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The Judge Was Unfair

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Posted by Paul R. Martin on May 7, 2002 15:37:20 UTC

Hi Harv,

***So, Paul, do you think the judge was fair?***

He heard the testimony wrong. You slipped in false testimony by saying, "Dr.D, of course, not wanting to lose the case admits that he did use symmetry principles". If you read the exchanges between Dick and Yanniru, you will discover that Dick has consistently and adamantly denied assuming symmetry principles. Now, did he "use" them? I don't think either of us is competent to answer that, or to understand the role symmetry plays either in Dick's work, or even in Emmy Noether's work.

You asked me what I think, so I will tell you. I think symmetry somehow comes into play late in the chain of Dick's inferences and is not part of his assumptions.

***I saw analogies in your response, but what I didn't see was a response on how symmetries cannot create the type of physics that Dick's paper produces.***

You didn't see such a response because I don't claim that symmetries cannot create the type of physics that Dick's paper produces (which, incidentally is the same type of physics that has been produced by scientists.)

To the contrary, from what little I understand about it, my impression is that Emmy Noether has shown exactly how symmetries do produce physics.

***My question was what is wrong with the assumption that symmetries are in fact responsible for Dick's results and not any fancy work on his part.***

What is wrong with it is that it is an assumption. Not that that is terribly wrong and bad. After all, that assumption has been made by traditional physicists and it has proved to be remarkably successful.

What Dick has proved with his "fancy work" is that you don't need to make that assumption. Instead you can prove that it must necessarily be so for any communicable universe. He has removed the inescapable doubt that accompanies any assumption.

It isn't that Dick has discovered a new and different physics that should replace the old physics. What he has done is to find a firm and "true" foundation on which much of physics can be derived from pure thought without any appeal to experience or experiment. This forms a watershed separating out those aspects of our universe which must be the way they are from those aspects which retain some degree of freedom.

If acknowledged, this could be useful for science because they could then deliberately devote their expensive experimental resources only to those parts of physical theory which are not tautological. It's a waste of time to run an expensive experiment only to prove that A = A.

Gotta run. You know, maybe you should have been a lawyer, Harv. That was a pretty good story.

Warm regards,


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