Author Topic: "The odds of life are too low for it to just have happened" refuted  (Read 12880 times)

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Offline MockTurtle

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Re: "The odds of life are too low for it to just have happened" refuted
« Reply #145 on: July 15, 2010, 08:03:16 AM »
My theory is no more senseless and unfalsifiable than a Quantum Mechanical worldview which conceives of a universal vacuum filled with intangible, invisible particle-wave, probability events which only make sense if the observer is factored in somehow. (The idea that it is the sharing of experience between observers that makes it real makes more sense to me.)

Quantum mechanics is highly falsifiable, but it has a track record of highly accurate
predictions over decades.  What new thing does your view predict?
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Offline Immediacracy

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Re: "The odds of life are too low for it to just have happened" refuted
« Reply #146 on: July 15, 2010, 08:17:15 AM »
Regardless whether the QM model makes intuitive sense to us, QM does allow us to make specific mathematical predictions about the behavior of the real world, which turn out to hold up.  Does your theory do the same?
My ideas don't change any of the predictions of QM, but they do seem to point to a resolution of QM's counter-intuitive paradoxes. My theory allows for the prediction of order, purpose, intelligibility, and the possibility of life in the Cosmos. Which is a proven fact, utterly untouched by QM. My QC (Qualitative Cooperative) model doesn't diminish the predictive power of the exteriorized QM model, but it makes the two-slit experiment make a lot more sense.
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Offline Immediacracy

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Re: "The odds of life are too low for it to just have happened" refuted
« Reply #147 on: July 15, 2010, 08:22:40 AM »
Quantum mechanics is highly falsifiable, but it has a track record of highly accurate
predictions over decades.  
To me QM has been falsified already, with it's accurate predictions being based on mutually exclusive ontologies of particle and wave. QM is like a meticulous study of traffic patterns without noticing that cars have drivers. Add drivers, and it makes a lot more sense, even though the predictions remain the same.

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What new thing does your view predict?
Subjectivity, communication, expression, order, negentropy, teleology, perception, creativity, the possibility of life, the possibility of consciousness, qualia...etc.
"That which we call reality arises in the last analysis from the posing of yes–no questions and the registering of equipment-evoked responses; in short, that all things physical are information-theoretic in origin and that this is a participatory universe."
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Offline Azdgari

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Re: "The odds of life are too low for it to just have happened" refuted
« Reply #148 on: July 15, 2010, 08:27:25 AM »
Ontologies are ways of intuitively understanding something.  As such, ontologies can't falsify anything, though they can themselves be falsified sometimes.
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Offline penkie

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Re: "The odds of life are too low for it to just have happened" refuted
« Reply #149 on: July 15, 2010, 08:33:48 AM »
To me QM has been falsified already, with it's accurate predictions being based on mutually exclusive ontologies of particle and wave.
...
Subjectivity, communication, expression, order, negentropy, teleology, perception, creativity, the possibility of life, the possibility of consciousness, qualia...etc.

Quantum Mechanics have been falsified by you, because you think it is counter intuitive? Because YOU don't understand it?
Let me quote from the Crank wikipedia page description that can be directly applied to your reasoning in previous discussions with me.

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- Cranks overestimate their own knowledge and ability, and underestimate that of acknowledged experts.
- Cranks insist that their alleged discoveries are urgently important.
- Cranks rarely, if ever, acknowledge any error, no matter how trivial.
- Cranks love to talk about their own beliefs.. and often appear to be uninterested in anyone else's experience or opinions.

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They typically assert that academic training in the subject of their crank belief is not only unnecessary for discovering "the truth", but actively harmful because they believe it "poisons" the minds by teaching falsehoods.
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cranks inevitably reveal that whether or not they believe themselves to be knowledgeable concerning relevant matters of fact, mainstream opinion, or previous work, they are not in fact well-informed concerning the topic of their belief.

