Let's talk a little bit about probabilities...

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posted on Sep, 14 2010 @ 02:42 PM
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reply to post by Maslo
 



Thats your personal interpretation and description of reality. I can also say that there are events which have no direct cause, only probability of happening (quantum processes (wavefunction collapse) are in their essence stochastic and not deterministic) and according to observable evidence, I would be equally right. At our current level of understanding, these two interpretations are indistinguishable, and therefore equally probable to be true. I also personally think that quantum randomness is the result of some undelying deterministic hidden variables, but I cannot completely disregard that its actual true stochastic event, I dont have evidence for that statement, it would be unscientific. You cannot disregard some theory only because you personally dont like it, you have to use evidence (why is something this way, AND not the other way).


We have no evidence of any true random event as we do not know all the variables that lead to a perceived random event. We can not call something we do not know all the variables for a random event. Randomness is for fools and charlatans.


Until you have evidence that says otherwise, its a possible interpretation.


With such logic, every man made deity exists in reality and all must be worshiped. Lack of understanding does not give rise to something being an actuality.


Because mutations can be caused by probabilistic quantum events, but compositions of star systems and planet orbits cannot be effectively influenced by quantum events.


Genetic material is every much macroscopic as a planet or star. Why would it's diminutive size in such respect have any more or less effect? An atom decays into radiation and which strikes the genetic material causing a mutation. It's not random nor chance, as for it to happen, you need to consider all variables that led to it happening.


We dont know. Therefore, both interpretations are equally probable, till we determine that either there are additional hidden variables (quantum events are in their nature deterministic) or there are not, at least not observable from our universe (then they are stochastic in their nature).


If all variables are not known then one can't exclaim that the universe is stochastic in nature as you mentioned earlier. We know reality is deterministic because no event is without a cause. Reality is action at work, never ceases in motion. Lack of understanding doesn't give rise to anything else but a lack of understanding.




posted on Sep, 14 2010 @ 04:02 PM
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reply to post by sirnex
 





We have no evidence of any true random event as we do not know all the variables that lead to a perceived random event. We can not call something we do not know all the variables for a random event. Randomness is for fools and charlatans.


We do not know if there ARE any such hidden variables.




With such logic, every man made deity exists in reality and all must be worshiped. Lack of understanding does not give rise to something being an actuality.


I am not saying it is an actuality. But lack of understanding does give rise for something being a possibility.




Genetic material is every much macroscopic as a planet or star. Why would it's diminutive size in such respect have any more or less effect? An atom decays into radiation and which strikes the genetic material causing a mutation. It's not random nor chance, as for it to happen, you need to consider all variables that led to it happening.


It can very well be random. Nothing in quantum mechanics forbids it. Quantum wavefunction returns probability amlitude, and whether there are some hidden variables that choose one of the states according to this probability or not is unknown. Thats why different theories about these things are called interpretations, because it is basicaly just semantics, the math is the same.




If all variables are not known then one can't exclaim that the universe is stochastic in nature as you mentioned earlier. We know reality is deterministic because no event is without a cause. Reality is action at work, never ceases in motion. Lack of understanding doesn't give rise to anything else but a lack of understanding.


According to our best understanding, universe behaves as if it is partialy stochastic in nature. You can hide this randomness behind some hypothetical hidden variables if you are uncomfortable with it, but it is not necessary. We do not know if reality is deterministic. It may not be so.



posted on Sep, 14 2010 @ 05:10 PM
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reply to post by Maslo
 



We do not know if there ARE any such hidden variables.


How again is the universe stochastic in nature if one doesn't have all the variables in which to exclaim it is so?


I am not saying it is an actuality. But lack of understanding does give rise for something being a possibility.


OK, so randomness is not an actuality. Nor does a lack of understanding something give an credible possibility of something being true or possible. If that were the case, then we are still left with the requirement of worshiping hundreds and thousands of man made deities born from simple lack of understandings. The logic in your argument simply does not fit reality itself.


It can very well be random. Nothing in quantum mechanics forbids it. Quantum wavefunction returns probability amlitude, and whether there are some hidden variables that choose one of the states according to this probability or not is unknown. Thats why different theories about these things are called interpretations, because it is basicaly just semantics, the math is the same.


Unknowns is not how reality works. Humanity may not know and humanity may not understand. Reality is not humanity.


According to our best understanding, universe behaves as if it is partialy stochastic in nature. You can hide this randomness behind some hypothetical hidden variables if you are uncomfortable with it, but it is not necessary. We do not know if reality is deterministic. It may not be so.


