Saturday, February 02, 2008

Just Rambling

There is a physics/philosophical concept whose point escapes me.

Schrödinger's cat (I know I shouldn't be using Wikipedia, but it has the virtue of simplicity)

The idea is that there is cat in a box that, due to a little device, has an exactly 50/50 chance of being dead or alive but we don't know until we open the box and look. It is supposed to reflect the uncertainty of sub-atomic physics. Others interpret it as a massive paradox creating other universes or a cat that is simultaneously dead and alive.

Yes I know the idea of the "experiment" and what it's supposed to prove, and it does make its point, but in reality there is no paradox. The cat is either dead or alive but our knowledge by its nature is always incomplete, so we don't simply know, end of story.

Much like the question "If a tree falls in the woods and no one hears it, did it make a noise?" it is a question of how much does our knowledge and awareness affect reality.

Ultimately we can take this to solipsism or the idea that only what is in the mind can be known for sure.

Begs a question.

Before there were any minds in the universe to be aware of it, did the universe exist?


Maybe I'm just tired of politics.

3 Comments:

Blogger Tom said...

I agree - Politics is so draining and futile.

Here's a thought along the thought of our place in the Universe -

We may be alone. We may not be alone. Either way, the thought is staggering.

8:29 AM  
Blogger Gayle said...

Before there were any minds to be aware of it, the universe didn't exist to any minds, but I still believe it existed. No... wait a minute. I have to correct myself. God has a mind and in spite of all the arguement about it, He created the universe, so the universe never existed before there was a mind. :)

I'm getting a headache! I'm tired of politics too, Shoprat. It's going to be a long year!

4:14 PM  
Blogger Bloviating Zeppelin said...

Just as I used to ask myself (silently, so no one knew how DAFT I was): if the Universe is truly endless and there's a wall at the end -- then what's beyond the wall?

How much dirt is in a hole 3.5' X 6' X 4'8"?

Before there were politics, was there Altruism?

BZ

7:22 PM  

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