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# Time, The First And Fundamental Dimension...

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We all know the old analogies of explaining n-space, where you start off with a single dimension in which only a line can exist, and then one dimension up, in which 2D objects like squares and triangles can exist, and then up one dimension to the 3D universe around us, which we can perceive as objects with height, width and depth. And then we normally add in Time as the fourth dimension, so that our calculations work out.

However, even in a one-dimensional universe, time would be required for two lines to interact. You want to experience an n-dimensional world, time is required. Information about anything and everything cannot breach the speed of light, in other words, it takes time. So a one-dimensional universe cannot be perceived by a one-dimensional observer in the absence of time.

So, it seems that if we consider Minkowski's space-time, a "four-dimensional universe", with the regular x,y and z axes, with time combined, then it should make sense to consider time as the very first dimension, and not the fourth. The common view on the subject is that time is added as the fourth dimension, kinda like an afterthought.

But if Time is indeed the first dimension, being fundamental, it seems as if Time has to exist before any of the other dimensions can unfold. And that the other dimensions (or their existence) is impossible in the absence of Time...

A lot of interesting conclusions can be drawn from this. For instance, if Time is indeed fundamental, it would imply that Time alone can merrily exist in the absence of the 2ND, 3RD and 4TH dimensions - but that none of those dimensions are possible in the absence of time...

So, "space" can not exist without time. And perhaps, vica versa?

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Well stated. I wonder how time and the speed of light are related. As you say, it takes time for information to travel from "A" to "B" because the speed of light is finite. If the speed of light were infinite, information could travel instantaneously. How would that alter the dimension of time from our present experience of it?

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Contemplating time is very interesting. I am not sure if the following statements are correct.

It is my understanding time is an abstract. That means it is a thought not something concrete. Whereas dimensions are a physical manifestation. What moves has physical reality, but time does not. Time is a measure of movement through space, and if there is no movement, there is no time. You can not measure what is not. A dimension being a physical manifestation and can be measured.

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t is my understanding time is an abstract.

Time is interesting, I agree. I think time is an actual dimension for several reasons. One is, as matter warps space (gravity), time is warped as well. Therefore, space and time are unifided as space-time, and they can not be separated. If we have space we must have time. So, even when there is no movement in space, time still must exist in that space.

If there were not time when there is no movement, that section of space would be left behind as an adjoining section of space whith movement in it evolves into the future, so to speak.

If we visualize a vertical loaf of sliced bread, each slice represents a moment of space-time. The bottom slice representing a moment in the past and the top slice representing the present moment. Even when there is no movement within each slice, all the slices can be thought of as representing space evolving in time, from bottom to top.

So, even when no movement occurs in each slice, overall, time is advancing from the bottom slice to the top slice. Time advances whether there is movement or not withing space (slices).

I think this is one explanation of the time dimension, anyway (as poorly as I can explain it). I'm no expert in any sense, I just think this is an interesting explanation of what time may be like. There are other opinions actual 'experts' have, some agree with you, so I think the subject is still open to discussion.

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Your explanation does not work for me, because the way I figure it, there can not be space without movement. The dot that is does not become a line, does not represent time, but the line does. The loaf of bread is made of atoms and the atoms are made of atomic particles that are more space than matter, and that space exist because of movement. Stop the movement and there is nothing.

Hey, I just learned time has been debated since ancient times. What fun. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Philosophy_of_space_and_time

I have been trying to get better information and learned we can not complete stop the movement of atomic particles but can slow them down. Because of the law of thermaldynamics preventing the complete freezing of particles, I don't know if doing so would elemenate the existence of such.

Edited by me-wonders

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Here's an interesting video about time:

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Bravo, great video. Now I orginally had this problem with time because of this idea that time has a direction. If time has a direction, where is coming from and where is it going? What is moving and what causes the motion?

The word entopy is interesting. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Entropy What is entopying? Where does it come from?

Are we speaking of the big bang? Wouldn't the movement from the big bang be from a center outward? The means the movement goes in all directions out from a center, and this is not like hitting balls on a pool table. Those balls are not moving, and whatever is eminating from the center of a big bang is moving out. I can not imagine any reason for anything to collide into anything else, like balls on pool table.

Now the story goes that matter follows the big bang, and this becomes dust that becomes stars and planets, or something like that, but this is not entropy, is it? I see the opposite of entropy. I see an evolution of greater and greater complexity and varity.

It is late and I really need to recharge my brain. It is really a lot of fun thinking about all this stuff It seems the more we think on it, the more interesting it gets. Heck, we might even discover God.

