Does time exist?

Discussion in 'General Science & Technology' started by Shadow1, Mar 31, 2010.


Does time exist?

This poll will close on Sep 13, 2037 at 2:04 PM.
  1. Yes

  2. No

Multiple votes are allowed.
Thread Status:
Not open for further replies.
  1. Steven Genieus Registered Member

    Cheer up TimeTraveler theres always time* for funny pictures you only live once.

    *And on the subject of time lets get back to the argum...i mean discussion
  2. Google AdSense Guest Advertisement

    to hide all adverts.
  3. Dywyddyr Penguinaciously duckalicious. Valued Senior Member

    Not quite as sad as someone who persists in making assertions that he can't back up, calls upon physics and science yet appears to be ignorant of them and constantly tries to deflect the argument...

    So what? It shows that information can be destroyed.

    Wrong again. It isn't called the God Particle, Lederman's book simply has that title because his publisher thought it was catchy and would sell. "God Particle" is a nonsense name for marketing purposes.

    I see you can't even reason correctly.
    Try this: if a cardboard box falls into a black hole what information about that box remains? It's size? The length, breadth and depth? The thickness of the material? Nope, the only thing we can say afterwards (given that we could actually check the before and after mass of the black hole) is the mass that the box was. Any other information has gone.

    That's quite rich coming from someone who's contradicted himself more than once in this thread, and offered nothing but his own assertions as "evidence".

    So what information about anything falling into a black hole remains after it's done so?
    What information remains after a book is burnt?

    And you haven't provided even that to support yours. Merely your own assertion.
    I also note that you can't read: that article gave the names of two physicists who state that (quantum) information is lost - Thorne and Hawking.

    I see you also failed to understand the import of that, too.

    And the point of that link would be...?
    Last edited: Apr 13, 2010
  4. Google AdSense Guest Advertisement

    to hide all adverts.
  5. TimeTraveler Immortalist Registered Senior Member

    What you are saying is that "time" is real, as if it's a physical object or as if it has energy or mass of some sort. As if time is proven to be linear with beginning and end, as if the past and future actually do exist outside of our minds. I'm saying the past and future do not exist, that reality is a series of nows, and that time only exists because of illusions of perception.

    Dragons do not exist outside of the perception of living animate objects. There would be no such concept of dragons because all things that exist are perceived. Anything which has never been perceived cannot be said to exist.

    You can speculate on the existence of dark matter, or try to claim that "time" exists, but if you have never observed it as an object how can you truly know it exists? For example if time exists it must have a form and shape right? So what is the physical shape of time?

    Is it a line? Is it a sphere? Is it a hypercube? In order for it to have a shape at all somebody has to "measure" time itself, so what exactly is a second compared to a microsecond compared to a nanosecond? This is all measurements right?

    So what happens if you measure the spin of a particle? An electron has a spin of 1/2 times Planck's constant divided by 2*pi. Now for a scientific fact, prior to measuring an electron it's known as a wave function. Wavefunction:

    Please Register or Log in to view the hidden image!

    Wave function collapse only happens when an electron is measured and this turns the electron into a particle. This has been demonstrated by the double slit experiment.

    If time is real then an electron would be a particle whether it's measured or not correct?

    So if time is real you have to explain the double slit experiment
    Now I'm not going to claim I know why this scientific experiment works. But the fact is this is a physical experiment which proves by observation that time itself is an artifact/result of observation. If the wave function is in both places and only collapses into place when we measure it, it shows me that location and "time" is a result of observation.

    Since you claim I'm speaking on subjects I know nothing about, how would you disprove the double slit experiment and copenhagen interpretation of quantum mechanics? That is what you'll have to do to convince me that "time" exists independently of observers.

    We could debate what exactly an observer is, and what makes something an observer, because thats where I predict you'll take the debate next. The fact is this experiment is real and you've provided not a single experiment to prove "time" is real. You feel it's real? Show us what time is.
  6. Google AdSense Guest Advertisement

    to hide all adverts.
  7. TimeTraveler Immortalist Registered Senior Member

    No it doesn't. It's a hypothesis/theory on what might happen and it's not a fact. It's never been observed, or tested.

