a reply to: ChaoticOrder
ChaoticOrder, since you pointed me to this post, one which I have strong feelings about, I thought I'd resurrect the thread.
I have watched numerous talks by Laurence Krauss, both on YouTube and Netflix... and various places on the internets.
Let me expound on my troubles with a universe from nothing...
1. It may be an axiomatically incorrect assumption to assume "nothing" exists. In the beginning, there may have been "everything" and then we added
the space in between. This gets rid of the idea of "creation from nothing" (ex nihilo). You would only have to explain the creation of "distance" or
"redistribution", not the creation of "stuff". I see no plausible reason why nothing should exist rather than something. Just looking into space an
seeing a lot of emptiness isn't proof of anything. Let's face it, there is a whole lot more there that we don't detect and wavelengths we aren't
actively looking at.
2. It is still not understood if "time" came into existence when the universe came into existence. Time may or may not be... umm...
"trans-universal". While we can do relativistic calculations with time "t", we still don't know if that weird dimension of time was actually created
with space, or if it just... uhh... "harmonizes" with space. Just because two things are coupled doesn't imply that they are inseparable. For
instance, what if space grows out of time? It sounds idiotic, granted, but there are numerous ways in which space-time is coupled, but also exist
independently, or as an inheritance structure.
3. We are still uncertain if the universe has boundaries. We might be exchanging materials with a connected universe. It would wreak havoc on our
laws of conversation, but we make assumptions that there is no point of "exchange" when we develop laws of conservation. For more ideas on universal
bounds, see this: Definition of the universe
4. Just because we can't see the cause of quantum events, doesn't mean they don't exist. The Heisenberg Uncertainty Principle assumes that our
methods of measurement inherently interrupt what we are measuring (position and spin of particles in a probability cloud)--which is currently a true
statement. If you attempt to measure the location of a basketball by throwing basketballs at it, the quality of information you get back will suck.
But if you measure it with a light pulse, you can measure the location, spin, and vector of the basketball. Thus, measuring quantum effects may be a
problem of engineering just as much as it is physics. That being said, I doubt we'll have high-resolution subspace scanners anytime soon.
5. Randomness is not a good explanation. If I state, "Random events occur. Anything can happen as a result of random events. The universe is
therefore possible."... I really don't think I've explained ANYTHING. You then have to prove everything else. Prove that randomness is both random
and that it occurs. Prove that randomness leads to both creation and complexity. Prove that complexity allows for a universe to form. Again,
randomness is just a bad explanation. It is equivalent to saying "God/Zeus did it."
Points where I agree:
1. Our universe does, obviously, allow for our type of intelligent life. It's also easy to consider that there is some form of intelligent life that
is native to stars, rather than planets. Maybe there are space whales that live among massive gas pockets in space. Life is most likely numerous and
diverse, far beyond our planet. And in other variations of a universe, other forms of life would most likely take on different forms, as well. We
aren't so much "special", but rather a "special variation". Intelligent life could be as common in universes as fungi is on our planet. Life may be
a common "expectation" of universes.
2. Quantum mechanics has gotten us much further in our understanding of the universe. The proof is in the pudding.
3. Tweaking the 20-ish constants of nature would form radically different universes with totally different properties. I don't know if this means
that our universe is a unique incarnation that "works", if we're one of many universes, or if that's just how our particular "simulation" was setup
(simulated reality theory).
A secondary point:
Human knowledge always seems to expand when we reject "nothing" as an explanation. "That's for God to know, not you." "There's nothing there, don't
waste your time on it." etc. Calculus was born because we attempted to explain an infinitely small (infinitesimal distance). Telescopes were sought
after because we wanted to understand the things that whirled around in the night's sky, opening up a vast ocean of emptiness that heavenly bodies
moved through. Nothingness and randomness are in direct opposition to knowledge. When quantum physicists explain the universe by randomness out of
nothingness, they have chosen their religion. I refuse to believe such limitations to knowledge, just as future generations will look back and wonder
why we wasted so much time telling people that "random events" created the universe. What crap!