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Old 04-24-2020, 06:09 PM   #51
Ryanb9
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Re: expanding universe question

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Originally Posted by BrianTheMick2 View Post
It is an analogy that is helpful for you to get your head wrapped around it. The 2d dots on the balloon wouldn't be able to see the middle of the balloon either.

All we "see" is that everything is getting further away and the stuff that is more distant is moving away from us at a more rapid pace.. We can also "see" that everything else is getting further away from everything else and the things that are more distant from each other are moving away from each other more quickly than those things which are closer together. This makes it certainly look like space is expanding, and no one has come along with a competing theory that does a better job of accounting for the observations.

Another helpful thing to wrap your head around that makes the headache go away is that all we have are models of everything. We will always only have models.. Maybe next year we will have a better model that you will find more enjoyable.

Thankfully, if you can't get your head wrapped around it, you can still enjoy a tasty beverage. The universe is expanding slowly enough that you won't need to take the expansion into account when reaching for the glass.
Are you grunching? We dont "see" the universe is expanding. We see things as they are (not expanding at all) and physicists say "given the current model of the universe we hold to be true, as to what we are seeing, we would only see it this way if the universe was expanding." It is very incorrect to say that we see the universe expanding because this is very much untrue. What they are doing is more akin to this:

1) There is a flashlight in the distance, too far for me to know what its doing.
2) I build tools and use them to measure the strength of the light hitting me from that distant flashlight.
3) I predict the flashlight will be hitting me with x amount of energy
4) The tool I made records <x amount of energy hitting me from the flashlight
5) I assert that the source of the light must be moving away from me, which would account for the less-than-expected energy level I recorded (doppler effect).
6) I repeat this for all light sources all around me, and they are all hitting me with less energy than I expected *and the ones furthest away have the most energy loss*
7) I hypothesize that all things all around me are expanding outwards in all directions .

As you can see, it is very far from the truth to say we see everything around us moving away from us.

*not sure about this one. this might be circular reasoning because for all i know they are using the amount of energy loss to determine how far away the light source is.
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Old 04-24-2020, 08:03 PM   #52
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Re: expanding universe question

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Are you grunching?
Nope. Digrunting. With your analysis isn't grunching.

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We dont "see" the universe is expanding. We see things as they are (not expanding at all) and physicists say "given the current model of the universe we hold to be true, as to what we are seeing, we would only see it this way if the universe was expanding." It is very incorrect to say that we see the universe expanding because this is very much untrue.
I'll summarize your thoughts with what we have actually done:

We look* objects that we pretty much know the luminosity** of. This is akin to your flashlight, except that we have the make, model and serial number of that flashlight and have put in a set of fresh batteries. The ones that are less bright (given that we know how luminous they are) are more distant. This seems fairly obvious if you have a rudimentary understanding of geometry.***

The ones that are more distant (via the above) have more redshift than the ones that are less distant. Given that we also know the wavelengths various things give off when they aren't in relative motion to us****, it is a relatively simple calculation to figure out their apparent motion relative to us.

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As you can see, it is very far from the truth to say we see everything around us moving away from us.
It is the opposite of very far from the truth.

Unless, of course, you are only saying that we don't see things except for through direct observation with no analysis of those observations. That is fine, but I'm curious whether you believe in things like atoms and chemical reactions and electricity and female orgasms. The models we have created to explain those phenomena that we can directly see all certainly make less sense than an expanding universe.

*using fancy equipment

**luminosity is akin to brightness at a certain distance. http://universe-review.ca/R02-07-candle.htm

***or have ever had first-hand experience with some of our other technological achievements, such as a candle, at work. Obviously, this is less precise, but we have all experienced this.

****pretend I found a link to spectographic analysis here.
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Old 04-24-2020, 08:08 PM   #53
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Re: expanding universe question

Oh, and it is not "less energy." It is less apparent brightness (surface area of a sphere) and lower frequency (redshift). The details kind of matter if you are trying to think about these things.
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Old 04-24-2020, 09:32 PM   #54
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Re: expanding universe question

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Originally Posted by BrianTheMick2 View Post
Oh, and it is not "less energy." It is less apparent brightness (surface area of a sphere) and lower frequency (redshift). The details kind of matter if you are trying to think about these things.
I accept his characterization on this one even though physicists refer to it more specifically as redshift. A longer wavelength light stream with equal amplitude, has less energy.

