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Smartest Guy Doesn't Grasp What Rest Of Us Do? Doesn't Compute!

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Posted by Luis Hamburgh on August 13, 2002 22:18:14 UTC


You understand Einstein this summer, but did not last summer. This is great! Now you nudge Stafford from time to time, telling him there is something "subtle" he’s not quite understanding.

--But to some of us this "subtlety" was overcome years ago.

Still, you insist Stafford is "far more intelligent than anyone else here." Oh, and he doesn’t even understand this "subtle" thing that you have just begun to understand.

--Doesn't something seem a little inconsistent here?

You demand of Alan that he tell us, "in three sentences at most, what in the world" he’s talking about. Yet neither you nor Stafford can tell us in such simple terms what "challenges" of Stafford’s the rest of us might "enjoy exploring . . . if we had a similar attitude."

Is it that Stafford's ideas are so complex that almost no one is capable of putting them into a few, simple sentences? Or could it be a much more uninteresting situation? I think Stafford's "challenges" are old news, and as you -- his close (and smarter) ally -- explore these ideas, you're slowly learning exactly how old and commonplace they are.

We’ve already seen you “break through” the philosophical barrier regarding time. Let’s see if we can apply your three-sentences standard to the rest of Stafford’s “work”:

1 -The universe is nothing more than particles that cannot exist absent motion, and motion that is meaningless without particles!
2 -There is a smallest span of distance, meaning there is a smallest unit of time (ignoring the 'Einstein was wrong' tangent here), both of which we might be quantify in numerical terms; terms with which we might be able to describe all of reality.
3 -When taken together, ideas # 1 and 2 suggest that there is no such thing as true simultaneity!! Once we accept this, we see that the numerical system suggested in # 2 is perfectly suited to describe all of reality!

Does any of this ring a bell? Have you never considered Shrodinger's cat? Have you never contemplated the philosophical position known as solipsism?

Have you still "never, ever seen anyone with the required intelligence and knowledge deal with" Stafford’s ideas?


By the way, these issues have been volleyed about in intellectual circles for decades. They’re very fun to contemplate, but hardly anything revolutionary.

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