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RECENT POSTS IN THIS TOPIC

Paul Borrill: on 8/7/13 at 21:51pm UTC, wrote Dear Paul, I have now finished reviewing all 180 essays for the contest...

Akinbo Ojo: on 8/1/13 at 11:41am UTC, wrote Hello Paul, You are frequent and valued contributor on this forum. It...

basudeba mishra: on 7/28/13 at 12:30pm UTC, wrote Dear Sir, This is our post to Dr. Wiliam Mc Harris in his thread. We...

Vladimir Rogozhin: on 7/24/13 at 13:10pm UTC, wrote Dear Paul, Great question, great, deep systematic answers. It is written...

Stephen Anastasi: on 7/22/13 at 10:32am UTC, wrote Hello Paul I thought this was an excellent effort at bringing something...

WANG Xiong: on 7/18/13 at 13:44pm UTC, wrote Dear Paul Reed, Thanks for your nice essay, well done Which is What? ...

Vladimir Tamari: on 7/16/13 at 1:50am UTC, wrote Dear Paul. Hello, and hope this finds you well. Apologies if this does not...

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FQXi FORUM
May 20, 2019

CATEGORY: It From Bit or Bit From It? Essay Contest (2013) [back]
TOPIC: Which is What? by Paul Reed [refresh]
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Author Paul Reed wrote on Apr. 19, 2013 @ 10:09 GMT
Essay Abstract

1 Whether information is physically existent or not is irrelevant to whether it is information. It is information if it is a representation of something else which is existent. So that something is primary. It being, somewhat obviously, presumed that this entails a valid representation, and a proper understanding of what is being repreented. That reveals that a component of physical existence is information. That is, what is received (or properly proven could have been receivable), eg light, is information. 2 What ultimately can constitute any given ‘it’ is left open, as this cannot be resolved generically. It is the physically existent state which defines any given physical reality. But this begs the question: existent state of what? Could what are regarded as properties actually be the substance, or it is effectively something inert, rather than the standard conception of something which is affected by something else? 3 It is critical that the existential sequence is differentiated from the existential representation of that. Something which many, including Einstein, have failed to do. This has resulted in the false concept of relativity and incorrect assertions about the importance of light, ie that e=mc2, etc. The physical properties of light, or more precisely what enables the creation and conveyance of the physical effect known as light, particularly its speed, are only relevant to the physically existent photon based representation of the existential sequence, not the sequence itself.

Author Bio

Having obtained a BA in Sociology, which instigated thinking about the difference between objective/subjective and how perception worked, Paul joined the Metropolitan Police Force. A career change resulted in him working in several senior management roles, mainly project management/user requirement definition in automation projects, in the HQ of the Post Office. Gaining early retirement enabled him to follow a range of leisurely pursuits, of late-consequent upon reading Stephen Hawking’s latest book- a generic investigation of physical reality and the original relativity, and associated, papers.

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Joe Fisher wrote on Apr. 19, 2013 @ 22:11 GMT
This is an absorbing essay. I am glad that you agree with the assessment I made in my essay, BITTERS that only the unique happens once, including your “any given distance (between conceptual spatial relationships)is always unique” Only information is sequential. Reality is not.

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Anonymous replied on Apr. 20, 2013 @ 04:10 GMT
Joe

Thanks. I started moving up the list of essays last night, and will get to yours soon. Yep, if I had to say which point is most important, it is: only one definitive physically existent state at a time. That drives everything. Of course, how that actually manifests in this reality is not necessarily as easy as that statement might imply, and I leave it to others to work out.

I do not agree with your last point: "Only information is sequential. Reality is not". Any given reality is discrete, and there is a sequence of them. In other words, because that physically existent state (ie the discrete reality)involves only 'one degree' of difference and therefore is occurring at such a rate of turnover, it is immensely complicated. And so differentiating it to this existential level is probably impossible, but at least the level is recognised. Normally we think of a reality when in fact it is a sequence of realities. By definition, information, ie a representation of reality, must reflect the nature of it.

Paul

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Philip Gibbs wrote on Apr. 20, 2013 @ 09:15 GMT
Paul, this is a very thought provoking essay. I agree that "information must be a representation of something" Strings of bits on their own have no meaning until something processes them.

