Mon, Feb 28, 2011
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Questioning the Fundamentals
Could Einstein's Theory of Relativity be slipping into the past as a discredited misunderstanding?
And could it be replaced with an intuitive and simplified scientific truth that was discovered over a century ago?

A major turning point in the public’s understanding of science came about a century ago, with the introduction of Einstein’s special and general theories of relativity. Before then, educated laymen were expected to and usually could understand new developments in science, at least in outline. After Einstein this changed. Science moved beyond the ken of educated laymen. You didn’t understand what these new arguments were about? Then stick to your poetry, or perhaps your knitting. Science was becoming a private party to which you weren’t invited. (Except that, increasingly, your taxes were expected to pay for it.)

Newton’s laws of motion and gravity always were intelligible to the layman, and could be expressed in plain language. Einstein’s relativity changed that, in the direction of reduced clarity, intelligibility and vastly increased complexity. I shall go further and say that relativity failed to improve on Newtonian physics in terms of accuracy.

Recently I wrote a book about relativity, Questioning Einstein: Is Relativity Necessary? It was based on the research and arguments of Petr Beckmann, who taught electrical engineering at the University of Colorado after defecting from Czechoslovakia in 1963. He wrote books that were both popular (A History of Pi) and obscure (The Scattering of Electromagnetic Waves from Rough Surfaces), and late in life he published Einstein Plus Two (1987).

He argued that the facts that led to relativity could more easily be explained by classical physics – without relativity. His book was in many ways technical, but before he died (in 1993) he reviewed it for my benefit in a series of tape-recorded interviews.

remainder of article here

I am enamored of questioning the fundamentals.
I find the deepest delight in discovering that all events behave with the reason of an axiom.
There is value in asking questions of common assumptions, if only to define the axiom that defines the truth and explore further into the ramifications of that knowledge with a clear logical footing.
Sometimes it is found that there is no truth in old, confusing ideas at all. Perhaps the reason that Relativity Theory doesn't make sense to anyone outside the club is because it's just plain wrong?

(For all I know the luminiferous aether is the hard drive our program exists on.)

Mon, Feb 28, 2011  Permanent link

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Hixgrid     Wed, Mar 9, 2011  Permanent link
I think that the idea of your post is interesting and has potential to be discussed in a constructive way. I don't agree with every arguement, also in the related article from Tom Bethell, but I think that it is not so important who is right, but to understand that there are more principle ideas that we have assumed so far. In my opinion Einstein may have detected many correct laws, but it could be that they are specially correct in the Einstein-Space, which could be a special case in a holographic universe. That is all speculative, but the very lesson is to understand, that our brain is not neccessarily evaluating objective data and that we are human beings - which is a proof that there are very complex fundamental things happening - just becaus it is so unlikely that we exist, but we do and are at the beginning of awakening - e.g. that quantum physics is used by our brain and neurons or that the Einstein - Space may be only the beginning of our understanding of things like a singularity or time. May be time is just a subjective phenomenom - a change of entropy?! So the speed of light is more than the author (Bethell) assumes (space divided by time), it could be a geometric phenomenom as well as a subjective entropy change/information flow - but superpostition and quantum entanglement tells us that there is even more than that.
Phyllotaxis     Thu, Mar 10, 2011  Permanent link
I think that it is not so important who is right, but to understand that there are more principle ideas that we have assumed so far.

This enlightened mentality is exactly what has drawn me so powerfully to this place, and those of you that exist here. It's vital to openly look at everything around us that may contain a thought, or idea, or even an accidental correlation pointing to a broader, coherent knowledge.

I fully agree with your views on the essay— it presents an interesting way of looking at things that are not often questioned by the autodidactic free thinker. I'm glad you found it useful for stirring some thought.

May be time is just a subjective phenomenom - a change of entropy?!

I have spent many hours wondering about that very thing! It's so refreshing to see another person open to these thoughts, as seemingly abstract as they may be. I love the idea, and think of it often.

I really do believe that "time" could be nothing more than our brain's perception of entropy.

Imagine a view of physics, or a rendering of reality that has no need of an artificial "time dimension" to have to factor in... all of a sudden the purity of thermodynamics and information theory may one day quite simply and eloquently describe our individual "witness of change from one state to another".
That very sentiment has rather obsessed me some nights, in that it treats time as an artificial and unnecessary construct that humans created out of a simple need for communication of ideas between others—much the same way that every other facet of social language was manifested.
It therefore makes sense that we regiment time by our heartbeats and Sol cycles, because everyone understands them, but in my view that's only a loose shortcut in the scheme of things.

