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Sharp_one sheds light on the universe, and information


213374U

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We will never have ALL the information because there is INFINITE amount of information and to obtain it we would need to spend inifite time and have infinite memory. Which we don't. S

[...]

As an aside, I'd love to hear an explanation on why information is infinite. I was under the impression that the universe is a closed system with finite energy. This would suggest that information in a quantum sense is, indeed, finite. However, by virtue of the principle of uncertainty, we know that information doesn't really "exist" unless an observer makes a measurement, and at that precise moment and by virtue of the measurement, the relevant "information" bit comes into existence. Again, since there can only be a limited amount of observers making a finite amount of measurements (because the universe has a finite energy, remember), information is also finite. Further, a prominent model of the end of the universe predicts that it will end with what is called "heat death". In this scenario, the universe becomes esentially a nothingness without distinguishable features (in simple terms, no information). If all information has been destroyed, this means information was finite to begin with. So what makes you say that information is infinite?

 

Well, professor. What's your take?

- When he is best, he is a little worse than a man, and when he is worst, he is little better than a beast.

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Heat death of the universe isn't considered to be the going theory anymore as I understand it.  Thermodynamics doesn't take into account how a gravity field might actually decay (and IIRC gravity fields decay rate is unknown) and IIRC (and if I understand correctly) the Dark Matter theories regarging where the extra energy in the universe is coming up (because expansion of the galaxy is speeding up rather than slowing down as predicted) puts a big swerve in the whole thing.

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Philosophers say that we cannot ever estimate the amount of information because we will always lack the understanding to measure it to begin with. Theoretical physicists like Max Tegmark say that any mathatical model possibly concieved can be a description for any universe....so nope. We will never know as we are right now.

Edited by Meshugger

"Some men see things as they are and say why?"
"I dream things that never were and say why not?"
- George Bernard Shaw

"Hope in reality is the worst of all evils because it prolongs the torments of man."
- Friedrich Nietzsche

 

"The amount of energy necessary to refute bull**** is an order of magnitude bigger than to produce it."

- Some guy 

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Philosophers say that we cannot ever estimate the amount of information because we will always lack the understanding to measure it to begin with. Theoretical physicists like Max Tegmark say that any mathatical model possibly concieved can be a description for any universe....so nope. We will never know as we are right now.

 

Incorrect, long time ago SJW calculated the amount of information there is in existence....and it is finite  :geek:  

"Abashed the devil stood and felt how awful goodness is and saw Virtue in her shape how lovely: and pined his loss”

John Milton 

"We don't stop playing because we grow old; we grow old because we stop playing.” -  George Bernard Shaw

"What counts in life is not the mere fact that we have lived. It is what difference we have made to the lives of others that will determine the significance of the life we lead" - Nelson Mandela

 

 

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That's because they are dumb.

"Some men see things as they are and say why?"
"I dream things that never were and say why not?"
- George Bernard Shaw

"Hope in reality is the worst of all evils because it prolongs the torments of man."
- Friedrich Nietzsche

 

"The amount of energy necessary to refute bull**** is an order of magnitude bigger than to produce it."

- Some guy 

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Don't think anything 'infinite' exists in reality, just a tremendous amount of possible things that would class as information, or thought. 

Why has elegance found so little following? Elegance has the disadvantage that hard work is needed to achieve it and a good education to appreciate it. - Edsger Wybe Dijkstra

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We will never have ALL the information because there is INFINITE amount of information and to obtain it we would need to spend inifite time and have infinite memory. Which we don't. S

[...]

As an aside, I'd love to hear an explanation on why information is infinite. I was under the impression that the universe is a closed system with finite energy. This would suggest that information in a quantum sense is, indeed, finite. However, by virtue of the principle of uncertainty, we know that information doesn't really "exist" unless an observer makes a measurement, and at that precise moment and by virtue of the measurement, the relevant "information" bit comes into existence. Again, since there can only be a limited amount of observers making a finite amount of measurements (because the universe has a finite energy, remember), information is also finite. Further, a prominent model of the end of the universe predicts that it will end with what is called "heat death". In this scenario, the universe becomes esentially a nothingness without distinguishable features (in simple terms, no information). If all information has been destroyed, this means information was finite to begin with. So what makes you say that information is infinite?

 

Well, professor. What's your take?

