE.
SO WE KNOW SOME OF THE THINGS WE
MIGHT SEE BUT WHAT'S REALLY NEAT
ARE THE THINGS WE DIDN'T EXPECT.
WHEN GALILEO LOOKED OUT HE
DISCOVERED THE MOONS OF JUPITER.
EVERY TIME WE HAVE A NEW WINDOW
WE DISCOVERED SOMETHING
UNEXPECTED.
WHAT I EXPECT WILL HAPPEN OVER
THE NEXT 40 YEARS AS THIS
BECOMES THE ASTRONOMY OF THE
21ST CENTURY IS WE'RE GOING TO
BE SURPRISED A LOT.

Steve says THIS IS A BIT OF AN
ODD REQUEST BECAUSE I DON'T
THINK I'VE EVER REQUESTED THIS
OF ANOTHER GUEST BEFORE, BUT WE
ARE TALKING ABOUT SOMETHING THAT
IS ON YOUR SHOES.
[Laughter]
CAN YOU PUT YOUR SHOES ON THE TABLE?

Lawrence puts feet on the table and says I'M HAPPY TO PUT MY SHOES.
IT'S MY NORMAL POSITION WHEN I'M WORKING.

He's wearing sneakers printed with a colourful galaxy pattern.

Steve says THERE IS SOME SPACE
THE FINAL FRONTIER ON THESE SHOES.
IS IT ANY PARTICULAR GALAXY OR
PART OF OUR GALAXY?

Lawrence says I WOULD
LIKE TO SAY IT WAS.
IT'S JUST AN IMAGE OF STARS AND
GLOBULAR CLUSTERS.

Steve says THOSE SHOES ARE SO
YOU, LAWRENCE.

Lawrence says THANK YOU.
I RARELY GET TO DO THAT, STEVE,
SO I'M VERY HAPPY I GOT TO SHOW
OFF MY SARTORIAL SPLENDOR.

He puts his feet down again.

Steve says INDEED.
LET'S GO THROUGH SOME TERMS.
IN ORDER TO EXPLORE THESE ITEMS
WE NEED TO KNOW A FEW THINGS.
DARK MATTER.
WHAT'S DARK MATTER?

The caption changes to "Peering into darkness."

Lawrence says IT'S
MATTER THAT DOESN'T SHINE.
GREAT LINGUISTIC... ACTUALLY,
IT'S THE STUFF... IT'S THE
DOMINANT MATTER OF CREATION, IF
YOU WISH.
MOST OF THE MASS OF OUR
GALAXY... AND OF ALL GALAXIES WE
SEE... AT LEAST 90 PERCENT OF
THE MASS IN THE UNIVERSE DOESN'T
SHINE.
WE DON'T KNOW WHAT IT IS MADE
OF.
WE THINK IT'S A NEW TIME OF
ELEMENTARY PARTICLE.
OUR GALAXY, 90 percent OF THE MASS OF
OUR GALAXY IS NOT STARS AND GAS
AND PLANETS, IT'S THIS STUFF AND
IF IT'S REALLY WHAT WE THINK IT
IS, IT'S A GAS OF ELEMENTARY
PARTICLES, THOSE DARK MATTER
PARTICLES ARE GOING RIGHT
THROUGH YOU AND ME AS WE SPEAK,
WHICH MEANS TO DETECT THEM WE
DON'T HAVE TO USE TELESCOPES, WE
ACTUALLY BUILD BIG DEVICES
UNDERGROUND TO LOOK FOR THAT
STUFF.
WE'RE LOOKING FOR THIS KIND OF
DARK MATTER BECAUSE WE THINK
IT'S NOT ONLY A NEW TYPE OF
ELEMENTARY PARTICLE WHICH WILL
REVEAL NEW THINGS ABOUT THE
FUNDAMENTAL STRUCTURE OF MATTER,
IF THE DARK MATTER WASN'T THERE,
WE WOULDN'T BE HERE.
BECAUSE WE TALKED ABOUT BLACK
HOLES BEFORE.
WE DO KNOW THAT THESE VAST
CONGLOMERATIONS OF DARK MATTER
COLLAPSED EARLY ON IN THE
HISTORY OF THE UNIVERSE
PRODUCING WELLS INTO WHICH ALL
THE MATTER FELL.
GALAXIES WOULDN'T HAVE FORMED.
THERE WOULDN'T HAVE BEEN ENOUGH
TIME SINCE THE BIG BANG FOR
GALAXIES TO HAVE FORMED.
IF THERE WEREN'T GALAXIES, THERE
WEREN'T BE STARS, IF THERE
WASN'T PLANETS, THERE WOULDN'T
BE TVO.