That said, I don't accept his argument as valid.
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Old 04-24-2020, 10:33 PM   #55
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Re: expanding universe question

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We look* objects that we pretty much know the luminosity** of. This is akin to your flashlight, except that we have the make, model and serial number of that flashlight and have put in a set of fresh batteries. The ones that are less bright (given that we know how luminous they are) are more distant. This seems fairly obvious if you have a rudimentary understanding of geometry.***
This seems like a circular argument to me--at the very least it is raising red flags. You say "we look at objects we know the luminosity of" ... well how could you know the luminosity of it unless you looked at it before?

Also, this is nowhere in the same universe as knowing the make, model, and serial number of a flashlight. No one on earth has left even this solar system. Not a soul on the planet has experienced life in a different galaxy, or traveled even 1/100000^100000'th of the distances were talking about. And you want me to believe our understanding about it is similar at all to our understanding of an object that we ourselves invented, know how to create, can take apart, dissect, repair, use, feel, see, etc? Our understanding of the one and the other are in completely different realms. As Hume said, the further you get away from things you can interact with directly, the lower your confidence should be in your conclusions about them.

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The ones that are more distant (via the above) have more redshift than the ones that are less distant. Given that we also know the wavelengths various things give off when they aren't in relative motion to us****, it is a relatively simple calculation to figure out their apparent motion relative to us.
This is rubbing me the wrong way for a number of reasons. Once objects are far enough away from us, they wont move enough to be measurable in our lifetime. What I mean is, if I want to calculate how far a ship is out to sea, ... well, I wont get into this here and now. Again, it seems circular.

We don't know what wavelengths various distant things give off, and it is wrong to say that we do. We know what they are when they reach Earth, that is to say, when we measure them. We can use induction to draw certain conclusions that may or may not be true from this using life experience we have, but it is not a testable hypothesis--we cannot travel to a distant galaxy and measure anything because we cannot travel to a distant galaxy. We are stuck in a glass bowl looking out and licking up the scraps of information that happen to ping us, but we cannot go out into the field and collect samples, we cannot interact, we cannot change one star while holding the control constant, and the conclusions about the universe we make from inside our bowl must be, due to the nature of our situation, rudimentary at best.

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It is the opposite of very far from the truth.

Unless, of course, you are only saying that we don't see things except for through direct observation with no analysis of those observations. That is fine, but I'm curious whether you believe in things like atoms and chemical reactions and electricity and female orgasms. The models we have created to explain those phenomena that we can directly see all certainly make less sense than an expanding universe.
It doesn't matter if they make sense if they are true. What does matter is that they cannot contain any contradictions. If they require us to assume A and not A then I don't need to read any more about them because I know where it will end up.

edit: I don't think you should have used atoms as your example, you should have used a deity or higher power. Atomic theory is a testable hypothesis, and if real, something we can manipulate, control, test, observe, change, shoot lasers at, draw things with, etc. A deity, however, is something we cannot interact with and is an untestable hypothesis and is therefore of no use to science. Conclusions about distant galaxies are somewhere in the middle, where we cannot interact with them, but we can observe whatever they sent our way in the past.

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Old 04-25-2020, 12:58 AM   #56
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Re: expanding universe question

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I accept his characterization on this one even though physicists refer to it more specifically as redshift. A longer wavelength light stream with equal amplitude, has less energy.
Yes, but there's a difference between "less energy" due to redshift and "less energy" due to lower amplitude. Characterizing the first case as simply "less energy" confuses it with the second case. That confusion confuses the ensuing argument.


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Old 04-25-2020, 04:24 AM   #57
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Re: expanding universe question

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this is nowhere in the same universe as knowing the make, model, and serial number of a flashlight.
We may as well bec we know the exact luminosity of Standard Candles.

They all have the same luminosity and we use them to determine how far away each of them are.

ETA: To add link to Type Ia super novas which is the only type of Standard Candle that I know of. That other link mentions 'astronomical objects' so maybe there are other, IDK.

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Old 04-25-2020, 06:51 AM   #58
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Re: expanding universe question

Ryan, the post above yours along with the two below yours amount to what most of my reply to your post would have been.

