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RECENT POSTS IN THIS TOPIC

Gary Hansen: on 2/23/18 at 19:14pm UTC, wrote Hello Kjetil, Your essay is brief and concise, i.e. to the point, but not...

Steven Andresen: on 2/23/18 at 13:13pm UTC, wrote Dear Kjetil If you are looking for another essay to read and rate in the...

Don Limuti: on 2/19/18 at 20:07pm UTC, wrote Hi Kjetil, I believe you misquoted Douglas Adams who commented: "Time is...

Peter Jackson: on 2/18/18 at 21:03pm UTC, wrote Kjetil, Great little essay, ideas and analysis. An excellent job for a...

Kamal Rajpal: on 2/18/18 at 6:17am UTC, wrote Dear Kjetil Hustveit, You have done a good job in your brief essay wherein...

peter cameron: on 2/2/18 at 16:47pm UTC, wrote Hello Kjetil, Very much enjoyed your essay. Your opening specification of...

Satyavarapu Gupta: on 2/2/18 at 12:54pm UTC, wrote Turtles all the way down by Kjetil Hustveit Hi Kjetil Hustveit Very nice...

Alan Kadin: on 1/21/18 at 15:50pm UTC, wrote Dear Mr. Hustveit, You brief essay provides a clear identification of...


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FQXi FORUM
August 25, 2019

CATEGORY: FQXi Essay Contest - Spring, 2017 [back]
TOPIC: Turtles all the way down by Kjetil Hustveit [refresh]
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Author Kjetil Hustveit wrote on Jan. 18, 2018 @ 19:18 GMT
Essay Abstract

A short essay about how to find the fundamental and how insight may unfold when going that path. There is of course no background needed to read it and it ends with a - maybe - unusual conclusion.

Author Bio

Kjetil Hustveit is a physics amateur though a computer professional with a passion for contemplating about how reality is stitched together.

Download Essay PDF File

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Georgina Woodward wrote on Jan. 20, 2018 @ 10:17 GMT
Hi Kjetil, I really like the conversational style of your essay and that it is an easy, well structured, well thought out read. You end "It may, if we’re able to identify the correct fundamentals help us bridge the gap between what we do observe directly and the foundation of reality and I really think that entanglement, causality and randomness - with the addition of energy is a quite good shot. Yes I agree with you about bridging the gap. Your choice of fundamentals is as you say "quite a good shot". I don't like the entanglement turtle. It is an impostor. Entanglement is only of states or values so there will need to be physical entities or phenomena to which they pertain. Otherwise you only have an abstract universe and not a physical one. It is also rather a special case pertaining to special circumstances. There needs to be existent things or phenomena that can have energy or undergo change, so there can be causality, sequential cause and effect happenings. Not disembodied information alone. Being a computer professional maybe has some bearing on your choice of fundamentals. I also would not have chosen randomness as a greatly important turtle but he is perhaps showing something about the true nature of the universe with which we interact. Which does not have one predictable answer to a measurement or observation inquiry, but what we find depends on both the universe, as it is and as it is happening, and how the question is asked. But each to their own -turtles : ) This competition is showing great diversity of opinions and writing styles. Thank you for an enjoyable read. Kind regards Georgina

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Author Kjetil Hustveit replied on Jan. 20, 2018 @ 21:26 GMT
Hi Georgina,

thanks for taking your time reading through my essay and I am really delighted to hear that you enjoyed reading it. I think you’re addressing a very important point and I hope that more people could discuss their thoughts about this. Because if the entanglement turtle is not an impostor it could have some interesting implications on how we view reality. I personally is not entirely convinced that there is any need for a more physical entity. But the real test is if this is sufficient to model everything we observe from it. Even then it wouldn’t necessarily be the correct, but just like the essay contest here - just going there should reveal interesting new insight.

Best regards,

Kjetil

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Joe Fisher wrote on Jan. 20, 2018 @ 19:45 GMT
Dear Kjetil,

I think FQXi.org might be trying to find out if there could be a Natural fundamental. I am surprised that so many of the contest's entrants do not appear to know what am fundamental to science, or mathematics, or quantum histrionics.

Joe Fisher, Realist

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Author Kjetil Hustveit replied on Jan. 20, 2018 @ 21:30 GMT
Hi Joe, I think this essay contest's question is a really good one and it is easy to miss the finer point. But nevertheless it leads to a lot of fruitful discussions.

