Onward! Into Holographic Noise–A Chat with Fermilab’s Craig Hogan



Craig Hogan is obviously a trailblazer.  He was part of the High-z Supernova Search team that discovered dark energy, two of whose members were awarded the 2011 Nobel Prize in physics for the breakthrough. And measured in productive scientist years, Hogan is still somewhat a pup, as evidenced by his apparent 45-mile Chicago drone commute to Fermilab, where he serves as director of the Center for Particle Astrophysics.  So Hogan has plenty of time to find the holographic noise he’s been looking for, for a half dozen years or so, having now reconfigured his original holometer space probe instrument that DOE invested $2.5M in.  Hogan is no quitter, he’s pressing on, as he tells me in the interview that follows:

“[I]t’s not fair to say that it’s time to give up because there are very few experiments, and our experiment is the only one of its kind . . . I think you should give us a little bit of time to look for it.”

Hogan says that his main motivation is “this principle of holographic information” and that he and his team have adjusted the experiment to now be “sensitive to rotations.”

Hogan has a point about his experiment being the only one of its kind.  The field is rife with theory and often comes down to showmanship.  Theoretical physicist Leonard Susskind’s antics may be the most flagrant. 

As widely reported, Susskind, a co-inventor of the holographic principle, threatened to slit his own throat if Hogan found holographic noise. Susskind once threatened me saying that if I ever published the transcript of our 20-minute taped telephone conversation he agreed to, in which he said that everything he knew about evolution he learned from reading Richard Dawkins’ book and then proceeded to describe two other giants of biology as nut cases, that he would—. 

Story continued in new bookDarwin Overthrown: Hello Mechanobiology.

darwin overthrown - final - front cover




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