What is spacetime made of?

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Re: What is spacetime made of?

Postby Raze on September 1st, 2018, 5:07 am 

ronjanec » August 28th, 2018, 10:07 am wrote:Raze,

I am a GR/SR heretic: A great deal of it goes against my common sense, and I refuse to believe anything that does this no matter what anyone says. And very silly atomic clock experiments that supposedly “prove” things like “time dilation” to be true have shown me that even one of the most important “proofs” for this kind of thing is a bunch of nonsense, and this of course strengthens my convictions about this.

For example, an atomic clock slowing down in an experiment does not actually mean that time slowed down here physically relative to the other atomic clock: It just means that one of our devices slowed down relative to another for some other reason. The movement of an atomic clock is not time’s actual or literal physical. movement existing here, man just calls this the movement of time(Raze, if you think I am wrong about my comments on this experiment please explain why you believe this)

Man did invent the first timekeeping system Raze(in effect making time begin to exist in the universe for the very first time);

The earth rotating on it’s axis as it orbits the sun causes what is called by man to be the day, the night, the seasons, and the year: Pre-historic man eventually noticed the effects/patterns here from the naturally occurring movement of the earth around the sun on the surface of the earth, and then started to measure and divide all of this going on into what is today called the results of our timekeeping system: Eventually he also started calling the results and effects of all of this going on the ancient precursors of the words ‘time’ and ‘the passing of time’.

Pre-historic man of course did not know what was actually going on here behind the scenes here, but his timekeeping system still worked despite this. One very early method of timekeeping by pre-historic man was watching the illusionary daily “movement/journey of the sun across the eastern, southern, and western horizons” Noon, or the sun at it’s highest apex during the daily “journey” meant the day was half over.

Look at the face on your clock or watch Raze: Even today, this still mimics the illusionary very ancient “journey of the sun across the horizons” that was again used by our very ancient ancestors for timekeeping purposes. And 12 o’clock noon today, still mimics the sun at the apex or highest point of the ancient daily “journey”(!)

None of the things that I described going on here represented time existing physically and moving as a distinct physical object in the universe. Time’s existence that began here was, was actually nothing more than a ancient singular word that man used to describe the results of his ancient timekeeping system.


First I have to say you are actually factually incorrect about one thing regarding the atomic clock experiment: there is no confusion about why it happens. It's not for "some reason," it comes directly from the fact that the universe has a finite, universal speed limit. Furthermore, every kind of clock imaginable experiences the same thing. Clocks on GPS systems in satellites, for example. More recently, lithium ions accelerated in a particle accelerator.

https://www.scientificamerican.com/arti ... -verified/

Every single type of clock you can imagine that has been tested has shown that when you sync them and then move one very fast with respect to the other (relativistic speeds), they become desynced. As this applies even on the sub-atomic level (with elementary particles), it is more than "clocks." It is periodic motion itself.

Additionally, gravitational time dilation has also been shown experimentally to be true:

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Pound%E2% ... experiment



At what point are you simply rejecting observable reality in place of an abstract model? Call it what you want, but whatever allows for periodic motion (including every kind of clock imaginable) is not universally constant.



Additionally, there are other experimental verification of time dilation, and other inevitable logical results from experiment:

Muon decay, for example. They decay at a rate far too fast for them to survive coming through the atmosphere and making it to the surface in the numbers that they do, and yet so many make it here just fine.

Additionally, what about the observation that the speed of light is independent of the motion of its source? What are the logical conclusions of that? (in particular, the logical conclusions or length and duration measurement)



And regardless of what word you use to describe "time", what time describes is periodic motion, and it occurs. Call it what you want, but periodic motion is actually observable, while space is not. Nor is time. We can only observe events. Events include periodic motion, and periodic motion is dependent upon frame of reference.





Anyway, you talk about common sense. So what is the common sense conclusion about length and duration if we live in a universe in which it is observed that the speed of electromagnetic signals is the same for all inertial observers regardless of the state of motion of their source? (and that that speed is finite and the maximum speed any object can obtain)

Lastly, all linear transformations that involve isotropy, homogeneity, and Newton's inertial law holding, (reasonable assumptions about the universe) have a single speed limit like the one above, and there are thus only two reasonable options*: the universal speed limit is finite, or it is infinite (note that this can and has been mathematically proven. This link goes through it near the bottom: http://mathpages.com/rr/s1-07/1-07.htm). Experiment has confirmed the universal speed limit is finite. There is only one "common sense" conclusion, and by common sense I mean careful reasoning in light of that: the correct transformation equations between inertial reference frames is the Lorentz transformation equations, which mix measurements of length and duration depending upon relative speed between reference frames (were the speed infinite, the square root would become unity and we'd be left with the Galileo transformation equations, which are low speed approximation of the Lorentz transformation equations).

*In the link above a third option is listed, but it would allow for people to "turn around" in time, which is obviously impossible; as Faradave has pointed out," time," whatever you want to call it, is not bidirectional.


EDIT- Final note: The Lorentz ether theory is experimentally indistinguishable from special relativity. All it is is special relativity with an additional untestable hypothesis. Lengths and duration measurements are still dependent upon relative speed, and all the other results of special relativity hold as well.
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Re: What is spacetime made of?

