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Thread: Can everything be predicted using maths?

  1. #1 Can everything be predicted using maths? 
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    Right guys, i'm 15 and just signed up to this, so go easy please. So, i've always been eager to find out how everything works, and it drives me crazy never having the answers. Anyway, here's my 'theory'; (Please bare in mind i am not saying we could ever do this, but it could be done) , Right, if you had a chemical reaction and took into account every single variable there is ( beginning) , i mean atom by atom, placing of the sub-atomic particles, temprature, gravity , you get my point. You could determine the whole reaction, and could watch one atom and tell what velocity it will hit another atom, and how much velocity it will have after the collision, but doing this for all the atoms. Effectively if you took into account everything at the big bang (just at the 'bang') you could see what energy would go where, what atoms would form where when everything had cooled down, essentialy you could determine the whole timeline of everything that would ever happen.

    It's all just maths if you really think about it. This got me thinking, "What about organic life?", If you breathe in, (again every single factor accounted for) you could tell where a certain oxygen atom was going to land where in the lungs. Then, enter the blood, and knowing the denstity of the blood and it's temp and everything, you could tell where in the body the oxygen would go. Let's say it goes to the brain ends up in the brain, it could let's say land on a certain cell which would create a stimulus and send an electrical impulse down your central nervous system to let's say the arm? Your arm would then do what the impulse intended it to do. So in all, there was no choice to stop that from happening. It was meant to happen.

    It got me thinking, "Maybe, we have no choice. Everything can be determined through maths. Everything is meant to happen. Is there such a thing as 'free will'? Or is everything simply down to precision movements, one thing moves the other." If you really think about it, it can all be calculated. We could never possibaly even come close to being able to account for everything, but i'm talking about it's principal, not it's practicality. What do you guys think?

    P.S please tell me i'm not going crazy....


    Last edited by JNickson; January 26th, 2012 at 06:38 PM.
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    Your paragraph is difficult to read because it's just a giant block of text. Please reorganize

    You're idea isn't crazy at all. I think several people on this forum would certainly agree with you, including me.

    Mathematics is the science of abstract quantities, but it's really not that abstract. As you look into physics, you'll find interesting subjects that show the world in a very unfamiliar fashion. Since everything that ever happens in all its complexity comes down to physics and chemistry, it's all pretty much math, IMO.


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    I'll get to work on that reorganizing . I gethca, some things really get you thinking. I'm so interested into how things work, that my physics teacher wants to slap me for asking all the time. I sit and i just think. I just think about things like, "Do we all see colour the same?" . I love physics, i'm set 1 out of 9, and i love maths in which i'm also set 1 of 9. I'm taking A level maths, further maths, chemistry and cosmology for my A levels. Want to be a cosmologist. I see it as, an idea never get's improved upon untill someone questions the current idea
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  5. #4  
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    JN

    No.

    "Maths" can predict, project, explain, analyse absolutely nothing. All you have to do is ask an expert statistician about a piece of analytical work. They'll tell you "Yes, this is the correct result from applying the Chow test" ---- then they'll ask a few questions.

    Why did you use a Chow test and not some other procedure?
    What's the physical, economic, other data you're trying to analyse?
    Did you omit important data, include redundant data? and a dozen other issues affecting an analysis or projection.

    And then they'll probably say something along the lines of .....
    "It's a beautiful, statistically significant result. Unfortunately it's meaningless without a mechanical, scientific, biological, something explanatory mechanism to
    a) justify using the mathematical procedure in the first place and
    b) to determine whether the result is actually significant in the real world and not just as a mathematical artifact."

