VirginMoney Extra April

Travelling Without Moving

Human teleportation by 2022? Jon Spooner thinks so. His groundbreaking show, 'The Ethics of Progress', uses plain and jargon-free English to explain how recent developments in the world of quantum physics have brought us to the edge of the unthinkable.

Inspired by the theories of Quantum Physics Professor Vlatko Vedral, Spooner unravels the mysteries of superpositions, teleportation and entanglement and invites his audience to consider how current developments in the field will irretrievably change the world as we know it. Teleportation is no pie-in-the-sky concept, says Spooner; it’s already happening.

Superposition is the fact that an object can exist in a minimum of two different places at the same moment in time. Entanglement is explained as the possibility of entangling two separate particles so that they behave in exactly the same way, no matter the distance we put between them. It’s also what Albert Einstein could only explain as “spooky action at a distance”.

Understand those two concepts, says Spooner, and you will be able to approach the "really head twisting part of all of this” – teleportation. This is the movement of objects (and potentially people) between different places, without actually passing through any of the space in between.

What he means to say with his title, 'The Ethics of Progress', is simply that because you can't reverse what has already been invented, we need to know the implications of that invention before it is put to use. He cites the invention of the wheel as an example: That it brought about radical advancement may not necessarily justify the trouble it has caused.

Spooner considers teleportation as this century's wheel, and the moral and philosophical questions he raises are intriguing: What are the implications of teleportation on human beings? When an object is teleported, some of the atoms that make it up are destroyed. And if our atomic arrangement is destroyed, what keeps us from losing our identity? In other words, will the person who leaves point A be the person who arrives at point B? Einstein was right; it is spooky.

Spooner knows that such apparently outlandish scientific theory “may sound a bit nuts”, but insists that it is all actually really straightforward. “Trust me, I'm an actor and I understand it,” he says. But if Spooner makes an entertaining presenter, it’s not who is telling you this that captivates but what it is that he’s saying.

or, for the Higher Grade option, visit


VirginMoney Extra April
VirginMoney Extra April
VirginMoney Extra April

Other sections

Extra Goodies

Past Editions

VirginMoney Extra April