Friday, August 8, 2008

Tenth Dimension Polls Archive 16

Poll #16 - Zero plus zero equals zero. What does infinity plus infinity equal?
(poll ended June 16 08)

5% said "zero", 70% said "infinity", 15% said "two infinities", and 8% said "none of the above".

This poll is a continuation of similar questions asked in the preceding couple of polls, where you will find some useful discussion about the "many roads to infinity" concept that can make questions like the one in this current poll seem contradictory. The first answer, "zero", for instance, would make sense in the following context: if I start with a line, and place a point on the line, all of the values heading in one direction on that line would be heading towards infinity. Meanwhile, all of those values in the opposite direction would also be heading towards infinity. Is there such a thing as "positive infinity" and "negative infinity" when we look at things in this way? If there were, then adding those two values (or concepts) together should cancel each other out and leave us with zero as the answer. My preference with this project is to say that because infinity is not a number, the infinity that you head towards in either direction on any particular line in any particular direction is ultimately heading towards the same thing: infinity. But keeping in mind the idea of a perfectly balanced equilibrium state which in this project is the tenth dimension in its unobserved state, an idea which also ties to the work of Dr. Sean Carroll which we've been talking about in this blog, does give us a way to think of how a point of indeterminate size, a perfectly balanced equilibrium, and "zero" all are interconnected ideas.

Next poll question - Does science progress by funerals?

Click here for the archive of polls 1 to 10.
Click here for the archive of polls 11 to 15.

Other blog entries discussing infinity, timelessness, and Dr. Sean Carroll:
Unlikely Events and Timelessness
The Spacetime Tree
The Annotated Tenth Dimension Video
What Would a Flatlander Really See?
God 2.0
Daily Parrying
Time in Either Direction

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