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Several years ago, New Scientist featured an article on a new theory by Stephen Hawking that involved the future having some effect or "backreaction" on the present.

As it would be very tedious and time consuming to root through several years of back issues to find it again, I was hoping someone might be able to provide a reference, or just put me on the right track.

I tried a search myself, but could find nothing on the ArXiv. I thought for a moment it might be ("Cosmology from the Top Down"); but although that is interesting, it doesn't match what I recall of the article.

Please note, I'm not interested in starting a discussion of the merits or otherwise of this theory, merely seeking a reference.

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2 Answers 2

Ah, found it! Searching through scanned back issues of scientific magazines is damned time consuming, because so many interesting articles need re-reading ;-)

The article I was thinking of is from New Scientist 2006-04-22, vol 190, no 2548, page 28, "Mr Hawking's Flexiverse". The basic theme wasn't quite how I remembered it, but somewhat related.

The article didn't reference the original paper, or not that I noticed; but from the timing of its appearance I imagine it must have been based on the paper "Populating the landscape: A Top down approach". S.W. Hawking (Cambridge U., DAMTP), Thomas Hertog (CERN). CERN-PH-TH-2006-022. Feb 2006. 22 pp. Published in Phys.Rev. D73 (2006) 123527, listed on Hawking's web page at

Anyway, that answers my question. So thanks everyone for helping, or wanting to help even if you weren't able to!

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Maybe this? (I haven't read it, as it is behind the paywall, so this may be irrelevant).

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Not sure: that article's about Schulman's work. Here is a reference, but no mention of Hawking. – twistor59 Dec 30 '12 at 18:11
I see, thank you. – akhmeteli Dec 30 '12 at 18:34

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