Can "Infinity" ever be more than a mathematical abstraction?

Discussion in 'Physics & Math' started by Seattle, Jun 24, 2018.

  1. Seattle Valued Senior Member

    So now you don't understand Tegmark either? There is a difference between not understanding and not agreeing. I don't particularly agree with him but I understand what he is getting at.

    Why get so caught up in definitions when I'm sure that you actually understand what he is trying to convey (Tegmark)?

    Atoms are abstract to a degree but that's what nature is made of. He is taking it further and implying that quarks are even more abstract but you still get his point so why obsess on the definition of "abstract"?
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  3. Write4U Valued Senior Member

    Did you prove that I purposely told a lie? The determinig factor in the definition of "lie" being "purposely telling a falsehood" .

    Therefore, you accusing me of lying is tantamount to accusing me of being a liar, and that is you comitting an ad hominem. You saying that it is not does not make it any less an ad hominem. Instead of arguing the subject you made a personal attack on my character.
    That's committing an ad hominem!

    You do not get to say what is an ad hominem. Not because I say so, it is the very definition of ad hominem as shown in every dictionary and translation of the Latin term.

    If you had told me that my perspective on the subject was wrong, you would not have committed an ad hominem. And you insisting that I was lying only compounds your trespass.

    You can wiggle all you want but objectively it is and will always be a stain on your character for not admitting this, unless you can prove that I purposely told a falsehood in order to win an argument.

    I do not lie! I am not a liar! Please do not accuse me of lying! It is a serious offense on your part and it is beneath you!

    It makes me lose my respect for your usually valuable contributions to this forum....

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  5. Write4U Valued Senior Member

    Ok, I can see the point and I tend to agree, but it does not solve the question that the universe is expanding and it can be argued that expansion needs a prior permittive condition (or state). Note I am not saying it needs more space, but expansion requires a physical permission to expand. Else it would be restricted from expanding, no? i.e. The potential for expansion needs to exist on both sides of the boundary. Can't expand a balloon in a shoebox, can we? We would end up with a BB, no?
    If an imaginary axis cannot extend beyond the limits of the object, then by definition a bounded universe has an axis which does not extend beyond the boundary, no?
    Ahh, thank you. I wasn't aware of that. I'll need to brush up on that aspect...

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    Note the qualifier of "bounded spacetime" (not infinity), which I intended to mean that you and I are in agreement on this, no?
    Last edited: Jun 30, 2018
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  7. NotEinstein Valued Senior Member

    Ok, let's remember that you put the word "purposely" in this sentence...

    So why did you put the word "purposely" in the previous sentence? If it's part of the definition, it's redundant.

    Anyway, I've already mentioned the "lie by omission", which counters the definition you've just given.

    False; that's only true if I imply that you are wrong, because you are a liar (in general). I made no such claim, and if you interpreted it that way, I do apologize.

    You told a lie by omission; that makes my argument focus on content, not on you. The crux of my argument is not a personal attack, but an "attack" on what you did.

    But you do?

    Then you have trouble reading dictionaries. An ad hom is a type of argument. If somebody is lying, pointing that out is not an ad hom.

    Yes, because you, who has to look up definitions of words and then still gets them wrong, are the final judge on what is objectively true.

    Alright then, I

    I do not lie! I am not a liar! Please do not accuse me of lying! It is a serious offense on your part and it is beneath you![/QUOTE]
    Alright, let's go through this again, looking at another aspect of it...

    (Emphasis mine.)

    (Emphasis mine.)

    So the definition that you are using does not actually precisely match any of the ones that one finds when looking them up in the dictionary, even though you claimed that it would. This is a contradiction. You've made two claims, and (at least) one of them is false.

    (Emphasis mine.) So at least that part is correct.

    Now, I'm prepared to withdraw my claim that you were "purposely" lying, because I didn't mean to upset you like this. I was under the impression you actually knew what you were typing, and that you were smart enough to not type such easily-proven-wrong falsehoods. I asked you a direct question, you answered it, I asked a straightforward follow-up question, and you then immediately proceeded to prove yourself to have told a falsehood.

    So please explain to me what happened? Why did you contradict yourself in just a couple of posts? Why did the follow-up question uncovered the falsehood in the first statement? Why didn't you notice when writing it that the first statement you wrote was false?

    Look, I'm sorry that I upset you, but I asked you an important, direct question, and you answered me with a falsehood. What do you think that did with my respect for your contributions?
  8. NotEinstein Valued Senior Member

    What is a "permittive condition", and why would it be required? And especially, how does that related to space being limited or not?

