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 Partners: Astrid and Bruce McWilliams

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

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

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

Buz Craft: on 10/8/09 at 17:45pm UTC, wrote Georgina, thank you so much for your comments. I would like to put my idea...

Georgina Parry: on 10/8/09 at 0:09am UTC, wrote Buz, thank you. It interesting to me that you consider the pulse...

Buz Craft: on 10/4/09 at 15:30pm UTC, wrote Georgina, after reviewing your concerns about my idea, I will send a brief...

Buz Craft: on 10/2/09 at 4:07am UTC, wrote Wow again, Georgina, bet you play checkers, or is it chess? Thank you very...

Georgina Parry: on 10/1/09 at 21:15pm UTC, wrote Buz, If all spatial description is discounted, then potential energy must...

Buz Craft: on 10/1/09 at 2:22am UTC, wrote Georgina, addendum. I had assumed questioners would realize a disproval of...

Buz Craft: on 9/30/09 at 23:37pm UTC, wrote Dear Georgina. Thank you for sending your good points. I simply propose...

Georgina Parry: on 9/30/09 at 20:39pm UTC, wrote Buz Craft, your suggestion is not logical because you have not given any...


Steve Dufourny: "Hi Dr Chiang, I see this GR like this, in fact these EFE , the hilbert..." in Anatomy of spacetime and...

Dr Narayan Bhadra: "STRUCTURE FORMATIONS OF BIOMOLECULES We study a Nano-Structural..." in Alternative Models of...

Steve Dufourny: "Hi Jim,hope you are well, You could be interested to read some papers on..." in The Nature of Time

Javier Soto del Valle: "As Arieh Ben-Naim [1] says, time does not appear in entropy expressions...." in First Things First: The...

Jim Snowdon: "Picture a single photon moving in space? Where on the photon does time..." in The Quantum Clock-Maker...

Jim Snowdon: "Good Morning Steve! Happy New Year! I can hardly wait..." in The Nature of Time

Steve Dufourny: "Hi, Esa, Nasa, WB, UN ,All governments, the royal famillies, the..." in Global Collaboration

Nicholas hosein: "Iwrote the above when I had perfect clarity." in Good Vibrations

click titles to read articles

Good Vibrations
Microbead 'motor' exploits natural fluctuations for power.

Reconstructing Physics
New photon experiment gives new meta-framework, 'constructor theory,' a boost.

The Quantum Engineer: Q&A with Alexia Auffèves
Experiments seek to use quantum observations as fuel to power mini motors.

The Quantum Clock-Maker Investigating COVID-19, Causality, and the Trouble with AI
Sally Shrapnel, a quantum physicist and medical practitioner, on her experiments into cause-and-effect that could help us understand time’s arrow—and build better healthcare algorithms.

Connect the Quantum Dots for a New Kind of Fuel
'Artificial atoms' allow physicists to manipulate individual electrons—and could help to reduce energy wastage in electronic devices.

January 29, 2022

CATEGORY: What's Ultimately Possible in Physics? Essay Contest (2009) [back]
TOPIC: It's the Temperature! by Buz Craft [refresh]
Bookmark and Share
Login or create account to post reply or comment.

Author Buz Craft wrote on Sep. 22, 2009 @ 12:08 GMT
Essay Abstract

WHAT IS ULTIMATELY POSSIBLE IN PHYSICS…? …begs the question: Is Temperature massless? Is Time? This seems the case—unless one considers that both these elusive happenings could in fact be “the same entity.” That is, if Temperature and Time are equivalent, then Mass and Energy naturally become their required counterparts! (Temperature/Mass = Time/Energy). This follows because neither side of the equation can exist without the other. Tons of space matter and debris (Temperature/Time) regularly pound onto Earth. This continuous onslaught results in both an increase in Gravity—and in Temperature. At some point, man will be obliged to deflect and/or eject tons of this impacted matter from the planet, much as we would move to counter an incoming asteroid or comet. Initially, we will probably be able to transport this surplus material out of Earth’s gravitational field—but eventually, it may be necessary to send it, and the accumulated orbital buildup, completely out of our solar system. The object, of course, will be to control the Temperature of our planet, as best as possible, for life hereon. This posit, I believe, opens up a different way to look at the universe.

