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Why Don’t Things Fall Apart
Posted: 19 May 2017 09:59 AM   [ Ignore ]
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Looking for input from someone with a good science background. This is just an example for discussion but it works: Why doesn’t a rock just dissolve away? By this I mean, as I mentioned in another thread, if you were to look at the atomic level there’d be no difference between a rock, say, and the air next to it, other than density and the type of atoms. But what keeps these two apart? Why don’t they just mix into each other like warm and cold water mix eventually? Or better yet, what about two rocks stuck next to each other. Why don’t they just meld into a single rock?

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Posted: 19 May 2017 12:02 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 1 ]
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https://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/Pauli_exclusion_principle

This explains things on the quantum level. On larger scales chemical bonding keeps things together.

https://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/Chemical_bond

Edit: On the molecular level objects do share material. I learned this in freshman physics when we were measuring the force it takes to move wood blocks across a hard table. If we left the blocks in place for a few minutes it took more force to get them moving than if we set them down and immediately measured the force required to slide the blocks across the table. This does not violate Pauli’s Exclusion Principal as no electrons shared the same space, but the electrons in the molecules would cross orbits and thus require more force to move.

[ Edited: 19 May 2017 04:46 PM by DarronS ]
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Posted: 19 May 2017 03:46 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 2 ]
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CuthbertJ - 19 May 2017 09:59 AM

... other than density and the type of atoms.

As they say the devil is in the details.

Beside, regarding that rock you mention, give it some time and it will fall apart and ‘dissolve’.
But more amazing give microscopic phytoplankton enough time and it will become a rock (White Cliffs of Dover, etc.).

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Posted: 20 May 2017 06:55 AM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 3 ]
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For a while I’ve been bugged by people saying atoms are mostly empty space because it turns out not to be true mainly because electrons are not like little planets spinning around a star.  They are spread out over covalent shells and if anything are like spherical force fields, not “empty” space.  But, that’s just an aside. 

This morning for the fun of it I went to YouTube and plugged in
“Matter and physics - Why Don’t Things Fall Apart”

Near the top of the list was this cool short

Empty Space is NOT Empty
Veritasium channel -  4:46 min
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=J3xLuZNKhlY
Even has a video clip of “empty space” itself.

same channel also has this gem

Can We Really Touch Anything?
Veritasium channel - 8:29 min
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=bKldI-XGHIw

Fun stuff.  Actually this one gets a little silly, but then gets back to the topic at hand.

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Posted: 20 May 2017 10:57 AM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 4 ]
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CuthbertJ - 19 May 2017 09:59 AM

Looking for input from someone with a good science background. This is just an example for discussion but it works: Why doesn’t a rock just dissolve away? By this I mean, as I mentioned in another thread, if you were to look at the atomic level there’d be no difference between a rock, say, and the air next to it, other than density and the type of atoms. But what keeps these two apart? Why don’t they just mix into each other like warm and cold water mix eventually? Or better yet, what about two rocks stuck next to each other. Why don’t they just meld into a single rock?

Science doesn’t answer “why” questions. It has enough tp do trying to answer “what” and “how” questions. Why things are not different from the way they are is beyond the scope of science.

[ Edited: 27 May 2017 11:17 PM by LoisL ]
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Posted: 21 May 2017 06:32 AM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 5 ]
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LoisL - 20 May 2017 10:57 AM

Science doesn’t answer “why” questions.

Ouch, tagged by another trick question.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=rrA3zqDjZ5Q  smile

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Posted: 21 May 2017 07:00 AM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 6 ]
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CuthbertJ - 19 May 2017 09:59 AM

if you were to look at the atomic level there’d be no difference between a rock, say, and the air next to it, other than density and the type of atoms. But what keeps these two apart?

Isn’t that the point.  Different elements behave differently at various temperatures and pressures.  How do oxygen and nitrogen behave on Pluto?

I have always regarded the element mercury as very weird.  Liquid metal, it sounds like science fiction.  LOL

psik

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Posted: 22 May 2017 06:49 AM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 7 ]
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I took physics a long time ago, but there is such a thing as “cohesion”—atoms and molecules of the same kind do tend to have an affinity for one another.  So at the molecular level, you actually would see a difference.  Atoms of the same element “scrunch up” together.  And when you get into the macro level, like rocks, they tend to form crystalline structures.  Living things, of course, organize into tissues and organs.  In short, this is exactly why naively picture everything on a “quantum level” doesn’t necessary work.

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Posted: 24 May 2017 10:00 AM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 8 ]
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This is from the article Darryl pointed to: “In general, strong chemical bonding is associated with the sharing or transfer of electrons between the participating atoms.” But see, there’s a loaded word there…participating. I remember now about cohesion and whatnot. But what makes a bunch of atoms “participating” in the first place? Take two gold bars. What makes one bar different from the other? If I place one on top of the other and leave it, even say a thousand years, I’ll bet there will still be two gold bars.

Lois - I’m not about the teleogical “why” but the physical why.