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I see the opposite of entropy. I see an evolution of greater and greater complexity and varity.

Entropy is not an absolute law, it is a tenancy, in a way, but ultimately it always prevails. Disorder can become temporarily ordered, whether naturally or by manipulation by us, but that order will eventually become disordered. I think this is called the entropic arrow of time.

Wouldn't the movement from the big bang be from a center outward? The means the movement goes in all directions out from a center...

I don't think there is a center of the universe from which all things are moving away from. For instance, when we look in all directions from Earth, everything around us is moving away from us no matter in which direction we look. There is no preferred direction in which the universe is expanding. In general, everything is moving away from everything else in all directions.

In a 2D analogy, there is no center to the surface of the earth, or any center to the surface of an expanding balloon. It's an odd thought, I agree. Because we are inside the Big Bang, the BB happened everywhere, and the universe's expansion is happening everywhere.

Even if we could roll back time to the instant when the BB happened, it would not happen in any specific location, because we would be there, too, inside it, with no reference point to determine any specific center of its expansion.

Edited by StarMountainKid

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I didn't believe you, so I googled for information and found out science agrees with you. I am not dealing well with this I am thinking there is a center to the balloon. There is a center to everything even if it is flled with air. It has taken me 50 years to accept there is nothing outside of the universe, not even space, because the universe is space. Oh dear, my brain is melting down. Does this happen to anyone else? When thoughts don't make sense to me, my brain starts feeling really wierd. This is Halloween and I am thinking thoughts of space and time that don't make sense give me a creepy feeling, as well shut down my brain.

Here is a video that explains what you said http://www.spitzer.caltech.edu/video-audio/664-ask2009-001-Where-Is-the-Center-of-the-Universe-

The balloon model makes sense sort of , but the bolloon is a flat surface and if we go through the balloon horizontally and vertically there is a center. Is this going through a worm hole? I have to give my brain a rest and get back to something that makes sense. I am working on an exhibit about time, and I think I will narrow this down to time as we exprience it on earth, and avoid the greater challenge of understanding time not dicated by the rotation of our planet around the sun and the moon around our planet.

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Fascinating .. even to the unlearned, such as me! Galaxies sometimes collide and cluster , which is visible proof of local forces overcoming expansion .. so is any physical body. Not everything is moving apart.. if that was true .. we could not exist. If all space is expanding.. then that would include the space between our noses and computer screens. Even the space within atoms? Think about it.... would space stop expanding at the edge of our galaxy? .. the edge of our solar system?... the edge of our atmosphere?... the edge of our yard? ... at the front door? at the surface of our skin? NO. It's just that local forces (mainly gravity?) keep *nearby things in their relative positions ... IN ... expanding space.

How would all of this be affected by shrinking space.. a (big crunch) ? . . . . . ...?

Here's another thought.. If Space and time are one and the same .. then if space is expanding.. so is time. Maybe it's this expansion that we experience as 'time' ?

*

Edited by lightly

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What you said reminded me of the quickening. I googled "time quickening" and got stuff about what the bible says and other prophecies, but nothing scientific. I assume that means there is no science to what is said about the quickening, but thought I would throw it into the discussion. If time is something like gravity, could it move slower or faster? Would space expanding like balloon change the rate of time? Would anything effect time?

I am still not believing there is such a thing as time, only our preception of time, and that can change a lot, depending on if we are waiting for something, or are totally aborbed in what we are doing. But maybe more explanations will convince me time is a force like gravity.

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What you said reminded me of the quickening. I googled "time quickening" and got stuff about what the bible says and other prophecies, but nothing scientific. I assume that means there is no science to what is said about the quickening, but thought I would throw it into the discussion. If time is something like gravity, could it move slower or faster? Would space expanding like balloon change the rate of time? Would anything effect time?

I am still not believing there is such a thing as time, only our preception of time, and that can change a lot, depending on if we are waiting for something, or are totally aborbed in what we are doing. But maybe more explanations will convince me time is a force like gravity.

This former artronaut explains time well.

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I am still not believing there is such a thing as time, only our preception of time, and that can change a lot, depending on if we are waiting for something, or are totally aborbed in what we are doing.

I sort of agree with you about psychological time. If space-time exists as slices of space-time, each slice representing space during the shortest moment of time, then in each slice time wouldn't exist. Each slice would be static with no movement possible, like a frame of movie film.

Each frame or slice of space-time would exist as separate 'now's', the shortest moments of time. (Planck time is considered the shortest unit of time, 10 ^-44 seconds.)

