Worldwide quantum physics experiments powered by human randomness.

A Bell test is an experiment to decide whether the world is really as strange as quantum mechanics says it is. Our ordinary experience tells us that inanimate matter has a reality independent of ourselves. For example, we believe the moon was there, orbiting the earth, long before there were any people to admire it. Quantum physics seems to say something different: that the act of observing the world can change it. Niels Bohr, a towering figure in quantum mechanics, even claimed that observables such as “the position of the atom” have no meaning until someone measures them. If this is true, the act of observation at least alters and maybe creates the world, quite the opposite of an independent reality. Physicists and philosophers have debated Bohr’s interpretation of quantum mechanics since it was published in 1927.

The BIG Bell Test (BBT) is a worldwide project to bring human randomness to cutting-edge quantum physics experiments. On November 30th, many people will contribute randomly chosen bits. These will be distributed in real-time to experimental groups around the world  for use in quantum physics experiments, including the first Bell test(s) with human-generated randomness. In addition to testing fundamental physical principles like non-locality, human randomness is useful in important applications such as secure communications, and also as a “seed” for the generation of even more randomness.



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