What is "time"

Discussion in 'Physics & Math' started by Saint, Nov 9, 2014.

  1. MattMars Registered Member

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    There's nothing particular complicated about what I am suggesting, of course you may find it hard to accept if you just hear the suggestion and not the accompanying observations and reasoning.
    Just as anyone hearing that the world is round might find that hard to accept if they didn't carefully follow the reasoning and see if it made sense to them, with what ever knowledge or skills they have.

    Likewise one would have trouble understanding how the world might be round if one started with the opinion it obviously must be flat, and any suggestion otherwise must be wrong.

    I'm not suggesting you might follow the reasoning I present in the video with such a closed mind, but as i say, in discussing "timelessness" or "time", i have found it is very important be very aware of possible confirmation bias, the worse kind of which is where someone is sure they are not biased because they are sure their starting assumptions are right.

    (With respect, most experts on "time" seem to start with this, one-sided and unscientific approach, considering only their hypothesis "that time exists", and not even bothering to construct or test an antithesis - the video below demonstrates our natural tendency to do this brilliantly)

    I write a great deal about timelessness vs time, and blind confirmation bias is the biggest feature in most debates. Everyone just stating their opinion ( usually as fact ), and no one applying the scientific method.

    re confirmation bias, this is a video by Veritasium i recommend everyone in this discussion checks out...
    2,4,8,16 Can You Solve This?

     
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  3. RJBeery Natural Philosopher Valued Senior Member

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    Right. If it takes me an hour to get to the store what I'm ultimately saying is that "my location changes from HOME to STORE just as the hour hand on the clock changes from FOUR to FIVE"
     
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  5. RJBeery Natural Philosopher Valued Senior Member

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    I see Physics as a subset of the world of mathematics. In other words, we can discuss mathematically valid objects which have no bearing to the material world.
     
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  7. paddoboy Valued Senior Member

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    But the exact reverse situation can also be true.
    Using a simplistic Occam's razor approach, if time did not exist, then we would not be here...
    Afterall the BB was an evolution of space and time in the first instant...Matter was emergent from that.
    Again, my question, "show me any realistic realm, world or Universe where time does not exist"
    Time is responsible for change. Change does not occur without time passing.

    I find both Carroll's and Smolin's views on time as logically and realistically acceptable, while still debatable.
    here's another.....
    http://www.pitt.edu/~jdnorton/Goodies/passage/
     
  8. RJBeery Natural Philosopher Valued Senior Member

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    Time could pass without change, but change necessitates that time passes. Therefore I don't think we can say that time is responsible for change. If anything, time is a mere label for that change.
     
  9. paddoboy Valued Senior Member

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    21,647

    More realistically, if we had no time, we would have no change....but if we had no change time could still pass. That illustrates the reality of time.

    Space exists, time exists, space/time exists. They are far more than some abstraction in our minds. They exist and have always existed [at least as far back as the BB] outside of GR or any other possible model of how the Universe works.
    All GR did was show us the true realistic nature of both as being non absolute contrary to what Newton thought.
    That is as near factual as one can hope to get and even an observable validated QGT in the future, will surely be formulated in time and space.

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    http://www.pitt.edu/~jdnorton/Goodies/passage/
    A common belief among philosophers of physics is that the passage of time of ordinary experience is merely an illusion. The idea is seductive since it explains away the awkward fact that our best physical theories of space and time have yet to capture this passage. I urge that we should resist the idea. We know what illusions are like and how to detect them. Passage exhibits no sign of being an illusion.

    We have no clear idea of how to describe this passage in ways comparable to the precision of theories of time and space in physics. We usually end up describing passage with metaphors that prove circular and then, in desperation, gestures. That failure is not a good reason to doubt the objectivity of temporal passage; it is a reason to doubt the reach of our understanding.

