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The Universe: 4 Forces Constant Forever?

  1. Mar 18, 2010 #1
    Well to start things off, this is my first post. =)
    I'm not sure which category to post thi under, but I figured this would be appropriate.
    I am a big fan of Stephen Hawking and have read all of his books multiple times, and I was wondering a couple things that maybe you smart people out there have an answer too. (Im 17 and other than loving Quantum Phsics, Im a n00b.)

    Okay, so. First off, I personally believe in our universe is the single and only universe, and it itself is infinite in size. Now obviously our universe is goverened by the Fundamental forces, and pretty much created by them too, but I was wondering if maybe this is not as true as we think. (Crazy, i know, dont kill me.)

    We literally know 0% of everything we can know about the universe, and maybe somewhere way down the road, (like waaaay far away, Lets say an unfathemale amount of light years) there could be a place where some sort of strange energy, lets say Pink Energy, could somehow counter act upon the fundamental forces, and the fundamental forces in fact only governed our small corner of the universe?

    Is this possible?
    Is this stupid?
    Is there any information you can give me as to why/why not this is possible?

    I have never been able to fnd anything about this, so thanks for reading and responding!
  2. jcsd
  3. Mar 18, 2010 #2


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    Well, dark energy and dark matter seems to be pretty weird...that could potentially be an indication of something wrong with our understanding of gravity, although it's far too early to know for certain. The pioneer anomaly also sheds some (very very very small amount of) doubt as to whether we have the right formulas.

    We definitely don't know everything about everything. We don't have a theory of everything just yet.

    But, I mean, until we can come up with something better, we might as well use what we got (unless what we got is proven wrong...in which case we can only use what we got for specific cases).

    This has been the path of science for a long time. We have a model, and it's only valid over some range of speeds or sizes or w/e, and then we get better models that are valid over larger ranges of speeds and energies. So far, we don't have a theory that's valid for all ranges of sizes/speeds/energies.
  4. Mar 19, 2010 #3
    @Winnipeg: The universe as it's commonly understood, is believed to have "inflated" like a balloon from something like a pinprick. If so, then the forces didn't create them, and in fact at that time there would only be 3 forces anyway: Strong Nuclear, Gravity, and the ElectroWeak force which would later seperate into the E&M and the Weak Nuclear Force.

    The whole reason this would be possible isn't that a big bang "ejected" or "exploded" and the shrapenel = the universe. Think instead of a balloon with the stars and galaxies painted on it when it's half-inflated. Let the air out, blow some in, inflate it MORE than you did. That's the model of 3+1 spacetime *somehow* emerging from a primordial vacuum, or the collision of Branes or some other exotic meta-cosmology.

    Then again... in an infinite universe, none of that holds or makes any sense, unless beyond the CMB there is just... more universe. That's a bit of the problem with an infinite truly UNIverse... you can make the very sane, not stupid, not crazy argument that far away in spacetime, beyond the horizon coudl be... anything. More of us, but walking on our hands. Anything. That's infinity for you.

    Nothing you've said is stupid or crazy however, and you've been very honest about your experience. This is a forum that is all about education, so ask away. That said, if you don't mind I'd like to ask something; why do you believe the universe is "infinite in size" and the only one? It's definitely not something most people believe so strongly. Ah, and an infinite universe without boundaries is probably what you're really saying, whereas "infinite in size" could be followed by, "but totally empty!". :wink:
    Last edited: Mar 19, 2010
  5. Mar 19, 2010 #4


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    "We literally know 0% of everything we can know about the universe"

    I think it is more accurate to say that we know perhaps 95% of everything we can know about the universe. We have theory that explains almost everything that we observe, our new evidence shows a strong tendency towards convergence (e.g. evidence regarding the age of the universe), and there is only only so much that we can even in theory observe about the universe.

    We don't have a complete theory of everything, but most current research is devoted to theories that would deviate from current theories only in subtle ways in extraordinary situations.
  6. Mar 19, 2010 #5
    Estimating a percentage of "what we know" is silly, not to mention functionally, literally, and semantically WRONG.
  7. Mar 19, 2010 #6


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    Might I also point out that there were many times in history when people thought they "knew basically all there is to know". Before the advent of QM, people though that with classical mechanics almost everything was done. Then QM came along and wrecked that ship. When Dirac formulated his formula for electrons, someone real famous (who exactly escapes me atm) stated that within a couple of years everything would be known (he thought that there was just 1 more equation involving the nucleus to be solved). He was proven wrong too.

    I wouldn't get too optimistic that we "know almost everything" - as is suggested by the 95% figure you posted.
  8. Mar 19, 2010 #7
    Very true... not to be pessemistic, but given that at least the first ~360,000 years and everything at and below the Planck scale (not to mention the contents of the supermassive BHs that drive galaxies and Quasars!) is a mystery... and the first is likely to remain so FOREVER in terms of direct observation...

    95% is... hell, we don't even understand mass :rofl:
  9. Mar 20, 2010 #8


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    We probably know almost everything possible to know in our present paradigm of theory. I doubt that knowledge is complete. I'm confident better theories are 'out there', but, think the only way to discover them is to eliminate pretenders. Not an easy task. When we achieve the next level I'm confident we will all be slapping our heads.
  10. Mar 20, 2010 #9
    We're not supposed to be slapping our head NOW?! I have these bruises for nothing, bugger! :wink:
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