The Holographic Universe Explained

We live in a universe with 3 dimensions of space and one of time. Up, down, left, right, forward, back, past, future. 3+1 dimensions. Or so our primitive Pleistocene-evolved brains find it useful to believe. And we cling to this intuition, even as physics shows us that this view of reality may be only a very narrow perception. One of the most startling possibilities is that our 3+1 dimensional universe may better described as resulting from a spacetime one dimension lower - like a hologram projected from a surface infinitely far away.
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Hosted by Matt O'Dowd
Written by Matt O'Dowd
Graphics by Aaron Halevy
Directing by Andrew Kornhaber
The holographic principle emerged from many subtle clues - clues discovered over decades of theoretical exploration of the universe. Over the past several months on Space Time, we’ve seen those close clues, and we’ve built a the foundations needed to glimpse the true meaning of the holographic principle. We’ve moved from quantum field theory to black hole thermodynamics to string theory. We’ve made a background playlist if you want to start from scratch, and I especially recommend catching last week’s episode. But this is tough material, so let’s do a review.
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سلطان الخليفي


  • JunkYard Chic

    JunkYard Chic

    Il y a 25 secondes

    So there's some type of invisible record as a lid to a black hole with only the B side recording information and we all live in the holographic image of the B side recorded information where gravity has been gathered enough by the B side record that the holographic image actually has curves.

  • Glenn B

    Glenn B

    Il y a heure

    Can we determine if we live in a 2D holographic universe by comparing the gravitational waves and EM waves from neutron star mergers-in a similar way to that paper looking for 4+ string dimensions-except testing for LESS dimensions instead?

  • Nick Robinson

    Nick Robinson

    Il y a 2 heures

    It would be great if there was a way to switch off the music

  • Gabriel Hermesson

    Gabriel Hermesson

    Il y a 2 heures

    Banana for scale.

  • BuzzedAldrin


    Il y a 2 heures

    Now let's hope that after watching rewatching this 12 times I understand it, like previous hard episodes 🤞

  • Bálint Forgács

    Bálint Forgács

    Il y a 3 heures

    Do you think it is possible that we see the surface of the volume when we look at black holes? All the information of our universe is translated to a surface, and when we look at black holes, we see how a surface model explains it? Is their surface information - of their underlying matter - is the way we as matter look like at the surface of our universe?

  • geefreck


    Il y a 4 heures

    Neat. Also , wut

  • Dave Stites

    Dave Stites

    Il y a 9 heures

    I feel like I don't even deserve to be alive because I am far, far too stupid to understand almost anything in this video

  • Christopher Tobias

    Christopher Tobias

    Il y a 11 heures

    Oh snap.. Russel Brand is a genius!

  • Viral Killer

    Viral Killer

    Il y a 12 heures

    This sounds like crap. Basically a desperate attempt to explain why things appear to flatten on the horizon, using overly complex maths. I'm afraid the quantum information IS lost, at least in this universe.

  • Viral Killer

    Viral Killer

    Il y a 13 heures

    The reason we can't understand the universe fully is because our ape brains can't comprehend up to 10 dimensions. We maybe never will. But a computer could.

  • Cloud Galaxy

    Cloud Galaxy

    Il y a 14 heures

    I watched the playlist... Unfortunately, I'm still too dumb to understand this bad boy. Everything was making sense in the other videos. I still just don't understand why the theory of a holographic universe is compelling. Maybe the math just looks good? Any who, you should make a movie just explaining this. I'd watch that.

  • jess mcisaac

    jess mcisaac

    Il y a 14 heures

    I'm here because I'm drunk and think I understand? 😊 why are the rest of you here? Serious comments only please? LOL 👍😘❤🇬🇧x

  • sravan reddy

    sravan reddy

    Il y a 17 heures

    I stopped at banana.

  • Bill Avery

    Bill Avery

    Il y a 18 heures

    Does his mean we live inside of a black hole?

  • Antiochus III the Great

    Antiochus III the Great

    Il y a 22 heures

    Alex Jones was right. Lol

  • Eric M.

    Eric M.

    Il y a 23 heures

    It seems that the holographic principle has the potential to be a theory of everything but its still a work in progress. That two of the hints came from black holes (Hawking radiation and bh entropy) leaves me to wonder where the next clues might appear. And yeah there is a lot in this video but my neurons are getting mad swole from the workout.

  • Andrew James

    Andrew James

    Il y a jour

    I'm not trusting the words from Penis Broadcast Semen.

