Search FQXi

If you are aware of an interesting new academic paper (that has been published in a peer-reviewed journal or has appeared on the arXiv), a conference talk (at an official professional scientific meeting), an external blog post (by a professional scientist) or a news item (in the mainstream news media), which you think might make an interesting topic for an FQXi blog post, then please contact us at with a link to the original source and a sentence about why you think that the work is worthy of discussion. Please note that we receive many such suggestions and while we endeavour to respond to them, we may not be able to reply to all suggestions.

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

Current Essay Contest

Contest Partner: The Peter and Patricia Gruber Fund.

Previous Contests

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
Terms of Use

Order posts by:
 chronological order
 most recent first

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

By using the FQXi Forum, you acknowledge reading and agree to abide by the Terms of Use

 RSS feed | RSS help


John Merryman: "The problem is that we do experience reality as those discrete flashes of..." in The Quantum...

Thomas Ray: "(reposted in correct thread) Lorraine, Nah. That's nothing like my view...." in 2015 in Review: New...

Lorraine Ford: "Clearly “law-of-nature” relationships and associated numbers represent..." in Physics of the Observer -...

Lee Bloomquist: "Information Channel. An example from Jon Barwise. At the workshop..." in Physics of the Observer -...

Lee Bloomquist: "Please clarify. I just tried to put a simple model of an observer in the..." in Alternative Models of...

Lee Bloomquist: "Footnote...for the above post, the one with the equation existence =..." in Alternative Models of...

Thomas Ray: "In fact, symmetry is the most pervasive physical principle that exists. ..." in “Spookiness”...

Thomas Ray: "It's easy to get wound around the axle with black hole thermodynamics,..." in “Spookiness”...

click titles to read articles

Why Time Might Not Be an Illusion
Einstein’s relativity pushes physicists towards a picture of the universe as a block, in which the past, present, and future all exist on the same footing; but maybe that shift in thinking has gone too far.

The Complexity Conundrum
Resolving the black hole firewall paradox—by calculating what a real astronaut would compute at the black hole's edge.

Quantum Dream Time
Defining a ‘quantum clock’ and a 'quantum ruler' could help those attempting to unify physics—and solve the mystery of vanishing time.

Our Place in the Multiverse
Calculating the odds that intelligent observers arise in parallel universes—and working out what they might see.

Sounding the Drums to Listen for Gravity’s Effect on Quantum Phenomena
A bench-top experiment could test the notion that gravity breaks delicate quantum superpositions.

March 17, 2018

CATEGORY: Wandering Towards a Goal Essay Contest (2016-2017) [back]
TOPIC: SPACE: WHERE IT ALL BEGINS ©2017 by Ted Erikson [refresh]
Bookmark and Share
Login or create account to post reply or comment.

Author Ted Erikson wrote on Mar. 3, 2017 @ 17:29 GMT
Essay Abstract

SPACE: WHERE IT ALL BEGINS ©2017 Geometry has provided many extremes of structures for occupied, and unoccupied, space. This essay merges thermodynamic and geometric concepts to generate an "activity" based on a dimensionless "surface-to-content-ratio" (area-to- volume). Such activities depend on radius, r, for spheres and edge, e, for regular tetrahedrons referenced to it's altitude, h, as equal to unity. Such thermodynamic principles apply to "all creatures, small and large" vis.: photons-electrons-protons- molecules-bacteria-animals-whales. Finding space to occupy and hold, time to exist, and fend off competing physical activity is a battle for all things!

Author Bio

Ted Erikson earned a BS ChE ('52) and a MS Chem ('59) from IIT and a Gas- Surface Interaction diploma (’65) from MIT. He spent 23 years at the IIT Research Institute as a Senior Chemist resulting in 2 patents and 10 publications followed by 16 years teaching chemistry, math, and physics in public schools. Erikson is also an accomplished marathon swimmer. His beacon in life is chaos, "a state of things where chance is supreme" all things considered.

Download Essay PDF File

Bookmark and Share

William B Goodwin wrote on Mar. 7, 2017 @ 15:56 GMT
Dear Ted,

While the majority of your essay focused on spheres and tetrahedrons, I would have like to hear more about the part you mentioned in your “Summary and Conclusions” relating to the emergence of the mind versus physics.

Bookmark and Share
report post as inappropriate

Author Ted Erikson wrote on Mar. 7, 2017 @ 17:09 GMT
In my original submission, I had a reference to the ~2005 Hitachi double slit experiment which was not an active link so I had to delete it.. However, I then subsequenctly found a working link reference to it @

Clearly, electrons possess a "property" to organize info into a recognizable form.. It is the same property that birds swarm, crowds gather, etc. and all integrate their actions without time. My clues to this process are too rudimentary to present at this time, but it's resolution after half a century remain my obsession.It is my remaining final goal fot life at age 89!

