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Time, discrete or Continuous?

  1. Sep 27, 2009 #1
    Whether or not time is discrete or continuous is unknown, and is a key idea answer that many physicists are looking for. This topi is for discussing the factors that effects whether or not ime is continuous, and effects it might have.

    Before i talk about whether or not time is discrete or continuous, i would also like to start with explaining the definitions of continuous and discrete variables, with a surprising outcome.

    When one thinks about the nature of time, and whther or not it is continuous or discrete, it is only natural to compare discrete and continuous variables with others that we know of, such as integers and decimals. However, when one thinks about the meaning of a continuous variable, which is not done very often, a potentially surprising outcome is found. A continuous variable is a variable that can be infinitely big or small, it has no limitations. However, a continuous varibal must start some where, otherwise it is nothing! By thinking about this notion deeper, we realise that aklthough continuous variables are not limited by how big or small they start as, they are in fact restricted by numbers themselves! What i mean is this, no matter how small or big a continuous variable starts as, no matter how small of a number it goes up by, it is always, always going up by something! It is therefore restricted by the confounds of actual numbers! Does this mean that all supposedly continuous variables are in fact discrete variables?

    The application of this notion towrds time is easy, and helps reinforce the understanding of this notion. If time is discrete then it is easy to picture time having a negligible unit that it uses to tick forward in its neverending pattern. However, if time is contimuous, it still must travel in a unit, after all, how would time get anywhere if it wen 0 forwards all the time?

    This idea is logical, and i think is a good contribution to times pattern. From now i will be looking at the effects that this has, and how it even manages to solve two more problems which are the acceleration of light (and other objects) and how it manages to allow other worlds with opposite times to cross.

    The acceleration of light has always been a confusing debate, does light take time to get up to its optimum speed (3x10to the power 8 m/s in a vacuum), or is it emmitted at that speed instantly, does it even take time to emit the light. (I have just realised the emit backwards is time). Well, first of all, is time is discrete, then there is no such thing as an instannt, everything takes time!. Therefore, the accelleration of light always takes time, just one unit of the unimaginaly small units that time comes in.

    The idea of aceleration and its connection with time also has other effects as well. It has always bothered me, when something accellerates it goes from 0m/s to n m/s in an amount of time. But there must be an instant when from 0 m/s it goes to the smallest amount of speed there is, instantly, but by referring to the discreteness of time, there again is no instant! It has to take time! But if it did not take time to get to this small amount of speed, the the acceleration would be... n/0 = infinity! Infinite acceleration! (The same applies for light).

    Whether or not there are other worlds out there is perhaps an unsolveable question, we will never know. But perhaps there are parrallel universes, in the smape position as ours, but at a different time! Maybe, time goes faster or slower in other worlds than in ours? What would the effects be if two worlds were to cross paths, catastrophic? or nothing? Perhaps the abscence of matter in parts of our universre are simply filled with matter from other universes that fill these gaps with their matter as they cross our paths continuously, but we have no idea! Or maybe if time is continuousst then mathematically the point in which it passes us would last for 0 tmie, no effect!. But if it is discrete and the universe passes through our point in time where earth is... chaos? Or maybe the time is so short that we feel no effects, after all, nothing travels faster than the speeed of light!

    To summarise, the effects of time having a small unit which it uses to tick forwards are immense and lead on to lots of other topics.

    Thank You,
    William Evans

    Please note, this is simply ideas that i myself ihave had, and not copied off sites, contrary to many e-mails that i have recieved...
  2. jcsd
  3. Sep 27, 2009 #2


    Staff: Mentor

    I recommend that you learn some basic calculus. This stuff has been resolved for centuries. You are literally several hundred years behind the times. Please read up on the concepts of infinitesimal and of limits.
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