  • ZFlyingVLover


    Il y a jour

    Sounds like alot of mumbo jumbo similar to new math. Does this stuff add up? Yes or No? If no then useless like new math and common core.

  • Pedro Victor

    Pedro Victor

    Il y a jour

    Let me think A 2D Quantum Field in a 4D Minkowsky Space generates a 3D Universe

  • kalez238


    Il y a jour

    Sorry, what? I was distracted by the bananas.

  • Ray Brandt

    Ray Brandt

    Il y a jour

    Aaaaaah, so you mean... that... wait, no, I didn't get it.

  • Daan Scatozza

    Daan Scatozza

    Il y a jour

    life is a puzzle

  • Jyrki Holopainen

    Jyrki Holopainen

    Il y a jour

    The music is very distracting. The content is already hard enough without it.

  • Rafael Ramirez

    Rafael Ramirez

    Il y a jour

    Nothing but theory...blah!

  • MrPxKx


    Il y a jour

    I feel dizzy...

  • Ryan Dawson

    Ryan Dawson

    Il y a jour

    Marvel movies are great. Up until Brie Larson.

  • Ray Brandt

    Ray Brandt

    Il y a jour

    Loving Brie Larson here, especially the scenes with Nick Fury, good stuff. Definitely better than anything in the Dark World, an easy example.

  • Bobby Boomer

    Bobby Boomer

    Il y a jour


  • Afterlifesinner


    Il y a 2 jours

    I can't help but feel distracted by the background music. I remember spacetime always tending towards more subtle soundtracks. is it just me.

  • Brandon Feltman

    Brandon Feltman

    Il y a 2 jours

    so i had an idea, but i wouldnt know who to ask or where to ask. but here it is: what if dark matter is actually the area within space-time where actual matter will exist or has existed throughout the entirety of all space-time? it would somewhat explain why dark matter seems to have gravitational effects on current matter. its not a separate matter acting on "current" matter..its just matter that will be there, or has been there at some point. made sense to me, but i dont really have physicists around to tell me im wrong :)

  • Bill Avery

    Bill Avery

    Il y a 18 heures

    That makes sense to me

  • Rain Ghost

    Rain Ghost

    Il y a 2 jours

    Im edgy and original, i understood everything, glad my buddies fractals are shown some love finally.

  • IdoN0TneedTherapy


    Il y a 2 jours

    Interesting video plagued by awful and too loud ambience. Please reduce the ambience volume on future videos. Preferably to zero.

  • Some Fella

    Some Fella

    Il y a 2 jours

    Another dumb ass nonsense vid! Zzzz ffs get a grip on REALITY!

  • Ladnavar


    Il y a 2 jours

    science is weird.. I'm not complaining caz I didnt understand half of this, but the examples and theoretical mambjamb in this video became so extreme I thought that it didnt matter anymore. at such large scales even if the universe fits the definition of a simulation it has nothing to do with us. in the same way that no one reading this comment will ever experience falling into a black hole.. unless practical implications/applications become apparent soon, this is just intellect masturbation Xp

  • srinitaaigaura


    Il y a 2 jours

    I demand a video with a detailed explanation for that black hole photograph - how, who, what, when and what challenges they faced.

  • MrPxKx


    Il y a jour

    Shitloads of them already on youtube.

  • Filming life to Remember it.

    Filming life to Remember it.

    Il y a 2 jours

    Here's something Matt O' Dowd, can ponder when he has a coffee chat with fellow astronomers. Tuesday morning, April 23. Fourteen minutes after sunrise, looking-down at the Barge Canal, in New York, from a bridge, A mirror reflection of the sky. A patch of sky became brilliant blue. Hazy white surrounding it. Then. In a heartbeat, it closed-up. From the inside-out. Like getting suck-in by a vacuum. No. Not my imagination, as others saw the same. Straight-up. An arms length from the Sun's position. A cosmic phenomena? Weather related? A worm hole? Just when science claims to have the answer, the Universe changes the question. The Universe must be Liberal.

  • Radu Morosanu

    Radu Morosanu

    Il y a 2 jours

    where did you got that shirt?

  • DarkCanister


    Il y a 2 jours

    Did you have a new animator? The animation style for this episode looks different from the previous ones.

  • Rami Sadiq

    Rami Sadiq

    Il y a 2 jours

    I challenge this guy to break this down in terms where everyone can understand.

