Time Explained

Discussion in 'General Science & Technology' started by Farsight, Nov 8, 2006.

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1. Farsight

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Prince James:

Thanks for the scientific mind compliment. I try. As regards Einstein and Godel, the former was rather sidelined by QM, and the latter did have psychological problems later on. I could dig up a couple of links, but best if you DYOR.

The problem with at the same instance is that you're already assuming a kind of mental ruler, a length of "time" made up of successive instants, and then you use this as an argument for the mental ruler.

I know it sounds trite, but: In space. If nothing had ever moved, including light, the concept of space evaporates. Electrons, photons, atoms, etc would be immobile, so there would be no concept of time. Morever if they had never moved they'd all be in the same place so there would be no concept of space either. I see space as something real because of c. There's "nothing there", but something prevents infinite motion, so space is in a way a kind of aether. Whilst the Michelson-Morley experiment disproved the traditional view of an aether, the constant c led to special relativity and the variability of time experience according to velocity. Whilst there's the length contraction as well, c is the fundamental constant, so expressing it as distance over time is defining it using the things it defines. That's why I say velocity is more fundamental than time. It's like c, it's units are its units, whatever you want to call them. I rather like "degrees", as per temperature, which is after all a measure of motion. We tend not to think of temperature as fundamental so maybe it's better if I relate to a "particle". Its mass is a fundamental property, and I can measure its momentum. Since momentum is (traditionally) mass times velocity, that suggests velocity is a fundamental property as well. You can't find any "time" when you look at the properties of the particle, especially a massless photon. But the momentum's there, so is the velocity. The latter has the same dimensions as c, and it's a dimension in the generic "measure" sense. But it's not a Dimension in the sense of something you can move through, because it is the moving through.

Sorry if I've rather repeated the essay here and this doesn't convince. Please press me on any point.

baumgarten: that's interesting. I know I'm not the first to come up with this sort of thing. Well I do now. I didn't a month or so ago. Duh.

3. (Q)Encephaloid MartiniValued Senior Member

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What is your problem, pal? I asked a question based directly at one of his comments, if you don't like it, too bad. It' isn't trolling, numbnuts.

I already understand the concept of time and don't need to present a counter-theory, because, guess what, there is no counter-theory, there is simply an understanding of time, which clearly you do not possess if you have to ask.

5. AzaelRegistered Senior Member

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It seems most commonsense to me to say that time = distance / speed

Sure you actually have to contrive some system of measurement, but otherwise what is wrong with that definition?

7. Farsight

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Azael: Special Relativity. If you're a photon, you experience no time. So:

time = distance / speed

0 = distance / speed

Regardless of any experience, we know the distance isn't zero because that's what the space has got, and we're confident that the photon's velocity is the constant c rather than infinity. It's this velocity that's constant and fundamental, not the experienced time that depends on your velocity.

8. leopoldValued Senior Member

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i find the above link intriquing. i had to tear the little holes in paper to convince myself.

it is probably a limitation to our sight. it also reminded me of why we are able to transmit a color tv picture in a 4 mhz bandwidth. the encoding/decoding process takes into account the limitations of our eyesight. for example did you know that if a colored square, if sufficiently small, will be grey? that is why a pinstripe suit on a tv screen will have color bars in it, not because the suit is in color but because the color oscillator has lost it's sync.

9. D HSome other guyValued Senior Member

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I agree with Q and phlogistician: There is no science here. Just a bunch of words.

Way to many words, and no math to back them up.

Time is a fundamental quantity in SI. Simply put, time is axiomatic, as is position. The two put together give velocity, a derived quantity.

The choice of axiomatic versus derived is a bit arbitrary. Two of time/position/velocity must be axiomatic quantities. The handy thing about choosing time and position is that one quantity is inherently a scalar, the other, a vector. A perfectly valid system could have time and velocity axiomatic, with position derived. The system we have works quite fine, thank you. It appears that your whole argument hinges on time being axiomatic and you don't like that.

What if I am not moving?

