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TOPIC: Essay Contest 2010: What to Ask? [refresh]
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FQXi Administrator Brendan Foster wrote on Mar. 23, 2010 @ 14:09 GMT
We at FQXi are on a mission to build a community of people who support research on fundamental physics questions. We are always looking for creative ways to build connections between researchers in different fields, and between researchers and the wider public.

Our two Essay Contests have been great successes in this direction, generating worldwide interest from all manner of thinkers, including many of you. To enhance Community, we designed the contests to involve the entrants, Members, readers, and fans to an unprecedented level.

Our mission is why we put the entries on display for everyone to read, why we set up the forums for entrants and readers to discuss, and why we allowed entrants to vote towards the winners.

And, it is why we now ask your opinion on the 2010 Essay Contest topic.

We want a question that challenges writers and has no easy answer, but still allows something to be said. A question that is physics based and requires physics knowledge, but to which a non-scientist can still give an insightful answer. And of course, a question that is interesting and provocative--basically, a foundational question that everyone in the world will want to stop and think about.

To that end, we invite you to record your vote in our quick poll below. We've narrowed down the list to these ten topics. Select as many as you find worthy of the contest. This poll will not be the final determinant of the question, but we will use your opinions to help with the decision. If you have further ideas, or suggested rewordings, leave a comment below.

Remember, check as many boxes as you like and click 'vote'.



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Roland Orre wrote on Mar. 23, 2010 @ 16:48 GMT
Do we really exist?

If we add all forces and energies in the universe they sum to zero as I understand.

I imagine that it is possible to build a quantum computer where the bit flipping could be done without any additional energy. This quantum computer could execute an arbitrary complex world model, however without any exchange of information with the outside, the world within that computer would not be easily proven to exist.

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FQXi Administrator Brendan Foster replied on Mar. 24, 2010 @ 14:22 GMT
Another good, tough question. It's a bit broad, though, rather philosophical---perhaps more suited to the Templeton Foundation. Can you suggest something similar, but with a sharper physics focus?

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Roland Orre replied on Mar. 26, 2010 @ 08:04 GMT
Eternal supercomputer?

Would it be possible to build a quantum computer that given a specific starting condition, i.e. a program, can continue to execute forever, producing non trivial solutions? The issue: can the information state changes in this machine, implementing e.g. a minimal Turing complete machine, be seen as completely elastic, thus act as a super conducting Turing machine where no external energy need to be added, or would the state changes cool down and stop the system over time?

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Roland Orre replied on Mar. 27, 2010 @ 17:40 GMT
To further clarify my question I may add: When I say cool down I mean an increase of entropy in the system, that is from an information theoretical point of view the entropy would remain constant, the quantum state changes would be ideal, but the interesting issue as I see it is: would there be any leakage of information between the state shifts of the Turing machine that could cause it to finally stop.

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Anthony Martin (UK) wrote on Mar. 23, 2010 @ 18:06 GMT
Do plants have a form of 'nervous' system, do they have an ability to 'hear', do they 'feel', do they play a greater role in the Gaia theory than first perceived and, do they communicate within a portion of the EM spectrum that has not as yet been deciphered? Are plants the parent 'spark' of abiogenesis?

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Anonymous replied on Mar. 23, 2010 @ 18:25 GMT
Hello dear Anthony Martin,

Happy to know you, I love the horticulture which I practice since many years, and I am fascinated by the plants and flowers.

It exists a lot of correlations between animal cells and vegetals cells since the first differenciation billions years ago on Earth.

If the animals evolve, the plants too thus if an intelligence exists in the animals world...where is the family which is interesting.

I class anaimals and vegetals and some families are relevants about the evolution and the complementarity.

The urticacea(urtical order), the rutaceae(therebental order), or the rhoedal and others too for the essential oils...these aromatics are fascinatings .

All is linked in fact and complementary when we see our evolution....the frequences of communication seems relatives too ,can we understand their languages, perhaps only with the respect of these creations.

We are catalyzers of the truth, this universality in optimization....and the hour is serious about the ecology,a global strategy must be quickly put into practice, we kill plants and animals and species disappear in some years and the Universe, it has built these creations since 13.7 billions years, can we do that??? no evidently thus why ......

Best Regards

Steve

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FQXi Administrator Brendan Foster replied on Mar. 24, 2010 @ 14:19 GMT
I find this question fascinating in general, but I don't think it is quite right for the contest. It's a bit too biology, too specific--can you suggest something similar, but more physics,cosmology, more broad?

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Steve Dufourny replied on Mar. 26, 2010 @ 10:52 GMT
Hello dear Brendan,

Indeed the lifes ,these biological polarizations are fascinatings.

You imagine the interactions in a biological life aged of 13.7 billions years.

If it exists a complexity , it is there in the lifes on a sphere.The center of our Earth is so incredible in its code.

It could be super to extrapolate some ideas about astrobiology and the lifes, Drake has made beautiful works about that.

In fact it exists some universalities, like eyes, brains, glands, ....after it is a question of thermodynamics and adaptation,...the system is the same in its whole but different in its parameters of evolution like color, h, pression, density.....we can imagine for exemple a little being, with a other color , some specificities due to the gravity more important...the environment is correlated too....in fact the diversity is so incredible when we correlate with the locomotion ,nutrition, reproduction and the adaptation more the intrinsic thermodynamical parameters.

The lifes are a pure physical system in 3D ....the adn and the amino acids are relevant too.....we can correlate with H CNO..CH4 NH3 H20 HCN H2C2....MORE TIME AND EVOLUTION AND ENERGY .........the system is universal and adaptable simply.

The complemenatrity like a universal foundamental .

It is fascinating all these lifes in our Universe, you imagine the number of lifes and intelligences, it is fascinating.

Sometimes I rest in my garden and I see the sky during night, my biggest dream is to discover this universe ,to voyage and discover these creations, these lifes everywhere.

In fact at this moment, just at this present, intelligences live on a sphere , many many lifes which evolve too .How are they, where are they, are they happy,....probably they ask them the same questions about the reality in evolution.

A sure thing they are a reality, it is logic .

It is fascinating

Regards

Steve

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James A Putnam wrote on Mar. 23, 2010 @ 21:31 GMT
Brendan Foster,

I tried to vote. A message appeared telling me I already voted. I have not voted. I am trying to vote. What do you think?

James

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Ray Munroe replied on Mar. 23, 2010 @ 21:46 GMT
It did the same to me.

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Lawrence B. Crowell replied on Mar. 24, 2010 @ 03:27 GMT
Moi aussi. I looked at the results so far and then tried to vote.

bummed LC

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FQXi Administrator Brendan Foster replied on Mar. 24, 2010 @ 14:13 GMT
Try clearing all Cookies, then reloading the page. That seems to work for me.

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Anonymous wrote on Mar. 23, 2010 @ 22:59 GMT
This forum gets stranger every day.

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FQXi Administrator Brendan Foster replied on Mar. 24, 2010 @ 14:15 GMT
Don't we all.

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Anonymous replied on Mar. 26, 2010 @ 11:59 GMT
Don't forget to bring a towel

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Steve Dufourny replied on Mar. 26, 2010 @ 12:20 GMT
you are comic an funny, it is cool and the humor is so important .

Steve

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Bee wrote on Mar. 24, 2010 @ 06:41 GMT
I would suggest to make the topic "emergence in physics" into "emergence and reductionism in physics" you can't treat one without the other anyway. (Voting worked fine for me).

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FQXi Administrator Brendan Foster replied on Mar. 24, 2010 @ 14:23 GMT
"Emergence & Reductionism--a two-way street?"

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Jens Koeplinger replied on Mar. 25, 2010 @ 01:50 GMT
"Emergence and reductionism" would be wonderful! But - would we be allowed to shoehorn our pet project into the competition? ... :) ... Thanks, Jens

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Stefan Weckbach replied on Mar. 31, 2010 @ 10:35 GMT
"Emergence & Reductionism--a two-way street?"

Very interesting to me.

Additionally i would propose the line of thinking about

"randomness & necessity -- mathematical & physical rules and the role of informational redundance"

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Phil Gibbs wrote on Mar. 24, 2010 @ 10:09 GMT
The display of votes made is unclear when viewed in Internet Explorer because of missing line break before titles, other browsers OK.

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FQXi Administrator Brendan Foster replied on Mar. 24, 2010 @ 14:15 GMT
Which titles do you mean? The text of the questions?

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Phil Gibbs replied on Mar. 24, 2010 @ 17:00 GMT
I mean the questions. I will try and attach a screen shot taken from IE8

attachments: q.jpg

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Phil Gibbs replied on May. 10, 2010 @ 06:48 GMT
The results table shows the percentage of votes cast for each question, but what is the percentage of voters that voted for each question? It wont make any difference to the order of the results, but it would be a clearer indication of the popularity of each question.

If the average number of votes cast per person is three then the number of people voting for the most popular title is 16% x 3 = 48%. But what is the actual average? We know how many votes have been cast so we just need to know how many people have voted. Could the administrators tell us?

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Eckard Blumschein wrote on Mar. 24, 2010 @ 16:16 GMT
I did not vote for "What is the universe made of?" because I consider "made" a speculation.

Instead of fruitless contemplations on "Paradoxes in physics" I would prefer looking for serious mistakes, futile efforts, and other unsound tendencies.

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John Merryman replied on Mar. 28, 2010 @ 00:04 GMT
I second that. Asking foundational questions cannot just be about expanding on what we know, but questioning it as well.

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Helmut Hansen wrote on Mar. 24, 2010 @ 16:37 GMT
In 1991 the scientific magazine OMNI published the article --The Mind of God--, in which the authors A.J.S Rayl and K.T. McKinney asked: Can science reach beyond physical reality and prove that a divine being or force oversees the Universe?

There is no other issue that is discussed so controversial like this one.

Many scientists, especially physicists, reject this kind of requiry. They fear for the continued existence of science, because science bases upon a certain narrowness, f.e. on the rigorous adherence to fact and inferential reasoning. They fear that science would lose its internal cohesion, if metaphysical questions are entering science. But other scientists are pointing to the fact, that it is no scientific heresy to settle on indirect evidence. Since no one has ever held a quark in his hands, the same reasoning could be applied to the search for God.

However, until today there is no actual research program to seek God. Most scientists believe, that such a research program would receive only little encouragement, because it is simply impossible. As God is traditionally defined as being invisible, he transcends all empirical procedures. It is therefore in principle impossible, to prove it in a scientific way.

But we have learned from a big fighter that --impossible-- is just a big word thrown around by small men who find it easier to live the world they've been given than to explore the power they have to change it.

My question is therefore: How can we develop a modern metaphysics?

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Anonymous wrote on Mar. 24, 2010 @ 17:21 GMT
Hi. I would like to suggest a few more topics [some of these are perhaps way out!)

Are spacetime and matter two manifestations of the same thing?

Is there a connection between black-holes and elementary particles?

Why is spacetime four dimensional?

Why is there one time direction, but three space directions?

Do we really understand quantum mechanics?

Is gravity fundamentally different from the other forces?

Did the Universe have a beginning, or is it eternal?

Is there intelligent life elsewhere in the Universe?

The physics and mathematics of the human mind

The `yet to be discovered' symmetries of the physical world

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Tejinder Singh replied on Mar. 24, 2010 @ 17:24 GMT
Anonymous in the previous post is

Tejinder Singh

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this post was moved here from a different topic

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Steve Dufourny wrote on Mar. 24, 2010 @ 18:35 GMT
Hi dear Tejinder Singh,

Hope you are well ,I have answered you hihihi

Are spacetime and matter two manifestations of the same thing? Yes ,just the rotation implies mass in the duration.

Is there a connection between black-holes and elementary particles? Logically it is a sphere with a volume more important than stars , they turn and have a mass , thus of course the gravitational fields and the superimposings are linked like all gravitational systems in fact.Thus they cause effects on the galactic system evidently, the gravitation is the gravitation.They balance the system .

Why is spacetime four dimensional? The relattivity says many things about the locality and the globality and too about our past perceptions, relativistics,thus it is a question of referential but I think strongly what the time rests always like it is, the intrinsic duration perhaps can be interesting but only for the checking of the space.It is totally different in my humble opinion.We can only check the space and probably in the future some durations of the internal clocks of the spherical system.But never about the universal time constant, the time is purely irreversible.

Why is there one time direction, but three space directions? Because without these laws, the evolution won't exist with all its splendids creations, bilogical and minerals.

Do we really understand quantum mechanics? Of course no, we can imagine and we can approach but the scale is so far of us.Thus we must accept these limits due to the evolution and our young age simply at the universal scale.

But we are on the road due to our past thinkers and their splendid foundamentals equations, in fact the road is the road.

Is gravity fundamentally different from the other forces? No just different in their rotations

Did the Universe have a beginning, or is it eternal?Yes a begining of the physicality and yes fortunally at the unification of all spheres, yes the eternity begins between all .....the end doesn't exist, just the begining,

Is there intelligent life elsewhere in the Universe? Of course everywhere in these billions bilions galaxies which turn around the center of this sphere which increases its density and its mass.There is an ultim physical aim netween spheres and it is there the eternity begins ....

Best Regards from an human on Earth

Steve

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Saibal Mitra wrote on Mar. 24, 2010 @ 19:08 GMT
Multiverse or Universe?

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Steve Dufourny replied on Mar. 27, 2010 @ 13:23 GMT
1 of course and with many lifes and spheres.........

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Anonymous wrote on Mar. 24, 2010 @ 19:18 GMT
No offense, but you guys are posing questions which are way too broad in scope and border on the fringes of scientific inquiry.

I would guess that the average university scientist gets stuff like this in their mailbox every day -- someone writing, wanting an answer to an esotoeric question or offering some possible theory that explains the totality of existence.

There are no currently available answers to some of these questions and I think people need to be less ambitious in their desire for explanations.

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FQXi Administrator Anthony Aguirre replied on Mar. 24, 2010 @ 22:01 GMT
As for way too broad in scope, that's a tricky question: broad makes it open to lots of different essays, authors, and subtopics. More specific would probably lead to less essays and appeal to less readers (who have diverse interests), but may make more progress on that particular subject. We'll probably go broad on this one (as for the first two), but I think at some point it might be fun to try a more specific one to see what happens.

