Imagination

This is a discussion on Imagination within the A Brief History of Cprogramming.com forums, part of the Community Boards category; >>23 is an unprovable assumption, no matter which way you look at it. Of course it is (I said so ...

  1. #46
    Peace
    Join Date
    Aug 2001
    Posts
    1,510
    >>23 is an unprovable assumption, no matter which way you look at it.

    Of course it is (I said so myself). My only point here is; Why chose a result that is in no way indicated by the data at hand? The problem was of course a vastly simplified one but I'm hoping people get the idea.

    >>What if 2 isn't really 2.

    Which is exactly the same as the question I posed, really. All evidence to date points to the fact that 2 is 2. So based on this, we are technically making an assumption that this is the case. Why would it not be?

    Depending on how ridiculous you want to get, you could say that everything is uncertain. But as its already been stated, you are going to have to decide whether or not you trust your senses. Deciding to neglect the evidence will, in a sense, turn your world to chaos. Without a concrete set of rules by which to compare different elements, you will arive at a different conclusion from the same calculation. This is pure bunk. By deciding to ignore the most logical solution in favour of one that has no supporting evidence you are declaring that you believe the universe to be random and chaotic which is so obviously not the case.
    "There's always another way"
    -lightatdawn (lightatdawn.cprogramming.com)

  2. #47
    erstwhile
    Join Date
    Jan 2002
    Posts
    2,227
    >>Clyde: Not all observation is subjective. <<

    Really? Perhaps you would like to reconsider: "Laws don't change at all, what we think of them changes" ?

    >>Clyde: Thats not what it says at all. The anthropic principle is an explanation for why the universe has some of the properties it does, it does NOT say those laws exist merely because we observe/describe them. I suggest you read up on the topic before you use it in an argument. <<

    You quoted me as saying, "that suggests that these 'laws' exist and the uni/multiverse exists only because we observe/describe them".
    "the weak anthropic principle states that, because intelligent life is necessary for cosmological enquiry to take place, this already imposes strong selection effects on cosmological observations"
    (http://nedwww.ipac.caltech.edu/level...eacock3_5.html)

    >>Clyde: *sigh* I am so tired of tired of coming up against this kind if ignorance. Scientists know (well have pretty good idea anyway) what happened at the very beginning of time not by magically guessing, but by WORKING IT OUT, based upon the evidence in the universe around us. It's not assertation it's SCIENCE, based upon evidence and derived theory. <<

    Yes, it must be very difficult for you. Perhaps a re-read of the thread may help you overcome your ignorance. I note that you haven't offered an experiment that could validate your assertion that "the laws of physics are the same everywhere".

    >>Clyde: There is only ONE assumption that science makes;it is that our senses are based on reality and not faked. That assumption is a pretty safe bet, further more, science WORKS planes fly, computers compute, cars drive, etc. etc. if that assumption was false they wouldn't. <<

    Science makes lots of fundamental assumptions mostly centring on the validity of observation and the alleged a priori nature of maths. BTW, where exactly do you imagine that I have said that science doesn't 'work'?

    >>Clyde: The "ideas" come from MATHS, mathematical derivation, NOT "imagination".<<

    ...and maths is invented and described by? a)Wooly mammoths b)cosmic fluffiness c)imaginative human beings d)devil's advocates

    >>Clyde: Bingo, or perhaps you can imagine 9 dimensional space? Or imagine what you would "see" if you could "zoom in" on a molecule and look at electrons? <<

    Sure can. What colour would you like it to be?

    >>Clyde: Eh? Again you argue from IGNORANCE, I study quantum mechanics at university and the first thing that the lecturers tell you is that you CANNOT imagine the principles in your head. They are derived mathematically, you can use them to predict, but you absolutely CANNOT picture what's going on.<<

    "the first thing that the lecturers tell you is that you CANNOT imagine the principles in your head". If everyone believes this then no one will try. If no one tries the statement becomes a self-fulfilling prophecy. The point you seemed to have completely missed again is that individual human beings generated these constructs using their minds, a property of which is imagination. You seem to be treating them separately although both processes (imagination/maths/whatever) occur quite happily, sometimes even synergystically, in the brain. To say that these individuals were somehow completely devoid of imagination or that imagination played no role in the formation of their ideas is, quite frankly, preposterous.

