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Peter Jackson: on 10/6/12 at 19:04pm UTC, wrote Edward You confirm my own issues with sidereal and astronomical time...

DANIEL ALVES: on 9/28/12 at 16:01pm UTC, wrote Dear Edward I have read a lot of your papers, including your phd thesis...

Yuri Danoyan: on 9/8/12 at 0:23am UTC, wrote

John Merryman: on 9/4/12 at 2:28am UTC, wrote Edward, Since time is the subject of my own entry, I naturally had to see...

Edward Anderson: on 9/3/12 at 13:26pm UTC, wrote Essay Abstract ``It is utterly beyond our power to measure the...


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First Things First: The Physics of Causality
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July 19, 2019

CATEGORY: Questioning the Foundations Essay Contest (2012) [back]
TOPIC: Machian Time Is To Be Abstracted From What Change? by Edward Anderson [refresh]
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Author Edward Anderson wrote on Sep. 3, 2012 @ 13:26 GMT
Essay Abstract

``It is utterly beyond our power to measure the changes of things by time. Quite the contrary, time is an abstraction at which we arrive through the changes of things." Ernst Mach [1]. *What* change? Three answers to this are `any change' (Rovelli), `all change' (Barbour) and my argument here for the middle ground of a `sufficient totality of locally relevant change' (STLRC) giving a generalization of the astronomers' ephemeris time. I then use STLRC as a selection principle on existing and new approaches to the Problem of Time in Quantum Gravity. Emergent Jacobi-Barbour-Bertotti time can be interpreted as arising from a STLRC, resolves the classical Problem of Time and has an emergent semiclassical counterpart as regards facing the QM Problem of Time.

Author Bio

Edward Anderson studied theoretical physics at Cambridge and London, before holding research positions at Cambridge, Alberta, Madrid and Paris. Edward's other main interest is in forms of university welfare that actually work for the shy and the different.

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John Merryman wrote on Sep. 4, 2012 @ 02:28 GMT

Since time is the subject of my own entry, I naturally had to see what your entry says.

You make what seems to be the classic physics mistake of first recognizing that time is an effect of change, then obsessing over how it's measured. If you want to understand time, ask what change is, not how to measure it. Hint: The earth doesn't travel the fourth dimension from yesterday to tomorrow. Tomorrow becomes yesterday because the earth rotates.

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DANIEL WAGNER FONTELES ALVES wrote on Sep. 28, 2012 @ 16:01 GMT
Dear Edward

I have read a lot of your papers, including your phd thesis which I find fascinating. I will have to read your essay again to go through all the technical details. One question: why are Mach´s thoughts so compelling? If distinct philosophies of motion lead to distinct physics, would it be possible that advances in Mach´s thougths could lead to advances in physics? Particularly, are we restricted to absolute or relational philosophies of motion? Please see my essay , I think your opinion would be very valuable. Thanks


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Peter Jackson wrote on Oct. 6, 2012 @ 19:04 GMT

You confirm my own issues with sidereal and astronomical time conventions, but I was quite surprised, although closing in a little on the question of locality of time, that you didn't explore of analyse 'Proper Time', and the consequential existence of what I may then christen 'improper time' and it's rationalisation. Do you have a view?

I'd also be interested in your views on the rather new temporal analysis and findings within my own essay.

Best wishes.


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