Determinism vs chance

Discussion in 'General Philosophy' started by Quantum Quack, May 13, 2010.

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  1. Quantum Quack Life's a tease... Valued Senior Member

    the way the game plays is like this:
    I ask:
    what is 1+1= to
    the answrer I will get is 100-98

    so what is the definition of "cause"?
    answer: that which is not random...
    so what is the definition of random?
    answer: that which is not caused?
    So random is caused or is it not caused?
    answer: eh...what is the definition of Cause again?

    Quoting Neil Bohr's famous quip:
    "The opposite of every great idea is another great idea."
    "logical self annihilation"
    and you will see how the game is played even better...
    Last edited: Jun 1, 2010
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  3. Quantum Quack Life's a tease... Valued Senior Member

    eh..ok which dictionary do you wish to use:
    this one from freedictionary .com
    Last edited: Jun 1, 2010
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  5. glaucon tending tangentially Registered Senior Member


    You cannot seriously think that any of that makes sense.
    Moreover, this isn't the subforum for games.

    Not that I'm too invested in this discussion anymore, as I completely fail to see how it's in any way relevant to the OP at this point, but, so as to hopefully forestall an unending sequence of spiraling tangents into obscurity I'll ask you directly: what is the definition of causality that you are making use of?

    I'll follow up on iceaura's directive here: Definition

    QQ, I'm afraid you're living up to your epithet.. well, at least the "quack" part.
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  7. Quantum Quack Life's a tease... Valued Senior Member

    The producer of an effect, result, or consequence.

    and hey I am not playing the game....I am only highlighting it...

    the Op is about deteminism vs chance. [ randomness ]

    as yet the only reason we have the notion of randomness is mathematics [ according to Ice Aura.] He has stated on numerous occassions that randomness is all theer is. [ nil determination/cause in absolutum ]
    where as the gedanken posed demonstrates quite clearly that determinism does indeed exist and is in fact real even beyond the notion of subjectivity and unattainablilty of reality. In other words it is an objective truth that a physical body can not pass through a closed door with out removal of the door. [ not interested in perception or belief or even supposed knowledge ]
    The door provides the cause for imprisonment and it is an "objective" door at that.
    So if Ice Aura can show how he can randomly or by chance wave a magic wand [re:cyperiums post] and exit the room with out removing the door he will have substantiated his counter intuitive position.
    It is not up to me or any one to prove a counter intuitive position or proposal it is indeed up to the proposer to support his counter intuitive position.
    Last edited: Jun 1, 2010
  8. glaucon tending tangentially Registered Senior Member

    Thank you.

    (Note to all: this is why, in ordinary philosophical discourse, one always begins with definitions...)
  9. Quantum Quack Life's a tease... Valued Senior Member

    Look I am going to post just this one more post to this thread as I am tired of suffering the games being played.
    one last legiitmate attempt to put some ideas on the table:

    The main logical proof of determinism is in fact able to be found by realising that every pixel of >0 dimensional space and time is unique. The universe is made up of infinte diversity not only in it's substance but also in it's spacial attributes.

    There is not one single pixel that is an exact copy of another. It is impossible for this not to be so.
    Point 1] effective infinite diversity.

    Now this diversity is impossible to be acheived by chance or randomness because if these possible random causations were actual we would experience a loss of infinite diversity. In the universe random copies of "things" would exist including the spacial definitions,that are not only copies but are exactly equal and the same - which is utterly impossible.
    Point 2] Randomness and chance would generate patterns that would defeat point 1.

    This infinite diversity cannot be acheived ad-hoc it must be determined that way [Constant probability of 100%] by the very nature of this universes physics. [ note: this is not the same as mankinds interpretative physics] therefore:

    Point 3] This infinite substance and spacial diversity is fully and absolutely determined to be infinitely diverse
    Randomness and chance can have no part to play other than mental convenience and speculation

    This is why I introduce the ratio Pi earlier to help demonstrate that determination can be witnessed as apparently random but as stated above proved other wise.... logically and no doubt in practice also.
    Show me a pixel that is not unique/diverse within the context of this post, in 4 dimensional space and I'll eat my shorts!
    [every digit of Pi is unique yet could hold the same number 0~9]

    Now go ahead and play games with the above because if you do it'll be the last you'll hear from me in this thread and possibly others.
    If you require definitions let me know...

    note: the use of the descriptor pixel is to avoid the the need to qualify infinitesimal points and their actual size and position relative to each other.
    A Plank length could suffice but as I don't subscribe to Planks Constants it would be inappropriate for me to use it as a descriptor for infinite points in spacetime so pixel shall have to do.
    Last edited: Jun 1, 2010
  10. iceaura Valued Senior Member

    So the producer of the difference between a measured electron passing through a slit and an unmeasured one is the "cause" of that difference?

