# The Naked Scientists Forum

### Author Topic: Is distance an absolute invariant?  (Read 16362 times)

#### Thebox

• Neilep Level Member
• Posts: 3164
• Thanked: 46 times
##### Re: Is distance an absolute invariant?
« Reply #125 on: 07/02/2016 10:13:27 »
So by length contraction you actually mean length compression of a moving body?

And in saying that a moving body must also have a height expansion/decompression?

L=x

x+v=<x

<x=>y

So in vacuum a spring travels at the near speed of light, what force makes the spring compress?  acceleration?  can't be speed
« Last Edit: 07/02/2016 10:24:27 by Thebox »

#### Colin2B

• Global Moderator
• Neilep Level Member
• Posts: 1921
• Thanked: 125 times
##### Re: Is distance an absolute invariant?
« Reply #126 on: 07/02/2016 11:32:20 »
So by length contraction you actually mean length compression of a moving body?
No, it is called length contraction so it doesnt get confused with compression. Compression implies pressure or pushing inwards. This is space changing, imagine a stretched rubber band, draw a line on it, now let the band contract and the line is shorter. Gravity and speed affect the stretch of spacetime.
And in saying that a moving body must also have a height expansion/decompression?
No, just length in the direction of movement.

So in vacuum a spring travels at the near speed of light, what force makes the spring compress?  acceleration?  can't be speed
Explain why it can't be speed.
Remember there is no force compressing the spring

#### alancalverd

• Global Moderator
• Neilep Level Member
• Posts: 4725
• Thanked: 155 times
• life is too short to drink instant coffee
##### Re: Is distance an absolute invariant?
« Reply #127 on: 07/02/2016 11:52:41 »
As Colin says, contraction, as observed by a second party moving relative to the stick, not compression, which would be observed by a traveller on the stick.

You can avoid a lot of confusion by using the same words as everyone else.

#### Thebox

• Neilep Level Member
• Posts: 3164
• Thanked: 46 times
##### Re: Is distance an absolute invariant?
« Reply #128 on: 07/02/2016 11:59:33 »
As Colin says, contraction, as observed by a second party moving relative to the stick, not compression, which would be observed by a traveller on the stick.

You can avoid a lot of confusion by using the same words as everyone else.

So let me get this right, space-time you really mean light?

length contraction you are on about the angles of an object relative to light?

You  mean light contracts relative to the observer?
« Last Edit: 07/02/2016 12:06:59 by Thebox »

#### Colin2B

• Global Moderator
• Neilep Level Member
• Posts: 1921
• Thanked: 125 times
##### Re: Is distance an absolute invariant?
« Reply #129 on: 07/02/2016 14:41:14 »
So let me get this right, space-time you really mean light?
No, we said spacetime we meant spacetime, not light
length contraction you are on about the angles of an object relative to light?

You  mean light contracts relative to the observer?
No, light remains the same speed for all observers when we consider movement in special relativity.
We are not talking about the angles of light relative to an object, but sometimes that can be used as an analogy.

#### Thebox

• Neilep Level Member
• Posts: 3164
• Thanked: 46 times
##### Re: Is distance an absolute invariant?
« Reply #130 on: 07/02/2016 14:53:57 »
So let me get this right, space-time you really mean light?
No, we said spacetime we meant spacetime, not light
length contraction you are on about the angles of an object relative to light?

You  mean light contracts relative to the observer?
No, light remains the same speed for all observers when we consider movement in special relativity.
We are not talking about the angles of light relative to an object, but sometimes that can be used as an analogy.

Huh?  now I am back to square one, what do you mean by ''This is space changing'',  ?

How exactly can space change when space is not made of anything ?  What are you suggesting changes?

There is no proven ether, there is no solidity, the values are zero, so how can zero change?

#### Ethos_

• Neilep Level Member
• Posts: 1277
• Thanked: 14 times
##### Re: Is distance an absolute invariant?
« Reply #131 on: 07/02/2016 15:10:37 »

There is no proven ether, there is no solidity, the values are zero, so how can zero change?
Think for a moment about what you just said; "there is no solidity". This example is not the reason for length contraction but may help you understand how it could happen.
« Last Edit: 07/02/2016 15:13:23 by Ethos_ »

#### Colin2B

• Global Moderator
• Neilep Level Member
• Posts: 1921
• Thanked: 125 times
##### Re: Is distance an absolute invariant?
« Reply #132 on: 07/02/2016 15:12:29 »
space is not made of anything ....... the values are zero, so how can zero change?

And also you didnt answer my queston

Explain why it can't be speed

#### alancalverd

• Global Moderator
• Neilep Level Member
• Posts: 4725
• Thanked: 155 times
• life is too short to drink instant coffee
##### Re: Is distance an absolute invariant?
« Reply #133 on: 07/02/2016 16:23:00 »
So let me get this right, space-time you really mean light?

