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Our tax dollars now tell us that Star Trek's "transporters" are not possible.

Discussion in 'After Hours Lounge (Off Topic)' started by Jack Briggs, Feb 10, 2005.

  1. Steeve Bergeron

    Steeve Bergeron Cinematographer

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    I basically agree with that. "Less likely" or "improbable" doesn't equal "impossible" in my book. If it's not impossible, then it may be possible. Even if it goes against our scientific knowledge. That's the only acknowledgement I want from the others.
     
  2. Kenneth

    Kenneth Supporting Actor

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    You got that for trasporters already. However, the assumption that physical laws differ from location to location is a totally different question. As noted above, there are only three ways this can occur without destroying the universe. The first is impossible (we have observed the universe and it is not static). The second is a philosophy question, not a science question. The third is possible (but highly improbable) and academic since matter that far out may not even exist anymore.

    Cheers,

    Kenneth
     
  3. Steeve Bergeron

    Steeve Bergeron Cinematographer

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    You know, Kenneth, at least you're admitting there's a possibility. A very slim one, granted, but still a possibility. That's the kind of flexibility I'd like to see from the others. That "scientific way or the highway" attitude I'm seeing here is very annoying. That's basically what I mean when I'm talking about the arrogance of the scientists. They think a little too much that they really know what's impossible. How can someone be absolutely sure about our unproven assumptions, like the universe for example, that he will dismiss anything else is beyond me.

    I know that the current scientific belief is that we live in a stable universe and that the physical laws are the same everywhere, but we don't really know that. Maybe the universe is not as stable as we'd like to think. I keep hearing that it has to be stable otherwise it wouldn't work. The reality of it is that we're only assuming. I think we have a good idea of what's happening in our small part of the universe. But elsewhere, that's another ball game.
     
  4. Kevin M

    Kevin M Producer

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    ......possibly, but that's not really the point of the bickering I suppose.
     
  5. Jeff Gatie

    Jeff Gatie Lead Actor

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    Prove it.
     
  6. Kevin M

    Kevin M Producer

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    Yes, and all of it being conjecture based on what they know of our corner of the galaxy and what they can discern from doppler shift...they still can't answer whether it is a closed universe (eventually pulling back upon itself perhaps to cause another Big Bang) or an open universe (just drifting away into nothingness), and also from what they can discern from radio telescopes and visual observations, as far as I know they still haven't "found" the actual boundaries of the universe itself so even all of that is based on a theory....granted good solid theories based on what evidence has been observed so far.

    For now these theories hold up but I'll lay good odds that even the men who postulated these theories to begin with would never state them to be utterly unchangeable as more discoveries are made, that is the nature of the game as far as I can tell. The notion that there may be differing sets of laws in various parts of the universe might very well be flat out wrong, but to except what we know so far as the limit of possibility is equally as wrong IMO.
     
  7. Kenneth

    Kenneth Supporting Actor

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    We are able to visually observe Quasars on the edge of known space (these are within a few hundred million years of the Big Bang). All the science I have seen indicates the universe is open (which also means there is no boundary to observe, only the first matter). In fact the latest information indicates that not only is the universe expanding, all the matter in it is accelerating. This has led to the new Dark Matter and Dark Energy concepts to try and explain these effects we observe.

    As to the question of a more unstable universe, how unstable does it need to be? I thought we had plenty of instabilities as it is, without introducing complex ones like physical variables (instead of physical laws). We already have matter accelerating away from each other. We have observed the effects of Black Holes (or something very much like them), which would seem to qualify as the ultimate instability. We see the effects of enormous black holes at the center of every galaxy we can observe. We have anti-matter. Do we really need to hypothesize theoretical instabilities?

    The thing about changing natural laws is that change would need to serve a purpose. WHY would gravity attract in one place and repel in another? There would need to be a reason for this to occur. All the other instabilities (black holes for instance) are based on observable phenomenon (sometimes billions of light years away). Just because we can't visit this location yet doesn't mean we can't use our observable data (optical data, radio data, x-ray data, etc) to make conclusions on what that location would be like.

