Newton's Cradle

Jean-Jacques Mass

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Oct 14, 2004
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Newton's Cradle

I have recently been looking at current models that demonstrate common physical attributes of the universe, in an attempt to construct a primer for understanding the behavior of temporal attributes. The physics model called "Newton's Cradle," which is used to demonstrate the conservation of motion and energy, can be used to think about temporal events as well. This is a theory I've been drawing out and am still working on, your feedback is appreciated!



Consider Newton's Cradle, above. The five balls can be considered to be five distinct events, occurring along a timeline in relation to each other. In order of left to right,

1) I enter a room.
2) An acquaintance of mine sees me.
3) She remembers a question she had for me.
4) She walks over to me.
5) We begin a conversation.

From the order given above, we can think of this as a complete causal chain, with event #1 (me entering the room) eventually leads to event #5 (the woman talking with me). Various models of time label it's "direction" as either omnidirectional or monodirectional, meaning that time can either go forwards and backwards or it goes only forwards. However, this example lends strength to the argument that a causal chain has an inverted nature, as I will show.

The initial direction of this causal chain is familiar to all of us, and is easily distinguishable. If I hadn't entered the room, I wouldn't have ended up talking with the woman. Therefore, my entering the room lead to a chain of events that ended (not necessarily ultimately, but in the causal segment we are looking at) with me talking with her. In this way, we can think of a temporal Newton's Cradle, with the "ultimate" (here I use this to mean an event at an extreme end of a temporal segment) cause striking a series of intermediary steps to finally end in an "ultimate" result.



However, as the symmetrical condition of Newton's Cradle above shows, there is an inherent similarity between ultimate causes and ultimate results. While the traditional view holds that #1 caused #5 (and all steps in between), it can also be said that event #5 caused event #1. This is because of the fact that if I had not entered the room, those events wouldn't have happened that way (although they might have eventually happened in a different order at a later time). Thus, if you "read" this causal chain backwards, you would see the conclusion, and be able to say that the specific result of any action causes its antecedent because it necessitates it.

This is to say that, since every result needs a cause, that necessity links the two together in a way that reciprocates their causal relationship. A cup shatters because it fell (result - cause); a cup falls so that it will shatter (cause - result). This is the temporal equivalent of a ball on Newton's Cradle falling back, thus causing the exact same series of events as were caused by the opposite ball. We don't normally think of things happening to get a result - the cup falling was an accident, after all - however, it seems to be so. A result instigates its own cause because it would not have happened without that cause.

EDIT: Clarity.
 

iooqxpooi

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Newton's Cradle

Just wondering...how is this a theory? This is more of a statement. Pardon my post if it offends you or such.
 

Fringan

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Aug 27, 2004
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Newton's Cradle

Originally posted by Jean-Jacques Mass?@Oct 18 2004, 12:06 AM
I have recently been looking at current models that demonstrate common physical attributes of the universe[...]

Consider Newton's Cradle, above. The five balls can be considered to be five distinct events, occurring along a timeline in relation to each other. In order of left to right,

1) I enter a room.
2) An acquaintance of mine sees me.
3) She remembers a question she had for me.
4) She walks over to me.
5) We begin a conversation.

From the order given above, we can think of this as a complete causal chain, with event #1 (me entering the room) eventually leads to event #5 (the woman talking with me).
Just a thought:

Lets say someone convinced that queen person not to fund Columbus trip over the atlantic to look for a new way to reach india without having to go round africa. During that time the trade with spices, tea and whatever was getting more and more important and the colonial powers were competing.
Most likely someone else would pretty soon have tried to sail west from europe for the same or different reasons. America would still have been found and the state of Colombia in south america would have some different name.
Just the same, if event A in your example doesn't occur theres a good chance event B will happen anyway because of the numerous events leading up to your choice to carry out action A.

My point is that events and what leads up to them are not just one event but a series of events. What we call a major event are probably a big number of smaller events. Perhaps just one event or a smaller number of events won't change that history will sooner or later get to point B.
 

thenumbersix

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Mar 2, 2005
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Re: Newton's Cradle

At the point of South America being discovered, as time does not 'flow' forward or backward, so the event of south america being discovered causes a 'ripple' in time which initiates the actions that lead to Columbus' funding, thus sending him out to fulfill his temporal duty ?

In this case, as more people read the history of Columbus the more it causes the initial event, maybe the funding, his birth or his ancestors birth, maybe even the appearance of man. We think therefore we are...Personally I think he impressed the Queen in the trouser department ;D

So re-writing history may actually change it, keep up the fabricating Hollywood, you may be onto something....

Good post.
 

Bernard

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Jun 25, 2005
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Re: Newton's Cradle

Hi there,

Just another thought.....

Talking of the discovery of America.....what if it was Clombus's destiny to discover it and therefore the queens destiny to fund it?

The Problem with Newton's cradle seems to me to be that it is in the horizontal plain but could still be expressed in a sinusoidal movement with relation to time.

Time is another slippery subject that seems to elude our simple brains....time is a man made thing and became necessary to timetable trains running on the railway lines. imagine the confusion of two different times in on either end of a railway track. You cannot guarantee a trian at either end would be on time.

It is a convenient tool buch should be remember as such

Bernard
 
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