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 stargazer1000
Joined: 1/16/2008
Msg: 1
A universe driven by probabilityPage 1 of 2    (1, 2)
So I was watching an episode of Michio Kaku's Time series and he said something that got the wheels turning. That there are events so improbable, that one would not see them during the lifetime of the universe.

And that phrase struck me. "Lifetime of the universe." So then, if we can accept that the universe will have an infinite lifetime, then does increased time mean the potential for increasingly improbable occurrences?

Of course, all matter would likely become degenerate over time. However, if there can be an increase in improbable events over extremely long time, might that include the switching over from "degenerate" to "regenerate" matter. Would this mark a new "start" point?

I know, it reads a little like someone pounding back a few. However, I assure you, no alcohol or other intoxicants were ingested in the development of this thread. Just a thought process taken to the extreme.
 xlr8ingmargo
Joined: 7/28/2009
Msg: 2
A universe driven by probability
Posted: 2/21/2010 8:06:34 AM
Very interesting concept~
I really do enjoy the way you smarties get me to think about the world around me in new and different ways. Thanks for sharing your thoughts, really.
 thecdcisreal
Joined: 6/18/2008
Msg: 3
A universe driven by probability
Posted: 2/22/2010 9:36:29 AM
This a very, very interesting subject matter to me.

One thing I have been spending a lot of time thinking about is entropy, especially entropy in a closed system. Entropy leads to disorder which leads to complexity which leads to events which you cannot predict or imagine.

However, according to my knowledge, an increase in complexity would require a "closed system" or a finite universe, this is due to the law of conservation of energy. The implication of an infinite universe seems to be that of infinite universes (multiverse) which may be able to get around the law of the conservation of energy ( ie., all the energy in our universe could seep out into another or vice versa).

But let's just work with a closed system. As the entropy, and thus complexity, increases we will gradually reach new possibilities. For example, is conscious life a result of the ever-increasing complexity of the universe? Is it possible for us to evolve unimagined abilities due to increasing complexity?

Another thing I wonder is this, does complexity eventually lead back to commonality? I have used this example before, but I am considering it a step further now:

You have a ziploc bag with one layer of salt on the bottom and a layer of pepper on top. This is an ordered system, the more ordered a system, the less entropy - unless work is being applied to counter entropy and maintain order. Now if I begin shaking the bag, then the salt and pepper begin mixing together. Eventually order is destroyed. It is possible to continue shaking the bag and one day arrive back at a separation of salt and pepper to create order, but the probability is so low that you would probably have to shake the bag for "longer than the lifetime of the universe." So once disorder is introduced at certain levels of complexity, it is almost impossible to return to order (without applying work, often in massive amounts).

But this lead me to another thought. What if this new state of disorder is not "disorder" but is rather a new form of order. Whereas before you could reach in the bag and grab a pinch of salt or a pinch of pepper, now you can only grab a pinch of salt and pepper. Eventually, as disorder increases, the distribution of salt and pepper should even out and thus we would arrive at a new form order. This order is, of course, the even distribution of salt and pepper resulting in an equal probability of grabbing the same ratio of salt to pepper particles with each pinch. Would this not be a new order or a return to commonality?

Unfortunately, I have not run any calculations to prove my point, these are all thought experiments. But I have been considering pursuing the academic studies necessary to solve such problems. Thoughts?
 apainlessend
Joined: 12/11/2009
Msg: 4
A universe driven by probability
Posted: 2/22/2010 2:54:01 PM

Of course, all matter would likely become degenerate over time.


^What does this mean.

I do believe that the term improbable only exists in the use of context, (E.g. Explaining the concept of the opposite of probable.) as you cant use a term like improbability, in application to a universe that has infinite possibility.

If I fall of a building it is probable that I will die.
It is improbably that superman will save. (Highly.)
However, in a omniniverse without limits, (Assumedly.) then it is not impossible
 stargazer1000
Joined: 1/16/2008
Msg: 5
A universe driven by probability
Posted: 2/22/2010 7:24:20 PM


Of course, all matter would likely become degenerate over time.


^What does this mean.


Essentially, over the course of the lifetime of the universe, all matter becomes "degenerate." That is to say, it breaks down to its constituent parts until nothing is left but an endless sea of photons.

And therein lies the rub. What happens after that? There are several theories, from an endless eternity of nothing to a "big rip" after the increasing cosmic expansion passes a certain critical point. Oh, the endless possibilities!
 stargazer1000
Joined: 1/16/2008
Msg: 6
A universe driven by probability
Posted: 2/22/2010 8:15:29 PM

If there is a direction to time and time is a real dimension, then is the memory of each state within the system some how recorded in the continuum of time by causality?