    Maths is wonderful in its own right. It's also the language of science. But what you convey when using that language has to be scientifically valid, not just mathematically pretty.
    "Courage is what it takes to stand up and speak; courage is also what it takes to sit down and listen." Winston Churchill
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    I think you first need to find the person who is able to predict the future and then ask them to put that into math, right?
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    Effectively if you took into account everything at the big bang (just at the 'bang') you could see what energy would go where, what atoms would form where when everything had cooled down, essentialy you could determine the whole timeline of everything that would ever happen.
    This is the age-old question of determinism.
    Where this falls down is at the quantum level - yes, you are right, if every single variable was know exactly, and if all physical laws were known exactly, then you would in theory be able to explain the whole history of the universe. Unfortunately this isn't possible because there are limits to how exactly something can be determined in quantum mechanics ( look up "Heisenberg Uncertainty Principle" ). What this basically means is that you can measure only one variable at a time with arbitrary accuracy, but not all of them simultaneously; so you could measure exactly where an electron is, but then you wouldn't be able to tell its momentum or energy at this exact same moment.
    So in other words, it just isn't possible to determine all variables at the same time, which makes this a no-go.
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    Quote Originally Posted by Markus Hanke View Post
    Effectively if you took into account everything at the big bang (just at the 'bang') you could see what energy would go where, what atoms would form where when everything had cooled down, essentialy you could determine the whole timeline of everything that would ever happen.
    This is the age-old question of determinism.
    Where this falls down is at the quantum level - yes, you are right, if every single variable was know exactly, and if all physical laws were known exactly, then you would in theory be able to explain the whole history of the universe. Unfortunately this isn't possible because there are limits to how exactly something can be determined in quantum mechanics ( look up "Heisenberg Uncertainty Principle" ). What this basically means is that you can measure only one variable at a time with arbitrary accuracy, but not all of them simultaneously; so you could measure exactly where an electron is, but then you wouldn't be able to tell its momentum or energy at this exact same moment.
    So in other words, it just isn't possible to determine all variables at the same time, which makes this a no-go.
    I know the quantum level's considered pretty chaotic, but is that implying that there's actual indeterminate randomness?

    If not, then maybe we could determine every detail of every point in time as long as we attain a perfect and complete understanding of physics.
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    Quote Originally Posted by brody View Post

    I know the quantum level's considered pretty chaotic, but is that implying that there's actual indeterminate randomness?

    If not, then maybe we could determine every detail of every point in time as long as we attain a perfect and complete understanding of physics.
    It's indeterminate in the sense that you can only give probability values to outcomes, not absolute values.
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    Quote Originally Posted by Markus Hanke View Post
    Unfortunately this isn't possible because there are limits to how exactly something can be determined in quantum mechanics ( look up "Heisenberg Uncertainty Principle" ). What this basically means is that you can measure only one variable at a time with arbitrary accuracy, but not all of them simultaneously
    Actually Marcus, I believe you slightly overstate your case. This is only true of non-commuting variables as follows.

    To every variable in QM there corresponds an Hermitian operator acting on a complex Hilbert space of state vectors. These operators/variables may be thought of as "observables" if the only allowable range of measurement outcomes are simply the spectrum of eigenvalues for these operators. This makes sense because the eigenvalues of an Hermitian operator must be real, as, if course, must also be a if it to be measurement in the physical world.

    The converse, surprisingly (to me at least), is true: every possible measurement outcome of a state is an eigenvalue for some Hermitian operator

    So given 2 (or more) Hermitian operators taking the same state vector as argument, one says that they commute iff . One may just well (more informally) say that the variables commute under this circumstance. This ramble is because it is not obvious to me that, in the more general case in mathematics it makes sense to talk about "commuting variables".

    Whatever. The point being, it can be shown that the eigenvalues for different commuting operators acting on the same state can be combined according to simple arithmetic rules (these are real numbers, recall), so that two (or more) commuting variables can be simultaneously measured, and one can think of this being a single measurement with two (or more) real values, simultaneously obtained


    So in other words, it just isn't possible to determine all variables at the same time,
    From the above, the HUP refers ONLY to the non-commutative case. (Though it requires a bit more work to show this)
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  11. #10  
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    Quote Originally Posted by Guitarist View Post
    Quote Originally Posted by Markus Hanke View Post
    Unfortunately this isn't possible because there are limits to how exactly something can be determined in quantum mechanics ( look up "Heisenberg Uncertainty Principle" ). What this basically means is that you can measure only one variable at a time with arbitrary accuracy, but not all of them simultaneously
    Actually Marcus, I believe you slightly overstate your case. This is only true of non-commuting variables as follows.

