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 Topic: The Magic of Intelligent Design, A repost from Telic Thoughts < Next Oldest | Next Newest >
Thought Provoker

Posts: 530
Joined: April 2007

"Any sufficiently advanced technology is indistinguishable from magic." Arthur C. Clarke, Profiles of The Future

One of the biggest obstacles to accepting ID hypotheses as scientific endeavors is their appeal to magic-like mechanisms. But what if a magic-like aspect in nature has been around so long that we don't see it for the magic it is? I suggest what we think of as randomness is, for all practical purposes, magic.

Let's take a hypothetical coin, we flip it, it comes up heads. We note that.

We flip it again, it comes up heads again, We note the pattern (two heads in a row).

We flip it again, it comes up tails.

The pattern is broken. Why? Is it "magic"?

We don't think of it that way because we are conditioned to expect flipped coins to "randomly" come up heads or tails even when we flip them in the exact same manner. The same would be true if we used a perfectly repeating mechanical device to flip the coin. Assuming the coin was perfectly balanced, the results would not be a pattern. A perfectly repeatable (deterministic) setup is impossible because quantum level effects are non-deterministic.

However, are quantum level effects random?

Before we try to answer that question, let's go back to flipping coins. This time we will flip three special coins. These special coins have an interesting aspect. They appear to respond to what is called. If "heads" is called at least one of the three coins will be heads. If "tails" is called, at least one of the three coins will be tails. After thousands and thousands of tests, the coins have never failed to do this. Further more, when "heads" are called all three coins will be heads one out of four times (not one out of eight). When "tails" are called all three coins will be tails one out of four times. At no time are all three coins heads when "tails" is called and at no time are all three coins tails when "heads" is called.

The thousands of consistent and repeatable experiments convinces even the most skeptical of scientist that the special coins are, indeed, special.

More experiments are preformed. It turns out that calling or "heads" or "tails" can be delayed until after the coins have landed (as long as no peeking is involved).

Further experiments show that three different people can flip the three coins separately. This exposed an very interesting property of the special coins. If the three people all call the same (either "heads" or "tails") then at least one of them gets what they call and, sometimes, all three of them get what they called as would be expected. However, if they don't call the same, sometimes none of them get what they call (happens one out of four times).

Once all the permutations are cataloged the special nature of the coins become even more apparent. The state of the third coin can be absolutely predicted after the first two coins are called and exposed.

For example, imagine the coins flipped and on the table with each of the three people covering it with their hands. The first person calls "heads", shows his coin, it is tails. The second person calls "heads", shows his coin, it is also tails. The third coin will ALWAYS be heads regardless of what the third person calls.

The experiment is reran, but this time the first two people call "tails" and their coins show tails again. The third coin will ALWAYS be tails regardless of what the third person calls.

Note that the third coin's state depended on what the other two people called NOT the whether the coins were heads or tails.

These special coins are special indeed. What natural explanations would explain the coin's behavior? Here are the non-metaphysical possibilities…

1. The third coin "magically" predicted the future.
2. The third coin "magically" changed state at the last moment
3. The coins are "magically" linked to people's consciousness

The magic described here is basically the reality of Greenberger–Horne–Zeilinger (GHZ) quantum states. Instead of calling heads or tails, the observers decide which quantum state (e.g. horizontal polarization) to measure. This magic-like effect has been experimentally tested and verified countless times. Its reality is not in question.

Even though quantum effects are non-deterministic they aren’t random.

You might ask what quantum level effects have to do with Intelligent Design.

First of all, it goes to show that magic-like effects can be scientific. There is also reason to believe quantum effects where instrumental to function in early life on Earth (front loaded?).

Recently, it was discovered that photosynthesis uses quantum mechanics. Photosynthesis is an extremely old biological mechanism.

DNA is being used as building blocks for quantum computers and the DNA structure and “code” is optimal for processing search algorithms. DNA/RNA defines what is or isn’t considered a living organism.

Finally, the Penrose-Hameroff Orch OR model of consciousness hypothesizes that consciousness is an artifact of quantum processing in microtubules. Microtubules are instrumental in living structures and organisms that appear to be aware of their surroundings.

Personally, I have serious criticisms concerning the apparent motives and past actions of the ID Movement, but it would be a mistake to dismiss all challenges to orthodox thinking as simply an appeal to the metaphysical because it may turn out that the magic is real.

Richardthughes

Posts: 11110
Joined: Jan. 2006

WOO WOO ALL ABOARD THE DEPAK CHOPRA EXPRESS.