Steve says YOU KNOW KATHERINE FREESE.
SHE SAID WE'RE GOING TO GET TO
THE BOTTOM OF DARK MATTER IN
PROBABLY A DECADE.
DO YOU THINK SHE IS RIGHT ABOUT THAT?

Lawrence says IT'S ONE
OF THOSE THINGS WE'VE BEEN
SAYING FOR A LOT EVERY DECADES.
I TRY NOT TO MAKE PREDICTIONS
FOR ANYTHING LESS THAN
2 TRILLION YEARS IN THE FUTURE.
NO ONE WILL BE AROUND TO CHECK.

Steve says WE CAN'T CALL YOU ON
THAT ONE, CAN WE?

Lawrence says YOU COULD
BUT THE PROGRAM HAS TO BE LONG
RUNNING TO DO IT.

Steve says SECOND ONE.
WEAK FORCE.
WHAT'S WEAK FORCE?

The caption changes to "The Large Hadron Collider Reports."

Lawrence says WELL, THE
ELECTRO WEAK FORCE... THERE ARE
FOUR FORCES IN NATURE.
THE ONES WE KNOW, GRAVITY AND
ELECTRO MAGNETISM, THE TWO THAT
GOVERN MOST OF THE THINGS IN OUR
DAILY LIVES.
IN FACT THERE'S ANOTHER FORCE
CALLED THE STRONG FORCE WHICH
HOLDS TOGETHER THE PARTICLES
CALLED QUARKS.
THE WEAK FORCE IS A WEAK FORCE,
AS YOU MIGHT IMAGINE.
IT ONLY OPERATES ONLY ATOMIC
NUCLEUS.
IT IS RESPONSIBLE FOR THE
NUCLEAR REACTIONS WHICH POWER
THE SUN WHICH ARE PRETTY
IMPORTANT TO US BECAUSE THEY
ALLOW LIFE TO HAPPEN.
THAT WEAK FORCE TURNS OUT TO
HAVE BEEN... IT TURNS OUT WE
DISCOVERED ACTUALLY, AND THIS IS
ONE OF THE MOST REMARKABLE
JOURNEYS HUMANS HAVE EVER TAKEN,
IN FACT MY NEW BOOK OUT NEXT
YEAR IS REALLY ABOUT THIS, IS
THE FACT THAT THE WEAK FORCE AND
THE ELECTROMAGNETIC FORCE WHICH
APPEAR VERY DIFFERENT IN THE
SCALES OF YOU AND ME, ARE
ACTUALLY DIFFERENT
MANIFESTATIONS OF EXACTLY THE
SAME FORCE AND THEY ARE
DIFFERENT BECAUSE OF THIS
INVISIBLE FIELD THROUGHOUT
NATURE CALLED THE HICKS FIELD
AND IT TURNS OUT AN ASSOCIATE
WITH THAT
ON JULY 4TH, 2012, WE DISCOVERED
THE HIGGS PARTICLE.
IT TELLS US WE'RE HERE BY
ACCIDENT.
PARTICLES HAVE MASS, PARTICLES
THAT MAKE YOU AND I UP, ONLY
BECAUSE THERE'S THIS BACKGROUND
INVISIBLE FIELD.
AT A FUNDAMENTAL LEVEL WE THINK
THEY HAVE NO MASS.
IT'S LIKE SWIMMING IN
MOLASSES.
AS THE PARTICLES MOVE THROUGH
THE HIGGS FIELD, THEY GET
RESISTANCE AND THEY ACT HEAVY.
AND IF THAT FIELD WASN'T THERE,
ONCE AGAIN YOU AND I WOULDN'T
BE HERE.

Steve says THAT'S WHY IT'S
IMPORTANT TO KNOW THAT.