    To every variable in QM there corresponds an Hermitian operator acting on a complex Hilbert space of state vectors. These operators/variables may be thought of as "observables" if the only allowable range of measurement outcomes are simply the spectrum of eigenvalues for these operators. This makes sense because the eigenvalues of an Hermitian operator must be real, as, if course, must also be a if it to be measurement in the physical world.

    The converse, surprisingly (to me at least), is true: every possible measurement outcome of a state is an eigenvalue for some Hermitian operator

    So given 2 (or more) Hermitian operators taking the same state vector as argument, one says that they commute iff . One may just well (more informally) say that the variables commute under this circumstance. This ramble is because it is not obvious to me that, in the more general case in mathematics it makes sense to talk about "commuting variables".

    Whatever. The point being, it can be shown that the eigenvalues for different commuting operators acting on the same state can be combined according to simple arithmetic rules (these are real numbers, recall), so that two (or more) commuting variables can be simultaneously measured, and one can think of this being a single measurement with two (or more) real values, simultaneously obtained


    So in other words, it just isn't possible to determine all variables at the same time,
    From the above, the HUP refers ONLY to the non-commutative case. (Though it requires a bit more work to show this)
    Wow, you obviously know a lot about QM - kudos to you.
    You are absolutely right about the non-commuting variables Guitarist, I stand corrected.
    I suppose it shows that while I know some of the basics of QM it isn't really my area of expertise as such...much to learn still...
    However, as for the point made in the OP, even if just some of the variables are not simultaneously determinable, that would still mean that the universe can not be pre-determined, in my opinion...
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    Thanks guys, but i'm going to have to admit i barely understood any of the above (So much to learn) . So, it's not possible for us to account everything, but it's theoreticaly possible? I'm sorry guys, i'm just abit confused about the above convo
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    Sorry JN

    No, it's not theoretically possible. Maths is terrific in and of itself.

    But it isn't possible to come up with "an equation for everything".

    Maths is what you use to express ideas in science - but the power of the explanation lies in the scientific (or other) quality.

    Think of someon who speaks beautifully, uses lots of elegant phrases and memorable sayings. Sounds terrific. But it makes a huge difference whether they're talking sense or rubbish.

    Same for maths. It doesn't matter how elegantly the equations run if the idea itself is nonsense.
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    Occam's Razor should be perhaps taken with this one. The simplest explanation is usually the most correct.

    Putting it simply, if mathematics can potentially predict everything, as an ultimate science, the human mind in understanding and constructing that mathematics would also have equal foresight. How likely is that though, for the human mind to perceive the future? If the human mind is not designed to perceive the future, how can it calculate the future? What am I missing here?
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    The question was not "can humans predict the future"; it was, "Can everything be predicted using math" (referring to chemistry/physics as well I assume). Just because humans will never be able to predict the future does not mean that it is not theoretically possible to predict all outcomes using the concept of math.

    Your point is valid, however, there may be one problem. If, at a quantum level, there is a certain amount of "randomness", there would be no way to predict the actions of everything. That being stated, if there is absolutely no randomness then it is of course, possible.

    Free will is about making your own choices; while determinism is the idea that everything is set into predictable motion since the Big Bang. Contrary to popular belief, they are not opposites. It is clear fact that we have control over our minds. We must remember though: All of our thoughts, ideas, and decisions are electronic signals generated by neurons in our brain. In the end, the argument comes down to how you define the two concepts.
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    It would also need mindreading. For instance when someone wants or has to do something that implies a risk and reward, maybe rob a bank or rescue someone out of a burning building. The risks, the odds and rewards can be determined maybe. But how to determin what will be acceptable balance for some person to come to acting.
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    Markus I apologize - I spelled your name wrong in my last. My excuse, should I need one, is that working on my netbook I can see an author's name but not his full text, or I can see the full text but not the author's name.

