Non-Mainstream Theories

  1. Hi everyone. This is my first post so at this point I want to thank all of you for your terrific and interesting and informative forum on cosmology.

    I understand, and agree with, not getting into non-mainstream theories not published in peer-reviewed journals in this discussion group that covers cosmology . But I find these areas are also of interest to me along with everything in this cosmology forum.

    Can anyone tell me what forum, that is composed of members who are as knowlegeabe as you guys here, that more or less covers (or at least allows) non-mainstream theories like Andrei Linde's proposal that there may have been (and may continue to be) areas in already existing universes that sprout new universe (big bangs) from older universes, etc., etc.?

    Thanks.

    Frank
     
  2. jcsd
  3. Wallace

    Wallace 1,253
    Science Advisor

    I think you have misunderstood the nature of this forum. I don't speak with any authority here, but my understanding is that discussion of 'non-mainstream' scientific theories are perfectly permissible here. For instance there are many discussion of MOND, a non-mainstream alternative theory to dark matter. Non-mainstream theories are perfectly welcome, what we don't bother discussing here are poorly formulated personal theories that are not rigorously developed.

    In order to avoid subjective judgement the rules are clear, if the theory appears in a scientific journal then it is fair game. Appearing in a journal doesn't make an idea correct, but it does mean it has passed some level of scrutiny in terms of it being a sensibly formulated idea. There are probably as many journal articles about 'non-mainstream' cosmology as there are ones about the 'mainstream'.

    For the ideas you mention, do you know what papers they appear in? If you have never searched for journal articles before, just ask as plenty of people around here can help you learn how to do this, it is surprisingly easy.

    In any case welcome to PF!
     
  4. marcus

    marcus 24,296
    Science Advisor
    Gold Member
    2014 Award

    You are attracted by multiverse speculations, it looks like

    I don't know of a forum where they discuss such ideas intelligently but I have an idea for you.

    There is a book about different multiverse ideas, with about 20 different authors. I would suggest that you read the book, so you are not stuck on just ONE person that you heard about, but instead know 5 or 6 or 7 different ideas that grab you

    and then start writing email.

    Maybe 5 out of 6 won't answer. But keep trying. If you come across as reasonably articulate and sensible, someone will answer.

    You may not find a forum, but if you make one or two email contacts you will eventually find a BLOG where some people discuss things like "eternal inflation" scenarios.

    I am thinking how to proceed in worst case. There might be a great forum for this right around the corner and I just not know about it.

    but even in the worst case you can
    1. educate yourself about several different ideas
    2. write email to several authors asking questions (authors like being asked questions about their writings by intelligent readers)
    3. learn about good webites (if any exist) from your email contacts.
    ===================

    So the book I would recommend is expensive, with many authors represented, and I hope you can persuade the local library to order it, so you don't have to buy it yourself, unless you a rich old dude.

    Universe or Multiverse edited by Bernard Carr
    http://www.amazon.com/Universe-Multiverse-Bernard-Carr/dp/0521848415

    read what the reviewer Jill Walter says. The list of authors and chapter titles is impressive. I can find it at the Cambridge Press website for you if you want. Amazon does not have a table of contents chapter listing

    Like wallace says, you also might get a conversation started here about multiverse. I personally don't think it is science because no connection with observational data. Pure fantasy. But people differ. A lot of people entertain multiverse notions because they previously bought on to string theory and then discovered that string apparently does not predict a unique version of physics. It predicts a haystack. the choice is to drop string and look for something better, or keep string and start believing in an infinity of more or less equal likely versions of physics (which might be concretely imagined as an infinity of distinct universes) or as all eternally sprouting from random fluctuations as per Andrei Linde.

    It doesn't interest me personally because I see it as too likely that we can find a better more predictive fundamental theory that WILL make unique predictions. so I take the first choice I mentioned. discard string and watch the ongoing development of newer approaches.

