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RECENT POSTS IN THIS TOPIC

Joe Fisher: on 3/31/15 at 15:22pm UTC, wrote Dear Dr. Adams, I thought that your engrossing essay was exceptionally...

Marcel-Marie LeBel: on 3/27/15 at 18:55pm UTC, wrote Demond, Are these distinct constructs derived from a similar study “the...

Demond Adams: on 3/2/15 at 15:23pm UTC, wrote Alex, Mathematics is simply a model (tool) used to illustrate...

Alex Newman: on 3/1/15 at 18:25pm UTC, wrote Mathematics is used to make up things we think they are laws of nature. But...

basudeba mishra: on 2/19/15 at 4:19am UTC, wrote Dear Sir, We thoroughly enjoyed your excellent essay. Mathematics...

Demond Adams: on 2/18/15 at 17:54pm UTC, wrote Richard, Thank you for commenting. Perspective Theory offers an infinite...

Richard Lewis: on 2/18/15 at 11:54am UTC, wrote Hi Desmond, I did like reading your essay which was very clearly...

Sujatha Jagannathan: on 2/16/15 at 9:41am UTC, wrote Speaking truly as a true physicist, indeed! Hands-On! Sincerely, Miss....


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FQXi FORUM
December 13, 2019

CATEGORY: Trick or Truth Essay Contest (2015) [back]
TOPIC: Physics the Philosophy of Mathematics by Demond Adams [refresh]
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Author Demond Adams wrote on Jan. 21, 2015 @ 21:13 GMT
Essay Abstract

Mathematics describes the logic of numbers while physics explicitly explains the laws of nature, yet somehow these separate disciplines appear eternally and intrinsically related. We can not describe nature without referencing physics and we cannot describe physics without introducing mathematics. Are these distinct constructs derived from a similar study “the logic of nature”, or is this a coincidental aspect of nature’s mystery? In this paper I will discuss the motivation of applying mathematics to physics and argue its cohesive interplay in guiding our investigations of nature.

Author Bio

Theoretical Physicists and author of "The New Standard Model"

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Sophia Magnusdottir wrote on Jan. 22, 2015 @ 08:14 GMT
Are you sure we cannot describe nature without using mathematics? In my essay, I argue that we can!

-- Sophia

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Author Demond Adams replied on Jan. 22, 2015 @ 18:52 GMT
I admit, I know nothing about flying planes, but somehow I find comfort in the pilots entrusted to land planes safely.

Inevitably our drifting galaxy will one day collide with another massive galaxy and this home planet will ricochet out of our known orbit and into a dark abyss. It is with the correct interpretation of mathematics entrusted to physicists that I find solace in determining what would eventually happen next against the various opinions of many that will undoubtedly offer speculative assumptions regarding these future events.

Sure we may describe nature without the rigors of mathematics, but it will only offer speculative assumptions regarding future events. Some events are insignificant, but I simply prefer the absolute confidence provided from the accumulated study of mathematics and physics.

Best regards,

-D.c.Adams

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Sophia Magnusdottir replied on Jan. 23, 2015 @ 07:55 GMT
Hi Demond,

Predictions are always speculative as we can never rule out, strictly speaking, that the laws of nature change tomorrow. But the quality of speculation that is possible has nothing to do in principle with our use of mathematics, it has something to do with the laws of nature and our ability to make observations.

See, what we do when we use math is basically that we try to find a system that is a (usually greatly simplified) description of another system. We test it against observations, and the more tests it passes, the higher our confidence becomes. You can do the same thing for systems that are not math. Take the example with the black box in my essay. If you test it sufficiently often you become more confident that it is useful, and you will try to use it the next time. Do you really "know" that it will still be correct tomorrow? No, you don't, you are never entirely certain, you just become more confident. Math just turns out to be a particularly useful "box" for some cases.

-- Sophia

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Koorosh Shahdaei wrote on Jan. 23, 2015 @ 11:07 GMT
Hi Demond,

Would you explain further what you meant by: "Mathematics represents who we are and manipulates what we will become."

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Author Demond Adams replied on Jan. 23, 2015 @ 16:24 GMT
Koorosh,

Thank you for your question and reviewing my essay. The sentence means many things…but to offer one explanation without the philosophical conjecture-

The human body is undoubtedly a miraculous machine and it is only reliable because it depends on mathematics which is fundamentally reliable. It also is constructed to fails only because of mathematics.

Take for instance the blood pressure going through our veins. If it is maintained in equilibrium we live, if it is not -we die. This is a simple equation, but it holds life and death within the small parameters of an equation. We may do things to ourselves to offset this balance or maintain it. Otherwise, it is relatively consistent and we must depend on this equation to remain as reliable and predictable as possible to stay alive. We are at the mercy of a gauged equation every day.

