A Physicist Has Worked Out The Math That Makes 'Paradox-Free' Time Travel Plausible

juanrga

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That's not an argument against determinism, that's an argument that we will never have all of the information required to predict everything (assuming determinism is true).

There is currently no evidence to fully confirm or deny determinism. It's a possibility.

I personally believe we will never have enough evidence one way or the other. I think it will always be a philosophical question.

Rigth. We will never have the evidence needed to prove determinism. Anyone wanting to prove determinism must (i) create a final theory that explains everything, (ii) exactly and instantaneously measure all the properties of the Universe with infinite precision, (iii) introduce all that information in a computer bigger than the Universe to make an exact prediction about the future properties of the Universe, (iv) measure again in an exact and instantaneous way all the properties of the Universe with infinite precision, and (v) demonstrate that the difference between the prediction and reality is exactly zero. Obviously this proof is not feasible; therefore determinism will always remain as a philosophical view.
 

serpretetsky

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Rigth. We will never have the evidence needed to prove determinism. Anyone wanting to prove determinism must (i) create a final theory that explains everything, (ii) exactly and instantaneously measure all the properties of the Universe with infinite precision, (iii) introduce all that information in a computer bigger than the Universe to make an exact prediction about the future properties of the Universe, (iv) measure again in an exact and instantaneous way all the properties of the Universe with infinite precision, and (v) demonstrate that the difference between the prediction and reality is exactly zero. Obviously this proof is not feasible; therefore determinism will always remain as a philosophical view.
True, maybe instead we could instead see how many of our models that rely on random behavior start going away as we learn more, and maybe this hints at determinism?

Example: Radioactive decay is stochastic, but on a per particle basis as far as we can tell it is random. What if in 50 years we suddenly develop models/tools to accurate predict when a particle will decay to within a millisecond? What if every random behavior we currently understand keeps become less and less random as we develop more technologies/models. Does this hint at determinism?

What if we can predict what a particular human will do given certain conditions accurately. Or what if we develop fast enough computers and models that we can accurately predict the weather to the hour in a specific location on earth 10 years from now. For all intents and purposes is this deterministic enough that we can just say "yeah... we live in a deterministic universe"
 

Aegir

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True, maybe instead we could instead see how many of our models that rely on random behavior start going away as we learn more, and maybe this hints at determinism?

Example: Radioactive decay is stochastic, but on a per particle basis as far as we can tell it is random. What if in 50 years we suddenly develop models/tools to accurate predict when a particle will decay to within a millisecond? What if every random behavior we currently understand keeps become less and less random as we develop more technologies/models. Does this hint at determinism?

What if we can predict what a particular human will do given certain conditions accurately. Or what if we develop fast enough computers and models that we can accurately predict the weather to the hour in a specific location on earth 10 years from now. For all intents and purposes is this deterministic enough that we can just say "yeah... we live in a deterministic universe"

This is only valid if this is actually the case.

So tell me: Does knowledge yield a stable, consistent universe, which as Einstein says, "does not play dice?"
Or has knowledge that we've obtained point to the universe being less consistent, where things happen for truly no reason?

What exceptions exist? Quantum physics? Chemistry?
Is the human ego at play if we look to things we don't understand, and claim chaos and randomness?
Or maybe the ego is acting up when we claim to understand things that we don't actually understand?

Furthermore, what use is assuming determinism vs non-determinism?
Does assuming chaos yield some sort of praxis? A useful machine? A tool? An idea that enlightens?
Does assuming order yield some sort of praxis? A useful machine? A tool? An idea that enlightens?
 

juanrga

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True, maybe instead we could instead see how many of our models that rely on random behavior start going away as we learn more, and maybe this hints at determinism?

Example: Radioactive decay is stochastic, but on a per particle basis as far as we can tell it is random. What if in 50 years we suddenly develop models/tools to accurate predict when a particle will decay to within a millisecond? What if every random behavior we currently understand keeps become less and less random as we develop more technologies/models. Does this hint at determinism?

What if we can predict what a particular human will do given certain conditions accurately. Or what if we develop fast enough computers and models that we can accurately predict the weather to the hour in a specific location on earth 10 years from now. For all intents and purposes is this deterministic enough that we can just say "yeah... we live in a deterministic universe"

I tried to explain why determinism cannot be scientifically proved. For reasons (i--v) all our models are stochastic with a deterministic component plus another is not. Precisely the random component is the reason why we use statistical methods to extract averages and uncertainties from the raw laboratory data.