Our psychological consciousness may somehow process all these separate frames into what we experience as time elapsing. All these moments or slices of space-time 'now's' would always exist. Your 'now' at 12:00 noon yesterday still exists with you within it as a slice of space-time. If this is true, all slices of space and time must exist, past, present and future.

This may be what the universe is: time-captured moments of space. All space and all time exist in these space-time slices, from the Big Bang to the end of the endless expansion of the universe. All these slices exist right now, but we can't access them, we can only experience our psychological perception of time. For us, time seems to move from past to future as we experience slice after slice.

As I've said before, I'm definitely no expert in these matters, all this is just what I've picked up through my interests. I don't think there is any completely agreed on definition of time.

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I am jumping into this thread a bit late, but I have a few things to say.

...So, it seems that if we consider Minkowski's space-time, a "four-dimensional universe", with the regular x,y and z axes, with time combined, then it should make sense to consider time as the very first dimension, and not the fourth. The common view on the subject is that time is added as the fourth dimension, kinda like an afterthought...

I agree with everything you say, I just wanted to point out that while time may often be referred to as ``fourth'', time is usually the first component of the Minkowski metric (the value at row 1, column 1 in the matrix).

Well stated. I wonder how time and the speed of light are related.

They are very intimately related, see my comments below...

It is my understanding time is an abstract. That means it is a thought not something concrete. Whereas dimensions are a physical manifestation. What moves has physical reality, but time does not. Time is a measure of movement through space, and if there is no movement, there is no time. You can not measure what is not. A dimension being a physical manifestation and can be measured.

Time is concrete. In Special Relativity (which seems to be correct, based on all our experiments) time is very intimately related to a spatial dimension.

The three spatial dimensions we are familiar with are all interchangeable through the physical process of ``changing your perspective'' (i.e. turning around maps the direction that used to be ``forward'' into the direction ``backward'', turns ``left'' into ``right'', etc.), and through the equivalent mathematical process called a trigonometric rotation.

In a very similar sense, space and time are interchangeable through the physical process of ``moving faster'', and through the equivalent mathematical process called a hyperbolic rotation. Note the equivalent language; if the speed of light were an imaginary number (ignoring, of course, whether or not that even makes sense) there would be no difference between space and time!

Time is ``different'' than space, and because of that (or mathematically, because of the differences between trigonometric and hyperbolic functions) we can never completely map space into time or vice-versa. But we can partially map one into the other. That is the fundamental origin of the ``length contraction'' and ``time dilation'' that occur a relativistic speeds.

I have been trying to get better information and learned we can not complete stop the movement of atomic particles but can slow them down. Because of the law of thermaldynamics preventing the complete freezing of particles, I don't know if doing so would elemenate the existence of such.

There connection between ``thermodynamic time'' and the time in ``space-time'' is very interesting but not completely figured out yet.

There is definitely a difference between the time in ``space-time'', which is just an (arbitrary) coordinate, and the time in ``thermodynamic time'' which is more the expression of an object's age. (And therefore closer to a spacetime interval than just a difference in time.)

What you said reminded me of the quickening. I googled "time quickening" and got stuff about what the bible says and other prophecies, but nothing scientific. I assume that means there is no science to what is said about the quickening, but thought I would throw it into the discussion. If time is something like gravity, could it move slower or faster? Would space expanding like balloon change the rate of time? Would anything effect time?

I think ``yes'', but how would we tell? If everything in the Universe changed by the same amount, would you be able to see anything different?

If you could somehow find a vantage point outside the Universe maybe things would look different.

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I am in a hurry and can't read all the post, but want to say I really like the Amsterdam's talk on time. To me that is the right reasoning, but "theromodyamic time" looks darn interesting! I wish I had more time to study this, but I have to work on my ballot and other paper work things. boo I hate paper work type stuff, and making decisions.

Hey, I am going to visit with a gaming friend, because he can make me sit until I get everything done, and without help, I will keep finding reasons to put things off. Maybe I should throw dice for those ballot decisions?

Edited by me-wonders

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Why trip on flipping physicist when everything he is saying has already been concluded through quantum string/m-theory. This is the same old problem from the begining of science, Lamark theory vs Darwins theory of evolution. Are you a mechanist or are you into vitalism? And imho, this can be influenced by how much love you receive as a child and as an adult how much love you have in your heart.

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I am jumping into this thread a bit late, but I have a few things to say.

I agree with everything you say, I just wanted to point out that while time may often be referred to as ``fourth'', time is usually the first component of the Minkowski metric (the value at row 1, column 1 in the matrix).

