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y_feldblum

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  1. TR, A = A S(x^2)dx = S(x^2)dx (t1,x1,y1,z1) = (t1,x1,y1,z1) 4 = 4 "A thing is itself" "A rose is a rose is a rose" An ether must exist - Quad Eras Demonstratum, QED, finito If science violates the law of identity, then it must display a contradiction with reality. Given that the ether's possibility of existence has been conclusively disproved, and no amount of A is A chanting will bring it back, where is the contradiction? "If it exists, it exists as something with a particular knowable uncontradictory identity." "Nonexistence does not exist" is self-referential. "Nonexistence of a exists within the framework A" is perfectly rational. I am still waiting for anyone to explain the Michelson-Morley experiment in Objectivism's language. RC, "Something exists there, we know that because we think we have a rule that says it; however, since we can't define that something, and it has no identity, we don't know any of its properties. For all intents and purposes, it has no properties save that it does not interact at all with anything else in existence for the simple reason that no matter how scientists have tried, they simply have not been able to detect that something. The ancient Greeks could blow on their void and they could sail with it, but we can't do any of that; but no matter." That, or it is you who is mistaken. I have not drawn any conclusions which differ from what mainstream science has discovered about reality. Rejecting that would be tantamount to rejecting reality in favor of A is A deductions. And by the way, since you are so adament in opposing physics, would you like to explain the famous double-slit experiment, and how it really does not violate the law of causality? (According to modern science, it doesn't, but you reject modern science, and according to your unaided eyes it does.)
  2. RedCap, You state that something undefined definitely exists. Is that not a fallacy? When has the nonexistence of ether been disproven. The Michelson-Morley experiment disproved its existence, but what about its nonexistence? I labeled your understanding as mysticism, not A is A. You are right that I have not read all of AR+P. I am only a year into the philosophy. I don't accept the Primacy of Consciousness philosophy, although apparently you do. Observable fact: there isn't anything in empty space. Your contention: the law of identity says there must be, therefore there is. Doesn't reality come first?!
  3. Redcap, That seems to be precisely the hundred-year-old scientific description of ether, the definition I was using, and (I'm only guessing) the definition you were using. Nobody then knew what ether was, nobody knew its properties, nobody could identify it or specify it, nobody could classify it. It was simply an unidentified what-have-you for all anybody could tell. That, and it's a concept completely shot down by hard evidence. No such kind of thing exists. "The law of identity does not allow nothingness" - really? If so, can you tell me what there is between the electrons and the nucleus of a carbon atom? How is it we can move through whatever this thing is? How is it that something can exist - displacing ether or coexisting? Since your only question is, what is the ether that you just know exists (mysticism), please answer it, because nobody else can. Scientists have so far discovered not a single law, not a single equation dealing with any ether. Their premise is that empty space is empty, and so far that premise has proved true wherever there is empty space to test it, your own misused law of identity notwithstanding.
  4. RedCap, stop kidding yourself. What famous and accepted and radically new scientific theories has Ayn Rand proposed? It is a fallacy to dismiss the modern science with a wave of the magic "A is A" wand. I've said before, "A is A" applies to the person, not the thing being understood. "Things are what they are" - and that leads us to Newtonian Kinematics, class, so please take out your notebooks and pencils and take notes. No. "Things are what they are" - so you cannot dismiss the fact that I'm typing at a thing called a "computer" with the wave of the magical mystical wand, chanting "no, it's really a box with fancy pushbuttons that don't do anything, but there's this pink elephant in the sky that's watching you and is making things appear on the screen based on what you do, but sometimes he'll get pissed at you for no reason and show you something he likes to call the blue screen of death and nothing else until you push the button on the box marked restart." Understood? "A is A" dismissed Plato and Kant; it doesn't dismiss modern science, no matter how weird to your normal mode of thinking it may seem at first. You have a very peculiar understanding of the law of identity; and it's demonstrably peculiar since it excludes science as we know it. Time is a dimension more basic than the spacial three. Time and space are completely intertwined - and this is verifiable experimentally - such that time is the same kind of thing as space: if space is a dimension so is time, and if space is a relation then so is time. We all know space is a dimension. Your rejection of the wave-particle duality is reminiscent of the debate that began before Newton, which one light was. The answer is, your understanding of the world is mistaken, not physics. Because you are evolved for the macroscale, where the distinction is impossibly blurred, where things appear particles and oscillations appear waves but nothing appears both, does not change that which is readily observable under an electron microscope: particles are waves and waves are particles. Light behaves as both - you can do the experiments yourself - and the results that you obtain (one position excluding the other) are entirely dependent on what you are looking for. If you are looking for waves, you will find that your experiments tell you, light behaves like and is composed of electromagnetic waves. If you are looking for particles, you will find that your experiments tell you, light behaves like and is composed of independent photons. Whether or not fact meshes with your macroscopic understanding does not change fact. And your "theories" - there are theories for everything, but give me solid proof. We have the experiments for QM, now where are they, undisputed, for your theories?