No. If I had meant light, I would have written light. And I haven't mentioned space-time at all.

Just read the words on the bloody card!

#### Thebox

• Neilep Level Member
• Posts: 3164
• Thanked: 46 times
##### Re: Is distance an absolute invariant?
« Reply #134 on: 07/02/2016 19:08:45 »
So let me get this right, space-time you really mean light?

No. If I had meant light, I would have written light. And I haven't mentioned space-time at all.

Just read the words on the bloody card!

My apologies, it was Colin who mentioned stretching of space-time.

As Colin says, contraction, as observed by a second party moving relative to the stick, not compression, which would be observed by a traveller on the stick.

You can avoid a lot of confusion by using the same words as everyone else.
I have read this about 3 times and still observe no contraction.

Let us use a surfer on a surfboard surfing in space, and parallel to the surfer is another surfer travelling the same speed and direction.

s1→→→→→

s2→→→→→

So what am I looking at in this scenario that contracts?

a. the length of the surf board?

b. the distance?

« Last Edit: 07/02/2016 19:11:18 by Thebox »

#### jeffreyH

• Global Moderator
• Neilep Level Member
• Posts: 3927
• Thanked: 55 times
• The graviton sucks
##### Re: Is distance an absolute invariant?
« Reply #135 on: 07/02/2016 19:44:46 »

No, I said

Quote
If you define b as being a fixed distance from a, then obviously [distance is invariant]. If you define b as being the other end of a stick, relativistic contraction will apply if the stick moves relative to an observer.

Thebox please read Alan's answer above through as many times as necessary. It tells you ALL you need to know. You can even come back and ask questions if it is not exactly clear. There is a subtle distinction in what Alan has said that you might miss.

#### Thebox

• Neilep Level Member
• Posts: 3164
• Thanked: 46 times
##### Re: Is distance an absolute invariant?
« Reply #136 on: 07/02/2016 19:58:48 »

No, I said

Quote
If you define b as being a fixed distance from a, then obviously [distance is invariant]. If you define b as being the other end of a stick, relativistic contraction will apply if the stick moves relative to an observer.

Thebox please read Alan's answer above through as many times as necessary. It tells you ALL you need to know. You can even come back and ask questions if it is not exactly clear. There is a subtle distinction in what Alan has said that you might miss.

Yes I have read that too, several times now, it sounds like Alan is saying space is an invariant but a stick if it moves shrinks in length.

Without an opposing force to the direction of the stick I do not see how this is possible.

Where can I view the observation evidence of this?

#### timey

• Neilep Level Member
• Posts: 1307
• Thanked: 8 times
##### Re: Is distance an absolute invariant?
« Reply #137 on: 07/02/2016 20:22:38 »
Yes Space Flow, (chuckle)  I truly know the feeling!  Have you read 'The Trouble with Physics' Lee Smolin?
No I have not read his book and to tell you the truth I have no intention to.
I 110% agree with his views and basically have learned to avoid the subjects of "String theory", "M theory", "God", Multiverse, or any other religion you want to name.
There is a definition of what can be classed as a theory within the confines of the scientific method and none of those qualify.
Therefore I have no interest in reading or hearing any more about them.
If your idea can not make a testable prediction, it is not a "scientific" theory.
At best it is a hypothesis.

I don't know why you wouldn't be interested in Lee Smolin's book.  It basically echoes your sentiments here exactly, and illustrates each part of everything within physics that does not match up.

Hope all went well with surgeon.

#### timey

• Neilep Level Member
• Posts: 1307
• Thanked: 8 times
##### Re: Is distance an absolute invariant?
« Reply #138 on: 07/02/2016 20:28:11 »
Can you tell me who these others are please?  It's just that I'm now making an assessment of your intelligence, and I'm quite sure I'll find that your own assessment of a persons intelligence will help me... ;)
I'll let you make up your own mind on that one my friend. Here is a key that will help you make the informed decision: Read through their posts, when you find contradictions and errors, their intelligence becomes quite evident.

And as far as your assessment of my intelligence, if I may be so blunt; The honest search for reality is more important than intelligence. One can be quite intelligent, but if they are dishonest enough to dismiss evidence offhand just to preserve their own vision of reality, they will never achieve any thing of significance. It takes both timey, intelligence and an honest assessment of experimental observation, whether those observations fit in neatly with ones biased predisposed positions or not.

Ah... Hmmmm, OK, Lol,  I can see that I might have to start reading your posts...