As for "the fringe of scientific inquiry", well we prefer "edge" or "frontier", but in any event, it's where we mean to be! And yes, I get things in my mailbox that make me cringe sometimes, but they don't make me want to be any less ambitious, or to tackle questions with already-available answers!

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Anonymous replied on Mar. 24, 2010 @ 22:14 GMT
Making progress in understanding nature often doesn't come from getting a direct answer to a question but from knowing what questions are appropriate to ask in the first place.

There are questions that are appropriate to a situation and then there are outlandish questions which simply takes one off on a tangent, far away from the general direction that represents the progress that is desired.

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Phil Gibbs replied on Mar. 25, 2010 @ 07:31 GMT
If the question is too broad people will make it fit anything they happen to be working on. If it is too narrow you wont get enough essays on topic. For example question 1 is too broad in this sense, but questions 2 and 3 are about right.

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Georgina Parry wrote on Mar. 24, 2010 @ 20:16 GMT
Anonymous,

You said "There are no currently available answers.......be less ambitious....." But this is scientific inquiry. When did not already having the answer stop scientists from trying to find one?

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Anonymous replied on Mar. 24, 2010 @ 22:21 GMT
Scientific inquiry is concerned with forming answers to questions that can ultimately be verified empirically. Science is not a wild goose chase that involves tracking down things that go bump in the night.

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Member Ian Durham wrote on Mar. 25, 2010 @ 00:13 GMT
Here's a curious question that came up on my personal blog based on a discussion of the nature of mathematics:

Is mathematics an emergent phenomenon?

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Lawrence B. Crowell replied on Mar. 25, 2010 @ 02:44 GMT
According to Chaitan mathematics is a sort of emergent accident within a transfinite set of self-referential loops.

Cheers LC

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Steve Dufourny replied on Mar. 25, 2010 @ 11:06 GMT
Never.......... physics yes and maths afetr, that's all ......EPR or Copenhagen ....oh My God that continues ......PHYSICS before Maths after

The transfinite alephs of Cantor with loops or strings OOOHHHHHHHHHH MY GOD The fractal of the uniqueness seems lost in an ocean of confusions due to some adds and superimposings where the foundamentals disappear .......

Steve

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Member Ian Durham replied on Apr. 4, 2010 @ 11:48 GMT
I really need to read some of Chaitan's writing.

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Georgina Parry wrote on Mar. 25, 2010 @ 00:30 GMT
Anonymous,

Perhaps it will eventually be possible to empirically verify those potential answers as new theory and mathematics is evolved to do that task.

With respect it seems pretty much like a fabulous wild goose chase to me. The truth is always tantalizingly just out of reach and can never be completely or certainly captured. However it is not entirely pointless as the chase keeps us mentally fit, and interested in remaining mysteries of the universe. It gives people jobs, entertains the public, finds its way into new gadgets etc. Having the answers may actually be less important than the quest itself.

If by things that go bump in the night you mean the mysterious and unexplained then science should be there.It is only mysterious and unexplained because it hasn't been explained yet. The connection between infra sound and paranormal experience and feeling of unease is now recognized. The experiences are real but were dismissed as paranormal nonsense by some before a scientific explanation was available. Infrasound on Wikipedia.There is a section talking about the effect on animals and one about paranormal experience.

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Lawrence B. Crowell wrote on Mar. 25, 2010 @ 02:47 GMT
I favor the questions on "why quantum" and the origin of the second law of thermodynamics.

LC

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T H Ray replied on Mar. 27, 2010 @ 14:11 GMT
Lawrence,

Why quantum and the origin of thermodynamics is a good topic; however, I think it is encompassed in the question of whether nature is continuous or discrete.

Continuous vs. discrete functions, I think, leaves the question open for more specific mathematical treatment.

Tom

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paul valletta wrote on Mar. 25, 2010 @ 10:59 GMT
What would the consequences be if an allready "dead" cat, is placed into shroedingers box?

Are allready Dead cats always "dead"?

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Anonymous replied on Mar. 25, 2010 @ 13:16 GMT
Answer: the cat would rot.

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Steve Duduf replied on Mar. 25, 2010 @ 13:43 GMT
anwer 2: the dog too would rot

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Florin Moldoveanu wrote on Mar. 25, 2010 @ 16:33 GMT
Regardless of the topic, I would strongly recommend to relax a bit the maximum character limit. Yes, it does promote brevity and cuts down on useless rambling, but the current limit is too much affecting the quality of the essays to the point of forcing them to become silly skeletons with limited literature references. If the goal is to present a high level overview of established facts, then the current limit is OK. But if the goal is to present new ideas, they need to be put better into context to be able to convince the non-experts in your narrow domain that what you assert is indeed valuable.

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Steve Dufourny replied on Mar. 25, 2010 @ 18:54 GMT
Hi dear Florin,

I agree , it is difficult to resume.

For exemple I have many many pages, more than 500 writed by hands , more the classments and others.

What do you think about a essay with 1 resume of ten pages and an attached piece more developped for a better understanding of the details.

That's right, it is difficult to resume in fact .It easier to continue the details than to resume in fact .

Best Regards

Steve

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Ray Munroe replied on Mar. 25, 2010 @ 19:03 GMT
I agree that it was somewhat difficult to pare my ideas down to the former essay size (I purposely went under the limit because I didn't want to overwhelm with too much mathematics). However, could you imagine, say, 150 papers, each 15 pages long? I wouldn't be able to read them all...

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Steve Dufourny replied on Mar. 25, 2010 @ 19:09 GMT
Yes indeed for the jury , it will be difficult and long, I don't know.

Who has ideas ....?

Friendly

Steve

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Marshall Barnes wrote on Mar. 25, 2010 @ 22:45 GMT
I like the multiverse or universe question, myself.

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FQXi Administrator Anthony Aguirre replied on Mar. 26, 2010 @ 22:19 GMT
It's a fun topic, but there is already a great collection edited by Bernard Carr that contains a bunch of really good articles on the topic (plus one by me):

Universe or Multiverse

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Constantin Leshan wrote on Mar. 26, 2010 @ 19:46 GMT
I would like to suggest a topic 'How to travel the astronomical distances to reach other habitable worlds?'

Remember, the cosmos is vast and we live on small planet. Imagine the historic moment when the first Earth-like planet is detected deep across interstellar space.

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FQXi Administrator Anthony Aguirre replied on Mar. 26, 2010 @ 22:20 GMT
Also a fun topic, but since the winner of the just-concluded contest wrote on exactly this subject, it might get a bit repetitive...

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Jason Wolfe replied on Mar. 26, 2010 @ 23:24 GMT
I've reversed engineered what the multiverse must be like to be able to travel astronomical distances in a short time. I assure you, these are fertile grounds for interesting discussion.

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Steve Dufourny replied on Mar. 27, 2010 @ 18:46 GMT
Hi all,

Dear Leshan,

It is a real problem, perhaps just due to the evolution simply.

The distances between these cosmological spheres are a real problem for the check of space.

The special relativity seems a problem.

I like the special relativity and the perception of our physicality correlated to this point.

But the system has a problem when we extrapolate the interactions between spheres in the Universe.

Perhaps what simply we are too youngs and even too dangerous to discover an other planets with lifes and intelligences.

I don't know and I agree I don't understand why this limit.

I search a link with stars and BH , indeed the light and the perception is due to our sun and the system perhaps is limited just at the star, thus after the system can be more interesting for the check of the space.

An other idea is this one, about the evolution of the universal sphere and its volume,

Let's imagine simply an expansion with an acceleration after it decelerates MAX volume, after the contraction appears and thus the space is less important between spheres and thus optimize the interactions between the different universal creations.The future is incredible...

There we can correlated with the conscious and the acceptation of our young age at the universal scale.

An other possibility is the check of the topology and the rotating universal system around the center, this point implies an other logic when we analyze our past and thus we can superimpose correctly the system of evolution.

An other idea is the contraction of the space if we link with the dark matter.

Indeed they are spheres (the same)without rotation thus no mass.The entanglement is correlated with the universe and thus the space between sphere is important because if we can implies a contraction due to an activation of the rotation, thus that implies a mass in a point and a reduction of the space.

Now of course for a space ship, we must check two main systems the fields and the speed ,thus two spheres of energy.the intrinsic system furthermore must have an autarcic ecological system , the methanization and composting shall permit this autarcy for foods and others even electricity adds with light or others.....in fact the biotechnology is fascinating.It is too the future of the technology,

Now if an intelligence comes here, thus they are more evolved , thus more conscious too ,or perhaps they can't interact ???? In all case if they come, hurry up dear friends of the universe, somethings are bizares here ,help us hihihihi

Regards

Steve

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Anonymous wrote on Mar. 26, 2010 @ 22:59 GMT
An interesting topic that bridges physics and philosophy might be something along the lines of:

In the absence of experimental evidence, what set of crieria can and should be used to judge the intrinsic value of a theory, not only to the community as a whole, but also it's value as a heuristic model of phenomeon?

There are plenty of new and radical ideas that have been put forth over the past decade or os. Unfortunately, the community as a whole never stopped to take the time to pasue and reflect on the process of conducting the business of science when technology(or the lack thereof) precludes our ability to confirm or deny the validity of te theory itself. Theory has progressed far beyond the realm of experimental verification.

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Jérôme CHAUVET replied on Mar. 27, 2010 @ 21:08 GMT
Such a theory of theories,i.e., a meta-theory which would validate theories, should be self-validating, or one then would need to propose a meta-meta-theory for validating the meta-theory, and so forth without end... Indeed, really intriguing question.

Regards,

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J.C.N. Smith replied on Aug. 26, 2010 @ 12:33 GMT
"In the absence of experimental evidence, what set of crieria can and should be used to judge the intrinsic value of a theory, not only to the community as a whole, but also it's value as a heuristic model of phenomena?"

This is an interesting question, indeed. I think we all have some sort of instinctive "gut feeling" about how to answer this question, but has anyone ever set forth a generally accepted answer in a thorough, logical, concise fashion? Thomas S. Kuhn certainly touches on this in his book 'The Structure of Scientific Revolutions,' but it was not his principal target. Excellent food for thought, regardless of whether it becomes a topic for an essay contest.

Perhaps this topic falls more under the category of scientific method than foundational questions?

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James Putnam wrote on Mar. 27, 2010 @ 14:36 GMT
I am still unable to vote. So, I will mention that I choose:

'Origin of the Fundamental Constants'

and

'Origin of the Second Law of Thermodynamics'

James

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Jérôme CHAUVET wrote on Mar. 27, 2010 @ 20:57 GMT
One question I would wish to address in such an essay contest would be:

Can one find a given and finite set of axioms explaining the emergence of everything?

To me, this is pretty much the most fundamental question ever in the Cosmology field... Can one start building up a Universe by means of a finite collection of rules.

Regards,

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Florin Moldoveanu replied on Mar. 28, 2010 @ 05:06 GMT
Jerome,

Check out http://www.fqxi.org/community/forum/topic/473

I believe the short answer to your question is no because of Geodel's theorem, but I am working to find an indirect solution. If you want, you can consider set theory as the answer for all emergence because set theory is the foundation of math, but this does not solve the question: "why those equations"? What is really needed is to find a way to distinguish/select one mathematical structure from another relative to its global usefulness in nature, and do that in a non-tautological way. Once the backbone if nature is obtained (quantum mechanics, relativity, standard model), the next problem becomes one of emergence of the rest of math in nature.

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Lawrence B. Crowell replied on Mar. 28, 2010 @ 12:42 GMT
The Godel theorem in physics and cosmology probably involves the emergence of structure, or existence itself. There are a number of “layers” at which there may be alternative cosmologies, or universe in the multiverse. In M-theory and strings there are foliations of Dp-branes connected by type IIB strings in a QCD-like arrangement, where each brane corresponds to a “universe.” Each universe of course has its regions where the inflaton field differs, similar to regions of magnetization in a ferro-magnetic solid. So the latter of these is the type I universe and the braney version is type II. Max Tegmark takes this to a level III which connects with many worlds version of quantum theory, and then beyond that is a type IV which involves different mathematical systems which describe causal principles --- or what might be analogous to that. Tegmark involves a sort of first order logico-set theoretic argument to skirt the Godel issue.

At the Planck scale there might be indeed the absolute end of structure, or the emergence of what I refer to as Godelian chaos --- a vacuum defined by self-referential loops of quantal(like) bits. So any structure, say what you regard as the axomiatic structure of the universe, is something which emerges as an accident. This would be some analogue of how Chaitan sees mathematics as a system of accidents which emerge from an uncountably infinite set of self-referential sets. We might call this the type V version of the multiverse, which is taken beyond Tegmark’s mulitverse IV.

To be honest if we can get a handle on the type I and II we will have done well. This means we have some observational or experimental data to support such theories, however obliquely. This might be a 50 year enterprise through much of this century. We might get some handle on the type III, if quantum gravity gives some results on quantum foundations. As for type IV and beyond I have my doubts. It is not clear to me how such ideas have observable implications on our local universe. I will also confess extreme doubts about whether our species will exist long enough in the future, or survive our own induced anthropocene on this planet, for us to get some intellectual and observational handle on these ideas.

Cheers LC

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Roy Johnstone wrote on Mar. 28, 2010 @ 05:58 GMT
A newly developing field of research is "Quantum Biology". So could a question such as: -

Can and does the brain operate quantum mechanically?

fit into the FQXi format without being too narrow? It would also raise issues such as the existence of free will, emergence and reductionism at least. I don't believe this issue is settled yet, despite the findings of Tegmark for example.

BTW, I also get the "You have already voted" message when I have not!

Cheers

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Lawrence B. Crowell replied on Mar. 28, 2010 @ 20:49 GMT
There have been a few hints at quantum biology. The following tech-rev indicates some work along these lines. There are also proposals that quantum entanglements might be involved with bird navigation . I am not a big upholder of quantum mind ideas, and these ideas are somewhat conjectural at this time.

Cheers LC

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FQXi Administrator Brendan Foster replied on Mar. 30, 2010 @ 14:15 GMT
I would say 'is brain qm?' is too specific, but the broader topic of free will v. determinism is a good suggestion. And with that topic, an essay on whether the brain is quantum would fit well.