Every effect is proceeded by a cause, everything in reality is in a constant state of motion either in and of itself or in relation to the whole of reality. There are no hidden variables, no randomness, no chances, no probabilities. All there is, is an infant species pretending it can describe reality through lack of understanding and mathematical wizardry.



posted on Sep, 15 2010 @ 04:50 AM
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reply to post by EnlightenUp
 


Even though life already exists on earth, does it in fact still start (again) from "dead matter" in places from time to time? Why should any process that got it going in the first place be extinct?

Any kind of carbon-based proto-life that got got started on Earth these days would soon become food for the life that already inhabits the place. You know what they say: first come, first served.



posted on Sep, 15 2010 @ 05:15 AM
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reply to post by sirnex
 




How again is the universe stochastic in nature if one doesn't have all the variables in which to exclaim it is so?


How do you know you dont have all the variables?



OK, so randomness is not an actuality. Nor does a lack of understanding something give an credible possibility of something being true or possible. If that were the case, then we are still left with the requirement of worshiping hundreds and thousands of man made deities born from simple lack of understandings. The logic in your argument simply does not fit reality itself.


Yes, you cannot prove a negative, therefore there is a possibility that a god exists. To say god doesnt exist with 100% certainty is as foolish as to claim it certainly exists. Agnostic atheism is the correct scientific stance in the cause of deities, and agnosticism is the correct stance in the cause of (experimentally indistinguishable) interpretations of quantum theory.

And, actually, we have some hints that causality in the quantum world may be violated - its called Bell's theorem



In theoretical physics, Bell's theorem (AKA Bell's inequality) is a no-go theorem, loosely stating that:
No physical theory of local hidden variables can ever reproduce all of the predictions of quantum mechanics.

Bell's theorem has important implications for physics and the philosophy of science as it proves that every quantum theory must violate either locality or counterfactual definiteness.

A series of experiments has demonstrated the quantum predictions that form the basis of Bell's Theorem. Some would therefore claim that not only the predictions of quantum theory but also experimental results now prove, using Bell's Theorem, that the universe must violate either locality or counterfactual definiteness. However, interpretation of these experiments is still the subject of some debate.


So either the world features instantaneous action at a distance (something Einsteins theory of relativity forbids), or causality is violated. Which of these principles in the universe is more important? If you want to take real scientific stance here, you cannot say that, unless you have evidence to back up your claim, not just personal preference. Both are equally likely to be true. As we have learnt many times before (relativity, quantum world, chaos theory..) universe sometimes works in counterintuitive and seemingly paradoxical ways.

en.wikipedia.org...

My favourite interpretation is De Broglie–Bohm theory . It satisfies all properties of "classical" (non-quantum) theories (deterministic (hidden variable), unique history - causality) except non-locality, but which cannot be used to send any real information FTL. Therefore it does not fully break this result of relativity, it just sort-of restricts it to quantum entanglement and directly non-interacting guiding wavefunction). Altrough I have read there are some problems with the theory (I have to delve deeper into it to see if they are indeed there and justified, and dont stem just from misunderstandings as proponents of the theory claim).

But I cannot absolutely disregard other interpretations without evidence, since they are experimentally indistinguishable.



Unknowns is not how reality works. Humanity may not know and humanity may not understand. Reality is not humanity.
Every effect is proceeded by a cause, everything in reality is in a constant state of motion either in and of itself or in relation to the whole of reality. There are no hidden variables, no randomness, no chances, no probabilities. All there is, is an infant species pretending it can describe reality through lack of understanding and mathematical wizardry.


Then how do you know that "unknowns is not how reality works, there are no probabilities.."? Because it seems counterintuitive to our infant species, just like relativity at a time? Mathematics is logic, the language, mainframe of the universe. Its our only tool that ensures we wont get deceived by our human nature and imperfect feelings (intuition) in our search for true nature of the universe, and go only where experimental evidence leads us, no matter how counterintuitive it may seem to us.

(btw. no hidden variables AND no probabilities? What do you mean by that? Either there is probability or hidden variable - there is no third option).

edit on 15-9-2010 by Maslo because: typos



posted on Sep, 15 2010 @ 02:17 PM
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reply to post by Maslo
 



How do you know you dont have all the variables?


I personally don't have all the variables, but logically, once all the variables are known for any event, then what's left for randomness, chance, and probability?

If you can accurately describe an event from start to end, there is no randomness in that event, there is no play of chance, there is no probability of it happening. All that is left is the actions that take place in between.


Yes, you cannot prove a negative, therefore there is a possibility that a god exists. To say god doesnt exist with 100% certainty is as foolish as to claim it certainly exists. Agnostic atheism is the correct scientific stance in the cause of deities, and agnosticism is the correct stance in the cause of (experimentally indistinguishable) interpretations of quantum theory.


