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# Infinity a big mistake ?

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posted on Feb, 11 2006 @ 04:07 AM
I personally find it hard to believe the concept of Infinity, and that there is anything in the Universe we can describe as totally infinite. I believe Infinity is the cause of many problems in science, or perhaps infinity is really something else not what we describe it as.

Where Infinity goes wrong :

Let us say that the following series has an infinite number of terms:

S = 1 - 1 + 1 - 1 +1 - 1 ..... and so on forever

Now there are different ways we can group these :

S = (1-1) + (1-1) + (1-1) + .... and so on

therefore S = 0 + 0 + 0 + 0 .....
so S = 0

but there is another way we can group these numbers in the series:

S = 1 + (-1 +1) + (-1 +1) + (-1 + 1) + ........... and so on

In this case S = 1 + 0 + 0 + 0 + 0 + 0 + 0 + 0 + ......... and so on

therefore S = 1
Therefore in this series, with infinite terms, 0 = 1

I got this example from a book, and I thought it was a good example of when Infinity can cause unecessary problems in Math.
But we also know infinity causes problems in Physics, e.g when we say space time can have infinite curvature. This runs us into a singularity.

What do you think, is infinity really necessary, or is it a concept that should be discarded ?

posted on Feb, 11 2006 @ 04:30 AM
the only problem with your equations is that subtraction is not associative, so your groupings do not work. As far as infinity goes, I am not sure what to think. I personally do not subscribe to things with no end. That would mean there was no beginning, either.

posted on Feb, 11 2006 @ 05:59 AM
?

Clearly infinity does not exist. It's impossible. Scientists won't tell you that because it would negate everything they know.

Reality is impossible. Surely I don't have to tell you that? Things don't pop into existence from nothing. And things don't exist infinitely, otherwise all existence and experience would have no actual space to exist in the impossible infinite time line. If we had always existed, we would all be gods by now. Although we wouldn't, if you see what I mean, because you could always set back the time of being born, say, another billion years, etc.

It's elementary.

[edit on 11-2-2006 by albie]

posted on Feb, 11 2006 @ 06:09 AM
I believe infinity exists, but unfortunately cannot back this up with any links nor evidence to external sources. What happened before 'time' began? What happens when 'time' ends? Does it loop? If it doesn't loop, what happens? If it is not infinite, what happens? If everything ceases to exist forever, isn't FOREVER infinite? What only I can comprehend for this existance is infinity.

- Nazgarn

posted on Feb, 11 2006 @ 06:18 AM
So you believe that if you travel in one direction into space, you'll carry on forever?

And how do you explain my idea that if we have always existed, in some form, that we wouldn't have done everything, like an infinity ago?

Infinite time stretching into the future and past negates experience itself.

Look, I'm sorry if I'm not explaining it right. Could someone else try? I need a lie down.

posted on Feb, 11 2006 @ 06:21 AM

Therefore in this series, with infinite terms, 0 = 1

How does it?

The two series are similar yes.

BUT. Taken with the groupings the series are in fact different. The groupings effectivly make it two completely different series doesnt it.?

Also the two series ARE different. They start differently. One starts with (1 - 1) + (1 - 1) etc
the other starts with 1 + (1 - 1) + (1 -1).

If the base set is S = 1 - 1 + 1 - 1 +1 - 1 ..... then the second grouping doesnt apply because it starts differently. ( with 1 + 1 )

Ok fair enough. If you take a subset from the infinite length series then its valid that 1 = 0. BUT you have to take it from the START of the series. It doesnt make sense otherwise.

Therefore in this case its not infinity thats the problem but the fact that you have taken two subsets from the infinite series and comapred them using different start points within the series. The two groups have to share the same base reference point.

Sorry Im not being very clear but I know what I mean.

Yeah. You can really only rationalize the problem correctly if all sets share the same base reference or else the comparison is worthless.

In fact I have just noticed that in the second grouping there are pluses and minuses in completely different locations.

Ok I have totally confused my self now. Perhaps proving your point ha ha.
If you can explain why the second grouping is in a completly different order that might help. From my point of view they shouldnt even be compared to each other.

Hmm Ill stop ranting now I think. ha ha.

Oh and I think the best way to think of infinity is that its allways one bigger than the last number. Infact, it can be proven with simple thought processes. Just think back in time. What made us? What made God?( or big bang or whatever ) what made that thing? and what made the process that made that? etc etc etc. Can it just stop at some point. Of course not. Something doesnt come from nothing thats why! Ergo infinity. Or maybe our punny three dimensional brains just cant cope with the problem ha ha.

Ok seriously Im finished now. ...........

posted on Feb, 11 2006 @ 07:39 AM
Infinity is very useful in math, but of course it can cause several problems as well. However, if you are dealing with real numbers and "real world" math you can't get away from it. (Unless you have a program like Maple to do it for you
)

Just for fun: The sum of all numbers = 0 ( ...5+4+3+2+1+0+-1+-2+-3+-4+-5...)

