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OFF-TOPIC Anyone up for a lil Chaos Theory?

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MJ DeMarco

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I'm trying to get a little Chaos Theory into my book as it pertains to our actions that transcend into the years ... the theory relates that minute changes in initial conditions can have dramatic effects when extended out years, decades, millenia ...

Some "time travel" movies have addressed chaos theory in their storylines where time travelers disrupt the future by going back in time and changing initial conditions ... like, if I travel back 100,000 years and accidentally kill a butterfly, the world as it is today would be entirely different ...

Chaos Theory: A Brief Introduction | IMHO

The flapping of a single butterfly's wing today produces a tiny change in the state of the atmosphere. Over a period of time, what the atmosphere actually does diverges from what it would have done. So, in a month's time, a tornado that would have devastated the Indonesian coast doesn't happen. Or maybe one that wasn't going to happen, does.
 

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MJ DeMarco

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Interesting. I am assuming this is to stress the idea that little changes greatly change your future.
Absolutely, and I'm not just talking about big things like "move to another city" but minor things ... like the choice to go out with friends on a Saturday night vs staying home to relax.
 

JScott

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Anyone who has any interest in the topic should definitely read "Chaos," by James Gleick...

I was tremendously lucky to get into a class at the University of Maryland taught by James Yorke, who is one of the "founding fathers" on the subject of non-linear dynamics...even for non-math types of people, it's an immensely interesting topic...
 

HCBailly

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Wasn’t there an episode of Star Trek: DS9, where they were trying to predict future events of the war through some complex set of equations? It wasn’t Chaos Theory, but I recall one line where they were saying that small, minor events tend to cancel out over long periods of time, in the grand scheme of things. For example, 1 (event)/infinity (total timeline) would equal zero.
 
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MJ DeMarco

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Probably, Star Trek has a dozen or so episodes involving altered time lines due to time travel.
 

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There are many types of chaos but the one that I think applies here is deterministic chaos. Here is a brief introduction I found with some of my comments italicized. Unfortunately Chaos was a very young science when I was studying math and I did not quite reach that far. probabbility and statistics was my next class but I dropped out before I took it.[FONT=Arial, Helvetica]Deterministic Chaos[/FONT]

[SIZE=+1]a system is chaotic if its trajectory through state space is sensitively dependent on the initial conditions, that is, if unobservably small causes can produce large effects[/SIZE]
In the last few decades, physicists have become aware that even the systems studied by classical mechanics can behave in an intrinsically unpredictable manner. Although such a system may be perfectly deterministic in principle, its behavior is completely unpredictable in practice. This phenomenon was called deterministic chaos. To explain its origin, we must go back to the concept of linearity. Linearity means basically that effects are proportional to causes. If you hit a ball twice as hard, it will fly away twice as quickly. Another way of expressing this is additivity: the total effect is the sum of the effects of the individual causes. For example, if you are pushing a car that ran out of fuel, and want it to move twice as fast, you might either push twice as hard, or find someone else to help you push.



When searching for mentors you want to find someone who is stronger than you therby pushing the car even faster. Bettr yet find a mechanic who can fix your car.


The effect would be the same. In the example of the car, the system is not perfectly linear: when you push twice as hard, the car will not move exactly twice as fast, but only approximately. You would not make a big mistake, though, if you would assume that the effect is proportional to your effort. Many practical situations are like that: they are not exactly linear, but you can approximate them quite well with a linear function. Linear equations are solved easily, but non-linear ones are in general very hard or impossible to solve. Therefore, until the beginning of this century most non-linear problems in classical mechanics were approximated by linear ones. However, cases started to accumulate where linear functions were clearly not good approximations.
One of the most famous is the three-body problem. Newton's theory of gravitation provides a simple solution to the problem of two mutually attracting bodies, for example the sun and one of its planets. However, as soon as a third body comes into play, for example another planet, the problem becomes mathematically unsolvable. In practice, astronomers work with approximations, where the attraction to the most important body, in this case the sun, is taken as the basis, while the effect of a third body is brought in as a perturbation.



