Discussion Board

Topic: A paper that you may find interesting

From: John Dreher
Location: Berkeley
Date: 07/16/2010

I was struck by the similarity of this paper
http://arxiv.org/abs/1001.0785v1
to the background physics you postulate in several
of your novels. From the paper:
"In this paper we will argue that the central notion needed to derive
gravity is information. More precisely, it is the amount of information associated with matter and its location, in whatever form the microscopic theory likes to have it,"
"Thus we are going to assume that information is stored on surfaces, or screens. Screens separate points, and in this way are the natural place to store information about particles that move from one side to the other. Thus we imagine that this information about the location particles is stored in discrete bits on the screens. The dynamics on each screen is given by some unknown rules, which can be thought of
as a way of processing the information that is stored on it. Hence, it does not have to be given by a local field theory, or anything familiar. The microscopic details are irrelevant for us."
Most of this paper is over my head, but it may be that once again fact
will follow fiction. BTW, Erik Verlinde is not a crackpot -- he publishes in Physical Review etc. See also his Wikipedia entry. This is so cool it's worth trying to get some dim idea of the holographic principle and string theory.

Re: A paper that you may find interesting

From: Greg Bear
Date: 07/20/2010

Part of this line of theorizing goes back at least to INFORMATION MECHANICS by Frederick Kantor, which I recommend to those with a good technical background. Updates are clearly needed!

Re:Re: A paper that you may find interesting

From: John Dreher
Location: Berkeley
Date: 07/20/2010

Thanks for the pointer to Kantor's work. Doing a little Wikipedaling around Kantor leads me to the suspicion most of quantum information theory is about qubits and such, i.e. information encoded in quatum states. Verlinde is working at a deeper level, underneath quantum mechanics and/or string theory. But Kantor's work also seems to be more fundamental, since he is messing with the uncertainty principle. Maybe I'll buy a used copy of IM and see if my antique brain can handle it.

Re: A paper that you may find interesting

From: Bill Goodwin
Location: Los Angeles, CA
Date: 07/20/2010

No technical background here. But the above makes me think of Mark McCutcheon's Expansion Theory. The little I've read about that is oddly (perhaps misleadingly) compelling...his idea is that the equivalancy of gravity and acceleration should be taken literally. We have weight because space is somehow expanding more rapidly in the vicinity of matter, etc. The thought has an Einsteinian flavor to it ("clearing the slate" and rethinking what the universe is actually telling you, I mean). His book (The Final Theory) purports to make it sensible, but I've never read it.

The connection in my own crackpot brain is a "many worlds" one: A "bit" represents a choice--the more bits you've got, the greater the spreading of timelines. One need simply picture the space in which McCutcheon's "expansion" takes place as being the multiversal one, right? The expansion is constantly accelerating because outcomes themselves are always dividing; the expansion is always just beginning because (subjectively) time itself is always "just beginning."

To put it crudely, information causes gravity. No mystery.

And Inflation? Living organisms are "choice generators" and the appearance of intelligent life pulls out all stops. Culture changes physics...Olaf Stapledon and Greg Bear are born...

Well, I've said it. I can die happy now, assured that my brilliant little insight will survive me.

Re: A paper that you may find interesting

From: Greg Bear
Date: 08/06/2010

One of my previous suppositions was that it was the processing of information about particle relationships that caused a vector change. The larger the mass, the more particles to keep updated. In a sense, the "refresh" rate of the universe causes gravity. But needless to say I could never do the math.

Re: A paper that you may find interesting

From: Bill Goodwin
Location: Los Angeles, CA
Date: 08/07/2010

Hmmm...I need to refresh myself on Bear. Verlinde and McCutcheon will have to wait!

Respond to this discussion

May we post your correspondence on this site?
Yes
No
IMPORTANT: For form verification, type the following number in the box below: 75




See Also...

Archives: [Oct-Dec 2004] [Jan-June 2005] [July-Dec 2005] [Jan-June 2006] [July 2006] [Aug-Dec 2006] [2007] [2008] [2009] [2010] [2011] [2012] [2013] [2014] [Current] [Search Blog Archives]