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Florin Moldoveanu replied on Mar. 31, 2010 @ 01:30 GMT
The brain is not QM-ical because simple order of magnitude decoherence arguments can easily prove it so. But the brain does not follow the distributive property of Boolean logic because different areas in the brain can represent different parts of a concept/proposition. What this implies is that the brain can sometimes violate Bell’s inequalities, a fact already proven by clever brain experiments. But violating Bell’s inequalities is not enough to prove the QM character of the brain.

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Jérôme CHAUVET wrote on Mar. 28, 2010 @ 16:49 GMT
@ Florin Moldoveanu:

Thank you for the reference... I discover your essay for the first time. I'm going to read it with great interest.

Thank you

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Florin Moldoveanu replied on Mar. 29, 2010 @ 23:33 GMT
@Jerome,

Looking forward to your feedback.

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Anonymous wrote on Mar. 28, 2010 @ 19:20 GMT
Another interesting subject for an essay:

Will String Theory actually make a testable prediction before the end of the current millenium?

It's been 40 years now and the theory that has yet to make one single prediction that can be tested, let alone account for any observation that current theories cannot. If this was 1900 and a theory had been around for fourty years but had yet to make one testable prediction, such a theory would have been dismissed as a vacuous model of observed phenomenon.

String Theorists are holding out hope by clinging to nothing concrete other than the power of pure faith in evidence unseen that the frankensteinian creation will eventually rise from the ashes and come to life.

McCoy.."Good God man ! We are talking fourty years since its inception and the thing has undergone numerous mutations throughout the years, yet not one of these has succeeded in coming up with one single testable prediction."

Spock: "Logic suggests.."

MccCoy: "Logic ! The man's talking about logic ! It's not about logic, it's about what we can see. You green blooded, inhuman.."

Spock: "Really, Dr. Your failure to think logically will be your undoing."

McCoy: "Dammit man, I'm a scientist - not a logician. I can see with my own eyes that this man has no life in him !"

Kirk: "Are you sure he's dead, Bones?"

McCoy: "In medical school, they taught me what it means to be dead. He's dead, Jim."

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Anonymous replied on Mar. 28, 2010 @ 19:57 GMT
Given the LHC and other effort will fail confirming expectations. Wouldn't it be the best question for an essay to ask: "Is there possibly something wrong in the foundations?"

Anonymous

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Anonymous replied on Mar. 28, 2010 @ 22:05 GMT
My allusions to Frankenstein are not totally off the mark. The approach of String Theory has kind of resembled someone digging up a bunch of corpse' and snatching various pieces and parts off of the bodies and reassembling them into a very hideous monstrosity. The head is sewn onto the neck and bolts are jammed into the skull to keep it from falling apart. Limbs are hanging off by a thread and when the creature talks, everything it says is completely unintelligible. "Dubabewabee".

It ends up looking like something bolted and sewn together and passed off as the real thing. When people remind Dr Frankenstein that the monster really isn't saying anything concrete, he simply ignores this fact and continues on as if nothing is amiss. The Dr. tells us that eventually, he will come around and say something concrete.

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Steve Dufourny replied on Mar. 29, 2010 @ 10:29 GMT
hihihihi wawwwww what a post .

But who are you dear Anomymous, you see clear, who are you ?

Steve

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Don Limuti (www.zenophysics.com) wrote on Mar. 31, 2010 @ 07:53 GMT
"Is there possibly something wrong in the foundations?"

The cat is dead and an autopsy is in order to figure out why it makes such good predictions being as dead as it is.

This is a good one.

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Marcel-Marie LeBel wrote on Apr. 2, 2010 @ 17:18 GMT
Since the early Greek philosophers we have understood the distinction between two important concepts: the underlying reality and our perceptual experience. Over the centuries, we have always mixed the two concepts at the same time and this amounted to not much. But if we take the perceptual experience alone, then we have an empirical approach….Science is this approach, the empirical approach....

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Steve Dufourny replied on Apr. 3, 2010 @ 09:59 GMT
Hello dear Marcel,

It is a beautiful post, thanks for this universality.

I agree with you about this real fact.

We can't deny this evidence about the entropy and the evolution.

It is like a physical aim in fact and a real optimization in time.

The spirituality is evident when we study sciences and truths.

At the age of 14 , I said me but how these particles know how they must become in fact ?

I searched why they can be adapted and why these gravitationalks stabilities.

The model of Bohr fascinated me , I think it is the better of our past thinkers.I classed all thus to understand the rule of these polarisations, mendéleev was a good partner for my classments.And Darwin of course.

The codes became my first focalization, the informations of particles are fascinatings, they build and they evolve, they polarise and synchronize.....

The spirituality is important but it is essential to differenciate the physicality with the eternity behind our walls .Because our system is in 3D and is intrinsically coded in the main central sphere, quantic or universal.

Thus we can have an universality and in the same time to respect its intrinsic laws of evolution.

You know Marcel when I was 18 years old perhaps,

I have read the book of Descartes about the method of the rationalization of the realism.

"Dicourses about the method" All is there about the difference between imaginaries creations and our realism in 3d.

His book is very relevant about the logic.

The spirituality can be logic too thus in accepting our limits and the evolution.

Thanking you for this post , very interesting about the synchro of the physics .

Best Regards

Steve

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Paul N.Butler replied on Apr. 5, 2010 @ 16:32 GMT
Marcel-Marie Lebel,

You have a good point in that man has often attempted to look at the universe as a black (unknowable) box (entity) and concentration has been only on finding relationships between its observational outputs while ignoring the implications that such relationships lead us to as far as the existing underlying structure that generates them. Thankfully this in fact is not...

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Marcel-Marie LeBel replied on Apr. 6, 2010 @ 02:57 GMT
Paul N. Butler

Thank you for the plea for the underlying reality and also for presenting it into context. I would like now to comment on your text so as to re-affirm some distinctions or to underline my agreement.

“ it nevertheless has led to great advances in chemistry and physics”

First, in no way do I mean to diminish the immense success of science in all its various...

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Member Ian Durham wrote on Apr. 4, 2010 @ 11:47 GMT
I thought of another possible essay topic:

What are the limits of mathematics (in describing the physical world)?

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Steev Dufourny replied on Apr. 5, 2010 @ 09:04 GMT
Hello dear Ian Durham,

It is so important this synchro and the limits.

That will permit to evitate all these falses extrapolations without sense.

The responsability of the sceinces community must be strong and rational.

It's very important for the evolution.

We must sort and class all these ideas with pragmatisme.

These things imply a lost of monney, a lost of improvement.....

That must change simply....because the students can't learn these stupidities.

They make me nervous with their pubs of nothing, they think they are scienctists,....they like monney and that's all..........a big joke for the sciences ...

Best Regards

Steve

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FQXi Administrator Brendan Foster replied on Apr. 5, 2010 @ 14:09 GMT
"What are the limits of mathematics?"---We had something like this in mind under "Physics, Mathematics, and Reality".

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Member Ian Durham replied on Apr. 13, 2010 @ 01:35 GMT
Brendan,

Yeah, I guess that fits. Guess I already voted though! :)

Ian

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Bill Foehringer wrote on Apr. 5, 2010 @ 14:43 GMT
The first two options and the option about fundamental constants could be rolled into one question. Did our universe spring from nothing if not from what did it arise?

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Anonymous replied on May. 4, 2010 @ 19:37 GMT
Bill, what you call "the universe" is confined to only part of visual experience. The totality of experience goes way beyond this. The body -- including thought, feeling, vision, and emotion -- are all subject to the laws of physics.

"How wonderful that we have met with a paradox. Now we have some hope of making progress." -- Bohr

"Opposition brings concord. Out of discord comes the fairest harmony." --Heraclitus

Dreams combine and include opposites/differences. Electromagnetic space -- the sun and photons -- is both larger and smaller than typical or ordinary space.

Gravitational/electromagnetic space as energy/light/feeling takes place in dreams, as dreams involve a fundamental integration and spreading of being and experience at the mid-range of feeling between thought and sense. Dreams make thought more like sensory experience in general, or memory, imagination, and thought would be impossible. THINK! Dreams make thought more like sensory experience in general. Dreams make thought more like gravity and electromagnetism/light. It is impossible that the mathematical union/derivation of Einstein's G.R. equations AND the equations of Maxwell (for electromagnetism) is some sort of coincidence or error.

THAT IS IMPOSSIBLE. The theory (or thought) determines what we can observe.

Plotinus said that what truth affirms it must also be.

Where FQXi (and others here) have failed miserably, is to not recognize and realize that:

The ability of thought to describe OR reconfigure sensory experience is ultimately dependent upon the extent to which thought is similar to sensory experience.

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Jonathan J. Dickau wrote on Apr. 9, 2010 @ 18:18 GMT
Hello to all,

My suggestion for a contest topic is the same I made in the previous contest results forum.

How does changing one assumption about reality alter our view of the Cosmos (and the natural laws thereof)?

This is not quite the same as any of the choices above, but could include questions like the origin of the fundamental constants or continuous vs discrete, and so on. But it could also be 'is time linear?' 'does the universe have a beginning?' or what have you. The origin of 2nd law question relates to my FFP10 topic and therefore may be of interest to me too. Hmm.. Perhaps I'll just click all of the boxes.

Regards,

Jonathan

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Edwin Eugene Klingman replied on Apr. 11, 2010 @ 03:21 GMT
Hi Jonathan,

I like your topic. I assume that the author specifies the assumption that he'd like to change and them discusses the consequences. Of course, if the correct change of assumption is made, it may explain everything -- hard to fit into an essay. It may be too open-ended, resulting in essays that have little in common.

A related idea is this: "Where should we put the mystery?" By this I mean that there are, for example, certain mysterious aspects of quantum mechanics, that may be responsible for many of the current mysteries, such as particle families, dark energy. dark matter, etc. Can we "shift the mystery" to another phenomena that will clear up many of these current mysteries. I believe that there will always be the essential or ultimate mystery, but I don't think that many of the current mysteries are in any way ultimate.

Is this what you're essentially proposing?

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Jonathan J. Dickau replied on Apr. 16, 2010 @ 21:54 GMT
Yes! Thanks Edwin Eugene,

I believe that the best way to promote creative and interesting contributions is by leaving things somewhat open ended. That way, authors are free to pursue their pet ideas, but in a way that supports the intent of the contest.

I like your idea that making an assumption also shifts the mystery, or makes the question "Where is the mystery now." I think sometimes people get caught in a loop of searching where the answers once were. Subjects that once brought successes are funded, while innovations that could bring real answers are ignored, all too often. Open ended questions like "what happens if we change one assumption?" or "what becomes a mystery if we assume this is true?" keeps things interesting - by keeping the focus from being too narrow.

All the Best,

Jonathan

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Paul N. Butler wrote on Apr. 10, 2010 @ 04:38 GMT
Marcel,

I tried to answer your last comment to me, but although it showed up on the site when I sent it, when I looked later it was gone. I sent it again and got the same response. I don’t know if it was taken off for some reason or was too long or what because no reason was given here by whoever removed it. I am sending this short message to see if it gets in. If it was removed because of some reason I would like to know why, so I can try to avoid the problem in the future. Our conversation seems to fit into the (Physics and philosophy: How does one help the other) topic. You seem to be saying that for the last couple hundred years physics (looking at observed data and looking for the patterns and relationships in it) and metaphysics (trying by logical thought to understand the structure of the world and how it works) have been looked at as two completely separate subjects with the prevailing attitude that never the twain shall meet and you seem to be questioning whether this is the best approach or not, but you don’t seem to come down firmly and plainly on one side or the other as to whether they should be joined together or not. What do you believe would be best? On my part I come down on the side of joining the two together because I have observed that scientific advancement has generally been the greatest when scientists have had good logically thought out visualizations based on the observed data such as those of the structure of the atom as a guide to help them determine which new observations to make to test the accuracy of the visualization and to look for new data that would be predicted by how the visualization describes things to work. The visualization can also allow a lot of observed data to be tied together under it such as happened in chemistry by using the visualized structure of the atom to help in gaining understanding of how atoms join together to form molecules, etc. Of course if you don’t want to give away your position in any detail on the subject now in case this subject is ultimately chosen for the next contest, I can understand that also. By the way, the universe as we observe it (matter and energy, etc.) is made of motion. Now all you have to do is to understand how it works by itself and you will have it made.

Your welcome,

Paul

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Member Ian Durham wrote on Apr. 13, 2010 @ 01:40 GMT
So here's another suggestion for a question: how can we get more FQXi members to participate in the forum? Aside from our admins and bloggers, I'm the only FQXi member who seems to post here these days! Why is that and how can we change it? ;)

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Georgina Parry replied on Apr. 13, 2010 @ 01:49 GMT
Good question Ian, but will any of the members read it?

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J.C.N. Smith replied on Aug. 26, 2010 @ 12:51 GMT
Excellent question, albeit perhaps a bit off topic. So much to read, and so much to do, and so little time. I'd wager that members will make time to read and participate only if they find real value in it. I'm glad to see that at least one member apparently does. Perhaps Mr. Durham can suggest answers to his own question?

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Lev Goldfarb replied on Sep. 2, 2010 @ 18:22 GMT
Ian,

I think you know the answer to your question. ;-)

Perhaps moderated blogs/forums might be a partial answer, but I doubt.

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Peter van Gaalen wrote on Apr. 13, 2010 @ 18:57 GMT
According to rationalism we do not need empirical data in order to develop theories about the world, we can do without empirical data. According to empirism we need empirical data to develop theories about the world. The following question is queried according to empirism:

"Can we develop a theory of everything with all available data we have right now (april 2010), or do we need more data in order to develop such a theory? or can't we answer this question?"

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FQXi Administrator Brendan Foster replied on Apr. 16, 2010 @ 13:47 GMT
I like this question, but I do feel it is a bit specific for the overarching contest topic. I think it would make for a great essay, though, and could probably be used for several of the categories suggested below. Especially 'what is the U.made of' or 'math, phys, and reality'. Start writing!

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Member Ian Durham wrote on Apr. 13, 2010 @ 21:15 GMT
Peter,

That's a really great question. According to Gregory Chaitin, a theory of everything is impossible anyway, but it's a great question nevertheless.

