Rutgers scientists: Asteroids did kill the dinosaurs

Nov 29, 2010
Research scientist Paul Field, professors Ken Miller and Rob Sherrell with one of the core samples from Tighe Park, Freehold, N.J. Credit: Nick Romanenko, Rutgers University

(PhysOrg.com) -- Sometimes, you just can’t trust the iridium. A silvery-white natural metal that’s a member of the platinum family, iridium is a key ingredient in the manufacture of spark plugs. Iridium is also an important piece of evidence in a mystery that scientists have debated for decades – why did dinosaurs disappear from the face of the earth?

The prevailing scientific consensus is that at least one asteroid – possibly more – hit the earth about 65 million years ago, showering the planet with dust and debris, blocking sunlight, causing firestorms, and marking the end of the Cretaceous Period and the beginning of the Paleogene Period. Most scientists believe the impact was directly responsible for the mass extinction of many species of plants and animals – most famously, the dinosaurs.

The impact also left a clue – a chemical signature in the earth’s crust called the “iridium anomaly.” Iridium is rare in the earth’s crust but far more abundant in asteroids. That’s why, all over the world, scientists find unusually high concentrations of iridium in sediment layers at the boundary between the Cretaceous and Paleogene periods – called the K-Pg Boundary by geologists.

All over the world, that is, except in Freehold, New Jersey – 25 miles down the highway from Rutgers University’s New Brunswick Campus.

In several cores drilled at sites around New Jersey – much of which was covered by the ocean when dinosaurs roamed the earth – fossilized sea creatures are found below the K-Pg Boundary, buried by debris that contains iridium. This evidence supports the iridium anomaly – and the consensus that asteroids killed the ..

But not in Freehold. In 2007, scientists Neil H. Landman, of the American Museum of Natural History, and Ralph O. Johnson found fossils above the iridium-laden boundary in Freehold’s Tigh Park. Johnston is a self-educated paleontologist from West Long Branch, N.J.

Some scientists argue that the work of Landman and Johnson casts doubt on the consensus. These scientists say the Freehold evidence suggests dinosaur extinction was caused by catastrophic volcanic eruptions.

Enter Rutgers geologist Ken Miller, a professor of earth and planetary science in the School of Arts and Sciences. According to a paper authored by Miller, Rob Sherrell, Paul Field. and their colleagues in the journal Geology, the real explanation for the Freehold findings is far more simple: The iridium moved.

And how do they know that? Sherrell and Field, of the Institute of Marine and Coastal Sciences in the School of Environmental and Biological Sciences, went through a highly specialized, painstaking process of geochemical analysis to pinpoint the location of the K-Pg barrier at another Freehold site near the one excavated by Landman and Johnson..

Sherrell and Field analyzed sediment samples from the layers near and within the K-Pg boundary, using a method called nickel-sulfide fire assay to do the job. They melted the sediment at a high temperature, forming a bead of nickel sulfide. The iridium migrated to the bead, and the bead itself was in a crucible of sediment glass formed by the melting. They broke that glass to get to the bead, and then dissolved the bead in acid. The nickel dissolved and the iridium was left behind as very fine particles in the acid. They filtered the solution, and then dissolved those tiny particles in a second acid solution. This process produced a purified iridium solution that Field and Sherrell analyzed in their mass spectrometer.

“We infer that, at the Freehold site, the iridium has migrated,” Sherrell said. Just what caused the iridium to “migrate” below the layer of fossils isn’t clear.

Miller, the geologist, speculates that the sediment is sandier at the site in Freehold than at other sites in New Jersey, and this may have allowed what he calls “percolation” to occur. But the bottom line is clear: “The moved.”

Explore further: Hurricane Edouard right environment for drone test (Update)

Provided by Rutgers, The State University of New Jersey

4.3 /5 (19 votes)

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User comments : 213

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moebiex
5 / 5 (1) Nov 29, 2010
Just curious: Isn't iridium also produced in nuclear explosions? What sort(s) of evidence of human civilization would survive 65 million years of erosion etc - especially given the likely succession of multiple ice-ages, if we are so stupid as to go that route?
sstritt
2 / 5 (3) Nov 29, 2010
@moebiex
You're being too anthropocentric! Change "evidence of human civilization" to "evidence of civilization" and you might have an interesting idea. Don't know anything about the iridium though.
newscience
4 / 5 (2) Nov 29, 2010
The Shiva crater near Mumbai India was close to the same time, also, an asteroid impact on one side of the earth cause volcanoes or lava traps on the exact opposite side in planet from the shock wave. These lava areas then spew material and gas for thousands of years.
jmcanoy1860
3.7 / 5 (3) Nov 30, 2010
@moebiux

What?
kevinrtrs
1 / 5 (28) Nov 30, 2010
The prevailing scientific consensus is that at least one asteroid – possibly more – hit the earth about 65 million years ago, showering the planet with dust and debris, blocking sunlight, causing firestorms, and marking the end of the Cretaceous Period and the beginning of the Paleogene Period.

Strange to say, the asteroid couldn't have struck the earth at that time because it(earth) wasn't there to strike in the first place!!!
The earth is young, less than 10000 years, even if it sounds as foolish and batty as hens teeth to you.
So the conclusion that dinosaurs became extinct because of an asteroid strike is just a myth. Just another story made up to appease those who do not WANT to believe in a creator.

LivaN
5 / 5 (13) Nov 30, 2010

appease those who do not WANT to believe in a creator.

Actually most people do WANT to believe in a creator. Just like most people WANT to fly. Just like most people WANT to be thin and eat junk-food all day.

Unfortunately we live in a world where WANTS don't make reality.
Bog_Mire
4.2 / 5 (11) Nov 30, 2010
Cmon Kev, your just trolling arent ya? but thats a tired old lure, surely you can come up with a better one than that. If you find Noahs ark on a mountain side in Iran or somewhere, are ya gunna use Carbon dating to prove its age, or just take a guess? LOL
mjc
5 / 5 (1) Nov 30, 2010
I'm new to this.....is the kevinrtrs guy joking!
Bog_Mire
2.3 / 5 (3) Nov 30, 2010
mjc: kev is serious, but good for a laugh non the less
Yellowdart
1 / 5 (5) Nov 30, 2010
So the conclusion that dinosaurs became extinct because of an asteroid strike is just a myth.


Actually Kevin, during the flood, you would have had volcanic activity as well as asteroid/meteors striking the earth...basically the earth's own expelled rock returning, some probably well afterwards.
Kikeros
4.5 / 5 (2) Nov 30, 2010
Obviously kevinrtrs is a fake! It's a psychological experiment made by a graduate student in Studies of the Psychology of the Internet. That's the only reasonable explanation.
lengould100
3.7 / 5 (3) Nov 30, 2010
1) kevinrtrs likely is a Tea Party sponsored propagandist out to maintain the faithful (but why here?)

2) kevinrtrs is likely a monk from the Vatican, helping to maintain the money-spinning illusions.
krundoloss
4 / 5 (4) Nov 30, 2010
hey Kevinrtrs

WTF are you talking about? 10000 years old? That can be proven wrong 10000 different ways. Please dont waste our time, this is a SCIENCE site!

And if it is a Physch experiment, you may conclude that Anonymity on the internet causes people to be blunt, cruel, and to always seek the last word in a argument. Why, because there are no consequences as there would be in a real life situation.
dcoder
5 / 5 (3) Nov 30, 2010
For creationists, these axioms:

* What we have written about the creator is accurate...
* Don't ever question it...

The entire foundation (and witless comment) is not scientific ... his comments should be considered abuse.

Thankfully, good science is about questioning our own models. Some are just mad because now we can't be jailed, exiled or killed for this rationality...
Yellowdart
1 / 5 (2) Nov 30, 2010
For creationists, these axioms:

* What we have written about the creator is accurate...
* Don't ever question it...


The problem isnt that there is iridium. They are arguing that its moved, yet they have no mechanism for how. Maybe test it in sand would be a good idea??

In essence, what we have written is accurate, dont ever question it.

I doubt these guys are creationists, so it would seem, that any scientist as well as creationist as well as human being is subject to your lousy arguement.

Bog_Mire
1 / 5 (2) Nov 30, 2010
strange though that Kev cannot contemplate a creator who is infinitely *old*, and confines himself to such a small box.
Skeptic_Heretic
5 / 5 (4) Dec 01, 2010
1) kevinrtrs likely is a Tea Party sponsored propagandist out to maintain the faithful (but why here?)

2) kevinrtrs is likely a monk from the Vatican, helping to maintain the money-spinning illusions.

Vatican doesn't believe in young earth creationism either. There's only about 50,000 people who will say they believe it when pressed. Most will backpedal and say " I believe the Bible" because saying one piece of it isn't true, invalidates the entire construct in their mind.
Yellowdart
1 / 5 (6) Dec 01, 2010
strange though that Kev cannot contemplate a creator who is infinitely *old*, and confines himself to such a small box.


Is it any more or less difficult to do old or young for a God? Nope. Young would simply be creation, without a box to begin with...In other words, the creation of matter and the laws by which it will be bound offers no confinement on God, or time. There is no box.
Bog_Mire
1 / 5 (2) Dec 01, 2010
fair point Yellowdart...hadn't thought of it like that.
Ethelred
3.9 / 5 (9) Dec 04, 2010
Strange to say, the asteroid couldn't have struck the earth at that time because it(earth) wasn't there to strike in the first place!!
Well it is strange that you keep saying nonsense like that.

The earth is young, less than 10000 years, even if it sounds as foolish and batty as hens teeth to you.
No. Just wrong. What is foolish is that you insist on refusing to learn the truth.

Just another story made up to appease those who do not WANT to believe in a creator.
Want doesn't matter. EVIDENCE does. Do you have ANY evidence to support your claim? You steadfastly refuse to even acknowledge the question which is ample evidence that you know that you are full of it.

So again, how do YOU reconcile the Egyptians not noticing that they drowned, according to the time frame in Genesis? If you can't do that why are you on a science site? Try the Oxymoronic Discovery Institute. They not only appreciate Active Ignorance they advocate it.

Ethelred
Ethelred
4.3 / 5 (6) Dec 04, 2010
, the creation of matter and the laws by which it will be bound offers no confinement on God, or time. There is no box.
There is a Bible that people that think the world is young believe in. The description of the world in the Bible and the Universe we live in don't match. So that particular god either doesn't exist or is lying in one of those two things. Or the Bible is just the writing of ignorant men and we can't take its word about the existence of Jehovah.

I go with the last one.

Ethelred
Physorg should do themselves and us a favor
Stop the Ranking Insanity
MatthiasF
1 / 5 (10) Dec 04, 2010
, the creation of matter and the laws by which it will be bound offers no confinement on God, or time. There is no box.
There is a Bible that people that think the world is young believe in. The description of the world in the Bible and the Universe we live in don't match. So that particular god either doesn't exist or is lying in one of those two things. Or the Bible is just the writing of ignorant men and we can't take its word about the existence of Jehovah.


This is a little dishonest. What we've discovered about the Earth's creation pretty much fits with the creation story. Read the Genesis poem again and you'll notice it's exactly what geologists and physicists explain as well.

But everything after the poem was probably several hundred stories woven together into a single one (OT and NT alike).
Skeptic_Heretic
5 / 5 (3) Dec 04, 2010
This is a little dishonest. What we've discovered about the Earth's creation pretty much fits with the creation story. Read the Genesis poem again and you'll notice it's exactly what geologists and physicists explain as well.

I don't recall geologists and physicists saying that the Universe was created through magical incantation. Udayism is a disease, don't succumb to it.
Shootist
3.4 / 5 (5) Dec 04, 2010
The Shiva crater near Mumbai India was close to the same time, also, an asteroid impact on one side of the earth cause volcanoes or lava traps on the exact opposite side in planet from the shock wave. These lava areas then spew material and gas for thousands of years.


No. You are wrong.

Looking at the largest craters in the Solar System (Utopia Planitia (3500km), SP-Aitken (2500km) , Hellas (2000km) and Caloris (1800km), only Caloris has indications of "weird terrain" at the antipode. Mercury is only 4900km in diameter, the Caloris Impact Basin is almost 1/2 the diameter of the entire planet.

There are no extant impact basins on Earth which could possibly cause geologic effect on the other side of the planet.
Shootist
1.3 / 5 (3) Dec 04, 2010
Just curious: Isn't iridium also produced in nuclear explosions? What sort(s) of evidence of human civilization would survive 65 million years of erosion etc - especially given the likely succession of multiple ice-ages, if we are so stupid as to go that route?


Iridium was created during fusion in a star. Star supernovas and iridium is pumped out. Period.
yyz
5 / 5 (7) Dec 04, 2010
"Iridium was created during fusion in a star. Star supernovas and iridium is pumped out."

Actually, iridium (and other heavier-than-iron elements) were formed by the energetic supernova blast itself, sometimes referred to as supernova nucleosynthesis.
trekgeek1
4.7 / 5 (6) Dec 04, 2010
The prevailing scientific consensus is that at least one asteroid - possibly more - hit the earth about 65 million years ago, showering the planet with dust and debris, blocking sunlight, causing firestorms, and marking the end of the Cretaceous Period and the beginning of the Paleogene Period.

Strange to say, the asteroid couldn't have struck the earth at that time because it(earth) wasn't there to strike in the first place!!!
The earth is young, less than 10000 years, even if it sounds as foolish and batty as hens teeth to you.
So the conclusion that dinosaurs became extinct because of an asteroid strike is just a myth. Just another story made up to appease those who do not WANT to believe in a creator.


%*#!ing idiot.
Mike_Beck
5 / 5 (4) Dec 05, 2010
The prevailing scientific consensus is that at least one asteroid - possibly more - hit the earth about 65 million years ago, showering the planet with dust and debris, blocking sunlight, causing firestorms, and marking the end of the Cretaceous Period and the beginning of the Paleogene Period.

Strange to say, the asteroid couldn't have struck the earth at that time because it(earth) wasn't there to strike in the first place!!!
The earth is young, less than 10000 years, even if it sounds as foolish and batty as hens teeth to you.
So the conclusion that dinosaurs became extinct because of an asteroid strike is just a myth. Just another story made up to appease those who do not WANT to believe in a creator.



Actually, you're both wrong. The earth is only 40,000 years old and dinosaurs WERE killed by an asteroid. It was last February. I clearly remember it because it thoroughly screwed up traffic on the way to work.
Ethelred
4.1 / 5 (9) Dec 05, 2010
This is a little dishonest.
Not in the least.
What we've discovered about the Earth's creation pretty much fits with the creation story.
No. Even if you go with an Old Earth the order of creation is just plain wrong. Equating 'Let there be light' with the BB is about all you match to reality. Days and nights without a Sun. Flying creatures before crawling life. Plants without a Sun. Even when it was written that last was obviously wrong.
Read the Genesis poem again and you'll notice it's exactly what geologists and physicists explain as well.
You read that prose again and compare it to ACTUAL reality instead of Creationist nonsense. Or you can just reread my first paragraph as it is correct.