 

 

Most of what you two are arguing about is nitpicky crap. I strongly suspect if you two were in the same room you wouldn't be having this discussion as you'd have agreed on most of the major points long ago, and would have moved on to something more constructive. Of all the arguments I've seen pop up on this board in the last year plus I've been here this one between you and Sharp might win the 'what on earth are you guys even arguing about' award.

 

You post a good example of why your discussion is up for the award in the OP.

 

Sharp says that the knowledge to be obtained in the universe is infinite and you wish to argue that it's not? Come on. First, there's no way of knowing if the knowledge is infinite for sure or not, but second and more importantly it effectively is infinite from the point of view of any human (which was the point Sharp was making). The knowledge contained on earth alone is infinite in all practical purposes, let alone if you factor in the knowledge contained outside the confines of earth. Try as one might, it is not possible in a human life time to obtain even a mediocre sized fraction of the knowledge out there that there is to be obtained. One couldn't even achieve that if one was able to extend their lifetime a hundred fold.

 

You two are better than this.

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Sharp says that the knowledge to be obtained in the universe is infinite and you wish to argue that it's not? Come on. First, there's no way of knowing if the knowledge is infinite for sure or not, but second and more importantly it effectively is infinite from the point of view of any human (which was the point Sharp was making). The knowledge contained on earth alone is infinite in all practical purposes, let alone if you factor in the knowledge contained outside the confines of earth. Try as one might, it is not possible in a human life time to obtain even a mediocre sized fraction of the knowledge out there that there is to be obtained. One couldn't even achieve that if one was able to extend their lifetime a hundred fold.

 

 

On the other hand, while you can argue that the total of all obtainable knowledge is infinite, the total needed to make any given decision is very much not; also, there's a case to be made for diminishing returns after a certain amount of information has been gathered.

"Lulz is not the highest aspiration of art and mankind, no matter what the Encyclopedia Dramatica says."

 

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Heat death of the universe isn't considered to be the going theory anymore as I understand it.  Thermodynamics doesn't take into account how a gravity field might actually decay (and IIRC gravity fields decay rate is unknown) and IIRC (and if I understand correctly) the Dark Matter theories regarging where the extra energy in the universe is coming up (because expansion of the galaxy is speeding up rather than slowing down as predicted) puts a big swerve in the whole thing.

Gravity fields disappear when the masses that originate them cease to exist, dissipate or what have you. Black holes are thought to eventually evaporate so in the far future there would be no masses that can generate gravity. Do you mean gravitational waves? I have no idea what would happen with those in an expanding universe.

 

I must admit, I'm not up to the latest developments, so heat death may well be obsolete. The point remains, however. The observed acceleration in the expansion of the universe results either in hyperacceleration (Big Rip) or the aforementioned heat death (depending on the cosmological constant IIRC). In the more extreme case of the Big Rip, at a certain point you have a situation where the observable universe is smaller than arbitrarily smaller structures, first tearing apart molecular bonds, then atomic nuclei, and finally fundamental particles. Either way, all information and possible observers have been destroyed. How can an infinite amount of anything be destroyed?

 

 

 

Philosophers say that we cannot ever estimate the amount of information because we will always lack the understanding to measure it to begin with. Theoretical physicists like Max Tegmark say that any mathatical model possibly concieved can be a description for any universe....so nope. We will never know as we are right now.

What? Is this some new interpretation of the many-worlds theory or...?

 

Never knowing or never being able to measure doesn't necessarily imply infinity. I'm not sure what you're getting at.

 

 

 

Sharp says that the knowledge to be obtained in the universe is infinite and you wish to argue that it's not? Come on. First, there's no way of knowing if the knowledge is infinite for sure or not, but second and more importantly it effectively is infinite from the point of view of any human (which was the point Sharp was making). The knowledge contained on earth alone is infinite in all practical purposes, let alone if you factor in the knowledge contained outside the confines of earth. Try as one might, it is not possible in a human life time to obtain even a mediocre sized fraction of the knowledge out there that there is to be obtained. One couldn't even achieve that if one was able to extend their lifetime a hundred fold.

I seem to remember that you railed against Walsingham answering for obyknven, with good reason. That's exactly what you are doing now.