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- seriously misunderstand the mainstream opinion to which they believe that they are objecting,
- stress that they have been working out their ideas for many decades, and claim that this fact alone entails that their belief cannot be dismissed as resting upon some simple error
- ignore fine distinctions which are essential to correctly understand mainstream belief.

and especially

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In addition, cranky scientific "theories" do not in fact qualify as theories as this term is commonly understood within science. For example, crank "theories" in physics typically fail to result in testable predictions, which makes them unfalsifiable and hence unscientific. Or the crank may present their ideas in such a confused manner that it is impossible to determine what they are actually claiming.
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Offline penkie

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Re: "The odds of life are too low for it to just have happened" refuted
« Reply #150 on: July 15, 2010, 08:46:56 AM »
Immediacracy, because I'm sure you will come up with a long confusing nonsensical reply that explains that you really are totally right and we just don't understand, again.... please look into the crackpot index. Every positive number resulting from a test indicates a cranky theory. I think you score points for item numbers 6, 7, 9, 14, 16, 17, 19, 26, 34 and 36.
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Offline Immediacracy

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Re: "The odds of life are too low for it to just have happened" refuted
« Reply #151 on: July 15, 2010, 08:59:13 AM »
You take a 2000 year old religion (Taoism), which like every religion is based on nonsense, subjectivity.

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It shows that you are clever. Not that what you say holds any merit at all.
I'm not trying to be clever, I'm just exposing your accusation that these ideas our 'my special theory' as a an argument from authority fallacy. I don't say that these ideas hold any merit at all, I'm asking whether there's anything in particular that can be said about their merit one way or another based on the realities of our experience of nature (rather than on personal intolerance or conventionalism).

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Are your sure that, on this specific forum, you want to claim that your 'theory' is supported because many people believe something similar?
No, I'm just saying that it's not "my special theory"...because that was "your special objection".

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Moreover, you don't say in any way why a scientific world view is inadequate, even though you throw in 'contemporary' and 'current form' to hide behind vagueness.
I'm not hiding any vagueness, I just want to be crystal clear that I'm not opposed in any way to a scientific worldview (in fact, my whole point here is to extent it's coherence), but the worldview of the moment, which I consider in many ways to reflect a hypertrophied empirical pseudo-detachment and an atrophied sense of subjective awareness. This imbalanced perspective projects it's own bias onto the cosmos, which it conceives as being automatic, and devoid of inner content.

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No, he is not. He is a scientist.
I guess you've never heard of Robert Anton Wilson. He's an author with a PhD in Psychology, but he's not a scientist as far as Quantum Physics goes. My OMM/ACME polarity has it's roots on Wilson's ideas about left brained vs right brained reality tunnels.

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Quantum mechanical theory is supported by countless evidence.
Or, maybe QM is a fractured, ambiguous non-theory custom tailored to explain conflicting evidence.

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Your 'theory' is not. Comparing yourself to a scientist is nice, but it doesn't mean your ideas are not 'cranky'.
I'm not saying what my ideas are, because I don't know myself. That's for others to decide. I don't rely on categories and labels to tell me what is or is not real. Like RAW says, all perception is a gamble.

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But the big difference is, again, that it is supported by evidence.
The two slit experiment, to me, shows that it my not supported by evidence. Science is rife with the history of accepted doctrines which someone pokes a hole in. (You've seen James Burke's outstanding series 'The Day the Universe Changed' I presume?) This is the story of science. It's never been anything else. Evidence is misleading. So is intuition.

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What predictions do you make that we could verify and isn't explainable by any other scientific theory?
again, "Subjectivity, communication, expression, order, negentropy, teleology, perception, creativity, the possibility of life, the possibility of consciousness, qualia...etc."

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It's ironic that you are smart enough to see this trait in others, but not enough to see it in yourself.
I'm not reaffirming conventional wisdom though. I'm not trying to shoot down QM because I don't like it - I think it's cool.. muon-neutrinos, quark charm... I love it. I just love the unmistakable validity of consciousness and subjectivity more. If I had to bet whether an antiparticle of a W Boson was real or Bozo the Clown was real, I would probably have to go with the evidence of the tv show of the Clown.