And I got your e-mail. I have it on my to-do list. I'm just been swamped lately with administrative work.

Ian

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Florin Moldoveanu replied on Apr. 14, 2010 @ 01:01 GMT
Ian,

What is Chaitin's argument agaist a TOE? (Or even better how does he define the TOE?)

Thanks,

Florin

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Lawrence B. Crowell replied on Apr. 14, 2010 @ 03:33 GMT
Chaitan's idea rests on incompleteness in any formalism. I think unification is really an attempt to put certain basic physical quantities on some equal or covariant footing. These might be seen with the units c, G, ħ, k_B, g --- the speed of light, gravitational parameter, Planck unit of action, Boltzmann constant and gauge coupling parameters. This is not quite the same as a theory of everything, for I would not expect such a theory to spit our recipes for baking bread, or controlling aphids in the garden. Further, in 50 years we may find some underlying aspect to the universe, a new force or some new aspect to space, which depends on another constant Y. So any real unification in physics involves the unification of fundamental fields or processes which we know about. This is possible. An absolute Russell-Whitehead level of a TOE in physics is probably not.

Cheers LC

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T H Ray replied on Apr. 14, 2010 @ 04:38 GMT
Lawrence,

That was an excellent summary of Chaitin. Fundamentally, as he demonstrated, if a certain degree of randomness exists even in arithmetic, programmed calculations of physical phenomena on a physical substrate have a built in error similar to the unpredictability of a coin toss. Most numbers are unknown to us anyway, and are likely to remain so; Chaitin's number, OTOH -- the halting probability of a Turing machine -- is "maximally unknowable."

I was at a conference a few years ago where Chaitin was a plenary speaker. At the Q & A afterward, a young woman began, "I'm not a mathematician, but I want to thank you ..." and then asked her question. Chaitin began his reply, "I knew you weren't a mathematician, or you wouldn't be thanking me ..." :-)

Tom

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T H Ray wrote on Apr. 14, 2010 @ 16:27 GMT
Here's a nice article on the subject:

Chaitin

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Member Ian Durham wrote on Apr. 16, 2010 @ 01:50 GMT
The Math Factor did a great interview with Chaitin that just recently got uploaded but seems to only be available if you subscribe through iTunes (for some reason it's not on the main Math Factor website). It's about an hour long, but it is definitely worth listening to. The interview was done about three years ago but was not posted until recently.

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T H Ray replied on Apr. 16, 2010 @ 14:07 GMT
Ian,

Thanks for that interview source. I had no difficulty downloading it to my Mac, and will look forward to listening.

I was fascinated, when I heard Chaitin speak in person, by his ability to hold forth and hold attention for 20 or 30 minutes without notes or visual aids, on a highly technical topic to an audience of widely varied degrees of mathematical knowledge.

Tom

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Stefan Weckbach wrote on Apr. 17, 2010 @ 09:23 GMT
thanks for the link to the article about Omega and for the hint to the interesting interview with Gregory Chaitin. I found it as streaming media on http://www.podbean.com/podcast-detail?pid=18637 .

My proposal for the upcoming essay contest would be the tension between

"randomness & necessity -- mathematical & physical rules and the role of informational redundance"

As far as i can see, Omega has no redundance in it which can be reduced to a finite theory to generate Omega step-by-step with arbitrary accuracy. Our world, including maths, obviously can be reduced/compressed in large parts to describe seemingly different phenomena (to arbitrary accuracy?). Are these phenomena only examples/instances where the halting problem doesn't occur? What connections are there between the definition of Omega and the many-world-interpretation of QM?

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Lawrence B. Crowell replied on Apr. 17, 2010 @ 12:42 GMT
The Chaitan halting probability Ω with physics probably involves issues such as renormalization group flows and whether or not the cosmological constant on the so called “landscape” is Turing computable, or whether there is some probability for there being a halting procedure for computing it. In a quantum cosmological setting a particular cosmology (a universe in the so called multiverse) has its Λ set on the landscape by the random occurrence of the inflaton field on a false vacuum. Is this in some ways computable, or is there some bound on the halting probability for this being a computable outcome for a cosmology? In this sense the fine tuning problem might be a manifestation of a halting probability for a quantum computer (a quantum cosmological computer), with a bounded QP algorithmic structure to compute a particular outcome --- such as what we observe.

Cheers LC

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Member Ian Durham replied on Apr. 18, 2010 @ 18:15 GMT
Stefan,

I think that's fairly close to the question of the nature of mathematics which, ultimately, is at the heart of physics as well.

Ian

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Steve Dufourny wrote on Apr. 17, 2010 @ 09:58 GMT
Hi Fqxi,

A very interesting idea is to focus on the study of water and fire for example,

The water is fascinating , this gravitational stability is fascinating .

Regards

Steve

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Steve Dufourny replied on Apr. 17, 2010 @ 14:13 GMT
that becomes tedious , oh my god that becomes tedious , they turn in round .

FQXi Makes something , people comes and after return because that becomes tedious , et tatata et tatati et tatata , I think people prefers the quest of their system and the whole is forgotten .....that becomes tedious .

A little of creativity dear fqxi a little of creativity, hihihi

Steve

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jbg wrote on Apr. 22, 2010 @ 08:26 GMT
this is a very inspiring endeavour. as a result, i found myself compiling a list of additional questions relating to foundational aspects of reality, next to some of the more stranger things that reality harbours (e.g., life and consciousness;-).

unfortunately, the list got a bit long and somewhat idiosyncratic, so i decided to stick it in a blog post: a few questions...

with kind regards,

james

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FQXi Administrator Brendan Foster replied on Apr. 22, 2010 @ 13:32 GMT
Lots of questions...One that I liked especially was "why does macro-reality appear so well-ordered whilst the quantum realm is so bizarre?"

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Stefan Weckbach replied on Apr. 23, 2010 @ 07:39 GMT
Hi James,

your list of questions is very deep-asking and provoking in one or the other way.

One question i asked myself by reading your list, is, if most of your/our questions could ever get a *scientific* answer. My feeling is that possible answers to most of these questions will remain forever in the domain of subjective speculation. The next question is, why could this be the case? (the question *which* of your questions could belong to this subjective domain would be in my opinion a very interesting subject for further discussion here).

My personal opinion why most of those questions could belong to the subjective domain, is, because the main tool of scientific reasoning - logics - is self-restricting in a Gödel/Chaitin-sense. With logic one can never explore if there exists a level of meaning that transcends logic. Logic cannot give a definite answer to this question - or could it nonetheless?

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Member Ian Durham replied on Apr. 26, 2010 @ 00:23 GMT
Brendan,

If you talk to Bob Griffiths (developer of the consistent histories approach to QM), it's the classical world that looks weird.

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Juan Enrique Ramos Beraud wrote on Apr. 25, 2010 @ 02:24 GMT
I already voted, but I would like to add some questions to be considered for next essay.

Why does math work when describing physical phenomena?

Do we agree that physics is just descriptive / prdictive and it should never ask/answer why?

(math shows how, never why).

Isn't it that finding "what the universe is made of" is as pointless as finding the name of God?

(each religion and language has several names for God)



The topics where there some how already but nevertheless I like more agresive questions.

And by the way, when will the contest begin?

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Steve Dufourny replied on Apr. 25, 2010 @ 10:28 GMT
Hi Juan,

I agree you say

math shows how, never why.

indeed indeed

Steve

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Juan Enrique Ramos Beraud wrote on Apr. 25, 2010 @ 16:43 GMT
After reading the previous posts a more fundamental question comes to mind.

Which are the fundations of physics we all agree?

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Anonymous wrote on Apr. 26, 2010 @ 20:11 GMT
"How space manifests as gravitational/electromagnetic energy" is DiMeglio's idea from the prior essay contest -- Jonathan Dickau liked it alot, remember?

Jonathan Dickau wrote that it is "right on".

Christian Corda said DiMeglio's essay was "philosophically excellent".

Remember Florin twisting things and lying outright in the last essay contest.

For Florin M. to speak of a TOE is a joke. Florin doesn't even know or properly understand what the fundamentals are, to begin with, to speak of a TOE (theory of everything).

Ray, you do not have DiMeglio's and Corda's background, abilities, and knowledge either.

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Ray Munroe replied on Apr. 26, 2010 @ 20:22 GMT
C'mon Frank. Be a man and put your name on these silly blogs. We all have different backgrounds. I have a Doctorate in High Energy Physics. Isn't this blog supposed to be about foundational questions in Physics? Nonetheless - I am not criticizing your background. I am criticizing your presentation. I hope that you have at least read (and preferably studied) Klingman's ideas. I honestly think that is one way to present your ideas in a more scientific manner.

Have Fun!

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Florin Moldoveanu replied on Apr. 26, 2010 @ 20:47 GMT
Frank,

You are a delusional crackpot and a liar. Dr. Corda never endorsed your so-called theories from the scientific point of view, but only as science fiction. I am glad I got to expose your academic dishonesty. You filled your posts with insults, lies, and victimization poses. You don’t even have the guts to sign your posts, but everyone here already recognizes you even as anonymous.

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Anonymous wrote on Apr. 26, 2010 @ 20:22 GMT
Lawrence Crowell initially said that he did not see why or how DiMeglio's essay -- that the dream demonstates space manifesting as gravitational/electromagnetic energy -- is wrong. Indeed, Lawrence further stated in writing that he hoped DiMeglio's essay was not correct.

Ray, that is your idol talking.

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Ray Munroe replied on Apr. 26, 2010 @ 20:41 GMT
Frank - During the essay contest, I gave a half-serious, half-smart-alec response to your questions, and *SOMEONE* (I assumed it was you) simultaneously gave me a '1'. I warned Lawrence to be careful answering you - that you had a potentially malicious vote. I thought that Lawrence's answer was brilliant - he 'out-Franked' the real Frank Martin, and yet he also recieved a '1' vote shortly thereafter. My scores later surged and I was in 5th place prior to the judges' scoring. Unfortunately, Lawrence's scores never recovered. I think you were jealous that Lawrence could write better 'Dream' non-sense than you.

The past is the past. Neither one of us won that last contest, and being beligerant towards each other probably hurt everyone involved. I'm serious though - you need to read Klingman's ideas. If you don't understand his ideas on the first read-through, then read it again and again until you mostly understand his ideas. His idea was as 'odd' as yours, but he understands how to present real Physics.

Have Fun!

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Lawrence B. Crowell replied on Apr. 26, 2010 @ 23:28 GMT
Thanks Ray for jogging my memory. I had no idea what "anonymous" was writing about. I did try to politely skirt the issue as I recall.

Frank DiMeglio reminds me of L Ron Hubbard, both in the nature of what he proposes and in his behavior. For those who are not aware L Ron was a science ficiton writer who converted his stories and his "Dianetics" theory of psychology into a type of religion, called Scientology. His Dianetics theory was deemed complete hogwash by the psychological community. During the estate settlement his estranged son declared something to the effect, "98% of what L Ron Hubbard ever said was a lie."

I can't say whether Frank is of this sort entirely, but he seems to think he gets endorsements from people, when in fact they are nothing of the sort.

Cheers LC

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Anonymous wrote on Apr. 26, 2010 @ 20:26 GMT
DiMeglio is anonymous because FQXi says his ideas are not credible.

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Maxwell and Bacon wrote on Apr. 27, 2010 @ 00:02 GMT
"...the only laws of mind are fabricated for it by matter"

"..., all perceptions, both of sense and mind, are relative to man, not to the universe."

The interactive nature of thought, gravity, feeling, and electromagnetism/light escapes you all at FQXi.

The range and extensiveness of feeling is central to any unified theory of physics. Did you know that?

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Anonymous wrote on Apr. 27, 2010 @ 00:05 GMT
We need DiMeglio at FQXi, like him or not. He is a genius of the highest order from what I can tell. Steve is right, he is a universalist in his thinking. That type of thinking is super valuable and very rare.

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Anonymous replied on Apr. 27, 2010 @ 00:31 GMT
Thank you again anonymous for your support at this crucial moment. I understand how immensely important it is that I participate in the next essay contest. I will not let you down.

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Anonymous wrote on Apr. 27, 2010 @ 00:37 GMT
The next essay contest should be about advancing/developing the idea that the dream merges and balances electromagnetism/light and gravity. Although this idea is a proven fact, it is of the greatest significance.

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Anonymous wrote on Apr. 27, 2010 @ 00:39 GMT
DiMeglio does outsmart himself.

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Don Limuti(www.zenophysics.com) wrote on Apr. 28, 2010 @ 01:03 GMT
I second Brendan's suggested question: "why does macro-reality appear so well-ordered whilst the quantum realm is so bizarre?"

And another good question is: "Exactly when is this contest going to begin?"

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FQXi Administrator Brendan Foster replied on Apr. 28, 2010 @ 15:15 GMT
The question was asked by user jbg, not me.

When begin---It will be later this spring.

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Jason Wolfe wrote on Apr. 29, 2010 @ 22:00 GMT
There is yet so much that we, the physics community, do not understand. Quantum Mechanics is an advanced guessing game that they call information. Entropic gravity means that information attracts other information. I think it is becoming clear that we've reached our limit of understanding.

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James Putnam replied on Apr. 29, 2010 @ 22:06 GMT
Dear Jason,

I say that we have not just now reached the level of our understanding. I say that our level of understanding was reached as soon as we began to guess about the nature or natures of cause. There are many missing answers that go way back.

James

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Jason Wolfe replied on May. 1, 2010 @ 03:42 GMT
Dear James,

It's hard to determine "cause" for physics. It's a very integrated system which makes it hard to find a "first cause". In spite of this, I do have some ideas. Particularly, the Discrete Field Model.

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James Putnam replied on May. 1, 2010 @ 14:58 GMT
Dear Jason,

It looks like our last two messages have disappeared. They both had to do with mass. We have different views there and that is fine. With regard to my message about cause; I meant that all causes are guesses. The idea of introducing causes into theory introduces artificial stopping points in learning. I have said enough here in these forums and blogs to recognize that this viewpoint doesn't attract interest. The same thing happened with my message about mass and units of measurement. Anyway, I think you write interesting messages. It is good to have people looking in different directions.