I disagree. The concept of a creative deity that created all of reality for the sole benefit of one sentient race in a vast cosmos is nothing more than narcissistic musings of a primitive culture created thousands of years ago in an attempt to explain the world around them and why it was the way it is. Usually and most often, only those higher up in the rungs of the social ladder were the one's who could "communicate" with these so called creators of the universe. Usually through drug induced visions.

I'm sorry, but a man made creation mythology in no way accurately depicts reality nor gives any plausibility of it being actual to reality. We might as well start exclaiming that the universe is born from the anal drippings of a magenta colored cosmic unicorn. It hold's as much equal weight by such logic.


And, actually, we have some hints that causality in the quantum world may be violated - its called Bell's theorem


Deals with locality, not causality.


So either the world features instantaneous action at a distance (something Einsteins theory of relativity forbids), or causality is violated. Which of these principles in the universe is more important? If you want to take real scientific stance here, you cannot say that, unless you have evidence to back up your claim, not just personal preference. Both are equally likely to be true. As we have learnt many times before (relativity, quantum world, chaos theory..) universe sometimes works in counterintuitive and seemingly paradoxical ways.


Where is causality being violated? How exactly is 'spooky action at a distance' violating causality?


My favourite interpretation is De Broglie–Bohm theory . It satisfies all properties of "classical" (non-quantum) theories (deterministic (hidden variable), unique history - causality) except non-locality, but which cannot be used to send any real information FTL. Therefore it does not fully break this result of relativity, it just sort-of restricts it to quantum entanglement and directly non-interacting guiding wavefunction). Altrough I have read there are some problems with the theory (I have to delve deeper into it to see if they are indeed there and justified, and dont stem just from misunderstandings as proponents of the theory claim).


I don't know much about the theory other than that it sounds a bit iffy to me.


But I cannot absolutely disregard other interpretations without evidence, since they are experimentally indistinguishable.


Reality is reality and reality works only the way reality works. It is the only valid interpretation towards reality. Once all variables to an event are known, there is simply no room for randomness, chance or probabilities. What happens is what happens.


Then how do you know that "unknowns is not how reality works, there are no probabilities.."? Because it seems counterintuitive to our infant species, just like relativity at a time? Mathematics is logic, the language, mainframe of the universe. Its our only tool that ensures we wont get deceived by our human nature and imperfect feelings (intuition) in our search for true nature of the universe, and go only where experimental evidence leads us, no matter how counterintuitive it may seem to us.


GR/SR is based of the idea that there exists a fourth dimension called 'time'. No such dimension exists and I would go so far as to say that dimensions themselves as we define them ourselves are simply pure mathematical fantasy. Never have we observed any dimension other than the "three" we live in. Instead, I prefer to look at it as how it is, that being that it just is. If time is a dimension, then so must temperature be as well.


(btw. no hidden variables AND no probabilities? What do you mean by that? Either there is probability or hidden variable - there is no third option).


If all variables are known, then what is left 'hidden' and where does probabilities come from?



posted on Sep, 15 2010 @ 06:18 PM
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reply to post by Astyanax
 


Any kind of carbon-based proto-life that got got started on Earth these days would soon become food for the life that already inhabits the place.


reply to post by sirnex
 


It might not develop any further simply due to more established life using it as a source of sustenance.


I had considered that possibility. However, that is an assumption to which I shall refrain from committing. It most certainly could happen, yet not be doomed for use as raw material. Could it find incorporation into existing life? If so, how many separate lineages have merged? Does it play a part in evolution of existing organism by altering them? Could it thrive in remote ecosystems? Depending upon the actual rules of the game, would it even be distinguishable?

To me, there are many questions at this time.

reply to post by Astyanax
 


You know what they say: first come, first served.


That might imply precisely the opposite of what it first seems! "They" say almost everything one ever hears. "They" play all sides. "They" are very adept in the use of urban folklore. "They" cannot be trusted. "They" vanish when the lights are on.


reply to post by sirnex
 


Then again, we are continually discovering new species all the time, so who knows?


"They" most certainly know.



posted on Sep, 16 2010 @ 04:44 PM
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Originally posted by idmonster
I'd like to add a couple of billion years of dealing cards into that mix.

And give the recipient the opportunity to keep one card out of every.............say 100 deals. Yup! Lovin the poker game/evolution analogy.


probability doesnt work that way.

flip a coin 100 times or a billion times and the probability is still 50/50.



posted on Sep, 16 2010 @ 04:59 PM
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Originally posted by Mr_Awesome
and what is the probability of getting 5 cards without a dealer?

hmm maybe thats a different topic

edit on 14-9-2010 by Mr_Awesome because: (no reason given)



Lol, it's so simple a concept that most miss it.