Postby ronjanec on September 1st, 2018, 9:50 am 

Raze,

4:57pm 4:58pm 4:59pm(my L.E.D digital clock at home): Raze, this is time existing, moving, and passing here right? I personally have no problem with someone saying this because it’s true, and that’s what man calls (and how he defines) this particular type of movement;

But is this time existing, moving and passing here in physical distinct object form?. No, this is the physical movement of the numbers on an electronic device that man invented, or something else existing and moving here(and you must be one physical thing or the other right? This certainly sounds like common sense to me Raze)

So if any clock anywhere in the universe slows down for any reason whatsoever in an experiment or otherwise, does this mean that time itself actually slowed down? No. This was again something else physically moving here in distinct object form not time itself. So do any of those experiments that supposedly “proved” time slowed down prove anything in regards to time moving in distinct physical object form? Again no.

If you accelerate a Leprechaun very close to the speed of light on a spaceship moving this fast, will he shrink in size, and age at a much slower rate relative to another Leprechaun living here on earth? “Well of course not you big dummy!” “Leprechauns only exist on earth because we talk about them, they have no (real or actual) distinct physical object or thing form existing here on earth or anywhere else in the universe”;

Only objects can slow down relative to something else. I’m trying to tell you and everyone else Raze, that time does not actually exist “independent” of man’s timekeeping system in distinct physical object form anywhere in the universe(and never has).

I’m definitely wrong about all of this? Ok, but I think it’s fair on my part to ask you to actually prove what you are saying is true then: And I challenge anyone anywhere reading this, to point to any distinct physical object or thing existing anywhere in the universe that you are saying is time actually existing in distinct physical object or thing form(And please remember, this cannot be something else actually existing here in distinct physical object or thing form)

Raze(and anyone else reading this), I am not trying to prove the T.O.R wrong here(although, I again personally believe it to not be true):: I am only trying to prove the “time dilation” part of this theory wrong.

(Biv: Could you please move this thread to the odds and ends forum(ouch), or anywhere else you feel appropriate, since you said it does not meet your standards for this forum in SCF?)
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Re: What is spacetime made of?

Postby davidm on September 1st, 2018, 11:18 am 

So if any clock anywhere in the universe slows down for any reason whatsoever in an experiment or otherwise, does this mean that time itself actually slowed down? No.


I’m trying to tell you and everyone else Raze, that time does not actually exist “independent” of man’s timekeeping system.


These two statements are contradictory. How can time “itself” not slow down, if you maintain that time does not exist independently of man’s time-keeping systems, yet you agree that such systems can slow down?
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Re: What is spacetime made of?

Postby davidm on September 1st, 2018, 11:29 am 

There is no time metaphysically independent of clocks. But what is a clock?

Clocks are not confined to man-made time-measuring devices. The natural world is filled with clocks.

The beat of a heart is a clock. The firing of neurons is a clock. The flashes emitted by pulsars is a clock. The list is endless.

And what people are telling you is that all these clocks, natural and manmade, slow down in an inertial frame in motion with respect to a rest frame. This has been repeatedly observed to occur, in precise accordance with Einstein’s predictions, and this slowing IS time dilation. That is all that it is.
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Re: What is spacetime made of?

Postby Braininvat on September 1st, 2018, 11:49 am 

ronjanec » September 1st, 2018, 6:50 am wrote:
(Biv: Could you please move this thread to the odds and ends forum(ouch), or anywhere else you feel appropriate, since you said it does not meet your standards for this forum in SCF?)


Glad to be of assistance. Enjoy.
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Re: Age of Enlightenment

Postby Faradave on September 1st, 2018, 2:04 pm 

Some of the confusion here is that "time" is ambiguous, as seen in this video.



The proper time of an inertial reference frame refers to "aging" by any sort of clock sharing that frame. Adopting this convention allows consistency, in that a moving frame would then exhibit both length contraction and aging contraction. This is a requirement which follows from Einstein's 2nd postulate: ∆x/∆t = c = c' = ∆x'/∆t'.

By contrast, "time" also often means future displacement, otherwise known as the aging of the cosmos in its own rest frame (where background radiation is isotropic - equally red-shifted in all directions). This "cosmic frame", as Marshall called it, also implies a cosmic spatial simultaneity.

The cosmic frame is still subject to Relativity, in that an observer in relative motion to the cosmic frame will see the cosmic clock run slow and its size shrunk in the direction of motion. However, since nothing in the universe is older than the universe, no inertial frame will find an older age of the cosmos than the cosmic frame nor its isotropic background. The cosmic frame is thus a convenient universal reference.

The age of the universe from the Big Bang event is evident from it's size, temperature, entropy, material content (resulting from stellar nucleosynthesis), and other measures).
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Re: What is spacetime made of?

