Laws of physics vary throughout the universe, new study suggests

Discussion in 'Physics & Math' started by Musika, Apr 20, 2018.

  1. Write4U Valued Senior Member

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    11,635
    Assuming alpha is variable, would that mean chaotic or just different mathematical functions,
    i.e. different physical behaviors?
     
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  3. Q-reeus Valued Senior Member

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    Chaotic? Over what humongous distance scale? All such thoughts are just pure speculations stemming from a faulty survey's initial deduction.
    Here's an article that does talk of possible chaotic variations of various 'constants' owing to speculative string theory notions:
    www.nat.vu.nl/~wimu/Varying-Constants-Papers/Barrow-2003.pdf
    Happy reading!
     
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  5. QuarkHead Remedial Math Student Valued Senior Member

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    Just as a matter of interest, a priori why should the laws of physics NOT vary from point to point in a spacetime manifold?
     
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  7. Dinosaur Rational Skeptic Valued Senior Member

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    The classical world of our senses is built on a quantum level of reality which is governed by probabilistic laws.

    The mainstream deterministic notions believed prior to circa 1890-1920 have been replaced by a quantum level of reality.
     
  8. Q-reeus Valued Senior Member

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    I've often asked myself why there is remarkable uniformity rather than total chaos. Since everything is supposed to stem from a plethora of underlying quantum fields, it get's down to why those fields are so uniform. Nobody really knows beyond maybe invoking symmetry principles like Noether's theorem. Here's one easy read take on it that properly splits the issue into two parts (with further links within):
    http://www.pbs.org/wgbh/nova/blogs/physics/2015/10/are-the-laws-of-physics-really-universal/
     
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  9. Write4U Valued Senior Member

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    11,635
    First; what caused the manifold to form itself in the current configuration in the first place? Chaos or some fundamental mathematical ordering of values and functions?

    I never said that the laws of physics are not variable and/or probabilistic. My position is that regardless how the pattern forms, there have to be mathematical functions which were causal to that physical conditon. These variable conditions may well be caused by different mathematics than those which apply to our patch.

    At least that's how I understand Tegmark and a host of other cosmologists, which to a person express a sense of discovery when their mathematics predict the formation of specific patterns. It was there all along, the scientists just discover the mathematical physical functions responsible.

    It seems inconceivable to me that when pattern forms within a chaotic condition, that this is by pure chance (which is not the same as probabilistic), and that there has to be a form of logical mathematics which compels these observed patterns to form in a specific way.

    But fundamentally, are our observations of physical interactions not based on the recognition of certain specific behaviors (under varying circumstances) which can can be translated by specific mathematical equations relative to the existing conditions?

    For clarification, can you cite an observable condition, other than chaos, which is by it's nature untranslatable into a mathematical (logical) equation?

    From your example:
     
    Last edited: Apr 30, 2018
  10. exchemist Valued Senior Member

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    8,311
    AAARRRGGGHHH!!!!!!

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  11. QuarkHead Remedial Math Student Valued Senior Member

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    You asking about the "cause" of the origin of spacetime. As far as I am aware, this is unknown.

    Plus, when talking about mathematics, please be careful of your use of the term "function". To a mathematician this has a very specific meaning, and other than the one you appear to be using.


    No. Mathematics does not "cause" physical phenomena, it merely describes them.
     
  12. Dinosaur Rational Skeptic Valued Senior Member

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    4,885
    From http://www.sciforums.com/threads/la...the-universe-new-study-suggests.160772/page-2
    The above relates to the fine structure constant (aka Alpha) It seem to me to be a huge leap from the above to the claim that “The laws of physics vary throughout the universe.

    Unless there is more to the story, the following seems to be a sufficient statement.
     
  13. Write4U Valued Senior Member

    Messages:
    11,635
    If we can describe them, they must be there to begin with, either as potentials or values. no?

    With "mathematical functions" I mean "consistent patterns of behaviors and interactions of physical objects dependent on prevailing conditions". Perhaps mathematicians call it "work".

    But then "work" is a result of specific physically inherent mathematical potentials (latent abilities) which determine the result of the "work".

