Search FQXi

Please also note that we do not accept unsolicited posts and we cannot review, or open new threads for, unsolicited articles or papers. Requests to review or post such materials will not be answered. If you have your own novel physics theory or model, which you would like to post for further discussion among then FQXi community, then please add them directly to the "Alternative Models of Reality" thread, or to the "Alternative Models of Cosmology" thread. Thank you.

Contests Home

Previous Contests

What Is “Fundamental”
October 28, 2017 to January 22, 2018
Sponsored by the Fetzer Franklin Fund and The Peter & Patricia Gruber Foundation

Wandering Towards a Goal
How can mindless mathematical laws give rise to aims and intention?
December 2, 2016 to March 3, 2017
Contest Partner: The Peter and Patricia Gruber Fund.

Trick or Truth: The Mysterious Connection Between Physics and Mathematics
Contest Partners: Nanotronics Imaging, The Peter and Patricia Gruber Foundation, and The John Templeton Foundation
Media Partner: Scientific American

How Should Humanity Steer the Future?
January 9, 2014 - August 31, 2014
Contest Partners: Jaan Tallinn, The Peter and Patricia Gruber Foundation, The John Templeton Foundation, and Scientific American

It From Bit or Bit From It
March 25 - June 28, 2013
Contest Partners: The Gruber Foundation, J. Templeton Foundation, and Scientific American

Questioning the Foundations
Which of Our Basic Physical Assumptions Are Wrong?
May 24 - August 31, 2012
Contest Partners: The Peter and Patricia Gruber Foundation, SubMeta, and Scientific American

Is Reality Digital or Analog?
November 2010 - February 2011
Contest Partners: The Peter and Patricia Gruber Foundation and Scientific American

What's Ultimately Possible in Physics?
May - October 2009
Contest Partners: Astrid and Bruce McWilliams

The Nature of Time
August - December 2008

Forum Home
Introduction

Order posts by:
chronological order
most recent first

Posts by the author are highlighted in orange; posts by FQXi Members are highlighted in blue.

RECENT POSTS IN THIS TOPIC

Frank Ullmann: on 10/24/12 at 17:56pm UTC, wrote Dear Ben, I am sorry for being late in my reply but I got knocked out by...

Benjamin Dribus: on 10/4/12 at 22:46pm UTC, wrote P.S. I put in a rating for you because I don't know if I'll get back to it...

Benjamin Dribus: on 10/4/12 at 22:36pm UTC, wrote Dear Frank, I just finished reading your essay (for the first time, at...

Sergey Fedosin: on 10/4/12 at 7:12am UTC, wrote If you do not understand why your rating dropped down. As I found ratings...

Frank Ullmann: on 8/28/12 at 13:20pm UTC, wrote Hi Peter, Thank you for your friendly remarks. Kind regards, Frank

Peter Jackson: on 8/20/12 at 17:15pm UTC, wrote Frank "Now, it is important to note that we have not shown that special...

Frank Ullmann: on 8/15/12 at 15:42pm UTC, wrote Dear Ioannis, Thank you for your comment. I am not quite sure, but I think...

Ioannis Hadjidakis: on 8/13/12 at 8:53am UTC, wrote Dear Frank, Thank you for trying to accommodate Minkowski's geometry to...

RECENT FORUM POSTS

Robert McEachern: ""all experiments have pointed towards this and there is no way to avoid..." in Review of "Foundations of...

Joe Fisher: "Dear Steve Agnew, Naturally provided VISIBLE realty am not a silly humanly..." in Can Time Be Saved From...

James Putnam: "Light bends because it is accelerating. It accelerates toward an object..." in Black Hole Photographed...

Steve Agnew: "Stringy and loop quantum are the two big contenders, but neither has a..." in Can Time Be Saved From...

Robert McEachern: "Lorenzo, The nature of "information" is well understood outside of..." in Review of "Foundations of...

Georgina Woodward: "Steve, Lorraine is writing about a simpler "knowing " rather than the..." in The Nature of Time

Steve Agnew: "Knowing information necessarily means neural action potentials. Atom and..." in The Nature of Time

RECENT ARTICLES

Can Time Be Saved From Physics?
Philosophers, physicists and neuroscientists discuss how our sense of time’s flow might arise through our interactions with external stimuli—despite suggestions from Einstein's relativity that our perception of the passage of time is an illusion.

Thermo-Demonics
A devilish new framework of thermodynamics that focuses on how we observe information could help illuminate our understanding of probability and rewrite quantum theory.

Gravity's Residue
An unusual approach to unifying the laws of physics could solve Hawking's black-hole information paradox—and its predicted gravitational "memory effect" could be picked up by LIGO.

Could Mind Forge the Universe?
Objective reality, and the laws of physics themselves, emerge from our observations, according to a new framework that turns what we think of as fundamental on its head.

The impossibility of building a perfect clock could help explain away microscale weirdness.

