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Old 09-29-2010, 08:43 PM
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Default Time may end within Earth's lifetime, says physicists.

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There is a 50 per cent chance that time will end within the next 3.7 billion years, according to a new model of the universe. A team of physicists led by Raphael Bousso at the University of California, Berkeley rebel against this idea. They say an infinitely expanding universe is contrary to the laws of physics do not work in an infinite cosmos. For these laws to make any sense, the universe must come to an end.

Their argument is simple yet surprisingly powerful: If the universe lasts forever, then any event that can happen, will happen, no matter how unlikely. In fact, this event will happen an infinite number of times, which leads to the key obstacle: When there are an infinite number of instances of every possible observation, it becomes impossible to determine the probabilities of any of these events occurring. And when that happens, the laws of physics simply don't apply. They just break down. "This is known as the "measure problem" of eternal inflation," say Bousso and buddies. In short, the laws of physics abhor an eternal universe.

The only way out of this logic trap is to introduce some kind of catastrophe x factor that brings an end to the universe. Then all the probabilities make sense again and the laws of physics regain their power. "Time is unlikely to end in our lifetime, but there is a 50% chance that time will end within the next 3.7 billion years," Bousso says.

The imminent end of time is unnerving but the argument depends crucially on an important assumption about the laws of physics: that we ought to be able to understand why they work, not just observe that they do work. And that's a philosophical point of view rather than a physical argument. Buosso raises some interesting questions, says the MIT Technology Review, "but nothing to lose any sleep over. At least, not for another 3.7 billion years."
Is Time Coming To an End Within Earth's Lifespan?

To put it simple, if space and time are infintely expanding, then every conceivable event can happen no matter how unlikely. If true, then it is impossible to be certain that the universe is infinite.

Do you think that the Universe will end in under 4 billion years? Do you think humanity will be around to experience this terrible fate?

If anyone can spot the flaw(s) in what I underlined then you get a cookie.

Last edited by Dreaming Of Pandora; 09-29-2010 at 08:54 PM.
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Old 09-30-2010, 01:09 AM
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Then wouldn't that mean a timeline where time is also infite will occur? (unless time itself is exempt from having an infinite number of possibilities itself) Also meaning that an infinite number of universes will have infinite time? Also meaning that this theory secondarily also would prove the multiverse theory correct (for there to be universes to experience this timeline and thus survive).

But wait, doesn't that also mean that a universe will both simultaneously end and continue, and every possibility in between? Is this some sort of relativistic Schrodinger's cat?

There very well could be a 50% of time ending in 3.7 billion years, but never a 100% chance, nor 0% chance. If it's true then at least a few universes will get the shaft of the deal. It would also mean that universes will go on forever, as well, because an infinite number more big bangs will occur.

The underlying problem with the theory is that some of these events that would occur in infinity would undermine the original theory in the first place. So either: 1) Time cannot end, or 2) Some events can never happen, regardless of there being an infinitely high chance of them occuring.

I think I just blew my own mind. My mind's fizzling...
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Last edited by Tsyal Makto; 09-30-2010 at 04:46 AM.
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Old 09-30-2010, 03:46 AM
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Well, drat. I'd better hurry up and read those library books.
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Old 09-30-2010, 04:26 AM
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I went and read the actual paper. It really seems more philosophy than science. I'm not buying it, but then again I don't care much about what happens in 3 billion years.

It is an interesting conjecture.
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Old 09-30-2010, 07:33 AM
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Yeah it's more word play than any thing else which is why I'll quote someone as it sums up my thoughts pretty well.

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This is the silliest and most logically flawed premise I've seen n a long time. The conclusion that the universe cannot be eternal depends on the initial premise that the universe is eternal. In other words: if the universe is eternal, then it cannot be eternal. This is circular reasoning. If the initial premise instead is that the universe is NOT eternal (which is what current understanding of the laws of physics leads us to believe), then the conclusion is moot. Also, the statement that"If the universe lasts forever, then any event that can happen will happen, no matter how unlikely." is also flawed. If the universe ends in a cold death, with no entropy, then events can no longer "happen" in the sense of the laws of physics (i.e. with no entropy, there is no arrow of time). Therefore, there is a limited time window in the life of the universe where events can "happen", likely or unlikely.
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Old 09-30-2010, 03:19 PM
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Interesting...

gives me one thought though... 'why do we bother?'...
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Old 10-01-2010, 02:04 PM
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interesting. we'll be dead by then though, (our sun is going to expand and eat our planet within a few 10 or 100 million years i think) i wonder if other races are discussing the same thing right now
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Old 10-01-2010, 02:44 PM
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...and then there's this!

Doomsday argument - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
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Old 10-04-2010, 01:34 AM
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I just saw the headline on this topic and didn't bother to read the rest.
Excuse me... ummm... 'time' does not end... and not only that..in 3.7 billion years... who the hell cares!!!!

sorry..dealt with another idiot today..still kind of worked up about it.
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Old 10-04-2010, 12:00 PM
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I hope this 'idiot' isn't me. Actually time can come to a halt. The arrow of time or 'entropy' depends on the motion of atoms. At 0 Kelvin there is no particle motion therefore no entropy. As the universe expands enough so that individual atoms are light years apart, time slows more and more until it stops completely, relative to the outside observer.
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Old 10-04-2010, 04:22 PM
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"Have you been reading 'Quantum Physics for Dummies.' "? (sorry that's a quote from a show)
It's the 37 billion years that is the other kicker. How many of us are going to be here? ZERO!
It's this kind of news that panics the uneducated and just boggles the minds of those of us who are trying to get through this life alive.

(and no, you weren't the idiot, idiots at work)
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Old 10-04-2010, 06:35 PM
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I hope noone takes this too seriously, I personally think the idea is flawed (as post #5 would suggest) and that its only speculation, not fact.

Hope that clears it up.
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Old 10-05-2010, 04:44 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Patrice Maire View Post
It's the 37 billion years that is the other kicker. How many of us are going to be here? ZERO!
Take your vitamins and get plenty of fresh air and you too can outlive the heat death of the universe.
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Old 10-09-2010, 03:46 PM
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Time does not exist at all, it is simply something which humans invented. All that exists is a series of Infinitesimally small changes which occur all around us in succession, humans define this as the passage of time, but it really is not.
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Old 10-10-2010, 01:13 AM
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Time exists, it's just variable like anything else - primarily in the presence of gravity. Human measurement of it is flawed though.
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