Bookmark and Share

Joe Fisher replied on Mar. 9, 2017 @ 16:53 GMT
Dear Ted Erikson,

Please excuse me for I have no intention of disparaging in any way any part of your essay.

I merely wish to point out that “Everything should be made as simple as possible, but not simpler.” Albert Einstein (1879 - 1955) Physicist & Nobel Laureate.

Only nature could produce a reality so simple, a single cell amoeba could deal with it.

The real Universe must consist only of one unified visible infinite physical surface occurring in one infinite dimension, that am always illuminated by infinite non-surface light.

A more detailed explanation of natural reality can be found in my essay, SCORE ONE FOR SIMPLICITY. I do hope that you will read my essay and perhaps comment on its merit.

Joe Fisher, Realist

Bookmark and Share
report post as inappropriate

Peter Jackson wrote on Mar. 9, 2017 @ 13:24 GMT
Dear Ted,

I found your essay, discoveries and derivations fascinating and revealing of some of the many hidden truths in nature. And that's without fully understanding it or it's implications!

I find many of those truths exist in related geometries. Have you considered looking a little deeper into, or behind Pythagoras theorem, particularly regarding it's 3D dynamic equivalence? I did so with regard to the momentum distribution over the surface of a spinning sphere with respect to it's centre-of mass-rest frame. I found orthogonal sine/cosine curves emergent, each with maximum uncertainty at 90o, so tangent point interactions (momentum exchange) produce the complementarity of Diracs formula for QM. That seems too shocking a finding for science to contemplate!

While struggling to assimilate your own work I kept finding what appeared to be important and very close agreement, links and analogies with mine. Were these my imagination?

I see your essay has a derisory score. I think given humankinds current state it's understandable that essays identifying the most foundational and important advancements in understanding are eschewed or dismissed. (My own has had four 1's!) I have yours down for a high one. But more importantly I do hope you'll read mine carefully and consider the parallel discovery I've made about spheres, it's implications, and any correspondence with yours.

Very best regards

Peter Jackson

Bookmark and Share
report post as inappropriate

Peter Jackson replied on Mar. 26, 2017 @ 14:01 GMT

I hope you may respond, and read & comment on my own essay. I note yours has undeservedly hit the bottom, perhaps it to has had some 1's (mine's now had 11!) but the good news is I hadn't applied my score yet so will do now.

Best wishes


Bookmark and Share
report post as inappropriate

Satyavarapu Naga Parameswara Gupta wrote on Mar. 10, 2017 @ 13:13 GMT
Nice essay Erikson,

Your ideas

1. This essay merges thermodynamic and geometric concepts to generate an "activity" based on a dimensionless "surface-to-content-ratio" (area- to volume).

2. Panpsychism*, as an ancient philosophy, suggests all things have awareness. An excellent review8 (The Stanford Encyclopedia) writes, "Broadly speaking, there are, at bottom, only two...

view entire post

Bookmark and Share
report post as inappropriate

Don Limuti wrote on Apr. 3, 2017 @ 05:18 GMT
Hello Ted,

Finding space to occupy and hold, time to exist, and fend off competing physical activity is a battle for all things! This is a most interesting adjunct to Darwin.

You investigate some interesting numerology that is at least as fascinating as that of Pythagoras. Have you any insights into Planck Units? You may find my website interesting:

Thanks for your most interesting underrated essay.

Don Limuti

Bookmark and Share
report post as inappropriate

Dizhechko Boris Semyonovich wrote on Apr. 7, 2017 @ 08:38 GMT
Dear Sirs!

Physics of Descartes, which existed prior to the physics of Newton returned as the New Cartesian Physic and promises to be a theory of everything. To tell you this good news I use «spam».

New Cartesian Physic based on the identity of space and matter. It showed that the formula of mass-energy equivalence comes from the pressure of the Universe, the flow of force which on the corpuscle is equal to the product of Planck's constant to the speed of light.

New Cartesian Physic has great potential for understanding the world. To show it, I ventured to give "materialistic explanations of the paranormal and supernatural" is the title of my essay.

Visit my essay, you will find there the New Cartesian Physic and make a short entry: "I believe that space is a matter" I will answer you in return. Can put me 1.


Dizhechko Boris

Bookmark and Share
report post as inappropriate

Login or create account to post reply or comment.

Please enter your e-mail address:
Note: Joining the FQXi mailing list does not give you a login account or constitute membership in the organization.