Now you might think: that’s really unlikely. And so it is! But that’s because fluctuating into the Big Bang is tremendously unlikely. What we argue in the paper is simply that, once you insist that you are going to examine histories of the universe that start with high-entropy empty space and end with a low-entropy Bang, the most likely way to get there is via an incredible sequence of individually unlikely events. Of course, for every one time this actually happens, there will be countless times that it almost happens, but not quite. The point is that we have infinitely long to wait — eventually the thing we’re waiting for will come to pass.
And so what?, you may very rightly ask. Well for one thing, modern cosmologists often imagine enormously long-lived universes, and events like this will be part of them, so they should be understood. More concretely, we are of course all interested in understanding why our actual universe really does have a low-entropy boundary condition at one end of time (the end we conventionally refer to as “the beginning”). There’s nothing in the laws of physics that distinguishes between the crazy story of the fluctuation into the Big Crunch and the perfectly ordinary story of evolving away from the Big Bang; one is the time-reverse of the other, and the fundamental laws of physics don’t pick out a direction of time. So we might wonder whether processes like these help explain the universe in which we actually live.
So far — not really. If anything, our work drives home (yet again!) how really unusual it is to get a universe that passes through such a low-entropy state.
First, notice that Science does sorta confirm eternity. And, this seems to state that our universe is much more unique than previously thought. Okay, so it took me reading it twice in some places, but a great article.
- Entropy (pknatz.wordpress.com)
- Bryan Fischer and the dogmatic incantations (scienceblogs.com)
- What was that again? A mathematical model of language incorporates the need for repetition (eurekalert.org)
- Existence: Why is there a universe? (newscientist.com)