Now consider the conception of a child. Its biology is the construct or "summation" of genes contributed by two separate individuals. A unique algorithm of their genes creates this new person. This algorithm iterated in the form of a DNA strand can represent who the child is physically. "Mathematics represents who we are"...

Let’s say we made copies of this algorithm and made clones of this child. The physiology of these cloned children are initially identical because the mathematical algorithm creating their genes is identical (equilibrium in mathematical equation). If we distributed these children to different locations on the earth and simply exposed them to different levels of UV radiation, their DNA molecules would change slightly and as cells repair/duplicate themselves during maturation, these variable DNA modifications or derivations within the algorithmic code is calculable and would ultimately change their physiology. Mathematics "...manipulates what we will become".

Once again thanks for the great question!

Best Regards,

D.C.Adams

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Edwin Eugene Klingman wrote on Jan. 27, 2015 @ 20:52 GMT
Dear Demond,

I tend to agree with a number of your comments on others' threads. In your essay you refer several times to "physical laws", whether as "rules of the virtual game" or "web of mathematical laws prescribed as physics". There are different perspectives on this, two prominent ones being that the "laws" of nature are outside of physics or that these laws arise from physical existence. I tend to favor the second, and I'm not sure which one you favor. You several times refer to 'free will' as delusional which seems to favor physical reality subject to "outside laws". I view free will as basic, and compatible with physical reality, as I have indicated in earlier essays.

But I may have misinterpreted you, as you note that "it is only through the guide of human intuition that we possess the ability to confidently derive a mathematical interpretation." I agree with this, but I associate 'intuition' with consciousness, which I further associate with free will.

Your example of zero and infinity is interesting, but I tend to avoid infinities, not understanding their math and doubting their physical relevance.

You deal with complex ideas, such as "the laws of the universe are relative", but "relative to what?" Your development of perspective theory in terms of observers leads to a focus on density. I'm not sure I understand your statement that "an object's gauged field dimensions (volume) is represented by its density",' but I am convinced that density as the crucial variable is often overlooked today, most particularly particle densities.

Thank you for reading and commenting on my essay, and best wishes to you.

Edwin Eugene Klingman

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Author Demond Adams wrote on Jan. 27, 2015 @ 22:40 GMT
Edwin,

Thank you for your post. Forgive me, but for an analogy I will consider a computer application.

I tend to think of physical laws as a software application of which there are many. Fundamentally we are capable of reducing the hierarchy of an application into a lower Boolean logic of (1's and 0's) on or off. Somewhere in between we use a programming language and interpreter...

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Edwin Eugene Klingman replied on Jan. 28, 2015 @ 00:34 GMT
Dear Demond,

Thanks for your excellent analogy/answer to my questions. I am intimately familiar with the OSI Seven Layer scheme; the physical layer, the data link, network, transport, session, presentation, and application layers. I haven't worked there for over 10 years so I haven't thought about it much recently, but it does provide an interesting analogical perspective.

You say it works bottom-up, so we are at some level incapable of changing the fundamental laws upon which are reality operates. You then note that free will is limited. That seems to imply that it exists. I believe it exists and agree it is limited. But I tend to see it as an operation at the lowest level. To stick with the analogy, in ISDN the physical layer is a simple state machine with a simple protocol interface to the data link, but below this, the physical layer performs adaptive echo cancellation to optimize signaling. This adaptive behavior, (like free will) is completely invisible to all seven layers above it, yet it performs one of the most crucial operations! This is only an analogy, but, I think, a surprisingly appropriate one.

Anyway thanks for your analogy, which I found both apt and interesting.

Best,

Edwin Eugene Klingman

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Akinbo Ojo wrote on Feb. 12, 2015 @ 13:54 GMT
Dear Demond, I like the approach taken in your essay.

When you say, "Philosophy was developed to discern verifiable facts from fiction using the logic of deductive reasoning...."

May I ask you to use such reasoning to educate me on what an extended line in space consist of and how can you cut a line? Bear in mind that in continuous space, between any two points there is a third and a point is uncuttable. Yet you can swing the blade of your sword in the air without hindrance. Even, in finite geometry, the case is not better as I point out in my essay.

Then you ask: "How can something derive from nothing? If everything is derived from nothing, then something is ultimately nothing when deduced". That is the Parmenidean curse at work, which in my opinion has kept our physics imprisoned for millennia. I suggest we break the curse.

All the best in the competition.

