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you could probably make any number of different models to fit it, especially if you select the bits you choose to include.
I,m afraid the talk of 'models' does not allay my fears. In fact, quite the opposite, because it makes physics sound like a game of 'fit the image to the stars', you know, looking at the stars and seeing pictures in them, and, really, you can see any picture you like, and especially if you select which stars to include!It seems to me that the world we live in is incredibly complex, and you could probably make any number of different models to fit it, especially if you select the bits you choose to include. And now I start thinking to myself (and I should say here that I happen to have heard that the Einstein model of the universe was not the only one on offer at the time, but the others have been forgotten because, well, to be blunt, Einstein had the right friends!)... so, to get back to what I am thinking to myself, is the science that we have today the only model that we could be using? If there are others, why are we using the one we are using? Is it because say, Newton or Faraday or Maxwell, had enough clout that they could have their theories oust all the competition? And then, if we are saying that it is a matter of 'whose' theory it was, rather than which theory might be best, then what are the consequences? Are we in fact left with a model of the universe which is very inferior to what we might have had if truth had mattered more than vested interest?The more I go down this road the more uneasy I become.....Again I have to say... help!!!
If I'm not mistaken, the spectra of elements in other parts of the Universe have been recorded from their light and are the same as the spectra of those same elements on Earth, right (except that they are modified slightly by redshift or blueshift of the light)?If the spectra of elements is the same there as it is here, then the physics that governs atoms much be the same as well. For example, the EM strength must be the same, as must the quantum numbers that determine electronic structure. The mass of the electron must be the same as well.
Wouldn't you love to know, though!
As you say, this only works as far as we can see stars, but beyond the point where we see stars we really cannot say very much.
Quote from: DoctorBeaver on 28/03/2008 07:36:35Wouldn't you love to know, though! Are you suggesting that it is necessarily 'knowable' and 'understandable'?
QuoteAs you say, this only works as far as we can see stars, but beyond the point where we see stars we really cannot say very much.you can imply quite a lot, though. If things were, in fact, very different beyond our vision then an observer out there would see different pictures in different directions. Likely? |It would be a real coincidence; hence the Cosmological principle.
It is of fundamental importance to the theories of physics that the laws if physics are the same everywhere in the universe. Also, that space is the same everywhere. How can we possibly know this?
Two things about that: in the first place, I thought science was about TRUTH, and if it is, then difficulty is neither here nor there. This thing about difficulty and cost in time and effort is putting expediency before TRUTH, and surely that cannot be right or healthy?
And talking of health, physics is surely just the base science upon which most others build, and if that is so, then if physics is uncertain, then so too must be all the others, and if that is true, then it applies to medical sciences, and that has my hair standing on end, because I need to be able to trust the medical professionals!
Soul Surfer says my brain is doing the same thing as scientists ... I disagree. If I fall down, my brain concludes that there is something that makes me go downwards with a bump, as it were, but it would not go off and make work out that it was an inverse square law, and then use that to make predictions about projectiles and planets in orbit and so on.
in fact, something is just occuring to me as i write, and it is to do with competition: it seems to me that my brain id fundamentally different in that is ACCUMULATES from experience, takes EVERYTHING on board, which is different from science, where one theory has to COMPETE with another.
Well, this is certainly getting me thinking!
first, what is made of observations of light from distant stars and galaxies (as an artist I certainly love the pictures that come from this!)If I get this correctly, scientists look at light coming from sources in the sky, and they, as it were, draw a picture of what they see, and then they look at what they have here on earth, and they say that the light from the stars looks just the same as the light from atoms or whatever, that we have on earth, and therefore they must be the same thing. Well, that is too simplistic, and the can't be right.
So, just because two things look alike, one can conclude nothing. So what is the difference between what scientists are doing with the things they see in the night sky and what Freud (and numerous pseudo-scientist)were doing with the things they were looking at?
Lets go right back to the beginning of science! I have usually heard it said, (I watch programmes like COSMOS by Carl Sagan and the like) that the roots of modern science go back to the ancient Greeks.As an artist, i am well acquainted with the ancient Greeks. They had a preoccupation with 'reality'. It is often claimed that they took art forwards by discarding the kind of thing the Egyptians were doing .... representing people or gods as having heads of animals and so on .... and concentrating on creating images that 'looked' real. Well, actually, what the Greeks were doing was throwing out INSIGHT in favour of surface look-a-like. When the older cultures represented people and gods as having animal heads and so on, they were using METAPHOR to reveal insights into how those gods and people BEHAVED. So, when we talk of someone as 'bullish', or as predatory, we are saying things about how they think and behave, and if we represent these people as having the appropriate animal parts, we are communicating our insights about their true natures. That insight is what the Greeks threw out! So they left us with a much shallower art, that concerns itself only with what is on the surface. I wonder, did they do the same with science?
If you say something to someone often enough (and coca cola advertisers among others are very well aware of this effect) they will come to accept it. So, has science brain-washed us into accepting things that are not at all reasonable?
On the other hand, I could turn round and say, do you have any reason to suppose things are the same at the other end of the universe? And what? You put the onus on me to justify what I am saying and say that if you do not KNOW things are different, then you have to think they are the same? No to that.
I do hope scientists are as robust as they seem. I am poking and proding, but then, they do actually profess to hold a defensible position, and to welcome scrutiny!