James

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Don Limuti wrote on May. 1, 2010 @ 08:33 GMT
Thanks Jason,

I agree quantum mechanics is an advanced guessing game. The latest entry into the guessing game is Entropic gravity as you mention. With this theory the more mixed up things are the more gravity we have. Using this criteria the next FQXi essay contest will cause a measurable jump in gravity. An alert should be issued to all cosmologists.

Please allow me to toss a guess into the ring (it will increase gravity only a little). I present a theory of dark matter and dark energy which I think you will find interesting because it is so simple. This theory will not upset GR but it has an interesting twist on conservation of matter.

Take a look at:

http://www.zenophysics.com/DWT/11f__A_Look_at_the_Univers
e.html

If you like what you see on this plot take a look around the site.

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Jason Wolfe replied on May. 2, 2010 @ 06:20 GMT
Hello Don,

I glanced at your website. It sounds like you're saying that any idea of concrete objects, such as electrons, should be abandoned, replaced with digital waves. Now, digital signals are made up from waves. I think your idea is correct. Keep at it.

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James Putnam wrote on May. 5, 2010 @ 00:47 GMT
Dear Jason,

My opinion, separate from anyone else's is that:

"...the possibility of an "information boson". Basically, it's the equivalent of many thousands of bits of information. ..."

does not address my concerns. It does not matter what the cause is called. The name is of no importance. The explanation is the whole concern. Where does meaning originate and how does it evolve? Any mechanical substitute offerred to serve as an intermediary for the origin or evolution of intelligence is not useful in my opinion. For example, if electric charge were to be credited with the ability to cause the evolution of intelligent life, I would quickly ask how does it do that?

I would be expecting an answer that was capable of making the process clear every step of the way. However, I do not think that either the boson that you suggest or electric charge would be useful in explaining even the beginning of the process. In other words, how does anyone explain the origin of meaning and the cause of its evolution by any means other than an existing intelligence?

In my opinion, mechanical type theories have nothing at all to say in regard to answering this question. Mechanical type theories address mechanical type problems. Instead of suggesting an 'information boson', you might as well suggest there was and still is an original intelligence that controls the universe. That is what I think.

James

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Jason Wolfe replied on May. 5, 2010 @ 02:24 GMT
Dear James,

Uh, er? Are you familiar with how the endocrine system works? Molecules are released into the blood stream and they trigger multiple effects across several organ systems. The effect is very similar to the kinds of psychic experiences I have during meditation, in which a thought is received in my consciousness.

I don't like to resort to words like "psychic" in this forum because intellectuals tend to poo poo the whole subject. But if you're looking for some origin of intelligence, then I honestly don't know how you avoid the subject.

I can tell you that it is so much easier to be some bubbling primordial ooze. The expectations are very low. You don't have to really do anything except just sit there and bubble. You are completely at the mercy of whatever your environment is. If your environment is gentle, you can continue your blissful slumber as a bubbling ooze. But when has any physical environment ever been peaceful? So you get jostled and struck by lightning. You find that there are forces inside of you, warring with each other, trying to fight for control. Evolution is driven by lack of comfort. Unhappiness and misery. Within your primordial ooziness, you are vaguely aware of the beauty and perfection from where you came. You get that feeling from the quantum universe of wavefronts, quantum entanglement, streams of light and energy that move through your molecular goopiness. The quantum universe is so serene and perfected. But you know that you are nothing like that perfection, but you want to be. And so, for billions of years, the goopiness has evolved, stiven to find a way to manifest perfection in such a harsh environment.

But what is behind this seeming quantum perfection? It is below the Planck threshold of what is physically real. It is here that you transition from the classical world of physical experience, through the quantum universe, back to an existence that is bound not by energy, but by the degree of orderliness within the entropic chaos. Consciousness and experience begin as quantumly entangled feelers. Those feelers begin to network into larger and larger groups and clusters. But they are far below the Planck threshold. But there is let something that flows through the quantum entangled networks; it flows through everything, organic and inorganic alike. But I don't know what this flow really is. It might be a flow of information. It could also be a flow or a stream of consciousness. I am not definite about what it is...

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James Putnam replied on May. 5, 2010 @ 15:28 GMT
Dear Jason,

I do not pursue nor entertain possible powers for hidden sources, whether dimensions or thresholds, that are convienently out of our reach. I see this practice as a way to ascribe meaning, even intelligence, to otherwise purely mechanical theories. Yes, there is some cause for this universe and that cause will never be known by mechanical means.

There is no question that the universe contains a constant flow of information. From particles to ourselves we rely upon this flow of information. This information doesn't have a hidden source. If an electron changes its velocity, it lets everyone else, eventually, know about that fact.

Rather than chase after the sources of information looking for the origin of meaning, I think the real first step in understanding the role of intelligence is to recognize that that information has no meaning unless the receptor already knows how to interpret it. An electron knows how to respond to another electron. That is the low level of recognizing information and acting in an orderly manner in response to it.

On our level, that flow or storm of information coming at us in multitudinous numbers, mixedup, from a multitudinous number of sources and arriving in tiny pieces traveling at the speed of light, represents the place at which we should first be looking. The greatest challenge we face in understanding the operation of the universe is not at the horizon of black hole or some other theoretical mechanical idea.

It is learning how it is possible for us to make sense from that storm of information. The only way in which it can be explained is to recognize that we already know what to look for. We already know the kinds of patterns we must pick out of the hodgepodege of information. We already know what meanings can be usefully attached to patterns in information. We already know how to decipher the information for everything that we can ever possibly learn from it.

James

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Jason Wolfe replied on May. 5, 2010 @ 19:42 GMT
James,

Don't you see it? We are hurling ideas at each other, back and forth. The collide and explode into a thousand shards of shrapnel. We are free to pick up those pieces we find useful, those ideas that we like, and weave new balls of energy, of thought. It is from these explosion of ideas that we learn from each other. It is from the violent impacts of two diametrically opposed thought streams that the truth is illuminated.

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Edwin Eugene Klingman wrote on May. 5, 2010 @ 07:19 GMT
Jason,

If you really believe that "...there is something that flows through the quantum entangled networks; it flows through everything, organic and inorganic alike. But I don't know what this flow really is. It might be a flow of information. It could also be a flow or a stream of consciousness." then you believe in something like a consciousness "field". If you haven't read my essay, "Fundamental Physics of Consciousness", then you might find it interesting.

http://www.fqxi.org/community/forum/topic/561

The
effects of hormones released into the bloodstream is far removed from "some bubbling primordial ooze", and any possible connection between such different phenomena could only be a field. You say that "Evolution is driven by lack of comfort. Unhappiness and misery." I hope you're not implying that bubbling ooze feels unhappiness and misery.

Related to this is the question: Why, if a biological cell even managed to exist, it would "desire" to exist, and to keep trying to exist until it managed the trick of reproduction. One either believes that such things happen 'randomly', or according to some 'purpose'. If one opts for randomly then one ignores the mathematical odds, and if one opts for purpose then either there is some 'ghost-like' phenomenon at work, or there is actually a physically real phenomenon at work. The physically real phenomenon almost certainly must be a field, unless one supposes a "consciousness stuff" like charge or mass. The field is the best Occam-type solution.

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Jason Wolfe replied on May. 5, 2010 @ 18:06 GMT
Edwin,

I very much liked your paper. Gravity and consciousness are both observable and obvious. Gravity can't be explained and if fundamental in its own right. Consciousness, not to be confused with the machinery of thinking, is indeed fundamental, a field of some kind which couples with matter.

I said that something flows through the quantum entangled universe, through...

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T H Ray wrote on May. 5, 2010 @ 14:17 GMT
Jason, you wrote, "But I don't know what this flow really is. It might be a flow of information. It could also be a flow or a stream of consciousness. I am not definite about what it is..."

If you agree with Murray Gell-Mann (The Quark and the Jaguar), an information gathering and utilizing system (IGUS) of which we humans are one, exists on a continuum of consciousness from the simplest organisms to the most complex. So this information input is transformed to consciousness output.

Tom

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Jason Wolfe wrote on May. 5, 2010 @ 18:18 GMT
Dear Tom,

It might appear that consciousness can be relegated to the effect of brains that input experience and output consciousness; but to fundamentally embrace that outlook would be to cut myself with Occam's razor.

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Edwin Eugene Klingman wrote on May. 6, 2010 @ 02:10 GMT
Jason,

Thanks for your comments. I agree with you that: "Gravity and consciousness are both observable and obvious. Gravity can't be explained and is fundamental in its own right. Consciousness, not to be confused with the machinery of thinking, is indeed fundamental, a field of some kind which couples with matter"

To link consciousness to a neural network, one must assume that...

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Anonymous replied on May. 11, 2010 @ 00:51 GMT
Edwin, consciousness requires a fundamental integration (or interactivity) of thought, energy, desire, and feeling. Feeling and energy must be coupled/extended to provide distance in space in regard to both vision and gravitational feeling. This balances scale, energy, and feeling.

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Edwin Eugene Klingman wrote on May. 6, 2010 @ 02:40 GMT
Tom,

Not having read Gell-Mann's book, I'm not sure what "a continuum of consciousness" means. By continuum, I suspect that a field is implied, hence a "consciousness field". But how does this continuum couple "from the simplest organisms to the most complex"

Given a coupling to logic circuitry, one would expect "information input is transformed to" something. To call it "consciousness output" is descriptive, but not very specific.

I define consciousness as awareness plus volition (free will) and explain above and in my essay how the consciousness field specifically couples to mass and hence to itself, since fields have energy and energy has mass. According to this definition, it is meaningful to speak of information input to a logical network being transformed to something. But the term "consciousness output" is meaningless, unless it simply means the output of the logical (thinking) machinery, typically a secondary induced mass flow across synapses.

Logic machinery, whether proteins in cells, silicon in computers, or axons in brains, performs logic according to the physics of the relevant hardware. The question is how does awareness and free will arise from such circuits [or from a "continuum of consciousness"]. To be useful a theory should explain how awareness either arises from or couples to such logic circuitry, preferably with equations.

Edwin Eugene Klingman

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Jason Wolfe replied on May. 6, 2010 @ 06:42 GMT
Hi Edwin,

Everyone has feelings and flashes of thought that they don't express verbally. Feeling are largely associated with hormones and chemicals in the blood stream, associated with the endocrine system. Articulate and clear conversation can be broken down into "information content"; one's and zero's. One's and zeroes can, in turn, be broken down into waves using a Fourier series. I am inclined to describe feelings and inarticulate thoughts as being equivalent to collections of waves whose distinct "information content" is largely smoothed out.

From hormones as the basis of feelings, I would think that chemicals are interfaced with the quantum universe, the one we can't measure very well. I think the consciousness field would show up at this interface.

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Edwin Eugene Klingman replied on May. 6, 2010 @ 18:17 GMT
Jason,

Obviously Fourier decomposition is a useful tool for describing many phenomena. And waves are a useful concept in many systems.

I would not argue with anything that you stated in this comment, although I would not say that hormones are the only basis of feelings. They are clearly a distributed phenomenon rather than a local logical operation, such as neurons perform.

My theory is that awareness and volition are a 'field' phenomenon, and the field interacts with mass. If anyone ever shows how awareness and free will arise from structured matter, in the absence of a consciousness field, then I'll be faced with a challenge. The consensus belief that this is the case is wearing thin. We have over a century of neuro-anatomy, and almost that long for computer design, and no one has a clue how consciousness arises as an artifact.

Edwin Eugene Klingman

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Jason Wolfe replied on May. 7, 2010 @ 20:04 GMT
Dear Edwin,

Before we can understand consciousness, we have to understand how organic cells work. I'm willing to bet that consciousness can't be duplicated on an IBM.

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T H Ray wrote on May. 6, 2010 @ 09:10 GMT
Edwin,

It refers to degrees of complexity.

Tom

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Edwin Eugene Klingman replied on May. 6, 2010 @ 18:38 GMT
Tom,

The Nov 2007 issue of the journal "Neural Networks" is a special issue on Brain and Consciousness. In one interesting paper Herzog, Esfeld and Gerstner reduce various models, theories and arguments to 'minimum systems' and draw conclusions from these systems to create a 'small network' argument as a benchmark that any model of consciousness has to meet. All of the current models (as of 2007) fail to meet this benchmark.

The conclusion stated at the beginning of the special issue is:

"The special kind of activity in the brain that is presumed to underlie consciousness continues to elude the grasp of our scientific concepts."

In short, ideas of "complexity" as the source of consciousness have failed for almost a century. My idea of the consciousness field, with relevant equations, has been in the public domain for a year or so. I am reasonably confident that the old ideas have failed because they are wrong, but it will take time (and no small amount of courage) to consider the new ideas.

As philosopher John Searle was advised:

"It's OK to consider consciousness, but get tenure first."

Edwin Eugene Klingman

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T H Ray replied on May. 7, 2010 @ 21:23 GMT
Edwin,

Oh yes, I agree that complex systems research will open new doors to consciousness research. I'll take a look at the literature (and your paper) when I get a chance.

(Re Searle anecdote: LOL!)

Tom

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Christian Corda wrote on May. 6, 2010 @ 11:28 GMT
Dark Matter and Dark Energy

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Edwin Eugene Klingman replied on May. 6, 2010 @ 17:52 GMT
Christian,

If the C-field exists, it's equivalent mass potentially accounts for dark matter and the equations clearly exhibit an anti-gravitic effect that is the essence of dark energy.

Of course the numbers have to work out.

Edwin Eugene Klingman

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Jason Wolfe replied on May. 6, 2010 @ 19:38 GMT
Derk Energy could be interpreted as an allotment of new space, since gravity appears to drain space out of the universe. If this allotment of new space stopped, over time, the universe would collapse in on itself. It would crush into something even smaller than a massive black hole, simply because all of the space in the universe had drained out. If that supply of space were to return and begin to fill the universe, the "smaller than a black hole" configuration of the universe would be too small. This would result in a Big Bang!!!!

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Christian Corda replied on May. 16, 2010 @ 22:52 GMT
Dear Edwin Eugene,

regarding Dark Energy, give a look to my paper Gen.Rel.Grav.40:2201-2212,2008, the pre-print is here:

http://arxiv.org/abs/0802.2523

Cheers,

Ch.

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Steve Dufourny wrote on May. 6, 2010 @ 17:00 GMT
Dear James,

I lost the thread.