It's like the atheist scientist that runs out of his lab with a test tube exclaiming, "I have created life from nothing more than dirt! Take that, 'God'!"
Suddenly a voice comes from the heavens, "Wow! Good job!- but wait! Who's dirt did you use?!"



posted on Sep, 20 2010 @ 04:15 AM
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reply to post by miriam0566
 


probability doesnt work that way. flip a coin 100 times or a billion times and the probability is still 50/50.

Yes, the probability that the 101st coin flip, or the 100-billion-and-first flip, will come out heads is still 50 percent. But the probability that you will throw heads at least once in a series of coin flips increases with the number of flips.

For one flip, there are only two possible combinations, H or T, and the chance of H coming up is 50 percent.

But for two flips, there are three possible combinations, HH, TH and TT, and only one, TT, has no H in it. Since all combinations are equally possible, the chance of throwing heads once in two coin flips is 2 out of three, or 66.67 percent.

For three flips, there are four possible combinations, HHH, HHT, HTT and TTT, or which only TTT has no H. So the probability of throwing heads once in three flips is 75 percent.

You can see the way it works now. For any number n of coin tosses, there is only one combination that contains no heads. So the odds of throwing heads once in n tosses must be (n - 1)/n.

For one hundred flips, it is 99 percent.

For one billion flips, it is 99.999999999 percent.

*


The probability of abiogenesis, meaning the probability of coming up with a viable molecular replicator under the conditions that existed on the primitive Earth, is the probability of a fairly limited series of chemical reactions are initiated by chance and take place in order. Given the rate of chemical reactions occurring on the Earth's surface, which must number in the trillions a minute or greater, abiogenesis--if it could occur at all--was not an unlikely event but a near-certainty.

The man or woman of faith is thus left with two viable options.

  1. Deny that abiogenesis could ever occur, insisting that only God has the power to create life.

  2. Admit that abiogenesis may well be possible, but continue stoutly to maintain that life on Earth was no abiogenetic accident but the work of God.

Option One is a bit risky, methinks. Going by past form, the odds on a two-horse race between God and Craig Venter distinctly favour the latter.

Option Two is purely faith-based and therefore undisprovable. I'd latch on to that one, Miriam, if I were you.

edit on 20/9/10 by Astyanax because: you need to know the odds.



posted on Sep, 20 2010 @ 04:42 AM
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reply to post by Astyanax
 


Aren't there 2 ^ n combinations of heads and tails where n is the number of flips? It's a binary number.

That would p = (2 ^ n - 1) / (2 ^ n) to get at least one head since only one combination is all tails.

if n = 0 then p = 0 / 1
if n = 1 then p = 1 / 2
if n = 2 then p = 3 / 4
if n = 3 then p = 7 / 8
...

For 100 flips it's much closer to 100% than 99%. (2 ^ 100 is *huge*). Might as well call it 100%.

(Maybe I'm answering a different question entirely though)

Exactly once in n tosses (we don't care when):
p = n / (2 ^ n)

One head at the end of n tosses (which I guess is the same as the first, simplified):
p = 1 - 1 / (2 ^ n)

edit on 9/20/2010 by EnlightenUp because:




edit on 9/20/2010 by EnlightenUp because: I'm probably embarassing myself



posted on Sep, 20 2010 @ 05:03 AM
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reply to post by EnlightenUp
 

2^n will give you the number of permutations. We are looking the number of combinations.

For combinations, sort order is irrelevant. In a three-coin toss, for example, HTT, THT and TTH are considered equivalent. All we're looking for is the coin to come up heads.

More here if you need it.

edit on 20/9/10 by Astyanax because: I always do.



posted on Sep, 20 2010 @ 05:10 AM
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reply to post by Astyanax
 


I edited already, depending upon the question being asked.


The one you seem to be asking is p = n / (2 ^ n) aka. exactly one head in n flips.

If n = 3 then p = 3 / (2 ^ 3) = 3 / 8

If n = 100 then p = 100 / (2 ^ 100) ~= 0

ETA:

To get exactly r heads in n flips, it appears to be:
p = (n C r) / (2 ^ N) where C = combinatorial function (above in earlier post)

edit on 9/20/2010 by EnlightenUp because: fix the oops



edit on 9/20/2010 by EnlightenUp because: get fancy



posted on Sep, 20 2010 @ 06:28 AM
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reply to post by EnlightenUp
 

Go back to Miriam's post. Read it. Have a think. Talk to me tomorrow.

