[extropy-chat] something rather than nothing

Stathis Papaioannou stathisp at gmail.com
Sat Mar 24 01:25:28 UTC 2007

On 3/24/07, A B <austriaaugust at yahoo.com> wrote:

If a Universe was predetermined to have a positively
> infinite lifespan, then an observer from any
> "time-location" should be able to look backwards and
> see an infinitely long history of their own Universe,
> back to the "beginning". If we take positive infinity
> (which would represent the total lifespan of this
> hypothetical Universe) and divide it by any finite
> number (which would represent a randomly selected
> "time-location" for an observer) the quotient is still
> infinity which would correspond with the apparent
> "age" of the Universe from this observer's
> perspective.

Not really: if you stand at any finite number you can always look backward
to zero, but you are only at an infinitesimal proportion of infinity if you
look forward. You might say it is surprising that we find ourselves at such
a low number as 15 billion, but it would be equally surprising for us to
find ourselves at any other finite number, however large. And that's if the
distribution of observers is uniform over the infinite span of the
universe's existence: if the probability of observers arising or surviving
decreases as time increases, it can turn out that there is a high
probability that an observer would find himself in the first n years of the
universe's existence.

Stathis Papaioannou
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