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Cranks and Physics

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posted on Feb, 2 2012 @ 04:59 AM
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Full quote here:

No, my complaint was the long winded one across several post with the specific points made against a range of issues. As has just been mentioned, you seem to be selectively picking out sentences for your own gratification.

Ah, ad hominem. An art form here on ATS.

Btw I would be very grateful if you could clarify your complaint as I seem to be cherry picking for my own gratification.




posted on Feb, 2 2012 @ 05:01 AM
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Originally posted by Astyanax

Sometimes today’s cranks turn out to be tomorrow’s Einsteins.

This is often stated, but in real life it almost never happens.


In the past it happened quite regularly. Einstein, Tesla, Schrödinger were all once viewed as ‘cranks’. A good modern day example would be Andrea Rossi who has invented the E-Cat , the supposed cold fusion energy producer



Science is definitely a little too dismissive of theories which cannot be tested right now or even hint at being slightly aligned with the spiritual.

To expect otherwise would be to misunderstand what science is for or how it works.


I disagree. There is a difference between arrogantly writing off something completely versus simply not incorporating it into mainstream scientific knowledge. Many many theories have been made which have had to wait years for the right type of equipment to be invented in order for them to be tested.



Just because one is unable to fit one’s theories into a mathematical formula, does not necessarily mean it should be written off altogether.

That's not how it works. As others on this thread have already explained, the theory should be self-consistent and make accurate predictions about reality. It is nature, not the scientific establishment, that insists on the maths.


As I have already stated above, there are numerous scientific theories which make very accurate statements about reality which are not easily translated into a mathematical formula. Ultimately I have no doubt that everything can be converted into maths, but in nature there are quite often far too many variables for a theory to neatly fit into a mathematical formula.



As such there should be no reason why one cannot relay the core concepts of the theory to the layman. The maths is secondary and only exists to prove the validity of the theory.

Have you noticed the incredible mishmash of error and superstition that is the layman's 'understanding' of quantum mechanics? Nobody can really 'get' quantum mechanics in a nonmathematical way: you can only ever make sense of it mathematically. This is only one example of a number of ideas in physics that are really only practically expressible in mathematics.

Humanity has acquired immense knowledge and understanding about the physical world since the time of Galileo. Unfortunately, this knowledge does not lie within everyone's intellectual compass. The bulk of humanity will just have to be content with the knowledge that a few clever people understand the details, and accept what those clever people say on faith.

Yes, I know that sounds like the very opposite of science. I know it sounds a lot like religion. It isn't, but it sounds like it. Sorry about that.


I do not disagree. Note that I said the ‘core concepts’, not the intricate nuances that were involved in order to work out the theory in the first place.



Science and New Age philosophy are verging ever closer.

They are absolutely not. Popular writers (who are part of the entertainment industry I mention in my post above) often pretend they are. It is not so.


Really…..? Like I have said theoretical physics is definitely not my fields of expertise. But when it is an established scientific fact that the human mind can influence sub atomic particles which are the basic building blocks of everything in the universe this certainly begins to run very close to the vein of mysticism whether you want to believe it or not.



Most scientist refuse to accept that many of their theories do run parallel to concepts which have been echoed by the mystics for many thousands of years.

Can you provide examples of some of these concepts? (Please note that I have already read books like The Tao of Physics and The Dancing Wu Li Masters. The authors of these books are simply exploiting the fact that the human mind works and apprehends the world around it in certain set patterns, which have been defined for us by evolution – the ways in which are brains were 'designed' by evolution to operate. So we can skip all that and get down to the really nitty-gritty.)