Regards,

Akinbo

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Author Demond Adams replied on Feb. 12, 2015 @ 17:21 GMT
Akinbo,

Absolutely an awesome question! Based on my theoretical work, I found nature offers a continuous connection between all objects of mass inclusive of the vacuum of space. I proposed this as my answer to the mass-gap theory proposed by Yang-Mills. This suggests there is no separation to speak of outside of a gauged limit defined by arbitrary locations in space set by the...

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Sujatha Jagannathan wrote on Feb. 16, 2015 @ 09:41 GMT
Speaking truly as a true physicist, indeed!

Hands-On!

Sincerely,

Miss. Sujatha Jagannathan

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Richard Lewis wrote on Feb. 18, 2015 @ 11:54 GMT
Hi Desmond,

I did like reading your essay which was very clearly expressed. I also share your view about the lack of a realistic interpretation of quantum theory.

I did not fully understand perspective theory and how this helps with the interpretation of reality.

In your essay you say: Quantum mechanics appears probabilistic because it attempts to identify the fixed trajectory of a gauged particle density within the perspective of an infinite field gradient.

My comment now is from the viewpoint of the Spacetime Wave theory (see my essay: solving the mystery). My version would be: Quantum mechanics appears probabilistic because the photon is a dispersed wave disturbance of spacetime and the electron is a looped wave disturbance of spacetime. When an interaction occurs (for example between a photon and an electron in an interference experiment) the probabilistic effects only come into play at the point of interaction (observastion, detection). Prior to this everything progressed as real physical waves with a well defined but dispersed nature.

Regards

Richard

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Author Demond Adams replied on Feb. 18, 2015 @ 17:54 GMT
Richard,

Thank you for commenting. Perspective Theory offers an infinite degree of dimensional propagation (freedom) relative the perspective (super-position) of the object or observer . It is this displacement in a field gradient (space-time) in a particular direction (possible trajectories) using a parameter gauged object (defined space-time manifold or 'loop') that creates a probabilistic outcome (reality) in quantum mechanics.

In other words, the ratio of the defined gauged propagation of the object (factored displacement of the real object in space-time -- value in a numerator) by a gauged perspective field gradient (a field of possible dimensional trajectories -- value in a denominator) creates a probable divergence which is the real outcome of the interaction. By inverting these factors we describe fragmentation (Quantum Chromo-Dynamics/fragmentation and the scattering of 'parton' particles/debris).

You don't give yourself enough credit... the main concept of your comment is very accurate and correlates with the main principles offered in Perspective Theory - we simply selected different words to describe the same effect. (Having different defined perspectives on the same reality is relative! Reality describes the accuracy of these possible perspectives.) Great comment.

Best Regards,

-D.C. Adams

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basudeba mishra wrote on Feb. 19, 2015 @ 04:19 GMT
Dear Sir,

We thoroughly enjoyed your excellent essay.

Mathematics describes the quantitative aspect of Nature, whereas physics describes the other aspects – qualia. Thus, they are interrelated. Language is the transposition of information to another system’s CPU or mind by signals or sounds using energy (self communication is perception). The transposition may relate to a fixed...

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Alex Newman wrote on Mar. 1, 2015 @ 18:25 GMT
Mathematics is used to make up things we think they are laws of nature. But the essay claims that we use math to find laws of nature. Only nature knows its laws.

Do I miss something? Infinity minus infinity does not equal zero.

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Author Demond Adams wrote on Mar. 2, 2015 @ 15:23 GMT
Alex,



Mathematics is simply a model (tool) used to illustrate occurrences found in nature. This is no different than a painter painting an observed image or a musician scoring sheet music in an attempt to illustrate sound. Through the theory of music we are able to manipulate random notes (frequencies) to depict and communicate reality or imagination. Physics is similar but in...

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Marcel-Marie LeBel wrote on Mar. 27, 2015 @ 18:55 GMT
Demond,

Are these distinct constructs derived from a similar study “the logic of nature”, or is this a coincidental aspect of nature’s mystery?

To me, this is the most important statement of your essay. To recognize the logic of nature.

Good luck,

Marcel,

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Joe Fisher wrote on Mar. 31, 2015 @ 15:22 GMT
Dear Dr. Adams,

I thought that your engrossing essay was exceptionally well written and I do hope that it fares well in the competition.

I think Newton was wrong about abstract gravity; Einstein was wrong about abstract space/time, and Hawking was wrong about the explosive capability of NOTHING.

All I ask is that you give my essay WHY THE REAL UNIVERSE IS NOT MATHEMATICAL a fair reading and that you allow me to answer any objections you may leave in my comment box about it.

Joe Fisher

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