Lawrence says EXACTLY.
IT'S IMPORTANT TO KNOW.
LOOK, THE GREAT THING ABOUT
COSMOLOGY, FIRST OF ALL, IS IT
TAKES US AWAY FROM POLITICS.
I MEAN, IT ALLOWS US TO SORT OF
REALIZE HOW OUR PETTY RIVALRIES
AND ISSUES ARE SHORT TERM.
MORE IMPORTANTLY, IT REALLY
ADDRESSES THE FUNDAMENTAL
QUESTIONS THAT EVERYONE ASKS
ABOUT THEMSELVES: HOW DO WE GET
HERE?
WHERE ARE WE GOING?
SO IT WON'T MAKE A BETTER
TOASTER, IT WON'T MAKE A FASTER
CAR.
BUT LIKE ART, MUSIC, AND
LITERATURE, IT GIVES US A NEW
PERSPECTIVE OF OUR PLACE IN THE
COSMOS AND MAKES LIVING WORTH
LIVING.

Steve says IT HAS INTRINSIC
BEAUTY TO IT.

Lawrence says WHENEVER
THERE IS A DISCOVERY LIKE THIS
OR THE WORK I DO, PEOPLE SAY
WHAT PRACTICAL SIGNIFICANCE IS IT?
YOU DON'T ASK THE PRACTICAL
SIGNIFICANCE OF A MOZART
SYMPHONY.
IN FACT, I'M VERY PROUD OF THE
FACT THAT ALL MY RESEARCH HAS NO
PRACTICAL SIGNIFICANCE
WHATSOEVER.

Steve says ALL RIGHT.
HAVING SAID THAT, SOME YEARS AGO
YOU ASKED ABOUT HOW RESEARCH IS
GOING TO RESOLVE THE QUESTION
ABOUT WHETHER THERE IS ONE
UNIVERSE OR MANY UNIVERSES.
ARE YOU ANY CLOSER TO FIGURING
OUT THE ANSWER TO THAT QUESTION?

The caption changes to "Is outs the only universe?"

Lawrence says WHAT'S
REALLY NEAT, A FEW YEARS AGO, IN
MY LAST BOOK I WROTE A LOT ABOUT
IT, IT'S A METAPHYSICAL
SPECULATION.
TO COME BACK WHAT WE TALKED
ABOUT EARLIER, IF WE'RE ABLE TO
DETECT GRAVITATIONAL WAVES FROM
THE EARLIEST MOMENTS OF THE BIG
BANG, ACTUALLY IT WILL GIVE US
VERY STRONG INDIRECT EVIDENCE
ABOUT THE POSSIBLE EXISTENCE OF
OTHER UNIVERSES.
BECAUSE IT TURNS OUT, THIS
INFLATIONARY THEORY PREDICTS
THAT OTHER UNIVERSES SHOULD BE
OUT THERE, ONES WE CAN'T DETECT
CORRECTLY.
AS A CONSEQUENCE THERE'S
GRAVITATIONAL WAVES.
IF WE WERE TO MEASURE THEM, WE
COULD PROBE THE THEORY.
IF WE COULD PROBE THE THEORY
ENOUGH, WE WOULD BE ABLE TO
CONFIRM THE LAWS OF THE PHYSICS
IN A WAY THOSE OTHER UNIVERSES
MUST EXIST.
WE'RE LIKE THE PHYSICISTS OR
CHEMISTS IN 1905 WHEN THEY
SHOWED ATOMS EXIST.
EVERYONE KNEW THEY EXISTED
BECAUSE EVERYTHING ELSE REQUIRED
THEM TO EXIST.
WE MAKE IT TO THE POINT WE COULD
TURN META
AGAIN, SOMETHING ELSE I THOUGHT
IN MY LIFETIME WOULD NEVER BE
RESOLVED AS AN EMPIRICAL
QUESTION.

Steve says HAS YOUR THINKING
EVOLVED AT ALL ON THE ISSUE OF
WHETHER WE ARE THE ONLY BEINGS
IN THE GALAXY CAPABLE OF
UNDERSTANDING THE CONVERSATION
WE'RE HAVING RIGHT NOW?

