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Author Topic: How was the real universe created?  (Read 22572 times)
Death 999
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Re: How was the real universe created?
« Reply #75 on: June 01, 2003, 03:55:52 am »

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wait a minute... what's all this talk of light wrapping around? light wraps around nothing unless it is very heavy and is exerting tons of gravity upon it.


The universe is pretty freaking heavy, even if it is finite.

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the universe expands at speed of light, so while being finite, nothing inside can ever reach the edge.


We've been over this before. You're just rambling on and on in your own little world.
There is no edge. If there were an edge, we'd see a lot more anisotropy in the cosmic microwave background, unless we were in the exact middle of the universe.

Assuming that we're the middle of the universe has been done before (three distinct versions - terrocentrism persisting for millennia, heliocentrism presisting for two hundred years or so, and solar-system-as-center-of-galaxy that persisted for about twenty years).
(We were wrong each time)
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Death 999
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Re: How was the real universe created?
« Reply #76 on: June 01, 2003, 04:02:25 am »

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This topic is pointless, its like 'is there other alien lifeforms out there', everone has their theorys but noone knows yet.
So I surgest you stop trying to prove things from your 'theorys' because it hasnt been proven, so it is up to you to believe what you want to... so its best if you dont try to prove other people wrong.


Some theories are possible explanations. Others are not.

As a scientist, it's important to consider all the possible theories (closed finite, open infinite, flat infinite, open/flat finite of which we are the exact center), but those which make radical assumptions can be dismissed until evidence comes in their favor.
Open or closed infinite involved radical assumptions until Einstein devised his theory General Relativity which suggested that the universe is slightly non-euclidean.
Right now there is no evidence that we are at the center of the universe, and that is a rather strong condition, so it has less weight in Occam's Razor.

CERTAINLY, it's out of line to claim that there MUST be one certain way.

Mainly, I have been attempting to show the plausibility and likelihood of the infinite universe, despite the insistent claims that the universe must be finite.
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Re: How was the real universe created?
« Reply #77 on: June 01, 2003, 05:32:09 am »

Let me apologise up-front for the spontaneous contribution to the size of this thread, which while not quite infinite certainly illustrates the point about things mutually getting farther from each other.

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The problem with infinity is that it isn't a number or a quantity. Thus, operations like expansion, contraction, addition, subtraction that apply to numbers and quantities and variables and the like can't be applied to infinity.


Fair enough - subtracting infinite cardinals is notoriously bad, as you yourself point out, though "addition" usually works well enough, in the sense of providing a meaningful description of the union of two disjoint sets of given cardinalities.

I too don't know what it means to expand or contract an infinite cardinal. But I don't think anyone here has purported to know that, either.

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Infinity is like religion. It's a concept.


Fair enough as well - so much of mathematics is abstract concepts. But we don't need to denegrate the work of all those highly competent individuals by calling it a "religion," no matter how much you dislike Axiom of Choice. (Sorry, no more bad math jokes.)

Let's make a distinction between infinite cardinals, which measure the size of various sets, and those sets themselves. (I sense this is the only point salient to this thread which I will make.) For example, the Cartesian plane R^2 is a set which is infinite. Yet while I already admitted ignorance on the point of stretching or contracting its size, call it aleph_1, I know plenty of ways to manipulate the plane. I can spin it around - you pick any point on the plane, and we'll rotate the whole thing around it; this amounts to changing our sense of direction. Or translate it; this amounts to changing our point-of-reference. Plenty of more fun, perfectly well-behaved tricks to play: we can shear it, kind of a skewed-stretch; or reflect it - not really a physical operation, though? But I think you'll agree it's perfectly all right to take every point on the plane and push it so that it's the same direction from the centre, but twice as far - or twice as near. Ahh, stretching and contracting.

Certainly the expanding-balloon analogy makes perfect sense. Every one of these tricks ("transformations") we can do on the plane we can do in a volume of space in R^3. So if our balloon is a spherical shell about the origin, we can push it outward. Now everything is expanding but it doesn't even look like there's anything resembling a centre of expansion, at least to those stuck in that perspective according to which there's no space, only the balloon's surface.

Even more pertinent, I guess, is that exactly the same things are true of a higher-dimensional space, like, for those who feel Euclidean, R^4; or higher-dimensional hyperbolic spaces, or your favourite slightly-well-behaved geometry. The tricks look different - for example, we don't measure distance in hyperbolic geometry the same way, or, for that matter, in Minkowskian geometry.