Here is the rest: it seems that you dislike the way astromonical physics is done. We make observations and develip theories to account for those observations. We also use knowledge from other domains of knowledge (both experimental and observational) to inform our theories.

If your standard (for accepting a theory as being the best account of our observations) is that we must have run a tape measure to the edge of the observable universe, that is OK (unless you are seeking a job as an astromoner).

One problem is that you seem to really dislike analogies used to explain things. The balloon thing is an analogy to help you understand things on a more intuitive level. There is no such thing as a perfect analogy. For instance, balloons are made out of polymers and the universe is not, representing a 3d phenomena on a 2d balloon surface has a very important d missing, and some balloons are the wrong color. If analogies are not helpful for you, then the best course of action is to ignore them and focus purely on the math. Keep in mind that we will probably continue using analogies because most of us find them helpful.
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Old 04-25-2020, 10:38 AM   #59
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Re: expanding universe question

Ryan's also made the objection to the balloon analogy that your ruler will expand along with everything else so there's really been no change. I'm not sure what the correct response is to this. But here's two ideas. First, what you really want for the balloon analogy are stickies rather than dots drawn on the balloon. The stickies do not expand but stick to the ballon via static or magnets or whatever. Thus they represent reality rulers in the universe that do not change shape while the space in which they exist expands. Second idea, even if the ruler is like the dot drawn on the balloon and expands along with the balloon, the speed of light does not change and remains the only real measure. After the balloon expands it takes longer for light to travel the length of the ruler and the ruler is thus measured as now being longer than before.

I think the first idea is probably right but I thought of the second idea first so I'm keeping it in my hat to pull out like a magician's rabbit.


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Old 04-25-2020, 11:56 AM   #60
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Re: expanding universe question

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One problem is that you seem to really dislike analogies used to explain things. The balloon thing is an analogy to help you understand things on a more intuitive level. There is no such thing as a perfect analogy. For instance, balloons are made out of polymers and the universe is not, representing a 3d phenomena on a 2d balloon surface has a very important d missing, and some balloons are the wrong color. If analogies are not helpful for you, then the best course of action is to ignore them and focus purely on the math. Keep in mind that we will probably continue using analogies because most of us find them helpful.
I love analogies and I think they are very helpful in explaining things that are otherwise hard to understand. I accepted your balloon analogy, but I stated that if this was whats happening we would expect to see a void in the center of the universe that was increasing in size.

For example, if someone said the earth was like a furnace, where the rocks in the hot center were liquid and the outside surfaces were cooled and hardened, as if we were walking on slag, I would say "then we should be able to dig down and eventually find molten rock" and if you said "well, no, you shouldn't be able to do that" then I would say your analogy is a bad one. This wouldn't mean I am not a fan of analogies, or that I am expecting too much of them, or that I am being too critical of your analogy, it only means it was a bad analogy and we should look for a different one.
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Old 04-25-2020, 12:11 PM   #61
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Re: expanding universe question

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Here is the rest: it seems that you dislike the way astromonical physics is done. We make observations and develip theories to account for those observations. We also use knowledge from other domains of knowledge (both experimental and observational) to inform our theories.

If your standard (for accepting a theory as being the best account of our observations) is that we must have run a tape measure to the edge of the observable universe, that is OK (unless you are seeking a job as an astromoner).
I don't dislike the way it is done, I dislike that in this field there is so much induction that is pawned off as if it were deduction, and that many physicists cant seem even to admit to themselves that they are using induction. The fact that physicists dont often put a large asterisk next to facts they claim to discovered about the universe as a whole, letting the public know how different this is from hard sciences such as medicine where you can interact with your patients, do controlled trials, change variables and get new data, construct double blind tests of randomized patients, etc, is concerning to me, when physicists cant interact in anyway whatsoever with their tests subjects (planets, stars, solar systems, distant galaxies, etc).

It seems to me that because it is a field that involves so much math the experts have conflated our certainty of math, which requires the assumptions of axioms and firsts principles, with certainty in physics, which is a real-life observational/empirical science that happens to use a lot of math.

Big data analytics, a field that involves as much if not more math than physics, does not put anywhere near as much certainty in their conclusions as physicists do but in my opinion have as much or more reason to be confident in their conclusions than physicists.

