Try as I might, I couldn't google my way to the exact source of that original idea. But I did stumble upon PhysLink.com, the "Physics & Astronomy Online" site -- a resource I would never, ever seek out were it not for the odd connection between a Q&A on the PhysLink site and my search query. Funny thing: I actually read the words "quantum mechanics" and didn't immediately navigate away from the page.
The question posed on the site was this: "What is the name for a phenomenon where the presence of the observer changes the nature of the observed?" The answer detailed the "Copenhagen Interpretation of quantum mechanics," the "Schrodinger Cat phenomenon," and the "Heisenberg uncertainty principle." Double...no, triple whoa.
Bottom line, however, is that all of this talk about particles and momentum and mass and velocity has a lot to do with qualitative research in an educational setting. Mike Perkins, a physics/astronomy major at Penn State, posted one of the answers to the question:
Imagine a dark room with a particle in it. In order to find it, we have to turn on a flashlight. When the flashlight hits the particle, we will for an instant know the position but the photons in the light will hit the particle changing its velocity, so we can only know one aspect of a particle's behavior with certainty at a given time. This is why we always refer to electrons existing in a 'probability cloud,' since we know where they are likely to be, but aren't sure of an exact position" (Perkins, accessed October 16, 2014).
I don't know. I'm just reflecting here. Thinking about the questions and how the beam of a flashlight pointed into the darkness might affect what we see.
PhysLink.com: Physics & Astronomy Online. (Accessed October 16, 2014). Answer to Question, posted by Mike Perkins. http://www.physlink.com/education/askexperts/ae179.cfm