  • Archontasius


    Il y a 2 jours

    So we are flatlanders living in imaginary third dimension until e abbot imagine a flatland itself

  • Tomas Molina

    Tomas Molina

    Il y a 2 jours

    "One Maldacena" HAHA xD

  • Shirin Chatterjee

    Shirin Chatterjee

    Il y a 2 jours

    I miss you

  • Thelittle200


    Il y a 2 jours

    So the projector is the great attractor! Just kidding love the show 😁

  • Karen Nagamoto

    Karen Nagamoto

    Il y a 3 jours

    I know the animator has put in a lot of effort but it's way to much and distracting. Also the "background" music is so loud I have a hard time actually following the content.

  • Lisa Hennessey

    Lisa Hennessey

    Il y a 3 jours

    It's amazing how one can understand English words yet not have a clue what was said the whole video!!

  • zimek


    Il y a 3 jours

    To authors: why don't you do a video on quantized inertia topic?

  • Corey Scott

    Corey Scott

    Il y a 3 jours

    He has certainly not mastered the art of rendering anything comprehensible.

  • Jasper Lawrence

    Jasper Lawrence

    Il y a 3 jours

    Matt something about black holes and the big bang bothers me. If the entire universe at the moment of the big bang was in a singularity, a black hole containing our entire universe, why and how would that explode with sufficient energy to destroy the singularity? has anyone calculated the energy required to blow up a black hole of a particular size in our universe?

  • Subparanon


    Il y a 3 jours

    Spacetime, I have a question about energy and entropy. We all know there is no perpetual motion, I mean if there were, the more it happened, the more it would tend to happen. It would mean a source of energy that would just keep growing and growing unchecked. But lets do a thought experiment a second. The amount of energy in a system doesn't necessarily correlate to how much potential energy there is, or how much work can be extracted from that energy. For instance an automobile engine wouldn't produce very much work if the temperature and density of the air outside the engine, was the same as the combusted gases inside of it. It's the difference in heat and pressure that makes the engine do work. So lets say there was perpetual motion, and it just kept pumping energy into a closed system; at a certain point, in spite of there being lots of energy, the density of it would start to become uniform, IE things get hot and expand, and so at a certain point, it wouldn't matter how energetic it was, if everything was energetic right? If the universe were having infinite amounts of energy pumped into it forever, would we even notice it? I mean from the perspective of doing more or less work. Things would get hot for awhile but it's a closed system, temperatures would equalize, and probably matter might get hotter and hotter, and molecules would be unstable, but would it produce any more usable work? I hope you understand what I'm asking because I find it hard to express it with words. I'm trying to say that I don't think perpetual energy in a closed system affects entropy in the long run unless you also have perpetual non-energy. The opposite of energy, sucking it back out unequal to what is going in.

  • Azimech_ 77 Industries

    Azimech_ 77 Industries

    Il y a 3 jours

    You have a great voice, even for falling asleep. Unfortunately I am unable of comprehending even the rudimentary basics of quantum mechanics. I just hope to filter out a simple conclusion I can use.

  • Alfonso J. Ramos

    Alfonso J. Ramos

    Il y a 3 jours

    Could you make a video explaining this:

  • Monkey Robots Inc.

    Monkey Robots Inc.

    Il y a 3 jours

    U guys aren't good at teaching stuff.

  • Monkey Robots Inc.

    Monkey Robots Inc.

    Il y a 3 jours


  • Jakes comic review Superheros

    Jakes comic review Superheros

    Il y a 3 jours

    The commentator is a flat earther

  • R3ll1k73


    Il y a 3 jours

    "Biological fact: It is well established that the brain uses more energy than any other human organ, accounting for >>>up to 20 percent

  • Jared Coatney

    Jared Coatney

    Il y a 3 jours

    Nice hidden swastikas in your graphics. I'm hoping it wasn't intentional. @10:35 Might wanna change your game of life representation.

  • Kargadan


    Il y a 3 jours

    watch this video in a dark room at full screen... XD fun visualizations. Anyways I still don't fully comprehend how our universe is "projected", how is the projecting happening(through what means?)

  • Rain Ghost

    Rain Ghost

    Il y a 2 jours

    Hint: professor Suskind lecture, find it easily on youtube

  • babyplaze


    Il y a 3 jours

    Is anyone else watching this at 4am thinking they've been transported to the year 3000 and we're supposed to understand everything in this video?

  • Dan Sternof Beyer

    Dan Sternof Beyer

    Il y a 3 jours

    I watched this episode like Picard watches Geordi La Forge give a detailed explanation of how he’s going to solve something technical. I didn’t totally understand, but I knew the case was in good hands. At the end I pointed and said, “Make it so.”

  • ZappBrannigan23


    Il y a 4 jours

    Do this next!

  • IntermediateJesus


    Il y a 4 jours

    This is like my favourite theory of physics ever.

