# Entropy

Discussion in 'Pseudoscience Archive' started by DRZion, Nov 23, 2009.

1. ### DRZionTheoretical ExperimentalistValued Senior Member

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entropy- an evolution of laws and rules necessary for life

if the electron had a charge different by even .01% then the universe could not exist,

so it is with entropy and life on earth

its like an .. anthropo something principle

3. ### draqonBannedBanned

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are you trying to find what the principle behind mankind is that relates to the entropy and uniqueness of the universe?

5. ### draqonBannedBanned

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this thread needs to be moved to philosophy/religion

7. ### DRZionTheoretical ExperimentalistValued Senior Member

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no no no.. well maybe philosophy of science. There is a word I'm looking for - anthropo-something principle, but I can't remember what it is. Its a word that gets used to explain why the parameters of life, although so incredibly improbable, have allowed us to exist. The fact is that we have evolved to fit with the parameters, not the other way around.

I guess I am trying to say that we should only observe entropy increasing in nature because it is nature that gave us birth as a sentient species - because we are products of nature we obey by it's laws always, naturally.

Its the same reason humans can't breath underwater- we simply evolved that way. Perhaps life itself evolved to fit the physical laws present on earth. I can't be sure.

8. ### BenTheManDr. of Physics, Prof. of LoveValued Senior Member

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The word is Anthropic''.

This is making no sense, sorry.

And I don't see how this is related to Physics.

9. ### kurrosRegistered Senior Member

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Anthropic principle? Invoking this can be a dicey move, although it is perfectly valid in some situations. For instance it is fine to explain why the Earth is at the distance from the sun that it is (i.e. because we wouldn't have existed to observe it otherwise, and it could have been anything), but it gets a bit dodgy to use it for fundamental constants, unless you believe in some kind of string theory multiverse in which the constants could have been anything.
I would place this entropy application of yours on similar grounds. If you believe entropy could just as easily have been increasing as decreasing then sure, the anthropic principle tells you why it must increase, but if not then it is a bit like saying God made the universe the way it is so that we could observe it.

10. ### quantum_waveContemplating the "as yet" unknownValued Senior Member

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What you are trying to say DRZ? I don't think life requires such fine tuning. If your view of life in the universe is that life originates (on a planet) based on physics and chemistry when conditions are hospitable, then life could form across the universe here and there when the proper conditions come together. There could be many different sets of conditions from which many different varieties of life could emerge.

One view is that life came from out of nowhere on the early lifeless planet Earth. The planet afforded a variety of hospital environments for life and life itself is “generative” meaning that given enough time and the right combinations of chemistry and environment life can emerge and get a foothold. In the same view, life is also “evolvative” and once it gets a foothold in a hospitable environment it flourishes and branches out into many forms, many species, etc. to take advantage of every nook and cranny of the hospitable planet. It also adapts to changes in the environment as well.

The term entropy doesn’t really apply unless you want to call the emergence of life from the environment the beginning of a cycle of reverse and then increasing entropy, i.e. from 100% entropy of a lifeless planet to some much smaller level of entropy that only arises as life emerges and flourishes, and then a growing entropy back toward 100% as life declines on the planet. Such a cycle would be characterized by phases starting with the potential for life, the emergence of life, the flourishing of life to all the hospitable environments on the planet, and the eventual decline of life as the necessary resources are used up or as the extenuating circumstance like the fuel burning rate of the sun causes an inhospitable environment on Earth to reign in the living community.

If that is how you apply the term entropy to the circumstances of life on Earth and throughout the universe, then the entropy cycle might begin with an initial absence of life on a planet which would be 100% entropy. The potential for life would begin to reverse the entropy and start it toward some positive entropy potential, and the emergence of life would be tenuous at first but that would reverse the entropy significantly. Then as life flourishes it reaches the minimum level of entropy for that planet and for those hospitable environments. Finally, the normal entropy of a planet’s ability to sustain life will kick in and the entropy of the life on that planet will begin to increase and will finally become complete as all life is eradicated.

You have to understand, as I’m sure you do, that complete entropy is 100% (a lifeless planet) and the maximum entropy when life is flourishing is closer to 0% in the scenario I describe.

