[ExI] QT and SR

Lee Corbin lcorbin at rawbw.com
Sat Sep 6 19:25:19 UTC 2008

Mike writes

>> it's not the thinking that's valid or invalid, it's how much criticism
>> theories have sustained, and how much stuck. The theory
>> of the electron shell is very much still a part of physics so
>> far as I know (or modern chemistry, etc.). We believe to
>> be so that which has successfully stood up to a lot of criticism
>> over time. So the answer is, "yes, electron shells turn out to
>> be real", keeping in mind Eternal Truth #2 ("Every statement
>> needs to be further modified") and that all conclusions are
>> tentative.
> I had written:
>>> Pretend spacetime were deformed in discrete units such that the
>>> new states of gravitation (for example) have effects at distances
>>> that would otherwise exceed the transfer of information at lightspeed.
> To which Lee replied:
>> Blasphemy. If you believe in SR, nothing can exceed the speed
>> of light. Ever.  Any way. Inconceivable.
> Are these two examples at odds with each other?

Yes  :-)   This is a pretty satirical use of the language, I admit.
On the other hand, perhaps the very idea of one of us on this
list using "Blasphemy" would have been ludicrous enough for
you to guess that I wasn't entirely serious here. 

No, the simple truth (in defiance of Eternal Truth #1 "Nothing
is Simple"!) is that our theories never need justification, only
lots of criticism. Those that survive the criticism have sustained
exactly the kind of "criticism" natural selection hands out to
its subjects. This approach is called Evolutionary Epistemology,
and is a fundamental piece of Pan-Critical Rationalism (Popper
and Bartley).

> Continuing my earlier idea of the multiple configurations of space-time:
>  Does MWI require that each instance of 'overlapping' (for lack of a
> clearer term) worlds must share exactly the same cosmological
> constants?

Yes. In fact, looking at Tegmark's synopsis, for each level-two
"bubble" (which corresponds to a physically infinite level one universe
such as ours, which many years ago I named "Bruno", (in honor of
he who first claimed that space was actually infinite and contained
infinitely many worlds) and have so far received at least one congratulation),
there is a whole multiverse, i.e., the David Deutsch term for the entire
superposition of all branches corresponding to that one bubble. (In
Tegmark, the David Deutsch multiverse is "Level Three". See the
April 2003 issue of Scientific American for the best descriptions.)

So our level one universe is constantly splitting and recombining,
though since we're near the Big Bang, the splits vastly outnumber
the merges. A split occurs whenever quantum mechanics gives
amplitudes for more than one outcome for any physical process.
See David Deutsch's extraordinarily clear 1000 paragraphs in
his "Fabric of Reality" not only for the physics of the multiverse,
but for an excellent epistemological discussion of PCR and so on.

Every physical object is constantly interfering with itself, and it's
that alone (all according to MWI) that accounts for the solidity
of physical objects. So a huge number of splittings are occurring
everywhere all the time, and radiate outwards at the speed of

> Is it possible that the degree of their overlap is a
> function of the similarity of those constants, such that from one
> representation of an instant of the universe to another
> [representation] there may events that are otherwise inexplicable
> because of our old expectation of the instantaneous rules governing
> observable phenomenon?

You have to go to a different bubble, according to the physicists
I've read, e.g. Linde, in order to get other physical constants.
The branching we experience (according to MWI) here all takes
place for one bubble, one physically infinite spatial universe.

>  I really wish it were easier to convey complex
> ideas, written English is such a narrow bandwidth...

Ah yes, that would be nice.

> Do you know of any discussions of this [communication]
> problem, or proposed solutions?

Not really. Even Skype or the telephone conferences or
even if we had perfect video conferencing, two problems
remain.  (1) this kind of forum is great because (excuse
me a moment while I go get something to eat) allows for
total freedom of time and opportunity to participate, and
(2) we simply cannot convey our ideas in any possible
way to others I reckon, short of mind-melding. And even
there, I'm skeptical that it would be all it's cracked up to be.


More information about the extropy-chat mailing list