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12string

Our views on physics are too human centric

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I was reading an article about Steven Hawking's last paper to be published, and came across this quote from the co-author, Thomas Hertog:

“The mystery was why do we live in this special universe where everything is nicely balanced in order for complexity and life to emerge?”

And I saw it as a completely backwards thought process.  It's no mystery at all.  This universe existed long before any animal or vegetable life existed.  That life only exists in the form we as humans understand it only because it was borne out of the special balance.  But because we as humans only know one universe, one form of life, 4 dimensions, we expect that the entire universe can be defined in those constraints.  It's rather egocentric thinking.  The paper discusses other universes, and the space between them.  Thinking in terms other than what we know in our universe, maybe in one of those other universes, with a different balance, and a different "life" in a form we can't possibly comprehend, there's a version of a physicist wondering why our universe is incapable of supporting life but theirs is.

We have no idea of how many other dimensions exist, and we have no ability to ever comprehend what they might be.  So we are constrained in our thinking by human space and time.  Why do so few scientists consider that in their theorizing?  It's fine for earth sciences, but backwards thinking for theories on the universe - or whatever else might be out there.

 

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15 minutes ago, pedalphile said:

P&R.

Why?  I did not post this with any P or R intent.  We have some pretty intelligent people here, I just thought it was an interesting POV on the state of science, that might generate even more interesting conversation.

 

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1 hour ago, 12string said:

I was reading an article about Steven Hawking's last paper to be published, and came across this quote from the co-author, Thomas Hertog:

“The mystery was why do we live in this special universe where everything is nicely balanced in order for complexity and life to emerge?”

And I saw it as a completely backwards thought process.  It's no mystery at all.  This universe existed long before any animal or vegetable life existed.  That life only exists in the form we as humans understand it only because it was borne out of the special balance.  But because we as humans only know one universe, one form of life, 4 dimensions, we expect that the entire universe can be defined in those constraints.  It's rather egocentric thinking.  The paper discusses other universes, and the space between them.  Thinking in terms other than what we know in our universe, maybe in one of those other universes, with a different balance, and a different "life" in a form we can't possibly comprehend, there's a version of a physicist wondering why our universe is incapable of supporting life but theirs is.

We have no idea of how many other dimensions exist, and we have no ability to ever comprehend what they might be.  So we are constrained in our thinking by human space and time.  Why do so few scientists consider that in their theorizing?  It's fine for earth sciences, but backwards thinking for theories on the universe - or whatever else might be out there.

 

I would change "know" to "experience" or "easily perceive".  For example, physicists are well into the double digits for dimensions. Doesn't most or ALL of current string theory or the tough theoretical-make-your-brain-smoke science DEPEND on that?

It is also a lot of other things that color our judgment - in every day circumstances - but as scientists work, they build greater filters or add in the new factors to their equations. Science is always working toward greater and more accurate answers.

Tom

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It is difficult to understand something without internalizing the idea. I read some material a while back about how the language of mathematics limits scientific understanding. So not only are we limited in our ability to understand concepts, we are limited in the degree to which we can explain them.

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On 05/03/2018 at 2:54 PM, donkpow said:

It is difficult to understand something without internalizing the idea. I read some material a while back about how the language of mathematics limits scientific understanding. So not only are we limited in our ability to understand concepts, we are limited in the degree to which we can explain them.

That is certainly the case with me.  My brian doesn;t focus on math to 'splian things - it is a more nebulous process, like fuzzy logic. :)

 

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On ‎5‎/‎3‎/‎2018 at 12:54 PM, donkpow said:

It is difficult to understand something without internalizing the idea. I read some material a while back about how the language of mathematics limits scientific understanding. So not only are we limited in our ability to understand concepts, we are limited in the degree to which we can explain them. 

which means we can't rely on robot to replace human being completely.  I mean really replace with all the human emotions that are unique, predictable and unpredictable.

I like the idea of language of math limits scientific understanding.  I think this is why I feel exhausted after computer software script testing...it's like math....different components and logic that we are trying to put together and take apart again and again, each time we tweak one part to perfect the whole.  Isn't that what math is:  a language to reach /aim for perfection. It does limit scientific understanding because math contains and cannot cope with so many variables.  Math doesn't express colours, sounds, smells, etc. 

Can one write a mathematical  statement for an entire ecosystem in a region of the world?  (Never mind, mathematical statement for the universe. How about writing one for our Earth world...?)

 

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Dearie said once, math is like long extended song, to some people.  To mathematician, it's another language. I realize among some geek programmers, programming code is like poetry to them.  I guess, it's just their version of perfection...to make 1 (limited) thing function "perfectly".

To me perfection, is extremely limited state and filled with nuances.  A good poem of words, can be interpreted and enjoyed from several different angles by several people.  If they enjoy poetry of words, language and its imperfections.  I appreciate perfect grammar, but that can be incredibly limiting for self-expression.

THis is what I mean: math is striving for perfection. It is limiting and doesn't consider richness of variations in living organisms.

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My feeling, and it's just a feeling is that we're missing something.

Because this is an area of interest to me, I suspect it's another perceptual or cognitive limitation screwing us up. (Feynman figured out that we were interpreting some results incorrectly because of the precession illusion)

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...Homo sapiens is adapted to look for patterns and to take advantage of the predictive algorithms that arise from them.  Thus we got agriculture.