Lawrence says I DON'T
KNOW IF WE'RE UNDERSTANDING OUR
CONVERSATION, BUT... LOOK.
THE GALAXY HAS 100 BILLION
STARS.
WHAT WE HAVE LEARNED IS MOST
STARS HAVE PLANETS AROUND THEM
AND THERE ARE MANY OTHER EXOTIC
SOLAR SYSTEMS, 100 BILLION
GALAXIES.
IT SEEMS HIGHLY UNLIKELY TO ME
THAT... CERTAINLY I EXPECT
THERE'S LIFE, THERE'S CERTAINLY
MICROBIAL LIFE.
UNDER THE OCEANS OF EUROPA, WE
MIGHT FIND IT.
IS THERE INTELLIGENT LIFE?
THAT'S A HARDER QUESTION.
IT TOOK US ALMOST FOUR AND A
HALF BILLION YEARS TO BE HERE ON
EARTH.
BUT THERE ARE SO MANY PLANETS
AND STARS, I WOULD BE SURPRISED
IF THERE WEREN'T INTELLIGENT
LIFE ELSEWHERE IN THE UNIVERSE.
UNFORTUNATELY IT'S A BIG
UNIVERSE AND IT'S HIGHLY
UNLIKELY WE'LL EVER KNOW ABOUT
IT. AND THAT'S A SHAME BUT IT'S
WORTH TRYING. AND THERE'S
EFFORTS... S.E.T.I. AND OTHER
PROGRAMS TO LOOK, BUT IT'S A
SHOT. BUT I'D BE AMAZED...ON THE
OTHER HAND YOU KNOW A LOT OF
PEOPLE...I'LL BE TALKING AT AN
EVENT LATER THIS WEEK WHERE
PEOPLE TALK ABOUT FINE TUNING,
THEY THINK IT SHOWS SOME
SIGNIFICANCE - THEY THINK THE
UNIVERSE IS FINE TUNED FOR
LIFE. WELL IT IS...IT HAS
PROPERTIES SO WE CAN BE ALIVE
HERE, BUT IN FACT, MOST OF THE
UNIVERSE IS VERY INHOSPITABLE
FOR LIFE. AND IF FACT, MOST OF
THE UNIVERSE IS TRYING TO KILL
US EVERY DAY. IF YOU THINK ABOUT
IT, THE FACT THAT WE BEEN AROUND
WHEN THERE COULD BE SUPERNOVA
EXPLOSIONS GOING OFF NEARBY OR
GAMMA RAY BURSTS OR ALL SORTS OF
THINGS THAT COULD HAPPEN. IT'S
REALLY AMAZING THAT WE'RE HERE
BECAUSE WE'RE IN A REMOTE CORNER
OF THE GALAXY. SO MOST OF THE
UNIVERSE IS NOT FINE TUNED FOR
LIFE AT ALL, IT'S PRETTY
HOSTILE. SO IT MAY REQUIRE A
VERY SPECIAL ENVIRONMENT LIKE
THAT ON EARTH. BUT AGAIN, THERE
ARE ENOUGH STARS, ENOUGH PLANETS
THAT I SUSPECT...EVEN THOUGH IT
IT WILL BE VERY RARE...THE GREAT
THING ABOUT OUR UNIVERSE IS IT'S
SO BIG AND IT'S SO OLD THAT RARE
EVENTS HAPPEN ALL THE TIME.

Steve says DID WE JUST GET
LUCKY TO BE IN THIS PARTICULAR
PIECE OF REAL ESTATE?

The caption changes to "Lawrence Krauss. Arizona State University."

Lawrence says WE'RE
CERTAINLY LUCKY.
YOU KNOW, YOU CAN THINK OF IT AS
BEING LUCKY AND SAY THE ODDS ARE
VERY SMALL.
IF THERE ARE ENOUGH PLANETS AND
ENOUGH DIFFERENT ENVIRONMENTS,
WHAT WOULD BE AMAZING WOULD BE
FOR US TO FIND OUT WE WERE
LIVING IN A PLACE THAT WE
COULDN'T LIVE, OKAY?
IT'S LIKE, YOU KNOW, WITH
EVOLUTION, PEOPLE SOMEHOW THINK
THAT'S EVIDENCE FOR DESIGN.
BUT IT'S NOT.
IF THE BEES COULDN'T SEE THE
FLOWERS AND SEE THE COLOUR OF
THE FLOWERS AND BE ATTRACTED,
THEY WOULDN'T REPRODUCE.
IT'S A COSMOS NATURAL SELECTION.
IT'S LIKE SAYING, GOING BACK TO
MY SHOES AGAIN, ISN'T IT AMAZING
MY BODY IS EXACTLY LONG ENOUGH
TO REACH THE GROUND?