FQXi FORUM
May 20, 2019

CATEGORY: Questioning the Foundations Essay Contest (2012) [back]
TOPIC: About the Lengths of World Lines and of Time Units When Comparing Groups of Inertial Frames by Frank Ullmann [refresh]

Author Frank Ullmann wrote on Aug. 10, 2012 @ 12:47 GMT
Essay Abstract

We explore whether our interpretation of special relativity - according to which we consider space and time as space-time equipped with geometric properties - leads to conclusions that go beyond those drawn directly from the equations of special relativity. To do so, we develop a method that allows us to determine the ratio of the lengths of any two polygonal time-like world lines both connecting the same two events. It turns out that all such world lines have the same length, regardless of the number of time units counted along each of them, whereas at the same time the mean lengths of the time units are different if their numbers are different. Therefore, if different numbers of time units are counted, this cannot have a geometric cause.

Author Bio

I have studied theoretical physics at the Goethe Universität in Frankfurt. There are two questions that keep me up at night: what makes gravity so special and what is time?

Ioannis Hadjidakis wrote on Aug. 13, 2012 @ 08:53 GMT
Dear Frank,

Thank you for trying to accommodate Minkowski's geometry to Cartesian coordination system (CCS) that is consistently impossible. That is one of the reasons I propose a different coordination system (NCS) which has not most of CCS' disadvantages. According to this, time dilation is geometrically explicable and inertia frames - although there is no such a frame in Nature - are equivalent.

Best wishes, Ioannis

report post as inappropriate

Frank Ullmann replied on Aug. 15, 2012 @ 15:42 GMT
Dear Ioannis,

Thank you for your comment. I am not quite sure, but I think you might misinterpret my conclusions. Provided that I did not made a mistake then I have shown that a necessary condition for it to be possible that space and time form a four-dimensional structure (called space-time) endowed with geometrical properties is not satisfied. This would mean that space-time actually do not have properties that could be called geometrical.

Kind regards, Frank

report post as inappropriate

Peter Jackson wrote on Aug. 20, 2012 @ 17:15 GMT
Frank

"Now, it is important to note that we have not shown that special relativity is wrong. In fact, we have merely shown - as indicated above - that the geometric interpretation of the equations of special relativity is not possible."

Excellent. I'm in full agreement, and point out Cartesian co-ordinates exist in vector space, which is geometry, where motion is an invalid concept. I've gone on to derive an interesting alternative where each frame is a geometry in itself, with boundary conditions representing LT's as Doppler diffraction zones.

"But predictions arising from special relativity do not depend on the geometric interpretation of special relativity. Therefore, what we have shown does not change what can be predicted on the basis of special relativity."

Precisely. The model I derive from this better explains the SR postulates logically, and all via a quantum mechanism. I hope you'll read my essay and comment. (but be warned, it is densely layered!).

Best wishes

Peter

report post as inappropriate

Frank Ullmann replied on Aug. 28, 2012 @ 13:20 GMT
Hi Peter,

Thank you for your friendly remarks.

Kind regards, Frank

report post as inappropriate

Sergey G Fedosin wrote on Oct. 4, 2012 @ 07:12 GMT
If you do not understand why your rating dropped down. As I found ratings in the contest are calculated in the next way. Suppose your rating is
$R_1$
and
$N_1$
was the quantity of people which gave you ratings. Then you have
$S_1=R_1 N_1$
of points. After it anyone give you
$dS$
of points so you have
$S_2=S_1+ dS$
of points and
$N_2=N_1+1$
is the common quantity of the people which gave you ratings. At the same time you will have
$S_2=R_2 N_2$
of points. From here, if you want to be R2 > R1 there must be:
$S_2/ N_2>S_1/ N_1$
or
$(S_1+ dS) / (N_1+1) >S_1/ N_1$
or
$dS >S_1/ N_1 =R_1$
In other words if you want to increase rating of anyone you must give him more points
$dS$
then the participant`s rating
$R_1$
was at the moment you rated him. From here it is seen that in the contest are special rules for ratings. And from here there are misunderstanding of some participants what is happened with their ratings. Moreover since community ratings are hided some participants do not sure how increase ratings of others and gives them maximum 10 points. But in the case the scale from 1 to 10 of points do not work, and some essays are overestimated and some essays are drop down. In my opinion it is a bad problem with this Contest rating process. I hope the FQXI community will change the rating process.

Sergey Fedosin

report post as inappropriate

Member Benjamin F. Dribus wrote on Oct. 4, 2012 @ 22:36 GMT
Dear Frank,

I just finished reading your essay (for the first time, at least!) Here are a few questions and thoughts:

1. Just to be sure, on page 1, by “length,” do you always mean “spacetime interval with respect to the Minkowski metric?”

2. Similarly, when you write,“all world lines of this set lead from event A to event B and (secondly) the number of time units...

view entire post

report post as inappropriate

Author Frank Ullmann replied on Oct. 24, 2012 @ 17:56 GMT
Dear Ben,

I am sorry for being late in my reply but I got knocked out by the flu for a week. You have posted same good questions (particularly by 4 and 6).

(see attachment)

Kind regards,

Frank

attachments: replies_Frank_Ulmann_FQXI.pdf

Member Benjamin F. Dribus wrote on Oct. 4, 2012 @ 22:46 GMT
P.S. I put in a rating for you because I don't know if I'll get back to it before tomorrow... it might be nicer if we could ignore this whole aspect as authors, but I've found that people like to know. I suppose since so many people automatically down-rate to gain an advantage, every honest rating is a help. Anyway, take care,

Ben

report post as inappropriate