If you’re a science fiction fan, you’re surely familiar with the concept of parallel universes- other realities that differ from ours, and one another, in small ways, but still share many or most of the important defining qualities of our own world.
If you’re a skeptical person, you’ve probably already dismissed the idea as nothing but science fiction, good for selling mass market paperbacks but ridiculous as a serious theory.
Brian Greene, however, is one of a growing number of scientists who’d say you’re wrong. He even goes so far as to suggest that we will soon be able to prove it.
Just like in the best sci-fi, Greene says that these other universes, which may be vibrating within a millimeter of our own, yet invisible and unreachable due to existing in a different plane from our understood four dimensions (if you’re scratching your head, the fourth one is time, through which we don’t move as freely as the first three, but do have some understanding of), may be almost identical to our own, or far different. We may all exist in all of them, but living different lives in each one.
Greene and other experts believe that at the current rate with which we are improving technology, these alternate universes will be a proven fact in (relatively) short order.
Some experts are expecting to see proof within ten years, while others say that fifty years, or even a century, is a more realistic outlook, though still quite short within the scope of human knowledge.