    In other words, name and text do not commute!!

    PS: I would remind you all that this subforum is intended for discussing mathematics. Let's try and keep it that way
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    Quote Originally Posted by adelady View Post
    Sorry JN

    No, it's not theoretically possible. Maths is terrific in and of itself.

    But it isn't possible to come up with "an equation for everything".

    Maths is what you use to express ideas in science - but the power of the explanation lies in the scientific (or other) quality.

    Think of someon who speaks beautifully, uses lots of elegant phrases and memorable sayings. Sounds terrific. But it makes a huge difference whether they're talking sense or rubbish.

    Same for maths. It doesn't matter how elegantly the equations run if the idea itself is nonsense.
    Well stated, adelady
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    Quote Originally Posted by Guitarist View Post
    Markus I apologize - I spelled your name wrong in my last. My excuse, should I need one, is that working on my netbook I can see an author's name but not his full text, or I can see the full text but not the author's name.

    In other words, name and text do not commute!!

    PS: I would remind you all that this subforum is intended for discussing mathematics. Let's try and keep it that way
    Not a problem at all, Guitarist...people use both versions of my name, I'm fine with that
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  20. #19  
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    I think yes, using simulations
    With bravery and recognition that we are harbingers of our destiny and with a paragon of virtue.
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    How about no?
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    Why not? If there is no randomness, there must be some deterministic quality to how everything collectively happens.

    Math can't fully explain things on its own, but it can certainly describe them, from the fundamental level up. If there's a certain charge in this space, and another charge over here, this interaction will happen here, causing this ... and such, which determines how everything in our macroscopic world happens (even emotion).

    Can someone explain?
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    It seems amit28it deleted his post. (or it was removed) As for the prediction of everything by maths i'd say that a full and detailed description of everything might not be possible, the limits of what we can measure limit our description to predicting random events. But we can still get plenty of practical usage out of simplified models and approximations.
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    Quote Originally Posted by brody View Post
    Why not? If there is no randomness, there must be some deterministic quality to how everything collectively happens.
    As far as we know, the universe is inherently and fundamentally probabilistic. There are also limits to how accurately things can be known (see Heisenberg Uncertainty Principle, for example). Chaos theory also suggests that however accurately you know the initial conditions there will be a limit to how far ahead you can predict anything.
    Last edited by Strange; February 12th, 2012 at 05:33 AM.
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  25. #24  
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    jn

    math is not almighty science.

    math can only predict those things that can be quantified. it means something which can be divided into quantity can be predicted by math.

    things which math cannot predict are mind, emotion, natural calamities, man made disasters etc.

    math is not almighty science.
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    Hurrah! xxx200 says something I agree with!

    things which math cannot predict are mind, emotion, natural calamities, man made disasters etc.
    Some of these can be predicted in some circumstances, to a limited extent; for example, we can predict the path of hurricanes and typhoons to warn people of danger.
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    Quote Originally Posted by xxx200 View Post
    math cannot predict ... mind, emotion
    Well it may be possible. I don't think we're exactly sure how the mind operates yet. But we can quantify the output of certain biochemicals in the brain compared to one another, which may partially or wholly determine our moods and emotions.
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    if something determines our mood and emotion that is not necessarily our mind. our mind is not biochemical. our minds are our emotion or our thought especially. it cannot be quantified. therefore math cannot got them.
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    Quote Originally Posted by xxx200 View Post
    if something determines our mood and emotion that is not necessarily our mind. our mind is not biochemical. our minds are our emotion or our thought especially. it cannot be quantified. therefore math cannot got them.
    If not our mind, where are emotions and thought? Are you implying a spiritual/religious perspective?
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    Quote Originally Posted by xxx200 View Post
    if something determines our mood and emotion that is not necessarily our mind. our mind is not biochemical. our minds are our emotion or our thought especially. it cannot be quantified. therefore math cannot got them.
    Well, again, we can measure and predict certain things. Remove oxygen from the brain for a few minutes and all activity will cease. Stimulate a certain area electrically and you know what the result will be. If a stroke damages particular parts of the brain then a doctor can predict the sort of loss of function expected. This is, currently, mostly qualitative rather than quantitative but it is being made more precise all the time.