I’m surprised someone whose ‘mind is firmly closed’ even bothered. As for your critiques of these works this is only your opinion and I am certainly not about to be drawn into a debate about literature. My example is the movie which Arbitrageur below has also chosen to critique which is ‘What the Bleep do we know'. I do not have the ability to get down to the nitty gritty for I am not a physicist. But the people who chose to be part of this movie do. Amongst them are:



• Amit Goswami, is a theoretical nuclear physicist and was a member of The University of Oregon Institute for Theoretical Physics starting in 1968, teaching physics for 32 years. After a period of distress and frustration in his private and professional life starting at the age 38, his research interests shifted to quantum cosmology, quantum measurement theory, and applications of quantum mechanics to the mind-body problem.
• John Hagelin, a physicist at Maharishi University of Management, director of MUM's Institute for Science, Technology, and Public Policy, and three-time presidential candidate of the Transcendental Meditation-linked Natural Law Party.[25]
• Stuart Hameroff, an anesthesiologist, author, and associate director of the Center for Consciousness Studies at the University of Arizona, who worked with Roger Penrose, on a speculative quantum theory of consciousness,
• Andrew B. Newberg, assistant professor of radiology at the University of Pennsylvania Hospital, and physician in nuclear medicine, who coauthored the book, Why God Won't Go Away: Brain Science & the Biology of Belief
• Candace Pert, a neuroscientist, who discovered the cellular bonding site for endorphins in the brain, and in 1977 wrote the book Molecules of Emotion.
• Fred Alan Wolf, an independent physicist, who recently wrote The Yoga of Time Travel: How the Mind Can Defeat Time,[26] and is featured in the documentary film Spirit Space.
• David Albert, a philosopher of physics and professor at Columbia University,
• Michael Ledwith, author and former professor of theology at the National University of Ireland, Maynooth;
• Daniel Monti, physician and director of the Mind-Body Medicine Program at Thomas Jefferson University;
• Jeffrey Satinover, psychiatrist, author and professor;
• William Tiller, Professor Emeritus of Material Science and Engineering at Stanford University; Source


Yes the movie dumbed down a lot of concepts in order to make accessible to the general public, yes the movie included a few dubious people such as the channeler JZ Knight. But of all the names mentioned above only one claimed that his views had been misrepresented in the film. The rest were more than happy with the end result. That is only one out of eleven.

The other ten, who know far more about their chosen field of science than you or any other posters on this thread do, are quite happy to be involved in a film which compares many of the latest scientific to what many will term as New Age Theory.



edit on 2/2/2012 by 1littlewolf because: (no reason given)



posted on Feb, 2 2012 @ 05:13 AM
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reply to post by moebius
 

i have no bone to pick with you.
what you write is more or less true for physics.
i think you will be hard pressed to write down the formula for plate tectonics or evolutionary theory though.
i can understand what little wolf was saying though.
i think you will find you are more closer then further apart imo.


edit on 2-2-2012 by BBalazs because: (no reason given)



posted on Feb, 2 2012 @ 05:30 AM
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Originally posted by moebius
Now looking at the postulates posted by @1littlewolf I have to retract my statement that mathematics is required to define a theory.

It can be formed from a set of postulates by applying deductive logic. Logic is a method utilized in mathematics, but it is not mathematics as such. Thus a theory only has to be based on verifiable postulates and be logically consistent.


Thanks.

Look, I'm not here in defence of every crackpot who believes they have a theory of everything. All I'm trying to say is that just because a theory sits outside the body of knowledge which mainstream science has established, it should not be automatically dismissed as 'crank' science. That's all I'm trying to say. As for what you say here:


I am just trying to understand what you are talking about. First you say that a theory doesn't have to be formulated mathematically and doesn't have to be usable. But then you add that, it has to stand up to scientific scrutiny some day. What does that mean for a unusable theory?


When a theory is able to be tested or formulated or scrutinised and still stands up, then yes that theory will then carry far more weight and can then be utilised to further to answer questions about certain specifics. But unless a theory be proven to be wrong, then it does not mean the theory is any less valid, it just means it cannot as yet be utilized in a usable way. It can however still be used as a an avenue of possible investigation into phenomena which we are still trying to come to grasp with.