 

Whether it's infinite from the pov of any one human isn't relevant (in this thread). This is about information in a general sense. Is it infinite in the universe as a whole? I honestly don't know, but I'm leaning towards no. I'm not fond of infinity as a reality. I seem to remember that Gromnir has an actual physics degree so maybe he can comment, but he's not the only one who could offer an educated guess. More educated than mine, at any rate.

 

Regardless, if you want to frame the question in human terms, then you must also limit the information pool that is relevant to any given human-scale decision by the same measure. At any rate, saying that one can never make informed decisions because "information is INFINITE" is... wacky.

Edited by 213374U

- When he is best, he is a little worse than a man, and when he is worst, he is little better than a beast.

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Philosophers say that we cannot ever estimate the amount of information because we will always lack the understanding to measure it to begin with. Theoretical physicists like Max Tegmark say that any mathatical model possibly concieved can be a description for any universe....so nope. We will never know as we are right now.

What? Is this some new interpretation of the many-worlds theory or...?

 

Never knowing or never being able to measure doesn't necessarily imply infinity. I'm not sure what you're getting at.

 

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"Some men see things as they are and say why?"
"I dream things that never were and say why not?"
- George Bernard Shaw

"Hope in reality is the worst of all evils because it prolongs the torments of man."
- Friedrich Nietzsche

 

"The amount of energy necessary to refute bull**** is an order of magnitude bigger than to produce it."

- Some guy 

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It depends what you consider information, it's a loose word, especially in this context, define what you consider the proper formula for writing up a piece of information, and what is or isn't information, whether an equation, the result of the equation with certain variables, both, or neither, are information, and it'll almost certainly be obvious whether the answer is finite or infinite. If you don't do this this thread is just gonna be people arguing whilst not understanding their opponents arguments due to using different definitions for certain words and ideas.

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Heat death of the universe isn't considered to be the going theory anymore as I understand it.  Thermodynamics doesn't take into account how a gravity field might actually decay (and IIRC gravity fields decay rate is unknown) and IIRC (and if I understand correctly) the Dark Matter theories regarging where the extra energy in the universe is coming up (because expansion of the galaxy is speeding up rather than slowing down as predicted) puts a big swerve in the whole thing.

Gravity fields disappear when the masses that originate them cease to exist, dissipate or what have you. Black holes are thought to eventually evaporate so in the far future there would be no masses that can generate gravity. Do you mean gravitational waves? I have no idea what would happen with those in an expanding universe.

 

I must admit, I'm not up to the latest developments, so heat death may well be obsolete. The point remains, however. The observed acceleration in the expansion of the universe results either in hyperacceleration (Big Rip) or the aforementioned heat death (depending on the cosmological constant IIRC). In the more extreme case of the Big Rip, at a certain point you have a situation where the observable universe is smaller than arbitrarily smaller structures, first tearing apart molecular bonds, then atomic nuclei, and finally fundamental particles. Either way, all information and possible observers have been destroyed. How can an infinite amount of anything be destroyed?

 

Yeah, I'm not the best one to explain it, science isn't really my forte. So while I got the basics of it, I'm going to have a terrible time trying to get it across to someone else.

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Don't think anything 'infinite' exists in reality, just a tremendous amount of possible things that would class as information, or thought.

It always boggled my mind how you can take a rational number and keep dividing it by two inifinitely. It will get smaller and smaller forever and the universe hasn't exploded yet (or maybe that is why it's expananding at a faster and faster pace)?

 

Alternatively, from a very old post of mine:

 

Just sittng here, staring at my coffee and thinking. What is coffee made of ? How many particles ? The nature of it... stuff like that. Trying to figure out what my coffee is made of, resulted in ideas like molecules'n stuff. Then again, these are made up of atoms, which are made up of electrons, neutrons and protons, which are made of (insert favourite physics model here), repeated infinitely. Conclusion ? My coffee is made up of an infinite amount of "things". Why doesn't my coffee explode instantaneously and destroy the universe ? Probably because the rest of the universe is made the same way and applies an opposite and equal force on my coffee.

 

No big deal, Coffee is still there and Gorth is happy. original.gif

 

Then I thought about, what if something disturbs the balance between my coffee and the universe ? If the balance is disturbed to the disadvantage of my coffee, bummer, my coffee gets crushed by the forces of the universe. I can make a new cup of coffee. What happens if the balance is disturbed to the disadvantage of the universe ? My coffee explodes in a pyrotechnical show of supernova proportions and will probably destroy the universe. Better be careful with that coffee, It's potent stuff...