It might be a limitation in viewing something as vast and currently inexplicable as the universe, but you gotta start somewhere, man.

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9 minutes ago, donkpow said:

You draw a conclusion based on an incomplete set of facts. You jump to a conclusion because you have the sense that your conclusion is correct. 

Didn't I say it was a feeling? (the weird font is accidental)

You often have to make judgements with imperfect information. We've been dancing around roughly the same problems all my life. We're missing something.

 

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1 minute ago, late said:

Didn't I say it was a feeling? (the weird font is accidental)

You often have to make judgements with imperfect information. We've been dancing around roughly the same problems all my life. We're missing something.

 

^^^^^^^^^^^^proof of a random universe ? :huh:^^^^^^^^

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21 minutes ago, Page Turner said:

^^^^^^^^^^^^proof of a random universe ? :huh:^^^^^^^^

Not at all.

Whatever physicists settle on is fine with me. Not one of those internet ******* that pretend they can rewrite science.

Having said that, cosmologies and women are like buses. A new one will show up shortly.

But I do have a bias, I always look for cognitive and perceptual problems.

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1 hour ago, Page Turner said:

...Homo sapiens is adapted to look for patterns and to take advantage of the predictive algorithms that arise from them. 

 

31 minutes ago, late said:

But I do have a bias, I always look for cognitive and perceptual problems.

...how would you prove a random universe, exactly ?

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1 hour ago, late said:

But I do have a bias, I always look for cognitive and perceptual problems.

 

Maybe you should focus your attention inward.  🤭

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1 hour ago, Page Turner said:

...Homo sapiens is adapted to look for patterns and to take advantage of the predictive algorithms that arise from them.  Thus we got agriculture.

It might be a limitation in viewing something as vast and currently inexplicable as the universe, but you gotta start somewhere, man.

Imagination is the key ingredient for advancement. If you can imagine it, you can define it. At least as far as you can understand it. Many of the products of imagination are dismissed for the lack of a definition that can be communicated until such time that understanding is available in others.

vangogh.gif

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59 minutes ago, Page Turner said:

 

...how would you prove a random universe, exactly ?

 

59 minutes ago, Page Turner said:

 

...how would you prove a random universe, exactly ?

I wouldn't.

I googled it and found a lecture that seemed to be saying we couldn't know it, much less prove it.

Or something like that.

I'm on the bench, at the bus stop, sitting next to a cutie, waiting for the 9:05 Cosmological Express. I'm asking her about a big bang.

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1 hour ago, donkpow said:

Imagination is the key ingredient for advancement. If you can imagine it, you can define it. At least as far as you can understand it. Many of the products of imagination are dismissed for the lack of a definition that can be communicated until such time that understanding is available in others.

vangogh.gif

...I don't understand. :huh:

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1 hour ago, late said:

 

I wouldn't.

I googled it and found a lecture that seemed to be saying we couldn't know it, much less prove it.

...yet much of what we understand in the realm of science is based upon the idea of evidence and proof.

Just guessing randomly, I'm gonna say that science is ill equipped to embrace a random universe, whatever the reality.

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29 minutes ago, donkpow said:

The image is a computer manipulation. The submitted image of a cat is reformed using the style of Vincent Van Gogh.

https://www199.lunapic.com/editor/?action=vangogh

...Van Gogh had a cat ?:huh:  I thought it was Schrodinger who was the cat person ?

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26 minutes ago, Page Turner said:

I thought it was Schrodinger who was the cat person ?

We can’t know for sure. That’s why it’s called the Uncertainty Principle.

Did you hear about the time Schrödinger got pulled over for speeding? The cop came up to the car and said “Do you know you were going 90 miles an hour???” “Great! Now we’re lost!”

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"We have no idea of how many other dimensions exist, and we have no ability to ever comprehend what they might be.  So we are constrained in our thinking by human space and time.  Why do so few scientists consider that in their theorizing?"

What scientific breakthrough makes you believe we are "constrained in our thinking by human space and time."  The concept of quantum mechanics, that things on the atomic and smaller level have significant wave and particle properties, and that time doesn't move constantly were developed outside the observable universe.

Actually, the point of the paper was to say that other universes that may have been created after the Big Bang would HAVE to be similar in nature and obey the SAME laws of physics ours does.  There has been a problem with the evolution of life occurring in ANY universe obeying our laws of physics, where one of those laws is "The entropy of the universe is always increasing."

Entropy is a measure of disorder.  If you build a sandcastle along the beach, the next day it will probably be eroded - there won't be a second one that formed on its own.  Increasing entropy is natural.

We chemists plan reactions around the fact they will not proceed automatically unless either entropy increases or enough heat energy is released to offset decreased entropy.

So the question arises: in a "nicely balanced" universe, how could the complexity of life arise when nature's way is for things to become LESS complex?

A couple guys won a Nobel Prize for it, basically saying the Earth got more disordered overall, but not evenly: there are pockets where entropy could go downhill because there was energy to drive it.  Whether they were volcanic vents in the oceans that did it or tidal pools struck by lightning, no one knows.

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