It's all about the GEO600 --
"If the GEO600 result is what I suspect it is, then we are all living in a giant cosmic hologram."
The GE0600 is The German-British Gravitational Wave Detector.
The GEO600 project aims at the direct detection of gravitational waves by means of a laser interferometer of 600 m armlength. Gravitational waves are extremely small ripples in the structure of spacetime caused by astrophysical events like supernovae or coalescing massive binaries (neutron stars, black holes). They have been predicted by Albert Einstein in 1916, but not yet directly observed.
OK - I guess I understand what it IS
and I kind of understand what it DOES
From Einstein Online:
With space and time not as rigid background structures, but as dynamical objects (changing as the world changes in and around them), general relativity predicts fundamentally new phenomena. One of the most fascinating is the existence of gravitational waves: small distortions of space-time geometry which propagate through space as waves!
Most readers will have encountered several wave phenomena in everyday life. Sound waves, for instance: a small region of air is compressed, and the fact that its inner pressure is a bit higher than that of neighbouring regions leads to its expansion. This expansion leads to compression nearby, and in this way, the slight surplus in pressure propagates further and further. Such pressure waves are produced when we talk: our vocal cords compress the air around them, sound travels as waves, and these waves are absorbed by our ears when we hear them. In Einstein's case, the situation is somewhat different, but the basic principle is the same: a slight distortion in one region of space distorts nearby regions, and in the end, there is a moving distortion which speeds along at the highest possible speed (the speed of light). Such travelling distortions of space geometry are called gravitational waves.
Here is the article. It was published in NewScientist last month. I thought the comments following the article would help clarify things. Nope. It just made my head hurt worse.
Have at it if you dare and MTFBWY!
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