10. Farsight

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DH: your atoms and electrons etc are moving. :

Azael: I meant to add that a photon experiences events

11. (Q)Encephaloid MartiniValued Senior Member

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Farsight

Time exists as a mathematical quantity (same as space). Time is not a physical quantity in terms that anything depends on it. Nothing in our physical universe depends on time as well as on space (location), as well as on velocity, and on some other "purely mathematical" so to speak quantities.

This "physical non-existence" of such mathematical quantities is called "shift symmetry (of time, of space, of velocity, etc)" and is expressed by simple equation: F (t)=F (t+t1). It means, that nothing changes if you shift in time (or in space, or in velocity) any physical process - no observable difference whatsoever.

We call this symmetry term the "energy conservation law,” and "momentum conservation law" for space non-existence (shift symmetry), and "special relativity" for velocity non-existence (shift symmetry), “charge conservation” for phase non-existence, etc.)

Because nothing depends on time, there is no absolute time. No time stones, no other marks indicating time. The only way of "measuring" this mathematical quantity is to take any periodic process say, a pendulum, or a string, or a light bouncing between mirrors, or an electron oscillating in an atom, etc - then call the device a "clock device" or simply "clock”, then take TWO measurements of numbers of oscillations say, at two different locations, or at 2 different gravity environments, or at 2 different states of motion, etc., then take a RATIO of these two numbers (can't be one number because time is not absolute) and then label this ratio as "relative rate of one time versus another" or "rate of time versus reference clock rate", or "time in conventional units of time" or "accurate time" or simply "time".

Time used to be defined via pendulum, then via quarts crystal oscillations, then via Cs electron oscillation, and soon via H electron oscillation.

This is how time is measured, and in that essence, how time is therefore DEFINED and understood.

12. TheoryofrelativityBannedBanned

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Time is the speed at which we experience reality

13. baumgartenfuck the manRegistered Senior Member

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But speed must always be measured with respect to time. Something can't be dependent on that which it defines.

14. TheoryofrelativityBannedBanned

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chicken and egg

15. TheoryofrelativityBannedBanned

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Record player

regular play, fast play, slow play

same with the way we experience reality

events occur, biologically we are 'set' to experience them at a 'set speed'
different species 'set' differently to each other. Hence many things in nature not understood.

All things DO occur together but we do not experience them together with other species.

Example

say for arguments sake we are set a 'regular' speed (record player analogy)
bee set at slow play.

WE see bee's wings beating so fast it makes no biological sense to us, it is unexplainable in science.

BUT for the bee, it's wings are not beating particularly fast.

In real time (we don't know what that is) the wings beat at a rate which is actually NOT unusual, we just have no idea what speed time really occurrs at in order to be able to REALLY measure their speed.

(This is the result on my own ponderance so feel free to dispute I've mentioned it here before)

16. baumgartenfuck the manRegistered Senior Member

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That's a question of causality, not static dependence. You're defining X in terms of X. It's a snake eating its own tail; there's nothing of substance to be found.

17. valichRegistered Senior Member

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Objective time vs. subjective (regular play, fast play, slow play) vs. cosmic warped time vs. multidimensional analysis, black holes, worm holes....

18. valichRegistered Senior Member

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Motion cannot be accounted for purely in space. If motion was accounted for purely in space, then it would stand to reason that one could occupy two different points at the same time. I'd say motion is the fundamental thing. Object A moves from location X to location Y. It isn't at location X and Y. It can't occupy two different points, and it can't get from one point to another without moving through the intervening points. When you say "at the same time", I think you're again using the time-is-a-length concept to justify it. All I can do is reiterate that time is how we measure/compare this motion against other motion including the motion of our own atoms, clocks, nerve impulses, etc. Everything is always "at the same time", and that's now.

But this isn't the case: We are only capable of being in one place or another. This then implies that any motion in time is a motion in another "dimension". That is, that along with one's motion in space to go from one point to another, one is also going through time. That time, in fact, is what facilitates any movement. Does time require space and motion to manifest? Certainly. But can motion and space exist without time? Certainly not.

