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Current Essay Contest

Contest Partners: The Peter and Patricia Gruber Foundation and Scientific American

Previous Contests

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

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

Wandering Towards a Goal
How can mindless mathematical laws give rise to aims and intention?
December 2, 2016 to March 3, 2017
Contest Partner: The Peter and Patricia Gruber Fund.

Trick or Truth: The Mysterious Connection Between Physics and Mathematics
Contest Partners: Nanotronics Imaging, The Peter and Patricia Gruber Foundation, and The John Templeton Foundation
Media Partner: Scientific American


How Should Humanity Steer the Future?
January 9, 2014 - August 31, 2014
Contest Partners: Jaan Tallinn, The Peter and Patricia Gruber Foundation, The John Templeton Foundation, and Scientific American

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

Questioning the Foundations
Which of Our Basic Physical Assumptions Are Wrong?
May 24 - August 31, 2012
Contest Partners: The Peter and Patricia Gruber Foundation, SubMeta, and Scientific American

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

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

The Nature of Time
August - December 2008

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Alan Lowey: on 2/10/11 at 15:19pm UTC, wrote Hi Paul, how about the imagery of an Archimedes screw which has both...

Vladimir Tamari: on 2/2/11 at 2:20am UTC, wrote Hello Paul. A quick look at your paper prompts this response: Your vision...

Paul Alexander: on 2/1/11 at 17:21pm UTC, wrote Essay Abstract This essay addresses the question “Is reality...


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May 31, 2020

CATEGORY: Is Reality Digital or Analog? Essay Contest (2010-2011) [back]
TOPIC: Is Reality Digital or Analog? A Discussion by Paul R Alexander [refresh]
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Author Paul R Alexander wrote on Feb. 1, 2011 @ 17:21 GMT
Essay Abstract

This essay addresses the question “Is reality digital or analog?” by: a) considering a range of possible realities and Universes b) proposing a hypothetical Universe, based on a fundamental physical unit which has a combination of digital and analog characteristics c) reviewing issues relating to possible pure digital and pure analog Universes d) proposing an answer to the essay question, within this framework.

Author Bio

Paul Alexander has an Honours Degree in Science (Statistics). Paul's Honours thesis reviewed the calculus of discrete vs continuous solutions to mathematical expressions for the "Law of Large Numbers".

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Vladimir F. Tamari wrote on Feb. 2, 2011 @ 02:20 GMT
Hello Paul. A quick look at your paper prompts this response: Your vision of a Universe made up of s-points is compelling. I like the idea of small irregularities evolving to form permanent features - an evolutionary interactive approach on the most basic level of a universal fabric is sound. Is it necessary though to invoke the concept of a random foam? This idea of course relates to quantum probability and randomness of the wave function. In general, of course, the devil, as they say, is in the details, in how exactly the s-points interact.

My own Beautiful Universe Theory (BU) and the essay posted here in this contest, have similarities to your ideas. The s-points correspond to my dielectric nodes, but I have avoided probabilistic ideas or even Einstein's Relativity, but tried to rebuild things from scratch. Not very convincingly so far but I tried! I am hoping to do some basic simulation of some aspects of the (BU) interactions, but it is not so easy for me and there are many interrelated phenomena in Nature to choose from. Cheers! Vladimir

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Alan Lowey wrote on Feb. 10, 2011 @ 15:19 GMT
Hi Paul, how about the imagery of an Archimedes screw which has both particle and wave properties? Would this be a contender for the visualisation of the fundamental particles?

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