    It's the Higgs particle. I know what it's called.

    This does not really fit in with the nature of energy. The energy itself isn't destroyed, maybe the configuration can be destroyed but this is not proof that the information does not escape from the black hole if the black hole evaporates. Where exactly is the information going and where does the energy go? To believe it can just evaporate out of existence defies the law of physics as we know it because we have never observed ANYTHING evaporate out of existence. If you think I'm wrong then show me an actual experiment proving this hypothesis and stop showing me a hypothesis which hasn't been tested. I showed the double slit experiment because this has actually been tested and observed to be true.

    Here is some evidence supporting my hypothesis:

    This is not a fact. This is speculation. Until you show me the experiment proving this, I don't believe it and neither do the majority of physicists. This is why Hawking lost the bet.

    My concept of time is clear. It's an illusion of the mind. There is not much to contradict here, either you can take the double slit experiment as evidence or you can say this isn't good enough and/or offer evidence supporting your claims.

    When you burn a book the book is never completely destroyed. It becomes smoke, then ash, and the particles don't go anywhere either. When you say the information is destroyed it's like saying if we throw water into a black hole that somehow nothing will remain, it wont become any other form but will literally cease to exist entirely. I don't see how you can believe that. To have the information be completely destroyed it would literally have to evaporate the mass of the book into "nothingness" which is something none of us has ever seen in any experiment in physics.
    And these two physicists so far have failed to prove their theory. They are no different than you and I arguing about whether time is real. They don't know but they have their hypothesis, just like we have ours. They do not have facts and either one of us could come up with a formula which looks good on paper but this is not necessarily something which can be proven.
    Last edited: Apr 13, 2010
  8. Dywyddyr Penguinaciously duckalicious. Valued Senior Member

    Length is real but it isn't a physical object, nor does it have mass or energy. It's a dimension.

    You keep saying it, but you can't offer any evidence.

    So you're saying that they are perceived but they don't exist?

    Ooh, tricky one.

    And you persist in the nonsense. What is the physical shape of length? Or mass?

    Who says it has a shape?


    What? How do you work that out?


    And again you waffle off into nonsense.
    The Copenhagen Interpretation is, as its name suggests, an interpretation of what could be the reality - there are other, equally valid explanations. But it has sod all to do with time.

    And another fact is that you've provided nothing but your own ill-informed assertions to "show" that it isn't.

    Show us what length is.
  9. Dywyddyr Penguinaciously duckalicious. Valued Senior Member

    And your point would be?
    You still haven't addressed the burnt book...

    Apparently not:
    What's energy got to do with it?

    Blah blah: address the point - information is lost.

    Keep trying and re-read the article - Thorne says he didn't.

    WTF does the double slit experiment have to do with time?
    I think you're calling on things you consider abstruse to "make" your point. And failing miserably.

    So you claim that a burnt book is readable? That the information contained therein is perfectly accessible?

    Please Register or Log in to view the hidden image!

    Rubbish, what makes you think the mass would have to be evaporated for the information to be lost?

    Delusions of grandeur much?
    There's a considerable difference.

    You could come up with a formula? Riiight...
    A consistent, valid one?
    Go ahead.
  10. TimeTraveler Immortalist Registered Senior Member

    Yes I certainly did. The book becomes ash and the information is now in the form of ash.

    Information is never lost. If you melt gold, does it cease to be gold? It's still gold no matter what you do to it. You can turn it into ash, it's still going to be some "thing" and this is because the information is still there the material information which makes up the object in our mind isn't missing. Just like if I delete data on my harddrive it's not ever going to be erased, even if I write over it.

    Mass is material information. Shape, form, etc.

    Anyone can come up with a formula. In this case a formula would be useless because we can't test it, and also I don't have to come up with a formula because the formulas already exist. I suggest you look up the formula's on consciousness and on free will. It basically says if free will exists then particles have free will.

