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Old 01-03-2005, 11:51 PM   #1 (permalink)
DJ FC
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Well I've been pondering a few thoughts in my head lately, and it sure would be nice to get them down on paper (or virtual paper) and what better way than to post them in the jibberish thread for all to read and comment on.

If any of these ideas are stolen from other people, I am sorry, it was purely coincidental.

First and foremost, a few assumptions:

1) If something is possible, however improbable it may be, given enough chances; it will happen.

- Example: If I play the lottery enough times, I will eventually win.

This seems straight forward enough; until you begin to consider the smallest of chances (eg a comet will take a specified path). But the fact of the matter is that we have to accept it in all cases, no matter how small the odds, there is always a certain number of times that could render a desired outcome. We always assume that these events are possible (they donít violate the laws of physics, or whatever universal laws really exist)

2) The law of conservation of matter.
-Matter cannot be created nor destroyed. We accept this as truth, and I am not going to consider otherwise. In the event that matter can be turned into energy and vis versa, I consider the two one in the same. One can be exchanged for the other, but neither can be created nor destroyed.

3) The first 3 dimensions (height, width, and depth) all exist together.
Example - While we can treat "time" (the 4th dimension as I will refer to it) separately from the other 3 dimensions, we will not assume that 2 or 1 of the 3 dimensions can exist without the others (an object cannot have height without width and depth, etc.)

Ok so here was my train of thought:

People use the concept of "infinite" so loosely, that I doubt they truly understand how bold a statement is. Specifically with infinite referring to time (forever), we immediately come to some strange conclusions when considering my assumptions.

If we assume that time will continue infinitely (at first we will assume that time started at some point, and from that point continues ad infinitum, but we will discuss the other option later) and we also consider my first premise (that given enough chances anything that is possible will happen) well we can conclude that anything that is possible will happen.

How is this a possible conclusion? WellÖ can we put odds that someday the Earth will fall into the sun? Certainly we can. Can we put odds that the entire universe will collapse and explode again? You bet. Does it matter what these odds are? Nope, because if time continues on forever, this will eventually happen. So when this universe explodes again, is it possible that another planet capable of sustaining life could be created? Why yes, itís happened before. So there are odds of this event happening, no matter how small? Certainly. Well on any given planet capable of sustaining life, life may spring upÖ itís pure chance. And this life could be humanoid. You see the pattern. No matter how small the chance may be, as long as you assume infinite chances at achieving a desired solution you will eventually arrive at this solution.

Wow thatís fucking crazy. So assuming that time goes on foreverÖ I can safely assure you that there will be some point in the future in which the Japanese win WW2. It is incomprehensible how much time would be required for this to happen, but we can rest assured that it would indeed happen.

Not only will it happen with the same construction, but it will happen with the exact same pieces of matter in the exact places. Matter may fly off into space, but there is always the chance that gravity could pull it back, and the chance that it could be sucked back up and spit exactly as it was spit before.

Sounds far out, absolutely crazy, but we canít disprove it.

OK, well now letís make another assumption, and forget time for the time being.

Letís assume that the universe has no origin.

First I must explain what I mean by origin. Assume that there was a single point in the universe. And from this point, there could be a distance beyond which there was no matter. The laws of physics may still apply there, but matter simply does not exist at such distance.

In such a construct, without an origin, you could keep traveling in a straight line forever and keep finding matter.

If this was the case, then you could place odds that you would find anything within the next amount of space you imagined. There are odds that there is intelligent life, so if you searched far enough, you would find it.

If you searched far enough, somebody else would be writing this exact passage at the exact time that I am.

This also seems fucking nuts, but we canít disprove it.

So lets assume we have both. An infinite universe, infinite matter, and infinite time. Only this time, time as well has no origin. Existence and matter always has been and always will be.

But this canít be the case, because if it was, everything I could think of would be happening right now. How so you ask? Well it would be possible that some time ago and at some distance away, some civilization launched a rocket with a cat and a message to be directed toward my house, or they would blow up the moon, or anything you can think of. Well the odds of these things happening, no matter how remoteÖ do exist, but they simply donít happen.

So we can conclude at least one of the following:

Time has an origin.
or
The Universe (or existence, basically I mean everything that is) has an origin, and a finite amount of matter.

Ok now back to time.

