How do we know for sure that we live in three dimensions?

Sure, our surroundings certainly appear to exist in three dimensions, but any good Cartesian will tell you that the appearance of a material object alone is insufficient evidence of its true nature. So how do we go about proving that we aren't, in fact, deluded inhabitants of Abott's two-dimensional Flatland, or even the one-dimensional Lineland?

The short answer is: a lot of ways, involving a lot of physics and a lot of mathematics. But that's kind of a cop out, right? So here's an almost-as-short answer by physicist-animator Henry Reich, who explains in just sixty seconds one way that physicists go about showing that we are, in fact, three dimensional beings caught up in a multi-dimensional existence.


The video is just one in the awesome ongoing series titled "One Minute Physics," which features animated crash courses on topics like quantum tunneling, special relativity, and the Heisenberg uncertainty principle, and is definitely worth checking out.

[Spotted on New Scientist]

Image by gualtiero boffi/Shutterstock

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