Postby ronjanec on September 1st, 2018, 2:56 pm 

davidm,

You are missing the most important(and the most critical point) that I am trying to make here in my post: And thats perfectly understandable, because it is a very difficult point and distinction to get your mind around. It personally took me quite awhile, and a great deal of personal aggravation to finally figure this out for myself many years ago. Let me show you basically how I did it;

I asked myself that terrible question “What is time? I then looked over at the clock face on my
L.E.D digital clock 4:57pm 4:58pm 4:59pm and said to myself “that is time, right?”...”time existing and moving”;

I then thought about all those other things that are called and represent time existing to man, or seconds, minutes, hours, timekeeping, days, seasons, years, the earth rotating around its axis as it orbits the sun, spacetime/and the time dimension etc., and said to myself “they also represent time existing and moving”;

??? “The word time is singular, how can all these different things also be time existing(and moving) here in the universe?” “But they are!” “What is time, or time existing?” “All these different things are time and time existing” ???

“I thought you must be one thing or the other, and cannot be two different things, or say a horse and a chicken?” “But time still does represents all those different things existing and moving in the universe in spite of the very logical scientific statement here” “This kind of sounds like a Trinitarian type belief in religion” ??? “I must be doing something wrong here”;

I went back to staring at my clock: 5:10pm 5:11pm 5:12pm “That is time existing and moving here, and so are all those other things I thought about” “I can’t see anything wrong with my logic here!”

I went back to staring at my clock again, and thinking about this for quite awhile: 7:15pm 7:16pm 7:17 pm “You know, when you get right down to it, this is also an electronic device existing and moving here in addition to time existing and moving here” “The clock definitely has a distinct physical thing or object spatial presence existing here in the universe but what about time existing here?” “Time cannot also have a distinct physical thing or object spatial presence here, because it is impossible for two distinct physical things to exist in the same space at the same time”;

“So in other words, time existing, moving, and passing here, is actually just a word man uses to describe the physical existence and movement of the electronic device that is spatially present here;

I looked at almost everything man has called time existing, moving, and passing somewhere, and found it to almost always be something else physically existing and moving here in distinct object or thing form, and never time existing in the same way “Almost everything”? I of course could not look at spacetime, because it would be invisible even if it did actually exist in distinct physical object or thing form...which it doesn’t.

“There is no time metaphysically independent of clocks”? I agree and just said so David. “What is a clock”? I just explained that a clock is not time actually existing in distinct physical object or thing form, and neither are those other things you mentioned in the same post.

If you understand what I just said here...you will understand that what I said earlier was not “contradictory”.

(Sorry for the very long post everyone: But this is some really deep metaphysics, and I tried my best to explain it so most could understand it).
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Re: What is spacetime made of?

Postby ronjanec on September 1st, 2018, 3:22 pm 

Braininvat » Sat Sep 01, 2018 9:49 am wrote:
ronjanec » September 1st, 2018, 6:50 am wrote:
(Biv: Could you please move this thread to the odds and ends forum(ouch), or anywhere else you feel appropriate, since you said it does not meet your standards for this forum in SCF?)


Glad to be of assistance. Enjoy.


I can usually appreciate a good joke about myself Biv, and also tolerate just about any kind of criticism of myself whether justified or even unjustified, but what you just did here I consider very sarcastic, mean spirited, and personally very insulting(“the crackpot forum”?)

I have always treated you with respect here Biv, despite our many differences of opinion, and I don’t think it is to much to ask that you treat me in the same way.
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Re: What is spacetime made of?

Postby Braininvat on September 1st, 2018, 7:40 pm 

The forum description, and the commas between Fringe theory and so on, should indicate that crackpot theory is included, but is not the totality of the forum. Unsupported musings are not necessarily crackpottery. My sample thread, for example, is unsupported and lacks scholarship, but would not be considered crackpot by anyone who has lived with cats and understands the years of observation that went into it. And I will note that you requested a change of venue for the thread, and it seemed to me that this would be the best fit. Also, it will show in New Posts, which it would not do in Odds and Ends. At some point, it is possible that you will respond to the critiques and the useful presentations on Lorentz transformation and relativity, and this would result in modifications of the OP theory that would send the thread back to PT or to Philosophy forums. As it stands, your theory seems to rest on subjective impressions and idiosyncratic definitions of time. This makes it a fringe theory.
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Re: What is spacetime made of?

Postby Raze on September 1st, 2018, 10:57 pm 

ronjanec » September 1st, 2018, 9:50 am wrote:Raze,

4:57pm 4:58pm 4:59pm(my L.E.D digital clock at home): Raze, this is time existing, moving, and passing here right? I personally have no problem with someone saying this because it’s true, and that’s what man calls (and how he defines) this particular type of movement;

But is this time existing, moving and passing here in physical distinct object form?. No, this is the physical movement of the numbers on an electronic device that man invented, or something else existing and moving here(and you must be one physical thing or the other right? This certainly sounds like common sense to me Raze)

So if any clock anywhere in the universe slows down for any reason whatsoever in an experiment or otherwise, does this mean that time itself actually slowed down? No. This was again something else physically moving here in distinct object form not time itself. So do any of those experiments that supposedly “proved” time slowed down prove anything in regards to time moving in distinct physical object form? Again no.