At this point, I'm not sure how much of this I actually believe and how much I'm saying to argue this side of the argument to my fullest capabilities, so let me know if I'm getting too far into the weeds here. Personally, I think were still on track.
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Old 04-25-2020, 12:28 PM   #62
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Re: expanding universe question

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Ryan's also made the objection to the balloon analogy that your ruler will expand along with everything else so there's really been no change. I'm not sure what the correct response is to this. But here's two ideas. First, what you really want for the balloon analogy are stickies rather than dots drawn on the balloon. The stickies do not expand but stick to the ballon via static or magnets or whatever. Thus they represent reality rulers in the universe that do not change shape while the space in which they exist expands.
I can accept this analogy, as it doesn't seem to have any flaws that jump out right away. The sticker implementation was actually what that worksheet I quoted on post#23 used, and I incorrectly translated that to using marker dots, which they may have already done before and learned from their mistakes on.

So I will agree with you that this analogy works as far as being a possible explanation for how each entity could see all other entities expanding away from it. However, are there not other things that would be happening here? Would we not expect to see, by looking directly across the void (the center of the balloon) entities moving away from us at maximum speed, and when we move left or right from that point they slowly start moving away less fast and less fast?

Would we also not expect, if this analogy were true, to find a void in the center of the universe about which all the entities were expanding away from? And is it not the case that when we use the redshift to determine the velocity of bodies all around us in all directions, they are all moving away from us, and there is not some direction we can point into the sky and say "those ones are directly across the void from us, and are moving away much faster from us than any others"

If the universe were behaving as you described in the balloon-sticker example, would we not expect to see all these other things?

edit: I don't think I'm being unfair in my expectations of analogies, as BrianTheMick2 may have mentioned earlier. For example, if you said that adding gas into a room was analogous to filling up a water balloon with water, I could say "well, if that's the case, you should be able to poke a hole in the room and all the gas would escape, because thats what happens with water in a water balloon" and I think it would be fine to say that. If you cant, what is the point of making an analogy in the first place?

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Old 04-25-2020, 12:35 PM   #63
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Re: expanding universe question

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I love analogies and I think they are very helpful in explaining things that are otherwise hard to understand. I accepted your balloon analogy, but I stated that if this was whats happening we would expect to see a void in the center of the universe that was increasing in size.
The idea is that the universe is the 2 dimensional surface of the balloon. There is no 3rd dimension for balloon people to look into. As far as the balloon people know, their universe (the balloon surface) is all that exists. That's why they call it the universe.


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Old 04-25-2020, 01:27 PM   #64
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Re: expanding universe question

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The idea is that the universe is the 2 dimensional surface of the balloon. There is no 3rd dimension for balloon people to look into. As far as the balloon people know, their universe (the balloon surface) is all that exists. That's why they call it the universe.
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I'm sorry but this is a non-starter for me. I don't want to spend the time it would take to dissect this quote but I think it will suffice to say it could be looked into and found inadequate and is not a path we want to be going down.

I think its analogous to calling what Lichtenstein wrote philosophy -- idk how poetry got confused for philosophy but it did, and probably wont be fixed for a few hundred years.
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Old 04-25-2020, 01:43 PM   #65
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Re: expanding universe question

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Ryan's also made the objection to the balloon analogy that your ruler will expand along with everything else so there's really been no change. I'm not sure what the correct response is to this.
The correct response is, "that isn't what is happening at all. Space is expanding. The stuff in space is not expanding. It isn't like scaling up a drawing in any way, shape, manner or form, not even in the slightest respect would the ruler expand even the tiniest iota even if you really believe that it would do so and believe it so strongly that it forms the entirety of your belief system and you will have to rethink whether you are living a good life."
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Old 04-25-2020, 02:32 PM   #66
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Re: expanding universe question

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I'm sorry but this is a non-starter for me. I don't want to spend the time it would take to dissect this quote but I think it will suffice to say it could be looked into and found inadequate and is not a path we want to be going down.
Unfortunately, it is just an analogy. There are literally zero astrophysicists in existence who do not understand that it is a 2d analogy to help people understand a 3d phenomena.*

If it doesn't help you to understand it, then the only other route (that I am aware of) is spending years studying the math, observation and theoretical underpinnings so well as to develop an intuitive understanding. I'd suggest enrolling in a graduate program in theoretical astrophysics as a start, but I'm pretty sure that it would be easier to just accept that there are limitations of analogies and that everyone involved is keenly aware that the analogies used are nothing more than a way of visualizing math-based stuff that is really difficult for normal to understand without some sort of visual aid.