    After all, the brain is just another organ. Once we didn't know what the heart did or how it worked, now we understand it very well. Eventually we will understand the brain[*] just as well.

    [*] Which, of course, means the mind as well.
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    Quote Originally Posted by Strange View Post
    Well, again, we can measure and predict certain things. Remove oxygen from the brain for a few minutes and all activity will cease. Stimulate a certain area electrically and you know what the result will be. If a stroke damages particular parts of the brain then a doctor can predict the sort of loss of function expected. This is, currently, mostly qualitative rather than quantitative but it is being made more precise all the time.

    After all, the brain is just another organ. Once we didn't know what the heart did or how it worked, now we understand it very well. Eventually we will understand the brain[*] just as well.[*] Which, of course, means the mind as well.
    well this kind of prediction is not possible using math. they are mostly based on medical laws. this is also limitation of math.
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    computational neuroscientists will be very disappointed that their task is impossible, i mean since you know exactly what the boundaries of mathematics are they must be wasting their time right?
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    Computational neuroscientists?

    We're right back in the realm of what can maths (in any of its multitudinous forms) actually predict. I'd put this discipline right into the same category as seismology, vulcanology, astronomy, glaciology - even though I'm not convinced it is as well-developed as any of those.

    Despite using very sophisticated mathematics in dedicated computer systems, these disciplines can only tell us what should not surprise us. We're not at all surprised by earthquakes in New Zealand or Japan. But seismologists can only tell us where the biggest risks for the biggest quakes are - they cannot predict the year or the size or the precise location of the next large quake for any of the known active regions. Neither can vulcanologists tell us which volcano is likely to be the next Pinatubo-scale eruption - apart from being near the equator, which doesn't help a lot - let alone when that will happen. During the next 15-30 years is not what I'd call a useful prediciton - not knowing whether it will be when your own child is born this year or their child 30 years hence ain't especially helpful.
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    so there's room for improvement, none of this says it's impossible to make more useful predictions.
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    Quote Originally Posted by xxx200 View Post
    well this kind of prediction is not possible using math. they are mostly based on medical laws. this is also limitation of math.
    Are you saying medicine and physiology don't use mathematics? I'm shocked.

    This may be relevant: The mathematics of being nice - life - 21 March 2011 - New Scientist
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    Quote Originally Posted by Guitarist View Post
    Quote Originally Posted by Markus Hanke View Post
    Unfortunately this isn't possible because there are limits to how exactly something can be determined in quantum mechanics ( look up "Heisenberg Uncertainty Principle" ). What this basically means is that you can measure only one variable at a time with arbitrary accuracy, but not all of them simultaneously
    Actually Marcus, I believe you slightly overstate your case. This is only true of non-commuting variables as follows. To every variable in QM there corresponds an Hermitian operator acting on a complex Hilbert space of state vectors. These operators/variables may be thought of as "observables" if the only allowable range of measurement outcomes are simply the spectrum of eigenvalues for these operators. This makes sense because the eigenvalues of an Hermitian operator must be real, as, if course, must also be a if it to be measurement in the physical world. The converse, surprisingly (to me at least), is true: every possible measurement outcome of a state is an eigenvalue for some Hermitian operator So given 2 (or more) Hermitian operators taking the same state vector as argument, one says that they commute iff . One may just well (more informally) say that the variables commute under this circumstance. This ramble is because it is not obvious to me that, in the more general case in mathematics it makes sense to talk about "commuting variables". Whatever. The point being, it can be shown that the eigenvalues for different commuting operators acting on the same state can be combined according to simple arithmetic rules (these are real numbers, recall), so that two (or more) commuting variables can be simultaneously measured, and one can think of this being a single measurement with two (or more) real values, simultaneously obtained
    So in other words, it just isn't possible to determine all variables at the same time,
    From the above, the HUP refers ONLY to the non-commutative case. (Though it requires a bit more work to show this)
    random question: if I learn linear algebra will that suffice to understand tensors? what book do you recommend for those for whom math is not intuitive?
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    As someone who has done much linear algebra but only has the slighest grasp on tensors i'd say no, you need more. But on the other hand if the basics are all that you want for the near future then sure.
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    Without wishing to overstate my case, everything in the observable universe definitely has its origins in Northamptonshire -- Alan Moore
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    Math. What even inspired that? Failure?
    In someting?
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    Quote Originally Posted by wallaby View Post
    so there's room for improvement, none of this says it's impossible to make more useful predictions.
    Exactly what I think all the disagreement in this thread roots from. Currently, of course mathematics can't predict everything.