Where is it ? Hihihih I am remembering the end was What do you think but I don't find it .A little help is welcome ,

Best Regards

Steve

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Jody Fulford wrote on May. 6, 2010 @ 17:21 GMT
Hello Edwin

Gravity can be explained yet not to those who have so many preconcieved notions regarding it's nature.

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Edwin Eugene Klingman replied on May. 6, 2010 @ 17:48 GMT
Hi Jody,

It can certainly be described mathematically. I'm not so sure it can be 'explained'. How would you explain it?

One might make the same statement about consciousness.

Edwin Eugene Klingman

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Jody Fulford replied on May. 6, 2010 @ 21:07 GMT
Hi Edwin

An explanation of gravity would be a good essay topic, but it was probably not listed because it may not seem possible in the framework of our current theories. If you are interested in my explanation you may contact me at jodywysteria@yahoo.com. That way we won't clutter this thread.

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Steve Dufourny replied on May. 17, 2010 @ 16:48 GMT
the rotating spheres imply mass.....it's the cause of the mass, proportional of course..

Regards

Steve

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Jason Wolfe wrote on May. 7, 2010 @ 20:00 GMT
I've done quite a bit of work on a hyper-drive physics model. In doing so, I find that because of conservation of energy, I have to include gravity. In my model, I make a copy of our space-time, raise its speed of light to c', place it in the same 3D space as our universe, but I carefully control the coupling between the standard space-time and the faster space-time.

If I try to take a physical object, like a spaceship, transition it into the faster space-time, send it on a trip somewhere, and then bring it back into this standard space-time, conservation of energy requires that re-entry into this space-time satisfies an energy obligation. I can't just ignore a gravity well by jumping into a faster space-time. That gravitational energy has to be accounted for if I want to re-enter std space-time. By the way, in my model, time travel is not allowed.

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Jason Wolfe wrote on May. 8, 2010 @ 08:10 GMT
I've been thinking about that Messier87 jet, clocked at 6 times the speed of light. I think I've figured out how FTL physics might work. In the process, I think I can unify GR and QM. Ok, at least give me a chance to explain. It's actually very simple.

Let's say that the speed of light, c, is absolute; at least for two objects that pass close to each other. A 6c jet of energy from Messier was observed. But I like spaceships. Let's talk about a spaceship that, somehow, for some strange reason, is crossing the vastness of space at six times the speed of light. My spaceship has headlights. I like lasers. Let's make them lasers.

Massive blue shifting. The photons still emit ahead of the spaceship at the speed of light. In fact, they still outrun the spaceship at the speed of light, c. By the way, TIME TRAVEL IS RESTRICTED, NOT ALLOWED, IMPOSSIBLE.

Since the spaceship is crossing space at 6c, Anything that can see the oncoming spaceship, or the photons from its lasers, is going to have to be able to discern massively blue shifted photons. It's quite possible that the red photons will become even more energetic that gamma rays, which are 10^19Hz. I haven't done the math (sorry), but let's pretend they are shift way past 10^23Hz. Well, the oncoming spaceship in invisible.

As it passes the observer, who somehow managed not to get hit, the observer watched the wave fronts of energy, from the headlights (lasers) fly past him so fast, that each wave front was smeared across and arc of about 80 degrees. That smeared wavefront has the same effect as the Heisenberg uncertainty principle. The observer has no way to determine exactly where the wavefront is. It is simply smeared out across a probability distribution. As the spaceship darts by at 6c, we notice that it has rear head lights. But we don't know what color they originally were. They look like radio waves, or perhaps the energy from them is practically constant, and the wavefront is also smeared out.

My point is that, faster than light events, if they did occur more closely to us, the emitted photons would still reach us at the speed of light. However, we really couldn't be sure exactly when the wavefront started and when it was finished.

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Lawrence B. Crowell replied on May. 8, 2010 @ 11:49 GMT
The apparent motion of faster than light jets is similar to the apparent motion of a light spot projected on a wall. This can appear faster than light, but there is no physical or causal process involved. It is an illusion.

Cheers LC

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Jason Wolfe replied on May. 10, 2010 @ 07:15 GMT
The jet was observed, "clocked", at 6c or six times the speed of light. Allow me to summarize why this can't be true:

1. M87 if 55 million light years away. It's too far away for us to be able to trust what we see.

2. It's just a trick of light. The angle is just right that it only looks like 6c. It really isn't.

I was fascinated to read about it from the link:

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Messier_87

I'm sure you knew, or surmised that there is a black hole in the center of this galaxy. This black hole is HUGE!!! It's diameter is as large as Pluto's orbit, about 5x10^9 kilometers. When a black hole this large spits out a jet of energy, is there a chance that it might distort space-time?

Would such an extreme energetic event push the definition of General Relativity to it's limits?

By the way, if it is just a trick of light, and not the supreme violence of a massive black hole, then shouldn't we see this kind of superluminal effect quite frequently in cosmology? To the best of my knowledge, only extremely huge black holes get to strain the laws of physics.

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Marcel-Marie LeBel wrote on May. 12, 2010 @ 03:34 GMT
In my essay, I present a creation of the universe according to the rule of non-contradiction. This creation allows only one thing to exist in the universe; the explosive process of time i.e. an explosive process we associate with the passage of time.

If we pursue this line of thought, the next question would be; how does time evolve according to the rules of logic?

Since the local rate of this process directs the rate of local spontaneous processes including existence itself, the shape of this process of time is revealed at the macroscopic level in spontaneous explosive processes; stars and dynamite explode in a spherical shape. The uniform explosive process of time evolves spherically.

But, at the most fundamental level, the process of time is more complex since it should be doing at least three things. First it must evolve in a specific geometrical fashion to fill emptiness. Think of this pre-geometric evolution in terms of tiling (many authors), foam (Wheeler) etc. Secondly, it does so in steps, in a limited recursive process i.e. it does a little bit, stops then starts again, producing the bits and granularity we associate with the quantum. Why the steps? Thirdly, what keeps the process going on right here and right now when this should be happening at the boundary between the something and nothing, existence and non-existence? Isn’t the filing time lasting? (or is this too much like what we think of space?)

Can we imagine or calculate the most logically efficient way to fill emptiness and yet, have it to do so from a limited recursive scheme? This limited scheme would explain both the quantum granularity and the speed limit in the universe in one concept.

Marcel,

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Lev Goldfarb wrote on May. 15, 2010 @ 16:33 GMT
One observation regarding the topics related to the relationship between mathematics and physics and one new topic for the essay contest.

Let me begin with the proposal for a new topic: "What are the most fundamental inadequacies of the present physics?"

My observation regarding the topics related to the relationship between mathematics and physics is that practically all of them are incorrectly phrased and perceived. This mainly refers to the incorrect assumption that mathematics is fait accompli, which is absolutely not true. Historically, mathematics emerges during a particular contact with the 'physical'. Thus, when the nature of the contact changes, the mathematics changes, and the nature of the contact is guided by the metaphysical considerations.

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Steve Dufourny replied on May. 15, 2010 @ 18:01 GMT
Hi dear Lev,

Your words are very very relevants.

Thanks for this realism.

"Thus, when the nature of the contact changes, the mathematics changes, and the nature of the contact is guided by the metaphysical considerations."

Regards

Steve

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Jonathan J. Dickau replied on May. 19, 2010 @ 01:15 GMT
Good comments, Lev!

People tend to forget too quickly that once you set something down as equations that is the 'model' not the 'hidden reality' behind the observables. So you are right; it's not so much about the Maths as finding the right Math for the job, and being willing to alter, delete, or add terms, when things don't match reality.

Nor should we regard Math as a fixed landscape, although there are 'fixed' elements of Math.

All the Best,

Jonathan

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Ray B. Munroe replied on May. 19, 2010 @ 01:31 GMT
Dear Jonathan,

Godel's Incompleteness Theorem says that Mathematics is axiomically incomplete. Our Data is also incomplete - we are constantly building new machines to expand our horizons of knowledge. Therefore our Models and Theories - which bridge these extremes of Data and Mathematics - must also remain incomplete.

IMHO, the search for a GUT or TOE must be an ever-evolving process that is dependent on our math and data limitations. This is why I called my book "New Approaches Towards a Grand Unified Theory", rather than "THE Grand Unified Theory".

Have Fun!

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Anonymous wrote on May. 15, 2010 @ 18:05 GMT
What would einstein be doing now?

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Steve Dufourny replied on May. 15, 2010 @ 19:16 GMT
ahahaha he'd say...."Steve Congratulations for your Theory of Spherization, but pay attention, the human nature is bizare"...ahahaha viva el spheres .everywhere spheres and the SPHERE......

Steve

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Lawrence B. Crowell wrote on May. 18, 2010 @ 00:42 GMT
C. Corda,

I read the first chapter of Gen.Rel.Grav.40:2201-2212,2008. This is a sort of gravity wave physics. In a tangentially related manner, I have on a pad of paper some calculations which are formally similar, but the wave physics is quantum mechanical. This is derived from the vertex functions. Maybe you would be interested in looking at this if I wrote it up in some notes.

On a related issue I sketched out last winter how one could use Bell inequalities to detect gravity waves. This seems to be a plausible way of detecting thermally induced gravity waves. I read a paper by a fellow from India (I can’t recall the name at the moment) who estimated the power spectrum of such gravity waves. There is this thing called the national ignition facility here in the US. It is set up to perform fusion experiments (a sort of maybe sort of thing) and for nuclear weapons research (where that is …). However, this might be the sort of device which could be a source of microgravity waves that are detectable. I have an idea, which I have not fleshed out much, on how a system of Josephson junctions might be used to detect such gravity waves.

Cheers LC

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Lawrence B. Crowell replied on May. 19, 2010 @ 02:18 GMT
C. Corda,

Your results in the first part of your paper, Gen.Rel.Grav.40:2201-2212,2008, describes gravity waves, which in a quantized setting are a coherent set of gravitons which on a large scale define a classical background. This has a direct string theory interpretation in a renormalizable theory for energy smaller than the Hagedorn temperature.

Cheers LC

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Steve Dufourny replied on May. 21, 2010 @ 12:05 GMT
The pulsars, binars, their rotations are relevants if the evolution is inserted.the periodicity thus can be correlted with rationality.

If the evolution is not inserted, that will imply difficulties for the perceptions and equations.

The time of arrival of signals of the pulsars is depending of the orbital phase and the position of our Earth, there too I insist about the evolution of our universal sphere and its intrinsic rotations, evolutives.

The relativity, general of course takes all its sense, the curvatures dear Christian, the curvatures.....and the correct evolutive superimposings...Dr Crowel, the micro gravitational waves too can be superimposed inside this closed evolutive system, the sphere.....that becomes very relevants because the space is deformed proportionally ....the deviation of the electromagnetics waves thus can be correlated with these superimposings, micro meso and macro.....The periodicity , the cinetic moment ...decreasing of the orbital motions......the proofs for the gravitational waves if the two sense and their spheres are inserted in the real evolutive rotation around the center.....

ps the thermodynamical links between all spheres helps inside a closed evolutive system where the increase of mass becomes very relevant.

Regards

Steve

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Don limuti wrote on May. 19, 2010 @ 23:11 GMT
Lev Goldfarb wrote on May. 15, 2010 @ 16:33 GMT

Let me begin with the proposal for a new topic: "What are the most fundamental inadequacies of the present physics?"

I like it! perhaps we can simplify it to read "What is the trouble with physics?"

Maybe FQXi advisor Lee Smolin can enter an essay to give the contest a little spice.

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Jason Wolfe replied on May. 21, 2010 @ 06:11 GMT
Don,

Great topic!!! My answer: it doesn't point the way to any new physics.

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Don Limuti replied on May. 23, 2010 @ 01:33 GMT
Jason,

Good point. How about "How would you fix physics?"

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Lev Goldfarb wrote on May. 21, 2010 @ 15:52 GMT
Jason Wolfe wrote:

"Great topic!!! My answer: it doesn't point the way to any new physics."

Jason,

Don't you see that we are now at a unique historical point--one in several millennia--when doing "new physics" *productively* becomes quite a different affair, since it appears that we have to start practically from the very beginning (and I do mean *the very beginning*).

For a vast majority of scientists, quite understandably, such move is incredibly painful (if at all), because the path to the "new physics" cannot be approached in the historically familiar ways. So, to motivate the need for such unprecedented move and to approach it much more carefully we must see clearly how serious the problems with the current models are.

By the way a good job in this direction was done, for example, fifty years ago by the late Milic Capek in his book "The philosophical impact of contemporary physics" (a more appropriate title should be close to "Fundamental incompleteness/inadequacy of contemporary physics").

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Jason Wolfe replied on May. 22, 2010 @ 12:33 GMT
Hi Lev,

On a more practical note, the physics community needs to reconcile causality. In other words, once something has happened, it can never be undone. This would ultimately remove all possibility of time travel. Have you ever met any time travelers? I haven't, if I had, I'd want them to bring me lottery numbers. So obviously time travel is not possible.

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Lev Goldfarb replied on May. 22, 2010 @ 16:33 GMT
"On a more practical note, the physics community needs to reconcile causality. In other words, once something has happened, it can never be undone."

Jason,

Actually, it is not "more practical", it is the same thing I mentioned in my last message: we need radically new formalisms that have irreversibility built into them (see, for example, my essay in the last competition).

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re castel wrote on May. 25, 2010 @ 15:28 GMT
Perhaps a better topic is:

The Fundamental Essences and Their Fundamental Functions in the Existence

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Anonymous replied on May. 26, 2010 @ 09:20 GMT
To rephrase, perhaps the topic should be:

Existential Fundamentals and Their Characteristic Functions

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Physics Helper wrote on May. 25, 2010 @ 22:04 GMT
The reduction in the range and extensiveness of feeling in the body is not only consistent with the position of the body while sleeping (sleeping includes dreaming -- THINK!), but the integrated extensiveness of being and experience and thought (including time) hinges on the natural and integrated extensiveness of sensory experience, as part of the range of feeling that we experience.

