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Thread: Does anyone think FTL travel is scientifically feasible?

  1. #121
    Replying from phone after many drinks... So manipulating quotes are too tricky, teehee

    I'll try to keep points consecutive.

    Regarding EM radiation versus large scale motions I think we kind of agree that one model predicts A and another predicts B, and that dark matter/energy are a notional artifact in order that A=B when otherwise, without this exotic substance A =/= B. Correct? This inconsistency makes me uncomfotsble that dark matter/energy exists. I'd rather just accept that models are inconsistent. The Si what is that neither model explains the whole truth and more understanding is required to make more sense of the universe. No model is inviolable. Just a best fit to observations. Might be correct. Might not. I'm cool with that.

    Regarding particle accelerators... As I said. Layman's terms. An increase of momentum (m x v) without an apparent increase in speed is just an increase of mass. This is true of a single particle. I have belief issues and don't trust that this would be true on a macro scale. Given a notional way to accelerate a macro structure towards light speed I have belief issues that the macro structure would just gain mass instead of velocity... We neither have any means to prove or disprove my lack of belief.

    Light speed forming a barrier - from "first principles" - is a strange concept to my mind. Several steps are required and assumptions are made in the process. I've always had a beef with speed of light being a universal barrier, yet the speed of light not being constant.

    Thanks for bringing up the 3+1 fundamental forces. Next is a discussion of the extra dimensions. And the anti matter. And where they disappeared to shortly after the big bang.

    Discuss the big bang as a re-expansion of a universe that imploded to a singularity and continued to implode "iur the other side". Continue that concept toward a universe that is sinusoidally expanding, halting expansion, shrinking, to a singularity, out the other side, expanding, etc...

    So too with Kelvin. We know it is a measure of energy/movement/vibration. Consider an overshoot from vibrating to negative vibration. Like a playground swing. At the apex of arc movement goes from positive/up to zero to negative/down. Similar to a sinusoidal universe. Could be described as "phase" with regard to Kelvin. As a thought experiment, anyway... And not unlike AC electrics that require imaginary numbers to solve voltage/inductance/capacitance/etc.

    Finally, you yourself exhibit the conditioning I described when you constrain your assumptions in such an apparently rigid fashion "until it's shown otherwise". Let's be more bold and open minded. Let's assume otherwise just for the sheer hell of it and see where it might lead?

    Thanks again for the counterpoints to my cynicism (Even though I'm an engineering grad and an aviator/instructor dealing in fixed known physical concepts by trade)


    Yours

    Mark H


    PS. The NdGT sketch. I'll paraphrase from alcohol infested memory.
    3 kids at a spelling bee. The word is CAT.
    First kid says CAT. = correct
    Second kid says KAT. = marked wrong
    Third kid answers XEJ. = marked wrong

    Second and third are "equally" wrong. Even though one could argue that second is a "better" spelling than the "right" answer. Even dictionaries know this since the phonetic spelling is KAT.
    In this way we are conditioned into "what" to think rather than "how" to think.

    Second concept is a job interview.
    First candidate during interview is asked how tall the spire on this building is. First candidate is an architecture graduate and has memorised the heights of notable buildings. Including this one. Answers 215 feet. Which is exactly correct.
    Second candidate doesn't know and asks for a few minutes. Goes outside. Paces out the length of the building's shadow. Compares to their own shadow. Relates to their own height and calculates building is approx 200 feet tall.

    Candidate 2 takes much longer to answer and does not get the answer 100% correct.

    Which candidate gets the job?
    Some interviewers would go for candidate 1. Reflects that conditioning is evident in regards to "what" to think/ rather than "how" to think.
    I'm candidate 2.

  2. #122
    Originally Posted by Sapyx View Post (Source)
    Is FTL travel feasible?

    Things that argue in its favour:

    - Whenever a scientist proclaims something to be "impossible", they are almost inevitably eventually proven wrong. Whenever a scientist proclaims somethign to be "possible", they are almost inevitably eventually proven right. It turns out that there are far fewer things in this universe that are "impossible" than we give the universe credit for.

    - It is impossible to know what hyperscience might one day discover - some mechanism to access alternate dimensions, ways to open up wormholes that don't require negative energy, ways to bend space without requiring vast amounts of energy to do so, or some means of "going faster than light" that we haven't even imagined yet. There is much that is "impossible" or "magical" about our world that somebody from just a couple of hundred years ago would never have been able to imagine could be possible.