Your paragraph 29 seems crucial. The information that is apparent at a given time is "the same as" existence. Do I have that right?

I will probably need to revisit this again later after reading other essays.

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Paul Reed replied on Apr. 20, 2013 @ 14:25 GMT
Philip

Thanks, please do re-visit it.

Not sure I agree with your third sentence. My point was that information is a representation of. It can be an 'it' (ie physically existent) in its own right. Light being an obvious example. Information does not have to be processed to be information.

Probably a number of paras are crucial!! Your re-statement of it is not quite right. The point is we do not have some form of 'direct access' to existence. That is, even the possibly limited form thereof which is potentially knowable to us. We can only have knowledge of. So what we are doing is ever improving our approximation of what exists to the point where we can say, instead of it is 'the best fit at present', it is 'the equivalent of'. But we will only know that by default, because there is no 'magic' reality available as a reference, ie after a sufficient number of years, when no new knowledge arises. Assuming we have been investigating in the meantime!!

Paul

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Kimmo Rouvari wrote on Apr. 21, 2013 @ 10:26 GMT
Are quarks information? They are representation of something, right? For me, they are representation of the Big Bang. Do you agree?

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Author Paul Reed replied on Apr. 21, 2013 @ 15:09 GMT
Kimmo

If one is not careful, then everything becomes ‘information’, in the sense that everything informs us about itself &/or something else. But then the whole discussion becomes meaningless. The differentiation has to be limited to information being a representation of something (it can still be existent in its own right, eg light). Which then leads to ensuring we do not reify information, and, given an understanding of the processes which rendered the information, we can understand its relationship with what it is representing.

The above comment leaves aside the fact that we only have information, we do not, in any sense of the word ‘have’ reality. But within our existentially closed system, that, assuming due process, is the approximation of reality, for us, and ultimately (ie once we get it right), the equivalent thereof.

Paul

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Kimmo Rouvari replied on Apr. 21, 2013 @ 17:09 GMT
But why resist the idea that everything is information? Why would it make discussion meaningless? Could you open up this more?

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Author Paul Reed replied on Apr. 22, 2013 @ 03:10 GMT
Kimmo

Anything helps us to understand, and is hence 'information'. How does that help? The point is to differentiate what is real and what is a representation.

Paul

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Author Paul Reed wrote on Apr. 24, 2013 @ 04:19 GMT
Why Einstein was wrong (Abridged Version)

Introduction

1 Distance is an artefact of physically existent entities, it being a difference between them in terms of spatial position. Existence necessitates physical space, but that can only be assigned via entities. So distance can only involve entities which exist at the same time. And they can only exist in one physically existent...

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Anton Lorenz Vrba replied on May. 4, 2013 @ 14:35 GMT
Paul, you can only fight Einstein with his weapons and that is mathematics and thought experiments. You will find the information paradox that I present in my essay stimulating and casts a big shadow on SR

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Author Paul Reed replied on May. 5, 2013 @ 02:20 GMT
Anton

Not so. One fights anybody with what they actually said and relates that it to the true nature of whatever it is they are commenting on. One of the problems with Einstein being that most people do not even know what he said. As I had no background whatsever, I just read what he said, not what the standard interpretation is. This is incidentally, just the start of a paper about 14 pages long, I put this up as two respondents started quoting Einstein at me as a way of countering what I was saying (which was not about Einstein).

Apart from which I could ask you if there is anything wrong with what is said in the extract?

Incidentally, Einstein defined SR as involving:

-only motion that is uniform rectilinear and non-rotary

-only fixed shape bodies

-only light which travels in straight lines at a constant speed

It is special because there is no gravitational force, or more precisely, no differential in the gravitational forces incurred.

And his second posulate of 1905 is irrelevant. because he does not deploy it as defined, as there is no observational light in Einstein, just a constant used to calibrate duration and distance which is described as an example of light.

In other words, although he was wrong, most people are trying to resolve issues which Einstein did not even have.