Bye for now.



posted on Sep, 20 2010 @ 07:43 AM
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Originally posted by Astyanax
reply to post by EnlightenUp
 

Go back to Miriam's post. Read it. Have a think. Talk to me tomorrow.

Bye for now.


I did. I sent you a U2U detailing things. Each individual flip is indeed p=1/2. You want at least one head (meaning 1, 2 or 3 heads).

What you forgot what that there are (for 3 tosses):
1 way to get no heads: TTT (3C0)
3 ways to get one head: HTT, THT, TTH (3C1)
3 ways to get two heads: HHT, HTH, THH (3C2)
1 way to get three heads: HHH (3C3)

Simply saying H, HH, HHH, TTT is not correct.

The problem comes in confusing the combinations with the actual permutations:
H1 T T, T H1 T, T T H1 = 3 = 3 P 1
H1 H2 T, H2 H1 T, H1 T H2, H2 T H1, T H1 H2, T H2 H1 = 6 = 3 P 2
H1 H2 H3, H2 H1 H3, H2 H3 H1, H1 H3 H2, H3 H1 H2, H3 H2 H1 = 6 = 3 P 3

Out of eight possible sequences, 7 have heads. p = 7/8 to get at least one head in three flips.

This all generalizes for the inquiry to:
p = (2^n - 1) / (2^n) = 1 - 1/(2^n) = 1/(2^n)*Sum(r=1 to n):n C r

Check the calculator at the link you provided if you feel that I do not possess the proper authority in the matter. It treats it like a binary number sequence problem just as I began doing. If we were throwing tetrahedrons, it would be a base-4 sequence.


edit on 9/20/2010 by EnlightenUp because: moar, and a little moar



posted on Sep, 20 2010 @ 06:02 PM
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reply to post by Astyanax
 


Where is the probability arising from? With each toss there are quiet a few variables that will determine the ultimate fate of the coin and which side it will land on. Given that these variables do in fact exist and must be accounted for in determining which side the coin will land, then where is the probability arising from?

Mathematical wizardry and pure disregard of the true variables at play.



posted on Sep, 21 2010 @ 02:25 AM
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reply to post by EnlightenUp
 

I had a bit more of a think. It seems I was wrong to conflate all permutations into combinations. I apologize.

So the chances of one coin coming up heads in a series of tosses is actually greater than I calculated it to be. My calculations were in error, but not my conclusions, I think.

*


reply to post by sirnex
 

Ah, there you are, you perennially rude and ill-spoken person. I suggest you address your objections to Miriam, or to the OP, or possibly to God. I was merely commenting on the probabilities of coin tossing.



posted on Sep, 21 2010 @ 02:52 AM
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Originally posted by Astyanax
reply to post by EnlightenUp
 

I had a bit more of a think. It seems I was wrong to conflate all permutations into combinations. I apologize.


Nothing to apologize for from my point of view. However, I'll accept it as a free gift.


Consider the game as tossing n coins simultaneously; it's the same game as n tosses done in succession.


So the chances of one coin coming up heads in a series of tosses is actually greater than I calculated it to be. My calculations were in error, but not my conclusions, I think.


You made conclusions?



posted on Sep, 21 2010 @ 02:59 AM
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reply to post by EnlightenUp
 


You made conclusions?

See the second part of the post that started all this off.



posted on Sep, 21 2010 @ 03:29 AM
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Originally posted by Astyanax
reply to post by EnlightenUp
 


You made conclusions?

See the second part of the post that started all this off.


Ah yes. I suppose there's a 3rd option, one where God created the parameters that govern chemical reactions to produce abiogenesis at a certain rate under certain conditions-- whatever pleased Him and he thought was good.


There was an article, posted somewhere on ATS where it was found water molecules actually can increase the distances over what current chemistry predicts at which DNA is able to recognize and assemble from compatible bits. No specific mechanism was offered at the time. That got me thinking that since not all rules are known, probabilities calculated in the past to assess how likely abiogensis is, prior to certain observations, may not reflect reality at all.

I suppose I was attempting, in so many words and a few equations, to show how assuptions, knowledge and even having a well-defined question so that you're sure about what you're asking can wildly influence probability calculation-- also that it can be quite counterintuitive at times.

I did dig up something that seems related to what I mentioned though I do not believe it was the article cited already.
The DNA Mystery: Scientists Stumped By "Telepathic" Abilities

Scientists are reporting evidence that contrary to our current beliefs about what is possible, intact double-stranded DNA has the “amazing” ability to recognize similarities in other DNA strands from a distance.

...

There is no known reason why the DNA is able to combine the way it does, and from a current theoretical standpoint this feat should be chemically impossible.





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