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Is muscle movement quantized or continuous?

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Based on my knowledge, my chain of reasoning works like this...

When you want to move a muscle your brain sends an electrical nervous impulse along the chain of nerve cells to the muscle you want to move.

A nervous impulse is nothing other then a jolt of electricity, the voltage is uniform and the only difference is the rate the jolts are sent, resulting in faster movement.

When a muscle is hit by electricity it's reaction is to contract, this is what creates movement.

Given all this, is our movement continuous or quantized? Let's say one jolt moves my finger 1 degree, another jolt would move it another degree. Would that not make it impossible to move my finger 1.5 degrees? To me it stands to reason that while you could shut off the power to your finger at any time, making it theoretically continuous, there must be a minimum amount of frequency by the impulses needed to cause any movement.

If this is true then the movement of our bodies is the microscopic snapping through possible positions. And therefore there must be a finite number of possible positions our bodies can take. Like a knob that can only click it's way through the pre-determined positions on a dial.

Is all this true? Do nervous impulses work like I think they do? Are there things about nervous impulses or muscles we don't know? Are we capable of only positioning ourselves in this quantized way? Has anyone proven any of the things I have said? Please consider you answer carefully.

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1 hour ago, Omnifarious said:

I might if I thought you could ask good questions. In other words, one could move their finger 1.2654719879044635 and how would you begin to ask the question of whether or not an electrical impulse would move the finger only .79044635 degrees, or or only .65471987904 less? Or change it's degree of movement from 1 degree to 1 8836572 degrees? And then to 2.97357 degrees? Unless you are saying that electrical impulses are all the same so body parts jerk to and from positions. Read up in this https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Chaos_theory

1 hour ago, Omnifarious said:

Do nervous impulses work like I think they do?

No.

1 hour ago, Omnifarious said:

Are there things about nervous impulses or muscles we don't know?

Kind of a rhetorical question. One only knows something if it isn't unknown. There may be research scientists who re running experiments that WE don't know about.

1 hour ago, Omnifarious said:

Are we capable of only positioning ourselves in this quantized way?

Does it really matter? Besides, you're saying "quantized way" as if it's a fact. You first set up questions and then create you own conclusion by producing a fact based on your questions yet to be answered? That is unacceptable.

1 hour ago, Omnifarious said:

Has anyone proven any of the things I have said?

How would YOU find out. Have YOU done an indepth scientific investigation of the literature? I do for the fields that I am interested in as I think most here do. I doubt professional ballet dancers would have issues with their fluidity. Although it's possible they would question it if they ever saw this thread.....or laugh and go on dancing.

Edited by Evolute
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On 2/20/2021 at 6:24 PM, Evolute said:

Does it really matter? Besides, you're saying "quantized way" as if it's a fact. You first set up questions and then create you own conclusion by producing a fact based on your questions yet to be answered? That is unacceptable.

It matters because it's connected to my issues regarding the possible infinitude of art from my other discussions. If our movement is limited like this then so is our ability to create in the physical world. You mentioned the movements of our eyes compensate for our photoreceptors. I also thought of that but if muscle movement is quantised then so is eye movement right?

And how is putting forth my hypothesis and then asking what people think of it unacceptable?

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On 2/20/2021 at 11:40 AM, Omnifarious said:

If this is true then the movement of our bodies is the microscopic snapping through possible positions.

Why do you even care? You have more than one "if this is true". You seem to think so

On 2/20/2021 at 11:40 AM, Omnifarious said:

Are we capable of only positioning ourselves in this quantized way?

You are assuming that it is and so you are basing your whole argument on that assumption "Based on my your) knowledge, my (your) chain of reasoning". You don't know if it is a quantized way. You're making the leap from inorganic action to organic action and assuming limitations to organic movement based on atomic fluctuations. I gave  you a link to Chaos Theory in the other thread. ALL of you concerns could be addressed there if you haven't gone there already. Why did you even begin this second thread if the topic relates to the other one? These aren't separate issues.

