View Full Version : what is time?

2010-May-15, 06:08 PM
This question, to me, is the most confounding question of them all. What is time and why does it seem to move forward?
After Einstein, the world believed that time and space were both intertwined and malleable. This can be shown by the slight time differentials between Earth and outer-space (mass bends space and time). But is that really all time is? to me that seems only a vague explanation of the characteristics of time.
So we know that there is scientific evidence to back up the existence of something called "time", but what are other thoughts on what time may be? The answer could lie in thought itself. Some people believe that the fact that time moves forward is only because that is how our minds are able to perceive time. This means that time may not actually move forward, but our minds make it so.
what are your thoughts? thank you

2010-May-16, 03:01 AM
Hmmm... Its a good one!

Ok, rather than an answer, you seem to be interested in thoughts and ideas. So here's one;
Einstein tells us that the closer we get to the speed of light, the more time slows down. So Einstein tells us that at very high speed, we will perceive time as going slower.

So here is my thought;
Maybe we could make time go faster. Einstein says at speed time can go slower, so i'm saying maybe we can make it go faster. What exactly is it that makes light travel at 3 x 10^8 m/s ? So maybe we could speed up time if we could make light go faster. The vacuum of space IS NOT empty, there is stuff there like particles and vacuum energy. So if we had empty space with nothing in it, maybe light would go faster and time would travel faster for us.

Got you thinking now!

2010-May-16, 03:48 AM
What is time and why does it seem to move forward?

Time is what separates questions about time.

Maybe recent topic The nature or the essence of time (http://www.bautforum.com/showthread.php/103719-The-nature-or-the-essence-of-time) has what you need. Probably not, but it's all I have time for right now.

2010-May-16, 07:06 AM
That is very interesting what you said about what makes light travel at the speed that it does. In fact, light could theoretically travel at an infinite speed if not for one major flaw. That is, the speed of light is a constant because that is the speed at which an objects mass and density would become infinite. This is a problem for anything trying to travel faster than the speed of light (unless you have something similar to a warp drive) And as you said, space is not a void. It is full of particles and energy; however, I believe that IF the universe were a void, light would not be able to travel at all (In my mind, it is the very fact that space is not empty that makes is possible for light to travel at the speed that it does)
As well, the interesting thing about time traveling at close to the speed of light is that you wouldn't notice a change in time at all. No matter how slow time gets, our minds will always believe we are moving at a normal rate, except for the fact that it would take much shorter for certain things to happen

2010-May-16, 10:20 AM
Time is a co-ordinate like space. It is a fundamental requirement for existence as we know it. It allows 3D spatial objects to exist. A photon doesn't require time to exist, yet it would never experience existence as we know it without time. We experience time in one direction because if it was multi dimensional like space paradoxes would disrupt existence as we experience it. Time is the universe's way of reminding itself its here.

2010-May-16, 12:46 PM
The reason we experience time as duration is because of two facts:

1. The Fluctuation Theorem.
2. Extraordinarily low gravitational entropy at the beginning of the universe.

2010-May-16, 02:59 PM
The speed of light in a vacuum is determined by the electrical conductivity and resistance of empty space, because visible light is part of the spectrum of electromagnetic radiation. So I'm not sure about speeding up the speed of light. But it is strange that one's motion relative to another's motion can lengthen or shorten the duration of time for those objects in motion relative to each other. It's explainable, but still bizarre.

Theoretically, the particle of time is the Chronon in quantum theory. That's another strange concept. Particles of matter can be manipulated, why not manipulate the particles of time somehow? Another thing to think about.

2010-May-16, 06:14 PM
Time is a finite collection of Planck time intervals.