Everything that QM tells us seems to be related to what we are using to measure it...so why not just admit that it's the activity within the measuring device that we are measuring?
"That which we call reality arises in the last analysis from the posing of yes–no questions and the registering of equipment-evoked responses; in short, that all things physical are information-theoretic in origin and that this is a participatory universe."
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Offline penkie

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Re: "The odds of life are too low for it to just have happened" refuted
« Reply #152 on: July 15, 2010, 09:15:43 AM »
The two slit experiment, to me, shows that it my not supported by evidence. Science is rife with the history of accepted doctrines which someone pokes a hole in. (You've seen James Burke's outstanding series 'The Day the Universe Changed' I presume?) This is the story of science. It's never been anything else. Evidence is misleading. So is intuition.

I have had enough of this fruitless discussion. Just one thing, please note that quantum mechanics did not only explain the results of current results, but also correctly predicted properties of matter that were not known at the time, but later have been fully confirmed. Like Quantum entanglement. How does your semi-theory explain that?
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Offline Immediacracy

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Re: "The odds of life are too low for it to just have happened" refuted
« Reply #153 on: July 15, 2010, 09:26:11 AM »
Immediacracy, because I'm sure you will come up with a long confusing nonsensical reply that explains that you really are totally right and we just don't understand, again.... please look into the crackpot index. Every positive number resulting from a test indicates a cranky theory. I think you score points for item numbers 6, 7, 9, 14, 16, 17, 19, 26, 34 and 36.

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6. 5 points for using a thought experiment that contradicts the results of a widely accepted real experiment.
I'm not contradicting results, I enthusiastically support them, I'm just providing an alternate interpretation of them.

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7. 5 points for each word in all capital letters (except for those with defective keyboards).
I only use all caps when it's an acronym. That's not what they're talking about. This is a what a crank looks like.

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14. 10 points for each claim that quantum mechanics is fundamentally misguided (without good evidence).
I admit that my idea qualifies there, but I think the very fact that QM is believed to be misguided have to do with the possibility that in some way...it is.

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16. 10 points for arguing that a current well-established theory is "only a theory", as if this were somehow a point against it.
I have never, to my knowledge, looked at or expressed well-established theories on the grounds that it's "only a theory".

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17.  10 points for arguing that while a current well-established theory predicts phenomena correctly, it doesn't explain "why" they occur, or fails to provide a "mechanism"
I don't fault QM for not explaining why phenomena occur. I just see QM as a phenomenon which is shared by matter, not by space.

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19. 10 points for claiming that your work is on the cutting edge of a "paradigm shift".
I don't claim that, but my ideas are along the same lines as a lot of others who do claim a paradigm shift. It would be great if there was a paradigm shift, but I tend to think people will go on digging themselves into a deeper hole with the current paradigm until it's too late.

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26. 20 points for talking about how great your theory is, but never actually explaining it.
Do I talk about 'how great my theory is'? I try to explain it as well as I have the patience to. I can't say whether it's great or not, I wouldn't know. It seems plausible to me, and that makes it interesting to me.

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34. 40 points for claiming that the "scientific establishment" is engaged in a "conspiracy" to prevent your work from gaining its well-deserved fame, or suchlike.
Pfft. Really? I've never attributed any conspiracy or well-deserved fame to my ideas. I've only had the chance to present them to who I thought might be an expert one time - who did became angry at me personally, but didn't give me any reason to see the idea as less plausible.

