This article raises several questions regarding current ideas on non-locality, isomorphism, quantum mechanics, gravity and the speeding up of the universe, including the possibility that para-classical explanations might not be necessary in describing the laws of character.
With admittedly little insight into the mathematical operations that underscore current interpretations of classical and quantum physical laws, this writer (having read numerous books on the subject) has however ended up confused more than informed. Part of the reason has to do with the writing style of author-physicists who, admirably, seek to popularize complicate topics. While some stick to concrete ideas and definitions others lapse into abstractions with no spatial, geometric or experiential foundation, i.e. concepts that don’t seem to coincide with the world we live in; for example multi-verses, time travel and the existence of additional dimensions. Often unable to bring their explanation down to earth, they rely on cart-before-the horse mathematical models to create reverse resolution.
While this method is reasonable the speculation typically goes well beyond that into areas that might never be confirmed or refuted. At times it seems in their zeal to uncover a theory of everything, these thinkers come up with so many “every-things” as to be left with nothing. In this opinion, science should dovetail at the minimum loosely with shared sense. In that context, a series of items is discussed in concrete terms about current theory and the character of our world.
The confusion-pushed search for a theory of quantum gravity is feverish in scientific circles. Confusion results from the fact that on a large extent gravity is lawful with regard to the influence of one body on another (whereby the more enormous body will draw the less enormous one in via an inverse square law based on the respective mass and distance between the two). However this only applies to objects with mass equal to or beyond that of an atom. The subatomic (quantum) world acts differently, particularly regarding massless particles which move around seemingly on their own, independent of surrounding matter and in a way that makes it impossible to track their position and momentum sequentially.
At confront value this conflict begs for resolution which is why physicists have sought a theory of gravity that encompasses both General Relativity and particle (quantum) physics. But is this confusion justified?
Do we need a theory of quantum gravity?
One could ask: if gravity is a function of mass and particles such as photons and electrons have no mass, why they should behave as if in a gravitational relationship? How can something that “weighs” nothing attract something else? In addition, “mass” reflects the congestion of particles or atoms within a body; for example uranium, with an high density of atoms has greater mass than a more sparsely congested liquid such as water. As the density of a body decreases (at some point down to a single particle such as a quark) it would have less mass. With only one particle there can be no congestion unless the particle itself has internal elements that congeal. already then, (assuming there exists a root form of matter which cannot be further broken down) there would have to be a point where gravity could not pertain due to zero mass. In other words, gravity is ultimately a spatial, mathematical composite that cannot exist without at the minimum two elements pressing on one another. As an aside, this is something to consider when discussing the mass of any singularity. More specifically, once anything is whittled down to a single body can its information/communicative content reach a point where its implicit redundancy adds up to zero congestion and zero mass, despite the predecessor “crunching” of different elements that ended up in a singularity?
In that context one could argue that Einstein’s form of gravity is sufficient; the search for a quantum/classical combine unnecessary.
Beyond that, since both gravity and massless particles travel at light speed wouldn’t gravitational influence on the particle be canceled out as a consequence of relativity? For example if you travel at 100 mph on a highway and a wind of 100 mph is facing you, your car would come to a stop – all things being equal, and characterize neither momentum or regression. Along the same lines; gravity would require differentials in mass, speeding up etc. (something that is discussed below in term of Information Theory).
Furthermore, celestial bodies do not simply to pay attention to gravitational relationships. All are hurtling by space at enormous speeds. As a consequence it isn’t just gravity that is influencing their movements, but also momentum, centripetal and centrifugal force, inertia or “drafting” (as when a cyclist cuts down on friction by undercutting wind factors when riding directly behind a competitor) and the action/reaction rule as presented in Newton’s third law of motion – the latter holds that as a body thrusts forward it does so into an air containing some matter (not all of space is a vacuum), which leads to a counter-reaction in the opposite direction. possibly any and all of these forces are influencing planetary and galactic movement. Is it possible that the speeding up of the universe, in addition as dark matter could be explained as some juxtaposition of all these influences instead of by a single explanation such as superstring theory, brane theory or hologram theory?
One interesting thought experiment would be to imagine gravity’s influence if all bodies, despite mass and distance, were completely inert: that is, had no momentum, rotation, or any susceptibility to centripetal, centrifugal forces, drafting, or action-reaction mechanics. Presumably gravity could not exist in such a state because in an inert universe any sort of gravity-induced allurement/collapse would require a change in momentum, i.e. movement. consequently, if without of motion cancels out gravitation then one might assume motion is the most basic correlate, or already cause of gravity.
