August 17, 2009 feature

# New Law of Physics Could Explain Quantum Mysteries

Tim Palmer, a weather and climate researcher at the European Centre for Medium-Range Weather Forecasts in Reading, UK, has been interested in the idea of a new geometric framework for quantum theory for a long time. Palmer’s doctoral thesis was in general relativity theory at Oxford University in the late 1970s. His studies convinced him that a successful quantum theory of gravity requires some geometric generalization of quantum theory, but at the time he was unsure what specific form this generalization should take. Over the years, Palmer’s professional research moved away from this area of theoretical physics, and he is now one of the world’s experts on the predictability of climate, a subject which has considerable input from nonlinear dynamical systems theory. In a return to his original quest for a realistic geometric quantum theory, Palmer has applied geometric thinking inspired by such dynamical systems theory to propose the new law, called the Invariant Set Postulate, described in a recent issue of the *Proceedings of the Royal Society A*.

As Palmer explained to *PhysOrg.com*, the Invariant Set Postulate is proposed as a new geometric framework for understanding the basic foundations of quantum physics. "Crucially, the framework allows a differentiation between states of physical reality and physical 'unreality,'" he said.

The theory suggests the existence of a state space (the set of all possible states of the universe), within which a smaller (fractal) subset of state space is embedded. This subset is dynamically invariant in the sense that states which belong on this subset will always belong to it, and have always belonged to it. States of physical reality are those, and only those, which belong to this invariant subset of state space; all other points in state space are considered “unreal.” Such points of unreality might correspond to states of the universe in which counterfactual measurements are performed in order to answer questions such as “what would the spin of the electron have been, had my measuring apparatus been oriented this way, instead of that way?” Because of the Invariant Set Postulate, such questions have no definite answer, consistent with the earlier and rather mysterious notion of “complementarity” introduced by Niels Bohr.

According to Palmer, quantum mechanics is not itself sufficiently complete to determine whether a point in state space lies on the invariant set, and indeed neither is any algorithmic extension to quantum theory. As Palmer explains, in quantum theory, states associated with these points of unreality can only be described by abstract mathematical expressions which have the algebraic form of probability but without any underlying sample space. It is this which gives quantum theory its rather abstract mathematical form.

As well as being able to provide an understanding of the notion of complementarity, the two-fold ontological nature of state space can also be used to explain one of the long-standing mysteries of quantum theory: superpositions. According to the Invariant Set Postulate, the reason that Schrodinger’s cat seems to be both alive and dead simultaneously is not because it is, in reality, in two states at once, but rather because quantum mechanics is ignorant of the intricate structure of the invariant set which determines the notion of reality. Whichever point (alive or dead) lies on the invariant set, that one is real. The notion of quantum coherence, which is reflected in the concept of superposition, is, rather, carried by the self-similar geometry of the invariant set.

With superposition seemingly resolved from the perspective of the Invariant Set Postulate, other aspects of quantum mechanics can also be explained. For instance, if states are not in superpositions, then making a measurement on the quantum system does not “collapse the state” of the system. By contrast, in Palmer’s framework, a measurement merely describes a specific quasi-stationary aspect of the geometry of the invariant set, which in turn also informs us humans about the invariant set.

The Invariant Set Postulate appears to reconcile Einstein’s view that quantum mechanics is incomplete, with the Copenhagen interpretation that the observer plays a vital role in defining the very concept of reality. Hence, consistent with Einstein’s view, quantum theory is incomplete since it is blind to the intricate structure of the invariant set. Yet consistent with the Copenhagen interpretation, the invariant set is in part characterized by the experiments that humans perform on it, which is to say that experimenters do indeed play a key role in defining states of physical reality.

Yet another quantum mechanical concept that the Invariant Set Postulate may resolve is wave-particle duality. In the two-slit experiment, a world where particles travel to areas of destructive interference simply does not lie on the invariant set, and therefore does not correspond to a state of physical reality.

Among the remaining mysteries of quantum mechanics that the Invariant Set Postulate might help explain is the role of gravity in quantum physics. As Palmer notes, gravity has sometimes been considered as an objective mechanism for the collapse of a superposed state. However, since the Invariant Set Postulate does not require superposed states, it does not require a collapse mechanism. Rather, Palmer suggests that gravity plays a key role in defining the state space geometry of the invariant set. This idea fits with Einstein’s view that gravity is a manifestation of geometry. As such, Palmer suggests, unifying the concepts of non-Euclidean causal space-time geometry and the fractal atemporal geometry of state space could lead to the long-sought theory of “quantum gravity.” Such a theory would be very different from previous approaches, which attempt to quantize gravity within the framework of standard quantum theory.

Palmer’s paper is an exploratory analysis of this Invariant Set Postulate, and he now hopes to develop his ideas into a rigorous physical theory. Just as global space-time geometric methods transformed our understanding of classical gravitational physics in the 1960s, Palmer hopes that the introduction of global state space geometric methods could give scientists a deeper understanding of quantum gravitational physics. And, as suggested above, combining these two types of geometry might help lead to the long-sought unified theory of physics.

__More information:__ T.N. Palmer. “The Invariant Set Postulate: a new geometric framework for the foundations of quantum theory and the role played by gravity.” *Proceedings of the Royal Society A*. doi:10.1098/rspa.2009.0080

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**Citation**: New Law of Physics Could Explain Quantum Mysteries (2009, August 17) retrieved 26 May 2019 from https://phys.org/news/2009-08-law-physics-quantum-mysteries.html

## User comments

retrosenderEl_NosefhtmguyfhtmguyFoolish1Is this theory an attempt to describe specifics of wave function collapse WRT more insight into what set of interactions are possible with or without collapse?

SincerelyTwoteledynteledynSteveSsoijimbo92107Has this human stumbled upon Bounded Fractal Drives? I didn't think that would happen for several more years!

AlexaAlexaNeilFarbsteinSlotinSlotinEvery other approach is sort of guessing.

bluehighChiRavenCyberguyAnd as others have pointed out, it's not a "Law. It's not even a hypothesis, because it does not yet make any testable predictions.

So, superficially interesting, but I would bet we will hear no more about this.

brantSlotinSlotinAlexahttp://arxiv.org/abs/0908.1301

NoumenonInterpretations of QM should be epistemological. The 'unreality' cannot be described in terms any better than Kant's Noumenon.