I have this discussed before. Many times. Lets see YOU fit actual evidence into the Genesis ONE timeline. It can't be done. Then try to reconcile G2 with G1. That can't be done either except to say that one is real and the other a mere story.

They are both stories.

Ethelred
joshuahamrick
1 / 5 (4) Dec 05, 2010
I like how the article says that the iridium migrated, bottom line. That is not science or education. That is people holding on to special interest. In fact I am very disappointing with this article and most of the comments on it.I'm not saying its correct or wrong.

I am unsure what these iridium isolation did to prove their theory. If someone could explain how they prove anything I would appreciate that. Until then, this is a bogus article supported by nothing but opinion.

This should be fully explored and not just written off as a self educated person going against the grain.

What scientific discoveries have we not made because people must maintain a status quo??? Science should question everything, even its own answers.

It infuriates me to see educated men and women being so close minded. I'm curious how it migrated, do your job and show me that. It may have profound impact to our understanding of these processes among others.
Code_Warrior
1 / 5 (4) Dec 05, 2010
@Ethelred
The theories of science are more useful models for developing technology than religious doctrine is. However, scientific theories have gaping holes that require as much faith as religious doctrine to rationalize.

The gaping hole is that the observations we are making now can be reliably wound backward all the way to some event for which no evidence can be obtained at this time. While observations clearly demonstrate systems that have evolved over time, there is no way to prove at this time that they weren't created in a state of complexity and evolved from there.

Occam's razor may conclude that the extrapolation all the way to the singularity may be the simplest explanation, but the universe is not bound by Occam's razor. In addition, extrapolation is a mathematical no-no.

My point is that you cannot claim the moral high ground based your belief that scientific theories are correct any more than a religious zealot can.
MatthiasF
1 / 5 (8) Dec 06, 2010
I'm not talking about creationism, I'm talking about ancients realizing there was an order of creation and getting it right.

The Genesis poem from the original Hebrew, spelled out creation as such.

Day 1. Existance.
Day 2. Universe and Sun.
Day 3. Earth, Plant-life
Day 4. Sun exposed and stary night (could suggest the atmosphere was too thick to see either at some point)
Day 5. Animals.
Day 6. Humans.

You have to keep in mind, knowledge was passed down through oral stories prior to written word.
Ethelred
4.1 / 5 (9) Dec 06, 2010
1/2
However, scientific theories have gaping holes that require as much faith as religious doctrine to rationalize.
Nonsense. No rational person claims that science has all the answers since we are clearly still engaging in research.
The gaping hole is that the observations we are making now can be reliably wound backward all the way to some event for which no evidence can be obtained at this time.
It fits the observed Universe so far. Which includes the CMBR. So the BB model works all the back to that. Genesis fails at day two.
While observations clearly demonstrate systems that have evolved over time, there is no way to prove at this time that they weren't created in a state of complexity and evolved from there.
I covered that. Perhaps you just didn't like the alternative. A god that lied in either the Book or the Universe. Either way you have a god that can't be trusted. So why go on a book that doesn't fit the evidence?

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Ethelred
4.1 / 5 (9) Dec 06, 2010
2/2
but the universe is not bound by Occam's razor
I don't have a problem with that. Some others do.
In addition, extrapolation is a mathematical no-no.
It is NOT a no-no in physics. Especially when the evidence fits the extrapolation. As it does.
My point is that you cannot claim the moral high ground based your belief that scientific theories are correct any more than a religious zealot can.
False. I am NOT claiming a MORAL ground. Just a ground based on actual evidence not on a book written long ago by men that clearly did not know how the world works.

I asked for a show of EVIDENCE. Do YOU have any? Bad philosophy that pretends an ancient book is equal to a modern evidence based science is not in any evidence to support that book.

Ethelred
Ethelred
4.1 / 5 (9) Dec 06, 2010
1/3
I'm talking about ancients realizing there was an order of creation and getting it right.
And I am pointing out that they did NOT get it right.
Day 1. Existance
No. That isn't what is in the Genesis.
And God called the light Day, and the darkness he called Night. And the evening and the morning were the first day.
Note there is no Sun but somehow an evening and a morning.

Day 2. Universe and Sun.
Doesn't say that either.

And God made the firmament, and divided the waters which [were] under the firmament from the waters which [were] above the firmament: and it was so.

Another day without a Sun. Yet you claimed a Universe and a Sun.

And the earth brought forth grass, [and] herb yielding seed after his kind, and the tree yielding fruit, whose seed [was] in itself, after his kind: and God saw that [it was] good
And the evening and the morning were the third day.


Grass and another morning and evening and STILL no Sun.

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Ethelred
4.1 / 5 (9) Dec 06, 2010
2/4
And let them be for lights in the firmament of the heaven to give light upon the earth: and it was so
Now we have a Universe.
And God made two great lights; the greater light to rule the day, and the lesser light to rule the night: [he made] the stars also
Finally we have Sun. On day four. Not exposed as you rewrote it. Finally created.
(could suggest the atmosphere was too thick to see either at some point)
Could also suggest an unwillingness to accept what was actually written. Because it was wrong perhaps.
Day 5. Animals
In the wrong order. You glossed over that.
And God created great whales, and every living creature that moveth, which the waters brought forth abundantly, after their kind, and every winged fowl after his kind: and God saw that [it was] good.
I take the glossing over was because you know this is wrong. Whales came long after birds. And thus ends Day 5 without actual land animals. Which is where the birds and the whales came from.

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Ethelred
4.1 / 5 (9) Dec 06, 2010
3/3
And God said, Let the earth bring forth the living creature after his kind, cattle, and creeping thing, and beast of the earth after his kind: and it was so
That is DAY SIX. Out of order. Also day six yet you tried to paste all the animals into day five.

Did you really think I wasn't aware of the real Biblical order? Or could at least look it up?

You have to keep in mind, knowledge was passed down through oral stories prior to written word.
You have to keep in mind that I am aware of this. You might also not try to snow me like you just tried. Or is that you actually have the wrong order in your head? That you know it that poorly.

So the order is wrong and you tried to rewrite it. Perhaps you should accept the reality that the Bible is just the word of men and there is nothing divine in it.

Ethelred
Ethelred
3.9 / 5 (7) Dec 06, 2010
If someone could explain how they prove anything I would appreciate that. Until then, this is a bogus article supported by nothing but opinion.
It really isn't clear in the Physorg article. By going over it again I THINK they were showing the that iridium layer isn't in the same relationship with the K-T boundry that it is every place else. That is the fossils that are above the iridium layer as NOT above the K-T boundry. Presumably because the iridium has migrated from the K-T boundry layer to a lower layer.

The alternative is that this is the ONLY place where the fossils in question survived the K-T event. If so they should have recovered or at least shown up a little in still higher layers.

The article here is exactly the same on Rutgers.

Ethelred
Code_Warrior
1 / 5 (4) Dec 06, 2010
@Ethelred
Moral Highground may have been a poor choice of words, but I was character limited. I meant to convey the issue in terms of correct/incorrect where one person believes their view to be correct and other views are incorrect. Nobody is in a position to claim they are correct and, in my view, nobody ever will be.

I do believe in God and I do believe the unverse was created. However, I don't see the Bible as literal truth or some kind of sequence of events. I see it as a moral guide that lists the rules by which I am required to live.

I will use the theoretical model that works the best on whatever the task at hand is. If I am doing my job as an engineer, then the laws of physics are the best model to use for that work and the Bible is useless. If I have a moral problem to solve, then the Bible is the best model for me to use for that work and the laws of physics are useless.

More>
Code_Warrior
1 / 5 (4) Dec 06, 2010
The view that extrapolation is ok for physics is where I disagree. Physicists skirt mathematical rules when they are inconvenient. Renormalization comes to mind. As a practical matter, it works great and I see no issue. As a theoretical matter - not so much.

Even if models reach the point that they can accurately describe the condition of the universe if it were compressed down to a single point, that does not constitute proof that the initial condition of the universe was a single point. It merely demonstrates what could happen if we were able to create that condition.

I do not know the initial conditions. I belive they are fundamentally unknowable because our evidence can never be more than circumstantial. Science is claiming the singularity as the initial condition, so the burden of proof is on science, not me. The proof being offered in terms of CMBR is consistent with BB, but it is also consistent with M-Theory. The evidence is circumstantial, not conclusive.
Skeptic_Heretic
5 / 5 (4) Dec 06, 2010
The view that extrapolation is ok for physics is where I disagree. Physicists skirt mathematical rules when they are inconvenient. Renormalization comes to mind. As a practical matter, it works great and I see no issue. As a theoretical matter - not so much.
If that's what you think they're doing, you're not in a position of knowledge complete enough to comment.
The proof being offered in terms of CMBR is consistent with BB, but it is also consistent with M-Theory.
That would be because the postulates of M-Theory also involve a singularity.
Skeptic_Heretic
5 / 5 (5) Dec 06, 2010
I'm not talking about creationism, I'm talking about ancients realizing there was an order of creation and getting it right.

The Genesis poem from the original Hebrew, spelled out creation as such.

Day 1. Existance.
Day 2. Universe and Sun.
Day 3. Earth, Plant-life
Day 4. Sun exposed and stary night (could suggest the atmosphere was too thick to see either at some point)
Day 5. Animals.
Day 6. Humans.

You have to keep in mind, knowledge was passed down through oral stories prior to written word.

This is akin to me saying Greek mythology had a correct statement of abiogenesis because man was created through lightning striking a mud puddle.

I wouldn't say that, because it's utter horseshit without some serious mental gymnastics.

Secondly, Genesis states that the star were created after the earth (wrong order and impossible) and that man and beasts existed before there was a sun and moon(also impossible).
Code_Warrior
1 / 5 (2) Dec 06, 2010
If that's what you think they're doing, you're not in a position of knowledge complete enough to comment.

Don't take my word for it, Rudolph Haag meets the standard you have set and his theorem is the definitive statement on the matter. You can argue with him if you like.
That would be because the postulates of M-Theory also involve a singularity.

The point was that the evidence is circumstantial, not conclusive.
Ethelred
3.7 / 5 (6) Dec 07, 2010
1/4
Nobody is in a position to claim they are correct and, in my view, nobody ever will be.
Only if you have an unusual definition of incorrect. The world is NOT 6000 years old and it would be incorrect to even pretend that there is any truth in the claim that it is.
I do believe in God and I do believe the unverse was created.
That is NOT what I am getting at.
However, I don't see the Bible as literal truth or some kind of sequence of events. I see it as a moral guide that lists the rules by which I am required to live.
Why do you believe that when you don't believe much that is in the Bible? If it isn't literally true than it is just the word men. Enough of it is provably wrong to call into to question all the supernatural stuff in it.
If I am doing my job as an engineer, then the laws of physics are the best model to use for that work and the Bible is useless.
I agree with that. But not the next. Try reading Exodus as it is actually written.

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Ethelred
3.7 / 5 (6) Dec 07, 2010
2/4
If I have a moral problem to solve, then the Bible is the best model for me
If you need the Bible for morals then how do you deal with slavery which is acceptable in the Bible? I find Jehovah's actions in a number of places quite reprehensible. Exodus for instance.
The view that extrapolation is ok for physics is where I disagree.
You would be an unusual engineer if you have never extrapolated from incomplete data.
Renormalization comes to mind.
That is not extrapolation.
that does not constitute proof that the initial condition of the universe was a single point.
Where did I claim it did? Do you really think anyone thinks it is proved? Proof is for mathematicians not physicists. You make a MODEL with math and then see what it tells you about the universe. Then you check the model against evidence. If it fails to match then its wrong. If it fits then it FITS. It's not proved. There are only models that work to the limits of observation.

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Ethelred
3.7 / 5 (6) Dec 07, 2010
3/4
I do not know the initial conditions.
No one does.
I belive they are fundamentally unknowable because our evidence can never be more than circumstantial.
That is the sort of thinking that religious people engage in to avoid dealing with the evidence. The red shift evidence is NOT circumstantial. That is like calling a blood test circumstantial. Circumstantial is what Otto uses to prove his conspiracy fantasies.
Science is claiming the singularity as the initial condition,
No. It isn't. In fact a lot of people have put in a lot work to try to get around the singularity because it is a problem. Now a Plank length point isn't a problem but that is speculation. So is the singularity for that matter.

But BB theory is VERY solid right back to the limits of observation. Which is what the article below is about.

http://www.physor...big.html

Thats about the CMBR. Cosmic Background Radiation.

More
Ethelred
3.7 / 5 (6) Dec 07, 2010
4/4
The proof being offered in terms of CMBR is consistent with BB, but it is also consistent with M-Theory
Yes. IF anyone can patch up M-Hypothesis. It gets rid of the singularity which is good.
The evidence is circumstantial, not conclusive
Neither conclusive NOR circumstantial. It is solid evidence that the Universe was, at the very least, much smaller and just hot gas a little over 13GY ago.

I feel the need to ask this question. Do you believe in the Flood? If so where is the evidence? If not why believe the rest of the supernatural stuff?
The point was that the evidence is circumstantial, not conclusive.
This reminds of pair of lines in The Princess Bride.
Inconceivable!
I don't think that word means what you think it does.
I also think you have an odd idea of physics if you think anything is conclusively proved. Maybe Newton thought that way but its rare these days.

However that doesn't mean you can't conclusively DISPROVE something.

Ethelred
Code_Warrior
1 / 5 (6) Dec 07, 2010
Neither conclusive NOR circumstantial. It is solid evidence that the Universe was, at the very least, much smaller and just hot gas a little over 13GY ago.
You are splitting hairs over what to call the evidence. Yes, the evidence points to an evolving system that was smaller and hotter in the past, nothing more.
That is the sort of thinking that religious people engage in to avoid dealing with the evidence.
Extrapolation is the sort of thinking that theorists use to avoid dealing with the lack of direct evidence from the time in question. It is also what conspiracy theorists do with their evidence.
Do you believe in the Flood?
No. Noah's ark is about the cost of being wicked.
I also think you have an odd idea of physics if you think anything is conclusively proved.
My point this entire time has been that no theory of the universe can be conclusively proved correct. You have been too focused on my religious beliefs to see it in what I have written.
Code_Warrior
1 / 5 (3) Dec 07, 2010
@Ethelred
I didn't even see the other 2 posts in your series until just a minute ago. I am not the guy arguing that the Bible's creation story is the actual history of the universe, nor do I believe that the unverse is 6000 years old.

I never said that renormalization was extrapolation, I used it as an example of physicists skirting mathematical rules when they are inconvenient. I also said that I had no issue with it as a practical tool, I object to its use as part of the mathematical framework of a theory. Both Dirac and Feynman objected to renormalization. Dirac objected on mathematical grounds, Feynman objected to the lack of consistency.

As an engineer, of course I use extrapolations and approximations in my work. I just don't claim that they represent some fundamental truth.

I choose the Bible as my moral guide because I can reason out the moral of the stories. Your preferred moral guide is your choice. My point was clear and your response was argumentative.
Ethelred
3.9 / 5 (7) Dec 08, 2010
My point this entire time has been that no theory of the universe can be conclusively proved correct. You have been too focused on my religious beliefs to see it in what I have written.
YOU have been too focused on my comments on religion to notice that I NEVER CLAIMED PROOF. Also not noticing two other posts in a series LABELED as 1/3 More gives the impression that you were concentrating on ignoring what I actually said.
My point was clear and your response was argumentative.
Your point was and is wrong and arguing is what people do here.

