Monday, May 14, 2007

The single speed universe

For the photon, there is neither time nor distance. Every destination takes no time at all to reach, which is, of course, also true of non-local "transmission" of non-meaning. I've retained that much from Gribbin and my recent readings of popular works on cosmology and quantum physics.

So does that mean that there's only one "space-time speed" for everything, namely to be as motionless as a photon?

After all, the more gravity one feels, and the more history of acceleration one has, the more one moves through time rather than space alone. in other words, as one gets closer to the speed of light the energy input of an accelerating force is diverted into time travel rather than space travel.

So, if one thinks of speed as movement through space and time, is it true to say that everything in the universe has the same "speed"?

I did a quick google on the topic, and found this article. So maybe that is the way physicists think about spacetime velocity. BTW, the article claims that one interpretation of general relativity is consistent with both the transactional interpretation of QM and Tralfamadorian philosophy.

Truly, all of modern physics is an attempt to understand the photon ...

Update 5/15: Turns out I was remembering chapter one (relativity theory) of Greene's overview of cosmology and theoretical physics! I'd skimmed the chapter a few weeks ago and I was basically recalling what he'd written, though the Tralfamadorian bit is mine. Nice to know I wasn't just spouting off! Even Greene mentions how alien and astounding special and general relativity theory feel when he reviews the concepts -- and that's his profession. These are concepts so beyond our everyday existence that they easily slip out of my feeble mind ...

I'm now taking a leisurely slow read through the book and will doubtless have further related comments ..

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