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"Richardthughes, you magnificent bastard, I stand in awe of you..." : Arden Chatfield
"You magnificent bastard! " : Louis
"ATBC poster child", "I have to agree with Rich.." : DaveTard
"...it was Richardthughes making me lie in bed.." : Kristine

creeky belly

Posts: 205
Joined: June 2006

 Quote Even though quantum effects are non-deterministic they aren’t random.You might ask what quantum level effects have to do with Intelligent Design.First of all, it goes to show that magic-like effects can be scientific. There is also reason to believe quantum effects where instrumental to function in early life on Earth (front loaded?).

They are also non-trivial, what mechanism front loads a probability distribution other than potential perturbations?

k.e

Posts: 1948
Joined: Mar. 2006

 Quote Finally, the Penrose-Hameroff Orch OR model of consciousness hypothesizes that consciousness is an artifact of quantum processing in microtubules. Microtubules are instrumental in living structures and organisms that appear to be aware of their surroundings.

Oh Telepathy ..why didn't you say so.

I'd be interested to know how LSD changes the quantum wave functions or frequencies of sub atomic particles in the brain. Or is that a quantum interaction *snicker*

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The conservative has but little to fear from the man whose reason is the servant of his passions, but let him beware of him in whom reason has become the greatest and most terrible of the passions.These are the wreckers of outworn empires and civilisations, doubters, disintegrators, deicides.Haldane

Thought Provoker

Posts: 530
Joined: April 2007

Hi Creeky Belly,

Thank you for providing the link.  It is the best description of the GHZ states I have seen yet.

I will probably use it in the future.

BWE

Posts: 1901
Joined: Jan. 2006

When the doors of perception are cleansed, all will appear as it is- infinite.

have you ever looked at your hand? I mean really looked at your hand?

--------------
Who said that ev'ry wish would be heard and answered
When wished on the morning star
Somebody thought of that, and someone believed it
Look what it's done so far

The Daily Wingnut

k.e

Posts: 1948
Joined: Mar. 2006

 Quote (Richardthughes @ Sep. 25 2007,17:49) WOO WOO ALL ABOARD THE DEPAK CHOPRA EXPRESS.

OH HA HA HA VERY FUNNY, I THINK YOU MEAN DR QUANTUM  HOMO

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The conservative has but little to fear from the man whose reason is the servant of his passions, but let him beware of him in whom reason has become the greatest and most terrible of the passions.These are the wreckers of outworn empires and civilisations, doubters, disintegrators, deicides.Haldane

blipey

Posts: 2061
Joined: June 2006

Is this a joke?

No not the Chopra Express, you homos, the OP.

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But I get the trick question- there isn't any such thing as one molecule of water. -JoeG

And scientists rarely test theories. -Gary Gaulin

qetzal

Posts: 311
Joined: Feb. 2006

 Quote (Thought Provoker @ Sep. 25 2007,09:43) We don't think of it that way because we are conditioned to expect flipped coins to "randomly" come up heads or tails even when we flip them in the exact same manner. The same would be true if we used a perfectly repeating mechanical device to flip the coin. Assuming the coin was perfectly balanced, the results would not be a pattern. A perfectly repeatable (deterministic) setup is impossible because quantum level effects are non-deterministic.

You may be interested to learn that this is not true. Not that this really speaks to your main point, of course.

 Quote You might ask what quantum level effects have to do with Intelligent Design.First of all, it goes to show that magic-like effects can be scientific. There is also reason to believe quantum effects where instrumental to function in early life on Earth (front loaded?).

I expect quantum effects are instrumental to function of everything, living and non-living. I fail to see how that ties in to ID.

 Quote Recently, it was discovered that photosynthesis uses quantum mechanics. Photosynthesis is an extremely old biological mechanism.

When you get down to it, doesn't every chemical reaction use quantum mechanics? I imagine thermonuclear fusion uses quantum mechanics, and that's a much older 'mechanism.' What should we infer from that?
 Quote DNA is being used as building blocks for quantum computers and the DNA structure and “code” is optimal for processing search algorithms.

Optimal how, and compared to what? Any citations? Are you suggesting this implies something related to ID?
 Quote DNA/RNA defines what is or isn’t considered a living organism.

Not really. At present, everything we know that's arguably living contains DNA and/or RNA, but lots of people think that life without DNA or RNA is at least theoretically possible.
 Quote Finally, the Penrose-Hameroff Orch OR model of consciousness hypothesizes that consciousness is an artifact of quantum processing in microtubules. Microtubules are instrumental in living structures and organisms that appear to be aware of their surroundings.