If you accelerate a Leprechaun very close to the speed of light on a spaceship moving this fast, will he shrink in size, and age at a much slower rate relative to another Leprechaun living here on earth? “Well of course not you big dummy!” “Leprechauns only exist on earth because we talk about them, they have no (real or actual) distinct physical object or thing form existing here on earth or anywhere else in the universe”;

Only objects can slow down relative to something else. I’m trying to tell you and everyone else Raze, that time does not actually exist “independent” of man’s timekeeping system in distinct physical object form anywhere in the universe(and never has).

I’m definitely wrong about all of this? Ok, but I think it’s fair on my part to ask you to actually prove what you are saying is true then: And I challenge anyone anywhere reading this, to point to any distinct physical object or thing existing anywhere in the universe that you are saying is time actually existing in distinct physical object or thing form(And please remember, this cannot be something else actually existing here in distinct physical object or thing form)

Raze(and anyone else reading this), I am not trying to prove the T.O.R wrong here(although, I again personally believe it to not be true):: I am only trying to prove the “time dilation” part of this theory wrong.

(Biv: Could you please move this thread to the odds and ends forum(ouch), or anywhere else you feel appropriate, since you said it does not meet your standards for this forum in SCF?)

ronjanec,

There are two problems with you trying to "prove time dilation wrong." The first is that it's an experimental fact (with your interpretation, you will say that objects slow down, which is fine), and the second problem is that time has a particular definition in physics, and when physicists speak of time dilation they are doing so in light of their definition of time. In particular, in special relativity, time is defined operationally. It is defined as that which can be measured to have periodic motion using a clock. No further abstractions are made about it in Einstein's original work. And as such, by that definition, everything that moves periodically (everything that could be used as a clock) literally does go about its natural periodic motion at a rate that is dependent upon relative velocity. That is an observed fact.

Now, the model to explain it is where the idea of spacetime comes from. It's just an accurate physical model. It could be unicorns causing it. But what is called time dilation (whatever it truly is) definitely does happen. And the very same thing is true of "space" (again, defined operationally); whatever length contraction "actually is," it does occur, and both occur in a way that exactly matches the relativity model.


And that is exactly why Minkowski thought of the idea of spacetime: because using Einstein's operational definitions of time and space (which apparently are different from your definitions of time and space), one discovers that neither time nor space are absolute. However, for whatever reason, the 4-dimensional dot product of time and space IS absolute. Other than the fact that it made the theory more simple, the conspicuousness of the fact that this product is the same for every observer is why Minkowski believed the notion of spacetime was important.

Because again, according to Einstein's operational definitions of space and time (space is what a meter stick measures, time is what a clock measures, and any further speculation on the two is a waste of...time), neither one of the two are the same for every observer. And Minkowski found that an operation between the elements of space X = (x, y, z) and element of time T = (ct) of the form X ⚬ T = -(ct)^2 + x^2 + y^2 + z^2 [or equivalently (ct)^2 - (x^2 + y^2 + z^2) ] is the same value or every inertial observer. Since neither (x, y, z) or (ct) have that property, he felt that the four-vector (ct, x, y, z) which has the aforementioned property was a more useful way to look at it. And he is correct, in terms of physics.




So what is spacetime made of? That misses the point. Space and time have an operational definition in physics. Whatever their existence is beyond metersticks and clocks is beyond physics, at least when it comes to relativity. But what we know to be true is that all periodic motion, from hearts, to atoms, to clocks, to elementary particles, will have varying rates that depend upon the relative motion or gravitational acceleration between two observers (but note: an observer at rest with respect to the clock or meter stick will NOT see either time dilation or length contraction on it- although differential aging is real, but that is a slightly different concept [look up the twin paradox, which is no paradox at all, but instead a lack of understanding]). What the heck does this mean? It's a mad concept. But it's also an observed fact. However, Minkowski space (i.e., spacetime) and relativity explain this observed fact in an entirely logically consistent way, and one that is as simple as possible.

There is an alternative explanation: the Lorentz ether theory. However, as I mentioned before, it's exactly the same except it adds a superfluous hypothesis of an undetectable absolute rest frame.




Lastly, regarding your hang ups about time: correct me if I'm wrong, but you don't have a problem with the claim that clocks (or other things that move with periodic motion) slow down as a function of speed, or that lengths change as a function of speed. You simply have a problem with the claim that time slows down or space contracts. Is that right? If that is so, then I have two issues for you to consider:

(1) If you were to take that idea and model some physics, you'd end up with the exact same equations of special relativity. You'd just be calling "time" something other than time.

(2) How would you explain muon decay from the reference frame of a muon coming into the atmosphere? No observer at rest in their own reference frame would ever measure their own clocks to be moving slowly (this includes all objects with periodic motion: their heart rate, their thoughts, their atoms, etc). Which means the only explanation for the muon surviving the trip through the atmosphere is that the distance it measures that it travels is smaller than the distance people at earth measure it traveling. The length of the "space" between the muons and the earth must be smaller. If it's just the clouds and air and so on that shrinks (since THEY are moving toward the muon in the muon's reference frame), but the distance between the muon and the earth has not gotten smaller, then surely the muon would have decayed by the time it reached the surface. And yet they do not decay nearly as often as they should, statistically speaking, without taking relativistic effects into account. So what else is shrinking in the muon's reference frame? It has to be the distance between the muon and the earth. The "space" between. Or rather, the length between the earth and the muon. So it isn't just objects being squished, as Lorentz originally thought.