    >>Clyde: Hence "simple" molecules. <<

    Polymers are simple molecules. Some are huge. But I was actually trying to draw your attention to the arbitrary designation of scale.

    >>Clyde: No... that would be Decarte.<<

    Descartes. Who was a mathematician (of sorts). I was attempting to use 'I think therefore I am' as an example and analogy of circular argument.

    >>Clyde: WRONG, it's NOT a detection problem, it's because quantum effects break down with macroscopic objects. <<

    'macroscopic objects' again, eh? Back to molecules of arbitrary size.

    >>Clyde: Wrong, wavelength is not subjective, velocity is not subjective, mass is not subjective, energy is not subjective, voltage is not subjective, power is not subjective, etc. etc. Percieved colour on the hand, how loud a sound sounds, how cold it feels, etc. they are subjective, see the difference?<<

    I said all observations are subjective; you are describing properties (wavelength, energy, voltage etc) and not the observations made about or upon them. Do you now see the difference?

    >>Clyde: The Earth is round and I can tell you now that will never change, and will never be re-defined.<<

    Forever and ever and ever? Round? Always? wow.
    Last edited by Ken Fitlike; 06-02-2002 at 07:34 PM.

  3. #48
    Just because ygfperson's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jan 2002
    Posts
    2,493
    wow. this is some heavy stuff, man. i'll stick to 3 points.
    • observation can be objective. an observation is subjective when it is interpreted and changed based on previous knowledge. what if you're reading a digital scale? you know the approximate mass of the object in question, through observation of the scale, without interpreting and changing that observation based on previous knowledge.
    • math is imaginary, because it exists in our minds as a collection of logic. but it doesn't make math inaccurate.
    • the earth will eventually get sucked into the sun and vaporize and fuse into god-knows-what.


    oh, one more comment.
    *sigh* I am so tired of tired of coming up against this kind if ignorance.
    you're in an internet forum.

  4. #49
    Peace
    Join Date
    Aug 2001
    Posts
    1,510
    >>math is imaginary

    No. Math is representational. Fairies are imaginary. Math is the representation of fact. We use math to measure factual data. The only thing that could be wrong in a mathematical equation is the data involved. Something could be incorrectly represented but that would be the fault of the person involved not through any fault in the mathematical system.

    >>Science makes lots of fundamental assumptions mostly centring on the validity of observation

    Uhm, gee. Do we have anything else to go on? The observation that two identical actions yield two identical results is not really all that much fluff.

    >>...and maths is invented and described by?

    See above.

    >>Sure can. What colour would you like it to be?

    I dont think anyone is arguing that you cant imagine a representation of the situation. I believe the argument would be that you cant imagine it correctly.

    >>Forever and ever and ever? Round? Always? wow.

    *looks confused* Now I'm lost. What was the origional point again? Technically the earth is an oblate spheroid so in reality it never _was_ "round".

    Oh the point, yes: The statement "Nothing is impossible", is incorrect. I believe what some people are trying to say would be more correctly expressed as: "Some of the actions we currently deem impossible may be possible." That would be a correct statement that I would have no argument with. I do however, take exception to "Nothing is impossible" as many things clearly are.
    "There's always another way"
    -lightatdawn (lightatdawn.cprogramming.com)

  5. #50
    The Earth is not flat. Clyde's Avatar
    Join Date
    Mar 2002
    Posts
    1,420
    "Really? Perhaps you would like to reconsider: "Laws don't change at all, what we think of them changes" ?"

    .... What we think of laws can change, that doesn't make all observation subjective.

    ""the weak anthropic principle states that, because intelligent life is necessary for cosmological enquiry to take place, this already imposes strong selection effects on cosmological observations""

    Correct but you have totally mis-read it. The anthropic principle does NOT say the laws EXIST because of us, it merely points out that some of the properties of the universe must be what the are because we know we exist.

    For example: Why is the universe about 10 billion years old and not 1 billion? Answer Because intelligent life couldn't have formed at the age of 1 billion years.

    "I note that you haven't offered an experiment that could validate your assertion that "the laws of physics are the same everywhere"."

    As i said before physicists do not randomly guess about this stuff, I do not know the exact principles involved, but i do know that they can track the universes age back to a billionth of a billionth of a billionth of a billionth of a billionth of a billionth......... of a second. They have a pretty clear view of what happened at the beginning, and IF the universe had different laws of physics in different places they would know about it. Further more, you would SEE crazy effects coming from distant space. If you want a more indepth answer find yourself a physics prof. of you course you will probably choose to ignore what i've said and go on blindly claiming there is no "proof".