The venture of getting at the function of time as entropy alone with respect to relativity is what excites me. Interstellar space has a dramatically different rate of entropy than the surface of earth. It stands to reason that there may be a corresponding change in the men, medium, or materials that pass through these different environments. Perhaps 'time' passes faster on earth than in deepspace because there's just more stuff changing on earth? But to think of the changes strictly in entropic forms of rate of decay brings to my mind interesting musings of an alternate way of looking at things.
I mention these conceptual ideas, you understand only as personal thoughts- not declarations of measured science fact. But I do believe that there could be usefulness in exploring the concepts further.

If you want me to sound really crazy, I'll tell you that I believe human action and economics might also be explained using the simple principles of entropy.
In the same way temperatures are prone to equalize via the path of least resistance, human minds, through physical action, take the path of least resistance to attain their desires.

Most would grant that the optimal path of least resistance for humans being is whatever peaceful, freely-exchanged interaction they choose. Granting only that the individual mind is the arbiter of "least resistance", the idea works every time. (Chaos easily explains the violent barbarian mouth-breather, and I go to bed hoping that stars, black holes, and asteroids are not capable of the vulgar malice of mankind's worst, else I'd actually nightmare over what we will someday find out in the expanse... but I digress)

What is the difference between a burning leaf changing at a variable rate from plant matter and water to the hot gas and particulate byproducts freed from those shapes with heat, and a man, also at a variable rate, working to earn money, changing that labor to cash, which changes again to a digital account balance, which changes again to a Fender Stratocaster, which becomes a beautiful series of amplified string vibrations, glistening with harmony? I wonder if the fact that man is making a choice is fundamentally relevant to the fact that, with every single choice entropy occurs 'against the negative' of whatever action is taken.

We might not call either of these things entropy, and introduce only chemistry to measure the leaf, and countless textbooks worth of social rights moral imperatives involving price, labor, and monetary theory to explain the man's effort to get the guitar... but can they not both fit within the process of entropy? On a broad scale, maybe it's better to think of it that way.
I believe that they are intimately translatable to each other.

The human mind 'directs' the man using stated (internally or externally) reasons instead of unstated- but equally finite- chemical reactions in the leaf.
To my thinking, that distinction doesn't undo the entropic change processes that result from both events.
Saying that the choice is the only difference brings to mind Schrödinger's cat.
Who "chooses" what, exactly? Which 'choice' makes the difference? What happens to the choice that wasn't made? Can you measure choice at all, knowing that every choice maker has infinite possible choices to make? Sounds like entropic change to me. We know only one thing, and that is that humans choose things, and that each choice is unknowable until made.

Alas, this comment is long enough.

In spite of my limitations, I hope you understand the intent and meaning of my ideas, fragmented and unpolished as they may be, and I hope your thoughts profit from them in some small way.
Hixgrid     Sun, Mar 13, 2011  Permanent link
Thank you for that very helpful comment!

I really do believe that "time" could be nothing more than our brain's perception of entropy.

I agree to nearly all of your ideas and especially to the concept ot time as entropy change and that, in my opinion, our brain has established a reality of its own.

Yes, human interactions and the entropy concept have
similar correlations in economics or human behavior. But you cannot explain this to the politicians or the electors - we would need other laws in the social system and have to change the education system (neuro-didactics, power to think and analyse, think social, think with emotional intelligence...) but this is another topic.

We will find more surprises in physics as we may think today. Our brain is not perceiving all neccessary data and out there in the vast universe there are more different answers as we might believe.

An additional idea I have is the question if it is possible to develop mathematics for a holographic universe - and see if things change - dimensions, matter and energy, dark matter and dark energy or the gravitational force - may be these are manifestations of different conditions.

May be we can develop new technologies with this knowledge - but one thing seems not to change: how can we use technologies and knowledge in a useful and peacefully way - so that science is able to enlighten the people and not to be misused only for commercial and military purposes - I say this because I have the impression that science is to much under pressure by financial and political constraints - so that many things that are worth to be discussed are supressed - as long as there is no potential for profit.

May be that the idea of entropy change is leading us to a new perspective - but we are human beings and should be lucky with the things implemented in us - I would be very lucky if more people would think like this.
Phyllotaxis     Mon, Mar 14, 2011  Permanent link

An additional idea I have is the question if it is possible to develop mathematics for a holographic universe - and see if things change - dimensions, matter and energy, dark matter and dark energy or the gravitational force - may be these are manifestations of different conditions.

