1. Standard memberark13
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    07 Sep '08 03:48
    This could be more of a philosophical question than a physical one. Why can nothing go faster than the speed of light? Why do we need a speed limit? It seems like a strange and arbitrary concept. Looking at the history of discoveries in physics, everything seems to have it's place and to make sense in describing the world. And I don't say this to suggest a divine creator - far from it - but rather to say the world is generally constructed in a sensible way. Certainly discoveries have frequently surprised us, but they turned out to be necessary and fit in nicely. Is it necessary to have a speed limit?

    Thoughts, with regards to physics or philosophy, are welcome.
  2. Subscriberjoe shmo
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    07 Sep '08 06:041 edit
    Originally posted by ark13
    This could be more of a philosophical question than a physical one. Why can nothing go faster than the speed of light? Why do we need a speed limit? It seems like a strange and arbitrary concept. Looking at the history of discoveries in physics, everything seems to have it's place and to make sense in describing the world. And I don't say this to suggest ...[text shortened]... essary to have a speed limit?

    Thoughts, with regards to physics or philosophy, are welcome.
    I have no learned knowledge of this, but I have watched a program on the science channel that theoretical physists have statede that the speed of light may not actually be the physical barrier that it was once thought to be....i belive there are certain particle that are tied together in such a way that no matter the distance between them, they act instantaniosly to each other, thus breaking the the speed of light..hinting at a deeper, inter-connectedness, than can be desribed......Remeber, everything that is percived for now , is percieved by us,......a bias in opinion is inescpeable for the time...

    At one point in time our Earth was considered to be flat...so.........

    some of my thoughts
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    07 Sep '08 06:23
    Originally posted by ark13
    This could be more of a philosophical question than a physical one. Why can nothing go faster than the speed of light? Why do we need a speed limit? It seems like a strange and arbitrary concept. Looking at the history of discoveries in physics, everything seems to have it's place and to make sense in describing the world. And I don't say this to suggest ...[text shortened]... essary to have a speed limit?

    Thoughts, with regards to physics or philosophy, are welcome.
    Only the speed of light is forbidden for particles with mass. Natuer permits particles over the speed of light, but they are (still) non detectable.

    *If* you try to fly *at* the speed of light, the equations that governs mass vs speed will have a zero denominator, and it is forbidden to divide by zero.

    Is this logical? It is good or bad?

    If there were no barrier at the speed of light, if every information travelled at an infinity speed, what would we know about the universe?
    One thing is that everything that happened in the universe, we would no instantanously. Therefore, we wouldn't kno anything of the evolution of the universe. We wouldn't know about BigBang, or the age of the universe, or cosmology.

    With the speed barrier, we know that the farther we se out in the universe the younger we see the universe. If wee look the most far out possible, then we se the BigBang itself (the background readiation).

    What about supra light information? Sorry, doesn't exist. The barrier is still there.
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    07 Sep '08 16:503 edits
    Originally posted by ark13
    This could be more of a philosophical question than a physical one. Why can nothing go faster than the speed of light? Why do we need a speed limit? It seems like a strange and arbitrary concept. Looking at the history of discoveries in physics, everything seems to have it's place and to make sense in describing the world. And I don't say this to suggest ...[text shortened]... essary to have a speed limit?

    Thoughts, with regards to physics or philosophy, are welcome.
    …Why do we need a speed limit? It seems like a strange and arbitrary concept.
    ,…


    But it isn’t an “arbitrary” concept! It is a concept that was logically deduced by Einstein. Contrary to popular belief, the way Einstein deduced it had nothing to do with moving spaceships in space, it was deduced from an apparent logical contradiction in the theory of electromagnetism that existed at the time. According to electromagnetism at the time, electric fields and magnetic fields where “absolute” which means they didn’t depend on the frame of reference. I wont go into the full argument here but, to cut a long argument short, it could be logically shown by logical argument that the electric fields and magnetic fields must behave (according to the theory of electromagnetism itself) as if they DID depend on the frame of reference! -and that was the logical paradox.

    Obviously logical contradictions cannot exist in physical reality and Einstein deduced that the only way that paradox could be solved is by concluding that electric fields and magnetic fields where NOT “absolute” but “relative”. From there he deduced that that would have to mean space and time must also be relative and from there he also deduced that that would have to mean there exists an absolute speed -the speed of light.

