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    • CommentAuthorloreman
    • CommentTimeJul 12th 2011
     
    Posted By: AngusWell, then, no - the number of "rules" is infinite because we can never observe all of infinite reality in order to know if we have got them all.


    But is reality infinite if there are a limited number of "rules"?
    • CommentAuthorloreman
    • CommentTimeJul 12th 2011
     
    By the way, it has just been given to me in a vision that we are all just star poo-Sagan was totally being euphemistic. Go the Sun! Ra Ra!
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      CommentAuthorAngus
    • CommentTimeJul 12th 2011
     
    Posted By: loreman
    Posted By: AngusWell, then, no - the number of "rules" is infinite because we can never observe all of infinite reality in order to know if we have got them all.


    But is reality infinite if there are a limited number of "rules"?
    - I said the number of "rules" that we may need to write for ourselves may be infinite. So I don't understand your response.
  1.  
    Posted By: Angusthe number of "rules" is infinite


    Hmm: If the universe began, and the universe will end : there be no infinite...
    The beginning and end make it all finite.
    Yet since man does not know such answers, then infinite becomes a viable construction due to our limitations.

    Ahhh:
    The irony of it all!
    • CommentAuthorloreman
    • CommentTimeJul 12th 2011
     
    Posted By: Angus
    Posted By: loreman
    Posted By: AngusWell, then, no - the number of "rules" is infinite because we can never observe all of infinite reality in order to know if we have got them all.


    But is reality infinite if there are a limited number of "rules"?
    - I said the number of "rules" that we may need to write for ourselvesmay be infinite. So I don't understand your response.


    So we "wrote" E=MC2? It has no existence independent of the "human race"? No wonder we're infested with flying saucers!
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      CommentAuthorAngus
    • CommentTimeJul 12th 2011 edited
     
    Posted By: lostcauses10xIf the universe began, and the universe will end : there be no infinite...


    We know neither. Brian Greene's most recent book is good on surveying the ideas around this.

    First - the "Big Bang" may not be the first event in the universe. For example, it may have been preceded by a "Big Crunch" (and these may cycle forever), or it may be a local event in a vastly bigger universe (there is actually some vague evidence pointing to this).

    Second - if you like Everett's Many-World interpretation of the wavefunction "collapse", (it gives me the creeps) - then there is an infinite number of universes being created all the time.

    ETA - well, maybe not an infinite number of universes - how could we tell? Say infinity plus or minus 15%: good enough for government work.
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      CommentAuthorpcstru
    • CommentTimeJul 12th 2011
     
    Posted By: lostcauses10x
    Hmm: If the universe began, and the universe will end : there be no infinite...
    The beginning and end make it all finite.


    Not so. You can have a line of defined length, say 1 unit, yet there are an infinite number of possible positions between 0 and 1. Simply having a defined beginning and end (of a line or anything), tells you nothing about the limits of what is in-between.
    • CommentAuthorloreman
    • CommentTimeJul 12th 2011
     
    But for the purposes of the argument, aren't the concepts "off" and 'on" more appropriate than the mathematical abstractions 1 and 0? I don't believe they're equivalent and the former certainly imply limits
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      CommentAuthorpcstru
    • CommentTimeJul 12th 2011
     
    Posted By: loremanBut for the purposes of the argument, aren't the concepts "off" and 'on" more appropriate than the mathematical abstractions 1 and 0? I don't believe they're equivalent and the former certainly imply limits


    Not quite sure what you are replying to. Off and On, boolean states are not equivalent to beginning/end points - the difference being there is something between the beginning and the end whereas boolean is state system with no concept of 'in-between'.
    • CommentAuthorloreman
    • CommentTimeJul 12th 2011
     
    What I was trying to say is that the idea that there are infinite points between other points may not be useful in thinking about the universe and whether it is "infinite" and that the "on/off" concept may be of more utility when examining the idea. It is precisely the fact that there is no "in between" involved which provides that utility. The "universe" is now "on". Was it ever "off"? If so, will it ever be "off" (hear the creaking of the floodgates of questionable humour) again?
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      CommentAuthorAngus
    • CommentTimeJul 13th 2011
     
    Posted By: loremanWhat I was trying to say is that the idea that there are infinite points between other points may not be useful in thinking about the universe and whether it is "infinite" and that the "on/off" concept may be of more utility when examining the idea. It is precisely the fact that there is no "in between" involved which provides that utility. The "universe" is now "on". Was it ever "off"? If so, will it ever be "off" (hear the creaking of the floodgates of questionable humour) again?