This is, again, another reason why the concept of spacetime (in physics) is more useful than either space or time. It is invariant, while the other two are not.



Anyway, last thing, regarding your challenge for someone to essentially put time in a bottle: all the things you said about time, about how it's just a word to describe something actually present here, can be exactly parroted with a switch between space and time: space is just a word to describe something actually present now, with "now" being the temporal equivalent that "here" is to space. You can't see space. It bears repeating: you can't see space. No more than you can see time. You can only see rays of light that hit your retina and are interpreted by your brain. You only see depth because you have stereoscopic vision. You only feel objects because electromagnetic signals transfer information to your brain over a duration. And the distance between you and that object you are looking at is not an absolute thing. It is entirely dependent upon your relative motion with respect to it.

So put space in a bottle. Something that isn't just you describing a distance between two objects (when that distance is not something everyone will see).





So again I argue to you that space is no more real than time. Both are words used to describe things we observe, and neither are absolute. Both together are, which is why I think MOTION is more real than either space or time, because motion is the comination of both of the two, and has been pointed out, the Minkowski norm (the spacetime interval), is something every observer agrees upon. So in my book that makes it more "real" than either space or time alone.

But the bottom line is that the only "real" things are objects and their evolution. Both space and time are just words we use to describe that. What is real is the effects we observe. We attribute them to either space or time or both, but all that, including space, is just a model. The best model, in my opinion, is one that is invariant, and that's why I prefer spacetime.
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Re: What is spacetime made of?

Postby ronjanec on September 1st, 2018, 11:14 pm 

Raze,

I have become rather burned out trying to give a very in-depth response to everyone’s comments about this particular subject, so I hope you will forgive me for not doing this again with you(This is also very time consuming on my part)

You sound like you really know your stuff in this area of physics Raze, and I hope we can talk about some of the same type of things in the near future. And by the way, welcome to the forum Raze.
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Re: What is spacetime made of?

Postby ronjanec on September 2nd, 2018, 9:35 am 

Raze,

“So what is spacetime made of?” I’m missing the point in asking this question? I don’t know about that Raze: If science does not know what space or time actually is in an objective tense, and only knows about this in a strictly operational sense, how can any scientist say or make with any high degree of confidence any accurate observations or predictions about space and time, if he doesn’t even know what he is actually dealing with in the first place.

I am pretty sure that gravity exists, and can I observe this operationally, and I can even perform an experiment proving this to be true, but I would still be very nervous about making any other kind of statements or predictions about gravity, with any high degree of confidence on my part.

It sure sounds like it to me, that science may be on very shaky ground with its observations and predictions about space and time today even in strictly an operational sense. Just saying Raze.

(Yeah, I know said I would not respond to you about this particular post Raze, but I felt bad about not responding to a post that you worked so hard on: Plus I felt better after getting a good nights rest)
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Re: What is spacetime made of?

Postby davidm on September 2nd, 2018, 11:28 am 

ronjanec » September 2nd, 2018, 7:35 am wrote:... how can any scientist say or make with any high degree of confidence any accurate observations or predictions about space and time, if he doesn’t even know what he is actually dealing with in the first place.


And yet, special and general relativity both make predictions, those predictions have been checked (tested and observed) countless times, and every single prediction has checked out — most recently, the verification of the existence of gravity waves, predicted by Einstein in 1916 and verified 99 years later. So what’s the problem?
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Re: What is spacetime made of?

Postby phyti on September 3rd, 2018, 2:39 pm 

What is time?

The author of SR didn't believe or promote the idea of an objective time. In contrast, he developed the idea of clock time or time measurement as being motion dependent! It was Minkowski who expressed the time variable as a mathematical 'dimension', but solely for mathematical purposes, i.e. time on paper.

quotes by the author of SR

From 'The Meaning of Relativity', Albert Einstein, 1956:

page 1.

"The experiences of an individual appear to us arranged in a series of events; in this series the single events which we remember appear to be ordered according to the criteria of "earlier" and "later", which cannot be analyzed further. There exists, therefore, for the individual, an I-time, or subjective time."

page 31.

"The non-divisibility of the four-dimensional continuum of events does not at all, however, involve the equivalence of the space coordinates with the time coordinate."

page 32.

"Finally, with Minkowski, we introduce in place of the real time co-ordinate l=ct, the imaginary time co-ordinate..."

time and perception

Subjective time requires memory, which allows a comparison of a current state to a previous state for any changes, which lends itself to an interpretation of time flowing. Patients with brain damage to specific areas involved in maintaining a personal chronology, lose their ability to estimate elapsed time, short or long term. Consider the fact that people waking from a comatose state, have no memory of how much elapsed time, whether hrs, days, or even years.

Consider one of the greatest misnomers ever used, 'motion pictures' or 'movies', where a person observes a sequence of still photos and the mind melds them to produce moving objects where there is no motion. These cases show time as part of perception. SR then alters perception via motion.

The simplest argument against the arrow of time, time is a scalar, a magnitude with no direction.

The operational definition of assigning a time to an event as mentioned by A.E. in his 1905 paper is essentially what it is, and how it's been done since humans appeared.