    So, the “reason” for the speed limit is because, without it, we would have to assume the absurdity that subtle logical contradictions exist in physical reality.
  5. Subscriberjoe shmo
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    07 Sep '08 17:49
    Originally posted by Andrew Hamilton
    [b]…Why do we need a speed limit? It seems like a strange and arbitrary concept.
    ,…


    But it isn’t an “arbitrary” concept! It is a concept that was logically deduced by Einstein. Contrary to popular belief, the way Einstein deduced it had nothing to do with moving spaceships in space, it was deduced from an apparent logical contradiction in th ...[text shortened]... would have to assume the absurdity that subtle logical contradictions exist in physical reality.[/b]
    thats not really as absured as some think it is, there is no physcical reality......everthying is percieved by mind, which includes the body and the so called " physical world around us.... a series of connections that create relativity, from one to another.... it is no wonder when a relative point of measure disappears, we haven't a physical leg to stand on...No matter how scientifically true we believe our assumptions to be , they are only true realative to our collective perceptions...
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    07 Sep '08 18:116 edits
    Originally posted by joe shmo
    thats not really as absured as some think it is, there is no physcical reality......everthying is percieved by mind, which includes the body and the so called " physical world around us.... a series of connections that create relativity, from one to another.... it is no wonder when a relative point of measure disappears, we haven't a physical leg to stand o ...[text shortened]... believe our assumptions to be , they are only true realative to our collective perceptions...
    …there is no physical reality,…

    Are you saying that physical reality may be an illusion? If so, although I do not totally discount that possibility, IF the whole world IS an illusion, then logically there could not be either a “speed limit” nor “no speed limit” IN “physical reality” because that “physical reality” would not exist!

    If everything depended on “our collective perceptions” as you suggested, then to conclude that there is a “limit to speed” would be no more or less arbitrary than to conclude that there is “no limit to speed” for either conclusions would be totally arbitrary because either conclusion would depend totally on our perceptions.
  7. Subscriberjoe shmo
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    07 Sep '08 18:451 edit
    Originally posted by Andrew Hamilton
    [b]…there is no physical reality,…

    Are you saying that physical reality may be an illusion? If so, although I do not totally discount that possibility, IF the whole world IS an illusion, then logically there could not be either a “speed limit” nor “no speed limit” IN “physical reality” because that “physical reality” would not exist!

    If ev ...[text shortened]... ns would be totally arbitrary because either conclusion would depend totally on our perceptions.[/b]
    what do we use to describe our physical world?...Is it our measuring sticks, are eyes, our arms, our cells, our neurons, our atoms? in a way, because of perception it is, and these limits and boundries have merit. But, though the tools may be an integral part, HOW do we give physical characteristics to ideas? Such as self perception, numbers, formulae..basically, the universe, and entire existence comes down to "I".... the self referential paradoxical loop😕
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    07 Sep '08 19:361 edit
    Originally posted by joe shmo
    what do we use to describe our physical world?...Is it our measuring sticks, are eyes, our arms, our cells, our neurons, our atoms? in a way, because of perception it is, and these limits and boundries have merit. But, though the tools may be an integral part, HOW do we give physical characteristics to ideas? Such as self perception, numbers, formulae..b ...[text shortened]... e universe, and entire existence comes down to "I".... the self referential paradoxical loop😕
    How does any of this relate to what we were talking about?

    You suggested that the speed limit was “arbitrary” and then later you said “there is no physical reality” and also suggested that everything depends on our perceptions and then I pointed out that, IF that was true, that would make the conclusion there is a “limit to speed” no more or less arbitrary than the conclusion that there is “no limit to speed” for either conclusions would be totally arbitrary because either conclusion would depend totally on our perceptions. Do you agree with this or not?
  9. Subscriberjoe shmo
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    07 Sep '08 20:071 edit
    Originally posted by Andrew Hamilton
    How does any of this relate to what we were talking about?

    You suggested that the speed limit was “arbitrary” and then later you said “there is no physical reality” and also suggested that everything depends on our perceptions and then I pointed out that, IF that was true, that would make the conclusion there is a “limit to speed” no more or less ...[text shortened]... ecause either conclusion would depend totally on our perceptions. Do you agree with this or not?
    I belive I agree with your statment...

    I was trying to point out that though our equations to describe the universe don't allow division by zero, the universe could care less...

    It seems to me that undefinition is arbitrary as well, i mean we are talking about a verticle vs horizontal in math...both are logical and real, as percieved by us..... I mean zero doesnt exist and yet it is accepted. It exists in subsets. I can have apples , or I cannot have apples. But the universe is somthing, not nothing....

    If our brains can be thought of data interpreters, then what is its program? this is really all we are trying to work out, not physics, not mathematics, or any other science, we are trying to understand our minds in a round about way, the only way we know how...