Steve says YOU ALWAYS TELL GOOD
JOKES WHEN YOU COME HERE.
I'M GOING TO ASK YOU TO TELL
ANOTHER ONE.
YOU HAVE QUOTED YOUR FRIEND THE
NOBEL LAUREATE FRANK VILCEK HE
SAYS WE NEED A THEORY OF
SOMETHING.
THERE'S A JOKE ABOUT THAT.

The caption changes to "Where is Unified Theory."

Lawrence says THERE WAS
A LOT OF TALK ABOUT THE THEORY
OF EVERYTHING, STRING THEORY, A
HOOPLA THAT IT WAS THE THEORY OF
EVERYTHING.
AND WHAT FRANK SAID RIGHTLY IS I
DON'T WANT A THEORY OF
EVERYTHING, I WANT A THEORY OF
SOMETHING.
I WANT A THEORY THAT MAKES A
PREDICTION YOU CAN TEST.
THAT WASN'T TO NECESSARILY PUT
DOWN STRING THEORY.
BUT WE'VE MADE GRAND CLAIMS.
AND PHYSICS ISN'T BASED ON
WHAT'S ELEGANT OR BEAUTIFUL OR
WHAT WE LIKE.
IT'S BASED ON WHAT WORKS.
AND SO IT'S REALLY IMPORTANT TO
REALIZE THAT WE SHOULDN'T GET
TOO DETACHED FROM EXPERIMENT.
SO WHAT'S REALLY BEEN NICE IS WE
HAVE MADE A LOT OF PROGRESS ON
THEORIES OF SOMETHING.
IN FACT, YOU KNOW WHAT?
THE THEORY OF EVERYTHING REALLY
WOULDN'T BE A THEORY VERY MUCH.
IT WOULD BE VERY IMPORTANT
BECAUSE A THEORY OF GRAVITY AND
QUANTUM MECHANICS, SO-CALLED
QUANTUM GRAVITY, WAS NECESSARY
TO UNDERSTAND THE BEGINNING OF
TIME.
SO FROM A PERSPECTIVE OF
FUNDAMENTAL UNDERSTANDING, IT'S
INCREDIBLY IMPORTANT.
BUT IT MAY ONLY BE IMPORTANT FOR
UNDERSTANDING THE BEGINNING OF
TIME.
FOR UNDERSTANDING HOW OATMEAL
BOILS, YOU WOULDN'T NEED A
QUANTUM THEORY OF GRAVITY.

Steve says MOVING ALONG.
I THINK WE'VE ONLY GOT A FEW
MINUTES LEFT WHICH IS A SHAME
BECAUSE THERE ARE MORE JOKES I
WANT TO HEAR.

Lawrence says I'LL TRY
AND...

Steve says SOME OF THE MORE
FUNDAMENTAL QUESTIONS OF LIFE
YOU HAVE SAID THAT, QUOTE,
RESOLUTION MAY BE AROUND THE
CORNER BUT ONLY IF WE ARE
EXTREMELY LUCKY OR IT MAY TAKE
CENTURIES IF AT ALL DEPENDING ON
THE KINDNESS OF NATURE.
THE KINDNESS OF NATURE.
I WANT TO KNOW WHAT THAT MEANS.

