Skip to comments.Rethinking Einstein: The end of space-time
Posted on 08/09/2010 7:25:58 AM PDT by LibWhacker
Physicists struggling to reconcile gravity with quantum mechanics have hailed a theory inspired by pencil lead that could make it all very simple
IT WAS a speech that changed the way we think of space and time. The year was 1908, and the German mathematician Hermann Minkowski had been trying to make sense of Albert Einstein's hot new idea - what we now know as special relativity - describing how things shrink as they move faster and time becomes distorted. "Henceforth space by itself and time by itself are doomed to fade into the mere shadows," Minkowski proclaimed, "and only a union of the two will preserve an independent reality."
And so space-time - the malleable fabric whose geometry can be changed by the gravity of stars, planets and matter - was born. It is a concept that has served us well, but if physicist Petr Horava is right, it may be no more than a mirage. Horava, who is at the University of California, Berkeley, wants to rip this fabric apart and set time and space free from one another in order to come up with a unified theory that reconciles the disparate worlds of quantum mechanics and gravity - one the most pressing challenges to modern physics.
Since Horava published his work in January 2009, it has received an astonishing amount of attention. Already, more than 250 papers have been written about it. Some researchers have started using it to explain away the twin cosmological mysteries of dark matter and dark energy. Others are finding that black holes might not behave as we thought. If Horava's idea is right, it could forever change our conception of space and time and lead us to a "theory of everything", applicable to all matter and the forces that act on...
(Excerpt) Read more at newscientist.com ...
Particle Physics gives me a hadron.
Sometimes I think being smart enough to think about subjects like this beyond the realm of just understanding would be a great burden.
How did that electron meet up with that proton in the first place, and where did THEY come from?
OK, I’ve read the article ... now my head hurts.
Don't I know it.
It is a burden.
We have all heard that Einstein determined that space and time were actually aspects of the same thing: Spacetime. And we’ve all seen the “world-line” funnels, and the super-C forbidden action zones and suchlike, so we know in an important sense, space IS time.
Since from the Science of econimics we also know that time is money, does it follow that space, therefore is money?
[Another but related subject:]
My former partner was fond of observing that, “time is money, but it ain’t cash.”
I expect that the String Theory Lobby will not be happy with this development. Personally I like it since it is testable, a feature that seems to be lacking in ST.
General Theory ver. 2.0!
the list ping
Ask Laz or C.D.
I don’t think GR and Quantum mechanics can be reconciled by such tricks. We’re missing some facts, some kind of measurement needed to reconcile the two theories.
staying on FR over two hours....real time travel!
Two hydrogen atoms walk into a bar.
One says, ‘I think I’ve lost an electron.’
The other says ‘Are you sure?’
The first says, ‘Yes, I’m positive.’
Oddly enough, the value of this idea is less that it might provide a great theory, than that it challenges existing theory, and forces its reexamination.
This is the underlying problem with such theories. As soon as they are accepted, they become barriers, like walls. All you can do is to build up the wall further. You cannot transcend it without destroying it. Fortunately, the taller a wall gets, the less stable it becomes, contributing to its own destruction.
And this is a great general theory of knowledge, by the way.
As far as the subject goes, I rather like the idea of space-time, and I think that this theory gives it short shrift, in the quest to discover the gravity particle, which may or may not exist.
Just because mass and gravity affect time-space doesn’t mean they are the same things. In fact, it implies that mass and gravity transcend time-space, and affect space-time so strongly that it is bent into their mass and gravity dimension.
You should be pants'd for saying that.
Are there any Purdue grads on this thread? Doesn't mass increase with speed?
LOL Clear as a bell except for that last term in the Effective Lagrangian. ;)
Agreed. It also sounds easier to understand than String Theory. It always bothered me that String Theory does not seem to be teachable in a conceptual way, to the layman, in the way Special and General Relativity can be. I can't get my head around ST at all. But the thought experiments Einstein used to explain Relativity are not too difficult to grasp and kind of fun.
That one is always a real knee slapper.
Take a boson and call me in the morning.