    But that is just my personal view and I encourage you to follow the multiverse idea if it fascinates you. Always best to follow what you find exciting and stimulating.
     
    Last edited: Jun 4, 2008
  5. Thanks Wallace and Marcus. Your comments are of help and I'll try them all.

    Frank
     
  6. marcus

    marcus 24,296
    Science Advisor
    Gold Member
    2014 Award

    You sound interested. I did a search and found the page at Cambridge Press with the Table of Contents

    http://cambridge.org/catalogue/catalogue.asp?isbn=9780521848411

    You can see there are a couple of Nobelists, and many authors, and scientists on both sides of the issue...

    But the thing costs $85 and I worry about suggesting anything that expensive especially in this case. Multiverse speculations are ultimately a pretty wild goose, I fear.
    But there it is. Only you can know whats right.

    =========================
    In case other people read this, and are interested, the link above gives the names of the chapters, and I will list the various authors here who contributed. A lot of eminent people were involved in the book

    Bernard Carr, Steven Weinberg, Frank Wilczek, Martin J. Rees, S. W. Hawking, Max Tegmark, Andrei Linde, Alexander Vilenkin, James D. Bjorken, Renata Kallosh, Savas Dimopoulos, Scott Thomas, Craig J. Hogan, John F. Donoghue, Leonard Susskind, V. F. Mukhanov, James. B. Hartle, Brandon Carter, Lee Smolin, Anthony Aguirre, George Ellis, Don N. Page, Nick Bostrom, William R. Stoeger, Robin Collins, John D. Barrow, Paul Davies
     
    Last edited: Jun 4, 2008
  7. marcus

    marcus 24,296
    Science Advisor
    Gold Member
    2014 Award

    Oh, you can often find free preprints of people scholarly writings at either arxiv or spires.

    http://arxiv.org/
    http://arxiv.org/multi?group=grp_physics&/find=Search

    you see the search tool? type in any of those authors names (last name, or last name and initial) and see what is available in PDF to download free.

    narrow the search by selecting "comments" from the pulldown menu beside the box, and typing in Multiverse, some other keyword like Carr ---the editor's name

    If I type Smolin in for author, and Multiverse Carr in for comments, I get
    a free copy of the chapter that Smolin contributed to the book
    http://arxiv.org/find/grp_physics/1/AND+au:+smolin+co:+AND+multiverse+carr/0/1/0/all/0/1

    I could also just not put any author in the box and only just select "comments" in the menu beside the box, and type in Multiverse Carr, then I would probably get several free chapters, like this

    http://arxiv.org/find/grp_physics/1/co:+AND+multiverse+carr/0/1/0/all/0/1

    yes, that gives 7 free chapters by various people including Nobel laureate Frank Wilzcek. So that's an easy way to get a taste without spending 85 bucks. You can download and print out any of those. Or just scan and decide you arent interested.

    the actual book can be better than the preprints of contributed chapters, which often get revised and edited, but still the preprints give some idea
     
    Last edited: Jun 4, 2008
  8. Marcus - can observational data from particle accelerators not be used to support or disprove a multiverse theory?
     
  9. cristo

    cristo 8,407
    Staff Emeritus
    Science Advisor

    What sort of observational data do you mean? Have you read something suggesting that this may be the case?
     
  10. Chronos

    Chronos 9,945
    Science Advisor
    Gold Member

    I'm not marcus, but, I give that notion a resounding 'Yes'. Particle physics and cosmology go hand in hand, IMO.
     
  11. re: nonmainstream cosmology

    I am new to the forum. I am looking for opportunities to link with others who recognize that much if not most of the mainstream cosmology has an underlying fatal flaw.. namely their dependence upon a definition for Doppler which contains a "presumption of exclusive cause".
    I do not have ready access to major educational centers/libraries so I will be happy to receive your suggestions re: websites or (books by authors that are in print)
    I wish to review any published nonmainstream theories which do not assume that that the universe is expanding or that it began in a hot/condensed state. I personally do not consider the peer review process a sufficiently objective process... I believe that it fails to fairly consider new paradigms and nonexpansionist cosmologies.