Original remark by you:
My point is that you cannot claim the moral high ground based your belief that scientific theories are correct any more than a religious zealot can.
If that isn't argumentative what the heck is?

Scientific theories ARE more correct since they have to fit evidence. Ideas that are based on faith DESPITE the evidence against them simply are not even close to correct.

Ethelred
Skeptic_Heretic
5 / 5 (3) Dec 08, 2010
That would be because the postulates of M-Theory also involve a singularity.

The point was that the evidence is circumstantial, not conclusive.


I'd really like to see how you get through you life day to day if this is what you assume merits action or inaction.
Code_Warrior
1 / 5 (5) Dec 08, 2010
@Ethelred
Your response to my admission of a simple mistake assumes motives where none exist.
Your point was and is wrong and arguing is what people do here.
If the above quote applies to my choice of moral guide, then check my post. I was VERY careful to say that the Bible was the best moral guide for ME to use. Choice of the best moral guide is EXTREMELY personal and up to the individual to decide. It is not a matter for debate as there is no absolute best moral guide. My basic point was that all models have limited applicability so you choose the model you believe to be the best fit for a problem. My examples were intended to illustrate that point. If you think that is wrong, then that is your opinion.

I object to the evangelization of scientific theory as absolute truth. I also object to evangelization of religious doctrine as absolute truth. Since you have basically stated that you are not claiming scientific theory to be absolute truth then I have no beef.
Bog_Mire
1 / 5 (5) Dec 08, 2010
look, the Bible is a book, a guide, on how a woman or a man can get to heaven. It is NOT a book on how the heavens are made. Period.
Ethelred
3.3 / 5 (7) Dec 09, 2010
admission of a simple mistake assumes motives
It was argumentative EVEN if you had not used the 'the moral high ground' remark.
If the above quote applies to my choice of moral guide
That remark was directed clearly at this remark.
belief that scientific theories are correct any more than a religious zealot can.
Which is FALSE.
. My examples were intended to illustrate that point.
What examples? You posted none to support your claim that a fanatics faith is equal to scientific theory.
I object to the evangelization of scientific theory as absolute truth.
Few scientists would make that claim. I object the claim that faith is better than evidence and reason.
I also object to evangelization of religious doctrine as absolute truth.
I don't, if they don't mind me disagreeing and covering the errors. I just did that while getting a ride home tonight.

Faith is NOT equal to reason. This seems to be the real source of you original reply.

Ethelred
Ethelred
3.3 / 5 (7) Dec 09, 2010
Look, the Bible is a book, a guide, on how a woman or a man can get to heaven.
What heaven? Do you have actual physical evidence to support its existence?

Beside which that is just your opinion and a heck of lot Christians would disagree with you. At least half a dozen of them post here. Frankly I don't see the first two books of the Bible as evidence that Jehovah is moral. So there is really no way to know just what that hypothetical entity REALLY wants.

And if you don't really believe Jehovah did the things the Bible shows Jehovah doing then why do you believe in Heaven? I mean besides wishful thinking that is.

Try looking at your religion, for a moment, as if it was someone else's. Look at what you ask people believe. I did this when I noticed that various people in the historical sciences never looked at their beliefs like they looked at the people they studied. The Book simply doesn't hold up to dispassionate study.

Ethelred
Code_Warrior
1 / 5 (2) Dec 09, 2010
@Ethelred
The mistake to which I referred was my failure to see your other 2 posts. The motive to which I referred was your statement:
Also not noticing two other posts in a series LABELED as 1/3 More gives the impression that you were concentrating on ignoring what I actually said.
I simply meant to inform you that your impression of my motive was wrong.

The examples I cited were directly related to the statement that different models are used for different problems. My objection is to those who claim to have the ultimate truth. I have had this debate in one form or another on many occasions with people claiming to be physicists who espouse that theory is equivalent to truth and they just don't know all of the details yet.

Now you go ahead and pick various sentences to respond to, take them out of their context, connect them other sentences I have posted, and extrapolte them into more incorrect assumptions on your part. In the meantime I will move on to something else.
Bog_Mire
1 / 5 (2) Dec 09, 2010
OK Ethelred, you can disarm the big calibres now. I don't believe in heaven or a God; just making a point that some Bible Bashers have taken their book as a literal description of how all was created - which IMHO is false - it is a moral code; ie how one "gets to heaven", or how some ancients thought humans should best live their lives.....you sure are getting crankier these days. Chill my friend.
Thrasymachus
3 / 5 (10) Dec 09, 2010
Ethelred's point is that the Bible is as poor a choice for any sort of moral guide as it is a poor choice as a guide to what really exists and how it came to be. The Bible condones slavery. It advocates execution for the commission of any unwed sex act. It sets prices for women to be sold as if they were livestock. In the New Testament, it commands voluntary submission to moral suffering as the price for moral goodness. To be saved one must be baptised in the faith of the resurrected son of a vindictive desert god.

The truth about morality can be found in the same way the truth about reality can be found. Through the systematic engagement with others in an honest attempt to figure it out, instead of a blind assurance that you already know.
Bog_Mire
2 / 5 (5) Dec 09, 2010
thras. no, in fact ethel was chiding me for believing in heaven and asking me for evidence of its existence. you both are barking up the wrong tree here (plus I am sure ethel is more than capable of standing up by himself) your obscure references to ancient biblical practices is a bit weird if you ask me. are you suggesting that religion is incapable of theological evolution and modernisation?
Thrasymachus
1.7 / 5 (6) Dec 09, 2010
I'm claiming that your insistence that nobody has absolute proof of anything empirical or moral, and that this gives you defense against attacks on your theological moralism is badly in error. We may not know what Truth is, but we know how to find what is false, in both an investigation into empirical reality and an investigation into morality. Your theology is false, not just empirically false, but morally false as well. It preaches slavery, literally in the old testament, and moral slavery in the new. There are many reasons people come to be enamored with falsehoods, but when you know they are false, you should abandon them. You admit that you no longer consult priests and holy men about the nature of what is and how it came to be because what they claim is demonstrably false. Why should you consult them about what ought to be, when what they claim is equally false or morally repugnant?
Bog_Mire
2.3 / 5 (3) Dec 09, 2010
"your insistence that nobody has absolute proof of anything empirical or moral.." ummmm, I never said anything anywhere even remotely close to that. are you sure you are flaming the right person here? IMO you are edging dangerously closer to resembling a troll who is itching for a fight about....something, anything to do with religion, theology or moralism(sp). Wow.If you READ and COMPREHEND my posts you will see that I am not religious, never have been and until I have proof otherwise, never will be. There is no heaven and no God and the bible is bullshit. OK? Again: WOW. Are you tripping or what?
Thrasymachus
2.5 / 5 (8) Dec 09, 2010
You're right, I apologize, I mistook you for Code Warrior and his insistence in the inaccessibility of Truth. You, however, made a similar error in claiming the Bible is "a moral code." Its code is objectively immoral, based on the acceptance of ideas that are either objectively false, or incapable of objective falsification. Ethelred responded to you because you jumped in to defend Code's interpretation of religion, that it's immune to criticism because it's a moral code of some sort.

What I want to know is why you bother commenting on a thread if the only thing you're really trying to do is blow off the debate? I have a dog in this fight, the claim that morality is possible without faith. Which dog is yours?
Bog_Mire
2 / 5 (4) Dec 10, 2010
an understanding of how religious nutjobs think. Your making a lot of assumptions here. my post was, in fact, a rejection of CW in that the Bible was never meant as an explanation of existence, rather an ATTEMPT to give humans a moral compass. Never said I agreed with that either. I suggest a please explain/expand rather than launch into a trigger happy diatribe.....once again, ethelred seems able to stand on his own quite comfortably. Your attitude of ownership of debate is a little condescending and frankly irritating.
Ethelred
3.7 / 5 (6) Dec 10, 2010
1/2
Moved to the top because Code Warrior keeps ignoring it.

Now to remind anyone still reading this what I was talking about.
My point is that you cannot claim the moral high ground based your belief that scientific theories are correct any more than a religious zealot can.
Scientific theories ARE more correct than beliefs based on faith that fly in face of evidence.

Funny how you have consistently refused to even acknowledge that statement which I have consistently made clear was what I was talking about.
The examples I cited were directly related to the statement that different models are used for different problems
See above as what you are evading here.
My objection is to those who claim to have the ultimate truth.
That is mostly the religious.
I have had this debate in one form or another on many occasions with people claiming to be physicists who espouse that theory is equivalent to truth and they just don't know all of the details yet.


More
Ethelred
3.9 / 5 (7) Dec 10, 2010
2/2
I am not they. Nor are very many working physicists. There are a surprising number of physicists. THIS site has a surprising number of RETIRED physicists that have become CRANKS. Certainty that you have the truth while not even having much in the way of evidence, Oliver Manuel, Dr. Prins, is a sign of a Crank. Both are retired.

Now you go ahead and pick various sentences to respond to, take them out of their context,
Your post is right up there for anyone to read. The 1000 character forces me to cut back on what I quote. First drafts almost always have more. This one too.

connect them other sentences I have posted
Bull.

and extrapolte them into more incorrect assumptions on your part. I
Show one. You are pretty determined to NOT deal with what I actually say.

In the meantime I will move on to something else.
Might as well since you don't want to touch what I ACTUALLY said.

Ethelred
Ethelred
3.7 / 5 (6) Dec 10, 2010
OK Ethelred, you can disarm the big calibres now.
I am always armed even when naked.
just making a point that some Bible Bashers have taken their book as a literal description of how all was created - which IMHO is false
Now that is weird. Its the Thumpers that make the claim. 25 percent of Americans believe the Bible is the literal word of Jehovah with NO contradictions and no errors.
you sure are getting crankier these days. Chill my friend.
Yeah you push buttons and then act surprised when the buttons push back.
ethel was chiding me for believing in heaven and asking me for evidence of its existence.
No. I was doing BOTH. Much shorter otherwise.
my post was, in fact, a rejection of CW in that the Bible was never meant as an explanation of existence, rather an ATTEMPT to give humans a moral compass. Never said I agreed with that either
I have to say the post in question didn't look that way. Sorry if we SHOULD have known but it wasn't clear to me.

Ethelred
Bog_Mire
3.4 / 5 (5) Dec 10, 2010
well, semantics maybe, but i always thought it prudent to be clear of facts before pulling the trigger. Anyhoo the button I pushed was directed at CW, and he appears to be busy ignoring the three of us. we call Bible bashers over here in Orstaylya the annoying ones who bash on your door on a Sunday to interrupt your lamb roast with fairy tales of a 6000 year old universe and such. We have such pleasant conversations involving blue heelers and how fast they can run. So a case of lost and translation and so on. Clear now?
Bog_Mire
2.3 / 5 (3) Dec 10, 2010
sorry should read: Lost IN translation. (bit like the Bible) =/
Bog_Mire
1 / 5 (2) Dec 10, 2010
Phew! really had to spell that one out.
otto1932
1.5 / 5 (26) Dec 10, 2010
I am always armed even when naked.
Wet noodles aren't very effective in combat.
ATTEMPT to give humans a moral compass. Never said I agreed with that either
-Which is a typical religionist lie. Tribal law preceded religionist morality. Religions commandeered law because they needed to precede it with 'you shall have no other gods before me.' They also found morality good for disguising all the immoral things they would be asking adherents to visit upon their enemies.
otto1932
1.3 / 5 (27) Dec 10, 2010
You, however, made a similar error in claiming the Bible is "a moral code." Its code is objectively immoral, based on the acceptance of ideas that are either objectively false, or incapable of objective falsification.
You sure you know what you're talking about TH?

"Ethical statements such as "murder is evil" or "it is good to help those in need" are not usually considered to be falsifiable. This does not necessarily amount to conclusion that they are all false, or without truth-values. It mainly affects their status as scientific theories. The meta-ethical thesis that ethical statements have no truth-value is called non-cognitivism." -wiki

-It seems your team members have been letting you get away with less than respectable statements. Such as:
Its code is objectively immoral
I'm not sure what 'thou shalt not kill' is code for or how it could be considered objectively immoral. I'll have to start reading more of your posts and correcting you when necessary.
Thrasymachus
1.7 / 5 (6) Dec 10, 2010
How does the assertion of an observation of an empirical phenomenon, something which in itself is inherently subjective, become objective? Through its universalizability and fruitful applicability. Other scientists repeat the observation to judge whether the observation is indeed a universal phenomenon. Further, they interpret the meaning of the observational claim and place it in context within the extant theoretical framework, thereby filling out its applicability. Moral claims are not empirical claims, they are not observed, but they are judged to be objective in the same way, through communal judgement as to their universalizability and appropriate role in human social interaction.
otto1932
1.3 / 5 (27) Dec 10, 2010
More examples:
The Bible condones slavery. It advocates execution for the commission of any unwed sex act.
Both sweeping generalizations which have little to do with actual bible content. Moses led the Israelite slaves out of egypt. God forgave Lot for his transgressions. David was an adulterer.
It sets prices for women to be sold as if they were livestock.
Where in the bible does it list prices for women?? And as we know, Gideons men got their women for free.
otto1932
1.3 / 5 (26) Dec 10, 2010
How does the assertion of an observation of an empirical phenomenon, something which in itself is inherently subjective, become objective?
Good question. Why did you characterize it as such?
Through its universalizability and fruitful applicability.
Aw jeez- he's throwing kantianisms at me in incomplete sentences.
Moral claims are not empirical claims, they are not observed, but they are judged to be objective in the same way, through communal judgement as to their universalizability and appropriate role in human social interaction.
Correct. So why the bullshit about falsifiablilty?
Cont
otto1932
1.3 / 5 (26) Dec 10, 2010
You also fail to mention the evolutionary framework of morality, which is of late being recognized as the basis for it. That being specifically intratribal cooperation and altruism vs intertribal competition and conflict, and the advantages for selection that these offer.

They are genetically determined and have little to with universal morality, except that which can be imposed upon a population artificially by creating the perception of a 'supertribe' or nation, or humanity in general. Sociopolitically. Which is what philosophy is for.
Thrasymachus
1.7 / 5 (6) Dec 10, 2010
What do you think falsifiability does? It reports relevant circumstances in which the observation does not obtain. It reports that the observation is not universal. Circumstances in which the observation could be falsified are circumstances in which that observation can be made. If there are no circumstances in which the observation can be made, the claim is not falsifiable. Your theories of global, domineering, supra-historical conspiracy imply observations which appear to be meaningful. However, there is no way, and you absolve yourself of responsibility for actually finding a way, of making those observations.
Thrasymachus
1.7 / 5 (6) Dec 10, 2010
The evolution of human beings has about as much to do with morality and what it means to be moral as it does with science itself, and what it means to be scientific. What we feel on an emotional level, the pleasure we take from helping a family member in distress, the horror we feel from seeing them harmed has as much to do with what is moral as the satisfaction or distress a student feels from answering a math question correctly or incorrectly. They are fortuitous instinctive guides, much like the similar instincts that guided and continue to guide empirical investigation. But they do not constitute the thing itself.
Ethelred
3.7 / 5 (6) Dec 10, 2010
Otto
I'm not sure what 'thou shalt not kill' is code for or how it could be considered objectively immoral.