    If particles have free will then consciousness is real. If particles are completely predetermined then consciousness is artificial and illusion. This is essential to understanding the nature of time. Do some research and respond in a clear concise manner.
  11. Dywyddyr Penguinaciously duckalicious. Valued Senior Member

    Wrong - the information has gone. It is no longer there or accessible. If the book is burnt what information can you get from it? What did chapter two say? How thick was the book? When was it printed?

    When will you realise that information is not a physical thing?

    Fail. The information on your hard drive is stored in an on or off state of a switch on the drive - if it's over-written then the switches are altered and the previous state has gone.

    Nope, that's the object itself, not the mass.

    Note that I said "valid" and "consistent". "Anyone" can come up with drivel.

    There are no "formulas for consciousness or free will". (Unless written by cranks).
    And no it doesn't say anything of the sort.

    Particles don't have any will at all.

    Clear and concise manner?
    Oh please, you post specious new-age nonsense, fail to support your "argument" with anything other than your own mistaken assertions and lose track of what you've previously said, and you tell ME to be clear and concise?

    Please Register or Log in to view the hidden image!

    Last edited: Apr 13, 2010
  12. Fraggle Rocker Staff Member

    You're overlooking the definition of "information." Information is organization. When a book is burned, the molecules break down. Many of the atoms are released into the air, where they drift away. All of the atoms are reorganized. The book itself no longer exists, and the information it once contained certainly no longer exists.

    The same is true of life: life is organization, not substance. When you die, all the atoms in your brain lose their electrical charge, resulting in an irreversible degradation of the synapses, so all the information in your brain--memories, personality, etc.--is lost forever. The organization is gone. Eventually your entire body decomposes and the molecules themselves break down. Your atoms continue to exist, but the organization that was you does not.
    I just explained why that assertion is false. Information is not matter or energy. It is the particular organization of matter and energy.
    But if you melt a gold statue made by an Inca artist (as the Christian occupiers of the New World did because it was "heathen" art), the statue no longer exists. All you've got is the gold. The Spanish king ended up owning tons of gold, which has a certain economic value, but he lost the irreplaceable artwork that would have turned the modern country of Spain into a world center of antiquities.
    You need to bone up on the concept of levels of decomposition. You're seeing the structure of the universe as flat, when it's actually quite deep. Quarks and leptons are organized into protons, electrons, neutrons, etc. Protons, electrons and neutrons are organized into atoms. Atoms are organized into molecules. Molecules are organized into solids, liquids, gases, plasma, etc. Solids are organized into objects. Objects are organized (by humans) into artifacts. Artifacts are organized (by humans) into civilizations.

    It the organization at any one of these levels is destroyed, then all the higher levels of organization vanish. Burn the book and the organization of the carbohydrate molecules is destroyed, so the carbon atoms recombine with oxygen in the air and form carbon dioxide molecules and water molecules. As a result, the sturdy, rigid cellulose structure of the pages is gone; most of its atoms have evaporated and a few are left as ash, but they no longer form pages. The organization of those atoms that we call "writing" is lost forever, and there is no more book. The organization of books that we call a "library" is gone. This is what the Christian occupiers did to the Aztecs: they had many libraries in which their history and culture was written; now it's gone and the organization we call Aztec civilization no longer exists.
    Having made a career in information technology for 43 years, I can state with complete authority that you are absolutely wrong. * * * * MODERATOR'S NOTE TO OTHER READERS * * * * Do not believe Time Traveler's assertions about how computers work. They are false. This is why you must have ANTIVIRUS SOFTWARE and why you must regularly BACK UP YOUR DATA. When it's gone, it's just gone! When a digital magnetic storage medium is overwritten with new information, the electric charge on its atoms is reorganized. The previous organization is lost forever.

    Yes, there is a very slight residual charge left in some of the material. If you overwrite your hard drive once, the geeks like Timothy and Abbey on "NCIS" might be able to reconstruct a few small fragments of your erased data. But after you overwrite it a few more times that former organization is completely lost forever. NCIS is fiction. Spies in the real world can't do that.
    And that is several layers of decomposition higher than the atomic structure of the matter itself. What you're talking about here has nothing at all to do with chemistry, much less with elementary particles. Information is the organization of the matter, not the matter itself.
    Heisenberg never suggested that particles have anything like "free will." That is an unscientific accretion to his physics that was added by philosophers, and it is not science. The entire basis of the Uncertainty Principle is that the probability of a particle being in one place versus the other is completely random. The particle does not "make a choice." It is at the mercy of the laws of probability.