  5. I can't disagree with your understanding of the article (partially since I don't fully understand it myself). The article has plenty of flaws though. "The universe" can mean different things to different people and in different contexts, so we must be clear here. There are three keys ideas: the laws of physics, existence (spacetime, its shape etc), and the sum total of information (ie energy/matter, wave-particles). Depending on the context, the universe may or may not be its own concrete entity. It may sometimes refer only to the sum total of information, or sometimes it may refer to spacetime and the laws of physics. Spacial and temporal characteristics apply differently to information than to existence. The model of the universe I tend to agree with is what I know from modern science, eg GR and QM (and it's not all that much, really, just a couple fundamentals and a tiny fraction of the math). If Ayn Rand and most Objectivists disagree with it, one can't consider it a fault of Objectivism but only of metaphysically inclined students without the heads for tensor calculus and observervation-dependent results (and stop fleeing in terror).
  6. I must say that that article is like the dog asking the bird how the water is. Neither lives there. Science is where you want to go for the physical size of the universe, not philosophy.
  7. RedCap, your pink elephant objection, though imaginative, is flawed. It is possible that such a thing exists, though now that we know quite a lot about our planet, the possibility that such would happen naturally is very very remote. Nevertheless, I could genetically modify an elephant to make it pink and then there it would be. The fact that we have reason to believe such a thing is such a very remote chance naturally means it would be foolish to hypothesize about it until one has reason to believe a different chance applies. All this in relation to multipartverses. The concept of evidence is possible with relation to pink elephants, no matter statistical likelihood or degree of (non)sense, but it is impossible with relation to multipartverses. One concept is open to evidence, open to a reference to reality, and the other is closed. Once you have some evidence, if ever, you can begin to discuss the former; but there is no chance of ever seriously discussing the latter with any reference to reality.
  8. Note, this was copied from that other thread (see the first post). Reply to this topic here. DAC, The concept of "fundamental unit of time" has existed as long as the universe has. In fact, the fundamental units of length, acceleration, mass, and energy are all derived from this fundamental unit. Cesium-133 is only our (roundabout) method of counting, though it is very accurate as far as it goes in our approximately inertial frame of reference. Spacetime (zeroth dimension of time plus three dimensions space) is itself a property of the universe. We don't talk about "things inside the universe expanding" - we talk about "expanding universe". The universe was once a singularity, a point with no length or width, and no time. The universe is indeed temporally and spacially bound. A straight line from infinity to infinity in spacially unbound, but an expanding circle is bound spacially and temporally; same in 2d with an infinite plane and an expanding sphere. (If you think I'm making this up, (a) the Hubble Constant is the rate at which the universe, physical existence at all, is expanding like a hypersphere, and ( Einstein initially thought his equations were wrong too; he lied initially to cover up the fact but soon regretted it.) You can in fact travel infinitely in any direction, though, just as you can travel infinitely around the Earth. Perhaps in an alternate reality things might have been different, the universe would not be curved, it would have existed forever, and it would be unbounded by space and time; but such is not the fact of our existence. Universe to me connotes physics, spacetime, and the sum total of mass/energy within spacetime. Atoms and all particles are not exactly spacially bound; in fact, one speaks more of a "particle cloud" than the particle itself. A particle cloud is the conception of a probability spread. Technically, atoms in your body have probability spreads that include my body. Things are in fact fuzzy. Objectivists probably don't like it because they don't like fuzzy moral/metaphysical realities, but that's just how it is. Energy exists, like matter, only in the form of wave-particles. The photon is a wave-particle; and heat is a higher frequency excitation of a wave-particle. Re spacial boundaries, don't confuse spacetime with matter/energy. General Relativity (geometry) and Quantum Mechanics (wave-particles) are different theories. For anyone who cares, it is up to us to integrate Objectivist philosophy with scientific reality; don't let us default on that. What Objectivism currently says about the physical laws of existence aren't nearly as binding as what science reports them to be.
