Even at absolute zero, the lowest temperature possible, nothing has zero energy. In these conditions, particles and fields are in their lowest energy state, with an energy proportional to Planck’s constant.
Schrödinger dreamed up a cat that, thanks to quantum physics, is half-alive and half-dead. Einstein worried about spooky action at a distance. Now Google is trying to build a quantum computer and we can communicate secretly using quantum particles. This is not even a century of progress in quantum physics. It sounds like science fiction, but that’s your job. We asked you to pick up the threads of this story and tell a new tale - and wow, you responded! The contest received over 400 entries. Our judges have a very hard job ahead.
We've announced the shortlists! Read the top ten stories in the Open and Youth categories and vote for your favourite by the end of January to help decide the People's Choice prize. You can still read all the other entries to the contest too. There were many stories we loved that couldn't squeeze into a top ten.
Michael is the design director for Scientific American and responsible for ScientificAmerican.com, and its newsstand specials. He and his team establish the visual language for the brand and produce its award-winning graphic design, illustrations, photography and information graphics. He was not always a science journalist, having designed for magazines as disparate as Esquire and Architectural Record, but his love of science led him to work for Discover magazine and produce award winning design for that publication as well. Always curious, he works on and builds cars, is an illustrator and practices fencing in his off time.