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Count Iblis wrote:
"Tegmark is not at all at the ''outer fringe of physics''."

Of course not Count. And which of Tegmark's statements correspond with the results of any actual lab experiment?

We find planets and count them.
We don't find parallel universes: None are known.

To say the "some sort of multiverse" is well accepted within physics is utter nonsense. Physics doesn't accept things for which there is zero experimental evidence. There isn't even general acceptance of dimensions beyond the known four.


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Quote:
Originally posted by DA Morgan:
Count Iblis wrote:
"Tegmark is not at all at the ''outer fringe of physics''."

Of course not Count. And which of Tegmark's statements correspond with the results of any actual lab experiment?

We find planets and count them.
We don't find parallel universes: None are known.

To say the "some sort of multiverse" is well accepted within physics is utter nonsense. Physics doesn't accept things for which there is zero experimental evidence. There isn't even general acceptance of dimensions beyond the known four.
I meant to say that the idea of a multiverse is acceptable to most physicists, not that they accept that a multiverse indeed exists.

From your comments in this and other threads, I can conclude that you clearly don't have much knowledge about physics. In physics you can't always get the ''direct lab evidence'' you ideally want. There is no direct evidence for many different things that are nonetheless well established.

Quantum mechanics is a good example. The rules of quantum mechanics only allow you to observe certain consequences of the theory. All the predictions have been verified, but there are things you can't observe in principle (e.g. you can't see an electron going to two slits simultaneously).

A multiverse theory would be similar to quantum mechanics. It makes predictions (e.g. for neutrino masses) that can be tested. But you can't see a parallel universe, just like you can't see an electron going to two slits simultaneously.

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Everything short of believing in invisible purple rhinos is acceptable as a discussion point.

Tegmark is on the fringe and were it not for his association with Hawking might well be unknown.

Conclude what you will. My degrees are not predicated on your belief system.


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Quote:
Originally posted by DA Morgan:


Tegmark is on the fringe and were it not for his association with Hawking might well be unknown.

This doesn\'t look like finge to me laugh


The idea of the multiverse is gaining in popularity among the big names in theoretical physics and astrophysics. People like Hawking, Steven Weinberg, Susskind and many more are proponents of this idea. That doesn't prove that the idea is correct, but it makes it no longer a ''fringe'' subject. There are also many people who don't like it. And there are many who are neutral.

So, the multiverse idea is just a controversial topic, like so many other topics in physics (e.g. the mechanism responsible for high temperature superconductivity, there are many proposed theroies and a lot of discussions but no proof of which one is correct).

I would define a ''fringe'' theory to be something that cannot be ruled out yet, but which has a small number of followers. I.e. if you ask 100 of the leading physicists in that area if they think the theory is correct, they would almost all answer ''no''.

This is e.g. the case for astrophysical models which assume that dark matter doesn't exist and that instead general relativity has to be modified. Such theories can in principle be correct. We can't rule it out yet. However, there are only a handful of people who push for this idea. You do have an increasing number of people working on this now, but most of them are trying to constrain these type of models.

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Count Iblis wrote:
"The idea of the multiverse is gaining in popularity among the big names in theoretical physics and astrophysics."

Perhaps you have not noticed but science is not authoritarian. We don't worship the guy with the best public relations. We don't kow tow to the guy who's book make the NY Times Best Seller list. And we don't have priestesses and imams.

Perhaps you are confusing science with scientology or some other religion.


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Quote:
Originally posted by DA Morgan:
Count Iblis wrote:
"The idea of the multiverse is gaining in popularity among the big names in theoretical physics and astrophysics."

Perhaps you have not noticed but science is not authoritarian. We don't worship the guy with the best public relations. We don't kow tow to the guy who's book make the NY Times Best Seller list. And we don't have priestesses and imams.

Perhaps you are confusing science with scientology or some other religion.
Not me but you are making this error. You started to label Tegmark as a fringe scientists. So, you are the one who ''attacked'' Tegmark on the basis of the popularity of his ideas amongst the people working in the field. I then pointed out that in that respect you are wrong, because first of all Tegmark has done a lot of work on ''ordinary'' astrophysics and second, his multiverse ideas may be controversial but not fringe, because that idea has a lot of support.


Science is indeed not authoritarian. That means that a theory that is not fringe has, by definition, the support of a lot of independent scientist who support it on the basis of its merits, not its popularity. That doesn't prove that it is correct, but it does mean that the theory cannot be criticised by questioning the intellect of the scientists who support it.

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I didn't attack Tegmark. I stated that his proposal was on the fringe: It is.

Things don't move away from the fringe until there is some confirmation based on the results from experimentation. Until there is confirmation ... there is just speculation.

And please don't try to change the subject. I was responding to the following statement you wrote:
"gaining in popularity among the big names."

Science does not run on popularity. Get over it.


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Quote:
Originally posted by DA Morgan:
I didn't attack Tegmark. I stated that his proposal was on the fringe: It is.
No it is not. It is a popular idea and popular ideas are, by definition, not fringe.

Quote:
Originally posted by DA Morgan:

Things don't move away from the fringe until there is some confirmation based on the results from experimentation. Until there is confirmation ... there is just speculation.
Wrong again. There is no experimental confirmation whatsoever for superstring theory. This theory is indeed speculative but it isn't fringe at all. Fringe has to do with the popularity of the idea (which is a non scientific concept anyway). Speculative theories can be non-fringe and even be part of a mainstream scientific paradigm.

