“smeared out” across spacetime


Senior Member
Does “smeared out” mean "spread over" here?

The only alternative left for those holding on to the current paradigm is to postulate some form of non-locality: nature must have—or so they speculate—observation-independent hidden properties, entirely missed by QM, which are “smeared out” across spacetime. It is this allegedly omnipresent, invisible but objective background that supposedly orchestrates entanglement from “behind the scenes.”

-Scientific American

  • PaulQ

    Senior Member
    English - England
    “Smeared out” means "spread out very thinly". It also has a nuance of being somewhat vague or indefinite in its boundaries.

    If you imagine pressing your finger into butter and then rubbing your finger on a window, then the butter will smear the glass/be smeared on the glass.


    Senior Member
    English - South-East England
    A bit more than that. Galaxies are spread out across spacetime, but in a nice orderly way in the geometry we understand. Hidden variables under QM have to have simultaneous effects in different places, so they can't be just a bit here, then another bit there, they must be 'smeared', messy.

    cross-posted, not disagreeing
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