Lawrence says NATURE WAS
KIND ENOUGH TO HAVE TWO BLACK
HOLES COLLIDE IN TIME FOR THIS
MACHINE TO TURN ON WITH JUST THE
RIGHT SENSITIVITY.
WE'RE IN A SITUATION WHERE WE'VE
HIT ALL THE LOW-HANGING FRUIT.
THE EXPERIMENTAL PHYSICS WAS A
LOT EASIER A CENTURY AGO.
IT'S HARD TO PROBE THE
FUNDAMENTAL STRUCTURE OF NATURE,
AND SOMETIMES NATURE IS NOT VERY
KIND.
FOR EXAMPLE, I CREATED BEAUTIFUL
THEORIES, THEY'RE JUST
BEAUTIFUL.
IT TURNS OUT NATURE HASN'T BEEN
WISE ENOUGH TO ADOPT THEM.
OFTEN IF YOU'RE A THEORIST, IT
IS KIND OF AMAZING AND ALMOST
TERRIFYING WHEN YOU THINK OF
SOMETHING AND YOU'RE WRITING A
PAPER UP IN THE MIDDLE OF THE
NIGHT TO THINK NATURE MIGHT
ACTUALLY OBEY IT AND GIVE YOU
EVIDENCE.
I'LL GIVE YOU AN EXAMPLE WITH
DARK ENERGY OF SPACE.
IT IS THE DOMINANT ENERGY IN THE
UNIVERSE AND WE'VE TALKED ABOUT
IT BEFORE.
MAYBE WE'LL TALK ABOUT IT AGAIN.
IT MEANS THAT EMPTY SPACE WEIGHS
SOMETHING.
WE DON'T UNDERSTAND WHY.
BUT WHEN I FIRST PROPOSED THAT
THAT MIGHT BE THE CASE, I DIDN'T
DREAM IN THE SLIGHTEST THAT IT
WAS REALLY TRUE.
IT WAS AN HERETICAL ARGUMENT
THAT I THOUGHT WOULD DEMONSTRATE
WHAT WAS WRONG WITH
OBSERVATIONS.
THE BIGGEST SHOCK WAS WHEN IT
TURNED OUT TO BE TRUE.
IT'S HARD TO BELIEVE THAT WE
MERE HUMANS CAN SORT OF GRASP
EVERY NOW AND THEN NATURE.
NATURE HAS BEEN KIND.
BUT SOMETIMES WE HAVE TO PROBE
IT A LITTLE BIT AND MANY TIMES
IT'S A LONG, HARD HAUL.
IN FACT, THE PEOPLE WHO WERE
DOING GRAVITATIONAL WAVE
EXPERIMENTS HAVE BEEN DOING THEM
FOR 40 YEARS.
IT'S NOT AS IF THEY JUST STARTED
LAST WEEK.
IT REQUIRES A KIND OF DEDICATION
AND PERSEVERANCE AND INGENUITY
THAT IS AMAZING.
TO ME THE DISCOVERY OF
GRAVITATIONAL WAVES IS REALLY A
TESTAMENT TO THE PERSEVERANCE
AND INGENUITY HUMANS HAVE AND
THAT'S WHY I FIND IT SO
EXCITING.

Steve says COOL.
LET'S FINISH UP ON THIS, RELATED
TO EDUCATION.
SHOULD COSMOLOGY BE TAUGHT IN
HIGH SCHOOL, EVERY HIGH SCHOOL?

The caption changes to "Cosmology for all?"