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36  40 points for claiming that when your theory is finally appreciated, present-day science will be seen for the sham it truly is. (30 more points for fantasizing about show trials in which scientists who mocked your theories will be forced to recant.)
Haha. The odds of my theory ever being known are obviously pretty remote, but it does seem possible that at some point someone's theory will supersede the current model, and that the new model may take a similar approach to mine.
"That which we call reality arises in the last analysis from the posing of yes–no questions and the registering of equipment-evoked responses; in short, that all things physical are information-theoretic in origin and that this is a participatory universe."
- John Archibald Wheeler

Offline Immediacracy

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Re: "The odds of life are too low for it to just have happened" refuted
« Reply #154 on: July 15, 2010, 09:30:03 AM »
Like Quantum entanglement. How does your semi-theory explain that?
Quantum entanglement is exactly what my theory is based on. Shared, cooperative communications between particles (real particles, with mass, positions, and velocities).
"That which we call reality arises in the last analysis from the posing of yes–no questions and the registering of equipment-evoked responses; in short, that all things physical are information-theoretic in origin and that this is a participatory universe."
- John Archibald Wheeler

Offline penkie

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Re: "The odds of life are too low for it to just have happened" refuted
« Reply #155 on: July 15, 2010, 09:38:27 AM »
Quantum entanglement is exactly what my theory is based on. Shared, cooperative communications between particles (real particles, with mass, positions, and velocities).

So you can provide a mathematical background for your theory, predict verifiable results of measurements and build quantum computers with it? When will you send your paper to a physics journal?
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Offline Immediacracy

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Re: "The odds of life are too low for it to just have happened" refuted
« Reply #156 on: July 15, 2010, 09:39:23 AM »
Quantum Mechanics have been falsified by you, because you think it is counter intuitive? Because YOU don't understand it?
ME is all I have. Do you not think that it's counter intuitive?

Cranky, like Quantum, is in the eye of the beholder. The more pseudoskeptical the accuser, the more like a crank others will seem to them. It's a measure of intolerance, not invalidation.

All I ask is that one person give me one specific example of why my idea is invalid. Why is it so hard for someone, even an angry Physics professor to think of a single counter-example?
"That which we call reality arises in the last analysis from the posing of yes–no questions and the registering of equipment-evoked responses; in short, that all things physical are information-theoretic in origin and that this is a participatory universe."
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Offline Azdgari

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Re: "The odds of life are too low for it to just have happened" refuted
« Reply #157 on: July 15, 2010, 09:45:23 AM »
Immediacracy,

Have you considered that your failure to understand QM intuitively might be the result of a common failure of human intuition, rather than a failure of QM as a theory?

EDIT:  Spelling
« Last Edit: July 15, 2010, 09:50:14 AM by Azdgari »
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Offline penkie

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Re: "The odds of life are too low for it to just have happened" refuted
« Reply #158 on: July 15, 2010, 09:49:34 AM »
All I ask is that one person give me one specific example of why my idea is invalid. Why is it so hard for someone, even an angry Physics professor to think of a single counter-example?

You're now going towards item 13 in the crackpot index? It's because you presented us with an ill defined theory of nothing, that doesn't define anything science doesn't explain, nor does the explanation you account to it lead to any predictions, tests or possible examples that can be used to in any sense validate nor invalidate your theory.
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Offline Immediacracy

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Re: "The odds of life are too low for it to just have happened" refuted
« Reply #159 on: July 15, 2010, 09:49:43 AM »
So you can provide a mathematical background for your theory, predict verifiable results of measurements and build quantum computers with it? When will you send your paper to a physics journal?
My idea isn't mathematical. It has to to with awareness, expression, and communication. Math is an exterior, objective descriptive language. I would love to partner with a physicist with a mathematical background and see if it's possible to submit the idea to a physics journal (along with a prologue which explains the dynamics of pseudoskepticism and the psychology of scientific materialism and predicts it's own rejection).

But I don't need any formal consensus on this idea. It makes sense to me, whether I like it or not. If others get something out of it, great. It would be amazing if it turned out to be possible to validate conclusively by an experiment, but with the prevailing model based on the chimera of quantum, it seems like any result that QM can't explain will just get patched up with an obscure theoretical kluge. I could be wrong, but that's how it seems to me.
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Offline Immediacracy

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Re: "The odds of life are too low for it to just have happened" refuted
« Reply #160 on: July 15, 2010, 09:55:04 AM »
It's because you presented us with an ill defined theory of nothing, that doesn't define anything science doesn't explain, nor does the explanation you account to it lead to any predictions, tests or possible examples that can be used to in any sense validate nor invalidate your theory.
How is it ill-defined? I'm saying that light doesn't travel through space, it's a phenomena of matter communicating with itself. Matter has internal energy states which it can detect in matter regardless of separation by a vacuum. Light is a quality of matter and location not a projectile of any form.