They are very intimately related, see my comments below...

Time is concrete. In Special Relativity (which seems to be correct, based on all our experiments) time is very intimately related to a spatial dimension.

The three spatial dimensions we are familiar with are all interchangeable through the physical process of ``changing your perspective'' (i.e. turning around maps the direction that used to be ``forward'' into the direction ``backward'', turns ``left'' into ``right'', etc.), and through the equivalent mathematical process called a trigonometric rotation.

In a very similar sense, space and time are interchangeable through the physical process of ``moving faster'', and through the equivalent mathematical process called a hyperbolic rotation. Note the equivalent language; if the speed of light were an imaginary number (ignoring, of course, whether or not that even makes sense) there would be no difference between space and time!

Time is ``different'' than space, and because of that (or mathematically, because of the differences between trigonometric and hyperbolic functions) we can never completely map space into time or vice-versa. But we can partially map one into the other. That is the fundamental origin of the ``length contraction'' and ``time dilation'' that occur a relativistic speeds.

There connection between ``thermodynamic time'' and the time in ``space-time'' is very interesting but not completely figured out yet.

There is definitely a difference between the time in ``space-time'', which is just an (arbitrary) coordinate, and the time in ``thermodynamic time'' which is more the expression of an object's age. (And therefore closer to a spacetime interval than just a difference in time.)

I think ``yes'', but how would we tell? If everything in the Universe changed by the same amount, would you be able to see anything different?

If you could somehow find a vantage point outside the Universe maybe things would look different.

Here is a link that makes the idea of "space time" very real meaning. I can get my head around this concept, without experiencing it, and I am having trouble understanding how to experience it.

http://www.sciencenews.org/view/generic/id/65130/title/Aboriginal_time_runs_east_to_west

As we can see from the link, left may become right when we turn a map, but north does not become south. Is our sense of time a true understanding of reality or dependent on our culture? I think it is dependent on our culture.

I am so reminded of the debate set off by Plato's forms, and the idea that perfect form exist but is not manifest reality. Math creates a reality that we do not experience, because it is not manifest reality. It is abstract. This brings us to question, what can we know without experience? For example we can see old people and think we know something about aging, but we do not really know the experience until we have it. We may think **** taste bad, but we don't know how bad until we eat it. Other cultures have very different experiences of time, so how can we be sure our experience of time is the true experience of time, and exactly we are experiencing?

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http://en.wikipedia.......w_of_time This is an explanation of time having one, linear direction, and there might be a problem with it, because planets are round, and if we travel round them, although our direction does not change, it does change relative to our starting point.

http://www.perkel.co.../relativity.htm This explains Einstien's relativity, and if we travel at the speed of light 200 light years away, and return the same day, everyone on earth will be 200 years older. Hey, let me be clear about this, I don't understand this stuff at all. But the problem with time having only one direction is coming back to earth, and finding the apes rule the planet. That is time on earth moved forward, and you come back to the future., not to the time the day you left.

Edited by me-wonders

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this is so confusing ! o well time ll explain

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http://www.perkel.co.../relativity.htm This explains Einstien's relativity, and if we travel at the speed of light 200 light years away, and return the same day, everyone on earth will be 200 years older. Hey, let me be clear about this, I don't understand this stuff at all. But the problem with time having only one direction is coming back to earth, and finding the apes rule the planet. That is time on earth moved forward, and you come back to the future., not to the time the day you left.

Just remember that the word ``time'' unfortunately is used to refer to two different (albeit related) things.

For space-time, ``time'' is used to refer to the dimension.

For objects, ``time'' is used to refer to the the time elapsed (in other words, the increase in age of that object, or thermodynamic time).

The two are related but not exactly the same. In space-time, the ``increase in age'' of an object is called that object's space-time interval.

If you are travelling at the speed of light, you can move forward in time (in the dimension sense) just as you move forward in space (again, in the dimension sense) - but your space-time interval doesn't change: you are not aging.

The ``amount'' of time and the ``amount'' of space that you travel through is in some sense arbitrary; it depends on how you define your coordinate system. (I.e. you could relabel your house as the ``North pole'' and label any other point on the globe as the ``South pole'' and build up a NSEW direction system. It might not make sense to anyone but you, but it would work.)

The space-time interval between any two points in the (space-time) coordinate system is ``real'', it does not depend on how you define your coordinate system.

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There is another 'dimension' that must be considered -- the senses.

If every living being lost the sense of sight and touch there would be NO physical dimensions.

