Re: [humanism-174] I live thus time passes

From: Mark R. Orel
Sent on: Friday, February 1, 2013 2:07 AM

Your cognitive bias is superseded by your profound ignorance
of time.  First I have to thank Ms. Presloid for her timely link.  I
highly recommend it, Radio Lab in general, and that link in particular

No Mark, time is not a unit of measure. We have units for measuring it. But units to measure something
are useless and irrelevant if there is not actually a quantity to be measured. Time is the property being
measured, not the units. The units, you fool, are second, minute, hour, day, week, month, and year.

Time is not a property, time is a concept.  These "units" of time are time. 
Time has no properties.  Time is a system of measuring a duration, 
It is nothing more.  As you said, "You fool, the units are..."  Yes, a unit
of a measure does not a property make.  Time is the measure and
seconds are the units that describe the measure. 

You brought up the Theory of Relativity.  I assume you are referring to
the Special Theory and not the General Theory.  But it really doesn't
make a difference, so let's use E=mc2 .   Let me step back to the
definition of relativity, just a quick cut and paste from a dictionary:
Physics, the fact, principle, or theory of the relative, rather than absolute, character of motion,
velocity, mass, etc., and the interdependence of matter, time, and space: as developed and
mathematically formulated by Albert Einstein and H. A. Lorentz in the special (or restricted)
theory of relativity and by Einstein in the general theory of relativity (an extension covering the
phenomena of gravitation), the theory of relativity includes the statements that: 1) there is no
observable absolute motion, only relative motion 2) the velocity of light is constant and not
dependent on the motion of the source 3) no energy can be transmitted at a velocity greater
than that of light 4) the mass of a body in motion is a function of the energy content and varies
with the velocity 5) matter and energy are equivalent 6) time is relative 7) space and time are
interdependent and form a four-dimensional continuum 8) the presence of matter results in a
“ warping” of the space-time continuum, so that a body in motion passing nearby will describe
a curve, this being the effect known as gravitation, as evidenced by the deflection of light rays
passing through a gravitational field. 

I know what you're thinking, 7) space and time are interdependent...
This does not mean that they are physically interdependent, but
mathematically interdependent.  Unlike Euclidean space where
time is treated as universal and constant.  You're saying Einstein
but thinking Euclidean.  You are confusing your relativistic and
non-relativistic, respectively, theories.  c is the velocity of light. 
Velocity is time, a measurement, over distance.  Nothing more. 
Time is being used to describe the properties of mass and
energy.  Mass and energy are not being used to describe the
properties of time.  Why, because time has no properties other
than to measure a duration.  And even that is relative, which is
what the Theory of Relativity shows.

Back to time, what properties do you think time has? 
Time can move fast, slow, even stand still.  Even
Steven Hawking tried to disprove time travel.  He
couldn't do it.  There are no physical laws that would
prohibit time travel, either forward or back.  Please tell
me how our concept of time has any effect upon the
Universe?  If our concept of time were to disappear
overnight in what way would the Universe change? 

Now to your idea of an hypothesis.  And Glen thought I was
inconsistent.  It wasn't three weeks ago that you where
all about the correct use of the word theory.  Now you
want use the word theory to mean hypothesis. 

1. a proposition, or set of propositions, set forth as an explanation for the occurrence of some specified group of phenomena, either asserted merely as a provisional conjecture to guide investigation (working hypothesis)  or accepted as highly probable in the light of established facts.
2. a proposition assumed as a premise in an argument.
3. the antecedent of a conditional proposition.
4. a mere assumption or guess. 

This come from the reference you supplied for the word
theory., I used their link. 

How does Dr. Ockels presentation not fit into any of the
above definitions?  Since when does a hypothesis require
to be peer reviewed to be an hypothesis?  And you all thought
I had wired standards.  Who's the postmodernists now? 

...Charles Darwin's Theory of Evolution by Natural Selection was first
presented to the Royal Academy, not at some general audience talk
similar to TED

Given the current conditions,,
If he were alive today I bet he would.  

"Theoretical physics is a branch of physics which employs mathematical models and abstractions
of physics to rationalize, explain and predict natural phenomena. This is in contrast to experimental
physics, which uses experimental tools to probe these phenomena" 

Yes, but is it in this context:, or
is it in this context: 6. A hypothesis offered as a basis of thought on a given subject; loosely, any idea ,
guess, etc., put forward to be accepted or rejected in seeking the explanation of some condition,
occurrence, or the like.  Like the unified field theories?

