[ExI] Boltzmann brains

Rafal Smigrodzki rafal.smigrodzki at gmail.com
Tue May 5 05:42:36 UTC 2020

On Sun, May 3, 2020 at 7:26 AM Re Rose via extropy-chat <
extropy-chat at lists.extropy.org> wrote:

> All together, this is overall such a hugely low probalistic occurance that
> is fun to think about but seems rather unlikely, at least to me.
> IMHO, I think this is why biology is so different from physics - it is
> biological processes that drive the organization of molecules into such
> ordered structures, and these processes follow the harsh and nasty laws of
> evolution, increasing the overall infomation held in such colllections of
> interdependant molecules, far beyond what could be held or acted upon via
> simple physically probable interactions that  randomly occur in the
> universe.

### Indeed, some physicists tend to approach biological processes with
inappropriate ideas. You have probably heard creationists repeating what
they heard from a physicist about even a single hemoglobin molecule being
so complicated that it would take 10e165 years to create it randomly (or
some other insane number). Of course, we biology nerds know that evolution
is not random, it's iteratively selective and randomized, which is
completely different from just random picking of possibilities out of the
bucket of the possible.

The physicists who came up with the Boltzmann brain idea failed to
differentiate between random and evolutionary processes. They said "a
galaxy is much bigger than a brain, so it must take much more random
movement of molecules to create a galaxy than a brain", assuming that the
likelihood of an object randomly coming into existence is more or less an
inverse function of the number of atoms in that object. But we know that
neither galaxies nor brains come into existence randomly, in fact both are
created according to natural law, and their respective densities per cubic
gazillion of light years are dictated by the specifics of that law, not by
their sizes.

Wolfram's hypergraphs provide more detail on the ability of simple
iterative mathematical processes to generate seemingly random but still
highly structured, lawful entities. Physicist will need to greatly refine
their ideas about physical randomness if they follow his lead.

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