Paul

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Jacek Safuta wrote on Apr. 27, 2013 @ 15:35 GMT
Hi Paul,

I do not understand much of your essay. But there is some interesting content inside.

According to (25) Einstein failed to differentiate reality from its light based representation.

But Paul, do you remember his famous statement addressing exactly this issue (also incl. in my essay http://fqxi.org/community/forum/topic/1609): ”reality is merely an illusion, albeit a very persistent one”? From Einstein we know that gravitation is not a force field but a manifestation of spacetime geometry (only our perception causes that gravity seems to be a force). So maybe you are not so far from Einstein and me in your understanding the reality notion?

Please, imagine two men starting to go from the Earth equator to the North pole. The distance between them is e.g. 100 meters. They start and go exactly parallel to each other. There is no rope binding them and no force trying to pull them together. But with every step they are a bit closer and closer as if a rope and force existed. Finally they hit one another at the North pole. Apparently that is the effect of geometry of the Earth surface which is not the Euclidean plane but a sphere. Add extra one dimension and you have well known gravity.

In my simple and short essay I have tried to apply the same concept to the rest of known “force fields” i.e. electromagnetic, strong and weak nuclear and even go further…

Thanks

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Author Paul Reed replied on Apr. 28, 2013 @ 06:04 GMT
Jacek

I suggest you re-read it then, or ask specific questions which I will answer.

Re Einstein, see my post above. Others quoted Einstein in trying to refute what I was saying (and not specifically about Einstein). So in order to avoid a string of posts, and similar ones in different blogs I put this up. Indeed, I have just posted some more paras in respect of spacetime on Mikalai’s blog in response to qsa.

What he said is irrelevant. It is what he did which matters. And that has import in the second postulate. Because he did not deploy it as defined. In other words, it is null and void as defined, and the ensuing search for a reconciliation of constancy of light and rate of change is pointless. That is because there was no observational light in his theories, nobody observed anything, because there was nothing available for them to do so. All he had was a constant which he illustrated in terms of an example of light, eg a ray, or lightening. c is not the speed of observational light, it is a constant deployed to calibrate distance and duration.

After further doses of coffee I will read the newly published essays.

Paul

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Anton Lorenz Vrba wrote on May. 4, 2013 @ 15:12 GMT
Paul, a stimulating read. I stared my essay with the sentence "Information in a physical sense is that what causes the state of a physical entity to change." That does not depart in any way from your view.

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Author Paul Reed replied on May. 5, 2013 @ 02:23 GMT
Anton

It does not sound like my view, but I will re-read your essay

Paul

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Lev Goldfarb wrote on May. 16, 2013 @ 16:02 GMT
Hi Paul,

You said at the very beginning of your essay:

"And in that respect, information must be a representation of something, so the something is primary."

Why is it that "information must be a representation of something"? This is the problem with the incredible ambiguity of information, which I mentioned in my essay: we don't know what the word means. ;-)

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Lev Goldfarb replied on May. 16, 2013 @ 16:10 GMT
Sorry, I said "we don't know what the word means", but more relevantly I should have said that the word doesn't mean anything specific. ;-)

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Author Paul Reed replied on May. 16, 2013 @ 16:28 GMT
Lev

"Why is it that "information must be a representation of something"? Because precisely of what you say next. The concept of information is being applied to almost anything, on the basis that anything gives us information. But this is a meaningless definition. Indeed, more fundamentally, the whole concept is a fallacy. But since the essay asked for a differentiation, then I gave the only one that makes some sort of sense, physically.

Paul

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Vladimir F. Tamari wrote on May. 19, 2013 @ 02:50 GMT
Paul,

Congratulations for your excellent well-thought out paper. In the article you covered the ground you have been partially explaining in your previous posts. Your systematic style of point-by-point enumeration reminded me of that of Ibn Al-Haytham in his Kitab Al-Manather (Book of Optics). I have no head for logical exposition but it has finally dawned on me that we share important conclusions in our world-views. In my Beautiful Universe theory I see a single 'now' Universal State in which local linear adjacent action causes the 'next' state; this somehow resembles your position inasmuch as I understand it. There are other points of agreement and others I do not quite understand or disagree with, but for now I will just wish you well in the contest.

