pharos at gmail.com
Tue Aug 24 07:57:12 UTC 2021
On Tue, 24 Aug 2021 at 02:13, William Flynn Wallace via extropy-chat
<extropy-chat at lists.extropy.org> wrote:
> Is there a consensus in our groups as to whether the universe is finite or infinite? It certainly is infinite for the human race's practical purposes.
> Let's suppose it is finite. So you go to a place where it ends. What do you see? What if you tried to drill a hole in it? Would it go through? Would it meet resistance? Would the end of your drill bit disappear from existence in this universe?
> People need to know these things. bill w
Ask Ethan: Could the Universe be infinite?
Perhaps the limits of what we can observe aren’t just artificial;
perhaps there are no limits to what’s out there at all.
Ethan Siegel Nov 12, 2016
>From our best observations, we know that the Universe is an awful lot
bigger than the part we can observe. Beyond what we can see, we
strongly suspect that there’s plenty more Universe out there just like
ours, with the same laws of physics, the same types of structures
(stars, galaxies, clusters, filaments, voids, etc.), and the same
chances at complex life. There should also be a finite size and scale
to the “bubble” in which inflation ended, and an exponentially huge
number of such bubbles contained within the larger, inflating
spacetime. But as inconceivably large as that entire Universe (or
Multiverse, if you prefer) is, it might not be infinite. In fact,
unless inflation went on for a truly infinite amount of time, the
Universe must be finite in extent.
The biggest problem of all, though? It’s that we only know how to
access the information available inside our observable Universe: those
46 billion light years in all directions. The answer to the biggest of
all questions — whether the Universe is finite or infinite — might be
encoded in the Universe itself, but we can’t access enough of it to
know. Until we either figure it out, or come up with a clever scheme
to expand what we know physics is capable of, all we’ll have are the
Still. I think our Universe is probably big enough to keep humans
occupied for a while. :)
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