    I think maybe we just need a better understanding of how things work so we can compute the outcomes and narrow it down to an actual timeline.

    If I toss a coin, it's 50/50 chances for heads or tails. But does it seem that there is any factor of true randomness involved? Doesn't seem so. It's all determined which side faces up before I toss... The exact force I exert on the coin to make it go up, and the angle at which I do it... And other small but effective things such as air density, wind, etc. And if random, subatomic particles are still involved, their role is infinitesimal in this common situation.
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    Quote Originally Posted by theQuestIsNotOver View Post
    Occam's Razor should be perhaps taken with this one. The simplest explanation is usually the most correct.

    Putting it simply, if mathematics can potentially predict everything, as an ultimate science, the human mind in understanding and constructing that mathematics would also have equal foresight. How likely is that though, for the human mind to perceive the future? If the human mind is not designed to perceive the future, how can it calculate the future? What am I missing here?
    You're right that the human mind constructed mathematics. But, in analogy, we've just set up the rules; we're not fit enough to play the game. The game is the complex and long computations that we leave to supercomputers. Our brains can't deal with the horde of information in calculating large values, as it's already being bombarded with handling the incredibly vast amount of information from our five senses. We just set up the rules, as in the axioms, the operations, etc. After all, mathematics is just a model to describe.
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    Quote Originally Posted by JNickson View Post
    Right guys, i'm 15 and just signed up to this, so go easy please. So, i've always been eager to find out how everything works, and it drives me crazy never having the answers. Anyway, here's my 'theory'; (Please bare in mind i am not saying we could ever do this, but it could be done) , Right, if you had a chemical reaction and took into account every single variable there is ( beginning) , i mean atom by atom, placing of the sub-atomic particles, temprature, gravity , you get my point. You could determine the whole reaction, and could watch one atom and tell what velocity it will hit another atom, and how much velocity it will have after the collision, but doing this for all the atoms. Effectively if you took into account everything at the big bang (just at the 'bang') you could see what energy would go where, what atoms would form where when everything had cooled down, essentialy you could determine the whole timeline of everything that would ever happen.

    It's all just maths if you really think about it. This got me thinking, "What about organic life?", If you breathe in, (again every single factor accounted for) you could tell where a certain oxygen atom was going to land where in the lungs. Then, enter the blood, and knowing the denstity of the blood and it's temp and everything, you could tell where in the body the oxygen would go. Let's say it goes to the brain ends up in the brain, it could let's say land on a certain cell which would create a stimulus and send an electrical impulse down your central nervous system to let's say the arm? Your arm would then do what the impulse intended it to do. So in all, there was no choice to stop that from happening. It was meant to happen.

    It got me thinking, "Maybe, we have no choice. Everything can be determined through maths. Everything is meant to happen. Is there such a thing as 'free will'? Or is everything simply down to precision movements, one thing moves the other." If you really think about it, it can all be calculated. We could never possibaly even come close to being able to account for everything, but i'm talking about it's principal, not it's practicality. What do you guys think?

    P.S please tell me i'm not going crazy....


    Can I just deal with your main question, that would be the OP question ''Can everything be predicted by math''?