Author Bio

During my 30 year career as a captain with the Dallas Fire Department, I studied the science of fire and the basic properties of all materials, both stable and radioactive, as each of these requires special treatment when elevated to its flammable state or danger point. I am a former US Marine; I have an Associate in Arts degree from El Centro College, Dallas, a Bachelor of Arts degree from the University of North Texas, Denton; a Texas Teacher’s Certification from East Texas State University, Commerce and a Master of Liberal Arts degree from SMU.

Download Essay PDF File

Bookmark and Share

J.C.N. Smith wrote on Sep. 22, 2009 @ 19:36 GMT
Mr. Craft,

It is obvious that you've given this topic a great deal of thought. While I may not agree with all of your views, I also do not disagree with all of them. Regarding your comments about time and time travel, for example, may I suggest that you might be interested in reading my own essay, which appears elsewhere among this collection of essays; it is titled 'On the Impossibility of Time Travel.' If you enjoy reading that essay, I'd also recommend reference 4 at the end of my essay for your reading enjoyment.

I'm sure that the good citizens of Dallas owe you a debt of gratitude for your long service as a firefighter there, just as we all owe a debt of gratitude to those who work to keep us out of harm's way. Thank you, and good luck.


Bookmark and Share
report post as inappropriate

Uncle Al wrote on Sep. 24, 2009 @ 17:35 GMT
A hydrogen atom cooled to absolute zero has zero thermal energy. Its electron and proton will together continue to be unremarkable. Helium cooled to absolute zero under its vapor pressure is still a liquid that will flow in your claimed frozen Time. It is worse than that. Cryogenic atom fountain clocks do not run slow vs. heated cesium and rubidium atomic clocks. But it is much worse than that. **Negative temperatures Kelvin** are real world trivially achieved in lasing media, NMR and EPR spectroscopy, MRI imaging, and old fashioned adiabatic demagnetization of paramagnetic salts for deep cryogenic refrigeration.

Your equation Temperature/Mass = Time/Energy rearranges toTime=Temperature(Energy)/Mass, Time = Temperature(mc^2)/(Mass), Time = (scaling constant)Temperature(c^2). Unit consistency aside, DvD players' laser diodes do not travel backwards in time (nor do their electrons become positrons). Laser pointers did not appear before they were invented, the nominal 4 megajoule 500 terawatt National Ignition facility is not a time machine.

Bookmark and Share
report post as inappropriate

J.C.N. Smith wrote on Sep. 25, 2009 @ 09:50 GMT
Mr. Craft,

I'm taking the liberty of posting this to the thread for your essay as well as to the thread for mine, because I'm not sure whether or how often you check back on the thread of my essay where you posed the excellent question, "What is the duration of Present Time?" I'd like to add to the reply which I offered there, which I fear was not very helpful. If you have a deep and burning desire to understand the concept of time, the best advice I can give you is to read the book 'The End of Time,' which was written by Julian Barbour and published in 1999. It is now available in paperback. While I don't necessarily agree with all of Mr. Barbour's thinking, I find his book to be an excellent source, a veritable treasure trove, of information about time.

Relevant to your question about the duration of the present time, for example, Barbour writes, ". . . Einstein's approach to relativity led him to an explicit theory of simultaneity but an implicit theory of duration. It is the latter that is important for this book, but it never got properly treated in relativity. . . . Poincare's 1898 paper showed that [the theory of time] must answer two main questions: how simultaneity is to be defined, and what duration is. Associated with the second question is another, almost as important: what is a clock? Because of his approach, Einstein answered only the first question at the fundamental level." (pp.133-135 of 'The End of Time,' hardback edition.)

The best news is that Barbour apparently is about to publish an eagerly anticipated update to 'The End of Time.' (See the essay about him at the main FQXi Community page.)

Good luck with your reading!


Bookmark and Share
report post as inappropriate

Georgina Parry wrote on Sep. 28, 2009 @ 11:31 GMT
Thank you for sharing your ideas. I think the relating of oxidation of matter in general in the earth environment to increasing temperature is interesting. I do not know if there has been any research into how relevant increase in direct thermal input to the environment, via combustion and decay etc. is, compared to co2 levels , or variation in solar output or cloud cover etc. My guess is that this will have been considered by researchers in global warming science. I do not know, do you ? Some statistics would have been interesting here.

