About This Episode
How far will we journey into the cosmos during our lifetime? Neil deGrasse Tyson and comic co-host Chuck Nice answer questions about string theory, the fabric of spacetime, interstellar travel, free will, and the meaning of life with the help of theoretical physicist and author Brian Greene.
Neil and Brian debate how long humanity will last. Will we outlive the predicted length of existence we’ve seen from other species? Will we destroy ourselves? What happens if we send a crew into interstellar space and when they return everyone is gone? You’ll learn how long it takes just to get out of the Milky Way alone and what humans would be like if they grew up never knowing the Earth.
We explore free choice and free will. Brian tells us why he thinks we don’t have either. Discover more about time: is it made of something? You better believe we talk about string theory. Brian shares why spacetime itself could be stitched together by the threads of quantum entanglement. You’ll hear how dark energy could rip the fabric of spacetime – and why that might not be as catastrophic as it sounds. You’ll also learn why black holes shrink down if spacetime rips apart.
We dive into the meaning of life: Is there any? And, if there isn’t, what’s the point in living? Brian explains why he thinks physics should guide us and also set us free. Neil and Brian discuss the role of religion and if that would change if we were contacted by extraterrestrials. You’ll find out where the universe ends. Lastly, we investigate entropy in the universe. All that, plus, discover more about the simulation universe and if the human brain will ever figure out human consciousness.
This episode originally aired on May 9, 2020.
Thanks to our Patrons Jamie Boneleye, Evan Blackburn, Matthew Pounsett, Chris Behrensmeyer, and Brett Armstrong for supporting us this week.
NOTE: StarTalk+ Patrons can listen to this entire episode commercial-free.