    Also, please advise..is it safe to give out my E-mail address? I do not wish to be overwhelmed by lengthy responses but it would be good to be able to receive some concise "references" and "links".
     
    Last edited: Jun 14, 2008
  12. Chronos

    Chronos 9,945
    Science Advisor
    Gold Member

    There is no 'fatal flaw' in modern cosmology. It is very solid. Where did you get that idea?
     
  13. Chronos responded, "There is no 'fatal flaw' in modern cosmology. It is very solid. Where did you get that idea? "
    No disrespect to your perspective on this matter.. however, modern cosmology is dominated by expansionist theory and expansionist theory is completely dependant upon its ignorance of other causes of Doppler including gravitational redshift which Einstein admitted was essential for the validity of his General Relativity theory. This flaw was pointed out by Cahall in Integrated Field Theory (c) 1995 and I feel that it is good science to recognize that non-expansionist theory is a valid alternative perspective.
    __________________
     
  14. Chronos

    Chronos 9,945
    Science Advisor
    Gold Member

    I believe you meant Cahill. He is, to put it mildly, not credible. Try Ned Wright's web page as an alternative source.
     
    Last edited: Jun 16, 2008
  15. Wallace

    Wallace 1,253
    Science Advisor

    Gravitational redshift is an important phenomenon and its effects are observed in a variety of astronomical observations. Gravitational redshift however could not lead to the observed Hubble law unless gravity operates in a way that is very different to General Relativity.

    Any theory you want to imagine is a 'valid alternative perspective' and 'good science' is then the process of confronting different perspectives (or theories) with the data. Doing this shows that a model in which the Universe is expanding and General Relativity describes gravity is a good fit to the data. Other models are not so good, but any new model proposed is just as valid and would become the 'mainstream' model if it did better when confronted with the data.

    A theory that simply suggests that the Universe is not expanding and redshifts are caused by gravitational redshift is clearly ruled out by the data, for more reasons than I can think to list. If you have a reference (that conforms to PF guidelines) that demonstrates otherwise then please share it with us. I think you will struggle to do this however.
     
  16. I thank Wallace for his comments but as a point of clarification, "Integrated Field Theory" by Cahall (not Cahill) considers "transit" Doppler (due to the interaction of the photon with the electromagnetic fields) to be the primary cause of the apparent excess of redshift observed in the spectra of extragalactic sources. It seems like a far more credible understanding of excess redshift that the unexplainable sudden expansion of the early Universe.
     
  17. Wallace

    Wallace 1,253
    Science Advisor

    Any interaction between photons and any thing else show up observationally through a variety of mechanisms. Therefore if cosmological redshift was caused by such a mechanism it would be immediately obvious. It would be 'the' theory. The absence of any such observational evidence makes this a bad model.
     
  18. Sorry as I didn't realize that you all were that far ahead of me to the point you didn't want to take the time to point out the errors of my ways. I will leave the forum and go elsewere.

    milt
     
  19. cristo

    cristo 8,407
    Staff Emeritus
    Science Advisor

    I'm confused: where has this comment come from? You haven't posted in this thread before :confused:
     
  20. No, no post to this thread but I posted to 4 other threads and shut them down so I felt that it was due to posting my own theorys. Maybe I should find a good book on beginning cosmology but the problem with that is when I disagree there is no one to talk to. This group sounds very well educated and maybe I'm just not in their league but if I just post one post a day and keep it simple could someone take the time to educate me or point out the error of my ways? Maybe I should try another forum.
     
    Last edited: Jun 16, 2008
  21. Chronos

    Chronos 9,945
    Science Advisor
    Gold Member

    Championing Reginald Cahill's views will not get you much traction here.
     
Know someone interested in this topic? Share a link to this question via email, Google+, Twitter, or Facebook

Have something to add?