Is it really that crazy to you all?
"That which we call reality arises in the last analysis from the posing of yes–no questions and the registering of equipment-evoked responses; in short, that all things physical are information-theoretic in origin and that this is a participatory universe."
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Offline Azdgari

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Re: "The odds of life are too low for it to just have happened" refuted
« Reply #161 on: July 15, 2010, 09:56:46 AM »
Not crazy, just poorly-defined and of no practical explanatory value.
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Offline Immediacracy

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Re: "The odds of life are too low for it to just have happened" refuted
« Reply #162 on: July 15, 2010, 09:58:54 AM »
Immediacracy,

Have you considered that your failure to understand QM intuitively might be the result of a common failure of human intuition, rather than a failure of QM as a theory?

EDIT:  Spelling
Of course I have. I don't think QM fails as a theory, it just maps everything as going on exclusively outside of matter rather than inside. I don't make that assumption.

Tell me how you intuitively grasp the two slit experiment? What happens in that room that causes light to suddenly expand into a wide bar?
"That which we call reality arises in the last analysis from the posing of yes–no questions and the registering of equipment-evoked responses; in short, that all things physical are information-theoretic in origin and that this is a participatory universe."
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Offline penkie

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Re: "The odds of life are too low for it to just have happened" refuted
« Reply #163 on: July 15, 2010, 09:58:58 AM »
But I don't need any formal consensus on this idea.

It isn't even possible, because there is nothing in your theory that is in some way connected to formality or observation.

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I could be wrong, but that's how it seems to me.

I'm sure it does. I don't doubt your sincerity at all. The point is that your argument and reasoning are inherently flawed, because there is nothing that can substantiate or unsubstantiate your claims in any way.
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Offline Immediacracy

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Re: "The odds of life are too low for it to just have happened" refuted
« Reply #164 on: July 15, 2010, 10:06:07 AM »
The point is that your argument and reasoning are inherently flawed, because there is nothing that can substantiate or unsubstantiate your claims in any way.
Those are two separate issues. Consciousness can't be substantiated or refuted either, and that's what I'm talking about. Subjectivity as part of the Cosmos at a fundamental level. If the only flaw in my argument and reasoning is that they can't be confirmed or denied, then it may not be a flaw at all - just an accurate description of those phenomena, like consciousness, which cannot be objectively modeled.

Find me a real flaw - a real world observation inconsistent with my idea, and I'm more than happy to drop the whole thing. Believe me, it does me no particular service to have some big idea that everyone who isn't bored by hates me for and with which I can't do anything with. I just happen to think that there's a chance it could be somewhat true.
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Offline Azdgari

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Re: "The odds of life are too low for it to just have happened" refuted
« Reply #165 on: July 15, 2010, 10:06:49 AM »
Immediacracy,

Have you considered that your failure to understand QM intuitively might be the result of a common failure of human intuition, rather than a failure of QM as a theory?

EDIT:  Spelling
Of course I have. I don't think QM fails as a theory, it just maps everything as going on exclusively outside of matter rather than inside. I don't make that assumption.

Tell me how you intuitively grasp the two slit experiment? What happens in that room that causes light to suddenly expand into a wide bar?

Sorry for the ambiguity - I meant "common" in the sense of "common to humans" - myself included.  My point is that we don't need to intuitively understand it.  Intuitive understanding is emotionally gratifying, but it isn't necessary.
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Offline screwtape

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Re: "The odds of life are too low for it to just have happened" refuted
« Reply #166 on: July 15, 2010, 10:07:12 AM »
Is it really that crazy to you all?

