Re: Is the universe computable?

From: John M <>
Date: Wed, 7 Jan 2004 16:36:28 -0500

George Q wrote (among many others, full post see below):

A."the universe in which I live according to the current intuition
I have of it"
B:> the possibility to simulate the universe at any level of accuracy. <

First I wanted to ask what is intuition, but let us stay with common sense
(however divergent that may be). I don't have your intuition and you
don't have mine.
Now if A is true, I wonder upon WHAT can you simulate?
Your reply points to first person processes. I like better a 'mixed' way:
MY 'interpretation' of something to which I have access only through such
interpretation - but there must be a basis for the inter[retation both as
my way of doing it, but more importantly the 'thing' to interpret. The
(common sense) intuition comes into the 'my way'.

C. (universe:)"the smallest independent piece that does include myself"

First I object to "independent" which would lead to a multiple existence
of parallel natures (all of them singularities for the others) and we cannot
gain information from them - which would connect in some ways. Existence
as we can reasonably speak about it, is interconnected - nothing
If you make concessions to that and accept 'relative' independence, then the
smallest 'unit' including you is you. I don't think you want to go
If you expand further - well, I did not find a limit. This is why I
concocted a
narrative about a 'plenitude' (undefined, not Plato's concept) FROM which
distinct 'universes' occur (in timeless and countless fulgurations, callable
BigBangs) with some INTERNAL history - in 'ours' including space and time.
So I have a 'universe to talk about' - within my intuition <G>. And many
more 'universes', obscured by ignorance (no info) - not excluded. I don't
restrict 'them' to our logic, math, system, not even causality.

I like your metaphor of the dominos. It pertains to a view we may have
in our (exclusively possible) reductionist ways about the world: THIS
ONE is the cause of an event (one side of the domino) while the rest of
the system (all of it) is also influencing - whether we consider it in our
limited model (within our chosen boundaries) or not.

This list goes many times beyond the reductionist ways of thinking.
Math logic is beyond models, it only becomes reductionistic, if applied to
'things/events': when limited models are quantitatively characterized in
comparison with other models and an ( = ) sign (or similar) is applied to
them within the selected boundaries.


John Mikes

----- Original Message -----
From: "Georges Quenot" <>
To: "John M" <>
Cc: <>
Sent: Wednesday, January 07, 2004 3:33 PM
Subject: Re: Is the universe computable?

> John M wrote:
> >
> > Dear Georges,
> > to your series of questions I would like to add one as first:
> > "What do you call universe?"
> I would naively answer: the universe in which I live
> according to the current intuition I have of it. I am
> not sure this makes sense and I also understand that
> others may have different intuitions of it. Maybe a bit
> more formally I would refer to "the smallest independent
> piece that does include myself" (in case there is anything
> else and hoping that we can get a common intuition of that;
> dependence is relative to space-time continuity, particle
> interaction and this kind of things).
> > as long as we do not make this identification, it is futile to
> > speculate about "its" computability/computed sate.
> Maybe this is an opportunity to clarify the concept and
> to see up to which point it is shared among us. I am not
> sure we can easily go much farther than intuition we have
> of it and to isolate the possible differences we have.
> > I see not too much value in assuming infinite memories
> > and infinite time of computation, that may lead to a game
> > of words, calling "computation" the object to be computed.
> Maybe I was just not clear enough. I was just thinking of
> the possibility to simulate the universe at any level of
> accuracy. However small but non zero the accuracy, there
> would exist a simulation of finite but possibly very large
> size and time that meets it. Infinite memory and running
> time would be necessary only to run an infinite sequence of
> simulations with an accuracy going asymtotically close to
> zero.
> > Is 'Multiverse' part of your universe, or vice versa?
> I am not sure I understand the concept(s) of multiverse
> enough to make a reasonable answer to this question.
> For what I understand of it (them), it is (they are) not
> consistent with the view I have of causality (which is
> more related to the fact that the universe is "more
> ordered on one side that on the other" than to dominos
> pushing each other).
> Regards.
> Georges Quénot.
Received on Wed Jan 07 2004 - 16:48:26 PST

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