M. Orel

On 2013-01-31 09:28, Randy Pelton wrote:
Einstein's Theory of Relativity clearly postulates that time and space are essentially fundamentally linked. Having no reason at the present time to doubt the Theory of Relativity I maintain that time is built into the fabric of space. Certainly nothing Dr. Ockels said gives me any reason to doubt the Theory of Relativity. By the way he is asking everyone to do precisely this even though he does not explicitly come right out and say it. Now I wonder why that is. He certain mentions Einstein in his talk. The mere mention of such a well-known, even venerated scientist, seems to lend some credibility to his talk. But I think this just a ploy; a tactic to make his wacky idea sound scientific.

"I live thus time passes."

On the face of it, this is true. I never said I disagree with this. But don't be dense here Mark. You know damn well he means far more than what this statement literally means. The whole damn talk was about his proposition that time passes not simultaneously while you live but because you live. He is saying that time is not independent of life. I am saying that it is. So I do not accept what he is implying in this statement.

No Mark, time is not a unit of measure. We have units for measuring it. But units to measure something are useless and irrelevant if there is not actually a quantity to be measured. Time is the property being measured, not the units. The units, you fool, are second, minute, hour, day, week, month, and year.

"Is time relevant to the universe?" Answer is yes. You cannot separate time from the universe. I'd say that makes it relevant.

"Come on Randy, he identified an hypothesis. It's a thought experiment."

One that he then proceeded to argue was true before even offering up a test. Reread my transcription of the last few minutes of his talk. The man offered up as a statement of fact an outcome of an experiment not yet performed and most certainly not described by him. And he did not offer it as a thought experiment. He suggested that it should be experimentally tested. But never offered a description of what experiment should be performed to test his hypothesis. The experience that Dr. Ockels describes as having led him to this hypothesis occurred when he traveled into space in the 1980s aboard the space shuttle. He has had a long time to flesh out this hypothesis, think of one or more experiments and perform them. Where is the scientific writeup of this experiment? Why has this hypothesis not be tested and presented by him to the scientific community for their consideration and evaluation. Being a practicing scientist he clearly knows the process by which scientific ideas are examined and considered. But instead he employs the tactics of the likes of creationists. Take your case to the general public. Present your idea there. Dress it up in the language of science and mathematics. Well you don't get by bypass the peer-review process in science and claim that what you are offering is science.

Provide data/evidence to support you claim that "most established theories were first viewed in this way." Some were, but most? Furthermore, these theories were presented to the scientific community for consideration before taking the case to the general public. For example, Charles Darwin's Theory of Evolution by Natural Selection was first presented to the Royal Academy, not at some general audience talk similar to TED. And it was not dismissed as wild and wacky. Sure it was rejected by some, mostly because of their religious faith. But a large portion of the scientific community almost immediately recognized the logic and probable truth of the theory. Where is the support in the scientific community for Dr. Ockels hypothesis? As I said, he hasn't even attempted yet so far as I can find to even pass it through the process that all scientific ideas must be subjected to before you can claim scientific legitimacy.

"Randy, It's a thought experiment, give the guy a brake (sic)."

I do not agree that what he described is a thought experiment. In fact Dr. Ockels himself offers it as a hypothesis. He never says anything about a thought experiment. He calls it a hypothesis but then provides no evidence from any experiments. Again, you don't get to bypass the scientific process, including actual experimentation and peer-review. This is exactly what Ockels is doing by bringing this idea to the general public without first going through established procedures for vetting scientific ideas. And these procedures are in place because they work. They have been demonstrated to provide the best, most reliable means of ending up with ideas that have a high probability of being true, of actually corresponding to nature. What he prattled on about throughout his talk was not a thought-experiment. 

"By the way in what context do think the word theoretical is used in theoretical physics?"  

Herein lies what I take as the distinction between theoretical and experimental physics.

"Theoretical physics is a branch of physics which employs mathematical models and abstractions of physics to rationalize, explain and predict natural phenomena. This is in contrast to experimental physics, which uses experimental tools to probe these phenomena" (Source:


Our Sponsors

People in this
Meetup are also in:

Log in

Not registered with us yet?

Sign up

Meetup members, Log in

By clicking "Sign up" or "Sign up using Facebook", you confirm that you accept our Terms of Service & Privacy Policy