Vladimir

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Author Paul Reed replied on May. 19, 2013 @ 04:02 GMT
Vladimir

I have of course read your theory before, and while I cannot remember (getting old) if indeed its basic premise revolves around sequence of discrete definitive physcally existent states, then we are in agreement. Shame you do not want to engage on other matters.

Paul

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Vladimir F. Tamari wrote on May. 22, 2013 @ 12:05 GMT
Paul yes my 'Beautiful Universe' theory does posit a lattice of such nodes transferring angular momentum to adjacent ones according to a simple rule.

We are as old as we feel, but I am over 70 so I have to concentrate my time and energy at those times I feel my age!

vladimir

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Author Paul Reed wrote on May. 22, 2013 @ 17:25 GMT
Wish I could, having occupied my time at ludicrous hours of the morning, as I do not sleep well, I then spend the day renovating my son's flat. But I keep telling myself it's in a good cause, ie to ensure the granddaughters get into a good school. Off out to the theatre now. In other words, if I had the time I'd check your beautiful universe.

Paul

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Vladimir F. Tamari wrote on May. 23, 2013 @ 11:20 GMT
family is worth more attention than any Universe!

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basudeba mishra wrote on May. 30, 2013 @ 09:23 GMT
Dear Sir,

Thank you for giving us an opportunity to explain how uncertainty is inherent in Nature. Kindly bear with our lengthy explanation.

When Mr. Heisenberg proposed his conjecture in 1927, Mr. Earle Kennard independently derived a different formulation, which was later generalized by Mr. Howard Robertson as: σ(q)σ(p) ≥ h/4π. This inequality says that one...

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Author Paul Reed replied on May. 31, 2013 @ 05:13 GMT
Basudeba

The fact about the physical existence as knowable to us, ie not one we dream up to fit an incorrect presumption, is as follows:

To independently (from the sensory systems which can detect it) exist in the way it does, means that it occurs definitively. Something cannot physically exist and be in some way not definitive. Actually, since physical existence involves existence...

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basudeba mishra replied on May. 31, 2013 @ 12:11 GMT
Dear Sir,

We agree with your definition of sequence that it is caused by existence and difference. But it needs further clarification. Sequence involves action or events induced by action. Even in the space of sequence in space, we perceive one position and then perceive the next position and continue such action at least several times. Since existence itself involves continuous change, you are right. Your subsequent observation is in line with this statement.

We did not presume that there is indefiniteness in physical existence or that measurement process disturbed the object. We only said that all that exists and all effects that influence the outcome of measurement may not be perceptible to us. In fact, we perceive the result of measurement only at “here-now”, though the measurement was conducted a little in the past and the present state of the object is not as reported by the measurement. Similarly, other effect like a disturbance to the field through which the light pulse travels, etc, cannot be factored into the result of measurement. Still we use that result. This induces the indefiniteness in perception. Regarding the rest, we are talking about the same thing in different languages.

Regards,

basudeba

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Author Paul Reed replied on Jun. 1, 2013 @ 05:25 GMT
Basudeba

“Sequence involves action or events induced by action”

Obviously, and I did not say otherwise. Now, there are two possibilities: 1 There is some form(s) of inert substance which has properties which cause alteration thereto. 2 What we conceive of as ‘properties’ are in fact what exists as the substance. Certainly there must be something which has physical...

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basudeba mishra wrote on May. 30, 2013 @ 12:39 GMT
Dear Sir,

We thoroughly enjoyed your essay subject to some different modes of presentation. Something can be fundamental or not. There can be many things that are individually fundamental. But how can something be more fundamental than others? You are right that information must be a representation of something, but how can you say that the “something is primary”. However, we note that...

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Author Paul Reed replied on May. 31, 2013 @ 05:57 GMT
Basudeba

The point about primary was that the something, whatever it is, is what is physically existent. Whereas the representation, ie information thereon, may or may not be. The word fundamental also refers to being physically existent.

You may want to phrase those paras differently, but knowledge and perception are fundamentally the same. The issue is the degree to which any...