    And what does all of this have to do with the thread, Well the original poster also stated that this thread might be philisopical in nature, so i am trying to be philisophical...🙂
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    07 Sep '08 20:091 edit
    As long as there is a speed limit then time exists. It would seem that in this type of existence that there are constraints to speed that are absolute, given the existence of time. Time exists because there is no evidence that it doesn't or that it can be surmounted (i.e. 'time travel'😉 and plenty of evidence that time does exist. Therefore, logically there must be a speed limit.
  11. Subscriberjoe shmo
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    07 Sep '08 20:131 edit
    Originally posted by Badwater
    As long as there is a speed limit then time exists. It would seem that in this type of existence that there are constraints to speed that are absolute, given the existence of time. Time exists because there is no evidence that it doesn't or that it can be surmounted (i.e. 'time travel'😉 and plenty of evidence that time does exist. Therefore, logically there must be a speed limit.
    that seems to wrap aroud on itself...You basically said Time exists because a speed limit exists and vice versa....

    And time is our creation, It exists in our minds, it is not a physical phenomenon
  12. Standard memberark13
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    08 Sep '08 00:53
    Originally posted by Andrew Hamilton
    [bObviously logical contradictions cannot exist in physical reality and Einstein deduced that the only way that paradox could be solved is by concluding that electric fields and magnetic fields where NOT “absolute” but “relative”. From there he deduced that that would have to mean space and time must also be relative and from there he also deduced that that would have to mean there exists an absolute speed -the speed of light. [/b]
    I don't see the connection in your last argument: because space and time are relative, there must exist an absolute speed. I don't see how that follows.
  13. Subscribersonhouse
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    08 Sep '08 01:03
    Originally posted by FabianFnas
    Only the speed of light is forbidden for particles with mass. Natuer permits particles over the speed of light, but they are (still) non detectable.

    *If* you try to fly *at* the speed of light, the equations that governs mass vs speed will have a zero denominator, and it is forbidden to divide by zero.

    Is this logical? It is good or bad?

    If there ...[text shortened]... on).

    What about supra light information? Sorry, doesn't exist. The barrier is still there.
    I don't think nature permits anything over C, that is just a mathematical trick, by just reversing the mass from a plus to a minus and then reworking the theory, using negative mass. That does not mean nature 'allows' it.
    His question of 'why do we need it, (light speed limit)', its more like we have to put up with it. It would be nice if the speed of light was 300 billion Km per second and THAT was the top speed but no, its 300,000 Km per second whether we like it or no. My pet theory of how are universe got here, the other side of a black hole, a white hole, which is a good description of the big bang, leads to the idea there are many universes, some of which may indeed have a speed limit of 300 billion Km/sec.
    I think it would be a fascinating subject to speculate what the effects would be in a universe where C is a million times what it is here.
    Since C in that universe is not infinite, there is no reason why a universe could not be set up that way, the rules would still say you can't go over the speed of light, it would still take an infinite amount of energy to reach that speed but it would just be a million times faster than light in our universe, or gravitational radiation or whatever. What would such a universe be like?
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    08 Sep '08 08:36
    Originally posted by sonhouse
    I don't think nature permits anything over C, that is just a mathematical trick, by just reversing the mass from a plus to a minus and then reworking the theory, using negative mass. That does not mean nature 'allows' it.
    Well, it is a mathematical trick, but nature has chosen to obay these kind of tricks before.

    The trick is that in supralight velocities you get a mass with an imaginary component. And how a mass of (2+2i) kg looks like, I don't know.
    The formula doesn't permits then v=c, but permits any other v. When v < c then we have no problems.

    Do I believe in this? I don't know. Is the theory of tachyons disproven? I don't think so. To accellerate beyond v=c is impossible if you don't find a way to avoid the v=c part.
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    08 Sep '08 08:49
    Originally posted by ark13
    I don't see the connection in your last argument: because space and time are relative, there must exist an absolute speed. I don't see how that follows.
    I was told at university why it follows once but I don’t remember why it follows;
    -anyway, Einstein deduced it -not me.

    Before Einstein, it was assumed that space and time was absolute and speed was relative. Einstein showed that although everything appeared to behave as if this is approximately true for low speeds, it wasn’t actually true because it could be shown to be definitely false for speeds approaching c. What he basically deduced is that everyone had got the concept of space and time and speed all back-to-front;
    It wasn’t the case that space and time was absolute and speed was relative
    -it was the case that space and time was relative and speed was absolute!
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