--- Joel Dobrzelewski <[EMAIL PROTECTED]> wrote:
> Russell and Brent:
> I understand this is an extreme position, but I
> state it this way on
> purpose: to bring the issue to the foreground and
> get to the heart of the
> problem of science today.
> As long as we insist that continuous objects really
> exist -

> ****we will always*****

No, we're finite and discrete remember?

> be fooling ourselves and forever chasing an
> unobtainable ghost.
> Descriptions of continuous structures are only that
> - descriptions.  And
> they will *always* remain finite and discrete.

Discrete and finite viewpoints are an artifact of a
finite consciousness.

> The symbol "PI" is a finite description for an
> infinite *process*.
> No sheet of paper or gigabyte of RAM can contain PI.

It can, just not all at once. YOu could say Ram and
paper are temporally challenged entities.

> And thus, any theory we create or program we write
> MUST truncate PI at come
> point... otherwise we will forever be waiting for
> the theory to produce its
> first result.
> const PI = 3.1415926535
> These descriptions are entirely misleading - only
> approximations - never
> reality.

I strongly disagree.

Reality is a relative construct anyway, a
construction,  and agreement by a group of people
large enough to enforce it.

> It would be better to do this...
> const PI = 11101010000100010001111111100000111
> But even this is wrong.  To truly illustrate the
> point, we must do the
> following...
> function PI () as string
>   do
>      'calculate PI
>   loop
> end function
> Does the function PI() ever return a value?
> No.
> It is not within our reach.
> This is not proof that there is no continuum.
> Only evidence that there can be no continuum FOR US.


I just don't agree. If anything, your pi illustration
is a demonstration of a kind of continuum.

We are forced to interpret this infinite string in
finite terms because we *think* in finite terms.

One can train his brain to interpret any equation that
fits in his field of view simultaneously. That is, the
entire equation front to back as one visual/symbolic 
entity. From there, the information would trickle back
through the neurons to form an expression the
interpreter disires. So in effect, to the limit of his
field of view, he sees the equation in it's entirety
simultaneously without delay. Only processing depth
incurs any delay.

This person could also see a limited sequence of
numbers produced by the equation, in this case pi, to
the extent of his field of usable vision, and
interpret this finite sequence, simultaneousy from
paper to brain. Only depth of processing delays would
be incurred.

Now assume someone with a field of view that is
infinite in one direction along with the required
neurons for processing. This person could interpret a
continuous infinite number set simultaneously.

We assume we cannot do this because we assume we are
finite and discrete. I say this thinking is limited to
self limited consciousness.

We might view another concept. This idea assumes that
are finite nature is illusory. Our brains made up of
~10^9 neurons and 10^12 connections exist as an
intersection into a conscious realm that only sees
discretely. We see a single neuron but in fact a
single neuron would be (in this concept) an
intersection into a preceptual space where discrete
conscousness exists.
So to our equation to evaluate pi, simply an
intersection into discrete perceptual space if
something continuous and infinite.

This concept allows one to interpret infinite number
sets without constraint to time. Assuming time itself
is an illusion of descrete/finite perceptual space,
our way of thinking may be the exception, and not the
rule of all possible perceptional and thinking spaces.

> For us, there can only be one infinite process in
> the Universe - the
> universe itself.

Are we truely seperate from the universe that gave
birth to us? Could it be, we and are finite/discrete
thinking and perceptional viewpoints are simply a
snapshot, an intersection of the universe's expression
of intelligence? 

I assert that even our own existence is a continuum,
we only happen to be conscious at this point of our
development. In that, we are not seperate from the
universe that gave birth to us, every atom in our
bodies a mini-contimuum of existence, forming a
singular (aprently) expression of intelligence.

Robert W.

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