As a side note, Tegmark and others have presented papers showing that the signature 3+1 is the only one compatible with sentient observers — quite an interesting find, if true. One can logically imagine three dimensions of time and one of space, or four dimensions of space and none of time, or any other combination you could dream up, but none of them seem to admit of observers. So if one asks why we live in a 3+1 cosmos, it is an anthropic selection effect. Of course, the “why” here only refers only to why we observe, what we observe; not why it is that way, and not some other way. It is only to say that if it were some other way, no one would be around to notice.
I should like to add, as a further side note, that this place really could be a haven for those interested in science, people of all educational and knowledge levels, if discussions were actually moderated to preclude insults, trolling and ad hominem — which unfortunately regularly occur here, despite the rules, and which no doubt intimidate people who may try to come here and converse, but are scared off from posting for fear of being called a retard, a hyena, etc.
I don’t personally care about being attacked in such a churlish way, but I am sure many others do. In the realm of philosophy, Norman Swartz, professor emeritus of philosophy at Simon Frazier University, wrote an article, “Philosophy as a Blood Sport,” about this very problem in his own field (even before the trollish internet), and lamented about how many people had been driven from academic philosophy, including one of his best students, by mud-slinging argumentation in place of reasoned discussion motivated by the philosophical principle of charity, with at least a residuum of mutual respect, even if sometimes feigned.
I also bring up Swartz because, in a chapter of one of his books, he offers a long and brilliant philosophical exegesis on the nature of space and time, which can be found online for any interested. IMO it is a masterpiece of modern analytic philosophy, though I acknowledge that many hold philosophy to be meaningless, as did the late Steven Hawking. They are wrong. As Swartz has noted, the entire scientific enterprise is shot through with often unrecognized philosophical presuppositions. I’d be tempted to post a link to the chapter, but I get the distinct impression that here, it would either be disparaged or ignored, by people who agree with Hawking, or who think that nothing has any meaning except algebra.
This sounds interesting. There are a few of us who might appreciate it.
There happen to be three prolific posters here who fairly obviously have mental conditions (Ralfcis, Dubbelsox and Victor offhis Medsville). I have had all three of them on Ignore for quite some time. But I do scan the forum most days just to see if anything interesting has been posted. If you care to post something on another thread, away from these characters, I will certainly read it.
The main entertainment here otherwise is waiting for another perpetual motion crank to show up.