Nice thread, FamCore
, with some really interesting replies.
Harry Cliff presents a pretty compelling case to support the conundrum physics finds itself faced with these days. For all the success the Standard
Model has enjoyed over the years, it’s slip is starting to show as it’s limits are being tested. Although the pressure on the physics community is
mounting, the dilemma it’s in comes as no surprise. It’s a brick wall that was seen coming. And even though a solution is not yet in sight, I’m
not sure I would call it “the end of physics” yet.
A lot of the following is from a post I made about a year ago, but I think pertains to this thread, as well.
DM/DE is beyond the limits of our current knowledge. A lot of folks are taking their best shot at it, but at present we just can’t get there from
here. It may well turn out that our entire approach to the problem is on shaky ground. Considering the current state of physics, I can’t help but
think that the entire logical foundation is questionable, and at best inadequate to explain even the observable universe, let alone the
Physicists like Einstein and Newton viewed problems through the lens of both a scientist/mathematician and a philosopher, rather than practicing the
‘shut up and calculate’ method of quantum physics. To me, understanding the significance of a calculation is somehow more satisfying than taking
it at face value and thinking, “It’s futile to assign any fundamental reality to a calculation - as long as the numbers add up, your job’s
done”. I realize I’m interjecting ‘feelings’ into the process, which could be stifling for progress, but I’m unable to view the universe
from the perspective of a machine intelligence. To begin with, I don’t think that humans are capable of absolute objectivity, which may place
serious boundaries on our ability to “know”, but I also think a universe without meaning would be unfulfilling.
Much of physics (classical mechanics, relativitisic mechanics, quantum mechanics) is based on a foundation of either ‘quantum logic’ or
‘classical logic’ or a mixture of the two. However, neither approach is without flaws. To tackle the universe as a whole, as a system, may require
a completely different logical framework/perspective; one better suited to allow the anomalies observed. This logic might require more flexibility
than a human mind can currently accommodate. It seems we’re continually observing phenomena outside our ability to reason. Fuzzy, dark areas that
fall into unexplainable niches like:
real, but not quite
with properties, but not quite
there, but not quite
then, but not quite
causal, but not quite
deterministic, but not quite
Using currently accepted logic, which of the following is considered true?
1 - reality is continuous
2 - reality is discrete
3 - either 1 or 2
4 - both 1 and 2
5 - neither 1 nor 2
Answer: Who knows? The jury’s still out. Although a lot of hot debate is ongoing, there’s still no consensus. At any rate, physics is currently on
the hot seat and in dire need of a paradygm shifting breakthrough. I hope one comes soon.
IMO, it may be we’ll never understand the most fundamental of truths. It may be too vast to attain, or simply beyond our capacity to understand as
humans. But at the same time, it’s a challenge that can’t be ignored, and I don't think we've reached the end game yet. Just my 2 cents...
PS: By the way, some of you might find THIS LINK
interesting, It involves a study of the fine-structure constant, and brings some of our assumptions about it into question.