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basudeba mishra replied on May. 31, 2013 @ 11:25 GMT
Dear Sir,

Regarding your comment to our statement: “Your description of received physical information is somewhat confusing”, please note that information is the result of measurement and measurement is a comparison between similars. The field set up by our eyes is similar to the field set up by the light emitted by the object. Hence they are perceptible only to the eyes and not to the face or the wall. This is the physical circumstance.

Whether space and time are continuous or not? If you say they are digital, then how are they connected to make themselves meaningful? If something connects them, that thing fills the interval. The interval itself is space and time. Thus, they have to be continuous. Similarly, the road we walk on is continuous. Though it terminates at some perceivable point, its continuity within the boundary is not disputed. On the contrary, a car running on the road is discrete with reference to the road, though you may say within its boundary it is also continuous.

It is true that in a wave there is a continuous alteration of the water surface. But the water surface is not the wave. It is stationary. Only the momentum is transferred to the next position. What is transferred is continuous.

Regards,

basudeba

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Author Paul Reed replied on Jun. 1, 2013 @ 04:51 GMT
Basudeba

“please note that information is the result of measurement”

Not necessarily. Light, etc, is inherently information, as it is a representation of something else. It does not need to be measured to be so. Neither is the generation of information solely confined to the activity known as measurement. Any judgement/statement/perception/whatever involves comparison to...

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Akinbo Ojo wrote on Jun. 1, 2013 @ 15:29 GMT
Hello Paul,

Catching up on the essays. Your essay very philosophical and the numbered paragraph style resembles Aristotle's in his Physics and Metaphysics.

- You ask in paragraph 34, what should be considered to constitute ‘it’?

See Leibniz's Monadology, http://www.earlymoderntexts.com/pdf/leibmona.pdf, also quoted in my essay, On the road not taken.

- Then in paragraph 35, As physical existence is existential sequence and can only occur in ONE definitive form at a time... From this can be inferred that at other times there can be a change of state. Leibniz like the Pythagoreans believed all that was needed was 0 and 1 which are numbers but representative of definite states. To Leibniz, he identified 1 with God, and 0 with nothing. But it is really simpler for 1 to represent an extended, non-zero geometric point.

If you are interested you can also check out this blog, http://blog.stephenwolfram.com/2013/05/dropping-in-on-gottfr
ied-leibniz/

Regards.

*One question to ponder since you say you have more free time to contemplate things: Euclid says a 'line' is a length without breadth... is this a realistic definition for something real?

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Author Paul Reed replied on Jun. 2, 2013 @ 07:55 GMT
Akinbo

No it is not philosophical, it is a generic statement of the physical circumstances.

Para 34 is an occasion where the generic goes no further and there is a question as to what actually constitutes 'it'. Which is for physicists to find out. The point being that what manifests is the physically existent state of 'something'. But that could either be an inert substance which has the properties which alter, or the something could just be the properties (excuse the terminology, but what I mean should be easy to understand).

"From this can be inferred that at other times there can be a change of state"

Really the logic is the other way around. We know there is difference, physical existence is most definitely just in one physical state ad infinitum! So, the question is how does difference reconcile with existence, which necessitates one definitive state. And the answer is sequence. Physical existence is a sequence of definitive discrete physically existent states of whatever comprises it, that is, reality is one physically existent states at any given time. More than one d not co-exist, neither does existence involve any form of indefiniteness.

Re line, this cannot be so. To be a 'line' it must have 'breadth'. This is of course where representational devices can create problems if they do not reflect what occurs.

Incidentally, I note for some strange reason I have not read your essay. Will do so later

Paul

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Helmut Hansen wrote on Jun. 3, 2013 @ 15:15 GMT
I have read your paper. After struggling with your unusual way of thinking I begin to understand your approach - and I think you are right, at least with respect of the differentiation reality from its light based representation.

In his book "Relativity and Common Sense" Hermann Bondi celebrates the unity of dynamics and optics given by Special Relativity, in particular by the Principle of Relativity, as a great advantage, but just by this unity a wrong understanding of the constant of c was established. The speed of light c was indeed cutted from its fundamental optical root.