I am pretty sure he was not referring to the Ten Commandments. I brought up the rules allowing and codifying slavery that are in the Bible. I don't see any way to morally justify enslaving human beings. The Bible even allows Jews enslaving Jews.

Ethelred
otto1932
1.6 / 5 (27) Dec 10, 2010
What do you think falsifiability does? It reports relevant circumstances in which the observation does not obtain. It reports that the observation is not universal.
You didn't read the exerpt I posted. Falsifiablilty does not apply in this instance. Argue with yourself all you want. Look up the word in wiki.
The evolution of human beings has about as much to do with morality and what it means to be moral as it does with science itself, and what it means to be scientific.
You think that because you are thinking like a philo. Try reason. Mutual cooperation, communication, and altruism within a tribe fosters cohesion and the desire to sacrifice for others within the tribe. These are great advantages when in competition with other tribes. More cohesive tribes can grow faster, are more courageous and more successful on the battlefield, and so tend to survive and propagate in greater numbers.
Cont
otto1932
1.5 / 5 (26) Dec 10, 2010
Universal morality, while essential for the establishment of order among peoples, involves negating a natural tendency to coalesce into groups. This is no easy task, and it is a process of domestication which necessarily spans many generations.
I am pretty sure he was not referring to the Ten Commandments. I brought up the rules allowing and codifying slavery that are in the Bible. I don't see any way to morally justify enslaving human beings. The Bible even allows Jews enslaving Jews.
I know that. And if you are a Marxist you believe that wage slavery is no different.
Ethelred
3.4 / 5 (5) Dec 10, 2010
They are fortuitous instinctive guides,


I doubt that they are merely fortuitous. It is likely they evolved since they seem to have survival value. Emotional reward for successful behavior reinforces such behavior. Emotional punishment for being a putz tends to discourage such behavior. Which really should enhance survival. Since humans, me included, sometimes engage in petty revenge it is counter to survival to go around pissing off your neighbors.

Unless you are annoying your neighbors in a Socratic sort way in an attempt to improve their chances of survival. Which means that people should have evolved a tendency to occasionally intentionally piss off their neighbors.

Does that count as me making an excuse for pissing off the religious?

Ethelred
otto1932
1.3 / 5 (25) Dec 10, 2010
They are fortuitous instinctive guides, much like the similar instincts that guided and continue to guide empirical investigation. But they do not constitute the thing itself.
If you step back from your own temporal self-perceptions, and look at the behavior of humanity as a whole, you may begin to see that the tribal dynamic of internal cooperation vs external hostility is the norm, and that your empathic responses to injustice toward outsiders are in fact unnatural ones.

Whether it is learned, in that you have successfully absorbed the concept that those outsiders are part of your group; or whether it is the result of unnatural selection, or domestication, is immaterial for the discussion.

You may ask yourself if you had been brought up a Serb, and lived in a Serbian environment, And knew absolutely no other way of thinking, whether you would be as compelled as many serbians were to drive bosniaks from their homes.
Ethelred
3.4 / 5 (5) Dec 10, 2010
And if you are a Marxist you believe that wage slavery is no different.
Since when have I show signs of being a Marxist? Have you taking Marjon to heart?

Ethelred
Thrasymachus
2.3 / 5 (6) Dec 10, 2010
Both of you miss my point. The scientific method and scientific truth are not something that we typically think of as being an evolved trait of the human species. It is a tool we self-consciously develop because we have evolved the ability to act with self-awareness. We also have other instincts and feelings associated with self-aware action that guide our actions in making empirical observations and relating them to others. Sometimes those instincts and feelings help, and sometimes they don't. Likewise with morality. The instincts and feelings associated with social behavior help call to our attention relevancies and guide our actions, but they can be wrong or blinding. Morality, like science, is not about what we feel, though feelings are helpful. It is about what we, communally, think, using the best standards of thought we have.
Bog_Mire
2 / 5 (4) Dec 10, 2010
evolution is real?
Thrasymachus
2.1 / 5 (7) Dec 10, 2010
Evolution is a real as gravity and electricity, don't be ridiculous.
otto1932
1.3 / 5 (24) Dec 10, 2010
I think your point is obfuscation. 'Scientific method' is only interacting with the environment, noting the results of those interactions, and adjusting behavior to suit. This is essentially what life is.

Tribal members interacted with each other and with competing tribes. The individuals that prevailed were able to communicate and cooperate most effectively in a tribal environment. This gave their tribes a decided advantage in competition with other tribes.

Society has since found ways of expanding this intertribal behavior over larger socially-connected groups.

What is it you are trying to say that is in substantial agreement with this? In other words this is how things work- what are you trying to say which relates to it?
Thrasymachus
2 / 5 (7) Dec 10, 2010
'Scientific method' is only interacting with the environment, noting the results of those interactions, and adjusting behavior to suit. This is essentially what life is.
False. Science is the self-directed interaction with the environment and the communal verification of results. Dogs and cats, as smart as they are, do not do science. Neither do they do morality. Your pleasant little just-so evolutionary story has no bearing on the issue of whether morality is objective or subjective. At the same time humans were evolving more general traits of cooperation and altruism, they were also evolving more sophisticated traits of self-centeredness and subversive deception. That they were evolved and that they evoke certain emotions in us have no bearing on whether they are moral.
otto1932
1.3 / 5 (24) Dec 10, 2010
Your pleasant little just-so evolutionary story
Oh not mine dear sir. It's a consensus of the scientific community. I have posted relevant links before. Here is another one of many out there:
http://www.globus...0014.htm
otto1932
1.5 / 5 (25) Dec 10, 2010
"A scientific method consists of the collection of data through observation and experimentation, and the formulation and testing of hypotheses." -Nothing here about peer review. You may be referring to the formal academic process, but how is this def from wiki substantially different from what a dog does when he learns not to go in the house? He experiments by going on the carpet, his environment tells him this results in pain, he experiments again by using the backyard and finds this relatively painless. So he records the results in memory that using the backyard is preferable. He has successfully interacted with his environment.

The scientific method is in essence only the formalization of how evolution works. Instead of the dogs memory or the scientists paper, the results of successful experimentation and the acquisition of knowledge get to be recorded in the genetic code. The genetic code is a history of the successful application of the scientific method.
otto1932
1.5 / 5 (25) Dec 10, 2010
Successive gens of dogs will have to relearn the same behavior; but the dogs who are able to learn it quicker, or indeed learn it at all, will have a much better chance of surviving to reproduce, rather than being sent to the pound.

It's the same with tribal members; those who can interact successfully with their neighbors have a better chance of marrying their daughters or leaving the battlefield alive. This includes a tacit comprehension of the golden rule.
Thrasymachus
1 / 5 (5) Dec 10, 2010
No, the genetic code is a history of natural selection. Your dismissal of the formalism, and of the role of peer-review in the scientific method, is unwarranted and self-serving. The formalism, and rational choice of the system of investigation, is what makes science science. Being scientific means something more than just interaction and adaptation. Communities of scientists are needed to repeat observations, and pass judgment on the appropriateness and meaning of experiments. Science is science because its is self-directed activity, not activity directed by instinct or Pavlovian habit. Perhaps you are unaware that choice is ineliminable from subjective experience. Choice is at the heart of what makes science science, and what makes morality morality.
otto1932
1.4 / 5 (26) Dec 10, 2010
No, the genetic code is a history of natural selection
That's right! It is information; knowledge. I think you meant to say yes instead of no.
Communities of scientists are needed to repeat observations, and pass judgment on the appropriateness and meaning of experiments
Now- I know this is wrong, but instead of me proving it to you, why don't you post a ref to prove me wrong instead? I'll give you some time to respond.
Science is science because its is self-directed activity, not activity directed by instinct or Pavlovian habit. Perhaps you are unaware that choice is ineliminable from subjective experience.
I didn't say it was. The dog has the choice of going on the carpet again or not. Those that can't learn don't get to reproduce. Same with us. Did you read the link TH or only imagine what it said?
otto1932
1.3 / 5 (25) Dec 10, 2010
Choice is at the heart of what makes science science, and what makes morality morality.
And Mongols had a strong, cohesive internal social structure coupled with great animosity toward recalcitrant cultures, and so got to spread their seed far and wide. Something like 1/4 of the people in Asia purportedly can claim decendence from ghengis Khan. Something crazy like that.
Thrasymachus
2.2 / 5 (6) Dec 10, 2010
Knowledge is self-aware. The genetic code is information, not knowledge. You cannot understand what either science or morality are without understanding that distinction. Knowledge requires a knower, a subjective locus of choice. Information doesn't require any knower at all. It exists, or not, regardless of whether anybody is self-reflectively aware of it. Knowledge does not.

Science is also an inherently social activity. One researcher, alone, eschewing all peer review and disdaining the corrections or input of others, cannot do science, regardless of how rigorously he orders his observations.

I fail to see what your diversion into Mongol social cohesiveness has to do with anything. Morality is not about the cohesiveness of society. It is about the objectivity of choices.
Bog_Mire
1 / 5 (2) Dec 11, 2010
this is a beautiful argument/debate. I would score you all 5's if they had any relevance.(the scoring). I am wayyyy out of my league but nonetheless immensely appreciate both sides having a rational go at each other(and learning a thing or two). Bouquets!!
Ethelred
3.4 / 5 (5) Dec 11, 2010
evolution is real?
Yes. As in the evidence is overwhelming to anyone that is using reason instead of faith. Even for many that had a faith that was against evolution.

It is pretty much something that cannot not happen. There are mutations. Probably all of us have one or more recent mutations. There is an environment that is pretty merciless about killing off anything that doesn't fit well enough. It is clear that any change(mutation) that would enhance survival or rate of reproduction would something that the environment kills of less slowly than those without those mutations. This is the cause of evolution and unless you or someone can show that there is no environmental or no mutations then I have to consider quite well proved.

Not proved in the sense that Code Warrior seems to using which looks to taken from math. Proved in the same sense as GR or smoking can lead to cancer.

Ethelred
Ethelred
3.4 / 5 (5) Dec 11, 2010
Neither do they do morality
Ever seen a cat get mad if they think they have been wronged? I have. Of course it was a Siamese and they seem a bit different from other domesticated cats.
whether morality is objective or subjective.
That it most likely evolved doesn't stop the details from being subjective.
At the same time humans were evolving more general traits of cooperation and altruism, they were also evolving more sophisticated traits of self-centeredness and subversive deception.
Chimps engage in deception. I have deep suspicion about dogs in this matter.
That they were evolved and that they evoke certain emotions in us have no bearing on whether they are moral.
I can along with that. Morals are cultural, however the idea of treating others as you want to be treated is a pretty sound basis for any moral structure. Any moral system that doesn't have this at the base seems doomed to have contradictions.

Ethelred
otto1932
1.3 / 5 (24) Dec 11, 2010
Knowledge is self-aware. The genetic code is information, not knowledge. You cannot understand what either science or morality are without understanding that distinction.
A thing cannot be 2 things at the same time? You're confusing me, or your philo semantics are intentionally confusing as usual.
You cannot understand what either science or morality
I'm saying you are not aware of the newer discoveries regarding morality. No doubt because they discount much philo musings.
Science is also an inherently social activity. One researcher, alone, eschewing all peer review and disdaining the corrections or input of others, cannot do science, regardless of how rigorously he orders his observations.
Science can be done and has been done by many lone scientists. You discard much good science from the past with your errant def.
otto1932
1.3 / 5 (24) Dec 11, 2010
I fail to see what your diversion into Mongol social cohesiveness has to do with anything. Morality is not about the cohesiveness of society. It is about the objectivity of choices.
The objectivity of choices... the objectivity of choices... Anyone care to venture a guess as to what this means? Ha!

Mongols had a very successful code of ethics. It enabled them to conquer Asia. Still haven't read that link eh? 'Ignorance is Knowledge!' -says the philo TH
otto1932
1.3 / 5 (24) Dec 11, 2010
You cannot understand what either science or morality are without understanding that distinction.
Now, this statement betrays what I think is a fundamental philo disconnect. I would say that the vast majority of people doing science today, and therefore knowing science better than non-scientist philos, never dwell on the distinction. They may have to take a philo elective in school, and have fun playing 'what is this really?' for a semester or 2 while they're learning the process of doing real science, but then forget about it because it has no relevance to their profession.

And you know these are not only my opinions TH, but those of hawking and Dawkins, and of most scientists you may wish to ask. They understand science because they DO it.
otto1932
1.3 / 5 (24) Dec 11, 2010
I fail to see what your diversion into Mongol social cohesiveness has to do with anything.
Which is understandable. Philos seem to have little regard for phenomena, choosing rather to fiddle with their word calcs and musings and heated debates with fellow philos. And then a scientist comes along and says 'Look, this is why Mongols were so good to each other and so nasty to their enemies...' and the philos get testy.
otto1932
1.3 / 5 (24) Dec 11, 2010
Chimps engage in deception. I have deep suspicion about dogs in this matter.
Ever watch a squirrel run to safety? It will first feint to one side then run in the other direction, like a football player. Doves will do the same thing. This is also deception, behavior selected for and now coded into their genes.
Ethelred
3 / 5 (4) Dec 11, 2010
This is also deception, behavior selected for and now coded into their genes.
I am referring to intentional deception that is a product of planning not natural selection. I doubt that squirrels or doves have the brains to make decisions of that nature.

Now if you had brought up crows or parrots that would be different. Clever bastards those are.

You and Thrasymachus seem to be arguing for the sake of arguing, not that I object to that sort self entertainment. But doesn't Marjon or Zephyr have a few posts that need refuting. I am bored with both of them at the moment myself.

Ethelred
otto1932
1.3 / 5 (24) Dec 11, 2010
I am referring to intentional deception that is a product of planning not natural selection. I doubt that squirrels or doves have the brains to make decisions of that nature.
I know and I'm saying that there may not be as much of a distinction as you think there is. Much of what philos regard as 'free will' is only a reflection of genetic predisposition. Like the article a few weeks ago about liberalism being genetic.

Internal altruism and external animosity in tribes is largely genetically predetermined. Those who exhibit contrary behavior may only be doing so because they are defective in some fashion; which may not be a bad thing, as mutations are an evolutionary mechanism. The question is, will this behavior offer an advantage in his ability to spawn?
otto1932
1.3 / 5 (24) Dec 11, 2010
You and Thrasymachus seem to be arguing for the sake of arguing, not that I object to that sort self entertainment
-So refute the philo and risk a few 1/5s. It's easy to do:
False. Science is the self-directed interaction with the environment and the communal verification of results.
Well, science involves the scientific method, which is a separate and distinct thing from this:

"Another basic expectation is to document, archive and share all data and methodology so they are available for careful scrutiny by other scientists, giving them the opportunity to verify results by attempting to reproduce them. This practice, called full disclosure, also allows statistical measures of the reliability of these data to be established."

