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Contests Home

Current Essay Contest


Contest Partners: Nanotronics Imaging, The Peter and Patricia Gruber Foundation, and The John Templeton Foundation
Media Partner: Scientific American


Previous Contests

Undecidability, Uncomputability, and Unpredictability Essay Contest
December 24, 2019 - April 24, 2020
Contest Partners: Fetzer Franklin Fund, and The Peter and Patricia Gruber Foundation
read/discuss

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

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.
read/discusswinners

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

read/discusswinners

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
read/discusswinners

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

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
read/discusswinners

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

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

The Nature of Time
August - December 2008
read/discusswinners

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FQXi FORUM
May 31, 2020

CATEGORY: Trick or Truth Essay Contest (2015) [back]
TOPIC: Trick or Truth?? Try Truth and Treat! by kevin l bootes [refresh]
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Author kevin l bootes wrote on Mar. 16, 2015 @ 14:25 GMT
Essay Abstract

Ancient Greece's primordial 4 elements christened in mathematical physics' infancy, Aristotle's celestial spheres, Ptolemy's epicycles, and the creationist Puritans' flat earth: the gaze of scientists -- unbridled by prayerful worship of the past -- abandonning these incorrect assumptions toward exploring testable implications of revolutionarily novel ones has generated every tectonic shift of paradigm through science's history of advancing humanity's impatient stumbles toward perceiving physical truth. Of paramount importance in effecting the consequent quantum leaps in fundamental theory is the treat of falsifiability via experimantal observation. Rather than simply waxing poetic on sublimely cross-pollinating interconnections between co-spousal mathematics and physics, the essayist conjures instead falsifiable conjectures. Triumphant observation of CMB anisotropies played the pivotal role in precision cosmology's eliminating competitors from contention in proven, textbook-caliber cosmogenic theory. Mathematical ideas here considered -- rooted in the powerful roles played by statistics in refining experimentation's sensitivity and by equivalency principles in establishing relativity as gravitation's foundational bedrock -- suggest refinement in data collection and analysis via modifications in purpose and design of instruments and experiments. Exploring mathematical subtlety in electromagnetic theory -- inspired by debate among maverick theorists on professionalism's fringes regarding physics' need for QFT's second quantization and its formalizing photonic discreteness -- motivates reconsideration of bolometric sensitivity. Expanding scale from quantum to cosmic and shifting frame from observer to celestial, the exploration of complementary mathematical subtlety in gravitational theory -- regarding relativity's mass-energy equivalency and its novel application in attributing to galactic radiant energy a portion of the role played by dark matter in explaining anomalous rotation curves -- animates a corresponding reconsideration of redshift, viz., the proposed underestimated role played by gigaparsec-scale gravitational field gradient variation across the observable depth of the universe (shown to lengthen extragalactic photon wavelength) in generating astronomical redshifts previously assumed purely recessional in origin.

Author Bio

Perfect attendance through 12 yrs Catholic school rigor; 5 yrs Molecular Biophysics/ Applied Math attempted double major, BS Mathematical Sciences, Honors 1987 Johns Hopkins; Challenger disaster blocked NASA/STSI/JPL PhD work/study; instead 4 years Peace Corps Cameroon rainforest building fish hatcheries, marriage, kids; suspected of spying, machete attempt on life inspired MS Fisheries Science at field's leading school Auburn thesis research published Fishery Bulletin, field's leading journal; PhD Marine Science/ Physical Oceanography UT Austin interrupted third year retinal detachment, insurance denial, sibling death, divorce; instead high school teaching, carpentry, science writing, motorcycle rebuilding, remarriage, refatherhood, online Caltech, MIT quantum/ cosmological courses.

Download Essay PDF File

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Georgina Woodward wrote on Mar. 19, 2015 @ 07:01 GMT
Hi Kevin,

I enjoyed reading your beautiful poetic essay. I'm not sure I grasped all of it but loved the alliteration, poetic and story-like descriptions coving the development of physics.

Really interesting and more matter of fact writing about whether light is quantised particles prior to measurement.Covered in detail. I talk long similar lines when considering that we always have to make absolute reality into an observable,with a limited set of detectable states in order to measure it. For example the two bit coin is not the foundational object but an observable only capable of one of two outcomes. Whereas the coin prior to the measurement protocol can have many different orientations not limited to the two bits.

