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Author Topic: Descartes and empty space  (Read 12064 times)

Offline DoctorBeaver

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Re: Descartes and empty space
« Reply #25 on: 05/06/2005 17:31:53 »
GS - that's very well put. But let me ask you this. Did you try to verify every single fact that you were taught or did you take it for granted that your teachers were right? For instance, have you ever sought verifiable corroboration that the battle of Hastings was in 1066?
 

Offline chimera

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Re: Descartes and empty space
« Reply #26 on: 05/06/2005 20:04:30 »
gsmollin, I think your rendition of the art of science is a bit simplistic in the sense that science in your view only deals in things that can be experimented upon, and the rest is nice, but baloney. I don't think life accepts such artificial borders between science and philosophy, or likewise with science and religion.

Furthermore you really don't have to convince us of the scientific method, at least not at every opportunity whenever we're having an armchair debate on ur-soup or the deaper moanings of life, and stuff. Without trying to sound snide, it's a bit like being told you're loafing or something working at McDonalds while your should be flipping burgers. Sorry, science to me is more than reading instruments and measurements or discussing 'hard' numbers. Armchair philosphy CAN lead to new insights, I think. It is nothing to be sneezed at.
And at least half the fun, I think. Again, I hope you don't take this as offensive. You know I value your opinions greatly.

OK, Eth: think of this - light is the 'fixator' or 'effectuator' of time. The particles travelling at lightspeed experience time as if it was standing still, yet propagate all information about cause and effect in this universe. This is not contradicting Einstein btw, he says that only when two events follow so quickly on each other that light cannot travel between them in that time, that those two events *could* be seen by an observer (given the right speed and angle) to have happened in reverse order.

Meaning no information could travel between them that would lead to a conundrum.

So in a sense, lightspeed is a kind of 'sanity check' of the universe to keep things tidy in the cause-and-effect department. And time is somehow the light moving 'sideways' as you described, in a sense. So, photons standing still in time while 'updating' the rest of the universe of what happened locally. Make some strange sense.

Now people can say this is just a coincidence, light's no propagator of time, it's only there so we can see stuff, very handy, but immaterial. I say: why would you need a deeper 'mechanism' than this that you are already looking at? I invoke Occam's razor. :)
« Last Edit: 05/06/2005 20:51:56 by chimera »
 

Offline DoctorBeaver

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Re: Descartes and empty space
« Reply #27 on: 05/06/2005 21:42:45 »
quote:
OK, Eth: think of this - light is the 'fixator' or 'effectuator' of time

Is it? Isn't it time that defines how fast light can travel? No matter the frame of reference you're observing from, light can only travel a certain distance in a certain time. Is it true to say that only a given amount of time can pass between a photon moving from point A to point B?
 

Offline chimera

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Re: Descartes and empty space
« Reply #28 on: 05/06/2005 21:52:38 »
quote:
Originally posted by DoctorBeaver

quote:
OK, Eth: think of this - light is the 'fixator' or 'effectuator' of time

Is it? Isn't it time that defines how fast light can travel?



Just as my measure tape dictates the distance it will travel? :)
« Last Edit: 05/06/2005 21:53:21 by chimera »
 

Offline DoctorBeaver

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Re: Descartes and empty space
« Reply #29 on: 05/06/2005 22:04:13 »
It's a monkey-puzzle indeed. My intellect isn't large enough to fathom it
 

Offline chimera

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Re: Descartes and empty space
« Reply #30 on: 05/06/2005 22:17:17 »
Actually, as I said before, time is the only thing we CANNOT directly measure, the rest we can. This would suggest to me to take time more (or less, depending) seriously as a candidate for 'side effect' of the month, not the others. In that sense measurement, and the ability to,  is ofcourse always nice. There gsmollin and I agree.

I'll repeat my summons to the scientific community: What's the measure, particle, or the observed *mechanism* of Time?

A deep and resounding silence is what normally follows at this point....
 

Offline chimera

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Re: Descartes and empty space
« Reply #31 on: 06/06/2005 10:43:07 »
Noone? thought so.

Light - the unmoved mover. Mmm. Nice title for a little piece on inductio ad absurdum where the rules do not rule certain conclusions out, so they *could* be true, however repulsive the idea.