I just came across this very topic— have a read

I say this because I have the impression that science is to much under pressure by financial and political constraints - so that many things that are worth to be discussed are supressed - as long as there is no potential for profit.

My quick solution to their vulgar interference is simple : functionally ignore them, and keep working for the future. Support inventions that take us closer to tomorrow, and breed from within our community the kinds of inventions and inventors that won't be bought by GE and patented to extinction before they can change the world.

Much of mankind's potential is squandered and arrested by those parasites that prefer short term manipulation, violence, and gain to broader advancement. This base, animalistic force has acted as a brake on ingenuity for centuries. It is...human.

I reject it with a clear conscience, and support only that which makes for a better world- which makes it less powerful, centralized, and invasive.

I can not make government disappear, and no Utopian ideal will ever eradicate it. It is at worst the backward fear and abdication complex that drives those humans lacking confidence or integrity to the salivating grins of government glad-hands and thugs.
There will always be trashy, vain, spiteful, fearful and violent relics of eras past in public DNA, and our task must be to simply work around them. I don't care that *all* of humanity doesn't want universal understanding, clean energy and non-aggressive society. They can have their back ally's and hard lives if they choose them. My task is to make the future so mind-bendingly enticing that they lay down old canards and ignorances and decide join us on their own, for their benefit.
We must build a strong ship to sail the ocean, and make sure any that wish to live with us in this society may do so, so long as they add to the whole.

I believe we shouldn't try to save any that aren't attempting to be saved until we've made the advancements to really take them somewhere compelling. Otherwise we'll never leave the harbour. (I feel that the singularity is the un-mooring of that ship, and that we are fortunate to be witness to this rare transition)
Our work will continue, and eventually our gigantic advances will perhaps bestow upon them the tools and technologies to polish the rough edges, allay the fears, and take us all closer to what we can become by removing cultural dead weight.
Maybe we can't stop wars for oil today, but perhaps I can imagine solar microwave arrays beaming effectively unlimited power to the surface of every town, unplugged and removed from the oil demand that created the war, and invest in them. And on, and on.

I just don't care much about the parasites and predators of government and their civilian Vichy army of Corporate sycophants- they are old-world in my thoughts, belonging to a passing time.
We work around them, and like mercury our ideas and conviction will slide through their ham-fisted belligerence as we grow ever-more coherent in our movement forward.
The path of least resistance automatically means trans-government. It is the most logical direction to travel.

So long as we stead-fastly continue to work towards enabling our lives to operate without them, they will maybe fall to dust as irrelevant.

We must spend our time and money on that which is useful to us as a trans-human society. I pay my taxes only so that I am not caged or murdered by their gang. I follow arbitrary and anti-human laws for the same reason. But we are more than they, and we can change to something they can never be: free.
It is a competition, but they can not win, as every controlled system eventually falls apart. Entropy wins ;)

Someday I will talk more on thoughts of tangible formulas for opting out of the living skeleton of restraint we call government/corporate rule. We have it in our power, and knowing that I breath confidence.

I hope this post was worthy of your time.
Hixgrid     Mon, Mar 14, 2011  Permanent link
Yes, in deed, this post was excellent - and especially the link you provided!

Thank you very much for this. I cannot add very much, I simply agree with you in any point. But I am not sure if 'entropy' wins on this planet as long as it is ruled by humans.

But the idea of your link shows me that it is worth to think more on it and that my path can't be so wrong.

I make a quote of my post at HIXGRID: "Is the Einstein-Space a special case in the holographic universe?

Time may be a subjective phenomenon - is our brain creating time as an equivalent to entropy change?

Is the known mathematics a special case in the Einstein space - and will we have a new mathematics to apply the holographic universe?

The like Poincaré adaption of mathematics - is the holographic mathematics like the complex quantized numbers of the 'classic mathematics'?

Is matter a condition of an Einstein special case - an energetic condition of a dimensional partitioned convolution of the metastructure of space?

So is matter just a condition of the Einstein space? "

I hope we will find answers to this soon.

I am really excited :)

Hope we will stay in contact -shouldn't be too difficult ;-)
Apollo     Sat, Apr 2, 2011  Permanent link
This discussion made my day. The level of engagement and exchange in this community is astounding. Thank you sincerely for your openness and courage in sharing these ideas (both of you!)
Hixgrid     Mon, Apr 25, 2011  Permanent link
Scientists suggest spacetime has no time dimension 
Phyllotaxis     Sat, Apr 30, 2011  Permanent link
Thank you so much for that article- it was a pleasure to read, and inspiring—