-The SM itself doesn't require full disclosure.
otto1932
1.3 / 5 (24) Dec 11, 2010
You may be wrong about squirrels:
http://www.nytime...ngi.html
Thrasymachus
1.7 / 5 (6) Dec 11, 2010
The details of empirical observation are subjective as well. Nobody sees the colors I see or hears the tones I hear. We use social interaction and correction to make what is inherently subjective into something objective.

And I'm pretty sure otto's just being argumentative because he thinks it's funny. Indeed, his whole flood of posts amounts to nothing more than a slam on a discipline he knows nothing about, so that he can worship another discipline he knows nothing about. You want to undermine the objectivity of choice, otto? Try denying your own ability to choose without contradicting yourself.
ryggesogn2
2 / 5 (8) Dec 11, 2010
We use social interaction and correction to make what is inherently subjective into something objective.

That is not true. You are claiming the majority defines objectivity?
Color is objectively defined by the energy content of the photon.
Thrasymachus
2.1 / 5 (7) Dec 11, 2010
The energy content of a photon is not a color, marjon. Colors are things like red blue and green. A photon's energy level is measured by its wavelength, you know 450nm, 550nm, etc. Colors are associated with wavelengths, they are not the same thing. And when you want to know, objectively, what the color of something is, you ask somebody else.
ryggesogn2
1 / 5 (8) Dec 11, 2010
The energy content of a photon is not a color, marjon. Colors are things like red blue and green. A photon's energy level is measured by its wavelength, you know 450nm, 550nm, etc. Colors are associated with wavelengths, they are not the same thing. And when you want to know, objectively, what the color of something is, you ask somebody else.

photon energy is equal to (Planck's constant * speed of light)/wavelenth.
Any optical sensor detects energy.
I don't need to ask the color of a laser. All I need to know is what is the bandgap energy that produced the photos.
What is the color of a 1.06 um laser or a CO2 laser?
Thrasymachus
2.1 / 5 (7) Dec 11, 2010
Wtf are you talking about marjon? You really shouldn't try to join in conversations you don't know anything about. This is about what the difference is between subjectivity and objectivity, that is, what is true because of the unique perspective on a situation, and what is true of the situation in itself. Of course, it doesn't surprise me that you fail to appreciate the difference here, you've already shown that you believe that whatever you think is objectively true, regardless of how idiotic, asinine, or contradictory what you think really is. But I guess that's the best way to describe anti-scientific conservatives like you; solipsists with a self-contradictory tendency towards tyranny.
ryggesogn2
1 / 5 (4) Dec 11, 2010
T claims objectivity is defined by majority opinion. Not very scientific.
Ethelred
1.3 / 5 (3) Dec 11, 2010
Color is defined by receptors and the brain. Most, not all, humans have exactly the chemistry in the three receptors and the brain processes along very similar paths with the same chemicals. Thus I see colors the same as everyone else that does not have some sort of color blindness. If you don't then you have mutated chemistry.

Ethelred
ryggesogn2
1 / 5 (7) Dec 11, 2010
Color is defined by receptors and the brain. Most, not all, humans have exactly the chemistry in the three receptors and the brain processes along very similar paths with the same chemicals. Thus I see colors the same as everyone else that does not have some sort of color blindness. If you don't then you have mutated chemistry.

Ethelred

From what I understand from T, if a majority say a 633 nm laser is green, it is objectively green.
otto1932
1.5 / 5 (25) Dec 11, 2010
The details of empirical observation are subjective as well. Nobody sees the colors I see or hears the tones I hear. We use social interaction and correction to make what is inherently subjective into something objective.

And I'm pretty sure otto's just being argumentative because he thinks it's funny.
And yet you haven't successfully refuted anything I've said, you think full disclosure is a part of the scientific method, and you refuse to explore or acknowledge the recent conclusions scientists have reached about the evolutionary nature of morality. You haven't even explained what 'the objectivity of choices' means. Because it doesn't have a meaning. And rather than own up you change the subject or claim I'm just making fun of you. Sarcasm is a valid form of criticism- ever read Camus?

No this is not funny TM. Team Frajo has been encouraging your spaghetti posts for too long. Hopefully others will join me in calling your bluff and exposing your deception.
otto1932
1.5 / 5 (26) Dec 11, 2010
And when you want to know, objectively, what the color of something is, you ask somebody else.
No, when you want to know objectively what the color of something is, you ask someone with a colorimeter. Maybe you meant subjectively, as in 'in your opinion, what color would you say this is?'

Industry, govt, and science have devised standards for color measurement and replication which do not necessarily rely on wavelength, or wavelength alone. This includes ASTM, ISO, ICC, and others. For example:
http://www.optics...8-10-736
Thrasymachus
1 / 5 (5) Dec 11, 2010
I don't need to refute anything you've said because virtually everything you've said is beside the point. The evolutionary story of human beings is not at issue here. An individual organism, in interacting with its environment and adapting to changes, is not doing science. Science requires multiple subjective observations of the world from multiple observers and an analysis of those observations to determine objective relationships between them. A bare, uninterpreted observation is entirely subjective. Only an observation interpreted according to those objective relationships can be considered objective. Choices are objective in the same way. It requires multiple choosers analyzing the relationship between their choices, and then interpreting their choices in light of those relationships.
otto1932
1.3 / 5 (24) Dec 11, 2010
nothing more than a slam on a discipline he knows nothing about, so that he can worship another discipline he knows nothing about.
That's not true, as I have proven to you many times I know a fair amount about both, and certainly enough to agree with Feynman and hawking when they say that philosophy is dead.
You want to undermine the objectivity of choice, otto? Try denying your own ability to choose without contradicting yourself
I accept what the scientists tell me, that my ability to choose is restricted and channeled by many things, including but not limited to: genetic predisposition, parental upbringing, exposure to noxious chemicals, what I saw on tv last week, and whether or not I am tired or hungry at the moment. As is yours. Do you deny these things or just choose to ignore them?
otto1932
1.2 / 5 (24) Dec 11, 2010
I don't need to refute anything you've said because virtually everything you've said is beside the point. The evolutionary story of human beings is not at issue here.
No, I've proven to you that it is but you choose to ignore it because it threatens your preconceived, philo-based notions. Obviously.
Science requires multiple subjective observations of the world from multiple observers
No it doesn't. Look it up.
A bare, uninterpreted observation is entirely subjective.
NOT for the scientist who faithfully follows the scientific method, including using the proper instruments and apparati.
otto1932
1.2 / 5 (25) Dec 11, 2010
Choices are objective in the same way. It requires multiple choosers analyzing the relationship between their choices, and then interpreting their choices in light of those relationships.
What?? Ask Ayn Rand. Why would you think that choosing to do something requires more than one person? Would you like to instantiate this for the audience please?
Thrasymachus
1 / 5 (5) Dec 11, 2010
I accept what the scientists tell me, that my ability to choose is restricted and channeled by many things, including but not limited to: genetic predisposition, parental upbringing, exposure to noxious chemicals, what I saw on tv last week, and whether or not I am tired or hungry at the moment. As is yours. Do you deny these things or just choose to ignore them?
My choices are influenced by those things but not determined by them. My choices are determined by my self.

A scientist using the proper instruments and apparatus is already interpreting his observations. He is anticipating objective relationships between subjective perceptions. Instrumentation and apparatus are merely means for guiding subjective observation, so that a measurement can be obtained by comparing different observations. All measurement is only a comparison between at least two observations. Measurement itself requires a community of observations, which implies a community of observers.
otto1932
1.3 / 5 (25) Dec 11, 2010
apparatus are merely means for guiding subjective observation, so that a measurement can be obtained by comparing different observations.
No, they are to assist in collecting empirical data so the scientist can objectively judge the functioning of the experiment.
He is anticipating objective relationships between subjective perceptions.
No, he uses instruments so that his observations can remain objective.
All measurement is only a comparison between at least two observations. Measurement itself requires a community of observations, which implies a community of observers.
No, there is no such thing as 'a community of observations', unless you can post a reference? Again, instantiate or it ain't so.
otto1932
1.3 / 5 (25) Dec 11, 2010
My choices are influenced by those things but not determined by them. My choices are determined by my self.
No, science is diminishing the range of free will in all of us, including you. Your perception of self-control may only be an illusion. How would you know? You refuse to examine links I have posted to scientific studies which refute much of it. How do you know you're resisting the right urges, if you're ignorant of the nature and source of those urges?
otto1932
1.5 / 5 (26) Dec 11, 2010
Modularity of the mind- behaviors generated due to natural selection:

"Pylyshyn (1999) has argued that while these properties tend to occur with modules, one stands out as being the real signature of a module; that is the encapsulation of the processes inside the module from both cognitive influence and from cognitive access. This is referred to as the "cognitive impenetrability" of the module."

"Other perspectives on modularity come from evolutionary psychology, particularly from the work of Leda Cosmides and John Tooby. This perspective suggests that modules are units of mental processing that evolved in response to selection pressures. On this view, much modern human psychological activity is rooted in adaptations that occurred earlier in human evolution, when natural selection was forming the modern human species."
http://en.wikiped...ychology
otto1932
1.6 / 5 (28) Dec 11, 2010
I see soulman/dick_wolf is on the prowl again with his gutless bitchrating. Whats up dick? The worlds never how you want it to be, is it? Too bad. Sooner or later you're gonna expose your original nick, you know that?
ryggesogn2
1 / 5 (6) Dec 11, 2010
I accept what the scientists tell me,

Why?

The fundamental standard of color is based upon the wavelength/energy (recall light has a dual nature?) of the light producing the color.
http://www.nist.g...eter.cfm
Thrasymachus
1 / 5 (5) Dec 12, 2010
You still haven't answered my challenge, otto. Tell me how you can conceive of your choices as being entirely externally determined? The truth is that you can't. Determinism is self-contradictory as shown by the following argument: (1)The universe, or any self-contained part thereof, is said to be evolving deterministically if it has only one possible state at time t1 which is consistent with its state at time t0 combined with the laws of nature. 2) Axioms of logic are a part of the universe. 3) Axioms of logic are not dependent on any state of the universe. These three statements are inconsistent with one another. Since 2 and 3 are obviously true, 1 must be false. QED
ryggesogn2
1 / 5 (3) Dec 12, 2010
Since 2 and 3 are obviously true,

Says who?
Thrasymachus
1 / 5 (5) Dec 12, 2010
Are you going to seriously dispute the fact that the axioms of logic are a part of the universe and that they are not determined by any state of the universe? I suppose you see four-sided triangles all the time, and think that Modus Ponens only works because the universe spent some time as a quark-gluon plasma.
lengould100
5 / 5 (3) Dec 12, 2010
otto1932:
What?? Ask Ayn Rand.
In what universe is Ayn Rand an authority on anything, including philosophy? A small amount of introspection combined with a modicum of a sense of fairness eliminates both Ayn Rand and most of the old testament of the Hebrew bible as any sorts of bases for a system of philosophy.
Ethelred
3 / 5 (4) Dec 12, 2010
The fundamental standard of color is based upon the wavelength/energy (recall light has a dual nature?) of the light producing the color.
Actually that isn't true. That is frequency of light. Color is the way we perceive it. Try and find purple in the rainbow or brown. There are dyes that the camera see quite differently than humans do. I was just reading this months SA under a low pressure sodium light and looking at that katydid. The article clearly said the eyes were pink. My eyes clearly saw YELLOW even though I knew exactly what was going on. When I got on the bus the eyes were pink. Which I expected.

I worked in photolabs for fifteen years. If people really saw colors very differently from me I wouldn't have been able to do my job. Artists would all work in B&W because no one would be able to agree on what color went with which. Even with that experience I still need tools to calibrate color. The eyes adapt to shifts in light in ways that can deceive.

Ethered
Ethelred
2.3 / 5 (4) Dec 12, 2010
(1)The universe, or any self-contained part thereof, is said to be evolving deterministically if it has only one possible state at time t1 which is consistent with its state at time t0 combined with the laws of nature.
We don't live in that Universe.
2) Axioms of logic are a part of the universe.
No. Without a Universe Logic would still work only no one would know that. That is my hypothesis and I am sticking to it.
3) Axioms of logic are not dependent on any state of the universe.
That follows from my previous statement.
these three statements are inconsistent with one another.
No. The first statement is irrelevant to the others while two and three are consistent.

The only thing wrong with the first statement is that is false in this Universe. We live in a universe with Uncertainty.
1 must be false. QED
You really need to go over that again. 1 is not logically inconsistent. It is experimentally false. The two are not the same thing.

Ethelred
TheGhostofOtto1923
2.2 / 5 (45) Dec 12, 2010
otto1932:
What?? Ask Ayn Rand.
In what universe is Ayn Rand an authority on anything, including philosophy? A small amount of introspection combined with a modicum of a sense of fairness eliminates both Ayn Rand and most of the old testament of the Hebrew bible as any sorts of bases for a system of philosophy.
Otto the Quick agrees. He was just making a joke by throwing dead philos back at the philo. A philo for every opinion, and none of them stay dead for very long.
TheGhostofOtto1923
2.2 / 5 (45) Dec 12, 2010
You still haven't answered my challenge, otto. Tell me how you can conceive of your choices as being entirely externally determined? The truth is that you can't.
The TRUTH is, I didn't say that. What I SAID was:
I accept what the scientists tell me, that my ability to choose is restricted and channeled by many things
-Which is self-evident. And while some of us have learned to temper these influences to a degree, others have not. And so none of us can be entirely certain of our motivations, which science confirms for us all the time.

For instance, you've been caught a number of times posting nonsense, which you have been challenged on, and yet you ignore and persist. And you refuse to expose yourself to new info that I posted which would update your understanding of morality and free will (by 200 years). Why is that? Disconnects of this sort would limit your chances for survival in the bush.
ryggesogn2
1 / 5 (6) Dec 12, 2010
" A brown color is a color combination of red, orange and green--those colors are not adjacent in the visible colors of a rainbow so they do not combine to form a visible brown. The colors which normally make up the BROWN color, however, ARE ALL PRESENT in a rainbow, but are not present in the color combination we call brown."
"the relation between true colors and what we
perceive as colors is very complicated."
http://www.newton...9125.htm
Every color can be defined as a combination of photons of various energies and quantities.
The only subjectivity involved is the name you want give the color.
TheGhostofOtto1923
2.2 / 5 (45) Dec 12, 2010
For instance:
The universe, or any self-contained part thereof, is said to be evolving deterministically
-is an assumption given what we have learned about the universe so far. A law of nature which we haven't discovered yet could negate that assumption.

As to the rest of that paragraph- I assume, like any responsible philo, you ascribe to a community of thought from which you extracted that spaghetti. In other words I assume you didn't cook it up yourself? Would you provide a link please or a ref of some sort which would show the context from where that specific word calculation came?