    Because that is a probability, according to our current best theory.

    And the producer of equal air pressure on the square inches of the sidewalls of an inflated tire - chance distribution of air molecules and associated velocities, according to the laws of probability - is likewise a "cause".

    And so forth. Probability, randomness, chance, would seem to the the fundamental causes of most observed events - all of them, maybe.
    I missed the part where you showed by logic that the universe was made up of separable, distinguishable pixels of space and time.

    IIRC that contradicts the Standard Theory of QED and other aspects of modern physics, but it's an interesting exercise in imagination.
    Now you claim to be able to imagine, for some reason, by some kind of intuition apparently, an "infinite diversity" of these pixels. I don't see where you are putting your infinite diversity in finite collections of pixels. Or given an actual infinity of pixels, how you can assure yourself that they are each unique. One would tend to anticipate duplicates, here and there - an infinite number of them, even.

    How do you know you are not surrounded by the duplicates? That situation would still allow you to have an infinite diversity, whatever that means, elsewhere, so there's no problem even with your essentially arbitrary setup requirements.

    About which we need only observe that the world may not share your preference for infinite diversity, and be content to establish itself through randomness and its associated laws, despite the loss of some diversity along the way.
    Last edited: Jun 1, 2010
  11. Quantum Quack Life's a tease... Valued Senior Member

    Ice Aura,
    it is the very nature of 4 dimensional space to have eh...dimension is it not?

    that is to say that two points that are distinguishable are in different space time locations therefore different.
    this is simply due to the nature of expanded dimensions to 3 with the advent of time (4)
    to be surrounded by duplicates would be impossible as the very nature of surrounding me means that every one of those duplicates is in a different location in 3 dimensional space and dare I say undergoing different effects and causes.

    how many unique points are on the surface of a sphere? [ any size you wish to use ]
  12. Quantum Quack Life's a tease... Valued Senior Member

    19,536 that is not at all surprising!

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    to clarify the "point"

    how many unique points are on the surface of a sphere? [ any diameter/size you wish to use ]
    Last edited: Jun 1, 2010
  13. Quantum Quack Life's a tease... Valued Senior Member

    it is fundamentally impossible to loose diversity along the way in 3 or 4 dimensional space, simply due to the fact that dimensions exist as 3 or 4 dimensions.
    the only thing that is constant and not subject to diversity is zero or nothing ness.
    This inifinite diversity is determined by the simple axiomatic nature of spacetime and can not be random nor chance.
    Last edited: Jun 1, 2010
  14. iceaura Valued Senior Member

    So "pixels" is discarded, as a concept.

    OK. There are an infinite number of unique points on a sphere. And randomly losing any number of them has no effect on that fact. You can in fact remove an infinite number of them, randomly selected, and have exactly the same number of them remain, all unique and diverse as ever so.

    Your point?

    (btw: "dimensions" are human concepts, imposed on a reality not provided with them. It's quite possible that our reality is a hologram-like arrangement of, say, two dimensions. Just saying).
  15. Cyperium I'm always me Valued Senior Member

    If the distribution is not even then there is not equal pressure, and the molecules will go where the pressure is lowest (hence where there isn't equal distribution). The same cause and effect applies to water/electricity/etc.., I'm sure you realise that there are definite causes as to why the molecules move in such a way or why the water moves to equal the pressure, etc.

    I can't recognize events without math? I'm pretty sure that the brain doesn't use mathematical formulas to achieve what it does, instead I think that it is a natural mechanism which may very well adhere to mathematical formulas but not use them as such.

    A magic wand is different from a ordinary "wand" and is not caused by the wand but by what we call magic (that which causes the uncaused so to speak). The same goes with Random if you want to take it that way...

    Yes, since the law of large numbers only applies in mathematics. The cause for the way a formula works, can be found within the principles of the same formula.