    "Science makes lots of fundamental assumptions mostly centring on the validity of observation and the alleged a priori nature of maths"

    There is one assumption made on the "validity of observation", furthermore we KNOW that assumption is valid because if it wasn't science wouldn't work.

    "...and maths is invented and described by? a)Wooly mammoths b)cosmic fluffiness c)imaginative human beings d)devil's advocates "

    Imagination == recreating sense input in your head IE. picturing stuff, hearing sounds etc., maths == maths. They are completely different.

    Our mind limits our imagination, however the nature of maths is such that it is built up in tiny logical steps which mean that it is not limited by our mind. (well, thats not to say everything is derivable, it may well not be, BUT maths applies equally to all systems in the universe, imagination does not).

    "Sure can. What colour would you like it to be?"

    You can't, the fact that you don't understand why amazes me. Can blind people imagine red? Can deaf people imagine G sharp?

    It is fundamentally impossible to imagine 4 or more dimensional space because you exist in 3 dimensional space and you have no experience of a 4th dimension object, in exactly the same way that a blind person has no experience of colour.

    The same is true of wave-particle duality, you cannot possible imagine what an electron "looks like" up close because your imagination is limited by your experience.

    I know i can see it coming, your going to say something foolish like "But i've never seen a dragon and I can imagine it" or some other such nonsense. The point being that you HAVE seen 3d objects, and you have seen lizards and you have seen colour, etc. so all you are doing is building a picture out of elements you already have seen.

    Incidently what you can imagine as lightatdawn has pointed out is a representation, like imagining a ball on a suspended sheet for 4d space, BUT you are not imagining 4d space at all, you imagining 3d space and saying "if we say this 3d object works like a 4d object would...." Furthermore the further away you get from our experience the more totally useless such a method becomes, hence it is useless for picturing wave-particle duality or 9D space.

    A humans imagination is limited by his experience, and human beings inherantly only experience the universe on a particular scale: Between a grain of sand upto ... lets say a country. IF you alter the scale way beyond our limits you hit things that we cannot imagine.

    "The point you seemed to have completely missed again is that individual human beings generated these constructs using their minds, a property of which is imagination"

    Imagination == picturing stuff in your head, (or recreating other senses).

    "To say that these individuals were somehow completely devoid of imagination or that imagination played no role in the formation of their ideas is, quite frankly, preposterous. "

    The were not devoid of imagination, but the reason they came to the conclusions they did was because of mathmatical derivation, Einstein took Maxwell's wave equations and then altered spacial geometry in certain situations to make it fit. Physics is not solved by imagining how stuff is, its solved by maths, because imagination has limits and maths does not.

    "Polymers are simple molecules. Some are huge. But I was actually trying to draw your attention to the arbitrary designation of scale. "

    Polymers are not refered to as simple molecules, and the scale is NOT arbitrary.

    "Descartes. Who was a mathematician (of sorts). I was attempting to use 'I think therefore I am' as an example and analogy of circular argument. "

    You really think "I think therefore I am" is a circular argument? You think that the only thing we can EVER be 100% sure of is a circular argument? Excellent.

    "'macroscopic objects' again, eh? Back to molecules of arbitrary size"

    *sigh* its not arbitrary, why are you even questioning this, do you know anything about Quantum mechanics? Answer: No. I can't possibly teach you quantum mechanics, suffice to say that even if you take the simplest quantum mechanical system like "particle in a box" guess what happens? The higher energy levels converge to form a classical system. It's no more "arbitrary" than 9.81 ms^-2 being the acceleration due to gravity, close to the Earth.

    "I said all observations are subjective; you are describing properties (wavelength, energy, voltage etc) and not the observations made about or upon them. Do you now see the difference?"

    No i'm not describing the properties, i'm describing the observations, you go to your wavelength machine and you measure the wavelength, you get an answer, doesn't matter who makes that measurement they will get the same answer, hence objective. I measure voltage with a voltmetre, doesn't matter who makes the measurement they will get the same answer hence objective, etc. etc. on the other hand if two people compared how cold they think it is and they might very well get different answers because that is subjective. See the difference?