Perturbations are distractions in life. those things that take you of your determined path. Some might be refreshing while others might be catastrophic. This could be ideas, people, and decisions that enter your life. Its your job to decide whether these third bodies will keep you on your determined path.



Predictions based on this approximation are in practice very reliable. The reason this works is because the gravitation exerted by the planets is tiny compared to the gravitation exerted by the sun. However, nobody can prove that they are absolutely reliable. It is very well possible that the solar system is unstable, and that the gravitational attractions between the different planets may lead one of the planets to suddenly escape into outer space.



Your Gravity is your force of will or your personal power. Anthony Robbins states "its our decisions that shape our destiny". As such the more we exert our decision making process the stronger our gravity will be and the more people we will attract. Unfortunately we will attract both harmonius people and also "turds in the punch bowl." We again use our gravity or personal power to cast away those things that are detrimental to our determined path.



We cannot predict whether such catastrophic effects will occur because they depend on undetectable changes in the initial conditions. In the two body problem, if one of the conditions is changed a little, the effect will not be very different. For example, if the moon would be brought a little closer to the Earth, its trajectory would remain basically the same.



This is the case of being caught in the rat race. We let our insecurities guide us in our decisions and get caught on the slowlane treadmill doing the same thing over and over again. We may wish for a better life but wishing is not the same as deciding. To decide in Latin means" to cast off". we flee from our safe little orbit and try something different. It requires the use of will and ACTION. That is why it is so difficult to break free from orbit. The same reason it takes thousands of gallons of fuel for the sopace shuttle to lift off.


This is no longer true in the three-body problem. A tiny change in one of the variables, for example the speed of the planet Venus, might result in a totally different outcome, for example the planet Mars crashing into the sun. This is called "sensitive dependence on initial conditions". The effects are extremely sensitive to changes in the conditions that cause them. This is the essence of non-linearity: effects are no longer proportional to causes.


Free from the bondage of earths gravity we can now fly across the universe whipping by planetary and solar bodies gaining speed and and slingshotting away.



Small causes may have large effects. In a way, "sensitive dependence" is nothing more than the rediscovery by scientists of the old wisdom which is captured by the phrase "for want of a horseshoe the kingdom was lost".



Two words: Due Diligence



Processes which are very sensitive to small fluctuations are called chaotic. This is because their trajectories are in general very irregular, so that they give the impression of being random, even though they are driven by deterministic forces.
The meteorologist Lorentz has invented yet another expression, the "butterfly effect". While studying the equations that determine the weather, he noticed that their outcomes are strongly dependent on the initial conditions. The weather is a chaotic system. The tiniest fluctuations in air pressure in one part of the globe may have the most spectacular effects in another part. Thus, a butterfly flapping its wings somewhere in Chicago may cause a tornado in Tokyo


The words you speak have the same effect. They will either help someone decide to break orbit or send them crashing back down to earth. Choose your words carefully.


. This explains why scientists find it so difficult to predict the weather. To predict future situations, they need to know the present situation in its finest details. But obviously they will never be able to know all the details: they cannot monitor every butterfly flapping its wings! The fewer details they know, the less accurate their long term predictions. That is why reliable weather predictions seldom extend more than a few days in the future.



This works both ways. I was at first looking at real estate as my vehicle. I am now harnessing the power of FOREX and all its mathematical slpendor.I may have not chose it had I not seen an infomercial about it or some of the posts I saw here on this forum.




Such chaotic processes basically work as amplifiers: they turn small causes into large effects. That means that small, unobservable fluctuations will affect the outcome of the process. Although the process is deterministic in principle, equal causes having equal effects, it is unpredictable in practice. Indeed, causes that seem equal to the best of our knowledge can still have unobservable differences and therefore lead to very different effects.
 
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MJ DeMarco

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Thanx Eagle. This thread is ripe for a unicon interjection...

Also, The Butterfly Effect is one of the movies that really tries to put the chaos theory in cinematic forum ...
 

Russ H

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There was a story called "The Sound of Thunder" (by Ray Bradbury).

One of the most memorable SF stories I've ever read.

-Russ H.
 
