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My ideas about time

  1. Dec 19, 2003 #1


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    What is time? This is a very hard question. Not even physics experts have a good anwser. I´d like to show you my ideas about this subject.

    The measure of time is the measure of some standard events. I think we all agree with this. However, this thought lead us to think that, in a region with no events (therefore no exchange of energy), there is no time. I´ll show why this make sense. We can look to time in several different ways, as measure, as a dimension and as an operation. The operation time must generate a change in the physical system. In a region where there are no changes,the time operation would become a simmetry operation, so time would be frozen in that region. Formally,


    Where R.E are the referential or standard events. But all events are a function of work, which is function of entropy, right?

    So R.E=R.E(W(S)) where w=work and s=entropy. Taking the derivative, we find:

    D(R.E)/ds= (R.E)´*(W)´


    dt= (R.E)´*(W)´*ds

    Also, we know that S=k ln(P) so ds=(k/p)dp

    We can introduce this to quantum mechanics with the schrodinger equation:


    After many calculations, we find that

    -(h/2pi)²/(2m)*div(grad {y})+U(r)*y=ih/(2*pi)*(p/(R.E)´*(W)´*k*dp)*(dy-(<&y/&x,&y/&Y,&y/&z> * dr)

    x,Y,z= space
    t= time
    h= planck´s constant
    U= potential energy
    y= wave function
    div = divergence operation
    grad= gradient operation (div (grad)= laplacian)
    R.E= referential events
    W= work
    k= Boltzmann constant
    i= imaginary number (SQRT -(1))
    p= number of possible states (thermodynamics concept)

    What are the implications of this equation? Tell me your opinions about my idea.
  2. jcsd
  3. Dec 21, 2003 #2
    Well, I don't know, I'm only responding because no one else has, but it seems to me that you've only proved that you can't tell that time has pasted if you observe perfectly empty space. But it doesn't make sense to me to conclude that time hasn't pasted just because you can't tell that it has. It's like closing your eyes and trying to open them fast enough to see if the world didn't exist while they were shut.
  4. Dec 21, 2003 #3


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    Staff: Mentor

    'If a tree falls in the woods and no one is there to hear it, does it still make a sound?'

  5. Dec 21, 2003 #4


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    You can´t use this analogy to the time concept, and I don´t believe this question is this simple.

    First of all, I want to know if you agree that time can be treated as an operation without further complications. To consider time as an operation is just to see it from a different point of view, and no experimental result will become invalid .

    Now imagine that you´re in a void outside the universe. There are no events (no exchange of energy). In this region, all operations are simmetry operations, according to group theory. This includes time.

    If time is a simmetry operation, there´s absolutely no distinction between past and future. So it will become an arbitrary variable, and lose all it´s physical meaning.
    Last edited: Dec 21, 2003
  6. Dec 22, 2003 #5
    That is where I disagree. If you use that concept, and do the thought experiment you describe, the conclusions you come to are weird. I think that tells you more about your starting assumption than it does about the nature of time.
  7. Dec 22, 2003 #6
    i think its amazing that you can
    come up with an idea like that

    i have no idea what you idea is about
    it looks really complex (at least to me)
    mabey you'll be some great scientist some
    day even if this your theory proves wrong (it could be right, i dunno)

    not everyone can come up with a good idea
    and try supporting it scientifically
  8. Dec 22, 2003 #7
  9. Dec 29, 2003 #8
    you can't escape change and that is a mark of time to something somwhere...not only that, are you still devorced? I am in CA...how about dinner some time and we can take forever....or it may seem like forever...
    or if it is good it will make time stand still....there is no time unless you need more of it...
  10. Dec 29, 2003 #9
    I disagree with this part. I do know someone who has a good answer. He has posted it here - http://www.wfu.edu/~brehme/time.htm [Broken]
    Last edited by a moderator: May 1, 2017
  11. Dec 29, 2003 #10


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    Thinking well, we don´t need time to be an operation. Let´s say that the operation T tell us the consequence of the passing of time. Let´s say that <x,y,z,t> are the coordinates of a system. Then


    But since t=the number of operations, it becomes

    T{<x,y,z,n operations>}=<x2,y2,z2,n+1 operation>

    When a system is completely isolated,

    T(isolated){<x,y,z,n operations>}=<x,y,z,n+1 operations>

    This operation is a simmetry operation in space. There´s no distinction between past and future here, because the distinction between past and future is taken from events that require motion,
    such as the increasing of entropy.

    So, n operations=n+1 operations

    Therefore,time becomes an arbitrary variable and lose all it´s meaning. It is just a number withno interpretation in a region with no events.
    Last edited: Dec 29, 2003
  12. Dec 30, 2003 #11


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    I read that article and the man provides no definition.
    Last edited by a moderator: May 1, 2017
  13. Jan 11, 2004 #12
    Hi all,

    I think this is a good and interesting article on the nature of time written by Lee Smolin. If you haven't read it, here it is:-

    http://www.fortunecity.com/emachines/e11/86/whattime.html [Broken]
    Last edited by a moderator: May 1, 2017
  14. Jan 12, 2004 #13
    Hi dwf,

    How much time we need to ask "What is Time"?

    More to the point, no theory (or model) of x is x.

    For example: "What is simplicity?"

    I hope that you agree with me that no theory of simplicity is simplicity.

    Another example: "What is silence?"

    No answer to this question is silence itself.

    If we take this point of view then no theory on time is time.

    If you agree with this attitude then all we can do is to find an "answer"
    which is a temporary model of time.
  15. Jan 12, 2004 #14
    I think it would be interesting to analyze how time relates in the cloud chamber of a particle accelerator- that is to analyze the vector movement of any particle and then analyze the vector movement of its antiparticle. If you analyze the antiparticle as an antiparticle it moves as a vector forward in time, but if you look at it as just another particle it moves backward in time, like an explosion in reverse. According to this, in our universe time in the future would then mean increased entropy (increasing disintegration). Time in the past would then be entropy in reverse (increasing integration).

    This definitely matches how we experience time as humans - slow bodily disintegration. However in a world where we existed as antiparticles we would start life as scattered biological material in the earth and would slowly aggregate into a dead body which would then start breathing....well, you get the picture. We'd finally disappear into the womb.
    Last edited: Jan 12, 2004
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