A Thin Sheet of Reality: The Universe as a Hologram

What we touch. What we smell. What we feel. They’re all part of our reality. But what if life as we know it reflects only one side of the full story? Some of the world’s leading physicists think that this may be the case. They believe that our reality is a projection—sort of like a hologram—of laws and processes that exist on a thin surface surrounding us at the edge of the universe. Although the notion seems outlandish, it’s a long-standing theory that initially emerged years ago from scientists studying black holes; recently, a breakthrough in string theory propelled the idea into the mainstream of physics. What took place was an intriguing discussion on the cutting-edge results that may just change the way we view reality.

This program is part of The Big Idea Series, made possible with support from the John Templeton Foundation.


(Image Credit: Getty/Sigrid Gombert)

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An M
An M

If the same ball of clay shaped into a horse or into a car is swallowed by a black hole, would it modify the black hole in the same way, or is *all* information really kept on the event horizon making the two cases distinguishable?


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