Lawrence says YES.
IN THE SENSE THAT WE SHOULD...
WHAT WE SHOULD TEACH... I'VE
OFTEN SAID WE SHOULD TEACH
QUESTIONS, NOT ANSWERS.
WE LIVE IN A WORLD WITH LOTS OF
ANSWERS.
YOU CAN GOOGLE THE ANSWERS.
IN FACT, KIDS SHOULD LEARN HOW
TO BE ABLE TO SEARCH THE
INTERNET FOR ANSWERS.
BUT THE MORE IMPORTANT THING IS
TO BE ABLE TO TELL SENSE FROM
NONSENSE.
AND THE OTHER THING THAT'S
IMPORTANT IS TO THINK OF GOOD
QUESTIONS.
I THINK THAT SCHOOLS SHOULD
ADDRESS THE IDEA OF QUESTIONING
AND IN FACT TEACHERS SHOULDN'T
ALWAYS KNOW THE ANSWERS.
THEY SHOULD WORK WITH THE
STUDENTS TOGETHER TO FIND THEM.
SO TO THE EXTENT THE KIND OF
QUESTIONS COSMOLOGY ADDRESSES,
WHICH IS HOW DO WE GET HERE?
ARE WE ALONE IN THE UNIVERSE.
DO THEY TURN ON YOUNG PEOPLE?
OF COURSE.
I OFTEN TELL TEACHERS THE
BIGGEST MISTAKES YOU MAKE, AND I
COULD TELL T.V. HOSTS THIS AS
WELL, ARE ASSUMING THAT YOUR
STUDENTS ARE INTERESTED IN WHAT
YOU HAVE TO SAY.
YOU HAVE TO SEDUCE THEM.
YOU HAVE TO GO TO WHERE THEY'RE
INTERESTED IN AND FIND A REASON
FOR THEM TO BE INTERESTED IN
THIS.
USE COSMOLOGY AS A HOOK, USE
STAR TREK AS A HOOK, USE
ANYTHING, POLITICS, WHATEVER YOU
CAN TO CONVINCE STUDENTS THAT
CRITICAL REASONING, QUESTIONING,
AND A WILLINGNESS AND AN
UNDERSTANDING OF HOW TO SEPARATE
THE WHEAT FROM THE CHAFF IS
WHAT'S REALLY GOING TO BE
IMPORTANT IN THE 21ST CENTURY.

Steve says YOU ASKED THREE GOOD
QUESTIONS JUST NOW.
LET'S ASSUME EVERYONE HAS TAKEN
COSMOLOGY IN SCHOOL AND THEY'RE
GOING TO GRADUATE KNOWING THREE
BASIC FACTS ABOUT COSMOLOGY.
WHAT ARE THE THREE MOST
IMPORTANT FACTS THAT PEOPLE WHO
GRADUATE HIGH SCHOOL NEED TO
KNOW TO HAVE A BETTER
UNDERSTANDING?

The caption changes to "tvo.org/current-affairs"

Lawrence says FIRST OF
ALL, THE BIG BANG REALLY
HAPPENED.
IT'S NOT SOME CONTROVERSIAL
THING.
THE UNIVERSE IS 13.8 BILLION
YEARS OLD REGARDLESS OF WHAT THE
REPUBLICAN CANDIDATES IN MY
COUNTRY SAY.
THAT TELL US SOMETHING ABOUT THE
UNIVERSE.
THE EARTH IS FOUR AND A
HALF BILLION YEARS OLD.
THE FACT THE UNIVERSE IS
EXPANDING AND THE AMAZING THING
THAT EXPANSION SEEMS TO BE
SPEEDING UP INSTEAD OF SLOWING
DOWN, WHICH IS JUST... WOULD
HAVE BEEN UNFATHOMABLE OVER A
CENTURY AGO.
AND I THINK THE LAST THING IS
THAT WE ARE COMPLETELY
COSMICALLY INSIGNIFICANT.
IF YOU TOOK US AND EVERYTHING WE
SEE IN THE UNIVERSE, ALL THE
STARS AND GALAXIES AND GOT RID
OF IT, THE UNIVERSE WOULD BE
ESSENTIALLY THE SAME.
THE UNIVERSE... WE'RE A LITTLE
BIT OF POLLUTION IN A COSMIC SEA
OF DARK MATTER AND DARK ENERGY.
70 percent OF THE UNIVERSE RESIDES IN
DARK ENERGY.
ALMOST 30 percent IN THIS EXOTIC DARK
MATTER.
AND WE ARE A LITTLE 1 percent RESIDUE
THAT HAPPENS TO BE LEFT OVER.
SO SO MUCH FOR A UNIVERSE MADE
FOR US.

The caption changes to "Producer: Cara Stern, @carastern; Producer: Wodek Szemberg, @wodekszemberg"

Steve says PROFESSOR KRAUSS,
13.8 BILLION FOR THE UNIVERSE,
4.5 BILLION YEARS FOR EARTH
AND THE UNIVERSE IS EXPANDING.
THUS ENDETH THE LESSON. THAT'S
A GOOD SPOT TO END IT ON. GREAT
TO SEE YOU AGAIN. THANKS SO
MUCH FOR THIS.

Watch: Delving Ever Deeper into Space