Saturday, December 31, 2011

What is time

It's that time of year again when the current year disappears [sooner if you live in Ufa, Russia. Hello Gyuzel & Alina. By the way, if you are reading this I have lost your phone numbers. :-( ] and a new one miraculously appears. If anyone has been watching the particle physicist Professor Brian Cox's television programme on the BBC-not the Dundee actor Brian Cox who slaughtered the obnoxious little Englander historian David Starkey on Question Time-called 'Wonders of the Universe' his first programme talks about time.
So what is time? If this was QI then I would be holding up my 'Nobody Knows' placard. The time we look at on our clocks and watches is an expression of time and not time itself. So if time is not what we think of it what is it? I've spent a long time trying to suss this out and have been doing somersaults in my head trying to understand this. I know, I should get a life. The only conclusion that I have managed to come to is that time IS the universe and all the quantum particles are just an expression of this. I remember reading a book, years ago, called:  The Planiverse by Alexander Dewdney in which he postulated the idea of a two-dimensional universe. It blew my mind and got me thinking-I still hadn't delved into the String Theory then. If you do prepare for a mind explosion-if it is possible to have a two-dimensional universe it must also have time because time, as we know it, is there to stop everything happening at once, therefore the Space Time Continuum, in our universe cannot exist without time. Multidimensional space therefore, according to String Theory, can only exist if there is time. The only constant in the Universe is time therefore the Universe must be time. So, what is it?
When you get down into the quantum world you see that particles are not really particles at all but expressions of wave forms. Imagine an ocean with various waves travelling over the ocean. Particles are just the peaks and troughs of those waves but the waves are just an expression of energy moving over the ocean, which is why a quantum particle can be in one place but all over the ocean at the same time. 
So, what has this got to do with the price of eggs?  Well, the true answer is that I don't know. Answers on a postcard please. Hope that I haven't muddled up your brain too much. Have a happy new year.

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