Decay is the evolution from an unstable state. Unstable states are highly sensible to external perturbations. So you would have to know with astonishing detail not only where is each atom in the lab, but each atom in a far away galaxy in order to compute all the interactions affecting the unstable particle. Even if you develop a high-precision model, it will always remain a non-predictable component and you cannot scientifically rule out that component is not the result of some fundamental random characteristic of the universe.

The same about weather and human behavior. Our scientific models for the evolution of property Z are always of the kind (dZ/dt) = deterministic + uncertainty.

Determinism is a philosophical idea that got initial popularity in physics because physics was born from the study of very simple systems such as the motion of planets around the Sun. The rest of sciences always did deal with the incredible complexity of our world.

You can believe that the Universe is deterministic, but then you can find scientists that claim that it is not-deterministic even at the classical level

https://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/abs/pii/0960077995000429
 

Aegir

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I tried to explain why determinism cannot be scientifically proved. For reasons (i--v) all our models are stochastic with a deterministic component plus another is not. Precisely the random component is the reason why we use statistical methods to extract averages and uncertainties from the raw laboratory data.

Decay is the evolution from an unstable state. Unstable states are highly sensible to external perturbations. So you would have to know with astonishing detail not only where is each atom in the lab, but each atom in a far away galaxy in order to compute all the interactions affecting the unstable particle. Even if you develop a high-precision model, it will always remain a non-predictable component and you cannot scientifically rule out that component is not the result of some fundamental random characteristic of the universe.

The same about weather and human behavior. Our scientific models for the evolution of property Z are always of the kind (dZ/dt) = deterministic + uncertainty.

Determinism is a philosophical idea that got initial popularity in physics because physics was born from the study of very simple systems such as the motion of planets around the Sun. The rest of sciences always did deal with the incredible complexity of our world.

You can believe that the Universe is deterministic, but then you can find scientists that claim that it is not-deterministic even at the classical level

https://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/abs/pii/0960077995000429

Yet, I still cannot find any answer to the position that "If time travels in only one direction, then due to the fact that only one result occurs, only one result CAN occur."

Who will be able to answer this? No matter what our 21st century models suggest, as opposed to what our 31st century models might someday suggest, statistics is not a valid answer to "What will happen next?"

Am I a heretic of science for considering this? So be it. Let me burn then.

Statistics is literally fuzzy. It matters little that this is the best we've got. Surely it can be better. Do you think that we are at the pinnacle of technology and knowledge? Tsk. I quite doubt that. I think we will begin to push aside more and more fuzzy logic for more focused logic as we develop new research techniques and acquire more knowledge. Thus I will be unable to accept "statistics" as an answer. I am too stringent in my desire for true knowledge. It is INSANITY to truly, honestly, fervently believe that an experiment will have DIFFERENT results under the EXACT SAME CONDITIONS.

You claim that the conditions are the same, yet the result is different? THEN THE CONDITIONS WERE NOT THE SAME. HUUUMAN FOLLY!!!!!! HUMAN HUBRIS!

21st century quantum physics IS BELOW ME. That is just how it is. The answers we currently have are WORTHLESS. Otherwise we would be using them to build new technology and tools.
Instead, we are told that what they say is true, despite it being as good as mere belief. I would rather believe none of it, and wait for an answer that has a praxis attached. I'd simply rather assume nothing at all.

ASSUME NOTHING AT ALL!

Furthermore, if the direction of time itself is the key factor of determinism, then if time is only a perspective, and reality could actually be said to be a single entity, then everything "is already happened," with a determined result.
There is no room for non-determinism. From a perspective free from time, for example, a historian at the end of time itself, reality could quite possibly be seen as an overlapping array of space-time.
Determinism would then become the obvious answer.

The fuel that gives life to non-deterministic ideas is VERY obviously an egotistical desire to not be locked into a state which we as humans have no true control over. Let's not play games here and pretend like our motives are pure. We would love to imagine that not only is determinism false, but even randomness is false: We want to be in control of our own destinies.

We want to imagine that there's some loophole in determinism or non-determinism that gives our lives meaning and purpose. We want a CHOICE.

FREE WILL.

However, if determinism is true, then there is a simple philosophical construct that we must create: The goal of life is to evolve or develop a technology that can violate natural determinism, and force our will unto reality itself. The goal of life is to violate fate, and forge our own destiny. Defy reality.

