[ExI] QT and SR

Lee Corbin lcorbin at rawbw.com
Tue Sep 2 04:16:24 UTC 2008

John Clark writes (and by the way, I would never speak so
forcefully to anyone who had not proved on innumerable
occasions that he had a skin so thick that any rhinoceros
would melt with envy)

> "Lee Corbin" <lcorbin at rawbw.com>
>> Someone  is misinterpreting this result when claiming that there
>> was a cause in one place and an effect somewhere else, and this
>> effect followed just as if it had traveled at least at a speed of 4
>> orders of magnitude  faster than light.
> Lee, apparently not only do you know more science than me you 
> also know more than the scientists at the Group of Applied Physics 
> at the University of Geneva which performed the experiment. You
> also know more science than the editors of Nature that published
> their results; not Spoon Bending Digest, Nature.

These very well educated folks did use "hypothetical influence",
almost as if they could be dissing the Copenhagen Interpretation.

> I quote from the August 14 2008 issue of Nature, page 861-864:
> "Many Bell tests have been performed, and loopholes related to 
> locality and detection have been closed in several independent 
> experiments. It is still possible that a first event could influence a
> second, but the speed of this hypothetical influence (Einstein's
> 'spooky action at a distance') would need to be defined in some 
> universal privileged reference frame and be greater than the 
> speed of light."

I like their second sentence better than their first. By saying
that they've "closed loopholes" related to locality, they're
clearly indicating that they are among the shrinking number
of physicists who don't ally themselves with the MWI.

> "Here we put stringent experimental bounds on the speed of all 
> such hypothetical influences. [.] a lower bound for the speed of
> the influence [has been found]. The speed of the influence would
> have to exceed that of light by at least four orders of magnitude."
> So the possibility that the Universe is local has not been
> excluded experimentally, influences would have to move at 
> infinite speed to prove that it's non local and all we know is it's 
> better than four orders of magnitude faster than light.
> But I'd put my money on non local.

If I read that right, then you put your money on influences
traveling faster than light, in complete defiance of the Special
Theory of Relativity. But maybe you don't really understand
exactly how absolutely Special Relativity rules out such things.
Can something be going slower than completely stopped?
Well, that's how Special Relativity sees things moving "faster
than light", as conceptually incoherent. 

Remember that on a spacetime diagram relative velocity 
causes the angle between the space and time axes to 
diminish. Well, you can diminish that angle to less than zero!
Nobody believes in "ict" anymore (see Wheeler, Misner,
and Thorn "Farewell to ict" in their "Gravitation" tome).

> You say that "every elementary textbook on Relativity Theory 
> dismantles the notion of simultaneity or "instant changes" over 
> space and time" and I am certain you are correct. But the thing
> is, Nature is not elementary.

You don't know exactly what is replacing or repudiating Special
Relativity, but you figure it's got to be something, eh? To me,
their results simply make rejection of the Copenhagen Interpretation
even more vital to sanity, and confirm someone's use of MWI.

> Me a few posts ago:
>>> You really can instantly change something on the other 
>>>side of the  universe, or at least do so better than 4 orders
>>> of magnitude faster than  light.
> You:
>> do you or do you not retract having used the word "instantly"
> I do not retract it, and I admitted it has never been proven 
> experimentally, all we know for sure is something happened
> better than 4 orders of magnitude faster than light.

That assumes that there were no branching of universes (a process
which, BTW, doesn't proceed faster than light anyway). 

> And if you want to reserve the word "change" for things you do
> to matter or energy or information then feel free to use "influence"
> or "correlation" or invent your own word.
> The point is that something is moving in a very odd way and it
> is fast as hell.

Oh, really?  Then tell me exactly where in this chain of
reasoning you demur:

1. Something we do *here* causes an effect *there*.
2. Which would imply that a cause here produces
    an effect there "as fast as hell".
3. But there is an equally valid frame of reference
    (namely that of someone moving away from "there"
    towards "here" at a high fraction of the speed of
    light in which your so-called even *precedes*
    your so-called "cause".
4. Hence (1.) is incoherent.

> Me:
>> Nor can it explain why charged particles effect [Lee insists
>> "affect"] each other's motion at a distance, more 
>>"action at a distance".

"Effect", my dear fellow, means to cause to come into 
existence in a sort of way, e.g., "the President effected
great changes in the Transportation Board",

You clearly mean it as a verb, and the meaning I just
illustrated is the only one there is:

Go to http://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary and
type in "effect". Then eschew the choice "noun" and select
"transitive verb" (the only other choice). There you will see:

    Main Entry:
        transitive verb 

        to cause to come into being
        a: to bring about often by surmounting
        obstacles: accomplish <effect a settlement
        of a dispute>
        b: to put into operation <the duty of the
        legislature to effect the will of the citizens>

    synonyms: see perform

    usage: Effect and affect are often confused because
    of their similar spelling and pronunciation. The verb
    "affect" usually has to do with pretense <she affected
    a cheery disposition despite feeling down>. The more
    common "affect" denotes having an effect or influence
    <the weather affected everyone's mood>. The verb effect
    goes beyond mere influence; it refers to actual
    achievement of a final result <the new administration
    hopes to effect a peace settlement>. The uncommon noun
    affect, which has a meaning relating to psychology,
    is also sometimes mistakenly used for the very common
    effect. In ordinary use, the noun you will want
    is effect <waiting for the new law to take effect>
    <the weather had an effect on everyone's mood>.

Of course, you will not admit you were wrong. You, sir, never
do. I remember the huge blowout on SL4 where everyone but
Heartland was agreeing with you. Nonetheless, you did commit
the solecism of misstating his position. It would have been easy
for you simply acknowledge the mistake and move on. But, 
oh, no!  Finally, when *everybody* really piled on, you just
left the list for awhile (apparently sulking).

> You:
>> Fields supply the counter to that, as was well-understood 
>> in the 19th  century.
> An electric charge creates an electric field AT A DISTANCE.

Take a look at http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Field_(physics).
There you will see

    "If an electrical charge is moved the effects on another
    charge do not appear instantaneously. The first charge
    feels a reaction force, picking up momentum, but the
    second charge feels nothing until the influence, traveling
    at the speed of light, reaches it and gives it the momentum."

Your "AT A DISTANCE" is referred to in the same article:

    "Newton's pre-field concept of action at a distance"

and http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Action_at_a_distance which

    * Action at a distance (physics), the instantaneous interaction
       of two objects which are separated in space
    * Action at a distance (computer science), an anti-pattern

and I hope that you're not still clinging to "instantaneous"!

> Besides, a field is just a word, a word that describes what a
> charged particle will do when it is at a particular distance from 
> another electrical charge. Action at a distance, it's life, get over it.

The phrase, to repeat, "Action at a distance" connotes as the
wikipedia article asserts, 

    In physics, action at a distance is the interaction of
    two objects which are separated in space with no
    known mediator of the interaction. 

We have no need any longer for such ideas, which even Newton
ruefully claimed were abhorrent to anyone with common sense.
("Newton was not at all happy with the idea that gravitation is
action at a distance,. because he could not reconcile that with
physical common sense.")


More information about the extropy-chat mailing list