(Don't mind me too much, just having myself a mild troll)

#### timey

• Neilep Level Member
• Posts: 1307
• Thanked: 8 times
##### Re: Is distance an absolute invariant?
« Reply #139 on: 07/02/2016 20:33:49 »
BTW, Alan, it hasn't surprised me in the slightest that nobody has asked if I think I'm more intelligent than you or Jeff.
We were taking that as an axiom

Oh, goodly, good Colin, I'm sooooo glad that I'm a member!  ...But could we please make that an 'absolute axiom'?  S'got a better ring to it!

But...even though I hesitate to over complicate the matter, in the interests of honesty I fear it must be done!  So...having established the fact that 'we' think that I think I am more intelligent than both Alan and Jeff - on the basis that because I come from a socially outer space non schooled and self taught perspective, I have come from a place where I bring no absolute meter stick with which you may measure us against each other...therefore perhaps my intelligence cannot be considered an invariant and 'is' actually relative.

Congrats on becoming a moderator, btw!  It's cleared something up for me, as I was wondering if the mods got a cut on all this new advertising on the forum, but I think it pretty much goes without saying that the inclusion of a fresh one at this point rules this thought out... (chuckle)
Now I was thinking of mentioning that I remember a post where Alan said he used to be a trade unionist, but it occurs that I might need to ask Chris a favour one of these days, so I'll just stick a sock in it :D

#### timey

• Neilep Level Member
• Posts: 1307
• Thanked: 8 times
##### Re: Is distance an absolute invariant?
« Reply #140 on: 07/02/2016 20:41:18 »
It is a weird one box, relativity explains length contraction mathematically, but offers no reasonable explanation as to the causation of this phenomenon.

Therefore, actually, the way is clear for a speculation... I personally speculate that because the rate of time for the contracted length is slowed via its velocity, an observer is viewing the length moving in a slower rate of time relative to their own.  An observer viewing an event from their faster rate of time, will not have 'the time' in which to view the entirety of the length as it moves within it's slower rate of time, causing the length to appear contracted to the observer.

However, a length and a distance are 2 different things.  A length is a measurement of matter, and a distance is a measurement of space. The stretching of the fabric of outer space also affects distances according to GR.

It is true that science has had the benefit of many great minds, but on the other hand, logically speaking, it is in fact an act of sheer stupidity to consider our knowledge of the universe as wise...  Our 2 best working theories cannot be fully united.  If they could, discussions such as this would be redundant...

Well yes, normally when there is a piece of maths it suppose to represent something physically observed. I observe no contraction personally so it is a bit fairy tale like.

This being, box, because space time within our macro environment is only distorted to a very, very small fraction, of a fraction, of a second.

I think, after much reflection, that the answer to your question under the remit of established physics is:

"Is distance an invariant?"

... yes, and, no!

#### timey

• Neilep Level Member
• Posts: 1307
• Thanked: 8 times
##### Re: Is distance an absolute invariant?
« Reply #141 on: 07/02/2016 21:02:05 »
If anyone needs a definitive answer to a scientific question then Alan, Evan_au, ChiralSPO, Colin2B and others I may have forgotten will provide it. They are all prepared to stand corrected by others when they are shown to be wrong in their understanding. To effectively challenge mainstream ideas requires an understanding that you can't get from pop science books. Also adopting a user name based on a pet theory should sound alarm bells.

An understanding of the universe cannot be attained by a school education either, no matter how much your parents paid, and paid for or not, a school education is no guarantee of a persons personal intellect.

A full understanding of the universe is yet to exist.

P.S.  I hadn't realised Thebox... had a theory called Thebox...  I'll have to do a search, aye :D

#### Thebox

• Neilep Level Member
• Posts: 3164
• Thanked: 46 times
##### Re: Is distance an absolute invariant?
« Reply #142 on: 07/02/2016 21:18:08 »
If anyone needs a definitive answer to a scientific question then Alan, Evan_au, ChiralSPO, Colin2B and others I may have forgotten will provide it. They are all prepared to stand corrected by others when they are shown to be wrong in their understanding. To effectively challenge mainstream ideas requires an understanding that you can't get from pop science books. Also adopting a user name based on a pet theory should sound alarm bells.

An understanding of the universe cannot be attained by a school education either, no matter how much your parents paid, and paid for or not, a school education is no guarantee of a persons personal intellect.

A full understanding of the universe is yet to exist.

P.S.  I hadn't realised Thebox... had a theory called Thebox...  I'll have to do a search, aye :D

I have not got a theory called the box.

#### Thebox

• Neilep Level Member
• Posts: 3164
• Thanked: 46 times
##### Re: Is distance an absolute invariant?
« Reply #143 on: 07/02/2016 21:19:20 »
It is a weird one box, relativity explains length contraction mathematically, but offers no reasonable explanation as to the causation of this phenomenon.