    "Forever and ever and ever? Round? Always? wow"

    ..... as in we will never discover that the world is flat. And thats right even given eternity we will still never discover the world is anything but a spherical object.
    Last edited by Clyde; 06-04-2002 at 11:02 AM.

  6. #51
    Registered User
    Join Date
    Jun 2002
    Posts
    2
    In your imagination, can you make a rock so heavy that you cannot lift it?
    If so, can you lift it?
    yes and yes

  7. #52
    Registered User Aran's Avatar
    Join Date
    Aug 2001
    Posts
    1,301
    everything is an infinity, and an infinity of things can never happen.

    hence, everything is possible is false,so therefore its complement, nothing is impossible is also false.

  8. #53
    The Earth is not flat. Clyde's Avatar
    Join Date
    Mar 2002
    Posts
    1,420
    "everything is an infinity, and an infinity of things can never happen."

    That argument doesn't work. "Everything" might well cover an infinite number of scenarios, but that does not preclude each one of those scenarios individually being possible.

    However your conclusion is correct, for reasons i have already given.

  9. #54
    Registered User Aran's Avatar
    Join Date
    Aug 2001
    Posts
    1,301
    yes, but still, for each thing that is accomplished, at least two more things are discovered which need to be accomplished, and so on.

  10. #55
    Disagreeably Disagreeable
    Join Date
    Aug 2001
    Posts
    711
    Wow, nice thread. I enjoyed reading it immensely. I think I'll stay out of this one (), but I would like to say that both Clyde and Fitlike make some very good points.

    If I chose a side, it'd be with Fitlike. I can see exactly where he's coming from. I can also see Clyde's point of view, too.

  11. #56
    Just one more wrong move. -KEN-'s Avatar
    Join Date
    Aug 2001
    Posts
    3,230
    Originally posted by Hillbillie
    Wow, nice thread. I enjoyed reading it immensely. I think I'll stay out of this one (), but I would like to say that both Clyde and Fitlike make some very good points.

    If I chose a side, it'd be with Fitlike. I can see exactly where he's coming from. I can also see Clyde's point of view, too.
    Well of course you'd agree, this is the kid who got stoned one day and thought to himself "There is no spoon" -

  12. #57
    train spotter
    Join Date
    Aug 2001
    Location
    near a computer
    Posts
    3,859
    Sherlock Holmes said (or similar)

    "Once we discard the impossible, what remains, no matter how improbable, must be the solution."

    As he was just a character in A.C.Doyles imagination, somethings must be impossible, even in your imagination.
    "Man alone suffers so excruciatingly in the world that he was compelled to invent laughter."
    Friedrich Nietzsche

    "I spent a lot of my money on booze, birds and fast cars......the rest I squandered."
    George Best

    "If you are going through hell....keep going."
    Winston Churchill

  13. #58
    Registered User compjinx's Avatar
    Join Date
    Aug 2001
    Posts
    214
    >>In your imagination, can you make a rock so heavy that you >>cannot lift it?
    >>If so, can you lift it?
    Well, put it this way. change it so the rock is light, the "heavyness" is the speed (of light) and the question is "can you go faster?"

    so it goes:

    >>In your imagination,
    don't need it here

    is light so fast that you cannot go faster than it?
    If so, can you go faster?


    Somone might have beat me in coming up with this relation, but I didn't have enough energy to read all the posts as it is 23:21 right now.
    "The most overlooked advantage of owning a computer is that if they foul up there's no law against whacking them around a bit."
    Eric Porterfield.

  14. #59
    The Earth is not flat. Clyde's Avatar
    Join Date
    Mar 2002
    Posts
    1,420
    "I would like to say that both Clyde and Fitlike make some very good points."

    AAAaaaaaahhh.

    "If I chose a side, it'd be with Fitlike"

    *throws hands in the air*

  15. #60
    The Earth is not flat. Clyde's Avatar
    Join Date
    Mar 2002
    Posts
    1,420
    "is light so fast that you cannot go faster than it?
    If so, can you go faster? "

    In your imagination there is no problem with going faster than light. In reality, its a big no-no.
    Last edited by Clyde; 06-04-2002 at 07:43 AM.

Popular pages Recent additions subscribe to a feed

Similar Threads

  1. Pretty Optimistic
    By mithrandir in forum A Brief History of Cprogramming.com
    Replies: 42
    Last Post: 11-06-2001, 09:27 PM

1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 11 12 13 14 15 16 17 18 19 20 21