Our universe exists int he planar present as now expressed, and entire of creation exists in the volume of time. There are strong clues that the limits we endure are not a hindrance to certain beings, like Jesus who left the tomb without rolling away a heavy stone and entered a closed room without using a door or window, just materialized there and vanished from there. [Also, see fifth chapter of Daniel, for another interesting hint at the 'volume of time' and a being who reached from that where/when into the where/when of a Babylonian king and his party animals.]
That made my brain hurt.
Interesting comments by Julian Mann at the end of the article.
OK smartie, now you have to explain the article to me!
OK, that’s funny AND I got it. :)
“I was going to attend the clairvoyant’s meeting, but it was canceled due to unforeseen events.”
Isa 57:15 For thus saith the high and lofty One that inhabiteth eternity, whose name is Holy; I dwell in the high and holy place, with him also that is of a contrite and humble spirit, to revive the spirit of the humble, and to revive the heart of the contrite ones.
Why is that a valid thing to do? Seems whimsical, like a theory based on Alice in Wonderland.
I wonder what the very last comment said (Zotted).
Thank you so much for sharing your insights, dear brother in Christ!
I’ve been saying for a long time that relativity needs to be revisited. Here are some of the articles I’ve posted on FR.
Rethinking relativity: Is time out of joint?
Monday, November 02, 2009 9:29:43 PM · by Kevmo · 58 replies · 2,519+ views
New Scientist ^ | 21 October 2009 | Rachel Courtland
Re-Analysis of the Marinov Light-Speed Anisotropy Experiment
Friday, June 12, 2009 11:25:41 PM · by Kevmo · 27 replies · 1,652+ views
http://arxiv.org/PS_cache/physics/pdf/0612/0612201v2.pdf ^ | Reginald T. Cahill
The Suppression of Inconvenient Facts in Physics
Sunday, June 07, 2009 7:50:26 PM · by Kevmo · 80 replies · 2,374+ views
Suppressed Science.Net ^ | 12/06/08 | http://www.suppressedscience.net/
The End of Snide Remarks Against Cold Fusion
Friday, June 05, 2009 5:56:08 PM · by Kevmo · 96 replies · 2,393+ views
Free Republic, Gravitronics.net and Intrade ^ | 6/5/09 | kevmo, et al
SubQuantum Kinetics, wide ranging unifying cosmology theory by Dr. Paul LaViolette
Wednesday, August 22, 2007 12:00:43 PM · by Kevmo · 68 replies · 1,785+ views
THE STARBURST FOUNDATION ^ | January 2007 | Dr. Paul LaViolette
*** Are there any Purdue grads on this thread? Doesn't mass increase with speed? ***
Yes it does.
Another tiny stumbling block in 'us' ever achieving travel at or near Light Speed .
And no I didn't go to Purdue, but I know someone who did :-)
It really is not whimsical. What Petr did in his initial paper is justified, and, in retrospect, it is suprising that none of us thought of doing it earlier. It is not really possible to go into the full details of this in a forum such as a blog, but the main point is that, at “finite temperature” (this the jargon we use to refer to physical systems at temperatures above zero), Lorentz invariance (”Lorentz symmetry,” as it is referred to in the article) is automatically violated. The reason is that the mere statement that there is a finite temperature at all implies that there is present in the problem a large number of particles in the “background” that together make up what is referred to as a “heat bath.” The word “temperature” actually refers to a statistical measure associated to this background heat bath. However, this is the reason that Lorentz invariance is broken: the aggregate properties of the large number of particles that, together, make up the heat bath, among many other things, implicitly pick out a so-called “preferred direction” in spacetime. This “preferred direction” (technically, this is the direction in spacetme towards which the velocity 4-vector of the heat bath points) intrinsically breaks Lorentz invariance. What Petr did in his paper is technically justified. Other physicists later showed (as described in the article) that the original paper didn’t properly reduce to general realtivity (whcih DOES exhibit Lorent invariance) at low temperatures, but that defect of the original Horava idea has since been fixed. This is all still very much research in progress.
Thanks for the explanation. “E8” — I’ve seen that before! (Lisi)
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