There is a great article entitled "The Limts of Reason" by Gregory
Chaitin in the March Issue of Scientific American page 74. I quote:|
"So perhaps mathematicians should not try to prove everything. Sometimes they should try to add new axioms. That is what you have got to do when you are faced with an irreducible fact..... Physicists are willing to add new principles, new scientific laws, to understand new domains of experience...
This caused me to think about unprovable physical truths or impossible measurements. A simple one includes a nice reflective component: "what do you look like in the mirror with the eyes closed?"
I tried it on my wife when she was in a good mood. "Darling", I said, "did you ever think about what you look like in the mirror with your eyes closed?"
"I know what I look like," she said. "I can imagine it."
"Yeah, but you don't really know for sure."
"I can find out by taking a photograph of myself with my eyes closed, if I wanted to, but that would be a really stupid thing to do."
Ah ha! Now we are getting somewhere, I thought. Maybe I could squeeze in the concept of simultaneity a la Einstein.
Then I turned to her and gave her the coup de grace, "Yeah but you won't know what you look like at the precise time you look in the mirror."
She looked at me straight in the eyes and said, "George, you are giving me a headache!"
The moral of the story is: do not experiment or argue with your wife. You always come out the loser, even if you win.
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- Unprovable Physical Truths and Unwinnable Arguments George Levy