    If you have a dice and throw it a large number of times you would expect the average to come close to the sum of the numbers divided by the number of times you throw (which is always approaching a number if you throw it enough times, since the division makes it harder to escape the more throws you get).

    I know, uncertainty seem to be a fundamental principle, scientists sometimes say that the uncertainty principle is the reason for the vacuum fluctuations since all the properties of a particle cannot be definitely set to zero, cause then we would know all its properties which would be breaking the uncertainty principle.

    I also heard that the expansion of space is the reason for the quantum fluctuations (or was it the other way around?).

    Either case, the uncertainty principle must be governed by something, must have some kind of operation by which it is governed or it wouldn't do what it does. There must be a way about how it works.

    Yes, definitely (even if Random does exist the way you describe it).

    Of course the string of events back is altered by so many causes - and also the vast number of different strings of events that alter eachother makes it impossible...still all those causes work together as they depend on one another and make up the systems like weather and such.

    Because it is inaccurate of something.

    Of course the relations within reality is a aspect of that reality, although a incomplete aspect. Might work like a hologram, if you split a hologram in two the whole exists in each part, but with less accuracy.
  16. Quantum Quack Life's a tease... Valued Senior Member

    "'tis not the wand that performs the trick but the imagination of the user, using the wand as an aid in focussing his/her imagination. [source - The golden age of Wicca - yet to be written

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  17. Quantum Quack Life's a tease... Valued Senior Member

    Chaos theory.
    ~ wiki

    If Ice Aura would care to debunk Chaos theory as he has already stated he can , by all means we is all ears.
  18. glaucon tending tangentially Registered Senior Member

    Mod Note:

    Verbatim from the "Pre-determined Randomness" thread:

    The incessant bickering and 'witty' retorts are getting somewhat tiresome, and certainly aren't helping the discussion progress. Let's all calm down shall we?

    Given the vague nature of the topic at hand, it's no surprise that discussion is being derailed. People, let's all make attempts to be more lucid overall, as well as at reigning in our accusatory tendencies. As it stands, I see little value in keeping the thread open....

  19. Quantum Quack Life's a tease... Valued Senior Member

    so every point on a sphere is unique?
    could this not qualify for the label of infinite diveristy of points?
    and what would happen if those points were created randomly?

    Would they not loose aspects of their diveristy due to random pattern formation so that some points would be in at least two places on the spheres surface simultaneously? [ given that we are talking about pixels or points in space time at it's most fundamental level ]
  20. iceaura Valued Senior Member

    Name that cause.
    The law of large numbers is not a formula (, and is only relevant here in its very useful and well-investigated application to the physical world.

    To the extent that it correctly describes the behavior of the physical world, the probability distribution that is at the foundation of all such description behaves exactly like a "cause" of the observed physical effects - and nothing else involved does.
    So when you say something has "a cause", what are you talking about? Are you including probabilities among your causes?
    Aside from an apparent psychological discomfort, what objection do you have to identifying the apparent and observable terms in the well-verified equations as the "somethings" that "govern" ?

    But not "something else".

    They aren't analogous to pixels, and you can't label them "apart" from their location on the sphere, as you can a pixel.
    I'm not sure how you imagine one would "create" a point.

    A collection of points on a sphere can be selected or chosen randomly, a set of points can be generated randomly that approaches a "sphere", etc.
    Last edited: Jun 2, 2010
  21. glaucon tending tangentially Registered Senior Member


    See, both here, and in the other similar thread, I've been confused as to how and why the issue of causality is introduced. Despite asking for clarification, QQ insists upon drifting the discussion away from the scope of the OP, and right back to 'causality'.

    QQ: you're consistently confusing two disparate concepts: causality and randomness. What's more, you continue to confuse them, despite having provided not so much as a working definition.

    Let's be clear:

    Randomness refers to metrics; specifically, a distribution set of data.
    Causality refers to determinant implication; typically, the attribution of demonstrable succession.

    These two concepts, as well as terms, apply to completely different domains, and as such, are not interchangeable.

    If you feel you'd like to continue to debate iceaura, feel free to create the appropriate thread in Formal Debates.

    For now, your obstinacy in the face of reason has not served you well:

    Mod Note:

    Thread closed.

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