    Things that argue against it:

    - If FTL travel is at all readily attainable by a society not much more technologically advanced than our own, then the Fermi Paradox becomes even more intractable. If all those aliens are out there and they've all got FTL drives, how come none of them are here, right now, trying to sell us modular terminals and griefing the ISS?

    - It is entirely possible that FTL "travel", in terms of getting on board a spaceship and flying it by some hyperscientific means, is actually impossible, but that FTL communication is possible (by, for example, quantum entanglement). While this may eventually lead to long-range FTL "teleportation" (a standard sci-fi trope, best illustrated by the Stargate series), it wouldn't be "FTL travel" in the conventional sense.
    As for the Fermi-Paradox, the following video may be helpful. I find all of these guy's videos interesting and informative.


  3. #123
    Originally Posted by Rampant View Post (Source)
    Replying from phone after many drinks... So manipulating quotes are too tricky, teehee
    Ha ha ha! I'd had a few too many to reply last night!

    Originally Posted by Rampant View Post (Source)
    I'll try to keep points consecutive.

    Regarding EM radiation versus large scale motions I think we kind of agree that one model predicts A and another predicts B, and that dark matter/energy are a notional artifact in order that A=B when otherwise, without this exotic substance A =/= B. Correct? This inconsistency makes me uncomfotsble that dark matter/energy exists. I'd rather just accept that models are inconsistent. The Si what is that neither model explains the whole truth and more understanding is required to make more sense of the universe. No model is inviolable. Just a best fit to observations. Might be correct. Might not. I'm cool with that.
    Ah, so I think may be able to explain using that type of formalism...

    What we have is 2 models A & B.

    A & B together make a prediction about the rotation of galaxies Prg.

    {A,B} = Prg

    We also have observations of the rotation of galaxies Org.

    It is the prediction and observation that don't match.

    Prg =/= Org

    So, the conclusion is that something is wrong with A or B.

    Changes to both A & B have been under investigation for a long time.

    That is genuinely the situation.

    So, this is where I get curious to what your objection actually is, because it seems to be centred around holding models sacrosanct. When overlayed over the actual situation, it seems to be that you're objecting to B being changed and think A should be changed instead. But it's pretty inconsistent to say that you don't think models should be held sacrosanct and they should be changed and then using that as the grounds to object to a model being changed.

    (Just for clarity here, I'm not saying that the above is what you're actually meaning, I'm just explaining how it appears when overlayed over the actual situation.)

    Also, it's important to note that things are in no way finalised.

    Changing B simply represents the best explanation we currently have.

    Just to explain very briefly why that one's winning out:

    Changing B:

    Pros - For almost everything, A's predictions match observations to high levels of accuracy, so PA = OA. No de facto reasons that matter that we can't directly detect shouldn't exist. Possibility of new physics beyond what we currently know.

    Cons - No direct detections made.

    Changing A:

    Pros - This would be more mathematically elegant which would be preferred by many. Also the possibility of new physics beyond what we currently know. The possibility of being the next Einstein makes this avenue appealing to many.

    Cons - Despite all efforts so far, no new model has been found which can resolve this issue without resulting in other much bigger issues elsewhere.

    As it stands, Changing B is pretty far ahead.

    Hope that all makes sense, and I'll reply to the other bits separately!

  4. #124
    Originally Posted by Rampant View Post (Source)
    Regarding particle accelerators... As I said. Layman's terms. An increase of momentum (m x v) without an apparent increase in speed is just an increase of mass. This is true of a single particle. I have belief issues and don't trust that this would be true on a macro scale. Given a notional way to accelerate a macro structure towards light speed I have belief issues that the macro structure would just gain mass instead of velocity... We neither have any means to prove or disprove my lack of belief.
    Ah, possibly I didn't explain particularly well in my previous reply. My point was that there isan apparent increase in speed. So not believing that there wouldn't be an apparent increase in speed at a macro scale is correct, but also kind of redundant - there'd be an increase of speed under acceleration at all scales.