Therefore, actually, the way is clear for a speculation... I personally speculate that because the rate of time for the contracted length is slowed via its velocity, an observer is viewing the length moving in a slower rate of time relative to their own.  An observer viewing an event from their faster rate of time, will not have 'the time' in which to view the entirety of the length as it moves within it's slower rate of time, causing the length to appear contracted to the observer.

However, a length and a distance are 2 different things.  A length is a measurement of matter, and a distance is a measurement of space. The stretching of the fabric of outer space also affects distances according to GR.

It is true that science has had the benefit of many great minds, but on the other hand, logically speaking, it is in fact an act of sheer stupidity to consider our knowledge of the universe as wise...  Our 2 best working theories cannot be fully united.  If they could, discussions such as this would be redundant...

Well yes, normally when there is a piece of maths it suppose to represent something physically observed. I observe no contraction personally so it is a bit fairy tale like.

This being, box, because space time within our macro environment is only distorted to a very, very small fraction, of a fraction, of a second.

I think, after much reflection, that the answer to your question under the remit of established physics is:

"Is distance an invariant?"

... yes, and, no!

You should realise now you please need to explain why no?

#### Ethos_

• Neilep Level Member
• Posts: 1277
• Thanked: 14 times
##### Re: Is distance an absolute invariant?
« Reply #144 on: 07/02/2016 21:28:23 »

Ah... Hmmmm, OK, Lol,  I can see that I might have to start reading your posts...

(Don't mind me too much, just having myself a mild troll)
Be my guest timey, I'm sure you'll find a few contradictions and errors along the way. Like many people searching for the truth, I've had to change my mind several times when confronted with evidence. It's called "growth", something a few of us have resisted since their initial membership began.

#### timey

• Neilep Level Member
• Posts: 1307
• Thanked: 8 times
##### Re: Is distance an absolute invariant?
« Reply #145 on: 07/02/2016 22:16:58 »
If anyone needs a definitive answer to a scientific question then Alan, Evan_au, ChiralSPO, Colin2B and others I may have forgotten will provide it. They are all prepared to stand corrected by others when they are shown to be wrong in their understanding. To effectively challenge mainstream ideas requires an understanding that you can't get from pop science books. Also adopting a user name based on a pet theory should sound alarm bells.

An understanding of the universe cannot be attained by a school education either, no matter how much your parents paid, and paid for or not, a school education is no guarantee of a persons personal intellect.

A full understanding of the universe is yet to exist.

P.S.  I hadn't realised Thebox... had a theory called Thebox...  I'll have to do a search, aye :D

I have not got a theory called the box.

Aww, how cute is that?

Tbh, box, I did in fact already know this.  Try thinking it through a little bit further... :)

#### timey

• Neilep Level Member
• Posts: 1307
• Thanked: 8 times
##### Re: Is distance an absolute invariant?
« Reply #146 on: 07/02/2016 22:19:51 »

Ah... Hmmmm, OK, Lol,  I can see that I might have to start reading your posts...

(Don't mind me too much, just having myself a mild troll)
Be my guest timey, I'm sure you'll find a few contradictions and errors along the way. Like many people searching for the truth, I've had to change my mind several times when confronted with evidence. It's called "growth", something a few of us have resisted since their initial membership began.

Thanks, I will.  And speaking for myself, I'm all up for growth, progression, and a good measure of humour wherever possible.

#### timey

• Neilep Level Member
• Posts: 1307
• Thanked: 8 times
##### Re: Is distance an absolute invariant?
« Reply #147 on: 07/02/2016 22:27:09 »

You should realise now you please need to explain why no?

Really, do I have to?  Cos' from what I've seen everyone has had a go at explaining that a length contracts for an observer, that a distance contracts for a traveller, and that space time stretches distance.

Can't I explain why distance is an invariant instead?  It's the only angle that hadn't been so thoroughly covered!
« Last Edit: 07/02/2016 23:07:37 by timey »

#### Colin2B

• Global Moderator
• Neilep Level Member
• Posts: 1921
• Thanked: 125 times
##### Re: Is distance an absolute invariant?
« Reply #148 on: 07/02/2016 22:52:14 »
Can't I explain why distance is an invariant instead?
No, because the question is "is distance an absolute invariant"

The floor is your's.

#### timey

• Neilep Level Member
• Posts: 1307
• Thanked: 8 times
##### Re: Is distance an absolute invariant?
« Reply #149 on: 07/02/2016 23:12:46 »
Can't I explain why distance is an invariant instead?
No, because the question is "is distance an absolute invariant"

The floor is your's.

Check out the brain on Colin here, lol, lol, lol!!!

Is distance an 'absolute' invariant?

Is: As set out by established physics.  No!

If you ask me 'why' now, I'm going to scream!!!

#### The Naked Scientists Forum

##### Re: Is distance an absolute invariant?
« Reply #149 on: 07/02/2016 23:12:46 »