Best regards,

Kjetil

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Alan M. Kadin wrote on Jan. 21, 2018 @ 15:50 GMT
Dear Mr. Hustveit,

You brief essay provides a clear identification of three “turtles of reality”: entanglement, causality, and randomness.

This is not a surprising selection: causality is built into classical physics, and randomness and entanglement are built into quantum mechanics. However, quantum entanglement is not just relatedness; it is a mathematical construction that...

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peter cameron wrote on Feb. 2, 2018 @ 16:47 GMT
Hello Kjetil,

Very much enjoyed your essay. Your opening specification of requirements for the fundamental is demanding and thought provoking -

"Fundamental must be something that is impossible to divide into subparts, it should not require any prior framework and it must be possible to describe everything we know from it"

This brings the wavefunction to mind....

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Kamal L Rajpal wrote on Feb. 18, 2018 @ 06:17 GMT
Dear Kjetil Hustveit,

You have done a good job in your brief essay wherein you have defined the three turtles - entanglement, causality and randomness as the foundation of reality.

QM claims that an electron can be both spin-up and spin-down at the same time. In my conceptual physics Essay on Electron Spin I have proved that this is not true. Please read: https://fqxi.org/community/forum/topic/3145 or https://fqxi.org/data/essay-contest-files/Rajpal_1306.0141v3
.pdf

Kamal Rajpal

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Peter Jackson wrote on Feb. 18, 2018 @ 21:03 GMT
Kjetil,

Great little essay, ideas and analysis. An excellent job for a non-professional physicist. I particularly liked and agreed with;

"Location and time have to be emergent from the really fundamental building blocks".

"..Describing everything in a very fundamental and simple way could probably be done with vertices and edges."

" change also need some structure. So when a change happens it will have some consequences....to have structured change, causality is the turtle of choice.

it is possible to deduce a lot without direct observation".


I disagreed with invoking 'entanglement', but then there's good reason for me considering it to be just poor understanding & analysis, which you'll find if you get to my essay. Result may be rather more 'unusual' than yours or any!

Well done. Score to low I think, I have it down for a boost.

Very best,

Peter

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Don Limuti wrote on Feb. 19, 2018 @ 20:07 GMT
Hi Kjetil,

I believe you misquoted Douglas Adams who commented: "Time is an illusion. Lunchtime doubly so."

If you double an illusion you get a truth! Therefore, the "Lunchtime" turtle needs to be included in the fundamental list! (IMHO)

This is just a minor point. Otherwise, you have a well thought out humorous essay.

Thanks,

Don Limuti

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Steven Andresen wrote on Feb. 23, 2018 @ 13:13 GMT
Dear Kjetil

If you are looking for another essay to read and rate in the final days of the contest, will you consider mine please?

A couple of days in and semblance of my essay taking form, however the house bound inactivity was wearing me. I had just the remedy, so took off for a solo sail across the bay. In the lea of cove, I had underestimated the open water wind strengths. My...

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Gary Valentine Hansen wrote on Feb. 23, 2018 @ 19:14 GMT
Hello Kjetil,

Your essay is brief and concise, i.e. to the point, but not too brief to miss the point and not too pointed to assume that you have the final answer - for all of which I thank you.

Your question ‘Could it not be that there is really something that goes on forever?’ rings bells in my ears. Infinite regression is not fundamentally necessary; it is not possible. What, for example, is the ‘Turtle’ that ‘Existence’ stands upon?

Notwithstanding the popular presumption that the ‘universe’ is limited in size and expanding without admission that there is anything beyond (a matter of definition); the contrary view that I prefer is that time and space are limitless and that the word ‘Universe’ is so constructed to represent the notion that it too is limitless and embraces all-there-is, hence the prefix ‘Uni’.

Concerning the functionality of the universe, it is sufficient to account for the dynamics of change by attributing the causes to the interaction of unevenly distributed energy and matter.

Time and space do not ‘have to be’ emergent. They can just exist. Further, I have no reason to challenge the premise that energy and matter enjoy the same status; they simply exchange their forms as dictated by local circumstances.

I remind you that the FQXi question ‘What is’ seeks a singular answer, otherwise it would be framed ‘What are’. This disposes of the ‘truly fundamental property: entanglement.’

The notions of ‘chance’ and ‘randomness’ are merely admissions that we do not know unknown or unknowable causes. These are simply comfortable misnomers arising from our limited individual and collective knowledge bases (aka ignorance).

Lonesome George was a male Pinta Island tortoise in the Galapagos archipelago and the last known individual of the species. So there you have it – and there you don’t.

Best wishes,

Gary.

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