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B Lawrence Krauss and shortening the lifespan of the universe

  1. Feb 18, 2017 #1
    That was 10 years ago, when he proposed that humans are shortening the lifespan of the universe by looking at it. Is this nonsense?
     
  2. jcsd
  3. Feb 18, 2017 #2

    phinds

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    Give a citation please. I suspect you misunderstood what he said, but it's kinda hard to tell since you did not give a citation and quote his exact statement.
     
  4. Feb 18, 2017 #3
    "Several interesting open questions are raised, including whether observing the cosmological configuration of our universe may ultimately alter its mean lifetime."
     
  5. Feb 18, 2017 #4

    Bandersnatch

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  6. Feb 18, 2017 #5
    The Universe exists.
    I'm sure that humans being in it makes it no different from what it would be without them.
     
  7. Feb 18, 2017 #6

    PeterDonis

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    Where is this quote from?
     
  8. Feb 19, 2017 #7

    OCR

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  9. Feb 19, 2017 #8

    PeterDonis

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    These are helpful links, yes. Your attitude, however, is not. It's the responsibility of a person quoting someone to give a reference for the quote. You've helped Trollfaz out by doing that for him, which is fine; but it's certainly not the job of the moderators to do that for everyone.
     
  10. Feb 19, 2017 #9

    Chronos

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    Lawrence Krauss has an interesting sense of humor. He delights in titillating marginally informed pop sci audiences by raising possibilities that are only viable when you tweak certain assumptions that go into interpreting the data. I always viewed it as a teaching aid intended to help the truly curious understand how and why we rely on certain 'assumptions' and what happens when you push them a little too hard. He is a very popular speaker. You can get a sense of just how seriously he regards his remarks are by sizing up his audience. The Lawrence Krauss that gives planetarium speeches and magazine interviews is not the same Lawrence Krauss who addresses scientific conferences attended by professional physicists. He and Michio Kaku number among the science celebrities who make a living through this form of entertainment. I view it as something of value by promoting popular interest in science.
     
  11. Feb 20, 2017 #10
    Well, I guess I misunderstood what he said. Apologies
     
  12. Feb 21, 2017 #11

    Chronos

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    I did not intend to suggest professional scientists get some perverse satisfaction from misleading lay audiences. It's just a device to elevate popular public interest in science. If it interests you enough to provoke a little research, it's not phd difficult to figure out the context of their remarks
     
    Last edited: Feb 21, 2017
  13. Apr 28, 2017 #12
    I think misunderstanding
     
  14. Apr 28, 2017 #13

    PeterDonis

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    The problem I have with this approach is that the vast majority of the people in the marginally informed pop sci audiences, as you call them, have neither the time, nor the background knowledge, nor the inclination to do any such research. They think these scientists are authorities who are telling them the literal truth. And the scientists do nothing to disabuse people of this notion. I don't think the overall effect of this is to promote popular interest in science; I think it promotes popular misunderstanding of science.
     
  15. Apr 28, 2017 #14

    phinds

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    I dislike it as pedagogical methodology, but I think it does both even while misleading about specifics.
     
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