Or, you could do what I do (for things I can't wrap my head around) and just enjoy some nice videos that NASA puts out. They are quite pretty.

*I did a survey of all of them
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Old 04-25-2020, 06:40 PM   #67
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Re: expanding universe question

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Unfortunately, it is just an analogy. There are literally zero astrophysicists in existence who do not understand that it is a 2d analogy to help people understand a 3d phenomena.*

If it doesn't help you to understand it, then the only other route (that I am aware of) is spending years studying the math, observation and theoretical underpinnings so well as to develop an intuitive understanding. I'd suggest enrolling in a graduate program in theoretical astrophysics as a start, but I'm pretty sure that it would be easier to just accept that there are limitations of analogies and that everyone involved is keenly aware that the analogies used are nothing more than a way of visualizing math-based stuff that is really difficult for normal to understand without some sort of visual aid.

Or, you could do what I do (for things I can't wrap my head around) and just enjoy some nice videos that NASA puts out. They are quite pretty.

*I did a survey of all of them
This sounds very similar to cults and religions. You may get offended and think physics* is not a cult, however it should be understood that I'm not saying it is a cult, I am just saying that the above quoted is something that is often used by cults and religions. They tell you that you are wrong to disagree with them and that you should take them on their word, and that if you were an initiate you would understand--that their outlandish arguments would make sense if you were indoctrinated.

You do not see this, however, in evolution. Or with plate tectonics, or with any other science that I can think of. This is a red flag to me.

*i mean astrophysics, or whatever its called when you do physics about very distant bodies. the opposite is true when dealing with physics on the planet earth. everything is very on the strait and narrow as far as that subject is concerned.
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Old 04-25-2020, 07:36 PM   #68
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Re: expanding universe question

Our fiendish attempt to lure Ryanb9 into our cult has failed and we should look for more easily persuadable dupes. We've got a lot sunk into this one but I think that we should cut our losses right here and move on.
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Old 04-25-2020, 09:00 PM   #69
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Re: expanding universe question

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This sounds very similar to cults and religions. You may get offended and think physics* is not a cult, however it should be understood that I'm not saying it is a cult, I am just saying that the above quoted is something that is often used by cults and religions. They tell you that you are wrong to disagree with them and that you should take them on their word, and that if you were an initiate you would understand--that their outlandish arguments would make sense if you were indoctrinated.

You do not see this, however, in evolution. Or with plate tectonics, or with any other science that I can think of. This is a red flag to me.

*i mean astrophysics, or whatever its called when you do physics about very distant bodies. the opposite is true when dealing with physics on the planet earth. everything is very on the strait and narrow as far as that subject is concerned.
Literally no one said that you shouldn't disagree with them. Not here, or anywhere. They (the astrophysicists) are currently disagreeing with themselves and (as technology advances and better measurements become available and more smart people say, "hey, we can check that hypothesis or theory by doing such and such observation") they will continue to try to advance better models.

What we (here) have been saying is that you don't seem to understand that a model is a model and an analogy is an analogy. You also don't seem to have a handle on the fact that just about all scientists know that they are ONLY building and improving on models. Most of them have even read Asimov's Less Wrong essay.

What we have also been doing is pointing out errors in your understanding of what the astrophysicists are actually saying and why they are saying it. It is, I think, important to at least understand a theory before making a claim about it.

I am curious as to how you think that earthbound physics is somehow different. You learned at least one model of the atom in some high school science class, I presume. Are you aware of the fact that atoms look absolutely nothing like the model you were presented? Hell, one of the best physicists proposed the existence of a dead/alive cat as an analogy in another domain of physics.
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Old 04-26-2020, 12:45 AM   #70
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Re: expanding universe question

I wonder what quantum theory looks like for balloon people? I don't think circle people have it. Their thinking is way too 1-dimensional. Besides, how would they do the double slit experiment?


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