Jul 30

Imagine, if you will

Imagine you wished to make a hyper-detailed model of the universe. Whatever elementary particle you chose, be it atom, atomic nucleus, quark, what have you, you’d need to know its location. So you’d have a coordinate, or two, or three, or some number, to represent its location in physical space.

Now, when something at the elementary level moved, you’d have to increment one or more of the coordinates, no? I mean, if it went from 0,0,0 to 0,0,1 – that’s as fine-grained of a movement as you could get. In terms of the “system”, it would disappear from the box at 0,0,0 and re-appear in the box at 0,0,1.

And it would take time for this to happen, otherwise you’d end up with the possibility of infinite movement in no time. So you’d build in some sort of hyper-short clock tick, and that would be used to represent to time required to move an elementary particle from 0,0,0 to 0,0,1

Fundamentally, then, there’s no such thing as “less distance” than this distance, and no such thing as “less time” than this amount of time. When the clock tick 1050404040304050050504005050 moves to 1050404040304050050504005051, the question ‘what happens between these moments” would be meaningless. Just as the concept of the “space” between 0,0,0 and 0,0,1 would be meaningless as well.

And what would you call those elementary units of time and distance? Well, you could call them Planck time and Planck length….

Another interesting side effect.. you could run the elementary particles “animate()” function only when it wasn’t moving – that is to say, determine if it was ageing, what kind of interactions it was having with its neighbors, etc. Perhaps you’d make an exception on a “collision()” – when two elementary particles occupied the same space, you would have to run some sort of resolution function.

Interestingly enough, this would precisely replicate our existing universe’s quantum mechanics, including relativity.

So… are we just parts of some sort of giant computer simulation? It seems possible…

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