It is a correspondence convention, i.e., assigning events of interest to standard clock events, a measure and ordering of activity, with 'time' always increasing/accumulating.

It is an accounting scheme developed out of practical necessity, for human activities like agriculture, business, travel, science, etc. The unit of measure for time initially referred to relative positions of astronomical objects, stars, sun, and moon, which implies earth rotations and earth orbits. The year equates to the periodic motion of the earth relative to the

sun, the month, the moon relative to the earth, and the day, the earth rotation relative to the stars. All units of time are by definition, involving spatial motion or distance. The clock further divides the day into smaller units of measure. The reference in the 1905 paper of the watch hand to a position on the watch face involves nothing more than counting hand cycles (hand motion of specific distances representing subdivisions of a day). Finally, with the present day light clock, with internal light oscillations between an emitter and a mirror spaced a distance d, the time t represents a quantity of light motion equal to 2kdc (k a convenient multiple), i.e. a distance labeled as 'time'.

Current scientific research requires clocks that generate smaller and more precise periods than those of the past. The second is defined as n wave lengths of a specific frequency of light. Note "n wave lengths" is a distance, but labeled as "time".

If we use a light based clock to time the speed of an object along a known distance x, what are we actually doing?

We are comparing the simultaneous motion of an object to the motion of light for a duration (number of ticks). The result is a ratio x/s = vt/ct = v/c or speed. It should be obvious that the ticks serve to correlate the positions of the object with the positions of the light signal, for simultaneous comparisons. If you use Minkowski spacetime diagrams the vertical scale is not 'time', but ct, light path distance, i.e. they plot speed. This revision removed the question of the nature of 'time' vs. that of 'space', and provided a useful method of graphical comparison.

In summation: A clock provides a beat or rhythm to coordinate events.
A clock meters time just as a metronome sets a beat. Whether the metronome ticks fast or slow, the same amount of music is played. If the clock is adjusted to run faster or slower, the amount of activity does not change, only the measurement. A clock can only measure time if it's synchronized to a standard, just as a ruler used for measuring spatial intervals.

Just as computers require a clock to synchronize operations, there could be a clock that regulates the behavior of the universe, i.e. a form of objective time, but it hasn't been discovered yet.
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Re: What is spacetime made of?

Postby phyti on September 3rd, 2018, 2:49 pm 

ronjanec;

If you can accept 'time' as a human convention, the next step is comparing object motion to light motion.

1. A plane is parked on the ground, with passenger A sitting across the aisle from B.

A tosses a ball to B on a path perpendicular to the aisle, in 1 sec.

2. The plane leaves the airport, accelerates to a specified speed v.

B tosses the ball to A on a path perpendicular to the aisle, in 1 sec.

Other than the change in direction, the ball behaves the same in the moving plane as it did on the ground. This is in agreement with SR which states physics in a frame moving with constant speed free from acceleration is the same as physics in a frame at rest. Since all objects within the plane acquire the speed v of the plane, there is no relative motion of objects and the initial conditions are the same in both cases .

The lite clock consists of an emitter/detector ED and a mirror M.

Fig.1, you observe a static clock and a photon (blue) moving to M in 1 unit of time.

Fig.2, you observe a clock moving at .6c. Since light speed is independent of its source, the photon does not acquire the speed of the emitter as the ball does in the plane example. It can however move at a different angle and must be somewhere on the arc. The vector ct can be resolved into a vt-component which compensates for the motion of the clock and a ut-component which becomes the active part of the clock.

You see the moving clock running at 80% rate because the light has to intercept a moving target. (A hunter has to lead the target, and since the bullet has one speed, the angle compensates for the target motion.)

Fig.3 is the observation of an observer moving with the clock. It indicates .8 units, but he doesn't question its accuracy since his biological clock (chemistry) agrees. Motion affects all processes involving EM interactions.

That motion affected perception and measurements, was extremely new to science.
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Re: What is spacetime made of?

Postby ronjanec on September 3rd, 2018, 6:13 pm 

davidm, phyti, and anyone else reading this,

“What is spacetime made of?”

This thread started out in the Metaphysics forum many years ago, and that is the basically the same way(or ontologically to be precise) that I have usually responded to people’s comments over the years, and that is also what I was looking for in people’s comments on my posts in the past and in the present.

It seems that no matter what I post, all I get back in return is another lecture on physics: Guys this ain’t the science forum! If all you want to do is talk about physics, please go start a new thread in SCF talking strictly about physics.

What is space made of?(I already said what I thought this was made of) What is time made of? Atoms? Molecules? Strings? Fruit loops?(I’m saying that it’s actually not made of anything because it does not exist in object form, or is again, just a word we use to describe the results of man’s timekeeping system)

Do you realize how important it is to know what something is actually made of before you can be reasonably certain of any scientific statements or conclusions in the same area? “What is dark matter/dark energy made of?” “I dunno, no one knows, but it does all kinds of really neat stuff, do you want to hear what my professor taught me about this in college?” “He is a world famous expert on this!” Yeah, right.
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Re: What is spacetime made of?