Seriously. People here have the right to ask you to back up what you post.
Thrasymachus
1 / 5 (4) Dec 12, 2010
That's the point of my argument, Ethel, the principle of determinism is inconsistent not only with experimental evidence, but with itself together with principles of logic. And while you may be inclined to say that the axioms of logic would work in the absence of this or any universe, this is equivalent to saying that there exists something (the laws of logic) which is outside the laws of nature, that is to say, supernatural. Otto's claim is that individual choice is an illusion, as is the self which makes that choice, as everything about that choice and that individual is entirely pre-determined by external physical causes. This view of determinism is self-contradictory.
TheGhostofOtto1923
2.1 / 5 (46) Dec 12, 2010
That's the point of my argument, Ethel, the principle of determinism is inconsistent not only with experimental evidence, but with itself together with principles of logic
-And so what conclusion does this little conundrum lead you to? That the universe doesn't exist?

Assuming that this isn't just intentional prevarication (spaghetti) and that other philos will tend to argue this way with the intent to confuse and not clarify, you can see why scientists in general want very little to do with philosophers. They can never offer illuminating explanations for anything, and occupy coveted office space on academic institutions while scientists must work at write-up desks.

Thanks for the demonstration.
TheGhostofOtto1923
2.1 / 5 (45) Dec 12, 2010
Otto's claim is that individual choice is an illusion, as is the self which makes that choice, as everything about that choice and that individual is entirely pre-determined by external physical causes.
-And you demonstrate that you don't read posts very well either. I'm saying that, since you are unaware of major factors affecting the process of choice-making and morality which have been discovered and verified scientifically, you have nothing to say to either of them. You are LIKE the religionist holding on to fantastical explanations which have long been thoroughly disproven.

Do you do this from the hope that science will one day see the Light? Or perhaps like your dead philos, you believe a deity is the ultimate source of these things?
Ethelred
1 / 5 (2) Dec 12, 2010
1/2
This what you posted cleaned up. Please discover the ENTER key. THEN USE IT. Monobloc writing is difficult to parse.

1)The universe, or any self-contained part thereof, is said to be evolving deterministically if it has only one possible state at time t1 which is consistent with its state at time t0 combined with the laws of nature.

2) Axioms of logic are a part of the universe.

3) Axioms of logic are not dependent on any state of the universe. These three statements are inconsistent with one another. Since 2 and 3 are obviously true, 1 must be false. QED

To translate that into actual logic.

Given A
Given B
Given C

B and C are true Thus A is false.

That is BAD.

First A is compliant with B and C.

More
TheGhostofOtto1923
2.1 / 5 (45) Dec 12, 2010
Here you go:
"Some proponents of emergentist or generative philosophy, cognitive sciences and evolutionary psychology, argue that free will does not exist. They suggest instead that an illusion of free will is experienced due to the generation of infinite behaviour from the interaction of finite-deterministic set of rules and parameters. Thus the unpredictability of the emerging behaviour from deterministic processes leads to a perception of free will, even though free will as an ontological entity does not exist. Certain experiments looking at the Neuroscience of free will can be said to support this possibility."

-Macht Sinn? Selbstverständlich.
Ethelred
1 / 5 (2) Dec 12, 2010
2/2
B is NOT self evident.

I think you don't quite have B right. I think the Universe is part of Logic. That is the Universe exists because it CAN exist logically. Logic need not be deterministic, that is Logic can deal with probabilities.
C is only true if B is not.

If the Universe is in the state of Timelike Infinity then logic of any kind will be impossible. Which makes logic dependent on the state of the Universe. Timelike Infinity is when the expansion of the Universe has all the particles so far apart that they no longer interact.

A is falsified by experiment in any case.

Whether you like my idea or not B and C can only both be true if I am right and you are wrong. Your way has logic running on the Universe thus making it dependent on the Universe.

Unless you can show how A interacts with B and C you have a disconnected series of statements that do not establish any proposition. On top of which none of the statements are self-evident.

Ethelred
Thrasymachus
1 / 5 (5) Dec 12, 2010
I agree that A is false, both experimentally and because it is conceptually contradictory. We at least agree that it is false experimentally.

Proposition B states that the Axioms of Logic are part of the Universe. What does this mean? Simply that the laws of logic make a difference in the evolution of the universe from time t0 to time t1. I am a part of the universe in the same way, if we were to pluck me out of existence, it would change what happens next.

I'm not sure what you're point is with your argument about the universe at the end of time. Doing logic is impossible in such a state, but the laws of logic are still true in that universe. Nobody has to do logic for it to be valid. Logic does depend on the existence of the universe because every axiom of logic begins with the supposition of existence (given any x, there exists some y, etc.). However, logic doesn't depend on any state of the universe.
Thrasymachus
1 / 5 (4) Dec 12, 2010
So, to put it simply, B is true because the truth of the laws of logic makes a difference in the evolution of the universe. If one or more of the axioms of logic were in fact false, the universe would evolve differently from the way it in fact evolves. Moreover, the axioms of logic require the possibility of existence (i.e. a universe) in order to be meaningful. If existence is impossible, then not only is this argument moot, but the axioms of logic are without sense.

C is true because the axioms of logic don't require the existence of any particular thing or any particular arrangement of things in order to be true. The axioms of logic would be true even if the universe were such to have never evolved atomic matter, and despite the fact that no intelligence would have ever discovered them
Dick_Wolf
2.7 / 5 (7) Dec 12, 2010
@otthole1932
I see soulman/dick_wolf is on the prowl again with his gutless bitchrating. Whats up dick?

It's pretty funny how smart you're not. Several people who aren't me have also concluded that you're a petulant trolling blowhard douche bag. Soulman is one, but there are many others. And yet every time someone else gets fed up with your smarmy pseudo-intellectual fascist posturing, you foolishly assume they're me. Apparently you just can't fathom that after reading a few of your snide and sanctimonious posts, most intelligent people come to the same unflattering conclusion about you.

Dude: if you were even remotely as amusing as you think you are, you'd have your own television show. But as things stand, you're just another annoying website troll who talks about himself in the third person.
Thrasymachus
2.1 / 5 (7) Dec 12, 2010
Otto, I am not unaware of the research into the evolution and nature of human psychology, nor am I unaware of the biases and influences that influence how humans make choices.

But what you're unaware of is the significance of the evolution of self-awareness in the objectivity of choice. Of course every finite information user embodied in a world of near infinite information will have an epistemic horizon, their future will always appear open and uncertain from their perspective. The openness of the future is not even directly relevant for the objectivity of choice. The future is open from the perspective of horseshoe crabs as well, but they don't make self-directed choices. What matters is that what happens is the result of the self-aware activity of the chooser.
SoulmanOtto
2.2 / 5 (33) Dec 12, 2010
The future is open from the perspective of horseshoe crabs as well, but they don't make self-directed choices. What matters is that what happens is the result of the self-aware activity of the chooser.
Sorry, but I would want to hear this from a scientist who studied this sort of thing before I believed it. I don't think philos are qualified to comment on either crabs or self-awareness. Especially the dead ones.
soulman
2.6 / 5 (5) Dec 12, 2010
Ha, I've spawned an admirer - how sweet!
Ethelred
1 / 5 (2) Dec 12, 2010
1/4
at the Axioms of Logic are part of the Universe. What does this mean? Simply that the laws of logic make a difference in the evolution of the universe from time t0 to time t1.
Which is the same as the saying the laws of the Universe.
I'm not sure what you're point is with your argument about the universe at the end of time
If logic runs on the Universe logic must end with the end of the Universe. Timelike Infinity IS the end of the Universe. Nothing can change thus no logic can go on IF logic can only run on the Universe. IF NOT THEN logic can run WITHOUT the Universe.
Doing logic is impossible in such a state, but the laws of logic are still true in that universe.
What you just said is that the Universe is irrelevant to the functioning of logic. Which is MY thinking.

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Ethelred
1 / 5 (2) Dec 12, 2010
2/4
Logic does depend on the existence of the universe because every axiom of logic begins with the supposition of existence (given any x, there exists some y, etc.).
No. Those are not the axioms. They are the way YOU are stating them. IF x then Y. No existence required. You just threw 'exists' in out of habit.
So, to put it simply, B is true because the truth of the laws of logic makes a difference in the evolution of the universe.
Only because the existence of logic supports the existence of the Universe.
If one or more of the axioms of logic were in fact false, the universe would evolve differently from the way it in fact evolves.
That is laws of physics. Logic equates with math. Both are provable. When there are two possible axioms both are true in logic. Experiments show us which are true in the Universe. Euclidean vs. Non-Euclidean geometry for instance.

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Ethelred
1 / 5 (2) Dec 12, 2010
3/4
Moreover, the axioms of logic require the possibility of existence (i.e. a universe) in order to be meaningful.
Meaning requires sentient entities. Logic does not.
If existence is impossible, then not only is this argument moot, but the axioms of logic are without sense.
True on the first false on the second. Logic does not require sense any more than 'meaning'. Take a look at the more obscure areas of math. No meaning to anyone but the people studying it. They don't create math, they discover it.
C is true because the axioms of logic don't require the existence of any particular thing or any particular arrangement of things in order to be true.
Nor even the existence of the Universe.

Euclidean and Non-Euclidean geometry are both true. Even in a flat Universe but only one describes the Universe.

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Ethelred
1 / 5 (2) Dec 12, 2010
4/4
The axioms of logic would be true even if the universe were such to have never evolved atomic matter, and despite the fact that no intelligence would have ever discovered them
So why do you insist a universe is needed. What you just said is MY position on this.

And in ALL of that there was NOTHING in it to show why you think ONE is CONTRADICTORY to TWO and THREE. Which is the reason I tried to make your statement more CLEAR. You avoided that part.

Why is ONE false besides experiment? IF you can actually prove that you have proved Uncertainty in a way that would even convince Einstein. I don't see where you did that. Where do you think you did? This question is the ENTIRE reason I got involved. It would be a very profound thing to prove. From what I can see all you did was wave your hand and say it was contradictory.

Ethelred
Thrasymachus
1.2 / 5 (5) Dec 13, 2010
All I'm arguing here, Ethel, is that it is not rational to believe that every aspect of one's choices are entirely determined. I won't ever go so far as to suggest that any logical proof can ever prove anything about what really exists or not. You're quite right to point out that the Euclidian axiom in geometry, which can be thought of as a branch of spatial logic, does not seem to be true of the empirical world. There's also some reason to believe that the Law of the Excluded Middle doesn't apply to reality, and that's one of the foundational axioms of logic, without it, you can't do most kinds of logic.

Essentially, they only thing you're arguing is that the axioms of logic are not a part of the universe. If that's the case, then they are not natural. Insofar as we are influenced in our decisions by the axioms of logic, then our choices are at least partly determined by something that is not natural.
Ethelred
1 / 5 (2) Dec 13, 2010
is that it is not rational to believe that every aspect of one's choices are entirely determined
Newton would disagree. Einstein also. Most modern physicists do not
Essentially, they only thing you're arguing is that the axioms of logic are not a part of the universe
No. That is a side issue. Handwaving is the issue.
If that's the case, then they are not natural
That would depend on your definition of natural
Insofar as we are influenced in our decisions by the axioms of logic, then our choices are at least partly determined by something that is not natural
Same answer.

Supernatural is a loaded word and many people consider that the ONLY alternative to natural. Since logic can contain ways of thinking that are not congruent with the functioning laws of our universe then you can say that logic CAN be Meta-natural. Brane theory can produce a Meta-universe. In other words 'natural' simply isn't a term that fits logic and math.

Again handwaving is the issue

Ethelred
Thrasymachus
1 / 5 (5) Dec 13, 2010
No, you're changing the definition of the word universe after the argument's begun. The universe, by definition, is everything that ever has, presently does, and ever will exist. The order of existence doesn't matter to whether that thing is part of the universe. The connection of any particular part of what exists to any other particular part of what exists is immaterial. The universe is the sum total of everything about which it could ever truthfully be said that it exists. The idea of the multi-verse is not an idea of multiple universes, that concept is self contradictory. By definition, there can be only one universe. The idea of the multi-verse is the idea of self-contained, causally isolated parts of the universe. If anything that ever has, presently does, and ever will exist is part of the universe, then the axioms of logic are part of the universe.

(cont)
Yellowdart
1 / 5 (3) Dec 13, 2010
There is a Bible that people that think the world is young believe in. The description of the world in the Bible and the Universe we live in don't match. So that particular god either doesn't exist or is lying in one of those two things. Or the Bible is just the writing of ignorant men and we can't take its word about the existence of Jehovah.


And which nonreligious abiogenesis version do you prefer in your universe then? Your "universe" is still a subjective preference considering the mountain of options from which you can chose from to claim a superiority of "evidence".

I wont requote some of your following comments to save space, but you make a valid point about Order in Genesis, and this is used by young earthers, quite frenquently against old earthers. But you err, if you think day/night cycle would be a problem prior to day 4.

continued...
Thrasymachus
1 / 5 (5) Dec 13, 2010
Since the first premise is the definition of determinism, and the second premise relies only on the definition of the word universe, the only problem you can possibly have is with the third premise, that the axioms of logic are not determined by any prior state of the universe.

The laws of logic are the possibly valid truth preserving transformations of propositions. They depend upon the existence of propositions which have truth value in order to exist. In this sense, they depend upon a prior state of the universe for their existence. However, the content of the axioms of logic, the actual transformations themselves, are not determined by any prior state of the universe. (cont)
Yellowdart
1 / 5 (3) Dec 13, 2010
At the moment that matter begins to interact according to the guiding mechanisms of gravity/electrical/physical forces, that initial interaction of electrons, would create a burst of light. This is no different than what the big bang describes, and you would find the same evidence...a CMB. The earth rotating already, would still produce day/night cycles as light from the intitial interaction would continue to arrive from that portion of space...

I'd be glad to discuss more in PM, if you prefer.
Thrasymachus
1 / 5 (5) Dec 13, 2010
They are determined by the relationship between the meaning of a proposition and existence, also known as the truth function. Whatever it means for a proposition to be true is what determines the axioms of logic. The axioms of logic are determined by the theory of truth. However, no theory of truth that preserves truth values can be shown to be either free of circularity or free of paradox. This implies that the truth function is self-determined, and not determined by any other prior state.
TheGhostofOtto1923
2.1 / 5 (44) Dec 13, 2010
Essentially, they only thing you're arguing is that the axioms of logic are not a part of the universe. If that's the case, then they are not natural.
Human constructs are not natural and yet are part of the universe. Your word calcs are imprecise and therefore inadequate. For example:
They are determined by the relationship between the meaning of a proposition and existence, also known as the truth function.
Function in this case implies a formula but it's components are not defined. Existance of what? Meaning in what way? What sort of relationship?

There can be no formula with these word variables and therefore no sensical solution to it. Philos will borrow terms from other disciplines to make their methods seem legitimate, but they're not. You're dancing and no one is clapping.
TheGhostofOtto1923
2.1 / 5 (44) Dec 13, 2010
Another example:
I agree that A is false, both experimentally and because it is conceptually contradictory. We at least agree that it is false experimentally.
It could only be false experimentally until it was proven so experimentally. Otherwise it is an assumption based on incomplete understanding. Whether this particular word calc actually makes sense or not, that is.
Thrasymachus
1 / 5 (4) Dec 13, 2010
The fundamental underdetermination of the empirical world has as strong experimental evidence for it as does the theory of evolution. No theory is ever proved in science, otto, they can only be disproved. I suppose you think that the Uncertainty principle has no empirical support?
ryggesogn2
1 / 5 (5) Dec 13, 2010
The fundamental underdetermination of the empirical world has as strong experimental evidence for it as does the theory of evolution. No theory is ever proved in science, otto, they can only be disproved. I suppose you think that the Uncertainty principle has no empirical support?