    Explaining passage away as an illusion is an instance of a desperate stratagem that has been used to ill effect elsewhere when we become too eager to explain away an awkward fact. Immanual Kant urged that the Euclidean structure of space and the causal character of the world are illusory, merely arising through the interaction of our sensory apparatus with the things in themselves. He thereby grounded his defense of the impossible dogma that we know these facts for certain. Many worlds theorists in quantum mechanics protect their doctrine by asserting that the most basic fact of laboratory experience--that experiments have unique outcomes--is an illusion.

    Time passes. Nothing fancy is meant by that.1 It is just the mundane fact known to us all that future events will become present and then drift off into the past. Today's eagerly anticipated lunch comes to be and satiates our hunger and then leaves a pleasant memory.The passage of time is the presentation to our consciousness of the successive moments of the world.

    Time really passes. It is not something we imagine. It really happens; or, as I shall argue below, our best evidence is that it does. Our sense of passage is our largely passive experience of a fact about the way time truly is, physically. The fact of passage obtains independently of us.

    Time would continue to pass for the smoldering ruins were we and all sentient beings in the universe suddenly to be snuffed out.


    This passage of time is one of our most powerful experiences. What is not in that experience is the idea of a present moment, the "now," that has any significant extension in space. The "now" we experience is purely local in space. It is limited to that tiny part of the world that is immediately sensed by us. There is a common presumption of a present moment that extends from here to the moon and on to the stars. That there is such a thing is a natural supposition, but it is speculation. The more we learn of the physics of space and time, the less credible it becomes. For present purposes, the essential point is that the local passage of time is quite distinct from the notion of a spatially extended now. The former figures prominently in our experience; the latter figures prominently in groundless speculation.


    The passage of time is real physical fact that obtains in the world independently of us. How, you may wonder, could you think anything else? Well, you might think that the passage of time is some sort of illusion, an artifact of the peculiar way that our brains interact with the world.2 Indeed that is just what you might think if you have spent a lot of time reading modern physics.


    Following from the work of Einstein, Minkowski and many more, physics has given a wonderfully powerful conception of space and time. Relativity theory, in its most perspicacious form, melds space and time together to form a four-dimensional spacetime. The study of motion in space and and all other processes that unfold in them merely reduce to the study of an odd sort of geometry that prevails in spacetime. In many ways, time turns out to be just like space.


    much much more at.....
    http://www.pitt.edu/~jdnorton/Goodies/passage/
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  10. paddoboy Valued Senior Member

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    Even in Einsteins "greatest blunder" and his Static Universe time still existed.
     
  11. Farsight Valued Senior Member

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    Can you demonstrate time passing? No. But RJ and I can demonstrate change occurring. Can you open up a clock and point to the time passing or flowing inside it? No, but we can point to things moving inside it. And as for time really passes at http://www.pitt.edu/~jdnorton/Goodies/passage/, oh no it doesn't. Look at this bit:

    "In this spacetime, we exist as objects extended in space and time. We are world tubes of matter winding through spacetime and interacting with all the processes in it. Part of each of our body's world tubes are eyes, ears and a brain, all busily sensing and interacting and signalling."

    This is rubbish. Spacetime is static, because it models space at all times. You don't move up your worldline. You aren't a worldtube of matter winding through spacetime. There is no motion in spacetime, just as there is no actual motion through time, because time is a measure of motion. A clock "clocks up" some kind of regular cyclical internal motion and shows you a cumulative result called "the time". Or like RJ said, time is a label for change. Beg to differ? OK, I'll hop backwards a metre. Now you hop backwards a second.
     
    Last edited: Nov 11, 2014
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  12. Landau Roof Registered Senior Member

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    598
    You asked your question, and got a perfectly correct answer and you dismiss it out of hand. Here is Dictionary.com's third (and just as legitimate as the first and second) definition of 'realm':
    Time is merely our way (a semi-intelligent terrestrial organism's way) of organizing reality. This view is built in. The term 'hard-wired' seems insufficient for the depth of our dependency. However, being more then semi-intelligent, our species can step back perhaps and see that time is a nothing but a mental construct that allows us to manage reality.
     