If we said "yes", then what?  Would you seriously consider the possibility that you are a crank?  Would that change your mind about anything?  Or would it just reinforce what you already believe (that we just don't get it)?
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Offline Immediacracy

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Re: "The odds of life are too low for it to just have happened" refuted
« Reply #167 on: July 15, 2010, 10:09:00 AM »
Not crazy, just poorly-defined and of no practical explanatory value.
What kind of practical explanatory value is there in exclusively perpetuating a worldview which neglects to find consciousness, life, or meaning even when that view is itself sourced in said subjective living phenomena?
"That which we call reality arises in the last analysis from the posing of yes–no questions and the registering of equipment-evoked responses; in short, that all things physical are information-theoretic in origin and that this is a participatory universe."
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Offline Immediacracy

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Re: "The odds of life are too low for it to just have happened" refuted
« Reply #168 on: July 15, 2010, 10:25:08 AM »
If we said "yes", then what?  Would you seriously consider the possibility that you are a crank?  Would that change your mind about anything?  Or would it just reinforce what you already believe (that we just don't get it)?
If you all said yes then I would know that you're telling the truth, and that we are just very different people. I don't believe that you just don't get it, I think that maybe you might get it but you just don't want to be a fool who is willing to entertain ideas which diverge so far from the mainstream. Which is ok, that's the experience of all pioneering ideas.

What I think that you (as a group) may not get is that I don't expect people to accept this. I'm only interested in whether people come up with anything interesting that I haven't heard before. The fact that all I get is people's personal opinions of my opinions, criticizing them for their personal nature (in the most personal and aggressive way, of course).

Why would you think that your opinions of me would matter more to me than my opinions about nature? I have no agenda. I'm not selling anything here. I'm being completely honest and above board in my observations about the Cosmos. You don't like them? Fine. I expect that. But how do my observations not make sense? What are the flaws you see in the ideas themselves other than they being a different take on things which have appeared to be settled science for a couple of generations?
"That which we call reality arises in the last analysis from the posing of yes–no questions and the registering of equipment-evoked responses; in short, that all things physical are information-theoretic in origin and that this is a participatory universe."
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Offline Grimm

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Re: "The odds of life are too low for it to just have happened" refuted
« Reply #169 on: July 15, 2010, 10:26:45 AM »
Immediacracy:

I think you're falling victim to what a professor of mine recently called "the problem of 'if' in science."  It's something theoretical scientists have to be careful of, and I'm sure his definition of it is more than a bit subjective, but he's right as far as his point goes.  The "problem of 'if'" happens when creative, imaginative people get carried away with the ramifications of a possibility before determining the truth of that possibility.  The major problem in science is that you end up wasting lots of potential research time determining what something means far before you've determined if it's even true.

A little speculation is fine - it keeps the excitement flowing.  It makes people amped up to be a part of a project, or to work on increasingly incomprehensible mathematics.  If the speculation takes over, however, then all of your work is aimed at something that (like most science, actually) may turn out to be flawed so fundamentally that it doesn't matter.

Thus your theory.  It's an intriguing though about the ramifications if matter has a certain consciousness of itself.  If we allow that, to use your own statement of fact.  Yet, you've no prima facie evidence that your fundamental assertion is true beyond your own sense that it may likely be so.  I agree with you that the what-if is quite interesting.  Until, however, you devise a way to test your core assumption, well - you've not got much but wild speculation, no matter how grounded in your version of reality it may seem.

What these guys are trying to point out is that the difference between a crackpot 'theory' like, for instance, homeopathy and reality is the validation of the core assertion behind the theory.  QM isn't really at all what you think it is, and without a thorough understanding of things like Heisenberg, concepts like a 'quantum probability foam' seem awfully esoteric.  The Two-Slit experiment and the collapsing waveform based on observation are well-known, and these days, fairly well understood - even if, like gravity, we don't know the mechanism, we can predict behavior based on the influence of the phenomenon.  Scientists aren't just measuring their own instruments, as you've asserted.  