But let's say you're right here about "jerky" movement and even "jerky" eye movement. Whose to say that everything isn't relative in that the microscopic temporal stutter of body and eye aren't concurrent? It would mean that organic motion in the real world actually looks infinitely smooth since, for want of a better word, the quantum "blanks" in body and eye motion occur at the same time? Eye motion coincides with body motion so that both "jerk" through time simultaneously. If everything is locked into a sort of quantum rhythm then everything flows long nicely. Like a digital movie. Kind of like AC current at 60 Hz not flickering light bulbs although when touching a prong in an outlet one can feel the current alternating.

On 2/20/2021 at 11:40 AM, Omnifarious said:

Like a knob that can only click it's way through the pre-determined positions on a dial.

This isn't like robotics. It is the elasticity of our cells that smooth out our movements. What you are getting at might be true if we were made up of completely inorganic material. Besides, you are only using what we can measure at the quantum level as the basis for your your reasoning. The microcosm could get infinitely smaller and smaller even as the macrocosm gets infinitely bigger and bigger. Of course science has, so far given quantum sizes a cut off point but it's never stopped science from going after ever smaller particles. It's only our ability to measure that limits us. Always has been.

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This is all governed by Newtonian physics(https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Classical_mechanics) and can still be calculated easily using the laws of motion. The amount of force produced by the muscle does a predictable amount of movement of the arm or leg or whatever, the combination of billions of muscle fibers contracting or expanding using chemical energy from the mitochondria in the form of ATP created by the mitochondria supplied by blood in the form of complex organic molecules such as sugar or carbohydrates along with oxygen. There is nothing special about the organic body it still is governed by physics in a predictable way.

Cycle of Chemicals In Life

Muscle Movement Process

Newtonian Physics of kicking a ball

I thought I would explain it in pictures to make you understand, which all could be explained in math but you wouldn't understand that and as pictures say 1000 words much longer, but basically in the simplest form, (Chemical Energy Of Total ATP Used) = (1/2)(Mass of foot) (Velocity of foot)^2  and  (Chemical Energy Of Total ATP Used) - (Kinetic Energy of foot) = 0

Edited by VictorMedvil
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On 2/23/2021 at 2:51 AM, Evolute said:

Why do you even care? You have more than one "if this is true". You seem to think so

You are assuming that it is and so you are basing your whole argument on that assumption "Based on my your) knowledge, my (your) chain of reasoning". You don't know if it is a quantized way. You're making the leap from inorganic action to organic action and assuming limitations to organic movement based on atomic fluctuations. I gave  you a link to Chaos Theory in the other thread. ALL of you concerns could be addressed there if you haven't gone there already. Why did you even begin this second thread if the topic relates to the other one? These aren't separate issues.

But let's say you're right here about "jerky" movement and even "jerky" eye movement. Whose to say that everything isn't relative in that the microscopic temporal stutter of body and eye aren't concurrent? It would mean that organic motion in the real world actually looks infinitely smooth since, for want of a better word, the quantum "blanks" in body and eye motion occur at the same time? Eye motion coincides with body motion so that both "jerk" through time simultaneously. If everything is locked into a sort of quantum rhythm then everything flows long nicely. Like a digital movie. Kind of like AC current at 60 Hz not flickering light bulbs although when touching a prong in an outlet one can feel the current alternating.

This isn't like robotics. It is the elasticity of our cells that smooth out our movements. What you are getting at might be true if we were made up of completely inorganic material. Besides, you are only using what we can measure at the quantum level as the basis for your your reasoning. The microcosm could get infinitely smaller and smaller even as the macrocosm gets infinitely bigger and bigger. Of course science has, so far given quantum sizes a cut off point but it's never stopped science from going after ever smaller particles. It's only our ability to measure that limits us. Always has been.

Actually if we were talking about metal bones it wouldn't be quantised positions. If we were talking about some kind of robot, it's joints would be on a hinge moved by a motor that moves continuously while fed power. Assuming time and space are not quantized, you could stop them at any position. But I don't know if that's how organics work.

On 2/23/2021 at 2:51 AM, Evolute said:

Why do you even care? You have more than one "if this is true". You seem to think so

I don't want to think so and I don't want to. That's why I used the word "if". How does this say "I think it's true"?

On 2/20/2021 at 6:24 PM, Evolute said:

How would YOU find out. Have YOU done an indepth scientific investigation of the literature? I do for the fields that I am interested in as I think most here do. I doubt professional ballet dancers would have issues with their fluidity. Although it's possible they would question it if they ever saw this thread.....or laugh and go on dancing.