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MJ DeMarco

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There was a story called "The Sound of Thunder" (by Ray Bradbury).

One of the most memorable SF stories I've ever read.

-Russ H.
They made a movie adaptation of the book a few years ago staring Ben Kingsley ... did you get a chance to see it? It was pretty interesting.
 

Russ H

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Haven't seen it.

I'll try to find it.

I went through a Bradbury phase. Farenheit 451, Martian Chronicles, Dandelion Wine-- mostly short stories (my favorites). I'm an SF nut. :)

-Russ H.
 

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JScott

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I went through a Bradbury phase....mostly short stories (my favorites).
Me too...

Funny, something happened today that reminded me of this story:

All Summer in a Day - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

I spent about 20 minutes telling my wife about the story, but couldn't for the life of me remember who wrote it or what it was called. When you mentioned RB, it hit me...

Thanks Russ!
 

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MJ,

Ok how's this for chaos theory. I asked for a Carrier out of Wa. and got a submarine out of Georgia. On that Sub, a shipmate introduced me to RDPD in 2004. I got out of the service and got a job in the springs. I quit that job, went back to school and signed up for an internship. During that internship I had the time to read rdpd. I cruise the RD forums just in time to read HomeTheaterGuys posts (Aka Russ) directing me here. I get really helpful advice on everything under the sun and decide to buy houses. I quit school and get a job in a similar industry. That job allows me to buy 4 houses.

Now going back, how many of those little items would have prevented me from getting to this point. All, or maybe none. I may still have traveled 1000 miles, but only to reach another destination in my life far from this one. Both could be positive, only God knows.


I stopped cursing red lights years ago, because I have made it to and from work safely so many times. (Knock on wood) I wonder if I had not caught the light, could that car that darted out have hit me or would I have hit some stray pedestrian.

About 5 years ago a family was driving near Golden, Co. A new steel bridge girder fell and hit the car the at moment of impact with the ground killing the family instantly. Had the car not started for a mere 2-3 seconds would they be alive today? WOuld the kids have gone on to be world renowned for any thing. Who knows, but its a very very interesting topic.
 

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I think Stephen Ambrose wrote a book with a similar concept called "What If" They speculate on how the world would be different if little items like that changed.
 
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MJ DeMarco

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What movies reflect this theory? Butterfly Effect, Sliding Doors ... anyone know of any others?

Also, should we introduce string theory which mentions that every choice you have spawns off a new parallel dimension resulting in millions of parallel dimensions? In other words, millions of "yous"? In the other dimensions, you are dead, famous, miserable, happy, rich, poor ....
 

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What movies reflect this theory? Butterfly Effect, Sliding Doors ... anyone know of any others?

Also, should we introduce string theory which mentions that every choice you have spawns off a new parallel dimension resulting in millions of parallel dimensions? In other words, millions of "you s"? In the other dimensions, you are dead, famous, miserable, happy, rich, poor ....


I think there was a movie called "Intersection", that dealt with choices leading up to a bad car accident. It's been years since I've seen it, so don't remember the details.

As for the Infinite universes theory, I've heard it but don't subscribe to it. The reason being is that even though it's true that results would change if we made different decisions, there in NO force or mechanism that would cause that dimensional split to occur.

In other words, every physical action you make (ie. turn left instead of right) is the result of your brain arriving at that decision. Factors such as personal experience, interpretation of an event, and motivation all play roles in how you arrive at a decision. If you break it down, a decision is the result of neurons firing and chemical reactions occurring. Some would argue there is a spiritual element thrown in to the equation. Regardless, there is no evidence that entire new universes are instantly created based on decisions and actions which are constantly occurring.

That's not to say it’s impossible. There is just not a reason for it or evidence of it. Bottom line, there is no facilitator or mechanism that would cause this phenomenon.
Hope that makes sense.
 