MatthiasFGary_W_LongsineSpock: Nothing unreal exists.

-- Star Trek IV: The Voyage Home (1986)

docknowledgeJukriSJukriSSo, nucleus of atoms exploding, emit energy and absorbs more energy from particles who move inside nucleus of atoms!

.

AlexaSoylentPeople who say profoundly stupid things like "it's just a theory", have no idea what a theory is; they word they're looking for is hypothesis.

AlexaSmartK8kasenI'd preach my own discordianist/buddhist view of things, but it's the same crap as everyone else's, just a different flavour. Still goes straight to your brain, though, making it fat with presumptions. That is, if there is any room left between your own presumptions and ego. I know my head is pretty crammed...

Word of advice. You want to understand the universe? Stop thinking.

moj85PaulLoveZeroDeltaAntThe result of the double slit experiment is certainly "real" therefore the process and particles that create that result must also be "real"

Is this bloke using a pseudonym his name must be "fish" as this postulate is a storm that isnt going to happen.

NoumenonI'm not saying Reality does not exist without an observer! Obviously, our conception of it doesn't exist without a mind doing the understanding. We supply the conceptual structure in which to understand reality. Reality subjected to this paradigm or conformed within this paradigm, is what we call 'phenomenal reality' and is observer dependent. This cannot be the whole of Reality, because the mind has limited faculties in which to conform it.

In terms of the state space, or 'Phase Space', ...phenomenal reality would be a web or 'fractal' like subset of this space,... the realm that is conceptualized via space, time, causality; classical concepts or evolved intellectual faculties necessary for rationalization, i.e. QED works but is not 'rational' in this sense. This is not what Palmer means, but just reminds me of Kant's approach.

@kasen, you throw AWT into the same mix as one of the most influential philosophers of all time, as if its of the same relevance? All I'm saying is, based on epistemological considerations, one should realize that the purpose of science since the year 1900, is to make predictions only, not to provide an understanding of reality. As an example, if we consider the mind as a function(), ..there can't be a one-to-one correspondence between Reality (noumenon), and a rational understanding. The rational (classical) conception must be a subset of Reality proper.

MesafinaI think geometry is the most sensible and comprehensive way to explain what we have observed in nature so far. Geometry can easily explain gravity, time, possibility, even free will, and can do so very simply and elegantly at that.

By this line of thinking we consciously and visibly interact with as many as 5 physical, spatial dimensions on a day to day basis: length, width, depth, time, and possibility (or superposition, covering a linear set of possible states of matter which exist in accordance to the same laws of causality that govern the other 4 dimensions in exactly the same manner).

Of course this is all conjecture without experimental evidence, but conjecture is always the first step to conceiving of just such an experiment.

MesafinakasenFrankly, though, I find all modern philosophers utterly useless, conceited prats. All they ever achieved is finding fancy Latin and Greek names for old and common wisdom. Anybody can spend a little time in introspection and come up with the same conclusions and observations. But, hey, why do that when you can read a fancy book and quote from it?

As far as I'm concerned, all the philosophy books in the world can be reduced to a booklet of proverbs and sayings. Mental exercise and debate is good, yes, but anything done excessively harms more than it helps.

Lately, a lot of philosophers and mystics have started talking about quantum and theoretical physics and that just isn't helping anyone. Highly abstract maths isn't too great either, but at least it scares the mainstream media.

To make predictions, does not one have to understand?

KoenQuantum strangeness according to Werner Hofer is the consequence of an unphysical assumption: a matter-wave does not possess intrinsic potential energy, despite of the fact that any classical wave has potential energy. This unnatural assumption results into the non-determinism, probabilistic interpretation of the Phi wave function.

Strange indeed, and on top of that we get a 'superset' of "state spaces" of "unphysical" and "physical" universes (as if an unreality has a "state" property), not unlike the untestable multiverse idea.

C'mon, people, what do you know about this subject?

NoumenonAbsolutely not! This is why QM was such a revolution. To quote Feynman, "You see my physics students don't understand it. That is because I don't understand it. Nobody does...".

Your attitude toward philosophy is misguided, and probably not based on study of it. It is not all mystical flim-flam non-sense. Logic is a part of philosophy, and epistemology, what Kant wrote about ("A Critique of Practical Reason"), has a long history related to an analysis of scientific method. Now, Kant knew nothing of qm,... his analysis of reason, is useful imo, in interpreting Bohr's Copenhagen interpretation of the irrationality of qm. 'Irrationality' here does not imply a mathematical formulation cannot be successful,... just that concepts necessary for thought, time, space, causality, cannot of themselves rationalize it.

NoumenonkasenYes, that's actually quite true. I've never really read any philosopher's works, I just kinda picked it up as I went, from various bits and pieces. That alone is reason not to take any of my arguments seriously, but I persist nevertheless.

How can any epistemological question ever be answered and therefore contribute to our knowledge? Reason and logic limit and are limited by the language to and with which they are applied. For a linguist or a normal person, a word can mean any number of things. For a logician, and therefore philosopher, a word is required to have a precise meaning and only one. That's why people regard these quantum effects as baffling.

For me, the cat being both alive and dead is common sense. You have a cat, you put in a box where it may or may not die. What's so hard to understand that, since you don't know what's happening in the box, the cat can be seen as dead, alive, teleported, having developed superpowers etc.? The superposition is in your head, since technically that's where the cat is for the duration of the experiment. You can't express these things logically other than by tautologies, which is just a fancy name for all the common sense that philosophers couldn't find synonyms for.

When I was speaking of prediction earlier, I was thinking fully accurate ones, not probabilities. Philosophers and mathematicians work with absolutes, but at least the mathematicians' universe of discourse is inherently logic, unlike spoken language. Physicists do experiments and make observations. How can you understand the Universe by not leaving your own mind?

Isn't this the same as saying that the whole(formula, theory) is greater than the sum of its parts?

Occam's razor?

ben6993.....

But if quantum computers provide a big increase in speed of operation over non-quantum computers, that would be hard to explain? That would be like using the live and dead states of the cat in arithmetic procedures to make a useful gain. Much more than just saying that we do not know what the state of the cat is as it is not being observed. (On the other hand I do not understand how the multitude of states are actually going to be manipulated in a quantum computer!)

