Strange Dark Matter Theory

Discussion in 'Science and Technology' started by Vulcan Logician, May 31, 2013.

  1. Crazy Eddie

    Crazy Eddie Vice Admiral Admiral

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    That, unfortunately, is not always the case. Although the example is thought to be unique to economics (it isn't, but still...) we've recently had this whole dustup over austerity policies and the theory that a specific debt-to-income ratio results in stagnant growth. That basic assumption went unchallenged for years and was so widely accepted that whole countries began to make sweeping policy decisions based on it; imagine their collective embarrassment when that theory was exposed as bullshit by a graduate student.

    Here's the thing: the mathematical proofs in cosmological physics have come so convoluted that no "conventional" explanation for those theories is even attempted; the model itself is exclusively expressed as a number salad that makes no sense to anyone outside of academia. This has troubling implications for intellectual honesty: researchers can and do fudge their calculations to get results they prefer, even in fields where laypeople CAN check their equations and potentially expose them as bullshit. If a highly respected physicist hacks together a bullshit mathematical equation that no one understands, who exactly is going to call him on it? Not his peers, who don't understand the equation and can't explain why it's bullshit. Not a layperson, who isn't expected to understand it and whose opinion can be dismissed. Not a graduate student, who can be shouted down as a crackpot or marginalized in grant searches.

    Theoretical physics and cosmology both have this inherent problem: they operate at a very high level of sophistication in which it is fantastically difficult to independently verify their data, far more so than literally every other scientific field. What would really change about, for example, fundamental particle physics if it turned out that 90% of the experimental results over the last ten years were entirely made up?
     
  2. YellowSubmarine

    YellowSubmarine Rear Admiral Rear Admiral

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    Dark matter being a sentient omnipotent being and all.
     
  3. Crazy Eddie

    Crazy Eddie Vice Admiral Admiral

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    To paraphrase someone smarter than myself:

    What's weird is that there is nothing special about God, and all the talk against him is some irrational dislike that has no grounds. His existence would be no more weird than the existence of normal people, which are already here. There is no reason for all God to interact through the rest of the forces. And whatever is causing the mass discrepancy is not evenly distributed across space, so it's clearly omnipresent and very powerful, and we call omnipresent/powerful things "god" for some reason. If you like you can believe that God is, say, an invisible particle that doesn't interact through any of the fundamental forces except gravity, go for it, but it is theologically the same thing.

    :cool:
     
  4. Vulcan Logician

    Vulcan Logician Lieutenant Commander Red Shirt

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    Hmmm... I guess I didn't know what to expect. "Strange idea, dude." "Unlikely." Certainly not "You are an arrogant A-Hole", but whatever. I have very little ego to bruise truth be known. Admittedly, I have no degrees in physics, and could not work the necessary equations out to save my life. I guess I wasn't taking myself/my idea so seriously. Anyway, I seemed to have created a lively discussion among some other users. For what it's worth.
     
  5. YellowSubmarine

    YellowSubmarine Rear Admiral Rear Admiral

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    And you don't see the problem with your statement?

    In this context, comparing a bunch of particles that pretty much stand there doing nothing to something that's got a brain complex enough to more or less imagine and process the entire universe, that is probably the second most disproportional comparison that you can ever make. On the scale of thing, particles are the second most trivial and meaningless after fundamental forces, while deities are more complex and momentous than anything there is. To make a taste analogy, it is like wondering why a teenager would find it unsavoury to lick the inside of an exhaust pipe when she has no problem eating ice cream.
     
  6. JarodRussell

    JarodRussell Vice Admiral Admiral

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    Don't ever let people stop you. Unless you have a gun and they say "Don't shoot!", or you're on a ledge and they say "Don't jump!", that's where you need to stop.

    But if you think you're onto something there, then seriously, do something with it.

    The established image of the world and the universe has been shaken so many times, and so many times those who brought new revelations have been laughed at, they have been prosecuted, they have been forced into denying their observations.

    The replies in this thread are essentially driven by the same attitude.

    Seriously, people, why do you feel the need to be so condescending? Either encourage him to read up on the subject, or leave it. What's wrong with you guys?

    Especially in the extremely open field that is currently filled with mysterious "Dark Matter", which is the proper scientific term for "We don't really know jack shit what the fuck is going on here."


    So go work on that theory if you're really after it, and present it to a couple of physicists, etc... the whole condescending attitude of "You don't even have a degree, you don't know shit." is sickening. You don't even have to prove it yourself, it's enough if you talk to others who are deep into the subject and inspire them to look at it themselves. Inspiration for new ideas doesn't need a degree. If then others who have a degree prove that the idea is wrong, nothing is lost. If they go "Uh, uhm, we never thought about that" and prove that it's right... hello there!
     
  7. Asbo Zaprudder

    Asbo Zaprudder Rear Admiral Rear Admiral

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    [yt]http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=z2Q7YRDL90E[/yt]
     
  8. Pavonis

    Pavonis Commodore Commodore

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    I wonder if lawyers and physicians have similar "insightful contributions" from non-expert amateurs. Do people just wander into their offices and offer free advice on how to go about their work?
     
