Loading ...
Sorry, an error occurred while loading the content.

alternate universes

Expand Messages
  • eduard
    George, I will definitely take that to heart. I am almost finished my book. John Gibbon, is now speaking of alternate universes. In other words the cat, in
    Message 1 of 16 , Sep 4, 2002
    • 0 Attachment
      George,

      I will definitely take that to heart.

      I am almost finished my book. John Gibbon, is now
      speaking of alternate universes. In other words
      the cat, in the box is both dead and alive and
      each occurs in an alternate universe. Every
      decision point branches to another universe which
      once created will exist at the same time, but
      those which are not ours, are unknown to us.
      Gibbon is referring to a paper by Everett that was
      [at the time] supported by Wheeler. Although this
      seems to resolve the difficulty of the two slit
      experiment, it creates a lot of metaphysical
      baggage which perhaps is even more difficult. In
      effect, it is saying that, in our universe, the
      electron goes through one hole and some observer
      in another universe sees it going through the
      other hole. The wave function does not collapse
      but simply presents the choice of the particle to
      each universe. In this manner the particle does
      not need to "know" of the two holes, in the sense
      that it makes a unique choice. It makes both
      choices and each carries on its own universe. You
      can see how this results in a greater difficulty
      of visualization. After the electron makes its
      particular choice, the observer may either switch
      the experiment off or leave it on. Or he could
      put on his red tie or blue tie. Or he could walk
      out of the building or go to the cafeteria. The
      number of universes to accommodate all these
      choices and branching is mind boggling ...

      eduard

      -----Original Message-----
      From: George Walton
      [mailto:iambiguously@...]
      Sent: Wednesday, September 04, 2002 6:26 PM
      To: existlist@yahoogroups.com
      Subject: Re: [existlist] if a tree falls and I
      dont see it happen


      Ed,

      I wouldn't worry about whether or not you can hear
      the
      tree fall, okay? But, if one falls, hits you on
      the
      head and you don't feel it, that might be cause
      for
      considerable more concern. In other words, it
      might
      have killed you.

      Let me know if that happens, okay?

      Biggie
    • elbookdoc
      We ll not get back to clams for this diatribe, but I believe that flies will do. Say there is a man who needs to change his oil. He is a bit hung over and
      Message 2 of 16 , Sep 5, 2002
      • 0 Attachment
        We'll not get back to clams for this diatribe, but I believe that
        flies will do.

        Say there is a man who needs to change his oil. He is a bit hung over
        and perhaps irritable as this is not a thing that he'd really wanted
        to do in this state and to get the beer to sooth the ache, he needs
        to have the car -- whose which he'd set to drain. To make matters
        worse, the heat is hot and the wind is still and he smells from not
        showering, catching the attention of a fly.

        The fly hovers in craft above the fellow as he is about to pour, like
        flys do. The fellow puts down the oil to shush the fly and, done
        shushing, reaches for the oil quart...laying his hands on another,
        not the original open one. He snaps the new top thinking he'd done it
        already and starts to pour. He refuses to stop this time as the fly
        has at him. Waving hands wildly he trashes the original quart, which
        floods the driveway in its excrement -- so to speak. The fellow
        continues to pour as the puddle of oil seems to grow, thinking to
        himself he'll replace the quart he spilled when he gets to the quick-
        n-go. He was one quart short to start with and figured what he had
        would get him there, he'd get some beer and oil and be back.

        Done pouring, the fellow forgets about the fly which has gone away.
        He hops in the car and starts to drive off...leaving a small trail of
        oil, and almost 3 entire quarts of oil in a puddle on the driveway,
        as he forgot to put the plug back in the pan. A few minutes down the
        road, the engine siezes. Cars pile up in a waiting stream behind, and
        tempers rise. Some cross the double yellow to pass. On one of these
        cars, a bicycle improperly strapped to the rack falls to the side of
        the road and is damaged. The father circles the car back and picks up
        the bike, and decides to haul it right then to the bike shop so as
        not to ruin the plans for the afternoon.