    Originally Posted by Rampant View Post (Source)
    Light speed forming a barrier - from "first principles" - is a strange concept to my mind. Several steps are required and assumptions are made in the process.
    Hmm... I've covered one angle already with the point that we're held together by the EM force, and what would happen if we could reach the speed of transmission of that force (more fundamentally those arguments also apply to why everyone must measure the speed of light to be the same, which the speed of light as a barrier then comes from.)

    For another, consider how you would actually accelerate. It's a change in momentum and ultimately when you consider what's going on it boils down to an EM interaction. The maximum speed of that interaction is c, so...

    Originally Posted by Rampant View Post (Source)
    I've always had a beef with speed of light being a universal barrier, yet the speed of light not being constant.
    Well, that just seems like it's a problem coming from the shorthand that's generally used. It's specifically c, which is the speed of light in a vacuum (or more strictly, the speed of EM radiation in a vacuum) that's the limit and which is constant, not the speed of light per se.

    With regard to the speed of light not being constant in general, it's worth bearing in mind that it's EM radiation, and when it's travelling through a medium it is travelling through charged particles which it may or may not interact with, depending on the wavelength of the light, and the nature and structure/arrangement of the particles.

    Originally Posted by Rampant View Post (Source)
    Thanks for bringing up the 3+1 fundamental forces. Next is a discussion of the extra dimensions. And the anti matter. And where they disappeared to shortly after the big bang.
    No probs! Yeah, the matter/anti-matter imbalance is an interesting question!

    Originally Posted by Rampant View Post (Source)
    Discuss the big bang as a re-expansion of a universe that imploded to a singularity and continued to implode "iur the other side". Continue that concept toward a universe that is sinusoidally expanding, halting expansion, shrinking, to a singularity, out the other side, expanding, etc...

    So too with Kelvin. We know it is a measure of energy/movement/vibration. Consider an overshoot from vibrating to negative vibration. Like a playground swing. At the apex of arc movement goes from positive/up to zero to negative/down. Similar to a sinusoidal universe. Could be described as "phase" with regard to Kelvin. As a thought experiment, anyway... And not unlike AC electrics that require imaginary numbers to solve voltage/inductance/capacitance/etc.
    Yeah, but negative vibration is still movement

    Originally Posted by Rampant View Post (Source)
    Finally, you yourself exhibit the conditioning I described when you constrain your assumptions in such an apparently rigid fashion "until it's shown otherwise". Let's be more bold and open minded. Let's assume otherwise just for the sheer hell of it and see where it might lead?
    Ha ha ha! I wondered if you'd see it that way! You're mistaking a constraint for what I wrote for a constraint on my thought. What I was writing was a potential snake-oil moment. I just chose not to go down the snake-oil selling route.

    Originally Posted by Rampant View Post (Source)
    Thanks again for the counterpoints to my cynicism (Even though I'm an engineering grad and an aviator/instructor dealing in fixed known physical concepts by trade)
    Anytime! & thanks for all your points too!

    Originally Posted by Rampant View Post (Source)
    Yours

    Mark H


    PS. The NdGT sketch. I'll paraphrase from alcohol infested memory.
    3 kids at a spelling bee. The word is CAT.
    First kid says CAT. = correct
    Second kid says KAT. = marked wrong
    Third kid answers XEJ. = marked wrong

    Second and third are "equally" wrong. Even though one could argue that second is a "better" spelling than the "right" answer. Even dictionaries know this since the phonetic spelling is KAT.
    In this way we are conditioned into "what" to think rather than "how" to think.

    Second concept is a job interview.
    First candidate during interview is asked how tall the spire on this building is. First candidate is an architecture graduate and has memorised the heights of notable buildings. Including this one. Answers 215 feet. Which is exactly correct.
    Second candidate doesn't know and asks for a few minutes. Goes outside. Paces out the length of the building's shadow. Compares to their own shadow. Relates to their own height and calculates building is approx 200 feet tall.

    Candidate 2 takes much longer to answer and does not get the answer 100% correct.

    Which candidate gets the job?
    Some interviewers would go for candidate 1. Reflects that conditioning is evident in regards to "what" to think/ rather than "how" to think.
    I'm candidate 2.
    Good on you. And would you want to be employed by someone who would pick candidate 1 anyway? They'd not appreciate your skills, you wouldn't get to use them, would probably end up in disagreements with them, and would just be wasted there. Better to go for an employer who would pick candidate 2!

  5. #125
    Thanks again.
    Good precis of current models :thumbsup

    Appears that I explained myself poorly.