Microtubules are found in pretty much all eukaryotes, are they not? That doesn't prove much. Lipids are also instrumental in living structures, but I don't think that's evidence that consciousness is an artifact of quantum processing in lipids. (Note - I realize there's more to the microtubule hypothesis, and I'm not attempting to refute it here. I'm only pointing out that the ubiquity of microtubules in eukaryotes tells us nothing about their role in consciousness.)
 Quote Personally, I have serious criticisms concerning the apparent motives and past actions of the ID Movement, but it would be a mistake to dismiss all challenges to orthodox thinking as simply an appeal to the metaphysical because it may turn out that the magic is real.

Agreed. However, please note the key difference between QM and ID - evidence. As you acknowledge in your post, we can set up conditions where these seemingly magical QM effects can be conclusively demonstrated. We can state what observations are expected in certain situations, according to QM.

ID does none of that. It makes no claims about what we should observe. It offers no demonstrations or concrete evidence. It merely claims evolution is inadequate, therefore ID.

I don't reject ID because it seems too magical or counterintuitive. I reject it because it makes no claims, offers no predictions, and has no useful explanatory power.

Jim_Wynne

Posts: 1205
Joined: June 2006

Shorter TP: There's stuff we don't understand. Could be frontloading.  Back to gazing at navel.

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Evolution is not about laws but about randomness on happanchance.--Robert Byers, at PT

Thought Provoker

Posts: 530
Joined: April 2007

Hi blipey,

 Quote Is this a joke?

A lot of serious scientists have asked the same question.

Here is a quote from the link Creeky Belly supplied...

"Those who are not shocked when they first come across quantum mechanics cannot possibly have understood it." - Niels Bohr

"Quantum wierdness" and "spooky action at a distance" are terms used by the likes of Einstein.

Even I am not too sure how seriously I take this stuff.  For example, I have added "aka Quantum Quack" to my login name when posting to science blogs.

It is reality.  Whether or not it is a joke may depend on your Theism/Atheism status.

"Hah! Let them try to figure THIS out."

C.J.O'Brien

Posts: 395
Joined: Aug. 2005

The "magic" in your coin example is a result of your conflating macroscopic objects with quantum systems and asking us to expect that the properties of one "should" also adhere to the other. With no justification. Why should we expect quantum-scale systems to have the properties of macro-scale objects? If we in fact shouldn't, all the magic drains away.

Granted, we are left with some counter-intuitive behavior at very small scales, but, in the same vein, that is only because our intuitions are based on our experiences, which all occur in the macro world.

Similarly, appealing to quantum woo to explain the "mystery" of consciousness is persuasive only if you insist that consciousness is somehow so inexplicable as to seem magical. It doesn't to me, so I am unpersuaded that this is anything more than navel-gazing. (And yes, I've read Penrose on the subject.)

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The is the beauty of being me- anything that any man does I can understand.
--Joe G

Richardthughes

Posts: 11110
Joined: Jan. 2006

More magic:

http://www.breitbart.com/article....1&cat=0

Multiple universes in with a shout.

Looks like any bad Dembski math may be now SOL. Our numerator crushes your denominator. Oh, UPB becomes meaningless if true.

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"Richardthughes, you magnificent bastard, I stand in awe of you..." : Arden Chatfield
"You magnificent bastard! " : Louis
"ATBC poster child", "I have to agree with Rich.." : DaveTard
"...it was Richardthughes making me lie in bed.." : Kristine

blipey

Posts: 2061
Joined: June 2006

Hi TP,

I think you misunderstood me.  My joke reference was not in reference to QM.  As for being shocked by the theory of QM, shocked may not be quite the right word.  As I am not a physicist, I don't claim any special insight into QM, but I find it interesting.  My 15 hours of university classes in QM made me think it is cool, if difficult to wrap my brain around.

I'm pretty sure my religious leanings have zero bearing on whether or not I think QM is cool.  When I was younger, I would certainly identify as a practicing Christian (though certainly not of the biblical literalism variety).  I no longer identify myself as such.  It is interesting to note, however, that my views on such scientific matters and their "coolness"  factor is the same now as it was then.

My joke reference was more in reference to equating randomness with magic.  Your comment seems to indicate that you equate magic with stuff we don't know yet.  Fine, I guess I can go along with that in the same sense that Clarke meant it.

However, the magic of ID is not this same thing; your analogy is bad. The magic of ID requires (at least at some level of recursivity) actual magic--something that is supernatural.

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But I get the trick question- there isn't any such thing as one molecule of water. -JoeG

And scientists rarely test theories. -Gary Gaulin

Thought Provoker

Posts: 530
Joined: April 2007

Continuing...