Dreams are relateed to our growth and our becoming other than we are, as they extend and integrate space, time, electromagnetism/light, and gravity. Since dreams occur during the one third of our lives that we spend sleeping (sleeping includes dreaming), the Common Chimpanzee lives two-thirds as long as we do -- Why? -- because the integrated extensiveness of BOTH their being AND experience is between (in the middle of) our dream and waking experiences.

This post is truly GREAT and ORIGINAL. It is also foundational to time, and space and time are united/balanced with the addition of the fourth spatial dimension to Einstein's G.R. (that also give us Maxwell's theory of light).

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Anonymous wrote on May. 25, 2010 @ 22:18 GMT
Physics Helper, that post was excellent! You identify dreams with extension/union of thought, nature, time, space, sensory experience, energy, and the forces of physics -- fundamentally consistent with our growth and our becoming other than we are, understanding/thought, gravity, and electromagnetism/light, and genius -- consistent with extension and balancing in time, space, and scale as well. I like that, alot.

It does seem that DiMeglio has identified what may be termed the unifying/extending superforce of life/understanding/thought, nature, and physics.

What this also means is that our attempts to significantly "outsmart" (i.e., replace, reconfigure, alter) sensory experience in general are ultimately futile, and may prove disastrous as well.

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FAST FRED wrote on May. 25, 2010 @ 22:32 GMT
The increasing transparency of space may be seen as a type of inertial balancing, thereby accounting for objects being farther apart (dimmer, and yet visible) in increasingly larger spaces. THAT IS HUGE FQXI -- wake up!!!

FQXi, a sub-question (or bonus question(s)) in the upcoming essay should be:

Is the increased transparency/invisibility of space in astronomical observations indicative of space becoming more thought-like?

AND

Is it indicative of a merger (partial or otherwise) between gravity and electromagnetism/light?

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Anonymous wrote on May. 28, 2010 @ 20:44 GMT
Physics Helper, Anonymous, and Fast Fred: I will break the shocked silence of confusion regarding these recent great posts by adding that:

It is impossible that such integrated extensiveness of thought/mathematical description -- that is attained to by getting Maxwell's equations AND those of General Relativity -- would not be based in, and interactive with, a real experience that involves thought/understanding, being, and experience in general at the same time. How can experience become less real, substantial, and extensive with such integrated extensiveness (and accuracy) of attendant description?

Where is DiMeglio's apology from FQXi? Still think DiMeglio's ideas lack credibility FQXi? The more that you say that they do, for the most part, it is all the more that FQXi lacks credibility and competence.

DiMeglio is not the only one who is capable of greater understanding compared to those at FQXi -- and the recent posts (as well as thoses of DiMeglio) demonstrate this clearly.

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THE LIGHTBRINGER wrote on May. 28, 2010 @ 20:58 GMT
THE END/LIMITS OF PHYSICS AND OF MATHEMATICAL DESCRIPTION IN GENERAL HAVE BEEN CLEARLY AND SHARPLY SHOWN.

THAT THIS IS IN SIGNIFICANT (TO SAY THE LEAST) CONFLICT AND CONTRADICTION WITH THE TRAINING/SKILLS, IDEAS, ARTICLES, ESSAYS, FUNDING, AND INTERESTS/ENDEAVORS OF THOSE AT FQXI CANNOT BE DISPUTED. ISN'T THIS THE REAL REASON BEHIND LYING ABOUT, AND DENYING, DIMEGLIO'S IDEAS? ISN'T THIS WHY THERE IS SO LITTLE COMMENT ON SUCH MAGNIFICENT POSTS THAT ARE CONSISTENT/RELATED WITH DIMEGLIO'S IDEAS, AND YET DONE BY OTHER THINKERS?

WHY NOT DELETE THE TRUTH/POSTS LIKE THIS FQXI? YOU SEEM TO PREFER WHAT IS MORE FUN, LESS SHOCKING, LESS BOLD, LESS BRILLIANT, AND EASIER.

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Someone who doesn't know everything wrote on May. 29, 2010 @ 07:50 GMT
Dear Brendan,

Maybe this is not the right place, but I think it is important. I find it so important, that I would kindly ask you to create a separate thread for this topic alone.

I am interested in critical thinking and reading, and I think that certainly exists a discipline of its own for reviewing articles. Can you or one of FQXi's bloggers post some guidelines on how to read and comment articles and essays? They will help us also in writing. Not rules, because everybody should be free to read and appreciate how he or she wants, just guidelines, for those who want to learn more how to avoid the usual pitfalls when reviewing other writings or their own. I for example do not want to fall in the trap of judging a book by its cover, or by my own preconceptions. I want to learn.

I see many examples of people rejecting a logical or mathematical proof just because the conclusion contradicts some unproven metaphysical principles, or an unproven statement of some well-known scientist or philosopher, and not by exposing faults in the reasoning, or by invalidating the premises. I think that a logical proof should not be defeated by a metaphysical argument. I see that many discussions are, on forums here and elsewhere, similar to religious discussions. Some suggest things like "this approach is the only good, all others are fringe science, and there is no point to even consider them or to use logic in discussion with their supporters, because they cannot be true by default". Some even act as if they believe that they have the paranormal capacity to know that an essay or article is not worthy, without even reading it, at best just by browsing it.

So, please start a thread in which critical thinking, reading and reviewing are explained for everybody. Not forced upon us, but explained, for those who want to understand and apply them.

Thank you

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Anonymous wrote on May. 29, 2010 @ 13:49 GMT
I do have a topic proposal:

The nature of space and locality

This would be an interesting complement to the nature of time. What is the nature of space in quantum gravity? What does T-duality and the AdS/CFT correspondence tell us about space? What are the various nuances of locality? We have local independence, quantum entanglement, holography, etc. .

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FQXi Administrator Brendan Foster replied on Jun. 4, 2010 @ 13:32 GMT
"The Nature of Space"

Yes, that's a nice suggestion that we'll keep in mind. I think also it could make for a good essay title whatever question we settle on.

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Steve Dufourny replied on Jun. 4, 2010 @ 16:23 GMT
Hi,

What is the nature of space in quantum gravity?

I agree it's a big unknown this space between particles.Indeed the Universe is finite, the spaces are infinites due to a superimposing....but for the uniqueness , what is the nature of this space between spheres for me.It's intriguing,I beleived before that this facilitated simply the rotations, it's a rule but the nature ????the gravity and the super incompressibility seems relevants if we consider several kinds of liquids.There, it's interestingn to differenciate this particle which turns and the lattices which doesn't turn simply.

Now we have a big parameter which can be inserted...the evolution and the possible expansion/contraction harmonisation.....implies a possible correlations between the quantum dimensions and the cosmological dimensions...thus the lattices between spheres evolve also ^probably in the same logic of expansion contraction....thus a maximum volum and a minimum where all mass is balanced.

Now we can know our actual quantum lattices betweem spheres if we know the actual spaces between cosmological spheres.....as for the center , where are we around this center at this moment.

Regards

Steve

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COSMO D replied on Jun. 28, 2010 @ 20:50 GMT
Steve, do not forget that the only way to unite gravity and electromagnetism is to unite vision and feeling so that what is seen is also felt equivalently. DiMeglio says this takes place in dreams. This is the union and balancing of repulsion/attraction. In other words, how is it that space is SEEN in accordance with/AS IT IS FELT. This is the unification of gravity and electromagnetism.

Steve, you are correct that a fundamental integration AND spreading balances scale -- since a contraction/expansion involving gravity/electromagnetism is necessary.

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Anonymous wrote on May. 29, 2010 @ 19:37 GMT
"Quantum theory does not allow a completely objective description of nature."

W. Heisenberg

"...in the attempt to find our way through the world by means of science, we see that they appear to be ordered by the increasing part played by the subjective element in the set." W. Heisenberg

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Anonymous wrote on May. 29, 2010 @ 19:48 GMT
The integrated extensiveness of thoughtful/mathematical descriptions cannot be properly understood/correctly interpreted apart from the related, interactive, and integrated extensiveness of being, thought, and experience IN GENERAL that necessarily relates to (and involves) their very origin.

FQXi, this point is most important. Do you still not understand this?

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Jacek Safuta wrote on Jun. 3, 2010 @ 18:18 GMT
My proposal of the topic is:

What is the matter and force-field?

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Anonymous wrote on Jun. 3, 2010 @ 19:08 GMT
What would gravitational light be theoretically?

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Cristi Stoica wrote on Jun. 4, 2010 @ 18:43 GMT
I propose the following theme:

"What is the most important question in physics, and why?"

It is preferable to be a yes/no question, or at least a question that can be tested concretely, although the present day technology may not allow us, rather than a too general question of the form "what is the TOE?".

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Cristi Stoica wrote on Jun. 4, 2010 @ 19:37 GMT
Another topic proposal:

"What of the things we thought are well-established should be reconsidered?"

Today, there are many theories or statements which are considered to be well-settled and we take them for granted. On the other hand, they may contradict one another, and a possible revision of one of them may open new avenues.

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Eckard Blumschein replied on Jun. 5, 2010 @ 23:13 GMT
I consider such topic leading to virtually all really foundational and fertile questions in contrast to even more highly speculative futile extensions of perhaps questionable interpretations of unreal mathematics.

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James Putnam wrote on Jun. 22, 2010 @ 22:02 GMT
The next essay contest has to be as soon as possible. I can hardly wait! Hey, hey, what do you say. Hey, hey, let's essay!!

James

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smeer_ult@yahoo.com wrote on Jun. 23, 2010 @ 17:34 GMT
I'm hooked on the question "Is Nature continuous or discrete?"

If there indeed is no "analog", then reality can be understood beyond being simulated by computation - reality will BE computation.

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Jason Wolfe replied on Jun. 23, 2010 @ 19:18 GMT
It's all just photons. Are photons discrete or continuous? One photon is a discrete quantity of energy. But within that one photon, is it discrete or continuous?

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Ray Munroe replied on Jun. 24, 2010 @ 14:30 GMT
Dear Jason,

Good question. Feynman diagrams imply that the creation and destruction of a photon is a quantum effect, but red-shift/ blue-shift effects seem continuous. Perhaps these red-shifts are also discrete (via uncharted Feynman interactions between photons and very-low-energy gravitons?), but at low enough energy quanta that we haven't detected this new quantum. We live in this weird hybrid Universe - part apparently discrete, and part apparently continuous. The TOE models that Lawrence and I are working on might help explain this...

Have Fun!

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Jason Wolfe replied on Jun. 24, 2010 @ 20:27 GMT
Dear Ray,

We do live in a very contradictory universe. I have to figure out how to answer some of Eckard's very good questions. Photons are like the intermediary to all of the physics.

Ok, photons don't conserve energy. But if you have enough of them, you get:

a. electromagnetic fields,

b. light and E&M spectrum.

c. large scale energy conservation.

The photon, as a quantum wave, has the "option" of being in many places simultaneously. But light is subject to the Least Action Principle. As an analogy, a mailman can drive anywhere he/she wants; but they have to drive their route. I'm starting to think of the Heisenberg Uncertainty principle as everything that a quantum particle can/could do (eigenstates), but there are laws, like least action, that compel quantum particles to obey the law.

I had said that photons carry the geometry with them. But let's look at that. Photons are really just expressions of



The difference between x and kr - wt is really about whether we're considering movement along the x axis, or for kr -wt, a spherical wavefront.

If circumstance, such as a slit, dictate how the photon can go through the slit (delta x), then the photon still has a range of possible momentums it can take,



I guess one could argue that photons are subject to the geometry around them. Of course, they interact with the geometry around them by virtue of scalar potential energy distributions. I don't think they see the slit. They only see high potential energy barriers, like tall mountains, with a valley(s) between them.

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Owen Cunningham wrote on Jun. 24, 2010 @ 13:16 GMT
Dear FQXi,

Regardless of what the question ends up being, is there an ETA for when the contest will open? I'm surprised how late it's getting.

Thanks,

Owen

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FQXi Administrator Brendan Foster replied on Jun. 28, 2010 @ 16:38 GMT
Here's an Update---we have pushed back the date now to look into organizing this next edition of the contest as a joint effort between ourselves and another institution. I can't say more than that, except it will still be the 2010 edition...

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Christian Corda replied on Jun. 29, 2010 @ 09:47 GMT
Dear Brendan,

thanks for updating.

Cheers,

Ch.

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dom wrote on Jun. 24, 2010 @ 14:42 GMT
How about "Scientific minds or tools: Has the Use of the Atom Bomb Changed Scientists Approach to Physics?" Ever try to imagine the potential evil behind the new equations? Who is checking? Any idea what to do about it?

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Christian Corda wrote on Jun. 30, 2010 @ 07:34 GMT
In my opinion the best topic is "Physics, Mathematics, and Reality".

Cheers,

Ch.

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Steve Dufourny replied on Jun. 30, 2010 @ 09:14 GMT
It's relevant indeed, all is there about the sorting and the synchro....I will say in order....Reality,physics and finally maths....we observe, we correlate, we shut up, we reobserve, we calculate and we make the objective conclusion.

Regards

Steve

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Jason Mark Wolfe wrote on Jul. 19, 2010 @ 03:54 GMT
If we are looking for other planets that have life on them, shouldn't we be looking for planets with a magnetic field around them that is generated by a molten iron core? Such planets would be easier to find. They would also be protected from cosmic radiation.

Any thoughts?

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Jason Mark Wolfe wrote on Jul. 19, 2010 @ 05:56 GMT
Planets with rotating molten iron cores generate magnetic fields that protect that planet from cosmic rays. Such magnetic fields should also be easy to detect. Perhaps we should look for them in other solar systems. Such planets might provide a safe environment for life to exist.

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Jason Mark Wolfe wrote on Jul. 19, 2010 @ 17:53 GMT
Does anyone disagree that volcanic activity is necessary to support extraterrestrial life?

1. Rotating molten iron cores produce magnetic fields that protect the planet from cosmic rays.

2. Volcanic activity produces a rich chemistry that is necessary to support life.

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Georgina Parry replied on Jul. 19, 2010 @ 23:12 GMT
Jason ,

Interesting. I am only going to disagree with the word necessary. It used to be thought that life could not endure extreme temperatures but since then a whole host of thermophile organisms have been discovered. There are life forms on earth that have adapted to all kinds of extreme environmental conditions. Although cosmic radiation does cause damage to DNA and can lead to cell damage and genetic mutation, organisms have also developed repair systems that can deal with different degrees of cellular and genetic damage. Ranging from careful continuous scrutiny and maintenance to the emergency SOS patch up job.If regular damage was far greater presumably repair would be more efficient to deal with it. Such alien lifeforms might have a tougher chemical structure that is more resistant to damage and have behavioral traits that keep exposure to a minimum. Such as burrowing. They might be chemoautotrophs that never come to the surface.