    I'm not at all invested in either A *or* B. We talk about observation not matching observation. Which I'm cool with.

    The current "truth" is what I'm uncomfortable with and the reason being that in order to keep the {A,B} model it has been leveraged by the invention of some weird substance that has never been hinted at before the models' predictions and our observations became more and more accurate.

    My belief would favour new physics rather than some new , yet amazingly abundant substance (84% of all mass in universe at best estimate from Planck research c.2015 = last/most recent paper I read about it) that had never been hinted at before.

    A substance that interacts with gravity, the problem child of the "understood" forces, and no other fundamental force. I accept it is a well established and widely accepted thing, but dark matter seems a weak proposition to me, and in that view though I know I'm in the minority.

    Cheerz

  6. #126
    FTL Travel
    Relativity
    Causality

    Pick two. All three can't coexist.

    Einsteinian special/general relativity has been tested and found to work down to very tight constraints (at least at the macro scale)

    Causality violations would mean time travel. Which we have not seen.

    Therefore, FTL travel looks like the odd one out.

  7. #127
    Theoretically? Yes.

    In practical terms? We don't have the technology available to implement the theories.............. at least not yet.

  8. #128
    Originally Posted by Rampant View Post (Source)
    Thanks again.
    Good precis of current models :thumbsup

    Appears that I explained myself poorly.

    I'm not at all invested in either A *or* B. We talk about observation not matching observation. Which I'm cool with.

    The current "truth" is what I'm uncomfortable with and the reason being that in order to keep the {A,B} model it has been leveraged by the invention of some weird substance that has never been hinted at before the models' predictions and our observations became more and more accurate.

    My belief would favour new physics rather than some new , yet amazingly abundant substance (84% of all mass in universe at best estimate from Planck research c.2015 = last/most recent paper I read about it) that had never been hinted at before.

    A substance that interacts with gravity, the problem child of the "understood" forces, and no other fundamental force. I accept it is a well established and widely accepted thing, but dark matter seems a weak proposition to me, and in that view though I know I'm in the minority.

    Cheerz
    Here's my point though - what is happening is not seeking to keep the {A,B} model. What is happening is acknowledging that {A,B} is wrong and looking for alternatives.

    That appears to be what you think should happen, so hence I'm curious why you also seem to object to it.

    Similarly, you say you favour new physics, but dark matter would be new physics and you object to it.

    I'm not being critical here, just explaining how things are looking. I hope you can see my point.

    (And on a totally different topic - sounds like you had a good one last night, so I hope tonight's was suitably boozy too! )

  9. #129
    Originally Posted by Thatchinho View Post (Source)
    Here's my point though - what is happening is not seeking to keep the {A,B} model. What is happening is acknowledging that {A,B} is wrong and looking for alternatives.

    That appears to be what you think should happen, so hence I'm curious why you also seem to object to it.

    Similarly, you say you favour new physics, but dark matter would be new physics and you object to it.

    I'm not being critical here, just explaining how things are looking. I hope you can see my point.

    (And on a totally different topic - sounds like you had a good one last night, so I hope tonight's was suitably boozy too! )
    ( 'o')7

    Wasn't as boozy because Mrs is driving early Sunday morning (to a reptile breeders' expo?!), so I took it easy out of sympathy.

    I see your point about dark matter being "new physics" and that small comment appeases me somewhat.

    However, my scepticism still exists, because dark matter just seems like a cop-out and isn't, at heart, new physics, just something psuedo-classical to make the old physics theory fit new accurate observations.

    I'd be so much more comfortable with even more exotic explanations or "descriptions" of expansion fields, galactic distances, non linear values of c, exotic spacetime curvature, extra dimensions, antimatter bubbles, and non-localised FTL information flow, etc...just to shoot a few outlandish concepts off the hip.
    But no/ let's just stick in the mud.

    Its like an engine tuner that tells me car now has 600bhp and will crack a 10sec 1/4 mile. All the uprated parts should work well together, its well fitted, and tuned to optimum duty cycles. Theoretically its a 600bhp car.

    It only achieves 12sec quarters.

    Tuner then says - your car must be heavier than standard because that's what's killing acceleration.

    But my car isn't heavier than before?

    Let's put it down to dark matter. Because you've *definitely* got 600bhp, that is not up for debate!

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