AlexaMy point is, AWT is consistent both with discordianism (everything is omnipresent chaos), both with "Law of Invariant Set Postulate" (density fluctuations in gas are really observable subset of many states existing here).

So at least at the case of Mr. kasen and Tim Palmer, I'm not required to convince anyone, because AWT approach is consistent with both above theories and it still quite simple and clear. My motivation is to propose largest common denominator of all existing theories, which everyone can accept. Don't expect, such theory will predict everything in real time, which is virtually impossible. But it could form a common logicaly consistent platform of human knowledge, whereas more particular theories will do the rest.

SlotinBut in this moment scientists are behaving like medicinmans or Holy Church of medieval era, pretending that their lack of understanding is not bug, but a feature from the same personal reasons, like medieval priests. The longer the layman society will not understand, what they're really doing, the longer they can ask another money for further research, the longer they can keep their monopoly in information spreading, and so on. History just repeats in circles here.

SlotinOn the animation bellow you can see the observable subset of reality embedded into larger state space, i.e. density fluctuations of gas, while the rest of gas remains transparent and invisible. Is as that simple, as it is.

http://www.aether...crit.gif

This is my problem with formal approach, because it presents even the most trivial concepts completelly obscured for normal people.

What such way of information presentation may be good for? Well, one reason may be, author of this concept has guessed it without deeper understanding of wider consequences. But here can be another reason. The usage of legacy terms would enable scientists to study Aether concept without any mention of Aether concept before publicity, thus keeping their supremacy of knowledge. From the same reasons lawyers or medics are using latin words to separate their level of understanding from the rest of society for example under situation, when laymans aren't supposed to understand their own diagnose.

kasenImagine a black dot on a white background. The way I see it, while mainstream science focuses on the black dot, you guys are talking about focusing on the white background. Instead of deriving the surrounding universe from particles, derive the particles from the universe/aether. Did I get this right?

I somehow think your theory isn't fundamentally incorrect, but being incompatible with maths(at least that's the impression it gave me) it couldn't ever be more than a valid philosophy or way of seeing things.

Maths is the natural language of science because an experiment is basically a set of measurements and measurement implies numbers. Through experiments we gain consistent information which can then be applied by engineering to serve our needs. Our very basic, animal needs, but what're you gonna do...

My point is, you can't expect a theory to receive mainstream attention if you don't have a way to prove it. I mean, it's the most basic rule, prove by repeatable experiment. Till that happens, I guess AWT and any other theory/hypothesis/whatever are, well, unreal.

As a last resort, you might want to consider writing down the 95 theses of AWT on a piece of paper and posting it on the main entrance at Oxbridge or something. Worked in the Middle Ages, or so I've heard.

NoumenonIts the difference between providing an explanation of the underlying reality in terms understandable in 'classical terms', and making predictions,.. not the same thing.

btw, not that it matters, I copy/pasted the wrong book title by Kant,.. should have been 'A Critique of Pure Reason'.

NoumenonAlexaSlotinDespite of its simplicity, it's an approach, which is still pretty open for further approximations by formal math, because in this moment we simply have no formal model for description of condensation of Boltzmann gas or dense fluid at elementary level. Note that for formal math even situation with five or more coliding objects at the same moment is unsolvable problem and it must be solved via simulation.

If it's so, why to bother with some math at all when dealing with billions of particles at the same moment? It's true, AWT approach is incompatible with formal math - but it's not mistake of AWT or multiparticle gas, but just formal math, if it cannot handle it in predictable way. I didn't invented Aether or gas concept, it existed a long time before. Before computers appeared, scientists ignored it purpotedly, because they simply weren't able to handle it. But now we have a cheap computers while mathematicians are becoming more and more expensive. You should learn 25 or more years before becoming productive in theoretical physics. As a programmer, you can customize particle simulation in few hours - or we can simply develop a specialized processor for it.

AlexaFor me AWT is simply approach, which wasn't considered, tested the less - so we should at least check it at the moment, when theories like string theory or LQG struggle with increasing number of difficulties. The only problem here is, mathematicians fear lost of their jobs and motivations in the same way, like priests of medieval era or like assembly programmers of recent era. But we still have priests and assembly language programmers for writing HW drivers, who are earning a nice salary.

AlizeeNoumenonClearly you have never studied philosophy, and are probably unaware that a whole branch of philosophy is devoted to interpreting modern physics theories, & logic, and that many physicists & mathematicians contribute. The Bohr interpretation of qm is such a philosophy which is in effect what Kant had discovered, IMO. True many physicist look for other ways out, like multi-universe, etc,... but that is less rational IMO. What specifically do you object to, or do you even know for sure?

AlexaSlotinEthelredThis is wrong. So very wrong.

Laws are things that we observe but have no theory for.

The Laws of Thermodynamics for instance. There is no sign that they have been violated but we don't have theory to explain them.

Newtons Laws of Motion are similar in that sense.

Even more so for Kepler's Laws. He observed what was happening and made a mathematical model. But he had no theory as to why things worked that way.

Ethelred

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EthelredNoumenen is in love with Kant. ☺ (experimental test not to be confused me using vile smilies).

That is a theory that explains much about Noumenen's behavior. As with any theory it is subject to change based on future observations.

Ethelred

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EthelredThat was what I was thinking. However when I saw your post another possibility came to mind.

There are a lot of things that are real in that they effect what happens in experiments and other observed behavior in the Universe. However the math that models them us Complex Numbers and therefor have a component that could be treated as not real in some sense.

Frankly I think its a crock anyway. The claim about Schröedingers Cat is what got me. The way it is written we should be able to tell which is real without checking the box.

Ethelred

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kasenI think it is. You have these concepts, space, time, conscience, whatever. Each by its own provides an incomplete view on reality, but set in a common frame, theory, which may seem illogical since we don't/can't perceive through all those elements at once, they provide a sufficiently complete view as to enable predictions. Elephant in the room?

Look, Noumenon, clearly you have studied philosophy, but just how much of it did you? If you were to consider all western philosophy, you really should see some patterns and thoughts constantly repeating, under different wordings. And if you take all that and compare it to Eastern religions and mystical traditions in general you'll see it's the same ideas and observations all over the board.