    Permission? Permission from who/what?

    If you are saying that space needs to be physically able to expand in order to expand, then yes, that's trivial; that needs no saying.

    So you do mean that! That's trivially true. In order for X to happen, it needs to be possible for X to happen. This is hardly an argument.

    But what is there is no boundary? It's possible that space is just a "closed loop"; no boundary necessary.

    And, as I explained, talking about the "other side" of the boundary is incoherent; there is no space there, no position/location.

    That's hardly a good analogue: you are assuming a space-outside-of-space: the shoebox.

    (I see you've switched to "extend" instead of "growing"; that wording makes a lot more sense, yes.)
    Sure, but an imaginary axis can be infinite in size, so are you now also arguing as heyuhua that the universe must thus be infinite in size?

    To be honest, it would probably be clearer from the context in the original thread; don't worry about misinterpreting that.

    I don't dare to assume I know for sure what your position is, but I think a limited space (either "folded in" on itself as (for example) the surface of a balloon, or with a hard cut-off (although that would be somewhat weird)) is definitely a possibility. Infinitely sized space too. We (I) simply don't know. All we have is a demonstrable minimum size (basically, the observable universe).
  9. Write4U Valued Senior Member

    Why did you not ask me?

    Example of a set X called a cell;

    The processing of energy into a source of food requires several functions, one which is Photosynthesis, another is Phototropism, Heliotropism, yet another is Oxidation.

    In chemistry, we have Oxidation reduction, Polymerization and Depolymerization, Hydration and Dehydration, Acid base reactions. These processes have specific functions in the creation of bio-molecules.
    Process and Function are intimately related.

    I could keep citing many more, but I believe this adequately explains that where there is process there is function and vice versa.

    I try not to mix the two and always cite Values and Function as properties of physical objects, whereas I use the term Process when indicating that work is being performed.

    When I speak in general terms, which I can only do for lack of in-depth knowledge on many scientific subjects, I see no reason to secifically indicate in what context I am using those terms. The subject context should be sufficient for understanding what meaning to assign.

    OK, got that off my chest and I will not respond to any of those type of context questions, unless accompanied by a correction which indicates whyI am using the term incorrectly.

    Please can we end this and return to the subject, where I believe we can find agreement on several levels. That is so much more rewarding than this tit-for-tat......

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    Last edited: Jun 30, 2018
  10. NotEinstein Valued Senior Member

    I did, in post #95. Then you dodged the question in post #97, I pointed this out at the end of post #99 and re-asked the question, and you completely ignored it.

    So... is this another falsehood, or just terrible, terrible, terrible memory on your part?

    Ah, so process as in algorithm, not as in "biological process". That makes more sense, yes. There is no activity involved, except on the part of the mathematician.

    Not sure how that's relevant?

    This is a false equivocation; you are mixing up various definitions of the word "process".

    False; a "process function" is a term on its own; it does not "intimately relate" "process" and "function". That is not how language works.

    Next time, please only cite relevant ones.

    That's terribly badly worded. A biological process doesn't mean there is biological function, nor that there is mathematical function. A computer process existing (i.e. running) doesn't mean it has a function. Only if you define "function" so vague that it carries pretty much no meaning does your statement become true. But then it's meaningless...
  11. Write4U Valued Senior Member

    It's the definition of the term "lying" or telling a "lie"

    In all the above, do any of my posits hint that I am purposely telling untruths to score points?

    I have stipulated that I can be wrong, but that does not make it a "lie".
    Last edited: Jun 30, 2018
  12. NotEinstein Valued Senior Member

    You've missed my point. You said:

    So to "purposely tell a lie", is to "purposely purposely tell a falsehood". That's a lot of purpose, don't you think? In fact, it's double the necessary amount of purpose.

    But then again, if you literally had read the next sentence in my post, you would've been able to figure out why I said that. I guess you also missed the no-so-subtle clue with the ellipses and the "let's remember" in that first sentence.
  13. Write4U Valued Senior Member

    Well, IMO an artificial computer process does not have a biological function at all, it has a binary process, but it can have several functions, i.e. calculation, data processing, word processing, etc.

    And as I understand evolutionary biology, nature does not require or provide a specific process, unless it fills a specific function ordered by natural selection. In flowers, the evolved process of petal growth in accordance to the Fibonacci Sequence offers the most efficient functional growth pattern.