I also do not know how much matter lands on the earth annually. I assume that it is an insignificant amount compared to the mass of the earth, but I do not know. I should think that the fuel that would have to be burned to eject that matter back into space would far exceed any benefit from jettisoning the matter itself.Again some facts and figures, even assumptions used, to give a clearer idea of the cost benefit in thermal reduction of the exercise versus extra thermal output of ejection vehicle would be helpful.

It seems to me that temperature is related to change in position of matter in 3D vector space and also related to volume occupied in 3D space. Whereas the experience of time is related to loss of potential energy along the 4th dimension. This energy change being related to change in 4th dimensional position and is therefore also related to gravity but not temperature. Is it just the lack of mass associated with the passage of time and temperature change that led you to the hypothesis of a connection between these two? There are many scientists who use the thermodynamic arrow of time assumption and it is often mentioned as if it were fact. Was that influential in your thinking? Did you rule out other possibilities prior to writing this paper?

Despite disagreeing with much of the content of your essay, I must say that you have at least proposed something that ultimately may be possible, even if the benefit is highly questionable. Your ideas were also clearly expressed.

It did not take too long to read and understand. Time is precious, so thank you for that.

Bookmark and Share
report post as inappropriate

Buz Craft wrote on Sep. 28, 2009 @ 16:39 GMT
Mr. Smith, thank you for your good suggestions. Actually I had read "The End of Time" and was pleased to see that Mr.Barbour had referred to "Now" as being a vital consideration. Thinking his "Now" was related to my "Present Time Duration," I e-mailed him, and he was gracious enough to respond. In short, he said that he did not consider the "Present Time Pulse" as I posited it.

Simply, I believe that no "thing" can happen twice--so even the infinitesimal number one pulse of present time is "different" from the number two pulse, and so on. Likewise, the required Anti-Pulses are different from each other--and may or may not be "similar" in duration to the pulse they tag! Buz

Bookmark and Share
report post as inappropriate

Buz Craft wrote on Sep. 28, 2009 @ 16:54 GMT
Uncle Al, thank you for commenting on my post. I understand that an atom cooled to Absolute Zero would have Zero Energy. But I conjectured that such a cooling could not be "physically" achieved. My thinking was that any object cooled to absolute zero would necessarily exit this universe--and this, of course, would break the "rules." Buz.

Bookmark and Share
report post as inappropriate

Buz Craft wrote on Sep. 28, 2009 @ 17:22 GMT
Dear Georgina Parry. Thank you for your response. I believe our understanding and acceptance of four dimensions is largely a psychological reaction. Present Time, I say, is too minuscule to experience. On observing the remaing three, we notice that "depth" must be imagined. This leaves only height and width, but wait! we cannot see in two dimensions either. In fact, we only see points. These enter our psyche as particles (not photons). Our brain is so slow, we are presented with a glob-painting to examine, that was produced by the incoming points. Thus, dimensios aside, the only practical way to examine an object is to take its temperature!

Georgina, my posit is simply that TIME IS TEMPERATURE. Any object we know has TEMPERATURE; that object IS TIME!

Bookmark and Share
report post as inappropriate

Georgina Parry wrote on Sep. 28, 2009 @ 22:19 GMT
Buz Craft, thank you for explaining your thoughts.

You said "Present time is too minuscule to experience." I would argue that there is no present time but that time itself is a muddle of a number of different mental concepts. Historical time which includes past, present and future is one of those concepts. Neither past nor future have material existence and the present is different for each observer, being made up of a composite of inputs that have taken various lengths of time to reach the observer. There is no universal "Now". Past, present and future are just ways of ordering information in the mind and have no real external existence.Changes of position of matter in quaternion space and corresponding energy changes do exist externally.

The mind does an amazing job of creating a subjective reality experience of externally existing reality using the input received, filtering and internal processing. How exactly this is achieved is an interesting area of research at the boundary between the physical and biological sciences.

You say that only the property of temperature can be observed and therefore this must be the property of time and therefore the object is time. That is a logically incorrect argument.

