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Dr Quantum - Double Slit Experiment

Hits: 3227 | Rating: (3.6) | Category: Science | Added by: ElectricEye
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Male, 40-49, Eastern US
 3269 Posts
Tuesday, June 16, 2015 1:13:04 PM
I remember learning about this in college. There's a formula for the size of the slit compared to the length of the wave. Everything has a wavelength, so in theory, everything should act like a wave with the double slit. But the formula shows that for macro sized objects, like a baseball, or a marble, the slit size that is needed to produce the interference pattern is smaller than the size of the object. So macro sized object can't ever be seen as behaving like waves, even though they, too, have a wave length.

Male, 40-49, Europe
 123 Posts
Tuesday, June 16, 2015 10:17:29 AM
Wave-particle duality and the uncertainty principle are ultimately the same thing on a fundamental level. The particular manifestations belie the only conceptual difference.

The physical theory makes no claim about the exactness of a system, but instead only about our probability for observing it. It is not the electron itself that is in a superposition of states, but instead the probability for observing it. I recommend reading Dirac's Principles of Quantum Mechanics.

Physics does NOT say that things do not exist until we observe them. That is just more What-The-Bleep hippie nonsense. The PROBABILITY collapses once we observe it, not the electron itself.

Male, 30-39, Midwest US
 195 Posts
Saturday, June 21, 2014 12:39:42 AM
Everybody looking for a threesome.

Female, 50-59, Western US
 2683 Posts
Thursday, June 19, 2014 12:58:15 AM
It's like Doctor Demento went on a diet and became a scientist. Cool. However, I'm still too stupid to understand the explanation. Slow it down to extra-dumb, and I'll watch it again.

Male, 40-49, Canada
 4704 Posts
Tuesday, June 17, 2014 5:10:26 AM
Yes. As creepy as I always find it, the idea that things aren't static until you make them static does lend credence to the Multiple timeline/Universe theory. It really sort of explains how it works.

Male, 50-59, Canada
 29146 Posts
Monday, June 16, 2014 11:36:28 PM
@Draculya: Heisenberg? Close, but it's a different matter.

Photons have even less claim to "mass" than electrons! For them to be a wave is less "far fetched" although it's also hard to believe.

At least not yet.
To pretend otherwise is Hubris...

Male, 40-49, Asia
 13925 Posts
Monday, June 16, 2014 9:44:57 PM
I'll tell you what blows my mind: not the electrons, but much larger molecules of up to 10,000 atomic masses also exhibit this behaviour.

Also, if you think you have gotten your head round the double slit experiment and want to deepen your mind-fck:

Delayed Choice Quantum Eraser

Male, 40-49, Asia
 13925 Posts
Monday, June 16, 2014 9:26:35 PM
Heisenberg (not Walter White)

Male, 50-59, Canada
 29146 Posts
Monday, June 16, 2014 8:25:58 PM
@captkava: I SEE what you did OR DID NOT do there!

@hg: Schrodinger's Cat! = yes!
Everett-Wheeler (Many Worlds Theory) = Nope!

I'm a "ONE world theory" kind of cat! Parmenides is my hero! (Along with Zeno!!)

@OldOllie is correct: Electrons do not exist until we observe them! Measure, detect, see how other things react, they're slippery little... things!

@Rick_S: I've read the opposite of that. Probably RA Wilson. When big objects actually do the double slit? They make 2 lovely, clean lines. Reflecting off the edges does NOT make the highly re-producible multiple lines of an interference pattern. It makes random dots here and there.
iirc, of course!

Male, 40-49, Eastern US
 3269 Posts
Monday, June 16, 2014 7:54:46 PM
I remember learning in college that any sized object will produce the wave pattern in the double slit experiment. It's just that the size slit you need to cause the wave pattern is going to be several orders of magnitude smaller than the object if you go beyond the photon/electron type stuff.

I computed the size slit you would need to create the interference pattern with baseballs back then. I don't remember the result, but I do remember that it was very small, and that even the thread on the baseball couldn't pass through the slit.

Male, 60-69, Midwest US
 15860 Posts
Monday, June 16, 2014 2:50:10 PM
This means matter changes when observed by everything?

Yes. Observation at the quantum level is not passive. You cannot observe anything without interacting with it. You can only see an object in your everyday environment because photons are being scattered from it. At the quantum level, though, even a single photon will affect the state of the particle with which it interacts.

You cannot tell the exact position of, say, an electron, because (are you ready?) the electron doesn't HAVE an exact position until you interact with it. It's just a smeared-out wave (unless it's constrained by a potential such as being bound to an atom).

It's always dicey to make analogies with the macroscopic world, but imagine a thundercloud. It contains a quantity of electric charge, but where, exactly, is that charge located? It doesn't exist in one place, but when a lightning bolt from that cloud strikes a tree, for a short time you know exactly where it is.

Male, 60-69, Midwest US
 15860 Posts
Monday, June 16, 2014 1:32:12 PM
Electrons and other quanta simply do not exist as point particles; however, when they interact with other particles, as they must do in any observation or when the electron hits the wall, the wave function collapses, and they interact at a single point.

The wave function describes the probability of the particle interacting at a particular point.

Male, 18-29, Europe
 93 Posts
Monday, June 16, 2014 12:13:00 PM
This "The act of observing absorbs a certain amount of energy from the object being observed, thus altering it's characteristics." and the explanation from the video freak me out.

This means matter changes when observed by everything? or just the things that understand it?

or did the measuring equipment change the outcome?

weird stuff for sure

Male, 30-39, Western US
 5734 Posts
Monday, June 16, 2014 11:28:28 AM
1 theory is that whenever an event happens all possible outcomes exist in their own separate dimensional timeline. Only after we observe it do we know what timeline we currently exist on.

Male, 50-59, Europe
 5843 Posts
Monday, June 16, 2014 10:22:24 AM
The act of observing absorbs a certain amount of energy from the object being observed, thus altering it's characteristics.

Male, 40-49, Europe
 257 Posts
Monday, June 16, 2014 10:06:38 AM
wave/particle duality for the win/loss!

(see what i did there?)

Male, 30-39, Western US
 5734 Posts
Monday, June 16, 2014 9:19:23 AM
Schrodinger's cat

Male, 40-49, Eastern US
 600 Posts
Monday, June 16, 2014 7:17:00 AM
Link: Dr Quantum - Double Slit Experiment [Rate Link] - What the Bleep Do We Know!?

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