Another example is supersymmetry. You'll find it hard to find a job in theoretical high energy physics if you don't know much about supersymmetry. Is there experimental evidence for supersymmetry? None whatsoever!

Quote:
Originally posted by DA Morgan:


And please don't try to change the subject. I was responding to the following statement you wrote:
"gaining in popularity among the big names."

Science does not run on popularity. Get over it.
I wrote that in response to your ill informed statement about Tegmark being a fringe scientist. I agree that science largely does not run on popularity, but you did change the subject and alledged that Tegmark's ideas were fringe, which they are not.

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Count Iblis wrote:
"no it is not. It is a popular idea and popular ideas are, by definition, not fringe."

Astrology is popular.
Life after death is popular.
Paris Hilton is popular.

I'll grant some license as this is the Origins forum but in the realm of science, versus Discovery Channel or whatever magazines you read, popular does not equate to science. And popular does not make something fringe.

Count Iblis wrote:
"There is no experimental confirmation whatsoever for superstring theory."

Actually there is. The mathematics of string theory can be used to describe reality. There is nothing in the ideas of multiverses that describes objective reality.

Too bad you can't see the difference.


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Justine: ?what we may label as our soul is really only the expression of completely organic, biological occurrences (qualia)?
Quote:
Count Iblis II: [Yes, and]?if the brain were simulated on a computer then that computer would have the same soul.
If the function of the body, mind and posited soul are merely the functions of organic chemistry and reaction, why can't we create life?

No need for a complete human being, or even a reptile; how about an amoeba? We know the chemical composition of an amoeba. We can see how they are constructed. So put one together and have it take off. If you do that, and it doesn't take off, we must assume you left something out. Except we know what goes in, don't we?


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Quote:
Originally posted by DA Morgan:
Count Iblis wrote:
"no it is not. It is a popular idea and popular ideas are, by definition, not fringe."

Astrology is popular.
I don't think that you'll be able to find many astrophysicists who believe in astrology.


Quote:
Originally posted by DA Morgan:

I'll grant some license as this is the Origins forum but in the realm of science, versus Discovery Channel or whatever magazines you read, popular does not equate to science.
I never said it did. But if an idea is popular amongst scientists then that implies that it is not fringe. Astrology is not popular amongst scientists, but superstring theory is. Do you get it now?

Quote:
Originally posted by DA Morgan:


Count Iblis wrote:
"There is no experimental confirmation whatsoever for superstring theory."

Actually there is. The mathematics of string theory can be used to describe reality. There is nothing in the ideas of multiverses that describes objective reality.

There is no direct evidence that superstring theory has any relevance to physics. The same is true for multiverse theories. Both theories are in principle predictive. E.g. Multiverse theories can be used to predict constrain neutrino masses.


Quote:
Originally posted by DA Morgan:

Too bad you can't see the difference.
There is no difference. B.t.w. superstring theory predicts an ensemble of 10^(few hundred) different universes, the so-called string landscape. This has been invoked to explain the small value of the cosmological constant in much the same way as Tegmark explained the value of the neutrino masses.

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how about an amoeba? We know the chemical composition of an amoeba. We can see how they are constructed. So put one together and have it take off. If you do that, and it doesn't take off, we must assume you left something out. Except we know what goes in, don't we?
I think we have done this successfully with some virusses. Amoeba are extremely complex organisms. We don't know the exact chemical composition of amoeba at all. There are many many different molecules inside an amoeba that have various functions.

If you compare an amoeba to a factory, then the chemicals are the machines, tools, etc. inside that factory. This factory is able to copy itself. This means that the factory produces it's own tools and machines and the machines that do that are also produced within that factory itself.
We can't even make a self-replicating factory on the macroscopic scale, let alone a molecular factory.

Suppose you could make a small self replicating solar cell factory. Let's say that one factory produces one solar cell that generates 1 Watt in sunlight every day and that the factory is copied every month. Then after 2? years you would have one billion factories, so your output would be 1 billion solar cells per day! If the factories don't stop replicating then after a few years the entire earth will be consumed by these factories and transformed to solar cells.


This self replicating solar cell factory sounds like science fiction, but it would be much easier to assemble than an amoeba!

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Archie: how about an amoeba?
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Count Iblis II:I think we have done this successfully with some virusses.
Well, Count; do you assert this as a positive achievement? Have viruses been 'created' from chemicals; or just altered from the original state? For that matter, are viruses a form of 'life' or a form of organic 'rust'.

Rust consumes certain things, leaves behind a by-product and so on. Do you think rust is a form of life?

Back to your assertion that life is a complicated chemical reaction; demonstrate your assertion with something more than "?everybody knows?" An amoeba, complicated as it may be, is a rather simple form of life. Go ahead and make one that lives. Or will you continue to duck the issue?


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Archie,

You seem to wrongly assume that amoebae are very simple systems, so you could easily assemble them. But because we haven't heard of any scientist having assembled it there must be some problem with that idea, hence the idea that it is ''just a machine'' must be wrong.

You are completely wrong.

An amoeba is a simpler form of life than a human being, but not that much. Most of the complexity of living organisms is inside the cells. That's the place where the most important processes happen.

We know that living organisms are just molecular machines, even though we don't understand how it works. The reason why we don't know how an amoeba wrks is because it's system of enormous complexity.

Archie, why not just accept that science and not religion applies to the universe? If there were any truth in the religious world view, then how come I can't read anything non trivial about the physical world in the Bible?

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