    In short, no, I don't think that ''everything'' can be described by mathematics. For instance, take the most extreme case; a universe with N-constituents. In principle if the universe is infinite then



    In this simple approach we we find complex cases. The universe simply has too many variables (or -constituents) to be simplified so easily. There are far too many conjectures of physics alone that advocate as theories which as of yet, has eluded the greatest mathematical minds to set in foundatiion any kind of ''unified theory of everything''.... because, in loose terms that is what your OP question is really the crux of.... a unified theory of everything.

    I don't think physics will ever find unification if singularities are generally considered as unphysical.
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  43. #42  
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    The answer to your question;

    -according to Einstein and Newtonian physics - YES
    -according to Schrodinger and quantum physics - NO

    Pretty much as simple as that...
    Science cannot solve the ultimate mystery of nature. And that is because, in the last analysis, we ourselves are a part of the mystery that we are trying to solve.
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    The short answer to the OP's question is no. A bit of a longer answer is that there are processes that (as far as we know) truly are completely random. A canonical example is radioactive decay. We can't say precisely when any particular radioactive atom will decay; all we can say is "on average, a group of these atoms will decay at such-and-such a rate." It doesn't matter how precisely you measure that which can be measured; that knowledge confers zero predictive ability wrt radioactive decay. That means that the quality of your mathematical models is also irrelevant to your question.

    We live in a fundamentally unpredictable universe. That conclusion is independent of considerations such as the chaotic nature of nonlinear dynamical systems (such as the world we inhabit).
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    Choas theory shows the answer is NO even using Einstein and Newtonian deterministic physics.
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    JNickson great question!

    Choas theory shows the answer is NO even using Einstein and Newtonian deterministic physics.

    Hope you stick around and Welcome to the forum.

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  47. #46  
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    You are (not) going crazy.


    I see things the same way as you.

    Can you do the things you speak of in your first paragrapy ?


    things like random acts, may stop things like in your first paragraph from ever being done.

    I mean a random act, like whether a coin will land on heads or tails when flipped. It may be imposible in our reality to predict something like this.


    Unless relitivity would come into play,
    If theres two seperate groups of people, and one group is moving close to the speed of light, and the other is still ,and the 2 groups are looking at each other. In a situation like this, mind blowing things are possible, and maybe in this kind of reality you could predict whether a coin will land on heads or tails, but maybe not?

    But for your 1st paragraph, random acts (like not knowing if a coin will land on heads or tails) may stop it from being posible.
    And dont get discouraged, your a lot smarter than I was at your age.


    You say its all just maths if you really think about it ? I agree with you 1,000%


    I think in the future math and (computer programs) will be able to do things (kinda) like you think of.


    And with with your 2nd paragraph, I think these (random acts, like the coin flip) may make things exactly as you speak of imposible.
    Just like you cant predict whether a coin will land on heads or tails, that thing you want to track in the human body will be bumped around and other things get bumped around, and you just cant predict its path, just like you cant predict the coin flip. when small objects move and get bumped around, its like rolling dice, you cant predict them.

    But maybe they are not, maybe the things you think of are possible to a ((some)) extent, with complex math/ computer programs, in the future.


    My response to your 3rd paragraph,

    I too think (most) everything could be determined through maths and computer programs, in the distant future.


    You said maybe we have no choice, everything is ment to happen, is there such a thing as free will ?


    maybe most of the things you can see around you, have no choice, and just happen, but I think (you) may have more free will than you realize.


    I think most things are down to precision movements, and one thing moves another. Just realize that these (random acts), can change the future in a way that may not be able to be predicted.



    But I think we can (in the future) come very close to doing things like you think of, with maths and computer programs.


    ((maybe)) we could never figure out, were that exact oxygen atom will go in a human body, but I think it will be possible to predict what area of the human body it would be most likely to go.
    Last edited by chad; March 10th, 2012 at 02:08 AM.
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    maybe we could never figure out, were that exact oxygen atom will go in a human body, but I think it will be possible to predict what area of the human body it would be most likely to go.
    If you look back to the OP, JN asked .........
    Or is everything simply down to precision movements, one thing moves the other.
    When you think of one thing moving another, double pendulums come to mind. For small movements, the results are simple and predictable. For large movement, the whole thing is chaotic. The boundaries are fairly well set, but it's impossible to predict where the second pendulum is likely to be in any number of seconds time from starting.

