that I can safely say that nobody understands quantum mechanics.
Neurons and glia cells in the
human nervous system.
"We are quantum computers," said Pat.
"Huh," said Jim, while Mary shook her head and sighed as she gave a spoonful of baby food to Quincy, Jim and Mary's 3 month old baby.
"Do you realize that Quincy has already had an enormous amount of direct programming," Pat said as he sipped some wine. "And yet, Quincy's nervous system is still in its early stages of formation."
"So Quincy is a baby computer...is that what you are saying, " Jim said. "I'm not so sure that I like that image - my son the computer."
"Are you guys about to have one of those crazy philosophical discussions again?" asked Mary. "These discussions never lead to anything practical...make a computer that can change a diaper, now that's practical!"
"Well," countered Pat. "You are the computer that changes Quincy's diaper." They looked at each other and laughed. Pat had been invited to dinner at Mary and Jim's new home. He was all fired up because of an article that he had read about new information concerning the nature of the human nervous system.
Pat took out of his pocket and unfolded a picture he had cut out from Scientific American showing human nerve cells, neurons, connected to glial cells. These glial cells are just being recognized as being important for communicating within the brain and body.
"Do you realize," Pat said as he showed them the picture, "that you are an entangled web of about 100 billion neurons, and about 900 billion glial cells, that's a lot of cells, a trillion cells in your nervous system. And don't forget that you have about 100 trillion synapses linking the neurons, and who knows how many connections between the nerve and glial cells. All of this provides an incredible amount of potential. And, most of this potential is probably untouched."
"Yeah, I'll give you that we have mucho cells with lots of potential, in our nervous systems...so what does this have to do with quantum computers?" asked Jim. Mary nodded.
"Entanglement," said Pat. And he paused.
"Entanglement?" repeated Jim and Mary simultaneously.
"Entanglement is the word for the strange connection between particles that is at the center of quantum mechanics," Pat tried to explain. "Particles that are connected, say when initially formed, remain connected no matter how far apart they become. The connection is so strong that when one particle is touched by something, the other particle also reacts, and reacts instantaneously."
"That's like the mysterious faster than the speed of light interaction that Einstein never believed," said Mary.
"Exactly," said Pat. "And that was one of the few times, the great Albert was wrong! Once the reality of entanglement was established, someone realized that it could be used to make a super super duper computer that would make the current fastest computers look like abacuses."
"So, can I buy one?" asked Jim jokingly.
"Not quite yet," Pat smiled back. "But, you may have made one." He gave Quincy a kiss on his head.
"Okay, I'll bite", said Mary. "How is Quincy a quantum computer?"
"Well, consider that Quincy began with the very intimate entanglement, yes entanglement, of DNA strands from you and from Jim. This entanglement of atoms was probably a quantum mechanical type of entanglement and I bet that the growth of Quincy involves more than just classical chemistry from those DNA strands. The fact that entanglement occurred at the moment of conception permits much more information to be encoded in Quincy's first unique cell than would be the case using simple chemistry. Also, I bet that as the cells divide, the entanglement continues to get stronger and stronger as the number of cells increase."
"I've certainly seen enough photos of the complexity of the human body to know that all the various parts of our bodies, including the smallest cells, are magnificently entangled in the normal sense of the word," said Jim. "But what has this to do with quantum computers."
"If we accept that Quincy is, and has been, an entangled being in the mysterious sense of quantum mechanics, then he is already a quantum computer. Look, the basic definition of a computer is something that computes, assembles, stores, correlates, or otherwise processes information. Obviously, Quincy is processing information - if you are alive, you are processing information. In fact, he is already processing more information than any existing machine-computer could handle."
"But, but ...," Mary was not happy with this conversation, "Quincy is more than a very complex machine...he has intelligence, emotions... he has consciousness."
"Yes," said Pat, "and maybe his consciousness comes from the huge information capacity of his own quantum entanglements, plus the entanglements he already has with you and all that entangles you."
There was a long pause, and then Mary said, "How about dessert."
Earlier Conversations between Mary, Jim and Pat
Free Will and Precognition
Coincidences, Accidents and God