    As I've said, if you want to use the first early moments of the universe to play with the physical laws you can. It is impossible to verify that right now. In fact the Big Bang works to your advantage (since most of our physical laws break down for that first second or so). After that our models work pretty good and match the observable universe. However, the other proposal (other galaxy has different rules) has to be backed up with some sort or phenomenon that requires that explanation (this galaxy is flying apart but doesn't seem to be exploding might require a gravity repels there argument). I am unaware that we have ever observed such a phenomenon. Even if you use something like Dark Matter as the vehicle you would still get problems (since Dark Matter outnumbers regular Matter we should see an interaction between the two if they didn't follow the same rules). I think logic has to be the primary tool in this type of argument rather than intuition.

    Cheers,

    Kenneth
     
  8. RobertR

    RobertR Executive Producer

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    The "anything is possible" people will respond that if anything is shown to be questionable or false, then everything is questionable. It doesn't follow, of course, and neither does the "prove it's not true" demand. I see it as a "I don't want restraints on what is!" point of view.
     
  9. Jeff Gatie

    Jeff Gatie Lead Actor

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    Exactly. Whereas the scientist would do one of two things; fill up countless pages with equation after equation, finally ending with a "therefore", or simply say "Nevermind" and slink away. Now I know why I prefer the company of other scientists (and have a loathing for Mystics, Paranormals, New Age types...and Managers[​IMG] ).

    The following conversation occured shortly after dumb management decisions about things they knew nothing about led to 6 weeks of delays in a project coming to fruition:

    My MIS Director to me - "I'm not worried. We are problem solvers, we solve problems."

    Me - "No, I'm a problem solver. You are a problem causer."
     
  10. Dheiner

    Dheiner Gazoo
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    I think it's time for a silly question.

    Is gravity faster than light?
     
  11. Vincent Matis

    Vincent Matis Second Unit

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  12. Steeve Bergeron

    Steeve Bergeron Cinematographer

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    That's such a great quote. It made me laugh so hard, you have no idea. We may not agree much in this thread, but I'm definitely with you on this one. I have to constantly deal with dumb management decisions. Believe me, I can relate with you there.
     
  13. Jeff Gatie

    Jeff Gatie Lead Actor

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    There is a difference between a simple assumption and a theory which is backed up by peer reviewed physical experiments, observations and equations. So far, the "anything is possible" crowd has not given one equation, one experiment or one observation that attempts to prove what they assume is true. Until they do, they are flat out, 100% wrong. Surely you would hold your own reasoning up to the obviously disdained "proof" that the scientists are required for theirs, wouldn't you? This is what I meant by my "Prove it" request. I noticed the only one who replied to that request is on my side.[​IMG]

    Here's another quote for you:

    Jr. Programmer - "I think I've got it figured out."
    Me - "Do you have any output yet?"
    Jr. Programmner - "No."
    Me - "Then you've got nothin'!"
     
  14. Steeve Bergeron

    Steeve Bergeron Cinematographer

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    You keep on missing my point by asking me that question.
     
  15. BrianW

    BrianW Cinematographer

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    Steeve, I think you have a fundamental misunderstanding about the way the scientific method works. Einstein never proved anything, at least not in the fields under discussion in this thread. Theories are not the product of the scientific method. And theories are not proved, they are only disproved. The fact that past theories can be shown to be disproved is a monument to, not a failure of, the scientific method.

    Scientists don't claim to have all the answers. They don't even claim to know the truth. They just want to figure out how things work, and doing it by creating testable theories is the best ("scientific", you might say) method. Any theory that is not testable (such as that the laws of nature are different in different parts of the universe) are utterly valueless in learning anything new about the way the universe works.

    To be clear, I'll state that another way: Ideas that cannot be tested are completely ignored by the scientific community. An idea you may think has merit or may even be true has no use to the scientific community if experiments can't be devised to test it. You see this as arrogance, that scientists are utterly rejecting these ideas based on prejudice, elitism, or willful ignorance. But it's actually simple economy. Scientists -- according to the (what's that word? Scientific?) method they employ -- simply do not deal with things that cannot be proved or disproved. Indeed, if something cannot be proved or disproved, then it it doesn't even matter one whit whether it really is true, and the idea is dismissed as valueless. In time, we may have the ability to test some of these claims, but until we do, scientists shouldn't be wasting their time on them.