As C.J.O'Brien indicated, the reason quantum mechanics appears weird is because our intuition is based on our experiences in the macro world.  What if the quantum world is the one that is normal and it is the macro world that is weird?

Our intuitions perceive matter as solid objects obeying the laws of Newtonian physics operating in a universe of Euclidean geometry.  The concept of time is like a frame by frame movie with each frame containing a copy of the entire 3 dimensional universe.

In 1905 Einstein came along and started messing up this view.  I suggest the implications of what was started 100 years ago are just now beginning to fully manifest themselves.

Einstein proposed Special Relativity as a temporary, and incomplete, explanation of scientific observations.  The idea was to suggest multiple frames of reference to deal with the constant speed of light.  No one frame of reference was supreme, everything was “relative”.  Dealing with the Twin Paradox was done by mumbling something about accelerations.  This allowed for keeping the Euclidean geometry view of the universe.

General Relativity presumed a fixed, inertial frame of reference.  This model was also consistent with scientific observations.  It accomplished this by suggesting an entirely different geometry for the universe, Minkowskian Geometry (Minkowski was one of Einstein's teachers).  Space/time has four complex dimensions and is curved.  The shortest distance between two points is no longer a straight line.  The Twin Paradox is solved as a geometry problem (the traveling twin takes a short cut).

So we had two mathematical models that were consistent with scientific observations.  Which one was correct?  While General Relativity was pretty much presumed correct, when an experiment was conducted with a jet flying around the world (both East and West), no doubt remained.  Minkowskian Geometry is reality, Euclidean geometry is not.

So what is the big deal about Minkowskian Geometry?

In Euclidean geometry the change in distance (dL) can be calculated by taking the square-root of the sum of the squares.
IOW, dL^2 = dx^2 + dy^2 + dz^2.

In Minkowskian Geometry, the equation becomes dL^2 = dx^2 + dy^2 + dz^2 – dt^2.

The fourth complex dimension, time, contains the square-root of negative one.  Squaring it results in a negative.  This is how the traveling twin can take a shortcut.  Things get interesting at the speed of light.  In the case of a photon traveling from a star light-years away to a detector on Earth, the Minkowskian distance traveled is ZERO!

This brings us to quantum mechanics and GHZ states.  There is no mystery or even magic in understanding how three separate photons could be entangled in Minkowskian Geometry.  Heck, they can be thought of as the same photon! EPR paradox, superposition, etc all melt away once you combine General Relativity with Quantum Theory.  However, particles lose their identity in the process.

There are two main prevailing quantum interpretations, Many Worlds and Copenhagen derivatives.  Penrose’s OR model is a Copenhagen derivative.  With Penrose, everything is a wavefunction.  For example, a “photon” is a standing wave in Minkowskian Geometry.
Decoherence is the Objective Reduction (OR) of the wavefunction (other Copenhagen derivatives will refer to this as the waveform collapse).

Many Worlds is a metaphysical/mathematical construct that is offered to allow for the dogmatic resistance against giving up the idea that materialist particles are operating in an Euclidean universe. Richardthughes provided a link supporting a mathematical model.

Old habits die hard, but they do die...  eventually.

creeky belly

Posts: 205
Joined: June 2006

 Quote The fourth complex dimension, time, contains the square-root of negative one.

Actually, this is a misinterpretation of the concept of space-time. There are different ways of moving through it:
time-like: t^2 >> x^2+y^2+z^2 represent objects moving within same light cone.
space-like: t^2 << x^2+y^2+z^2 represent objects in different light cones (causally separated)
light-like: t^2 = x^2+y^2+z^2 -> L=0 represents the space-time for objects at the speed of light (gravity, photons, etc)

The GHZ game can be resolved by noting that in order to compare the states through causally separated entangled pairs (or trios) information must be exchanged which requires GR causality.

 Quote In 1905 Einstein came along and started messing up this view.  I suggest the implications of what was started 100 years ago are just now beginning to fully manifest themselves.

“Examples of this sort [Maxwell's magnetic flux experiment], together with the unsuccessful attempts to discover the motion of the earth relatively to the ‘light medium’, suggest the phenomena of electrodynamics as well as of mechanics possess no properties corresponding to the idea of absolute rest.” -Einstein

 Quote Heck, they can be thought of as the same photon! EPR paradox, superposition, etc all melt away once you combine General Relativity with Quantum Theory.  However, particles lose their identity in the process.

In the classical sense they can't, only probabilistically can you tie them together.