Ahh, I can feel my earlier apologies are wearing thin. So let me extend them again, and invite you to skip the rest, because it has nothing to do with the universe.

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Therefore, it is actually quite silly to say that something that is infinite is expanding. Especially if that something is the universe. Lemme put it this way:
Infinity + 1=Infinity.
Infinity=Infinity.
By subtracting infinity from either side of the equation via basic 7th grade algebra, we obtain that 1=0. In other words, it tells us that we're trying to do something dumb. Because 1 doesn't equal 0.


Yes indeed, something went horribly wrong. Naively I'd say it was the implicit assumption that, say, aleph_0 - aleph_0 = 0. In terms of limits of functions, it's easy to imagine why we have no reason to believe this: for example, let f(t) = 2t, g(t) = t; obviously their difference does not remain bounded as t becomes very large.

But I think there's a more fundamental mistake here (now my mathematical prejudices are appearing!) which is engendered by the commonplace fact that, whenever we have a real number, call it a, we have a real number b, sometimes written (-a), such that a + b = 0. b is called the additive inverse of a and we may take it as axiomatic that for any real a such a b does indeed exist.

The point here is that "subtraction" is a convenient fiction, a mechanical operation which disguises the implicit assumption about the nature of additive inverses. If we asked ourselves not what "infinity minus infinity" should equal, but rather what "aleph_0 less aleph_0" means in terms of sets, or what "the additive inverse of aleph_0" is supposed to mean, it is patently obvious that the original question is hopeless, either because it presupposes the existence of quantities which are nonsensical, or because (in the set interpretation) there are examples of pairs of sets with the appropriate cardinalities giving wildly different results.

On a completely different subject, I will remark that although I know what 2^(aleph_0) means, I do not know what (as was given in an earlier post) aleph_0^aleph_0 means. It is possible that this is a gap in my education.

Finally, "for the record," someone made an innocent typo earlier and claimed that the set of rational numbers is uncountable. Obviously they meant the set of irrationals.

I would now extemporise on why I disagree with the claim that this thread is silly and pointless, but that would clearly be overstepping the bounds of good sense and credibility of my oft-stated disdain for the long-windedness of this contribution. So in conclusion, I will add my personal cheer to the interpid souls working on the project for which this is a bulletin board.
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Re: How was the real universe created?
« Reply #78 on: June 01, 2003, 06:17:18 am »

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This topic is pointless, its like 'is there other alien lifeforms out there', everone has their theorys but noone knows yet.
So I surgest you stop trying to prove things from your 'theorys' because it hasnt been proven, so it is up to you to believe what you want to... so its best if you dont try to prove other people wrong.


6 pages and counting for a "pointless" topic. That's funny.

Everyone has their pet theory which has been proven in their logic so well that it's become air tight. Me, I don't know how the real universe was created. I mean, I was there, but it's been a while and I really wasn't paying attention to the details and all. Mostly it was created by the power of God, realizing that once that power is put into effect it becomes a "law" of the physical universe. But like I said, I wasn't watching the little details at the time. I was just there for the big bang.
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Re: How was the real universe created?
« Reply #79 on: June 01, 2003, 07:21:49 pm »

As the one who created this thread, I must say that I am suprised my little joke turned into this huge discusssion.

 Wink
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Death 999
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Re: How was the real universe created?
« Reply #80 on: June 02, 2003, 01:39:16 am »

Thanks for backing me up there, SplittingField.

I find it amusing that this is your first post -- well, we have to start somewhere, eh?

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Finally, "for the record," someone made an innocent typo earlier and claimed that the set of rational numbers is uncountable. Obviously they meant the set of irrationals.


OBVIOUSLY Wink
heh heh... I mean, the trick to it makes it obvious once you've been shown it, but when you only think about how the set is dense, it seems awfully uncountable.

And there's nothing wrong with long posts...
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Re: How was the real universe created?
« Reply #81 on: June 02, 2003, 03:40:08 am »

"Somewhere" -- as a shy individual I have the habit of lurking, and when a subject about which I love to talk arises (however tangentially and even inappropriately) it sort of bursts out. While I could comfortably talk about, say, the infinite for hours, personal experience has suggested to me that others are (justifiably!) not so comforted by this prospect  Wink .

I feel like I should pledge to make an actual on-topic post somewhere. Or otherwise, claim that "spaces" and "the infinite" are intrinsic to our imaginings of the universe around us and therefore are in fact on-topic. Best, no doubt, would be to forget it altogether.