At confront value the concept that particles have no lawfully discernible locations or momenta and can act lawfully only when observed seems either weird or tautological, depending on one’s perspective. One explanation for this occurrence (the anthropic rule) holds that the observer is implicitly connected to the physical world, consequently can never truly be an observer. In other words he is as dependent a variable as the particle being observed; it is as if only God can truly be an observer. Other explanations refer to the particle being virtual, darting in and out of reality or similar universes, consequently being beyond the circumscribed physical laws disinctive to our universe. Both explanations raise the question of why, already if the observer changes the particle’s behavior, both wouldn’t be unprotected to physical laws.
This point has been made far more eloquently. For example Witten believed the act of observing stimulated particles because the observer’s vision could only occur by firing photons at the particles (Zimmerman-Jones, Robbins 2014) – leaving the observer in approximately the same position as someone bobbing for apples. Others, for example Bohr, argued against this idea, stating that the uncertain character of particle behavior is built into the particle and character itself; seemingly mysterious, then again, perhaps not.
Mind and Matter…
One way to address this issue is by discussing the layout of the human brain. Early Russian research, beginning with Pavlov, demonstrated the existence of a brain mechanism known as the second signal system. He demonstrated that the dual hemispheric makeup of the cerebral cortex leads us to categorize experience in two ways: one spatial/material and one associative i.e. symbolic/linguistic (Windholz 1990). The encoding of the former onto the latter – much like a card catalogue – enhances not only our communicative capacities but also our memory storage. for example we don’t have to commit to visual memory all items in the ordern… ‘apple’, ‘orange’, ‘pear’, etc. because we can assign the label “fruit” to each and access all of them by cross reference. As a trite, but perhaps amusing aside it appears that by conceptual symbolic thought our brains are able to override the quantum (individual, piece by piece) form of character favored by quantum physicists by nifty, integrative mental mechanisms.
however while this neural mechanism provides a mnemonic and communicative advantage it can also rule to a hyper-categorization of experience. That is why Eskimos label a dozen types of snow when in fact the composition of snow is always the same.
If, due to that neuropsychological mandate, we cannot break free of a dual signal system then we cannot conceive of an un-categorical occurrence like quantum mechanics. Due to the human penchant for categorical drift we are forced to attribute the uncertainty of particle behavior to something. That “something” might have less to do with reality than with the evolution of the human brain (which, after all is designed to survive, not just discover).
In that context one could ask whether we already need labels to describe non-locality. Perhaps there is no such (material) “thing” as a photon. Its apparent capacity to function as a wave or a particle might really pertain more to our cognitive dispositions than to the photon’s character. Our brains are finite and until we can soundly, experimentally verify a theory (bearing in mind that neither an atom, electron or a photon has ever been observed) we might be looking at character by a neuropsychological prism.
The Particle/Wave Duality…
Another issue in physics is the apparent dual character of reality – more precisely of matter. In various settings a particle can behave like a discrete entity with circumscribed location and motion, however at other times characterize a wave character (which ameliorates its positional features as it appears to draw out and scatter probabilistically). It is an interesting quality that adds to the confusion in scientific circles. Once again, however this might be explained with Occamesque simplicity.
Consider the following hypothesis. A particle such as a photon or electron does not decay. however it has been established that all systems undergo entropy (decay) unless they are replenished regularly by outside energy supplies. already with that, entropy usually wins out due to the passage of time. That is because, among other things, those outside supplies are finite and will themselves wind down. consequently, perhaps something inherent in the particle’s non-entropic quality can address the duality problem.
One can begin by asking why a photon does not decay. One possibility is that the inner source of entropy is time itself.
An example comes to mind. If a person could keep at a certain age – say 15, in year 1967, and that year extended into perpetuity he would never age. In that case an outside energy source would be unnecessary; first because he wouldn’t need it, second because with no time lapse it would be impossible for “new” energy supplies to be absorbed because a time lapse would be required already if just for one to open his mouth, bite down and ingest the new source of energy. Renewal, or counter-entropy implies a time related ordern from depletion to energy restoration, which involves an event change and a time lapse. Without a time lapse, there can be no entropy and no need or possibility to re-energize. In that context it might be time that ultimately determines entropy.
If a particle is traveling at light speed, it is moving neither forward nor backward in time. It becomes “continued” not only in terms of its unsurpassable speed but also as a chronological keep up in a place point in the universe. Since it does not experience time lapses it cannot by definition be at one location at one point in time, then in another later on. While the “where” and “when” of human measurement depends on time passage massless particle do not recognize time passages. In the particle’s range of experience there is no such thing as time.