We can also conclude one of the following:
Either time isnít infinite
Or
Time travel is impossible

How do I get this? Well if time was infinite, eventually someone would discover time travel, if it was possible, and would visit me right now. But they havenít.

There was more stuff along these lines, I really should be writing this stuff down as I think of it, the arguments really were more richly and deeply developed in my head, Iíll post them if I remember.

[ January 06, 2005, 07:56 PM: Message edited by: DJ FC ]
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Old 01-04-2005, 12:03 AM   #2 (permalink)
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uh...I'm not sure man, good luck with that, there is an infinite number of possibilities.

...to abuse the testicles of the establishment.
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Old 01-05-2005, 10:42 PM   #3 (permalink)
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Problem with your first assumption:

Quote:
Originally posted by DJ FC:

1) If something is possible, however improbable it may be, given enough chances; it will happen.

- Example: If I play the lottery enough times, I will eventually win.
Counter-Assumption:
A possibility for something to happen is not a guarantee that it will happen no matter how many times the chance is given.

- Example: If I play the lottery enough times, I may have not have won.

Fragmented Thoughts:
The number of times you have already played do not effect your chances of winning in the future. So it is possible never winning even if you play infinite times.

Yes, there may be infinite chances for something to happen because it has an infinite amount of time to happen, but there are also infinite possibilities that must go at the bottom of the equation of probability, therefore making nothing certain.

Say you are correct, that anything that is possible has already existed or will happen. Well, you can also say it is possible for something never existing despite all odds of it existing. You can also imagine that there is the possibility of that very same thing existing. Non-existence and existence cannot co-exist; thus, this theory contradicts itself.

Quote:
Originally posted by DJ FC:

How do I get this? Well if time was infinite, eventually someone would discover time travel, if it was possible, and would visit me right now. But they havenít.
Why do you assume time must be infinite for time travel to exist? The distance from one side of my house to another is finite (even though itís a huge distance because my house is huge because I am rich) and I can easily travel from one side to the other in it (I get out of breath though when I run it because my house is soooo huge).

---------------
Interesting thoughts FC. Maybe you could reiterate with a little more breakdown of your main points into easy to follow, badass postulates? I donít know if Iím completely following you.

#YOLO
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Old 01-05-2005, 11:44 PM   #4 (permalink)
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Well as far as the "existing" and "not existing" argument goes... I never argued that any given action would occure at the same time as any other action.

I also stipulated that anything that is possible is limited to the laws of physics.

Also let's assume the odds of winning the lottery are 1 in 100... if we tried 1,000 times we'd probobly win.

If we tried 10,000 we could be more sure that we would win.

If we tried an infinite number of times I can guarentee that we would win.

No matter how small the odds are... infinity wins.
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Old 01-05-2005, 11:46 PM   #5 (permalink)
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And I never assumed that time travel must be infinite to exist, only that either:

Time isn't infinite
or
Time travel isn't possible

It's entirely possible (or at least cannot be disproven according to my premises) that time isn't infinite, yet time travel is still possible.
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Old 01-06-2005, 03:57 AM   #6 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally posted by DJ FC:
Well as far as the "existing" and "not existing" argument goes... I never argued that any given action would occure at the same time as any other action.
I never argued that you argued that any given action would occur at the same time as any other action.

Quote:
Originally posted by DJ FC:

If we tried an infinite number of times I can guarentee that we would win.

No matter how small the odds are... infinity wins.
You don't know that.

#YOLO
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Old 01-06-2005, 04:44 AM   #7 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally posted by THEINCREDIBLEdork:
</font><blockquote>quote:</font><hr />Originally posted by DJ FC:

If we tried an infinite number of times I can guarentee that we would win.

No matter how small the odds are... infinity wins.
You don't know that.</font>[/quote]I agree with FC there. To set it up mathematically...

<font size="1">There's a very real chance that I'm completely wrong with something I'm about to say. My apologies in advance.</font>

Say the odds of winning the lottery are 1/100 for any given ticket.

If you buy one ticket, your chances of winning are 1/100 (we just said that...)

If you buy two tickets, your chances are 199/10,000 (or 1.99/100)

Three tickets = 29,701/1,000,000 (2.9701/100)

Ten tickets = 90,438,207,500,880,449,001/100,000,000,000,000,000,000 (9.4xxxx/100)

100 tickets = 63.xxx/100

As you can see, the more you buy...the better your chances, though each successive ticket's added value is just a little bit smaller than the ticket before it.