BWE

Posts: 1901
Joined: Jan. 2006

TP, (Unfortunate acronym, I'm sorry)

This is sort of neat in a kind of swell sort of way but I'm confused. Are you saying that Dembski (et al) isn't a crank peddling snake oil? Because that seems unrelated to this topic and touches a few nerves. Kind of makes me get all tingly so I have to be alone for a few minutes y'know?

Your quantum dealy is cool, fascinating and many other wonderful fabulous adjectives but relating it to intelligent design is a bit weird. I mean, how do you relate something so swell like quantum stuff with something so slimy and icky like ID?

That's all. Thanks.

--------------
Who said that ev'ry wish would be heard and answered
When wished on the morning star
Somebody thought of that, and someone believed it
Look what it's done so far

The Daily Wingnut

Thought Provoker

Posts: 530
Joined: April 2007

Hi BWE,

You wrote...

 Quote TP, (Unfortunate acronym, I'm sorry)

No apologies necessary.  I don't take my anonymous pseudonym that seriously.

You wrote...

 Quote This is sort of neat in a kind of swell sort of way but I'm confused. Are you saying that Dembski (et al) isn't a crank peddling snake oil?

We are talking about dr-putting-pepper-on-boxing-gloves, right?

I am a very vocal critic of the ID Movement.  I am appalled by how Dembski is using his intelligence to manipulate people who earnestly believe his BS.

Nothing would delight me more than to watch Dembski squirm at having a new scientific hypothesis emerge that diverges from strict "Darwinism", but doesn't support the existence of his personal God.

Chances are some ID Scientists would get some credit.  Imagine Dembski’s dilemma if that would happen.

 Quote Your quantum dealy is cool, fascinating and many other wonderful fabulous adjectives but relating it to intelligent design is a bit weird. I mean, how do you relate something so swell like quantum stuff with something so slimy and icky like ID?

First of all, I am an engineer, not a scientist.  I like making models.  I like figuring things out.  I got curious with ID during the Dover trial (btw, the verdict was anti-climatic for me, it was that obvious).  In some ways, Behe appeared to have a spark of an actual idea.  So I starting investigating.  I started out searching through Behe's and Dembski's stuff but quickly got banned from UD.  This is when I got hooked up with Telic Thoughts.

Joy may be insane, but she knew all this stuff.  Between internet searches and reading things from Stephen Hawking and Penrose and Hameroff, it has clicked in my engineering mind.

I have presented this on several science blogs.  Let's just say the reception wasn't conducive for furthering conversation.

Associating it with ID isn't that hard.  ID proponents have a very flexible definition of "Intelligence".  And, to them, design practically means "not random". My ideas are supportive of MikeGene's front loading.

MikeGene supports it by letting me Guest Host on Telic Thoughts.  That irritates a lot of the religious Culture Warriors (I am clearly an Atheist in their eyes). It is pro-science.

Best of all, it provokes thinking on both sides.

Why not?

BWE

Posts: 1901
Joined: Jan. 2006

Why not indeed: carry on. Tis an interesting diversion and certainly causes fewer painful callouses.

--------------
Who said that ev'ry wish would be heard and answered
When wished on the morning star
Somebody thought of that, and someone believed it
Look what it's done so far

The Daily Wingnut

Reciprocating Bill

Posts: 4265
Joined: Oct. 2006

 Quote (Richardthughes @ Sep. 25 2007,10:49) WOO WOO ALL ABOARD THE DEPAK CHOPRA EXPRESS.

No, man, it's The Dancing Woo Woo Masters. It's The D'OH! of Physics.

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Myth: Something that never was true, and always will be.

"The truth will set you free. But not until it is finished with you."
- David Foster Wallace

"Hereâ€™s a clue. Snarky banalities are not a substitute for saying something intelligent. Write that down."
- Barry Arrington

qetzal

Posts: 311
Joined: Feb. 2006

 Quote (Thought Provoker @ Sep. 25 2007,17:00) Associating it with ID isn't that hard.  ID proponents have a very flexible definition of "Intelligence".  And, to them, design practically means "not random". My ideas are supportive of MikeGene's front loading.

No offense, but I don't think you've provided any evidence of such support. Not here, anyway.

As far as I can see, your 'argument' on this thread boils down to: "If QM is real even though it seems supernatural, then ID and front loading could also be real even though they seem supernatural." That's not a valid argument, and I don't think it supports ID any more than it supports pixies and fairies.

Have I missed something?