    Randomness is the very antithesis of organization, and therefore randomly arranged particles do not comprise information.
  13. Shadow1 Valued Senior Member


    hey, why don't we ask time traveler, he used to travel by time, i guess he may have an idea,

    to time travelar: does time exist?

    Please Register or Log in to view the hidden image!

  14. TimeTraveler Immortalist Registered Senior Member

    Information in this context cannot be defined as a book which is "readable". So the book itself still exists in some form, but the reader is the consciousness. Information in this context can be defined as material information such as chemical compounds which are composed of atoms, atoms which are composed of subatomic particles such as quarks and leptons, and the harmony that exists between the interactions. These subatomic particles are collections of numbers which are plugged into the wave function. All numbers are information, and the universe is built up of numbers.

    It's only the consciousness that interprets/measures the forms. The point is that the information never completely goes away and this has nothing to do with whether you can read the contents of thebook or not, the atoms never "released into the air". If you think this happens you have to show me an example of this because I've never heard of atoms being released into the air.

    It's a scientific fact that the matter is not solid. It appears solid because of electromagnetism. The atoms never touch or collide into anything so what exactly would make these atoms "drift"? If you are talking about smoke yes the ash might drift away but the atoms themselves will always exist and even if they do collide with other particles the energy is released as well as the information. It's just a law of physics that energy and information cannot ever be destroyed. Energy and information "flow" through time when measured by an observer. The wave function collapses into particles when measured but the information itself is fundamentally physical. The behavior of energy and matter is determined by the information content.

    By measuring and making use of information we can make predictions about the behavior of the physical universe. We can determine that the book will turn to smoke and then ash. The entire process is predictable because the information is never being created or destroyed, we are simply analyzing the different forms that the information takes through concepts such as conditional probability. The fact that objects such as burning books behave in a non random fashion should be evidence that the information is permanent and exists. Otherwise one day you can burn a book and it might turn to ash and the next day it might evaporate into thin air without a trace, or maybe you don't do anything at all and objects vanish for no reason. Since this doesn't happen then at some level the information is consistent enough that we can predict behavior.

    Lets not pretend to know what life is. For sake of argument I will assume that is what life is, it does not change the fact that the information never ceases to exist. Everything you've ever done always exists and can never be undone. Every thought you've ever had always exists and cannot be undone. Entropy is not the same as "destruction".

    Your definition of information is once again limited. I'm defining information in physical terms, as material object information. A material object is made up of particles/subatomic particles/wave functions. Wave functions are information which cannot be "destroyed", and which exist entirely as a series of probabilities.

    If you talk about life then you are thinking about the interpreter/thinker not the information itself. The information is what our 5 senses perceive and what we call the observable universe. The book will always exist in one form or another and because of this the information (the object) is never destroyed. It can be deformed and manipulated but it's never going to be completely gone.

    Learn about information theory. Matter is made up of wave functions which are pure information. Matter is not solid. It's only appears solid when viewed from a specific perspective. The true nature of the quantum universe is information and if the quantum universe is information, so is everything else. Particles are collections of numbers, wave functions are probabilities, and thats all the universe is.

    The information on the particle level never ceases to exist. The limits of your perception do not allow you to perceive the information but it's still there. The entire universe is just numbers and these numbers never go away because you cannot erase anything. You can write over it, and there is entropy, but this isn't the same as deleting information.

    The particles/wave functions ARE information. The electrons, quarks, leptons, neutrons and probably the higgs if we find it, is information. It can be represented by digits, predictable by probability, and it can be a wave function. A wave function is information because it cannot be described better by any other definition. A wave function is not limited to being at one location at a time, it can be in multiple places at the same time.

