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Big Bang Quantum question

  1. Mar 1, 2004 #1
    This is question from a philosophical thread but it is scientific in nature.

    Is omniscience possible in a universe described by our current laws of physics.

    I would say it is not. Information could not be gathered from the entire universe instanteously which would be necessary to know everything.

    One suggestion was if some entity was able to know the exact configuration of the big bang conditions, they could predict the total outcome of the system.

    I would one again say that this would be quite impossible. First dealing with a structure with infinite density. And secondly, the quantum flucations described by the uncertainty principle would make knowing the exact state of the system impossible.

    I would like to open the floor for any ideas that could possibly prove or disprove the idea of the possibility of omniscience.
  2. jcsd
  3. Mar 2, 2004 #2
    This seems like a religious question to me.

    I think omniscience is as possible as it always used to be. Time may just be an illusion. Any omnscient creature may see the future without calculating it from the past.
    Last edited: Mar 2, 2004
  4. Mar 2, 2004 #3
    I'm not sure if these ideas qualify as within our current laws of physics, but I doubt they contradict them as they are vague and probably not specific enough to clash with anything. But I have often imagined it possible, with enough knowledge and processing power, to examine a single particle, or string, or a something, and determine the status of the entire cosmos from the information it contained. I think everything in universe is dependent on everything else (could it be any other way?) like one completely interconnected whole. Current physics backs this up and it’s a common enough belief. But that doesn't mean every little piece reflects every other piece, or maybe it does, but I see it as a seemingly good possibility assuming we know how to look.

    I also imagine that with enough processing power a theory can be developed that will perfectly explain the entire workings of the physical universe and it may be possible to know that this theory represents the ONLY possible way reality can be represented. And so perhaps even without probing the smallest recesses of the universe or going beyond known dimensions experimentally it’s possible to fully understand the physical universe.

    So first we perfectly understand the system of the universe, and then we plot the coordinates and values of everything :) Actually this makes me think quantum mechanics would stand in our way because I think it claims some of these things can't be known and some are perhaps inherently random. So I guess I will assume that quantum mechanics can be understood by some deeper framework that will eliminate annoying probabilities and allow everything to be knowable :P
  5. Mar 2, 2004 #4
    it was from a philosophical thread, but it has has more science to it then anything else.

    Just want other scienctific, non-philosophical input
  6. Mar 3, 2004 #5


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    Consider this: You make up a random set of numbers to write down. Your first number is "1." Nobody but you would be able to predict the rest of the sequence just from seeing that first number. Of course, the information is "knowable" if you decide to tell someone what you're going to write down, but is otherwise perfectly random.

    I'm not sure such arguments are necessary though. I don't think we know enough to say whether "quantum fluctuations" really exist in an exact sense. The measurement problem is still wide open as far as I'm aware.
  7. Mar 3, 2004 #6
    And what if somebody decided to completely scan that very persons brain(somehow, lets eliminate the technology that would make it possible for now for the sake of simplicity) Scan all neurons and neurotransmitter activity and etc...
    Come on, at some point they should be able to even figure out the EXACT thoughts of that very person. No?
  8. Mar 3, 2004 #7


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    Yes. I was implying that that person could be the hypothesized omniscient being playing dice with the universe. I don't think we could do a brain scan on god!
  9. Mar 3, 2004 #8
    It would be especially hard to do if he did not exist.
  10. Mar 4, 2004 #9
    This is so obviously a topic about religion that God only knows what it is doing here.

    The mechanics of God would be bazaar, but if my life depended on it, I'd prefer to defend the idea using quantum mechanics than newtonian mechanics.

    Do you have a God complex?
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