Thought Provoker

Posts: 530
Joined: April 2007

Hi Creeky Belly,

As to Einstein's opinion on an interial frame of reference;

From a paper titled Einstein’s Ether: Why did Einstein Come Back to the Ether?

"In (1905) Einstein constructed a relativity theory that was based on the assertion that the ether was superfluous. In 1908 Minkowski formulated the theory of the “absolute world”. The nineteenth century ether no longer existed. A new kind of ether (space-time) came into being. One could keep on maintaining the ether, and at the same time strip it of the notion of absolute rest. Einstein seemed to agree, and after 1916 he returned to the ether. In 1920 he combined Minkowski’s absolute world concept and Mach’s ideas on rotational movements..."

To my statement "The fourth complex dimension, time, contains the square-root of negative one."

You wrote...

 Quote Actually, this is a misinterpretation of the concept of space-time. There are different ways of moving through it:time-like: t^2 >> x^2+y^2+z^2 represent objects moving within same light cone.space-like: t^2 << x^2+y^2+z^2 represent objects in different light cones (causally separated)light-like: t^2 = x^2+y^2+z^2 -> L=0 represents the space-time for objects at the speed of light (gravity, photons, etc)

Penrose provides hypothetical geometries that could have been "real".  Using complex numbers for dimensional quantities isn't a problem.  Actually, not using complex numbers makes things unrealistic.  Otherwise, you end of trying to segment things artificially in an attempt to avoid negative square roots (like you did above).  Complex numbers are no more artificial than irrational numbers.

There is no reason to be afraid of complex dimensions.

On page 413, Penrose explains the space-like equation is...

dl^2 = -dt^2 + dx^2 + dy^2 + dz^2

He also indicates that the orientation of the complex numbers is arbitrary.  Therefore, the time-like equation is...

ds^2 = dt^2 - dx^2 - dy^2 - dz^2

...which makes it easier to deal with things that stay inside the null cones (you called them "light cones").

The value of "ds" is equivelent to a watch or a clock.  This is why the solution to the Twin Paradox (Penrose calls it the "clock paradox") is easy in Minkowskian geometry.

BTW, if you are suggesting their is no interial frame of reference, how do you explain the Twin Paradox?  The problem looks the same to both Twins.  Each twin is standing still in his/her frame of reference and the other twin is the one moving.  Why are the results different?

 Quote The GHZ game can be resolved by noting that in order to compare the states through causally separated entangled pairs (or trios) information must be exchanged which requires GR causality.

Say that three times fast.  Better yet, say it in terms the listening audience can understand.

I think they may figure out you aren't saying anything that contradicts what I said.

Thought Provoker

Posts: 530
Joined: April 2007

Continuing...

Combining General Relativity with Quantum Theory isn't too controversial by itself.  Qetzal correctly pointed out this doesn't explain much, yet.  And blipey's question about the magic of randomness is still unanswered.

Since we don't generally zip around at light speed nor deal with things at the sub-atomic level, this isn't very disturbing, yet.  With maybe the exception of thinking about about that wave/particle distinction.

However, this is just the beginning.  The DEPAK CHOPRA EXPRESS has yet to build up a full head of steam.

Arguing about whether photons are waves or particles is practically academic since photons are massless.  The Copenhegan school of thought was that photons started out as waves and collapsed into particles when appropriate.  At the time, the alternative was to take a wait-and-see attitude.

Even when electrons where shown to exhibit wave/particle duality, they still are strange enough and small enough to accept as possible.  Ions?  Well...  Some people started to get nervous and got creative.  Everett came up with the idea of alternative realities being constantly created, the Many Worlds interpretation has born (1957)  Not many people liked the idea.  Most still held onto the Copenhegan school of thought, others continued to wait for a better explanation.

When full fledged molecules (e.g. Bucky Balls) were shown to be both a particle and a wave, the Many Worlds interpretation started getting a lot of supporters (even if they had to hold their noses to do so).

The alternative was to totally embrace the idea that there is no such thing as particles, just wavefunctions.

As an electrical engineer, this isn't that strange.  A finite electrical square pulse can be thought of as a sum of multiple sine waves.  And it is more than just thinking of it that way, a square pulse IS the sum of multiple sine waves which can be separated using electrical filters.

Once you get over the loss of particles, understanding quantum effects becomes easier.  The dual slit experiment is a piece of cake.  Two slits, interference pattern. One slit, particle-like behavior.  GHZ state?  Again, no problem.  The wave(s) are interconnected in Minkowskian space/time.  All observations and states are directly connected to each other and state changes occur wherever and WHENEVER they are needed.

