I listened to this year's Reith Lectures whilst getting ready to go to the studio last week. Professor Stephen Hawking was presenting his second lecture expounding Black Holes.

I thought I heard Professor Stephen Hawking saying that Black Holes could theoretically be found anywhere- in a TV set, or in a leather-bound volume of Shakespeare's plays, for example. I was swept up in the idea of these hidden portals to alternative universes sequestered in ubiquitous objects.

That wasn't quite the case:

"We would still expect the universe to be deterministic in the sense that if we knew the quantum state of the universe at one time the laws of science should enable us to predict it an any other time. If information were in lost Black Holes we wouldn't be able to predict the future. Because the Black Hole could emit any collection of particles. It could emit a working television set or a leather-bound volume of the Complete Works of Shakespeare. Though the chance of such exotic emissions is very low. "

So it was more that the leather-bound volume of Shakespeare's Complete Works might come out of a Black Hole than it might contain one. I think I preferred my version.