As for my use of the phrase 'cherry picking', it was simply my view that our exchange had disintegrated into a semantical argument more than something a discussion of ideas regarding the point the OP raised. If you want me to further clarify my statement I can but I honestly don't think it’s really necessary.



posted on Feb, 2 2012 @ 05:59 AM
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reply to post by BBalazs
 

I agree I might be somewhat biased towards physics.

"The following is not meant as cherry picking or criticism, just sharing information."
Plate tectonics and evolution are complex systems. But you can write down formulas for both depending on the level of approximation. Just googled this one: arxiv.org...



posted on Feb, 2 2012 @ 06:04 AM
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reply to post by moebius
 


cool. i dint know that. i learned something.
off course, as a mathematical demonstration is not a formula or equation for evolutionary theory, i am sure to this we can agree

as a counterpoint, let me offer something outside the reach of formulas for know:
en.wikipedia.org...



posted on Feb, 2 2012 @ 06:50 AM
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reply to post by Arbitrageur
 


why must you think it's necessary to undermine my posts? you do it in the Marko Rodin thread and now you do the same thing here?

you isolate one small (mostly insignificant) portion which has the potential to seem contradictory to my idea in order so that you twist my words into some other meaning entirely, which you use to your benefit.

the same exact routine that buddhasystem uses. i'm beginning to think you may be just as much a shill as he is, this is certainly a tactic a shill would use.

why did you ignore the bulk of my post on purpose? to derail my idea? to make it seem like Amit Goswami isn't credible? to make it seem like Amit Goswami is a "crank"?

why do you discredit the work of Amit Goswami?



posted on Feb, 2 2012 @ 09:23 AM
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reply to post by 1littlewolf
 


While Einstein's, Tesla's, and Schrodinger's theories were initially met with suspicion they were not cranks. They all based their theories on the work that had come before. They each wrote and published papers about their theories so anyone could check them. They acted like scientists. A crank sweeps away decades, if not, centuries of scientific research for no reason other than "It's wrong," and then they claim their theory is right without any kind of backing at all. They never allow for peer review and they never even publish any kind of scientific paper. In the cases of Einstein, Tesla, and Schrodinger science did what it's supposed to do. It replicated and attempted to falsify the work of these men, but they couldn't. Thus the work was accepted.



posted on Feb, 2 2012 @ 09:42 AM
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Originally posted by Xcalibur254
reply to post by 1littlewolf
 


While Einstein's, Tesla's, and Schrodinger's theories were initially met with suspicion they were not cranks. They all based their theories on the work that had come before. They each wrote and published papers about their theories so anyone could check them. They acted like scientists. A crank sweeps away decades, if not, centuries of scientific research for no reason other than "It's wrong," and then they claim their theory is right without any kind of backing at all. They never allow for peer review and they never even publish any kind of scientific paper. In the cases of Einstein, Tesla, and Schrodinger science did what it's supposed to do. It replicated and attempted to falsify the work of these men, but they couldn't. Thus the work was accepted.


The 'crank' mentioned in your OP has published his work, thus it is open for scientific scrutiny.

Like I have already stated I am not here to defend every crackpot who thinks they have a their own 'Theory of Everything'. What I take issue to is the sweeping generalisations in your post above, in your OP, and in the article which your OP has sourced.

This in my opinion is just as damaging to the scientific process as those guys selling '12th spiral DNA realignment crystals’



posted on Feb, 2 2012 @ 10:42 PM
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reply to post by metalshredmetal
 


meet Amit Goswami...

Sorry; you just disqualified yourself. Before you start to argue about physics, learn some physics. I did.



posted on Feb, 2 2012 @ 10:52 PM
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reply to post by 1littlewolf
 


Einstein, Tesla, Schrödinger were all once viewed as ‘cranks’.

Neither Einstein nor Tesla were ever viewed as cranks. Tesla was, with good reason, thought to be mad (he was) but nobody denied the value or legitimacy of his earlier work.


