The Land of the Dead is a lively place, but its denizens can only stay there, it turns out, as long as someone remembers them.
When the memories vanish, so even do the animated skeletons Some astronomers now say that even this pale version of salvation might be in jeopardy.
In the fullness of time (which in many cases would be longer than the current age of the universe), all the mass and energy that had fallen into the hole would come back out.
But, according to the classical Einstein equations, black holes are disturbingly simple; their only properties are mass, electrical charge and angular momentum.
Now, he said, it’s on the surface of the black hole.
“The information will be re-emitted when the black hole evaporates.”Other experts, including Juan Maldacena of the Institute for Advanced Study in Princeton, have been more measured, saying that if soft hair does not solve the information paradox, it might at least help.
Black holes are objects so dense that, according to Einstein’s law of general relativity, not even light can escape. Hawking turned these objects, and the rest of physics, inside-out.
He discovered, to his surprise, that the random quantum effects that rule the microscopic world would cause black holes to leak and, eventually, explode and disappear.
Whether this is enough to save physics, let alone a person falling into a black hole, is what Dr.
Hawking was working on in the years before he died.“When I wrote my paper 40 years ago, I thought the information would pass into another universe,” he told me at the Harvard conference.