How often do we not do exactly follow that recipe in quantum mechanics, and did not soomeone once observe that whatever remains, however improbable, must be true?
 

Offline gsmollin

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Re: Descartes and empty space
« Reply #32 on: 06/06/2005 15:29:22 »
chimera, maybe you are looking for this forum: http://www.thenakedscientists.com/forum/forum.asp?FORUM_ID=6

At the top of the page in this forum, it says "science", so if I remind you about the scientific method, then no offense intended, but I am on topic, and you are not.

In the future, I'll not comment on your religious posts. I shall try to stay polite, but in many forums you would be getting scatagorical spam rants.
« Last Edit: 06/06/2005 15:30:25 by gsmollin »
 

Offline chimera

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Re: Descartes and empty space
« Reply #33 on: 06/06/2005 15:58:23 »
quote:
Originally posted by gsmollin

chimera, maybe you are looking for this forum: http://www.thenakedscientists.com/forum/forum.asp?FORUM_ID=6

At the top of the page in this forum, it says "science", so if I remind you about the scientific method, then no offense intended, but I am on topic, and you are not.

In the future, I'll not comment on your religious posts. I shall try to stay polite, but in many forums you would be getting scatagorical spam rants.



gsmollin:

- philosophy is part of science

- I asked for a scientific answer to the phenomenon of time, I get none

- I made a remark about a coincidence between religion and science, and a correct one I think - refute it if you will, simple complaining about it does not help anyone

- I make no religious posts, since I am not a religious person.

- if I recall correctly your first intrusion into this discussion was with a historically incorrect joke, but correct me if I'm wrong. In certain forums you'd be flamed for several technical reasons right there and then, if I'm not mistaken.

Fortunately we aren't, eh?
 

Offline DoctorBeaver

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Re: Descartes and empty space
« Reply #34 on: 06/06/2005 18:30:23 »
quote:
Actually, as I said before, time is the only thing we CANNOT directly measure, the rest we can. This would suggest to me to take time more (or less, depending) seriously as a candidate for 'side effect' of the month, not the others.

I said in another thread that it had occurred to me that maybe time was a side-effect ( I think I said function, but it's the same thing)

GS & Chimera - don't start getting bitchy! [:o)] There are some good points being espoused by both sides. And I think if anyone is guilty of bringing religion into some of these debates it's probably me
 

Offline DoctorBeaver

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Re: Descartes and empty space
« Reply #35 on: 06/06/2005 18:34:40 »
quote:
philosophy is part of science

Of course it is. In areas that are at present impirically unprovable, theory is no different to philosophy. If a philosophical viewpoint is logically consistent then in what way is it inferior to purely conjectural mathematics?
 

Offline chimera

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Re: Descartes and empty space
« Reply #36 on: 06/06/2005 21:51:24 »
Frankly, gsmollin brought in religion himself with his first posting, kind of bring-your-own-straw man.

But when you ask a direct question he's pas a la maison. If he cannot quote the manual, the problem does not exist, sorry. Or rather not sorry, but you get the 'you must be methaphysically challenged' routine, and labeled 'probably contageous', and therefore hasta la vista.

Shame.
 

Offline chimera

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Re: Descartes and empty space
« Reply #37 on: 09/06/2005 09:15:45 »
quote:
Originally posted by DoctorBeaver

quote:
And is a 4-dimensional space not just 3-dimensional space doing a rerun, slightly different this time? I mean, it's the same 3 dimensions, just later. Time is just a sequence counter, in that sense. Not a real dimension always present, like the other 3. Those other three are ALWAYS present

Imagine a 2D object being moved along a 3rd dimension by an external force. The 2D object could not percieve that force as such as it exists in a dimension unaccessible to the object. The object wouldn't realise it was actually moving but things around it would change as a result of that movement.
Now, in my analogy, substitute a human being for the 2D object and have Time as a 4th D through which we are being moved by an external force. We can easily percieve & understand the 3rd D which was so mysterious to the 2D object and it's Time (the 4th D) which presents us with conceptual problems. It's quite possible that the 4th D is always present, just that we can't percieve it.
Think also of a photon. It travels at the speed of light which, I believe, as a result of time dilation means that from its perspective the entire life of the universe passes in zero time. For it, the 4th D doesn't exist. (Something in the murky depths of my brain tells me that the photon situation has some profound importance but the concept won't quite manifest itself yet.I'll probably wake up at 3am & shout "Eureka!")



