Thinking about the Universe

  • danisnotstr8

    Posts: 2579

    Aug 05, 2011 5:23 AM GMT
    Entropy says that the tendency of the Universe is to break down into more chaotic structures. Where the hell does life fit into this picture? Humans are infinitely complex and have evolved to this point from the simplest remnants of entropic processes. Furthermore, we continue (as life on Earth or in the Universe) to evolve into more sophisticated and organized structures. And then we manipulate matter by ourselves; we are resisting the tendency of the Universe. We are in a battle against time.

    We will eventually reach the Omega Point: this is when we will develop the technology to actually turn the elements, at the atomic level, into the pure energy from which they were born. This is the point when we will harness enough energy to actually rebuild the Universe. To travel back in time. To shrink space.

    Thoughts?

    @TigerTim, A special disclaimer: My terminology and processes may not be perfect here, but let's just go with the general idea. I miss you, buddy, and I think of you often.
  • Posted by a hidden member.
    Log in to view his profile

    Aug 05, 2011 2:57 PM GMT
    Thats why some say life is negentropic.... On the whole however, entropy still holds as the energy used by life to sustain itself comes from a finite source, being the sun.... But this is only when you consider the material aspect of life...

    Now in most traditions, it is asserted that life also has a spiritual aspect, namely the spirit, which animates the dead material... that is beyond the scope of science though, as it is non-material, thus non-measurable
  • Lincsbear

    Posts: 2603

    Aug 05, 2011 3:04 PM GMT
    The Earth and it`s life are a tiny oasis of growing complexity in a universe of increasing entropy due to the laws of themodynamics.
    It`s all downhill,guys......
  • jasen202

    Posts: 42

    Aug 05, 2011 3:06 PM GMT
    The universe is the ultimate example of a system , just like many systems on Earth biological and physically technical. That's the tangible aspect of it.

    The more important question is the intangible, what is the whole purpose of its existence. What's the universe for?

  • danisnotstr8

    Posts: 2579

    Aug 05, 2011 4:39 PM GMT
    GreenHopper saidThats why some say life is negentropic.... On the whole however, entropy still holds as the energy used by life to sustain itself comes from a finite source, being the sun.... But this is only when you consider the material aspect of life...

    Now in most traditions, it is asserted that life also has a spiritual aspect, namely the spirit, which animates the dead material... that is beyond the scope of science though, as it is non-material, thus non-measurable


    The sun creates radiation and sends this energy off through the solar system and beyond. If we someday figure out how to sustain a nuclear reaction, then we (essentially) can create a "second sun." When the sun dies in 5 billion years, there will probably be intelligent life who has already created a secondary means of sustaining their civilization.

    Better yet: What if our universe is just one of many? What if our universe is an experiment by another intelligent life form?
  • Lincsbear

    Posts: 2603

    Aug 05, 2011 5:40 PM GMT
    You mean the 'multiverse',where every possible variation on this universe exists,from the smallest quantum mechanical/sub atomic event to changes in the superclusters that comprise the largest known structures in the universe....?
    A world where the British won the American War of Independence?
    Beyond mind boggling!
  • Posted by a hidden member.
    Log in to view his profile

    Aug 05, 2011 5:44 PM GMT
    i have better things to do with my thoughts.icon_razz.gif
  • danisnotstr8

    Posts: 2579

    Aug 05, 2011 5:49 PM GMT
    Blackguy4you saidi have better things to do with my thoughts.icon_razz.gif


    LOL I'm just having a boring summer. icon_razz.gif
  • LJay

    Posts: 11612

    Aug 05, 2011 5:55 PM GMT
    My head hurts.

    Couldn't we discuss the use of the Neopolitan sixth in modulations to the subdominant instead? I have never really understood it.
  • danisnotstr8

    Posts: 2579

    Aug 05, 2011 6:02 PM GMT
    LJay saidMy head hurts.

    Couldn't we discuss the use of the Neopolitan sixth in modulations to the subdominant instead? I have never really understood it.


    If you treat the Neopolitan sixth chords in a similar way to a simple Neopolitan chord, the answer is easy when modulating to the subdominant.

    Basically, it works like this:
    In order to avoid parallels, the Neopolitan chord (or flat-major-II chord) best resolves with the third in the bass resolving to the third in the bass of the I chord, with the upper voices moving in contrary motion.

    Similarly, the Neopolitan sixth chords (German, Italian, or French) move seamlessly to the subdominant if we treat them as the Neopolitan chord of V. V then borrows I as its dominant, we add a seventh, and MAGIC! the I chord is now the V7 of the subdominant.

    I hope this helps.

    Now, about that universe....
  • LJay

    Posts: 11612

    Aug 05, 2011 6:16 PM GMT
    Thanks, Dan. I just have a hard time making it work in my head. I guess the keyboard and the paper need my attention. I never found Piston's expo of it to terribly clear.