    There are certainly mechanisms in the universe that allow no "in-between". However, we don't yet know whether either time or space is continuous. If they are, then obviously the universe is infinite, no matter how big it is.
    • CommentAuthorloreman
    • CommentTimeJul 13th 2011
     
    So if the universe is always "on" then it's infinite? What could switch "it" "off"?
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      CommentAuthorAngus
    • CommentTimeJul 13th 2011
     
    First you have to decide what universe you are talking about. Some hold that what we call the universe is just a piece of a bigger thing that keeps spawning universes. But if you mean that there is only one, this one, then the universe is never off, because if it were there would be no time for it to be off in, time having been created with the universe.
    • CommentAuthorloreman
    • CommentTimeJul 13th 2011
     
    That's why I used "it". I'm not sure that your reasoning really holds water, although of course if time was "off" the "universe" would be "off". The question then becomes what could possibly cause time to be "off"
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      CommentAuthorAngus
    • CommentTimeJul 13th 2011 edited
     
    Time is not off. Time doesn't exist to be off.

    Edited for clarity (**grin**)
    • CommentAuthorloreman
    • CommentTimeJul 13th 2011
     
    But that is a question begger. Even if time is an emergent concept rather than all the other things people have called it (like a dimension, a river, a thief etc etc) it will be "off" if the "universe" is "off". So what could cause the "universe" to be "off".
    • CommentAuthorjoshs
    • CommentTimeJul 13th 2011
     
    Posted By: loremanBut that is a question begger. Even if time is an emergent concept rather than all the other things people have called it (like a dimension, a river, a thief etc etc) it will be "off" if the "universe" is "off". So what could cause the "universe" to be "off".
    Think of the entirety of all things being the level of thought in double oh dimwit's brain. That vast timeless emptiness would be "off".
  2.  
    Time.... the immanent dimension of duration ... isn't something that pre-existed in some ineffable matter- and energy-less void that "was before" the BB.
    The expansion and unfolding of quantum fluctuation that was the BB created, not only matter/energy, but also the continuum or rather plenum in which it moves. The dimension of duration did not exist "before" the BB.
    Also, the BB was not an isolated temporal event. The succession of event durations that we perceive as the "flow of time" is just one bit of evidence that the BB is yet occurring. As the pressure on the plenum decreases with increasing expansion of the 3 macroscopic spatial dimensions and the one unfurled temporal one, further furled dimensions will begin to expand in their turn, with more or less violent consequences to the already-manifest chunks of possibility within the plenum.
    We've got six more space-like and one more time-like dimensionalities waiting to unfurl. Perhaps the accelerated expansion in 3-space is driven by the incipient unfurling of the seventh spatial dimension, and new zones of plus-dimensional spacetime are popping into existence at or below the quantum grain scale (10^-36 m, 10^-42 sec) and will continue to provide contiguous space between things and bridgeable gaps in duration.

    Anyone who wants to postulate discontinuous graininess in spacetime is faced with a rather insurmountable paradox: How do you remain in existence yourself, while crossing a "place when" space and time don't exist?
    • CommentAuthorenginerd
    • CommentTimeJul 13th 2011
     
    Why God doesn't worry about an evolution chamber.

    A scientist approached God (I assume this must be the one god, god of creation god) and said. "Ha ha. I have discovered how to create life. You're not so hot really"

    "OKAY", says God, "SHOW ME"

    "First" says the scientist, "I take some hydrogen, some oxygen and some nitrogen"

    As the scientist puts the cannisters onto the labtable, God whisks them away and says "MAKE YOUR OWN ELEMENTS, I MADE THESE"
    • CommentAuthorloreman
    • CommentTimeJul 13th 2011
     
    Posted By: alsetalokinTime.... the immanent dimension of duration ... isn't something that pre-existed in some ineffable matter- and energy-less void that "was before" the BB.
    The expansion and unfolding of quantum fluctuation that was the BB created, not only matter/energy, but also the continuum or rather plenum in which it moves. The dimension of duration did not exist "before" the BB.
    Also, the BB was not an isolated temporal event. The succession of event durations that we perceive as the "flow of time" is just one bit of evidence that the BB is yet occurring. As the pressure on the plenum decreases with increasing expansion of the 3 macroscopic spatial dimensions and the one unfurled temporal one, further furled dimensions will begin to expand in their turn, with more or less violent consequences to the already-manifest chunks of possibility within the plenum.
    We've got six more space-like and one more time-like dimensionalities waiting to unfurl. Perhaps the accelerated expansion in 3-space is driven by the incipient unfurling of the seventh spatial dimension, and new zones of plus-dimensional spacetime are popping into existence at or below the quantum grain scale (10^-36 m, 10^-42 sec) and will continue to provide contiguous space between things and bridgeable gaps in duration.

    Anyone who wants to postulate discontinuous graininess in spacetime is faced with a rather insurmountable paradox: How do you remain in existence yourself, while crossing a "place when" space and time don't exist?


    The old balloon analogy starts to pale a bit, eh?

    After all that, there's still an implied want of cause for the BB.