I'm actually currently reading about Kant to see precisely what he 'borrows'. Mind you, I'm not saying he couldn't have come up with stuff himself, but that he shouldn't get so much credit.

So far, it seems classical zen stuff, incidentally the same stuff I've been ranting about. Reason is a limited form of perception is what he's saying, and proceeds to mapping out the actual limits.

Correct me if I'm wrong, but couldn't your name also stand for 'the sound of one hand clapping'?

NoumenonHis line of research is relavent now as descibed briefly above. Your not going to put an effort in , so why attempt to debate anything if you don't even know what your debating?

SDMike2NoumenonTorbjorn_Larsson_OMNever mind that gravity _can_ be quantized, by way of the Lagrangian. The only problem is that it diverges at high energies. But that is a problem with incompleteness akin to newtonian gravity vs high speeds, not invalidity within its range of application.

The paper is filled with internal inconsistencies like the quantization non sequitur, and inconsistencies with existing physics. I could make a long list, but what is the use if it's NEW? It is astounding that any science news agency would make a press release out of this.

On that topic, this:

Aether Wave Theory

Another NEW, I presume. But this time since aether is falsified. Instead we use special relativity since way back.

Btw, considering the remarks on string theory, it is as of now AFAIU the only natural contender left for more fundamental physics. Tweprints is all over the paper that shows that Lorentz invariance is valid significantly above Planck mass, from results on a recent GRB signal's. Notably also several orders of magnitude above Planck mass, in the best case.

And quantum gravity ideas, or even the unphysical idea of a quantized spacetime or vacuum (which both, of course, in reality are complicated objects), seems to rely on Planck scale as natural length scale. Maybe they will accept fine-tuning, but then _everything_ is put in by hand, gravity and particles both.

(And still no dynamics as in the simplest oscillator. Speak of naturally "dead" theories!)

No, it doesn't mean that string theory is correct. But it is noteworthy if the alternatives are KIA.

AlexaWhich particular model of energy spreading through Aether was falsified before 120 years in your opinion? Was the second one falsified, too? Has some physicist thought about it at all?

AlexaAlexaTo prove, somebody is not right, you should prove it - or just ignore him. To prove, somebody is vague, you should prove, his logics can lead to mutually inconsistent conclusions - or just ignore it.

And so on. It symptomatic, how often just the proclamative proponents of science and scientific method are doing elementary mistakes in formal logics.

AlexaAlexaIf AWT explains/predicts string or E8 geometry, every evidence of this geometry should be considered as an evidence of AWT, too. In AWT strings or E8 geometry aren't adhoced concepts, as they're following from dense Boltzmann gas model in rather intuitive way. But mainstream science ignores AWT mainly because of fear of lost credibility in the eyes of the rest of society. Scientists are often claiming, the scientific method is the best approach from long term perspective.

In fact, they're not even able to recognize (not to say admit it), when it fails.

AlexaBoth we know perfectly, Aether theory was disproven by mainstream before years and here's no need to repeat it again and again for greater shame of scientists involved.

But was such refusal relevant to reality? This is the question!

NoumenonYour opinion of philosophy is misguided, seriously.

AlexaWhile scientists believe (quite correctly), scientific theory can be never confirmed with certainty, they're apparently confused regarding to theory refusal.

Whereas Popper's methodology is completely symmetrical in this point: negation of hypothesis is another hypothesis and as such it should be confirmed in the same way, like original hypothesis.

NoumenonThats factually false, Kant was quite original. Once I get the impression you understand his transcedental deduction and my use of it here, I'll respond further, otherwise your wasting my time and weighing down the thread. To be a successful critique of philosophy in general it's necessary to read some. I' m only interested in it as it relates to an analysis of science/knowledge. See Decartes, Locke, Hobbes, Liebniz, Hume, Kant, Schponhauer, etc. Good day.

Alexa"if AWT explains/predicts string or E8 geometry, (then) every evidence of this geometry should be considered as an evidence of AWT, too"

ben6993When a collapse of state occurs there must be some shift of states from unreal to real. But no shifts from real to unreal as time elapses?

On a closer reading, the article says that "states which belong on this subset will always belong to it, and have always belonged to it". Does this mean that before a collapse has occurred, the outcome has already been decided as the collapsed state belongs in the real set. Prior to that, that 'winning' state had just be one of many possible outcomes. So in this model, God isn't playing with dice. Or perhaps only he already knows what the outcomes will be?

NoumenonWrong yet again. Schopenhauer was greatly influenced by Kant, and Hegel (Fitch&Schelling) took his core idea further than Kant would have accepted, into idealism.

NoumenonI read that one as well. It's truely a pity that you missed Hume's analysis on causality, and Kant's point of departure, .. by focusing on that chapter.

NoumenonNoumenonkasenCan the sound of one hand clapping, or the number of angels that can dance on a pin, be considered noumena or not? If only there were a Kantian exegete around to enlighten us on such a matter...

NoumenonEthelredPudel? German or a mistake?

No its not religion. Its an overemphasis on philosophy over actual science. Plus the historical context of QM is open to debate. He thinks Heisenberg got a lot of ideas from Kant. Others think he was influenced by Eastern Philosophies.

I think it doesn't matter where it came from since Noumenon's ideas on this go farther than the evidence does. So it is philosophy and not science.

Ethelred

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NoumenonEthelredThe problem with Peter Woit on this is the idea of falsifiability. It is NOT a requirement of any theory for the simple reason that a non-falsifiable theory may still be right. It certainly would be a Good Thing for a theory to be falsifiable but there may come the day when a theory fits the evidence yet be unfalsifiable. So far String Theory is unfinished mathematically so it doesn't qualify as a theory in any normal sense. Thirty years now and no one has finished the math.

http://en.wikiped...iability

Unfortunately the site has a conclusion in the section on law that doesn't follow from the evidence.

That is not falsifiability that the Judge is talking about yet the author of the Wiki is pretending that it is. Pigheadness of the religious is not the same as non-falsifiability. The standard Creationist ideas were falsified long ago and that is what the Judge is clearly referring to, along with circular reasoning, if such a thing can be called reason.