Are you criticizing me for asking people this question? If so, what is the point of this website?

I tried googling this question but got nothing.

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16 hours ago, Omnifarious said:

Are you criticizing me for asking people this question?

Nah, lighten up. If you don't appreciate my efforts in trying to help just say so. We're all grown ups here.

16 hours ago, Omnifarious said:

Actually if we were talking about metal bones it wouldn't be quantised positions. If we were talking about some kind of robot, it's joints would be on a hinge moved by a motor that moves continuously while fed power.

You can't claim quantized movement in organisms using electrons to control muscle movement and ignore robots that use the same electron principles for their movement. Tayloring your arguments to fit whatever you decide doesn't seem very scientific. It seems more like confirmation bias. I think you're better than that 🙂

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Seems to me that all dynamic forms of energy need to be quantized. Else how could we measure the various forms of energy?

This may be of interest;

Planck’s Contribution

Quote

Energy is quantized in some systems, meaning that the system can have only certain energies and not a continuum of energies, unlike the classical case. This would be like having only certain speeds at which a car can travel because its kinetic energy can have only certain values. We also find that some forms of energy transfer take place with discrete lumps of energy. While most of us are familiar with the quantization of matter into lumps called atoms, molecules, and the like, we are less aware that energy, too, can be quantized. Some of the earliest clues about the necessity of quantum mechanics over classical physics came from the quantization of energy.

Figure 1. Graphs of blackbody radiation (from an ideal radiator) at three different radiator temperatures. The intensity or rate of radiation emission increases dramatically with temperature, and the peak of the spectrum shifts toward the visible and ultraviolet parts of the spectrum. The shape of the spectrum cannot be described with classical physics.

Quote

Where is the quantization of energy observed? Let us begin by considering the emission and absorption of electromagnetic (EM) radiation. The EM spectrum radiated by a hot solid is linked directly to the solid’s temperature. (See Figure 1.) An ideal radiator is one that has an emissivity of 1 at all wavelengths and, thus, is jet black. Ideal radiators are therefore called blackbodies, and their EM radiation is called blackbody radiation. It was discussed that the total intensity of the radiation varies as T4, the fourth power of the absolute temperature of the body, and that the peak of the spectrum shifts to shorter wavelengths at higher temperatures

Quote

All of this seems quite continuous, but it was the curve of the spectrum of intensity versus wavelength that gave a clue that the energies of the atoms in the solid are quantized. In fact, providing a theoretical explanation for the experimentally measured shape of the spectrum was a mystery at the turn of the century. When this “ultraviolet catastrophe” was eventually solved, the answers led to new technologies such as computers and the sophisticated imaging techniques described in earlier chapters. Once again, physics as an enabling science changed the way we live.

Edited by write4u
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On 3/5/2021 at 2:40 PM, Evolute said:

You can't claim quantized movement in organisms using electrons to control muscle movement and ignore robots that use the same electron principles for their movement. Tayloring your arguments to fit whatever you decide doesn't seem very scientific. It seems more like confirmation bias. I think you're better than that 🙂

But as I understand it, robotics use constant currents. Muscles use quantized pulses right? Doesn't that make them different?

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11 hours ago, Omnifarious said:

But as I understand it, robotics use constant currents.

Did you ever stop to think that what you thought might be in error? Constant current, as you put it, in no way negates the physics of electrons whether in mechanical or biological systems. What makes you think a biological function ISN'T constant current? Like in cell mitosis for instance?

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• 3 months later...
On 3/13/2021 at 5:35 AM, Evolute said:

Did you ever stop to think that what you thought might be in error? Constant current, as you put it, in no way negates the physics of electrons whether in mechanical or biological systems. What makes you think a biological function ISN'T constant current? Like in cell mitosis for instance?

Because everything I've ever read about nerve impulses tells me that they function as on or off pluses and not like the constant current you get in a machine. And logic tells me that our movement is limited by they way our nerves and muscles work.

I want to know if this theory of muscle movement is true. The only way I have to do that is by Googling these things to find out what the scientists have said. But sometimes I get no results so I come to places like this. And I can't work these things out for myself because I am no expert.

So are our movements limited in this way, yes or no? And either way, why?

Edited by Omnifarious

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