Never-the-less, there would seem to be a vast set of circumstances and a wide range of possible physics where life could be generated IMHO.

11. ### Pincho PaxtonBannedBanned

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The thing about life is that it requires a radical statement that most people couldn't accept. If Aether is a big deal, then suggestions for life are almost never going to get anywhere. But something like...

how many electrons does it take to change a lightbulb full of water into a brain?

Is close to the reality I think.

12. ### quantum_waveContemplating the "as yet" unknownValued Senior Member

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Maybe so, but as long as the number of electrons it takes to change a light bulb to a brain is finite, some day we will be saying hello to one. Not that your analogy is perfect, but given the right circumstances and chemistry, time allows for a potentially infinite number if iterations and only one has to light up and live.

13. ### Pincho PaxtonBannedBanned

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To tell the truth, I find it hard to create a dead Universe, and have it spring to life. I can come up with an analogy of the physics for the matter, but the logic somehow has to be pre little pop.

I exist, therefore I am.. becomes, "I am therefore the Universe exists."

14. ### quantum_waveContemplating the "as yet" unknownValued Senior Member

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I don't disagree if in fact there was a creation. But if the universe has always existed ... i.e. no creation and no beginning ...

If there was no beginning, and the universe has always existed then though life may come into existence and then be wiped out innumerable times and in innumerable places, at any given time there would be places where life was flourishing. It could then be said that life has always existed and always exists somewhere. So change that statement to, "Either I am, therefore the universe exists, or if I am not, then someone else is somewhere else and therefore the universe exists whether I do or not".

15. ### DywyddyrPenguinaciously duckalicious.Valued Senior Member

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Neither is supportable.
I am, therefore I assume that the universe exists (our senses aren't the arbiter of reality after all).
I am not. ........ :shrug:
(Therefore I can say nothing at all about anything).

16. ### Pincho PaxtonBannedBanned

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When I say the Universe beginning, I mean the tiny Universe... like two bubbles. We know that it grows, so play back the tape.

Hey I have a better idea! What if the universe turns itself inside out! Now that's a permanent state!

Last edited: Nov 23, 2009
17. ### quantum_waveContemplating the "as yet" unknownValued Senior Member

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OK, if you want to be rational about it

. But do you think I was trying to make a statement that was full of ultimate truth or do you think I was responding "tongue in cheek" to the sentiment that Creation of a dead universe wasn't something that Pincho would consider.

18. ### DywyddyrPenguinaciously duckalicious.Valued Senior Member

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Er, isn't that Big Bang, cool down, etc etc THEN life emerges?

19. ### quantum_waveContemplating the "as yet" unknownValued Senior Member

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OK, I've got you. Beginning of the "arena" we call our expanding universe in my terms might just be the bubbles in your terms. If so, the "arena" would be without life at its beginning as a big crunch, but would be subject to the generative and evolvative processes as the arena expands and matter and structure form within it. But all of that, the evolution of the arena, would be one small patch within a greater universe. That greater universe would be characterized by arenas forming and playing out across the potentially infinite landscape.

20. ### quantum_waveContemplating the "as yet" unknownValued Senior Member

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I can live with that in a single big bang universe. But my view is that our expanding universe is only a tiny arena within a greater universe characterized by a potentially infinite landscape of arenas forming and expanding, merging and collapsing into big crunches, and bursting into expansion.

21. ### DywyddyrPenguinaciously duckalicious.Valued Senior Member

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So how does "life" get from one to the other?

22. ### Pincho PaxtonBannedBanned

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Well again it takes a leap of faith to break down our brain into its individual parts, and say...

"This smaller part is just a smaller brain."
"This single Neuron is a single thought."
"This electron can create a single thought if it couples with something else."

If you dare to break it down like that, you can have life with 1 electron, and a few particles.

23. ### DywyddyrPenguinaciously duckalicious.Valued Senior Member

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Except that we haven't ever said ""This single Neuron is a single thought" which sort of invalidates single-electron life, doesn't it?
Life appears to be an emergent property of systems, not a "here it is!" proposition.