    Thats not destruction. It's a reconfiguration at best, or perhaps entropy, but the information is not destroyed because the behavior of this process is completely predictable. For example if you chop up a classified document in a shredder, given enough time and CPU resources that document can be reconfigured just like putting together a puzzle. The information never is lost, it's just scrambled. This would be like encrypting something and forgetting the key, it's not that the information has been destroyed, it's just contained in a form which we cannot reconstruct it. In order for it to be completely destroyed it has to be removed from existence entirely and this is what I'm saying is impossible.

    I'm in information technology also. You cannot truly delete information. You can write over it. Burning a book is writing over it, it's not deleting. It's just like shredding is not deleting. If the book is just a specific organization of the atomic / subatomic structure, then if you had the recipe for regeneration of that book and the technical capabilities to do it, it's certainly possible that a burned book can be regenerated. Speaking from one expert to another on information security, the closest thing you can come to deleting information from computers is to zero the drive. This is to write over the information with 0s. The second thing you can do is encrypt the drive and forget the key, this is equal to burning the book. What I'm saying is that the information itself on the particle level never ceases to exist. You cannot delete, you can only rearrange.

    If you take a magnet to a drive this is even better than writing over it. This is what the governments do to remove the data. The point I'm making is that information is never "destroyed". Meaning might be destroyed but meaning and interpretation depend on consciousness. If you speak of the words in a book being lose or of information being indecipherable, it does not change the fact that the information still exists in one form or another. When you say the information is gone, you have to prove it's really gone in the physical sense and not just gone in the linguistic/interpretation sense. In the physical sense information cannot be removed from the universe for the exact reason that energy and matter cannot be removed. Matter is made up of information because as I've said before the particles are wave functions which can only be described as having properties of information.

    How else can you describe a wave function if you don't conclude that a wave function is information?

    If information is merely organization, explain what a wave function is if it's not information? It's not matter, it's not solid, it has no location because it's non local, so what is it? I think information theory can describe the universe in a more accurate manner because a wave function relies on principles which can be described by numbers, particles can be described via bits and numbers, and matter is a set of fields of information.

    I never said Heisenberg. What I said is it's been proven via math that if free will exists on the macroscale in living animate objects, it must also exist on the lowest quantum scale. I think it should be left up to philosophers to decide if we have free will or not because I do not believe science can answer a question like that beyond producing the math to model how free will would work, or producing the math to model how determininism might work if free will does not exist. I favor the conclusion that free will exists, because I believe consciousness is something real. This fits into believing that the universe is information because there really isn't any better way to describe it.

    No scientist can tell us what randomness is. You can say it's the particle making a choice or you can call it chance, or you can call it probability, but the fact that it cannot be predicted means it's no different than your behavior. If you make a choice that I couldn't predict I can choose to call you a random animate object, or I can call you a living animate object with free will.

    "Quantum mechanics is a theory that uses probability to predict how particles will behave. But on a case-by-case basis, the behaviour of each particle is almost completely unpredictable."

    This is wrong again. Think again of information theory, if you take a random number generator and you use that to overwrite all the digits in a cipher, the information is not gone. Whoever has the key can still unmask the original information. The key could be a strand of DNA which creates life, or it could be any fundamental series of math calculations but the simple fact is that anything which can be scrambled can be unscrambled. There is nothing which is permanently scrambled in this universe and the best we can do to try to delete information is to scramble it.

    You can say I'm wrong and thats fine but I showed you some evidence to back up my claims. There are many scientists, physicists and mathematicians who believe the universe is fundamentally information. In fact most physicists who believe in string theory will believe in this claim because if there are 10 dimensions the only way to even make some of these calculations at all is to accept certain ideas about the universe. If you can believe string theory can be real, and that particles can be wave functions be in multiple places at the same time, and if you accept that particles behave in individually "random" manners then it's up to the individual to interpret.