A good modern day example would be Andrea Rossi who has invented the E-Cat , the supposed cold fusion energy producer.

He is not a crank, he is a fraud. Slightly different.


As I have already stated above, there are numerous scientific theories which make very accurate statements about reality which are not easily translated into a mathematical formula.

Could you name one, please?


But when it is an established scientific fact that the human mind can influence sub atomic particles which are the basic building blocks of everything in the universe this certainly begins to run very close to the vein of mysticism whether you want to believe it or not.

But no such thing has ever been established! This is just an urban legend.


As for your critiques of (The Tao of Physics and The Dancing Wu Li Masters)... I am certainly not about to be drawn into a debate about literature.

In other words, you don't have any examples to give me except... ‘What the Bleep do we know'. Which is bollocks.

Seriously, folks. You are not qualified to debate physics unless you have studied physics. I did once, as a physics honours undergraduate, but despite that tiny advantage I do not regard myself as qualified to express a variant opinion about anything in physics. I know my limits. Within them lie the ability to understand modern ideas in physics and (sometimes) explain them to others; but the ability to express a nonstandard opinion is well beyond them. As it is beyond yours.

Physics is not something for unqualified amateurs to speculate about on Above Top Secret.
edit on 2/2/12 by Astyanax because: (no reason given)



posted on Feb, 2 2012 @ 10:56 PM
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Originally posted by Astyanax
reply to post by metalshredmetal
 


meet Amit Goswami...

Sorry; you just disqualified yourself. Before you start to argue about physics, learn some physics. I did.


...

Ah, alright. your role is clear.



posted on Feb, 2 2012 @ 11:02 PM
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Originally posted by metalshredmetal
why do you discredit the work of Amit Goswami?

Quantum Quackery

University of Oregon quantum physicist Amit Goswami, for example, says in the film: "The material world around us is nothing but possible movements of consciousness. I am choosing moment by moment my experience. Heisenberg said atoms are not things, only tendencies." Okay, Amit, I challenge you to leap out of a 20-story building and consciously choose the experience of passing safely through the ground's tendencies.
Amit hasn't accepted the challenge. Do you?

Because if Amit and you don't accept the challenge it seems like what Amit said is total BS, not supported by your willingness to accept the challenge.

Quantum Quackery

Amit Goswami, in The Self-Aware Universe: How Consciousness Creates the Material World, argues that the existence of paranormal phenomena is supported by quantum mechanics:


. . . psychic phenomena, such as distant viewing and out-of-body experiences, are examples of the nonlocal operation of consciousness . . . . Quantum mechanics undergirds such a theory by providing crucial support for the case of nonlocality of consciousness.

(Goswami 1993, 136)


Since no convincing, reproducible evidence for psychic phenomena has been found, despite 150 years of effort, this is a flimsy basis indeed for quantum consciousness.2
Amit is making claims which are simply not supported by evidence. I know this doesn't matter a whit to you, but it really does matter to the scientific community.



posted on Feb, 3 2012 @ 12:32 AM
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Originally posted by Astyanax
reply to post by 1littlewolf
 


Einstein, Tesla, Schrödinger were all once viewed as ‘cranks’.

Neither Einstein nor Tesla were ever viewed as cranks. Tesla was, with good reason, thought to be mad (he was) but nobody denied the value or legitimacy of his earlier work.

Until Einstein’s Theory of Relativity was proven it was very controversial and viewed by many within mainstream physics as ‘crank’ science. Schrodinger’s work with wave particle mechanics was also very controversial. Yet where would physics be if they hadn't persisted?

An interesting side note Schrodinger was deeply influenced by the Hindu Vedanta which continues to intrigue many within the quantum science community to this day. Very New Age…..



A good modern day example would be Andrea Rossi who has invented the E-Cat , the supposed cold fusion energy producer.

He is not a crank, he is a fraud. Slightly different.