Similarly, with no time elapse, there can be no spatial change. That method the particle is what it is and everything that it is temporo-spatially; neither here nor there. It’s dual character is a simple manifestation of its para-chronological and para-spatial make-up. Theories superimposed on its behavior create closure, which satisfies the dual signaling system of the human brain, but might not mirror the non-spatial, non time related realities of the subatomic world.
The Classical/Quantum division…
It is understandable that physicists venture beyond parsimony at times in the attempt to unify classical and quantum physics. Perhaps because simple answers have been ruled more complicate solutions are the only recourse. however our universe is undeniably systemic and as such it must be integrated on some level. The elegant stability of its various characteristics make that obvious. For example, just the right amount of matter overrides anti-matter to make existence (symmetry-breaking) possible. Another example is seen in the already dispensing of matter and energy spread throughout the universe. Others can be seen in the spatial regulatory limits of the Planck length, Newton’s inverse square law and the regulatory trick played on us by light speed which is so functionally stubborn that any possible differences in speed that might occur as a consequence of two people viewing an object in motion from different perspectives must rule to a corrective change in time lapse (time dilation) in order to keep up “c” continued. All such mechanisms offer clear indications of a universe with a disposition toward stability.
The pervasive existence of cosmic order indicates there might be a congruent and/or co-functional relationship between quantum and classical physics (an idea implied by David Bohm via the hidden variables theory of quantum mechanics (Riley, 2010). Ultimately both the classical (order-based) and quantum theories must agree, and perhaps already be dependent on one another. nevertheless physicists continue to grapple with the apparent discrepancies so it is worthwhile to discuss this issue further.
Information and the Pre-material Universe…
One way to connect classical and quantum physics is by a concept that simultaneously refutes and proves both theories. It is found in an basic part of Information Theory. This produces some preliminary discussion.
Many theoretical physicists have referenced “information” in their writing, particularly regarding the behavior of black holes (Barbon, 2009). Information in that context typically refers to matter and energy. For example, if an object is sucked into a black hole, the object will increasing rapidly, as seen in various Star Trek movies. however since the law of energy conservation holds that the energy of the object cannot be annihilated, can only change its form the info-vigorous elements of the object cannot disappear. In effect, all of the information content must continue to exist in some form. One reason why Stephen Hawking believed that radiation would materialize and radiate beyond the black hole (and not be completely absorbed) was that the law of energy conservation, combined with beneath-the-surface energy fluctuations that characterize a quantum state method that some of the information content – the stuff that popped in and out of existence (virtual particles) had to continue to exist, and to retain the information content of the mass that was absorbed into the black hole. More simply put; you cannot get something from nothing, or nothing from something. That use of the term information as applied to matter and energy is useful but possibly incomplete.
An recondite Universe…
This writer has discussed this topic in past articles but the idea is worth repeating. Information equates not just with mass and energy but with existence in every sense of the information. While theoretical physics assumes matter and energy are essentially all there is – consequently the information “physics”, there is a universal “something” that is not completely physical.
Information theory holds that “something” can only come into existence by being extracted from a prior state of monotony or uncertainty. The latter refers to a super blend without any internal distinctions, whether in the form of mass or force. The amount of information corresponds to the amount of uncertainty that is reduced. For example, if we kind out the letters “tele”… and ask which information it refers to, answers would vary (uncertainty would be high). But if we add one letter at a time, each new letter (say initially the letter “p” it would reduce uncertainty by one bit. Now we have the letter ordern “telep.” nevertheless this can require several possibilities so uncertainty nevertheless prevails, as does redundancy. If, however we add the letter “h”, followed by the letters o… n… e. the information “telephone” emerges ( a kind of grammatical “creation)”. At that point maximal information has been attained, while uncertainty is reduced to zero. In an similar course of action this gives the idea of nothing a slightly different meaning.
Within that form each reduction in uncertainty..(i.e. each distinction extracted from redundancy item) creates a viable message… a “something” that can apply not just to language but possibly to any aspect of character.
In a cosmic context, “nothing” would equate with complete/infinite redundancy. For example, with no distinctions between a photon and an electron, between, plasma and matter, between a fermion (matter-carrying particle) and a boson (a force-mediating particle) there could be no existence; neither perceptible to the human eye nor with any functional or communicative similarities.