Now time on the other had must have a beginning, or else we would have never arrived at this moment. We would still be waiting for an infinite number of "Big Bangs" before we found ourself here.

|----Time1---------| (period of infinity) |-----------You are here------|

posted on Feb, 11 2006 @ 08:18 AM
I too believe in infinity, but I also believe that it isn't well understood. But it is there.

For example, you can travel around a circle an infinite number of times. You can keep walking and never hit an edge to stop you. Possible distance = infinity. However, displacement will never equal more than half the circumfrence.

The universe is the same thing. It curves 4-dimensionally. Now the real question is if this curve is "open" or "closed". An open curve would be infinite, and is described as the "saddle"-shaped universe. However, I believe it to be closed, which would make it a 4-dimensional ball.

Like the 3-dimensional ball, you could travel along the 2-d surface of the ball in any direction for an infinite distance, but finite displacement. In our 4-dimensional universe ball you can travel along the 3-d surface in any direction for an infinite distance, but of finite displacement.

But of course, due to the Big Bang, this ball is growing, and so the finite displacement also grows.

The 4-d universe shows how the universe can still APPEAR infinite, and yet not BE infinite.

posted on Feb, 11 2006 @ 09:05 AM
think about this. if the universe is expanding from the big bang what is it expanding in? is there an end to where it will expand to. where does the universe end? if there is an end what's on the other side of the end. as far as we know every thing has ends. our solar system, the milkyway. since we can not travel to the edge of the known universe we can neither confirm or deny that it ends

posted on Feb, 11 2006 @ 09:15 AM

Originally posted by albie
?

Clearly infinity does not exist. It's impossible. Scientists won't tell you that because it would negate everything they know.

Reality is impossible. Surely I don't have to tell you that? Things don't pop into existence from nothing. And things don't exist infinitely, otherwise all existence and experience would have no actual space to exist in the impossible infinite time line. If we had always existed, we would all be gods by now. Although we wouldn't, if you see what I mean, because you could always set back the time of being born, say, another billion years, etc.

It's elementary.

[edit on 11-2-2006 by albie]

Sorry, I don't mean to be rude, but what exactly are you basing this on? Have you discovered something that the worlds most intelligent people have missed? Please explain your views

posted on Feb, 11 2006 @ 11:01 AM
You have to forgive albie, he apparently hasn't learned of quantum mechanic's yet.

The two thing's people have the most trouble grasping.. Infinity and nothingness. We live in a finite space, all our experience's deal with the finite, so obviously we think of thing's to be finite. We also live in something, so it's hard to imagine a nothingness. Surely we can't exist in nothingness if we live in something, right? Well, maybe the universe does exist in nothingness, we don't know for sure what the condition's are outside our sphere of existance. Perhap's that nothingness is also like our vaccuum in space, appear's to be nothing there, but measure it at the quantum scale and you see a sea of virtual particals popping in and out of existance. I honestly don't have a problem with nothingness nor infinity as most people do. I think it's rather cool.

posted on Feb, 11 2006 @ 03:06 PM
What book is this from?

X²=y has an infinite amount of solutions

posted on Feb, 11 2006 @ 03:28 PM
Infinity is not meant to be a number. When you use it in mathematics, it resembles a number much larger than other numbers you're working with. When you are...say...integrating a function and you go from negative infinity to infinity - those are not meant to be numbers themselves, just something in mind to say "ok, think of the largest number you can, and make it a little larger."

The manner which you asked your question don't lead to philosophical debate, it just shows a common misconception.

posted on Feb, 11 2006 @ 03:54 PM

Originally posted by siddharthsma

I personally find it hard to believe the concept of Infinity, and that there is anything in the Universe we can describe as totally infinite. I believe Infinity is the cause of many problems in science, or perhaps infinity is really something else not what we describe it as.

Where Infinity goes wrong :

Let us say that the following series has an infinite number of terms:

S = 1 - 1 + 1 - 1 +1 - 1 ..... and so on forever

Now there are different ways we can group these :

S = (1-1) + (1-1) + (1-1) + .... and so on

therefore S = 0 + 0 + 0 + 0 .....
so S = 0

but there is another way we can group these numbers in the series:

S = 1 + (-1 +1) + (-1 +1) + (-1 + 1) + ........... and so on

In this case S = 1 + 0 + 0 + 0 + 0 + 0 + 0 + 0 + ......... and so on

therefore S = 1
Therefore in this series, with infinite terms, 0 = 1

I got this example from a book, and I thought it was a good example of when Infinity can cause unecessary problems in Math.
But we also know infinity causes problems in Physics, e.g when we say space time can have infinite curvature. This runs us into a singularity.