This is largely a rhetorical statement but the problem is that uncertainty places a major restriction on any predictability for the future and entropy erases evidence of the past.

However, an interesting things comes as a result of the longterm status of the universe in which all matter has degenerated. Essentially, all of spacetime becomes homogeneous and largely featureless. However, do minor variations then become more significant and thus a seed for even larger variations to aggregate?

What the hell am I talking about?
 impohell
Joined: 1/7/2010
Msg: 7
A universe driven by probability
Posted: 2/22/2010 9:06:35 PM

And that phrase struck me. "Lifetime of the universe." So then, if we can accept that the universe will have an infinite lifetime, then does increased time mean the potential for increasingly improbable occurrences?
The so-called universe, as it is called, should be considered not as an actual thing but merely the conception it is in the human mind, and therefor when speculating about the application of similarly human concepts like probability, which die with us and evolve as language will, care should be taken to avoid mistaking any theoretical assumptions as reality in any absolute sense. That said, it's likely that however you or I might think today of the mysterious workings of everything, we will be more than wrong, and doomed to be regarded as comically presumptuous by future generations at least, and certainly by any higher forms of intelligence that now exist beyond our ability to detect.
 acuddler
Joined: 10/30/2009
Msg: 8
A universe driven by probability
Posted: 2/22/2010 11:36:04 PM
The only way to get truly 'regenerate matter' is to vilolate the laws of thermodynamics ... which can't be done in this universe. Those laws also forbid the universe from having an infinite lifetime. Everything has a finite lifetime, and breaks down.
 stargazer1000
Joined: 1/16/2008
Msg: 9
A universe driven by probability
Posted: 2/25/2010 5:22:28 AM

A lot in the physical world doesn't "make sense" in terms of what we'd expected. As I was saying, I read that the evidence has been piling up in favor of the universe being infinite.


Can you cite a source?
 nipoleon
Joined: 12/27/2005
Msg: 10
view profile
History
A universe driven by probability
Posted: 2/25/2010 10:57:37 AM
A better title to your question would be, " Is the Universe Random ? "

There are basically 2 types of randomness.
True randomness and conditional randomness.

In true randomness, anything can happen.
Conditional randomness, is more like chaos but only within certain conditions.

The lottery is a type of conditional randomness.
The only numbers which can ever be picked in the lottery, are those within the boundary of the numbers available.

If the lottery were truly random then any number could come up, even one outside the boundary of those numbers available. Or, a monkey or a turtle.

So, is the universe truly random where literally anything can happen ?
Or, is the universe conditionally random where only certain things can happen within a fixed set of rules ?

If the universe has rules, then that means that all the possibilities of everything was set at the moment of the " Big Bang ".
That means everything can be predicted, even the lottery.

If the universe has no rules, then all bets are off.
Nothing can be predicted.
 xlr8ingmargo
Joined: 7/28/2009
Msg: 11
A universe driven by probability
Posted: 2/25/2010 4:05:40 PM
Kind of like people huh?
 artist_48
Joined: 1/27/2009
Msg: 12
A universe driven by probability
Posted: 2/25/2010 7:30:16 PM
"Of course, all matter would likely become degenerate over time. However, if there can be an increase in improbable events over extremely long time, might that include the switching over from "degenerate" to "regenerate" matter. Would this mark a new "start" point?"

I want some help on this fellas, but I need to understand something first.

The only thing I can equate this to is particulate matter (in earth's atmosphere).
As particulate matter is absorbed (changed) it reaches a point where the particle layer changes from cooling to heating resulting in scattering of sunlight caused by an increase in the amount of light reflected back, etc. Does this also happen in space ( not deep space apparently due to lack of light?)
Thanks- this will allow me to continue thinking on this topic.

Other thought(s); The only matter that regenerates that I can think of is plant and animal matter. Elements such as gases can alter there states and reform, but is this actually regenerating as you mean it?
 sum1reel
Joined: 6/5/2005
Msg: 13
A universe driven by probability
Posted: 2/26/2010 2:58:43 PM
@Kinky



Infinity has NO place in Physics,


this is an excerpt i took from another poster in the 'edge of space" thread (msg #38) where he says:

"infinity tends to be a number you end up with when you measure things with a tool of lesser dimension than the object has."