    Now if the composter says "Shit rots." and the farmer says "Manure makes for the best strawberries," why should we not think of life as negentropic? Crowbar in the works? Old age. Nothing lives forever. Entropy continues.

    To your Omega Point thoughts: The presence of an eventual stocpkile of the basics sounds like some futuroid version of alchemy to me. So we have the bricks, without the mortar and a mason's skills, the walls usually fall down. And who wants to travel back in time. The last omelette I attempted is not worth reliving.

    Damned humanities majors!

  • BIG_N_TALL

    Posts: 2190

    Aug 05, 2011 6:28 PM GMT
    danisnotstr8 saidEntropy says that the tendency of the Universe is to break down into more chaotic structures. Where the hell does life fit into this picture? Humans are infinitely complex and have evolved to this point from the simplest remnants of entropic processes. Furthermore, we continue (as life on Earth or in the Universe) to evolve into more sophisticated and organized structures. And then we manipulate matter by ourselves; we are resisting the tendency of the Universe. We are in a battle against time.

    We will eventually reach the Omega Point: this is when we will develop the technology to actually turn the elements, at the atomic level, into the pure energy from which they were born. This is the point when we will harness enough energy to actually rebuild the Universe. To travel back in time. To shrink space.

    Thoughts?

    @TigerTim, A special disclaimer: My terminology and processes may not be perfect here, but let's just go with the general idea. I miss you, buddy, and I think of you often.



    How long have you been reading my thoughts? icon_eek.gif
  • NerdLifter

    Posts: 1509

    Aug 05, 2011 6:29 PM GMT
    http://thefutureofourworld.ytmnd.com/

  • danisnotstr8

    Posts: 2579

    Aug 05, 2011 6:35 PM GMT
    LJay saidThanks, Dan. I just have a hard time making it work in my head. I guess the keyboard and the paper need my attention. I never found Piston's expo of it to terribly clear.

    Now if the composter says "Shit rots." and the farmer says "Manure makes for the best strawberries," why should we not think of life as negentropic? Crowbar in the works? Old age. Nothing lives forever. Entropy continues.

    To your Omega Point thoughts: The presence of an eventual stocpkile of the basics sounds like some futuroid version of alchemy to me. So we have the bricks, without the mortar and a mason's skills, the walls usually fall down. And who wants to travel back in time. The last omelette I attempted is not worth reliving.

    Damned humanities majors!



    HAHA!

    That's just the point, though-- the strawberries--
    The strawberries are alive, and they come from a seed, and it still doesn't explain how, at some point, energy began to "willfully" reorganize into that thing we call life. Life is most certainly negentropic, but WHY did it happen, and WHAT is the purpose? Negentropic processes are certainly moving closer to a reversal of space-time.

    In other words:
    1. Universe explodes
    2. Explosion (as we measure it these days) seems to be increasing in speed.
    3. Life develops.
    4. Intelligent life begins to manipulate matter. (As Prof. Cox stated the other night on his show, molding sand into a sandcastle is a great example.)
    5. Man-made nuclear energy
    6. (hypothetical) we harness the energy in a sustained fusion reaction
    7. (hypothetical) we develop technology to change anything into pure energy.
    8. (hypothetical) we develop warp drive in a usable sense.
    9. (hypothetical) we travel back in time, thus reversing space-time.
  • danisnotstr8

    Posts: 2579

    Aug 06, 2011 4:18 AM GMT
    I'm just dumping this thread back to the top... because there might be a chance that someone who's home on a Friday night is nerdy enough to think this is interesting.
  • Posted by a hidden member.
    Log in to view his profile

    Aug 06, 2011 4:33 AM GMT
    I was sort of into astrophysics for a while, but never really understood what I was reading. I just know that dark matter and dark energy make up the majority of the universe and must play a role in entropy. As far as life goes, here's a possible explanation of how life began:

    http://www.chem.duke.edu/~jds/cruise_chem/Exobiology/miller.html

    basically by chance the correct molecules were in the earth's atmosphere and oceans, and by electrolysis lightning caused certain amino acids to form. Now this sounds to me much more like a reaction in a voltaic cell (reaction that requires input of energy) and would actually be decreasing entropy for the molecules, however when you look at the entropy of the universe it always is decreasing for every reaction. So the lightning strike is actually a much larger decrease in entropy than the increase in entropy of the amino acids....Now I am making assumptions here, and someone that might know more might understand this better.

