[time 82] discrete models, QM vs. GR

Ben Goertzel (ben@goertzel.org)
Wed, 31 Mar 1999 20:11:17 -0500

One more comment. I am really in love with discrete physics models.
Stripping away the
fancy math and getting everything in terms of lattices and finite algebras
is incredibly
revealing. Remember, we can only test our theories up to finite precision
anyway. If it's
the case that the "magic" of continuous mathematics is needed to capture
physical theories,
that's wonderful, but it should be demonstrated rather than assumed. I
know this is an
eccentric view but I'm convinced it is correct. One can get straight from
logic to discrete
models, and I suspect that this is how the next physics revolution is going
to work -- in synch
with the computer revolution. The universe as bits!

Now let me make this more concrete.

Suppose we view the Standard Model as tony smith wanted to, as a discrete
8-D lattice
 This lattice isn't ~quite~ derivable from abstract algebra, because
algebra just gives you
a graph, not a graph with weighted links. I.e., the algebra does not give
you the metric

But, what is it that GR talks about? Precisely this metric structure, and
how the massive
elements in space affect it.

Perhaps we can view the two perspectives on the cosmos as follows:

1) the local perspective sees the links in the universe graph as having
certain "standard"

2) the global perspective sees the feedback between the weights on the
links and the
entities (particles) living at the nodes of the graph

This is a half-baked idea obviously, but ... ;)

GR basically says that space is curved more near a massive object. This
means that
mass is defined as that which makes weights smaller (makes a single link
correspond to
a smaller distance).

Even if these ideas are totally wrong, as is likely, they illustrate the
kind of extremely
simple framework I think needs to be adopted to get at the heart of things

More later,

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