Postby phyti on September 4th, 2018, 1:00 pm 

'Spacetime' is an abstract concept existing only in the mind. It uses symbolism to represent physical effects in the natural/physical world. It's intangible with no composition anymore than love, charity, or humor. Time and space in the common usage, are relationships of events.
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Re: What is spacetime made of?

Postby DragonFly on September 4th, 2018, 1:13 pm 

phyti » September 4th, 2018, 12:00 pm wrote:'Spacetime' is an abstract concept existing only in the mind. It uses symbolism to represent physical effects in the natural/physical world. It's intangible with no composition anymore than love, charity, or humor. Time and space in the common usage, are relationships of events.


Yes. Spacetime/Universe is a vantage point in regard to a deeper reality.
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Re: What is spacetime made of?

Postby Braininvat on September 4th, 2018, 1:19 pm 

Ron, if you've paid any attention to physics in the past century, you will notice that it seeks answers to questions that edge over into the metaphysical. If you ask what spacetime (a concept very much a part of physics) is made of, then you cannot avoid an inquiry that treads a path in both disciplines. If you keep getting "a lecture in physics" (yes, I've lookd down the thread and seen quite a few here), it is because your posts are not communicating that you have grasped the relevant points they are making. Philosophy is a demanding discipline, and modern metaphysics especially has become more demanding because of how scientific evidence has caused major revisions in our understanding of space and time. Space is no longer pure void emptiness. Literally, mountains (huge Himalayan ones) of evidence show that space is a sort of stuff that can be stretched and bent. To have any dialogue, metaphysical or otherwise, about it, it is necessary to understand this mammoth shift away from the understanding of space before the 20th century. We now know that the vacuum itself (so called "empty space") has an energy density - something beyond Newton's powers to even imagine.
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Re: What is spacetime made of?

Postby ronjanec on September 4th, 2018, 5:12 pm 

phyti » Tue Sep 04, 2018 11:00 am wrote:'Spacetime' is an abstract concept existing only in the mind. It uses symbolism to represent physical effects in the natural/physical world. It's intangible with no composition anymore than love, charity, or humor. Time and space in the common usage, are relationships of events.


Ok, but why do so many scientists say spacetime/time literally began in the Big Bang, and then expanded with the rest of universe? This equals spacetime/time being an object of some kind existing completely independent of the human mind, before any human minds in the physical universe could have possibly existed to come up with this same concept?
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Re: What is spacetime made of?

Postby ronjanec on September 4th, 2018, 5:42 pm 

Braininvat » Tue Sep 04, 2018 11:19 am wrote:Ron, if you've paid any attention to physics in the past century, you will notice that it seeks answers to questions that edge over into the metaphysical. If you ask what spacetime (a concept very much a part of physics) is made of, then you cannot avoid an inquiry that treads a path in both disciplines. If you keep getting "a lecture in physics" (yes, I've lookd down the thread and seen quite a few here), it is because your posts are not communicating that you have grasped the relevant points they are making. Philosophy is a demanding discipline, and modern metaphysics especially has become more demanding because of how scientific evidence has caused major revisions in our understanding of space and time. Space is no longer pure void emptiness. Literally, mountains (huge Himalayan ones) of evidence show that space is a sort of stuff that can be stretched and bent. To have any dialogue, metaphysical or otherwise, about it, it is necessary to understand this mammoth shift away from the understanding of space before the 20th century. We now know that the vacuum itself (so called "empty space") has an energy density - something beyond Newton's powers to even imagine.


Biv,

The problem I usually have though, is people only want to talk about the physics end, and usually completely ignore any metaphysical discussions I talk about here(phyti’s last comment was a welcome exception to this)

Or for example, if I ask the question “what is time?”, people again usually only want to talk about the spacetime aspect, completely ignoring the metaphysical aspect of the same question. This thread did after all start in PCF not SCF.

Another problem I personally have is not having a very good background in physics in college unlike a number of people here. So if that disqualifies me to comment in certain treads even of a philosophical nature... Nah, I’ll still comment about at least some of it: please just ignore the previous sentence. :)
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Re: What is spacetime made of?

Postby davidm on September 5th, 2018, 10:36 am 

For a purely philosophical discussion of space and time, I recommend Space and Time, chapter 8 of Prof. Norman Swartz’s book “Beyond Experience: Metaphysical Theories and Philosophical Constraints.” The entire book is free here. Swartz is a professor emeritus of philosophy at Simon Fraser University.

ETA: for much better readability of Ch. 8, I recommend the PDF version, here.
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Re: What is spacetime made of?

Postby ronjanec on September 5th, 2018, 10:42 am 

davidm » Wed Sep 05, 2018 8:36 am wrote:For a purely philosophical discussion of space and time, I recommend Space and Time, chapter 8 of Prof. Norman Swartz’s book “Beyond Experience: Metaphysical Theories and Philosophical Constraints.” The entire book is free here. Swartz is a professor emeritus of philosophy at Simon Fraser University.


Thanks David: I hate to download anything because of potential viruses, but maybe I will (still) give this one a shot despite this: hopefully when I have more time today.
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Re: What is spacetime made of?

Postby davidm on September 5th, 2018, 10:50 am 

There are no viruses here, and anyway, if your computer protections are updated, you should not have a virus problem anyway. I do recommend the PDF version, as noted above in the edit to my post, for much better readability.
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Re: What is spacetime made of?

