Monday, April 29, 2013

Is Time Real ?

    Most physicists think time is a subjective illusion, but what if time is real?
CREDIT: Shutterstock/Kim D. French

By Glenn A. Walsh
Reporting for SpaceWatchtower 

Is time real?

In a new book, "Time Reborn" (Houghton Mifflin Harcourt, April 2013), author and theoretical physicist Lee Smolin argues that time is real. This is a controversial view, as most physicists consider time to actually be illusory.

In his Theory of General Relativity, Albert Einstein considers time to be simply another dimension in space. Thus the human perception of time is just in our heads.

However, Smolin has become convinced that unless the laws of nature are subject to a real time, then these laws cannot be truly understood.

One implication for Smolin's ideas about time questions the human perception of free will. 

Columbia University physicist Peter Woit, writing in his blog Not Even Wrong, disagrees with Smolin's proposal, stating that there are problems with Smolin's view that the laws of nature evolve over time.

Smolin and Duke University neuroscientist Warren Meck discussed these issues April 24 at the Rubin Museum of Art in New York. reported on this public presentation.

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Sources: Glenn A. Walsh Reporting for SpaceWatchtower, .


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