    It's easier for me to believe in particles having free will than to believe in "unknown" forces and "hidden" variables. Free will is intuitive, hidden variables might make sense on paper but it's counter intuitive. Of course these scientists will say it's intuitive. On the other hand believing information can be destroyed is intuitive, but on paper it's shown that information cannot be destroyed.
  15. Dywyddyr Penguinaciously duckalicious. Valued Senior Member

    Wrong again.
    The book (before burning) contains information. Which is destroyed when the book is burnt.

    But the information in and about the book has gone. As Fraggle explained.

    So what?

    And now you're dodging the question. The information is destroyed.

    Wrong. As shown.

    Yes it does - you stated that information cannot be destroyed.

    What happens when something burns?
    Oh yeah, the particles that made it go up in smoke...

    Please Register or Log in to view the hidden image!

    Blah blah.

    Wrong. Energy no, information yes.

    WTF has wave function got to do with it?
    And no, information is not physical.

    Complete non-sequitur. The one does not follow from the other.

    It is not a fact.

    And that is speculation. Unsupported by any evidence.

    No it isn't. Try learning something.

    And physical properties (length, breadth etc) can be destroyed.



    No it hasn't.

    Then you should actually get an education.

    No it hasn't.
  16. Neverfly Banned Banned

    The posts have gotten long- I'll start fresh.

    I dunno what shows you watch on T.V., Time Traveller, but once a Hard drive is overwritten a few times, the data IS gone.

    As with Fraggle Rockers assertion. I lack his experience, however, I have a few years in doing Data Recovery of failed systems and Information security with one of the larger corportations.

    It's very frustrtating trying to explain information loss when people continue to think that computers work by magic.

    "What do you Mean you can't recover it?!"
  17. TimeTraveler Immortalist Registered Senior Member


    The data is lost beyond recover but it's not gone. It's overwritten. And this only takes place if the user deliberately wipes their drive because the recycle bin does not overwrite the data. Peter Gutmann invented the Gutmann algorithm specifically because he believed overwritten data could be recovered by the scanning transmission electron microscopy method which is detailed here this resulted in the Gutmann method of wiping data which is considered to be the method that is perhaps overkill but it's one of the best methods.

    The point is that in theory any data can be recovered or recoverable. Practically there is a limitation due to the amount of time, effort and many other factors which make data recovery practically impossible even if in theory it's possible.

    Do you need to overwrite the data on a drive to make it impractical to recover? Absolutely not. Approximately 3 times and the data will be practically impossible to reconstruct given the known methods.

    I've personally tested it, I've recovered data from drives which were merely reformatted. I've recovered data from drives which have been overwritten, but to recover data from a drive which has been over written multiple times is not possible. This still has nothing to do with information theory, theory has little to do with what is practical today but more to do with what is possible if we had unlimited resources and time to work on it.

    If you want to prove that information can be destroyed (not just reconfigured), be my guest. You saw the evidence I've showed you, I back up everything I'm saying with specific evidence. Look at the URL's I've shown and if you want to dispute any of it you can. I understand you can dispute the Guttman method and even I will admit it's not practical which is why nobody uses it, but it's still just scrambling the data and it's equal to just shuffling a deck of cards, it's not even going to be a random shuffle but a pseudo random shuffle, but that doesn't really matter either.
  18. Dywyddyr Penguinaciously duckalicious. Valued Senior Member

    What's the difference (in your mind)?
    The data has gone.

    It's up to you to show that information can't be destroyed - that was your contention.

    Wrong again: you've given the odd link and failed to state how it applies.
  19. Neverfly Banned Banned

    Time Traveller, that was a good post and you're right-- It's theoretically possible, albeit totally impractical with a computer.

    So for that example, you have the upper hand.

    But what happens if we change the example?

    How would yu reconstruct information that has been processed by a Black Hole?
    Think hard on that before you answer...
  20. TimeTraveler Immortalist Registered Senior Member

    Encrypted data is scrambled beyond recovery. It's not "gone", we just don't have the key to unscramble it.
    Did you read any of the URL's I've posted? They are loaded with facts and theories to support my argument. I'm not just making claims, you can fact check my sources and see that I'm citing references. Some of these references have been peer reviewed, some are experiments, some are math formulas, the point is my theory of the universe is not something which you can completely disregard as being unscientific or which you can merely claim is wrong because you say it is. If I'm wrong then you have to discredit my sources to break down point by point where my argument is wrong.

