[ExI] Do we live in a universe that allows infinite computation?

spike spike66 at att.net
Fri Aug 12 06:25:48 UTC 2011



From: extropy-chat-bounces at lists.extropy.org
[mailto:extropy-chat-bounces at lists.extropy.org] On Behalf Of john clark
Subject: [ExI] Do we live in a universe that allows infinite computation?


>.Back in 1993 Frank Tipler wrote an interesting book called "The Physics of

How many of us here studied Tippler in college physics?  I did.  His text
was very popular and readable.

>.In 2007 the poor man went a little funny in the head, you know, just a
little funny,  and he went and did a silly thing; he wrote another book
saying we should . check for radiation around the tomb of the Blessed Virgin
Marry that was caused by an intense beam of neutrinos that must have shot
out of the bottom of her feet as she ascended into heaven.

I have the Physics of Immortality, but didn't get this other book.  

Couple things about this comment: in a sense there were intense beams of
neutrinos that shot out the bottom of her feet, if you don't push too hard
on the adjective "intense."  There are intense beams of neutrinos shooting
out the bottoms of your feet right now.  Since neutrinos scarcely interact
with matter at all, yet there is one created with each nuclear fusion, we
can estimate the theoretical neutrino flux from the collective stars all
about, overhead constantly regardless of the orientation of our feet.  So
there would be (in a kind of loose sense) a beam of neutrinos shooting out
every surface of our bodies constantly, as well as a (~)beam going in the
other direction simultaneously.  Neutrinos are our friends.  Such
interesting little spin carriers are they, never causing problems much, but
so useful are they in protecting our cherished notions of conservation of
angular momentum.

Ja, I know I am stretching the point to give old Frank some wiggle room, the
way we do for all our favored old professors in their dotage.  If he said
the neutrinos would result in radiation around the tomb of the blessed
"Virgin" Mary, I would suggest he review how seldom a neutrino causes
anything to form a radioactive isotope.


>. Tipler's predictions turned out to be wrong, some spectacularly wrong; he
predicted the expansion of the universe would slow down, then it would stop,
then it would change direction and collapse in on itself.John K Clark


That this notion turned out to be apparently wrong is one of the saddest
things that have ever happened to me.  This of course means I have had a
happier life than I deserve.  That aside, the closed universe is an idea I
claim to have independently thought of in high school.  I was reading about
the big bang and how space is quantized.  I theorized that if the universe
is closed, then there is a finite number of particles in a finite 4-space.
Both are unimaginably large of course, but finite.  If so, there is a finite
number of ways a finite number of particles can arrange themselves in a
finite quantized space.  

Then the line of reasoning goes thus: if the universe exploded forth in a
big bang, then after it collapses, the same thing can happen again. If so,
and time is infinite (for how can time be finite?) then there are an
infinite number of big bangs, over a quite unimaginably large span of time.
If so, every possible combination of particles in finite space would
eventually occur in infinite space time.  If so, this exact arrangement of
everything will happen again.  Furthermore, it will happen again an infinite
number of times.  And it has already happened before.  An infinite number of






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