    We use the generality of "Cause and Effect", which IMO already is an abstract mathematical expression.
    If I said "a specific Cause creates a specific Effect", then IMO, I am describing a mathematical function or work, an Equation.
    That is indeed translatable into mathematics. I can write it as holes in a "punch card" in an old computer, or I can translate it by Morse code, or even as a chronology of sound waves of different frequencies. i.e. forms of mathematical translations.

    As Antonsen says: the number 4/3 has the potential to form a physical shape.

    http://pages.mtu.edu/~suits/notefreqs.html
     
    Last edited: May 1, 2018
  14. NotEinstein Valued Senior Member

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    1,986
    For those trying to learn, please know that Write4U's quoted post contains fundamental misconceptions and misunderstandings of at least the following:
    - What mathematical functions are;
    - What potentials are;
    - What values are;
    - What work is (both as used in physics, and as not used in mathematics);
    - That cause and effect doesn't come from mathematics;
    - What an equation is;
    - What it means to express a physical object or pattern in mathematical terms;
    - How numbers and shapes are related.
     
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  15. Q-reeus Valued Senior Member

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    You should well know by now that applies to virtually no-one here at SF. This is a place where some folks like to peddle their own pet notions, or endlessly post flippant quips as substitute for useful content, or act as PC attack dogs in the super-important-to-Mods political/ideological arenas. A place to vent your spleen, or be entertained, or attempt to entertain.
     
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  16. NotEinstein Valued Senior Member

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    1,986
    I agree with you that that's true for a disturbingly large number of posters here, yes. However, I don't have stats on the number of lurkers, or how often Sciforums turns up on Google-searches. It's those with no knowledge of who they are dealing with, those that (hopefully) aren't stuck in a non-learning mode I was aiming that post at.

    Then at least let's have them be confined to the fringe-sections.

    Those kinds of posts can safely be ignored.

    I'm personally not interested in that, so I don't engage.

    Those latter two, what's wrong with those?
     
  17. Q-reeus Valued Senior Member

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    3,411
    In principle I suppose nothing much, if it manages to relieve boredom in a socially responsible way. To each their own. It's on official record that SF is NOT a science site.

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  18. Write4U Valued Senior Member

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    11,635
    [Q-reeus said:
    or act as PC attack dogs in the super-important-to-Mods political/ideological arenas.[/quote]
    As demonstrated in your post # 31.........

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  19. NotEinstein Valued Senior Member

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    Perhaps, but those truly interested in doing science would be better off in the many scientific institutes and universities instead of on online discussion forums anyway.

    Look up the words "politics" and "ideology"; my post contains neither, so your assertion is incorrect.
     
  20. Write4U Valued Senior Member

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    11,635
    Sounds like an address to the body politic on this forum to me. Perhaps I don't understand "politics" either. Let me look it up quick.
    https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/body politic

    Such as the body politic on this forum?
     
  21. exchemist Valued Senior Member

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    8,311
    A very good and thought-provoking article. Thanks very much for that. I shall try to be more aware of articles about "scalar fields" in future.

    Among other things, it shows science is not being closed-minded about the idea of either the universal constants changing or even the laws themselves! But to date there seems to be no significant evidence of either.
     
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  22. exchemist Valued Senior Member

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    ...and to give aWrite4U a good kicking from time to time, when he gets on his soapbox with yet more proselytising, illiterate drivel about "functions" and "potential".....

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  23. Write4U Valued Senior Member

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    11,635
    Yes, I'll admit the semantics are a problem. But the ideas are not mine, they come from reputable sources. I present them in my own vernacular, but always refer to a link of the author, who has the credentials to put forth "novel" hypotheses. No one has ever heard me say that "mainstream science" is wrong. I lack the knowledge to be able to make that claim.

    It is up to the reader to determinine if they find it an interesting alternative, worthy of consideration, or not. And as I have said many times before, my "proselytising" is mainly probative, often qualified as my own opinion (IMO).

    Fortunately there are a few "learned minds" who actually address these probative proposals and offer much "food for thought", for which I am grateful.
     

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