I didn't grasp all of the final section about galaxies etc. but enjoyed the descriptive writing all the same. Thank you for sharing your writing flair and food for thought. Georgina

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Georgina Woodward replied on Mar. 19, 2015 @ 07:04 GMT
Kevin, perhaps I should add that I have not yet placed votes on any essays. That low vote was not mine.

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Author kevin l bootes replied on Mar. 20, 2015 @ 16:48 GMT
Thanks Georgina --

I suspected our watergarden planet contained other minds in tune with the 4-dimensional themes I'm struggling myself to grasp in the essay, which took a few more months of Sundays to paint together than I'm comfortable counting. Bursting forth in thunder here at the outset rather than concealing it like a card shark at the poker table, I do not believe in a unique big...

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attachments: princesstommi.JPG

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Author kevin l bootes replied on Mar. 20, 2015 @ 21:30 GMT
... second attempt to upload pdf file (too large?) of academic transcripts toward defining the ideological / conceptual / 'physilosophical' genesis of the 'Truth and Treat' notions of hypothesizing falsifiably (via empirical cmb confirmation/rejection of computational statistical predictions) a 'cmb-quarksoup equivalency' and its consequent quantum-cosmo-topological tunneling hyperlink through...

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Anonymous wrote on Mar. 24, 2015 @ 16:19 GMT
In hopes of encouraging further critical discussion and technical development of the 'dark light' and 'cmb-quarksoup equivalency' ideas, author can be reached by email = kevinbootes09ATgmailDOTcom or on phacebooq or by cell = (five oh 2) two nine 7 - seven three 22

Reconfiguring -- in the spirit of big-bang skeptic John Archibald Wheeler's asking "What good is a universe without life in it?" -- the Gothic doom of the big-bangers' dead-end cosmic evolution prophesied by 1981's animated Heavy Metal sci-fi classic:

An Ember will glow over the Universe

And Peace will grow in its Path

And Eternity will flow waving from the Sky

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Akinbo Ojo wrote on Mar. 29, 2015 @ 13:40 GMT
Hello Kevin,

I would not know your motivation for writing in this poetic way. Perhaps, to hide the many hidden truths, which I find, from those who do not desire that truth return to our physics.

I will not engage you on the Michelson-Morley experimental results which you pointed to.

I will first like you to tell me where this wonderful tourist destination called FlatLand is?

Second, concerning the photon, someone in this community, Armin Shirazi wrote a paper where he discussed a 'photon existence paradox', although he claims to still support SR. It goes somehow like this, if it is as it is claimed that time does not flow for a photon, then it follows that the time of emission of a photon is the same as the time of its absorption, how then can photon exist?

All the best in the competition.

Regards,

Akinbo

*Please leave a note on my blog when you reply so I know when to check back here.

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Sujatha Jagannathan wrote on Mar. 31, 2015 @ 10:56 GMT
Your speculations used in your work is worth the effort. It relates every feather.

- Sincerely,

Miss. Sujatha Jagannathan

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LLOYD TAMARAPREYE OKOKO replied on Apr. 7, 2015 @ 07:14 GMT
Dearly Beloved Kevin,

Your essay is a reminiscence of the book of Ecclesiastes.I was expecing you to end with a prophesy on the subject matter.

Keep on flourishing,

Lloyd Tamarapreye Okoko.

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Ted Erikson wrote on Apr. 8, 2015 @ 17:18 GMT
FYI:My Essay 2408 error corrections @

Chicago Section AAPT

Spring Meeting 2015 - Glenbrook South High School

April 11, 2015

8:15-8:45

Registration and Continental Breakfast

8:50-9:00

Welcome and Introductions - John Lewis - Host

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Dimensionless Dualities

Ted Erikson - R/E UnLtd. - sdog1@sbcglobal.net

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Janko Kokosar wrote on Apr. 12, 2015 @ 12:12 GMT
Dear Kevin

I agree that the photoelectric effect can be explained without photons, but antibunching effect cannot be explained without photons.

In principle, I think that mavericks are useful in science, and I am also maverick, if you read my references. But, it is better that you more clearly describe where you disagree with mainstream science, for instance antibuncing effect.

But, my speculation is that quantized gravitation does not contain virtual gravitons, and this can be connected with your ideas.

My essay

Best regards

Janko Kokosar

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