    Can we get back to "infinity"?
  14. NotEinstein Valued Senior Member

    (Emphasis mine.)
    Sure, it can have, but it's not necessary, which was my point.

    There are many biological processes and chemical processes happening inside your body right now; most of them have function, but it's not required for them to have one. That was my point.

    False; natural selection doesn't "order" or "mandate" or "demand" or "impose" processes or functions.

    Which definition of "functional" are you using here, because I suspect that's a fallacy of equivocation...
  15. Write4U Valued Senior Member

    Except I did not say "purposely telling a lie". A lie is by definition a "purposeful falsehood". See above.
    Oh, I understood what you were trying to say, but you said it badly. The use of the term "lie" was poorly chosen and I just brought it to your attention, that's all.
  16. Write4U Valued Senior Member

    I beg to differ. You are parsing my sentences.
    Last edited: Jun 30, 2018
  17. NotEinstein Valued Senior Member

    Then I suggest you contact the administration staff, because your account was hijacked for post #142:
    (Emphasis mine.)

    So, you were trolling just now?

    What does that have to do with you using the word "purposely" twice?

    If natural selection can "order" specific functions, then your brain processes must have done so too. May I ask what function your falsehood served?

    I'm not sure what your point with this statement is? If you are using parsing in the sense of "reading and interpreting", the obviously, yes I am, but so what?
  18. Write4U Valued Senior Member

    You said I was telling a lie, but you did not necessarily mean that I told that lie purposefully, no?
    So to bring your attention to the fact that the definition of a lie is a "purposeful falsehood" and that therefore your use of the term was inappropriate .
    Now you are trying to squirm out from under your "fauix pas". Let it go already. I am trying to be gracious here.
    Blah, Blah, Blah., ad nauseum.
    C'mon, you are getting ridiculous now. You are the one who is trolling BIG TIME.
    Last edited: Jun 30, 2018
  19. NotEinstein Valued Senior Member

    And my point was that if "telling a lie" is already purposeful by definition, then saying "purposely telling a lie" is nonsensical.

    Erm, it's you that's now squirming, not me.

    First you (inadvertently?) admit that you are trolling, and now you are trying to, as you say, "squirm out from under it" by acting childish.

    Says the person that, in response to a (admittedly too rash) accusation of lying after telling a falsehood through (I guess?) incompetence, starts trolling, acting immature ("Blah, Blah, Blah."), and ignoring questions and corrections.

    Also, may I point out that you got very, very upset and basically started internet-crying, and when I offered in return to withdraw the accusation, you promptly ignored that?

    And now I'm being accused of getting ridiculous...

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    If you feel I'm trolling, please contact the moderation staff.
  20. NotEinstein Valued Senior Member

    (Small correction for the record; I messed up quoting things properly in post #144, and it's too late to edit it now:
    The "Alright then, I" part is mine, but got left behind when moving it one quote-tag down, and the next part until the orphan-quote-endtag is from Write4U.)
  21. Speakpigeon Valued Senior Member

    I didn't say I didn't understand. I can read English, you know. I said his sentence doesn't make sense. There's a big difference if you need to be told.
    I understood what he said. It doesn't make sense.
    And I provided a justification for that. I observe that you don't bother to address it. You prefer to just dismiss it by suggesting I don't really believe it myself. You can't take at face value what people say? Well, clearly, there can't be any discussion on such a basis.
    Try again?
    Atoms are not abstract.
    Look at the various definitions of abstract and explain to me how atoms could be abstract.
    1. having no reference to material objects or specific examples; not concrete
    2. not applied or practical; theoretical
    3. hard to understand; recondite; abstruse
    4. (Art Terms) denoting art characterized by geometric, formalized, or otherwise nonrepresentational qualities
    5. defined in terms of its formal properties: an abstract machine.
    6. (Philosophy) philosophy (of an idea) functioning for some empiricists as the meaning of a general term: the word'man' does not name all men but the abstract idea of manhood.

    Tegmark's phrase "our physical world is an abstract mathematical structure" doesn't make sense because Tegmark is using the word "abstract" to specify the nature of a concrete thing, the physical universe, which is a contradiction.
    So, please explain how it is possible for our physical world to be anything abstract or what it means for the physical world to be abstract.
  22. RainbowSingularity Valued Senior Member


    did you attaend high school ?
  23. Seattle Valued Senior Member

    I did attend high school, college and grad school. How about you?

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