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Thread: A scientific supernatural belief?

  1. #71

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    Quote Originally Posted by NothingToSeeHere1 View Post
    okay,
    no.1: No. Every person on the planet that accepts science knows this to be true.
    Ha -- such optimism! If only the problems of epistemology could be resolved so easily!

    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Epistemology

    A rocket scientist made the news recently because he had built a rocket to prove that the Earth is flat... You can lead a horse to water, but can't make him drink.

    https://www.theguardian.com/us-news/...t-earth-theory



    Quote Originally Posted by Orange View Post
    As I said... "in ANY system there WILL be paradoxes, it's the one with the LEAST contradictions, theoretically and experimentally, that is considered to describe most accurately."
    Are you sure that there will be paradoxes in ANY system? How can that necessarily be the case?



    Quote Originally Posted by Drifter View Post
    ...I can easily change my position in three dimensional space, but I have no control over my 'position' in time. This is my "natural perception" anyway.
    I think relativity says that you are moving through spacetime at a fixed speed -- the speed of light. When you are stationary in space, you are moving through time at the speed of light. If you were to move through space at the speed of light, you would stop moving through time (all relatively speaking).



    Quote Originally Posted by Drifter View Post
    Also, "time" is a much more difficult subject to understand on a philosophical level. I find it difficult to think of time as being the same as a spatial dimension. I have a rough understanding of what 4 dimensional space would be like...
    Then just imagine that, but call one of the dimensions "time".

  2. #72

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    Quote Originally Posted by tiny View Post
    Are you sure that there will be paradoxes in ANY system? How can that necessarily be the case?
    Any self-referential one. Check it out.

    - - - Updated - - -



    Quote Originally Posted by Drifter View Post
    Many famous physicists made their greatest achievements in their mid-twenties. You have the advantage on me there.
    Heh. Well I'll be sure to mention you if I ever get a Nobel Prize. :P



    Quote Originally Posted by Drifter View Post
    I'm not qualified to explain it. I'm simply pointing out what a seemingly qualified physicist has written. No doubt there are differing hypothesis within QFT.

    I never even heard of QFT until Tiny had me look at this YouTube video last year. David Tong gives an entertaining lecture. I know entertainment doesn't equal science, but I like QFT on an intuitive level despite not understanding the math or science behind it.
    I'll check out the vidya, come back and edit.



    Quote Originally Posted by Drifter View Post
    I personally don't believe people will ever be able to adequately describe the ultimate buildong blocks of the universe with words or formulas, but I'm still fascinated by what scientists are saying.
    It's penises all the way down. xD

    (Sorry, I had to.)

    Oh I totally agree with you there, so does mathematics. Check out the link I gave tiny above.




    Quote Originally Posted by Drifter View Post
    The difference is that I can easily change my position in three dimensional space, but I have no control over my 'position' in time. This is my "natural perception" anyway.

    Also, "time" is a much more difficult subject to understand on a philosophical level. I find it difficult to think of time as being the same as a spatial dimension. I have a rough understanding of what 4 dimensional space would be like, and can see the possibility of our universe somehow being curved in 4 dimensional space if such a thing exists, but I would picture it as being 4D + time. That's just me though.
    See, here's a big thing that I feel like physics educators in the general public tend to miss: Minkowski space (aka spacetime) is noneuclidean and the time dimension is treated differently than the three spatial dimensions. If you're not getting too deep into the math behind it, it's a lot more intuitive to think of spacetime as 3+1 dimensions. The reason that they are combined together into a four dimensional system despite being given different treatments is because your position and perception in and of three dimensional space is inextricably linked with your position and perception in and of time. Time by itself and distance by itself are not invariant, since observers in relative motion at high speed will disagree on the time between events or the distance between events, so measuring time and distance separately cannot produce an accurate outcome. On the other hand, observers in relative motion can agree on the measure of a particular combination of distance and time called a spacetime interval (roughly analogous to a distance between two points on in a euclidean space) and thus the combination of space and time produces an accurate outcome that the two cannot generate separately. The reason that we don't see these effects the wonkiness of time in everyday life is because the speed of light is so damn fast and the particles moving anywhere close to that are so damn small that, with unaided human perception and at ordinary speeds, there isn't much we can observe which is noticeably different from what they would observe if time was completely separate from space.

    There's a lot more nuance and complicated math to it but that's basically the gist of it.

  3. #73

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    Quote Originally Posted by Orange
    It's penises all the way down. xD



    Quote Originally Posted by Orange
    ...

    There's a lot more nuance and complicated math to it but that's basically the gist of it.


    Quote Originally Posted by tiny View Post
    I think relativity says that you are moving through spacetime at a fixed speed -- the speed of light. When you are stationary in space, you are moving through time at the speed of light. If you were to move through space at the speed of light, you would stop moving through time (all relatively speaking).
    At this point my inner GPS just keeps repeating "recalculating".

    I still find QFT fascinating, although the math and science behind it isn't any easier to understand than it is for relativity or quantum mechanics. Field theories have been around for a long time and it looks to me like they might be getting renewed attention in the physics community.


    Quote Originally Posted by tiny
    Then just imagine that, but call one of the dimensions "time".
    Ok. Then let's call the other three god, love, and sex. That would make reality so much easier to understand.