    Thanks danisnotstr8 lol I did find it interesting on my friday night alone icon_sad.gif
  • calibro

    Posts: 8888

    Aug 06, 2011 4:37 AM GMT
    entropy (in terms of the laws of thermodynamics in regards to energy conservation) doesn't apply to humans because we're not closed systems. mystery solved.
  • Posted by a hidden member.
    Log in to view his profile

    Aug 06, 2011 4:39 AM GMT
    calibro saidentropy doesn't apply to humans because we're not closed systems. mystery solved.


    that is kind of what I was going at, we are a closed system and entropy involves the whole universe. While we may be losing entropy our byproducts (heat) increase it.
  • Posted by a hidden member.
    Log in to view his profile

    Aug 06, 2011 12:47 PM GMT
    swmrh911 said
    calibro saidentropy doesn't apply to humans because we're not closed systems. mystery solved.


    that is kind of what I was going at, we are a closed system and entropy involves the whole universe. While we may be losing entropy our byproducts (heat) increase it.


    So not true. My bedroom is a closed system, and believe me, entropy applies... unless some "pseudo-intelligent organizer" intervenes to reduce the chaos and bring order to things, which, unfortunately, isn't often enough. icon_confused.gif LOL
  • Lincsbear

    Posts: 2603

    Aug 06, 2011 12:56 PM GMT
    As long as energy gradients can be found to reduce entropy,complexity can exist/evolve(Earth,life,etc.)but that`s based on a finite energy input.The universe is a closed system,so entropy applies,however vast it may seem to us.Life is probably a temporary phenomenon of the young,energy rich universe.
    But what intelligence can do maybe different,but overcome the laws of thermodynamics....?
  • danisnotstr8

    Posts: 2579

    Aug 06, 2011 10:01 PM GMT
    swmrh911 saidI was sort of into astrophysics for a while, but never really understood what I was reading. I just know that dark matter and dark energy make up the majority of the universe and must play a role in entropy. As far as life goes, here's a possible explanation of how life began:

    http://www.chem.duke.edu/~jds/cruise_chem/Exobiology/miller.html

    basically by chance the correct molecules were in the earth's atmosphere and oceans, and by electrolysis lightning caused certain amino acids to form. Now this sounds to me much more like a reaction in a voltaic cell (reaction that requires input of energy) and would actually be decreasing entropy for the molecules, however when you look at the entropy of the universe it always is decreasing for every reaction. So the lightning strike is actually a much larger decrease in entropy than the increase in entropy of the amino acids....Now I am making assumptions here, and someone that might know more might understand this better.

    Thanks danisnotstr8 lol I did find it interesting on my friday night alone icon_sad.gif


    I am going to admit right now that I have NOT taken the time to read this, although I promise I will later.

    Your summary here immediately raises flags:
    Recently, on Mars, we have found a majority of the amino acids required for live to exist preserved in the soil. This suggests the idea that life did NOT begin on Earth, and rather, could have existed in the far distant past on Mars. And this leads us to another question: Did life on Earth actually come from Mars? I'm not suggesting that Martians hopped on their space plane and came here in search of richer soil. However, it's very possible that those amino acids from which life (we assume) came were transported here via meteorites from other planets.
  • danisnotstr8

    Posts: 2579

    Aug 06, 2011 10:05 PM GMT
    calibro saidentropy (in terms of the laws of thermodynamics in regards to energy conservation) doesn't apply to humans because we're not closed systems. mystery solved.


    I'm not going to even argue here. Please reread. I'm talking about ~life~, not humans.

    Life, on the grand scale, is a reversal of the breakdown of the universe. In the past (however-long), for instance, that life has existed on Earth, we have watched (to borrow from Prof. Brian Cox) as a pile of sand has rebuilt itself into a sandcastle.

    Calibro, I see where you're coming from, but you're not addressing my point. Mystery NOT solved.
  • qd2009

    Posts: 164

    Aug 06, 2011 11:27 PM GMT
    danisnotstr8 said

    HAHA!

    That's just the point, though-- the strawberries--
    The strawberries are alive, and they come from a seed, and it still doesn't explain how, at some point, energy began to "willfully" reorganize into that thing we call life. Life is most certainly negentropic, but WHY did it happen, and WHAT is the purpose? Negentropic processes are certainly moving closer to a reversal of space-time.

    In other words:
    1. Universe explodes
    2. Explosion (as we measure it these days) seems to be increasing in speed.
    3. Life develops.
    4. Intelligent life begins to manipulate matter. (As Prof. Cox stated the other night on his show, molding sand into a sandcastle is a great example.)
    5. Man-made nuclear energy
    6. (hypothetical) we harness the energy in a sustained fusion reaction
    7. (hypothetical) we develop technology to change anything into pure energy.
    8. (hypothetical) we develop warp drive in a usable sense.
    9. (hypothetical) we travel back in time, thus reversing space-time.


    What's wrong with saying nothing had any "willful" purpose?... And that the universe merely evolves in time according to set of prescribed rules, and what we observe here are just emergent properties of those rules? The appearance of 'life' occurred in a teeny-tiny little pocket of the universe. This is but a small region of the universe where entropy is slightly decreasing, bad hardly enough to compensate for the gigantic rate at which entropy rises in the rest of the universe. I think it would be erroneous to conclude that any part of the universe is getting closer to 'moving backward in time'.