Temperature is a measurement of energy. Time is a confusion of mental constructs used to explain observations of change and relating those changes to a regular change in 3D vector space such as ticking of a clock or relying upon the internal "biological clock". Not all of the observed changes are due to kinetic energy that can be measured as temperature. Gravity is not, in my opinion, best explained by temperature. (Although there is a relationship.) Nor are most of the other foundational questions.

I am biased in my opinions. Particularly of what time is and how gravity works but that also impinges on many different areas of physics. As my ideas are not accepted physics I should not really judge other people's ideas by whether or not they agree with my own. Which is a big temptation.So putting aside my own conflicting ideas, any alternatives must still be logically or mathematically correct (and self consistent). The proposition is based on a logically incorrect argument. Perhaps developing a rigorous logical and self consistent argument in support of your idea might help readers to overcome what appears to be an illogical foundational premise.

Bookmark and Share
report post as inappropriate

Buz Craft wrote on Sep. 29, 2009 @ 15:13 GMT
Dear Georgina. Wow, it seems we are "almost" walking in the same woods together--however your journey obviously goes about one step further than I would dare to go. I have to accept a "Present Time," however brief it may be [I think, therefore I am], but, as you suggest, I may be all alone in my world--both figuratively and literally!

I realize it is pushing the envelope to suggest that Temperature, a seemingly simple measuring tool, IS the object it is measuring! But that is just what I am considering: Simply, Time IS Energy and Temperature IS Mass.

TIME/ENERGY = TEMPERATURE/MASS. If you look at the pencil in your hand and accept that it is "alive," with energy, you have my premise: A pencil without Mass/Energy, i.e., Temperature, cannot exist in Time. Buz Craft.

PS: Abstract numbers make our days (An empty egg carton IS minus 12 eggs), but we could never "pick up" minus 12 eggs--because they exist only in our minds.

Bookmark and Share
report post as inappropriate

Georgina Parry wrote on Sep. 30, 2009 @ 20:39 GMT
Buz Craft,

your suggestion is not logical because you have not given any argument to demonstrate that all of the energy an object possess can be considered as kinetic energy, measurable by temperature. You have not taken into account other forms of energy, such as angular momentum (that is rotation) or potential energy. If you are able to provide reason why all of the energy an object possesses should be regarded as kinetic energy measurable by temperature then it would no longer be illogical. That is not however to say that it would be correct. It would mean however that your idea could not be so easily rejected on philosophical grounds.

Bookmark and Share
report post as inappropriate

Author Buz Craft wrote on Sep. 30, 2009 @ 23:37 GMT
Dear Georgina. Thank you for sending your good points. I simply propose that if an object exists, it HAS a Temperature, and is therefore Time itself. I believe most consider the Universe to be represented in various shapes and forms that remind of roundish bubbles. Again, most, probably, accept the general Multiple Universes posit. I do not. I think of the Universe as a single glob of Energy that, at each Pulse of Present Time, reaches out its dancing, flame-like fingers to ultimate COLD, that is, to Absolute Zero. In this case, Space (Absolute Zero), and the so called Dark Matter make up that target destination, but these ghost-like companions of the Anti-Pulse do not just enjoy their non-existence from afar, they are scattered and laced all around us, within and without the bounds of the flames, and even in the very rooms we occupy! Look at the fire in your fireplace; that is a picture of the Universe and of the Anti-Universe!

I suggest that each Present Time Pulse, which represents a neoteric Universe, serves to explain how one particle can seem to speed faster than light and be engaged with another particle that is trillions of light years away, and why a giant void appears to be the major player in the Cosmos! And what about the Energy that seems to be speeding up our travel plans? Could that not also be a ZERO target?

How can the above be proved? Show that each material object has a Temperature.

Buz Craft.

Bookmark and Share

Buz Craft wrote on Oct. 1, 2009 @ 02:22 GMT
Georgina, addendum. I had assumed questioners would realize a disproval of my idea could easily be provided by producing one material object that does not have a Temperature.

