homes underwater

Lets talk a second about sea level rise with climate change and how many homes ($800 Billion worth) are literally going to be under water by the turn of the century.

I remember reading an article a year or two ago about a town in North Carolina where politics deep-sixed a study that showed that all of their homes would be under water by the end of the century. After they killed the report, all future studies were limited to only 30 years. So for now, their real estate is A-Ok.

But, if you think about it, there are two organizations that don’t care about real estate holdings in the same way : insurance companies and banks. They can’t doubt science, they need to account for it and their risk analysis departments need to consider flooding in coastal areas. And the insurance industry seem to be taking flooding very seriously, you can easily see that it’s almost impossible to get flood insurance now. How much longer do you think it will take for the banks to stop giving 30 year mortgages?

And it will only take one or two banks to start this process. Once the idea gets out that financing these properties over long periods of time is too risky all the other banks will most likely follow along because banks are very risk averse.

As more and more banks decline to loan for beachfront properties over long periods it’s going to be a very quick domino effect and soon nobody will do it. And then real estate that at one point was valued in the millions immediately goes to almost 0 as nobody can get a loan to buy it.

But even if this doesn’t happen as I’m imagining it, how long do you think it will take people who own coastal property to lose confidence in the coming market and sell before its too late? All it will take is one nice storm and some serious flooding. Or one report from someone saying that flooding is inevitable. And then the bottom of the market is going to drop. And it will drop fast and far.

When will the tipping point occur?

I solved Quantum Mechanics

So there is a lot of things yet to be decided in quantum mechanics and I want to propose related answers to two of them. One of the questions talks about the so called Quantum Leap and the other question involves entanglement. Both are talked about in this cool Nova video:

If you didn’t watch the video here are my very simple explanations of the problems:

Quantum Leap

Electrons can be on any one of a number of orbits around the nucleus of an atom but as the atom is heated the electron will jump from one orbit to another and never be anywhere in between. This is a huge mystery and if you think about it, it makes no sense at all.


In short there is this property of a particle called spin and it can be of one of two states (well there are more than those but for this simple example lets stick with 2, just as the video does) and when two particles become connected or entangled, when you observe the spin of one, the spin of the other will be the opposite. The interesting thing is that this will always be true no matter how far apart the particles are.

Its a mystery how two entangled particles are able to ‘know’ about the spin state of their partner without any connection.

My Solution

Well, I have solved both of these riddles. It was really quite simple once you make the assumption that all of our reality is simply a computer program. That we are ‘sims’ in this ‘world’ that we live in. It’s not that far fetched and some recent thoughts by respected scientists (and a great movie) have headed in this direction.

If I were writing a program to simulate the world I would have to start with some fundamental building block of everything and since I don’t think that my sims will be able to get that deep I will make that the particle and one of them is called the electron (or whatever the sims will call it, but for now lets assume the creator of the simulation used the same names we do… although he/she/it most likely didn’t).

Anyway, lets say our atom code had some collection of electrons and for each electron we had properties describing it. One of those properties is the ‘orbit’ and for simplicity I chose to make it an integer : 0 representing the innermost orbit and each orbit past that would be another integer (1,2,3,etc.)..

ElectronInfo {
 // orbit location in the Atom
 orbit = 0

Atom {
 // other properties
 // the electron collection 
 Collection<ElectronInfo> electrons;

 // operations on Atom
 pushElectronsOutOneOrbit() {
   for each ElectronInfo in electrons
     info.orbit = info.orbit+1

So when We apply heat to the atom we simply increment the orbit:

addHeat(Atom a, int amountOfHeat) {
for each amountOfHeat

Presto, we just implemented a Quantum Leap. Ready for the entanglement? Lets assume we model particles in our simulation to have a location, a spin and a reference to another particle for entanglement:

Particle {
 // position in x,y,z space
 Location loc;

 // Spin can be one of the enumerated types {Up, Down, ...}
 Spin spin;

 Particle entangledPartner;

Now we have a couple of methods on our world, one is called observeParticle which allows us to observe a particles spin and for whatever reason we decide that when one particle is observed we alter the other particles spin. The other is called getParticleLoc which gives us the particles location:

observeParticle(Particle p) {
 Particle partner = p.entangledPartner;
 Spin pSpin = p.spin;
 if(pSpin == Down) {
   partner.spin = Up 
 } else {
   partner.spin = Down

 return pSpin;

getParticleLoc(Particle p) {
  return p.loc;

And again we have trivially solved the entanglement issue.

I don’t know. Whenever I hear about problems in quantum physics I always think that this stuff is simple, whoever wrote our program had stopped here at the bottom and there is no more ‘depth’ to the ‘world’. What does that say about our ‘reality’? You got me. That’s where I stop trying to speculate because I’d like to stay sane. Seriously.