    I may have missed the point of your post...
  • Posted by a hidden member.
    Log in to view his profile

    Aug 07, 2011 12:02 AM GMT
    danisnotstr8 said
    swmrh911 saidI was sort of into astrophysics for a while, but never really understood what I was reading. I just know that dark matter and dark energy make up the majority of the universe and must play a role in entropy. As far as life goes, here's a possible explanation of how life began:

    http://www.chem.duke.edu/~jds/cruise_chem/Exobiology/miller.html

    basically by chance the correct molecules were in the earth's atmosphere and oceans, and by electrolysis lightning caused certain amino acids to form. Now this sounds to me much more like a reaction in a voltaic cell (reaction that requires input of energy) and would actually be decreasing entropy for the molecules, however when you look at the entropy of the universe it always is decreasing for every reaction. So the lightning strike is actually a much larger decrease in entropy than the increase in entropy of the amino acids....Now I am making assumptions here, and someone that might know more might understand this better.

    Thanks danisnotstr8 lol I did find it interesting on my friday night alone icon_sad.gif


    I am going to admit right now that I have NOT taken the time to read this, although I promise I will later.

    Your summary here immediately raises flags:
    Recently, on Mars, we have found a majority of the amino acids required for live to exist preserved in the soil. This suggests the idea that life did NOT begin on Earth, and rather, could have existed in the far distant past on Mars. And this leads us to another question: Did life on Earth actually come from Mars? I'm not suggesting that Martians hopped on their space plane and came here in search of richer soil. However, it's very possible that those amino acids from which life (we assume) came were transported here via meteorites from other planets.


    The theory doesn't definitively explain the origin of life. It merely provides examples of a likely possibility. There are also theories that life originated in the deep sea vents. Either way, the entropic levels still abide by laws of physics. Take the second law of thermodynamics, two objects in a closed system will exchange energy until thermal equilibrium is reached. However we are not closed systems. We exchange energy with our surroundings in the form of heat. Look it up in Shrödinger's What is Life?. Calibro's point is as much proof as we need. Humans are no more than a cluster of cells differentiated in various functions. Each cell exchanges energy with one another and ultimately the skin allows an exchange of heat from the environment. Even if we are isolating a single unit of life, the system is still closed. The following is an explanation in somewhat of an analogy pertaining to formation of ice crystals from amorphous water:

    At first glance it seems to violate the laws of thermodynamics, however even entropy is somewhat relative. Entropy isn't just about the order in the matter. It's about the order in the energy in the system too. You can increase the order in the matter in the system, have it crystallise or whatever, but there will be an appropriate increase in entropy in the distribution of energy in the system to keep things going as the second law prescribes. If you have something spontaneously crystallising it'll do something like produce a lot of heat, which goes off and spreads about the place and increases the entropy.
  • danisnotstr8

    Posts: 2579

    Aug 07, 2011 12:23 AM GMT
    qd2009 said
    danisnotstr8 said

    HAHA!

    That's just the point, though-- the strawberries--
    The strawberries are alive, and they come from a seed, and it still doesn't explain how, at some point, energy began to "willfully" reorganize into that thing we call life. Life is most certainly negentropic, but WHY did it happen, and WHAT is the purpose? Negentropic processes are certainly moving closer to a reversal of space-time.

    In other words:
    1. Universe explodes
    2. Explosion (as we measure it these days) seems to be increasing in speed.
    3. Life develops.
    4. Intelligent life begins to manipulate matter. (As Prof. Cox stated the other night on his show, molding sand into a sandcastle is a great example.)
    5. Man-made nuclear energy
    6. (hypothetical) we harness the energy in a sustained fusion reaction
    7. (hypothetical) we develop technology to change anything into pure energy.
    8. (hypothetical) we develop warp drive in a usable sense.
    9. (hypothetical) we travel back in time, thus reversing space-time.


    What's wrong with saying nothing had any "willful" purpose?... And that the universe merely evolves in time according to set of prescribed rules, and what we observe here are just emergent properties of those rules? The appearance of 'life' occurred in a teeny-tiny little pocket of the universe. This is but a small region of the universe where entropy is slightly decreasing, bad hardly enough to compensate for the gigantic rate at which entropy rises in the rest of the universe. I think it would be erroneous to conclude that any part of the universe is getting closer to 'moving backward in time'.

    I may have missed the point of your post...


    I'm going to disagree with your suggestion that "life" occurred in a teeny-tiny pocket of the universe. Numbers suggest that life has occurred in more places than we can possibly count.

    More on the second part of your statement in a few minutes after I eat this small child for dinner.