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Eise last won the day on November 27 2019

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470 Beacon of Hope


About Eise

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    the old world
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    Physics, Astronomy
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    University degree philosophy, subsidary subject physics
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    Database administrator, a bit of Linux too

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  1. If it would be so easy to observe the effects of gravitational waves, why do you think this 'discovery' would not already be done earlier? The first (indirect!) proof of gravitational waves was with binary neutron stars: very, very heavy bodies compared to Jupiter, showing that their orbit is slowing down, but in an extremely slow pace. We already have explanations for the structure of Saturn's rings: orbit resonances with the many moons of Saturn.
  2. Funny: Daniel Dennett's first book about free will 'Elbow Room' has as subtitle 'The Varieties of Free Will Worth Wanting'. In this book he defends his compatibilist version of free will. The libertarian version of free will is simply not empirical: we do not know that we 'could have done otherwise' (in the literal meaning), we do not know the physical causes of our feelings and thoughts simply because we are a 'higher level phenomenon' of the brain: we cannot access our neural level ("Gosh, my neuron LQ225-ZH-5,768,231,234" is firing again and again! I must be hungry."). The idea of libertarian free will is purely ideological, and so I do not see why it would be 'worth wanting'. However, we do have an empirical concept of free will: the experience that when we want to act according my preferences and beliefs, I often can. I am thirsty, so I want to take a glass of water, and low and behold, I can act according to this preference! Only when somebody else blocks my way to the glass, e.g. locks the door to the kitchen intentionally to avoid I can take a glass of water, I am not free: I am standing before the kitchen door involuntary. Simply said, my actions are free if I can do what I want. (Yes, without these 'metaphysical things' like flying in the air, as you rightly remark). No. This is metaphorical speech. Nature caused me to exist as I am. So can it force me to do what I want to do? Doesn't that sound a bit absurd? Is a kind of free will that is like the Baron von Münchhausen pulling himself and his horse out of the quicksand by pulling himself at his hair a kind of 'free will worth wanting'? I think I only agree fully with Nr 1. I agree with Nr 2. except that you should not use the word 'freely', because that is exactly what we want to define. Nr 3 is nonsensical for me. What could free will be without external factors? The only thing I expect from a concept of free will is that I can 'move around through the external factors according my preferences'. Nr 4 is 'my personal enemy': ultimate responsibility is the empty companion of libertarian free will, which is just as empty. And then not just for what I do, but even for what I am! So, no. And with that the rest of your (or Kane's) argument fails. Responsibility does not mean being responsible for what I am: I must be responsible for what I do. And that means I can give the grounds for my actions (i.e. I can response, when others ask me for why I did something). No, not at all. Our praxis bears weight, because that is our concept of free will is at home in our daily concepts. If I lock you into a room, you very well know that you are not free to act according your preferences. But I forced that upon you: but there is no such force between you and your preferences and beliefs, these are elements that are you, that make up you. I do not base my concept of free will on responsibility: but it is a very good touchstone. Really, the whole basis of my concept of free will is that we can act according our preferences and beliefs, that we can act on what I recognise as my own grounds.
  3. Sorry, that again does not touch my argument. In my concept of free will, we need (sufficient) determinism, so how can there be a contradiction? This is what happens in most discussions between me and 'free-will deniers': I propose a definition of free will that necessarily needs determinism, and as reaction I get "But we are determined, so we have no free will". Do you see that that does not make much sense? Remember my definition: Your argument does not work if you take this definition of free will. Nowhere do I imply that your actions are not determined. You seem to be (psychologically) so much attached to your idea that for 'genuine' free will, you should be able to act completely independent of the history of the universe, your personal history, and the preferences you therefore have. But my definition does not contain such 'spooky free will'. It seems to me that you just repeat the way how you see that we do not have free will. You however oversee thereby that your arguments do not apply, because they only show that we are determined. But my definition is not touched by that. As long as you do not show that my definition is wrong, you can defend the fact that we are determined with more and more arguments, but I can only yawn: yes, we are determined, but that does not deny we have free will in any sensible (=naturalistic) way.
  4. With due respect for the difficulties you have to formulate your points, couldn't you boil it down to the essential argument in your above posting? Just a few points that caught my attention By the capability of (at least human) animals to anticipate the future, dependent on how they think it will develop dependent on what actions they could do. And that is not a contradiction with the brain being determined. I fully agree that physics only give us causal determination (I don't know why you are using 'pre-determined'. What does this 'pre' mean for you?). And determinism is a condition of free will being possible. I also agree with your evaluation that randomness cannot be a fundamental condition of free will: too much randomness makes free will impossible: our observations, thoughts and feelings would be completely unconnected.
  5. I have no idea what different perspectives of objects in the same FOR have to do with relativity which is about how observers in different FOR measure time and space. And I remember you have serious problems already with perspective... "Analogies are like cars: if you take them too far, they break down." (Don't remember where I saw that, but it applies very well here). Please test your ideas at the examples of time dilation/length contraction of muons. Can you explain these with your ideas? And did you look up the 'paradox of the pole in the barn'? If you work this through, you would realise how essential the relativity of simultaneity is, and that your diagrams do not suffice to account for that. Therefore you should understand the message of Janus' diagrams, which show the different time readings. One of the best understandable explanations I found in Chapter 2.3 Paradoxes in David J. Griffith, Revolutions in Twentieth-Century Physics. I think it is a very useful introduction for laypeople in modern physics, if your are not afraid for a bit of mathematics. But a little understanding of simple algebra is enough (which also is enough to have a basic understanding of special relativity).