As for the Daubert standard there, in a Court of Law falsifiability is a reasonable method of deciding whether a scientific method of finding and testing evidence is fit for use in court.

While falsifiability is desirable in any scientific theory it just may not fit any theory that will ever work as a Theory Of Everything. So No Even Wrong is just a Sound Bite.

Since when does Physorg count as a science news agency? It is more of science publicity site. It has one advantage over the REAL science sites. Better discussions. Some don't allow any discussion.

We, the bullshit artists are what make this site worthwhile.

For us anyway.

Not so much new as a Dirty Furin Idea. Which is one of the problems with discussing things with them. They have problems with English and most of us have problems with Chek. I gave up a while ago. Can't make head or tail of the sites they link to so I can't even begin to see if works at all or not.

However I think the basic concept is a Relativistic version of Aether Theory. In that case the Michelson-Morly experiment would not disprove the aether.

Peter Woit likes Quantum Loop Gravity. I mention him because of that sound bite of his you used.

It is in the String Hypothesis as well. I expect that ALL theories of everything will need that. I don't think there will ever be a theory that shows that exactly one kind of universe is valid. And that is what is required to avoid setting constants by hand.

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EthelredI since I didn't say that I stand unjustly accused.

I said a lot of his ideas. I suppose I should have said strongly influenced.

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AlexaAt first, in most other theories E8 geometry is ad hoced stuff (i.e. postulate) in the same way (i.e. like light speed invariance in relativity theory), as here's no logical way, how to derive it from other postulates. In these theories E8 was choosen accidentally just because their equations plays well with it. There is an apparent difference between confirmation by using of coincidence of theorems, conjectures and postulates with observable reality.

At second, every evidence of validity of theorem of particular theory can serve as an evidence of particular theory at the same moment. This is simply how confirmation of theories works in science: it's based on agreement of their predictions with reality - no less, no more. The fact, some observation agrees with predictions of more than single theory doesn't mean, it cannot be used for confirmation of these theories anymore. For example, recently was computed mass of proton by using of QCD theory in 5% precision. Such achievement was presented as a huge success and confirmation of QCD validity.

But mass of proton was calculated before twenty years already with 0.06% precision by Heim's theory. Is the above result still confirmation of QCD? Indeed it is, why not. If mass calculated would differ from real mass of proton, it would serve for disapproval of QCD instead.

AlizeeAlizeeSlotinHere's a problem with open strategy, when number of competetive theories increases. Some other may appear quite productive and inspirative, some other not - while they still can be right. After then removal of such theory from interest of mainstream press makes a huge handicap for such theory. On the other hand we should keep some utilitarian priorities here: if some theory isn't able to predict anything testable, it has simply no meaning to deal with it until progress in technologies will enable its falsification.

Note that AWT anticipates the "Invariant Set Postulate" in apparent way, because the formation of existence of a "state space, within which a smaller subset of state space (reality) is embedded" is simply description of formation of condensate in dense gas and nothing special is about it. Therefore "Invariant Set Postulate" can be derived from principle of spontaneous symmetry breaking in predictable way and here's no need to consider it separatelly as an independent law in ad hoced, vague and incomprehensible way. So far we don't know about any other method, how to deduce the formation of "observable set in another hidden set" then the condensation of inertial particle environment, so it has no meaning to consider it as a separated general principle.

But as we can see, mainstream formal science exploits every possibility, how to diassemble Aether concept to its particular aspects to cover, Aether is crucial point of our reality understanding.

SlotinHere's no need to invent these abstract ideas, if we consider charactert of density fluctuations in dense particle gas. This model is borrowed from observable reality, it's simple, clean and logical, it can be simulated by computers in arbitrary degree of precision and it can anticipate all previous concepts in trivial and consistent way. But from certain reasons mainstream science doesn't want to keep physics transparent for other people. I presume, this is not accidental tendency at all and it has social origin.

AlizeeAlexaAlexaben6993ben6993.................

It is not the same thing to me. I had not heard of AWT until reading this website last month, so AWR is not my pet theory. All theories have a place, though, until there is a concensus of disproof.

And after that ...? I am uneasy over the lack of symmetry in the ascendency of disproof over proof. Science advances through theories being disproved leaving scope for infinite progress as nothing is set in stone. That is good as everything is up for re-evaluation in the future. Which is why future generations will look smugly back at TOE and laugh at us thinking we knew it all. Just as some end of nineteenth century physicists thought there was little physics work left to do. (I imagine that discovering the TOE will be a magnificent achievement, it is just the name I quibble at.)

The opposite clearly won't work as relying on proving that theories are correct does not allow for progress except in new theories. So there does have to be a lack of symmetry in relying of disproof. Which disturbs me a little. Not sure why, except that I prefer symmetries.

But disproof of a theory relies on testing it against all other theories (i.e. the ones which have not been disproved yet) and those are all subject to change/improvement in the future. Disproof is measured against unreliable knowledge, though it is the best we have. It is not perfect. Nothing is perfectly known to be false.

The aether was dismissed as unreal after the Michaelson-Morley experiment, I believe.

But I can't dismiss it in my personal thoughts so easily. I think of the aether as existing ... but it is just that the speed of light is a constant as well. It may be silly to think like that but I find nothingness hard to contemplate. But I am not a pro-aether advocate either. (Well I seem to be right at this moment but I will be happy to let the aether go if I can find another concept to replace it with.)

I can understand having no apples in my shopping bag. But I cannot understand there being absolute nothingness outside of an infinite universe. And I cannot understand matter sitting in nothingness. Some mathematicians tried to re-write maths without using irrational numbers (Scientific American article a few years ago) as irrationals don't really exist. Does this parallel the aether-or-not issue?

I don't myself have quite the same reservations about using irrationals and complex numbers in maths. They seem real enough for me in maths. But in the everyday world there may be problems. Viewed as decimals, an irrational number has infinite length in a non-recurring pattern. That implies that you need to specify it arbitrarily small, and as a length it would be arbitrarily smaller than the Planck length. That is a problem of specification in the everyday world. And how do you specify an infinite arrangement of the numbers of an irrational?

Rationals seem to be a less of a problem as you can use simple fractions. But they do actually have the same measurement problems in everyday life as for irrationals.