  • Dajuan A.P.

    Dajuan A.P.

    Il y a 4 jours

    Alex Jones was talking about this a few months ago

  • Ryan Nickens

    Ryan Nickens

    Il y a 4 jours

    The music is not necessary, and actually quite disruptive. I can appreciate you guys trying new things, but the music is just not a good fit for this channel. Just my two cents

  • Oliver Curwen

    Oliver Curwen

    Il y a jour

    It makes cents to me!

  • Abouelazz Ali

    Abouelazz Ali

    Il y a 4 jours

    If a ring form spacecraft rotates around an axel in in order to create fake gravity from the centrifugal force it s is still conciderd an acceleration right? If it is will it dilate space time? Pls if someone knows the answer help 😊😊

  • Craig Craigson

    Craig Craigson

    Il y a 4 jours

    Question: I was thinking about determinism. If you hypothetically could go back to the beginning of the universe and measure the mass, velocity and every single property of every single particle and all things that existed in that tiny space, you could then predict every single thing that was ever going to happen afterwards, right? I see no flaw, except, I do not know to which degree the quantum world is immeasurable. Of course not with our technology, but to prove determinism, we only hypothetically have to be able to measure it. Do we simply not know, or is it measurable? Thanks in advance, Any input greatly appreciated.

  • Steve Nesbit

    Steve Nesbit

    Il y a 4 jours

    So does a holographic universe explain quantum entanglement in that while we see things as entangled (but not connected in a known way) in our "reality" created from the holographic surface, but on the holographic surface itself the entangled particles are connected in some way?

  • Avi Aero

    Avi Aero

    Il y a 4 jours

    Would you agree the current 3+1 space time holographic universe to be essentially a remnant of a higher dimensional universe ejected via a white hole during Big Bang? 🤔🤔🤔

  • Nafrost


    Il y a 4 jours

    It’s amazing what we can do with the same brains we used to throw stones at each other.

  • Robert Mihai

    Robert Mihai

    Il y a 3 jours

    No man! Those brains are long dead

  • Nafrost


    Il y a 4 jours

    Man this video built heavily on previous one, good thing I have been watching Space Time from about when the first episode of string theory came out.

  • Abhi


    Il y a 4 jours


  • Michael Parrott-MacLeod

    Michael Parrott-MacLeod

    Il y a 4 jours

    A perfect holographic projection in a universe that is imperfect? This is a construct not viable totally based on a quantum event at a black hole never seen or may never be seen since it’s beyond our perception.

  • Likas Pokas

    Likas Pokas

    Il y a 4 jours

    When you do local transformations : scale (Weyl symmetry ) , local rotation (gauge transformation of dirac field).. etc Sometimes you visualize those transformations as active transformations (changing the function itself) and sometimes as passive transformations (rotation of the coordinates without touching the function) .. Are both types of transformation correct and equivalent?

  • grawss


    Il y a 4 jours

    JFC, this is craziness. Basically every bit of terminology you used is based on science unproven in any laboratory experiment, built off other terminology unproven in laboratory experiment. Stop just adding new unproven terms to fill in the gaps of bad science; it's high time science figures out how the basics work before building all sorts of new forces and particles to substitute for our ignorance. "The weird thing is that when you write the quantum wave equation for the gluon strand with length as a separate dimension, you get the wave equation of a graviton, the quantum particle of gravity, which is ridiculous given the puny energy of a meson!" Wtf is this nonsense. Have we suddenly figured out all this "quantum" stuff? Are we Facebook messaging different dimensions now? You're just looking at results, making calculations for those results, and then when the calculations fail in any case, creating new terminology to explain away the failures. 'Oh, it must be an entirely new force we can't test in the lab and have no evidence of; it cannot possibly be that we're wrong!'

  • 50PullUps


    Il y a 4 jours

    I don't understand. And I never will. Either that, or I will only believe that I understand.

  • Chris-stuff-ER


    Il y a 4 jours

    He looks like Peter dinkleage

  • elfootman


    Il y a 4 jours

    Where can I get the soundtrack used? It's amazing!

  • TheTails63


    Il y a 4 jours

    We might be a microscopic part of a bigger organism

  • Krish Dhameliya

    Krish Dhameliya

    Il y a 4 jours

    I have a question by no mean I am an expert in black holes but as I understand it when something is thrown inside a black hole it says on the event horizon and then some particles get thrown back and some gets pulled in which is Hawking radiation but if that's true then still the black hole get some particles in which means its mass should increase not decrease over time. did I understand something wrong here?