Take two atomic clocks and take one for a fast trip round the world. The readings are different, but they're both here, now. So we have no evidence for any movement through time.
-----------------------------------

Right! So we have a discontinuum between time and motion, or between time and speed and distance. There is no direct relation, when considering relativity, between time and distance and speed and motion and location.

19. Prince_JamesPlutarch (Mickey's Dog)Registered Senior Member

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Farsight:

I'm not so sure this is actually true. For consider Zeno's paradox of the arrow. At any point in an arrow's flight the arrow is at a point. Like a flipbook, the travel of an arrow is essentially a series of static images. This would then seem to imply that if time is not a seperate dimension (as both the first, second, and third are accounted for purely in space) then we'd have to accept that time does not exist, as even motion is simply space "flipped".

Consider also that motion not self-contained, whereas time at least admits of a quality of being so. That is to say, one cannot speak of motion outside of something going from one point in space to another, but one can speak of time without speaking of motion, and just speaking of "time as relating to time". In a relative sense, when something is standing still it is not ceasing to move through time. Yet if time is velocity, there only time we could speak of would be time in movement.

Then how do you account for the three dimensions?

Yet if can speak of velocity as a fundamental, do not we have to assume the space it moves within? For you shall admit that no space = no velocity, yes? One could not move in a void, yes?

20. Farsight

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3,492
Prince James:

We could still have space if everything was motionless, but that begs the question of how everything got to be where it is.

I think it's going too far to say time does not exist. That would be like saying sound does not exist just because actually it's all down to the motion of molecules in the air. I'd also say that time is a dimension, but only in the generic sense. The word dimension used to mean "property" or "measure". Temperature used to be considered a dimension. But nobody ever thought they could actually climb up to some high temperature. I think the word has gradually been overtaken by the "spatial extent" meaning, and time has been swept up by it.

I think you can only think of time in terms of motion. Whilst your observed object might be motionless, your atoms/cells/nerves/clocks are whirring away, in motion. If they weren't, you wouldn't experience any time, and wouldn't be doing any observing. The motion is your internal motion, through local space, not the motion of the object through time.

They're degrees of freedom. I can move in them, and measure how far I've moved. And see how far I've moved.

Yes. Space has permeability and permittivity which fixes c. This "nothing" isn't quite nothing, because it has properties. I think "void" is a problem word, a contradiction in terms meaning nothing, but lots and lots of it, but to answer your question: motion is traversing some extent, so if a void has extent, you can traverse it. If it has no extent, traversing it doesn't sound like much of a problem.

21. Farsight

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No. The direct relation is still there. Special Relativity says velocity can range from 0 to c, and determines how much of spacetime you experience as space, and how much you experience as time.

If you're moving forwards at c, all of your velocity is in the forward direction, so the local/lateral motion of your atoms/cells/brain/clocks is zero, and you experience no time.

If you're moving forward at .5c, your local/lateral motion can occur at velocities up to nearly .5c, so you experience some time.

If you aren't moving forwards at all, all of your local/lateral motion can occur at velocities up to c, and you experience lots of time.

In any situation your experience of time means you have a different idea of your speed, because it's distance / time. But in all situations your velocity is your velocity. If you were travelling at c experiencing no time your speed is infinite but your velocity is still c.

22. Prince_JamesPlutarch (Mickey's Dog)Registered Senior Member

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Farsight:

I actually have a theory regarding this. Shall I present it? It is getting a bit tangential, mind you, but it could be somewhat relevant.

Well here's a question: How would motion account for its own existence? What aspect of space alone would allow for motion between points? For you will admit that, at least in some sense, space itself is static, yes? That it is essentially a Cartesian gridwork with an aetherial substance?

So you construe space as basically the fabric that prevents infinite speed but allows for direction?

Well supposing a void (let's say an absolute nothingness) would not exist (or else it would be a non-void) it would seem to not allow motion, as no motion could go within it. So yes ,it is a bit of a vacuous concept in regards to motion, but at the very least, this shows that space would have to be construed, alongside velocity and mass in your system, as a fundamental.

23. (Q)Encephaloid MartiniValued Senior Member

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You see, I was right, Farsight simply ignores everything and presses on with his pet theory. Typical kook.