does time exist, or did we just make it up?

quantumThis article, though a little long, is very interesting. It questions the validity of time. Does time actually exist or is it something we made up to measure our perception? This seems straightforward. Logically, to me, it seems that we made up time to measure our perception of something. It is bizarre that time passes more slowly for those moving faster. Let’s take an example: You are in a spaceship approaching the speed of light and spend 1 light year going somewhere and 1 light year coming back. People on the earth have aged much more than you. Now keeping that example in mind, consider this: We (and by we, I mean earth and our universe) is traveling away from something (perhaps due to the big bang) at a certain rate. Therefore if this theory holds true, the origin of the big bang must be where actual time is accurate, but since we’re moving at some really fast rate away from it, we’re aging (and time is passing) more slowly for us than at the point of the big bang. Make sense? It’s very interesting to think about. I hope your brain doesn’t explode.

Physicists have long struggled to understand what time really is. In fact, they are not even sure it exists at all. In their quest for deeper theories of the universe, some researchers increasingly suspect that time is not a fundamental feature of nature, but rather an artefact of our perception. One group has recently found a way to do quantum physics without invoking time, which could help pave a path to a time-free “theory of everything”. If correct, the approach suggests that time really is an illusion, and that we may need to rethink how the universe at large works…

…In the past year, he and his colleagues have worked out a method to compress multiple quantum events in time into a single event that can be described without reference to time Physical Review D, vol 75, p 084033.

via Is time an illusion? – physics-math – 19 January 2008 – New Scientist.

Tags: , ,

scientists stop the aging process in mice

I find this extremely interesting, but at the same time, it brings up the question about immortality. Does anyone truly want to be immortal? I don’t think I do, but at the same time, this could completely improve the life of someone whose liver is too old to function. It will decrease the likelihood of a failed transplant or a transplant at all. It’s a thin line we’re walking and it appears we’re about to fall over it.

Scientists have stopped the aging process in an entire organ for the first time, a study released today says.

In experiments, livers in genetically modified mice 22 to 26 months old, the equivalent of octogenarians in human years, cleaned blood as efficiently as those in animals a quarter their age.

By contrast, the livers of normal mice in a control group began to fail.

via Scientists stop the ageing process (ABC News in Science).

Tags: ,

study: drug can erase emotional links to fearful memories

A lab study shows that a common blood pressure drug can modify a fear memory in people. Scientists are hopeful such drugs could be used to treat people with post-traumatic stress disorder, and this is already being tried in one clinic.

The really interesting thing about this story is that the memory itself is still in tact, but the emotional link (i.e. fear) is erased. In the study, volunteers were exposed to two images of spiders and received a small electric shock when they saw one of them. This produced an emotional memory of fear whenever they saw that particular spider. The experimental group of students were then given a beta blocker (blood pressure) drug and exposed to the same image. This effectively removed the fear that was associated with the image. Truly an amazing development especially for those with post traumatic stress disorder (PTSD).

via Study: Drug Can Erase Fearful Memories : NPR.

Tags: , ,

are there multiple universes? multiverse?

Tags: , , ,

next generation cloaking device demonstrated

“A device that can bestow invisibility to an object by “cloaking” it from visual light is closer to reality. After being the first to demonstrate the feasibility of such a device by constructing a prototype in 2006, a team of Duke University engineers has produced a new type of cloaking device, which is significantly more sophisticated at cloaking in a broad range of frequencies.”

“Cloaking devices bend electromagnetic waves, such as light, in such a way that it appears as if the cloaked object is not there. In the latest laboratory experiments, a beam of microwaves aimed through the cloaking device at a “bump” on a flat mirror surface bounced off the surface at the same angle as if the bump were not present. Additionally, the device prevented the formation of scattered beams that would normally be expected from such a perturbation.”

via Next generation cloaking device demonstrated.

Tags: , ,

‘Marilyn Monroe’ Hormone

marilynmScientists have discovered an ovarian steroid hormone that when present, causes women’s bodies to be shaped like an hour glass. It also typically makes them move from one man to a man that is more respected or in a higher class. They also do not typically have one night stands, but could have an intense affair.

SCIENTISTS have identified the Marilyn Monroe hormone that is linked to an hour-glass body shape in women, and also an increased desire to trade-up to new men.

Women who have high levels of oestradoil also show elevated confidence and a greater inclination to have sex outside of their current relationship, according to the US-based research.

via ‘Marilyn Monroe’ hormone discovered | News.com.au.

Tags: , ,