Lee Smolin on The Illusion of Space

 
Poldano
 
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Poldano
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25 March 2020 00:45
 

https://getpocket.com/explore/item/space-the-final-illusion?utm_source=pocket-newtab

Briefly, the theory so far is that only quantum events are fundamentally real, and that the sense of four dimensional spacetime, along with everything it “contains”. emerges from the collective frequencies of events and their causation of other events.

A greater-than-lightspeed drive is apparently possible in theory, although Smolin doesn’t speak to the issue, but I suspect it gobbles up ginormous quantities of energy. The energy consumed is what I guess to be the the equivalent of the violated macro-scale probabilities that all those nonlocal quantum events are arranged just so.

 
 
brazen4
 
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brazen4
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26 March 2020 21:03
 

Poldano, thanks for that reference. I listened to Smolin on Lex Fridmans podcast and really liked his way of communicating his knowledge and intuitions. Personally, I figure I grasp maybe 20 or 30 percent of what he has to say but I don’t care, I’m just glad there are people like him out there giving it their best. It makes sense to me that the world of fundamental particles has to translate (upward?) to the world of macro-events, the world as I know it, but because my math skills and over-all education level are minimal to moderate I would never have come up with this reasoning on my own. The internet world has made it possible for people such as myself to “give it a go” when ever one of these brilliant minds decides to forego the math and put their own grasp (so far) into laymens terms. (sort of)

[ Edited: 26 March 2020 22:21 by brazen4]
 
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26 March 2020 22:57
 

I’m glad you appreciate it, Brazen. Smolin seems to have captured something I have been attempting to verbalize for a while. Like you, I am not well-trained in math, but I am fortunate to have a good visual imagination and strong spatial intuition. As a result of much thinking in the shower and on long commutes over the years, I arrived at a similar impression of the statistical nature of Einstein’s thought processes, and speculated that macro physical phenomena, including relativity, were statistical outcomes of quantum processes. It’s not too far a leap from there to the notion that all our native perceptual biases are a result of the macro statistical phenomena that compose not only the world we live in, but also us, to the extent that we can determine without artificial instrumentation and non-intuitive theories.

 
 
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27 March 2020 15:17
 

Smolins struggle to put some kind of sense or pattern to “locality” grabbed me right off. It is something I hadn’t known was so anti-intuitive. He seems to be stuck where most physicists are regarding the damnable issue of entaglement.  I know that guys like Sean Carrol have come to some sort of peace with it for the time being but it remains one of the elephants in the room. Smolin has some intuitions/explanations that he seems satisfied with but really, I couldn’t follow him there. Not that I question what he posits, but that I am unable to “visualize” the issue as a whole. I haven’t given up though and will re-read that thread on and off for some time to come. I have to go back and get reacquainted with “how it was determined that subatomic sized things have spin, up and down”. I haven’t gotten comfortable with that little detail and I know that that is a key part of the discussion. Right now though I have a chainsaw in desperate need of sharpening. Thanks for your input.

 
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29 March 2020 23:06
 

The most counter-intuitive aspect of QM may be the hint, at the very least, that temporally-directed causality is not factual at that level. That idea is a direct result of non-locality, when the speed-of-light limit on classical causality is taken into account. If you don’t have a problem accepting that, then in my opinion you are rather remarkable.

 
 
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30 March 2020 16:46
 

First off I have to admit that as much as I have attempted to follow various opinions/posits on this topic, I am in over my head and mostly enjoy the ride for the way it stimulates my imagination. That said, I like the way you say “hints” when referring to the idea that temporally directed causality isn’t factual at the level of QM. Right, where can one possibly go from there? I “suspect” that measuring apparatus/techniques will continue to advance and possibly lead to new perspectives. The continuing issue of “how to measure without interfering with the QM state of that which you are measuring” is a huge issue that is far from my ability to imagine even a science fiction solution to. I plan to continue to try to keep up as those dedicated to this field continue their work, and I love reading stuff by guys like Smolin who are on the forefront of understanding and are willing to talk about the various elephants in the room.