Postby ronjanec on September 5th, 2018, 6:54 pm 

davidm and anyone else reading this,

Professor Swartz’s book talks about a number of metaphysical concepts in the ‘Space and Time’ chapter of his book that davidm linked to us here in his recent post; A quick comment on some of this;

The contention that time’s beginning would be basically “impossible” to figure out? I figured this out many years ago and have talked about this number of times here(or basically pre-historic man again watching the illusionary “movement/and it’s location along the daily journey” of the sun “across” the eastern, southern and western horizon, and learning to time his daily activities to this);

Space basically does not actually exist to some of the people he mentioned? Or Space is nothing? I can’t buy either conclusion, and consider both illogical conclusions; Long story short: there must be something existing between objects in the universe and it can’t be nothing;

And then on the other hand to some he mentioned: Space definitely exists. Everything must exist somewhere in physical space literally. Two physical things cannot exist in the same space at the same time: So physical space must exist around other physical things or inside them on an atomic level;

The concept that someone could possibly travel back or forward in time from the present time is complete nonsense if you actually understand what you are really talking about here(I’ve talked about this a number of times here)
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Re: What is spacetime made of?

Postby phyti on September 6th, 2018, 2:21 pm 

ronjanec » Tue Sep 04, 2018 5:12 pm wrote:
phyti » Tue Sep 04, 2018 11:00 am wrote:'Spacetime' is an abstract concept existing only in the mind. It uses symbolism to represent physical effects in the natural/physical world. It's intangible with no composition anymore than love, charity, or humor. Time and space in the common usage, are relationships of events.


Science talks about concepts AS IF they are (physical) things. No one sees an orbit, a 4-vector, momentuum, center of mass, etc. Labels are required for purposes of identification and a common understanding. The ‘big bang’ is one theoretical human concept of how the universe began and developed to its curent state. There are other theories. If ‘time’ is a human convention, then it didn’t begin with the BB. That is an assumption by the segment of scientists who believe time is an objective something, that works behind the scenes planning events.
It may be more than a science problem. No one wants to hear news that “there’s a hole in my clock, and time is running out’.
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Re: What is spacetime made of?

Postby ronjanec on September 6th, 2018, 2:43 pm 

phyti » Thu Sep 06, 2018 12:21 pm wrote:
ronjanec » Tue Sep 04, 2018 5:12 pm wrote:
phyti » Tue Sep 04, 2018 11:00 am wrote:'Spacetime' is an abstract concept existing only in the mind. It uses symbolism to represent physical effects in the natural/physical world. It's intangible with no composition anymore than love, charity, or humor. Time and space in the common usage, are relationships of events.


Science talks about concepts AS IF they are (physical) things. No one sees an orbit, a 4-vector, momentuum, center of mass, etc. Labels are required for purposes of identification and a common understanding. The ‘big bang’ is one theoretical human concept of how the universe began and developed to its curent state. There are other theories. If ‘time’ is a human convention, then it didn’t begin with the BB. That is an assumption by the segment of scientists who believe time is an objective something, that works behind the scenes planning events.
It may be more than a science problem. No one wants to hear news that “there’s a hole in my clock, and time is running out’.


That’s very interesting phyti: I usually get a lot of grief when I say and try to prove that time did not literally begin in the Big Bang(or at least here on the forum), but that it actually began back in pre-historic time’s. It’s good to know that there are others out there like me that also believe that time did not begin in the Big Bang.
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Re: Grounds for Separation

Postby Faradave on September 6th, 2018, 2:54 pm 

I think its fair to say that current convention acknowledges 4D of separation emerging from the Big Bang singularity. There is latitude in how we label those separations (time, space, interval, duration, distance, etc.) for which Special Relativity serves as a satisfyingly consistent example. It's still a model and there's room for others. But it's a high bar to surpass.
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Re: Grounds for Separation

Postby ronjanec on September 6th, 2018, 3:17 pm 

Faradave » Thu Sep 06, 2018 12:54 pm wrote:I think its fair to say that current convention acknowledges 4D of separation emerging from the Big Bang singularity. There is latitude in how we label those separations (time, space, interval, duration, distance, etc.) for which Special Relativity serves as a satisfyingly consistent example. It's still a model and there's room for others. But it's a high bar to surpass.



I obviously fall in the “others” category Dave. :) On a more important note; Why is N.Y.C pizza so lousy?
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Re: What is spacetime made of?

Postby ronjanec on September 6th, 2018, 11:31 pm 

Faradave,

All joking aside Dave: I honestly cannot see any really good reason why time had to begin in the Big Bang;

Except for the theoretical claims of SR that you mentioned: all the other things that we normally associate with time existing(clocks etc.) obviously could not have begun when(my just saying “when” does not mean time existed back then...it’s just existing today as a present day observation about a previous particular point in the existence of the universe) this was(the same thing with “was”) said to have occurred.

I think the “high bar to surpass” here is actually the concept of naturally occurring spacetime, versus this just being simply a man made and invented type of measuring system existing today, with spacetime also just being a more recent invention of man.
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