An object becomes dimensional through its relation with another object.

You touch the earth (by sitting or standing for instance), you feel its hardness because you exert a force on the earth and the earth exerts a force back on you.

If you don't feel the earth AND if NOTHING else feels it's force either then for all intents and purposes the force doesn't exist. If in addition nothing sees the earth (or sees you) then for all intents and purposes neither the earth or you exist -- nothing exists.

Edited by nothingman

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There is another 'dimension' that must be considered -- the senses.

If every living being lost the sense of sight and touch there would be NO physical dimensions.

An object becomes dimensional through its relation with another object.

You touch the earth (by sitting or standing for instance), you feel its hardness because you exert a force on the earth and the earth exerts a force back on you.

If you don't feel the earth AND if NOTHING else feels it's force either then for all intents and purposes the force doesn't exist. If in addition nothing sees the earth (or sees you) then for all intents and purposes neither the earth or you exist -- nothing exists.

Our senses are merely a by product to use at our own dispense to desipher how to react to many things. It is a by-product of nature, without evolution and "TIME" or "Chemical change and any change" there would be no sense. I think that is a false statement that you are telling us, however, forum starter soldier 4 death actually is onto something huge, saying time is the first dimension, saying if there is something, it has been changed before it was.

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Just remember that the word ``time'' unfortunately is used to refer to two different (albeit related) things.

For space-time, ``time'' is used to refer to the dimension.

For objects, ``time'' is used to refer to the the time elapsed (in other words, the increase in age of that object, or thermodynamic time).

The two are related but not exactly the same. In space-time, the ``increase in age'' of an object is called that object's space-time interval.

If you are travelling at the speed of light, you can move forward in time (in the dimension sense) just as you move forward in space (again, in the dimension sense) - but your space-time interval doesn't change: you are not aging.

The ``amount'' of time and the ``amount'' of space that you travel through is in some sense arbitrary; it depends on how you define your coordinate system. (I.e. you could relabel your house as the ``North pole'' and label any other point on the globe as the ``South pole'' and build up a NSEW direction system. It might not make sense to anyone but you, but it would work.)

The space-time interval between any two points in the (space-time) coordinate system is ``real'', it does not depend on how you define your coordinate system.

Imagine the universe as a brain, sending signals in circles and also in a direction. When our brain circles "I read your post 5 times" time ticks faster. But once we our on a tradectory time ticks slower, I learn something knew, time goes into tiiiiick tiiiiick tiiiick, I watch a commercial I have seen countless time, time goes into tck tck tck. Just like our universe it can be understood in the same fashion. <<<<<<Literally in space travel you miss more information(energy) that has been presented causing your clock to slow down>>>>>>Being in orbit may very well meen that time is going faster<<<<<< Edited by buddy rob4

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There is another 'dimension' that must be considered -- the senses.

If every living being lost the sense of sight and touch there would be NO physical dimensions.

An object becomes dimensional through its relation with another object.

You touch the earth (by sitting or standing for instance), you feel its hardness because you exert a force on the earth and the earth exerts a force back on you.

If you don't feel the earth AND if NOTHING else feels it's force either then for all intents and purposes the force doesn't exist. If in addition nothing sees the earth (or sees you) then for all intents and purposes neither the earth or you exist -- nothing exists.

Only from a subjective point of view, There is still an objective realtiy. Sound waves do not disapear because I am Deaf. They still exist, said deaf person just can not perceive them.

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Our senses are merely a by product to use at our own dispense to desipher how to react to many things. It is a by-product of nature, without evolution and "TIME" or "Chemical change and any change" there would be no sense. I think that is a false statement that you are telling us, however, forum starter soldier 4 death actually is onto something huge, saying time is the first dimension, saying if there is something, it has been changed before it was.

If we could process the light that enters our eye at the speed of light then we would be able to move and react like Neo on the Matrix. I think on the movie the eye is bypassed and a direct link from a computer is plugged directly into the brain. For all I know technology could be advancing to make this a reality.

But the reality I am sure of shows that normal chemical processes such as adrenalin increases the heart rate and does help us process information faster so we are then able to percieve time slower in order that we might react quicker. This instinct I think was developed because it is unnecessary to always walk around on edge or in a constant state of heightened awareness. It would drain the bodies energy reserves and we would age quickly so only kicks in ideally during absolute times of survival.

Other methods of slowing time perception include mind altering drugs, meditation and exercise.

All this means is that we are limited by the natural speed of chemical and biological change within our bodies. As for the speed of light outside of our bodies it remains constant.

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