Considering the lack of overwhelming evidence on either side, this seems to be a happy compromise that lets reality be deterministic, but only for as long as it defies the will of life.
 

jerry8169

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Statistics is literally fuzzy.
There are lies, damn lies, and then statistics. You can take any statistics you like and bend them to your way of thinking. For example, according to the statistics, Mars has warmed at the same percentage over the last 30 years as the Earth has, and since according to current statistical models, only humans have the power to make environmental changes, we must have done something to Mars as well. Since the only thing we have sent to Mars have been rovers that use solar panels to create energy, this shows that solar panels can cause global warming.
 

juanrga

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Yet, I still cannot find any answer to the position that "If time travels in only one direction, then due to the fact that only one result occurs, only one result CAN occur."

Who will be able to answer this? No matter what our 21st century models suggest, as opposed to what our 31st century models might someday suggest, statistics is not a valid answer to "What will happen next?"

The arrow of time doesn't imply determinism. In fact many models of irreversibility are based in non-unitary evolutions.
 

Aegir

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The arrow of time doesn't imply determinism. In fact many models of irreversibility are based in non-unitary evolutions.

Yes it does.

The models you speak of are quite likely wrong.
There is absolutely no reason to think that the direction of time is not linked to the fact that only one result occurs BECAUSE only one result CAN occur.

It is logical to think that all events follow the path of least resistance.
This means that through time, all events will follow the path of least resistance, meaning that things only turn out one way.

And no other course of events can be tested, due to the direction of time only flowing in one direction.
 

juanrga

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The models you speak of are quite likely wrong.
There is absolutely no reason to think that the direction of time is not linked to the fact that only one result occurs BECAUSE only one result CAN occur.

Determinism implies an unitary evolution and unitary evolutions can be inverted because there is an one to one relation between states. That is the reason why all unitary evolution theories are time-reversible and cannot explain the observed arrow of time.
 

Aegir

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Determinism implies an unitary evolution and unitary evolutions can be inverted because there is an one to one relation between states. That is the reason why all unitary evolution theories are time-reversible and cannot explain the observed arrow of time.

I don't think that it does, in that case. If a theory is not modeling reality correctly, then either the theory is incomplete, or wrong.

Therefore, I would compare reality more to a fractal pattern than a Hilbert space, where a fractal is defined as a simple equation, but always viewed as a progression.
Without viewing the fractal as an image, it doesn't really make much sense. Try it. Look at a fractal equation, and shrug because it's tedious to try to think about it.

But run it in a fractal generator program on a computer, and as long as you continuously clear the RAM, you can scroll in either direction infinitely, as long as it is indeed an infinite fractal.

Even if "fractal" isn't the nature of reality either, the point I am making is that "unitary evolution" as a concept might not apply to our discussion on determinism and time.
This might be an idea that is trying to find complexity in something very simple, and adding confusion, rather than understanding.

I would simply claim that the concept of "unitary evolution" is unnecessary and does not add to our discussion, due to the fact that the over-arching concept of "all events seek the path of least resistance" and "you cannot test to see if an event took another path because you cannot go back in time" already overshadow all other ideas. Unless you can prove that events DO take alternative, higher-resistance paths, or that energy CAN be created or destroyed spontaneously, leading to energy levels changing without a "cause," then I do not think any other concept is necessary.
 

tangoseal

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Well, as a biochemical physicist I was on a very advanced research team that explored ways to strategize clicks-and-mortar architectures while attempting to incubate robust hashtags. My team, 3 of us, did manage to mesh vertical quantum waveform portals across a parameteric calamity girter charged to 3.7mEv with reverse phased in-loop flux balancers. Our initial findings came up short but after applying an increase in zeni-patterned emission scatter clatogramic radiation spins we managed to streamline leading-edge vortals contained within the magnetic destabilization field.

However, with updated bitwise underscored software pinnings, the team subsequently discovered disintermediate value-added functionalities caused by inter-related sub atomic modalities on the 3rd harmonic depletion co-effecient.

Needless to say it was an impressive and expensive foray into morph capable scaleweave positronic beam convergence within micro cellular organelle transfer mechanics.
 

sleepeeg3

Supreme [H]ardness
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I don't see how you could prevent a paradox from occurring. What is a paradox? Even stepping on a blade of grass in the past could have compounding effects on the future that impact you in some way, shape or form in the present. It would seem practically anything you do in the past would be impossible, unless you are somehow viewing the past in a read only, alternate dimension type of timeline.
 
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