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  13. paddoboy Valued Senior Member

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    Sure. The BB was 13.83 billion years ago.
    And many other links and examples given, if you took the time to read.


    Now why I ask, why does a pot, a kettle and the colour black come to mind.

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    Your rather tarnished hypocritical reputation here Farsight makes that highly hilarious.

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  14. RJBeery Natural Philosopher Valued Senior Member

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    I disagree with this. I believe time passing is an illusion because the alternative (that the passage of time is an objective reality) requires a "now" which indicates what time is passing through. SR and GR destroy any universal, objective concept of "now" over spacetime. I guess one could make the argument that time is "simultaneously" passing through all points in the 4-D spacetime block, like a field of sorts, but I don't think this is what most philosophers mean when discussing the subject.
     
    Last edited: Nov 11, 2014
  15. krash661 [MK6] transitioning scifi to reality Valued Senior Member

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    some say , time, is what makes a complete circuit of energy,for this system we exist in. like an electricity circuit.
     
  16. MattMars Registered Member

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    Hi Pad,
    With respect (and I'm not being rude), I think your logic here is flawed, one can't use the conclusion of a proposition as it's basis.

    Effectively here your logic suggests "time must exist for things to exist, therefore time must exist", I.e you seem to have started not from what you actually observe, but from the assumption an invisible intangible thing called time exists.

    to back this up scientifically you need to suggest an experiment that shows precisely what this "time" thing is, and how "it" must exist for things to exist. Otherwise you just have an unfounded opinion.

    And, you would need to prove that, contary to all that we actually observe everywhere, things do not just exist, move and interact, misleading us in to assuming a thing called time exists, if we jump to conclusions without a solid chain of logical thought.
    mm
     
    Last edited: Nov 11, 2014
  17. MattMars Registered Member

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    57
    Hi Krash,

    Yep, a lot of people say a lot of things apparently about a thing called time, often just starting from the assumption some invisible thing exists unless disproven.

    The trick is finding people who can support their suggestions not just with more and more, statements but scientific experiments and evidence, (and those who test both sides of the coin, consider fresh thinking objectively, and not just defend an acquired position )

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    (Nice avatar)
    mm
     
  18. paddoboy Valued Senior Member

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    I certainly asked a legitimate question, but certainly did not receive an answer correct or relevant to, or even encompassed by acceptable scientific laws and methodology.
    Unicorns, Centaurs and heaven are not scientific concepts, simple as that.


    Time is far more then just organizing reality....Time along with space, emerged and evolved from the BB.
    Time along with space, spacetime, gravity, matter, energy are all real concepts and each are dependent on each other, and as real as each other.
    To dismiss one, is to dismiss all.
     
  19. paddoboy Valued Senior Member

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    21,647
    Since according to our BB/Inflationary model, time along with space, evolved from that moment, and everything else was emergent from that, I say my logic is pretty sound.



    I see you as complicating the issue. Time must exist [because according to the BB] time was that along with space that first evolved. Everything else came later.


    Science does not pretend to understand all accepted models of cosmology.Our understanding of the BB, DM and DE are just three aspects of that.
    I've given "my view" certainly on why I think time exists, as have Carroll and Smolin and other links I have supplied.
    I admit the subject of time is open for debate, which includes your own "view" as to why you disagree. :shrug:


    In general science does not deal in proofs, But in my opinion I have given plenty of evidence as to why I think that time does exist, and I believe that to be a logical conclusion based on common sense.
     
  20. krash661 [MK6] transitioning scifi to reality Valued Senior Member

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    you won't find ANYONE in public society to show evidence.
    they do not have the ability to work on such a level.
    including mainstream.
    you also need to understand, time is a physical state entity.
     
  21. OnlyMe Valued Senior Member

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    An example please!
     
  22. Landau Roof Registered Senior Member

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  23. Saint Valued Senior Member

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    Is time just a perception of our mind, time indeed does not exist?
     

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