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 stargazer1000
Joined: 1/16/2008
Msg: 1
Future predetermined...Page 1 of 1    
Yeah, I know what you're thinking. Another hoodoo woowoo posting about the great mind of the universe, Deepak Chopra, visualizing from the rear, hoozie whatsis, pseudo science nonsense.

Not quite. Or maybe it is. But I read this article in Discover Magazine and thought it was actually kind of interesting.

http://discovermagazine.com/2010/apr/01-back-from-the-future

So are we looking only at extremely short periods of time or is it possible that, somehow, some future state of the universe actually does influence our present? Sadly, I lack the mathematical understanding and I'm even a little iffy on the conceptual side of it. But I thought I'd throw it out there just for the fun of it.
 abelian
Joined: 1/12/2008
Msg: 2
Future predetermined...
Posted: 8/4/2010 9:33:42 PM
I can't read the article, so I really don't know what they are talking about. I'm inclined to doubt that it is what it sounds like.
 stargazer1000
Joined: 1/16/2008
Msg: 3
Future predetermined...
Posted: 8/5/2010 7:46:57 AM
The basic concept of the article as I understand it is that much of the universe is the way it is not just because of the past but because of the future. Apparently in certain experiments in quantum physics, it has been observed that future states can affect the measurement as well as past and present.

The test discussed in the article involved a three-step process in which you had a laser set up with a test both in the center and a means to change the condition of the laser at the other end. The condition at the end is changed randomly and its effects on the center is measured. Because of the nature of the experiment, it requires a very, very large dataset in order to glean any significant results out of the noise. Again, forgive me if this is a little vague.

Here is a list of some of Jeff Tollaksen's papers. http://en.scientificcommons.org/jeff_tollaksen

We always hear that the earliest moments of the big bang were a particular strange time for our four dimensions and four fundamental forces of the universe so it is easy for a enthusiastic amateur like myself to wonder if this may have "imprinted?" some sort of final state for the universe.

However, it is also easy to see how some might glom onto something like this for some sort of New Age interpretation of reality that has absolutely nothing to do with reality.
 scorpiomover
Joined: 4/19/2007
Msg: 4
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History
Future predetermined...
Posted: 8/5/2010 12:03:54 PM
I have always wondered about this. Scientific laws seem mostly based on localisation, what is going on nearby, such as gravity. They seem to consider all 3 dimensions. Yet AFAIK, there are 4 dimensions, the 3 axes of space, and time. So surely, gravity should make an effect on objects near it in space AND time, which would result in gravity affecting an object from the second before now, and the second after now.
 stargazer1000
Joined: 1/16/2008
Msg: 5
Future predetermined...
Posted: 8/5/2010 4:24:03 PM
What I find interesting is that this is an attempt to empirically measure something that is, at least, a hypothetical possibility and that the initial early results appear promising.

Clearly, there would be some serious philosophical consequences to this that would have to be tackled if, in the long run, it is proven a real phenomenon.
 chrono1985
Joined: 11/20/2004
Msg: 6
Future predetermined...
Posted: 8/5/2010 4:59:08 PM
In light of a single concept I don't really think the future can be predetermined, but it might be influenced by vast distance in both time and space. That assertion roots into a theory which states at the sub-atomic level there are wormholes forming and dissipating within incredibly short periods of time. If that's correct then there is a small amount of transfer from just about anywhere (in time and space) going on all the time, but then it'd also mean there must be some governing rule behind it to keep causality stable.

That concept reminds me of a trick I used to keep a random number generator random. The problem with it originally was that from the time the random number generator was started, you could with enough information about the flow of the program predict the numbers it'd spit out. That worked fine for awhile until I really needed stuff that wouldn't eventually fall into a pattern, at which point I got the idea to factor in past results at random intervals, at which point it became near impossible to predict the random numbers. The longer that random number generator runs, the more unpredictable it becomes.