And it makes sense to me because we don't know the totality of the universe...and if we had the capabilities to acknowledge these other dimensions i'm sure we'd unravel a good many secrets!.



unless one is compelled to use it do dirty tricks


which is basically the main way that physicists are trying to 1-up one-another!....i mean, look at it like this....we figure out that there is a whole lotta matter missing in the universe (perhaps!), and then somebody conjures up 'dark" matter.....its like, well we can't see it, and we can't detect it...BUT its there cause we say it should be there!!!!



Even though it works LOL!


Ahhh, the fudge-factor!
 Devourer of Memes
Joined: 9/6/2008
Msg: 14
A universe driven by probability
Posted: 2/26/2010 10:21:44 PM
@ stargazer1000: I believe the universe is driven by the probability of all possible states matter can exist in, but I think the possible states have tangible boundaries. For example, the big bang singularity is a boundary of ever increasing density and heat the closer and closer we move backwards in time the less possible states that can exist as you approach the singularity of the big bang. On the flip side as we move forward in time and the universe expands while density of matter decreases you have an increase in the possible states that the universe can exist in, which allows for more complex structures like galaxies and planetary systems. I also believe time is finite and will end at the state of absolute zero when perfectly flat space is reached and becomes what is know as the Bose-Einstein Condensate. As we approach absolute zero the set of all possible states begins to decrease rapidly just as when time is moved backwards towards the big bang. I'll stop here for now, but basically I'm agreeing with you stargazer, however I believe the probability can only be one of the possible states matter can arrange itself within set boundaries of time.
 scorpiomover
Joined: 4/19/2007
Msg: 15
view profile
History
A universe driven by probability
Posted: 2/27/2010 4:31:10 PM

And that phrase struck me. "Lifetime of the universe." So then, if we can accept that the universe will have an infinite lifetime, then does increased time mean the potential for increasingly improbable occurrences?
Of course. But only improbable occurrences. Not impossible ones.

Of course, all matter would likely become degenerate over time. However, if there can be an increase in improbable events over extremely long time, might that include the switching over from "degenerate" to "regenerate" matter. Would this mark a new "start" point?
The Second Law says that everything tends to an equilibrium with more entropy, and consequently, less free energy, and that requires a more uniform energy distribution. So with more time, matter spreads into more a uniform distribution, and eventually the energy in mass equally spreads into a more uniform distribution. So even with infinite time, all we would get would be greater degeneration of matter into a completely uniform energy distribution across the entire universe, at which point, there is nothing to "regenerate" matter.
 JustDukky
Joined: 7/8/2004
Msg: 16
A universe driven by probability
Posted: 2/27/2010 9:03:37 PM
The universe is a self-similar, chaotic fractal. I'm absolutely convinced of that and have predicated much of what I do now on that hypothesis. Fortunately, I'm not the only guy who feels that way; I came across this vid today:

http://video.google.com/videoplay?docid=-8950549020166531913#
 xlr8ingmargo
Joined: 7/28/2009
Msg: 17
A universe driven by probability
Posted: 2/28/2010 9:48:59 AM
Wow. There is actually quite a bit of info on the subject of fractals in science and math.
I even found an M.I.T. video from 2001~ Cool stuff dude! I think even Plato said someting about roughness. This dude on one vid explained roughness as a far more complicated and difficult science.
 Devourer of Memes
Joined: 9/6/2008
Msg: 18
A universe driven by probability
Posted: 2/28/2010 5:49:46 PM
Random aggregation and the disordered geometric configurations demonstrate that fundamentally random microscopic processes can give rise to predictable macroscopic behaviors. No reason you can't have probabilistic reality of the universe creating self-similar, chaotic fractals. However, the fractal is a product of probability.
 Super_Eve
Joined: 10/23/2008
Msg: 19
A universe driven by probability
Posted: 2/28/2010 5:50:13 PM

The universe is a self-similar, chaotic fractal. I'm absolutely convinced of that and have predicated much of what I do now on that hypothesis. Fortunately, I'm not the only guy who feels that way; I came across this vid today:

----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
I agree also. I have seen a lot of evidence and read a few articles investigating the idea. Actually I think it goes further than just the universe and has far reaching implications.


Great vid, Dukky! Although, my computer kept sputtering, and missed a bit about the involvement of proteins...

I have also alway s been against the Law of Determinism, with its purport that everything can be predicted, provided enough information is supplied. I think it leaves out the random variable, that can lead to an improbable occurrence...
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