    ----------------------------

    Teleportation is absolutely possible, but it won't happen using any of the four methods Kenneth outlined above. Instead, we will use Macro Quantum Tunnelling. We observe quantum tunnelling all the time on the subatomic scale. A subatomic particle has a finit probability of instantly transporting itself to any place in the universe at any time. It's just like winning the lottery. Indeed, in about 100 billion years, the universe will be old enough that an object as large as a person will have had an even chance of tunnelling in one piece to a different location in the universe. And in ten googolplex years, the entire universe itself will likely tunnel into a completely new state of existence. This is like every subatomic particle in the entire universe winning the lottery at exactly the same time. The odds are extremely low, but given enough time, it will eventually happen.

    All we have to do is contrive things so that we can get every subatomic particle in an object we want to transport to win the lottery at exactly the same time so the entire object can tunnel to a new location in the universe. The bad part is that we have no way of knowing how to do this. The good part is that it likely won't require a lot of energy, and there is absolutely no place in the universe that is not within reach using the tunnelling method.

    So forget this mass-energy conversion, disintegration-reintegration nonsense that would take a computer the size of the universe to store the transported object's subatomic energy states and city-sized nuclear reactors at the source and destination. Forget the high-energy requirements of creating a spinning singularity to jump-start a wormhole. And forget having your guts fall out by travelling interdimensionally. Quantum tunnelling is the way to go. All we have to do is buy each subatomic particle we want to transport a googolplex of lottery tickets, and we're on our way.
     
  16. Brad Porter

    Brad Porter Screenwriter

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    But in your view, nothing can ever be proven. So why would you grant anything to someone making an effort to prove something?

    Or is there something (anything?) that you would accept as universally true? That's what we're most curious about.

    Brad
     
  17. Kenneth

    Kenneth Supporting Actor

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    There are certain facts that lead one to make conclusions concerning the Big Bang though.

    One fact is that there is a uniform background energy noise in the Universe. This is detectable and measurable. This is currently attributed as the residual of the Big Bang.

    Another fact is that all the matter we can detect is flying away from each other and a central location. So as far as we can tell all the matter must have originated in that central location.

    One last fact is that we know that if too large a grouping of mass is clustered in one place it collapses in on itself, creating a Singularity. If all the matter in the Universe originated at a common point it would have had to originate from a Singularity.

    It is not the Big Bang that leads us to Natural Laws, it is nature itself that leads us there. We don't observe dramatic differences from galaxy to galaxy. Their shapes differ but they all emit energy and most are stable. If large portions of galaxies were flying apart while others were staying together we could argue that natural laws are variables, not constant.

    We have also been able to observe matter out to about the 12 billion year mark. Every indication we have is that is close to the beginning of our Universe. The more exotic the theory the more it needs to be grounded in a mathematical rational or some sort of exotic observational data that doesn't match our current theories. I haven't heard either of those offered to justify some of the exotic theories proposed. Without that, an exotic theory is Fiction (hopefully with a little science thrown in for good measure [​IMG] ).

    Maybe we need to build the Deep Thought computer and ask it [​IMG] Otherwise I'll meet everyone at the Big Bang Cafe and we can discuss science theories over their buffet [​IMG] We could go to the Restaurant at the End of the Universe, but if the Universe really is open (like we currently think) it would be really dark [​IMG]

    Kenneth
     
  18. RobertR

    RobertR Executive Producer

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    Agreed. Nothing is known to be true or false in Steve's way of looking at things. Everything is a giant maybe. If asked" "what do you know?", his answer must be "it would be arrogant to answer that". Why would he even accept "proof" that physical laws change? After all, the "proof" would come from one of those "error prone" scientists, who can't be trusted.
     
  19. Jeff Gatie

    Jeff Gatie Lead Actor

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    Something tells me that Steve would probably trust the scientists when they have data to support that he is correct. He may not be able to follow the data, but I'm sure he would cite it endlessly.[​IMG]
     
  20. Steeve Bergeron

    Steeve Bergeron Cinematographer

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    I already answered the "mistrust" question here.
     

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