It's good that you don't believe them.  In fact, it's so important to say this that I should say it again:

it's good that you don't believe them.

Go and find out.  Learn the math.  Really see what they're talking about and what predictions have been made.  Your characterization of the theory is typical of laymen - QM is neither intuitive nor intellectually easy.  Taking it on, trying to understand it, to see why it has gained prevalence despite the brain-bendyness that has made scientists twitch for generations and to fight it at every turn?  That's incredibly valuable.

Unfortunately, your own current theory, as I've gleaned the edges from reading what I have in this thread, rests on a fundamental assertion that - scientifically - is utterly unproven, if not completely falsified.  The ramifications - the what-ifs - that you're presenting are incredibly fun to speculate upon, certainly, but your baseline asssertions cannot be given a free pass.  

Look at String Theory, for example.  It is elegant, mathematically.  It sews up all of the problems between QM and the Standard Model so neatly that it would be an utter shame if it weren't true.  Scientists are utterly excited about it because its ramifications are far-reaching - it would mathematically explain everything from the Big Bang ('brane' theory!) to Entanglement, the cause of the speed of light limit to a new unified field equation that could - in theory - let us harness gravity the same way we do EM radiation these days.  Thrilling, no?  The reason, however, you've not seen more scientists jump on the bandwagon is that its core assertion - that matter's fundamental particle is actually vibrating strings of intradimensional probability - is absolutely untestable.  Unverifiable.  If you /allow/ that this is true, then you solve the Unified Field problem.  You discover the shape of the universe.

Fortunately for all of us, no one gets a pass on 'allowing' things in science.  The LHC - one of the great scientific endeavors ever attempted by man - will either prove or disprove the Standard Model in the coming decade or so (by the hopeful discovery of the Higgs Bosun and Supersymmetry).  If it does not, then we will have learned that everything we know is wrong, and String Theory has a chance.  

Now.  Your theory?  Neat notion.  How do you propose to verify that matter has knowledge of itself?   Neither I nor anyone else - nor even should you yourself! - should accept your speculation until you prove the bit that we have to 'give' you for that speculation to be true.  So.  How can we do that?
"But to us, there is but one god, plus or minus one."  - 1 Corinthians 8:6+/-2

-- Randall, XKCD http://xkcd.com/900/

Offline Immediacracy

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Re: "The odds of life are too low for it to just have happened" refuted
« Reply #170 on: July 15, 2010, 10:38:46 AM »
Sorry for the ambiguity - I meant "common" in the sense of "common to humans" - myself included.  My point is that we don't need to intuitively understand it.  Intuitive understanding is emotionally gratifying, but it isn't necessary.
See, that's the thing though. If a Christian said that to you about the Trinity or something, you'd excoriate them. Have you ever considered that maybe intuitive understanding is necessary to make sense of something? Is it possible that that's what the point of a theory is?

When an established orthodoxy tells me that it's not necessary to understand, what's left is for me to believe. Faith over understanding. I'm willing to accept that QM is useful, and possibly true, but I don't give up my skepticism about it just because it's popular among our best and brightest scientists.

I've never heard anyone describe the possibility that anything is going on 'inside of matter' - (except maybe String Theory in a weird way) so part of me wonders if that's such a simple possibility that it's been left unimagined and unexplored all this time, even though the condition of being inside our body is an everyday experience. Perhaps this idea is unpalatable because we'd like to think of ourselves and our subjective consciousness as somehow far more sophisticated than 'the universe' and at the same time, far less deserving of the attention. Maybe the idea that our inner worlds are completely separate from the inside of all worlds is the illusion?
"That which we call reality arises in the last analysis from the posing of yes–no questions and the registering of equipment-evoked responses; in short, that all things physical are information-theoretic in origin and that this is a participatory universe."
- John Archibald Wheeler

Offline Azdgari

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Re: "The odds of life are too low for it to just have happened" refuted
« Reply #171 on: July 15, 2010, 10:50:00 AM »
If the Trinity was a theory that made accurate, testable predictions, then I would give the idea serious thought.  That's the difference, and one you're glossing over.
The highest moral human authority is copied by our Gandhi neurons through observation.