By that course of action, perhaps the complete universe – its essence, its roles, its communicative features originated, not quintessentially in a big bang but more functionally by information expansion in course of action that could be called cosmic resolution.
In some ways this is coincides with the anthropic rule but goes beyond that to a broader world mechanism which can be discussed by another experiment (sorry about the redundancy).
Imagine a universe with no distinctions among particles, forces, stars, planets, flora and fauna; only an infinite blend. In that state nothing could communicate with anything else. Changes, adaptations, messages, force and mass variations, in addition as symmetry-breaking would all be impossible. This redundant world would not just be in a long-lasting state of entropy. It would not be a “world” at all because only with a change from a state of uncertainty to information can existence originate.
A Proto-physical Explanation…
In that sense, a bridge between classical and quantum physics might lie in information dynamics. Without the uncertainty of the quantum world there could be no classical, lawful world. In that sense classical and quantum physics might be complementary instead of contradictory. In other words, just as one cannot get information without a prior state of uncertainty, one cannot get the lawful classical world without it being extracted from the uncertain quantum world.
Room for Dissent…
There are several problems with this argument (I told you I was fairly ignorant on this subject matter). One is that it explains the universe in recondite, instead of material terms. In this form Information theory replaces physics as a chief frame of reference. Second, it transcends both the quantum and classical models by postulating a ‘derivation’ theory of the cosmos whereby one cannot have order without an initial state of disorder. That would seem to refute the typical order to chaos ordern implicit in thermodynamics. Another problem lies in the implication that something can arise from nothing, which runs contrary to the rule of energy conservation.
How to address such conundrums? It is not an easy task. Quantum mechanics has been not only verified by research but employed very effectively technologically. So have classical concepts – or else we couldn’t not travel into outer space or use GPS systems in our cars. however so has Information Theory, both technically and mathematically. The concept that information is measured by a reduction in uncertainty is almost well established (Stover 2014).
Another possible problem is that this idea raises interesting questions about reality; converting it to something more metaphysical because origin and causation are considered pre-material. It is scientific in that information lends itself to measurement by the uncertainty reduction postulate but the ultimate unified theory is not a field or theory of quantum gravity but a non-material info-resolution course of action.
What About the Beginning?
How might one conceptualize the pre-informed universe? One way is by drawing a similar between two forms of energy – possible and kinetic. possible energy corresponds to mass but has no impact or communicative possibilities or any effect at all, without movement (which converts it to kinetic energy). possible energy is a state of pre-existence with no cause-effect manifestations. Like possible energy the proto-universe might have been implicit, at the minimum until one bit (the first distinction) of information was extracted from its absolute state of redundancy.
Once a distinction occurred and separated from the pack (electron, photon, helium gas etc.) something interesting would have happened. Not only would the information content of the cosmos have increased at that point, but by separation by distinction it became possible for the first foray into communication to begin. That is because only with a capacity for signal differentiation can there be a message. consequently the newly definite particle/gas entities were at some point able to cause influence on each other where none existed before in the possible universe. That in itself would have led to more rapid signal distinctions. An information explosion would have unfolded into a plethora of celestial bodies (which could be equally categorized as cosmic bits). ultimately, the four main forces would have separated functionally.
From information to systemization and complexity…
As more distinctions occurred, more bits of information would have obtained. Atoms developed distinctions in the form of electrons, a nucleus, protons etc. as part of information proliferation. enormous clouds of gas swirled until gravity pulled some together into definite galaxies, which entailed nevertheless more information (uncertainty reduction) in the universe.
The question is whether existence, as applied to the origin and evolution of the universe can be seen as an evolving information system. If so, the quasi-entity prior to creation would have to be described as somewhere between a physical and a pre-material world. Not “nothing” as with a vacuum, but “nothing” in a functional/communicative sense; governed most basically by a course of action encompassed in information dynamics, and ultimately manifest by a resolution course of action, not unlike the cognitive quest for discovery by those who study the universe.
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Cover, J.M. Thomas, JA (2006) Elements of Information Theory (2nd Edition) Wiley-Inter-science
Riley, B.J. (January 2010) Some Remarks on the Evolution of Bohm’s Proposals for an different to Standard Quantum Mechanics TPRU, Birbeck,University of London.
Stover, J.V. (2014) Chapter 1; Information Theory; A Tutorial Introduction. University of Sheffield, England
Zimmerman-Jones, A, Robbins, D (2014) Physics: String Theory disagreement about the Anthropic rule. Internet Article in Education-Science- Physics.