    The link is not "odd". First you said that information can be destroyed so I showed you a link from current scientists and physicists who say information is not destroyed by black holes. Next you repeat saying information can be destroyed by burning it, yet if a blackhole cannot destroy information how can it be destroyed by fire? So I used the analogy of computers because I suspected that on a site like this we probably all know more than the average joe when it comes to information security. In the realm of information security entropy can cause information to be lost, but lost is not the same as destroyed. In order for something to be destroyed it has to cease to exist while in order for something to be lost you just have to write over it a few times or encrypt it and forget the key.

    I compared burning a book to decomposing/deconstructing the book. This does not destroy the information because for example the soundwaves, lightwaves, particles etc all contain the information perhaps in a form we don't know how to access but it's there. If you yell really loud the soundwaves will exist in the universe FOREVER. The light that reflects off you will exist FOREVER. The information exists FOREVER but the form of it is what changes. This is why I said every thought anyone has ever had since the beginning of "time"(eternal now) exists FOREVER, even if light cannot escape a black hole it's not the same as saying the light ceases to exist upon entering the black hole.

    Math is not my expertise but look at a blackhole as a type of function. It has an input in the form of light, and an output in the form of radiation. The information that goes into the blackhole eventually comes out of it in one form or another. Or if you know programming languages then it's like blackhole() where you input information into blackhole() and it spits out what we might consider to be gibberish, but it's not completely random which means that information is contained in the gibberish output. Through analysis of the gibberish output we might be able to figure out what the input is or was.

    Since I'm not an expert on math or blackholes I won't pretend like I am, I'm just using this analogy to explain my argument. There is no delete in the universe.
    Last edited: Apr 14, 2010
  21. Neverfly Banned Banned

    Anaologies, by their very nature, are always flawed. They serve to direct, not instruct.

    Your analogy of the computer delete was an interesting example. But let's take that example a little further.

    You delete the file.
    You wipe the drive.
    You overwrite 177 times.
    All of this, so far, is very very minor activity.

    Smash the drive with a hammer.
    Hmm... still minor.

    Burn the drive in a furnace at 10,000 Degrees F.
    Stir the molten bits into slag.
    Re-melt it. Stir some more and add several other molten metals.

    Is the data still recoverable?

    Whatever information was on that drive is now absolutely, totally and completely removed. The materials that made the drive are still there, but there is no possible, much less theoretical, way of recovery. None.

    And we haven't even gotten to the majors like Black holes yet. Where quantum particles themselves are compressed into nothing recognizable.
  22. TimeTraveler Immortalist Registered Senior Member

    The information exists somewhere in some form in the universe. It's not (ABSOLUTELY NOT) removed from existence. When a star dies the light might be millions of light years old by the time the information reaches the earth and we witness it. This is because the lightwaves travel space FOREVER. This would mean the light waves, sound waves, all the information generated by the creation of the book, the thoughts generated by the individuals who read the book, and the information generated by the destruction of the book, are contained in the universe FOREVER.

    The sound of the keystrokes when typing up the book are in the universe somewhere. We just dont have the instruments to analyze the information. So asking me if the data is recoverable is not asking me a logical question. Technically the data is not recoverable by us, but in theory because the information always exists its always going to be recoverable in theory. Whether the technology to piece the book back together exists, or whether some aliens come along and decide to analyze every soundwave, lightwave and form of radiation generated by planet earth, the fact is that the radiation will always exist. This is proven by the article on blackholes, the information in the form of radiation ALWAYS exists even with blackholes so it's safe to say this would apply to burning a book or to destroying a harddrive.
  23. Neverfly Banned Banned

    Simply stating this belief of yours is not support of that belief.
    Unless you can demonstrate HOW to recover that data in my example, even theoretically, you must admit the possibility that you're in error-- that You WANT to believe that information can never be destroyed.
Thread Status:
Not open for further replies.

Share This Page