Continuing this line of logic forces one to realize that ALL quantum effects are interconnected in Minkowskian space/time.  And since time is just another dimension, the interconnection occurs across all space and all time.

This makes the entire universe (space and time) one large wavefunction in Minkowskian geometry.

Think of a Mandelbrot Set.  Here is one ithat claims to be as large as our universe.  And that is just one complex dimension with a very simple function.

Are we having fun yet?

I mention the Mandelbrot Set because it illustrates something that is non-changing yet chaotic.  In the dimension of time, it would give the illusion of randomness.  I suggest there is no such thing as natural occurring randomness.

For a long time science was comfortable with Newtonian determinism.  The idea was that if the position and velocity of every particle could be known for a given time then everything could be calculated for the future and the past.

This is similar.  Things only look random because they can be extremely complicated.

I still haven't got to the ID part yet, but I think I need to break here before going on.

k.e

Posts: 1948
Joined: Mar. 2006

TP so far you have only wasted space.

Aside from rationalizing your political stance on untenable principles which is to say enabling the dishonesty and charlatanism of ID players which must make you seem a radical outside the box thinker...to you. *yawn*

So far you have failed to improve the image that ID is a grab bag of flaky poseurs indulging in obscurantism aka religious theology for political ends aka theocracy.

Less useless math please, its pure hand waving and trivial obscurantism PARTICULARLY when you REPEAT IT.

The square root of negative one to you seems to be magic however it is only used to describe a rotating vector and collapse a dimension to make a physical problem amenable to mathematics. Get over it.

If you are discussing the magic of ID you know yourself that no math is not only a requirement but an absolute necessity since their followers are barely literate let alone above boiling point on the IQ scale.

You like love Penrose? How about taking up a better lost cause than ID and try for a Nobel for him………I think that has a better chance of success *giggle….gaffaw*

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The conservative has but little to fear from the man whose reason is the servant of his passions, but let him beware of him in whom reason has become the greatest and most terrible of the passions.These are the wreckers of outworn empires and civilisations, doubters, disintegrators, deicides.Haldane

k.e

Posts: 1948
Joined: Mar. 2006

 Quote Arguing about whether photons are waves or particles is practically academic since photons are massless.

Yes but they have momentum and maybe you could explain why they can't escape a black hole.

....hey wait a minute this has what to do with ID ..again?

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The conservative has but little to fear from the man whose reason is the servant of his passions, but let him beware of him in whom reason has become the greatest and most terrible of the passions.These are the wreckers of outworn empires and civilisations, doubters, disintegrators, deicides.Haldane

Thought Provoker

Posts: 530
Joined: April 2007

continuing...

Hearing no objections from my last comment (I waited a whole five minutes), I will presume everyone understands and agrees that quantum effects are interconnected both in space and time.

The first thing about this that starts smelling like ID is the concept of a teleological universe.

The purpose of our teleological universe is to be internally consistent.

And, yes, I said that with a straight face.

You may not consider it a very aggressive purpose, but it is a purpose and it is better than anything other ID proponents can forward without suggesting some intent of a designer or designers.

The point is that the universe must have a consistent wavefunction with no discontinuities from the beginning to the end of time, or it wouldn't exist (see Anthropic principle).

The wavefunction is purposeful design.  I don’t know who or what designed the wavefunction.  Since I embrace Gould’s NOMA.  I am of the opinion we will never be able to find out via empirical methods.

However, to those inclined to believe in an omniscient, timeless designer we will call God for a lack of a better name, this provides a mechanism by which such a designer could operate.

Whether via anthropic principle or divine whim, life may be necessary to make the teleological universe complete.  One wild idea is that life will bring an orderly end to the universe because some stupid scientists manage to create a naked singularity in their lab.

If the universe needs something to be consistent, than interconnected quantum effects will make it happen and time order isn’t a restriction.  While quantum effects are inherent in both living and non-living material, living material is inherently more flexible.

MikeGene’s front loading is essentially looking for a preponderance of clues that a future need was satisfied by a past feature.

Retrocausality would be something that interconnected quantum effects would demonstrate.

Thought Provoker

Posts: 530
Joined: April 2007

Hi K.E.

You wrote...

 Quote Yes but [photons] have momentum and maybe you could explain why they can't escape a black hole.

If you are not careful, people might get the impression you understand and are interested in this stuff.

Gravity bends Minkowskian space/time.  Either that, or bends in Minkowskian space/time are what cause gravity.

Either way the photon particle/wavefunction gets wrapped up in the fold.

BTW, have you already figured out that gravity is the only thing left to possibly be considered real?