        At the bike shop, the mechanic who sets to work on the bike is a bit
        of a perfectionist. He's straightened what was bent and goes through
        a few pains to touch up the paint. It only takes a few moments more.
        He's got an appointment with a realtor to look at a new appartment
        that is only a few minutes from the shop. He'll be a few minutes
        late, but no big deal. He checks out the family and sends them on
        their way, then hops in his car and bounds off. He was going to take
        his bike, but, being late already, he decided not to push his luck
        with the realtor.

        He sees the apartment and likes it. He puts in a down-payment. On the
        way back from the apartment, he makes a wrong turn. He honks his horn
        at an old woman who seems to be pulling out of her driveway without
        stopping to look. She hears the horn and stops. She curses youth,
        takes a moment to calm down, then slowly starts on her way again. A
        few moments later she kills a young father at an intersection by
        running a light that she thought she would make.

        Before I go on, let me point out that this is not at all where this
        story ends. But I end it here.

        What caused the death?

        The woman never saw the fly. The fellow in the shop never saw the
        fly. The fellow who brought his bike to the shop never saw the fly.
        The dead fellow never saw the fly. The fellow whose car engine has
        seized has forgotten the fly.

        In essence the idea of the fly does not matter, but the fly, for me,
        symbolizes quantum mechanics. It is a random behavior which sets off
        a stream of behaviors, which, by chance can be said to manifest into
        something else. It is not predictable as to whether the fly caused
        the death, as there are many points where the events might have
        happened in a similar way. For example, the fly may not have bothered
        the fellow while he changed his oil, yet because he arived on time to
        the meeting with the realtor, the realtor was more chatty and
        personable, and the two spent longer discussing the apartment and
        other interests, yet the fellow still managed to leave to get back to
        work at exactly the same time, still encountering the woman with a
        honk of the horn, still resulting in the death of the young father.

        What I also find interesting here is that many things might have
        happened anyway. The car may have seized had the plug gone in the pan
        and the oil been retained -- regardless of the fly. The bike may have
        fallen from the car necessitating the trip to the shop because it was
        poorly tied. The fellow from the shop might have passed the woman in
        many different series of events (e.g., being on-time and on his bike,
        he took the wrong turn and delayed her by riding behind and shouting,
        rather than using the horn). The woman, not distracted by the horn
        may have though of something she forgot, then felt it unimportant and
        continued on. The fellow that died might have cut himself shaving and
        in taking just 5 seconds to dab on a bit of tissue may have saved
        himself from his early fate -- or created a different one that
        occurred at the same time for some other reason. And at any point
        some other variable might be introduced to change the series of
        events.

        There are decisions that effect the outcome as well as calculations,
        and both are not always critical. Observation matters (woman hears
        horn), previous outcomes matter (fellow drinks the night before), and
        the cycle does not end, while new events appear. Everything effects
        everything else to a greater or lesser extent as the timeline moves
        forward. And should the young father turn out to be the fellow whose
        car had seized, coming back from where he'd already accepted a rental
        car, events can effectively lie dormant to affect later, larger
        changes. And can do so unpredictably.

        There is both no reason to assume the result is predictable, and no
        reason to assume it is not probable (depending on the nature and
        complexity of behaviors). There is also no reason to assume
        calculations are not just dumb luck and a decent approximation of a
        probable result. To say one knows what happens is a lie.

        It is following the exceptions that give clues to actual, rather than
        probable, behaviors and outcomes. Yet, even following these, you can
        never know.