I am convinced that the constant of c is of dual nature like light itself! In other words, the speed of light is given twice: in a wave-like version and in a particle-like version. In special relativity ony the wave-like version (i.e. the second postulate) has been taken into account. Special relativity is thus highly incomplete.

The differentiation between reality (dynamics) and light (optics) is thus a necessary condition to recognize this incompleteness of special relativity.

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Author Paul Reed replied on Jun. 3, 2013 @ 18:20 GMT
Helmut

There are two main strands of response to your post:

1 What is SR

SR is not 1905. SR, as defined by Einstein later, involves:

-only motion that is uniform rectilinear and non-rotary

-only fixed shape bodies at rest

-only light which travels in straight lines at a constant speed

It is special because there is no gravitational force (or more...

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Peter Jackson wrote on Jun. 8, 2013 @ 16:55 GMT
Paul,

Well done. A clearer more rational essay than last year, although it did often seem to be largely a re-iteration of the same fundamental points.

None the less I think it showed some better understanding in some areas, including in particular;

"all that can be defined is A, from within A," I might add for full implications; "once the signal has interacted with and is is...

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Author Paul Reed replied on Jun. 9, 2013 @ 06:41 GMT
Peter

Your addition is pointless, that was about the existentially closed system.

What happens in the brain is irrelevant to the physical circumstance. The physics stops at the point of interaction, whether it is with a brick wall or an eye. What we need to know, is what was received.

Your next reference is to the first point I posted on NPA. There are not 2 cases. Either there is relative movement in which case…as stated. Or there is not relative movement, in which case the rate of change remains constant for the recipient observer and the same as the reality (leaving aside other possible ‘interferences’ on light as it travels). Neither is this about the overall speed of travel, but is concerned with rate of change.

Again I am not enjoying this. The contest opened just when I had time to write something. And as I do not sleep well, it gives me something to do in the early hours of the morning, before I then go out and crawl all over my new camper van (the last one got stolen). Or otherwise go to Muswell Hill to renovate my son’s new flat. But I must find a different pursuit.

Paul

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Peter Jackson replied on Jun. 10, 2013 @ 11:40 GMT
Paul,

Arbitrarily deciding where physics starts and stops is an interesting new approach, but it only seems to be a belief system you've built as it conflicts with observation and seems to have no scientific basis.

You are suggesting that there is no refraction by a lens, or at least that when we look through a telescope or microscope we will never 'see' anything because the physics has 'stopped' at the surface of the lens! This is completely contrary to all contemporary optical science. That view entirely missing the relevance of the process of refraction, which changes the speed of the signal to c/n ONLY in the frame of the eye lens.

Are you seriously suggesting an instrument with a lens moving at 0.2 c 'towards' a light source will "see" precisely the same spectroscopy as an adjacent lens moving 'away from' the source? If so you are missing a whole tract of fundamental A level science needed to even get INTO a college course! That is not to say that many at college are not indoctrinated with inconsistent theory, but it does however explain the inconsistencies in your comments.

Also 'rate of change' only comes from acceleration of course, not relative motion per se. If you read what you wrote you will see the apparent confusion there too.

I think you may enjoy this more if you did a little more research late at night before rushing too rapidly into writing. I spent over 40 years untangling the deep mess of complexities before a broad consistent ontology started to emerge, then more checking it's predictions before I published my first paper.

Peter

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Author Paul Reed wrote on Jun. 10, 2013 @ 20:12 GMT
Peter

It is neither arbitrary, not a belief system. Though do note that it is ‘only’ a generic statement.

As stated previously, but for convenience, I will repeat it here. The physical existence we are investigating is all that is potentially knowable to us (ie what we can be aware of because we can either experience it directly or can hypothesise it, which is, in effect,...

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Antony Ryan wrote on Jun. 13, 2013 @ 20:45 GMT
Just thought I'd say hello Paul.

I liked your approach such that we must define well what we mean by Bit and It. Also the numbered points and bite size paragraphs made it a nice read. Hope you get a chance to look at my essay

Well done & good luck!

Antony

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Hoang cao Hai wrote on Jun. 16, 2013 @ 07:18 GMT
Dear Paul Reed

The essay is very good and very deep analysis, but somewhat cumbersome and lack of definitive conclusions.