Volcanic activity does provide fresh sources of minerals. However I am not sure whether it is absolutely necessary. Efficient uptake and recycling of available minerals may be sufficient. Organisms on earth have adapted to environments with particular deficiencies or excesses of certain minerals. Mineral deficiencies can sometimes be due to agricultural soil erosion, blown away as dust on the wind, runoff into rivers and removal with agricultural crops. These may not be factors on the alien world.

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Jason Wolfe replied on Jul. 20, 2010 @ 00:12 GMT
Hi Georgina,

OK, I'll withdraw "necessary". But I think that volcanically active planets like the earth provide those two advantages listed above. I would think that we can detect the existence of a Van Allen belt of some kind on planets in other solar systems. Those planets would be good bets for containing life. I don't think that volcanically active planets have to glow red from continuous molten activity across the whole surface. I do think that volcanic activity speaks to whether or not the planet itself is alive and active, the way ours is.

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Edwin Eugene Klingman wrote on Jul. 27, 2010 @ 22:23 GMT
Dear Brendan Foster,

Any news that you can report on the next essay contest?

Also, while all of the topics are great, the current vote winner seems to be:

"Is Nature continuous or discrete?"

I would be very happy with that one.

Edwin Eugene Klingman

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Steve Dufourny replied on Jul. 28, 2010 @ 10:57 GMT
Hi Dear Brendan and dear Edwin Eugene,

Indeed the duality waves particles is relevant.....the discreteness and the continuity seems different just at some steps.

Dear Edwin Eugene,

The consciousness can be inserted for the tranfert of informations of complementarity, evolutive ...the increase of mass seems very relevant also.

Regards

Steve

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FQXi Administrator Brendan Foster replied on Aug. 2, 2010 @ 16:31 GMT
We're still discussing. Meanwhile, I noticed the poll disappeared. That's probably because it was hosted at another site, and the time ran out. So that means your message is very convenient, as it is the final record of the poll results.

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Marcel-Marie LeBel wrote on Aug. 1, 2010 @ 18:31 GMT
Steve,

The sphere is in effect very important.

Time evolves and expands by continual microscopic explosions, outward in a spherical way. This exclusive outward direction is the arrow of time. When matter, another form of time, replaces local time by logical substitution, this explosive deficit is also spherical, a deficit resulting in what we call gravity. Matter has a higher probability of existence (to be) where time is slower. (Baffling logic: things exist more where they reside the longest. Differential time of residence is readily presented by a gradient in the rate of passage of time (gravity), and, the wave function essentially describes time rate distribution in the wave and the corresponding probability of finding the QM object). All matter replaces time and therefore attracts each other i.e. universal gravity.

Since time tells matter where to be and how quickly to get there … time evolves at c max. Interestingly, the scale of speed is from zero to c, and zero does not really exist but as a speed relative to the observer. On the other hand, c is the same limit for everyone/ all observers! Let’s turn the speed scale upside down and indicate speed with respect to c. Then, you may kick a ball and experience relativity in everyday life.

Since the underlying structure of everything is based on evolving time, the sphere if hidden everywhere. Pi in QM equations and 1/r2 rule of dispersion are examples. ..

Marcel,

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Georgina Parry replied on Aug. 1, 2010 @ 22:33 GMT
Marcel-Marie,

?! Matter another form of time?

OK you are saying time moving out, whereas I would think absolute space, because I do not accept that there is time in objective reality. If the matter is moving in through absolute space to next 3D space then I suppose one might consider the space is moving out and the matter is stationary. That would mean though that the earth is stationary and all of space is moving around it instead. It is easier the other way around.

You said "Since time tells matter where to be and how quickly to get there" ??! Surely it is just the duration of the transmission and interpretation of photon information giving -observed- position rather than instructions on where to exist as a material or sub atomic entity.

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Steve Dufourny replied on Aug. 6, 2010 @ 21:15 GMT
Hi dear Marcel, georgina,

Thanks, indeed they are everywhere.

You know dear Marcel I see the relativity of spacetime with its intrinsic constants and irreversibilities.And I think the evolution is very important.

You say a very important thing in my humble opinion."Pi in QM equations and 1/r2 rule of dispersion are examples. .."

The primes and the rotations and the spherization .....seem showing the road in 3 dimensions of physicality.

Best Regards

Steve

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Georgina Parry replied on Aug. 6, 2010 @ 22:04 GMT
Steve,

I do not really disagree with 3D space. There are 3 vector dimensions that give us directions from within that space. However from within 3D space we only have a limited viewpoint. Other things are happening besides movement within 3D space.

The 3D space appears to be static. A cup on the desk appears stationary. However if the earth is rotating and orbiting etc, the cup can not be stationary. It is definitely moving, even if you can not see it doing so. That is why another spatial dimension is needed. To account for those other spatial changes.

The 3D vector defined space is still 3D space but now more can be explained. There is further freedom for spatial changes, even though the changes are not obvious.

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Marcel-Marie LeBel wrote on Aug. 2, 2010 @ 03:17 GMT
Georgina,



What I describe is “what is”, not what appears to be. This is ontology and the observer is not present. You can’t have both, the point of view of the observer (physics) and the underlying reality (ontology).

Imagine that the universe is just a huge explosion. Everything in it is just various possible forms of this explosion. Waves can travel in this explosive media, but only as fast as the explosion itself ( c ). Some very short wave can loop on themselves as standing waves and appear as matter. And, wherever matter is, there is less explosion happening there because in one place time cannot be both the simple explosive type and the complex derivatives conjugate as matter. This is a simple logical substitution as per the rule of non-contradiction. A universe that is operational and spontaneous requires that it be made of only one substance providing a set that can undergo all logical operations; addition, subtraction, substitution etc..

Now, lets say we want to create a universe out of nothing. First, it has to be logical and the most important rule of logic is the rule of non-contradiction. In this instance, this rule would say that there can’t be something and nothing at the same time. The key word here is “at the same time”. The only thing that can exist in a logically created universe is time itself. Only passing/exploding time can fit the bill. So, our whole universe is made of this exploding time, acceptable locally but as whole as contradiction, with a zero sum. Luckily, this sum can’t happen because the moment required to make it does not exist. There is no such thing in the universe as a moment. Every point is at a different moment from each other and time is running ..

I don’t expect you to be able to wrap your brain around this one. I have explained it a hundred times to a hundred people in a hundred different ways and I haven’t struck the right combination. I don’t think you can.

Marcel,

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Georgina Parry replied on Aug. 2, 2010 @ 05:30 GMT
Marcel-Marie,

thank you for further explaining your viewpoint. I was hopeful that there might be some common ground and that we were considering the same things in a different way, as I find is often the case when talking to other people. You say "You can't have both, the point of view of the observer (physics) and the underlying reality (ontology)". I beg to differ. I think it is essential that both are considered and used, though not within the same model simultaneously. Both models combined into one understanding give the greater reality comprising both experience and existence.

I think you have made some assumptions that I have not. One assumption is that the Universe has been created. I think that if time does not exist in objective reality, there is no need to assume that the universe was ever created or appeared out of nothing. The objective reality of the universe is atemporal imo and thus Eternal because time does not pass, or run out, there is only spatial change. Absolute space is Eternity. The Universe does not need to materialize initially from a singularity or from the word of God. It is just either gradually or episodically entirely recycled within absolute space, Eternity.

You said "The only thing that can exist in a logically created universe is time itself." I am really not sure about this. I don't think a creation event is logical. Surely God can be illogical and create whatever and if a whole universe can spring from a singularity then frankly anything can happen. I don't ascribe to the whole something out of nothing philosophy. I suppose if time is nothing and you start with nothing then you still have nothing. OK so far.... but which makes the whole universe?! It would be a leap of faith for me to accept that material substance is made of time. I could accept that a structure develops over time which is actually absolute spatial change of position. Though that is not what you are saying.

You say There is no such thing in the universe as a moment. Every point is at a different moment from each other and time is running ..Yes I can imagine it, and the creation scenario you have described. But how does it help? I have been down the route of imagining time expanding out at the big bang and waves of 3 dimensional time- it was a dead end. Being able to imagine it is not enough . It has to answer the questions and paradoxes and fit with space-time experience and everything that is observed and experienced and be self consistent. Otherwise it is just another belief.Imho.

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Georgina Parry replied on Aug. 2, 2010 @ 21:19 GMT
Marcel -Marie,

Eternity comes from the root word eternal which means without beginning or end and lasting for ever. Eternity is eternal. It seems the most appropriate word in the English language for the meaning I wish to convey.I see no reason to invent a new word just because some people have a distaste for anything that may have a religious interpretation put upon it.

I did introduce God because you mentioned logical creation. I was just pointing out the creation of the Universe is not logical whether you choose a religious or scientific model. They are equally illogical to me.

You said "First of all, you don't know what time is." I think that is a pretty rude assumption. I have given it a lot of thought over many years and now reckon I have a far better understanding than most. With that statement you have just completely discounted everything I have been explaining about time on this site and elsewhere, without even any explanation as to why you think I am incorrect. Time in my opinion is not something that can be made into the material and sub atomic substance of the universe, so I do reject the equivalence you propose on the basis of my own -understanding- of time.

You said "Space is an objective truth in our reality, it is not in the underlying reality. We make up space ourselves. Take any pair of points anywhere on a ruler and realize that at a speed limit c they are all away in time from each other i.e. not at the same moment. The whole ruler does not fit within a single moment, therefore it is not all there at once and space it represents does not exist." I understand what you are saying here because you are talking about the inter-subjective reality of experience. It is I agree not an objective truth it is a perception.

I understand space -time and can separate the reality perceived due to time delay of transmission and interception and interpretation of of information, from the reality that must exist without information transfer superimposed.I have no problem accepting that we do not see things as they are. I am not looking out of windows in my head. My brain activity is processing sensory input to fabricate a simulation of external reality with the additional information that it exists externally. It is not the underlying reality at all. Nor is the temporal separation on which you are basing your model. The observed present position and arrangement of matter is not seen where it exists At Objective Now in external objective reality. I agree. It is continuously changing and due to the delay in information transfer is never seen exactly as it is. I do understand Marcel both my own model and your explanation. This stuff is not scary imo.

By the way I do like the idea that the -whole- Object Universe is made of different forms of one thing. However I would prefer to imagine it as some kind of medium other than time. Anything would be better than time, which I do not consider to have any Objective reality.

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Ray Munroe replied on Aug. 2, 2010 @ 21:46 GMT
Dear Georgina,

I understand that you have your concept of time, and you have thought about and discussed that concept with us at great length. You are a very thorough communicator, although I also like to mix in some mathematics as well.

Did you read Jonathan Dickau's essay at Topic # 541? He had some ideas on Energy-Time unification that may tie into Marcel's ideas.

I agree with Eternity. In my models, "eternity" is an infinite Cantor set of self-similar worlds.

Have Fun!

Ray

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Marcel-Marie LeBel wrote on Aug. 2, 2010 @ 19:36 GMT
Georgina,

“Both models combined into one understanding give the greater reality comprising both experience and existence.” I agree, but care must be taken that the ontological model be not tainted with elements of the observer view e.g. space, time etc.

Imho, there is more philosophy in the word “eternity” than in the word “creation” and you are the one who introduced God into the discussion…

“?! It would be a leap of faith for me to accept that material substance is made of time.”

First of all, you don’t know what time is. It is then premature to reject this equivalence. Secondly, in the process of pair creation, a gamma ray turns into a positron and electron, matter for you. You have no problem with that, right? And that equations of induction include time, electricity and magnetism in reciprocal fashion i.e T , E and B all derivatives of each other.. Recap: matter @ gamma (EM) @ induction @ T, E, B all the same stuff; matter = time . No leap of faith here! Bonus: all being made of the same nature can effectively operate in the background according to logic.

It is common to mix up everything and get confused. Know what a truth system is (read my essay). Space is an objective truth in our reality, it is not in the underlying reality. We make up space ourselves. Take any pair of points anywhere on a ruler and realize that at a speed limit c they are all away in time from each other i.e. not at the same moment. The whole ruler does not fit within a single moment, therefore it is not all there at once and space it represents does not exist. We are comfortable when we apply this to distant stars and yet, it is the same here. Now, this is all well known and, in order to keep doing physics, we have decided to combine what we perceive and what we know in a single concept called space-time. Of course, there is no such thing in the underlying reality.

Try to understand. When you do, you’ll know. At first, you will be scared…

Marcel,

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The Lightbringer wrote on Aug. 5, 2010 @ 20:25 GMT
Great job Fast Fred. Come on FQXi, admit the truth. The dream is generally incorporating quantum mechanical pheniomena as well. I said GENERALLY, AND in keeping with the union of gravity and electromagnetism/light.

As DiMeglio says: Dreams make thought more like sensory experience in general.

And, to quote Author Frank Martin DiMeglio: "Thoughts are relatively shifting and variable. Accordingly, dream vision is relatively shifting and variable. Therefore, the quantum mechanical nature of both thought and dream vision is quite apparent. Indeed, the unpredictable and random aspects of quantum phenomena are clearly evident in dreams. The dynamic nature of quantum energy/entities is also apparent in dreams. (Light is known to be quantum mechanical in nature.)"

The dream represents the underlying and fundamental process/manifestation by which the totality of experience is attained to and known/understood at its deepest level.

FQXi -- When are you going to go in the direction of the central truth(s), never? When is the truth the truth FQXi? Answer: When money, friends, power, and funding are secondary to truth.

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Anonymous wrote on Aug. 6, 2010 @ 00:16 GMT
Please, let's not have the essay contest be on gravity, particles, and/or unification. Those are topics of the standard model, and there is no shortage of places to read such ideas. I believe there are more foundational questions that transcend the standard model, and that is where the FQXi contest should focus -- questions of time (already covered), space, the measurement problem, the Heisenberg cut. Ontology -