The article above uses mathematical space to define its real and unreal sets. I think that the sets would have been better termed superimposed and collapsed rather than unreal and real. 'Unreal' is misleading.

The avoidance of 'nothingness' also leads me to a fractal view as there should be 'something' at all scales both large and small. Fractal self-similarity of structure implies that there may be an infinite number of Plank length barriers of greatly disparate sizes, and physicists have located only one of them. A TOE could lead to all the Planck sizes being deduced, if it really is a Theory of Everything.

Lastly, I would not believe any of all this until it is backed by maths. And even then I might not believe. After all, nothing is ever proven to be correct. It has only 'not yet been disproved'.

kasenIf mathematics can't be complete, then whatever we choose to define in mathematical terms would also face the same limitations. I'm probably overestimating the applicability of those theorems, but the general idea of not being able to have your cake and eat it sounds reasonable and has a certain quantum quality about it.

I think it's more probable in the near future that a mathematician/theorist will come up with a proof that a TOE can't be formulated, than an experimentalist will infer it from experimental data.

At the very best, we might come up with 2 TOEs, one working from the outside in, one working from the inside out, or in other words, one aether-centered and one particle-centered.

The more interesting question, however, is where to from there? We have ultimate knowledge of the universe, now what?

Also interesting questions: Is the sound of one hand clapping a noumenon? Has Western epistemology really come up with anything new since Plato?

ben6993.........

I don't understand vacuum energy. But I imagine it as energy popping out of the very small scale universe(s). Ie the universe(s) we cannot measure on a smaller scale than Planck's length. The virtual particles are very short lived as their energy is borrowed from the vacuum and has to be paid back.

Our BB universe seems to have come from the vacuum energy but its energy has not yet been paid back. Will it ever? Did its size exceed a threshold where it does not need to be paid back. Is this analagous to electrons only changing shells if a threshold of energy is exceeded. Ie cf their quantum nature?

Is there a net flow of energy from the small scale universes to our large scale one? At least in this part of the universe. In which case our BB would not be the only one. And is that drive or push of energy from small to large scale, also causing inflation. And is there somewhere far off where there is energy seeping the opposite way from large to small scale? Eg in Black holes disappearing into within a small scale universe below the Planck length? And is there a large scale Planck length that our universe is trapped in? If our BB universe is more massive than a certain threshold, will it be able to burst out into a larger universe? It does not seem to have enough energy at the moment to do that but perhaps inflation will greatly increase to give it the uummph? And emerge as a virtual particle?

I do not really believe all this, I am just idly thinking ...

NoumenonWell as you know, science proper is inductive, not analytic,... but in any case, it is interesting how roughly similar your application of Godel's proof is to Kant's transcendental deduction, ...unfortunately being completely oblivious to this, you continue your useless sarcasm with ottis1923. I stated on another forum, that what Godel did for mathematics, Kant did for metaphysics and the theory of knowledge in general,... this is the limitation you seek in Godel above, but in regard to a conceptual understanding of reality.

You seem more rational than Ottis1923, so if your interested more than are cynical, the following link to text from the book 'The Philosophy of Physics', quote's the great Abraham Pais,... "Bohr became in effect, through his idea of complementarity, the successor to Kant in Philosophy".

The above quote is a conclusion I came to one my own, independently (!), through a study of the history of physics, and philosophy (Copleston's 9 vol History and many original works including of course Locke, Hobbes, Hume, and Kant, etc). I'm not implying that I'm special for making this connection on my own,.... I'm saying if one is aware of the respective conclusions (Kant/Bohr), the connection is obvious and meaningful. I don't think that Bohr or Heisenberg were conscious of Kant until later, but can't prove it either way. Again Palmer's idea in this article reminds me of the subject dependent 'Phenomenal Reality' as a subset of Noumenal Reality.

Copy/Paste whole thing, scroll down to "6.4.1 Complementarity"

http://books.goog...xiLRvvYC&pg=PA368&lpg=PA368&dq= kant copenhagen interpretation quantum mechanics&source=bl&ots=zNrJQ4HbQE&sig=cPsi6iwWyzKQ8S5JRPCD9ZQuM80&hl=en&ei=UoaQSpCPBOORtge6pMjOBA&sa=X&oi=book_result&ct=result&resnum=3#v=onepage&q= kant copenhagen interpretation quantum mechanics&f=false

[I have not read this particular book, but another of the same title by Sklar is good.]

NoumenonNoumenonNot exactly, ....Poincaré and Lorentz continued formulating their (Eclidean) relativity theories in terms of the aether, even up until 1907! It was Einstein who took the necessary conceptual leap and did away with the ether, ...because it became an unnecessary assumption after Einstein's brilliant leap, and still is.

Noumenonben6993...........

So should one replace the idea of 'aether' with the idea of 'vacuum energy'? Or is that just changing the label?

- - - - - - - -

Re: "Also interesting questions: Is the sound of one hand clapping a noumenon? "

...........

Colour is a noumenon, I believe.

Any sound is a noumenon, too?

The sound of one hand clapping may be:

particles striking the vacuum energy,

rational numbers thrashing around the irrationals on the real number line,

between effects struggling for significance tested against within effects in statistics,

trying to have new ideas when one's mind is empty etc?

- - - - - - - -

Re: "The more interesting question, however, is where to from there? We have ultimate knowledge of the universe, now what?"

............

I have as much problem with 'ultimate knowledge' as with 'nothingness'. So there should be more to know. Godel's barriers to knowledge can be sidestepped by expanding the bases that are assumed in a system. The invention of colour was one such expansion of the human senses. There may be more to come, for example with human/computer integration. The possibilies are great but it is hard to imagine a new sense without having it already. The world will be the same but it will look different to us when we further evolve.

kasenAnd didn't the revelation feel great? That's why I rarely read books. Well, your epiphany came after reading a lot of books, but I guess it's just a matter of preference as far as information acquisition is concerned. I prefer wiki sites and plain old sitting around and thinking.

I read page 368 of that book, but unfortunately page 369, which deals with Kant, is not in the preview. I think I got the main idea, though, complementarity. I also got that idea from all the stuff I've read on religions and mysticism, where it's pretty much the central idea, and from my personal musings.