Socialist economic theory has been and continues to be disproven yet T, and others, support it. Not very scientific.
SoulmanOtto
2.3 / 5 (33) Dec 13, 2010
No theory is ever proved in science
They can offer a path to further research, and they can be employed to engineer useful technology, if they are valid.
The fundamental underdetermination of the empirical world has as strong experimental evidence for it as does the theory of evolution.
-is an invalid statement, as evolution is a part of the empirical world. And the possibility of alternate theories varies depending on the specific phenomena one is trying to explain, and so is inappropriate in describing the entire 'empirical world'.
I suppose you think that the Uncertainty principle has no empirical support?
The question is whether it has adequate support or not. You keep throwing new philo up without acknowledging or answering questions with the old stuff. Why is that? Quantum uncertainty, or vacuum flux perhaps? I know- problems with free will. Got a headache?
SoulmanOtto
2.2 / 5 (33) Dec 13, 2010
I always try to avoid free will when I'm tired or hungry. Hey, I hear dianetics can tune up your free will by excising those pesky engrams and clearing your brain out. At least thats what this guy says:
http://www.youtub...Z_uAbxS0
Thrasymachus
2.3 / 5 (6) Dec 13, 2010
You really have no idea what you're talking about, otto. Empirical theories can never be valid. Validity is a property of deductive proof. Empirical arguments are by definition invalid. That doesn't mean they are useless, that means they will never be certain.

All one has to to do show that determinism is false of the entire empirical world is to show that it is false of some part of the empirical world. Either determinism is true of the whole universe, or it is false. There's no middle ground here because the very definition of determinism won't let there be any. Multiple experiments have shown that the collapse of the wave function is entirely underdetermined.

You accuse me of not answering old questions, but neither have you. You not only fail to understand the very concepts you purport to support, but you insult those who point out your failure. In a very real way, you are worse than marjon, who is at least honest in his disdain for knowledge.
TheGhostofOtto1923
2.2 / 5 (43) Dec 13, 2010
You really have no idea what you're talking about, otto. Empirical theories can never be valid.
I didnt say anything about theories, I said your statement about the empirical world was invalid, as evolution is a subset of the 'empirical world' and you were comparing them as 2 separate things. The qualifier 'as strong...as' is indeterminite in itself; but to apply it to a subset of a larger thing and imply equivalence is, as I said, an invalid arqument.

If youre gonna use word spaghetti calcs, you should at least stick to the rules and use suitable comparative qualifiers, eh?

I like this phrase I found:

'A deductive argument may be valid but not sound.'

-As in an unsound mind, or an unsound staircase? What makes you think you can say that word + word = something exact? Word math is not math. THE PROOF is in the fact that philos never reach unrefuted conclusions. Ask the next gen.

-And 'proof' is a wholly mathematical term in this context. You misused it.
Thrasymachus
1 / 5 (5) Dec 13, 2010
And you're accusing me of playing with semantics? Reread what you just wrote. My claim is clear. The Uncertainty Principle is empirically well supported. This disproves determinism as any kind of objective fact about the world.

You don't even know what it means to be sound. A valid argument is one that preserves the truth values of the propositions contained therein. Start with true premises, get true conclusions, every time. A sound argument is one that is valid, and where the premises are actually true.

A proof is a logical demonstration. Mathematics is a subset of logic. This was proved by Russel and Whitehead in Principia Mathematica.
TheGhostofOtto1923
2.2 / 5 (46) Dec 13, 2010
Here you go. The tale of philos struggling to be understood (or, the beginning of the end):

"Wittgenstein held that the meanings of words reside in their ordinary uses, and that is why philosophers trip over words taken in abstraction. From England came the idea that philosophy has got into trouble by trying to understand words outside of the context of their use in ordinary language..."
http://en.wikiped...ilosophy
A proof is a logical demonstration. Mathematics is a subset of logic
-As physics is a subset of metaphysics? I don't think so.
This was proved by Russel and Whitehead in Principia Mathematica.
-And disproved or ignored by? You left that out-

Read the above article on semantics and the demise of a discipline-
TheGhostofOtto1923
2.2 / 5 (46) Dec 13, 2010
Case in point:
By definition, there can be only one universe.
By philo definition, which M theorists and others including Wittgenstein, ignore.
You really have no idea what you're talking about, otto.
-Another absolutist qualifier which is easy to discount. I obviously know quite a few things of which I speak, and you obviously don't know how to apply fundamental rules of logic to everyday situations consistently. Is that because of your free will? Do you choose to be imprecise and obtuse?
TheGhostofOtto1923
2.2 / 5 (46) Dec 13, 2010
TH- have you been quote-mining?
http://amathemati...ity.html

-Nothing wrong with that per se, but you should cite your sources so as not to seem uh, superficial?
Thrasymachus
1 / 5 (5) Dec 13, 2010
You really ought to read The Philosophical Investigations if you think Wittgenstein is some paragon of not playing with the meaning of words. He's one of the masters. And he had a horrible temper when people pointed out truths his simplified and closeted meditations couldn't accommodate. Read Wittgenstein's Poker.

And I can't help but be struck by the irony of being accused of misusing words when I stipulated the definition of the word I was using. You clearly have a problem with what I stipulated. If you prefer, substitute out "Universe" with "everything that exists" in the above proof. It remains a valid reductio ad absurdum.
Ethelred
2.3 / 5 (3) Dec 14, 2010
1/4
No, you're changing the definition of the word universe after the argument's begun.
Begun not begun No in any case. I am NOT changing the definition, I am using a popular modern definition rather than a 70 or so year old definition. I am doing so because the definition you are using is wrong for discussion about laws of the Universe when there can different laws and different constants in OTHER universes.
. The universe is the sum total of everything about which it could ever truthfully be said that it exists.
See above. Its a bad definition. Totally incapable of dealing with M-Bran theory, String Theory, Wheelers Many Worlds model and many others. The only people that still use that definition are people that think that between here an 13.7 billion light years out is all there is, was or ever will be. Its an idea who's Space-Time has passed. Despite that nice something from nothing video from Richard Dawkins of Jerry Krause that someone linked to the other day.

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Ethelred
2.3 / 5 (3) Dec 14, 2010
2/4
The idea of the multi-verse is not an idea of multiple universes, that concept is self contradictory.
See what I mean. The definition is inadequate for the task. It is limiting your thinking. The Multi-Verse IS an idea of multiple universes. Sometimes the words people use put blinders on them that can be removed simply a change in definitions.
The idea of the multi-verse is the idea of self-contained, causally isolated parts of the universe.
No. It is the idea of separate universes. Not only separated by DIFFERENT causes but even by different, incompatible laws and constants.

Argument by Definition is a crappy way to argue when the definition is either a matter of opinion or needlessly limiting. You can't make a whole universe with different constants disappear by saying it is a contradiction to a mere human word.

In other words I am NOT limited your narrowly defined world Horatio.

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Ethelred
1 / 5 (2) Dec 14, 2010
3/4
If anything that ever has, presently does, and ever will exist is part of the universe, then the axioms of logic are part of the universe.
Non-Euclidean geometry can exist as an IDEA in Flatland but won't be part of the laws of that Universe.
Since the first premise is the definition of determinism,
I think that is a fair thing to say.
the only problem you can possibly have is with the third premise, that the axioms of logic are not determined by any prior state of the universe.
well I DO have a problem with the second premise as it is wrong but that has nothing to do with determinism and NEITHER does the third.
The laws of logic are the possibly valid truth preserving transformations of propositions.
I will go with that IF by proposition you do not require anything that implies existence of physical reality. If you do then I disagree. A and B not If something other labeled as A. The Law do not require the something.

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Ethelred
1 / 5 (2) Dec 14, 2010
4/4
In this sense, they depend upon a prior state of the universe for their existence
No. Only YOUR specific argument does. You are trying to remove generalized logic and replace it with specified logic.

Basically this ANOTHER effort to misuse a definition that we don't agree on. And in any case your new version of 3 is does NOT follow from 1 and 2. Nor does it demand, in any way, a non-deterministic Universe. Only experiment can do decide whether a universe is deterministic or not.

Unless of course you do a MUCH better job of establishing your argument in well founded propositions that really are self-evident, which they clearly aren't, and actually PROVE that there is a requirement for a non-deterministic Universe.

This implies that the truth function is self-determined, and not determined by any other prior state.
And has nothing to do with whether the Universe is deterministic or not. Thus you didn't prove non-determinism.

You just waved your hand.

Ethelred
Ethelred
1 / 5 (2) Dec 14, 2010
1/3
And which nonreligious abiogenesis version do you prefer in your universe then?
No preference as we don't know enough yet. The world isn't going to become 6000 years old just because we don't know everything.

I have ideas about some things but they are just ideas that may or may not reflect reality. I had some ideas about RNA and DNA in 2001 that have since become the mainstreem. I doubt my writing on Apolyton.com actually influenced the change.
Your "universe" is still a subjective preference
Uh you do know that fossils actually exist don't you? Which means they are NOT subjective.
which you can chose from to claim a superiority of "evidence".
I don't pick and choose. ALL the evidence supports a 4.5 billion year old world with life for billions of years in a universe that is also billions of years of old. There is NO evidence for a Young Earth. If you think there is how about you post a link. To something I can't disprove in a seconds to at worst minutes.

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Ethelred
1 / 5 (2) Dec 14, 2010
2/3
But you err, if you think day/night cycle would be a problem prior to day 4.
No. Its hard to have days and nights without a light source.
At the moment that matter begins to interact according to the guiding mechanisms of gravity/electrical/physical forces, that initial interaction of electrons, would create a burst of light.
From what matter? No Sun remember. No Moon. The Earth won't do it as it can't set.
This is no different than what the big bang describes, and you would find the same evidence...a CMB.
You did imply that you were going to talk about the Evenings and mornings problem. You aren't doing that.

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Ethelred
1 / 5 (2) Dec 14, 2010
3/3
The earth rotating already, would still produce day/night cycles as light from the intitial interaction would continue to arrive from that portion of space...
The CMBR is from EVERYWHERE. It can't set so there can't be nights. It can't cool down that fast either. However it was pretty cool 4.5 billion years ago. More than 2.8K but far less than incandescent. Indeed planets can't form until the gasses that emitted the light of the CMBR cooled below incandescent.
I'd be glad to discuss more in PM, if you prefer.
Right here will do nicely. I have no interest in writing for one person about this. PMs are for personal stuff. For instance I have sent PMs about Oliver Manuels little problems that aren't relevant to his Crank ideas. Or to plot against the Sockpuppeteer. Or to discuss the vagaries of the Imoderators. Not science. That I only write about where MANY can peruse my magnificent prose. Or just to annoy as many as possible if you prefer to look at it that way.

Ethelred
TheGhostofOtto1923
2.2 / 5 (44) Dec 14, 2010
And he had a horrible temper when people pointed out truths his simplified and closeted meditations couldn't accommodate. Read Wittgenstein's Poker.
So did Schopenhauer who threw a woman down a staircase once. Doesnt mean Wittgenhauerstein was wrong. Or right.
And I can't help but be struck by the irony of being accused of misusing words when I stipulated the definition of the word I was using.
The philo def, using philo words to describe things which have no bearing on every day experience? Yes. And rendered null and void by scientist after scientist after scientist. As well as each successive gen of philos until resurrected again, only to be discounted again. Can we discern a pattern?
Skeptic_Heretic
not rated yet Dec 14, 2010
Looks like a zephyr alias was banned, but which one.

ArcainOne
5 / 5 (1) Dec 14, 2010
Wow... I was right... Otto really does have multiple personalities. It was a theory of mine up until now. Maybe he fell into that pudel as a kid and nearly drowned which started to spawned them one at a time. That would explain his fascination with attack pudels. Frankly it is a bit of a complement as only highly intelligent people can even create multiple personalities. Still... thats bat $h!t crazy.

Finally Otto, we arn't on teams here. I've disagreed with SH and TH, and probably disagreed with the MANY other people who have rated you down including all the stupid ghostsofX... (seriously btw, I thought we where at least resembling something of adults? One or two is cute, 99 is stupid) This is a SCIENCE NEWS SITE... why the hell are we acting like we came from the 4chan or wow forums?! ...I think I am done... have fun trolling the "noobs"...
TheGhostofOtto1923
2.1 / 5 (43) Dec 14, 2010
Finally Otto, we arn't on teams here.
The tribal nature of humans is well-documented and is an obviously powerful moderator of behavior.
Wow... I was right... Otto really does have multiple personalities.
I am not sure of either the intent or the value of this personal message. Physsorg guidelines state specifically that PMs are not allowed in comments. Theres a new sheriff in town. Or Pudelcatcher, whichever.
Thrasymachus
1.8 / 5 (5) Dec 14, 2010
@Ethel The definition of the word needs to be adequate to the usage to which it's put. In this case, it doesn't matter what the structure of determinism is. That is to say, when I define the universe as "the sum total of existence" all that is doing is placing a scope on the earlier definition of determinism.

I have a problem with your limiting the meaning of universe in the way you do without relevant cause. What's your point that other universes might have other physical laws? In fact, we can translate what I mean when I say universe into what you mean when you say multiverse, quite easily. And as I told otto, if you dislike the term for whatever semantic reason, just replace the word with the phrase "everything that exists." (cont)
TheGhostofOtto1923
2.2 / 5 (44) Dec 14, 2010
And as I told otto, if you dislike the term for whatever semantic reason, just replace the word with the phrase "everything that exists."
-But then you would have replaced one term with another composed of 3 words instead of 1. Scientists use the term 'universe' to describe different things, you got a problem with that?
when I say universe into what you mean when you say multiverse
-And when boffins invent yet another term to suit a new theory, yours can stretch to encompass that also? Kind of makes the philo def meaningless in any dimension doesnt it?
Thrasymachus
1 / 5 (5) Dec 14, 2010
I'll do it for you, just so there won't be any ambiguity. I added a bit to be sure we can agree on the implications of the words being used.

1) Everything that exists, or any self-contained part thereof, is said to be evolving deterministically if there is only one possible state or array at time t1 which is consistent with its state at time t0 combined with the laws of nature.

2) The axioms of logic exist. They are part of everything that exists. Any state description of everything that exists will contain the axioms of logic. (Note: this is not the same as saying they are true. Euclid's axioms that define flat space are not true of the empirical world, but it's empirically false that those axioms don't exist. Schoolkids use 'em all the time.)

3) Axioms of logic are not dependent on any particular state or arrangement of anything that exists.