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Posted: 24 May 2017 02:30 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 9 ]
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CuthbertJ - 19 May 2017 09:59 AM

Looking for input from someone with a good science background. This is just an example for discussion but it works: Why doesn’t a rock just dissolve away? By this I mean, as I mentioned in another thread, if you were to look at the atomic level there’d be no difference between a rock, say, and the air next to it, other than density and the type of atoms. But what keeps these two apart? Why don’t they just mix into each other like warm and cold water mix eventually? Or better yet, what about two rocks stuck next to each other. Why don’t they just meld into a single rock?

You will find the answer in quantum mechanics except for the White House which is obviously falling apart more each day.

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Posted: 24 May 2017 07:11 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 10 ]
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CuthbertJ - 24 May 2017 10:00 AM

This is from the article Darryl pointed to: “In general, strong chemical bonding is associated with the sharing or transfer of electrons between the participating atoms.” But see, there’s a loaded word there…participating. I remember now about cohesion and whatnot. But what makes a bunch of atoms “participating” in the first place? Take two gold bars. What makes one bar different from the other? If I place one on top of the other and leave it, even say a thousand years, I’ll bet there will still be two gold bars.

Lois - I’m not about the teleogical “why” but the physical why.

Will you explain the difference?

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Posted: 25 May 2017 10:48 AM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 11 ]
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LoisL - 24 May 2017 07:11 PM
CuthbertJ - 24 May 2017 10:00 AM

This is from the article Darryl pointed to: “In general, strong chemical bonding is associated with the sharing or transfer of electrons between the participating atoms.” But see, there’s a loaded word there…participating. I remember now about cohesion and whatnot. But what makes a bunch of atoms “participating” in the first place? Take two gold bars. What makes one bar different from the other? If I place one on top of the other and leave it, even say a thousand years, I’ll bet there will still be two gold bars.

Lois - I’m not about the teleogical “why” but the physical why.

Will you explain the difference?

Why did New Orleans get hit by Hurricane Katrina? A) Because a low pressure system off the coast formed ....  B) Because homosexuals can get married there.  A is the scientifical Why, B is the teleological Why. (And obviously, B is false, but just an example).

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Posted: 31 May 2017 03:48 AM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 12 ]
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Citizenschallenge-v.3 - 20 May 2017 06:55 AM

For a while I’ve been bugged by people saying atoms are mostly empty space because it turns out not to be true mainly because electrons are not like little planets spinning around a star.  They are spread out over covalent shells and if anything are like spherical force fields, not “empty” space.  But, that’s just an aside. 

Actually, an electron, or any other quantum object for that matter, is ‘smeared’ over a possible number of locations. It is only when measured that such an object is ‘resolved’ and ‘occupies’ a specific position.

Essentially, matter is just an expression of a particular bunch of probability waves that have collapsed to form the objects we see in the world. But, it is a possibility that quantum objects do not just occupy a particular position but branch off in other dimensions that we aren’t aware of, in terms of ‘Many Worlds.’

The idea is whenever we are faced with a choice, such as making a decision about what to eat, etc., we are causing a branching off of future events. We might, for example, decide to eat an apple, which from our perspective seems to occur, however, the idea is that not only did the observed event occur but the non-event also occurred, viz: not eating the apple. So all possibilities are covered as long as they are feasible possible probabilities of what quantum objects can satisfy.

The implication of this, to take an historical example, is that JFK was not only shot but was also not shot, constituting another world direction. That the assassin or assassins completely missed their target and Kennedy continued to be President, preventing the Vietnam War, possibly. It’s hard to say.

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Posted: 31 May 2017 06:34 AM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 13 ]
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The Many Worlds interpretation of quantum mechanics is scientifically and philosophicallly bankrupt. It cannot be tested and explains nothing about our universe. A few prominent scientists push it off on the public it many, many more consider it a waste of time.

[ Edited: 31 May 2017 06:38 AM by DarronS ]
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Posted: 31 May 2017 11:56 AM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 14 ]
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DarronS - 31 May 2017 06:34 AM

The Many Worlds interpretation of quantum mechanics is scientifically and philosophicallly bankrupt. It cannot be tested and explains nothing about our universe. A few prominent scientists push it off on the public it many, many more consider it a waste of time.

No solution of QM can be tested but the MWI remains one of the most popular ideas because it answers a number of observational problems. DeWitt, Tegmark and Deutsch are among its main proponents. In fact, the whole concept of quantum computing relies on the idea that bits can exist in ‘superposition’ which, Deutsch believes, are the result of ‘other realities’ interacting at the quantum level with ours.

Where do you get your information from?

[ Edited: 31 May 2017 12:02 PM by webplodder ]
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Posted: 31 May 2017 03:34 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 15 ]
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Part of it is my admittedly elementary understanding of quantum mechanics and science, part of it is the magical nature of the Many Worlds Iterpretation. Most physicists do not believe in this idea.

https://www.sciencenews.org/article/poll-quantum-physicists-shows-agreement-disagreement-and-something-between

According to the survey cited in this article only 18 percent of physicists believe the Many Worlds Theory, Max Tegmark being one leading proponent, but he is known for promoting controversial and often untestable ideas, such as the Mathematical Universe Theory.

This is fascinating stuff. If you want to continue this conversation I’d be happy to find some of the reading material that led me to reject the MWI. I’ve had company the last few days and have some stuff to get caught up on around the house first.

[ Edited: 01 June 2017 06:27 AM by DarronS ]
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