6 points - as Grading method (compared to my goal ) = 5 criteria with 2 points each : The idea actually,Similar views,Measures consistent,Conclusions detail,Applying diversity.

http://fqxi.org/community/forum/topic/1802

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Author Paul Reed replied on Jun. 17, 2013 @ 05:09 GMT
Hoang

Since the essay is supposed to be about differentiating it from bit, then it and the conclusion is too. The real message is what constitutes physical existence for us, and how does this occur.

Paul

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Hoang cao Hai wrote on Jun. 27, 2013 @ 03:32 GMT
Send to all of you

THE ADDITIONAL ARTICLES AND A SMALL TEST FOR MUTUAL BENEFIT

To change the atmosphere "abstract" of the competition and to demonstrate for the real preeminent possibility of the Absolute theory as well as to clarify the issues I mentioned in the essay and to avoid duplicate questions after receiving the opinion of you , I will add a reply to you :

1 . THE...

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James Lee Hoover wrote on Jul. 3, 2013 @ 19:17 GMT
Paul,

If given the time and the wits to evaluate over 120 more entries, I have a month to try. My seemingly whimsical title, “It’s good to be the king,” is serious about our subject.

Jim

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john stephan selye wrote on Jul. 8, 2013 @ 18:39 GMT
I agree with many points that you bring up here. There is indeed a reality beyond the Observer, and we are involved in the field of observation and can therefore only detect it in part. I think that in your consideration of light, however, you put this aside (I'm not sure why) and become concerned with the 'reality' of phenomena beyond what we can see.

Am I misunderstanding you?

I...

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Author Paul Reed replied on Jul. 9, 2013 @ 04:46 GMT
John

“Am I misunderstanding you?”

Probably. Light is a physically existent entity in its own right. It is just that, given its qualities and with the evolution of sight, it also has a functional role as a representation of what occurred (which could be labelled the existential sequence). It is a question of “beyond what we can see” and “only detect it (reality) in part” in the following sense.

We can only be aware of existence through a physical process. So, leaving aside how good that process is at capturing and conveying it (and then how proficient we are at processing that), it is the very fact that it is, which means there is a logical possibility of an alternative. Because hypothesis, so long as it adheres to the rules, it an alternative form of sensing, ie virtual sensing. That is, based on direct sensing, we can discern the reality that, literally, we cannot sense. The point is that it is always within an existentially closed system, we cannot transcend our own existence. Reality is all that which is potentially knowable (ie detectectable). Now a lot of it we may never detect/infer, or we may get it wrong, but the potential was there.

The results are not subjective. The relativity which Einstein alluded to, is a relativity in the timing of the receipt of light, which is fundamentally a function of spatial position. The “greater system/reality” you refer to, is reality (physical existence/what occurred).

“What if the inorganic…”

What if the earth is made of blue cheese. There must be some evidence for a ‘what if’, otherwise you have strayed out of the existentially closed system by way of a belief. We are aware of reality because we receive a physical input, and the evidence is that others receive similar. In other words, physical existence is independent of the mechanisms which enable its detection. How, and why, this came into existence is beyond our knowledge.

Paul

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Anonymous wrote on Jul. 12, 2013 @ 18:36 GMT
Dear Paul,

I very much liked your very pragmatic and sensible essay, which I was prompted to read by your posts, specifically in Lev's thread. I agree with your position that light for us represents the ultimate source of information. I also heartily agree with your statement that "unless proven to the contrary, it must not be assumed that what is physically received is an entirely accurate, and/or comprehensive, representation of even the form of existence we can know." In my essay I claim that our knowledge of the world is necessarily limited by the type of information our senses and sensors can capture. I allude that there are other types of info waiting to be discovered with either improved or entirely new technology.

My position resonates very well with your ideas that "The ontological/epistemological conundrum is that we cannot transcend the form of existence available to us, and we receive only representations of that. ... There is no something immediately available to us." and that "That is, it always has to be assumed that there is a possibility of more knowledge.."