There, no mention of that controversial word, universe. I hope this clears things up a bit.
TheGhostofOtto1923
2.2 / 5 (44) Dec 14, 2010
Nor of the metaphysical and all of it's potential dis- or un-logic. Good for you TM, glad to see you're trying to quit. Cold turkey is what I say. Always best.
Ethelred
2.3 / 5 (3) Dec 15, 2010
1/3
@Ethel The definition of the word needs to be adequate to the usage to which it's put.
Yes. Which is why I refuse to accept your definition of Universe. I am hardly the only person that disagrees with you on this.
In this case, it doesn't matter what the structure of determinism is.
I agree. Either you didn't prove anything.
That is to say, when I define the universe as "the sum total of existence" all that is doing is placing a scope on the earlier definition of determinism.
Indeed. It is in no way requiring non-determinism.
I have a problem with your limiting the meaning of universe in the way you do without relevant cause.
I have a problem you using a redacted definition. And I gave cause even so.
What's your point that other universes might have other physical laws?
You just covered it. They would be OTHER universes.

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Ethelred
3 / 5 (4) Dec 15, 2010
2/3
In fact, we can translate what I mean when I say universe into what you mean when you say multiverse, quite easily.
No need. Just use the words that are current.
And as I told otto, if you dislike the term for whatever semantic reason, just replace the word with the phrase "everything that exists." (cont)
No. For one thing some universes might actually be deterministic.
I hope this clears things up a bit.
You still have a conclusion that does not follow from the premises. You have NOT proved that any much less all universes must be non-deterministic.

What is so bloody hard to understand. You did not do what you claim you did. I asked you to clarify how you think you proved anything and you have consistently went of on the Universe vs Multiverse tangent. Even after I pointed out that it was a side issue.

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Ethelred
2.3 / 5 (3) Dec 15, 2010
3/3

Please, pretty please, prove it or admit you didn't.

Also I disagree with 2. It is still wrong.
They are part of everything that exists.
They exist apart from everything that is physical. They transcend physicality. You can disagree if you want but it still won't patch up your failed logic.

Let me try to get this pounded past that tendency to go for the tangent and avoid the point.

Again. That is, I did it before and you still avoided the point.

I feel like I have been pounding nails in the wall to trap jello.

THE POINT IS:

Logic can be and IS BOTH deterministic and non-deterministic.

Any given Universe can be either.

You have attempted to prove the above false.

You have not done so. Unless you have something in you head you did not post.

Fermat's last theorem was a crock UNTIL someone actually proved his HYPOTHESIS to be true. Your claim is in the same state as Fermat's famous bullshit claim in the margin.

It isn't proved.

Ethelred
ryggesogn2
1.6 / 5 (7) Dec 15, 2010
For all you atheists:
Einstein:
"I am not an atheist,"he began. "The problem involved is too vast for our limited minds. We are in the position of a little child entering a huge library filled with books in many languages. The child knows someone must have written those books. It does not know how. It does not understand the languages in which they are written. The child dimly suspects a mysterious order in the arrangement of the books but doesn’t know what it is. That, it seems to me, is the attitude of even the most intelligent human being toward God. We see the universe marvelously arranged and obeying certain laws but only dimly understand these laws."
http://www.bigque...’s-god
TheGhostofOtto1923
2.2 / 5 (44) Dec 15, 2010
@TM
One important note- when scientists use the term 'universe' it is usually referring to something within a particular theory that they have described much more succinctly using mathematics. The word is an approximate representation of an exact component of their theories which can't be described adequately with words.

Philos will try to describe the same thing using words alone, but since they usually have no appreciation of the maths then they will always fall short of an adequate or useful description, which is absolutely necessary in discovering anything more about it, or conveying information about it to others.

To scientists words are only a convenience. They know they are worth little for explaining, clarifying, or predicting. What you are trying to say can only be said with numbers, not words.
yyz
5 / 5 (3) Dec 15, 2010
"Einstein:
"I am not an atheist..."

Not sure why you brought this up, but.....

In 1954 Einstein also wrote: "the word 'God' is for me nothing more than the expression and product of human weaknesses, the Bible a collection of honourable but still primitive legends which are nevertheless pretty childish."

"For me, the Jewish religion like all other religions is an incarnation of the most childish superstitions"

"the Jewish people to whom I gladly belong, and with whose mentality I have a deep affinity, have no different quality for me than all other people."

"As far as my experience goes, they are also no better than other human groups, although they are protected from the worst cancers by a lack of power. Otherwise, I cannot see anything 'chosen' about them."

http://www.cbc.ca...ter.html
Thrasymachus
1 / 5 (6) Dec 15, 2010
I didn't limit existence in the universe to just physical things, and I don't know why you are trying to do so. Determinism isn't about just physical existence, it's about everything that exists. Either what exists is wholly determined, or it is not.

I think what we're getting hung up on here is what the source of determination is. The laws of causality and the laws of nature (being a bit repetitive there), are usually what's thought to completely determine something's existence. That's the only reason I can think that you're getting so hung up on other universes, that because they have other laws, they would be determined differently.

But that's not relevant to this argument. It doesn't matter what the mechanism of determination is. The first premise just says that there's some mechanism of determination for everything. It doesn't require mechanisms to be the same in a single universe, let alone across universes.
Thrasymachus
1.7 / 5 (6) Dec 15, 2010
My point is that logic is certainly deterministic. It has particular laws that are discoverable and that leave no room for alternatives. But those rules are entirely self-determined. Hard determinism has no room for self-determination. It requires that everything that is determined (which is everything) be determined by something else. The only thing that can possibly determine the laws of logic are the laws of meaning, i.e. how is it that a proposition can be meaningfully true or false. But the laws of logic are the laws of meaning, so the laws of logic must be self-determined. Since hard determinism doesn't allow anything to be self-determined, and we know at least one thing is self-determined, that idea of determinism must be false.
SoulmanOtto
2.4 / 5 (34) Dec 15, 2010
I didn't limit existence in the universe to just physical things, and I don't know why you are trying to do so. Determinism isn't about just physical existence, it's about everything that exists.
There IS no metaphysics... only physics. And physics can only ever adequately described by scientists using numbers, not words; if not today then some day, most likely.
SoulmanOtto
2.2 / 5 (33) Dec 15, 2010
I didn't limit existence in the universe to just physical things, and I don't know why you are trying to do so. Determinism isn't about just physical existence, it's about everything that exists.
There IS no metaphysics... only physics. And physics can only ever be adequately described by scientists using numbers, not words; if not today then some day, most likely.
Thrasymachus
1 / 5 (7) Dec 15, 2010
So essentially, otto, you're claiming that the only meaningful propositions are those that are capable of scientific investigation. You're a logical positivist. Only about 80 years or so out of date.
TheGhostofOtto1923
2.1 / 5 (46) Dec 15, 2010
So essentially, otto, you're claiming that the only meaningful propositions are those that are capable of scientific investigation. You're a logical positivist. Only about 80 years or so out of date.
Don't worry the world will catch up.

Your 'isms' all come up short. None ever explained anything as we now know. Science has taken over the function of defining human behavior and perception, because it now has the ability to do so.
Thrasymachus
1.5 / 5 (8) Dec 15, 2010
No, I mean 80 years out of date as in, proved a meaningless and false proposition over 80 years ago. Go look it up if you don't believe me.
Ethelred
1 / 5 (2) Dec 16, 2010
1/5
I didn't limit existence in the universe to just physical things, and I don't know why you are trying to do so.
Because that is the correct definition.

You are mistaking UNIVERSAL for UNIVERSE. One is a logical term and the other is an astronomical term. It has been that way for a long time. The laws of universe A can be different from Universe B.
Either what exists is wholly determined, or it is not.
Only on a per universe basis.
I think what we're getting hung up on here is what the source of determination is.
I think its your logic that is the hangup.
That's the only reason I can think that you're getting so hung up on other universes, that because they have other laws, they would be determined differently.
No. That is why I am trying to be clear on there being a strong possibility that there are OTHER Universes.

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Ethelred
1 / 5 (2) Dec 16, 2010
2/5
The first premise just says that there's some mechanism of determination for everything.
No. Its a definition of a deterministic Universe. Its a good definition even if you don't understand that is what it is. Not a mechanism, a definition.
It doesn't require mechanisms to be the same in a single universe, let alone across universes.
You stated it as a definition. Not a mechanism. It ISN'T a mechanism.
My point is that logic is certainly deterministic.
It need not be so. Since logic INCLUDES math, you said this also, then it includes statistics and probabilities. It is NOT inherently deterministic.
It has particular laws that are discoverable and that leave no room for alternatives.
That is different than what you said earlier in regards to Euclidean and Non-euclidean geometry. Those two ARE alternatives.
But those rules are entirely self-determined.
That I agree on. The RULES not the results.

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Ethelred
1 / 5 (2) Dec 16, 2010
3/5
Hard determinism has no room for self-determination
I may agree. I think you mean non-probabilistic for HARD. That may or may not be right. IF the Copenhagen model is right than you have a point. IF Wheeler's multiple worlds model is right than ALL paths are taken and there is no actual choice, just the illusion of choice. I am not happy with that but I think it the more likely. Why shouldn't all possible universes exist? Why only one?

The next shows why you are fighting against logic transcending universes
It requires that everything that is determined (which is everything) be determined by something else
Only within a given Universe
The only thing that can possibly determine the laws of logic are the laws of meaning, i.e. how is it that a proposition can be meaningfully true or false
Which transcend any universe. Indeed we have already agreed that both Euclidean and Non-Euclidean logic are valid even if one is not relevant to this Universe.

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Ethelred
1 / 5 (2) Dec 16, 2010
4/5
. But the laws of logic are the laws of meaning, so the laws of logic must be self-determined.
Which can only be true if they transcend physical reality. Otherwise they are dependent on physical reality.
Since hard determinism doesn't allow anything to be self-determined, and we know at least one thing is self-determined, that idea of determinism must be false.
Which is only true IF logic does not transcend physical reality in which case it is determined by the matter within the Universe. Men in this case.

Look, either logic transcends physical reality or it is dependent on physical reality. You can't have both.

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Ethelred
1 / 5 (2) Dec 16, 2010
5/5

At least I now know what you thought you proved. You made a hidden assumption that contradicted one of your givens.

Your given

2) Axioms of logic are a part of the universe.


But the laws of logic are the laws of meaning, so the laws of logic must be self-determined.
Which makes them OUTSIDE the Universe.

Hidden assumptions are often hard to see. It took millennia for anyone to spot the hidden assumptions in Euclid's original geometry. They have been patched.

Ethelred
SoulmanOtto
2.4 / 5 (34) Dec 16, 2010
No, I mean 80 years out of date as in, proved a meaningless and false proposition over 80 years ago. Go look it up if you don't believe me.
Look up 'Sinn fur Humor'. Proved by whom by they way? Newer and different philos with the same or similar lack of appreciation for science? Science has come a long way in the past 80 years.
So essentially, otto, you're claiming that the only meaningful propositions are those that are capable of scientific investigation.
No, I'm claiming that scientists have come to believe that most any 'proposition' you or any philo might choose to make can best be dealt with scientifically, by scientists qualified to do so. And I happen to agree with them.
Thrasymachus
1 / 5 (6) Dec 16, 2010
Ethel, this is getting pointless. What's the point of my posting that counterproof to determinism? Simply to make room for self-determination, i.e. freedom of choice, within this universe. I don't care if the laws of meaning and logic transcend this universe, or every universe, as long as they are also within it. By agreeing with me that meaning and logic transcend physical existence and are self-determined, and by agreeing that we have some access to meaning and logic, you are agreeing with me that we have access to self-determination. That's all I want. I could care less if billiard balls with identical positions and momentums must always behave the same way, or if neurons are determined in the way they fire. Insofar as logic and meaning are self-determined, and insofar as we define ourselves and our world through them, then we are self-determined as well.

SoulmanOtto
2.9 / 5 (25) Dec 16, 2010
KNow what's funny?

"Most philosophers consider logical positivism to be, as John Passmore expressed it, "dead, or as dead as a philosophical movement ever becomes." By the late 1970s, its ideas were so generally recognized to be seriously defective that one of its own chief proponents, A. J. Ayer, could say in a interview: "I suppose the most important [defect]...was that nearly all of it was false.""

-And yet:

"Logical positivism was immensely influential in the philosophy of language and represented the dominant philosophy of science between World War I and the Cold War."

-So apparently it had little effect on the actual course of science or on the work of scientists during a period which saw perhaps the greatest scientific developments of all time. In other words, a main philo school of thought proved to be largely irrelevant to the discipline it was supposed to be serving. Gosh.
SoulmanOtto
2.8 / 5 (25) Dec 16, 2010
And you sir claim that in order to criticize philosophy I actually need to know it? Why would I want to do that? All I need to know is that it has failed, and continues to fail. For as hawking said, philosophy is dead.
Ethelred
2.3 / 5 (3) Dec 17, 2010
1/3
Ethel, this is getting pointless
I don't think you understand what you seemed to be trying to do. If you had succeeded you would have proved that ALL POSSIBLE Universes MUST be non-deterministic. Which would make debate about the Heisenberg's Uncertainty Principle, Einstein's problems with QM and dice rolling END. You would have prove Einsteim wrong, Heisenberg more correct than he new and that god does play dice with the Universe. For all possible Universes.

I think that would be a VERY profound point. And somehow you think there is no point here. Bloody weird that is.
Simply to make room for self-determination, i.e. freedom of choice, within this universe
Only that isn't all you were claiming even if you didn't understand that.
I don't care if the laws of meaning and logic transcend this universe, or every universe, as long as they are also within it
That is meaningless IF they transcend. Then they aren't within it, the Universe is DEPENDENT on it.

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Ethelred
2.3 / 5 (3) Dec 17, 2010
2/3
you are agreeing with me that we have access to self-determination
No. That is what I have been trying to get across. You did NOT prove that.

We MAY have freedom of choice, if the MultiWorlds hypothesis is wrong, but only experiment not logic can prove that. This is because your logic wasn't valid logic. You made two contradictory assumptions and in logic that is supposed to be able to make ANYTHING provable thus it is not a valid arguement.
That's all I want
You don't have it.
or if neurons are determined in the way they fire. Insofar as logic and meaning are self-determined
If neurons are PRE-determined by the laws of the Universe than you don't have freedom of choice. Logic and meaning INCLUDES both the possibility of pre or non determination for the neurons. Thus you either have or do not have freedom of choice depending on WHICH laws are functional in the Universe. You were attempting, unknowingly, to prove that ALL Universes MUST be non-determined.

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Ethelred
2.3 / 5 (3) Dec 17, 2010
3/3
and insofar as we define ourselves and our world through them, then we are self-determined as well.
Which you did not prove.

Which is the point I am making. You did not prove your proposition. You failed because:

Logic and meaning support BOTH determinism AND non-determinism. However no Universe can be BOTH. Only experiment NOT logic can show which is true. And of course you had a contradiction which made the argument invalid.

Oh yes PLEASE start using better formatting. Monoblock posts are needlessly difficult to parse. Hit the enter key now and then. TWICE or you don't get white space and that is needed for visual clarity. Even when the logic isn't.

Ethelred