    So for the time being, JN's question has to be answered No. If chaos theory eventually produces another mathematical scheme, then there might be some chance. But not now.
    "Courage is what it takes to stand up and speak; courage is also what it takes to sit down and listen." Winston Churchill
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    In my opinion mathematics is everywhere and its used in day to day life but its not right that everything can be predicted using mathematics,Maths is to study not to predict anything.
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    Please stop spamming your web site everywhere with irrelevant comments.
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    if we know all the physical or material phenomenon then mathematics can do wonders
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    Quote Originally Posted by Markus Hanke View Post
    Effectively if you took into account everything at the big bang (just at the 'bang') you could see what energy would go where, what atoms would form where when everything had cooled down, essentialy you could determine the whole timeline of everything that would ever happen.
    This is the age-old question of determinism.
    Where this falls down is at the quantum level - yes, you are right, if every single variable was know exactly, and if all physical laws were known exactly, then you would in theory be able to explain the whole history of the universe. Unfortunately this isn't possible because there are limits to how exactly something can be determined in quantum mechanics ( look up "Heisenberg Uncertainty Principle" ). What this basically means is that you can measure only one variable at a time with arbitrary accuracy, but not all of them simultaneously; so you could measure exactly where an electron is, but then you wouldn't be able to tell its momentum or energy at this exact same moment.
    So in other words, it just isn't possible to determine all variables at the same time, which makes this a no-go.
    What JNickson said is possible, but only if the world would not have been a truly "analog", but made of snapshots. Just like a digital realm (non-random). However, there is no (and probably will never be) the real proofs of the fact that we are living in a "non-snapshot" world, so who knows...
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    Nobody knows the answer for sure, but it's most likely (about a 95% chance) that no, not everything can be predicted, even if you absolutely 100% know all the conditions. Forgive my ignorance if this is, but I believe it's impossible to know everything, isn't there a principle stating that velocity and position put together can only be known to a certain extent?
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    Quote Originally Posted by anticorncob28 View Post
    Nobody knows the answer for sure, but it's most likely (about a 95% chance) that no, not everything can be predicted, even if you absolutely 100% know all the conditions. Forgive my ignorance if this is, but I believe it's impossible to know everything, isn't there a principle stating that velocity and position put together can only be known to a certain extent?
    Most (Quantum Mechanics) QM interpretations take the Heisenberg Uncertainty Principle (HUP) as a basis to infer an absolute limit to the precision of a measurement and that observable phenomena is a complete description of reality, however other interpretations such as Bohm's hidden variables theory argue that HUP may be a crude description of the average statistical behaviour of 'deeper' causal variables and that the uncertainty principle may be a limit that is imposed by our ignorance of causal variables.

    Bohm was an ardent critic of randomness and the status it now enjoys as 'intrinsic to certain natural processes' arguing that 'randomness in one context may reveal itself as simple orders of necessity in another broader context'. For example 'chaos theory has demonstrated that in virtually all non-linear deterministic systems, there is a domain in which the system behaves as if it were random', despite the fact that it is actually deterministic. In his view randomness may have the appearance in certain contexts as being fundamental, but the deeper truth may have to consider the broader context. From here .

    Anyway, provided that such interpretations still have merit I suppose the verdict is still out. :-))
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    Though most hidden variable versions of QM have to jump through quite a few hoops to work
    As is often the case with technical subjects we are presented with an unfortunate choice: an explanation that is accurate but incomprehensible, or comprehensible but wrong.
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    There is MONTY HALL scenario , where right prediction based on this theory is mathematically right . But natural scenario wise , no matter how many time it
    proves to be right , it will be considered as fallacy .
    If prediction turns out to be wrong , it is natural to be wrong , but mathematically certainly not right to see wrong result .
    So logic in math and real scenario are considered and evaluated in different terms may be .
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