Some interesting articles...

Discussion in 'SCIENTIFIC and ANECDOTAL research' started by stardis, May 27, 2010.

  1. stardis

    stardis Senior Registered

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    The website FQXi.org has a lot of interesting articles about physics and time. It may challenge some beliefs on what our reality may be and give us something to think about. The articles or essays are fairly short and easy to read. Click on "articles" at the top of the home page for a long list.
     
  2. Nightrain

    Nightrain Senior Registered

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    The article that caught my eye was "Readers' Choice: The Emperor's New Swindle" By Julie Rehmeyer, Feb 13, 2009. After years of trying to understand the vague explanations of Quantum Mechanics, I found the explanation of Bohemian Mechanics to be a breath of fresh air. Some times the most simple concepts are the most accurate.


    -Nightrain
     
  3. fiziwig

    fiziwig moderator emeritus

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  4. stardis

    stardis Senior Registered

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    That was nicely written. I like your idea of recycling the universe.
     
  5. Nightrain

    Nightrain Senior Registered

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    Much of the article seemed devoted to the present concern people have toward the MMR vaccine; and I would say that their concerns are justified considering the fact that it has not been tested to the degree that other vaccines have been tested. And, after reading the arguments against the MMR vaccine, I would venture to say that these are well educated people.


    When it comes to medicine I have found that less educated people tend too often to hang on every word that Doctors have to say; when, in fact, so many Dr.s have too often been very wrong.


    When it comes to science in general, the only contact most people have with the subject is through their health care resource and their teachers, and the amount of trust people have toward science is comparable to sainthood. It has been my experience that when most people are confronted with problems, they are most likely to say, "Well...I don't understand a word he said, but he's got a Phd.".


    It is true that science has taken it on the chin with the present resurgence of Creationism; but people tend, for the most part, to believe the scientists. I tend to sympathize with the scientists, myself; however I also know that most scientists can't agree with each other on many things including the many assumptions that have arisen from the double slit experiment and Schrodinger's Cat. As much as I would like to see proof of multiple universes and of an immortal spirit world, I don't think science is quite there yet.


    -Nightrain
     
  6. tanguerra

    tanguerra Moderator Emeritus

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    Ha ha Fiziwig! :) The same could be said about those who refuse to 'believe in' reincarnation.

    Yes indeed. The persistence of the belief in 'pixies' and the like in Ireland, even to this day is such an example. At the same time so are the amazingly old stories that make up the oral history of the Australian Aborigines, the Greek Legends and such... We love a story. Indeed, it is part of our evolution to learn from such stories. That is one of the functions of memory, after all - to learn from our mistakes?

    But, is science always 'right'? Does it know everything (yet)? Is a lack of acceptance of 'scientific information' always simply 'a mechanism to reduce cognitive dissonance' (a delusion, in other words)? Sounds a little arrogant to me. Even in the case of creationism v evolution cited, there is already some discussion that there must be something else going on other than dry replication of genes and that the ideas of Lamarck may have some merit after all. Things don't have to be 'either' scientific 'or' a delusion. The world is full of mysteries and wonders still unsolved.

    I agree we shouldn't be spreading ignorance and superstition! :)
     
  7. tanguerra

    tanguerra Moderator Emeritus

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    Here is a lovely example of what I was talking about above sort of.


    Black Holes in a Tub and the Church of Unitarity

    It is all very clever and interesting and everything what these quantum chaps are up to. They are making amazing breakthroughs all the time. But in the end of the article, the conclusion he seems to be coming to is that if they have identified what they choose to call a 'Black Hole' therefore God (however you conceive Her) or at least the 'immortal soul' (same thing...?) does not exist. I just don't see how that follows. Maybe they have discovered God (however you conceive Her)? Why not? Maybe it's just another word for 'it'?


    Maths + Clever-new-names-for-things = The universe is meaningless?


    Maths + ever-increasingly-complex-patterns = Meaning still a bit outside of our understanding?


    :)
     
  8. stardis

    stardis Senior Registered

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    I think the author is just using the "immortal soul" as an analogy for the idea that information is not lost when matter is falling into a black hole but is preserved so that the possibility of a unified theory of quantum gravity is possible.


    Speaking of "a mechanism to reduce cognitive dissonance", have you read The Three Christs of Ypsilanti? Here is an interesting article about the book that leads to the conclusion that in the absence of reality, people are much more inclined to believe all sorts of odd things and that cognitive dissonance is probably a very good thing. The comments on the article are quite good and worth reading for the most part.
     

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