Wednesday, July 18, 2007

Doctor Who and his IMU Watch

IMU stands for Inertial Measurement Unit. It tracks movement relative the frame of reference where all mass is at rest.

Doctor Who is a Time Lord.

While Doctor Who may be fictional, IMUs are not. Ideally, an IMU ignores relativity. Even when an IMU "feels" like it is at rest because it is inside a smooth traveling train, the IMU knows it is moving relative to the inertial frame of reference.

Now any competent Time Lord is going to be carrying around a functional IMU. I imagine the Doctor's would look like an old fashion pocket watch. Now the Doctor's IMU isn't like the inaccurate and incomplete versions we have. Our IMU's are inaccurate because they are improperly calibrated and drift and they are incomplete because they are missing the fourth dimension, time. Imagine a real-life IMU that only works in two dimensions. It would still marginally function, but the results would be deceptive. The Doctor's IMU has none of these failings. The Doctor's IMU Watch will accurately tell us the distance we travel in four-dimensional space-time. More specifically, it will tell us the SQUARE of the distance traveled. The reason for this will become apparent shortly.

The Doctor's IMU Watch is an interesting little gadget. It has four hands that show roughly seconds, minutes, hours and years. If you looked at in time mode it acts like a normal watch except for the squared part. To get it into distance mode you flip it over and the hands now show distances of light-seconds, light-minutes, light-hours and light-years.

Inside the TARDIS the Doctor can go anywhere instantly. His IMU Watch faithfully shows 4 Light Years Squared (16) when he goes 4 Light Years. In time mode, whether he goes forward or backwards in time the IMU Watch shows a positive value for time squared. The fact that it is positive in both directions of time shouldn't be any more surprising than showing a positive value for going forward or backward in distance. We are measuring the length traveled in the inertial space-time frame of reference. Taking the square of time causes the same effect as taking the squares of distances.

For amusement the Doctor shows up on Earth and let's us take a look at his IMU Watch. As a watch it doesn't look that interesting. Curious to see what our real movement is while "standing still" on earth we turn the watch IMU over. It is running backwards! In fact the movement duplicates the movement of the watch side only going counter clockwise. The Doctor then opens up both sides of the pocket watch to show there is only one set of hands. The difference between time mode and distance mode is from which side the hands are viewed.

The Doctor smiles and motions us inside the TARDIS and puts it into hover mode. The IMU Watch hands stop. Curious, we ask if the TARDIS is still on Earth. "Yes, but is also in other places too" is the answer. "What other places?" we ask. "All other places" he answers broadening his smile. The TARDIS hover mode is what could be thought of as vibrating around the speed of light. In this situation time and distance shrink to nil and thus the vibrating TARDIS travels to the ends of the universe using only infinitesimal movements.

The completeness of the IMU Watch exposes the deception caused by our incomplete version of an IMU (ours is missing the time dimension). The shortest distance between two points is NOT a straight line, at least not in inertial space-time. The Twins Paradox isn't paradoxical when you understand this. It is a simple geometry problem (simple for a Time Lord). The traveling twin took the shorter route to get to the same place in space-time as his/her sibling.

The reason why the IMU Watch runs backwards even though the measurements are squared is due to the fact that the four dimensional values are complex numbers. Time and distance are orthogonal to each other. Either time or distance include the square-root of negative one depending on which side of the Doctor's gadget you are viewing. Squaring everything turns the complex values into real numbers (albeit negative).

Let's take one more trip in the TARDIS. This time the TARDIS is used to observe a quantum experiment. One photon split by a half silvered mirror with each half sent to two different mirrors 1 light year distant and back again. With fine adjustments the Doctor gets the TARDIS into hover mode to observe that the single photon is just a standing wave going in two directions and back allowing the two half waves to combine into a predictable interference pattern. But what about showing the particle half of the wave/particle experiment? No problem, The Doctor travels ahead two years where the scientists are waiting for the two halves to combine but arrives a little bit early. "Which side do you want stopped?" the Doctor asks. The scientists tell him. He waits until the last second of the two year wait and does a non-local jump to the mirror. His IMU Watch dutifully records the 1 light-year inertial distance and the corresponding negative 1 year time. The Doctor kicks the mirror away and puts a detector in its place and goes into hover mode. The waveform is now a standing wave between the newly placed detector and the scientists trying to measure an interference pattern. The scientists don't see the interference because the waveform simply collapses into one of the detectors. Which detector is chosen appears random, but when we asked the Time Lord, he just smiled knowingly and left.

The point of all of this is to setup an understanding of the nature of the medium in which life evolves, the molecular level. While the existence of Time Lords might be fanciful, quantum effects are not. They are real and validated by experiment after experiment. The null state of our universe is light speed. Quantum effects are, for all practical purposes, retrocasual either directly or as a result of non-local orchestration in space-time geometries.

Here is a link to a Dr. Hameroff paper Quantum Computing in DNA

Here is a link to a joint Hameroff/Penrose paper, Orchestrated Objective Reduction of Quantum Coherence in Brain Microtubules: The "Orch OR" Model for Consciousness

I suggest it is quite possible that quantum effects are steering life at the DNA level and at the microtubule level. Who or what is behind the steering wheel isn't that much of an issue, because if the agent or process controls quantum effects, manipulation across time is a side benefit, whether or not the driver has the capabilities of a Time Lord.

1 comment:

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