I lack the knowledge and motivation to thoroughly analyse all philosophy and formally demonstrate(or disprove) my intuition that there is a commonly repeated thought pattern which is also present in religious and scientific paradigms. As such, I resort to sophistry and dialectics for persuasion. Since I have the ego to back it up with, it's more efficient for me that way.

The common meme would be division and complementarity(new word, yay!). Plato had intelligible and visible, Kant had noumenal and phenomenal. The main idea is the same, if there's anything later philosophers should be credited with it's taking the division further and further. Perhaps Kant's work was the pinnacle of that process and his achievement would be the formal, logical, exhaustive proof of a very old idea. What Godel did with mathematical logic, Kant did with discursive logic and Bohr did with scientific induction.

In the end, I think it's a matter of preference. I am more prone to admire people who do much with minimal resources than people who do very much with adequate resources. So I appreciate a several sentence koan more than a several hundred pages epistemology treatise. They may not be entirely equivalent, but as a physicist would put it, it's a good approximation.

DesmondMurseAlexaAlizeeAlizeeAlizeeben6993...............

Very interesting. I think of a logical sequence advancing by proving (I mean failing to disprove) a sequence of connected rational points on a real (mathematical) line. And there is scope for progress as there are always more rational points in between any two rational points you may think you have proven (or located), so knowledge can always increase by adding more rational points to the argument.

But we are really chasing 'the truth', which does not exist, or it is not provable. Similarly, irrational numbers are difficult to label, difficult to manipulate unless we give them individual names such as pi or e. Not very practical for the infinite set of irrational numbers, for we need a mechanism for turning each label into a usable number. So in this analogy, irrational numbers represent 'the truth' that we are seeking. But, as we cannot work with them, we work with the rationals. Progress is by identifying rationals which are closer and closer to the true irrationals that you are looking for? But never getting there as you cannot specify a rational number exactly as it would require specifying an infinite string of digits.

In the same way, physics identifies ever more fundamental particles without ever convincing us that they have reached the ultimate fundamental particles. By this analogy of rational/irrational numbers, the fundamental particles will be like irrational numbers. The chase will go on for them below the Planck length. And on beyond the next even smaller, Planck length (at say 10 EXP-135 or wherever it is), and on and on, ad infinitum.

It is interesting and paradoxical that we search for the truth but yet deny its existence. It is often said that the truth does not exist.

donavanbadboyAlexaben6993In the rational/irrational arguement I am trying to see what corresponds to the aether.

On the rational mathematics line, "n 1" ="n" "1" together with "1/n" = "1" / "n" together with the integers seem to be about enough to define the rational numbers. The irrationals are not defined in this space. Yet irrational numbers like pi and e mysteriously turn up and are found to be useful.

In this analogy, does the aether correspond to the rationals? In which case it/they exist. Or does it/they correspond to the irrationals, which do not exist, yet are sometimes found and found to be useful?

And similarly, if spinors and twistors are invented in mathematical space, do they stand in for the rational points. For the aether? And in such space will there be things equivalent to irrational numbers lurking? Things which do not exist in the definition of the space, but may be found there nevertheless and found to be important?

ben6993should be "n plus 1" = "n" plus "1"

donavanbadboydonavanbadboyExcuse my ignorance, isn't that just two sligly differnt syntaxes explaining the same function?

On irrational numbers, so what if you can't write the number down on a piece of paper, it's still an exact value. Anyway, in base pi, surely pi = 10(base pi).

HenisDova recapitulation

A. Its essential statement

"Extrapolation of the expansion of the universe backwards in time to the early hot dense "Big Bang" phase, using general relativity, yields an infinite density and temperature at a finite time in the past. At age 10^-35 seconds the Universe begins with a cataclysm that generates space and time, as well as all the matter and energy the Universe will ever hold."

E = Energy content of the universe

m = mass content of the universe

D = distance, Total = in all spatial directions, from the point of Big-Bang, of singularity's energy-mass superposition

At D=0, E was = m and both E and m were, together, all the energy and matter the Universe will ever hold. Since the onset of the cataclysm, E remains constant and m diminishes as D increases.

The increase of D is the initial inflation, followed by the ongoing expansion, of what became the galactic clusters.

At 10^-35 seconds, D was already a fraction of a second above zero. This is when gravity starts. This is what started gravity. At this instance starts the energetic space texture, starts the straining of the space texture, and starts the space-texture-memory, gravity, that most probably will eventually overcome expansion and initiate re-impansion back to singularity.

B. Some of its further essential implications beyond Einstein-Hubble and re classical-quantum physics

And again and again : "On The Origin Of Origins"

http://www.the-sc...age#2753

1. It promotes commonsensical scientific critical thinking beyond Einstein-Hubble.

The universe is the archetype of quantum within classical physics, which is the fractal oneness of the universe.

Astronomically there are two physics. A classical Newtonian physics behaviour of and between galactic clusters, and a quantum physics behaviour WITHIN the galactic clusters.

The onset of big-bang's inflation, the cataclysmic resolution of the Original Superposition, started gravity, with formation - BY DISPERSION - of galactic clusters that behave as classical Newtonian bodies and continuously reconvert their original pre-inflation masses back to energy, thus fueling the galactic clusters expansion, and with endless quantum-within-classical intertwined evolutions WITHIN the clusters in attempt to delay-resist this reconversion.

2. There is no call, no need, for any dark energy. The energy of the universe is conserved. The mass of the universe is conserved in the form of energy, the energy fueling the clusters expansion. At the next universal singularity, at the next D = 0, there will again be E = m for a small fraction of a second...just wait and see...

Following Newton (1) gravity is decreased when mass is decreased and (2) acceleration of a body is given by dividing the force acting upon it by its mass. By plain common sense the combination of those two 'laws' may explain the accelerating cosmic expansion of galaxy clusters and the laws that drive it, based on the E/ m/ D relationship suggested above..

3. There is no call, no need, for a Higgs Particle.

The resolution of energy-mass superposition is reverted when D = 0. Shockingly sad, but must be soberingly faced rationally.

C. Its implications re the origin and nature of life beyond Darwin, re selection for survival

For Nature, Earth's biosphere is one of the many ways of temporarily constraining an amount of energy within a galaxy within a galactic cluster, for thus avoiding, as long as possible, spending this particularly constrained amount as part of the fuel that maintains the clusters expansion.