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Also, should we introduce string theory which mentions that every choice you have spawns off a new parallel dimension resulting in millions of parallel dimensions? In other words, millions of "yous"? In the other dimensions, you are dead, famous, miserable, happy, rich, poor ....
There have been several episodes of a pretty far out late night am radio show called "Coast to Coast" that have delved into this topic: John Titor & Time Travel - Shows - Coast to Coast AM with George Noory ...Very entertaining to say the least. :)
 
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Rawr

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I was actually going to post a thread on how small decisions can have a huge effect down the line.


meeting a random stranger who is going to be your SO. going for a walk and ending up in a career.. etc.
 

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What movies reflect this theory? Butterfly Effect, Sliding Doors ... anyone know of any others?

Also, should we introduce string theory which mentions that every choice you have spawns off a new parallel dimension resulting in millions of parallel dimensions? In other words, millions of "yous"? In the other dimensions, you are dead, famous, miserable, happy, rich, poor ....
Sort of related, the past episode of How I Met Your Mother was entirely about what events caused him to end up at a crosswalk at a certain time. He talked about why he decided to go for a walk, why he turned left instead of right, why he decided to pay a bum a dollar. The whole episode was flashbacks. Yes its a comedy show, but it illustrated how little decisions changed his life that day.
 

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NoMoneyDown

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Along these same lines, I often seem intrigued by people who may have had something accidental occur (like getting a fender bender) and respond by saying something like "If only I had left the house 5 minutes sooner." Yet, something you did (or didn't do) 15 years earlier could have sealed your fate in other ways before now, too - perhaps even fatally. Yet we only concentrate on the outcome of something (bad) that has happened to us today. IOW, leaving home 5 mins sooner COULD have prevented the fender bender you had, but it could also have caused you to have a more serious accident 10 seconds before you had this one.
 

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What movies reflect this theory? Butterfly Effect, Sliding Doors ... anyone know of any others?

Also, should we introduce string theory which mentions that every choice you have spawns off a new parallel dimension resulting in millions of parallel dimensions? In other words, millions of "yous"? In the other dimensions, you are dead, famous, miserable, happy, rich, poor ....

String theory deals more with the sub atomic world. that is they put atoms in a particle accelerator and smash them into a wall. the result is a cascade of sub atomic particles. What is interesting is that sometimes the particles just for a microsecond out weigh the mass of the atom from which they came . In other words matter was created out of seemingly nothing.

The theory is that particles vibrate in different dimensions. As humans we can only perceive four dimensi0nal space-time. (width height depth and forward time) String theory states there are dimensions we do not perceive. Up to eleven of them or more. when atoms are put through a particle accelerator these unseen particles recombine with others from other dimensions whether in space time or beyond forming a mass greater than the original atom.

The sum of all the particles in an atom is greater than the atom itself. But that is only looking through the picture with space-time. When we look at it in eleven dimensions the weights balance.
 

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Check it!:cool:


[ame=http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=j50ZssEojtM]YouTube - Large Hadron Rap[/ame]
 

PEERless

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MJ, I just wrote about Chaos as it pertains to my idea of luck.

"...Chaos implies the incredible significance of every moment. Tiny actions and conditions -- things as subtle as the flutter of tiny wings -- can have enormous consequences on the course of events in the future...Could you make a choice this instant that would change the very course of your future?"

Feel free to quote me.
 
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MJ DeMarco

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MJ, I just wrote about Chaos as it pertains to my idea of luck.

"...Chaos implies the incredible significance of every moment. Tiny actions and conditions -- things as subtle as the flutter of tiny wings -- can have enormous consequences on the course of events in the future...Could you make a choice this instant that would change the very course of your future?"

Feel free to quote me.
Skyler Reep, Author of Luck Struck?
 

Russ H

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eagle, that accelerator rap was great! :smxA::smxA::smxA:

-Russ H.
 

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eagle, that accelerator rap was great! :smxA::smxA::smxA:

-Russ H.
http://www.ted.com/index.php/talks/brian_greene_on_string_theory.html

Here is A great talk on string theory simplified. Very exciting times we live in.

I read LHC broke down a few days after it was fired up sept 2008 and the repairs are almost done. Should start seeing some cool stuff in August. People do not realize that if this theory is proven to be true this the applications will be mind blowing.


:coolgleamA:
 

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