  9. I'm copying my response to DAC to the thread he started for this discussion. Reply to me or to him there.
  10. DAC, The concept of "fundamental unit of time" has existed as long as the universe has. In fact, the fundamental units of length, acceleration, mass, and energy are all derived from this fundamental unit. Cesium-133 is only our (roundabout) method of counting, though it is very accurate as far as it goes in our approximately inertial frame of reference. Spacetime (zeroth dimension of time plus three dimensions space) is itself a property of the universe. We don't talk about "things inside the universe expanding" - we talk about "expanding universe". The universe was once a singularity, a point with no length or width, and no time. The universe is indeed temporally and spacially bound. A straight line from infinity to infinity in spacially unbound, but an expanding circle is bound spacially and temporally; same in 2d with an infinite plane and an expanding sphere. (If you think I'm making this up, (a) the Hubble Constant is the rate at which the universe, physical existence at all, is expanding like a hypersphere, and ( Einstein initially thought his equations were wrong too; he lied initially to cover up the fact but soon regretted it.) You can in fact travel infinitely in any direction, though, just as you can travel infinitely around the Earth. Perhaps in an alternate reality things might have been different, the universe would not be curved, it would have existed forever, and it would be unbounded by space and time; but such is not the fact of our existence. Universe to me connotes physics, spacetime, and the sum total of mass/energy within spacetime. Atoms and all particles are not exactly spacially bound; in fact, one speaks more of a "particle cloud" than the particle itself. A particle cloud is the conception of a probability spread. Technically, atoms in your body have probability spreads that include my body. Things are in fact fuzzy. Objectivists probably don't like it because they don't like fuzzy moral/metaphysical realities, but that's just how it is. Energy exists, like matter, only in the form of wave-particles. The photon is a wave-particle; and heat is a higher frequency excitation of a wave-particle. Re spacial boundaries, don't confuse spacetime with matter/energy. General Relativity (geometry) and Quantum Mechanics (wave-particles) are different theories. For anyone who cares, it is up to us to integrate Objectivist philosophy with scientific reality; don't let us default on that. What Objectivism currently says about the physical laws of existence aren't nearly as binding as what science reports them to be.
  11. RedCap, the concept of ether contradicts reality. Galileo and Newton should have realized the fact, as should have all the scientists up until Einstein's time. Soon after Einstein introduced Special Relativity, two scientists decided to try discovering the "ether drift" ... and what they got was a null answer. The Michaelson-Morley experiment is the definitive, classical, textbook experiment disqualifying the existence of "ether". To shock you a bit further, there is no such thing as "absolute position". Saying something like "I am x feet away from the center of the universe is incorrect. There is no center to the universe, and the concept of position only exists when speaking in relation to a specific frame of reference. Furthermore, the same thing can be said of velocity. Michaelson and Morley were attempting to find the absolute velocity of the ether, ie the velocity at which the ether is moving in relation to the universe itself. They did not get an answer to their question; what they got was no velocity at all: not zero velocity, but none at all. Velocity (speed) is again only valid in relation to some specific frame of reference. There is no ether, and there is no universal position or speed. There is nothing in empty space, and there is no way to tell your velocity relative to nonexistent ether or to space itself. The analogy to air was wrong for precicely the reason cited above: you can feel an "air drift" or wind; but there is no experiment you can possibly set up which will yield a valid measurement for "ether drift". So now I've supported everything you wanted me to. I'm not sure how you bring the law of identity into play here. Let's say that the universe were in fact composed of an ether continuum. In that case, it would be composed of an infinite amount of energy (or information) - and not only that, but the second order of infinity, or Alpha One = 2 ^ Infinity. Infinite energy ... define that. Either reality contradicts the law of identity - or you are using it incorrectly. "Things are what they are; A is A" means the question, "how do you know that table isn't really a table, maybe it's a lamppost?!" is invalid. It's tied to humans gaining knowledge, not what actually exists. The law of identity means you can't claim that the real essence of "table" will be forever hidden from you because it's in a world of "things as they are", or that the real essence of "spirit" is unknowable because it belongs to the spiritual realm and not to physical existence. If you construe it to mean empty space really isn't empty space, you are misusing it. I'm not sure I understand the "rationalist" mentality of opposition to a hundred years of solid science. Perhaps, it is the same reason nobody had understood it since the dawn of time. What humans can sense and perceive without external tools and a rigorous mathematical framework is only an approximation of actual reality. Newtonian kinematics (laws of motion) were an approximation of Relativistic kinematics where all velocities are significantly less than 1 (the speed of light), and Newtonian geometry (Euclidean) was an approximation of Relativity's geometry, and particles and waves were an approximation of the wave/particle duality QM, and on and on. However, science has progressed beyond the approximation. Lastly, on the net, caps conventionally represents volume, regardless of what you personally mean. A better idea would be to perfect your writing style so that caps become unnecessary. Better to say what you mean than simply to shout - or whatever you mean by caps. As you can tell, since I had to read your post to respond, I am living with it. For personal welfare, though, actual communication of one's ideas is slightly better than a big loud grunt. Nevertheless, if you feel that your stlye lets you say all that you mean to, that your sentence structure already emphasizes all the words that your caps do, caps (and bold) are completely extraneous and in fact make it harder to understand. Good communication interspersed with big loud grunts isn't as good as without. However you write, though, I'll still live with it.