So you say. This has not yet been proved and only emphasises my point that these matters should be investigated until they are completely shown to be false. This invention could revolutionise energy production if it were to be real, it could solve many of the world’s problems. This is one reason why such things deserve to be investigated fully.



As I have already stated above, there are numerous scientific theories which make very accurate statements about reality which are not easily translated into a mathematical formula.

Could you name one, please?


Here is a cut and paste from an earlier post of mine which you appear to have missed.

The core principles of geology are a set of laws which do not have nor require nor have any mathematical backing. They include but are not limited to

* the Principle of Superposition
* the Principle of Original Horizontality
* the Principle of Lateral Continuity
* the Law of Cross Cutting Relations
* the Law of Inclusions
* the Law of Faunal Succesion

There are thousands of scientific theories which are based firstly on observation and may or may not be able to be translated into mathematical theory at a later date. Either the phenomena they describe is just not easily translated into mathematics, or we are still missing part of the equation and the maths will have to come later....




But when it is an established scientific fact that the human mind can influence sub atomic particles which are the basic building blocks of everything in the universe this certainly begins to run very close to the vein of mysticism whether you want to believe it or not.

But no such thing has ever been established! This is just an urban legend.


The double-slit experiment is not an urban legend. This is experiment shows consciousness collapsing a wave into a particle. In other words, the human mind influencing energy and matter beyond the confines of the body. Sounds very mystical to me.



As for your critiques of (The Tao of Physics and The Dancing Wu Li Masters)... I am certainly not about to be drawn into a debate about literature.

In other words, you don't have any examples to give me except... ‘What the Bleep do we know'. Which is bollocks.


If you were a film critic and I planned on watching this in the cinema then your opinion on this film might matter to me. But as I’ve already stated this film contains 10 prominent scientists and doctors who posses far more than an undergraduate degree in physics, all of whom are quite happy to have their work associated with New Age theory. All you seem to have is your opinion not backed up by fact and a degree which I would guess is probably a couple decades old by now. This is only slightly more than the supposed crank referenced in the OP’s source.


Seriously, folks. You are not qualified to debate physics unless you have studied physics. I did once, as a physics honours undergraduate, but despite that tiny advantage I do not regard myself as qualified to express a variant opinion about anything in physics.


And yet your entire post is riddled with nothing but your opinions on physics.


I know my limits. Within them lie the ability to understand modern ideas in physics and (sometimes) explain them to others; but the ability to express a nonstandard opinion is well beyond them. As it is beyond yours.

Physics is not something for unqualified amateurs to speculate about on Above Top Secret.


Why the Earth not? We speculate about everything else here on ATS. Who made you the self appointed guardian of all knowledge related to physics?

Besides, this thread is not about physics per se as the OP is clearly talking about science as a whole in all his posts. Physics is only one small part of science.



edit on 3/2/2012 by 1littlewolf because: (no reason given)



posted on Feb, 3 2012 @ 01:15 AM
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Originally posted by Arbitrageur

Originally posted by metalshredmetal
why do you discredit the work of Amit Goswami?

Quantum Quackery

University of Oregon quantum physicist Amit Goswami, for example, says in the film: "The material world around us is nothing but possible movements of consciousness. I am choosing moment by moment my experience. Heisenberg said atoms are not things, only tendencies." Okay, Amit, I challenge you to leap out of a 20-story building and consciously choose the experience of passing safely through the ground's tendencies.
Amit hasn't accepted the challenge. Do you?

Because if Amit and you don't accept the challenge it seems like what Amit said is total BS, not supported by your willingness to accept the challenge.

Quantum Quackery

Amit Goswami, in The Self-Aware Universe: How Consciousness Creates the Material World, argues that the existence of paranormal phenomena is supported by quantum mechanics:


. . . psychic phenomena, such as distant viewing and out-of-body experiences, are examples of the nonlocal operation of consciousness . . . . Quantum mechanics undergirds such a theory by providing crucial support for the case of nonlocality of consciousness.

