Throughout history, human beings have always reflected on their existence to try to understand who we are? Where we come from? and where are we going? Questions that have been addressed since ancient times.
Now a group of physicists from the University of Queensland, United States, and the Néel Institute, in France, were given the task of determining the cause and effect on the question of what came first, the chicken or the egg? something that the Greek philosophers debated for a long time.
Through a study published on the website of the University of Queensland, the team led by Jacqui Romero explained that “the rarity of quantum mechanics means that events can happen without an established order.” Because the answer could be somewhat ambiguous, Romero offered an example in which he explained the so-called casual order indefinite. “I took the example of a daily commute to work, where someone travels one part by bus and another by train, normally you would take the bus and then the train, or the other way around In our experiment, both events can happen first.”
The researchers carried out a procedure called photonic quantum switch, with which Fabio Costa, of the University of Queensland, determined that the order of events (in this case the transformations in the shape of light) depends on polarization. “This is only a first proof of principle, but on a larger scale, the indefinite causal order may have real practical applications, such as making computers more efficient or improving communication.” Based on that fact, the scientists argue that, both the egg and the chicken were first, from the point of view of quantum physics.
“The egg and the chicken is really a metaphor, in popular literature it always asks what came first, and what we test with this experiment, in which ‘A happens before B’ and ‘B happens before A’ can be certain at the same time, is that the two events happen first!” said Romero.