        Sails Untied
        --------------------------------------------
      • eduard
        elbookdoc,
        Message 3 of 16 , Sep 5, 2002
        • 0 Attachment
          elbookdoc,

          << In essence the idea of the fly does not matter,
          but the fly, for me, symbolizes quantum mechanics.
          It is a random behavior which sets off a stream of
          behaviors, which, by chance can be said to
          manifest into something else >>

          If the fly is representative of quantum mechanics,
          then it itself is a probability function. It can
          be any number of possibilities, from a live fly to
          a dead fly, to the fly that is caught in a spiders
          web. The man who is changing oil, collapses the
          function such as to create the single fly that
          distracts his attention. The point made by John
          Gibbon is that this single fly is that known in
          our universe, along with all the subsequent events
          that cascade from that encounter in the driveway.
          The other states of this fly carry on in other
          universes. Perhaps in the universe in which the
          fly is caught in a spider's web, the oil changer
          is not distracted, and his car does not stop, such
          that he runs down the old lady and thus saves the
          father who goes on to write a text book on
          Existentialism.

          eduard
        • elbookdoc
          Message 4 of 16 , Sep 6, 2002
          • 0 Attachment
            << The point made by John
            > Gibbon is that this single fly is that known in
            > our universe, along with all the subsequent events
            > that cascade from that encounter in the driveway.

            I don't mean to be cocky, but I somehow knew what I was going
            to say as soon as you responded and that it would affect exactly
            this:

            The fellow who had been drinking was a heavy, habitual drinker.
            He was prone to delirium. The fly was not real.

            Now you'll tell me it doesn't make a difference.

            I have a little trouble with the idea that all possible events *exist*,
            and that there are multiple universi (?) necessarily. Isn't that
            POTENTIAL that exists, rather than necessarily assuming other
            universes do? A pretty grand assumption -- especially for one
            like yourself (missouri be damned). I would be all with you if you
            were discussing perspective (each individual perspective is a
            universe), but to 'collapse' things: If the universe is not observed
            (or imagined), does it make a sound?

            Your perspective on Gibbon makes him sound like a duck.

            P. Littlebrain
            ----------------------------------------------------
          • eduard
            elbookdoc, Yes, I have the
            Message 5 of 16 , Sep 6, 2002
            • 0 Attachment
              elbookdoc,

              << I have a little trouble with the idea that all
              possible events *exist*, and that there are
              multiple universi (?) necessarily. >>

              Yes, I have the same problem with the idea that
              there are multiple universes. It seems much to
              complex. But then it seems to provide an answer to
              the difficulty of dealing with the superposition
              of states. I suspect, however, that it has it has
              a certain attraction because it matches the
              mathematics. Actually, this whole thing is well
              beyond me and I guess I shall have to read some
              more books.

              I am now into a book, "God and the New Physics" by
              Paul Davies. What struck me whilst reading it
              last night, was the idea that the within the
              present universe, there is an inherent tendency
              for localized order out of the surrounding chaos.
              I don't have a specific quote, as this is more in
              the way of an impression I obtain in the reading.
              Although the universe, in general, tends towards
              overall chaos [high entropy], the formation of
              stars, galaxies, and life itself is towards order
              [low entropy]. I recall reading about the
              philosophical/religious outlook of the ancient
              Sumerians. In that they initiated the dualist
              idea of good and evil which I would put in terms
              of order and chaos respectively. The Egyptians
              had the same sort of outlook, with the pharaoh
              being the protector of society against chaos.
              From there one could develop a personal philosophy
              based upon our purpose as being to maintain and
              propagate order. This seems more pleasing than a
              simple purpose of propagating ourselves, as
              humans, through reproduction and such. Perhaps
              one could also look at it from an Existentialist
              viewpoint in that our choices produce ever
              increasing order. It fits as well with the idea
              that our choices are made for everyone.

              << Your perspective on Gibbon makes him sound like
              a duck.>>

              I don't understand this last comment.

              eduard
            • elbookdoc
              Message 6 of 16 , Sep 6, 2002
              • 0 Attachment
                << Your perspective on Gibbon makes him sound like
                > a duck.>>
                >
                > I don't understand this last comment.>>

                Ducks go Quack.

                Mr. Mallard
                --------------------------
              Your message has been successfully submitted and would be delivered to recipients shortly.