And -- I did not mean to claim that "rationals are countable" is obvious Tongue . On the contrary, I think most people (I'll cop to this) do imagine first that there are more rationals than integers. Rather it was the nature of the typo which was "obvious."
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Re: How was the real universe created?
« Reply #82 on: June 02, 2003, 10:39:20 pm »

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As the one who created this thread, I must say that I am suprised my little joke turned into this huge discusssion.

 Wink


Be proud Rain Man! Bringing life to the forum is what we want!
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Re: How was the real universe created?
« Reply #83 on: June 02, 2003, 11:54:37 pm »

First of all, I agree with the RainMan... All this discussion as to wether the universe is finite, infinte, flat, donut-shaped or inside a pickle jar is beside the point. I’d like to focus again on the original question, and for that I'll try and put my clumsy thoughts into even clumsier words. One of the unavoidable factors in this discussion is the language that we use. I don’t think we are refering to the same thing when we say ‘Universe’.
To the question "How was the real universe created?", I follow it with another question, "What do you mean by 'Universe'?"
There are many many definitions for the word 'Universe'. I can think of at least 3:
a) The Geographic (or physical) explanation: In which ‘Universe’ is infinite space (and everything in it).
b) The Mathematical one: where universe is the same an infinite group (of whatever), and
c) The "perceptive" one: In which our universe is anything and everything that is within our area of perception-influence-explanation. This would mean 'Universe' is another term to mention 'Reality'. If there are things outside (and probably there are), they are not part of our universe.
Using this explanation, the obvious way to go (for me) is to answer the original question "How was the real universe created?", it's as simple as "We created it". We created it and continue to create it all the time by reaching towards the limits of our perception and observing, defining and trying to explain what we find inside. As to the things that (obviously) exist outside, they don't fit into our definition of 'Universe', so they don't need to be in the answer.

I definitely don’t feel qualified enough to talk about either physics or mathematics (or about anything alse, for that matter)

Please, someone enlighten a small ignorant man (with as few big words as possible)
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Re: How was the real universe created?
« Reply #84 on: June 03, 2003, 02:57:44 am »

I have no answer about what the universe really is.  Not good enough at physics to figure it all out.  Interested in reading the works of people who bravely go down the path of discovery, though  (like Hawkin or Brian Green in Princeton).

I am simply fascinated with the beauty, complexity, and order, with which the universe is formed.  It is amazing to be alive.

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Re: How was the real universe created?
« Reply #85 on: June 03, 2003, 03:29:27 am »

yes it is, regardless of where the hell it is exactly we live and if there's any company.
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Re: How was the real universe created?
« Reply #86 on: June 03, 2003, 05:23:09 am »

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Considering the finite vs. infinite debate, I once read a rather simple way of proving that the universe is not infinite:

Why is the night sky dark?

There are stars in the sky. The brightness of an object is divided by four when the distance to it is doubled. However, when the radius of a sphere is doubled, its surface area is quadrupled. Imagine the surface of the sphere is the night sky, and the radius is infinity. Therefore, if we have an infinite universe with an infinite number of light-emitting stellar bodies, the brightness if the night sky should be constant and even.



Sorry to re-touch on the infinity talk for those bored of it, but this is flawed reasoning. As is the suggestion about an infinite number of stars creating infinite graviational forces in the Universe.

The reason is that distances are also infinite. As the distance tends to infinity the "brightness" from our perspective equals 0.

Those who posted on this last page are correct, there is no way to prove the size of the Universe.
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Re: How was the real universe created?
« Reply #87 on: June 03, 2003, 05:25:42 am »

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yes it is, regardless of where the hell it is exactly we live and if there's any company.


Although, company would be nice. I don't mean Ur-Quan or those acid dripping aliens from... aliens, or even those guys from independence day, or the war of the worlds, or Ming the Mercy-less, or any of the psycho badguy aliens.

I mean like the sort of drop-by-for-a-friendly-chat sort of aliens. Like the Arloo, only not so self-rightous, or Spathi, only not so freaking scared of everything, or the Bjorins, only check your emotional luggage at customs, or Alf, only not so...Alf, or the Syreen, only not so dressed. Like that.
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Re: How was the real universe created?
« Reply #88 on: June 03, 2003, 09:26:29 am »

I think the Syreen would be just fine the way they are dressed (knife included).
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Re: How was the real universe created?
« Reply #89 on: June 03, 2003, 09:50:46 am »

Actually, I don't mind the Ur-Quan-- except for the enslavement and ethnic cleansing bit, of course.   They seem like interesting people to hang out with.

Much better company than, say, the Thraddash or Umgah.  I think these guys would be annoying as hell.

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