I bet you have.

qetzal

Posts: 311
Joined: Feb. 2006

How many unsupported assertions are you prepared to cram into one post?
 Quote (Thought Provoker @ Sep. 25 2007,21:25) The purpose of our teleological universe is to be internally consistent....The wavefunction is purposeful design....Whether via anthropic principle or divine whim, life may be necessary to make the teleological universe complete....If the universe needs something to be consistent, than interconnected quantum effects will make it happen and time order isn’t a restriction....While quantum effects are inherent in both living and non-living material, living material is inherently more flexible....MikeGene’s front loading is essentially looking for a preponderance of clues that a future need was satisfied by a past feature.Retrocausality would be something that interconnected quantum effects would demonstrate.

The ability to imagine or assert something is not evidence for its reality.

k.e

Posts: 1948
Joined: Mar. 2006

 Quote The wavefunction is purposeful design.

Says you .....oranges are orange.

 Quote I don’t know who or what designed the wavefunction.

Schrodinger

 Quote Since I embrace Gould’s NOMA.  I am of the opinion we will never be able to find out via empirical methods.

From someone who boldly stated that the photon is massless what a pussy!

You should know there is an upper limit on the mass of a photon and is only massless because no one has measured its mass yet.

In any case same old obscurantism pages and pages of sciency gafflegab then "I believe in my faith".

Why bother?

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The conservative has but little to fear from the man whose reason is the servant of his passions, but let him beware of him in whom reason has become the greatest and most terrible of the passions.These are the wreckers of outworn empires and civilisations, doubters, disintegrators, deicides.Haldane

creeky belly

Posts: 205
Joined: June 2006

 Quote You might want to read Penrose's The Road to Reality.Penrose provides hypothetical geometries that could have been "real".  Using complex numbers for dimensional quantities isn't a problem.  Actually, not using complex numbers makes things unrealistic.  Otherwise, you end of trying to segment things artificially in an attempt to avoid negative square roots (like you did above).  Complex numbers are no more artificial than irrational numbers.

What you added was meaningless. When events are space-like, they are not causally connected, so you don't interpret the result the same way. I chose to use an actual General Relativity text, in this case Sean Carroll's Spacetime and Geometry which is based on the work of Thorne, Weinberg, Taylor, Wheeler, Hawking, Ellis, and Nash. There are actually different schools of thought on which convention to use, but the negative one is added to the metric, not the actual vector. If you want to classify imaginary numbers above as space-like separation that's fine, but you're arguing a convention, nothing more.

 Quote BTW, if you are suggesting their is no interial frame of reference, how do you explain the Twin Paradox?  The problem looks the same to both Twins.  Each twin is standing still in his/her frame of reference and the other twin is the one moving.  Why are the results different?

I never made such a claim, merely that relativity was built up from electrodynamics as a way of satisfying Maxwell's equations in moving reference frames. No point was being made, just wanted to share some of his words. The twin paradox represents and equivalence in space-time. In this case dL^2 must be the same for both the traveling twin and the stationary twin. In the earth's frame of reference (with the speed of light set to 1):

Stationary twin:
by definition x,y,z=0, let's say 1 year passes and the brother travels 0.5 light years, the observer will see
L^2 = t^2 - x^2-y^2-z^2 = 1^2 - 0.5^2 -> L = 0.75 light-years

Traveling twin:
How much time has passed in his frame?
L^2 = t^2-x^2-y^2-z^2 -> 0.75^2 = t^2 -> t = 0.75 years

Time passed for stationary: 1 year. Time for traveling: 0.75 years.

 Quote Say that three times fast.  Better yet, say it in terms the listening audience can understand.I think they may figure out you aren't saying anything that contradicts what I said.

My point was that even though things like collapsing the wave function seem to violate relativity, they don't. You still need to compare the results, which will subject to the rules of space-time. I wasn't really trying to contradict, mainly to point out the practicality of so-called faster than light communication.

 Quote This makes the entire universe (space and time) one large wavefunction in Minkowskian geometry.

Quite. The structure of our universe was built up from density and tensor perturbations (quantum effects), much of that information can be found in things like the CMB. However, the unfortunate result from QM shows that as you increase the energy level, you revert to a classical state, in which case the wavefunction really becomes indistinguishable from a classical description.

 Quote Hearing no objections from my last comment (I waited a whole five minutes), I will presume everyone understands and agrees that quantum effects are interconnected both in space and time.

Unless you start talking about inflationary epochs, in which regions of the universe became causally disconnected as it expanded. I recommend Peacock's Physical Cosmology or Peeble's Inflationary Cosmology for more information.

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