  4. #74

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    Quote Originally Posted by Orange View Post
    Any self-referential one. Check it out.
    Ah... Gödel's incompleteness theorems... I remember touching on them when I was studying philosophy... About the time I was reading one of Bertrand Russell's books... and considering some kind of (imaginary) machine that could read a chain of punched cards (?) and did something interesting... (Ring any bells?) Curse my memory!

    I read the wiki page and delved a bit further... but... I still don't get it! Can it's conclusions be summarised in a few points...?

    I'll definitely have another look when I get a chance. Cheers for the tip! :-)



    Quote Originally Posted by Orange View Post
    It's penises all the way down. xD

    (Sorry, I had to.)
    Chortle! I'm still chuckling at "Mount Stupid"!



    Quote Originally Posted by tiny View Post
    I think relativity says that you are moving through spacetime at a fixed speed -- the speed of light. When you are stationary in space, you are moving through time at the speed of light. If you were to move through space at the speed of light, you would stop moving through time (all relatively speaking).


    Quote Originally Posted by Drifter View Post
    At this point my inner GPS just keeps repeating "recalculating".
    Think about the spaceman who goes on a long voyage, and returns to find he has aged less than his twin, as he has accelerated through spacetime relative to the other. As he accelerates through space, he travels more slowly through time; yet his speed through spacetime remains constant (I think...)

    Uh...



    Quote Originally Posted by Drifter View Post
    Ok. Then let's call the other three god, love, and sex. That would make reality so much easier to understand.
    How would that even make sense?! Are you teasing me...

  5. #75

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    Quote Originally Posted by tiny View Post
    Ah... Gödel's incompleteness theorems... I remember touching on them when I was studying philosophy... About the time I was reading one of Bertrand Russell's books... and considering some kind of (imaginary) machine that could read a chain of punched cards (?) and did something interesting... (Ring any bells?) Curse my memory!

    I read the wiki page and delved a bit further... but... I still don't get it! Can it's conclusions be summarised in a few points...?
    I suspect you're thinking of a Turing Machine and of the Halting Problem, which is an important result in Computer Science and in Mathematics.

    Gödel's Incompleteness Theorem shows that for any system of assumptions or axioms, there will be conclusions whose validity cannot be established within the confines of that system. There will always be unanswerable questions. Specifically, the self-consistency of a system of axioms cannot be demonstrated by those axioms; self-consistency must ultimately remain unproven. Turing's Halting Problem effectively demonstrates that there is no surefire method by which to identify which questions are unanswerable, and which are merely very hard.

    Famously, the brilliant mathematician Georg Cantor suffered a nervous breakdown while attempting to answer just such a question, known as the Continuum Hypothesis. Long story short: Cantor was the first to prove conclusively that there are different sizes of infinity, and specifically that the quantity of real numbers is larger than the quantity of integers, even though both are infinite quantities. Cantor was able to establish that there are, in fact, an infinite number of different sizes of infinity — but which infinite number? ^.^ The Continuum Hypothesis asks whether there is an intermediate size, an infinity larger than the size of the set of integers yet smaller than the size of the set of real numbers. More generally, it asks if there exists a continuum of sizes of infinity just like the real numbers, or whether infinities come only in discrete quantized sizes like the integers. It seems like the kind of question that ought to have an answer, but it doesn't. Incidentally, Cantor was not the only mathematician to suffer a breakdown from trying to answer it… Gödel later did as well.

    One last note: according to my understanding of Gödel's Incompleteness Theorem, it does not demonstrate that any self-referential system contains paradoxes, only that a system cannot prove itself to be free of them.

  6. #76

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    Quote Originally Posted by tiny View Post
    Think about the spaceman who goes on a long voyage, and returns to find he has aged less than his twin, as he has accelerated through spacetime relative to the other. As he accelerates through space, he travels more slowly through time; yet his speed through spacetime remains constant (I think...)
    It gets confusing. You and I talk about acceleration whereas most people only talk about velocity being the reason for time dilation. The difference in velocity relative to two observers is the same for both of them. So is the distance. People claim that each observer would see the other as aging more slowly. If that was the case then either they are having an illusion or they are both aging more slowly. Either way their ages would have remained the same relative to the other once they are reunited. Of course, the idea that each aged more slowly than the other makes no sense at all, so I will go with the illusion hypothesis if they were to claim this is what they saw.

    The "spaceman" is imaginary. I can just as easily imagine the spaceman 'aging' faster than his earthbound counterpart due to the stresses of space travel. I believe I understand this 'thought experiment' on one level: if spacetime is plotted on two axes, time and distance, then increasing along one axis, while maintaining constant velocity, would cause a decrease along the other axis. But this thought experiment is only answering the question - "what would it look like if space and time could be plotted this way?" It isn't proof of anything.

    The fact that clocks subjected to space travel lose time, in agreement with relativity theory, is interesting. But it doesn't answer the question of whether this is due to some kind of time shift or due to mechanical issues caused by being exposed to external forces. I'm just guessing here but I believe the mathematical models used to describe relativity theory would be similar to models used to describe the behavior of atoms in an atomic clock that is exposed to the force of acceleration. I'm way over my head on this so I can't offer any proof.

    Time is still a mystery to me. I've worked with hundreds of graphs plotting various things over time. The idea of time being an axis is well imbedded in my brain. It seems to be a linear kind of thing: past, present, and future. But, philosophically, time may exist as a single point: now; and may not be a line at all. I need some time to wrap my head around this.

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