  6. You mean something like this, but then bigger?
  7. Wow. You want to argue that there is an error in relativity, but you did not understand Janus' diagrams? The message of the diagrams is, that you cannot account for the situation you created, without taking the relativity of simultaneity into account. As you don't in any of your diagrams, you will fail. It is obvious for everybody here that you argue against something that is over your head. To be honest, as you probably noticed, it is also partially above my head. But my mindset is different than yours: understanding the basic principles, knowing that special relativity is fully integrated in every basic physics theory (EM, QED, general relativity), that special relativity is tested through and through since more than 100 years, I completely trust the real physicist saying something about relativity that I might not understand fully, but makes sense against that background. OTOH you go even that far that you insult one of our outstanding experts on relativity (Markus), and you invest not enough time in what another one is showing you in animations and extend diagrams (Janus). In the meantime, do you understand Janus' latest diagrams by now? If you do, you should see that your diagrams with all these connection lines have next to nothing to do with the real situation. When I said: I meant of course without all the superfluous rods and connection lines. We started the example with an observer with a clock (B), and 2 planets, with their clocks synchronised, and B traveling from planet E to planet X. Now you complicated the example by making B a rocket (B + its rod) with the same length as the distance it must travel (seen from their respective FORs). Now your diagrams are worthless, because they do not take the relativity of simultaneity into account. (Janus did that for you, so now you can try to setup the same argument in his diagrams. Does your argument still work)? Please explain to me why muons that live too short to travel from the place where they are created high in the atmosphere to the earth's surface. Let my see how your ideas work in this simple, empirically tested situation. Then I think you can learn a lot by looking at the 'ladder in the barn' thought experiment. It is also called a 'paradox', but just as the twin 'paradox', it is not a real paradox. This situation is very similar to the one you created with the rods (the 'ladder in the barn paradox' is also know as the 'pole in the barn paradox'). But it can only be solved if you take the relativity of simultaneity in account. Good luck pondering carefully these examples.
  8. Yep. If I see it correctly, this is Janus 4th diagram in the series 'In the rest frame of B, you get this:'. I also had the idea that you would run into troubles because of the relativity of simultaneity. Janus worked it out into the last detail. It might look complicated, but you did it to yourself, by introducing rods that add nothing to the original situation. Really, Markus already said it clearly: it is not possible to derive some inconsistency in the framework of relativity. You behave like somebody who still thinks he can trisect an angle.
  9. The distance B must travel is given by E-X. This distance is 1Lh in the FOR of E-X, but 0.6Lh in the FOR of B. The distance B must travel is definitely not given by the length contraction of a rod attached to B, seen from the FOR of E-X. You see it yourself: B's rod does not reach X. Oh, c'mon. From the FOR of B the distance E-X is length contracted. Your diagrams do not show that.
  10. Uh? 'The distance'? Here you go again. Not mentioning which distance from which frame In E-X's FOR, the distance between E and X is 1Lh. So for B, moving with 0.8c, he sees the distance he must travel as 0.6Lh. There are no other relevant distances for this situation. Lengths of poles connected to B just play no role. Why, B could be a rocket of 1 Lh long. The only thing that interests us is the passing of the observer in B with his clock, passing E and X.
  11. Until here, yes. Right, because the distance to travel is 1 Lh in E-X, and because B moves with 0.8c, it sees this distance as 0.6Lh. Wrong. Which distance? See above: we started from the fact that in the FOR of E-X, the distance between E and X is 1 Lh. So X must travel this distance to get to the place where E was, and B still is. And in X's FOR, this is still 1Lh. This is exactly the point where the situation is not symmetrical, as I said in my first point above (made a few typos, I correct them here): There is no distance of 1Lh in B's FOR, so this is simply invalid: So no, it is not exactly as symmetrical as you think.
  12. One of our greater debunkers. But AFAIK, he taught quite a few other magicians in debunking. As a person, it surely is a loss. I found him sympathetic, read his 'Flim-Flam' which describes some of his great debunking cases. Sorry to hear this.
  13. That is a nearly empty statement. Every inertial observer is in its own stationary frame, per definition. What is important what velocity the 2 observers, and therefore automatically their FOR's have relative to each other. Really? This is what I said: Where do you see a statement about which FOR is at rest and which FOR is moving? The situation is symmetrical: E-X sees the clock of B having a slower ticking rate B sees the clocks of E-X having a slower ticking rate E-X sees everything in B's FOR length contracted B sees everything in the FOR of E-X length contracted, which includes the distance E-X What is not symmetrical is: The distance traveled between E and X, which are both in a common the FOR E-X; length contractions in the FOR of B from E-X's view play no role The clocks of E and X are synchronous in the FOR E-X, so they are not in the FOR of B. We are interested in the events "E's location coincides with B's" and "X's location coincides with B's", whereby E and X are in the same FOR. So we have to look at what this space distances are in the respective FORs: 1Lh in E-X, and 0.6 Lh in B. If we look at what the respective clocks show at these 2 events, we must take time dilation and the relativity of simultaneity in account: for E-X, B travels simply from E to X, its time is dilated, so it takes only 45 minutes; for B, E's clock is at 0:00, and X's clock is already 48 minutes ahead (not synchronised in his frame!) when E passes B, and because of time dilation, he observes B's clock ticking away only 27 minutes, which makes that when X passes by, he sees X's clock at 48 + 27 = 75 minutes. I hope I succeeded to show that only the relative velocity plays a role, not who is in rest or is moving. Can you please let this sink in, and ask about (or criticise) the points I made above. Don't, really don't introduce some other of your confusion's at this moment.
  14. In the 'B-close-passing-E-and-X' example, yes. However, the FOR of E-X and the FOR of B have different time and space axis, so their respective projections on their space and time axis of the events 'B passes E' and 'B passes X' will differ. But they fully agree on the spacetime distance of these events.
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