It grabbed me because so many strange and beautiful brains, each in the grip of their own wild, beguiling theories, had engaged in lifelong mind-wars with each other; wars fought out on an intellectual plane inaccessible to 99.94 per cent* of all the humans who have ever lived.
One 'thought experiment' is called Schrodinger's Cat, after Erwin Schrodinger, who designed it to illustrate the illogicality of the Copenhagen Interpretation, the prevailing quantum theory of the age.
Schrodinger imagined a cat in a box with a particle of radioactive material, which may or may not decay and kill the cat. The Copenhagen Interpretation implied that the cat is both alive and dead until someone opens the box and observes its state. Schrodinger's Cat asked when something stopped existing in a mixture of states, and became one thing or the other.
Quite honestly, who knows? Who really knows what they're on about? But then one thing clicked. Schrodinger's Cat is a thought experiment made for Jeremy Snape, author of this madness.
To wit: A bowler delivers a ball. At what point does that ball become good or bad? Does it only become good or bad when the batsman decides it's good or bad and acts accordingly? Is this why 'good' balls get hit for four, and 'bad' balls take wickets?
I'm still thinking about this. Can Jeremy help? Can anyone?
NB: Rather brilliantly, a man called Hugh Everett, father of E of the Eels, came up with an answer to Schrodinger's Cat: his Many Worlds theory suggests that both outcomes are true, and are going on simultaneously in separate universes. Which means that somehow, somewhere, Matty Hayden is still in at the SCG.