Sounds very similar to the idea of having wormholes pop into existence, transfer some energy/force/matter for a very small amount of time, then poof out of existence; each time that transfer occurs it will change the system that was transferred from and the system that was transferred to, in effect making the randomness more unpredictable each time it occurs.
 Super_Eve
Joined: 10/23/2008
Msg: 7
Future predetermined...
Posted: 8/5/2010 5:01:09 PM
Stargazer, did you recently just watch Slumdog Millionaire? I did. And it certainly gave me pause.


Clearly, there would be some serious philosophical consequences to this that would have to be tackled if, in the long run, it is proven a real phenomenon.


As in it might resolve the old dilemma of the law of determinism vs. free will?

Was there more to the article than Tollaksen (besides the name link that provided his phone number) having prior experience with boats in a "torrential" sea?

Do you Op, believe all of your choices are predetermined? Come to think of it, I don't believe that I have ever read where you have provided a solid answer to this question...
 abelian
Joined: 1/12/2008
Msg: 8
Future predetermined...
Posted: 8/5/2010 6:55:14 PM

The test discussed in the article involved a three-step process in which you had a laser set up with a test both in the center and a means to change the condition of the laser at the other end.


I've only had time to skim a couple of papers (one is really long), but this seems to be another attempt to put classical thinking back into quantum mechanics (albeit in a rather bizarre fashion). The relevant paper is:

http://arxiv.org/abs/0706.1232

To dissect the experiment will take a while, since it's not clear whether they've really made a prediction that differs from quantum mechanics for several different reasons. My personal opinion is that this is wrong.
 abelian
Joined: 1/12/2008
Msg: 9
Future predetermined...
Posted: 8/5/2010 7:01:58 PM

They seem to consider all 3 dimensions. Yet AFAIK, there are 4 dimensions, the 3 axes of space, and time. So surely, gravity should make an effect on objects near it in space AND time, which would result in gravity affecting an object from the second before now, and the second after now.

That's true in any causal theory of motion. If you exert a force on an object the force affects the object as it propagates in space and time.
 az109
Joined: 7/3/2010
Msg: 10
Future predetermined...
Posted: 8/5/2010 9:32:27 PM
Something can progress according to its potential. I hope they didn't stop the presses to run the story.

The next thing you know, someone will get excited about the fact that when you plant an acorn, an oak tree grows.
 stargazer1000
Joined: 1/16/2008
Msg: 11
Future predetermined...
Posted: 8/6/2010 6:20:44 AM
Just want to throw out there that Mekenna put this idea forth decades ago. Glad to see the scientific community catching up.


The difference being these are real scientists doing real experiments, not just dropping 'shrooms, listening to Floyd and going "Wow, wouldn't it be cool if...!"

These guys both academically and mentally graduated out of high school.

Besides, revolutionary ideas about the nature of time predate McKenna by about a century. So he's hardly the originator of anything more than jack and sh!t!
 scorpiomover
Joined: 4/19/2007
Msg: 12
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History
Future predetermined...
Posted: 8/6/2010 6:59:38 AM
RE Msg: 11 by abelian:

They seem to consider all 3 dimensions. Yet AFAIK, there are 4 dimensions, the 3 axes of space, and time. So surely, gravity should make an effect on objects near it in space AND time, which would result in gravity affecting an object from the second before now, and the second after now.
That's true in any causal theory of motion. If you exert a force on an object the force affects the object as it propagates in space and time.
I've never seen any formal equations of motion, that describes how any force happening NOW, affects the past. Perhaps you could show me links to the standard equations that show that?
 abelian
Joined: 1/12/2008
Msg: 13
Future predetermined...
Posted: 8/6/2010 7:28:02 AM
I've never seen any formal equations of motion, that describes how any force happening NOW, affects the past. Perhaps you could show me links to the standard equations that show that?

That wasn't what you said in the comment to which I replied.

The difference being these are real scientists doing real experiments, not just dropping 'shrooms, listening to Floyd and going "Wow, wouldn't it be cool if...!"

There have been attempts to do similar things in the past. The most notable was probably the Wheeler-Feynman absorber theory.
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