While at the keyboard, I would like to open one other can of worm holes: I cannot accept that a particle and a wave can occur at the same instant. It seems to me that Quantum Mechanics might be related to, and could possibly serve to validate, my own posit about a Universal Pulse and an Anti-Pulse that happen at such a rate we can never comprehend. This idea, I have noted, would be perceived as Time or Space, not Time and Space. So, I would argue that in the final analysis, it is particle or wave, not particle and wave. [This wave, of course, is Zero].

Likewise, this would be my belief concerning that old bottled up cat we hear so much about: That is, show me a cat that is dead and alive at the same moment.

As a fire fighter, I often was obliged to look at death head on. Many times I held a person, man, woman or child, while they expired, in some cases by a terrible death. But, thank God, I also was able to save the lives of some. I’m convinced that a living creature can actually die and then be alive, and then die and be alive, and so on until the final death. So I would conclude said cat in the box could be alive or dead, but never alive and dead. Buz Craft.

Bookmark and Share
report post as inappropriate

Georgina Parry wrote on Oct. 1, 2009 @ 21:15 GMT

If all spatial description is discounted, then potential energy must be considered as latent kinetic and angular momentum as just another form of kinetic energy that need not be distinguished, as it is only vector direction that is continuously changing and spatial directions are not part of the description. I do not have a particular problem with saying that all matter is energy...

view entire post

Bookmark and Share
report post as inappropriate

Author Buz Craft wrote on Oct. 2, 2009 @ 04:07 GMT
Wow again, Georgina, bet you play checkers, or is it chess? Thank you very much for commenting on my posts; I will study your responses.

(Alas, I suppose we will now go our separate ways to search for our own Truths; I am an old guy who has a few longhorn cows in East Texas).

Anyway, I'd like to throw out one other subject. Let us look at a vacuum. If we could produce a perfect vacuum in, say, a container, and if we could introduce, say, two atoms, into the container through, say, two leak proof gates, what would happen? I predict the two atoms, having Nothing to keep them apart, would rush together (Gravity?), collide and annihilate one another. The Mass in the container would return to Zero, and the grade for my theory would likewise be a well deserved Zero.

But. This scenario began with IF, and there is the rub. We cannot produce a perfect vacuum, for if we did, the walls of the container, having Nothing to keep them apart, would likewise immediately collapse together (Gravity?)!

Why then does the matter in the Universe not rush together to fill the vacuums we have posited? I believe the matter does rush together, at each infinitesimal Pulse of Present Time! But, where are these vacuums? They are (Strings and Branes aside) all around us, unbeing themselves at each Anti-Pulse. Whew! Farewell and Good Luck to you. Buz Craft.

Bookmark and Share

Author Buz Craft wrote on Oct. 4, 2009 @ 15:30 GMT
Georgina, after reviewing your concerns about my idea, I will send a brief response: I suggest that material objects in our universe, during the Pulse of Present Time, are measurable, physical items--while those things you mentioned, such as massless particles (quarks, anti-matter, etc.) may very well reside in the realm of the Universal Anti-Pulse. Concerning the pulses, I believe an Anti-Pulse is crucial--as there cannot be an Up without a Down. Buz Craft.

PS: In my previous post, I spoke of a walled container. I did not include that I considered these walls to be, in effect, shimmering, transparent branes.

Bookmark and Share

Georgina Parry wrote on Oct. 8, 2009 @ 00:09 GMT
Buz, thank you. It interesting to me that you consider the pulse foundational. I agree that there must be a change that gives rise to passing of time but I regard that as an energy change or corresponding change in 4th dimensional spatial position, that leads to inference of passing of time. (I did not mention massless particles (quarks, anti-matter, etc) here.)

The more I think about the foundational description of the universe the more I think that there is not only a problem with deciding what it is but also how it should best be described. Very often the same sort of things are described by different people from a different perspective or using different words but ultimately it is all the same.I have not encounter4ed your description before.

Your essay fits a lot of the criteria on which the essays are to be judged.

It is foundational, original and creative. It is accessible, clearly and well written. Good luck.

Bookmark and Share
report post as inappropriate

Buz Craft wrote on Oct. 8, 2009 @ 17:45 GMT
Georgina, thank you so much for your comments. I would like to put my idea as succinctly as possible: The melding of the Universal Pulses and the Universal Anti-Pulses spawns changes that we eventually notice. We have named this phenomenon, TIME. Thanks again, Buz

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.