Genes are THE Earth's organisms and ALL other organisms are their temporary take-offs.

For Nature genes are genes are genes. None are more or less important than the others. Genes and their take-offs, all Earth organisms, are temporary energy packages and the more of them there are the more enhanced is the biosphere, Earth's life, Earth's temporary storage of constrained energy. This is the origin, the archetype, of selected modes of survival.

The early genes came into being by solar energy and lived a very long period solely on direct solar energy. Metabolic energy, the indirect exploitation of solar energy, evolved at a much later phase in the evolution of Earth's biosphere.

Dov Henis

(Comments from 22nd century)

Updated Life's Manifest May 2009

http://www.physfo...ic=14988&st=480&#entry412704

http://www.the-sc...age#2321

Alexaben6993Yes, an irrational is an exact looking number. There is some importance however in being able to write down the exact number. Using base pi is admitting that the irrational number pi exists, and using it as a base, even though it is not defined in the rational mathematics line. 10 in base pi may look like a rational number but it still represents one times pi. And if I am, at the moment, quibbling about using pi, then I can't multiply it by one.

I have no qualms about using irrationals and complex numbers in maths, but here I am trying to work out if we are actually using things which in a sense do not or should not exist. Science, according to the rational/irrational analogy in my above posts is advancing by defining rationals ever closer to irrationals, but never getting there. Science advances by removing the untruths. The target truth seems to be like an irrational. Never achievable. It is perhaps OK to say an irrational is exact? But it is less good to say that a scientific fact is 'true'. The truth does not exist as you can never quite reach it. In the same way, irrational numbers do not really exist as you can never quite specify them exactly, except by using labels.

The main point in my quibbling is to try to get some analogies with the aether. Also the article specifies sets of real and unreal states. Is it necessary to specify unreal states? The irrationals appear out of nowhere when the rationals are defined. Does it make sense to define the unreal states? Or should they pop out of the woodwork also?

NB I note that for this particular research, the full article is downloadable.

AlexadonavanbadboySlotinben6993..................

I like phi too. I am an amateur artist but only use phi by instinct rather than bothering to calculate placement of focal points on the canvas with repect to phi. From memory I think phi is something like: (root 5 plus 1) /2. Which means it is irrational, as is root 5.

The circumference of a circle is irrational so when one specifies pi by dividing the circumference by the diameter we are using an irrational in the definition of pi.

But we both know pi is irrational. We both know that we have to use irrationals in maths.

I am just saying that I don't like using a number that has an infinite sequence of digits in no fixed pattern. You cannot specify it exactly except in terms of another irrational (I think). And I am trying to make the analogy with scientific truths. We can only get asymptotically closer to a scientific truth in the same way we can only get asymptotically closer to an irrational number (unless you use irrationals in your definition too).

I know it is being a bit precious as some rationals are also infinite in decimal form eg 1/3 is 0.33333 recurring forever. But as a fraction, 1/3 does not take forever to write down.

AlexaNoumenonAlexaEthelredOnly for those that can be defined mathematically with an algorithm for calculating it to any arbitrary precision such as Pi or E.

Irrational numbers make almost all of the Real numbers. There is an infinite number of irrationals for EACH rational number. Trying to get rid of them is pretty much a matter of getting rid of all numbers.

Ethelred

Sorry for the new signature. But It Needed Killun.

From QubitTamer's fake profile

Qubitwit gets the rest of August in my signature for aiming his idiocy at me. Again.

ben6993..................

Though I am not an AWT man ... don't believe in any theory yet and likely never will.

But I am primarily a mathematician, if anything, and you always hurt the ones you love. Especially when they are such elusive things and you can't quite get your hands on them.

- - - - - - - - -

"Irrational numbers make almost all of the Real numbers. There is an infinite number of irrationals for EACH rational number. Trying to get rid of them is pretty much a matter of getting rid of all numbers."

.................

Yes, in part. Though there are also an infinite number of rationals between any two irrationals, so there would be plenty of rationals left. That's the trouble with using infinities: infinity of reals - infinity of irrationals = infinity of rationals.

- - - - - - - - -

When you define rational numbers, you are forced to see the need for irrationals although they are not defined in the rational space. They do not exist in the rational number space. I apologise for seeing analogies everywhere but I am not wise enough to see very clearly. I agree that some of the analogies, eg with science advancement, are not very convincing. Though any analogy falls short of the real thing. But I am intrigued by the irrationals intruding themselves. A little like the aether 'intruding' on the physical world? Nothingness is very hard to pin down.

Working with real numbers soon leaves you needing complex numbers. Then onto other numbers such as quaternions. The article uses both complex numbers and quaternions. But it doesn't go on to use octonions, I think. I have read that consistent number systems cannot go past octonions (?) but I can't believe there will be such a barrier in the long term. It does not seem right that you cannot take and invent more out of the apparent nothingness outside the latest mathematical systems.

SlotinmaxberanSlotinGPhillipSince this theory is in conflict with observed results, we can conclude it is certainly false. I'm surprised and disappointed that physorg didn't see this obvious conclusion. In the future physorg should spend a few extra dollars to have someone who has at least taken undergraduate physics to write these stories on "New Laws" of physics.

EthelredThat is my initial reading of this part of the article as well.

However looking at again I see a bit differently. Here it would be saying that the CONSTRUCTIVE interference would on the invariant set and that DESTRUCTIVE interference would, as stated above, NOT be on the invariant set so the first case would have reality, or rather the particles would effect things, and the in the second case the particles would simply not exist in physical reality.

That part is OK on a second reading.

continued

because some one at physorg is under the delusion that sound bites are an excellent replacement for intelligent discourse.

EthelredThis one bugs me. It's why I have no tolerance for the Copenhagen model.

I really don't think the universe gives a damn one way or other about OBSERVERS, as in things that are aware they are observing. Any model that gives credence to sentient beings having a special relationship with the universe strikes me a pure arrogance. To me there is likely no difference between the experimenters and the box the experiment takes place in to the laws of the universe. Its all particles, forces and relationships between them. Where the heck does the concept of an observer fit in there?

Ethelred

Brevity is the soullessness of spin doctors

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