  9. CorporalCaptain

    CorporalCaptain Admiral Admiral

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    Honestly, as I already indicated, and to clarify, my biggest problem with this thread is that it was falsely advertised in the title as being about a scientific theory (calling it a "theory" in the Science and Technology forum suggests that).

    If it had been properly identified as just a thought (it doesn't rise to the level of being a scientific hypothesis, either), I'd have had no objection. Thoughts and curiosity are to be encouraged, but making things out to be more than they are deserves a reality check.
     
  10. Asbo Zaprudder

    Asbo Zaprudder Rear Admiral Rear Admiral

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    I think dark matter must be a result of cosmic squirrels burying their nuts. You have to take me seriously -- it just sprang into my head. What do you mean that I offer no mathematics to offer an insight into existing observations or provide the basis of future experiments? You don't appear to understand I have a direct line to God.
     
  11. Crazy Eddie

    Crazy Eddie Vice Admiral Admiral

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    I do, actually. That's the whole point.

    That would be to imply positive qualities to the thing you're searching for -- recognizable brain processes -- which makes the premise falsifiable (data suggests the absence of said processes).

    "Dark matter" doesn't have this feature. It's a placeholder for some as yet undiscovered particle/substance/material that is defined less by what it is than by what it isn't.

    I don't see how. The properties of both deities and elementary particles are a subject of intense debate by learned academics with advanced degrees and impressive credentials standing on the shoulders of intellectuals who have been having similar debates for decades-going-on-centuries. As far as I can tell, the only difference between God and the God Particle is one of those things is unlikely to exist.
     
  12. Crazy Eddie

    Crazy Eddie Vice Admiral Admiral

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    As a matter of fact, they do. It's actually a common complaint about doctors -- especially family doctors -- having to argue with the know-it-all parents of their patients. The debate often goes something like

    Doc: "Your son's getting these headaches and throwing up because has a viral infection. He'll be contagious, so you'll need to keep him home from school and give him lots of rest."
    Mom: "Oh, really? I looked up his symptoms on WebMD, it seems to me he's having some kind of allergic reaction. I'm thinking he has a gluten allergy."
    Doc: "Based on what you've told me and the tests we've done, it's very unlikely this is an allergic reaction."
    Mom: "You didn't test him for gluten allergies. How can you be so sure?"
    Doc: "You're right, I only spent fifteen years in medical school and then another ten years practicing family medicine, so clearly your twelve and a half minutes reading WebMD makes YOU the expert on childhood pathologies."
     
  13. Asbo Zaprudder

    Asbo Zaprudder Rear Admiral Rear Admiral

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    The thing is that lawyers and physicians can probably get those people sanctioned and locked away under some mental-health legislation.
     
  14. Crazy Eddie

    Crazy Eddie Vice Admiral Admiral

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    They WISH.

    There's nothing worse than helicopter moms. Every upper middle-class parent with an iPad thinks they're a paid pediatric consultant whose job it is to give their expert advice to their doctors/teachers/lawyers/councilmen/etc. Unfortunately such behavior is far from illegal.
     
  15. Ancient Mariner

    Ancient Mariner Vice Admiral Admiral

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    Happens to teachers as a matter of course.
     
  16. YellowSubmarine

    YellowSubmarine Rear Admiral Rear Admiral

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    Note to self: Each time a neutrino passes me by, there's a miracle in the room and it defies God.
     
  17. publiusr

    publiusr Rear Admiral Rear Admiral

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    If only I could see one.
     
  18. Vulcan Logician

    Vulcan Logician Lieutenant Commander Red Shirt

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    I guess you are correct. In the realm of science, a theory is backed by at least some data. Sorry I wasted your time with my thought. Also, if you happen upon something that you feel is a waste of time on the web, most browsers are equipped with a "back" button. Use it! Again, sorry. Let's just leave it at that.
     
  19. Vulcan Logician

    Vulcan Logician Lieutenant Commander Red Shirt

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    Thanks JarrodRussell. You're okay in my book.
     
  20. Crazy Eddie

    Crazy Eddie Vice Admiral Admiral

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    Or flip it around: every time God passes by you, the neutrino count in the room increases by 30%.:vulcan:

    Theoretical physicists have become so enamored by the possibilities of dark matter that derivative theories about what it could be and what it could DO extend far beyond any logical connection to the data that suggests its existence, so much so that scientific institutions are beginning to make blanket factual statements with an extremely tenuous connection to what has actually been scientifically established, as if their confidence in the truth of the original assumption is sufficient to declare it as a fact. It is also something they have begun to do with, for example, supermassive holes, the existence of which were never ACTUALLY confirmed, despite astronomers' self-assurance that it had. Then, as now, an unbroken chain of "Based on this data, it's very possible there's a supermassive black hole there" evolved into "there's a black hole there" without alternate possibilities ever having been tested or ruled out. They took their favorite theory and ran with it simply because nobody managed to prove them wrong.

    It is in that specific sense that cosmology and theology have begun to grow more and more similar: theories are assumed to be correct based less on corroborating data than on a lack of contradictory data.
     
    Last edited: Jun 3, 2013