I also hope that you find my take on SR refreshing, for I propose that it is, first of all, the theory of relativity of information, caused by the inherent limitations in the medium that carries the signal to various observers. I hope you will find time to read my essay and comment on it :)

take care!

-Marina

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M. V. Vasilyeva replied on Jul. 12, 2013 @ 18:39 GMT
oops! did not realize that I was not logged in. You can find my essay at http://fqxi.org/community/forum/topic/1869

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Vladimir F. Tamari wrote on Jul. 16, 2013 @ 01:50 GMT
Dear Paul. Hello, and hope this finds you well. Apologies if this does not apply to you. I have read and rated your essay and about 50 others. If you have not yet rated my essay The Cloud of Unknowing please consider doing so. With best wishes.

Vladimir

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WANG Xiong wrote on Jul. 18, 2013 @ 13:44 GMT
Dear Paul Reed,

Thanks for your nice essay, well done

Which is What?

what give rise to information? from what?

and from a different point view, my essay may interest you

Bit: from Breaking symmetry of it

Hope you enjoy it

Regards,

Xiong

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Stephen James Anastasi wrote on Jul. 22, 2013 @ 10:32 GMT
Hello Paul

I thought this was an excellent effort at bringing something new to the table. I note that your paragraph 32 through to 35 would be implied by the content of my essay also, and would be interested to read your thoughts as these relate to your work.

Stephen.

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Vladimir Rogozhin wrote on Jul. 24, 2013 @ 13:10 GMT
Dear Paul,

Great question, great, deep systematic answers. It is written in the spirit of Rene Descartes: "clearly and distinctly", very good language.

The most important for understanding the nature of the information - light:

«Of all the types of representation received, light is the most important. It is a

physical effect in photons which enables sight. As light results from an atomic

interaction, the speed of the physical phenomenon which the photons interact with is irrelvant, unlike in a collision. Thus the start speed of any given light is always the same, and as with any existent entity, it will continue to move at that speed unless impeded. Also, there is a relentless sequence of such interactions, and light travels in all directions. »

You've given a lot of concepts that give a clue to the nature of the information. You are quite right: «The ontological / epistemological conundrum is that we cannot transcend the form of existence available to us, and we receive only representations of that.» Here the key concept of «the form of existence». Just need to add - "absolute (unconditioned) forms of existence." The goddess form -Eydoteya gives us a clue as to catch Proteus Nature (matter in all forms of its existence). You and I are close in spirit to the reserch. I put the rating of your essay "eight." Please look at my essay and fair vote.

Best regards,

Vladimir

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basudeba mishra wrote on Jul. 28, 2013 @ 12:30 GMT
Dear Sir,

This is our post to Dr. Wiliam Mc Harris in his thread. We thought it may be of interest to you.

Mathematics is the science of accumulation and reduction of similars or partly similars. The former is linear and the later non-linear. Because of the high degree of interdependence and interconnectedness, it is no surprise that everything in the Universe is mostly non-linear....

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Akinbo Ojo wrote on Aug. 1, 2013 @ 11:41 GMT
Hello Paul,

You are frequent and valued contributor on this forum. It appears that "strange reason" you mentioned June 2 still makes you not to read my essay yet? :)

I hope you can do so. Since submitting my essay, additional insights gained from interacting with FQXi community members, made me to do a follow up on my blog by writing the judgement in the case of Atomistic Enterprises Inc. vs. Plato & Ors delivered on Jul. 28, 2013 @ 11:39 GMT. You may view that as well.

Best regards,

Akinbo

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Paul Borrill wrote on Aug. 7, 2013 @ 21:51 GMT
Dear Paul,

I have now finished reviewing all 180 essays for the contest and appreciate your contribution to this competition.

I have been thoroughly impressed at the breadth, depth and quality of the ideas represented in this contest. In true academic spirit, if you have not yet reviewed my essay, I invite you to do so and leave your comments.

You can find the latest version of my essay here:

http://fqxi.org/data/forum-attachments/Borrill-TimeOne-
V1.1a.pdf

(sorry if the fqxi web site splits this url up, I haven’t figured out a way to not make it do that).

May the best essays win!

Kind regards,

Paul Borrill

paul at borrill dot com

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