Offline Immediacracy

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Re: "The odds of life are too low for it to just have happened" refuted
« Reply #172 on: July 15, 2010, 11:14:05 AM »
I think you're falling victim to what a professor of mine recently called "the problem of 'if' in science."  It's something theoretical scientists have to be careful of, and I'm sure his definition of it is more than a bit subjective, but he's right as far as his point goes.  The "problem of 'if'" happens when creative, imaginative people get carried away with the ramifications of a possibility before determining the truth of that possibility.
I do agree with that, although I try to make it clear that this is just the sprout of an idea. I haven't had time to do much with it at all except for trying to get it down in some written forms.

If you haven't seen the main thread on the idea as it came together, here it is.

Quote
How do you propose to verify that matter has knowledge of itself?
I would start from ourselves and move out. We are bodies and we have knowledge of ourselves. Our bodies are made of cells which seem to act, like us, in a cooperative and synchronized manner. Cells are made of molecules which seem to act to facilitate the operation, healing, and regulation of living cells. Molecules seem to be nothing more than configurations of atoms.

To me it seems that it's only us that doesn't have knowledge of matter, but matter seems to know what it's doing with itself.

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Neither I nor anyone else - nor even should you yourself! - should accept your speculation until you prove the bit that we have to 'give' you for that speculation to be true.  So.  How can we do that?

I completely agree. Has anyone done two slit experiments with a human eye instead of a screen? Seems simple enough. That alone could tell us something unexpected. Light takes place on your retina. We know this. It is a screen and it is an observer. What does it look like when you close one eye and shoot a laser at it through two slits? Does it need to be in a vacuum? Maybe a camera works just as well?.

I could imagine maybe some experiments using transcranial magnetic stimulation - basically do quantum mechanical experiments inside a living, conscious human brain. Any volunteers? :)

Thanks for the comments though. I don't know ultimately if there is a way around observer ambiguity. I think there is a 'Law of Conservation of Mystery' which may keep the interior phenomenon partitioned existentially from the exterior, such that the subject must always choose which side of the fence they are on for themselves. The voluntary aspect, the gamble of perception may be an immutable characteristic of the fabric of subjectivity itself while the subjective surrender to exterior evidence is an act of nontrivial consequence in any possible experiments. The placebo effect is a requirement for this level of cosmic integration.
"That which we call reality arises in the last analysis from the posing of yes–no questions and the registering of equipment-evoked responses; in short, that all things physical are information-theoretic in origin and that this is a participatory universe."
- John Archibald Wheeler

Offline Immediacracy

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Re: "The odds of life are too low for it to just have happened" refuted
« Reply #173 on: July 15, 2010, 11:29:59 AM »
If the Trinity was a theory that made accurate, testable predictions, then I would give the idea serious thought.  That's the difference, and one you're glossing over.
That's a good point, and it makes perfect sense, but the criteria of accurate, testable prediction is by definition an empirical standard. What I don't always think that people see when they use this approach is that reliance on those criteria exclusively opens the door to a different kind of confirmation bias - one which reflexively projects automatic, deterministic solutions onto all phenomena, even when the self plainly exhibits unpredictable, volitional, and inaccurate behaviors, and the self is at the heart of all of out understanding of the universe.

To true believers on the religious end of the spectrum, their truth requires faith in spite of a lack of evidence. They see empirical reason as being susceptible to spiritual corruption. For them, the proof is in the pudding of increasing alienation and immorality in society.

So I still say, science gets no pass from skepticism. If it cannot be understood intuitively, it may point to a reality not comprehensible to us, or it may simply be exactly what you might expect if you try to explain a universe which is half subjective in completely objective terms.
"That which we call reality arises in the last analysis from the posing of yes–no questions and the registering of equipment-evoked responses; in short, that all things physical are information-theoretic in origin and that this is a participatory universe."
- John Archibald Wheeler