 

Oh, and now my coffee's gone cold. sad.png

 

Better be careful when I pour it out and make som new...

Maybe Coffee is the mysterious dark matter that glues the universe together???

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“He who joyfully marches to music in rank and file has already earned my contempt. He has been given a large brain by mistake, since for him the spinal cord would surely suffice.” - Albert Einstein

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Don't think anything 'infinite' exists in reality, just a tremendous amount of possible things that would class as information, or thought.

It always boggled my mind how you can take a rational number and keep dividing it by two inifinitely. It will get smaller and smaller forever and the universe hasn't exploded yet (or maybe that is why it's expananding at a faster and faster pace)?

 

Alternatively, from a very old post of mine:

 

Just sittng here, staring at my coffee and thinking. What is coffee made of ? How many particles ? The nature of it... stuff like that. Trying to figure out what my coffee is made of, resulted in ideas like molecules'n stuff. Then again, these are made up of atoms, which are made up of electrons, neutrons and protons, which are made of (insert favourite physics model here), repeated infinitely. Conclusion ? My coffee is made up of an infinite amount of "things". Why doesn't my coffee explode instantaneously and destroy the universe ? Probably because the rest of the universe is made the same way and applies an opposite and equal force on my coffee.

 

No big deal, Coffee is still there and Gorth is happy. original.gif

 

Then I thought about, what if something disturbs the balance between my coffee and the universe ? If the balance is disturbed to the disadvantage of my coffee, bummer, my coffee gets crushed by the forces of the universe. I can make a new cup of coffee. What happens if the balance is disturbed to the disadvantage of the universe ? My coffee explodes in a pyrotechnical show of supernova proportions and will probably destroy the universe. Better be careful with that coffee, It's potent stuff...

 

Oh, and now my coffee's gone cold. sad.png

 

Better be careful when I pour it out and make som new...

Maybe Coffee is the mysterious dark matter that glues the universe together???

 

 :lol:

 

The omnipotent Gorthfucious has spoken.... and the secrets of the universe are revealed, coffee is indeed the elixir of life and the holds the key to immortality  :bow:

"Abashed the devil stood and felt how awful goodness is and saw Virtue in her shape how lovely: and pined his loss”

John Milton 

"We don't stop playing because we grow old; we grow old because we stop playing.” -  George Bernard Shaw

"What counts in life is not the mere fact that we have lived. It is what difference we have made to the lives of others that will determine the significance of the life we lead" - Nelson Mandela

 

 

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What does it mean to HAVE information? Are we getting into theoretical physics or just daily life?

 

The human experience is simply too complicated to fully understand in the forseeable future.

 

As for physics, well there are uncertainties, and I'm sure issues of entropy come into play if you turn every particle in the universe into a tool to measure every other particle.

"Show me a man who "plays fair" and I'll show you a very talented cheater."
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Sharp says that the knowledge to be obtained in the universe is infinite and you wish to argue that it's not? Come on. First, there's no way of knowing if the knowledge is infinite for sure or not, but second and more importantly it effectively is infinite from the point of view of any human (which was the point Sharp was making). The knowledge contained on earth alone is infinite in all practical purposes, let alone if you factor in the knowledge contained outside the confines of earth. Try as one might, it is not possible in a human life time to obtain even a mediocre sized fraction of the knowledge out there that there is to be obtained. One couldn't even achieve that if one was able to extend their lifetime a hundred fold.

I seem to remember that you railed against Walsingham answering for obyknven, with good reason. That's exactly what you are doing now.

 

Whether it's infinite from the pov of any one human isn't relevant (in this thread). This is about information in a general sense. Is it infinite in the universe as a whole? I honestly don't know, but I'm leaning towards no. I'm not fond of infinity as a reality. I seem to remember that Gromnir has an actual physics degree so maybe he can comment, but he's not the only one who could offer an educated guess. More educated than mine, at any rate.

 

Regardless, if you want to frame the question in human terms, then you must also limit the information pool that is relevant to any given human-scale decision by the same measure. At any rate, saying that one can never make informed decisions because "information is INFINITE" is... wacky.

 

 

Sending you a PM. I think you'll understand why when you read it.

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