(Goswami 1993, 136)


Since no convincing, reproducible evidence for psychic phenomena has been found, despite 150 years of effort, this is a flimsy basis indeed for quantum consciousness.2
Amit is making claims which are simply not supported by evidence. I know this doesn't matter a whit to you, but it really does matter to the scientific community.


The world of consciousness is a very murky world indeed, and what you’re dealing with is not just conscious choices, but the unconscious workings of the brain. This challenge is totally unfair and is akin to telling a person suffering from depression to choose to be happy, or a homosexual to just choose to be straight.

The fear of falling is instinctual, it is a universal fear and is far older than the human species has been around. Ever been abseiling? Despite the fact you know the ropes are more than capable of supporting a weight ten times your own you will feel fear, and this is where this mind experiment will fall apart. For you have no choice when you feel this fear.

If a man who has been studying and teaching theoretical physics for 32 years decides that there may be more to it than simply mathematical equations and subatomic particles then that’s enough for me.

Note your sourced article does not say anywhere that he has been proved wrong.



posted on Feb, 3 2012 @ 01:19 AM
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reply to post by 1littlewolf
 


The fear of falling is instinctual, it is a universal fear and is far older than the human species has been around.

Where did the instinct come from? A rational mind which was somehow conditioned to believe that falling from a height was a bad thing or did an animal somehow just somehow believe it was a bad thing and pass that irrational fear on through time? Are not instincts based on survival? Can an animal which knows nothing of mundane physics be bound by its restrictions?


edit on 2/3/2012 by Phage because: (no reason given)



posted on Feb, 3 2012 @ 01:22 AM
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reply to post by 1littlewolf
 


he has mixed faith and science.
they do fuse well, however if you move this into the realm of propaganda, brace yourself to be challenged.
it is only fair.he should prove his beliefs are more then that, he should prove they are science by demonstrating them.
still a good scientist though, just a case of the faith virus spreading out.



posted on Feb, 3 2012 @ 01:29 AM
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Originally posted by Phage
reply to post by 1littlewolf
 


The fear of falling is instinctual, it is a universal fear and is far older than the human species has been around.

Where did the instinct come from? A rational mind which was somehow conditioned to believe that falling from a height was a bad thing or did an animal somehow just somehow believe it was a bad thing and pass that irrational fear on through time? Are not instincts based on survival? Can an animal which knows nothing of mundane physics be bound by its restrictions?


edit on 2/3/2012 by Phage because: (no reason given)


The fear of falling come from when you try to walk as a baby and land on your ass. Amazing what lessons the nerve endings teach...



posted on Feb, 3 2012 @ 01:31 AM
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reply to post by Phage
 


good post. one day we will fly.

when we are not bound by physics....ohhh wait, apparently we already have that day: rapture

edit on 3-2-2012 by BBalazs because: (no reason given)



posted on Feb, 3 2012 @ 02:43 AM
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Originally posted by Phage
reply to post by 1littlewolf
 


The fear of falling is instinctual, it is a universal fear and is far older than the human species has been around.

Where did the instinct come from? A rational mind which was somehow conditioned to believe that falling from a height was a bad thing or did an animal somehow just somehow believe it was a bad thing and pass that irrational fear on through time? Are not instincts based on survival? Can an animal which knows nothing of mundane physics be bound by its restrictions?



The fear of falling comes from neither a rational mind (although it is rational) nor is it some animalistic belief which got passed on through time as in learned behaviour. It is a deep rooted instinct programmed into the brain just like the recognition of a face.

A newborn child who has never fallen before and posses neither a rational mind nor any beliefs will instinctively flinch if you were to move it in a way that it seems to be falling. The same I would assume goes for almost every animal.

Everything physical is bound by the restrictions of physics, but knowing what those restrictions are is another matter altogether...



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