In general, where N is the number of tickets that you have, your chances of winning are (100^N - 99^N)/100^N. If you were to buy something like...a trillion tickets, each with an independent 1/100 shot of winning, your total chances would be 99.9999999999999+a fuckload of 9's/100...but not 100/100. That said, the more tickets you buy...the larger your chances out of 100 become. If you take the limit of N in the previous equation ((100^N - 99^N)/100^N) as N approaches infinity, you get 1...or 100/100 (meaning you'll always win).

What's that mean? It basically means that FC's entire argument is true...so long as you're dealing with a situation with finite possibilities. No clue how it'd work with infinite possibilities...and I really don't want to think about it right now either.
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Old 01-06-2005, 04:00 PM   #8 (permalink)
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I'm eating an apple.

Psychedelics are illegal not because a loving government is concerned that you may jump out of a third story window. Psychedelics are illegal because they dissolve opinion structures and culturally laid down models of behavior and information processing.

― Terence McKenna
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Old 01-06-2005, 08:12 PM   #9 (permalink)
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Orgazmo and DJ FC I do see what you are saying. But it doesn't matter how many nines you have after 99.9%, it is still not a guarantee that the desired outcome will come true, a 100% value is the only one that can do that. In the sense of figuring out the laws of the Universe, your beginning assumptions that make the foundation for all future reasoning must be concrete and absolute, not allowing for any anomalies. Your foundation has a crack in it, and once you realize that there is a possibility for infinite number of alternate outcomes for everything that crack becomes bigger.

say the odds of winning with one ticket is 1\infinity

And you buy infinite tickets

do your crazy math now i dare you

1\infinity= no solution

[ January 06, 2005, 05:22 PM: Message edited by: THEINCREDIBLEdork ]

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Old 01-06-2005, 10:40 PM   #10 (permalink)
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Well you also have to be realistic about these things.

When I say that a dart I throw will hit the bullzeye, I can give you odds that I will be correct. We are judging a single event whether it will happen or not.

Indeed there are an infinite (technically) places within and outside of the bullzeye that the dart could go, but you can still give odds.

I believe, now this is completely unfounded, but hear me out, that there is some level at which only a finite number of acctions can occure, this level is probobly way beyond subatomic.

And the concept of infinity can be introduced into mathematics, it's called calculus. The whole process assumes what things would be at infinity by observing what happens as we approach infinity. It's a proven concept.

Edit:
Quote:
Originally posted by THEINCREDIBLEdork:
In the sense of figuring out the laws of the Universe, your beginning assumptions that make the foundation for all future reasoning must be concrete and absolute, not allowing for any anomalies.
Whether you realize it or not, you have just brought up one of the oldest questions in the book. How are we supposed to learn anything at all when all we have are observations of the world around us.

In my Greek Philosophy class we spent an entire 75min lecture on the phrase "It is (it exists)" as proposed by Heraclitus as the only thing that humans actually know. I urge you to take something from "It is" and make something fruitful out of it. The fact is you can't. All knowlede that we posses, even mathematics is "unfounded" as Plato described it (allthough he left an exception to knowledge of "The Forms")

[ January 06, 2005, 07:49 PM: Message edited by: DJ FC ]
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Old 01-07-2005, 04:41 AM   #11 (permalink)
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You guys should watch Pi.
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Old 01-07-2005, 05:54 AM   #12 (permalink)
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Quote:
But it doesn't matter how many nines you have after 99.9%, it is still not a guarantee that the desired outcome will come true, a 100%
I agree. That's where infinity comes into play. The whole idea of taking the Limit of the probability equation is to show that, as N approaches infinity, the probability of anything happening approaches 1...meaning it always happens. It means that, if you do something infinity times, the probability of a certain outcome is no longer 99.999999+% (as it is if you do that something a quadrillion times), instead the probability of any possible outcome is 100%.

Quote:
You guys should watch Pi
I've seen it...and I like it.

[ January 07, 2005, 02:54 AM: Message edited by: Orgazmo ]
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Old 01-07-2005, 10:32 AM   #13 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally posted by St. Anky:
You guys should watch Pi.
I've seen it...and I like it.
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Old 01-07-2005, 04:57 PM   #14 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally posted by St. Anky:
You guys should watch Pi.
I've seen it...and it was OK.

#YOLO
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