  • HeyImAName HeyImALastName

    HeyImAName HeyImALastName

    Il y a 4 jours

    Where did you get the super cool blue&purple astronauts in triangles shirt you wore in the majority of this video? I need it!

  • daveangels


    Il y a 4 jours

    Normally i can follow a bit, but this time my understanding was at a infinete distance

  • James Hedin

    James Hedin

    Il y a 4 jours

    journal club idea; what's going wrong with this: ?

  • RallyCarDelta Gaming

    RallyCarDelta Gaming

    Il y a 4 jours

    The way I understand it is the ads-cft model uses 4-D space in the bulk (where we are) with a 3-D, infinitely far surface. As you said, obviously that looks like "problem" because our world is, at least as far as we know, 3+1 in the potential bulk (with 2+1 on the potential surface). Can the problem be solved by compactifying the 4-D space into a 3+1, and doing the same on the surface (compact 3-D into 2+1).

  • Jordan


    Il y a 4 jours

    So before I watch this episode. That recent black hold that www know of Ames spooky action at a distance. What might we do it would take lightyears but the way we fire off entangled particles into space. What about firing some int towards that black hole and then once we calculated that reached out then measure the one entangled on our end. Maybe we experiment with the sun first?

  • John Willis

    John Willis

    Il y a 5 jours

    So. What I got out of that is we've been asking the wrong questions, its what we don't see or understand that reconciles the apparent paradoxes we've backed ourselves into by making assumptions. The questions become meaningless.. the paradoxes resolve themselves if you add a higher dimension to perception. But the questions arise because we are not taking into account the reality of the situation. Reality is more complex than we assume. Sort of the same thing Einstein did to Newtonian physics. Newtons Laws work well enough as long as you ignore the details. Einstein brought up a few more details of observation and then explained them away as Special Relativity.. resolving the paradoxes he originally brought up. I sense a recurring pattern here.. sort of like a TV Series Arc.

  • Jack Patterson

    Jack Patterson

    Il y a 5 jours

    Gravity = time?

  • sir vengeance

    sir vengeance

    Il y a 5 jours

    Yeah hard stuff!!

  • Jordan Unger

    Jordan Unger

    Il y a 5 jours


  • coolbeatguy


    Il y a 5 jours

    I love these videos. But can you make them a little easier to understand somehow? I know basic things about the holographic universe theory, black holes and string theory. But man, this goes way beyond anyone's understanding who doesn't have a PhD in physics.

  • He Yan

    He Yan

    Il y a 5 jours

    I m surprised how smart youtube thinks i am to recommend me this

  • Mellow Yellow

    Mellow Yellow

    Il y a 5 jours

    You lost me at 0:00

  • John Farris

    John Farris

    Il y a 5 jours

    SmarterEveryDay last two videos.

  • Ethan Joy

    Ethan Joy

    Il y a 5 jours

    The new graphics/sound effects ruin it for me. It’s hard enough to follow you without these unnecessary distractions. Love you bro but please tone down the special effects.

  • Atharva #breakthrough

    Atharva #breakthrough

    Il y a 5 jours

    can u pls make one explaining how one cud self learn modern physics assuming mechanics and E&M background?

  • M.A.G.


    Il y a 5 jours

    Could it be that this mechanism is nested? Could all spatial dimensions be such "virtual" ones?

  • impinator maxima

    impinator maxima

    Il y a 5 jours

    5:47 after I smoked that dmt earlier

  • Straylight


    Il y a 5 jours

    14:17 so what you're saying is basically that the universe is an inverted computer

  • Dave Dave

    Dave Dave

    Il y a 5 jours

    I just watched a video about some math "genius" named Ramanujan. You may not know this but Ramanujan's great contribution to human understanding was correcting the widespread delusion that the infinite sum (series as they call it in math), 1+2+3+4+5...(and so on), does NOT equal infinity. Surprise! It equals -1/12! So, what's my point, you ask? My point is that science, especially Physics and Cosmology, has been hijacked by mathematicians. These charlatans are driving scientific inquiry into the absurd, where stating 2 + 2 = 5 is no longer insanity.

  • ZSTAR 1000

    ZSTAR 1000

    Il y a 6 jours

    Can you do a video on microtubules and quantum consciousness?

  • Vaughn Tiffany

    Vaughn Tiffany

    Il y a 6 jours

    love the Game of Life stuff. Could some rules like GoL really govern our universe?

  • jeeze b

    jeeze b

    Il y a 6 jours

    Way to cover a to pic already EXHAUSTED by everyone else.