What do you think, is infinity really necessary, or is it a concept that should be discarded ?

What you just presented does not make sense mathematically:

While the sum of an infinite series can be written down as a type (S -> (1..infinity), it can not be calculated as to a specific value: operations like addition, subtraction, multiplication etc are not defined in mathematics for infinity, either as a value, or as a series.

The proof to the above has to do something with limits. I am not a mathematician so I can not exactly remember it, but once I had a mathematician friend who demonstrated the proof to me.

posted on Feb, 11 2006 @ 04:43 PM
first post

that series diverges therefore you cannot say what it is equal to at infinity but only at the n-th value. the reasoning that the book provides holds no mathematical basis.

if anyone wants the actual proof i can provide it using the geometric series test and p-series test.

posted on Feb, 11 2006 @ 05:13 PM
Infinity does in fact exist.

However, you cannot represent Infinity in any other way other than a symbol. This is due to the very nature of Infinity; there is no beginning or end.

So there is no place to start an equation from!!

It is difficult for us to conceive of anything being infinite as our experience of nature teaches us that everything has a beginning and an end.

However, In the same way that a 2 dimensional being could not view a third dimension, we are unable to directly view the infinite. This does not mean however that we couldn't conceive of the idea...

The main property of anything that is truly infinite is the idea of oneness.

If there can be no beginning or end then everything must be one.

Funny thing that as some say that they are the exact same properties that describe the BIG BANG..... or in fact a singularity at the centre of a Black hole...

However, i suspect the truth to be much more wondrous than even the mysteries hidden in black holes....

Dare I say... Use the FORCE Luke......

What is the FORCE??

MAYBE ZPE????? (Zero Point Energy)

NeoN HaZe....

[edit on 11-2-2006 by Neon Haze]

posted on Feb, 11 2006 @ 05:36 PM
ok. i felt the need to share this, and sorry if someone already touched on it, but.........

isn't time something that we ( our own consciousness or 'the collective unconscious' [an idea in psychology] ) created? think about it....

(i'll try not to lose myself with this) 1 day is the 'time' it takes for our planet to make 1 revolution, which in turn is divided into the sub groups that everybody knows (ie: 24 hours, 60 min to an hour, 60 secs to a min. and so on).
1 year is the time it takes for our planet to make 1 trip around our star (about 365 days)

so.... what am i getting at?.... we use things in nature to, for lack of a better word... measure/comprehend things... whether its our own lifetimes... the estimated age of the universe... even distances (lightyears)

so when people ask what was before time started, or what happens when it ends.... i cant help but smile. there is no such thing as time! it is something that we have created to try to help us explain the universe. the universe is way too crazy for anyone to even begin to comprehend what we think we can (does that make sense?).

i just realized that this is off topic now, so if requested, or if i feel the need to i will continue with this at a later time

posted on Feb, 11 2006 @ 06:09 PM
i can only say that, whils't math is not perfect, it is just part of reality.
and yes, infinity does exist. forever is the only things that is real.
one way to imagine this is by thinking of some scientists claim that the universe is growing. so therefore i will draw you two circles of the universe showing growth:
o
O

what is beyond the border? what the hell is it growing into? something cant expand into nothing because nothing is nothing.
and if it is a set size, then what still is beyond the "wall" where space ends?
nothing?
NOTHING?
its all in ur head and im going to free us soon. everything is a part of everything. we don't even need our bodies if we free our mind.

posted on Feb, 11 2006 @ 06:16 PM
to active7288
i believe u think like me.
time is just a measurement.
a measurement of memories.
i look at the dirt, and it is the same dirt from billions of years ago... or in turn(from my previous post)- from forever ago. therfore, it was, is, and always will be... right now. but memories confuse us, so we measure it. 60 ticks is a minute. 3600 ticks is an hour. but its always now, because now isn't time. memories are time.
time both exists and doesn't exist. it's hard to relate this to you because its all in my head and im trying. one day i will put it in the best of words, when im motivated to care to write such a thing. cuz i really don't care until everyone believes...

posted on Feb, 11 2006 @ 06:21 PM
Outside of mathematics in which infinity is very real we dont know anything for a fact is Infinite.

Theres really only two possibilities concerning space either the Universe is infinitely big (as most think it is) or the other possibility is that the Universe has a finite size but then there has to be something "outside of the universe" that the universe is expanding into. We are however stuck in space that makes up our universe and have no way to observe anything outside of it, this ceases to be a question that can be answered scientifically.

Blackhole singularities are said to have infinite curvature of spacetime and infinite density. But that can really never be proven since we cannot observe anything pass the event horizon. The term Infinite in this case might just be used because the laws of physics as we know them break down at that point. But thats really the best we can do at present.

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