I've been thinking a lot about this specific post the last couple of days.

How's this. We have problems imagining a 4D environment. 3D is our max. Time is perceived as motion. Light and radation travelling at lightspeed do not perceive time.

Now turn this topsy-turvy in your mind, like pulling something inside-out, and you can just barely imagine (I can) the universe MOVING in the 4th dimension via lightspeed, which we see with our human brains as 3D + motion and time. So any radiation (like light) travelling at lightspeed is actually the universe moving along this unseen 4th line, and any particle actually doing that, not perceiving normal 3D time at ALL. They are mutually exclusive.

[added for clarification:] This means that light is standing still in the 4th dimension, and ONLY moves in 3. Anything moving slower than light will still be moving in the 4th dimension and notice time. Only if you get to lightspeed time comes to a complete standstill.

This means time is an inverse function of motion in the 4th dimension. Anything stopping movement in the 4th dimension altogether automatically goes to lightspeed in the other 3.

Inversely this means that the slower you go in 3D, the faster your movement in the 4th is. And explains why you cannot go faster than light - without going back in time, if movement along that path is even allowed (!). Would rule out faster than light drives - you can not go slower than a full standstill in the 4th dimension - at lightspeed in the others.

Also throws some light (pun intended) on the fact why an 'observer' is so important in Quantum Mechanics, even if it's not a conscious being but an apparatus doing the observing, they always LOOK (via light or other radiation). That is not the passive thing it's made out to be, in this scenario. It's an act.

Time is a great teacher, but unfortunately it kills all its pupils - Hector Louis Berlioz
« Last Edit: 09/06/2005 12:12:57 by chimera »
 

Offline chimera

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Re: Descartes and empty space
« Reply #38 on: 10/06/2005 11:12:16 »
I just realised this scenario is essentially Minkowski's model of 4D space, which took Einstein a full 4 years to accept, btw. Gosh, Eth, we're geniuses, just 80 years too late... or have only 80 years to catch up, whatever you prefer.

So a bit of philosophising can lead to pure science after all, which just goes to show.

What Minkowski does not talk about, though is the fact that this means that EVERY object moving at a different speed has its own time, with accompanying number of slices, at ANY speed, even our slow terrestrial ones. This could be an alternative solution to the turtle and the hare problem - the increments in time-events are not of equal length for both objects.

Also, if two objects in close proximity in 3D achieve the same speed in this 4th dimension there could also be an 'unseen' attraction *because* of this similarity in 4D speed. This could be interptreted as gravity in 3D, and would work stronger for solid matter than for energy, but also for energy.

I think this would mean that if you send two high-energy lightbeams they would eventually converge, because of this. They'd be going at the same speed in 4D, so they fall towards each other, without any visible mechanism in the normal 3 dimensions to be found.

Time is a great teacher, but unfortunately it kills all its pupils - Hector Louis Berlioz
 

Offline DoctorBeaver

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Re: Descartes and empty space
« Reply #39 on: 11/06/2005 07:59:16 »
[xx(]
 

Offline chimera

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Re: Descartes and empty space
« Reply #40 on: 11/06/2005 08:34:09 »
quote:
Originally posted by DoctorBeaver

[xx(]



Yeah, I guess so.
 

Offline gsmollin

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Re: Descartes and empty space
« Reply #41 on: 13/06/2005 17:42:20 »
quote:
Originally posted by chimera
...I asked for a scientific answer to the phenomenon of time, I get none ...



http://plato.stanford.edu/entries/spacetime-bebecome/
 

Offline chimera

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Re: Descartes and empty space
« Reply #42 on: 13/06/2005 18:05:46 »
quote:
Originally posted by gsmollin

quote:
Originally posted by chimera
...I asked for a scientific answer to the phenomenon of time, I get none ...



http://plato.stanford.edu/entries/spacetime-bebecome/



Thank you.
 

The Naked Scientists Forum

Re: Descartes and empty space
« Reply #42 on: 13/06/2005 18:05:46 »

 

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