  12. The difference between ET and multipartiverses is that is that the former is verifiable while the latter is not. As of now, we have no knowledge of any ET civilisations, nor of any partiverses; as of now, both are distinct possibilities. Now, all we have to do is find one piece of evidence of ET to verify it; but the definition of multipartiverses states that it is physically impossible to verify the theory. Speculating about something while knowing that evidence is impossible ...
  13. Spacetime/warping etc, dimensions etc - equations and data imply such a model. One can dispute the model but not the equations/data without good evidence. The equations and data of the Ptolemaic model have been shown to be in error. The universe must be acausal to an Objectivist then. Either it's always existed, in which case it's acausal, or it had a beginning, in which case it's acausal. Remember that time does not exist outside of our spacetime; it is a function of our universe, not the other way around.
  14. Godless, whether certain people do or do not believe in physical reality, no matter to which philosophy they ascribe, does not change objective reality. So all the objectivists who do not believe in spacetime should celebrate the Special Relativity Centennial in two years. SR/GR is real, spacetime is real, and no evasion of one hundred years of science changes that reality. By "warping" spacetime I meant, picture a level fabric hung up in midair, and then picture what happens when objects are placed upon it - they sink through, warping the fabric around them. Children's science books are full of such pictures. The big bang was the universal beginning - how do we know such a thing happened? we can directly observe its effects today all around us, ie indirect observation. And a similar logic applies to higher dimensions. How do we know? - we see the effects and we know the mathematical and physical laws and equations which correlate the cause with the effects we observe. DAC, individual quarks, baryons, atoms, molecules, stars, and galaxies are affected by short-range forces plus the universal expansion. Short range forces, close up, are much more powerful and apparent than expansion, whereas farther away their effects fade by distance squared and the macroscale curvature of the universe becomes apparent. The earth might be orbiting about the sun and perhaps that is all one observes close up, but macroscale, the whole contraption orbits the galaxy center and the earth's miniscule zigzag through the orbit doesn't change the fact.
  15. Never heard of gravity warping spacetime either? The evidence is that the universe is, in fact, expanding in such a manner. The expanding 3-sphere theory doesn't explain the observable fact that every point inside the sphere is the center of the sphere at the same time. GodlessC, CMBR would knock down the 3d expanding sphere, though it does in fact support the 4d expanding sphere. Plus, to shock you all, the total amount of information possible in an x+1 dimension volume is tied not to the volume but, instead, to the x dimension surface area. It's math. Our 3d surface-area universe contains all the information available within the 4d hyperballoon. And GreedyC, the law of causality dictates that the universe does in fact have a beginning, and reality says we are perfectly capable of finding it out.
  16. Redshift is indeed evidence to the expansion of the universe, contrary to any quacks cited in this debate. In fact, the expansion of the universe is quite an interesting phenomenon. You see, it appears from the redshift data that either the Earth is the center of the universe, or spacetime is not Euclidean. The farther away stars and galaxies are, the faster they are moving away from Earth (and thus an increasingly higher redshift the farther out you look), and this is true in all directions you look. Everything is moving outward away from Earth in all three dimensions and the farther away things are the faster they are moving. How, you ask. Picture a balloon which, as you blow air into it expands: that is spacetime in two dimensions. Now, before blowing into it, mark dots all around it to represent galaxies. As you blow into it, notice that the dots expand away from each other in all directions, and, in all directions, the further away from each other they are, the faster they are rushing away from each other. In fact, each dot from its own two-dimensional perspective is the center of the universe with everything expanding away from it; the real center, though, is in a higher dimension. The universe, spacetime, is indeed expanding through a higher dimension as the balloon expands through the third, and it is indeed expanding into what was nothingness. Where spacetime is now there is no evidence that there was anything before, no matter, no energy, no information, not even alternate spacetime. Spacetime is curved, as they say, curved and expanding like a hypersphere. And before spacetime was a hyperpoint? There was no distance and there was no time. Then the big bang: ex nihilo (via laws of quantum mechanics) spacetime and an intense amount of expanding energy. "Cycles" of the universe have no way of being proven or even observed, and anyway our universe is expanding too fast to stop and begin contracting to continue any cycles. There is no such thing as ether, and the analogy to air is completely wrong; Newton should have known it, as he founded the principle of relativity (physics, not metaphysics!); but Einstein's special relativity and experiments based on it completely proved its nonexistence. And, please no caps. Use italics. It's "netiquette".
  17. Capitalistic expansion through war (as opposed to persuasion) is an initiation of force. War (as opposed to persuasion) for capitalistic expansion requires self-sacrifice to free the other country. Proving the existence of something re physics (application of math on the universe) vs philosophy/morality may require different methods at times. Philosophy uses the rule of derivation. Physics derives an equation with a prediction (ought) of a phenomenon which requires verification as the final step.
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